I wasn’t able to respond to a recent itunes related tag simply because I just don’t do me-tunes. But the two cds that have been on for the last week are Nathan Wiley’s The City That Destroyed Me and Joel Plaskett Emergency’s Ashtray Rock.
Nathan’s have remarkable lyrics and the album is a kicker from beginning to end. Kind of alt-country crossed with a blues/jazzy groove. He’s from Prince Edward Island, younger than you’d think, and here’s a couple. The first Bottom Dollar Baby is from his first cd. And it is a slinky sly song and a very cool video.
This next one is from the cd I’m listening to. It was shot in Cuba and kind of reminds you a little of the documentary about the Buena Vista Club.
Here’s Joel Plaskett (another Maritimer, this time from Nova Scotia and also with pretty good lyrics). Its one of those boring album cover videos but beggars and all that. Just listen to it; you’ll be singing it to yourself later.
That’s the me tunes. What I was watching on television last night was the viewer’s choice of Grammy moments or something like that. What viewers and the audience seemed to like for the most part was overwrought and self centred perfomances such as the one by Mary J. Blige. I must admit I’ve always found her lacking. Her performance which apparently exploded out of personal setbacks and had the audience to a standing ovation seemed to me like a controlled tantrum, a cry for attention. And then watching Bruce Springsteen perform Philadelphia I realized the difference was, and why I liked him so much more, is that he was a vehicle for the song and not the other way around. It wasn’t about him. It was about the world, and everyone in it. And it respected the song itself rather than prostituting it for cheap effect. Later in the show there was a tribute to The Clash with Springsteen, Elvis Costello and Dave Grohl and all let the music onto center stage. Any one of them could’ve commandeered their moment and restyled it into their version but they paid homage to the band and its music, became them as well they could, and I swear Springsteen even looked like Joe Strummer. A great moment.