10.27.2014

dimland radio 10-25-14 show notes

My Yearly Complaint

The show had a lot to do with music this week.
 
It's October and it's World Series time. It's also the time of year when I gripe about the shoe-horned into the seventh inning stretch new "tradition" of having some military person or cop or fire fighter sing 'God Bless America'. This forced on us tradition is one of the annoying results of 9/11 and the fact that it happened in New York City. And I blame the terrorists and the Hated Yankees.
 
I know traditions all start at some point in some manner, but there is already a perfectly good tradition in the seventh inning stretch. It's called 'Take Me Out to the Ballgame'. How 'bout we just stick with that one?
 
Selling Out Or Not Selling Out

After I finished griping about 'God Bless America' invading my favorite game, I went on to talk about how serious pop and rock artists used to resist their material being used to sell products. But that was the old days. Neil Young even wrote a song to voice his displeasure of the "selling out" of his contemporaries and newer artists.
 
I noted that "selling out" today is looked on very differently. Allowing their material to be used to sell trucks or insurance or whatever is a good option for artists to make money in this time of digital downloads.
 
Album sales are down, because people can just download the songs they want (often times downloading illegally) and the artist gets less money. So, ticket prices going way up and artists allowing their songs to be used in commercials is, in part, how many musical artists are able to earn a living.
 
I've heard it explained by a musician that musical artists can't "sell out." They want their music to reach an audience and using commercials is a way to build an audience.
 
How Is Kid Rock Still A Thing?

I then railed against crappy songs being used to sell Chevy trucks. I hated Bob Seger's 'Like A Rock' song. A song that was used by Chevy for what felt like a hundred years.
 
Now, Chevy is using the even crappier song 'Born Free'. At first, I didn't know who was responsible for my new most hated song, but, through the magic of my Shazam app, I learned it was Kid Rock.
 
I then wondered how a party time rapper with a little person sidekick had become outlaw country. How is Kid Rock still a thing?
 
2NE1 And Yeah! Woo!

However, I don't hated all crappy music. There is a crappy song being used to sell laptop computers by a Japanese girl group called 2NE1. It's a very electronic sounding song called 'I Am The Best'. Yes, the song is pretty lousy, but I kinda like it.
 
I like the amount of it I hear in the commercial that is. After I found the song on the YouTube and I discovered that the song uses a sample that I came to hate long ago, I like the song a bit less. It is the grossly over-used (Wikipedia lists nearly 100 songs that have used it) "Yeah! Woo!" sample. I started hearing it in the 80s and I never liked it.
 
The sample goes back to the Lyn Collins (I may have said Liz Collins on the show) song 'Think (About It)' released in 1972. The sample even has its own entry on Wikipedia.
 
No Platinum For You

I mentioned that we seem to have gone back to pre-1968 in the music industry. It was 1968 when album sales overtook singles sales in pop and rock music. Well, it seems as though there will be no artist whose album will have a million sales this year. People have gone back to just buying the songs they want.

 
New Who Tune
 
Imagine my interest when I saw that there is a new song available by The Who. It's called 'Be Lucky' and I think it's pretty good. I'm very impressed by how good Roger Daltry's vocals are. He sounds 20 years younger.

I also mentioned that I know what Amy and I will be doing for our anniversary next year. The Who will touring North America to promote yet another best of collection CD 'The Who Hits 50'. The song 'Be Lucky' is included on that CD. Amy and I will be going to their show at Target Center next October.
 
Never Found In The 80s: Red Guitars
 
Another installment of my too infrequent Never Found guest blog column on the Stuck in the 80s blog returned recently. I had written about a short-lived, very Leftist band from the UK called Red Guitars.
 
I also talked about an incident from my tortured art student days. A tale of walking home from a party from which I left early felling alienated and then encountering someone playing Red Guitars on their car stereo. Who else in St. Paul would be listening to Red Guitars?!
 
It's Not True: Woman Buried Alive
 
I'm sure there have been times when women have been buried alive, but not this time. There's a story heading around the internets about a woman having been killed and her body switched out of the coffee of some young man who had recently died. Well, she wasn't quite dead and the family of mourners of the person who was supposed to have been buried in that grave, heard the woman's screams. Through six feet of dirt. Really?
 
No, it's not true. Snopes.com sniffed this one out.
 
Movie Recommendation: Alien (1979)
 
20th Century Fox

Ridley Scott's excellent sci-fi monster film. It stars Sigourney Weaver, in a strong female role. along with a cast of outstanding actors. Scott applies the "less is more" philosophy masterfully. And one can never forget the alien "birth" scene.

Music heard on the show...

Dimland Radio opening theme song: 'Ram' by The Yoleus
First ad break bumpers: 'Peek-A-Boo' by Siouxsie & the Banshees & 'Private Eye' by Man Sized Action
Second ad break bumpers: 'Public Highway' by Luxuria & 'Plenty' by The Woodentops
Closing song: 'Angler's Treble Hook' by $5 Fiddle

That's it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you like. Find out more here and here.

10.23.2014

why i hate the new york yankees

I've talked about this on my show, Dimland Radio - Saturday nights at 11 Central at www.ztalkradio.com, last year (6-1-13), but I thought I'd blog about here since it is World Series time again. I hate the New York Yankees and, in the summer of 2013, I discovered a clear reason for my animosity.

There are many reasons to hate the Yankees:

Being a Minnesota Twins fan, in recent years when they weren't the losers they've been lately, each time my club would make the postseason, they would face the Hated Yankees right away and lose.

