Killing Rock and Roll

So yesterday’s post revisited a few songs from the movies that set up a good story and today’s post captures a few moments where rock and roll kills the momentum.  Not really anything else to say but to introduce


#1 – Marty McFly singing “Johnny B. Goode” in Back to the Future. This scene, which is really kind of funny, could have been saved if Michael J. Fox were to actually sing the song. Mark Campell’s voice is dubbed over Alex Keaton’s unconvincing performance, and another session musician, Tim May, plays the solo.

I don’t understand why Fox didn’t sing it himself. I feel like it would have added something to Marty McFly’s character, even if he sang it poorly. There’s a sincerity to the actors who perform the songs their characters sing, even if their subsequent musical careers as less than stellar – Jared Leto sang a song in the television series My So Called Life (“I Call Her Red”), and Ethan Hawk sang the Violent Femmes’ “Add it Up” in Reality Bites.  Both tried to be rock stars after that.

#2 – Andrew Dice Clay performing “I Ain’t Got You” in The Adventures of Ford Fairlane. Yes, I am actually posting a clip from an Andrew Dice Clay movie. In his defense, at least he had the courage to sing himself rather than hiring a session musician.

And its a good soundtrack, with a solid Mötley Crüe track, “Rock and Roll Junkie” and a Teddy Pendergrass tune fit together relatively seamlessly. The scene where Ford Fairlane performs Jimmy Reed’s “I Ain’t Got You” parlays its unbelievable nature by drifting into fantasy, much like Cab Calloway’s performance in The Blues Brothers. Unfortunately, while Cab Calloway’s transition from “poor old nigger” to nightclub star in white tails is sincere enough to break your heart, Andrew Dice Clay just comes off as a jackass.

The singer he talks to has a really funny haircut.

Ferris Beuller performing “Twist and Shout” in Ferris Beuller’s Day Off. I hate this movie. I wish the little bastard got caught in the end.

Why they couldn’t find another recording of “Twist and Shout” is beyond me. Given the millions spent on this garbage movie they could have hired a session musician like Mark Campbell to sing the part rather than using John Lennon’s voice. Man, I hate Ferris Beuller. They should make a sequel that shows him as an adult, and as the grifting, useless sucker-on-society that he is. And set it in prison.

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