Do you remember SONG HITS magazine? Well, long before the Interweb, there weren’t many places one could find the lyrics to hit songs that weren’t already on the inside liner notes of albums. So, there was this monthly magazine called SONG HITS, and they published the lyrics of current hits for Rock, Soul and Country singles.
At the time, it was actually a popular magazine, and I bought this magazine whenever I could, which wasn’t often. But, somehow I managed to get my hands on an issue during the Summer of 1980 (perhaps the July issue?), and read along to the songs while listening to Casey Kasem’s AMERICAN TOP 40 countdowns.
One of my favorite memories of junior high school in Winslow, Maine occurred in the Fall of 1980, and involved SONG HITS magazine, my favorite junior high teacher, and The Rolling Stones.
Before Math class started, someone I wouldn’t have called a friend wanted to look at my magazine. I was very protective of my SONG HITS magazine, and though I was reluctant, I let him take a gander at it before class. Well, the class got under way, and he still had my magazine. Our Math teacher – the late, great Robert Quirion, Jr. (who passed away in 2013) – noticed my classmate still had the magazine. Mr. Quirion walked to my classmate’s desk, picked up the magazine, thumbed through the pages, and came across the lyrics to the newest Rolling Stones song, “Emotional Rescue.” And then, probably surprising everyone (or not), he started a straight reading of the song’s lyrics:
“Is there nothing I can say, nothing I can do
To change your mind, I’m so in love with you
You’re too deep in, you can’t get out
You’re just a poor girl in a rich man’s house
Ooh ooh ooh, ooh ooh ooh
Ooh ooh ooh, ooh ooh ooh…”
Everyone in the class started laughing, and he gave the magazine back.
I’ll remember that moment forever, and other moments, too, like the last day of my Freshman year in June 1982 (at the time, Freshman students for Winslow High School were still stuck at the Junior High), and I convinced Mr. Q to pose for a photo with a boombox on his shoulder and pressed against his ear. I still have that photo somewhere. He was a great man, and a fun teacher.
“Emotional Rescue” would go on to spend 2 weeks at No. 3 in September 1980 on the BILLBOARD Hot 100, and would also reach the Top 10 in the U.K., Holland and Australia, and became one of their biggest hits of the 80s.
I love the Rolling Stones, although I wouldn’t consider myself a huge fan. And, I don’t know if whether or not it was the funny incident in the classroom with Mr. Quirion and the SONG HITS magazine, but regardless, for me, there’s no other Stones song more steadfast and true than “Emotional Rescue”…