This Friday’s Song is “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult. This 1976 song is about is about the inevitability of death and the foolishness of fearing it. The song has a compelling guitar riff, a memorable guitar solo in the middle, and the use of a cowbell percussion instrument. While disco had started to dominate the charts, this song is a solid example of how engaging American rock and roll could be.
I was in my early twenties when this song was released in 1976. I had moved back to Boston from New York the previous year. I had just started back at Salem State College after taking some time off. I was working nights at Gibbs Oil in Revere, MA as a service dispatcher. The company was in the home heating and retail fuel business then. I had gotten back into following Boston sports including especially the Sox and the Bruins. When I was working, I usually listened to a radio show featuring sports writers Clif Keene and Larry Claflin. The Clif and Claf show was a mainstay for me throughout my remaining years in college.
I have included two versions of “(Don’t Fear” the Reaper”. One is the audio version from the band’s channel and the other is a live cut from 1976. Hope you enjoy!