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♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇
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« Reply #75 on: September 28, 2016, 09:37:07 PM »

Snap...that's right...it WAS for Smile. Good catch.
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« Reply #76 on: September 28, 2016, 09:47:29 PM »

I agree that Pet Sounds is not a good album to use in the context of the article. I also agree that the article fails in its main thesis. But I think the reaction against the article in this thread is both disproportionate and misguided.  The article really isn't about the Beach Boys or Brian Wilson, or even Pet Sounds. Yes, that was thrown in as click-bait. But the article makes many valid points that are being dismissed for reactionary reasons.

The headline was the clickbait. The entire crux of the article revolves around the writer's attempts to tie his commentary and citing of quotes and published sources to the Pet Sounds album. Every one of the 4 pages ties the sociology to the Beach Boys and Pet Sounds specifically, and proceeds to paint a picture of Pet Sounds as the prime example of what the author is trying to convey. The logic of such claims is absurd, as specific as multiple points on every page which are intertwined with the album.

If the main focus of the piece is the Pet Sounds album, and that is not a good example to use, if the article fails in its main thesis...isn't that similar to ordering breakfast and getting cold eggs, under-cooked homefries, and burnt toast and saying it was a good meal because the diner gave free refills on the coffee?
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« Reply #77 on: September 28, 2016, 10:36:42 PM »

I agree that Pet Sounds is not a good album to use in the context of the article. I also agree that the article fails in its main thesis. But I think the reaction against the article in this thread is both disproportionate and misguided.  The article really isn't about the Beach Boys or Brian Wilson, or even Pet Sounds. Yes, that was thrown in as click-bait. But the article makes many valid points that are being dismissed for reactionary reasons.

The headline was the clickbait. The entire crux of the article revolves around the writer's attempts to tie his commentary and citing of quotes and published sources to the Pet Sounds album. Every one of the 4 pages ties the sociology to the Beach Boys and Pet Sounds specifically, and proceeds to paint a picture of Pet Sounds as the prime example of what the author is trying to convey. The logic of such claims is absurd, as specific as multiple points on every page which are intertwined with the album.

If the main focus of the piece is the Pet Sounds album, and that is not a good example to use, if the article fails in its main thesis...isn't that similar to ordering breakfast and getting cold eggs, under-cooked homefries, and burnt toast and saying it was a good meal because the diner gave free refills on the coffee?
I don't think the clickbait was just the headline. I suspect the author was already thinking about the subject matter, saw that Pet Sounds is temporally relevant, and tried to weave Pet Sounds into an existing theory, exactly as you say: "The entire crux of the article revolves around the writer's attempts to tie his commentary and citing of quotes and published sources to the Pet Sounds album." You seem to have picked up on the same thing that I did. Pet Sounds is an afterthought - something he's attempting and, I think you and I agree, failing to tie into his theory.
I don't think the main focus of the piece really is Pet Sounds.
Regarding the failure of the main thesis, no, it's not like a gross breakfast. It's more like trying to prosecute someone and the jury thinks your evidence makes for a very likely scenario, but a couple of the pieces don't quite fall into place, so they don't feel that it's beyond a reasonable doubt.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2016, 10:41:57 PM by Emily » Logged
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« Reply #78 on: September 29, 2016, 12:10:10 AM »

The author forgot to mention Pet Sounds disappointed on the charts while a guy named Jimi Hendrix was rocketing to stardom and dismissing the beach boys sound.

It's a legitimate point but a horrible example. Early beatles/beach boys stuff? Sure. But an underappreciated album that was more chamber pop than rock and roll anyway? Dont see in any way how it limited black rock and rollers at the time.
Actually, Jimi Hendrix was several months from really becoming a known artist. He didn't make his debut in America until June of 1967.
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« Reply #79 on: September 29, 2016, 12:39:50 AM »

Good point...as that famous quote came in June 1967 at the Monterrey Pop festival, where our Boys were originally supposed to perform...
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« Reply #80 on: September 29, 2016, 12:42:03 AM »

My commentary on the article and the comments on the article:

One needs to be familiar with the actual day-to-day context into which a work of art was introduced and thrived in order to make either a defense of this specific piece, or justify both its hypothesis/premise/conclusion and basic existence. I'm not seeing that in the follow-ups.

