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I Spent Money On This? Sunday, December 14, 2008

Posted by JB* in albums, I Spent Money On This?, JB*, music, shitty music.
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The tale of a holiday gift gone awry… after the jump

The Album:
Jon Secada (Self-Titled Debut)
The Year:
1992

The Story
My father has always been bad about Christmas gifts.  He used to travel about eleven months a year, save for his vacaton – when he would then travel for fun.

In the fall of 1992, he spent the months of November and December throughout the Southeast, teaching at various centers.  He called me about a week before Christmas, telling me he had not yet gotten everything for my brother.  He had, however, bought him a kickass Emerson boombox.  He asked me to go out and buy him three cds.  I do not recall two of them, but I remember him specifically asking for me to buy Jon Secada’s debut album.  He would be picking us up on the evening of the 23rd and would pay me (or more likely, my mother) back then.

The Good
The best thing about this was that the CD – even though I physically bought it – was not for me.  That is actually probably the only good thing about it.

Actually, the first single of the album was radio friendly, hitting #5 on the charts, for what it was – an upbeat sounding pop love song.  Hearing it in the car would be Just Another Day, after all -

Plus, the dude hung out with Gloria Estefan.  That has to be worth something.

The Bad
Christmas morning, my eleven year old brother is hella-excited to open his own CD player under the tree.  He figures out the three square packages are CDs, so he tore into them.  Upon finding Jon Secada, he could not figure out why, until our Dad says “I have some tapes, so let’s make a copy of it for me.”

Even without that, there is the music itself.  Secada was probably about a decade earlier – in the later 90s, he would have been part of the Latino Music Boom.  In 1992, though, it was just him and Gloria Estefan with the Miami Sound Machine (which is one of worst band names ever that you do not regularly hear mocked).  Since then, subsequent albums did little mainstream commercially,  and he moved to Latin albums, then Broadway musicals.

The Verdict
The thing is, this probably wasn’t even the most ridiculous Christmas with my father – there was the year he forgot nametags for the presents; the year he forgot wrapping paper so we had to wear bags over our heads; the year the house caught on fire; the year his girlfriend showed up to introduce herself to my stepmother; the year he bought a tree at 10 pm on the 24th of December, and it was so crooked he had to nail it to the floor; the year he didn’t get a tree at all so put Christmas lights on an inflatable dinosaur, setting it on fire; and the year my brother almost drowned in the hotel pool.

But this is the year my brother will not let him live down for giving a present, which was really for himself.

Join me next week as I continue to tally the thousands of dollars spent on ill-fated purchases of music.  And don’t tell my mother, lest she want me to pay her back.

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