Tuesday, November 09, 2004
glistening by the numbers: NINE
Marvin Gaye - "Cloud Nine"
41: I like the song there, just not the vocals or the beat or the way the vocals and the beat match up (for the most part) there. What else to say, I dunno.
Avi: That hi-hat is mixed just about as loud as the vocal, but it totally works. So is that two drummers or just an overdub? It's a shame that engineers don't seem willing to take chances like that anymore. Everyone's been arranging instruments in the exact same stereo spectrum for so long, no one wants to break the mold.
Lee: Thank god! Finally, some soul! Marvin is a god. I always hear something new everytime I listen to one of his tracks and I never get tired of them. This track makes me wonder what would've happen had Marvin and Curtis worked together on the Superfly soundtrack. Super soul.
Rosecrans: Marvin Gaye was shot by his father, Marvin Gaye, on the day before his birthday. The song's about escaping the world and living a million miles away from the father who treated your mother like shit. I don't know the last time I actually paid attention to a contemporary singer's lyrics and felt moved or impressed.
David: I'm a big fan of Marvin Gaye, but I don't think I've ever heard this one before. I certainly should have done, because its bloody marvellous.
This cover of the Temptations' cut (which had already been a big hit and a grammy winner only a year earlier) packs twice the wallop of the original. Shit is ANGRY, son. That stabbing hi-hat, the coiled snake restraint of the background girls and that psychedelic funk guitar just WAH WAH'n like a redheaded stepbaby adds up to one vicious song.
Marvin's capable of such a smooth flow when he gets his dander up; some of the lyrical riffs he gets into on this are so tongue tripped that you wanna push up ya lighter. Few artists move me quite as intensely and as bonedeep as Marvin.
Buy "MPG/That's the Way Love Is", a double album remastered Motown gold mine import, from Amazon.
This is Marvin on the cusp of embracing a new kind of genius, comparable to Stevie's pre-quantum leap album "Music of My Mind". Two years away from "Grapevine" and one year ahead of "What's Going On?", "That's the Way Love Is" is a heavy laden treasure chest of little appreciated Marvin. Worth a peek and a poke.
Read Marvin's sad obituary.
What is it about being the king of R+B that destroys great men?
We eat our young.
Consider "Mercy Mercy Me", Michael Eric Dyson's recent biography of Marvin.
Prince and the Time - "9 Lives"
Here, as promised is your weekly purple quotient. This unreleased Time track sounds roughly 'Grafitti Bridge' era to me; your milage may vary.
Absolutely beautiful. Everything I love about early nineties Prince: lyrics like "heckapumpbody", multi-layered synths and funky/spiritual backup singers, obsessively chantable chorus, bitchin' guitar solo, power diva screamin'. Yet another case of some of the best of the man's work slipping through the cracks.
Sorry about the sound quality; it's just good enough that you should be able to appreciate the song. Leastwise, _I_ do.
Visit the boy king.
Explore "Ecnirp", probably the only Prince website you'll ever need.
My Nine Lives in Scientology
Meeting the Neighbors
Honey, Where You Been So Long? is doing you a big favor and you may not even know it. He's offering a regular selection of classic pre-war blues tracks that are pretty much unavailable ANYWHERE ELSE ON TEH INTARWEB to say nothing of how expensive and time consuming it would be for you to go hunting in libraries and rekkid shops for this stuff. Quite a lot of what shows up on 'Honey' is clearly the result of years of careful listening and loving; you can get a real education just by keeping a close eye on the place.
Better yet, Peter is no closeminded Blues nut; he's got real love for plenty of other kinds of music and this informs his picks and commentary in such a way that he has patience for those new to the genre.
Recent offerings include music from Memphis Minnie, Memphis Slim, Bukka White and Blind Willie McTell.
Sing yo' song, Honey.
'Honey, Where You Been So Long?' started in late May 2004 with the track "Black Snake Blues" by Little Son Joe. I started 'Honey' because I thought that mp3 blogs were mostly posting the same batch of songs, and that what I really enjoy wasn't being represented. 100 plus tracks later, I've moved onto a bigger server for my tracks and a second writer will be joining the fray. I've lived in three different apartments since I've started the blog, two jobs and one goldfish. We are always looking for guest writers and mp3 submissions.
