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MELODY DIED, that’s what. All melodies have now been COMPOSED – and thus, played.

The audible permutations of notes are in the gazillions, but melodies which are distinctive and which humans can appreciate and learn quickly use LOGICAL PROGRESSIONS of notes. And those are ALL DONE.

The Death Of Melody started in November 1970 and became complete a decade later.

Its demise began when George Harrison released “My Sweet Lord” and an ailing music publisher who owned the rights to “He’s/She’s So Fine” SUED him for PLAGIARISM.

In fact, George’s composition had been inspired by his friend Edwin Hawkins’ “Oh Happy Day” – which in turn was based on an C18th hymn and was thus public domain (although George still got permission from Ed to use it).

Nevertheless, after five years the case got settled – AGAINST Harrison. The ironically-named “Bright Music” was awarded MASSIVE damages.

The result of this industry-rocking decision was that computer programmes were developed that would identify potential copyright problems BEFORE they arose, thereby saving the publishers time and MONEY.

At which point, composers discovered that with popular songs having been churned out at a dizzying rate since the immediate post-WW1 period, to satisfy the demand from music radio, stage musicals, the cinema, television and dance halls (and the recording industry that fed off them) plus countless hours of themes and incidental music for shows, films and programmes – ALL logical progressions of notes in the standard musical octave had now been USED.

After all, there are only TWELVE NOTES in that octave.

Thus around 1980, new memorable melodies became reduced from a torrent to a dribble.

So while the Eighties experienced a stream (if you will forgive yet another liquid analogy) of popular hits, they were driven, for the first time, not by melodies – but by complex chord-changes and new high-tech equipment which produced synthetic sounds never before heard.

And then came the CD.

Its convenience and durability were undeniable, but the big record companies – who had had a tough time during the Seventies, thanks to the independent record companies who had stepped in when they had lost the plot – used the new medium to wreak HAVOC on popular music.

Keeping prices artificially high, they re-released their back-catalogues on the format, IGNORING new music. Then they squeezed out vinyl (an embarrassment, due to its low price and superior, uncompressed sound) which FINISHED the process.

After which the only innovative music was Vocal Trance. This SHOULD have dominated Nineties Pop, but with vinyl now the domain of the specialist Dance market, it became a NICHE genre (as Rock ‘N’ Roll had been, in the Fifties).

But morally, it WAS the Pop of the Nineties and while its melodies only contained SHORT, repeated phrases – they represent the LAST ever composed.

And following that decade, the last seventeen years have featured material totally DEVOID of melody, with no identifiable style or content, which has resulted in the collapse of the record industry – along with the music radio industry which fed on that. Even TOTP has folded.

So today’s musicians perform LIVE, eschewing record contracts – their music being uploaded to THIS medium, for publicity.

But said music rarely rises above the mediocre, since those DAMNED computer programmes are still waiting for any composer who DARES to attempt writing something MEMORABLE.

Is there a solution? Well, that twelve-note octave is not carved in stone – other frequencies are available (some of which are used in “World Music”). However, they don’t sound too funky to Western ears.

These days, such popular music as exists having no memorable melodies, it is reliant on LYRICS – which during the Pop Era (1920-2000) were mostly relegated
to obscurity.

Thus Pop MUSIC is DEAD.

The Bond Songs make a good barometer for this. Since 1963, every Bond film has featured a Song over the titles – inevitably composed by a major composer and sung by a prominent artist. Often, they would be a FRESH talent (meaning if you got THAT gig – you’d ARRIVED). And the New Bond Song was almost as big an EVENT as the film itself.

The list of them is instructive…

1963 : From Russia With Love : Matt Monro
1964 : Goldfinger : Shirley Bassey
1965 : Thunderball : Tom Jones
1967 : You Only Live Twice : Nancy Sinatra
1969 : We Have All The Time In The World (OHMSS) : Louis Armstrong
1971 : Diamonds Are Forever : Shirley Bassey
1973 : Live And Let Die : Paul McCartney & Wings
1974 : The Man With The Golden Gun : Lulu
1977 : Nobody Does It Better (The Spy Who Loved Me) : Carly Simon
1979 : Moonraker : Shirley Bassey
1981 : For Your Eyes Only : Sheena Easton

…and THIS is where it dies. Indeed, the last two of the above were not GREAT.

