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Category Archives: music

I’m terrible at music: Top Twenty Songs of 2013 (Part Two)

Well, since you’re back today from yesterday’s musical debacle, that means I haven’t killed you with my musical choices. Not YET, anyway. We’ve still got ten more to go. You never know what might happen. You might want to have emergency vehicles present. I don’t want to be held responsible for your downfall, yo.

So here are my top ten songs of 2013, this weird, wild, and wacky year. I’m equally sad and glad to see this year go; it’s had some of the highest highs and lowest lows of my entire life. Oh, 2013, I should have known, you with your built-in triskaidekaphobia.

10. “Patient Love” – Passenger (All the Little Lights, 2012)

Three words on the tip of my tongue/Not to be spoke nor sung/Or whispered to anyone/Till I scream ’em at the top of my lungs again

I just discovered Passenger this year. I love this guy’s voice and his accent and how he sounds kind of far-away and dreamy and I love that you can hear the longing in his voice. This is a beautiful song. Can’t you just see this guy singing this song? Kind of down on his luck and waiting for someone and everyone’s saying she won’t come back, but he’s still waiting, and he’ll keep waiting?

9. “The Moorings” – Andrew Duhon (The Moorings, 2013)

Oh my darling my dear I have reason to fear/That you know not the man you’re adoring

This sounds like a folk song, and I think that’s what drew me in, and then I listened to the lyrics and I fell crazy in love and I play it very loud in my car and sing and sing. I like to imagine this song being sung as someone sails away from someone as he goes off to make his fortune even though he isn’t sure it’s the right move. Isn’t it so old-timey and beautiful? I love that it’s acoustic, too. I’m a total sucker for acoustic music.

8. “Applause” – Lady Gaga (ARTPOP, 2013)

I’ve overheard your theory/Nostalgia’s for geeks/I guess sir, if you say so/Some of us just like to read

I absolutely cannot hear this song without dancing around. I’m listening it to it right now and keep having to stop blogging so I can couch-vogue. I’m not even kidding. Lady Gaga makes me ALL KINDS OF DANCEY. She is just the best. SO DANCEY! This is an awesome song. (SIDENOTE: Dad hates her and said Obama created her to distract “us dirty libruls” from what he’s doing to the economy. TRUE STORY!)

7. “Let Her Go” – Passenger (All the Little Lights, 2012)

Only know you love her when you let her go/And you let her go

OMG, this SONG. The pause at the end of this song before you find out he really, really did let her go, how his voice kind of trails off on that line, and that’s why he’s singing this, and that’s why he’s feeling all these feelings, why he’s so lost; he made the wrong choice. He’s mired in regret. He didn’t realize what his choice would do to him, and now he does…but it’s too late. I get very misty-eyed when I listen to this song. Every damn time.

6. “Paranoia in B Flat Major” – The Avett Brothers (Live, Volume 3, 2010)

With paranoia on my heels; will you love me still/when we awake and see that the sanity has gone from my eyes?

I think I discovered The Avett Brothers last year, but this year CONTINUED my adventures in listening to all their lovely music. This song makes me both happy and wistful, which is an excellent combination for me. Their voices are so joyful, aren’t they? I can’t listen to these guys without smiling. I share them with everyone I know. I want everyone to love them as much as I do. (One of the worst books I read this year started every chapter with an Avett Brothers song quote. I was so mad they put one of my favorite bands into such a craptastic book.)

5. “Live and Die” – The Avett Brothers (The Carpenter, 2012)

You and I we’re the same/Live and die we’re the same/Hear my voice know my name/You and I we’re the same

And I like THIS Avett Brothers song even MORE. Seriously, listen to this one, you guys. It is SO HAPPY. And there’s a cheerful banjo, and it makes you want to dance around, and it’s romantic, and I so want to see these guys in concert someday. Come to Albany, Avett Brothers, I will sit down front and smile so big that you’ll feel so welcomed!

4. “Last Night on Earth” – American Idiot (American Idiot: The Original Broadway Cast Recording, 2010)

My beating heart belongs to you/I walked for miles ’til I found you

Best song of the best musical I saw all year. I WEPT when I heard this song performed onstage for the first time. It is gorgeous. If you’ve heard the Green Day version, do yourself a favor and listen to this version; the addition of the female voice…oh, my. I can’t even describe. Haunting. Heartbreaking and haunting and so, so beautiful.

3. “Just Give Me a Reason” – Pink featuring Nate Ruess (The Truth About Love, 2012)

We’re not broken just bent/And we can learn to love again

I think I might have listened to this more than almost anything this year. This came on the radio earlier in the year and I was all HOLY HELL I LOVE THIS and over and over and OVER, I listened. I’m telling you guys, I love Pink. This is a gorgeous duet, and it, again, really hits home – the divide in a relationship, when one person knows there’s a problem, and the other person denies it. Are they lying? Should you believe them? Do you dare put your heart out there for them to potentially hurt again? Do you NOT dare?

