Some of my favorite memories are of summer days at my grandparent’s house. Each morning, before another lazy day of fishing and swimming in the lake behind their house, grandma would make a country breakfast of eggs, bacon and biscuits. The smell would wake me and the image of her dancing in the kitchen to old time country music made me linger at the kitchen table just a little longer. When I hear music like that today it takes me back to yesteryear (which was only about 20 years ago.) June Carter Cash and Patsy Cline have a special place in my collection, fondly referred to as grandma’s. What has me me reminiscing like this? Two new renditions of an old song by Elainee which capture the spirit of some of the tunes grandma played.
I’m not certain Elainee was going for the 1950s-1960s Nashville vibe when she recorded Livin’ Doll, done twice by Cliff Richard in 1959 and 1978. She may not even like the comparison, but it’s meant as a sincere compliment. So many pop singers today owe a debt of gratitude to the trailblazers of that era and I couldn’t help but smile when I heard the rendition of this song. I can taste the eggs, bacon and biscuits all over again.
So who is Elainee? She’s one of the UK’s hottest country-pop stars. And if you saying to yourself you didn’t know England had country music, let me just say they have a rich tradition of it. A self-described wild, sexy, fun girl, she has a professional theatrical background which allows her to deliver very animated live performances. She shares the same vocal coach with the legendary Blondie vocalist Debbie Harry.
So you can see by her brief bio she’s not only entrenched herself in a form of music that has no geographical boundaries but she’s also modernized the attitude behind it as indicated by another song that’s really a second rendition of Livin’ Doll. Loving Hunk is the antithesis of Livin’ Doll. Whereas ‘Doll’ objectifies women as perfect walking talking dolls, ‘Hunk’ turns the tables, making men the objectified gender. You can almost here Elainee’s stiletto-feminist glee at having a walking, talking hunk locked in a trunk that she can take out and play with whenever she pleases. And while it wasn’t proper for women to sing of such things in days gone by, I’m sure grandma is somewhere smiling.