1983 : All Time High (Octopussy) : Rita Coolidge
1985 : A View To A Kill : Duran Duran
1987 : The Living Daylights : Aha
1989 : Licence To Kill : Gladys Knight
1995 : GoldenEye : Tina Turner
1997 : Tomorrow Never Dies : Sheryl Crow
1999 : The World Is Not Enough : Garbage (appropriately)
2002 : Die Another Day : Madonna (even Madge couldn’t save this)
2006 : You Know My Name (Casino Royale) : Chris Cornell (who?)
2008 : Another Way To Die (Quantum Of Solace) : Jack White/Alicia Keys
2012 : Skyfall : Adele
2015 : Writing’s On The Wall (Spectre) : Sam Smith

…and there they were. Up to ’77, nine CLASSICS. ’79 and ’81, a couple of so-sos. And from ’83 to date, a dozen instantly-forgettable TURKEYS.

I rest my case.

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I recall around ten, being hit on by VARIOUS perverts – it lasted about two years.

Then, as I progressed through my teens, I figured I TOO was a perv (but not with KIDS).

However, by the time I reached my early twenties, I came to the gradual realisation that on the Perve Curve – I was at best a three. Many of the friends and associates I had assumed were straight turned out to be WAY more deviant than I had EVER been.

After which I pretty much FORGOT about such things and got on with my life. But now that I am sixty-five, this issue has once AGAIN come into focus. Today, it appears that paedophiles, flashers, fumblers, peeping Toms, heavy-hitters and outright rapists SURROUND us.

It began in Britain, with Gary Glitter. Then it ramped up, with Jimmy Savile. After which, the floodgates opened. DOZENS of politicians and celebs found themselves being outed – many for incidents that had occurred DECADES earlier.

Then, belatedly, America joined the party. Mirroring Britain, first they had Bill Cosby. Then producer Harvey Weinstein. And now, seemingly half the men in SHOWBIZ. Every day, another bloke who has been a fixture of The Business falls from grace. Even POTUS has a slew of accusers.

The fallout from all this would fill several volumes – but I have just ONE question. How WIDESPREAD is this phenomenon? Percentage-wise.

It is a tough question to answer. Kinsey and Masters & Johnson managed to winkle out a lot. But they never asked questions like “How many times have you exposed yourself to a naïve young person to obtain a sexual thrill?” If they had, who would have ANSWERED it?

Thus only the cases that come to light are known about – the ACTUAL number will forever remain a MYSTERY…

Have you noticed how when romance enters the room, logic climbs out the window?

Case in point: “You are the wind beneath my wings.” Now any first-year physics student knows that the shape of the wings being curved above and flat beneath, forcing air to move faster over the upper surface, causes a partial vacuum ABOVE the wings, thus inducing lift. A wind beneath your wings would merely flip you over on your arse.

Another case: “I’m Wishing” – the song Snow White wistfully sings down the well, in the opening scene in Disney’s “Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs” (shouldn’t that be dwarves? – never mind). Some of her lines get an echo. But why only some? And more importantly, for the echo to take as long as it did, any half-arsed mathematician can compute the well must have been over A THOUSAND FEET DEEP.

Why was the water table so far down? Did C17th engineers REALLY possess the equipment to dig a well that deep? And how LONG would it have taken Snowy to crank up that bucket?

Pedantic? Me?

Kevin Spacey is a fine actor, producer, director – even a gifted mimic.

But unfortunately, he is a lousy WRITER. And it is THIS which has at least CONTRIBUTED to his monumental DOWNFALL.

After openly-gay actor Anthony Rapp went public with an accusation that Spacey had made a HEAVY drunken pass at him when he was just fourteen (and Spacey was twenty-six) he responded with the following statement, on Twitter…

I have a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor. I’m beyond horrified to hear his story. I honestly do not remember the encounter, it would have been over 30 years ago. But if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years.

This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life. I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact that I have been so protective of my privacy. As those closest to me know, in my life I have had relationships with both men and women. I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly. That starts with examining my own behavior.

The problems with this statement are three-fold.

One: it comes right after the TRAIN-WRECK of allegations against Harvey Weinstein. Spacey should have KNOWN that trying to casually brush off his encounter with Rapp would not fly, in the current climate.

Two: it CONFLATES his reply to an accusation of child-molestation with a Coming Out declaration. Coming Out is a BIG DEAL for gay people, which generally takes place in their teens or early twenties. Therefore it is NOT to be nonchalantly linked to an apology for sins, by an ageing whoopsie.

