Song Of The Day 3/31/2014: The Monks - "I Hate You"


They All Scream: Like yesterday's act The Stooges, the perpetually rediscovered '60s band The Monks lost a key member very recently: Lead singer Gary Burger passed away on March 14 at age 72 from pancreatic cancer. The Monks' story is well-documented: All five served together in the U.S. Army, stationed in some part of Germany just as the Vietnam Conflict was turning into more than a tiff. When they were discharged they roamed the streets of Deutschland, searching for ways to heighten their marketability and come up with a distinctive sound. Someone in the outfit -- by all accounts fine, sound men who had faithfully served their country -- came up with the idea to dress up as Franciscan friars. They then sheared off their hair, and I don't mean they went back to the military buzz cut with which they had already become intimate. We're talking very efficient, sculpted tonsure. Right when other bands at the time were wearing tighter trousers, The Monks opted for the frock.

Then they made the album Black Monk Time, one of the best albums of the '60s that wasn't by the Beatles, Dylan or the Stones. Burger's capricious mood disorder takes many forms here: sobbing, acting hyper, losing his place in the book and, on "I Hate You," screaming like a forlorn monk who just chased in his celibacy.

Thanks to Angela Kirkpatrick for suggesting this one. God has a purpose for you, Angela. Starting with monks.




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