July 27th, 2009

monkey pirate

Muisc Monday: Sensitive White Boy Music Edition

Back to the 90's again, kids! My sister gave me a copy of Toad the Wet Sprocket's album "Pale" for my birthday once, long ago. It was on cassette, and it had been opened and listened to. At the time I thought this scandalous, it was clearly something she'd listened to and didn't want herself. But I was wrong! It was something she'd listened to and realized I'd love. And she was right, I did. Toad became one of my favorite bands of all time, culminating in this song, "All I Want" (from the album "Fear") which has been a regular in my shower-singing repertoire for the past 15 years or so.



Toad the Wet Sprocket definitely falls in the "sensitive white boy" genre of music, something which was more prevalent in the 90's than today. Success was not kind to Toad - their first two albums, recorded in obscurity when they were young, teenagers, even, were excellent. Follow ups after the success of "Fear" were progressively less inspired.

In their heyday, I saw Toad at the Trocadero in Philly. Opening for them was the Gin Blossoms, a band unknown at the time. I was late because I'd made a very poor choice in asking a young lady to accompany me - she was callow and rude and dithered so mightily in getting ready that we missed the Blossoms. As we walked up to the club, they were out front handing out flyers. One of them said, "Want a flyer about the Gin Blossoms?" and I said, "Who the heck are the Gin Blossoms." The singer replied, "We're the Gin Blossoms!" In that case, I took their flyer. And lo, they went on to fame. The show was great, Toad were very natural on the stage and bantered and engaged with the audience. They also seemed to be having fun, and a little amazed that so many people knew all the words to many of their songs. Unfortunately, my date refused to use a public bathroom, and so, astonishingly, insisted we leave and drive back out of the city so she could use the bathroom at her apartment...before getting ready to go out with another guy, later that night. God rot your eyes, wherever you are, rude woman!

There's a live album recorded in Santa Barbara from the very same tour - I have it and love it. I wish they were still together, since they're a SoCal band, I could see them again. But perhaps the sensitive white boy music is best left in the 90's.
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