If a writer is going to use an album like Pet Sounds to state his premise and attempt to prove that premise, that in itself is absurd.

Some have gone back and tried to place everything surrounding Pet Sounds and Smile into a historical context. Not only the summary textbook style telling of events, but the actual daily/weekly/monthly events that surrounded the creation of these works. Current news, current music, TV, radio, film, advertising, fashion, regional trends (i.e. what made New York different from LA and different from Chicago in Spring 1966, Fall 1966, etc.) If context is key, the music created at a specific time never came from a vacuum, it didn't spring out of nowhere.

What is key in this case, since music is the focus of this article, would be what did the market into which an album like Pet Sounds was entering actually sound like, what did it consist of, and what else was surrounding it?

Why and how did Frank Zappa's debut album come out on Verve in 1966, a jazz label? Why did Jac Holzman, a figure in jazz, sign and release Love and the Doors on Elektra? How did the radio stations which were crucial to spreading this music sound, what did their playlists consist of?

For the radio portion of it, there is no simple answer. Every market from 66-69 had a different "sound" and a different style. Why did Boston top-40 play records which midwest top-40 wouldn't touch, and why did LA radio play what Philly never spun at all, or vice versa?

Someone needs to study those points in order to make such statements as in this article and the commentary following up.

Let's zero in on LA top 40, since it was what Brian Wilson would have been hearing when his work was being created and released. KHJ, KRLA, KBLA...1966 into 67.

Check the playlists, if available listen to the aircheck recordings from LA and the SoCal area. Motown next to soul, well-produced "pop" next to garage rock, Beatles next to Temptations, etc. East coast, West coast, south, etc. Wilson Pickett, Young Rascals, Sinatra (yes, Sinatra), Dionne Warwick, Lesley Gore, Junior Walker, Herb Alpert...

These diverse styles heard on top 40 - which was the market the singles and the album this author is using to postulate his theory - existed in the same music sweeps, in between the commercials and announcements. Listeners wanted it, they tuned in for the music. They heard what they liked, and they bought the 45 for 79 cents or dropped the 3-4 bucks for the LP.

Were there "R&B" stations and formats? Of course, just as there were classical, country, and easy listening MOR formats on the AM dial. But Top 40 was the delivery system for getting the music to the market, i.e. the listeners. Was there funny business going on in the business practices? No one denies it. It is a part of the entertainment business period. To this very minute. That's the reality.

So where is the Pet Sounds album and its singles fitting into this author's ideas on racism? Did he or any commenters ever listen to these broadcasts or scan the weekly surveys from the LA market in 66-67 to see what the actual formats and market he's pinning his theory onto sounded like?

I wasn't going to comment, but when I got caught up on the posts, I saw a disconnect - a wide one in some cases - existing between dissecting the sociology of the topic versus the actual words written by the author and his theories which he postulated on the back of the Pet Sounds album.

The author had a bogus premise, in my opinion, to begin with. He chose a convenient vehicle to carry it, a lightning rod if you will to generate interest 50 years after the fact. His choosing a specific album from a specific year and spinning his theories around it told me all I needed to know. As a clinical/educational research and analysis project, it failed because the premise hinges on a single album within a musical and pop culture context that the author barely if ever dissects or even describes. How was "Sloop John B" existing in the scene it was actually in, via top 40 radio and the kids buying the records, next to the R&B and soul records being played and bought by the same demographic?

It's a faulty premise to begin with. The "main idea" isn't clear. The statement followed by analysis and dissection followed by conclusion or proven hypothesis is scattered all over the sociological spectrum, yet "Pet Sounds" is the headline and assumed main topic of the dissertation. I can only assume that since the album is used as the vehicle to back up the theories offered by the article.

Now we have comments and this piece being shared around - attaching Pet Sounds directly (in the author's case) to existing racism of the mid to late 60's if not pinning future societal issues to this specific album's place within its era and by nature of its very creation.