Where did you get the name of your blog?
It comes from the Ma Rainey song, which for some reason i haven't ever posted on my blog. I should probably get to that soon. I was going to name the blog "Everyday of the Week Blues" from the Pink Anderson song, which I used as my first post, but I though that "Honey, Where You Been So Long" would be more of an attention grabber and give some personality to the blog.
What are the criteria you judge a song by to decide if it's post-worthy?
I'm not sure if i have a criteria in which I pick songs by. I normally pick a song that best reflects what I'm thinking about, what is stuck in my head, or what is new to my blues collection. The only think I really try to avoid is later day blues that fetish the guitar or songs every one has heard. Though I'm moving away from the latter rule as a lot of people enjoy when I post some of the more famous blues tracks.
What song would you like played at your funeral?
Blind Willie Johnson's "Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground". Hauntingly, beautiful instrumental track from the best slide guitar player of all time.
Five desert island discs?
1. Blind Willie Johnson – "The Complete Blind Willie Johnson"
2. Aretha Franklin – "Spirit in the Dark"
3. Nina Simone – "Pastel Blue/Let It All Out"
4. Billie Holiday - "Songs For Distinguished Lovers"
5. Son House - "The Complete Library Of Congress Recordings"
That old chestnut dinner party is at your house and you can invite three musicians living or dead. Who are you inviting?
Bessie Smith, Bille Holiday and Nina Simone. I wouldn't be able to speak, though.
Which critical darling do you find most overrated? Who's the most overlooked genius in the music industry?
Corey Harris, My Morning Jacket and Sunburned Hand of the Man get most of my scorn.
Robbie Fulks is quietly becoming the best songwriter of the current generation.
Recommend a few other musicblog sites.
1. Number One Songs In Heaven: Extremely well written musicblog with great soul/funk selections.
2. Locust St.: Focuses on music from the War Years, very informative and it has a great Tex Ritter song up now.
Is there a major flaw in the way that musicblog sites function that you'd like to see corrected?
I think musicblogs are progressing nicely actually. I just hope that more people expand into smaller styles of music rather than trying to cover everything. I can't wait until someone puts up a old country music blog as well as a good mainstream country blog.
ed. note: PLEASE!!!!!
List a few bands that you enjoy listening to that might surprise your readers.
I grew up listening to only rap music and still listen to a lot of mainstream rap so alot of that would be surprising to my readers. Also the Scissor Sisters album is top 10 or 15 for the year.
Are you a proud member of the iPod Nation?
I don't have that many mp3s, shockingly enough, to make it worthwhile, really. I don't even own a walkman!
Would you ever consider selling the blog?
I'd sell my blog in a heartbeat to Document Records in exchange for a complete set of their releases. Document Records, please feel free to contact me about this offer. Also, Document or Yazoo can feel free to send me albums as a form of sponsorship. Outside of that, I'd never sell out.
Make a ten song mixtape playlist based on the following topic:
All You Need to Know
1. Glen Campbell - "If This Is Love"
2. Willie Nelson - "Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer)"
3. Chuck Higgins and His Mellowtowns - "Ain't Gonna Leave Baby"
4. Laura Lee - "I Can't Hold On Much Longer"
5. Ghostface Killah - "Save Me Dear"
6. TV on the Radio - "Dreams"
7. Yvonne Hunter - "Have You Ever Been Mistreated?"
8. Elizabeth Cotten - "Oh, Babe It Ain't No Lie"
9. Nina Simone - "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood"
10. Hattie Hart - "Won't You Be Kind?"
Drop on by betterPropaganda and pick out a track to hype.
American Music Club - "Another Morning"
'Big rooms only make our lives small." Great Eitzel line, delivered with a wonderful hushed tenderness, is the soul of American Music Club. Its not a reunion it's just a new album.
our man in the field
So, yes, we DID take almost a week off and yes it WAS because we were depressed about the election.
I gave a lot of thought during this time off what the best way to respond was.
