Laser Time – Pre-Shame Songs


It’s another LT listening party and we’re looking back at some of our guiltiest pleasures! Although this time, we’ve added in some very specific criteria: What’s a song you’re ashamed to love made BEFORE you were born?!


RSS iTunes  |  Zune  | Facebook  | Twitter  | YouTube  | Twitch

November Patreon update
A Message from Brelston








57 thoughts on “Laser Time – Pre-Shame Songs

  1. I’m very glad to hear another musical episode over at Laser Time and for my contribution I will only do just two songs to make things more easier for production. Like most of us I grew up with hearing my parents music in car rides and in the house, I heard tracks from America to Abba on a daily bases. While complaining that I have to listen to most of their songs there was a little voice in the back of my head saying “Yeah I kinda like this” but I refused to listen. I very much enjoy listening to 80’s music now and then, that electro pop sound that only feels 80’s that you dont get from the 90’s and even now. I didnt grow up in the 80’s so the two songs I chose count for this topic.

    My first link was one of the first track I heard on GTA Vice City which kinda ignited that spark for 80’s music. I would never listen to it in public, nor put it on at a party, but if I ever did Kareoke I would have to be super drunk to stand up and read the lyrics

    My second one is one of those one hit wonders, but those one hit wonders your mother would love and also Fry from Futurama. I’m not too sure how guilty this one is because its actually a good song, I think the shameness is the pleasure you feel listening by yourself.

  2. Personally, being a younger listener (19 year old shit-kid), I grew up listening to a lot of my dad’s music, which mostly included 70s and 80s pop hits. But no song was played as much as Chris Norman & Suzi Cuatro’s “Stumblin’ In”. THIS FUCKING SONG was played so much in my infancy, there’s a VHS of me being baptized with that song being played in the background. No ragrets.

  3. Quick question: what the hell is Christopher Cross “sailing away” from? He’s white and rich enough to afford a yacht to sail away on.

  4. I loved all the music in this episode. I feel like all Billy Joel can be classified as shame songs…
    Scenes from an Italian Restaurant anyone…?

    Also, John Denver. I was reared on that man. If I listen without nostalgia headphones, he’s pretty pre-shame. “Leaving on a Jet Plane” can always make me cry. He’s fantastic and I can love him unironically.

  5. Aaaaall kinds of dubious criticism in this episode! Every old pop song with strings is garbage? That’s, like, 90% of pop music!
    I’ll nominate “Indian Reservation” by Paul Revere and the Raiders. I would be embarrassed to admit to loving this song, at least in mixed company, because it’s obviously racist. All it’s missing is the band chanting HEY-YA, ho-ya, HEY-YA, ho-ya. But it rocks so hard, so triumphantly. And it has a vibraphone which you just never hear. And 70s new age bullshit aside, that part at the end where the strings kick in, “Maybe someday when they’ve learned…” It gets me every damn time.

      1. Since this came up in a later episode: I don’t mean Donald Trump racist. I mean Tonto racist. Which is somewhere between Washington Redskins racist and Dances with Wolves racist. The song really has nothing to do with the actual Cherokee Nation, it’s just borrowing their name for a by-the-numbers ode to the noble savage, doomed by the inexorable march of progress. It’s sort of an early form of hashtag activism that allows us to feel good about ourselves just for being aware of something. Maybe the Indians aren’t dying in poverty! Maybe they’ll return when we’ve all learned how great they are!

        If you want to hear a song on this topic that Native Americans actually appreciated, check out Johnny Cash’s cover of “Ballad of Ira Hayes.”

        Doesn’t rock quite as hard though.

  6. “Rappers Delight” (short version). I know every gosh darn word to that song, and I love it so much. I wouldn’t say I’m necessarily ashamed of it, but i recognize it has some of the best rap lines of all time like “I don’t mean to brag, I don’t mean to boast/ but I like hot butter on my breakfast toast”, and “he can’t satisfy you with his little worm/ I can bust you out with my super sperm” (that last line was Big Bank Hank talking to Lois Lane about how hes better at sex then super man… really great stuff).

    Another album I have shame for and don’t want anyone to know about is the musical class “Jesus Christ Super Star” (made by Andrew Lyod Webber). My mom used to have the album on all the time during lent (the month or so when Catholics are guilted into giving up things they like) and I honestly kind of love it. The songs are so damn catchy I can’t help it, especially “Whats the Buzz”:

    and the titular song:

    As a non religious person, I think its great. Now that I’m obsessed with Hamilton I realized I have a love for “historical” musicals.

  7. I SWEAR I’ve heard that rock n roll song by Gary Glitter. I don’t know where, it must’ve been at some retail store I worked in while in my 20s. I recognize all of these from that period of my life. it’s like the only place you could hear them. I asked my boss at an art store why we played this crap and she said it was psychological and that it was discovered older more relaxed upbeat music made most people slow down and shop longer. unlike fast tempo music, which would make people rush around and leave too quickly. fucking retail psychology and exects exploiting it. gross!