2. “Bulletproof Weeks” – Matt Nathanson (Some Mad Hope, 2007)

Talking to what’s left of you/And watching what I say

This is just about the saddest song ever. If you can listen to this and not think back to a relationship that imploded, I think your heart might be dead. I can see the man singing this; I can see him remembering the time that things were perfect…until they just weren’t, and no one could predict them going wrong, they just went wrong, because sometimes things do that. You can’t predict it. You can, however, mourn it, and look back, and wonder what you could have done. When I discovered this song I listened to it on my phone in my bed over and over and just cried and cried. I love this so much.

1. “Monster” – Meg Myers (Daughter in the Choir, 2012)

what have I become?/I’m a fucking monster/when all I wanted was something beautiful/my love too much/your love not enough

I know. This is the weirdest choice for a #1 song of the year EVER. But I am OBSESSED with it. It is SO DARK and SO MOODY and I love her voice and she’s so powerful and so pained and I seriously sing this so angrily and so passionately when this one comes on in the car. And then I start it over. And I do it all over again. LOVE LOVE LOVE.

Alright, bloggonians. Did I kill you? Are you dead dead dead? Listen, a lot of you have been here for a while, you know I have the musical taste of someone raised by wolves; none of this can surprise you much. But I hope you liked some of them, at least, and I hope you had a good year of music on your ends, as well. *smooch*

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I’m terrible at music: Top Twenty Songs of 2013 (Part One)

For the past three years, I’ve done a year-end best-of music post. I always do it wrong, and my taste in music is TERRIBLE. Just a warning.

Ways I do this wrong:

  • As stated: bad taste in music. It’s going to probably make you cringe.
  • Probably very few, if any, of these songs actually came out in 2013. All that matters is that I first HEARD them in 2013. I’m very behind on what’s good and/or what I enjoy.
  • I usually do thirty songs. This year I only came up with twenty. I don’t know why, either. Slow year for music in Amyland? You’re probably going to be thankful when I’m done, because, as mentioned…TERRIBLE TASTE IN MUSIC.

So we’re breaking this up over two days…20-11 today, 10-1 tomorrow. I’m putting in videos whenever possible so if you’re so inclined, you can listen. Maybe someone reading will LIKE my terrible taste in music! As they always say, there’s no accounting for taste.

As for where I find the music I get obsessed with, it’s a little of this and a little of that. Pandora, background of television shows I’m watching, the radio, people recommending it to me, musicals, Facebook or Twitter telling me “ZOMG THIS IS AWESOME,” things like that. Where do most people get their new music, I wonder?

So, here we go. Hopefully you won’t hate these as much as I worry you will. These songs have made me happy since I heard them and I’ve since purchased them from iTunes and listen to them over and over at work and my coworkers are all “you are bopping at your desk” and I’m like “yep.”

20. “The Bed Song” – Amanda Palmer (Theatre is Evil, 2013)

You say I would have told you if you’d only asked me

This song is not only beautiful, it’s intelligent and heartbreaking. The end of this song killed me, the first time I heard it. It’s really relevant, isn’t it? To a lot of situations, I mean. I admire Amanda Palmer. I know a lot of people were angry with her this year, but I think she’s kind of awesome; she believes so fiercely in her art, and in love, and in creation. So she sometimes makes mistakes. Has no one ever made a mistake? She owns up to them, you know? And I’m not as judgmental about the alleged mistakes, to be honest. I think a lot of people hate on her because she dared marry Neil Gaiman, and he is our geek god. You know what? Good for them. I’m all for love. More of it, I say.

19. “Without You” – Ingrid Michaelson (Without You, 2013)

My life will go; my love will grow/without you

Ingrid Michaelson gets me. When I need something sad and moody but with a tinge of hope, I turn to Ingrid Michaelson. I love this song. It’s got loss, but also the potential of moving on, all with her beautiful, sweet, bubbly voice. I’ve listened to this so many times since downloading it.

18. “Beautifully” – Jay Brannan (Rob Me Blind, 2012)

It’s not that you’re not beautiful, you’re just not beautiful to me/she said, how beautiful do I have to be?

This is a really sappy song? And I’m aware of that? But it speaks to me. I’ve been the “yeah, you’re great, BUT” girl. Like, more times than I want to discuss at the moment, thanks. So sometimes I need a really sappy song to talk to me about that, that tells me that someone else understands that. Shush, no judging. (Also, this guy’s voice is really pretty. I like it a lot.)

17. “Lovely Tonight” – Joshua Radin (Wax Wings, 2013)

I see the rest of my life with you

Joshua Radin is my romantic-song go-to guy. His VOICE! Sigh. He gives me those good chills, you know? Those really good chills? I could listen to him all day. This song is (again) a little sappy…but I adore it. Listen, I like sappy. I like sad songs more than anything. Sad, moody songs are my thing. I’m not even going to apologize.

16. “True Love” – Pink, featuring Lily Allen (The Truth About Love, 2012)

At the same time, I wanna hug you/I wanna wrap my hands around your neck

This song made me smile every time it came on all year. It’s true, right? You can love someone right to pieces, but sometimes, just sometimes, you totally want to murderize them because they can be so damn CLUELESS about THINGS. And sometimes you know that’s why it’s the person you love, you know? Because who else could get to you like that? Someone that doesn’t matter wouldn’t bother you, that way-down-deep-under-your-skin way. (Also, I adore Pink. She is just about my favorite.)

