Tag Archives: music


9 Nov


An Award Named After an Obsolete Music Delivery Medium

1 Feb

I watched about an hour’s worth of the Grammys last night, and with the exception of Beyonce, every single thing was a cacophonic horror that reinforced the notion that the mainstream recording industry is out of ideas. The Black Eyed Peas sounded horrible. Imma be changing the channel. Taylor Swift was “pitchy”, as they’d say on American Idol.

The absolute worst thing I think I’ve seen on TV in a while involved Jamie Foxx, T-Pain, and Slash. It involved a tremendous amount of repetitive yelling, auto-tune, and an irrelevant guitar solo.

There was a nice enough Michael Jackson song about the environment, but instead of a call to action, the lyrics I could decipher revealed it to be a passive-aggressive call to complain. The syrupy Celine Dion was joined by Carrie Underwood, Smokey Robinson, and other people I can’t remember to sing karaoke with the disembodied voice of Michael Jackson himself.

In the meantime, people were urged to text a vote in as to which song they wanted Bon Jovi to play. Not being a fan of Bon Jovi, I hoped that people would text “NONE”.

Around the time they announced that after the commercial break, we could hear Roberta Flack, Bon Jovi, and other people I couldn’t care less about, I fired up the DVR and watched Family Guy.

No wonder the music industry is in crisis.

Bohemian Rhapsody

24 Nov


The Jonas Brothers

31 Aug

Last night, my daughter got to see her favorite band, the Jonas Brothers.  She’s 9 years old and smack in the target demographic for the Disney-managed trio.  The show had several opening acts, including this one, which was just phenomenal in its cheesiness:


The “Wonder Girls” are 5 young women from Korea who, I gather, have taken Asia by storm.  They sang one song, then left the stage.

But the Rogers Centre was sold-out.  55 – 56,000 people in there, and I have never heard in my life such noise.  I have never before felt the concrete floor of a stadium feel like it was going to buckle from the weight of thousands of tween girls jumping up and down.  A phenomenon they definitely are.  Manufactured by Disney.  But.


There is no doubt that these guys are talented.  They play actual instruments.  They sing actual songs that they actually wrote on those instruments.  They can sing.  They entertain.  There is nothing at all wrong with them.

And I’m not talking about the suggestive foam-spraying or the purity rings or anything else that South Park so excellently parodied last season.  I’m talking about the fact that this is perfectly reasonable music, especially for this age group.

No big choreography.  No multiple costume changes.  This isn’t N’Sync or Backstreet Boys or New Kids on the Block.  It’s schlocky, but not that schlocky.  The music isn’t Beatlesy, but the phenomenon is. My ears are still ringing.

So when I joked on Twitter/Facebook yesterday that the loneliest place in the world was the men’s room at a Jonas Brothers concert, it was the truth (seriously, I was the only guy in there, in a stadium, and that bathroom has never before been as clean, and probably never will be again).   I figured somebody would give me the, “you won’t catch me dead taking my kids to see the musical flavor of the month” line, and sure enough, there it was.

But my thought is this.  She’s a good kid.  She likes these guys.  They’re harmless, and they play instruments, which inspires her to learn hers.  They actually don’t suck and they put on a pretty good show.

But above all, it’s fine to teach your kids to listen to jazz and classical and whatever other more acceptable, proper music there is.  But it’s also fine to let them listen to and enjoy popular music, even if you hate it. Even if you can’t stand it and think it’s pedestrian.

Having her choose some of the music she listens to helps her love music.  And I’d rather she got interested in better music on her own initiative rather than having me lecture her about it.

Because we all probably liked some shit our parents hated.  Because it’s ok for our kids to just be kids and enjoy kid stuff once in a while.

Now, I have to take her to guitar lessons.

Poison & Def Leppard

27 Jun

I stumbled on Jeff Miers’ review of last night’s show at Darien Lake, and laughed at this bit:

Sadly, Poison also performed. Calling the band’s set atrocious would be going easy on them. The band rode the wave of glammed-out pop-metal acts that seemed to be lurking behind every corner in the latter ’80s, and managed to earn a rabid audience based on its pale reworkings of classic rock and metal tunes.

Many of these were in evidence on Friday, from the moment the band aped Aerosmith with opener “Look What the Cat Dragged In,” through the Cheap Trick “She’s Tight” to “Talk Dirty To Me.” Reality TV star and frontman Brett Michaels strutted about the stage to the audible appreciation of the female portion of the audience, and grabbed an acoustic guitar to lead the band through the country-leaning ballad, “Something to Believe In.”

It was all truly awful, from the live sound, to the cheesy refried Kiss effects. Happily, Def Leppard wasted little time taking the stage after Poison’s merciful cessation.

Negative reviews of things are always so much more entertaining than the positive ones.

Mixing YouTube

11 Mar

From this series – “ThruYou” by Kutiman. HT WNYMedia.net’s Jon Splett via Facebook

Here’s how he did it:

All About Trader Joe’s

10 Feb

Jen sent this along and I thought it was cute in a They Might Be Giants sort of way.

This Land Is Your Land

19 Jan

It’s that time of year again

22 Dec


I like the BNL Christmas album way better than “Snacktime”, incidentally.

Breaking News!

24 Nov

The Vatican forgives John Lennon for saying that the Beatles were more famous than Jesus.

In 1966.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled activities.