Wednesday, April 13, 2011

#22 Bobby Marchan There Is Something On Your Mind (1960)

In the South, you'd say a guy like Bobby Marchan had a little sugar in his blood... cuz he was so sweet. One of Huey "Piano" Smith's clowns, Bobby cut lead vocals on the classic double A-side ( in my opinion) "High Blood Pressure"/"Don't You Just Know It". Bobby also was the first to sing "Sea Cruise", a million selling single in 1959, but his vocals were replaced by Frankie Ford. Ford would become known as "The New Orleans Dynamo". Bobby was still just a clown.
Bobby finally got around to recording this Big Jay McNeely tune, a somewhat standard ass-swaying tune that, with a big dose of Bobby's theatricality, shot up to #1 on the R&B charts.
Yes, Bobby had a bit of a history with the theatre.

Since his teen years, Bobby liked to dress up as a woman and perform on stage in drag. He even organized his own drag troupe, The Powder Box Revue.
He would perform in drag at least into the 80's when I remember seeing posters of a platinum wigged Marchan stapled to telephone poles in New Orleans. (I was a college student, too dumb to go see Marchan when I could see The Neville Brothers play for the 12th time).

So here's why this is one of my 1001 tunes: the drama queen in Bobby gives us two dramatic monologues in the middle of "There Is Something On Your Mind".
The first one suggests when love is lost, move on.

I tell ya,when somebody else is rockin your cradle better
Than you can rock your cradle yourself,there's only one
Thing left in this world for you to do
Pack your clothes,turn around,walk slowly out the door
Look over your left shoulder,hang your head and say,

If you ever think about me
If I ever cross your mind
...I'm yours, I I know I know your mine

Then comes the second monologue. And the first time I heard this I stopped dead in my tracks. Its like the end of Taxi Driver!

After you can't stand it no more,you go on downtown
To the pawn shop and get yourself a pistol,and then you
Make it back up on the scene,where your love one and
Your best friend are now together..You go right in and
Bust down the door and shoot him..You can't shoot her
Because you know if you shoot her,all of your love and
Your long lifetime will be gone forever..and just as you
make it in your mind to forgive her,here comes another
One of your best friends through the door...This really
Makes you blow your top and you go right ahead and
Go on purpose to your heart,and shoot her...and realizing
What you just done,you say,"Baby please forgive me,I'm
sorry", and with her last dyin breath,she looks up at you
and say,

Doo,doo,doo Whoa-o-o , doo,doo,doo Whoa-o-o

For a thorough history of the Bobby Marchan story, check out this post by The Houndblog.

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