  8. Two songs, one that came out a year before I was born (I was born in 1997) and one that came out 9 years after, were played by my dad insesently, on one of his many burned CD’s, when I was growing up. My Maria by Brooks and Dunn and The Riddle by Five for Fighting. My dad is 50 times more emotionally in touch and wantent-to-cry than my mom, so, since these songs talk about finding a woman and fathers and sons, they were right up my dad’s alley to sing/cry over. I will hear these songs every once in a while when I listen to the playlist my dad made for my fist (not iPod) MP3 player in 2008. I still love these song but would NEVER play them unless I were by myself. My Maria The Riddle

    1. My Maria is one of the worst Brooks and Dunn songs but I secretly love it. My brother and I used to croon that song so loud and annoyingly when it would come on the radio.

  9. There are some songs on the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack that are made better by the movie but are still pretty rough, particulary 10cc’s “I’m Not in Love.” At the 2:19 mark a woman whispers, “big boys don’t cry”. Now in the context of the movie with Peter Quill losing his mother, it’s great, outside of it I’m not so sure.


    Growing up in Atlanta during the 90’s, my mom’s radio was permanently tuned to the oldies station Fox 97. So I actually really liked most of the songs played in this episode. That being said my pre shame song is without a doubt “Indian Reservation (The Lament of the Cherokee Reservation Indian)” covered by Paul Revere and The Raiders. Although it’s most commonly referred to as “Cherokee Nation”

    It’s really cheesy and kind of awesome at the same time but it’s hard to get past four white guys from Idaho chanting “Cherokee tribe, so proud to live so proud to die!”

  10. All jazz music.

    Not because Curtis Fuller and his band aren’t the king shit and the golden boys.

    But because it has, mostly correctly, become associated with douffbags who think they’re super interesting for refusing to buy coffee at Starbucks.

    In my youth, I once stopped an entire party by self-righteously putting on Miles Davis’s otherwise wonderful ‘It Never Entered My Mind’. In the morning I realised what a cock-blocking tonal shift I had created. From then on I only listened to jazz in the one part of the garden where my parents allowed me to smoke cigarettes and pretend it spoke meaningfully about the content of my soul.

  11. Another awesome show guys, thanks! Chris and Grimm, you guys might be interested in a recent documentary about Tower Records by Colin Hanks, apparently it’s pretty neat.

  12. Great episode. Atlantis is in Goodfellas, during the scene where the made man tells Pesci to “Go get your shine box.” and then it continues when Pesci comes back and stabs him to death.

    Also, I’d never heard Gary Glitter play Rock and Roll, but I have heard Phish cover it, sans lyrics, in live recordings.

    1. Then again I suppose why would you? It’s not like anyone would want to or admit listening to him ever again. Also since we’re on the subject Gary Glitter is actually in UK prison these days, since he has strangely come up in more than one episode.

  13. Really looking forward to VGMpire officially joining the Laser Time network.

    Now you guys just need to convince No More Whoppers to join. 😀

  14. Im 19, and needless to say, when I was a kid it wasn’t cool to like musicals, least of all Grease. My mum showed me an old VHS copy of it when I was around 8. It was one of her favourite movies when she was younger and Olivia Newton John is a national treasure here in Australia. Anyway I neglected to tell my friends how much I liked it, but frequently go back to some of the songs, especially my favourite – the main Grease theme by the now 82 year old Frankie Valli.

  15. Legend of an Episode and a great announcement, it’s about time Brett officially joined the family 😀
    As a guy who was brought up by his grandparents this was just a memory lane episode of being in my granddads car driving around, the only thing missing was some nerdy guy singing about Peggy Sue 🙂
    But again foooooking great episode, keep it up LT guys

  16. I love Johnny Cash. My dad was a big fan because his dad was a big fan, and I can listen to almost any era of his music and find it enjoyable. I don’t think I would ever play “one piece at a time” at a party with friends, but its a solid song! Chicken in Black is a comedy jam that I wouldn’t play in front of anyone, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking it is a funny/dumb song.

    1. I firmly believe that no one should be ashamed of listening to Johnny Cash. He was the man. When I was in junior high, my brother and I loved the later American Recordings albums, especially Unchained.

  17. I was born in 1995, which means that 3rd wave ska just barely misses the mark, making this a little harder. I don’t know if this is even a shame song, but the inclusion of Be My Baby and Sugar Sugar makes me not sure if it’s uncool to really love My Boyfriend’s Back, which i think falls somewhere in the middle of those two songs. I wouldn’t play it for my coworkers, at least.

    Anyway, if that’s too cool, I KNOW that Talk Dirty to Me by Poison isn’t, because hair metal as a whole is pretty much trash but idk i like this song. It was probably the inclusion on Guitar Hero 3 that did it for me, those games gave me a bit of an appreciation for songs by bands i otherwise don’t like

  18. Always great to see another entry in the Shame Songs saga- thanks for another great show!

    My granny lived in a four-room shack in rural southern North Carolina, but one of the few modern amenities she afforded herself was a pretty sweet hi-fi record player system, and she had an EXHAUSTIVE catalog of old-school country and gospel albums. Whenever we’d visit every couple weeks or so, some steel-guitar-backed quartet would be belting out tunes that, when they weren’t about praising the Lord, dealt primarily with one spouse doing the other one wrong. Like this Statler Bros. classic that, thirty-odd years later, still occasionally bubbles up through my mind and sets my toes a-tappin’:

  19. I’m not really ashamed to listen to any music, but there is one song i really like that has no realistic reason for me to play for another person; Vernon Dalhart’s big rock candy mountain. this song got popular after O borther where art thou, but i prefer this older hissier version. pretty good song, aint it fred?

