Pop Culture Rant

Weirdo writes a play using the music of the 80’s band The Go-Go’s. New York Times reviewer doesn’t like it. SJW hate mob descends.

Skimming thru the review and various bits and pieces on Twitter – I wouldn’t give such a concept more attention than that; you can dig deeper if you like to waste your time – I get the idea that this play was supposed to be some ground-breaking event and that the reviewer failed in his duty to praise the effort for being ground-breaking…but how using 35 year old music to kowtow to 2018 Progressive ideology is supposed to break any ground is beyond me. The whole thing seems boring – especially since the Go-Go’s started to bore me about 15 minutes after their first song hit the charts (but they were the first all-girl band to write and play their own music! Yeah? So, what? Their musical style was boring and their lyrics trite…but not even trite in a fun way like most pop lyrics are). The whole thing is rather a SJW rip-off of Mama Mia!, if you ask me. Apparently without the fun…and with substandard pop tunes as a hook.

I get nostalgia – I’m a Conservative, right? But I think, at times, we get nostalgic for things that only seemed cool at the time. It is like the continuing popularity of The Eagles on classic rock stations. It was mega-popular when it came out and I think people associate it with happy days of youth. But, come on, the music sucked! No one moves faster to change a radio station than me when I hear the first three notes of Life in the Fast Lane or Hotel California. Hotel California topped the charts in 1977 and you get to hear it several times a day if you listen to classic rock stations…but you’re lucky if you hear Lido Shuffle once a year on the same stations. And you can go listen to Hotel California if you want to compare, but I’ll actually provide Lido Shuffle for your enjoyment:

After listening to that and realizing that I’m right, also realize that if they ever do a play using 1977 music it’s gonna be with the Eagles music, not Boz Skaggs.

And just because, also from 1977:

But, Eagles, Eagles, Eagles. And don’t think I’m just ripping on them…Heart also sucked; as did Carlos Santana (never heard a more boring guitarist). Basically, most chart-toppers were lousy. You ever listen to those re-broadcasts of American Top 40? It is practically impossible to listen to: 9 out of 10 songs are just hideously bad. Not worth plowing through them to get to the one gem that actually endured the test of time.

Where am I going with all this? Nowhere – this is a rant, dang it! I’m just venting spleen on something that irritates me: and, in this case, it is the use of some of the worst music ever made as some sort of cultural markers for our civilization. I don’t care about that play because the subject matter of it seems pretty dumb…what I’m upset about is they used a lousy band and now I can find people waxing rhapsodic over the nuances of the fargin’ Go-Go’s! There are no nuances in a song that says over and over and over a-freaking-gain “we got the beat”. Meanwhile, this will never be part of a hit Broadway play:

Summer’s going fast, nights growing colder
Children growing up, old friends growing older
Freeze this moment a little bit longer
Make each sensation a little bit stronger

Because that might make you think about something – maybe even something pleasant. Its from this song:

And the guys who made up Rush are probably pinko enough…but their music is too actually good to make it on Broadway. So, we’re stuck with lousy music being made into bad plays about subjects that no one cares about. And then have to hear shrieks from SJW’s who feel we don’t appreciate it enough.

End Rant.

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18 thoughts on “Pop Culture Rant

  1. Amazona July 28, 2018 / 6:53 pm

    Lido Shuffle is OK, but my feeling is that once I heard it, well, I heard it. Didn’t need to hear it again. But that’s just me.

    I’ll hit Replay four times in a row for Canadian Railroad Trilogy, though, and that is a long song —- though Lido Shuffle was starting to feel pretty endless.

    I am just indifferent to pop music. And BTW I thought Mama Mia was awful, simply awful. Music was OK, in small doses. The movie was excruciating. So naturally they had to make it again. Redneck Trash music is wonderful—-Georgia Satellites singing Keep Your Hands To Yourself is a classic, and I do admit to loving the early Kentucky Headhunters. Of course, I am a sucker for a line like “don’t need to write it down, he’s got a photogenic mind…” I had to buy a new Andrea Bocelli CD because I wore out the Eco track, and an employee was once freaked out to see so many Tom Waits albums in my collection—-though to be fair, I only like a few of his songs, and the rest I just used to make people go home. Try it—-put on a Tom Waits album and you can clear a room in ten minutes. I guess you could say I have eclectic tastes, and basically skipped the 80s and 90s because every time I dipped my toe in I decided it wasn’t worth my time.

