VMA Day 2013 – Four Butterflies to Watch #heylookamonarch

Pop Culture, Soundtrek, TrapperKeeper

 

Honeymoon isn’t even the furthest stretch of one’s falsified imagination when it comes to the Video Music Awards since 2010 #generous This year, I …. okay, I don’t actually know half of the nominees, and I might not have heard of 75% of the songs, but I can pick up a pattern from a mile away #universallaw #fortherecord

No one can predict the future, but we can recognize the present – and that’s good enough for me. Four butterflies to keep an eye on when watching the monarchy tonight… #theeverythingelse

1.) [T]he renaissance of Pop Art and a Warholian world of blurred lines between reality and fantasy”

 

Sedgwick Germanotta

[T]angent. Point is: Edie said of herself something that resonates so deeply with GaGa tonight, “if you just listened to what I had to say it was sane, but if you just looked at me you wouldn’t bother to listen. And none of them did. God it was a nightmare.” There isn’t that futility with GaGa, but the nightmare is quite apparent. Performance artists live their art — completely. The world is their canvas — truly. Where the art succeeds, the artist suffers, but it is for the sake of art — even if only for art’s sake.

2013:

2.) Jimmy Timberlake 

Ms. Education – Neurotic Society (Compulsory Mix)

Politics, Pop Culture, SnapTrakks, TrapperKeeper

MLH NS CM

Neurotic Society

We’re living in a joke time, metaphorical coke time
Commerce and guru men, run the whole world man
Broke world and debauchery, old world brutality
Cold world kills softly
Whole world works savagely
Greedy men and pride fiends program TV screens
Quick-scam and drag queens
Real life blast fiends
Think twice this past dream

BlinkkBeats: “Sunset Chimps-Élysées (VMA 2011 EP),” Art Nouveau

Pop Culture, SnapTrakks, Soundtrek, TrapperKeeper

Welcome to VMA 2011: no host, west coast, teenage dreams, saccharin-infused schemes – welcome to the odd future #bonjournaggers

At this juncture it’s safe to say we’re all slaves to the throne… some of us, say it better than others #namelythus That said, it’s safer to say we’re all slaves to a throne of indentured servants, who may or may not even belong at said royal table… #kanyeshrugsandotherthugs Who says you can’t ball out when the bottom falls out? Not America – because these colors don’t run; but if not these colors running the world – then who? #girls That said, every court needs a jester, or Jordan #jacksontyson #takeyourpick #six so for this year’s VMAs – the world is a soundstage, the stars are in the building, and amidst the bevy of deafeningly adamant ambiguity we have a soundtrack to keep the beat right on par with said backdrop: VMA 2011 EP – Welcome to the Beautiful Dark Twisted Sunset Boulevard of Golden Schemes and Silver Screens…

Blinkkit: “We’re going to skate to one song, and one song only.” This year the throne came home – and by home I mean industry royalty reflected “those ones.” You know… the ones who shouldn’t have been here at all – The Help that helped themselves to a seat at the table. When banks are broke, the broke make bank #namely.

SnappScenes: Lady Gaga – “Born This Way”

Anthropopogy // Culture, Deconstruction, Pop Culture, SnapTrakks, Soundtrek, TK:NYC, TrapperKeeper

I don’t know where to begin or end with this one… and I suppose that’s the best way to be – as there is no beginning or end to the perpetual renaissance that is Born This Way.

On G.O.A.T, a Government Owned Alien Territory in space, a birth of magnificent and magical proportions took place; but the birth was not finite – it was infinite. As the wombs numbered and the mitosis of the future began, it was perceived that this infamous moment in life is not temporal, it is eternal. And thus began the beginning of the new race, a race within the race of humanity, a race which bears no prejudice, no judgment but boundless freedom. But on that same day, as the eternal mother hovered in the multiverse, another more terrifying birth took place, the birth of evil. And as she herself split into two, rotating in agony between two ultimate forces, the pendulum of choice began its dance. It seems easy, you imagine, to gravitate instantly and unwaveringly towards good; but she wondered, “How can I protect something so perfect without evil?”

That… is the truth.

What artists do wrong is they lie, what critics do wrong is they try; I’m not going to try and pretend I know every conceptual reference here, nor analyze from a detached place of fault-and-fact finding – this isn’t about Pop cheat sheets and checklists… I’m just going to riff on what I know for me, and what I see when I watch that which the world will be.

