It is another message of folk art that creativity need not lead to the destruction of norms. It can be dedicated to the perfection of things as they stand. . . .Art is our birthright. We are stuck here. Alone, one by one, we are born and die. We are members of groups without which we could not survive our first day. From them we learn. To them we return our learning. And all the time beyond us flows and cracks, without question, a power not ours that we can bend but not master. Art is the way we come to grips with this and make it visible, comprehensible. Born into this mumbo jumbo world, we have a right to make art, and I call conditions good that enable us to be artists, and I condemn conditions that steal art from us. Art is the way we achieve our humanity. The enemies of art are the enemies of humankind. If they say art is a privilege of the rare talented few or the possession of prosperous white men, I say they act criminally toward their kind.
So, that’s why I had to stop reading for a minute and try and figure out who is on either side of that divide, since much of popular culture is not a gift of art but a theft of our own artistic determination, and of course, of our money. To my mind, when a cloud of anonymous shareholders is the determining factor in what sort of pap is thrust into the brainpans of the public, then of course you end up with an audience trained to respond like anonymous wisps of cloud. Too many people have had their own creativity diminished, their own art stolen, by the very institutions that claim they are simply giving the audience what they want; creativity is reduced to swapping the semiotic coin of the realm with peers, chatting in some version of corporatese about the mascara sale at Eckerds, why football is great and soccer is boring, if Lady Gaga has a penis, and why the new Facebook layout sucks. But these are not sufficient, not even close, and so people grow into themselves or explode, or both.
246) Deftones: White Pony
I was so hoping they were going to cover this:
but oh well. Good anyway, nice turns and twists and most are for the sake of the song, not just to be twisty.
247) Verdi: Aida
Apparently someone made a rock opera of this Verdi monolith, Disney, I think, and then Elton John wrote the music… christ, why? is the first thing that comes to mind, then I remember that it’s Disney, in the age of regurgitation, and move on.
248) Mose Allison: The Best of Mose Allison
So damn likeable it’s almost unlikeable, but not quite, and so is fab, and I might just stick this one back in the pile so I get to listen to it a again in a few months.
249) Pamela Lucia: Into Outer Space With Pamela Lucia
Yes. Thanks, Pamela. See you there.
250) Pan Assembly: Hot Steel Music
Steel drums, that is, though there is a version of “Iron Man” here. A good soca, and “Pan In Yuh,” which is apparently a steel drum band standard. A serious din.