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Wednesday , February 24, 2010
Kat & Liz On: The Secret Sexy Genius of Bob Seger
A long time ago, in an Internet hideout far far away, Kat asked the hugely important question: "Why can't our generation recognize the totally obvious genius of Bob Seger?" "Because!" Barker barked back. "We're forever stuck with the image of Tom Cruise sliding across the living room floor in his underwear, no matter how hard we try to make it go away." Which was really lame and defeatist, in a very pre-nogoodforme.com sort of way. So in a valiant effort to steal Bob Seger back from Tom Cruise - kinda like when U2 stole "Helter Skelter" back from Charles Manson, only way less self-righteous - we present six songs that reveal the secret sexy genius of our beloved Bob.
"ROCK AND ROLL NEVER FORGETS"
Lately, like for all of 2010, the universe is trying so hard to get "Rock and Roll Never Forgets" into my ears as often as possible. It's all over my radio, it's always playing at 7-Eleven when I'm buying my Big Gulps or bubblegum, it's everywhere at every moment that ever happens. Which is cool cuz I finally listened to the actual lyrics, and I'm so thrilled at the one about how "sweet sixteen's turned 31." I'm 32, but I still get the thing about feeling tired and bored and "beaten down by life" (as I'm prone to saying in my more dramatical moments). I believe Bob Seger when he promises me rock and roll's the most reliable rut-buster, mostly because I believe anything rock singers ever tell me - and not in a naive kind of way! Like, in the wisest way possible.
Also in its last issue of 1994 Rolling Stone ran a photo of Kurt Cobain with the caption Rock and roll never forgets and I remember thinking "God, Kurt would hate that...but I would love it!" STILL TRUE. I still would love it. (Liz)
"Night Moves" is one of the Seeg's most famous songs, one of those tracks that only really made sense in the late 70s/early 80s where I guess casual sex was like the "official thing" and people wore those pukka shell necklaces and looked like Devendra Banhart before Devendra was a cultural concept or barely a twinkle in his parents' eyes. (I like to think of Devendra as hatching from a trunk of a tree at birth, though. It seems like a more suitable origin story for the Bearded One.) "Night Moves" is a great story-song, about two kids who have nothing better to do than have sex and drink beer during a long, hot summer. But there's this kind of twist in the last verse, a jump into nostalgia that looks back on it all with melancholy and gives an entirely different read on the title. Outside of its form and content, I always think of the Night Moves record itself in my parents' music collection, sitting there in a red milk crate along with Bruce Springsteen and Sheena Easton, who I know was not American, but whatever. Night Moves came out a few years after they first arrived in America from Thailand and was part of their own education into being an "American" at the time: joining bowling leagues, learning to drink Budweiser, listening to "heartland rock," getting the only jobs available to them as part of the "working class." Somehow I think of Bob Seger as being one of their spirit guides into what America was about at a very specific time and place, helping them get along in their new country and have some good old-fashioned American fun that didn't involve being an imperialistic world superpower. I'm a little too scared to ask my parents what they thought of "Night Moves," though they played it a lot on the record player when I was a small fry. I mean, I REALLY don't want to discover they were swingers or whatever. That would be awful, and traumatic. But I'm sure there was a reason why Night Moves disappeared after I turned five, along with a bunch of Queen records whose lyrics freaked me out for some reason. That's okay, though. I had a babysitter that had Prince's Controversy, so my "little kids accidentally listening to musical smut" quota was pretty full. (Kat)
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Tags: Americanism, Axel Foley, Barker's pediatrician, being bored, Beverly Hills Cop, Bob Seger, boys, hellcat dames, hyperemotionality, Judge Reinhold, jukeboxes, Kurt Cobain, love, Mulholland Drive, Rod Stewart, rut-busters, smut, the Midwest, the Sexiest Men Alive, Tom Cruise, U2
Sunday , August 16, 2009
Kat & Liz On: All-Time Top 5 Madonna Moments
This post probably could've been titled "All-Time Top 5 Most Underrated Madonna Moments," since we skirted over a few of our true favorites in the name of celebrating some of the more obscure stuff. Plus we've already talked up the genius of Madonna on "Wayne's World," and of her Marie Antoinette-inspired performance of "Vogue" at the VMAs, and we're sure everybody spends all her time recalling how awesome it was when Madonna played Karen's roommate on "Will & Grace" anyway. Add the part in Desperately Seeking Susan where she climbs out of the pool in boxers and bra and then eats cheese puffs on the chaise lounge, plus all of Truth or Dare, and and that's five right there. So here's another five, in honor of Madonnasky's birthday. Happy 51st, Madonna! We love you the most.