And three: thanks to “#metoo” a whole SLEW of his past misdemeanours have emerged – every clumsy approach he made during his ten years of helming the Old Vic, his decades on stage and five seasons making the U.S. “House Of Cards” have now caught up with him.

Thus with two ill-considered paragraphs, he has managed to piss off both straight AND gay people – and demolish his CAREER in the process.

But then, this is the world we live in now. In the past, showbiz types were expected to behave like the people next door – whilst simultaneously creating masterpieces and/or giving their all in front of thousands of people every night.

And on the occasions when the egos (or substances) needed to DO that created HAVOC, there were people who would COVER OVER the debris.

However now, in these post-PC times, this is no longer possible. And Spacey’s arrogance has not only cost HIM dear – it has also cost US.

He is only fifty-eight and (until now) was highly prolific. Therefore no less than THREE productions have suffered as a result of his undoing.

All the footage of his performance as J Paul Getty in Ridley Scott’s “All The Money In The World” is having to be RE-SHOT with Christopher Plummer, delaying the film’s release.

The Netflix film “Gore” – a bio-pic of Gore Vidal, another preponderantly gay man – with Spacey as the lead, had FINISHED filming and was going through post. But now it has had its release CANCELLED. It may NEVER be shown.

And another Netflix production – the above-mentioned U.S. House Of Cards – was IN production and has ALSO been dumped.

This last is a great loss. The original U.K. House Of Cards was made in the early Nineties and featured Ian Richardson as F.U. Spacey was perfectly cast as the belated U.S. version of the Machiavellian monster.

But he was unlucky – toward the end of the series, Trump would make his character appear banal in comparison. And so it was agreed last year that the sixth season would be the last. Actually, Spacey had said it should be good for five seasons, back around Season Two.

But now, Netflix have pulled the PLUG.

The Social Network has mused upon the possibility of it continuing just with C.U. (I’m saying nothing) – but that would be unwise.

Right now, how much of S6 was written and how much filmed, Netflix is not saying. But they own it, so that appears to be THAT.

Usually, studio execs leave viewers up in the air because of bad ratings – not behaviour.

So thanks a LOT, Kevin.

A friend sent me this piece and I had to SHARE. It may be true – or made up – or somewhere in between. Either way, it is hilarious. By all means pass it on. Enjoy…

THE FOLLOWING COMES FROM A CATHOLIC ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TEST. KIDS WERE ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS.

THESE TWENTY-FIVE STATEMENTS ABOUT THE BIBLE WERE WRITTEN BY CHILDREN. THEY HAVE NOT BEEN RETOUCHED OR CORRECTED. INCORRECT SPELLING HAS BEEN LEFT IN…

1. IN THE FORST BOOK OF THE BIBLE, GUINESSIS, GOD GOT TIRED OF
CREATING THE WORLD SO HE TOOK THE SABBATH OFF.

2. ADAM AND EVE WERE CREATED FROM AN APPLE TREE. NOAH'S WIFE WAS JOAN
OF ARK. NOAH BUILT AND ARK AND THE ANIMALS CAME ON IN PEARS.

