Saturday, April 18, 2009

Guilty Pleasures - Music


A Rather Long, Aimless Ramble On Musical Likes, Dislikes, and Critics

Just looking at the title, you can see where I'm going, and indeed, I could probably write a list as long as my arm of songs that we're supposed to hate, songs that music critics hate, but that I actually like. I can never think of them all at one time.

Songs that I love to hear despite how others hate these songs.

While driving to work the other morning, I had my usual struggle to find some music on the radio. Most radio stations have folks on there talking and I was not in the mood for listening to people yakking. I simply wanted to hear some music.

Finally found a station out of Vero Beach that was actually playing music and they played Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners from the 1980s, and I turned it up.

I'll wait a minute while you roll your eyes, or finish throwing up…

The music to that song sounds "happy" to me. They could take out the lyrics as far as I'm concerned, and I'd still like the song. The tune is really upbeat in a pleasing way that never fails to improve my mood. Driving in Palm Bay, Florida, in morning traffic is a life-or-death roller coaster ride on the best of days, and a little upbeat music is helpful to me.

But who can top the great lyrics in this song?
Come on eileen too-loo rye-aye
Come on eileen too-loo rye-aye
Toora toora-too-loora

Just kidding on the lyrics, to me, the music to the song has an uplifting quality to it that never fails to improve my mood. The lyrics are kind of dumb if you listen to them.

Plus, this song has one of those elements to it that, in my book, helps make it a classic.

Yes, you guessed it already…

The Banjo!

How can you hate a song with banjo in it?

I don't like country music, so hearing banjo on rock or pop stations is darn rare, but there it is, all through Come on Eileen.

Then, after Come on Eileen was over, they played Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard, yet another guilty pleasure of mine.

As a confirmed guitar nut, I have to say that I think Phil Collen, lead guitarist for Def Leppard is a really good player. For me that means, I really like both his guitar tone and the style in which he plays.

Def Leppards music is filled with neat guitar riffs by Phil Collen, and most are the kind of little guitar melody pieces that stick in my mind. I don't mind having a great guitar riff stuck in my head, unlike the lyrics or tune to any song that annoys me.

Anyway, Pour Some Sugar on Me is song that has great catchy guitar in it, and though the lyrics are pretty much from the mind-set of a 14 year old, I love the song because of the huge sound of Mr. Collen's guitar in there.

So, going to work the other day was quite pleasant because I heard these two classics that I happen to like.

A person's taste in music is as unique to them as their personality.

There's no imagining how many gallons of print ink has been used over the years to discuss music, but for the most part, these writings are done by music critics, one of the lowest forms of life on earth in my opinion. You can like anything you want, I'll have no problem with that, but I dislike a person pontificating on what they think is good or bad as if I MUST agree with them.

That being the case, I tend to disagree with most music critics (and movie critics for that matter). My main problem with critics is that they usually discuss music with the intent that I am wrong if I disagree with them. I really hate that.

Professional critics are a form of life I think we could do without. I find it hard to believe that a person can make a living listening to music and then trying to create a written opinion that will sway the public in one way or another, just because they say so.

For me it all comes down to a gut feeling, to like, dislike, love, or hate individual songs. Come on Eileen and Pour Some Sugar on Me just happen to be a couple of songs that I have always liked, one for the uplifting tune, and the other for the great guitar.

I would suspect that 99% of music critics hate these songs, but that has no effect on me. That's why I have never liked reading Rolling Stone, one, I could not care less about their music critics' opinions, and two, the only other articles in Rolling Stone tends to be politically way-far left stories.

I am not way-far left in my political beliefs. I'm pretty much way-far right, so that pretty much kills my desire to read anthing that Rolling Stone has ever printed.

Yeah, I'll sit and discuss musical opinion differences with you, but in the end, nothing you can say will make me like or dislike a song on your say-so because music is such a gut-level thing in my life. I would be surprised if my musical opinions swayed you even a tiny bit.

Aside from the song itself, for me, music is a time machine.

Hearing Come on Eileen and Pour Some Sugar on Me takes me back to the early and late 1980s in a way that just recalling the times cannot match. Something about music immerses me in feelings about the times that the songs were a backdrop for.

This can be good or bad, many songs were the backdrop for good times, but some of those good times are so beautiful to me, that hearing some old favorite songs brings up a bittersweet feeling in me; the times they recall are so sweet that thinking on them can actually hurt.

Consequently, over time, I had created my own mix CDs on our computer of songs that would take me, in mind and spirit, to certain times in my life. Such as the first year of mine and Lovely Wife's marriage. You get the idea.

I've translated these song groupings into several playlists on my iPod, so that I can dial up a set of songs to match my mood.

For example, I have been repeatedly playing my playlist of favorite songs by King's X, one of the best rock bands ever, that you've probably never heard of. Ty Tabor's guitar is always great, and Doug Pinnick's 12-string bass is massive. But, in the way of things, they've never had a great amount of commercial success.

Anyway, I started this to simply talk about one morning's drive to work when I was pleasantly surprised to hear a couple of old favorites. But as I thought about writing a blog post about them, I realized that many people probably absolutely hate one or both of these songs that had put me in a great mood the other morning.

This led to thoughts on differing musical opinions, music critics, and musical likes and dislikes in general, so the post ended up being this behemoth about nothing much.

I just know that I have always loved music.

I like what I like, especially great guitar, whether it's in rock, heavy metal, jazz, or whatever.

Music critics annoy me, so I avoid their opinions where possible.

And that's enough for today.

Bye.

4 comments:

Hammer said...

I liked 60's rock and other types of hard rock in the 80's but when come on eileen came out I found it very catchy and pleasant to listen to.

Marsha (Big Sis) said...

This was one of the videos I remember seeing on MTV years ago, back when it was actually playing music!!!!!!!!!! Now I can't get it out of my head!

Qtpies7 said...

I have very selective taste in my music likes, and they make no sense at all! I like a little of this and a little of that, not the same types of music, but over all, I could do without music completely. Noone gets that about me. Often music irritates the bejeebers out of me.
Here is one that I love, that I am SURE you haven't heard, it is done by some good friends of my children.
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rock-Rage-and-The-C-Shell/65701090465?ref=ts Check out The Pie Song.
They call me their biggest fan, lol. But that is the only song I can stand of theirs.

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