Apr 01

Isn’t that what the Rolling Stones are for?

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Isn’t that what the Rolling Stones are for?: In Britain, the search is on for a new manufactured band. But don’t apply if you’re a Justin Timberlake-alike with smooth moves and 6-pack abs. Oh no. They’re looking for men over the age of 50 for a “man band”. So, next time your dad starts embarassingly crooning “Wonderwall” complete with “emotional” hand movements at the family reunion, don’t get annoyed. Instead, remember that, in Britain, they pay for that sort of behavior.

Mar 01

At least someone is admitting the RIAA is out of touch:

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At least someone is admitting the RIAA is out of touch: A listing of the best songs of all time, as voted by the Recording Industry Association of America and the National Endowment for the Arts, was released today, and the winner is…”Over the Rainbow”? Rounding out the top five were Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas”, Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land” (the most inexplicable choice I’ve heard of in my entire life), “Respect” by Aretha Franklin, and “American Pie” by Don MacLean. Notably absent from most of the list: anything recorded since 1980. Highest rap entry was “Rapper’s Delight” at 162, and for those who like to keep tabs on the Beatles at all times, “Yesterday” ranked 56th.

The best quote was from Bob George, director of the Archive of Contemporary Music: “These are songs people would recognize if they were white, middle-class, and old. It’s a great list for people who go to baseball games.” Isn’t that the truth?

Feb 01

What was Liam Gallagher doing in Germany?

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What was Liam Gallagher doing in Germany? Poor Robbie. First he joins Queen and now this. Does the humiliation stop?

Dec 00

The best thing I ever seen Eminem do

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The best thing I ever seen Eminem do, since we have spoken of him lots in recent days, came this weekend. It was so bizarrely fascinating that I feel the need to let you all in on it. We were watching MTV, which had a show on basically accusing Britney Spears of being slutty for the way she dresses, and featured a truly agonizing segment of Britney sitting on a chair, watching a tape of people on the street in front of MTV studios degrading her (intersperced with a handful of girls defending her, including two friends who got into a bit of a fight when one said, “If you had her body, you’d dress like that too” – you just know the next line was “You think I’m fat??”). Eminem came on and said that he, Eminem, thought that Britney Spears was a bad influence on his daughter. Eminem. Eminem said this. Eminem had the nerve to call someone a bad influence on children!!!

This is made much more funnier in light of the fact that the show that lead into the Britney-bash-athon was a show about Eminem being a bad influence on popular culture, littered with comments by him stating that parents should be responsible for their children’s behavior and it’s all in good fun.

Dec 00

I don’t know how I missed it earlier, but I’ve decided it’s high time to clear up a misconception placed on

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I don’t know how I missed it earlier, but I’ve decided it’s high time to clear up a misconception placed on this very webpage on November 27th. I normally wouldn’t care, except that this misconception has run so rampant around the world and I’m hoping that my small efforts might halt the spread of it. Anyhow…

While Shep Pettibone did produce much of Madonna’s best music, “Justify My Love” was not one of them. That fine song was the work of none other than Lenny Kravitz, who also sings a spot of backup. Pettibone does have a remix on the single, but it’s not very good. Maybe she should try Lenny again; he’s easily better than William Bloody Orbit.

Nov 00

Do rappers live in the studio?

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Do rappers live in the studio? You really have to wonder, based on the sheer amount of post-death output that seems to occur. Now Big Pun is releasing a new album, in February, even though he died months ago. Tupac has “new” material coming out, Biggie does…when does it end? Are they actually dead? Are their “friends” just splicing together old lyrics to make new songs now? Are they taking bad, unfinished studio tracks in a Beatlesesque attempt to cash in? It’s not just rappers, of course – Nirvana released an album a few years after Kurt Cobain’s died, Sublime is still releasing stuff featuring their dead lead. I’m also certain that if Prince died today, we’d still have another 30 years of Prince releases backed up. The concentration of this behavior, however, is in the rap community and I can only wonder – just how much do these guys record?

