Sunday, December 8, 2013

Dick Dodd, Lead Singer of the Standells, Dies at 68 - NYTimes.com

Dick Dodd, Lead Singer of the Standells, Dies at 68 - NY Times

Dick Dodd, lead singer for the proto-punk garage band The Standells , has passed away. Dodd had a nasal, snotty, irritating way of singing , or rather vocalizing , perfect for a band that was composed of hammering backbeats and barbed wire guitar riffs, and it was a choice component of the band's one big hit, "Dirty Water", a left-handed salute to Boston . Talking about grime and filth of the River Charles and hanging out with "lovers, muggers and thieves", the song was a telling bit of self reflection of a town that was on edge with the collective trauma set upon by The Boston Strangler. Boston at the time was not a happy town , like any number of American cities experiencing the full wrath of the 60s, and Dodd's obnoxious refrain at the chorus "I love that dirty water....ooooooh Boston YOU'RE MY HOME..." was the kind of defensive, fist in the face move a local gives to a hand wringing out of towner too busy tsk-tsking over the sad plight of a city to actually understand what was happening in Bean Town. The punk genius of the song, though, was that the Standells weren't from Boston, but from Los Angeles, inveighing on a song written by their manager. Now that's punk.