Put the needle on the record with reporter Kyle Odegard, who reminisces about this song by the Crazy 8s.
The Crazy 8s formed in Corvallis and mixed elements of rock, ska and more. Though they never made it to the big time, the 8s were the undisputed kings of Oregon’s music scene for a few years in the mid- to late-1980s. And this song is perhaps their greatest legacy.
“Johnny Q” has a simple but irresistible horn hook — our intrepid reporter figured out the tune on his saxophone while he was a student at Gordon Russell Middle School in Gresham, and this was the first song where he could play the tape and jam along.
Beaver sports fans might be familiar with this earworm even if they don’t know its name. The Oregon State University band regularly plays “Johnny Q” at games, providing some in the crowd a trip down memory lane.
Just as a reminder, we’re putting out new videos every Thursday morning with our Mid-Valley Live section, which features arts and entertainment, food and drink, the outdoors and travel. Future Mid-Valley Legendary videos will feature our staffers’ favorite movies, TV shows, books, music and more.