September 27, 2004
The trouble with Kenny G
A famous jazz guitarist (as far as jazz guitarists go) named Pat Metheny has written a scathing essay vilifying easy-listening saxophonist Kenny G. It's passionate, venomous, and even mildly thought-provoking. Here's an excerpt:
"When Kenny G decided that it was appropriate for him to defile the music of [Louis Armstrong], who is probably the greatest jazz musician that has ever lived by spewing his lame-ass, jive, pseudo bluesy, out-of-tune, noodling, wimped out, f*cked up playing all over one of the great Louis's tracks (even one of his lesser ones), he did something that I would not have imagined possible.
He, in one move, through his unbelievably pretentious and calloused musical decision to embark on this most cynical of musical paths, sh*t all over the graves of all the musicians past and present who have risked their lives by going out there on the road for years and years developing their own music inspired by the standards of grace that Louis Armstrong brought to every single note he played over an amazing lifetime as a musician.
By disrespecting Louis, his legacy and by default, everyone who has ever tried to do something positive with improvised music and what it can be, Kenny G has created a new low point in modern culture - something that we all should be totally embarrassed about - and afraid of. We ignore this, "let it slide", at our own peril."
Check out the full article here.
Posted by matt at 04:37 PM
September 24, 2004
No more comments
Some bad news: over the past month or so, my website has been constantly bombarded with SPAM comments, advertising everything from blackjack to viagra. As a result, it's making it nearly impossible for me to check any real comments from real people. So from now on, no comments. It's sad, because I quite enjoyed reading them, but if you want to get in touch with me, you can still send me stuff via e-mail, which you can find on this site under the "Contact" heading.
I will, however, continue to post stuff on this site, so keep coming back to check out my random thoughts, work, travels, etc.
Posted by matt at 01:20 PM
September 04, 2004
I've returned from a month of travel and unparalleled adventure. A vacation floating across the east coast of Canada--New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia--then off to Helsinki, Finland, only to land with a thud back in Scotland, where it looks like I'm in for a wild and relentless semester. As I adjust from the headtwist, here are some things...
to watch: Finland's most recent musical export was the Bomfunk MCs. They had a big hit in Europe with Freestyler, and the video was filmed in the Helsinki metro, where I spent some time reeling from signs I couldn't read and an unending stream of stylish young people I could hardly believe. Watch it here.
to hear: The soundtrack for my time in Canada was a band called Iron and Wine. You can download a beautiful free song from them here.
to read: With all of the meaningless political rhetoricizing and mudslinging that's being broadcast these days, get rooted in the real by reading a rather lengthy but wortwhile speech from Bill Moyers called "The Fight Of Our Lives."
Posted by matt at 06:47 PM