"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice


This one is for Old Yank Fan. Something grimey n good.

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1 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jan 29, 2009 8:08 pm

You continually bring the goods, Alex! Screamin' Jay was too cool..and he actually called one of his albums "Black Music for White People" with a very UN-Pc album cover!

2 OldYanksFan   ~  Jan 29, 2009 8:11 pm

Let's see:
... no drum machine
... somebody is SINGING
... a melody
... a saxophone
(The saxophone is a woodwind instrument made from brass)

hmmm.... sounds like music to me.
Is that the best of Hip-Hop?
( I dint hear no cussin')

Got anything from 'Child Is Father to the Man'?
(It's pretty hip and has a few hoppity songs).

3 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jan 29, 2009 8:12 pm

just because I love the arguin' and debatin'...posted this a few entries below and re-posting here..

OYF..well, Alex and Chyll have done a great job trying to explain the appeal of hip-hop..can I just add the following?

“New” music is always rejected and scorned by the “elders”..for example:

there were RIOTS at the premier of Stravinsky’s “Rites of Spring”
Louis Armstong called BeBop “Chinese music” (not a compliment from him)
those same BeBoppers 20 years later (Dizzy Gillespie, etc) said of Ornette Coleman that “he’s jiving..he can’t play his instrument”
everyone came down on Miles for his fusion years, now it’s “classic”
older folks HATED Motown back then
need I go on??

one last point..the Hip-Hop era now vastly exceeds the “swing music” era..and today, only sophisticated swing music like Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman is listened to..mose was very pedestrian dance music that has been forgotten..you don’t have to like or listen to hip-hop, but the claim that it’s “not music” is weak..if Steve Reich or Morton Feldman play cut-up sound collages at Lincoln Center, that is “art”..when Terminator X does it, it’s “not music”..??

4 Alex Belth   ~  Jan 29, 2009 8:47 pm

Yeah, I gotta admit OYF, you really are coming across like a rigid snob. Sounds like there is a serious generation gap here.

You are stuck on musicianship, but like Max Roach said it's about the sound. But I don't imagine you dig rhymes either. Jeez, they curse in rap songs. Guess you don't like watching Scorese movies either. Richard Pryor is out too, I suppose.

I chose to spare you the famous rap song that sampled this tune, but now I'm wondering if I should have thrown it in there just bust your hump.


5 OldYanksFan   ~  Jan 29, 2009 8:47 pm

[4] I can't agree. NOBODY hated Motown!
BUT.... show me the goods.
Post some links to some great Hip-Hop tunes.
I can't talk about it, I can only listen to it.

6 RagingTartabull   ~  Jan 29, 2009 9:04 pm

haha yeah I think if you're trying to make the case for the artistic integrity of hip-hop "Kick In The Door" probably isn't the best route.

I submit as "Exhibit A" every non-rap fan's favorite rap group:

7 RagingTartabull   ~  Jan 29, 2009 9:06 pm

(sorry if this double posts)

haha yeah I think if you're trying to make the case for the artistic integrity of hip hop "Kick In The Door" isn't the best route

I submit every non rap fan's favorite rap group:


8 thelarmis   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:15 pm

wow, looks like i missed some fireworks! that's good, as y'all know i dislike confrontation greatly!

[3] some GREAT points Jazz Tokyo! yeah, and Bach wasn't appreciated til 100 years after his death. the audience actually fell asleep during the premier of Beethoven's 5th Symphony!!! (only to be rudely awakened by the theme everyone knows...) and, of course, jazz was played in whorehouses before Carnegie Hall. i'm not familiar w/ the name morton feldman, might have to check him out one day!

i guess it's the same thing with visual art - it's all subjective and perception. there's no real answer. [4] i think it was Duke Ellington, who said something to the effect of: there's no right or wrong music, only good or bad.

alex, chyll and tokyo, all have certainly have had great at-bats championing the hip-hop for us uninitiated. i'd like to think i could do the same for metal (don't worry people - i WON'T!!!) it might be a generation thing, but i don't think that's the whole thing.

