Record stores. There’s really nothing like them in the world. In my opinion, at least. French trip hop/hip-hop producer Wax Tailor agrees, and on his latest tour around the U.S. stopped by some small independent record stores to talk to their owners about why, and how, they stay in business.
I caught this fascinating documentary on Netflix last night. I hadn’t planned on it, Hell I had never even heard of it before. It just popped up in my Netflix feed…It’s a little independent documentary from 2013 called ‘Sample This.’ And while I’d never heard of the film, I am very familiar with its subject, which is a song. Not just any song, but one of the most heavily-sampled recordings in hip-hop and pop music history. It’s a track from 1973 called ‘Apache‘ by The Incredible Bongo Band. And while that might not sound too familiar to you, I’m willing to bet that you’ve heard at least part of it before. Don’t believe me? Give a listen:
I totally understand, it’s only mid-September. I’m not going crazy. But I just renewed this site’s web hosting for another year,you see, so I figured I’d better do something, anything, and get it up here PRONTO. And what that something, anything, is, is a Christmas tune. Hey: My site, my rules.
Oh, hello. Didn’t see you standing there. How’s it going? Really? That’s great. Me? Oh, I’m fine I suppose. Keepin’ busy. You know how it is…
We’ve lost an unfortunate number of famous, important musicians this year. Prince is just the latest in a growing line of artists who’ve left us in 2016. Whenever someone famous passes away, we naturally take their death as an opportunity to look back on their body of work, as well we should. Death is a profitable career move for famous entertainers, and a not-so-gentle way to remind us of their careers, but I say that today, we should all take some time to celebrate our favorite artists while they’re still with us. Let’s not wait until they’re gone to truly appreciate them.
Another work week in the books…Another long, rather sad week. I had a long, rambling post planned, about the nature of death and how as we get older it becomes more and more a part of our daily lives (being 46, this is becoming more clear every year.) But you know what? It’s gonna have to wait. I’m having trouble dealing right now with it all. So let me keep it short: hug your kids. Call your parents. Cherish each and every moment. Life is fleeting; never take it for granted.
It’s been a long week. Popular culture took a real hit this week with the death of David Bowie, and then actor Alan Rickman, both aged 69, both from cancer. Each in his own way created beauty with their art, and will be sorely missed. I take solace in the fact that all of the media attention will pique some curious kid’s interest, and he or she will visit a record store, or seek out a film, and be inspired to create art of their very own. Not for money, not for attention, but just because.
I almost forgot! I almost forgot to post the Friday Song. It’s been a hectic day; I took a long (very long) lunch break and snuck off to catch Star Wars The Force Awakens. Suffice it to say it was time very well spent. It’s good. It’s really good. I hope you get a chance to see it before the spoilers catch up with you; they are out there. It’s best seen without knowing anymore than you know right now.
I’ve reached that point in the Christmas season where all the music everywhere is starting to get to me a bit. Don’t get me wrong, I love the classics…but still. Do they really need to be playing everywhere? I don’t need to be serenaded at the gas station. The grocery store is bad enough. And I’ve also noticed, in addition to it being everywhere, the music choosers everywhere seem to be choosing versions of songs butchered by new artists rather than the much more soothing (to me) classic original versions. If I have to hear ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,’ it’d better be Brenda Lee singing. And if it’s not John Lennon singing ‘Happy Xmas,’ I don’t really need to hear it. No one does.