. . .
As a kid and a teenager, I was an inveterate up-and-down the radio dial guy, especially after the sun went down, when you could hear all sorts of weird shit on the radio if you just bothered to try. But while others looked for crazy gospel preachers; UFO conspiracy theorists or far-away sporting events, I looked for music that wasn’t being played on the radio in Fresno. (Because the radio in Fresno used to suck.)
And so it was one night in the late 1970s when I heard this fucking pastiche: it had the punk rock forcebeat and guitars, but the there was also a weird Beach Boys whoop and, wait a second, that guy isn’t even singing in English! French, maybe, what the hell even was this? But before I could find it, it ended, and there wasn’t even any back announcing. So while it was seared into my brain, I had no idea what it was, though I’m pretty sure I figured it out via Creem or Trouser Press at some point that the song I’d heard was probably “Ca Plane Pour Moi,” the language was French and the artist was called Plastic Bertrand. And serious punkers hated it. Or were supposed to hate it.