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630826 Posts in 25268 Topics by 3596 Members - Latest Member: bbb9 April 25, 2018, 01:27:04 PM
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1  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: NBA 2017 Topic on: Today at 09:17:01 AM
I’d rather be their Scott Layden.
2  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: Today at 09:16:23 AM
That’s like arguing whether cricket or rugby is more popular in the USA!
3  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: NBA 2017 Topic on: Today at 08:57:43 AM
Carnie?
4  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: Today at 08:57:12 AM
Talking positivity about rap, I think we’ve just turned off 80% of the board. 😀
5  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: Today at 08:48:45 AM
The “Ocean wanted to rap” perplexed me, considering he’s far better known as a singer. But I believe Brian: around the same time, the great rapper Earl Sweatshirt made some comments about how funny he thought it was that Ocean had begun considering himself a rapper. Must’ve been a phase. But when you’re getting a chance to sing with or for BW, I’d think you take it!
6  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Who Sounds Like The Beach Boys? on: Today at 07:15:30 AM
This is a journey many of us have taken, I suppose: with a limited catalog, eventually one tries to find lookalike supplements. In the late 90s to the mid 00s I was doing the same thing, including with some of those bands you mentioned. My unsolicited opinion on the whole effort is that it ends up empty: any group worth its salt isn’t trying to ape another band, but to add different influences or (hopefully) create something new. Those bands, then, peel off from being Beach Boys (or Beatles, or whoever) sound-alikes, while those that really stick to a script are just inferior and somewhat dull copycats.
 
It complicates it even more that the Beach Boys, like every great band worth copying, is too diverse to be easily copied. Are you channeling “Fun, Fun, Fun,” “Surf’s Up,” “Kokomo”? Maybe “Sail On, Sailor,” “Wouldn’t It Be Nice?” or “Busy Doin Nothin”? There are so many elements to incorporate, and it’s pretty unlikely that any band’s taste would lean toward more than a couple of them (unless it’s an actual copycat pastiche kind of act). Think of it this way: would the Beach Boys have been great if they served as the result of a Chuck Berry fan’s quest to find a band that sounded like Chuck Berry? Or the Four Freshmen? It’s the combination of diverse sounds in a unique way that makes any band great.
 
But while you’re searching, and since you mentioned Olivia Tremor Control (who pretty rarely sounded like the Beach Boys, I think, but certainly worshipped Smile-era stuff), you can dig a lot deeper into the associated bands from that same circle, the Elephant 6 collective. Especially in the late 90s and early 00s, a lot of those groups (especially since they tended to share the same musicians) mined that Beach Boys territory, along with the adjacent Beatles, Kinks, and Os Mutantes. If you liked OTC in particular, their offshoot bands Sunshine Fix and Circulatory System would probably be to your liking. Early Of Montreal has its Beach Boys moments, and did Beulah. The Music Tapes shared the so-called experimental vibe of OTC. Chocolate USA, the Essex Green, the Ladybug Transistor, Black Swan Network, Major Organ and the Adding Machine, the Late BP Helium, Marshmallow Coast, and the Minders are others that had a mid-to-late 60s pop vibe that sometimes reflected various Beach Boys sounds… Heck, Apples in Stereo basically came into existence based on a chance train-ride conversation about the Beach Boys and later named their studio Pet Sounds Studios.
 
Most longtime posters have seen a lot of these bands name-checked a million times by now, as this sort of thread pops up somewhat often. Usually the better music being cited doesn’t really sound like the Beach Boys on a consistent basis, but is heavily influenced by them in some way; the influence shows up only here and there, not everywhere. (Raspberries and Eric Carmen, Big Star and Alex Chilton, REM, Super Furry Animals, Belle & Sebastian and God Help the Girl, the Delgados, Flaming Lips, Wondermints, Cotton Mather, the Shins, Fleet Foxes, Dent May, Eels, Girls, Jeremy Messersmith, Euros Childs, Tame Impala, aforementioned Animal Collective and offshoot solo Panda Bear, some Dirty Projectors, etc.) That or it name-drops the BBs. Sometimes it’s some of each, like in Splitsville’s Pet Soul. None of these really sounds like the Beach Boys, but all of these has moments that are clearly either inspired by, similar to, or derivative of them to some degree.
 
