Feb 9, 2012
10:22 AM
Weekender

Joy to the world

Joy to the world

There is a special place in my heart for Three Dog Night. Perhaps that's odd, given that I was born in 1980, well past the band's creative prime. The genesis of my undying love for them is twofold:

1. My mom and I used to delight in scaring each other half to death replicating the scream from their semi-obscure (and vastly underrated) gem "Woman." At any random moment, one or the other of us would suddenly shout, "Huunghhh, AAAAAHHHHHH!" at top volume just as it happens in the original track, although a "not while I'm driving" rule was instituted the first time I nearly caused her to run the car off the road.

2. With apologies to Merle Haggard, Three Dog Night recorded the greatest song to reference Oklahoma in pop music history: Oklahoma native Hoyt Axton's "Never Been to Spain."

My family and I used to go see Three Dog Night every year when they performed at the Oklahoma City theme park Frontier City. Every year, they executed a different variation of a joke that, despite being possibly the cheesiest gimmick in the history of concert gimmicks, never failed to crack us up. (It was probably the cheesiness that made it so funny.) They would start a song written by someone else (a Beatles tune, perhaps), then after about the first chorus, one of them would stop the others and say something along the lines of, "Wait a second, guys, we didn't write that song!" and without missing a beat one of them would bellow, "Well I never been to Spain ..." and burst into the tune as the crowd erupted with knowing, appreciative hoots and hollers.

Even though that was more than ten years ago, I'd be willing to bet the farm that they'll dust off that joke this Saturday night (Feb. 11) at the Osage Event Center. Along with classic hits like "Mama Told Me Not to Come," "Joy to the World" and "Eli's Coming," Three Dog Night may be getting up there in age, but their music will delight fans of any age. The show is set for 7 p.m. Tickets start at $25 and can be purchased here.

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