Thursday, January 19, 2012

American Idol Snark Station

That's right, Party People, American Idol's eleventy-millionth season started last night. LAST NIGHT. Can you believe it? Boxer and I couldn't; we flung a series of texts back and forth about 2pm PST that featured so many WTFs? and Where does time flys? and Please Make it Stops that I was beginning to feel like one of those geriatric dudes that sit around at coffee shops, hitching at their pants and lamenting about days gone by. I don't want to be one of those people. But that's life. After forty, it seems, ti-i-i-ime is no longer on your side. Time is rubber stamping "Use By Date: Expired" on the forehead of your former Metallica tee shirt-wearing, fifth of Jack-clutching happy-ass self and shoving a Snuggie over your head and cup of decaf green tea in your mitt.

Anyway. I'm speaking about time passing here, not necessarily about the former merits (Simon Cowell) of a show that is going decidedly stale on the shelf. And there is only so much snark I can muster for Steven Tyler's Tourette's-fueled monologues, J-Lo's ass, and Randy's Cliff Huxtable sweaters before I just want to go clutch all my Dead Kennedys records to my chest and curl up on the sofa thinking about the good old days when music mixed the bourgeoisie and the rebel.

So, there won't be any snark today. I don't think I can tolerate the audition portion of this show no more, no more. I'll leave it until perhaps Hollyweird week but maybe even until the final 20 or whatever that number is.

In the meantime, let's do something fun and have another music round up. This one is inspired by a comment Troll left on my Flock of Seagulls post about a category he has on his MP3 player (or whatever it is Troll uses to play music because we know it ain't the iPod like NORMAL PEOPLE. Ah-hem.) called "Weird Songs."

Which got ME thinking about weird songs. Not necessarily novelty songs, but instead songs that are quirky and bizarre, which, in spite of their possible dissonance and incomprehensibility, make a compelling kind of sense to your ear. Songs that you may even be embarrassed to like, until of course, someone else tells you that they love them too! and then you don't feel like such an idiot, but, rather, kind of hip and tuned into it all.

Here, I'll throw down a few:

1. Mexican Radio, Wall of Voodoo: "No comprende, it's a riddle."
2. Bird Song, Lene Lovich: "Still I watch the sky, still I wonder why."
3. The Magnificent Seven, the Clash: "A.M. the FM, the P.M. too, churning out that boogaloo."
4. Settle Down, Kimbra: "We'll call her Nebraska, Nebraska Jones."
5. Oh Superman, Laurie Anderson: "Cause when love is gone, there is always justice."
6. Eat to the Beat, Blondie: "Oh, you got a sweet tooth and I remember, standing on the corner with a piece of pizza."
7. Never Say Never, Romeo Void: "I might like you better if we slept together."
8. Preacher Man, Dusty Springfield version (it's her restrained, blue-eyed-soul rendition of this song that makes it so bizarre): "Being good isn't always easy."
9. Peaches & Cream, Beck: "Give those pious soldiers another lollipop."
10. It's No Game, David Bowie: "Silhouettes and shadows watch the revolution." Bowie's apology for the Thin White Duke, accompanied by Robert Fripp and a bunch of incomprehensible screaming in Japanese. Perhaps the greatest song ever written.

Now it's your turn . . .


Jenny said...

"and shoving a Snuggie over your head and cup of decaf green tea in your mitt"


Yeah, I came to the same conclusion after I essentially tivo'd through nearly the entire show. I really wish they would change THIS part of the show. Stale. Boring. You said it best.

Weird songs. I like this. But right now I'm sliding down a hill (in a car) to take a doggie to the Vet in the middle of an ice storm, so I'll be back. (She's OK, just going for bi-weekly fluids.) Mr. Boxer is driving so I'm going to get his input on songs too.

Anonymous said...

I added "Mexican Radio" to the Troll-Pod's "weird songs" playlist after your last post. Will consider some of these new ones.

(I get all my Troll-Pod material from "pirate-sites", by the way.)

"Eat to the Beat" might have been the last time Troll-Cash actually made it's way to the Artists and the loathesome record companies.

I'm not sure I get your parameters for what makes a "weird song" because "Eat to the Beat" doesn't seem to meet what you stated.

But I'll go with:

Superman: Crash Test Dummies.

Pam said...

The Smiths (or Morrisey): Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now. Ticks the weird box for sure.

Van Morrison: Magic Time (not weird, but undervalued).

Yeah yeah to everything you say re Idol. We sat through and watched it, but really, like Groundhog Day ... same ol, same ol. Nothing else on. Surely they could format it differently somehow? Plus, now with X Factor, there is no difference between the two. I feel a big yawn coming on.