15. “Say Something” – A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera (Is Anybody Out There?, 2014)

I’m sorry that I couldn’t get to you/Anywhere, I would’ve followed you

Apparently everyone loves this because it was on The Voice or something but I love it because A., it’s so damn moody and pretty and heartbreaking, and B., I heard it driving home one rainy, foggy night and it was perfect for my mood and it stuck in my brain and wouldn’t leave so I downloaded it and listened to it over and over when I got home. I love a good moody driving-in-the-rain song. Back in the day, I used to make driving-in-the-rain mixtapes. Over and over and over. I couldn’t have enough of them.

14. “Cups” – Anna Kendrick (Pitch Perfect Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, 2013)

It’s got mountains, it’s got rivers/It’s got sights to give you shivers/But it sure would be prettier with you

This song makes me happy. Anna Kendrick has a surprisingly pretty voice; I loved the movie it featured in; the song itself is just so damn great. Both romantic and fun and perky. This song makes me sing and chair-dance when it comes on, every time, and I know I’ve listened to it like a hundred times since it came out.

13. “Hold Me” – HAIM (Just Tell Me That You Want Me, 2012)

I’ll be waiting for you/If you ever want to be there

Good grief, people, why didn’t you tell me how pretty the voices on these sisters were? SO PRETTY. Their harmonies make me SWOON. I love this cover. I’m a complete and total sucker for covers and this one is AMAZING. The way their voices just twist around each other…oh, my. Love, love, love.

12. “Samson” – Regina Spektor (Songs, 2002)

You are my sweetest downfall/I loved you first, I loved you first

I love this. I love Regina Spektor, but I love this reimagining of the Samson and Delilah mythos; well, it’s not so much reimagining, I suppose, but a prequel; someone loved Samson before he was Samson. Of course someone did. Someone always does, don’t they? This is a wonderful story of a song, and it’s also heartbreaking; it’s from the girl that history left behind.

11. “Paperweight” – Joshua Radin & Schuyler Fisk (Dear John Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, 2010)

I give up/I let you win/You win ’cause I’m not counting

No, I haven’t seen the movie. It has Channing Tatum in it. He makes me nervous. Also, it’s one of those Nicholas Sparks things…I am not at all a Nicholas Sparks fan. But this song is majorly pretty. I love the feeling of just falling in love it has in it, when everything seems magical, you know? And you know my Joshua Radin love. Sigh, Joshua Radin.

OK, folks, there’s your first ten. How painful were those. Bad? Not too bad? Ten more tomorrow. My very very VERY favorite songs of the year, if you’re still around, that is!


Maybe he’s leaving town – don’t let him get away! Hurry and track him down!

Remember last weekend, I went to (and then summarily snuck out of) Guys and Dolls? (Not because it was bad, but because poor cousin J. was getting antsy and I adore her.)

I was recapping Act II for her in the car on the way to the mall (in brief, because when you think about it, not a hell of a lot happens in Act II) and I was trying to think of the songs we’d missed. The only ones I was sad about were “Luck Be a Lady” and “Sit Down, You’re Rocking the Boat” and “Sue Me” (which I love irresponsibly – this is the first song I heard from the musical, many and many a moon ago, put on a mix by a very wise friend back in the glorious heyday of cassette mixes, sigh…and it remains my favorite to this day.)

Then I realized we’d missed “Marry the Man Today” and I was humming it a little in my house that night and thought…wait a minute. Whoa.

I don’t think I ever really paid attention to the lyrics of this song before (mostly because I kind of hate this song.) And once I did, I’m totally overjoyed that cousin J. didn’t hear it, because it’s kind of terrible and the last kind of romantic advice she needs.

Let’s take a look at this gem of a song, shall we? (my comments in italics. Because I’m fancy.) Oh, a little background, in case you need it: the two female romantic leads sing this to each other while they’re deciding whether or not to marry the MALE romantic leads, who they love, but who are CADS! CADS, I TELLS YA! (They’re not really cads, they’re just really, REALLY into gambling, to the point of ignoring their ladyfolk for it.)

And if you want to listen to it, rather than read my (MOST EXCELLENT, by the way) commentary…

Marry the Man Today (music and lyrics by Frank Loesser)

At Wanamaker’s and Saks and Klein’s
A lesson I’ve been taught
You can’t get alterations on a dress you haven’t bought

At any vegetable market from Borneo to Nome
You mustn’t squeeze a melon till you get the melon home.

(So don’t mess with something until you own it. Until it’s your property. OK. Fine. Heh, Borneo to Nome. Odd.)

You’ve simply got to gamble

You get no guarantee

Now doesn’t that kind of apply to you and I

You and me.

Why not?

Why not what?

Marry the man today.
Trouble though he may be
Much as he likes to play
Crazy and wild and free
Marry the man today
Rather than sigh in sorrow
Marry the man today
And change his ways tomorrow.

(OK. This, this right here? This is where the song takes a REALLY WORRISOME TURN.)

Marry the man today.
Marry the man today
Maybe he’s leaving town
Don’t let him get away
Hurry and track him down
Counterattack him and
Marry the man today

(OK, so first you’re going to marry him in order to change him into the man you want…then you’re going to, I don’t know, stalk him, attack him, and FORCE him to marry you. That’s not at all off-putting.)

