Shut up Neil, the fireworks are on.Posted: July 3, 2009
One of the many reasons my family heads to the beach for the week of July 4 is to see fireworks in their pristine unspoiled state.
The July 4 Independence Day holiday in the US has been celebrated with
firework shows for much longer than any of us been around. Probably in the last ten years ago or so it seems like that tradition has been pretty much ruined in the area where I live. Fortunately, the idea to ruin things has not spread to the North Carolina Outer Banks towns where I spend my summer vacation.
A few years back, a radio station in my city began sponsoring the July 4th fireworks and announcing that they would be broadcasting patriotic music that was “choreographed” to the fireworks.
First off, there is only one proper sound for fireworks. Boom. Fireworks don’t need musical accompaniment. They are a complete show unto themselves.
Unfortunately, because the sponsoring radio station is so dominant in the market, it is impossible to get someplace within eye shot of the fireworks where someone does not have their radio turned up listening to the music.
On top of that, the music “specially selected” is just brutal.
It seems to be a requirement that Neil Diamond’s Coming to America is part
of the special fireworks music. I know the guy has been around for decades. I know he’s had hits and is popular with my mother. That’s not enough. The song is repetitive. Its awful. But because of the generosity of this radio station, I get to hear it, like it or not.
Then we get to hear Lee Greenwood, God Bless the USA. Ughhhhh. The bombastic wailing…over and over. Of course, living in the US, I’d certainly like to get our share of blessings. But wouldn’t the world be a better place if God blessed every nation?
They also seem to always include the Bruce Springsteen song Born in the USA. I love Springsteen and I think this is a good song.
Despite the chorus, which seems to be the only part the dolts who set these things up understand, this is not a happy patriotic song. It’s about how poorly Vietnam vets were treated when they came home from serving their country. Now perhaps the programmers include this song as a cautionary tale for us on Independence Day – “don’t listen to Neil and Lee and get all fired up and careless, you see what can happen” – but I doubt it.
One year we went to see fireworks in a small town close to home. I felt good about the possibility that we’d see fireworks that went boom. No such luck. They had the usual medley of songs including those mentioned…and Dixie.
We’re sneaking out of town a day early to hit the Croaker (a croaker is a fish)
Festival in Oriental, NC, then on to the Outer Banks for the week starting with Independence Day. I’m setting up a few blurts to automatically pop up through the week while I’m gone.
Hope you and your families have a good week and your fireworks just go boom.