Nov 00

Just to update Maura’s entry below, the song that rips off

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Just to update Maura’s entry below, the song that rips off The Pajama Game is called “Dance With Me” by Debahlah Morgan. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a silly, stupid song, but much less egregious and awful a musical rip off as anything Jay-Z has done with children’s choruses from Annie and Oliver!. “Dance With Me” is actually doing quite well on the US charts, I think.

Oct 00

And the point of novelty songs is…?:

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And the point of novelty songs is…?: Anyone who is currently living in New York will know what I’m talking about, but for those of you who don’t, let’s give you an appraisal of the situation: Z100, the big pop station in the city, currently has at least 3 novelty sports songs playing in heavy rotation. There’s “Who Let The Mets Out?”, which is exactly what you think it is: “Who Let The Dogs Out” set to a disco beat but about the Mets instead of about dogs. Then there’s the Yankees songs. Last year’s big hit has come back to haunt us; “How Ya Doin’ Yanks?” is possibly the strangest, most Village People song I’ve ever heard used as a sports anthem. Then there’s the new one, “Pin Stripin'”, which is this horrendous parody of “Big Pimpin'” except about baseball (but of course). This is quite possibly the worst thing I’ve ever listened to, including Radiohead’s last two albums and 98 Degrees’ new single. If Jay-Z had anything to do with it, he should just shoot himself right now.

I know the sports song isn’t a purely American phenomenon; other countries have made a big event out of the soccer/football song. Why does this urge exist though? The songs are invariably awful, but people buy them. So, I’ve asked the question in I Love Music, and I’m truly curious as to who listens to these songs and why they exist. Some of them have become huge hits, like “The Cup Of Life”, so obviously someone loves them.

Oct 00

You know you want it – Holler Part 3!:

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You know you want it – Holler Part 3!: First off, I hate burdening you, the reader, with more about the absolute nothingness that is “Holler”. It’s not worth a full-fledged review, but it’ll doubtlessly get millions of them. I’ll just put forth that naming your album Forever is never a smart move; it seems the public is very reactionary. “Forever! My arse forever, you’ll take what we give you, soddy slappers.”

“Holler” is the sort of song that Rodney Jerkins has been doing for about 5 years now, with increasingly lower levels of success. It’s the kind of thing that just exists – you never overly notice it, unless forced to, and will quickly slip away after the initial, name-driven hit. Sort of like Kid A. The song is blandly inoffensive until Melanie C comes in. Whoever convinced this girl that she can sing and that screeching amounts to singing deserves a slap or two, because they’ve wrought some horrible stuff upon us. When she starts shrieking over the song at the end, I just have to wonder, “These girls, the ones that hammered Geri Halliwell until she was in tears (supposedly, etc), refuse to tell Melanie C to shut up? She’s not even muscular anymore”. I just don’t get why she gets all the flash parts of their songs. She’s not even as good a singer as Emma – Emma for god’s sake – and quite frankly I think her singles make that Posh Spice single look good. She was just this side of bearable when they first started and they insisted they all had to share the songs equally, even with the ones who couldn’t sing a note, but now she seems to have convinced everyone involved that she’s the stuff of this operation and should be allowed full scale racket over all that is done. U. G. H. Didn’t the producers actually hear that terrible Ibiza-style song that she did? You’d think that’d convince them otherwise, but of course not. We’re talking the same producer who thinks Jennifer Lopez is a hot talent.

Actually, I take that all back. The worst part of the song is when he starts doing that blathery shout out to the Spice Girls. “Spice Girls in the house, huh huh” or whatever he does actually say – when did the Spice Girls become bad asses? Next they’ll have inexplicable Snoop Dogg cameos in their videos, where he sits and watches them wash his car in a tarty fashion.

My only curiousity is what the Spice Girls themselves were thinking. I can’t imagine they all think this is a good song – for that matter, I can’t imagine anyone thinking this is a good song. Did they honestly think this would get them adult recognition? It’s a somewhat worrisome idea – I’d hate to think of Britney Spears doing some rubbish like this to get respect. Respect is such an overblown, overrated concept, especially if you believe you have to do clutter like this to get it.