as i've mentioned here before on these threads, growing up i actually kinda liked a little bit of run-dmc, fat boys and nucleus. it was kinda fun! as a lyricist, i dig rhymes! hell, dylan had some firing lyrics that can be considered a pre-cursor of sorts to the whole hip-hop genre (forgive me for not knowing the correct sub-genre lingo!). there's certainly some similarities (believe it or not!) in thrash metal, with fire-rapid rhyming lyrics spewing out with no discernible melody.

i quite liked when terminator x and chuck d joined Anthrax on Bring The Noize. i even dig when anthrax and living colour both would include a few bars of sampled drum machine. i just don't like full songs of it. i'm not down with electronica stuff, either. but Joe Jackson is a musical hero of mine and he LOVES Portishead. i can't stomach it, but he hears something in there that he enjoys and it influences him. he's got quite a lot of music with sampled drums. it's not my fave, but i come along to it pretty well.

this thread reminded me... i actually recorded a coupla hip-hop trax about 8 years ago, or so! yeah, a rapper from brooklyn lived in my apt complex and hired me for a coupla trax at a studio. i played a kick, piccolo snare and hi-hat. he also had some terrance trent d'arby type r&b singer on top of his rapping. i kinda remember one of the tunes and it was really cool! i believe i have them on tape...somewhere.

tokyo - it seems like Chick is the leader of the 5-Piece/Peace Band. there's a 2cd live set being released in Japan next month. it's w/ Vincenzo on drums, not blade. i picked up a live Miles In Berlin today! it's the 2nd great quintet in 1964 on Columbia. i didn't know of this release, but was glad to buy it, along with a cool drum 'zine w/ Tony on the cover (Traps) and an old school Cab Calloway poster!

now, there's a cat i figure Mr. Belth would dig - Cab Calloway! Louis Jordan, is my favorite entertainer. yeah, i thought OYF was entering dangerous terrain with his earlier comment about Innervisions. before seeing alex's post, i KNEW he'd be all over that record! me, i actually like Talking Book even better...

9 thelarmis   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:15 pm

holy crap, that was a looooong post! yeesh.

10 OldYanksFan   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:19 pm

Alex, here is a link that talks about the 'era of Rock' I grew up with. I think it is a good preamble that describes/predicts the nature of the 'contemporary'' music industry, and the music that was thereafter produced.


It's not a matter of being a snob. It's just that early on, music was produced for music's sake. There was little money in it. Record companies has no idea that there was 'real' money in it. In 1970, I saw a 5 hour concert at the Filmore: J Giles, Humble Pie and Mountain for $3.50. That was $1.00 more then seeing a movie in town.

Bill pegs it at 1971. I think it didn't take full effect for another 5 or 10 years. For me, when I saw my first 'Rock Video' on TV, I said "Shit... there goes Music'. I don't think there is a musician my age who doesn't see a huge gulf between pre '80s and post '80s contemporary music.

There is a difference between Art for 'Art's sake' and Art for sale.
I don't think there is an artist, musician, cabinet maker or anyone of creative pursuits who hasn't battled producing work that 'expresses their soul' versus 'what sells'.

Read what Mr. Graham has to say and see if you think he makes sense.

11 Dimelo   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:21 pm

How about some Maceo Parker? Shake everything you got!!!

12 OldYanksFan   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:24 pm

[7] Oh yeah. NOW you show up!

13 thelarmis   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:26 pm

[9] sorry, my friend! i'm late to the party!!! i've got a TON of drummer jokes though! : )

[8] nice man! maceo, of course, is SUPER BAD!!! the guitarist in my jazz trio used to play in an r&b/soul/funk variety band that toured around some in the southeast. the guys in the group were friends w/ maceo and my buddy had a big breakfast with him one day on the road. said it was an awesome experience!

