🔒 And the Bleat Goes On

Wait long enough and every enjoyment is eventually placed on the altar, gussied up, and sanctified. Rock ‘n’ roll lyrics were once a readymade source of ridicule, regarded as gibberish written by and for bubblegum brains and blasting out of transistor radios to drive mom and dad mad. The late-night television host Steve Allen, equipped with Clark Kent glasses and a quipster’s fast draw, did a routine where he read aloud the lyrics of a popular pop song as if performing a poem at the 92Y in full authorial pomp. Most of the kinescopes from his show have been lost in the ghostly landfill of time, but Allen’s goof on Gene Vincent’s “Be Bop a Lula” circa 1956 somehow survives on YouTube, as Allen invites the studio audience and viewers at home to drink in the song’s simple beauty: “Be bop a lula, be my baby/bop a lula…I don’t mean

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