Hat tip to Salon for an article, Band banned from performing ‘Louie Louie’ that describes why “Benton Harbor Superintendent Paula Dawning cited the song’s allegedly raunchy lyrics in ordering the McCord Middle School band not to perform it in Saturday’s Grand Floral Parade, held as part of the Blossomtime Festival.”
Am I the only one who was not aware that a “pop culture controversy” has been simmering for decades over the lyrics to Louie, Louie ? Fortunately, an alert parent notified Supt. Paula Dawning of their concern and Dawning answered the clarion call to protect our children:
In a letter sent home with McCord students, Dawning said “Louie Louie” was not appropriate for Benton Harbor students to play while representing the district — even though the marching band wasn’t going to sing it.
Fortunately for us all, the FBI has been on the job:
The best-known, most notorious version was a hit in 1963 for the Kingsmen; the FBI spent two years investigating the lyrics before declaring they not only were not obscene but also were “unintelligible at any speed.”
Two years? The FBI spent two years investigating the lyrics of a song? We can only hope President Bush awards the agents a Medal of Freedom.