Saturday, May 14, 2016

Song of the Day: "Sometimes"

Luke Bell is a country singer from Cody, Wyoming.

Cody Wyoming may or may not be my next alias (be cool).

Song: "Sometimes"
Artist: Luke Bell

Friday, May 13, 2016

Song of the Day: "The One"

I confuse Logan Lynn with someone else that I follow on Twitter... probably Loretta Lynn or Loretta Lynch or Logan Giles or Giles Marini. Only one of those people is my neighbor AND a musician (so far) and since he (or she) is my neighbor I will err toward being polite.

Of all the songs that have the exact same chord progression as the Dandy Warhols' "So Bohemian", this one is the best this year.

This would be way less awkward if the Dandy Warhols weren't friends with Lynn. Surely one of them is going to notice.

Song: "The One"
Artist: Logan Lynn

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Song of the Day: "Detour"

I like Cyndi Lauper. In addition to being talented and quirky, she's super sweet in person. I also appreciate that she's taken chances in the last 10 or 15 years (wait, is she taking chances or is she trying things not yet closed to her, like being a pop music queen?): standards, Memphis blues, a mother-fucking musical. Now country!

And if this duet with Emmylou Harris, one of the legendary voices of country music, is any indication, this album will suck.

Sorry Cyn, this would be better as part of the Best Musical Recording for Children album you need to do with RuPaul, Little Richard, Fred Schneider and Liza. You know, the album that gets Liza her mother-fucking Grammy.

Song: "Detour"
Artist: Cyndi Lauper/Emmylou Harris

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

A Tale That's Too Shitty

A good, cough, friend of mine once told me a story about the time he she helped his her mom pack and move:

"I started packing up kitchen items that wouldn't be needed here in the next month or 2. Naturally I demonstrated to mom that I am not considering her needs at this time.

I had packed the candy thermometer away like she wouldn't need it.

I'm basically Hitler. Worse, I'm Hitler's cousin (also named Hitler) who sent his mom to live with his sister/her daughter (Hitler-Weber) without a candy thermometer. She never knew when those little Jewish candies were done cooking."

Song of the Day: "Anywhere You Want To Go"

Santana IV, the 23rd and latest studio album from Carlos Santana and colleagues, is a follow-up to Santana III from 1971. It's the fourth album with the Woodstock era line-up of Santana (notably Journey's Neal Schon returns to the fold which means Neal Schon used to be in Santana... I did not know that). Eschewing most of the high profile guest vocalists from Santana's biggest albums; Gregg Rolie handles them for most of the album including this track.

Song: "Anywhere You Want To Go"
Artist: Santana

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Monday, May 9, 2016

Song of the Day: "Can't Stop the Feeling"

Justin Timberlake's latest EGOT positioning attempt, targeting the Oscar via Best Original Song from the forthcoming movie Trolls. Will it be this year's "Happy" (nominated 2 or 3 years ago)? I dunno, too soon to tell. Also that song lost.

Song: "Can't Stop the Feeling"
Artist: Justin Timberlake

Sunday, May 8, 2016

The White Version Of Black Respectability

"If anyone knows what art is, and how to make it, it’s fucking Beyoncé."--"Beyoncé’s ‘Lemonade’: How the writing credits reveal her genius" from
It's amusing to watch America react to a strong, successful, creative, talented black woman who has no interest in trying to conform to the concept of a Cosby Show version of "black respectability."
“Some of her performances we believe to be anti-police."--Tony Ragsdale, Coalition of Police and Sheriffs
That's only true if you think opposing the systematic racism present in virtually every police force in America is anti-police. For that to be true you have to believe the police themselves are sworn to uphold the systematic racism. So if you believe that, then sure Officer Ragsdale, it's anti-police. But if you believe that, Officer Ragsdale, we've got much bigger problems than Beyoncé.

Much. Bigger. Problems.

No, Officer Ragsdale (you don't mind me calling you Officer Ragsdale, do you officer? because I think it's fairly respectful, unlike calling you "boy" like you're somehow less than me--that would be blatantly disrespectful, I'm sure you'll agree, boy, so surely you'll see that the repeated times officers use that term, always in a pejorative sense, to refer to black men, that maybe it's part of the systematic racism present in virtually every police department in the country) this really isn't about the police at all, or even white people. Let me pause for a moment to apologize if you are not, in fact, white. But I am pretty much willing to bet a lot of money that you are white. You are a straight white male, likely one who self-identifies as a Christian, who tells others how much he loves liberty and freedom and this country.

But only when it conforms to your ideas of what liberty and freedom and this country should look like.

Otherwise it's wrong. It's dangerous. It's an attack on the very fundamentals of what make this country great.

Except it's not.
"Beyoncé didn’t just slay in that video and on that football field. She slayed mammy and massa. She slayed centuries of tragedy and repurposed it as audacious pride. She raised her fist and told the world, which has been telling us for centuries that everything about us—our bodies, our minds, our souls, our emotions and our truths—are wrong…she gave the White world two middle fingers. She told the world to jump back and gaze upon her Black fabulosity and be renewed. In the middle of a football game, she slayed the historic white expectations for Black women."--They Mad: Beyonce's Middle Finger Salute to White America
Some people have no use for whatever your idea of freedom or liberty or America looks like. Some people, Officer Ragsdale, are too busy for that. Beyoncé is too busy for that: she is busy assembling rich tapestries of sound and vision, rehearsing and touring, being a wife, a mom, a business woman and an artist and a performer and she doesn't have time to worry about your misconceptions.

We live in interesting times. We live in fabulous times. 

When things don't look or sound like the way you would do them, that doesn't mean they're wrong. And aside from your children and your employees, no one really has to ask your permission.

I am mesmerized by Lemonade. It's a stunning work of music and a cornucopia of amazing visuals. The musical styles are diverse but everything is connected, cohesive. She has a lot of collaborators (haters "she needs 30 writers on a song"), and it shows (me "you try it with fewer than 20 then, let's see your version"). There is a lot going on and there's no way any one person could have pulled it all off alone. I keep watching, listening, trying to confirm if this is really spectacular or if I'm just swept up in the hype and the polish, missing the fact that it's more a glossy catalog than a visual story.

This post should tell you I'm still amazed. 

And if you're at all uneasy or threatened by any of this let me reassure you, and you can trust me because I'm a middle aged white guy and, while I'm gay, I'm as, cough, straight acting as they get: this isn't about you.

Don't be threatened. When people celebrate an aspect of their lives it doesn't take a fucking thing away from you. Not Gay Pride, not Black History Month, not Polish Days, not St. Patrick's Day, not #BlackLivesMatter, not Christmas, not Channukah, not Kwanza, not Festivus, not Solstice, not National Italian-American Heritage month. None of that takes a fucking thing away from you.

And if you don't get how bad ass all of this is, please let me know. I can't explain it all but I think I get like 70% of it and damn, it is good.

[Oh, and I in no way think Beyoncé needs me to reassure anyone about anything, I'm just adding my three cents (worth 50% more than everyone else's two cent opinions) because, hello, I'm a blogger.]

Song of the Day: "No"

Allegedly Meghan Trainor delivered her follow-up to her debut album Title only to have her label's head, Babyface, tell her he didn't hear a single. So she went out and created this song.

Good for her.

And also fuck him. Apparently that's some bullshit he pulls with everyone of his artists. I guess the trick works but still, fuck you Babyface, playing games like that.

That story does remind me a bit of the story behind the Sara Bareilles song "Love Song". Her labeled asked her for a big passionate love song, and she said "no."

Song: "No"
Artist: Meghan Trainor