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Friday Night Videos

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The Summer of Covers continues!

Steely Dan never rocked the guitars harder than they did in “Bodhisattva,” the opening track to their second album, 1973’s Countdown to Ecstasy. The song went nowhere and the album was a commercial disappointment on its initial release — which is a real shame considering just what a solid performance all of it was.

The guitars were courtesy of longtime Dansters Denny Dias and Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, who provided a flat-out rock’n’roll sound to a snarky song about hippies and hipsters merely playing at giving up Western materialism for Eastern asceticism.

Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
I’m gonna sell my house in town
Bodhisattva
I’m gonna sell my house in town
And I’ll be there
To shine in your Japan
To sparkle in your China
Yes I’ll be there
Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva

Clever stuff, awesome musicianship — love it.

Fifteen years ago the Farrelly Brothers — writer/director/producers of movies like Dumb and Dumber, There’s Something About Mary, and Stuck on You — decided that the soundtrack to Me, Myself & Irene should feature almost nothing but Steely Dan covers.

(ASIDE: That soundtrack is only entertaining thing with the Farrelly Brothers’ name associated with it. While I love a good, crude comedy, the Farrelly Brothers’ stuff just isn’t funny. There’s nothing funnier than human beings behaving like human beings, but the Farrellys are incapable of writing a human being who acts like a recognizable human being. Their movies are lazy, stunt-based crap with no connection to reality, and therefore not funny. Their most famous bit is the infamous hair gel scene from Mary. It consists of four gags — the first is nothing a guy would ever do, the next two are impossible, and the fourth is nothing a woman would do ever. The Farrellys thought up a Stunt Gag, and rather than work at making it real and funny, they shoehorned their non-human characters into making the impossible happen. Not. Funny.)

So if for some reason you need to take a classic rock song and give it a retro-modern twist, who better than Brian Setzer at the height of his own private Swing Era? That rockabilly guitar, that swingin’ brass, that Steely Dan snark — this is good stuff whipped up together into an unlikely-but-delicious concoction.

Take me by the hand and turn it up.