Saturday, January 28, 2006

Confessions on a dance floor, CMAs

Madonna is 47?! 20 years after "Everybody", Madge, almost 50, still has a career in this one-hit-wonder culture we now live in.

I heard this CD all over St. Martin and bought it when I got back. I didn't love her last CD but this one is great. The first three tracks are my favorites.

I wasn't feeling her during her I love Britney phase. What the fuck was she doing, sucking up her? Britney is not the next Madonna, anymore more than 50 Cent is the next Chuck D, or Coldplay the next U2. Please, people get a grip.

We weren't allowed to watch too much TV growing up, esp. on school nights. We watched the local news, Mr. Cronkite and maybe one hour of prime time. Instead after homework we could read books, listen to music or play. My parents let us watch more of "the idiot box" as my dad called TV, on Saturday mornings. I can't remember which NYC station used to show Soul Train and American Bandstand back-to-back but those were good times.

When we moved to the burbs, we were older and of course watched more TV. However, we were the last family in the tri-state area to get cable, so I didn't get my MTV for a while. Some Saturday mornings I would still watch those shows. I remember sitting in the den watching this petite woman with a long row of rubber black braclets singing "Holiday". After the song Dick Clark interviewed her. The last question was:

Dick Clark: So what is your goal?
Madonna: To rule the world.

All this week been playing old-school hip hop, Led and Marley. I talk to my sister who is ten years younger than me and even she complains about most of the music out today. Yes, there has always been throwaway music but with everything that is going on in the world today, why is most of the stuff on the charts garbage?

I happened to see some of the CMA's rerun at the gym a couple weeks ago. I was fasinated that all the performers could actually sing. No backing vocals, no lip syncing. It was very weird to see a music awards show with real musicians. I knew who the artists were but I don't have a lot of country CDs. After the show, I thought I need to check Martina McBride, Big and Rich etc. Faith Hill's (other than the song "This Kiss", not a big fan, her stuff seems like watered down bad pop) duet with her husband, Tim McGraw was beautiful.

My parents loved Johnny Cash so when I go home to St. Martin for Christmas, I'll bring them the "Walk the Line" DVD. A lot of West Indians of their generation listened to country and my parents were no exception. The music didn't have the same negative cultural connotations to them that it did to many Afrian-Americans of that age. You could hear the blues and gospel influences and the lyrics dealt with love, family, friends, loss, heartache, the things that make life what it is.

When I hear a song like "Redemption Song" or a "Change is Going to Come" and the power of those lyrics, it makes me sad that now we have bullshit like the "Laffy Taffy" song. Ugh.


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