Pop music has been going through a long, continuous drought of protest songs. This dearth of message music goes back the 1980’s. This, not coincidentally, coincides with the advent of hip-hop to the top of the charts. While this is no surprise to millennials, this is counter-intuitive to Gen Xers who grew up on old-school hip-hop and rap, whose roots and early history was almost exclusively built on critical commentary of modern urban life. Continue reading “Nine (more) songs that were ahead of their time”
Sorry about being two months late. It took me that long to get over the worst year in modern pop music history. There are so many ways and so many times to say, “this year sucked,” so instead I will say, “in 2016, we got what we deserved.” And what we deserved was bland, slow, boring, auto-tuned mumble core, third-rate derivative blues-esque noise, packaged to us as pop music. The worst part is that I just described the alternative-rock scene. Don’t even get me started on the Top 40 crap. Continue reading “The I, Omnibus 2016 music year in review”
One of my earliest blog posts was about the definition of the word “classic” within the realms of pop culture. I never did answer my own question. More accurately, I never answered it within my article. I am going to rectify that. Continue reading “Pop Song ’09 – Which ones have become classics?”
You have been warned! You can thank me, or hate me later. Continue reading “The biggest earworm song of all time!”
“I am the entertainer
And I know just where I stand
And another long-haired band.”
Billy Joel – “The Entertainer”
Perhaps it’s because he is a native Long Islander, but the this Baby Boomer was the voice for many Busters and GenXers growing up in the late 70’s/early 80’s. He dominated the FM and AM airwaves (when AM radio was still playing music). He was a mainstay in the early days of MTV (when MTV played only music videos). He has a monthly residency at Madison Square Garden that is going into its 4th year, and is still going strong. When he is not at MSG, he has a tour of major league baseball stadiums in the summer of 2016.
His discography is so strong, you could compile a Top 10 list with just 2 album sides (e.g.: Side A of “Glass Houses” and Side A of “The Stranger”; or Side A of “52nd Street” and Side A of “The Nylon Curtain.”) And I wouldn’t blame you. Unless you go with the “River of Dreams” album – then we have a problem. Continue reading “The Top Ten Favorite Billy Joel Songs”
If I had to sum up pop music in 2015 as a whole, it would be, “meh.” You might perceive that to be an insult, but that is a tremendous upgrade from the prior two years, which were simply abominable. The year was dominated by Mark Ronson (“Uptown Funk”), Taylor Swift (“Blank Space”), Adelle (“Hello”) and a whole bunch of Canadians, one of whom can not spell the word “weekend” in any version or variation of English. (And I already used my “invisible letter” joke back on my podcast).
It doesn’t help that not only does most pop music continues to sound unremarkably similar, but in 2015, the music was low-key, and the lyrics were dour. If the pop music scene is supposed to represent the general mood of the populace in regards to the political and economic landscape, then they are six or seven years too late. Thankfully, last year was the least amount of time I spent listening to pop music in the past seven or eight years.
God damn, I need a drink. Continue reading “The I, Omnibus 2015 music year in review”
As a GenXer, I find it difficult, and sometimes frustrating talking about music to Gen Y-ers and Millenials. They are perfectly content to remain blissfully ignorant of anything before their time. But at least those conversations are cut short. Those with a sense of history, tend to dismiss the 1980’s culture as a whole. (Any argument given against the 80’s can also be applied to the 90’s, the aughts (’00’s), and even the 70’s.) But beneath its glitzy surface, and beyond the burning neon lights, were some hidden gems that have aged remarkably well. In fact, if they were remade today, many millennials would be hard pressed to believe the lyrics were more than double their age. I previously mentioned 5 such songs in a previous post.
Here are five more. (In no particular order) Continue reading “5 more songs from the 80’s that were ahead of their time”
(Editor’s Note: The following was originally written by Keith Feltenstein.)
In our next “Versus” round up, we take a break from beat-em-up, and change it to beloved TV show theme songs. We narrowed it down to two very catchy theme songs. In one corner of the sound stage, we have the Spider-man 60’s cartoon theme. And in the other corner of the sound stage, we have the Batman 60’s TV show theme song! Which of the two had the better theme song? I have posted the lyrics plus the videos for you to decide! Continue reading “Better earworm TV theme song: 1960’s “Batman” vs. 1960’s “Spider-Man””