Happy hunting (even though I hope you give up).
7  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: Yesterday at 11:04:42 AM
Nope. Not bad. Just how life goes.

She’s a critically acclaimed R&B leaning pop musician (lots of mid 70s Stevie Wonder sound imo) with about a decade of semi-popularity. “Tightrope” from around 2010ish was her breakout and maybe biggest hit. She has also collaborated with Prince, Of Montreal, Erykah Badu, Big Boi of OutKast...I forget who else.

She has also acted some, but I’ve never seen anything she did.
8  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: Yesterday at 10:12:55 AM
Nothing happened with either, other than a lot of message board complaints about unreleased, unheard and unfinished (unstarted, I think, in Ocean’s case).

I’m more worried about what happens when he pairs with Peter Hollens...

Anyway, I see it differently when he’s contributing to someone else’s work than when they are contributing to his.
9  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian featured on forthcoming Janelle Monae record? on: April 23, 2018, 05:31:40 PM
That’d be great. She’s really talented. Stylistically a bit odd, but she’s also quite versatile, and if—IF, just speculating—it’s just bg vox or something, that could fit atop a lot of styles easily enough.
10  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: The What Are You Reading? Thread on: April 23, 2018, 03:43:18 PM
Daniel Ellsburg's "The Doomsday Machine," which is terrifying.

To help mitigate the depression caused by the above, I started Steven Pinker's "Enlightenment Now." I'm going back and forth a few chapters at a time. We're all going to die. Everything's fine. We're all going to die. Everything's fine. And so on.
Trying to finish up the Pinker book, due back to the library today. But I started and am really enjoying Judaism in Persia’s Shadow, too. Getting some of both in while enjoying the 70-degree weather on my patio. To think, last weekend we got nearly 20” snow!
11  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: The What Are You Reading? Thread on: April 23, 2018, 03:40:36 PM
I am re-reading The Forsaken: An American Tragedy in Stalin's Russia. It's the true story of people whose parents brought them to Russia in the 20s and 30s and what happened to them in the waves of Stalin's Terrors. I am a history buff, and this was particularly interesting because it is about a time and place I know relatively little about, especially that many Americans moved to Russia at that time for various reasons: They may have been true believers in Communism, Jews whose families had fled the discrimination and pogroms of Tsarist Russia and longed to return, employees of Henry Ford who were paid handsomely to serve as engineers and consultants in the plant he sent over to assist in Stalin's industrialization plan. It is long and not written in a particularly engaging style, but is one of those books that has you looking back once finished and saying, "I grew from this."

That sounds really interesting!
12  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Why Do We Treat Brian Wilson Like a Child? on: April 23, 2018, 10:55:52 AM
This question touches on something I’ve flirted with really thinking through for years, but so far have just let swim around my head as a formless concept. So forgive the half-baked nature of the post.
 
I think people have for centuries tried to ascribe something like this condescension to certain kinds of artistic people—especially child prodigies, the mentally ill, even the very eccentric. They are looked at with some combination of related archetypes: holy fool, mad genius, (forgive the rude term) idiot savant. W.A. Mozart, Thelonious Monk, Michael Jackson, Daniel Johnston, Jeff Mangum, Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart), and yes, Brian Wilson, are a few example musicians in different times and genres who seem to roughly fit to some extent. The same concept applies to artists of other media.
 
(Brian Wilson happens to fit to some extent into two, if not all three, categories. While not exactly a child prodigy, he was producing high-level work by the time he was a young adult, and his mental illness has been discussed and documented to the point that I don’t need to mention it further here. And at least those mid-late 60s demonstrate an eccentric personality, although it’s hard to say how much of that was due to mental illness, drug abuse, an abundance of money and free time [with the band touring without him], etc.)
 