Give him the girlish laughter
Give him your hand today
And save the fist for after.

(Hmm. I don’t…I’m going to hope this just means, like, shaking your fist at him, but the way this song’s going, I think it’s about punching.)

Slowly introduce him to the better things
Respectable, conservative, and clean
Readers Digest
Guy Lombardo
Rogers Peet
Golf!
Galoshes
Ovaltine!

(Because whatever he’s into SUCKS. You know best. You gotta train him. Like a puppy. DON’T YOU PIDDLE ON THE GOOD RUG, HAROLD! *fist*)

But marry the man today
Handle it meek and gently
Marry the man today and train him subsequently

(What did I say? Train him. TRAIN HIM. Have a treat, Rover, that’s a good boy.)

Carefully expose him to domestic life
And if he ever tries to stray from you
Have a pot roast.
Have a headache
Have a baby
have two!
Six
Nine!

(If he tries to leave your iron fist and terrible household of trickery and deceit, feed him, deny him sex, or GIVE him sex, and tie him down with NINE CHILDREN. This is a great marriage. EXCELLENT advice.)

STOP!

(Yes. Please stop.)

But marry the man today
Rather than sigh in sorrow
Marry the man today
And chance his ways – change his ways – his ways
Tomorrow!

(AND SCENE.)

OK. Now, I realize this musical was first produced on Broadway in 1950. This was a very long time ago. Amy’s Dad was a wee bebeh! Amy’s Mom wasn’t even BORN yet! It was a different time! A time in which…well, apparently, women needed to trick men into marrying them, using any means available to them, then if the man wasn’t EXACTLY WHAT THEY WANTED (and they seem to want some sort of pipe-smoking dorky sweater-wearing loser with no will of his own) they wear him down using MORE trickery until he is CHANGED! And everyone lives happily ever after. Right?

Wait, not right? No?

What about the guy?

The woman’s happy as a lark, with this changed guy who’s exactly what she wanted all along…but is this GUY happy? This guy who, apparently, can’t do anything right unless he does everything the way she wants him to, and once he gives up everything he is, she’s finally happy…but who is he now? And how can he be happy, being this ghost of the person he was before?

I know love is compromise. I’m well aware of that. This situation isn’t compromise, though. This is one-sided; compromise means BOTH people change. This is sexist garbage, is what this is.

BUT AMY! you are saying. THIS WAS A SONG WRITTEN IN 1950, SURELY THIS ISN’T SOMETHING WE WORRY ABOUT NOW!

See, it is, though. I know a lot of people who’ve broken up (marriages, serious relationships, what have you) and I hear, over and over, the same thing.

I thought he/she would change, once we were together.

Or, the opposite: He/she thought I would change, once we were together.

I asked them over and over to stop doing (whatever it is) and they just wouldn’t and I couldn’t take it anymore.

If they loved me, why wouldn’t they change?

Do you remember, a long time ago, we talked about the frog and the scorpion? This is very much a frog and scorpion situation. You knew that person was a scorpion when you picked them up.

If you get together with someone with the endgame in mind that you will change him or her to better suit your needs, you are a., a jerk for getting together with someone who has things about them that bother you so much that you need to change them in order for the relationship to work for you and b., you are in a losing game, because no one’s going to end this scenario happy.

I’m telling you right now: once you get older, you learn to pick your battles. What’s worth getting up-in-arms about and what’s worth letting go. And you learn that no one’s perfect. And you learn that life’s not a rom-com. And you learn that you can love people not only DESPITE their flaws, but BECAUSE of their flaws. Because those flaws make that person more real, and more alive, and more yours; you wouldn’t recognize that person without those flaws. (And you know what? You’re not flawless yourself, special snowflake. That person’s overlooking probably a lot of YOUR flaws, too. Keep that in mind, sunshine.)

I’m going to give you an alternative to that song.

Marry the man today – if you can’t imagine a life without being married to them. Don’t attempt to change their ways tomorrow. Their ways may or may not change. Go into this with your eyes open. Can you live with the person you’re marrying if they remain exactly like this the rest of their lives? If not, how about you don’t say yes to the dress. There’s someone out there better suited to you, and someone out there better suited for him, as well.

Go ahead and marry the man today. I’ll totally cheer for you. I’m all about the romance, yo. But if you try to trick him into it (or reverse those genders, this works for the fellas, too) and then slowly chisel away the man who DID marry you, and someday you wake up and you’re married to a stranger and he leaves you because, well, that stranger no longer wants to be married to you…

…you really have no one to blame but yourself.

And they say theater is an unneccessary art. LOOK AT ALL WE’VE LEARNED TODAY.

Happy weekend, you romantic fools. Go woo like the wind. Do me proud.


Do you think the internet has an Outrage button like Staples’ Easy button? BOOP! OUTRAGED!

Apparently my outrage button was broken over the past couple of weeks.

The internet has been ALL KINDS OF OUTRAGED lately. I mean, it usually is? Don’t get me wrong. The internet is always a little bit up-in-arms about something. I don’t know if we’d recognize it if it wasn’t. It’s actually ironic Dad thinks so little of the internet, as he (and his RIGHTEOUS CONSTANT FURY) would fit right in. He’d troll comment-boards with the best of ‘em. HE WOULD USE MANY ALL-CAPS!