THE DANCETERIA SCENE IN "DESPERATELY SEEKING SUSAN"
My friends, I'm going to share something SO SEMINAL in the personal development of the avatar known as Kat Asharya: this whole scene made me want to be Madonna, and more importantly, want to live in NYC for the entire length of my earthly existence. To my young self, it epitomized everything I could possibly want out of life: nightclubs, intrigue, black clothes and cool dance moves. Very little has changed. (Kat)
SINGING SINATRA* WITH THE BOY FROM THE CHILI PEPPERS
It's Madonna and Anthony Kiedis doing "The Lady is a Tramp" at the Hollywood Bowl for some Arsenio Hall special in 1993, wearing matching Gaultier dresses, thigh-highs, and adorable hats with kitty-cat ears - which means it was my 15-year-old self's favorite thing ever, and I taped it and watched it 87 million times a day for many months. "Neither of them can sing worth a damn!" remarked my mom, which is true. But the kitty-cat ears! And the joyous buffoonery! And the weird mid-song dig at Sharon Stone! Still makes my heart soar today. (Liz)
*It's actually a Rodgers and Hart showtune. Just so you know.
WHEN SHE WAS MARRIED TO SEAN PENN
It is far from my official policy to celebrate a woman primarily for her marriage, but this is less a celebration than a "DUDE, REMEMBER WHEN MADONNA WAS MARRIED TO SEAN PENN?" kind of moment. Because: dude, they were married! That is kind of the weirdest thing ever! Now that I'm older and a whole enchilada of wiser in the ways of the world, this exquisitely blows my mind. I don't think the full cultural import of such a proto-celebrity marriage has yet to be explored; maybe a really smart sociologist will be able to link the Penn-Ciccone marriage to some sort of change in the divorce rate. Maybe Madonna marrying and divorcing Sean Penn during my formative pre-teen years was enough to inculcate me with a lifelong aversion to romantic commitment. Maybe no guy will ever live up to the paragon of love embodied in Madonna's dedication of True Blue to "the coolest guy in the universe." Maybe Leos should never marry other Leos. It still exerts such mystery over me: do they still keep in touch? Does he miss her? I WANT TO KNOW. (Kat)
ON LETTERMAN IN 1994
This shit was such a scandal when it aired, I actually got away with writing about it for a current events essay in 11th grade Spanish class. Afterwards there was so much talk of MADONNA BACKLASH!!!!! and IS THE MATERIAL GIRL OVER????, all because the squaresville Letterman audience was so put off by Madonnna's saying "fuck" 47 or whatever times during the 20-minute segment. What babies! I mean, sure, she's kind of an asshole, saying boringly mean things about Dave's hair and giving one-word responses to most of his interview questions, but she makes up for it with all the nervous giggling and fidgeting and cracking herself up at her own jokes. And apparently Letterman's people told her to be outrageous, but I guess they weren't expecting that might include her little spiel about the merits of peeing in the shower. People can be so narrow-minded sometimes. (Liz)
ANIMATED MADONNA IN WHO'S THAT GIRL?
I thought Madonna was an especially foxy cartoon, as evidenced here in the opening credits of Who's That Girl? (An entirely underrated good-bad movie, by the way, and yes, I'm totally, absolutely biased.) (Kat)
Tags: Arsenio Hall, birthdays, black clothes, Desperately Seeking Susan, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Madonna, Marie Antoinette, New York, peeing in the shower, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sean Penn, Wayne's World, Will & Grace