    The only musicals I like are the old fashioned kind, with plots and people talking to each other and then every now and then singing and dancing. “Hey, kids, let’s put on a show!” It never gets old. Saw Evita in London and hated every minute of it, though for the rest of the trip my husband and I sang everything to each other—-Darling, please pass the salt—-so I had no interest in seeing Phantom of the Opera.

    I believe the technical term is Musical Curmudgeon. Though if you like traditional jazz or stride piano I have some good stuff.

    • Retired Spook July 28, 2018 / 7:47 pm

      so I had no interest in seeing Phantom of the Opera.

      Actually, if they ever make it into a movie ( now watch someone tell me they have) and it comes on Netflix or Amazon Prime, I’d watch it, if for no other reason than All I Ask of You is one of my favorite songs. And I’ll admit it — I like the Eagles. I’m not crazy about the lyrics to Hotel California but the opening guitar riff is one of my favorites. But it’s not on their Greatest Hits, volume 1, which is one of the 6 CD’s in the changer in my car. One of my all-time favorite songs is a cross-over originally sung by Kris Kristofferson, I think, called Loving Her Was Easier, although my favorite version of it was done by, of all groups, The Lettermen, on an album titled “A little Bit Country.” My tastes aren’t quite as eclectic as Amazona’s, but I range from Classical to just about everything except Heavy Metal. More than anything I like songs that I can sing along to.

      • M. Noonan July 28, 2018 / 7:58 pm

        So, that means I had to check it out, to see what Spook likes – unfortunately, the sound quality on this appears weak:

        This is more my speed – though if anyone asks I’ve never listened to it:

      • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 1:03 pm

        Actually, the Krisofferson version is pretty good. Some people have a hard time getting past his voice, but I think it adds to the music and it’s my favorite version. I don’t know if you have ever listened to a whole Kristofferson album—the man, as a songwriter/poet, is amazing. His word play is brilliant, his imagery vibrant, and his emotions beautifully portrayed. I think I would put him and Paul Simon at the top of the semi-modern songwriters, though Lennon and McCartney had a lot of prime stuff.

        Kristofferson has a pretty good list of great songs:
        In addition to Loving Her Was Easier, he wrote
        Why Me, Lord
        Sunday Morning Coming Down
        For The Good Times
        Me And Bobby Mcgee
        Help Me Make It Through The Night
        The Silver Tongued Devil And I

        I am very focused on lyrics, which is why I also love Ian Tyson, whose songs tell stories. They are a little more horse-and-country, so they don’t have universal appeal, but they are not CW.

        A lot of people think jazz is just a bunch of unrelated discordant noise, and I think the modern versions are pretty close to that. But trad jazz is a different animal, very structured in its own way. It is very similar to classical music. Basically, the entire ensemble presents a musical theme, its structure and melody, and then each instrument in turn develops that melody, develops that theme, expands it or deepens it but always within the framework of the original exposition. You can always discern that original melody within the development. You can actually sense the creative spirit moving the musician. It’s not herky-jerky but fluid and organic. Then they all come back together and play the original exposition again, incorporating the developed themes. It can be glorious.

        My husband and I used to go to jazz parties, held by a couple of different people who would sell tickets for a few hundred dollars apiece to pay for travel and lodging for the top jazz musicians in the world, who never got to play together because no one could afford more than one or two at a time, and they would break up into groups of two to eight musicians for sets of several songs each and simply glory in the experience of creating magic. And it was magical. It was pure musical genius, pure talent, and the experience of watching these people interact with each other, pick up on their musical cues and run with them, was indescribable. They also had a lot of fun. One would throw in something new or clever, another would grin and pick it up and run with it, the rest would back them up, and it was special to be a part of that. I doubt that any of them are even alive today. I had a friend who was always buying me “jazz” albums that were unlistenable-to, just raucous noise to me, lacking the fluid creation of beauty that true jazz was.

        I’m also a Big Band fan—-I’ll take Glenn Miller over anything written in the past twenty or thirty years, I think. I used to do musical performance competition on horseback, and though I never rode to Glenn Miller one night I took my stallion into the indoor arena and put on a Miller CD and just pretty much let the horse do what he wanted to do, and he danced to the music till the end. There was a little nudge here or there to help him find the beat, but he was totally into it, especially “In The Mood”. He was a very hot, very high-energy horse, but that night he was mellow and just flowed to the music.

    • M. Noonan July 28, 2018 / 7:52 pm

      Endless is 2112.

      But, in my view, good endless. I go two ways on pop songs – I either like them very silly and fun, or I want them to have some real poetry in them.

      I never got into jazz, but I did develop an appreciation for the old style musical from my Dad, who loved them and watched them all the time. And, you’re right: they were much more fun.

