For an edifice designed to house and represent the seat of national and international power, it sure seems like the White House could have been diagrammed in crayon on college-ruled notebook paper during third period. We know there’s a bowling alley, of course—which Barack Obama is going to replace with a basketball court, as any modern eight-year-old would. There’s a private chef who can make you mac and cheese or pizza rolls, even after midnight!!! There’s a pool, a dog, a helicopter, spy equipment, secret rooms for ordering missile strikes, and lots of long hallways to skateboard down. There’s no moat (that we know of), but as it turns out, there is one more key feature: an awesome secret record collection!
And, in a move that would make any Mojo reader happy, it was last updated during the Carter administration, leading to a collection that includes:
landmark albums in rock (Led Zeppelin IV, the Rolling Stones’ Let It Bleed), punk (the Ramones’ Rocket to Russia, the Sex Pistols’ Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols), cult classics (Captain Beefheart’s Trout Mask Replica, the Flying Burrito Brothers’ The Gilded Palace of Sin) and disco. Not to mention records by Santana, Neil Young, Talking Heads, Isaac Hayes, Elton John, the Cars and Barry Manilow.
The collection started in the Nixon administration, but included squaresville stuff like Pat Boone. When Jimmy Carter got into office, a commission including John Hammond and then-Rolling Stone reviews editor Paul Nelson updated it with the above list of stone-cold classix. (And Captain Beefheart.) Each of the sleeves was imprinted with the presidential seal and the records were housed on the third floor—but as soon as Ronald Reagan moved in, they got shipped off to the basement. If Obama revives the collection, does that mean he might also implement my dream of a residence with an awesome water slide going from the roof to the basement?