Manilow Music vs Mall Rats

A mall manager in New Zealand wants to drive away rowdy teenagers, and he figures piping in Barry Manilow music will do the trick.

It’ll be Barry Manilow versus the mall rats. The New Zealand city of Christchurch hopes that putting the American crooner’s smooth and gentle tones into the mix of music to be broadcast through the central mall district can pacify unruly teens who congregate there_ or at least convince them to go elsewhere.

“The intention is to change the environment in a positive way … so nobody feels threatened or intimidated,” Central City Business Association manager Paul Lonsdale told The Associated Press. “I did not say Barry Manilow is a weapon of mass destruction.”

A group of several dozen young people regularly spread rubbish, spray graffiti, get intoxicated, use drugs, swear and intimidate patrons at the outdoor mall, he said.

The city council, police and local property owners covering 410 businesses agree that “nice, easy listening” music like Manilow’s “Can’t Smile Without You,” “Mandy” and other hits might change the behavior of loitering teens.

I have always had an eclectic taste in music. I listen to everything from Big Band/Jazz/Swing/Rock/ to Heavy Metal. The only two exceptions are Rap which is for the most part, racially tinged, misogynist, and just plain stupid, and Classical, which usually puts me to sleep.

As for Manilow, I’ve been a fan of his music since I was a teenager in the 70’s. I would have said as long as you play “American Bandstand”, “Jump, Shout Boogie”, “Avenue C”, and “It’s a Miracle”, crank it up.
I’m there.

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