Wednesday, December 19, 2018
"Rap For The Faint Of Heart" : A MID-WEEK MIX
So, this is how it unfolded.
I watched "Springsteen On Broadway" on Netflix. I was moved a number of times. It lived up to the hype. The next morning while having coffee, I surfed Facebook. There were more than a few posts about the Bruce show, all of which expressed the same feelings I had...except for one. Okay, so what? Not everyone likes Bruce Springsteen. What bothered me was the rationale behind finding the performance "boring." He is boring and he sucks because "after The River, his record sales plummeted." Huh? Upon further review, it seems the person making these statements really isn't a fan at all, and confused "Born In The U.S.A." with "Born To Run." But that's not really the point.
Don't people get tired of saying the same things over and over?
"The Beatles are overrated."
"Paul McCartney's solo career sucks."
"The Grateful Dead sucks."
"Led Zeppelin sucks."
"Billy Joel sucks."
"Hip hop sucks."
"All reggae sounds the same."
"All blues sounds the same."
My friend commented how he discovered a lot of great music through Burning Wood, and suggested I steer him in the right direction regarding rap, which he admits, he does not like.
"There are simply two kinds of music, good music and the other kind ... the only yardstick by which the result should be judged is simply that of how it sounds. If it sounds good it's successful; if it doesn't it has failed."
- Duke Ellington
I don't like what rap has become. I can't listen to it. I don't like "how it sounds." But not all of it is bad. It is the broad-stroke manner in which people decry rap and Billy Joel and Led Zeppelin and the Grateful Dead that gives me a twitch. A lot of the time, it is baseless, like trying a piece of sushi and declaring all Japanese food sucks.
I've put together a playlist of mostly older rap and hip hop. I wouldn't be surprised if some 20-something hip hop aficionado thought the playlist sucked. But these songs represent what I love about the genre. There's humor, great grooves and beats, amazing samples, and an occasional rhyme or three. I like "how it sounds."
I've mentioned the Beastie Boys masterpiece "Paul's Boutique" a number of times here. I do indeed think it's a masterpiece. It's three mad scientists piecing together hundreds of literate and often hilarious thoughts, while a veritable cornucopia of sound, comprised at times, of three and four components simultaneously, keep things at a danceable pace underneath it all. The songwriters out there might think that's cheating. I don't. I think it's another art form and the Beasties are fantastic at what they do. I wish I had thought of putting Bernard Herrmann's "Psycho" strings underneath Sly's "Dance To The Music." It's clever and it's creative and it's a blast to listen to.
Go in, if you dare. I've made it real easy for you. And please, let's not say, "We like what we like," or "This is what makes the world go around." Those statements are just as boring. This is a place to discuss music, good and bad.
Bust A Move- Young MC
Hip Hop Is Dead- Nas
I Know You Got Soul- Eric B. & Rakim
Shake Your Rump- Beastie Boys
The Seed- Cody Chestnutt & The Roots
Star-Crossed Lovers- Propellerheads & Martha Wainwright
Pop Goes The Weasel- 3rd Bass
On A Sunday Afternoon- A Lighter Shade Of Brown
Think Back- Galactic with Chali 2Na
Eye Know- De La Soul
Mona Lisa- Slick Rick
Funky- Ultramagnetic MCs
Jingling Baby- LL Cool J
Somebody Else's Beastie- Essexboy
Bouncin' Back (Bumpin' Me Against The Wall)- Mystikal
I Got A Man- Positive K
Summertime- DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
Fight The Power- Public Enemy
Posted by Sal Nunziato at 7:15 AM