Saturday, July 7, 2018

Music Reviews: I Gotcha and Baby It's Cold Outside

I really like most of Joe Tex's work. I also like the Ray Charles-Betty Carter version of the standard "Baby It's Cold Outside". Recently on Facebook a relative posted the Joe Tex song "I Gotcha!" which Joe Tex performed on Soul Train, well rather danced and lip synced, with Damita Jo. I love this song and had never had a problem with it. The character Joe Tex is singing about is horny and wants to get down to business. There's no doubt about that. But is he a threat? Is he a would be rapist? Some women I know said they found this song distasteful or even intimidating and offensive. I was surprised. I never heard the song that way. But everyone has different perspectives and responses. There's no accounting for taste. There is no right or wrong when it comes to the music you like or do not like.

I always thought that the song "Baby It's Cold Outside", particularly as sung by Carter and Charles, was about two sophisticated adults who were doing the dance that almost every man and woman have done at some point in their life with someone they like. I didn't see any coercion or threat. Unlike with "I Gotcha" I was aware that some people thought that "Baby It's Cold Outside" was a misogynist's how-to guide for date rape, but some of the people who think that also seem to be hostile to any hint of male heterosexuality so I didn't pay them too much mind. 

In any event by today's pop music standards lyrically both "I Gotcha" and "Baby It's Cold Outside" are quaint and almost innocent bedtime lullabies. So it's difficult for me to see how anyone could see these songs as menacing or intimidating. For me that's a reach, but I could be wrong. I'm not a woman. So there's that. We all process art through our own filters of lived experience.

What's your call? Are these songs harmless ditties or sexist threats?

I Gotcha!
Uh-huh. Huh You thought I didn't see you now, didn't ya?
Uh-huh. Huh You tried to sneak by me now, didn't ya?
Uh-Huh. Huh Now gimme what you promised me. Give it here! Come on!

Hey Good God Hey Hey

You promised me the day that you quit your boyfriend
I'd be the next one to ease on in
You promised me it would be just us two yeah
And I'd be the only man kissin' on you

Now kiss me!

Hold it a long time, hold it!
Don't turn it a-loose, now, hold it!
A little bit longer, now, hold it - COME ON!
Hold it! Hold it! Hold it! HOLD IT!
Now ease up on me now, good god. HEY!

Good God Hey The girls alright y'all Good God

You made me a promise and you're gonna stick to it

You shouldn't have promised if you weren't gonna do it
You saw me and ran in another direction
I'll teach you to play with my affections

Now give it here!

You never shoulda promise to me, give it here!
Don't hold back now, give it here!
Don't say nothin', just give it here, COME ON!
Give it here ! Give it here ! Give it here! Give it here!
Give it to me NOW!

Good God Hey

I Gotcha! Shouldn't made a promise to me
I Gotcha! You never should've promised to me
Gotcha! Give it on here, I gotcha!
You thought you got away from me, didn't ya?
I gotcha! Oh, I gotcha
Give it on up, I gotcha
Give it on here, I gotcha
You tried to sneak by me now, didn't ya?
I gotcha! Oh, I gotcha

[Betty] I really can't stay 
[Ray] Betty, it's cold outside

[Betty] I've got to go away 
[Ray] Betty, it's cold out there

[Betty] This evening has been 
[Ray] Been hoping that you'd drop in

[Betty] So very nice
[Ray] I'll hold your hands, they're just like ice

[Betty] My mother will start to worry  
[Ray] Beautiful, what's your hurry

[Betty] And father will be pacing the floor  
[Ray] Listen to that fireplace roar

[Betty] So really I'd better scurry 
[Ray] Beautiful, please don't hurry

[Betty] Well, maybe just a half a drink more  
[Ray] Why don't you put some records on while I pour

[Betty] And the neighbors might think 
[Ray] Betty it's bad out there

[Betty] Say, what's in this drink? 
[Ray] No cabs to be had out there

[Betty] I wish I knew how  
[Ray] Your eyes are like starlight now

[Betty] To break the spell 
[Ray] I'll take your hat, your hair looks swell

[Betty] I ought to say no, no, no, sir 
[Ray] Mind if I move in closer?

[Betty] At least I'm gonna say that I tried  
[Ray] What's the sense of hurting my pride?

[Betty] I really can't stay 
[Ray] Baby don't hold out

[Betty] Ah, but it's cold outside

[Betty] I simply must go 
[Ray] Betty, it's cold outside

[Betty] The answer is no  
[Ray] I say, it's cold out there

[Betty] The welcome has been  
[Ray] How lucky that you dropped in

[Betty] So nice and warm  
[Ray] Look out that window, man that's hard

[Betty] My sister will be suspicious  
[Ray] Gosh, your lips look delicious

[Betty] My brother will be there at the door 
[Ray] Waves upon a tropical shore

[Betty] My maiden aunt's mind is vicious  
[Ray] Gosh, your lips are delicious

[Betty] Well maybe just a cigarette more  
[Ray] Oh, never such a blizzard before

[Betty] I've got to go home  
[Ray] Betty, you'll freeze out there

[Betty] Say, lend me your coat  
[Ray] It's up to your knees out there

[Betty] You've really been grand  
[Ray] I thrill when you touch my hand

[Betty] But don't you see  
[Ray] How can you do this thing to me

[Betty] There's bound to be talk tomorrow  
[Ray] Think of my lifelong sorrow

[Betty] At least there will be plenty implied  
[Ray] If you caught pneumonia and died

[Betty] I really can't stay  
[Ray] Get over that old lie

[Betty & Ray] Ah, but it's cold outside!
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