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Fuck Shop:Too Much Joy

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Artist: Too Much Joy

Album: Gods And Sods

Appears On (Mixes): Past The Barber and Gymnasium

Song Notes: As Tim Quirk says at the beginning of this, Too Much Joy went to jail the first time they covered this. And, as they say, it's not actually a very good song. It's by 2 Live Crew, who have two claims to fame: The first was an obscenity case based on their lyrics in Florida—this is what sent TMJ to jail; they tried to put a protest show on, but all the other bands bailed on them so they just did it and got arrested (except for Tommy Vinton, the drummer, because he didn't actually sing; though he was scared he would; his day job is a police sergeant in the NYPD), and their second claim to fame was a landmark sampling case about their (awful) parodic cover of "Pretty Woman". As Tim says in that interview, this really isn't a good song, but it is a pretty interesting. This obviously isn't taken from the show where they were arrested—I don’t know if any recordings exist from that night. The thing I find interesting is that a song, even one this bad, could be thought of as legally obscene (even for a short while, as the case against them was later ruled unconstitutional). But I suppose this is one of those cases like what Larry Flynt does; no one needs to worry about people censoring speech that is liked; it's the speech people don't like that needs to be protected. (And man, is it pretty hard to like 2 Live Crew…) Still, though, Too Much Joy do a pretty good job, considering the material. I like that you can actually hear Tim Quirk's embarrassment as signing the awful, awful lyrics. This one isn't probably something you want to play around the kids. - Rev. Syung Myung Me


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