Buzz Kill said...

"I just want to go clutch all my Dead Kennedys records to my chest and curl up on the sofa..." - damn right and great rant!

The Mrs is a big fan of Idle and she didn't know it was on last night either - because I didn't see her watching it. I like Aerosmith but Steven Tyler is just - disturbing. That's not a good look for a 63 year old guy with a lot of hard miles.

Weird songs, here's a few:

Give it Away, RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS: "What I've got you've got to give it to your mamma
What I've got you've got to give it to your pappa
What I've got you've got to give it to your daughter
You do a little dance and then you drink a little water." - this whole song is baffling.

Dragula, Rob Zombie: "Dig through the ditches, And burn through the witches, I slam in the back of my
Dragula" - no idea what's going on here but I like the driving beat.

Stair Way to Heaven, Led Zeppelin: "If there's a bustle in your hedgerow, don't be alarmed now. It's just a spring clean from the May Queen" - ???

Jenny said...

You said embarrassed to like?

The Nights the Lights Went Out in Georgia.

Love Mexican Radio.

moi said...

Boxer: Hi to Mr. Boxer, ear scratches to Lucy, and don't get stuck!

Troll: What do you mean, have you listened to the lyrics to "Eat to the Beat"? And everything about Crash Test Dummies is weird. God shuffles his feet with those folks. Good pick.

Pam: Yes on all counts. Equating Idol with Groundhog Day is brilliant, too.

Buzz: I think the entire Chile Peppers oeuvre can be summed up in two works: Wacky Weed. I adore them, regardless. Zombie as well. The bustle in the hedgerow is coming from a bird called the May Queen who is spring cleaning. What's so difficult to understand about that? THAT being said, I hate "Stairway to Heaven" with every fiber of my being.

Boxer: Even weirder: it was sung by Mama from the Carole Burnette Show. I put it in the same category as "The Night Chicago Died."

grins said...

Just wait till you have to wear bifocals and wear orthopedic under wear that rides up on you! Owch! I just cracked my back laughing.

You see that white block down there? You see it? That is why I don't eat tofu. It looks like Mrs. Mean ol'Bat's art erasers in the sixth grade. The texture is the same but there's not as much flavor. Come to think of it that's why I don't like chicken breast.
Nobody has Spam contests any more.

moi said...

Curmee: Damn, but if your blog comments couldn't be set to a driving bass beat with a little bit of cheesy Farfisa organ in the background to become some of the greatest weird songs of all.

Jenny said...

Oh Hai. I'm back.

"You Can Leave Your Hat On"... but.... only sung by Tom Jones.

Have I done a good job of embarrassing myself?

moi said...

Boxer: No! Not embarrassing! Because that scene in 9-1/2 Weeks wouldn't be that scene without this song. So, good one because it's weird that that film is the last known recorded period of time when Mickey Roarke was drop dead doable and now he really, really, REALLY isn't.

czar said...

How about half the John Cale songbook?

"I know we could all feel safe like Sharon Tate."

Best opening line ever to a song: "Bugger in the short sleeves f()cked my wife / Did it quick and split." (Allegedly about Kevin Ayers)

"Fear is a man's best friend / You add it up, it brings you down."

"I was living my life just like a Hollywood / But I was dying on the vine."

How long you got, Moi?

Thing about Cale is that he can write some of the most beautiful songs in the world on the same albums he'll bust out this stuff. Kinda like another musical JC, whose only spoken words on an album ever were "A Love Supreme."

You can look it up.

czar said...

Since Troll has banned me from commenting on his blog (blessing in disguise), I'll wonder here why he's proud of his theft, and why he feels that the artists are not entitled to be paid for their work.

I guess I'll consider that next time I'm in a hotel or restaurant offering a buffet. I'll just go in and eat and not pay, to avoid money going to the loathesome business owners and chefs and waitrons. The food's just there for the taking, right? And if I don't get caught, who's the wiser?

Hell, even my music-freak sons on very low student budgets are grown up enough to pay for their entertainment -- and have all along.

grins said...

Sorry you were complaining about getting old, and I honestly cannot taste tofu. Other than that all I do is crack jokes.

moi said...

Czar: John Cale does get around, I'll give you that. Re: Troll. I don't know. But it's a valid question.

Curm: Well, let me be clear. I'm not complaining about getting old. I'm complaining about getting oldER. There is a distinction as far as this gal is concerned :o).

grins said...

Well you little whipper snapper you.

Pam said...

The Night the Lights Went out in Georgia TOTALLY equals The Night Chicago Died. Add in a dose of Delta Dawn and, dare I say it? Dare I? Her name was Lola. She was a show girl. You can take it from there.