I see George Clinton. I see One Nation Under a Groove, I see One Race Under the Hooves. I see Atomic Dogs reborn as Spearheaded Stallions. I feel what I felt when I lived in the eternal Funk of George Clinton’s 25th Anniversary show at the Apollo in 2005. I feel like a freshman again, caught in the unknown precipice that is Harlem’s heart with hippies and hipsters and blipsters and soulmen dancing together under the translucent kaleidoscopic gaze that is the pre-eminent Funkmaster’s view. Then, I witnessed the vintage funk future as George unearthed the mothership; here, I live the future as Gaga births the mother monstership.

Dime Dailies Playlist: Fever (105)

Soundtrek, Uncategorized

Scorcher today… only one thing to do: dance in the streets, then cruise into the sunset. Here’s a playlist that does just that; vice: it’s the spice of life – enjoi.

Top 5 of 2009: Songs/Albums

Pop Culture, Soundtrek

Thanks to Winstone over at The Couch Sessions I compiled my Top 5 songs/albums of 2009 (actually without Winston I wouldn’t have even considered the feat).

True Pop is self-contextualizing. My “best of” list reflects those works that built this year in pop culture, by reflecting the end of an era – of shallow celebrity veiled behind assumed artistry. Pop done right is cohesive, not fragmented, and neither are its masterpieces. Pop done right is an atmosphere – artists create their own world. Below are 2009 Pop best artists’ songs in relation to albums – not songs, or albums, and artists. My top 5 best reflect the year they dictated: 2009 – The Death of The Fame’s Fear.

“D.O.A. (Death of Autotune)”/The Blueprint 3 – Jay-Z

Hov on that new sxxt, like how come/ Want my old sxxt, buy my old album
Stuck on stupid, I gotta keep it moving/ Make the same sxxt, me I make the blueprint

 

“Bad Romance”/The Fame Monster – Lady GaGa

Got no direction, just got my vamp/ Take a bite of my bad girl meat, take a bite of me
Show me your teeth

 

“The Fear”/It’s Not Me, It’s You – Lily Allen

I don’t know much, but I know this for certain/ And that is the sun poking its head round the curtain
Now please can we leave? I’d like to go to bed now/ It’s not just the sun that is hurting my head now
I’m not trying to say that I’m smelling of roses/ But when will we tire of putting sxxt up our noses
I don’t like staying up, staying up past the sunlight/ It’s meant to be fun and it just doesn’t feel right

 

“Colourless Colour”/La Roux – La Roux

My reflections are protections/ They will keep me from destruction
My directions are distractions/ When you’re ready, come into the light

 

“Man in the Mirror”/This is It – Michael Jackson


A willow deeply scarred/ Somebody’s broken heart
And a washed-out dream/ They follow the pattern of the wind, you see
Cause they got to place to be/ That’s why I’m starting with me

The de-brief: VMAs 2009

Pop Culture, Soundtrek

janetvma

Yes, please. MTV: proof that reality is the greatest canvas, and life is the greatest performance art. By reality, of course I mean “reality drama” and MTV’s “reality” which is anywhere a production crew happens to be, and by life I mean celebrity – because, really, who else’s life matters? The VMAs (as stated below) are the encapsulation of all things Generation MTV, all things pop. While the past few years saw the bubble burst and pop culture crumbled to a state of all style and no care for substance, 2009 was ripe for the renaissance of Pop Art and a Warholian world of blurred lines between reality and fantasy for entertainment’s sake. Let’s delve.

Rolling Stone: The King’s Dead, Kill the Messenger

Pop Culture

Rolling Stone’s latest issue is the most complete obituary I have seen. In a fitting issue for the time of the King of Pop’s death, the magazine encapsulates the masses — and their media — at the time of the monarch’s passing. Rolling Stone, now more than ever, is a running requiem for what pop has become — that is for another post on another day, though.

What sparked this post was reading Rolling Stone’s last published Michael Jackson article during his life. The article was a more benign version of Perez Hilton’s first article after Michael’s death (how appropriately parallel). In a nutshell, Rolling Stone highlighted the cautionary signs of Michael’s mighty comeback being another flop and failure — due to (as Perez put it) “cold feet.” However, in a  most beautifully apropos closing to this piece — and hopefully their recent shark-jump — Rolling Stone declares:

What most people agree on: This is Jackson’s last shot. As one concert-industry veteran puts it, “You can only burn people so many times before they go away.”

