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excerpt from "Songs Sung Blah"

by Ken Robison
The Fresno Bee, Tuesday, August 5, 1997

(Dave Barry wrote a column on the world's most-hated songs. Fresno Bee columnist Ken Robison followed up with his own article. Here's an excerpt.)

Hated songs come from every corner of the music business. Some are from one-hit artists. Others can come from legendary bands, such as The Beatles. Many of [Dave] Barry's readers dissed The Beatles' "Hey Jude" because of its overdose of na-na-na-na's.
Ex-Beatle Paul McCartney also was criticized for his song "My Love," which had more wo-wo-wo-wo's than any other song except Morris Albert's "Feelings" -- which, as you can imagine, received a couple of votes for most-hated song. "If anyone on 'The Gong Show' sang that song, they were automatically gonged," said Phyllis Sommars of Fresno.

Play it again, Nate

Just don't tell Nate Butler about your feelings against "Feelings." He'll play it.

Butler, Fresno musician best known for his Beatles cover band The Beetles, sings a lot of cheesy songs as part of his weekend piano bar act at Veni Vidi Vici restaurant.

At a recent stint behind the keyboard, Butler did two of pop music's most-reviled songs -- "Muskrat Love" and Sammy Davis Jr.'s "The Candy Man."

"When I play 'Muskrat Love,' you can hear people in the room groan," he said. "But I think they get a kick out of hearing me play it."

Butler said he gets a secret pleasure out of singing sappy songs such as Neil Diamond's "Love On The Rocks" and Stephen Bishop's "On And On."

And that attitude translates into his rock 'n' roll playing, as well.

"One band I'm in, if you yell 'Freebird' we'll play it, just to spite you," he said.

A lot of songs are hated simply because they have been played to death.

"Like 'Stairway To Heaven,'" Butler said. "It's a good song, but I don't know anybody who wants to hear it again.

"And 'Twist And Shout', by The Beatles. I'm sick of it. It is, hands down, the most requested song for the Beetles band. People shout it at us, and we finally play it just to get them to shut up."

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