Monday, July 20, 2015

Way Down Yonder On the Chattahoochee

One of the most common transgressions made by music fans is judging a genre by the people it supposedly attracts.

I encounter it daily:  Country fans are drunken homophobes.  Only elitists listen to jazz.  Hip-hop heads are illiterate. 

I’m also guilty of making rash generalizations.  Thankfully, I caught myself before I responded to a friend's direct provocation regarding Sturgill Simpson (a musician I appreciate).  I was going to suggest that most members of the audience at Simpson's concert in Kansas City last week were status-conscious bandwagoners who wouldn’t be caught dead at an Alan Jackson show.

That wouldn't have been nice.

Jackson's music may not be worthy of consideration by Pitchfork obsessives, but it will always have a place in my life.  In the parlance of 2015, plenty of the songs on his new album Angels and Alcohol are “basic.”  I'm not bothered that the album demonstrates no musical or ideological progression.

“Mexico, Tequila and Me” may be just as tired as its title suggests, but I genuinely appreciate the cliches of “Jim and Jack and Hank.”  I also think that the spiritual cheese of “God Paints” is delicious.  And the title track- easily the album’s best song- hits close to home.

Now, for the rest of the story: I wore a pink shirt to an Alan Jackson concert in 2007.  Harassed for hours by drunken homophobes, I thought I’d be killed in Bonner Springs, Kansas.

I reviewed Tech N9ne’s Special Effects for KCUR.

I reviewed a concert by Keith Sweat and Blackstreet featuring Teddy Riley and Dave Hollister.

I reviewed a concert by the Dave Matthews Band.

A segment about Jeff Black is among the recent Local Listen items I've contributed to KCUR.

Shades of Jade’s new single ”That One” is RIYL: Brian McKnight, Kansas City neo-soul, Bilal.

Bummer’s punishing Spank EP is shockingly great.  The Olathe band’s new EP is RIYL: Paw, blind rage, Tad.

The Kansas City Star recalls the infamous Ozark Music Festival of 1974.

Joan Sebastian has died.  I reviewed his concert at Cricket Wireless Amphitheater last year.

Max Richter’s Sleep is “an eight-hour lullaby.”

Man Plans God Laughs is the title track of Public Enemy’s new album.

Heads of State’s Search For Peace is a standard-issue post-Coltrane jazz date.  RIYL: Gary Bartz, old school jazz, Larry Willis.

”God bless Rod Stewart.”

(Original image by There Stands the Glass.)


bgo said...

I like Sturgill, but he'll never come close to Alan Jackson. Jackson's new one bears repeat listens, something I cannot do with Simpson's big hit record. Doah.


Happy In Bag said...

I'll look for you at the free Dwight Yoakam/Chris Stapleton concert on Thursday, Bill.