Life is indeed the synchronicity of chance … Rolling Stone: they the self-fulfilling prophets of pop — pop’s own Prometheus if you will. Their fire can burn a King down, and yet simultaneously keep the JoBros “Burning Up” the cover — amazing.

Watch this space: Now that Vibe’s gone, there’s not many more places you can look — but I’ll take Spin and Q before I settle for this, the once-preeminent-print-publication-now-pop-pamphlet-with-an-inverse-page-to-ego-size-correlation.

Music Monday: June 29, 2009

Pop Culture, Soundtrek, Uncategorized

Last night was the 2009 BET Awards, and while the formal ceremony fell short of a proper Michael tribute, the subtext paid brilliant homage to the King of Pop and his legacy. If nothing else, the world has been reintroduced to true pop music and culture in the aftermath of Michael’s death. Music television and radio stations have played the best rotations in years by playing only Michael nonstop. The result: full social immersion into true music and artistry in the midst of a tween/teen/young adult generation who has fallen far beyond short — a la ringtone rap and thrice-warmed-over beats and lyrics.  The point: last night’s awards marked what could be the renaissance of pop, hip-hop, music, modern art, and culture

From the finest display of live auto-tuning and actual instrumentation I’ve witnessed in a minute (and points for the Dirty Diana nod)

a near perfect last stand — save for a fat lady singing — before the anti auto-tune assault

Au revoir auto-tune, bonjour artistry — and authenticity. In the midst of chaos, the best solution is simplicity; from the music industry, back to Michael the key is to cut through the hype and get to the core — the only one to do that better than Jay Hov last night was Janet

no words.

The BET Awards marked the apex and assassination of auto-tune — and everything it embodies; kill the counterfeit, “this is Sinatra at the opera,” not Soulja Boy on a Sidekick.

Watch this space: What better catalyst for the next cultural shift than the death of the mechanichal man in light of the man in the mirror — from auto-tune to authentic artistry. Now, from the King’s ashes will hopefully arise a phoenix-like pop renaissance; if not, blame it on the alcohol — literally.

The Michael Post

Pop Culture, Soundtrek, Uncategorized

Michael Jackson was an icon and today is a deity. Everyone has their two cents on this, so below are just a few of mine …

mjmtv

Pop: Michael Jackson embodied pop from head to toe, Michael was and is pop — period. VH1 opened their tribute with statements like “on the brink of his biggest comeback to date, Michael died,” and “the King has died.” When one man can singlehandedly make all music video television stations play music videos again, when the 4 hours of radio broadcast directly following his death are more diverse — and universally better — than the 4 years leading to his death, when every media outlet — from ABC to TMZ and everywhere in between — becomes an amplified epitaph, when the internet gets shut down, when one man can singlehandedly take the world from ripping him one day to R.I.P.-ing him the next, when that man’s death sparks an unspoken public guilt for allowing pop to descend to its present state … this is not “the brink of his biggest comeback to date,” it is his biggest comeback, this is not the “death of a King,” it is the ascent of a deity. Michael Jackson as pop, in and of itself, resurrected more than a concept — he resurrected a culture.

I would go on about all of the celebrity vs. artistry themes and nuances interwoven through the icon’s tale, but that’s for a coffee discussion or roundtable forum (open invitation)

Personal: Keith Olbermann said it best when he said this is bigger than the fame and controversy, that this transcends the trials — at its core this is the tragic death of a human gone too soon. The footage of Michael’s body being transported to the coroner brought his death to the human level. Regardless of everything else surrounding the event, Michael Jackson is a human being — a friend, a brother, a father, and another son to be buried by his parents.

Political-esque: BBC World asked what the death of Michael Jackson means for the African-American community; someone replied “What did Elvis’ death mean to the white community?” Michael’s death is bigger than that because Michael’s death, life, and impact transcend race: he was the first black artist on MTV, but he is also the greatest pop artist of all-time — race with and notwithstanding Michael’s death means everything to everyone within pop culture.

Everyone has their favorite Michael songs, videos, etc. Many are classics like Billie Jean, Thriller, Beat It, Black or White, etc. but below are my understated favorites.

First, the first Michael Jackson song I remember buying …

the man made a song about a rat … a ballad that remains heads and shoulders above the bulk of modern pop love songs today

Next, the first Michael song that made me buy a pack of Orbit to clean myself up

so raw … so gritty … so epic

Finally, what remains my first favorite Michael video

words … can’t … just … yeah.