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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

ESPN must be stopped!!! (and the year in music part 1)

When did ESPN start controlling all the sports we watch and how can we make it stop???  They were the only ones who cared about the NBA (because they have the TV rights!!!) so now we have to be subjected to it again!!  Ugh.  And now there is word they squashed the Syracuse molestation evidence for nearly 10 years???  Yet, they covered the Penn State scandal like CNN covered the first Gulf War.  What is with the hypocrisy??  Syracuse fill your coffers more than PSU???  We know that answer.  Fox has the BCS games.  ESPN is tied to the hip with college basketball.

And let's not forget the countless perverts and miscreants that the company has employed in the past.  Off the top of my head...  Steve Phillips and his intern.  Harold Reynolds and the sexual harassment case.  Sean Salisbury and the penis text.  The Nascar producer who was caught peeping into a neighbors window.  Dare I mention the on air talent???  They gave Michael Irvin a job for God's sake!!!  Will Michael Vick have a plush gig when his playing career is over???  Maybe Chris Brown can do the new Monday Night football song???

This company is very much the jocks that beat up the weaklings in high school all growns up and armed with some press passes.  A media group more interested in making news rather than reporting it.  A entertainment company interested more in selling you than engaging you.

Enough I say.  How can we get NBC in the mix again?  Do we have to stop watching Modern Family or other Disney fare so they lose money?  Can all us Northerners NOT go to Disney during winter break just once??  There are other places to visit in this country!!  You do know Orlando is not the only city in Florida, right?

The NHL had a prime chance to get into America's eyes the past few months.  ESPN does not own the rights so it was hardly noticed.  They have entirely too much control over the sporting world and count me among those who has had enough.  Is there anyone else with me???

Now onto the regularly scheduled blog...  2011 in music (part 1)

With only month left in the year several top albums charts have begun to surface.  For example: http://stereogum.com/891091/qs-50-best-albums-of-2011/list/http://stereogum.com/890842/pastes-top-50-albums-of-2011/list/, and http://altmusic.about.com/od/top10lists/tp/Best-Alternative-and-Indie-Albums-Of-2011.htm


It has been a wonderful and enlightening year and one blog entry would never do it justice.  For now take a look at these 5 bands that have received multiple plays during the past year.  It is as diverse as the year itself.  Those folks who tell you new music is not relevant or not like it was "in the good old days" haven't been listening...  or maybe not smoking what I have been ;-)

Just checking if you are still reading...  if so enjoy and take a joke when you read one.  Too transparent? So what.

Dawes:  California country/rock that has a peaceful, easy feeling.  "A Little Bit of Everything"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36bItoBXpxk  Amazing live version!!!
"Time Spent in Los Angeles"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vnSXDNkUR0
"If I Wanted Someone"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IbTcmvHU_ME&feature=related  Songwriting 101 right here folks.   Here performed acoustic and live.

AWOLNation:  "Sail"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gH2efAcmBQM&ob=av3e
"Not Your Fault"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1c5wJV63GE Live from Jimmy Kimmel.
"Guilty Filthy Soul" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1f-8yWhLzw&feature=related  Bluesy and gritty pop.  A real gem.

Decemberists:  "Calamity Song"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJpfK7l404I  Not the best song for their wonderful record "The King is Dead"  but the best video!!!
"This is Why we Fight"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLSOzcEQjiE
"Rise to Me" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4LfzxI07q4&feature=fvwrel Advanced Songwriting.

The Sounds: "Dance With the Devil"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQS8kEAhdHc  Cheesy, 80s retro nonsense that provides so much toe tapping you cannot ignore it.  Grab a Rubik's cube and throw on the Members Only jacket!!!
"Something to Die For"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LNI7Ycla_w&feature=related  Live stripped down version from Sirius studios.  Maja Iversson is a tremendous talent...  and she can sing too!!!
"No One Sleeps When I'm Awake" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYKjMEsR9v4&feature=related  Would you sleep with her singing away???  Here is another live version.  You're welcome.

The National:  "Bloodbuzz Ohio"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yfySK7CLEEg&ob=av2e  Their album High Violet came out last year...  but it is so strong it deserves more praise.

Givers:  "I Saw You First" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PQmfJmiNGU  Live version from SXSW in Austin.  Energetic grooves that blend cajun with pop.

Of Monsters and Men:  "Little Talks"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Dw8qdmT_aY  A wonderful live version of a wonderful song.  And you thought Iceland was for Bjork only!!!

Foster the People:  "Warrant"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcFITqQeQDM  Live from Austin too.  Synths and percussion made quite a comeback this year.  Several bands have incorporated 2 or more drum sets/keyboards on stage.  The big sound is both welcome and long overdue.  Think The Grateful Dead's space with clever lyrics and 20 minutes shorter.  Oh, and you can dance to it.  That's a stretch.  It stands alone and let's leave it at that.

Lykke Li:  "Get Some" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-TTPGAy5H_E&ob=av3e  Another example of steady percussion and tremendous pop groove.  Sultry, naughty and a bit dangerous.  If Beyonce and Lady Gaga had a witch friend from across the pond she might look like Lykke Li.

Caveman:  "Vampirer/Old Friend" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Svx2IV866Ok  A daytime live event from SXSW is odd given this is a nighttime NYC band.  Their debut album is a wonderful mix of mood and rhythm.  Drums and harmonies blended nicely with haunting guitars.  They headline their first Bowery show 1.20.11 and I am urging everyone within earshot to join the crowd.  Their live act is amazing and brings an added depth to an already deep record.  See you there???  http://www.bowerypresents.com/event/76417/


That's it for now.  Plenty more to chronicle before years end.  For now I am off to apply for the GM position for the Houston Astros.  Really, could they do ANY worse???







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