The envy I feel for the market New York provides the Yankees, so they are always rolling in money. Money the owners are willing to spend.

There's the media attention. Oh, the media attention. It sometimes seems the only team in baseball is the Hated Yankees. (Yes, I know. More envy.)

And then there's the fact that the Hated Yankees have won 27 World Series. Twenty goddamn seven!! The next closest team, the St. Louis Cardinals, has won eleven. I agree there is something to admire about that kind of success, but... goddamn.

And, since 9/11, this forced tradition imposed by the Hated Yankees (ok, maybe not them specifically, it does seem to be a media driven thing) of adding the singing of 'God Bless America' to the seventh inning stretch has my curmudgeonly self grumbling every time. I could be wrong but my thinking is if that terrorist attack had happened in St. Louis or Chicago we wouldn't be subjected to that horned in tradition every postseason. There's already a fine tradition that takes place as part of the seventh inning stretch, folks.

But, I discovered a reason that seemed to cut right to the heart of my hatred...

Stephen Jay Gould and the 1960 World Series.

Stephen Jay Gould - New York Times
Last summer, I was rewatching Ken Burns' Baseball documentary for I don't how many-ith time, when I got to the 8th "inning" it struck me. This is why I hate the Yankees.

It was the 1960 World Series, the Hated Yankees would be taking on the Pittsburgh Pirates, who, at that time, hadn't won a World Series since 1925. The Yankees were clearly the better team and the games they won in that series were blowouts. But the Pirates were able to force a seventh game in Pittsburgh.

It all came down to the bottom of the ninth when Bill Mazeroski broke a 9-9 tie by hitting the game and series winning home run. The better team lost.

Mazeroski's Home Run
So, in the documentary, we hear the tale told by Billy Crystal, Mickey Mantle, and Stephen Jay Gould. Crystal usually annoys me, so I pretty much just shrugged off his comments. Mantle was on that Yankee team, so his disappointment is understandable. Gould, however...
 
I like Stephen Jay Gould. He was a good scientist and science communicator and, as far as I can tell, a good guy. He died way too soon. He was a baseball fan and his team was you know who.

The revelation of the source of my hatred came when Gould stated that 30 plus years after the fact his friends and family know never to mention Mazeroski's home run. That's when it hit me.

Why the hell would you give a damn?! Pittsburgh hadn't won a World Series in 35 years! For the Hated Yankees it had been since 1958. And it's not like Yankees fans didn't have many champions to celebrate. In a young Stephen Jay Gould's lifetime the Hated Yankees won in '49, '50, '51, '52, '53, '56, and '58. They would go on to win again in '61 and '62. In all, the Hated Yankees have won 27 World Championships.

And Gould still carried ill feelings about losing what would have been their 19th championship? What the hell? Let it go. It's just one your team didn't win.

I swear the attitude is - It's the postseason, the Yankees are in it, just give them the trophy.

So, maybe it's more accurate to say I hate the Yankees fan. Maybe I shouldn't hold it against the team. Maybe I should admire a team with such a winning tradition. Maybe I should just stop calling them the Hated Yankees.

Maybe...

Nah.

  


10.20.2014

dimland radio 10-18-14 show notes

Why There Was No Show Last Saturday. 

Monday October 13th was my 13th wedding anniversary and the Saturday just prior became a date night for Amy (my wife) and me. We took in a concert by one of our favorite bands Pixies. I talked about how good the show was and how impressed I was with the opening act Royal Blood.

Royal Blood is a two piece band. There's a drummer and a bass player. This bass player was not only able to use the bass to hold the bottom of the song, but also use it to cover the rhythm guitar parts and lead guitar parts all at the same time. AND he was doing all that playing while handling the singing. Impressive!

Saturday night was also the annual Zombie Pub Crawl night, so downtown Minneapolis was crawling with zombies. In fact, there were so many zombies that the Guinness Book of World Records certified the event as the largest gathering of people dressed as zombies ever at over 15,000 participants.

So, the Pixies put on an excellent show and I gushed about various aspects of their show. It was also one of the loudest shows I'd ever seen. I talked about each member of the played and their highlight moments.

The show was over by 10:30, and since our son was spending the night at my folks' house, Amy and I figured there was no hurry to get home.

We hung out downtown for a while. At first we thought we'd go to First Avenue. Amy hadn't been there in over eleven years and it had been more than two years for me. However, The Afghan Whigs were playing and the doors had just opened for that show. Also, the ticket price at the door was $35 each!

We figured a beer at the pub across the street was a more economical option.

We had our beer and watched the zombies and started to head home when we thought we'd give First Avenue one more chance. We did find a way in and for much less than $70. I wrote a blog about that way in last week.

Movie Recommendation: Searching For Sugar Man (2012)
Sony Pictures
This Oscar-winning documentary chronicles the search for a singer/songwriter who could have been the next Bob Dylan. He went be the name Rodriguez and he released two highly acclaimed albums that just didn't sell. He disappeared. Many thought he had killed myself.

In the intervening years, his music many very popular in South Africa. He was a legend there, but nobody knew who he was or how he had died. A search began and this documentary covers that search and its result.

It's terrific.
  

Music heard on the show...

Dimland Radio opening theme song: 'Ram' by The Yoleus
First ad break bumpers: 'Broken Face' & 'Here Comes Your Man' by Pixies
Second ad break bumpers: 'Something Against You' & 'Debaser' by Pixies
Closing song: 'Angler's Treble Hook' by $5 Fiddle

That's it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you like. Find out more here and here.