But the two biggest outrages that happened (well, they’re not the “biggest” but they seemed to take up the biggest amount of Twitter/Facebook real estate)? I tried very hard to be outraged by them and just wasn’t. OK, fine. I didn’t try very hard. I think you’re either outraged, or you’re not.

So either I’m mellowing in my old age, or my outrage button has gotten worn out with the constant pushery. That may or may not be a euphemism; take it as you will.

Who can guess the two biggest outrage OUTRAGE WE ARE OUTRAGED! outrages that have been all over the interwebs in the last couple of weeks? Anyone? I mean, you won’t win a prize, or anything, but you can say you guessed correctly. I’ll give you bragging rights. I have no way to prove you right or wrong. And honestly, it seems like a silly thing to lie about.

If you guessed one of the things was the Miley Cyrus debacle, YOU ARE CORRECT.

I went days without watching this. Why? I didn’t care. (I still don’t. Not much at all.) I am old enough that Miley Cyrus and her ilk hold very little interest for me. She’s some Disney chick who’s trying to be a legitimate singer now, yeah? OK. Fine. Whatever.

Then sj was all, “Oh, just WATCH IT” and I was like “FINE I WILL” and she said, “Also watch the new Lady Gaga video” and that I gladly did, because that woman makes me happy. She is the best kind of kooky. And that new video is OFF THE HOOK. At one point she’s like a swan-thing. It’s INSANE and I LOVE it.

So I watched the Miley Cyrus video. OK, well, it’s not a VIDEO, it’s a clip from the MTV music awards. I like how MTV pretends it’s still relevant musically. That’s so cute of them.

I would show you a video of this, but there are none on the YouTubez. Just do a search, if you haven’t seen it. I’m sure you have. EVERYONE has.

Here were my thoughts while I was watching this.

  • Those teddy bear costumes look hot. I mean, WARM-hot, not sexxxxy-hot.
  • Why is Miley Cyrus sticking out her tongue so much? It makes her look dim.
  • This isn’t a very good song. She has a lovely voice. Maybe she should stick to ballads.
  • Is she wearing a fur bathing suit? My goodness but that’s impractical.
  • I think hair-horns are an odd choice. Are the kids doing this nowadays? Hair-horns and mismatched socks and getting drunk on hand sanitizer?

    Also, YES. I KNEW she was reminding me of someone. HAIR HORNS ARE A MISTAKE IF THEY REMIND ME OF THIS JIM CARREY CHARACTER, MILEY.

    Also, YES. I KNEW she was reminding me of someone. HAIR HORNS ARE A MISTAKE IF THEY REMIND ME OF THIS JIM CARREY CHARACTER, MILEY.

  • Someone should have told her this was a terrible idea.
  • OMG, Robin Thicke looks really embarrassed to have to share the stage with Miley Gone Bad. When he sang the “you’re a good girl” line, he couldn’t even LOOK at her. You probably have to work pretty hard to embarrass Robin Thicke; I mean, he thinks “hug me” and “fuck me” RHYME, for the love of Pete.
  • Robin Thicke is wearing a Beetlejuice suit. Now I want to watch Beetlejuice again.
  • Stop doing that with that foam finger. That’s not what those are for. YOU DO NOT KNOW WHERE THAT HAS BEEN.
  • So THIS is twerking. Huh.
  • This makes me feel 150 years old.
  • Seriously, doesn’t this young woman have advisors who could have said, “This is a hot mess, girlfriend?” Because it’s like a spoiled child’s birthday party entertainment. “I want bears and a foam finger and a girl with HORNS in her HAIR and a BATHING SUIT MADE OF FUR!” and the rich kid’s parents are all “sigh sigh OK Sir Thomas Jamieson the Third Esquire.” It’s just all so MESSY. There’s TOO MUCH GOING ON. It’s making me scratchy and giving me ADD.
  • The audience looks really uncomfortable. I’m sure if I knew who any of these people were, it’d be funny that they’re all sitting there with poker faces on (p-p-p-poker faces) but mostly it’s just a bunch of people I’ve never seen before looking like they’re being forced to watch a mental breakdown. UN. COM. FOR. TA. BLE. (People kept posting a photo of the Will Smith family looking shocked, but I didn’t see them, and I actually – I KNOW! – know who they are, so maybe that was only if you were watching live, I don’t know.)

    I just want to say, the Will Smith family really are beautiful, aren't they? My goodness but genetics were kind, there.

    I just want to say, the Will Smith family really are beautiful, aren’t they? My goodness but genetics were kind, there.

As you can see, nowhere in this was I all “I AM OUTRAGED!” A lot of people, apparently, were. People cried racism (I’m not going to speak to that; I personally didn’t find it racist, but I’m also not going to vilify those who did.) People cried sexism (which, honestly, I’m not seeing…unless we’re talking about Robin Thicke. He did seem to be a little uncomfortably touchy-touched up there.) People were all “SHE IS OUT OF CONTROL” and “SHE IS ON DRUGS!”

Here are my thoughts. What do you mean, you don’t care. I don’t CARE if you don’t care. It’s my blog, I get to pontificate. Pontificatilly.