If people want to really talk about it, I mean *really* talk about these issues and put them into the context of top 40 music trends and demographics of the 60's, ignore this article. It's flawed, faulty, and based on a premise which wouldn't even qualify for the term "threadbare logic".

It felt like something which needed a clickbait headline to generate interest and shares/views, and Pet Sounds happened to come under the microscope. Pop Matters can add this to its previous publication of a reviewer comparing a new Brian Wilson project to wheeling grandpa out for Thanksgiving dinner in a wheelchair.

Shame on them. Don't click on the site, simple solution to that one.

If you're going to discuss the real history and context of the music like Pet Sounds in an intellectual or educational manner, discuss it with some intellectual or educational knowledge of the subject matter and the historical context. Such context would have taken Pet Sounds or any similar album from 1966-67 out of consideration for becoming the basis of such an article.





GF's comments about top 40 radio of the era are dead on. As I'm fond of saying, context is everything and this "article" is sorely lacking it.
« Last Edit: September 29, 2016, 12:43:01 AM by GhostyTMRS » Logged
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« Reply #81 on: September 29, 2016, 03:08:34 AM »


GF's comments about top 40 radio of the era are dead on. As I'm fond of saying, context is everything and this "article" is sorely lacking it.

No doubt GF's comments about LA radio are correct. It seems to me, however, completely irrelevant to the article. The article is not saying that by 1966 rock had become segregated; the article nowhere says that top 40 stations exclusively played rock, even after it had segregated; and the article doesn't suggest that Brian Wilson wasn't listening to black artists.
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« Reply #82 on: September 29, 2016, 07:04:54 AM »

I thought the Jimi Hendrix "no surf music" comment was about Dick Dale, who was dealing with cancer at the time, and not about the Beach Boys at all.

(Edit: Oops, I had not seen Add Some's post above before I posted this message.)
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« Reply #83 on: September 29, 2016, 08:21:01 AM »

I just think it's a thing to define just about everything as either Marxist or Fascist. It's a way of dismissing rather than engaging.
Also, when someone comes along who demonstrates actual fascist tendencies, it's now easy to dismiss people who point that out as just labeling that person based on the tendency to do so, without engaging.

Playing the race card, be it outright calling somebody or something racist or implying that there is some malevolent racist element to a perspective, is also a way of dismissing rather than engaging.  Nothing ends a discussion quicker than calling somebody a racist.  SJWs get a lot of criticism because, despite their generally noble intentions, they seem to view everything through a ridiculously narrow prism-- be it race, gender, etc. and usually out of context. Their zeal is uber-religious and completely intolerant of other views.

Somebody earlier mentioned the parsing of everything into terms of race, and that a racial element will soon be part of every Beach Boys conversation. We're already there. I'm a public school teacher and students tell me all the time that I'm racist for liking the Beach Boys.  Awesome where we're heading, eh?
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« Reply #84 on: September 29, 2016, 08:28:23 AM »

Well said!
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« Reply #85 on: September 29, 2016, 08:30:36 AM »

"Pet Sounds and Race."  God Almighty.  Where/when will this end?
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« Reply #86 on: September 29, 2016, 08:34:00 AM »

"Pet Sounds and Race."  God Almighty.  Where/when will this end?

Unfortunately, it won't. Everything can be, nay, MUST be viewed through the racial prism until it's finally clear to you that you're a horrible person and everything you hold dear is evil and racist. And probably sexist, too. Smiley
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« Reply #87 on: September 29, 2016, 09:00:45 AM »

I wonder why the author didn't target the Beatles. They aren't just white, they are Un-american, which is even worse. 3D
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« Reply #88 on: September 29, 2016, 09:08:32 AM »

"Pet Sounds and Race."  God Almighty.  Where/when will this end?
There's no reason it should end: topics and questions can and should be open for discussion. One would just hope for more interesting treatments and, if I may piggyback on some of what Emily said, fewer knee-jerk (and that classic populist/anti-intellectual) responses.
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« Reply #89 on: September 29, 2016, 09:12:54 AM »

Anti-academic, Captain. It's not the same. And "knee-jerk response" is a classic straw man, used for responses one does not like.
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« Reply #90 on: September 29, 2016, 09:25:29 AM »

If there is a straw man, it might be the article, its author, and even academia (which I've already criticized in this thread and elsewhere) being used for target practice by some (but not all) people here. Some responses don't indicate the posters even read the article, they're just taking their straw-man version of what they're assuming it might say and spouting their typical complaints about fascists, or Marxists, or SJWs, or academia, or this particular publication, or whatever else.

