Royally Kranked

Monday, November 28, 2005

Two more interesting & fun links

Oil Industry Musicals

Yes, there really were recordings dedicated to the oil industry

And while they are fiendishly scarce, the oil industry, like many other bastions of capitalism, indeed produced a number of privately pressed, in-house motivational musicals, and several squeaked out on LP (for employees only, of course). They’re known as industrial shows: lavish stage productions that serve to entertain, educate, and encourage employees to do their job with gusto.

One Example-unfortunately, no audio clips were provided

4. Put Yourself in Their Shoes – Exxon, 1979

Oh we’ve been cryin’ uncle, since Uncle Sam arrived
And we know what’s going to happen if he will stay
This station will turn out to be a governmental agency if Uncle doesn’t go away!
- “Uncle Sam”, Put Yourself in Their Shoes, Exxon, 1979

Here comes Exxon again! This is really a wonderful show on so many levels. It revolves around an age-old industrial theme: an unhappy salesman (Harry, in this show) who just doesn’t have what it takes, receives cheerleading from his peers and reappears a new, proud, strong Exxon dealer at the end of the program. The standout cut may be the ridiculously sexist track An Exxon Dealers Wife, which heaps a dump-truck full of wifely duties onto the dealer’s spouse (presumably in the audience), to make sure her hubby stays fully committed to Exxon’s bottom line. One wonders what a dealer’s wife in the audience might feel if her husband’s employer demanded that she pump gas on a holiday, but these shows aren’t known for their subtlety. There are several other winning tracks: Major Surgery (sung by a rival, independent dealer), Fugue For Dealers, and The Best In the Business to name a few.

And a BIG Thanks to Shakespeare's Sister for finding this little gem, a bit that will stick in your memory for the rest of your life



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