Often this musician is seen, as the thread topic suggests, as a child. The supremely gifted artist is a “delicate genius” (to quote an angry George Costanza), a child whose talents must be supernatural, or whose gifts must be equaled out by some other human failings. The artist is innocent—almost no matter what he does, he is forgiven. His great work is properly lauded as great, but his lesser work is still championed because of the artist’s personality: it reflects his childlike nature, or his out-there vision, or his ability to overcome circumstances … but it’s rarely just bad. If it seems bad to us, it’s because we’re failing it, not the other way around. We don’t understand it.
 
So I think people treat Brian Wilson as a child partly because he somewhat easily fits into a pre-existing archetype of one type of artist, some tragic-romantic figure we already know about. The story reinforces and adds to our myths. It’s not entirely without merit—Brian did need a lot of help at different points in his life—but the public and media find the points of reality to be easy handles by which to grab him and pull him into the myth, and from then on its easiest to view him always through that lens.
 
Hope that made sense.
13  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: The What Are You Reading? Thread on: April 20, 2018, 05:31:52 AM
Judaism in Persia’s Shadow, by Jon Berquist.
14  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 19, 2018, 01:22:09 PM
Your elbow is the bendy one  Grin
15  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 19, 2018, 10:22:21 AM
The actual politics forum there is quite peaceful, really. Too quiet, if anything. It’s the various political (or personal-meets-political) fires that start in other parts of the board that are ugly.

Choosing one’s battles is the way to go. I’m not always good at it, but I’m getting better. One day I’ll learn.

Nola BB Fan: I’m sorry to hear about the time you have been having. A veteran of seemingly countless hours in hospitals with loved ones, I know how terrible it can be. The actual underlying illness, the bureaucracy of the institution, the “hurry up and wait” feel, the never satisfying answers, the stress of interacting with other, also stressed, visitors...it’s terrible. Numbing and painful all at once. You have my sympathy.

Oh, and the coffee is always awful.

16  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 18, 2018, 06:36:09 PM
Today I shook my head in disbelief.
17  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 18, 2018, 06:14:39 PM
It’s best described a laughably fringe interpretation. I don’t want anyone who hadn’t seen the post assuming you might be accurately describing it. It was clearly a pathetically mean-spirited insult, later quietly rescinded until being called out, only to go with an even more pathetic (and nonsensical) excuse.
18  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 18, 2018, 06:02:52 PM
Will do!
19  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 18, 2018, 05:37:25 PM
The purpose of your post is irrelevant to me, as is your opinion of Mikie’s post, but I had to address your absurd interpretation of its meaning.
20  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: So what did we all do today? on: April 18, 2018, 04:06:07 AM
clearly, he didn't insult "usawoman", didn't call her names, nor did he jump there at her posts directly. He even put her username in quotes, i.e. it's the username he didn't like, not her.

That’s complete nonsense.
21  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: Any Jazz aficionado's here? on: April 16, 2018, 01:54:38 PM
I oughtn't have doubted you: having dug into it, sure enough it does seem the final version used on the album was a composite of takes.

That said--and this might be trying to make a distinction in terminology that isn't really effective or necessary--I think it's not quite accurate to say it was "so complex ... that it had to be recorded in sections and then pieced back together." While the first version--the one on the album of the same name--was indeed a product of splicing, it was recorded and released numerous times by Monk (and others) afterward. I would guess it was more a product of trying to get a certain number of tunes done on a schedule (usually a day or two in those days for a jazz LP) and, once they began breaking down and getting angry--which I've read was indeed the case--they just quit rather than keep spitting into the wind.

No doubt it didn't help that the form is 8 bars, 7 bars, 7 bars, and that (per typical Monk) the accents and changes were odd. I just peeked at the chart and it's pretty odd. I have no doubt they could pretty easily play the head just fine, but soloing over those changes might have been an issue, especially if they didn't know the song well prior to the session.
22  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: Any Jazz aficionado's here? on: April 16, 2018, 12:04:17 PM
I highly recommend Monk. He’s a giant of American music, I’d say a month the 10 greatest of any genre.

