New songs hitting radio playlists this month were Mike Posner’s “Please Don’t Go”, Robert Plant & the Band of Joy’s “Angel Dance”, 30 Seconds to Mars’ “Closer to the Edge”, Hey Monday’s “I Don’t Wanna Dance”, Usher feat. Pitbull’s “DJ Got Us Falling in Love”, Reba McEntire’s “Turn on the Radio”, Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Country Strong”, Kenny Chesney’s “Hemmingway’s Whiskey”, Third Day’s “Lift Up Your Face”, the Plain White T’s “Rhythm of Love”, Drake feat. Nicki Minaj’s “Up All Night”, Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream”, KT Tunstall’s “Fade Like a Shadow”, Bruno Mars’ “Just the Way You Are”, Kevin Rudolph, Flo Rida, and Pitbull’s “You Make the Rain Fall”, Luke Bryan’s “Someone Else Calling You Baby”, and Alejandro Fernandez’s “Cuando Digo Tu Nombre”.
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Loretta Lynn recently performed in Des Moines, Iowa to a sold out crowd of 1,200 fans. Actually, it was more of a family show. Lynn’s twin daughters Peggy and Patsy took the stage before their mother and hawked mom’s cookbook and CD retrospective box set before launching into a couple of their own tasty musical numbers. And Loretta’s son Earnest performed with the grand dame, taking Conway Twitty’s vocals on “Lead Me On” and singing back up on other songs. The two also exchanged country-style banter replete with silly jokes and mother/son repartee that might have seemed more appropriate to younger folks (Lynn is 78 years old and Ernie is in his 50s) about moving back home and such. Plus, they weren’t the only family members to grace the stage. Lynn pulled bandleader Bart Hansen’s father Milton (the family hails from Pierson, Iowa) from the crowd and he covered Hank Thompson’s Squaws Along the Yukon” and Ray Price’s “Pride” to an appreciative audience.
But the show belonged to Lynn, who smiled regally dressed in a white, sequined gown. Her hair showed not a trace of gray, which combined with unwrinkled face and her buxom figure, gave the impression that time had passed her by untouched. This illusion was reinforced by the strength of her vocals, whether she was belting “Fist City” or crooning the emotionally restrained “Dear Uncle Sam”. Here’s Lynn as a much younger woman on “Fist City.”
Steve Kilbey, frontman for Australian pop/rock legends the Church, and All India Radio instrumentalist Martin Kennedy released their second album together, White Magic, on February 1. Kennedy has been having fun with animations for some of the tracks. Here’s the latest, for album standout “Inner Country”. Poor kitty!
Satire, as it exists today in the popular arts, is often held in higher regard than parody. Satire exists as a social mechanism; it should be funny, but it should also make one think. Parody, on the other hand, seeks only to poke fun, to take something well-known within a culture and, basically, goof on it.
In the world of film, for example, we have the genre parodies of the Zucker brothers—Airplane!, Top Secret!, The Naked Gun—and their heirs apparent, the Scary Movie franchise and its attendant spin-offs. The humor in these films is generally broad, and it calls upon the viewer’s knowledge of many specific cultural referents, which is something this writer likes to think of as the “humor of recognition”: the viewer catches the reference, says to him or herself, “Oh yeah, I know that song/movie/TV show,” and laughs accordingly. There is not much more to it than that, really, and so parody is often considered easier to achieve and thereby less fulfilling—the sloppier, lazier cousin of satire.
When El Guincho’s Pablo Díaz-Reixa invites us on a journey through the cosmos at the beginning of the delirious video for “Bombay” (from the 2010 release, Pop Negro), one might be led to believe an outer space adventure is in order. What comes next definitely isn’t what Carl Sagan had in mind. If you’re into “trips”, the surrealistic montage that ensues will surely be your kind of milkshake. A NSFW barrage of topless girls, furries, and guns—with a decidedly retro vibe—“Bombay” is an instant classic in the WTF department.