Beware the black SUVs

I dig this story. It’s by Amy Gardner of the Washington Post.

“A construction crew putting up an office building in the heart of congested Tysons Corner in McLean, Va., hit a fiber-optic cable no one knew was there. …

“Within moments, three black SUVs drove up, half a dozen men in suits jumped out, and one said, You just hit our line.'”

That line was “black” wire, used for top-secret intelligence gathering.

Another contractor said:

“Yeah, we heard about the black SUVs. We were warned that if they were hit, the company responsible would show up before you even had a chance to make a phone call.”

Cue the spy music!

We used to cruise around our central Wisconsin hometown in my Chevy Impala — I had a ’63, then a ’69 — the radio blasting away.

Every once in a while, my pal Marty would shout “Spy music!” and I’d be urged to drive faster and careen around corners. Cold beer usually was involved. Is it any wonder we didn’t have girlfriends?

I can’t remember what qualified as spy music. Maybe Marty does. “Secret Agent Man” is too obvious, and it rarely was on the radio in the mid-’70s. But when the right tunes came on the radio … “Spy music!”

Reading that story this week, I instantly thought … “Spy music!”


“Underwater Chase,” Al Caiola, from “Sounds For Spies and Private Eyes,” 1965. It’s out of print.

Yes, all these years later, I still am a sucker for spy music.

This record is chock full of originals and covers just dripping with cool and a hint of menace.

alcaiola65Al Caiola was much in demand as a session guitarist in New York in the ’50s.

Then he started cranking out stylish instrumental covers of movie and TV themes on the United Artists label in the ’60s and early ’70s.

“Sounds For Spies and Private Eyes” is one of those records. It’s considered one of Caiola’s best.

This tune was written by Caiola’s producer, LeRoy Holmes. It’s the only original on Side 1, sitting between covers of the themes from “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.,” “The Fugitive” and “The Third Man” and covers of “Secret Agent Man” and “Slaughter On Tenth Avenue.”


Filed under June 2009, Sounds

3 responses to “Beware the black SUVs

  1. ricardo

    Very groovy

  2. Marty

    The black SUV’s are outside my house, so I have cranked up the theme from “The Avengers” on the stereo! The eagle has landed and the fat man sings at midnight!!

  3. Great story . . . and good tune, too. We used to drive in my ’61 Falcon, trying to tail folks without having anyone driving behind us . . . As for Marty, I think the correct response is: Eight men walk in the forest.

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