3. LOTS WIFE WAS A PILLAR OF SALT DURING THE DAY, BUT A BALL OF FIRE
DURING THE NIGHT. 
 
4. THE JEWS WERE A PROUD PEOPLE AND THROUGHOUT HISTORY THEY HAD TROUBLE
WITH UNSYMPATHETIC GENITALS.
 
5. SAMPSON WAS A STRONGMAN WHO LET HIMSELF BE LED ASTRAY BY A JEZEBEL
LIKE DELILAH.
 
6. SAMSON SLAYED THE PHILISTINES WITH THE AXE OF THE APOSTLES. 
 
7. MOSES LED THE JEWS TO THE RED SEA WHERE THEY MADE UNLEAVENED BREAD,
WHICH IS BREAD WITHOUT ANY INGREDIENTS. 
 
8. THE EGYPTIANS WERE ALL DROWNED IN THE DESSERT. AFTERWARDS, MOSES
WENT UP TO MOUNTCYANIDE TO GET THE TEN COMMANDMENTS.
 
9. THE FIRST COMMANDMENTS WAS WHEN EVE TOLD ADAM TO EAT THE APPLE.
 
10. THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT IS THOU SHALT NOT ADMIT ADULTERY. 
 
11. MOSES DIED BEFORE HE EVER REACHED CANADA THEN JOSHUA LED THE
HEBREWS IN THE BATTLE OF GERITOL.
 
12. THE GREATEST MIRICLE IN THE BIBLE IS WHEN JOSHUA TOLD HIS SON TO
STAND STILL AND HE OBEYED HIM.
 
13. DAVID WAS A HEBREW KING WHO WAS SKILLED AT PLAYING THE LIAR. HE
FOUGHT THE FINKELSTEINS, A RACE OF PEOPLE WHO LIVED IN BIBLICAL TIMES.
 
14. SOLOMON, ONE OF DAVIDS SONS, HAD 300 WIVES AND 700 PORCUPINES.
 
15. WHEN MARY HEARD SHE WAS THE MOTHER OF JESUS, SHE SANG THE MAGNA
CARTA. 
 
16. WHEN THE THREE WISE GUYS FROM THE EAST SIDE ARRIVED THEY FOUND
JESUS IN THE MANAGER.
 
17. JESUS WAS BORN BECAUSE MARY HAD AN IMMACULATE CONTRAPTION. 
 
18. ST. JOHN THE BLACKSMITH DUMPED WATER ON HIS HEAD. 
 
19. JESUS ENUNCIATED THE GOLDEN RULE, WHICH SAYS TO DO UNTO OTHERS
BEFORE THEY DO ONE TO YOU. HE ALSO EXPLAINED A MAN DOTH NOT LIVE BY
SWEAT ALONE.
 
20. IT WAS A MIRICLE WHEN JESUS ROSE FROM THE DEAD AND MANAGED TO GET
THE TOMBSTONE OFF THE ENTRANCE. 
 
21. THE PEOPLE WHO FOLLOWED THE LORD WERE CALLED THE 12 DECIBELS.
 
22. THE EPISTELS WERE THE WIVES OF THE APOSTLES.
 
23. ONE OF THE OPPOSSUMS WAS ST. MATTHEW WHO WAS ALSO A TAXIMAN.
 
24. ST. PAUL CAVORTED TO CHRISTIANITY, HE PREACHED HOLY ACRIMONY,
WHICH IS ANOTHER NAME FOR MARRAIGE.
 
25. CHRISTIANS HAVE ONLY ONE SPOUSE. THIS IS CALLED MONOTONY.

The present: so Marty McFly goes back thirty years to 1987 – and has to convince the Doc he is from the future.

“Okay, so who’s the President in 2017?”

“Errr – forget it.”

I was very sad to hear of Tony’s PASSING – but glad to have finally “known” him for a short time, via his Facebook channel.

Here is the story. In 1959, I fell in love with his record, “Amore Mio” – here it IS…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKd-8c_M2cE

Below the piece, on YouTube, I wrote…

It took me FIFTY YEARS of searching, before I managed to acquire this lovely piece from the squeeze-box maestro.

Why? Well, the projectionist at my local Saturday Morning Cinema Club must’ve liked the track – he played it every WEEK, in the breaks between the C.F.F. films, cartoons and “Look At Life” shorts.

He even told me what the record was – but as a seven-year-old British kid, in 1959, I didn’t own a record player. And by the time I did, the company that released the record in Blighty, Top Rank, had gone bust – and taken their back-catalogue with them.

So for DECADES, I checked record-collectors’ shops, junk shops, jumble sales – you name it – and ZIP.

But when, a couple of years ago, I finally succumbed to the lure of the Interweb and purchased this computer – I was able to WIDEN my search. I eventually tracked a copy down to a shop in Wisconsin, USA.

But even THEN, the story was not over. Thanks to a sit-in at my local airport – Bangkok – the mail got piled up. LITERALLY. So much so, that a DVD someone sent me got BROKE – which is HARD TO DO!

Thus it was lucky that the posting of the 50-year-old record to me got DELAYED – thanks to American banks, who RIP PEOPLE OFF when it comes to changing foreign banknotes – which caused me to have to find some DOLLARS, before the shop would send it.

And so it’s THANKS to those greedy U.S. banks that I finally HAVE this disc IN ONE PIECE – which YOU can now listen to. Enjoy!

And here is a NEW version he posted on YouTube, just a couple of months ago…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KPNtNkJmf7g

I love you, Tony.