The kid grew up in a Disney bubble. It doesn’t seem she ever really had any constraints put on her, from her family, her handlers, etc. I mean, she needed to behave, for Disney, probably, in order to keep her contract – they sure do like the squeaky-clean image over there…but this was a multi-million dollar kiddo. I think she pretty much had her run of the place.

There used to be countdown websites to when she was legal, you guys. These were run by gross old pervs. I am not even kidding about this.

There used to be countdown websites to when she was legal, you guys. These were run by gross old pervs. I am not even kidding about this.

Then she grew up. She quit being a Disney princess and the real world knocked on the door and she was all, “I NEED TO STAY RELEVANT.” She’s, what, 20? People that age think relevance = being talked about. (Hell, they may be halfway right.) So she decided to do a thing on a highly-televised show that would generate a LOT of buzz, and that thing kind of made her look like a weirdo who stuck out her tongue too much. But she IS being talked about. So…she probably thinks it was successful. Will it translate to album sales? Don’t know. I’m not a record executive. I thought the song was terrible, but I’m not in the target age-range for that song, now am I? The last music I spent money on was Leonard Cohen. Did I mention I’m old? Yep. Old.

Here’s a sad thing: I kept watching her eyes. She didn’t look like she was having fun. She looked like she was planning her next move; like she was tactically strategizing where to move next, what would shock people most. She also looked a touch panicked, like the brooms got out of the sorcerer’s apprentice’s control. But she didn’t look like she was having FUN, dammit. Shouldn’t she be having fun? I mean, this is (I assume) her chosen career? I like to see performers having a good time. Like, with real smiles, that touch their eyes; with real laughter on stage. That makes me happy. That they’re getting to do what they’re passionate about for us. That it’s not just for a buck. That makes the artist in me happy, and I’m happier about dropping money on their music or shows.

This doesn't read "fun" to me. This reads "oh, this seemed like a REALLY good idea in the planning stages, you guys."

This doesn’t read “fun” to me. This reads “oh, this seemed like a REALLY good idea in the planning stages, you guys.”

If anyone told her this wasn’t the route to take – that there are other artists that started out young, and have carried reputable careers into their adulthood, like my beloved Justin Timberlake, or that there are other artists that reveled in shock-value, but still didn’t put a hot mess like that on the stage – like Madonna, or, yes, Lady Gaga – she didn’t listen, I guess. I was twenty once. I knew everything once, too. And I look back on that age and I just shake my head. I think a lot of us do. We were not all-knowing, at twenty, as much as we thought we were. I would imagine being a millionaire twenty-year-old is even worse.

Or maybe they didn’t dare tell her. Maybe she has a gang of sniveling yes-men and women around her.

Or maybe everyone genuinely thought this was a good idea. (This…yeah, I don’t think this is the case? But I’m putting it out there. It could have happened.)

I know a lot of people immediately went the OTHER way, too, and were all “DON’T YOU SLUT-SHAME HER! SHE IS A WOMAN! SHE GETS TO DO WHAT SHE WANTS WITH HER BODY!”

Yup. Not saying she doesn’t. Not at all slut-shaming her, and you’re right, she is a woman. Don’t even know that she’s slutty. (Is she known for sluttiness? I know there was a smoking-pot-no-it-was-just-salvia scandal a while back, but only because Saturday Night Live told me about it. That’s where I get most of my current events, much to Dad’s chagrin.) Just saying a furry teddybear bathing suit seems ill-advised, is all. So did my lace-edged footless tights in high school, which I also thought were sexy. I take that criticism.

Also, I am confused by this twerking situation. I discussed this with my high-school-senior cousin J. last week. I figured J. would have her finger on the pulse of the youth of Merka, being ONE of the aforementioned youth.

“I don’t know about that. I like country music,” said ever-practical cousin J., who is a ray of pure sunshine, and I want to put her in my pocket and save her from the sufferings that life will undoubtedly heap upon her, because she’s just goodness and light, and you totally want to protect that, you know?

Then Dad was all, “I KNOW ABOUT TWERKING IT WAS ON THE REAL NEWS!” and to my UTTER HORROR, he stood in the parking lot, put out his hands as if he was holding onto a walker, pooched out his ass, placed his feet far apart, and WIGGLED HIS BUTT. He looked like he was playing a game of charades and he was miming “old person who lost his walker and needed to get to the handicapped bathroom, stat.” Cousin J. and her adorable boyfriend utterly lost their shit. So. Thank you, Miley Cyrus; my father did twerking in the parking lot of the TGI Fridays last week because of you. HE DID THE TWERKING YOU GUYS. (Kind of worth it to see adorable cousin J., whose utter dream in life is to be Ariel at Disneyland – SERIOUSLY SHE COULD NOT BE CUTER, SHE WOULD BE THE BEST ARIEL – just collapse in gasping giggles all over the back of her mom’s SUV, though.)

Cousin J. would be better than this. She is just the best thing.

Cousin J. would be better than this. She is just the best thing.

So, in summation:

  • I think the Miley Cyrus thing was stupid.
  • The Miley Cyrus thing made me embarrassed for her.
  • I think the Miley Cyrus thing was musically questionable.
  • However, I failed to be appropriately (per the internet) outraged by the Miley Cyrus thing.