I'm still not exactly sure what I should do.
Bear with me while I figure it out.
In the meantime, crazy times call for crazy solutions.
Meet our new political/live music correspondent, David Boyle.
First of all, thanks for putting up the link to the "George W. Pussy" video on my site. The vid certainly didn't change the election results but at least it got out on the streets before Nov. 2.
I've now been mentioned at the top of Chuck Eddy's Nov. 2-8 "Eddytor's Dozen" list. How pained Michael Moore, Michael Stipe, Bruce Boss, Em-em and P. Diddle must be that they got so much media attention and yet proved largely impotent.
This world is getting worse.
I went to a Le Tigre concert last night in Detroit at St. Andrew's Hall. Le Tigre is "good" by definition, but yesterday they often seemed homogenized. I much preferred their August 2002 concert at the Magic Stick. They finished with a one-song Pointer Sisters encore, "I'm So Excited", with Kathleen Hanna doing her Miss America bit. I guess you can't castrate a woman but KH seemed pretty close with her "good night drive safely" wave-off to the audience as she left. I guess that's what signing with Universal does to you.
Hanna also said "Fuck Jesus" during her performance, which I didn't think was too cool. It's especially inappropriate in a venue named St. Andrew's Hall, but when she's sampling Reverend Al Sharpton on "New Kicks" and (gag) part of their new logo on their "This Island" CD is a gold crown with a _CROSS_ on top of the crown... talk about uprooting your own garden.
One of their opening bands, The Gossip starring Beth Ditto, was waaaaay better than Le Tig itself. I discussed some of this stuff (more about Pointer Sisters than the "Fuck Jesus" thing) with Beth Ditto after the concert and she said, "Well, Kathleen's thirty-five; she's paid her dues," which may be nice to say but I'm not sure if it's sufficient excuse.
I actually "advertised" the Tofu Hut during my recent four night stay in D.C. I went there to demonstrate and spent several days in a green flight suit wearing a sign saying "aWol Bush" along with a poster covered with Bush photos and the words "Coward-in-Chief". Also, on November 2, I dressed up as Jesus with a robe, a cardboard cross and a sign saying "Bush = JUDAS to Valerie Plame, National Guard, U.S.A." The other side of sign said "Forced sodomy at Abu Ghraib is _not Christian_".
I also carried another sign that said "VOTE" on one side and "See 'George W. Pussy Cat' at d-bo.com or tofuhut.blogspot.com" on the other.
I added the qualifier "cat" as my concession to be non-controversial. Maybe I should've advertised "Rapping of the Christ" as well...
TV crews from Canada, Denmark and Germany interviewed me when I was in the Jesus suit. There is a good chance some of the footage with your URL got on those countries' TV stations.
Tofu Internationale. Wow.
I'm probably on a CIA death list now, as I walked with those signs AROUND THE WHITE HOUSE REPEATEDLY on Nov. 2, getting a lot of friendly-but-concerned questions from guards and Secret Service men, mostly of the "how long are you going to be around here" variety.
My last donning of the green flight suit was when I went to the Capitol Hilton at 16th and K Street around 9 p.m. on the 2nd for the Democratic National Committee "victory" party where Eleanor Holmes Norton spoke.
At the Hilton, I switched the small sign on me from "aWol Bush" to one that read "Kerry: Mission Accomplished", which prompted at least one admiring photographer to take a picture and also one girl to say I "looked hot".
Well, the sign did say "Mission Accomplished", not "Mission Successful", so I guess I wasn't wholly inaccurate.
Wow, did it get somber at the "Victory" party after a couple hours! People saying that the party’s head was handed to them on a plate, Democrats swearing at each other and arguing about whether Terry McAuliffe should be sacked, etc, etc. Ugh. It didn’t help that the hotel staff got REAL surly and even openly aggressive and confrontational. They kicked us out of the party room after 1 a.m. and told us we had to leave immediately. Jeez.
Hope all well,
mr. t and me
music for maniacs is heating up.
Blogroll update on the way.
Continuing to seek employment and housing. Any interested parties, inquire within.