14 Dimelo   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:36 pm

[10] I like some good New Orleans Brass Bands, too. I've seen "Rebirth Brass Band" a few times in NYC, as well as in New Orleans. Good stuff!!! Oh yeah, Doctor John and his voodoo on stage is pretty nutty to watch but the beats are hot.

15 thelarmis   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:47 pm

[11] very cool! i don't have much of that stuff in my collection, but i dig groups like The Meters. i study some Second Line and LOVE playing that style. in fact, there's a little 2nd Line section in the new percussion piece i'm composing. next month, our bassist is going on tour and we've got a New Orleans organ player subbing. he's a badass and it's always a fun time playing with him! uh, not in the roger clemens sorta way, mind you... : /

16 OldYanksFan   ~  Jan 29, 2009 10:49 pm

[11] Hey Guy... here's a nice piece of work!

Hey... who do you think is the fastest? Cobham is fast, as is Neal. I don't think I've ever seen anyone as fast as Buddy (in his prime). Pure speed... who's the guy?

17 thelarmis   ~  Jan 29, 2009 11:45 pm

everyone see the new nomaas post on torre's book with some bollocks about Damon? why in the world did he write this book - or have it written? everyone is saying 'coz he was so upset about the end of '07 and how he was "let go," but he was also really upset that he wasn't included in the Last Day of Yankee Stadium. he said he wouldn't be there in person, 'coz it was in-season, but i guess he wanted to be mentioned and in the videos. i understand that. this whole thing is a bunch of bollocks though. as pete abe, 'nothing ever ends well'...

18 williamnyy23   ~  Jan 30, 2009 6:42 am

I got your back OYF. Along with heavy metal and rap, I can't stand hip-hop and do not respect it as "music". As popular as those genres are, they are also widely hated. Because they are so polarizing, it makes me believe that other factors are involved how one views them...in other words, they don't live and die on the quality of their sound. Also, I find that these genres generally appeal to the worst of our instincts, while "great" music appeals to our best.

19 mehmattski   ~  Jan 30, 2009 6:55 am

Grr! I overgeneralize and get my clothes in knots about my stereotypical view of entire genres of music! It is impossible for individual artists to be talented if the entire genre is not exactly like the music of my youth! If all I knew about baseball was the 2003 Detroit Tigers, I'm pretty sure I'd hate baseball, too.

Also, these kids really need to get off my lawn. *Shakes fist menacingly*

20 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jan 30, 2009 7:15 am

[14] wow, didn't see that one coming... :)
beating dead horse time here again but..since you don't respect hip-hop as "music", then I would assume that you think Lincoln Center-approved artists like John Cage or Steve Reich are don't make music either? Both masters of sampling, for example...ahh, forget it. Had this argument too many times over dinner as a teenager!

[15] perfect!

21 williamnyy23   ~  Jan 30, 2009 7:20 am

[15] I am pretty sure that I share the same generation as Alex, so it's not an age issue (which is kind of a stereotypical overgeneralization itself). While it would be best to judge every individual musician on their own merits, generalizations are necessary and useful because one doesn't really have the time to sample every song. So, if I find an overwhelming majority of a genre to be distasteful, it makes sense to move on to another.

22 williamnyy23   ~  Jan 30, 2009 7:27 am

[16] To be honest, I don't know who they are. Hip hop is a common genre of the day, so therefore it is much more susceptible to generalizations. I'd imagine Cage and Reich would more appropriately be judged on their own merits, but as I mentioned, I can't be sure because I don't know who they are.

23 Alex Belth   ~  Jan 30, 2009 8:19 am

We may be of the same generation but I completely disagree that rap music appeals to the worst in me. In fact, groups like Tribe, DeLa, Jungle Brothers only speak to the best in me and in life. How could Biz Markie do anything but bring a smile to your face I don't know.

I'm not a metal fan, and I don't listen to trip hop, house, deep house, jungle or any other numbers of electronic music but I would never dare say that they aren't music because they don't appeal to me.

24 Raf   ~  Jan 30, 2009 8:51 am

A lot of good points brought up in the comments section.

