Saturday, August 18, 2012

"...Just Having A Little Poke At Taylor, He Said, Swiftly..."

The Borg had it all wrong.

Resistance is futile?

Pish tosh.

I've been resisting, for years now, the inevitable incredible pull on my psyche of the traditional, and very human, force of aging.

Working most of my life in the creative arts (music, writing, radio, et al) has given me an edge over my more traditionally traveled peers.

Then again, a lot of them are happily retired and reasonably well off while I'm still wandering around waiting for my big break so, as G often opines, everything is a tradeoff.

Lately, though, even the youthful attitude in which I wallow, thanks to pretty much every waking hour spent in the pursuit of the aforementioned music, writing, radio, et al, has taken on a little water, sinking me ever closer to the very real possiblity that I might, despite my best efforts, finally morph into that which I have dedicated my life to not become.


Oh, I'm not so naive, vain or deluded that I feel the need to either deny, or regret, the graying of hair, the protruberance of paunch, the aches, pains and/or laments that come with the passing of time. I dress casually (again, thanks to the profession{s}) but I don't think my walking by elicits anywhere near the "tsk tsks" that, say, Madonna evokes these days with her 54 year old carcass crammed into the get up of the average 24 year old.

And though I really do (always have and always will) think that the pop music of the 1950's and 1960's will never be surpassed (and that even includes my guilty pleasure inclusion of Donnie Iris singing "Ah, Leah" on my treadmill IPod),  I have managed, for the most and larger part, to resist any generationally induced temptation to refer to contemporary music as "lame", "useless" "superficial", "irrelevent" or that greatest of the great, that time honored acknowledgement that my opinion of today's sounds have evolved from an OMG/IKR mindset to one labeled AARP.

No thanks to Taylor Swift.

Vis a vi her current "raced to the top of the charts" single. (Apologies if you have to sit through the inevitable :30 hype beforehand....sign of the times)....

Okay. First, the disclaimer.

I totally get why she is a superstar.

She writes and sings songs that hit her audience dead smack center of where they live.

But I'm noticing something here.

Most singer/songwriters, at least those that I have either known, worked with or simply enjoyed through the years, tend to "progress", "grow", even, say, "mature" with both their lyrics and their melodies as time passes, they live and learn more as they, to put it simply, grow up.

Find a copy of "Meet The Beatles" and play it.

Then find a copy of "Rubber Soul" and play it.

The time between those two recordings is less than eighteen months.

Taylor, on the other hand, has apparently decided to become unique in pop music in yet another way.


Her lyrics seem to be moving from heart felt, angst and/or anger flavored odes castrating one bad boyfriend or another, totally relatable and enrapturing the average thirteen year old to heart felt, angst and/or anger flavored odes to one bad boyfriend or another, totally relatable and enrapturing the average ten year old.

Don't get me wrong. Ain't nobody's bizness how anybody does de bizness.

And Taylor shure do sum bizness.

In fact, my whip smart six and half year old granddaughter Olivia knows all the words, back and forth, to all of Taylor's heart felt, angst and/or anger flavored odes...yada, yada.

Friday morning on the radio show, I played a snippet of the new tune and then, in a spirit of professional camaraderie, called upon my own moderately known gifts as a songwriter and suggested a few song titles that might assist Taylor with the direction she seems to be taking with her work, titles that I think, given where it seems to be headed, she could totally run with.

"I Don't Like You and You Can't Have Any Of My Skinny Cow"

"Why Do You Have To Be Such A Poopy Head?"

"My Easy Bake Oven Light Is Burned Out And I Suspect You".

"Who Needs Nike or L'Oreal? I'm The New Spokesperson for Fisher-Price".

"And You Thought Justin Bieber Was Annoying."

And, last, but I think absolutely the one that will become her signature tune...

"I'm Actually Almost 23, But Adele Has That Market Nailed Down".

Taylor seems like a nice kid.

And she makes Olivia happy.

So, live and let listen, I suppose.

Of course, I realize that, having been a little impish with the icon, I'm going to get emails offering song titles Taylor can use to get even with me.

No need, girls.

She already has that covered.

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