And I agree Brilliant Corners is amazing. But I don’t recall hearing that story before and honestly find it hard to believe. There was some takes-splicing going on in those days in jazz, but “too difficult to play” strikes me initially as likely mythology. I’ll have to dig into that. Thanks for passing it along.
23  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: What are you watching now?/Favourite Movie of the Moment on: April 16, 2018, 07:07:36 AM
Seinfeld is also (so far as I know) the first sitcom in which none of the primary characters is actually likable in any traditional way: none is a good person. They are all selfish beyond belief ... and I think viewers recognize that impulse in themselves. It was a chance to watch what could unfold if you actually said the things that go unsaid. "If only I'd said [whatever]..." well, Jerry, Elaine, Kramer, and George always said it. And did it. Terrible people, something like four Mr. Hydes setting loose that side of human nature. In the end, no lessons learned. Ever. It was the anti-sitcom.

Something I loved, though some people didn't, was that in the later years, it also became somewhat absurdist. No longer just four jerks living self-centered lives of judgment, but now thrusting themselves into absolutely idiotic situations that are treated as if they were possible in the real world. Kramer sets up the Merv Griffin set in his apartment, or the hot tub in his apartment. Elaine goes to Myanmar just to get Mr. Peterman to sign the expense report. Jerry drugs his girlfriend--repeatedly, eventually inviting George to participate--to play with her antique toys. The entire Indian wedding "unvitation" episode. That spirit was very funny to me.

I think those more absurdist episodes came after Larry David left the show.... and if I'm perfectly honest they're among my favourites

Mine, too. I realize they’re post-David and disliked (or relatively disliked) by many fans, but I love them.

Those last two seasons of Seinfeld are, IMO, kinda like the early 70s BB albums.   They may not be as popular as the classic years, but still very good. 

Though, I think Jerry made the right call in pulling the plug on the show after nine years because I think had they kept going down that route, the show would've become silly and lost it's way a bit, sort of how Married With Children did at the end.

I agree. I think many long running shows (and bands, for that matter) would be better off ending sooner than later. I think shows should get more time early on to find their voices—a single season is often not enough, but I’d say at least one full season is necessary—but then need more discipline on the other end to give up before they get bad.

Of course, it’s really advertisers who fundamentally make that decision for the networks.
24  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: What are you watching now?/Favourite Movie of the Moment on: April 16, 2018, 05:49:49 AM
Seinfeld is also (so far as I know) the first sitcom in which none of the primary characters is actually likable in any traditional way: none is a good person. They are all selfish beyond belief ... and I think viewers recognize that impulse in themselves. It was a chance to watch what could unfold if you actually said the things that go unsaid. "If only I'd said [whatever]..." well, Jerry, Elaine, Kramer, and George always said it. And did it. Terrible people, something like four Mr. Hydes setting loose that side of human nature. In the end, no lessons learned. Ever. It was the anti-sitcom.

Something I loved, though some people didn't, was that in the later years, it also became somewhat absurdist. No longer just four jerks living self-centered lives of judgment, but now thrusting themselves into absolutely idiotic situations that are treated as if they were possible in the real world. Kramer sets up the Merv Griffin set in his apartment, or the hot tub in his apartment. Elaine goes to Myanmar just to get Mr. Peterman to sign the expense report. Jerry drugs his girlfriend--repeatedly, eventually inviting George to participate--to play with her antique toys. The entire Indian wedding "unvitation" episode. That spirit was very funny to me.

I think those more absurdist episodes came after Larry David left the show.... and if I'm perfectly honest they're among my favourites

Mine, too. I realize they’re post-David and disliked (or relatively disliked) by many fans, but I love them.
25  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: Any Jazz aficionado's here? on: April 15, 2018, 11:15:59 AM
Glad to see Oliver Nelson mentioned. He's phenomenal and criminally unknown to general jazz audiences. Blues and the Abstract Truth is a canonical work, I think.

Wayne Shorter gets serious kudos, too. Obviously he's well known, but seemingly mostly for having played alongside Miles in the second great quintet. What nobody seems to mention on a regular basis is how many of those tunes he wrote. Phenomenal player, really good writer.
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