The song that has been on my brain the most this week:
- “D’yer Mak’er,” by Led Zeppelin, from the 1973 album “Houses of the Holy.”
If there was ever a song that could get stuck in your head for weeks at a time, it’s this reggae-esque ditty from Britain’s heavy metal royalty.
OK, language and music history lesson: This song title is not pronounced “Dire Maker.” The guys from Zep are British, and the title has apostrophes that do actually mean something.
It is pronounced “jah-may-kah,” and the song is based on an old joke that goes something like this: “My wife’s gone to the West Indies.” ”Jamaica?” “No, she went of her own accord.”
Although I strive to give this blog an educational bent whenever possible, I can’t say that was my main motive in this case. It just really bugs me when people call it “Dire Maker.”
This song has special meaning to me. It’s actually tied to one of my favorite high school memories – graduation.
While we were waiting in line to file into the auditorium for commencement exercises at Lindsay High School, a friend and I started singing this song. Pretty soon everyone was crooning, “Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, you don’t have to go-oh.”
For a moment, I was impressed that so many of my classmates were cool enough to know Zeppelin. But I then learned that they were actually singing the Sheryl Crow cover off the 1995 Zep tribute album “Encomium.”
Still, her version is fairly spot-on, it was a great musical moment, and it demonstrated the value – however marginal – of tribute albums.