Weekend links roundup

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February 23, 2008 by admin

  • Robert Christgau slums it blogs and throws in his three cents about Pazz & Jop vs. Idolator: “I really don’t have a horse in this race. I like Idolator and have no love for the guys who fired me, and of course there would be a certain schadenfreude in seeing PJ fail without me–I resist it, but it’s there.”
  • Marshall McLuhan blasts the Ford-Carter debate: “…the most stupid arrangement of any debate in the history of debating”; “the vibrations got through to the amplifier and said, ‘this must not continue'”; etc.
  • Frank Kogan revives the rockism-antirockism discussion: “My problem [with the term ‘rockism’] is more personal: I can’t tell if I’m a rockist or not, or whether a lot of other rock critics are rockists or not (Dave Marsh, Greil Marcus, Richard Meltzer, Lester Bangs, Robert Christgau, Chuck Eddy), and I think the confusion is in the concept, not in me.” (My quick response is perhaps similar to what Frank himself says in the same piece about the word “authenticity”; “rockist” works okay in describing a tendency, but clearly sucks as a defining label. )
  • Hillary Clinton resorts to political rockism: “If your candidacy is going to be about words, then they should be your own words…”
  • David Moore (and others) talk about Carl and Celine and taste: “I get no sense of Carl being moved by Celine, before or after his thought experiment. I get no sense of Carl really caring about Celine as an artist who makes music (though he cares about her as an object of study — although artists I have no sense of as even human routinely move me more than most Celine Dion — I think I’d rather write a book on Jojo than a Celine Dion album!”)
  • Devin McKinney at hey dullblog nails (pretty much) my problems with Marsh’s recently released Beatles book (though he, unlike me, was at least able to finish the thing). So much in McKinney’s review I agree with, but his last line says it best: “‘In print,’ Marsh writes of the other Dave [Dexter–the villain who takes up a sizable portion of the text], ‘he comes across as a nasty, vindictive son of a bitch.’ I grant Marsh the respect of assuming he sent his book to print fully aware of how easily that might be applied not just to his target, but to himself.” Too bad–the idea of Marsh writing about The Beatles Second Album was intriguing to me on a number of levels (as Marsh himself points out near the start, TBSA is the sort of “great story” record any smart critic would like to tackle). But as McKinney points out far more eloquently than I could (and BTW he’s completely on the money about the bullishness of Marsh’s taken-for-granted stance about ‘Till There Was You”), the rancor in Marsh’s voice just becomes too much after a while.

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