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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,josepp Damned bloody depressing (117* d) RE: Damned bloody depressing 13 Jun 12


You don't have to like any of that stuff, Don. That has nothing to do with anything. I asked about T. Rex because "Bang a Gong" is extremely well-known song and has been redone countless times. I want to know how many kids today even know who did the original. Another example is "Coconut" by Harry Nilsson. Kids today know the song because Danni Minogue redid it some years ago. And one admitted to me that he had no idea there was a previous version. When I asked him if he ever heard of Harry Nilsson he shook his head.

Johnny Ace was the world's first rock and roll star. He was dead by the time Elvis started his career. He was also black with a huge audience of white fans--particularly females but a lot white kids liked him. He could croon sweet love ballads and belt out badass R&B with booming bass and drums. He was also a top-notch pianist and started off playing piano in the WDIA house band that was led by BB King. When BB left to record, Bobby "Blue" Bland took it over. When Bland got drafted, Johnny took over the band and hit it big but his career was over in only about two years. He killed himself Christmas Day in Houston in 1954 between two sold-out shows. No one really knows why. Believe it or not, David Alan Coe is a huge fan of Johnny Ace and said that for years he couldn't sing Johnny's last (posthumous) hit, "Pledging My Love" without choking up. I met a guy on Youtube who told me he and his buddies cried when the DJ on the car radio announced Johnny's death. Ace's career lasted as long as Buddy Holly's but we have to concede that Holly is remembered better because he was white.

And Antonio Salieri was the teacher of Franz Schubert. The movie forgot to mention that in its zeal to depict him as a talentless hack whose only thought was to destroy Mozart. Salieri was considered one of the finest composers in Vienna. He was quite brilliant and was famous for his comedic operas and was not the dour-faced character portrayed by F. Murray Abraham. He knew Mozart but there was no particular rivalry between them. Also in the movie, Handel's music is mentioned to Mozart whom he dismisses with "Nah, I don't like him." In fact, Mozart loved Handel's music and said so.

I tip my hat to guys like Kurt Cobain who popularized Leadbelly to young people after he covered "Where Did You Sleep Last Night". THAT is what people with influence today need to do. Introduce the young to what they missed. When Steve Vai tried out for Zappa's band, Zappa handed him a bunch of 45s of old doo-wop songs. He told Vai if he wanted to play with the Mothers, he had to know the basis of the Mothers' music--doo-wop. Vai hated doo-wop--or so he thought. He loves doo-wop now because Zappa taught him how to listen to it. It's an endless well-spring of ideas.

Yes, every generation has its own music but we don't need to teach this generation its own music. There's no point to teaching them what they already know. I'm just thankful that the old recordings are still around. No one taught me to listen to that stuff. I found it on my own but thank god there was still something to find.


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