Moz’s veggie radicalism

28 07 2011

I don’t care if people are vegetarian, vegan or what have you.  In fact, even as a meat eater, I respect their convictions and why many of them avoid meat and animal products.   There’s a brutality to the food industry that is sometimes very hard to justify.

But you know you’ve lost your way when society starts to equate the death of animals to the death of humans.  Maybe I’m the old fashioned crackpot here, and not the animal rights people, but I value human life over animal life.

Morrissey, apparently, would say the slaughter of animals is equivalent to the slaughter of people, and he recently equated the horrible events in Norway with killing in the food industry.  From Uncut:

The singer allegedly made the comments during a gig in Warsaw on Sunday (July 24), before playing The Smiths[/a] song ‘Meat Is Murder’. Morrissey[/a] apparently said: “We all live in a murderous world, as the events in Norway have shown, with 97 dead. Though that is nothing compared to what happens in McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Shit every day.

I think he’s crocked.


Macca visits Motown

28 07 2011

While in town for his Detroit stop this past Sunday, Paul McCartney stopped by the Motown Museum, Hitsville USA.

It sounds like he had a blast going through the museum.  It is astonishing to me that, as much as McCartney has accomplished in his own 50-some year musical career, he’s still moved by the work of those that influenced him in his youth.  He still has his own heroes,  and some of them are from right here in the Motor City.

Noel Gallagher’s “The Death of You and Me” video

25 07 2011

This is a really good song.  It’s a bit of country, and ragtime, with a pinch of Kinks.  The falsetto lyrics and the beat are reminiscent of “The Importance of Being Idle.”   It’s a good example Noel Gallagher’s abilities, both as a songwriter and vocalist.  If the rest of the High Flying Birds album is of this quality — we know a few of the songs already, and they’re good — Noel will surpass what he has been doing with Oasis the better part of the last decade.  He’ll certainly leave Beady Eye in the dust.


24 07 2011

This was written by a beautiful young women that I know.  It might seem current, but actually it was written in the summer of 2008, after the poem’s author first heard Ms. Winehouse’s <em>Back to Black</em> album.  It’s a moving piece and quite prescient.


Purple half-moons under frenzied eyes
Heroine chic, thin is in
Pasty skin
Smokey, come-hither echoes
From vocal chords.

Long, drawn-out bellows
Ghostly cries of love
Agony, ecstasy
Head bowed in worship
To the white powder before your nose.

Like a thick black mass
Time oozes under the steel door.
Life bleeds out the crackled window.
Suffocation is near
Tattooed bodies strewn around.

Inhaling cigarettes and salty gin.
Fame in four-inch pumps
clicking on the stage
Slurred words rolling.

Ebony hair piled beehive high
Spread your soul on the clean green grass
Daddy’s wringing his hands
Mommy’s done holding her cry.
Their toddler left the crib

And is running toward the lake.

Amy Winehouse dead at 27

23 07 2011

Tragically, but not surprisingly, Amy Winehouse was found dead today in her London home, at age 27.
Had this come as some sort of surprise I suppose I could eulogize her. But this was, sadly, only a matter of time.

James Brown on the T.A.M.I. Show

19 07 2011

I heard it mentioned a hundred times in the song “When the World Is Running Down, You Make the Best of What’s Still Around,” but I had no clue what the T.A.M.I. Show was.  In fact, I thought it was about someone named Tammy Show.  Then I found the DVD by accident in the local library and made the connection.

The T.A.M.I. Show was a 1964 concert held over two days in the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, and was recording in what was groundbreaking “electronovision.”  The concert was then released on the big screen.

It’s hard to find an adjective that’s not overused these days.  I try not to overstate things.  But there is no other way to put it that this film is incredible!  Imagine a concert these days with the starpower of the equivalent of these artists, many of them who were still to peak:

  • Marvin Gaye
  • James Brown
  • The Supremes
  • The Rolling Stones
  • The Beach Boys
  • The Miracles’
  • Chuck Berry
  • Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas
  • Gerry & The Pacemakers
  • Lesley Gore
  • Jan & Dean (who emceed the show)
  • The Barbarians

Besides the musical artists, there was an amazing backing or house band, apparently known as the Wrecking Crew, and there was a bevy of young dancers.  The story goes that both Terri Garr and Toni Basil were in the dance corps.

There really were few lows in this show.  I found that I didn’t care for James Brown’s “Please Please Please” which seemed to go on and on and on.  He played this little bit of pretending to fall to the ground sobbing, only to be helped up and off the stage by his bandmates, who draped a king’s robe over his back.  He would then throw off the robe and saunter back to the mic.  People with probably a lot better musical taste than me think James Brown’s performance was one of the best ever captured on film.  I found it cheesy and goofy in spots.  Other than that bit, though, he was …well…James Brown.

Marvin Gaye, the Miracles and The Supremes all represented Motown beautifully.  I watched Marvin’s “Can I Get a Witness” several times; I didn’t want it to end.  He was such an amazing talent and, for me, the best on that stage.  Smokey and the Supremes showed why the lit up the charts for years.

The Rolling Stones were absolutely superb.  At that point, though, they had not fully defined their own sound.  They still had that feel of a (great) cover band.   If you’re a Stones fan, the TAMI Show is a must-see.

I was fascinated to see both Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas and Gerry & The Pacemakers, if only because I had heard so much about their part in the so-called “British Invasion.”  They were, after all, Liverpudlians (some of them) and friends of the Beatles.  I had heard their songs but had never seen more than a few seconds of footage from either group.  It is cool to see bands like that that have become little more than footnotes in rock history.

The Beach Boys showed themselves to be a more-than-adequate 4 piece band.  They were never the greatest musicians as individuals, but they held their own in that concert.

Chuck Berry’s one of my all-time favorites.  It’s sad he only got 2 1/2 songs while Lesley Gore, who performed well, had double that.

Jan & Dean were a bit annoying.  Someone re-wrote “Catch A Wave,” put lyrics to it about skateboarding, and talked them into singing it at the show.  Bad decision.

The Barbarians were interesting.  With their long bowl haircuts and high energy rock, they were sort of a Pre-Ramones (or maybe the Ramones borrowed from the Barbarians.)

If you can get your hands on the DVD or watch it streaming, do it! It’s a highly entertaining great piece of rock history.

Beatles Day?

11 07 2011

I must be living under a rock because I’ve never heard of this event.  It came and went yesterday without me noticing.

It sounds like a cheesy but fun event.  I wonder what the significance is, if any, of July 10.