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When it comes to the shelf life of songs from the pre-crossover days of rock, there’s not many that have endured.

A few big hits along with some familiar titles thanks to later remakes by other artists, and a couple of groundbreaking influential sides, but beyond that it seems a little random at times… except for one area.

So-called smutty records. THOSE get talked about, frequently compiled on old CD collections and hyped by a small but determined segment of the population who apparently are unconcerned that by doing so they’re revealing to the world at large just how awkward and inexperienced they are with the opposite sex that they need to get their rocks off with records more than seven decades old.

Ahh well, too bad those losers fawned over the underwhelming attempt at suggestiveness found on the top side of this single, because the flip-side might actually have the slightly more impressive effort even if – despite the strange and potentially kinky title – everybody keeps their clothes on throughout.


The Last Thing I Do
If the top half of their debut single had been nothing but an attempt to cash in – well after the fact – on a massive and salacious rock hit by The Dominoes from more than a year earlier, then you’d expect that they’d stick any old song on the B-side just to get it out before even more time passed.

Who knows, some labels may even go so far as to shove an instrumental on it and thus the vocal group known as The Du-Droppers would only be revived down the line if their song did well enough to justify it.

But if from the very start they were to come in with more songs that showed potential in their own right then that would at least give some indication the group were thinking about sticking with rock ‘n’ roll for the long haul.

That doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily be ideally suited for it, especially without the built-in notoriety of swiping the sexual theme of a far greater group’s biggest smash, but it at least would show that they were thinking beyond merely capitalizing on a single song that refers to another song done by someone else.

With Chain Me Baby, a misleading, if not completely inexplicable, title, they actually manage to make a case for themselves as an authentic creative group, even if sometimes while listening to this you’re not quite sure if they’re in the right music department. Who knows, maybe they took a wrong turn on their way to chapel services.

But that is also what makes this record a little more interesting too, seeing how guys with gospel running through their veins are going to tackle a song that doesn’t require them to fully shed that image as they had to on the flip side when they got to masquerade as horny Lotharios to distance themselves from their past lives.

Here they don’t have that option and as a result it might be more telling as to who they really are artistically… for good or for bad.


Treat Me Any Old Way You Please
When this starts off with light piano and subdued harmonies talking about mountains of stone, you say to yourself that they are truly gospel through and through. No doubt about it! Even the tonal qualities of their voices, the way they hold notes and their harmonic blend is instantly recognizable as the preeminent gospel technique of the day.

While that’s not necessarily the smartest approach for an aspiring rock group, it’s not exactly the worst way to show off your vocal talent, for while we get a very nice guitar accompanying them the main weight of the song is carried exclusively by the voices and the stately – but very soulful – vocal arrangement.

That’s the yin and yang of it though, this is a record that sounds really good from start to finish, but is also really out of place because of HOW they sing it… though to be fair, also because of how it was written. Or WHY it was written for that matter.

Seriously, what exactly do they mean by Chain Me Baby? We’ll get back to the location of this chaining in a second, but no matter where it’s taking place this kind of topic is highly abnormal outside of a BDSM club or porn shoot. Yet it’s clearly not about that at all.

I suppose it’s more of the ball and chain variety, as they want a girl to devote their lives to, but surely there are better – and clearer – ways of expressing it than this. Then when you add in the gospel vocal structure they’re using it can’t help but take on a different more spiritual meaning which, if you’re still clinging to your fantasies about sex with whips, might cause some problems with your conscience.

By the end of the song not only have they not clarified anything, they’ve actually made it more confusing by continually referring to doing it in a swamp, which now just gets weird, even for rock ‘n’ roll.

But all that being said, you still like hearing these voices, which sound on the whole even more appealing than the clear sexual ode Can’t Do Sixty No More, where J.C. Ginyard’s lead was melodious but too restrained and the others were ineffectual early on before becoming more spirited, but less disciplined down the stretch. You knew from the start they could all sing, that much was clear, but you might not have known how well if that had been your only exposure to them.

Here you know precisely how well they can sing, but now you don’t know if they can sing in the right way to be convincing as rockers. Odds are the answer is no, at least at this point, but that doesn’t mean you still don’t want to hear more of them to see if they can fully grasp the differences and make the jump from just moonlighting as rock singers to becoming full-fledged rock stars.


You Just Leave Me There All Alone
In the end we’ll give this the same score as the other half, but as stated the reasons are different, meaning if they could’ve somehow combined them… well, maybe that’s not the best idea either. I mean, singing gospel styled hymnals about long sexual encounters with a two-timing woman is probably not approved of in their church.

Then again the Bible DOES have plenty of stories about screwing your dead brother’s widow and how you’re required to sacrifice children for certain blessings, while at one point God threw a party for Abraham and his sister Sara who married each other and thereby invented incest, so who the fuck knows. Maybe with Chain Me Baby The Du-Droppers were following suit and keeping their options open.

Regardless, this first single shows the group has definite promise while having unsettling conceptual flaws to overcome in equal measure.

Since the talent is evident on both sides of this record you hope their commitment to rock ‘n’ roll is genuine enough to work through their stylistic conflicts, but truthfully you’d probably be more comfortable betting on a less talented group with more burning desire to be rock stars because at least then their songs themselves wouldn’t have these contradictory issues to keep dealing with.

If nothing else though it does make for a fascinating case study going forward.


(Visit the Artist page of The Du-Droppers for the complete archive of their records reviewed to date)