Send More Chuck Berry

Old joke:

NASA, in an effort to make contact with civilizations on other planets, sends a rocket into space packed with cultural items and a planetary map showing our location. There are great novels, reproductions of famous artwork, music recordings, histories of mankind, movies and assorted other things on board. A few years later a rocket lands on earth. It contains an envelope and, inside, a piece of paper with strange markings on it.

The government pulls together a team of the greatest scientists and linguists to figure out what it says. After six months, the lead researcher calls the president and says they have broken the code. The president says, “Great, what is the message?” The researcher pauses and says, “They want us to send more Chuck Berry.”

The good thing about the joke is that you can plug in any artist. I think of it as a Chuck Berry joke only because that’s how I first heard it.

Above is a good version of “Maybellene.” (Here is another good version, though the quality isn’t good enough for the wide video players used at this site. It’s a shame that I couldn’t use it. First of all, it should be a law that all MCs leave the stage like this guy. Berry’s entrance is almost certainly explained by Bruce Springsteen. His little spiel before he starts also seems carefully planned and well rehearsed.)

Here are great versions of Promised Land and C’est la Vie (the song featured in Pulp Fiction) from the early 1970s. Here’s Berry’s website and a nicely done discography.

The Daily Music Break offers daily and weekly emails. I won’t use your email address for anything else. Promise.

Close this popup

About The Author

10 Responses

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.