Songs Of The Day 3/30/2016: The Sweet – 5 B-Sides

For Themeless Week Dariush threw down this gauntlet: "B-Sides of a band called The Sweet." First of all, little warning: If you make your request in plural, by God you're going to get plural back. When someone says "B-sides" then, because of some internal detours in my wiring, I interpret the question as a math problem and not a request. So I saw that and read it as, "How many B-sides of The Sweet are there?" When the question as written was "Could you play a couple of B-sides from the Sweet?" This is why I feign fainting spells when people ask me where the nearest 7-Eleven is.

Second of all, have we agreed to call them The Sweet here in the U.S.? When I was growing up there was no "The" to 'em; they were always just "Sweet." I don't know or understand how the article got lost in transit from England to the United States, or why it was necessary to transform them from a noun to an adjective to obtain success in America. I don't think it's that good an idea, either. All the great bands have been nouns: The Beatles, The Kinks, Nirvana, The Shaggs. A few have attained success with modified nouns: The Rolling Stones, The Flying Burrito Brothers, The New York Dolls, The Wagnerian Poses. But if you just use an adjective you're being way too ethereal; you don't give the customer something good and hard to hold onto or slap around. You just give them an abstract cloud with no edges, just a big fluffy "concept." That never works. You remember the bands that went by the names Impotent, Frothy or Dislocated? No. They were adjectives, they were ungraspable, and I just made them up. And they never recovered.

Sweet, however, was successful in America, so all that is conjecture. Here are five B-sides to their biggest hits in America, which included "Ballroom Blitz," "Fox on the Run," "Love is Like Oxygen," "Little Willy" and "Block Buster." And for some reason it's fair to use the "The" in their name again, just as the King's English intended. So let's go medieval. Thanks, Dariush!

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