Commute Song of the Week 2/6/15: The Sugarhill Gang “Apache” (Jump on it)

During my teens and twenties, I hung with a group of wonderful guys who were passionate about music.  We talked and listened to music in an obsessive way that amazed and yes, probably bothered our friends.   My college radio disc jockey days were spent with these folks and I still count a few of them as good friends.

But in all honesty, we were incredible music snobs and spent a good amount of time trying to one up each other in finding obscure groupneverheards that proved, yes, we were way more hip that the next person.  We were the proto-hipsters, and to admit you liked anything mainstream or pop, was akin to the kiss of death.   Well, you could enjoy the stuff “ironically”, not unlike my fellow DJ Russ, who had a tongue in cheek 60-70s top forty show, but to actually admit you enjoyed listening to something that pervaded the airwaves of a Clear channel station such as the local Y103,was sacrilege.

I’m now at the age where I can finally admit that there is a large group of pop songs I really enjoy on their own merits.  Though I would have never admitted it in my punk infused days of the early 1980s, I’ve always loved this song.  Its just a fun bouncy rap over the Incredible Bongo Band’s version of the song “Apache”.  The lyrics are clever but simple, and are full of playful bravado.   The Sugarhill gang (who take their name from a section of Harlem) were the first rap group to chart to number one. in the US with “Rapper’s Delight”.  Though “Apache (Jump on It!)”, never charted here, its still my favorite Sugarhill rap.

Cause “Now what you hear is not a test!”

The video above is from “Soul Train” which I still think was WAY cooler than American Bandstand.

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