msnbc: Five singers who ruined pop music

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msnbc: Five singers who ruined pop music

Postby thick as a Brick on July 22nd, 2009, 1:41 am

Five singers who ruined pop music ... ment-5top/

David Bowie: " . . . Those who succumbed to Bowie-itis included everyone from Ric Ocasek of the Cars to David Byrne of Talking Heads to Robert Palmer to even Cyndi Lauper and Madonna. In short, anytime anyone tries on a vocal persona instead of singing from the heart, they’re channeling the Thin White Duke."

I think NOT!!!
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Re: msnbc: Five singers who ruined pop music

Postby Chandler on July 22nd, 2009, 9:21 am

Just another article or story to fill space. However, I find it intriguing that Steve Marriott... more or less a forgotten name at this point in rock and pop culture, is one of the five mentioned.

As for Bowie... Ocasek, Byrne, etc... the MSNBC writer views personas or characters as insincere while I view them as an extension voice, a fiction that can voice heartfelt truths. The equivalent with acting is that Anthony Hopkins should only play characters that resemble himself, that is, an actor playing an actor, not, say, Hannibal Lecter. Why must singers voice only personal truths while actors have free reign? I never have understood that division.

Admittedly, there are listeners who can't differentiate between character and artist. Once on a lengthy drive from a concert, a friend pointed out a lyric by Eno, saying that Eno must have been an emotional wreck when writing the personal lyric, at which I quickly countered that nothing Eno sings can be taken as a personal voice, not when songs are titled "Burning Airlines Give You So Much More," "The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch," and "Baby's On Fire."

To me, a musician who goes into character more than once or twice loses his personal voice. They become storytellers no matter if the narrative voice uses the personal pronoun.

That said, I have always viewed Ocasek and Robert Palmer as personal narrators, that is, if you will, singing from the heart. Byrne, in contrast, is more complex, even back at the beginning of Talking Heads. We all know he wasn't really a "psycho killer," but other lyrics were autobiographical with a personal narrative voice...

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Re: msnbc: Five singers who ruined pop music

Postby cyberyukon on September 15th, 2009, 7:12 am

Wow--a pretty subjective list.

I mean, seriously. David Bowie? Jim Morrison? Where are the Boy Bands? Where's Disco? Milli Vanilli??

Not to mention the cumulative effects over the years from such precision target-lock strikes as "Barbie Girl", "Karma Chameleon", "I'm Too Sexy" and "Mmm-Bop".

And is it really that hard to actually ruin pop music?

I mean...that's like saying it's hard to make the landfill unsightly.

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