2021 SONG DRAFT- ROUND 6 PICK 2- BADFINGER20 SELECTS – ‘BASTARDS OF YOUNG’- THE REPLACEMENTS

The Replacements Sticker! "Bastards of young", Paul Westerberg,  Adventureland | eBay

2021 Song Draft- Round 6 Pick 2- Badfinger20 selects- ‘Bastards Of Young’- The Replacements.

I was really happy when I saw Mike’s choice of the Replacements song Can’t Hardly Wait in the draft. That one was in the back of my mind but I had this one ready to go for later. I decided to go ahead and get this one in now. 

I could have picked a more instantly likable song by them like Skyway, Here Comes a Regular, or Alex Chilton but this song…was a great anthem that kicks you in the shins when it starts. It was recorded in the eighties but it has no giant production…it’s raw and honest about youthful uncertainty and alienation. 

I recently visited Aphoristic’s site and he had his top ten songs of the 1980’s.  I thought about it and I included this song on my list in the comment section. In popularity would it be there? No… but this is a lost anthem of the eighties that should have been taken up by that generation. Just because a song isn’t heard and embraced by everyone doesn’t mean it isn’t great. 

Westerberg’s songwriting in the 1980s rivaled any artist in that decade. 

Everyone who knows me… knows I’m not a huge fan of the top 40 in the 1980s but alternative rock is a different story. In my opinion, the two best alternative rock bands to come out of the 80s were The Replacements and R.E.M.

R.E.M played the music business game much more than The Replacements. The Replacements didn’t play at all until the very end. That hurt them on not being heard on radio or MTV. If it weren’t for their penchant for self-destruction they would have been known more by the masses. 

This song was on their album “Tim” released in 1985. Why was the album called Tim? There was no reference to the name on the album. The band’s manager said that he asked Paul Westerberg what the name of the album would be. Paul told him “Tim” and the manager asked why? Paul said “because it’s such a nice name.”

 “Tim” was placed 136th on Rolling Stone’s 2003 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, and 137 in a 2012 revised list. The album peaked at #186 in the Billboard Album Chart in 1986. 

Paul Westerberg:  “To me, a part of that song is about my sister who felt the need … to be something by going somewhere else. It is sort of the Replacements feeling the same way … not knowing where we fit. It’s our way of reaching a hand out and saying, ‘We are right along with you. We are just as confused.'”

They also played this song on SNL and got banned for life for being drunk and a certain swear word slipping out….supposedly by accident. This is the only video I can find of it. Westerberg eventually appeared on SNL in the 90s as a solo artist. The studio version is the second video. 

Bastards of Young

God, what a mess, on the ladder of success
Where you take one step and miss the whole first rung
Dreams unfulfilled, graduate unskilled
It beats pickin’ cotton and waitin’ to be forgotten

We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
The daughters and the sons

Clean your baby womb, trash that baby boom
Elvis in the ground, no waitin’ on beer tonight
Income tax deduction, what a hell of a function
It beats pickin’ cotton and waitin’ to be forgotten

We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
Not the daughters and the sons

Unwillingness to claim us, ya got no war to name us

The ones who love us best are the ones we’ll lay to rest
And visit their graves on holidays at best
The ones who love us least are the ones we’ll die to please
If it’s any consolation, I don’t begin to understand them

We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
Daughters and the sons

Young
Young
Young
Young
Young

Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours
Take it, it’s yours

36 responses to “2021 SONG DRAFT- ROUND 6 PICK 2- BADFINGER20 SELECTS – ‘BASTARDS OF YOUNG’- THE REPLACEMENTS

  1. straight ahead rock… they probably had a “fall through the cracks” problem besides their attitude not helping themselves. A bit too rock and roll for the few alternative stations around then, a bit too “out there” or different for the classic rock ones playing Motley Crue and Aerosmith and nowhere near pop enough for the general hit radio format. Perhaps they’d have found a home (and more sales) in the 90s if Westerberg hadn’t gone off on his own. Good pick!

    • Thanks Dave. The very reason I like them is probably just one of the reasons they didn’t get heard…rawness in a decade that ran away from it. Even heavy metal bands had smooth processed guitars…not the old fashion turn it up to 11 and go with it. You are right…I think they would have fit in the 90s much more. This is what Nirvana and other bands heard but to me they didn’t have the songwriting that The Replacements had.

    • If you ask me, give it another ten years & Nirvana will be known for an entry point for Dave Grohl & making radio realize people would listen to something beyond Michaels Bolton & Jackson.

    • Here is what my alternative what if history of Nirvana – maybe I would have been wrong but we will never know. Clearly Kurt Cobain was not a happy fellow- and wasn’t comfortable as being the spokesman for his generation.. IF only he had taken a different route- instead of killing himself… he lives I think its a good chance that today- you would hear talk every now and then will Kurt Cobain ever made a comeback? After the In Utero -the third and final album by Nirvana- he has pretty much disappeared from the music scene- living a secluded life- although there have been rumors that he has been secretly recording and had a large back log of music that he has never released – and who knows if the 54 year old Cobain will ever release this music- if the rumor is true. But reports are he is living a happy life- outside of the public eye- lying low….

  2. Love The Replacements- one of my favorite all time concerts- Replacements in 1988… I got them on a good night- they must not have been all that drunk.

  3. I like your comment Max that this song starts off by kicking you in the shins. Great line! It’s unfortunate when artists or bands with so much talent and a lot to say just don’t get the notoriety, acclaim or fame they deserve, for whatever reasons. They were probably ahead of their time in some respects.

  4. “Everyone who knows me… knows I’m not a huge fan of the top 40 in the 1980s…” Nope. You were listening to the Beatles and Surf music. LOL!

    I loved R.E.M. from the get-go (if you remember our convo on the video channel I watched that was a local anomaly). They were alt before alt was a thing. I really enjoyed the alt-rock from the 90s.

    The Replacements remind me of a fusion of The Ramones & the Sex Pistols…rough & in your face. I also feel a little AC/DC in this, too (Bon Scott years). This is a good song.

  5. Some of my favourite Westerberg lines

    God, what a mess, on the ladder of success
    Where you take one step and miss the whole first rung
    Dreams unfulfilled, graduate unskilled
    It beats pickin’ cotton and waitin’ to be forgotten

    Thanks for the shoutout.

  6. Well, I’m a day late to the discussion, but I’ve learned from Badfinger/Max’s past posts that I’ll love almost anything from The Replacements. And, because they didn’t play the music business game, I had no chance to hear them when I most needed their escape from the late 1980s Top 40. Bastards of Young is new to me, and I like the sound.

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