Educating Peter # 47

May 12, 2013

This week’s suggestion by Michael is “Baby Baby Baby” by Rebel. It’s a song from 1982, and The Michael told me two things about the band:

  1. They were from the Netherlands; and
  2. From the late 1970s to 1982 they were known as Rotjoch.

That was all I knew about it until I went looking for more information. (I like to know what I’m up against with these obscure songs Michael sends me.)

Unfortunately, the Interwebs didn’t tell me much. According to “this page, “rotjoch” mean “little pest”. I also found out that in addition to the song being released in 1982, for some reason it was reissued the following year with different artwork, and was credited to “Rebel (featuring Waldo)”.

And that’s everything I know about Rebel’s “Baby Baby Baby”.

Now that I’ve flaunted my total knowledge of Rebel and their song, I’ll have a listen to the little critter.

Rebel – “Baby Baby Baby” (1982)

0:00-0:19 – Yum. This is a very promising start. This introduction instantly reminded me of two things:

  1. Songs from the late-1950s/early-1960s. “Baby Baby Baby” uses a chord progression that was rampant in the ’50s/’60s. The progression – C major, A minor, F major, G major – was used in the overwhelming majority of Rock ‘n’ Roll ballads of the time. (If you can’t picture that chord progression in your head, just start singing “Duke Of Earl“. Or “Earth Angel“. Or “Stand By Me“. That’s the chord progression.)

  3. Puffy’s “Koi no Etude”. The combination of the bass line and the chord progression at the start of “Baby Baby Baby” immediately made me think of this Puffy song:

Puffy – “Koi no Etude (2006)

I think that song is sublime.

But back to “Baby Baby Baby”.

0:19-0:34 – I’m not entirely sure what the singer is singing in this verse, but I really like the melody. And I really like the little doodly guitar filigree/riff/lick/thing at 0:25/0:26.

I’m liking this song.

Now that the verse’s vocal melody is getting stuck in my head, it’s reminding me of something else. Unfortunately, I don’t know what that something else is at the moment. Hopefully, I’ll think of it soon.

Hang on…

Nope. Can’t think of it.

0:34-0:49 – Here’s the chorus, and I think it’s cute. It’s not all that different from the verse, so I’m slightly disappointed that it doesn’t distinguish itself from the verse by containing… well, containing something other than music resembling the verse.

0:49-1:03 – Another enjoyable verse. And there’s that guitar bit again (0:56/0:57). I don’t know why, but the tiny guitar bit here is quieter than the first time it was played. Odd.

Very nice singing from 0:57-1:00. Unusually, though, when the singer sings “several” at 1:03, his phrasing on the last syllable sounds like he was Auto-Tuned. Considering this record was released in 1982, that blows my mind a little.

There’s a nice drum fill leading into the next chorus (1:03-1:04) – although the high tom-toms (the first drums played in the fill) sound to me like bongos.

1:03-1:20 – This chorus has a weird vocal interjection. The singer begins the choruses with “Baby baby baby”, but in this chorus the third “baby” is accompanied by background vocalists singing a harmonised “baby” fairly loudly. The net effect for me is “Baby baby BABY!

Despite the startling “BABY!“, I still like the chorus.

1:20-1:50 – A two-part guitar solo, and I think it suits the song admirably – although I’m not entirely sure why the guitar solo had to be in two parts. (Unless it was two guitarists sharing the time allotted for a solo, with the first guitarist playing from 1:20-1:34, and the other guitarist taking over solo duties from 1:34-1:50.) Whether it’s one or two guitarists playing that solo, it’s well-played, well-recorded, and doesn’t outstay its welcome. My favourite part of the solo was the note-bend from 1:29-1:30. Very nice.

1:50-2:06 – Another chorus with that extra “BABY!” thrown in, but it didn’t bother me as much as the first time I heard it.

2:06-2:19 – A little breather before the band launches into the chorus repeating until the song’s finished. This part of the song is not much of anything, so I can’t really comment on it. (There’s nothing to comment on.)

2:06-2:19 – The chorus repeats, and the song finishes.

And that’s the song.

Thanks, Michael. I liked that one.