This week’s GrapeVINE spotlight is Dr. David Crawford, professor in the departments of International Studies, and Sociology and Anthropology. Dr. Crawford was born in Spain, grew up in Ohio, but lived in Southern California from 1966-1970 and then again from 1973-1984 because of his father’s work at Ohio State University. He is married with two children, 14 and 15 years old, and has five chickens and one dog. Dr. Crawford classified his favorite genre of music as “crappy” 80s punk, yet he also listens to surf rock, indie and West African music. He grew up in the punk era and lived on the beach so surf rock came into play then, and when he was older he traveled to Quebec and Morocco and got interested in music from Mali and Senegal. His diverse taste in music contributes to understanding him as a professor and as a person. To know someone’s playlist is to know their whole self.

Below is a list of some of Dr. Dave Crawford’s favorite songs:

  1. “Spanish Bombs” by The Clash

“I always liked political songs by The Clash. This one was about the Spanish Civil War, and since I was born in Spain under General Franco, I really like this song.”

  1. “Los Angeles” by X

“This is my hometown band! They played in my gym in college, they played in small clubs all around LA and they were just great. Their shows were so fun. It was a punk scene, but a very friendly punk scene; it was physical without being violent. It was in a way that, you know, you were in this kind of churning vat of humanity and you just lost yourself in the music and in the other people and it was a lot of fun.”

  1. “Caress Me Down” by Sublime

“This was one of my fave songs for when I was young and just because it’s so naughty. The lyrics are just profoundly inappropriate; especially the ones that are in Spanish.”

  1. “New Slang” by The Shins

“For me it is such a haunting song. I can’t figure out what the lyrics mean, I know all the lyrics, and it just strikes me as so sad, it’s the saddest song, and I just listen to it over and over whenever I feel like being sad.”

  1. “American Girl” by Tom Petty

“That was a song from when I was 15 years old and I just loved it.”

  1. “Story of My Life” by Social Distortion

“It makes me think of Southern California. The one line in the song that says ‘I went back to my old neighborhood and the pool hall I hung out at as a kid is now a 7/11,’ I mean, that’s like every place I’ve lived. Southern California is an all new place. All the buildings are different; everything’s changed. This is another song that really resonates with me plus; I like the guitar in it.”

  1. “Loser” by Beck

“I used to listen to this when I was in graduate school in London. Beck had been famous for a while already, but when you’re a grad student you feel like such a loser. You’re never going to be as smart as your professors and all everybody does is tear your ideas down. You have no money and you feel way too old to be a student anymore and Beck’s ‘Loser’ that just summarizes grad school.”

  1. “God Save the Queen” by Sex Pistols

“This is going back to childhood. When I was about 13 years old I first heard punk rock and I was kind of a hippy and my style was long hair, Led Zeppelin, peace and love. I really believed in peace and love, and then pink rock, and the Sex Pistols in particular, were like spitting on people, piercing their face with clothespins, and I thought the world was coming to an end. I thought these guys were the worst. They were the opposite of everything I believe in and hold sacred yet their basic outlook of making fun of the Queen of England and I thought like I kinda agree with that. I just thought royalty was stupid, I thought adults were stupid. There was something about Punk rock that appealed to me, but I also thought they just needed a little more peace and love and that didn’t really go with their whole vibe, but there’s an energy there or an anti-authoritarian ethos that’s important and that appealed to me.”

  1. “So You Want To Be A Rock ‘n’ Roll Star” by The Byrds

“The version I like the most is by Tom Petty. I loved Tom Petty when I was younger and I saw him about 10 times when I was younger. He played this song as an encore in Los Angeles at the Sports Arena and I thought it was the greatest song ever. I just loved it, especially the beginning of it. It’s great, it’s absolutely great, but I thought it was a Tom Petty song.”

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