36 Days of Adrenaline: Day 9 — “China Grove”

Artist: The Doobie Brothers

Why this song is an adrenaline rush: Are you kidding? Have you not heard those opening guitar chords?

Lyric line that’s fun to belt at maximum volume:

But every day there’s a new thing comin’
The ways of an Oriental view
The sheriff and his buddies with their samurai swords
You can even hear the music at night
And though it’s a part of the Lone Star State
The people don’t seem to care
They just keep on lookin’ to the East…

Fun factoids:

  • There really is a China Grove, Texas, down around San Antonio. It is not, however, a Chinese-American enclave; only 0.08% of the population is Asian. I think that’s, like, maybe two Asian guys.
  • Samurai — and their swords — are Japanese, not Chinese. In case you were confused.
  • The game show Don’t Forget the Lyrics! used the “China Grove” guitar riff as its theme music. Rickey Minor, now the bandleader on The Tonight Show, played the theme.
  • The Doobie Brothers were one of the first — and one of the relatively few, to this day — hard rock bands to include both white and black musicians in their lineup. To the best of my knowledge, however, there has never been a Chinese Doobie Brother.
  • On the other hand, several of the Doobies have performed and recorded with Japanese pop star Eikichi Yazawa, who might own a samurai sword or two.

Other songs by the Doobie Brothers that I could have chosen instead: “Listen to the Music,” “Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me),” “Long Train Runnin’,” Jesus is Just Alright.”

[Late to the party? Here’s an explanation of 36 Days of Adrenaline.]

Explore posts in the same categories: 36 Days of Adrenaline, Soundtrack of My Life, SwanStuff, That's Cool!

One Comment on “36 Days of Adrenaline: Day 9 — “China Grove””

  1. Donna Says:

    Back in the day when “Name That Tune” was on TV, if I were a contestant, I could have named this adrenaline rush tune in one note!

    I heartily agree with you that this is truly an adrenaline rush song. When I travel long distance westbound from where I am now to “you know where I’ve gone”, the Doobie Brother’s Greatest Hits CD is one of the 12 CDs loaded into my CD deck. “China Grove” is definitely a good adrenaline rush while on the road!

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