You might not know it, but the rights of ice cream men everywhere are slowly melting away. The city of Long Beach appears to be joining the ranks of Costa Mesa, Fullerton and Santa in restricting, even prohibiting ice cream men from playing music from their trucks to attract children. During tonight's Long Beach City Council meeting, councilman Dee Andrews plans to ask his colleagues to support an effort to ban operators of ice cream trucks from playing amplified music and is asking city attorneys to draft an ordinance that would require ice cream truck operators to comply with the city's noise ordinance and prevent the playing of any music when the trucks are parked and the operator is vending ice cream.
He says the music coming from the trucks on a daily basis has become a nuisance in the mid-city area of Long Beach. The question is, are the city's ice cream men going to allow their business to take such a serious licking? We think not. In fact, while there's still time, we're hoping a few bold cone merchants will ditch “Turkey in the Straw” for a day or two and blare some protest jams that will definitely send a message that they're sticking it to the man.
EPMD, “You Gots to Chill,” (1988)
When it comes to restricting with an ice cream man's ability to play music to attract his parade of sugar-starved, four-foot clientele, you're not just making his job infinitely more boring, you're messing with his business. So EPMD's track “You Got's to Chill” off of 1988's Strictly Business is a perfect message of protest a group of city officials who are definitely lacking some entrepreneurial spirit, not to mention a sense of Good Humor.
Van Halen, “Ice Cream Man” (1978)
There's no doubt the threat of an ordinance unplugging their music for good has Long Beach ice cream man singing the blues. But if there's one thing you should know about Van Halen, it's that they never take bad news lying down. Even a blues song by the legendary John Brim can easily be turned into a guitar wailing solo fest that's sure to piss off stuffy mid-city Long Beach residence who can't seem to handle a little children's music floating past their window. In that case, how about you take on of Eddie Van Halen's six string squeals and stick it in your ear. It's a flavor that's sure to satisfy.
Dorrough, "Ice Cream Paint Job” (2009)
When you're spreading good will to children while slangin' frozen treats, even an ice cream man reserves the right to feel like a bawse (that's "boss,” for the white people). So what better way to make your presence known than one of the 00's foremost lowrider jams, courtesy of Dallas rapper Dorrough? Besides, it's Long Beach–so any opportunity to look a little more gangster in your fridge on wheels will help you blend into the neighborhood.
Vanilla Ice, "Ice Ice Baby” (1990)
Though this song will probably have the exact opposite effect of the song above, who could resist the urge to annoy the shit out of Dee Andrews by rolling in an ice cream track past his office bumping a little Vanilla Ice. Word to yo motha'.
U2, "Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983)
When it comes to the battle for your right to blare music from your ice cream truck, you might have to go ahead hit 'em with one of the 80s most iconic protest jams. And if there just happens to be a frosty, fudge-covered tie-in with the lyrics, well, then that's just the cherry on top.