The Talking Propellerheads?
Date: Wed, 20 Apr 94 00:49:44 PDT
Subject: The Talking Propellerheads?
[Take it from me, there's nothing quite as much fun as playing music for a
reception at a computer conference ... unless, of course, your material is just
right for the crowd... -psl]
From: WhiteBoard News for April 19, 1994
San Francisco, California:
At the recent UniForum computer trade show in San Francisco,
the visiting techies rocked to the sounds of two bands: the
Beach Boys and the Talking Propellerheads.
While the Beach Boys might be a better-known band, the
Talking Propellerheads were probably better at interfacing
with the crowd. That's because they play songs like "UNIX
on the Desktop," sung to the tune of "Message in a Bottle"
by the Police: "Just an old OS, isolating me -- oh, and I
must confess better than NT - - oh. More Windows hype than
anyone can bear, buy my code before I fall into despair --
The Talking Propellerheads were born 13 years ago when six
salesmen at Westboro, Massachusetts-based Data General
showed up for the annual sales meeting with pencils, tables,
charts -- and guitars, keyboards and drums. They performed
"hitech" classic rock parodies, such as "Psycho Salesrep,"
to the tune "Psycho Killer" by the Talking Heads, and "Sales
Man," a spoof of "Soul Man," last popularized by the Blues
Brothers. Their fellow employees and management called for
encores. The sextet, most of them former systems engineers,
took its name from the slang for tech nerds --
Last year in Boston, the Talking Propellerheads won the
Lotus World "Battle of the Bands" fund-raiser by
outperforming groups from Lotus Development, Digital
Equipment and ComputerVision.
In "Cobol Wizard," to the music of "Pinball Wizard" from
the Who's rock opera, "Tommy," they proclaim, "Ever since
I was a young boy, I used to write Cobol. From mainframes
down to micros, I must have done them all. But I ain't seen
nothing like him in any sales office stall. That deaf, dumb
and blind kid sure writes a mean Cobol."
© 1994 Peter Langston