Friday, December 5, 2008

BUILDING YOUR MUSICAL VOCABULARY BY CHOOSING THE REET WORD


The other day when I was listening to the oldies station on my dish, they played Jackie Wilson’s hit, “Reet Petite.” Great song! It reminded me of when I was researching one of the chapters in my soon-to-be-published (fall of ’09) second book of music trivia, and was looking up the term “reet.” Reet, it turns out, is just a slangy jazz-era way of saying “right.” So, when Jackie sings, “She’s all right” and “reet petite” he’s really saying pretty much the same thing. But the ladies aren’t the only gender that employs the word reet. Reet is also applied to the special pleats in men’s zoot suit pants in the same jazz era. Ah, those were the days. Of course, in African-American culture, zoot suits and reet pleats are making a comeback, if they ever really went that far away. So look for males to be once again bedecked in the glory that is, to quote the lyrics from the musical Hair (see video below) the birthright of their sex. In other species males have the grandest plumage, the manes, the antlers etc. It’s only we humans where the males stick to those gray 6-piece suits all the time. But I digress. I think we should not only bring back the fashion of the era, but the slang as well.

So, I want to start hearing some reets out there. You can rhyme it up the way Jackie does. Like, “That is one reet sweet new pair of hip-waders you got there Bob” “Thanks, Phil. My Gladys got ‘em for me; I tell you that woman is reet petite and out of seet”

Okay, just don’t get too carried away.



Here he is, Mr. Entertainment, Jackie Wilson.




And here also, for your interest, is "My Conviction” from the 1960s musical Hair.





Photo from http://images.buycostumes.com
Jackie Wilson video by YT member oldies55
Hair video by YT member ObsessiveBeatles

6 comments:

Abel said...

Congratulations, I like this music. I have my blog with music like your blog. www.abel63.vox.com

Felicitaciones, me gusta esta música. Tengo mi blog con música como tu blog. www.abel63.vox.com

Deborah Godin said...

ABEL Thanks for your visit and comment. You have a nice blog, too, and great taste in oldies. Like the Elvis clock, too!

TomC said...

Deborah... very nice. Now, we are ready for you to help us finally understand the lyrics to Louie, Louie.

Deborah Godin said...

TOMC - Oh, the infamous Louie Louie lyrics! Did you know that Dave Marsh wrote an entire book about the song? It's got more trivia in it than can almost be absorbed, including the, ah, ahem, dirty lyrics. If Louie2 has gotten hold of you and won't let go, I recommend this book. The title is..."Louie Louie"

TomC said...

Thank you for the note. You piqued my interest so I did a little research in Wickipedia (very interesting) and in one of your favorite domains - YouTube. This interpretation makes sense: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wx-8_GI4d2c (including the notorious F bomb at 58 seconds). Thanks again!

Deborah Godin said...

@ TOMC - great YT link, thanks! That should prove, once and for all, that there really is a set of "clean" lyrics...
:-)