Thursday, October 29, 2009

off the florida keys

It seems I did remember a song from the 80's after all (that is, remember listening to it when I was young, not retroactively).

Every so often, our parents would have hangouts (I suppose they would be in their mid-30's so is that what I'm going to be doing in 10 years? Scary.) with two families from our church (and sometimes they'd let another family in the cool kids group), both of which were alumni from my dad's college, Seoul National University. Naturally, after some group activity, the parents would hang out in the living room, while the kids would hang out in one of the bedrooms, playing Monopoly, or an awesome computer game called Cyberia (where after you kill people and come back to the room, the hero quips, "You guys still dead?" Classic.) or watching some random TV show. One of the families had two girls, the other had two boys (the oft mentioned Brian Lee being one of them), and we were the boy girl family, yay. (Funnily enough, the two girls both went to MIT, the two boys went to Yale, and my sister went to Harvard and I failed to complete the trend by being well, a failure. Ok, really I'm over it though. Really.)

Anyhow, Aimee, one of the two girls and being the oldest of the bunch, introduced us to this song called "Kokomo" by the Beach Boys. You can listen to the song here.


Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take ya
Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama
Key Largo, Montego, baby why don't we go, Jamaica

Off the Florida Keys there's a place called Kokomo
That's where you wanna go to get away from it all
Bodies in the sand, tropical drink melting in your hand
We'll be falling in love to the rhythm of a steel drumband
Down in Kokomo

Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take you to
Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama
Key Largo Montego, baby why don't we go
Ooh I wanna take you down to Kokomo,
we'll get there fast and then we'll take it slow
That's where we wanna go, way down in Kokomo.

Martinique, that Monserrat mystique...

We'll put out to sea and we'll perfect our chemistry
By and by we'll defy a little bit of gravity
Afternoon delight, cocktails and moonlit nights
That dreamy look in your eye, give me a tropical contacthigh
Way down in Kokomo


Port au Prince, I wanna catch a glimpse...

Everybody knows a little place like Kokomo
Now if you wanna go to get away from it all
Go down to Kokomo


This song definitely has nostalgic value as we listened to it on those hangout nights, probably instilling some wistful Caribbean dreams in us (though none of us had probably ever been to the Caribbean at that point). I think I didn't actually know what Kokomo was until a long time afterwards, all I knew was it was a place where we wanted to go, apparently.

Oh, and now I remember I kicked ass at Monopoly. Sweet. Ah the memories.

Today's perspective:

This song still makes me want to get away from it all. I don't think I've been to the Caribbean yet actually. ANYONE WANT TO GO DOWN TO THE KOKOMO? Actually, I hear the cruises there are better than the cruises in Greece. (For more info on cruises in Greece, click here) Something else just makes the song tropical (probably the combination of the hand drums, steel drums and accordion-like sounds).

I didn't know this was a song made in 1988 until I researched songs from this time period, but man had the Beach Boys aged even at that point. I guess you can still sing about taking a hot babe to the Caribbean when you're a creepy old guy, as long as you're a Beach Boy.

I can't put my finger on it, but I suppose descending chord progression of the verses make for a potent nostalgic feeling, even without the memory of the song being from my childhood. The traditional Beach Boy style also pack a 60's type vibe into this song which makes it kind of looking into the past, in the past. Definitely would be an awesome song to play if one were to have a lot of friends at the Caribbean with a tropical drink melting in the hand at night, enjoying a nice breeze, ZoMG.

edit: Extra note, there's a scene in a How I Met Your Mother episode where Barney communicates to Ted with his eyebrows and this song starts playing where it's utterly classic.


gabrielle said...

My dad totally sang this song all the time when I was younger. I bet he still does even though I'm not home anymore.

janet said...

even then you were good at managing money...

Will said...

who says they're a failure going to duke

Denise said...

the snowstorm episode!!

that was hilarious

blee said...