Music Consumption in the MP3 Era
Music Consumption in the MP3 Era

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Name: uao
Location: California

uao is also a contributor to Blogcritics.org, Rhapsody Radish. and FIQL.com.

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A Sampling of Articles, Reviews, and Essays:

Feel free to dig through the Deep Freeze for more, but stuff dated before mid-March 2005 is still formative and impressionistic, and not really worth the effort.

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I grew up reading Robert Christgau, Village Voice, and Lester Bangs, Creem, Punk, various others.

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Note: the copyrighted audio material on this site is for listening only, and is not downloadable. It is provided as illustrations to the articles, and to interest people in the legal purchase of these artists' material. Any copyright holder who would like their material removed should contact me, and I'll remove it.

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Sunday, February 06, 2005
 

When I'm 64

Paul McCartney plays at Super Bowl XXXIX Feb. 6, 2005I was snoozing on the sofa, like I always do when the Super Bowl is on, and I had a dream in which I was chilling with Paul McCartney. McCartney looked like he did in his Wings days, and seemed like a nice enough guy, but he kept bursting into song every time I said something to him. He was being nice about it, but he wouldn't let me get a word in edgewise.

When I awoke, there he was onstage at the Super Bowl halftime in the middle of doing "Drive My Car"

McCartney took all kinds of crap from Beatles fans after the group broke up. His albums were routinely panned, people made fun of his wife, they compared him unfavorably to the sainted John Lennon. Through it all, McCartney managed to maintain his dignity and keep on working. He stayed with his wife until she left him on her deathbed, he took the Lennon comparisons with grace, and he even managed to record some interesting music.

His live shows are exercises in nostalgia, and the halftime set, which also included "Get Back", his solo hit "Live And Let Die", and a truncated "Hey Jude" was an almost perfect capsule summary of what to expect when he tours America this September. Arrangements that are faithful nearly to the note of the original recordings, some of his always awkward stage patter "Thank you Super Bowl!!" very little in the way of jamming. What matters is that he's Beatle Paul, the only living link to history (unless Ringo Starr's oldies revue counts), and the music is secondary to simply seeing him live at all. He turns 63 this summer, and won't be around forever.

Although McCartney hasn't had a top-10 hit in twenty years, his slow-selling albums of the 90's and 00's have represented a sort of creative renaissance for him. Freed from having to churn out a hit every year, or keep up with the times, he's gotten looser, more experimental, even jamming on his records.


Paul McCartney: Flaming Pie (1997)  Paul McCartney: Run Devil Run (1999) Paul McCartney: Driving Rain (2001)  Wings: Wings Greatest (1978)


None of those latter day discs will win him any converts, but old fans who tuned out after Wings might want to check out the strange, lengthy, quasi-mystical "Riding into Jaipur" from Driving Rain, his sweet singalong "The Song We Were Singing", from Flaming Pie, and (especially) his somber, sad, but resolute version of the Vipers' "No Other Baby" from Run Devil Run, his first release following Linda McCartney's death. Novices can start with his early 70's output, which wasn't as bad as the oldtimers say.

Hell, he put on a better show at the Super Bowl than either Janet Jackson or Aerosmith. Didn't even have to flash a tit.

Jam Tags, 1-5 stars:

Paul McCartney: No Other Baby *****
Paul McCartney: Riding Into Jaipur ****
Paul McCartney: The Song We Were Singing ****