On the evidence of this lumbering classic they should have written more together, although the original 1975 On Parole recording is far lighter and funkier than the greasy thud we know and love. You will receive a verification email shortly. "The Motorcycle Song" I don't want a pickle I just wanna ride on my morotcycle And I don't want a tickle I'd rather ride on my motorcycle And I don't wanna die I just wanna ride on my motorcy...cle It was late last night, the other day Thought I'd go up and see Ray So I went up and I saw Ray Simply, as Dorian Lynskey suggests, protest music, by its very nature, has a built in shelf life and is often designed for a particular audience, event and or time. Scarecrow Press. Creedence Clearwater Revival – Sweet Hitch-Hiker (1971). DRN even changed their name to Bolts for the single release, fearing they wouldn’t say Nuts on the radio. Taking this into consideration, along with the social backdrop of 1967, the song evolves from being a ‘dumb song’ about a young man’s love of motorcycles to a powerful protest song expressing a young mans’ plea for his life and his freedom. Ashgate. With scintillating finger-picking, soulful vocals and dark romantic lyrics, 1952VBL has become one of … Online sources Arlo himself, was known to criticise the police’s ‘Gestapo like tactics’ often using the stage as the setting to answer back to these questionable police tactics. Since 1981, Dumpy’s Rusty Nuts have been an ebullient mainstay of the UK biker circuit, generally having too good a time on the road to bother releasing records. The Moto Guzzi was designed to ‘Go Around the World or Around the Corner!’ while BMW imports claimed that in buying one of their products, the customer would have: ‘A Ball with No Chain!’. This is why I cannot go to war.’. The simple reason for this is that his draft number was never called, another reason was due to an arrest for littering; as recollected by Guthrie in ‘Alice’s Restaurant’ in which he ironically claims that because of his ‘special crime’ he was not ‘moral enough’ to join the army. Originally written by the Magic Band in the mid 60s, the song didn’t emerge on record until 1978 (rerecorded from a 1976 version, unreleased due to a financial dispute with Frank Zappa), in the middle of the biker song’s golden age. A fair old rocking headbanger from Creedence Clearwater Revival, paying tribute to a massively popular 70s pastime that’s now almost totally defunct, thanks to serial killers. Didn’t make a difference, alas. In the song, when Arlo Guthrie tells the listener that he doesn’t want a pickle, doesn’t want a tickle, he just wants to ride his motorcycle, does he mean this literally? Leave feedback, Arlo Guthrie (born 10th July 1947, Brooklyn, New York ) is an American. History shows over 58,000 young Americans did in fact die over the course of US involvement in the Vietnam War. There are currently 4 official released versions of this song, all of which are completely different from each other: the only similarity being the chorus. He rose to fame in 1967 after an appearance at The Newport Folk Festival, where he debuted ‘Alice’s Restaurant’ an 18 minute, largely spoken protest against the Vietnam draft. If so, perhaps this is a ‘dumb song’, if not, then what is he talking about? If Arlo is indeed singing about being free and having freedom, rather than having a motorcycle, one must ask: freedom from what? Tackling the film’s jaded nihilism, Hendrix brings his own radiant positivity to the theme, helping to cement the crucial early association of hard rock and motorbikes. Whether or not Arlo went to fight in Vietnam or (in the other versions of the song), whether or not Arlo actually squashed a cop, does that make the song inauthentic? A Band Of Gypsys original from 1969, first released on posthumous collection Cry Of Love, there’s a manic, propulsive energy to this heavy funk/proto-metal scorcher, Jimi’s reflection on 1969’s hit biker movie. Change ), A Study of Arlo Guthrie’s ‘The Motorcycle Song’, http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=1616, http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1967/10/7/city-police-raid-hippie-havens-find/, http://www.christianfighterpilot.com/fighterpilotspeak.htm#Pickle, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihh7NwaLtrU, http://www.nationalreview.com/nroriginals/?q=MWE4ZGExNTg0YTU2YjBiMjNhNGFiZTBiNTIxZDI4YTQ=, Collaborative Songwriting…A Retrospective. Having considered that life and freedom are key themes in the song, against the Vietnam milieu, I have so far, neglected to analyse the other 2 lines of the chorus, these being: ‘I don’t want a pickle’ and ‘I don’t want a tickle’. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. There was a problem. As a result of belief and lifestyle, Arlo Guthrie has often been strongly associated with this movement. Receive news and offers from our other brands? In this analysis of ‘The Motorcycle Song’ I am not trying to suggest that my reading of the song is the absolute or only possible reading: taking another musicological approach may produce different analytical results. Connect your Spotify account to your Last.fm account and scrobble everything you listen to, from any Spotify app on any device or platform. There are more obvious Priest biker songs – Hell Bent For Leather, Heading Out To The Highway, Freewheel Burning - but none have the dusky emotive surge and mesmeric transportive qualities (or funky bassline) of Desert Plains.
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