March 2009


Single and Listening

Here’s the second editionof this for March 2009 as promised yesterday.  I’m going to keep it short and sweet.  I must be feeling generous tonight.  No, it’s all just that good tonight.

Single Reviews by Release Date

♫♪

♫♫

♫♫♪

all over the place

carries a tune

part of the chorus

featured soloist

conducting the choir


Jamie Foxx “Blame It”
Released: January 26, 2009 From Latest Release:  Intuition ♫♫
Catchy as hell.  Know it’s about alcohol, but it’s a party-starter.  Will pack, crowd, and keep the dance floor going.

Pussycat Dolls  and A.R. Rahman “Jai Ho! (You Are My Destiny)”
Released:  February 23, 2009
From Forthcoming Release:   Doll Domination 2.0 Version ♫♫
A re-interpretation of the Oscar-winning song from Slumdog Millionaire.  The pop remix does it justice and brings it to an audience that may have slept on it.

Bat For Lashes “Daniel” Released:  March 1, 2009
From Forthcoming Release:  Two Suns  ♫♫
Never heard of Bat For Lashes before, but I like this.   A little different.  Sounds 80s to me.  Hypnotic and soothing.

So, this concludes this countdown.  Hope you enjoyed the ride.

* * *
I thought it would be fun to countdown MY TOP 10:   Music Video Cameos.  That is, music videos with cameos by non-musical personalities who are known for working in other areas of show biz.  My criteria were that:

1) the video be memorable, of course;
2) the featured personality not be another musical artist at the time (now if they became musical artists at a later point that’s another story; they’re
still eligible);
3) the featured personality be known at the time (not be an unknown who became known later); and
4) the cameo be a worthwhile part in the video (not just a 2-second spot).

1. Chevy Chase in Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al”

I love, love, love this video.  I was like 10 when it came out, but it left an impression. Simple idea; executed really well.  Great song, too.  Can’t say I know much about Paul Simon or Chevy Chase.  (Yeah, I know he was on SNL and in those vacation movies.)  But, this song and video made a mark.  I’m thinking I may go back to the CD this song was on and explore his stuff.  Well, I’ve said a lot throughout the countdown, so just sit back and enjoy Number 1.  And, yes, it’s funny.  That goes without saying.

March 31, 2009

A popolio selection of today’s New Releases. 

Bow Wow New Jack City II
Gavin DeGraw Free
Filter The Very Best Things (1995-2008)
Flo Rida R.O.O.T.S . (Route Of Overcoming The Struggle)
PJ Harvey and John Parish A Woman A Man Walked By
Diana Krall Quiet Nights
Pansy Division That’s So Gay
Queensrÿche American Soldier
Maria Taylor LadyLuck
Keith Urban Defying Gravity
Yeah Yeah Yeahs It’s Blitz!

Single and Listening

So, I normally do two of these a month.  I’m pushing it close to the wire this month.  I will post one today and one tomorrow.  Enjoy.

Single Reviews by Release Date

♫♪

♫♫

♫♫♪

all over the place

carries a tune

part of the chorus

featured soloist

conducting the choir

In this edition, I review Demi Lovato’s, Ciara’s, and Keri Hilson’s latest.  Demi sings alone, though the Jonas Brothers brought some writing and producing assist.  And Ciara hosts JT while Keri hosts KanYe West and Ne-Yo.  I will say one thing about Keri Hilson and that is that I’m diggin’ her 2009 update on Sheila E.’s ’80s look.  Not sure if Ms. E. is a true inspiration, but Keri’s rockin’ a hot look, regardless.

Demi Lovato “Don’t Forget” Released:  March 16, 2009
From Latest Release:   Don’t Forget ♫♪

Sounds like this girl has a lot of potential to be the next angst-filled rock chick ala’ Alanis Morissette or someone like that.  There’s grit in her voice that I like.  Good for the Disney set, but has cross-over potential all over it.  I predict great things to come from this one. (Hey, she’s a Disney kid.  How wrong can I be?  Britney and Christina, anyone?)

Ciara “Love Sex Magic” featuring Justin Timberlake Released: March 17, 2009 From Forthcoming Release:  Fantasy Ride ♫♪
I want to not like this because I think JT tries way too hard to be cool and to be Michael Jack, but it is catchy.  Not something I haven’t heard before, but a good imitation.  My dancing bones wouldn’t be able to resist the groove.  I’d have to give in to the “Love Sex Magic.”

Keri Hilson “Knock You Down” featuring KanYe West and Ne-Yo
Released:  March 20, 2009
From Latest Release:  In a Perfect World… ♫♪
It’s good, but it sounds like a mixture of previous work from Beyonce’, Rhianna, and KanYe West and Ne-Yo, who do guest on the track.  Seems like producers and writers rule over artists, though Hilson did write on the track with a slew of other writers.  Can tell it is one of those songs that the more you hear it the more you’ll get into it.

I thought it would be fun to countdown MY TOP 10:   Music Video Cameos.  That is, music videos with cameos by non-musical personalities who are known for working in other areas of show biz.  My criteria were that:

1) the video be memorable, of course;
2) the featured personality not be another musical artist at the time (now if they became musical artists at a later point that’s another story; they’re
still eligible);
3) the featured personality be known at the time (not be an unknown who became known later); and
4) the cameo be a worthwhile part in the video (not just a 2-second spot).

2. Christopher Walken in Fatboy Slim’s “Weapon of Choice”

Probably the hottest video of 2001.  It won numerous awards.  It’s so genius because you don’t picture such a tough guy like Christopher Walken moving like that.  Apparently, he took dance lessons way back in the day.  Who knew?  And, what makes it even better is that not once does he crack a smile.  He’s still that “tough guy” throughout the video.

The band isn’t even in the video, but that’s alright.  It works.  It’s said that this video brought Christopher Walken to a whole new audience he would otherwise not have been relevant to.  Really he tends to play quirky, strange characters and this was just one in a long line of them.  But, this really was one of those prime once-in-a-life-time roles. Interesting, what happens when things align and a group of talents get together and create something like this.

I thought it would be fun to countdown MY TOP 10:   Music Video Cameos.  That is, music videos with cameos by non-musical personalities who are known for working in other areas of show biz.  My criteria were that:

1) the video be memorable, of course;
2) the featured personality not be another musical artist at the time (now if they became musical artists at a later point that’s another story; they’re
still eligible);
3) the featured personality be known at the time (not be an unknown who became known later); and
4) the cameo be a worthwhile part in the video (not just a 2-second spot).

3. Paula Abdul, Rosanna Arquette, Dan Aykroyd, Mayim Bialik, Bubbles, Jackie Collins, David Copperfield, Emily Dreyfuss, Richard Dreyfuss, Corey Feldman, Lou Ferrigno, Debbie Gibson, Danny Glover, Steve Guttenberg, Jasmine Guy, Whoopi Goldberg, Sherman Hemsley, Olivia Hussey, Amy Irving, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Beverly Johnson, Quincy Jones, Don King, Virginia Madsen, Olivia Newton-John, Brigitte Nielson, Lou Diamond Phillips, Ricky Schroder, Steven Spielberg, Suzanne Somers, John Travolta, Blair Underwood, Carl Weathers, Billy Dee Williams, and “Weird Al” Yankovic in Michael Jackson’s “Liberian Girl”

Okay, so there are some popstars in there and that goes against my criteria.  We can knock them out of the running and that still leaves a lot of star power.  And, yes, these were some of the biggest stars at the time.  This goes to show the power that Jacko wielded at the time — to be able to get them all on the same set.  It’s fun to compare then to now and see where people are at now in their careers. 

Now, paint me clueless, but I like a couple of songs that use this as a sample and I didn’t realize they referenced an original Michael Jackson song until recently.  I love Jennifer Lopez’ “If You Had My Love” and MC Lyte’s “Keep On Keepin’ On” featuring Xscape.  I’m sure there are more as well as all kinds of other Michael Jackson samples and interpolations out there.  He is Michael Jackson and was at the top of his game at one point and for a very long while. 

That said, in my defense, this song/video was never released in the US.  It was only released in Europe and Australia as an official single for Bad.  Regardless, it’s a clever concept and that’s why it’s Number 3.

You get a two-fer today as I missed yesterday’s post.  Allergies have been kicking my butt for some days now.  Ran my errands yesterday, got home, and just slept all day.  But, woke up bright and early today and am serving you breakfast videos.

* * *

I thought it would be fun to countdown MY TOP 10:   Music Video Cameos.  That is, music videos with cameos by non-musical personalities who are known for working in other areas of show biz.  My criteria were that:

1) the video be memorable, of course;
2) the featured personality not be another musical artist at the time (now if they became musical artists at a later point that’s another story; they’re
still eligible);
3) the featured personality be known at the time (not be an unknown who became known later); and
4) the cameo be a worthwhile part in the video (not just a 2-second spot).

4.  Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista, Tatjana Patitz, Christy Turlington, Scott Benoit, Peter Formby, John Pearson, Todo Segalla and Mario Serranti in George Michael’s “Freedom! 90″

This was Mr. Michael’s (That doesn’t quite work, does it? That being his middle name and all.) coming out song.  Initially, it was about his struggle with his record company and his mission to gain his artistic independence.  The story isn’t new.  Prince, anyone?  When the stuff about his sexuality came out years later that’s when the layers about that became clear.  Obviously, those layers were always there as the song itself came from George.

He eviscerated the icons of his past imagery and success attempting to forge a new path.  He is in the video, though, if only for a moment.  The guy in the boxers who scratches himself is, reportedly, him.  A lyrical and visual slight for the slack he got for his @$$-time in the “Faith” video.  How bold was it to not appear in your own music video and replace yourself with a bunch of top models?  I think quite bold.  That’s why it’s Number 4.

Editor’s Note:  The song was renamed “Freedom! 90” to distinguish it from the earlier Wham! hit of the same name.

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