I turned on the radio today and heard that Gwen Stefani song “Rich Girl”. Have you heard this song? It’s got a bunch of words and music, your typical song. But the chorus is, “If I was a rich girl, da da da da da da da da da.” As in Fiddler on the Roof, “If I was a rich man, da da da da da da da da da.” How wrong is that? Do these singers have no decency? Sampling from Fiddler and the friggin Roof? I just tried to come up with a Broadway show whose music would seem even more ridiculous in a hip hop song. I could think of no other show. Fiddler on the Roof?! It’s the whitest show ever.
A few years ago, when I was still young, I was watching Full Metal Jacket and a prostitute comes on screen and propositions one of the main characters by saying, “Me love you long time.” I said, and I’m not proud of this, “Oh, they stole that from that 2 Live Crew song.” Being young, and not old, I honestly thought that Stanley Kubrick had sampled from 2 Live Crew. Some of you reading this won’t even know who 2 Live Crew was. At least I’m not as old as you people.
But I think you are officially old when you hear a Gwen Stefani song and start doing that little jig that the Fiddler on the Roof guy did on stage when he sang his Rich Man song. I tried to explain to someone why this all so wrong. They didn’t know what I was talking about. “No, it’s not If I was a rich MAN, it’s If I was a rich GIRL. You got the song wrong.”
I just realized that maybe I’m not old. Maybe I’m just unhip.
That is probably worse.