My response to the article was very critical, so don't misunderstand where I'm coming from, either. Just saying the righteous fury against Big Bad Eggheads and the Great Satan of Political Correctness gets pretty tiresome when its not actually specific or on point, but just gnashing of teeth.
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« Reply #91 on: September 29, 2016, 09:48:32 AM »

My response to the article was very critical, so don't misunderstand where I'm coming from, either. Just saying the righteous fury against Big Bad Eggheads and the Great Satan of Political Correctness gets pretty tiresome when its not actually specific or on point, but just gnashing of teeth.

I take your point, but have you considered that the gnashing of teeth that you find tiresome might be, in part, a response to the gnashing of teeth from the SJW side?

To be clear, I'm all for honest discussion. Questions should be asked, but that's not what I see happening.  I see an aggressive, veritably religious movement that is less interested in honest dialogue than converting the masses to their faith. Articles like this (yep, read it) are symptomatic of that movement.  What you see as tiresome fury is actually resistance to that movement.  And while I too would prefer thoughtful, non-knee jerk discussion, the onus for this is on the movement, not the resistance.
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« Reply #92 on: September 29, 2016, 09:56:05 AM »

My response to the article was very critical, so don't misunderstand where I'm coming from, either. Just saying the righteous fury against Big Bad Eggheads and the Great Satan of Political Correctness gets pretty tiresome when its not actually specific or on point, but just gnashing of teeth.

I take your point, but have you considered that the gnashing of teeth that you find tiresome might be, in part, a response to the gnashing of teeth from the SJW side?

To be clear, I'm all for honest discussion. Questions should be asked, but that's not what I see happening.  I see an aggressive, veritably religious movement that is less interested in honest dialogue than converting the masses to their faith. Articles like this (yep, read it) are symptomatic of that movement.  What you see as tiresome fury is actually resistance to that movement.  And while I too would prefer thoughtful, non-knee jerk discussion, the onus for this is on the movement, not the resistance.

Eh, I don't know. Nobody ever says "you know, my side is really at fault here." Not even "my side is equally at fault here." Just "MOMMMMM!!!!!!! He started it!" I agree with a lot of the criticism of what are derogatorily called SJWs. But I don't even like the term for reasons Billy noted earlier. I wrote a little on another board and don't feel like I ought to pollute two boards with my same nonsense, so I'll just summarize with the idea that refraining from lumping together people under insulting names (that aren't even insulting when taken literally, and are funny to use as an insult: You fucking superstar! You goshdarn nice person! Motherfucking saint!) is a good idea, as is trying to be charitable with people's motives and sincerity when possible, even when they're wrong.

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« Reply #93 on: September 29, 2016, 10:08:07 AM »

I just think it's a thing to define just about everything as either Marxist or Fascist. It's a way of dismissing rather than engaging.
Also, when someone comes along who demonstrates actual fascist tendencies, it's now easy to dismiss people who point that out as just labeling that person based on the tendency to do so, without engaging.

Playing the race card, be it outright calling somebody or something racist or implying that there is some malevolent racist element to a perspective, is also a way of dismissing rather than engaging.  Nothing ends a discussion quicker than calling somebody a racist.  SJWs get a lot of criticism because, despite their generally noble intentions, they seem to view everything through a ridiculously narrow prism-- be it race, gender, etc. and usually out of context. Their zeal is uber-religious and completely intolerant of other views.

