I bundled two weeks of songs, loving not many of them. Maren Morris sounded most convincing, hence herself, in collaboration with the Highwomen; “Circles Around This Town” is Going Circles in Songwriting. I prefer other tracks on The Weeknd’s latest installment of neon-bright signs illumining the scale of his obsession with Toto in 1982. AndContinue reading “Singles 1/29”
Did you expect this variety? I didn’t. And I didn’t expect A Flock of Seagulls to show up creating a synthesized landscape that encompassed the longing one expects from high school or, worse, college-aged romance. How on earth didn’t “Wishing” do better? I could apply this thinking to ‘Til Tuesday’s MTV hit but chart flopContinue reading “Ranking #26 singles, U.S. edition: 1983-1986”
As they depict a more recognizable world, the films of Apichatpong Weerasethakul get stranger. Memoria has the touch of the numinous. Plagued with an obscure ringing in her head, Tilda Swinton (the first non-Thai actor he has cast) wanders a Medellín as alien in its familiarity as Milan was to Jeanne Moreau in La Notte.Continue reading “Remembrances of things past: ‘Memoria’”
Most readers will stan, deservedly, for “And I Love Her,” but Brenda Lee acting like a full-fledged gleeful adult on “As Usual,” Lesley Gore sighing over that’s how boys are, and Dusty Springfield riding the hook of her life are all I need — if The Castaways’ “Liar, Liar” didn’t exist as Debbie Harry’s 1988Continue reading “Ranking #12 singles, U.S. edition: 1963-1965”
A few comments about films that fell outside my top twenty….
Owning my mom’s copies of Meet the Beatles and The Beatles Second Album should’ve given me a clue, but, no: it took Mark Lewisohn’s The Beatles – All These Years: Volume One: Tune In to remind me of the importance of girl groups as influence and competition, thanks in part to resident Black music specialistContinue reading “Ranking #8 singles, U.S. edition: 1963-1964”
I suppose this bill is conservatism of a sort, a return to the Florida schools I knew where homosexuality when discussed meant a tenth grade religion teacher ramming his index fingers together mimicking two penises, references to fanny packs as fag bags and The Picture of Dorian Gray as a “book written by a homo”Continue reading “To speak is a sin, or: ‘Don’t Say Gay’”
In June I extolled the taut delights of Fanny’s “Butter Boy,” and, well, here I am, confronted with another low-charting pair of James Brown singles and Jerry Lee Lewis’ fervid cover of “Me and Bobby McGee” and still choosing this little-known foursome whose guiding forces were Filipino sisters. Even played beside second-tier Four Tops andContinue reading “Songs peaking at #40, U.S. edition: 1970-1972”
I like the bookends: a director who flexes his ambitions with the ease of breathing and a film committed to to capturing the vaporousness of social media. I loved 2021!
Glancing at this list before I post it, I remembered again why 2021 ruled. Such an imaginative bunch! Click on hyperlinks for full reviews.
Not until the Reagan administration’s turn against farm subsidies and farmers generally did the city-dwelling American public realize farmers had been taken for granted; hence Farm Aid, itself a response to Live Aid. And Farm Aid is an event whose white emphasis deserves analysis besides its ostensibly noble purpose. Republicans from farm states will startContinue reading “The best songs about farming”
Readers know Joseph Robinette Biden was my first choice for Democratic nominee like Alicia Keys was for guardian of R&B and soul, but I faked an orgasm when voting for him and had a genuine one when he easily beat the Caudillo-in-Pampers.