    Kind of how I felt about the outrage. Sorry. (Also, I LOVE YOU JON STEWART!)

    Kind of how I felt about the outrage. Sorry. (Also, I LOVE YOU JON STEWART!)

We’ll continue with the other thing I failed to be outraged by tomorrow. Or the next day. Whenever I decide to blog again. I have these somewhat-busy evenings lately. That makes me sound like a lady of the evening, but it’s much less here’s-your-one-chance-Fancy-don’t-let-me-down than that, I promise. Just ended up with things to do after work lately, and that’s my blogging-time. In the meantime, you can try to guess what it might be. (Protip: if you guess Syria, you’re wrong. I don’t know anything about potential wartime scenarios. They make my head hurt when I try to figure them out, and when Dad tries to explain them, there’s a lot of shouting. It’s not Syria. Sincerely.)


Maybe I’m going deaf, maybe I’m going blind (maybe I’m just wicked old)

I am the first to admit I know nothing about popular music.

Nothing. Like, nothing. The radio station I listen to – when I actually listen to the radio – is mostly older stuff (or sometimes I branch out and listen to the local indie station.) Most of the time I just listen to the music I have on my phone because I know it’ll be stuff I like, with less talking. (Although the local commercials have their charm, sometimes. There’s been one lately for National Grid – our power company – that makes me laugh EVERY TIME. It’s just this guy talking about how you need to stay away from power lines, but he sounds SO PISSED, and he says something like “No matter HOW MANY TIMES we tell you guys to STAY AWAY FROM THE POWER LINES, people die because they touch them EVERY YEAR, so I guess we need to REMIND YOU AGAIN, SIGH SIGH SIGH” and seriously, it’s just about the best. Best of all? It’s not SUPPOSED to be funny. It’s supposed to be SERIOUS. That’s why it’s the best.)

DON'T YOU TOUCH THESE! How many times have I TOLD you? *sigh*

DON’T YOU TOUCH THESE! How many times have I TOLD you? *sigh*

Once and a while, though, a popular song will come on the channel I listen to. For a while, it was that foolish Bruno Mars song about giving some girl flowers and she wouldn’t have left him. “I SHOULDA BOUGHTCHU FLOWERS!” sang Bruno Mars, every time I turned on the damn radio. And it was annoying. Mostly because I am confused by Bruno Mars. I think it’s the autotuning. What’s up with all the autotuning these days, kiddos? I know this makes me sound like an old woman telling kids to get off my lawn, but I’m seriously perplexed. Is it because these “singers” actually can’t sing? Or is it because kids today like the sound of it? I’m seriously asking. I’m not even being sarcastic.

SERIOUSLY! They sound like ROBOTS! Why do people like this?

SERIOUSLY! They sound like ROBOTS! Why do people like this?

But yesterday – well, ok, this will show you how out of the loop I am. Yesterday, I heard this song that apparently, all of YOU have heard like a MILLION TIMES already. And I heard it for the FIRST TIME.

So this song came on, and it was kind of catchy, so I was like, “what’s this?” and bopping along a little and then some of the lyrics started making sense and I was like, “this is…I don’t know, kind of worrisomely sexist? And kind of…I don’t know, making sexual assault sound like cool-times?”

Yes. “Blurred Lines” came out in like June, or something, I guess. I know. It’s August. I am so far out of the loop that there’s ANOTHER loop, and THAT’S the loop I’m in, you guys.

Now, here is what I have learned about this song from people I know, and also the interwebs:

  • Robin Thicke is apparently some sort of big deal. (He sings R&B, which perfectly explains why I’ve never heard of him.) He is ALSO Alan Thicke’s son. I wonder if Kirk Cameron dreams of beating him up (or converting him to his krazy kult of Khristianity) when he sleeps at night for stealing his daddy?
  • Robin Thicke looks like a sexier version of Alan Thicke, but has a weird pompadour. And he has very pretty eyes.
  • I’m not the only one who thinks this song’s lyrics are a bit of a worry. A lot of people have been saying the same thing. (Well, DID say it. A few MONTHS ago. When it came OUT.)
  • Robin Thicke (and the people who sing this with him, who are apparently famous people, too – Pharrell and T.I.? I don’t know who those people are) is aware the song is sexist and inappropriate. And he doesn’t care. Actual quote from Mr. Thicke: “We tried to do everything that was taboo. Bestiality, drug injections, and everything that is completely derogatory towards women. Because all three of us are happily married with children, we were like, ‘We’re the perfect guys to make fun of this.’ People say, ‘Hey, do you think this is degrading to women?’ I’m like, ‘Of course it is. What a pleasure it is to degrade a woman. I’ve never gotten to do that before. I’ve always respected women.’ So we just wanted to turn it over on its head and make people go, ‘Women and their bodies are beautiful. Men are always gonna want to follow them around.'” This is…not the right thing to say in response to writing sexist and somewhat pro-sexual-assault lyrics, dude-bro.
  • The video posted above is the “rated” version. The unrated version has been banned from YouTube. You can only see it on VEVO, which I can’t embed here, I guess. In the “unrated” version, there are women who look naked that are wearing flesh-colored unitards or something. I don’t know. I didn’t care enough to watch this all over again twice.
  • A thing I said when upon hearing the lyric “I feel so lucky/you wanna hug me/what rhymes with hug me?” was “I don’t know. Bug me? Jug me? Slug me? I’m pretty sure ‘fuck me’ doesn’t, if that’s what you’re implying, Thicke.”