Jenny said...

The results for the Tofu Smackdown are in.

AND here's what Mr. Boxer adds:

1.Donovan: Mellow Yellow and Epistle to Dippy.

2. The Buoys: Timothy (the only top ten song about cannibilism)

3. Paul McCathry - Uncle Albert.

I had to hold him to just four. He was out of control. Wait! One more:

4. Crimson and Clover by Tommy James and the Shondells.

OK, He's done!! :-)

moi said...

Pam: Delta Dawn--yes! Oooo, you're good. Lola is bizarre, for sure, but I'm not sure belongs in the triad of ultimate weirdness that is NTLWOIG/TNCD/DD.

Boxer: I actually had to go look up the Buoys. I bow to Mr. Boxer's most excellent musical knowledge. I kind of dig the song--those Chicago-esque horns are pretty cool.

chickory said...

hilarious! I never watch until the final 12. you mean JLo shook her ass in a shiny bead curtain again? V needs a twit alert for that -he really enjoyed that pre divorce display the J and marc anthony put on last year. I loved wall of voodoo and stan ridgeways. soundtrack for "rumble fish"

remember the song "timothy" it was supposedly about canibalism but timothy was a fish.

I freaking love uncle albert by wings. pot of pie!

chickory said...

juniors farm. oh wings. I loved that album

Pam said...

I remember the song Timothy very well. And will challenge it also with the Bee Gees and Have you seen my wife, Mr. Jones?

And I'll raise you "In the Year 2525" ... an ultimate **I must turn the radio off immediately **if it ever comes on song.

czar said...

@Pam: Heartily agree on "In the Year 2525."

Not a weird song but an entirely bizarre video, yet one of my favorite covers ever -- and I just heard the original in the bank, so it comes to mind.

YouTube: Vanilla Fudge, "You Keep Me Hangin' On."

Every aspect of this video is priceless (well, to me).

moi said...

Chickory: And Jet! I thought the major was a lady suffragette.

Pam: 10cc "I'm Not in Love."

Czar: Anything by anyone named Vanilla Fudge. Also: Procol Harum.

czar said...

Little Richard doing "I Feel Pretty," from West Side Story.

sparringK9 said...

it hides a nasty stain thats lying there?!?

big boys dont cry!

moi said...

Czar: Lawdy Miss Clawdy.

K9: And just because I call you up, don't get me wrong, don't think you've got it made.

czar said...

How have we missed "McArthur Park"?

Pam said...

10cc, I'm not in love ... very English humor in that song. Love it!

How about some classics?

Hey, you! Get off of my cloud.

I am he as you are me and we are all together. (or anything Beatles in the psychadelic era)

LẌ said...

Toast And Marmalade For Tea

Good Morning Starshine

They're Coming To Take Me Away

I best stop now.

Pam said...

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas. Only a hippopotamus will do.

grins said...

Lets see if I can say something congruent to the topic.

Wooly bully - Sam the sham and the pharoahs
In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida - Iron Butterfly
Groovin - Young Rascals

chickory said...

theyre coming to take me away! that is the weirdest of them all. my brother used to say they were coming to take ME away, literally. i would cry. i guess i was like 5 or 6? or was it last year? grherhahaha

moi said...

Czar: Because someone left the cake out in the rain.

Pam: The Beatles most definitely. Helter Skelter, Lucy in the Sky, Sgt. Pepper--all of it.

lx: Toast and Marmalade for Tea--what a nasty bunch of lyrics to such a la, la, la, la, la tune!

Curm: Listening to In-a-Gadda-Da-Vidda is kind of like watching a C-130 lumber into the sky. There's a point at which you say to yourself: "Oh, God, no, that thing is NOT going to be able to get itself up in the air." And then it does. And without it Soundgarden would not exist, for which I am most thankful.

Chickory: That one freaked me out, too. If one were to chronicle all the horrible things brothers have done to their sisters over the centuries, it would make water boarding look mild by comparison. . . . Okay, so, any recent songs that are a little bizarre?

grins said...

I remember as a sophomore we would always turn up they're coming to take me away and Camp Granada.

Pam said...

Camp Granada! Hello Mudder! Hello Fadder! OMG, this post has me reliving my childhood, for sure. AM radio and punching buttons. Here's one that some folks might remember, but I can't think of what the name of it is. Sort of a spooky song about a boy who met a girl one night and loaned her his sweater because she was cold. They parted ways and he forgot to get his sweater. Went back to get it and her mom said that she died a "year ago today" ...then a strange force drew him to the graveyard ...

Anyone remember that one?

moi said...

Curm: Camp Granada!

Pam: Googled it: