Monday, February 18, 2008

Stop the presses!

Some of you may have the impression that a lot more big, newsworthy events happen in New York City than anywhere else in the world. Well, you're right. Here's the Friday front page of one of New York's dailies.

Sure, it's am New York and not the New York Times, but still..."Rock is Reborn in New York City?" A full-page ad on the cover? As someone who studied journalism in college, let me say--that is AWESOME! I dare you to try and read that headline in a normal voice--it's hard, isn't it? That's a sentence that has to be read in an over-the-top radio announcer's voice. With some sound effects at the end.

It's not an important story by any means, but it actually got me to stop and grab a copy of am New York, which I almost never do, despite the fact that it's free, and that they have real-life Newsies handing them out at the entrances of subway stations. (I was very disappointed by the lack of Newsies my first time in NYC.) Fifty papes!

You should probably also know that the back cover lists RXP 101.9's "9 commitments to New York," which include these doozies (bold print in original, Jeff's comments in parentheses):

1. We'll play music that passes one primary filter: that it is good rock
2. Our on-air staff will play a direct part in choosing the songs that we play (how do we know we can trust them to choose good rock?)
3. We will respect you with an intelligent product (but we'll disrespect you with our blatant pandering)
5. We will be upbeat & fun but never cheesy and dumbed-down--edgy but never with attitude (what does that even mean?)
6. We will take the music we play seriously--but not ourselves (except in this full-page ad)

This great moment in journalistic history reminded me that, when I was here five years ago, the radio station I listened to in my dorm room ran a "Top 500 songs of the 80s and 90s" marathon countdown over Memorial Day Weekend. I still have a printout of the full list in one of the boxes under my bed in Provo, but I can't find it online. I do, however, remember that "Livin' On a Prayer" was #2 (a relatively worthy choice), and the #1 spot went to--yep, you guessed it--"Smooth" by Santana and Rob Thomas. Seriously. Feel free to express your disdain and nominate a better top song in the comments (especially you, shabba shabba).


Anonymous said...

Well, you'll know what I say! Any Toad the Wet Sprocket song!

shabba shabba said...

I actually remember having a conversation with you about the very list in question. I was driving you home to Murray for some reason. It's kind of weird that I remember that.

I am just as exasperated now as I was then that the #1 song of the eighties and nineties was/is a Rob Thomas song. "Smooth" isn't even the best Rob Thomas song of the 80s and 90s. That honor goes to "Push," which hopefully isn't even in the top 200 of the list in question (although "Push" was and is a pretty cool song if your girlfriend just made out with her ex-boyfriend and you found out about it -- which actually happened to me in 1997 when Matchbox 20 was breaking).

I think the top song of the 80s and 90s ought to be either "Billie Jean" or "What's Up."

"Billie Jean" might get my vote because it's the only song I know that has at least three or four musical hooks, any of which is impossibly catchy on its own. But Michael Jackson (or Quincy Jones --whomever was actually the real genius) put those hooks all together in one song... and it's simply the groovenist song ever created. You can't not move to it. And I'm really, really white.

"What's Up" might get my vote because it's an underrated and forgotten encapsulation of the mid-90s. You can have your Teen Spirit; "What's Up" is my choice of anthem of the decade. 1993 saw many a teen taking a deep breath, getting real high, and screaming from the top of his or her lungs "What's going on?" (Drug use is bad, by the way). No one remembers 4 Non-Blondes, and for good reason. Their other songs sucked. But "What's Up" is the best song of the 80s and 90s.

Tamara said...

you have no idea how happy i am that you have a blog!!!

jeff said...

If I was a Toad fan, I'd stay anonymous too! Oh, snap!

Shabba x 2, stop trying to turn my comments into your own blog post. But I love your blog. And thanks for the ride. (4 Non Blondes? Really? Is "Voices Carry" your number 2 song?

Yay! I have 2 Tamaras reading my blog now!