Listen to "My Philosophy" be BDP. The lyrics are still relevant today.

25 ny2ca2dc   ~  Jan 30, 2009 9:04 am

[19] Here here Alex. If you're not into house/electronic, can you get into any of the hip-house stuff, maybe like the jason nevins remixes, e.g. of 'Tricky'.

26 williamnyy23   ~  Jan 30, 2009 9:46 am

[19] I mentioned the generation angle because it dispels the notion that age solely determines what music you like. While you may have a more positive relationship with rap, I think its appeal to most stems from it catering to many lowest common denominators. Besides, it's not a matter of whether something is technically music, but whether one respects it as such. I am not calling for a ban on metal or rap, but simply pointing out that not everyone considers them to have "musical" value.

27 Raf   ~  Jan 30, 2009 10:32 am

I think its appeal to most stems from it catering to many lowest common denominators.

Yep. It has a beat, and you can dance to it.

28 Dimelo   ~  Jan 30, 2009 10:55 am

Jungle Brothers, House Your Body, House it all above the place!!

29 ny2ca2dc   ~  Jan 30, 2009 11:01 am

[24] Not everyone understands House music...

30 Alex Belth   ~  Jan 30, 2009 11:17 am

When You're In My Hut...

31 thelarmis   ~  Jan 30, 2009 1:01 pm

there might be more sub-genres in "metal" than any other style. there are certain kinds of metal that i absolutely adore. i don't love playing it so much, though i've had to for work, at times. it most certainly IS real music and it's REALLY REALLY REALLY hard to play. a goodly amount of the players are ridiculously talented. like any style, there's gonna be good and bad and you need to sift thru to find the top...if you so desire.

again, i don't know about all the sub-genres of "rap," but i do know the names of a lot of the top acts that alex, chyll, jazz tokyo, et al mention and recognize them as really good artists that appeal to the layperson listener and accomplished musician, both the same.

yeah, i can't imagine a comment like music appealing to the "worst" of our qualities. i don't even know what that means! wow...

32 Shaun P.   ~  Jan 30, 2009 3:58 pm

[27] I am glad someone stuck up for heavy metal!

As for music appealing to the "worst" of our qualities: to me, that sounds like the old canard about Ozzie's "Suicide Solution" - that is, that the song caused kids to kill themselves. Of course the same kinds of charges have been made against rap and hip hop for years; I remember the debates over Ice T's "Cop Killer" all too well.

I've listened to heavy metal for years, and never once has it inspired me to do anything I didn't already want to do in the first place. To me, music at its best, whatever its genre, gives a voice and a melody to something we feel or think inside of ourselves, something that we can't vocalize, but something that's already there.

33 thelarmis   ~  Jan 30, 2009 11:16 pm

[28] awesome, shaun! who knows if you'll ever make it back to this thread, but...

yeah, i remember those silly accusations about both Suicide Solution and Cop Killer. of course, Judas Priest were sued for some "backwards" message or some crap. it's total bollocks. a lot of it comes down to parenting.

i learned a lot of great vocabulary words from metal records. i would take the lyric sheets to my mom (an english teacher) and ask her what they meant. she would tell me to "look it up" in the dictionary. there were also some terrific words she actually told me to "live by"! and others that were anti-racism, which i loved. and more that just let you know it was okay to be a teenager or be lonely or angry or...human. very thoughtful stuff and not angry. just LOUD!!!

metal, definitely gets a bad rap (or, is it: rep?)! i can't stomach the death stuff with growling 'vocals'. sounds like the "singer" swallowed a bottle of draino or kidnapped cookie monster. BUT, the music behind that voice, is generally mind-boggling. ditto, i can't stomach "rap metal." what's funny, is i'm actually on worldwide releases for both of those genres, haha!!!

i will stick up for metal for ever and a day, my friend! and as far as music inspiring me to do something - it mainly has made me drop whatever it is i'm doing, compromise/sacrifice most of my life and hit the practice room to woodshed for hours upon hours upon countless hours...!!!

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