One Step Closer to Being A Mall

CBGB’s

Another big part of New York’s long music legacy was lost to the history books this past weekend when CBGB OMFUG (Country BlueGrass Blues and Other Music For Uplifting Gormandizers is the long version of the name) unceremoniously closed its doors. And now, NYC is one big step closer to being a homogeneous plastic concrete Mall of America. I’m not going to claim to be anything close to a punk rocker, and I sadly never even set foot in the place. But I am aware of its place in music history, the legends it helped create, and the legend the venue itself became. In recent years, CBGB fell into some level of disrepair and the level of music innovation never did rival that time in the mid-to-late 1970’s when acts like the Talking Heads, The Ramones, Blondie, and others established themselves there. But you always knew that it was there as a living, breathing piece of NY and American music history. And now, it’s not there. Rumors are that they will try to take it apart and rebuild it in (gasp) Las Vegas, but obviously it will never be the same. What are they going to do next, close McSorley’s?

Via NY Times

“Metal” place

Over the past couple of weeks, on the commute home I have been putting aside my iPod at 6:30PM in favor of my mini-portable radio so I can listen to the NPR radio program Marketplace. When we were living in Boston, I’d always listen to it on the frequent weekend trips down to the NYC area and grew to become a great fan of the program.

And yesterday, a piece on the program just re-inforced why its just such a great program. The story led in talking about how toymaker Hasbro had a bad quarter, highlighting one cause being the influx of “non plastic” products into the market. The story then shifted to how people are willing to spend more on products made of metals and woods since such materials give the product extra cashé. They then profiled Motorola who is manufacturing a platinum phone, highlighting its hefty price, and ironically noting that you could buy a “metallic” ringtone for all of $1.50. And the “metallic” ringtone? None other than “Enter Sandman” by Metallica. They sampled the ringtone, and then faded into the actual song by Metallica! It was just a fantastic transition.

Now I am hardly a fan of Metallica (However “Enter Sandman” is one song of theirs that I actually do like), however my point is that Marketplace has always had a fun, irreverent, “tongue in cheek” perspective to its business reporting which makes the show so unique. And only Marketplace would be able to get away with fading out from a story into “Enter Sandman” by Metallica.

Its Not the Song, Its the Song Part

Over on retroCRUSH is a great page that highlights the top song parts in music. This page so accurately points out that there are so many songs out there that are exceedling average, or the band that created them was exceedingly average, but there are elements of a specific song they created that are timeless. Snippets like the opening rift in One Step Beyond by Madness or the opening of Anarchy in the U.K. by the Sex Pistols are highlighted and appropriately so. However, the biggest issue I have with this fine compilation is the fact that they listed Phil Collins’ In the Air Tonight as the #1 Cool Song Moment. Anyone who votes for Phil Collins at the top of any music related list (other than the list of top most annoying singers of the 1980’s) in any way has some serious musical issues. But even with that major jugmental flaw, its still a great list worth checking out.

Light My Fire

I was a little taken aback when I read that it was Jim Morrison’s 60th Birthday today. Now I am hardly a fan of The Doors and I am hardly old enough to even remember any of their music (it was mildy popular by the time I was in grade school) but Morrison is still a personality that really trancends the ages. It would be interesting to see how he would have aged. Or maybe he is still alive on an island in the South Pacific. One will never know.