Somebody earlier mentioned the parsing of everything into terms of race, and that a racial element will soon be part of every Beach Boys conversation. We're already there. I'm a public school teacher and students tell me all the time that I'm racist for liking the Beach Boys.  Awesome where we're heading, eh?
But this is completely hyperbolic. This is the second conversation or article I've seen that discusses the Beach Boys in terms of race (I'm not saying there aren't more but they are nowhere near being "a part of every Beach Boys conversation." )
And look at the reaction. It appears anti-'SJWs' have more fervor than 'SJWs'.
And no one called anyone racist. But your comment is a good illustration of where the comments are coming from, and it's not reflective of what the article actually says.
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« Reply #94 on: September 29, 2016, 10:10:48 AM »

Captain, I don't like terms like SJW too (do I ever use them?), and agree that they are overused, and often misused to attack people.
But also don't like this dismissal of even harsh criticism against that article as reactionary, populist and anti-intellectual. That's little better than name calling, and there should be the freedom of expressing an opinion about such as a single article without people jumping to wild guesses about one's whole philosophical and political outlook. Guesses that are often completely wrong.
I read all of the article right at the start of this thread, and find it appalling on many levels. Not having Craig's or HeyJude's "pen", I'll leave it at that for now.
As for the Academy, I'll never love it.
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« Reply #95 on: September 29, 2016, 10:17:09 AM »

Don't mistake my overall comments as being directed toward you. Please note, I was pretty specific in saying I wasn't speaking about everyone. But neither am I going to re-read however many pages we're up to just to point fingers at the people I think are fitting my criticisms (which would be unnecessarily rude, anyway). All is well.
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« Reply #96 on: September 29, 2016, 11:05:02 AM »

Best way to shut down a discussion: "Racism!"

Second best way to shut down a discussion: "See, your comment just proves my point!!"

Emily, you seem very annoyed that some of us are reacting to the general issue rather than the article specifically.  I will admit that I have used this thread to vent/dialogue about misplaced activism. Since I reject the article's premise, I see no benefit in limiting my discussion to its specific bullet points.

Re: what you called hyperbole, I find it odd and disturbing that so many jr. high/high school students have told me to ditch the Beach Boys because racism.  Because their music stemmed from a systemically racist environment.  Amazingly, when I showed a C50 performance in class last year, I was asked why Darian chooses to associate himself with Brian's band and that genre.  It's weird, it's real, and it's one of the reasons I responded to this post.
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« Reply #97 on: September 29, 2016, 11:20:48 AM »

Best way to shut down a discussion: "Racism!"

Second best way to shut down a discussion: "See, your comment just proves my point!!"

Emily, you seem very annoyed that some of us are reacting to the general issue rather than the article specifically.  I will admit that I have used this thread to vent/dialogue about misplaced activism. Since I reject the article's premise, I see no benefit in limiting my discussion to its specific bullet points.

Re: what you called hyperbole, I find it odd and disturbing that so many jr. high/high school students have told me to ditch the Beach Boys because racism.  Because their music stemmed from a systemically racist environment.  Amazingly, when I showed a C50 performance in class last year, I was asked why Darian chooses to associate himself with Brian's band and that genre.  It's weird, it's real, and it's one of the reasons I responded to this post.

It seems to me that the perception of someone or something being called racist actually led to 4 pages, so far, of discussion. And, despite the fact that you find it offensive for me to say that your comment illustrates my point (and I am sorry about that), you actually go on to agree - that you are reacting not to the specific article but to what you consider to be misplaced activism, which was exactly my point. I think this article is being dragged through the mud because people are primed to respond negatively to discussions of race. As I said, the article itself is flawed, but it's not in the ways people seem to be implying it is.
And I agree that people saying you should stop listening to not-racist music because racism is annoying. You could point out to them that all American music stemmed from a systematically racist environment, so I guess they'd better stop listening to music altogether.
« Last Edit: September 29, 2016, 11:30:02 AM by Emily » Logged
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« Reply #98 on: September 29, 2016, 11:23:59 AM »

Sincere question, Emily: why do you think people are primed to respond negatively to discussions about race?
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« Reply #99 on: September 29, 2016, 11:29:28 AM »

Sincere question, Emily: why do you think people are primed to respond negatively to discussions about race?
Because it makes them feel bad.
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