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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Six Best "Hey!"s in Rock and Roll

Posted By on Tue, Jan 8, 2013 at 11:13 AM

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2. Piebald - "American Hearts"

Piebald was a mathy emo-ish rock band from Boston who had a tendency to get a bit too cheeky at times. You know, like writing songs about ice cream. The band's most delicate balance occurred on its 2002 landmark We Are The Only Friends We Have which spawned the almost-hit single "American Hearts." I actually remember hearing this on 105.7 The Point, but the masses want nu-metal and nu-metal they shall receive. "American Hearts" uses its "Hey!" deliberately with a chorus of "Hey! You're part of it." In a way, it is a wake-up call. The band's singer Travis Shettel chronicles the tensions of modern America, the way we all contribute to the fabric of a society that can be unequal and stubborn. But "Hey!" pay attention to me, because you need to know that we're all in this together. For better or worse, you're part of it. It's actually a really responsible statement for a rock song.

1. Gary Glitter - "Rock'n Roll Part Two"

Really, it has to be "Rock'n Roll Part Two," because it is usually seen parenthetically as "Rock'n Roll Part Two (The Hey Song)." Hearing this song in a public setting, it takes physical restraint to not shout "Hey!" at the appropriate time. It's that whole involuntary, classical conditioning, Pavlov's dog thing that comes along with a song embedding itself deeply into our culture.

With that said, let's discuss how freaky Gary Glitter and his band are on the performance video of "Rock'n Roll Part Two," how uncomfortable the relatively straight-laced kids in the crowd are, how the guitar player with the star has to reconnect his strap at 1:40, and how beautiful it is that somebody this alien is responsible for the most notorious "Hey!" in rock history. Think about how even the most queer-bashing Westboro Baptist Church member would not think twice about shouting along to this song, even though Glitter is androgynous as it gets and the drummer looks like Mrs. Doubtfire and the action of partaking in the song is an indirect approval of these freaks. To this I say - "Hey, you're part of it."

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