Tag Archives: Music

Loving Screams

You guys. Your favorite dada-surf blitz, “Rock Lobster,” RESCUED JOHN LENNON’S GENIUS. See, B-52s recorded it partially as a Yoko Ono tribute (all those animal sounds!). Lennon heard it in a club. Inspired by its similarity to his wife’s music, Lennon collaborated with her to make Double Fantasy, after five years of rock block. Satisfying narrative urgency, Ono screamed her part in “Rock Lobster” with the B-52s ten years later.

“Listening to the B-52’s, John said he realized that my time had come,” [Ono] told Songfacts. “So he could record an album by making me an equal partner and we won’t get flak like we used to up to then.”

Loving screams save culture.

And I adore Molly Ringwald’s loving scream about the impact of The Breakfast Club and other John Hughes movies she collaborated in creating. Racist! Honest! Realistic! Empowering in their honesty and realism! Wholly endorsing sexual assault! Still totally racist!

How are we meant to feel about art that we both love and oppose? What if we are in the unusual position of having helped create it? Erasing history is a dangerous road when it comes to art—change is essential, but so, too, is remembering the past, in all of its transgression and barbarism, so that we may properly gauge how far we have come, and also how far we still need to go.

How far we still need to go, Molly? Turns out it’s #EqualPayDay. And one wonders if she got paid as much as the dudes in that film. Or if Ono got paid as much as her husband to make Double Fantasy.

One doesn’t really wonder. One screams.

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Bowie Covers

The permadelight of low-profile solo Stipe singing “I’m a dude!”

Higher profile solo Stipe forever puts Nirvana to RIP with “The Man Who Sold the World”

I linked to this already but Beck decided that what Bowie covers REALLY need are lots and lots of corporate-sponsored production value and maybe he’s right?

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Book Reviewlets: Girl in a Band, by Kim Gordon

Kim Gordon confirmed my adolescent suspicions that society shakes down into strata of cool. And that the people I love most not only occupy the same social latitude. They’re also all best friends.

Mixing drinks, sharing babysitters, dating each other before hardening and wizening into the wrinkle years.

Kim Gordon dated Danny Elfman, y’all. In high school.

And she’s best friends now with Carrie Brownstein and Amy Poehler?!

Thus the rusty gears of the universe click into nearly Renaissance degrees of harmony.

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Oh. That R. Kelly

When I was in college, I earned cookie money working here, a summer enrichment program for low-income girls. In my day, it was dance, drama, and creative writing. I taught creative writing, during which I made up lesson plans out my own head, and I also helped out in drama, and it was lovely.

One of student theater’s many perks is all the break time. Y’all don’t get that in athletics. Break time and the chance to imagine all the possible future selves one might become. During the many break times, these junior high girls would sing and reenact popular R&B videos. Performing on stage for each other and themselves.

When they sang “I believe I can fly,” they believed, during the moments spent singing the song, that they could fly.

Low-income girls, some of them several families to a house, living in what was only recently at that time the number one town for murder, per capita.

And when I think, now, what could have happened to them had they lived in Chicago instead of California.

I believe I can cry.

PS. Does anyone remember or care what Michael Jackson was accused of? And settled out of court for? And they dance dance dance anyway to “Smooth Criminal?” in a bemused retro way?

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Something Flickered for a Minute

I’ll take Manhattan in a garbage bag with Latin written on it that says

‘It’s hard to give a shit these days.’

Manhattan’s sinkin like a rock into the filthy Hudson water shock

They wrote a book about it that said it was like ancient Rome

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Top Adolescent Albums

Meaning, the top albums that capture adolescence. For me.

Meaning, the top albums about sexual frustration first, everything else second.

Inspired by this excellent write-up about one of the 80’s’ most underrated recordings:

1. The Violent Femmes’ debut, especially “Add It Up.”

Special bonus points to TfH’s brother (Hi!) for taking me to see them at the Santa Clara University gym when I was 15 (which is the perfect age for the Violent Femmes), and for buying me a t-shirt that I still wear.

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