Keep Your Self Control...

I love rummaging through old record bins. Sometimes you can't find a damn thing worth paying 50 cents for, and that blows. But, sometimes you find something truly unexpected and wonderful and it's all worthwhile. This was one of those special weeks and I found an album I think I can call... well magical. For your viewing pleasure:

That's right sports fans. This is a Cincinnati Bengals sponsored 12" vinyl of a song creatively titled "Just Say No." The date is listed as 1987. But there'se more! The backside features a picture of three Bengals players (Ira Hillary, Mike Martin and Reggie Williams) who all supposedly actually contributed to this sweet hybrid of music and message. Reggie Williams appears to be the leader of this band of do-gooders. That's right, the Dartmouth educated, Flint MI born Reggie Willams who has the enviable distinction of playing in both Bengals' Super Bowl losses AND even served on Cincinnati's city council for a couple years. How did he find the time!?

Were I more prepared and a little bit less lazy I would have captured this song to an mp3, but frankly it's just as terrible as you can probably imagine. My best description is Hall and Oates meets Lionel Ritchie ("All Night Long," not "Hello") but in a really shitty generic sort of way. Lots of snythesizers and an instrumental break featuring an alarming amount of cowbell. I took the liberty of transcribing the lyrics. And, no, I don't know whether or not they were personally written by Nancy Regan, so don't ask.

I met a girl so sad and lonely
She said her world was incomplete
Her friends tried to persuade her to do bad things
That's when i had to enter scene, I told her...

Just say no
Keep your self control
Then you'll know your mind is free
I've got too far to go
To get to where I want to be

It's really a no win situation
Pollute your mind with chemical things
We must avoid the complications
And find out what we really really need

(Say No!) (I reeeealllly wanna say No)

Don't be afraid to turn away
(Don't be afraid to turn away)
Your destiny is worth a whole lot more
If you just say no

[cowbell, synthesizer, a shit-ton more cowbell]
la da da da da

[Bridge, again for some reason]

Don't be afraid to turn away
(Don't be afraid to turn away)
Your destiny is worth a whole lot more
If you would say (say no no no no no, say no)
Just say it again (no no no no no no no no)
Just really say it!


So there you have it. One of the finest pieces of music ever composed and put to plastic. Frankly, with the current state of the 2006 Bengals it's nice to know that there was somebody actually not doing drugs on the team. Pass you by, glory days....

On another note, a friend of mine who teaches design pointed out that the cover of this album is one of the most poorly designed things he's ever seen and intends to use it in class as a "what not to do" example. Just all around fantastic.


trout said...

That crazed Bengal tiger is chewing through the helmet, just so that he can get his teeth on some Just Say No. This makes me think he wants to do away with saying no so that he can hit the hash pipe again. Yes?

Jim's Son said...

It hurts to look at that picture of the good folks singing.... I mean... when people put the effort in to promote that message and they aren't doing it in some condescending, or image saving way I feel bad... they have such good intentions... and obviously they have issues... but their work is so so futile... or something...

Anonymous said...

This is absolutely brilliant. You absolutely HAVE to upload some mp3s in the near future.

This is the kind of album that Chris Henry needs to hear.

Also, kudos on the blog, guys.

I'm adding a link from my own.

Gage said...

Dave, thanks for the compliment. I'll have to figure out sometime how to get an mp3, but trust me it's awful.