      But here’s something someone did with a modern tune – classic movie dancers set to Uptown Funk:

      • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 1:11 pm

        And thank you for the Uptown Funk clip—I LOVED it!

        One thing that came through so clearly was how much FUN these guys were having. They truly loved what they were doing.

      • M. Noonan July 29, 2018 / 3:23 pm

        I thought it pretty cool – there is some real talent out there which doesn’t get nearly the recognition it should. Even in people being edgy and transgressive…not the edgy and transgressive the media celebrates (which isn’t edgy, at all: just saying stale, Progressive ideology over and over again). It is one of the reasons I stay in the sewer of Twitter because there are gems to be found in there. I came across this, for instance (NSFW!!!!):

        I realize that it is far more likely to make a man laugh than a woman…but, I laughed. And even those who won’t like it, as such, will get the joke: the absurdity of the celebrity lifestyle. The living of a life which is supposed to make people think you’re something special just because you’re living it. Meanwhile, those the MSM celebrate are merely putting out the millionth version of the Special Oppressed Person triumphing over Mean Christian America. Yawn.

      • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 1:20 pm

        There’s a pretty amazing PBS special that shows every now and then, the Highwaymen, and it is great from beginning to end. Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson singing classics that actually have coherent lyrics.

        Johnny and Waylon are gone now, Willie looks like they dug him up for the show, Kris is hanging in there, but they put on quite a show.

      • Retired Spook July 29, 2018 / 2:57 pm

        Willie Nelson is one of those artists that you either love or don’t. My wife doesn’t care for him at all. Whenever I hear Always on My Mind I find myself humming it for the next two days.

      • M. Noonan July 29, 2018 / 3:15 pm

        Willie Nelson has never been one of my favorites…I get “it” about him, and he does have talent…but his musical style just doesn’t appeal to me.

      • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 4:18 pm

        I like Willie’s voice, though it is showing some cracks now, and his style just flows from one note to another. I’m not necessarily a fan of his entire catalog of work, but I do like “On The Road Again” and “Georgia On My Mind” and a few others, and I believe that “Always On My Mind” is a Kristofferson song. If I remember correctly, that is the song he talks about on that PBS special where he says he heard it and wished he had written it.

        I sometimes like a song or two but seldom want to listen to an entire album. Paul Simon’s “Graceland” is one I can put on and never skip a track.

      • M. Noonan July 29, 2018 / 11:18 pm

        It is pretty good – but that’s because Paul Simon is irritatingly talented. Hard to find a song of his which isn’t good.

      • Cluster July 29, 2018 / 5:42 pm

        That Uptown Funk video was AWESOME …. thanks Mark.

        And I will say this – Bruno Mars is an exceptional talent and one of the few young authentic musicians and entertainers ……..

  2. Cluster July 29, 2018 / 9:49 am

    Nice rant Mark and I also like Boz Skaggs. My musical tastes range from Frank Sinatra to Pink Floyd with Led Zeppelin, Dire Straits, Paul Simon, and Ray Charles in the mix. Very eclectic.

    I had to laugh this morning when I read this quote from “conservative” Jennifer Rubin describing her fellow conservatives:

    I think what they were motivated [by] was anger — and you can say it was racial anger or you can say it was anger simply about losing an election, but when Donald Trump came around and gave them permission to be angry about race, to be angry about immigrants, to be angry about elites, they said, “Yeah, that’s what we’re really angry about.”

    I am so glad Trump gave us permission.

    • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 12:14 pm

      Jenny, dear, thanks for the illustration of “projection”. Now that you have given us an unpleasant peek into your own mind, please do run off and play. Preferably in traffic.

      • Retired Spook July 29, 2018 / 12:31 pm

        It really did take the election of Trump to let a lot of so-called Conservatives show their true inner selves, the non-results oriented selves. “Shallow” comes to mind.

      • Amazona July 29, 2018 / 1:16 pm

        I am so discouraged by the prevalence of such negativity, spite and malice today.

        “Racism” is assigning characteristics, negative or positive, to people based on the melanin content of their skin, sometimes associated with ethnicity.

        It is NOT any of the things the ugly,hate-ridden Left tries to say it is. That is where “projection” comes in, when people reach into their own minds, drag out a slimy bundle of nasty and hate, and then declare “this is what THEIR minds look like”.

        No, it is not.

      • M. Noonan July 29, 2018 / 3:15 pm

        The real funny thing is she’s saying, “Why don’t these racist hicks listen to me?”

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