(Tuesday noonish insert): Do you know what would be a really AWESOME music-making duo? Morrissey and Liz Phair! Wow! I'm a genius!
Speaking of Sheryl Crow, she's releasing new stuff, and her voice is excellent. Yet, it harkens back to her less-produced "Las Vegas" voice - but better developed. She even out-Phairs Liz Phair a little. The summertime song I heard is, of course, well-crafted pop. Who else was it that I once said was trying to be Sheryl Crow? - I forget. Oh wait - it was Miley Cyrus. HEY! Sound Opinions is stealing my stuff, maaaaaaaaan!
(Tuesday noonish insert): And speaking of summertime songs: One of my all-time fav albums is "Static and Silence" (1998?) by THE SUNDAYS - it contains at least two summer songs. I suggest you get it and listen to it right now. Like I'm doing. The title track is so sweet it sometimes brings a tear to my eye. And the song "Cry", another great one, seems like it was composed on C harmonica, by-crackie. The next song, "Fashion" is on this CD, but there's another song which is hot and tight, with a David-Bowie "Fame" rhythm, and which is great for mixes. For some reason, I am great at singing the high notes - on this song and others... I SOUND like the singer. With an Aussie accent. Anyway, The Sundays, I think, were one of the most influencial gruops of all time - up there with The Cranberies, and that one girl artist - not Annie DeFranco, that other one... TORI AMOS!
After listening to Spanish/Arabic artists Alamena and Natacha Atlas, noticing YET ANOTHER NO DOUBT INFLUENCE, I put on "Return Of Saturn," (2000), which I OWN because I am SAGITAR-I, and yes, I have decided that No Doubt, (esp. this album), was extremely influencial - on Alameda, Morrissey, Ska, pop hip-hopi stuff, Yamagata, the Blink182-type bands, and many more. It was that whole Marley-inspired ska thing that oddly came out of "otherwise-Albuquerque" Aneheim, with that other influencial band, Sublime. And this album featured such greats as Jerry Harrison (Talking Heads), Elvis Costello, and David Gray. And although I tend to look at multi-tracking lead-singer voice as a bit crass, like using a telephoto zoom, no one can harmonise with themself(s) better than Gwen Stephani. And though I consider No Doubt to be slightly second-rate when it comes to originality, their performance was always tight and high-quality, and "Saturn" was prolly their most original work, bringing together rock, ska, and 40's swing very well and very fresh - "NEW!" - whereas "Tragic Kingdom" was their best and most popular, but had less subtle blending of these music styles.
I've been listening to a little Doctor Dogg live. I used to avoid them cuz I thought they were provincial, and had a stupid name, but they are REALLY good. Embellished punk with a bit of a country drawl. Also - I've spent most my life waiting for a PSYCHOLDELIC wave in pop music. I listened to a little from an Aussie psychodelic band last night. "Tame Impala" or something. They really SUCK. Also, according to Radio China, there is some guy riding around in Beijing in an Impala or some rich car and handing out everyone healthy box lunches but no body knows his name. And nobody knows why. I'll tell you why. Because Newt Gingrich. That's why. Huh?...
I hate Joe Cocker. And Elton John has sucked virtually forever. But EJ put out two Country/Honky-Tonk albums long ago, classics, called "Tumbleweed Connection" and "Honky Chateau", which are highly recommended. They are comperable to that one classic Stones album which goes back to very basic Alabama-type blues - I think it's called "Beggers Banquet". Well, "World Cafe" reports that Elton John is presently working on some stuff with Joe Cocker. Now, if EJ goes back to that Honkeyweed style, and Joe Cocker keeps his apoplectic, marble-filled mouth shut, then the result would be amazing. But of course that won't happen because Elton John is a creepy fat-ass zombie. My guess is that they will sound like Randy Newman having his larynx removed while doped up on Vodka and being produced in jail by a well-plunged Phil Specter.
Why is it that most rockers make great stuff, and then they turn into celebrity vegetables for the rest of their lives? That is, if they don't die at 27. Like Elton John. Or look at Paul McCartney. One of the best voices, and the best songwriter of all time, and he is useless now. Or Elvis Costello. And what the fuck happened to Peter Gabriel? He looks like death warmed over - and his songs SOUND like death warmed over. They just STOP being creative, and spend the rest of their lives at retrospectives and fundraisers and REALLY BAD reunion tours. The only person I can think of that that maybe this never happened to is Willie Nelson, but he's country. Or Bono maybe. Is it because the record companies deliberately encourage them to put out shit, pushing them aside so that NEW artists can make more profits? Is it the cocaine? You know what I think it is? I think it's the money. It takes the edge away. It makes them lazy and uninquisitive. And put-upon. If I because a famous rocker, I would refuse wealth, and stay hungry and agsty all my life. Then I would donate all my money to the Foundation for Beating the Crap Out of Republican Presidential Candidates. Or the Society to Promote Lunar Dog-Dancing. Or the Corporation for Recycled Toenails. In this way, I will leave the planet even more angsty than I found it, and the result will be even better music. Oh - and because of all the racism accusations against the Tea Party lately, apparently they are now changing their name to the Wife-Beating Drunk Driving Party - I could donate to them, too.
I'm going to start making a list of my fav songs of all time. What are yours?