Odds and Ends 029
In case you were wondering . . .
Jenny & Johnny: I'm Having Fun Now (Warner Bros. '10)
Just because she loves him for bringing out the folk-rock softie in her doesn't mean we have to ("Big Wave," "Just Like Zeus," "My Pet Snakes") ***
George Jones: Cold Hard Truth (Asylum '99)
Begins with two all-time keepers and a fine novelty, after which the songs need more than the scratch vocals he was stuck with after he ran into an abutment playing his stepdaughter the tape ("Choices," "Cold Hard Truth," "Sinners & Saints") ***
Lil Wayne: I Am Not a Human Being (Universal/Motown '10)
His throwaways beat their keepers, from solitary yet, but the true classics are all in the middle and the Young Money promos are filler ("I Am Not a Human Being" "Popular," "I'm Single") ***
The Go! Team: Rolling Blackouts (Memphis Industries '10)
Exceeding their emotional reach, musical grasp, and conceptual limitations whether softer or more elaborate ("Apollo Throwdown," "Bust Out Brigade") ***
Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba: I Speak Fula (Sub Pop '10)
At ease with himself and in synch with his people ("Jamana Be Diya," "Falani") **
They Might Be Giants: Join Us (Idlewild/Rounder '11)
Kiddie songs becoming a habit, clever fellows service the grownup market ("When Will You Die," "2082") **
The Old 97's: The Grand Theatre: Volume Two (New West '11)
If you'd been doing this since 1994, wouldn't you front-load volume one? ("No Simple Machines," "Visiting Hours") *
Liz Phair: Funstyle (Rocket Science Ventures '10)
Not a good sign when the skits stand out and your old demos are a welcome add-on ("Bang! Bang!" "White Babies") *
A real lapse some of the time. Does admit that the first Club on the Corner is Nascimento's "masterpiece". But Nascimento has indeed made many terrible records. (Joe Sixpack has a weakness for the mild 'n' mellow, but seems to hold it against selected subjects. Blames Nascimento for getting too jazzy. And I've mentioned Joe's Disco-Is-Satan problem.)
"Carmen Miranda's "The Brazilian Recordings" "
Strongly second hearing these. Different from the slightly silly movie icon (but related in an instructive way).
I'm keeping the vinyl, but nice job on a useful package.
Hank Aaron- RF
Willie Mays- CF
Billy Williams- LF
Willie McCovey- 1B
Joe Sewell- 2B
Ozzie Smith- SS
Monte Irvin- 3B
Rudy York- Catcher
The tone of my post was a joke, but the tendency I was speaking of is clear: great players associated with the Yankees, Cardinals, and numerous other teams, spend the bulk of their careers with those teams. That wasn't true of the A's even in their heyday, and by definition can't be true of the A's under their present management. (This is, by the way, why it's hard to maintain an allegiance to the A's, and explains much more about why so many A's fans have abandoned the team for the Giants than either the newness of AT&T Park or the size of the city/area. But that's really another conversation.)
And yes, I know full well that what I just said is true of many teams other than the A's. Partially about budgets/revenues, partially about management styles, and partially simply that the old teams like the Yankees and Cardinals had long histories pre-free agency. (Someone might claim that Philadelphia A's belong in this conversation, but it won't be me.)
Kenny: You're forgetting the great late 80's-early 90's A's teams. If you want to leave off Canseco and McGuire, fine, but Dave Stewart--four 20-game-win seasons in a row--should be remembered.
I'd love to make a list for the Red Sox, but only if I can include Bill Lee and exclude Roger Clemens
We saw "Silver Linings Playbook" for the first time last night, and I had a couple of music-related thoughts.
Led Zeppelin's "What Is and What Should Never Be" from LZII got my attention first. Plant's voice and the odd arrangement added just the right touch of insanity, menace and uncertainty to the scene where DeNiro and Cooper first fight.
And then the very unexpected "Girl from The North Country" for the romantic face time the two leads have in the dance studio. Never in a million years would I have thought of that song for that scene and boy did it work. Cash and Dylan. I don't know why that doesn't come to mind more often as an American(a) standard.
From the s/t I learn that there also was two from Brubeck and one from Les Paul and Mary Ford.
Rare Earth is a waste of time, plastic and vibrated air molecules though.
about the blogger
Starting in 1967, Robert Christgau has covered popular music for The Village Voice, Esquire, Blender, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and many other publications. He teaches in New York University's Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, maintains a comprehensive website at robertchristgau.com, and has published five books based on his journalism. He has written for MSN Music since 2006.