Now Muriel plays piano
Every Friday at the Hollywood
And they brought me down to see her
And they asked me if I would —
Do a little number
And I sang with all my might
And she said —
“Tell me are you a Christian child?”
And I said “Ma’am I am tonight”
—Marc Cohn – Walking In Memphis lyrics
That ‘s a great song.
Odd, where are today’s great songs? In this age of AMERICAN IDOL and “insert reality/music show here” and media consolidation, we’ve embraced the gimmick, regurgitating endlessly the old, but the new… and I have heard the new, the truly new… doesn’t make it to the big stage.
The truly new and innovative and dangerous, the challenging, which is really what so much of great music is, anthems of rage, Soliloquies of survival are… ignored by a medium intent on keeping music… a tool, to sell you Sprite or that new car.
The songs of Dylan and Beetles reduced to selling pop drinks.
Culture and art reduced to nothing more than a sound byte for corporate pimps.
Be aware of that.
Keep seeking out the artists who aren’t being shoved in your face.
Do a search for music on my blog and you’ll come across a lot of recommendations.
Search out those… anthems of rage, and Soliloquies of survival.
Search out art… that matters.
Because we need it.
Devoid of it we become… like the ‘media’ we do consume, cowardly, sycophants, blowing ignorantly to the most venal breeze.
Artist and those who love art, tend to be people who actually care about something beyond the… trivial. They’re the only people I can stand to be around anymore, people with… courage. And with… individuality.
“So that even unbeknownst to me, off the top, BeBop was a movement and a spontaneous cultural crusade. To restore the music to its deepest and profoundest originality, the essence of what gave it important cultural meaning.
Diz, Monk, Bird, and the others were restoring improvisation as the critical factor of jazz creativity. They were restoring the blues, as its sensuous history and self-consciousness. They were reinserting the polyrhythms of Africa and freeing post-1940s jazz from the Tin Pan Alley prison.”
–Amiri Baraka on THE HIGH PRIEST OF BEBOP from DIGGING:THE AFRO-AMERICAN SOUL OF AMERICAN CLASSICAL MUSIC