So, last night I went to the Lobo and watched Guitar Defamation League
GDL's this grunge/Floyd
/math-rock bass & drums duo, that are a total blast. The fact that they got all of that sound out of those two instruments, and not only made it sound good, but also kickass is pretty amazing.
And while it's easy to dismiss TheShotgun as more of the male-female guitar'n'drums garage rock "genre" that's been mighty popular lately (I'm sure you know who I mean), they added a fresh touch of fast, hard rock to the proceedings, and had me nodding my head enough to purchase a CD. They're still young, but with some more time under their belt, they'll become their own entity and maybe someone at the Stranger will find them cute enough (they are awful goddamn cute) to become the next big local thing for A&R reps to latch onto. I'd love to see them open for Ms. Led
or summat. (Go with a smaller label, kids!)
Now that I'm done pretending that I know what the fuck I'm talking about, I have to confess, when the kids broke out with some blues riffs, I couldn't help but remember where that shit came from, and the bittersweet fact that, these days, the music is being kept alive by the descendants of the people that caused the need for that music.*
When the White Stripes
cover St. James Infirmary Blues
on their first album, it's celebratory because not only is it a faithful cover, it's kinda kickass too. The only hope I have is that it leads folks to listen to the original recordings (I'm most familiar with Cab Calloway
's version), because that
is where the shit's at.
I guess the only thing I really have to say about all of this is that I don't care about the melanin, just, for gods' sake, do it right. I'm grateful it's being done well, because I'd hate to think of the alternative.
"Light Jazz," or "Jazz Fusion," for example. It's certainly light, I'll give it that much. The phrase jazz fusion was coined by Miles Davis
, around the time of Bitches Brew
, and the difference between Bitches Brew
and this...It's not even worth talking about.
However, calling it jazz is a misnomer the likes of which hasn't been seen since Turk 182
was advertised as a thriller. ('Cause, you know, that was a long time ago. Really. When was the last time Timothy Hutton was a lead in anything? The answer is right here
Do you know who listens to this crap? Aging fucking yuppies, that's who. Them and refugees, for some godforsaken reason. I know because the shuttle I take to and from work is filled with both, and I made the assumption that it was being played for the SUV crowd. No, later in the day, when I'm the only one on the shuttle, the driver will switch it from NPR to light jazz.
The mind yahtzees. These are people who come from places where Fela Kuti
would be popular, and now they're listening to Kenny G
. Or whoever is popular in that realm these days, who cares? David Sanborn
I don't want to ask them why, seeing as they are the ones driving, and if you spend an entire day dealing with downtown Seattle traffic, you can listen to whatever you want, if you ask me.
But still...it's just disgusting. And, seeing that I'm up here already, I'm just going to go off on the Jazz scene in this town.
What the fuck is it with you people? Do me a favor, go to Bud's Jazz Records
, in Pioneer Square, and ask him to get you some bebop, or hard bop, okay? He'll set you right.
Because, apparently, the only jazz Seattle knows is soft bop (this style is best exemplified by Dave Brubeck
's Time Out
and Miles Davis
's Kind of Blue
), which is nice and all, but not all the time
! Now, can we listen to something that really swings? Huh?
Hell, can we have a location that's not overpriced playing something other than yet another
cover of Summertime
? Do you think this can be done? I'm sure I'm not the only one thirsting for this. Get with it, people.
Okay, the ringing in my ears has subsided to the point where I can go to sleep now.
Have a good 4th, folks!*To be fair, TheShotgun consists of a white kid and a mixed kid. ________________________________________________________________
PS--Listened to the TheShotgun CD, and the production's pretty tight on it, so they are better live than on the CD but not by much. Impressive.
Also, they cover the Beatles' Yer Blues
, for which I need to thank them for reminding me that the blues have been appropriated for at least as long as the Fab Four and the Stones have been around.