Friday, September 28, 2012

Gangnam Style Flashmob at Central Markets

Congratulations to everyone who participated, it looked great and you all looked like you were having a great time (several passers-by mentioned this to me).

If you want to check out some other video's or you just want to congratulate the flash-mobbers, head to their facebook page or join the Adelaide Kpop Fans  if you want to get more involved.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The History of the 'Back in the day' song

Remember Festival Song by 360?  Remember how he said 'remember' and repeated the summer days, getting nostalgic for music festival over a slowly strolling beat with a looping piano sample?

It felt good to hear it, it felt nostalgic.  It was a great track to pop on at the bbq, or doing a cruise in your beat-up Datsun down Jetty Road, but why was it so popular?  And why do artists keep bringing these songs out, and why do we keep getting sucked into listening to them?

Ice Cubes Good Day mines similar territory to 360, swapping festival stories for a random trip through a day in his hood.  Slow, looping sample with lyrics about hanging out with your buddies and wasting time, a quintessential back-in-the-song.

Or Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince's Summertime, the granddaddy of all back-in-the-day tracks, as Will Smith fondly recalls his youthful summer days in Philly.

More recently, Indie rapper Danny Brown got on the bandwagon with Grown Up, talking with an odd fondness for his primary school days.  Or Snoop and Wiz's Young, Wild and Free, which was attached to a movie that inexplicably featured a mid-40's Snoop Dogg hanging out at a High School.

It's an easy out for a rapper.  They hear a looping piano or organ sample over some dusty break-beats and the lyrics come out too easily... remember back in the day, when you used to blah blah.  That's right, the rappers talking to you, and he wants you to think back to your own youth and the things you used to do.  Did you hang out with your friends, did you like wearing sneakers?  Of course you did, and now you're hooked because the rapper has brought you into his world, and you can't escape until he's listed all the things he used to do when he was younger, and you need to know if you did them too.

As long as there is youth, and as long as there are memories of youth, the back-in-the-day song is going to be a staple of your summer playlist.  I would tell you to be cautious about falling prey to the lure of the back-in-the-day song, but it wouldn't do any good.

You're desire for shared nostalgia, coupled with an addictive piano sample, will prove too much for your brain to handle, and you will be sucked in every time.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Video: The Veronica's - Lolita

The Veronica's are back, and they're a little darker than I remember them being...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Jessie Ware jumps into the Black Cab and performs 'Wildest Moments' squished between her guitarist and DJ.  Delightful.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Video: Missy Elliott performs two new tracks!!

Missy Elliott has been away from the scene for quite a number of years, mainly because she was suffering from Graves disease.  The two new tracks will be released this weekend, but this will have to tide you over until then!  Welcome back Missy!!

Essay: Pop music is getting sadder, apparently - part 2

by DJ Bobz

A few days ago I agreed somewhat with an article that pop music is getting sadder, although I disagreed with  the way the author of the article chose to articulate that notion.

The more I thought about it though, the more I thought that pop music isn't just getting sad, no, it's something even less definitive - it's getting more real.

The article alluded to the notion that Pop music reflects critical praise, and that Pitchfork promotes sad bastard music and influences sales of sad bastard music. Besides the fact that I don't think Pitchfork ratings have the kind of juice that would cause a band to change their style, I also don't think that bands would change their style because the latest Radiohead CD got a 9.5 rating.  Bands aren't that calculated.

I do think that Pop music is a reflection of something though.

Pop music is a reflection of changing attitudes in society.  In the 50's and 60's, we still held close the notion of the perfect nuclear family with the picket fence, and the chaste pop of the time reflected that.  The Stones and Beatles reflected the subtle changes in attitudes in the 60's, and psychedelic pop captured the laid-back mood of the 70's.

Today's music reflects the fact that the internet age has given us access to more information than ever before.  We can't pretend the nuclear family is real any more, and we don't have pop stars with the mystique of Michael Jackson any more.

Every pop star has to be real, even if it's a heightened reality version of themselves.  Katy Perry is known for her wacky costumes and video's, but recently she made a movie where we got to see her back stage and without make-up.  We need her to be real, and to a point she is, and that reality eventually gets reflected in her music, even if it's not really her writing those words that she sings.

Those words in pop songs represent real feelings and real emotions, and are presented in a more factual reality.  They're still not all that real, but they appear to be.

The sadness is the fact that pop stars are just like us, they're real people and they can't hide behind fancy video's or in big mansions.  They need to be accessible and by default, real.  If that means that they are also sadder, then that's the by-product and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Give me happy music, give me sad music, give whatever it is that A$AP Rocky does.

Just keep on keeping it real.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Pop music is getting sadder, apparently

I’ve been reading recently about the fact that pop music has gotten sadder, and that somehow this is a bad thing.

Maybe it has, but in reading this article it’s hard to agree.  Granted, the article is a little tongue-in-cheek, but behind every smart remark is a guarded opinion, so I don’t feel too bad about rebutting the author.

The research says that pop music (taken from 40 years of billboard chart data), is slower and played in minor keys more than ever before, both things that indicate ‘sad’ music.  This is hard to dispute, and I won’t, because I agree.  However, when the author of the article starts providing some examples, this is where I cringe.

Katy Perry singing a Whitney Houston cover at a concert is supposed to be an example of the sadness of modern music.  I agree it’s a sad song, not indicative of a generation of Sad Bastard pop fans.

Then the author invokes Pitchfork as a purveyor of sad pop music.  The reason being that apparently sad lyrics + happy music = high pitchfork ratings.  I can’t agree with this either, especially in the same week that party philosopher Andrew WK gets an 8.6 for an album that was originally trashed by the site 10 years ago. 

The author signs off by saying that she’ll be listening to the new Missy Elliott singles this weekend, Pitchfork be damned.  I dare say those same Missy songs will be heavily discussed and promoted at Pitchfork (and loved by the site if history is a guide).

If you’re going to discuss sad pop music, discuss sad pop music and not Hip-Hop (Missy) and not crappy British folk music that Pitchfork loathes (Mumford and Sons).