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I doubt many of you pure innocent waifs have taken notice of some recent tawdry trends around here, but rock ‘n’ roll seems to have had their hormones kick up a notch as of late.

The first it was The “5” Royales yesterday talking about what they want from their female partner(s), but since they’re still a group alternating between gospel and rock they chose to be a little more vague about the details not wanting to offend anyone who might not be partaking in the “sex for fun and profit” home course.

Then again, considering today’s entrant in this racy contest is all of 17 years old, it might be safe to say that this kind of music is bound to stir up some trouble if they’re not careful.


Get Out Of The Driver’s Seat
I don’t know about you all – and please, don’t tell me – but beginning one’s sexual journey around 17 years old seems a little late all things considered. In any event it’s definitely not something to get worked up about.

But in ancient times, say 1952, maybe that wasn’t the case, although considering people generally had shorter lifespans than today we have to ask why they were waiting so long to get started.

So let it be said that in this review the sexual awakening of Sylvia Vanterpool is not going to be an issue… unless of course we’re to take the title Drive Daddy Drive a bit too literally.

I’m not talking incestuous relations, because clearly that’s not what is intended, but rather the male role in her journey of sensual self-discovery being taken by a full-grown man.

Hmm… I know shock value is a major selling point – that’s why we have so many X-rated pictures adorning the site to attract wandering eyes – but here’s a case where maybe an alternative word could’ve been used… like say “Baby”.

Then again I suppose that brings to the table its own ethical quandaries.

Come to think of it, let’s forget the whole thing and move right along.

Not the record, we’re sure as hell not forgetting that, but let’s cast aside any moral crusade that might otherwise infringe upon a harmless rock song by a sassy future star who always stood toe-to-toe with the men in a misogynistic industry and came out on top.

Umm… try not to read anything nefarious into that last paragraph either or we’ll never get to the music.

This Ain’t No Kiddie Car
Considering how often we’ve criticized Jubilee Records’ resident bandleader, saxophonist Buddy Lucas, for his questionable arrangements in the past, he’s been shoring up his deficiencies as of late and actually coming up with suitable musical tracks behind the label’s rock acts.

Granted, none of it is really pushing the creative envelope and breaking new ground, but it’s still nice to see Lucas knows how to focus on the basics such as a choppy piano and some vibrant guitar licks while actually doubling-down on the rhythm by adding handclaps to bolster the drumbeat behind Little Sylvia who, as usual, sounds older than her years, which is a good thing considering the topic of Drive Daddy Drive.

No, she’s not talking about having her father take her in the car to the library to study with her friends. She’s moved past that and is taking the advanced course in the birds and the bees.

So putting aside any uneasiness about what’s age appropriate here – to listen to that is – it’s safe to say that Sylvia is passing her classes with flying colors. Her vocals just ooze confidence even as there’s still just a hint of youthful innocence in her tone. But isn’t that also the case in real life when teen girls discover their inherent power over guys and look to make it work to their advantage before they really know what they’re doing?

The story, which easily could be an insurmountable problem should it become too explicit to even contemplate coming from a girl her age, is definitely titillating but there’s just enough braggadocio in her delivery to take her words with a grain of salt. After all, if guys are known for exaggerating their sexual conquests, it stands to reason that the girls can do the same themselves.

But whether she is or isn’t stretching the truth to keep the inexperienced boys her own age at arm’s length, it’s clear by the way she sells Drive Daddy Drive that Sylvia has already got a few notches on her headboard.

It’s not just the way she’s effectively moaning the title line, imbuing it with a carnal release that comes through loud and clear, but she’s selling the double entendre lyrics that surround the chorus with a twinkle in her eye, chiding the men who can’t handle their… umm… automobiles properly.

Now of course they aren’t making it difficult to read between the lines, but that’s the whole point, isn’t it? She’s having fun exploiting the interest men are showing in her and knows she can mock them without risking losing their attention. In fact, her goading them on as she does, dismissing the ones who aren’t man enough for her, is simply thinning the herd. Survival of the fittest as it were.

But nobody here, not the band, not the song’s writer, and let’s face it, not the majority of the male audience, is fitter than Sylvia herself who has already figured out that when it comes to riding, the more self-assured you are in what you’re doing – and the less inhibited you are in how you’re doing it – the more fun you’ll wind up having.


Drive All Day, Drive All Night
These types of songs that are meant to be sold with a wink and a smirk, by the singer and probably the retailer too, generally have a built-in ceiling on them that keeps them from touching perfection.

Those that manage it are the ones that purposefully discard any and all attempts to rein in those pesky charges of indecency and instead push the limits of musical debauchery with music that matches, and often surpasses, the story which trades in the sly humor shown here for something much more blatantly obscene.

By contrast Drive Daddy Drive is content to tweak your sense of decorum, maybe at times stretch it to the limit, but never quite cross that line into X-rated territory… at least outside your own twisted mind.

But that’s when the artist’s own awareness of just what she’s doing factors in and can elevate a record past its built-in deficiencies, in this case a few clunky words and the lack of an instrumental break to really overheat the engine as it were. To that end, thanks to the enthusiasm of Sylvia herself – who’d grow up to be one of the most beautiful female rock stars of all-time in case you needed reminding of just who is flirting with you here – as well as the energy of the band who are playing with a hard-on for the majority of the run-time, the record mostly speeds past the handful of bumps in the road the song has in its construction.

But as you all know, what really matters when you get behind the wheel, whether you learned how to “drive” in your mid-teens or much later in life, the kind of road trip being described here will be a success as long as you get the car parked safely in her garage before the record ends.


(Visit the Artist page of Sylvia Vanderpool for the complete archive of her records reviewed to date)