I write this, sitting in virtual darkness, at my place of employment. Why? Because it’s chillllly. And my apartment is an inferno of stuffy, Minnesota heat. And I can’t fucking stand it right now. So. I sit and I write and I listen to music and it’s wonderful. No one is around, so it’s chill in every way possible.
Today, my dad sent me his madawesome results from typing in Top of the Pops into the phenomenon that is YouTube. (TOTP, RIP, by the way. The BBC staple is being cancelled after 42 years! Boo-urns!)
They included, beyond TOTP:
Footage from 1967 of Syd Barrett (also, RIP)
Oasis' first spot
The La’s in 1990, singing that one song about smack I still adore.
We Are the World, 1985
(um…yeah. wow. ‘member that!? Um, ‘member that *everyone* did it? Bob fucking Dylan. And these guys: Dan Aykroyd, Harry Belafonte, Lindsey Buckingham, Kim Carnes, Ray Charles, Sheila E., Bob Geldof, Hall and Oates, James Ingram, Jackie Jackson, LaToya Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Michael Jackson, Randy Jackson, Tito Jackson, Al Jarreau, Waylon Jennings, Billy Joel, Cyndi Lauper, Huey Lewis, Kenny Logins, Bette Midler, Willie Nelson, Jeffery Osborne, Steve Perry, The Pointer Sisters, Lionel Richie, Smokey Robinson, Kenny Rogers, Diana Ross, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, Tina Turner, Dionne Warwick, Stevie Wonder.)
And, his emails included loads of other gems.
There is something about seeing someone live for the very first time: their facial expressions and ticks, their speaking voice, they way they move their body, the way they look someone on the eye, or avoid eye contact... someone you've only heard on record....it is quite a mindfuck.
Seeing Richard Ashcroft speak for the first time got me right in my gut. First of all, I didn’t know how beautiful I would find him: those pouty Jagger lips, tussled hair, blue-green eyes, and then I heard that deep, sexy Wigan burr. It’s just so strange to hear a vocalist’s singing voice when you’ve *only* heard them sing. (there’s a bit in one of the Barrett obits about Bowie crediting Ray Davies and Syd with being the first to actually keep their Brit accents whilst singing).
Being able to use YouTube to see performances of bands and artists that are dead, or will most likely *not* be stopping by First Ave…ever, is especially precious.
I have been tripping on punching things like “the clash” in that search box. Seeing the Clash perform live is one of the most invigorating jolts I could ever get from a grainy little picture on my computer. The manic energy, the speedy playing, the tightness of the band and Strummer, my lord, Strummer. With his anger, his joy, his indestructible *passion* and intelligence (the street, reading-books-on-yer-own-type-a-smarts) that shaking, HYPERsexual leg bounce thing he does (Ike does it too) that makes like a punk Elvis. He twitches, he spits, he sweats and he plays like it’s the last thing he might ever do—every time.
What pleasure inducing technology! And I mean pleasure, baby. The Simonon eye candy to stage right of Joe = pornographic. Good lord, the boy swivels his goddamn hips and it’s earth quaking.
I can’t over the Clash. Still. You who know me, know this. Maybe it's just that I read more news now than ever...er—no---that can’t be it...(in J-school we *had* to subscribe to the NY Times and I've really always been a news junkie...) so, yes, I stand by my previous statement: the word "clash" is in the headlines and in our consciousness like crazy recently. Just like it was in 1977 and countless times before and after that, I suppose…
So, YouTube’s got me fucking hooked. I could pour over that thing for hours. Days. Months. Just plugging in bands….
Here’s a taste:
***I just read something that made me actually have some respect for Lindsey Lohan! (despite her good acting and freckles, she’s incredibly disappointing) she apparently sang Boston’s “More Than a Feeling” *and* Rick Springfield’s “Jessi’s Girl” for her b-day karaoke. Damn, those are the best guilty pleasure songs EVA. Good for her.
****Ooooh, my iPod on shuffle has been so good to me today! right now, it's:"Oooooh, you’ve got green eyes, oooh you’ve got blue eyes/ oooh, you’ve got grey eyes/ and I’ve never seen anyone quite like you before/ No, I’ve never met anyone quite like you before.” That, of course, is “Temptation” by New Order. Coulda come to me one of two ways: from “Substance” or the Trainspotting soundtrack (it was the later).
...and preceded by:
The Jesus and Mary Chain
Live Bruce Springsteen
Buddy Holly and the Crickets
Thought I’d share…it’s put me in a good mood all day. Well, that and ….that love thing that’s goin’ around.