With all the talk the other day about the anniversary of the March on Washington, of course, my mind moved to music as I started thinking of songs about equality. I know that I have a bit of a quirky musical mind, as the song that popped into my head was a 90’s flashback….”Mr. Wendal” by Arrested Development. No, youngsters…..not the TV show. Arrested Development was an alternative rap group from 20ish-years-ago. In fact, they actually sued NBC for the TV show name, and obviously did not win.
“Mr. Wendal” was a song that created a musical picture of a homeless person and really brought attention to the homeless problems in our country. I really loved the message of the song……that you can’t judge a book by its cover until you really get to know a person. This is why it made me think about the March On Washington. Incidentally, by the way, Arrested Development, gave half of the proceeds to the National Coalition for the Homeless.
Anyhow….I introduced this song to a group of middle schoolers yesterday. We talked about the lyrics and had a great and meaningful discussion about it. As we talked, it felt so refreshing to be handing them a song with such a positive strong message. I pointed out to them that even if the song is over 20-years-old, it is still a message that we can all relate to today. I didn’t say my next thought to them, but man….how sad that there is so little music like this out there today. Ugggghhh….they are listening to such garbage and are inspired by watching pop stars like Miley Cyrus twerk with a twice-as-old Robin Thicke across the stage.
I might sound like an old fuddy duddy, and truly…..I’m typically not as bothered as I felt yesterday, but man….the lack of class in music today was really hitting me hard at that moment.
So, though a little dated, I am happy to share music with a positive message today. It was a hit in the USA, because it spoke to us. Because the song reminded us that we could have intelligent thoughts. Because the song reminded us that it was cool to be educated. How refreshing! Click HERE to listen to Arrested Development’s “Mr. Wendal,” and maybe for this one day, put away the Miley Cyrus CDs and trade it in for something of worth.