“Now and Then,” the last (lost?) Beatles song

Advertisements Or, a rose by any other name So I want to talk about this song, which I called a Beatles song in the title for good old SEO purposes and because everyone is doing it. But I must confess to being somewhat disingenuous. I don’t think of it as a true Beatles song; it’sContinue reading ““Now and Then,” the last (lost?) Beatles song”

Who #7: thank u, next

Advertisements Or, prep screams and hipster dreams I almost called this one ‘I Love My Wife.’ We’ll get there. Today is the day you may have been waiting for: Who’s Next. A title that is untranslatable, at least into German. I take the album on runs, which is how I’ve finally cultivated an independent relationshipContinue reading “Who #7: thank u, next”

California Tragic: Weyes Blood at Astra

Advertisements Or, electro-pop Joni Mitchell from the future? I got a ticket on short notice to see Weyes Blood (pronounced ‘eyes’ with a ‘w’ attached) perform last week at Astra Kulturhaus, a Berlin club down in the clubby district. I’m a newcomer to her, though she’s floated in my periphery for years, and I wasn’tContinue reading “California Tragic: Weyes Blood at Astra”

An Improvised Quatrain on the Lennon-McCartney Songwriting Partnership

Advertisements Possibly greater than Arlen and Harburg, Possibly greater than Rodgers and Hart, Possibly greater than Gershwin and Gershwin— Gosh, I don’t know where to start!   Thoughts on “Now and Then” coming soon.   Image: 1969 via AP

Saint-Saëns’ “Danse macabre”: a perennial appreciation

Advertisements Or, a musical memory Halloween may be past, but All Souls’ Day is the second-best day of the year to discuss Camille Saint-Saëns’ 1875 symphonic poem Danse macabre. Besides, the day one of my grade-school music teachers introduced us to it was twenty years ago either this year or last year. So I’m lateContinue reading “Saint-Saëns’ “Danse macabre”: a perennial appreciation”

Who #6: Raise your hand if you loved Roger’s voice pre-TOMMY

Advertisements Or, an eras tour but it’s just one era A narrative I encounter not infrequently in my Who reading says something to the effect that Roger Daltrey didn’t really work out how to sing until Tommy. I would like to contest this claim. First off, I don’t know what ‘how to sing’ means. Secondly,Continue reading “Who #6: Raise your hand if you loved Roger’s voice pre-TOMMY”

Who #5: This is embarrassing

Advertisements Or, a check-in While interloping at the conference in Milan, I met a very knowledgeable presenter (British) to whom I took an instant liking. It somehow came up that I was writing this series on the Who because I had been listening to them all year. Her knee-jerk reaction was a weirded-out face andContinue reading “Who #5: This is embarrassing”

David Byrne

Advertisements Or, your latest song rec I hadn’t heard of the Australian trio STUMPS until last week when YouTube recommended the music video for their new song “David Byrne.” Now, I’m a simple man. I see something Talking Heads-affiliated, I click. And taking inspiration from David is a pretty good starting point for a song.Continue reading “David Byrne”

don’t be mean to ice spice

Advertisements Or, room to grow I saw Ice Spice’s musical guest spot on the opening episode of the new season of SNL, and, contrary to what seems to be popular consensus, I don’t think the problem is her. Let me say right off that, concerning Gen Z music, I am thus far a bigger fan ofContinue reading “don’t be mean to ice spice”

Who #4: La La La Songs

Advertisements In which I do a lot of air-drumming You know how any given McCartney composition has little cues and clues that let you know it’s a McCartney? I guess those tend to be musical more than lyrical. Anyway, in a like manner, Pete Townshend has a collection of what I call ‘la la laContinue reading “Who #4: La La La Songs”

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