  20. I probably win the award for the oldest songs. I’ve always had a historical curiosity for songs during World War 1. They’re a weird mix of the very different music style of the early 20th century, typical war propaganda, and some, well, straight-up racism.

    Two of my “favorites” (both NSFW):


    Define “How most of America saw Native Americans in the 1910’s”. That’s this song. Also, one of the first videos I ever posted to my YouTube channel (thanks, public domain!).

    Hunting the Hun:

    It takes a while to get going, but remember that this song is happily joking about a war where thousands were dying every day. Also, replace “German” with “Mexican” and “Sauerkraut” with “Tacos”, and you could have easily heard similar jokes even up to the present.

  21. I grew up listening to 60s and 70s music, because that’s all that my dad listened to whenever we were in the car. A lot of that is far from shameful though. If we’re talking about embarrassment about liking old shit, I absolutely LOVE the entire soundtrack from the 1982 Annie film. I feel like Hank is the only one who might commiserate with me about loving old musical music, but some of that stuff is just too good.

    On another note, YAY, BRETT’S BACK! I’ve been sensing that he was starting to feel the weight of dealing with Capcom’s fanbase, but he seemed happier during that bumper than he’s been in years. Welcome back, Brelston, we’ve missed you.

  22. Hearing Henry sing along to all these tunes is magical. It’s like the auditory equivalent of seeing a unicorn

  23. Super stoked to hear VGM & Brett are officially into the fold. No offense, but I found Lasertime as an extension of VGMpire. Gladly through my money into the Patreon to grow the show finally.
    For shame songs, mostly a gamer so naturally my shame comes from there. Here’s my top 3 “oh god I hope no one’s listening… or someone that hears it reaffirms how awesome this is” songs.
    from The Saboteur, “Feeling Good” –
    from Fallout 3, “I Don’t Want to Set the World on Fire” –
    and Bioshock, “Somewhere Beyond the Sea” –
    All are from mostly dead sounds today, but still can’t help but get ‘dem feels’ from associating them with the games I loved them in.

  24. Oh man, my 10-month-old son LOVES Spanish Flea. Every time I play it, he stops whatever he’s doing and starts bouncing up and down on his butt to the beat of the song.
    As for myself, my pre-birth shame songs line up well with Henry’s: a lot of 1970’s pop schmaltz in the vein of Paul Williams and the Carpenters. FANTASTIC show, wish it went a little longer!

  25. Oddly enough, both of my shame songs have the same title: “Call Me.”

    The first “Call Me” is a song originally written in the 60s. My favorite cover of it TECHNICALLY came out after I was born, but is a fun version of the song from Austin Powers. Performed by The Mike Flower Pops, it sounds like something that you would play in a bachelor’s pad, or when you’re about to perform the mattress mambo with your significant other.

    The second “Call Me” comes from a delightful time in the 80s when synthy pop was king. Written and performed by Go West, it is a perfect encapsulation of 80s cheesy pop song.

  26. Ray Stevens the Streak! My parents had all of his cassettes and as a kid I loved watching all of his music videos. Luckily I was introduced to Weird Al shortly after and was given a real taste of what parody music was.

  27. Doo Wah Diddy song is one that I heard in Grade K and kinda stuck with me. Its bubbly and old sounding but I enjoy it. Not really a shame song that I like but MacArthur Park is a running gag in my family. Usually if cake is involved. If we ever had cake in a park forget it.

  28. Props to Henry for talking about Sailing. I love that song, and it’s something I pull out occasionally at karaoke. Another good one by him – and one that’s more upbeat if that’s what you prefer – is “Ride Like the Wind”, featuring Michael McDonald. Listen here:

    Also, I got curious after Grimm mentioned the Neil Young album with synthesizers and vocoders (since that sounds right up my alley), so I looked into it. I think he’s referring to the album “Trans”, which I immediately fell in love with after listening to this playlist:

    As for me, I don’t really have any shame songs from pre-1980. I listen to a ton of music from the ’70s, but I’m not embarrassed by any of it 🙂

  29. I’m not quite ashamed of this, but I would never pull out my love of Gilbert and Sullivan at a party. But “When I was A Lad”, “A More Humane Mikado” and “I am the Very Model of a Moder Major General.” are very good tunes that are WAY older than me.

  30. #1 – Billy Joel is terrible and not redeemable in any way. Google ‘Scharpling’ + ‘Billy Joel’ for lots of entertaining Joel-bashing.

    #2 – CHRISTOPHER CROSS IS AWESOME and has like 3 or 4 other good singles in addition to Sailing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.