Mere Words Cannot Express

July 14, 2013 2 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

John Scott lists the best wordless verbal musical utterances from DuvAlumni.




Forward to 0:44

9. {sniffing noise} uttered by Ringo Starr in “The No No Song”

Hoyt Axton spent most of his school years here in Jacksonville, graduating from Lee High in 1956, moving on after a stint in the Navy to follow his recording artist and songwriting dreams. He had hits as both; his biggest hit as a recording artist was a country hit “Boney Fingers” in 1974. He had much bigger hits as a songwriter for others; his first was “Greenback Dollar” for the Kingston Trio; his biggest was “Joy to the World” by Three Dog Night. Three Dog Night also recorded his “Never Been to Spain” and Steppenwolf recorded his anti-drug songs “The Pusher” and “Snowblind Friend.” Axton’s biggest “anti-drug” song was “The No No Song” by Ringo Starr, that takes a tour of substances that Ringo chose not abuse anymore (at least in the song). The second verse takes him to Spain where he is offered cocaine, to which he replies “no no no no I can’t {sniff} no more.”




10. “ooooo-oooooo-ooooo” uttered by some combination of voice and synth on “Partie Traumatic” by Black Kids  

Jacksonville indie band Black Kids were one of Rolling Stone’s “bands to watch” in 2008 and have appeared on Jimmy Kimmel and David Letterman. Their debut album hit the top 10 in the UK. Like their fellow North Floridian Slim Whitman (see number 6), they’re bigger in England, at least for now.





Honorable mention: My friend Dave Cagle proposes that the “aaa-eeeee-aaaaaa” APE call from radio station WAPE should be mentioned. The actual call itself is from a song called “Ape Call” by Nervous Norvous, but in Jacksonville (and the southeast) the sound emanating over the beginning of many a top 40 hit, especially in APE’s  Mighty 690 ‘60s and ‘70s heyday deserves credit.

So with a “oo-oo” here and a “sniff sniff” there, a “quack quack”, “woo-woo”,  yodel-yodel, whistle-whistle, “erh-erh”,” shick-a-dow-dow” and everywhere a “brop brop.” Old Jacksonville has some musical sounds that words cannot express.





Article by John Scott, part of Jacksonville's Big Show
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