40 Years and 1000 Years

by Harry on December 17, 2006

My eldest (wow, I have an eldest now, not just an elder) is annoyed with me. She’s decided she doesn’t like “folk” music, so doesn’t want me to play Rubber Folk (UK), the brilliant album of covers of Rubber Soul. After two car rides of her quite wrongly berating the covers, we took a ride with several of her friends.

Eldest: “Dad, turn this off”
Friend: “Wait, it’s the Beatles, you don’t like the Beatles?”
Eldest: “Yes, but this isn’t the Beatles, its folk singers copying them”
(2 more songs pass)
Friend: “It’s really, really cool. I love it”
Other Friend: “Yeah, these guys are cool, man” (I’m not kidding, they really talk like this).
Eldest (outraged): “NO THEY’RE NOT.”

They are. There are a couple of less than perfect tracks; The Word, unlikely to be included in anyone’s top 40 Beatles songs, is worse on this album than on the original. But June Tabor’s haunting version of In My Life rivals the original, and Paul Brady’s reinterpretation of You Won’t See Me is, dare I say it, better. Other highlights are Show of Hands and Ralph McTell. The album hangs together well enough to make me long for Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Folk Club Band, and Magical Mystery Folk.

Richard Thompson’s tongue-in-cheek covers album, 1,000 Years of Popular Music (UK), is even better.

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The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Whoville

by Scott McLemee on December 17, 2006

The one thing I enjoy about this season is watching How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Some part of me always hopes things will turn out differently this time — that maybe the Grinch won’t go back to Whoville and return the stuff. (Of course I do know better; still, it’s my holiday wish.) Also, it is impossible not to admire the Grinch’s efficiency.

From the blog Intellectual Conservative, I learn that my green hero is being Semiticized. Who knew?
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