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egregious '80's music: shaddup you face (joe dolce)
Nov 12th, 2009 by wrekehavoc

do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

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in 1981,  american ex-pat joe dolce came up with cult hit shaddup you face, an unintelligible song with a chorus apparently written by joe’s eye-talian mama:

Whassamatta you? (hey!)
Gotta no respect?
Whaddaya think you do?
Why you looka so sad?
It’s-a not so bad
It’s-a nice-a place
Ah, shaddap you face
!

it actually ended up on the billboard hot 100 and took its place among the thousands of novelty songs that litter doctor demento’s mind and radio show.  in the UK, it even knocked ultravox’s vienna out of the number one spot.  this is somewhat surprising since the song hearkens back to an old sing-song that someone’s grandmother might have sung, albeit with wildly different lyrics.

annoyance aboundeth.

for starters, telling ANYONE to shut up was verboten in my family — it still is today.  you can disagree with someone else’s opinions, you can shush little kids who need to be quiet in a theater, when wildly provoked, you can tell a grown someone to hush. but to tell someone to shut up is like to slap someone in the face. it is just not done around here. and so hearing this song to me was a full affront on kindness. it was a dude encouraging people to behave badly. and to me, the 16 year old emily post of NJ, this was just wrong.

secondly, this ended up on a rock chart??? seriously??? novelty acts often annoyed me, but they were an annoyance that hardly showed up anywhere except on novelty shows. but i was subjected to this in my car on a regular basis for awhile. was it because people in the NY/NJ metro could relate to the eye-talian mama? (was it because the station managers could?) i couldn’t bear to hear this the first time; after the 50th time, i was screaming uncle.

to say it was a major step below  pac man fever pretty much would be an understatement.


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