BEEP-BEEP The Little Nash Rambler

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This 1958 song help Nash Motors sell 26,782 Ramblers, double normal production. The Rambler was a humble car purchased primarily by older people.  However, in this song, the little car passes and beats a mighty high-powered Cadillac.

This novelty tune, written by Chic Hetti and Donny Conn was an instant radio success. People loved that the little Ramber put the Caddie in the dust. “Beep Beep” began charting with Billboard on November 3, 1958; it charted for 15 weeks, peaking at number four. After the single sold one million copies.

Roulette Records, who released the album, didn’t want to release the song as a single. Why, because you can’t dance to it. But DJs of the time loved it, played it off the album cut until Roulette finally released the single.

You can’t dance to the song because it is built around what is called an accelerando. That means the tempo gradually increases with the increasing speed of the drivers. In that sense, it is like Ravel’s famous “Bolero,” the lover’s song that slowly builds from foreplay to a climax.

Am I saying that Beep Beep is for lovers too? Ahhh. Not really, but it depends on who you are with, I suppose.

The thing that makes Beep Beep a favorite is that it builds to a crescendo does, but the ride is fun. As a bonus, the underdog wins, and Americans love too root for the underdog even when it is a 1958 Nash Rambler.

 


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