    Mr. Seaver's totally disappointed in your rhyming skillzzzz, Mike. I mean Robin. ROBIN. Sorry.

    Mr. Seaver’s totally disappointed in your rhyming skillzzzz, Mike. I mean Robin. ROBIN. Sorry.

  • This song seems to be about a variety of good girls who the singers KNOW want to be bad in the most degraded way, even if they don’t ADMIT they want to be bad, so the singers are going to…well. “Hug” them until they acquiesce, I guess. Also at one point Alan Thicke’s son talks about smoking all the weed, and one of the other singers talks about “hugging” someone in the back of a Volkswagen. (This joke is only funny if you’re a Mallrats fan.)

    YES. WANT. Who's getting this for me?

    YES. WANT. Who’s getting this for me?

  • Also, the song keeps repeating “I know you want it.” I don’t know about you, but any variation of “I/You know you want it” immediately puts me on edge.
  • However, all of this having been said: THIS SONG IS HELLACIOUSLY CATCHY. Like, if I was fifteen-years-ago Amy and still going out dancing, I would totally have danced to this. It’s got a good beat.

I honestly don’t know what to think about this. Is it inappropriate? Yes. Kind of. And a little stupid. I’d like to think it’s tongue-in-cheek (I’d say not a euphemism, but when you’re talking about this song, it’s probably totally a euphemism) but reading Robin Thicke’s quote (unless that, in itself, is ALSO tongue-in-cheek, like a many-layered pile of tongues in cheeks) makes me think it’s not.

There have been a lot of songs over the years that are inappropriate, I suppose. Everyone finds something to be offended about. Do I, personally, find this song offensive? Yes, on some level, I do. I don’t like that there’s a song that is apparently nudging its listeners to ignore what women SAY and imply what they want from…I don’t know, body language or what they interpret as longing looks or whatever and say “I know you want it.” And the fact that this is such a popular song – well, yeah. That’s an issue. Do I think everyone listening to this is going to be all “THESE AREN’T JUST SONG LYRICS, THEY ARE WAYS I SHOULD LIVE MY LIFE!” No. Of course not. No more than I think everyone who listened to that cop-killer song killed cops, or that everyone who listened to the “he drinks a whiskey drink, he drinks a vodka drink, he drinks a lager drink, he drinks a cider drink” song drank all the varieties of alcohol (and then sang the songs that reminded them of the good times, and the songs that reminded them of the better times.)

I know a lot of people are all “it’s just a song!” as well as many people are all “THIS IS VERY IRRESPONSIBLE!”

I’m getting old. I don’t get as upset about things as I used to; I don’t know if this is a good thing or a bad thing. I don’t think I’ll watch the video over and over. However, if the song comes on the radio? I’m probably going to car-dance to it. It’s super-catchy, you guys. I’m not even kidding. And I usually HATE this type of music.

So, my super-late review of the song “Blurred Lines” by Alan Thicke’s son with pretty blue eyes who wears douchey fedoras?

Good song with a happy beat and a fairly inappropriate message and a pervy video.

(I think there are bigger things to get upset about in the world. The situation in Russia. The man that killed that woman and her son and then took off with her sixteen-year-old daughter. The fact that the shortcut I take to get home is CLOSED for ROADWORK and I have to take the LONG WAY HOME and there is SO MUCH TRAFFIC THAT WAY ZOMG. Things like that.)

According to the interwebz, “Blurred Lines” is the song of the summer, anyway, and look at all the places it’s been:

Jimmy Fallon and Robin Thicke! With classroom instruments! Sorry, I don’t know, even if you’re offended by this, if you can watch this without smiling a little. Jimmy Fallon is one of those magic people that makes me grin inappropriately. I just love him.

This guy whose happy neighbor is bopping around to it in his backseat! I decided I love this guy, because his eyes remind me of BFFs when BFF is comically surprised by something. I MISS YOU, BFF!

The Muppets! I don’t know if this is adorable or creepy.

MY song of the summer is (upon research) from like 6 or 7 years ago, so as you can see, OUT OF THE LOOP. I’ve been listening to this for the past month, over and over, on repeat. Because it makes me cry.

(See, I like my songs bittersweet, and poignant, and I like to leave crying, 99% of the time. Once in a great while, I like to bop around. But mostly, I like to cry. It’s my best thing.)

I have also randomly gotten obsessed with covers of Radiohead’s “Creep.” I found a Brandi Carlile cover, and an Ingrid Michaelson cover, and I listen to them OVER AND OVER. I don’t know why, all of a sudden. It’s a good song, though.

OK, those of you in the loop, what do you think about this song? Fun? Offensive? Did you not even know it existed until I posted about it? What is YOUR favorite song of the summer? (Extra points if it’s sad.)

Happy Thursday, people of the internet. It’s almost the weekend! We’re almost there! WE CAN DO IT!


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