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You Can't Fix Stupid
By Mick Polich - 11/18/2009 - 09:17 AM EST

You can’t fix stupid…..

Thank you, Ron White!!!!

You can’t fix stupid, honey - no if’s, and’s, or butts…..

And further more, stupid is as stupid does, Lt. Dan….

Is there ‘stupid’ in music? Some folks think so. But then again, some persons’ ‘stupid’ is another persons’ ‘smart’ in music taste.

To me, musical ‘stupid’ is only when someone holds up a form of music as a ‘gold standard’ to judge all before and after it, hallowed be thy muse, thank you very much. For instance, “American Idol” has become a ‘gold standard’ this past decade. Good to great singers? Technically, yes, but heb’bin’ forbid Neil Young, Lucinda Williams, Rickie Lee Jones, or Kurt Cobain trying out. Think they would make the cut? I can hear Simon muttering ‘dreadful’ under his terse British lips.

And that, ladies and gents, would not only be sad, but it would be stupid.

No “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, “Cinnamon Girl” or “Car Wheels On A Gravel Road” – yikes. Well, to my ears, it would be a pretty drab experience. No “Chuck E’s In Love” – brother, major sadness there.

Yep, Forrest, stupid is as stupid does!

But the question remains: can you fix stupid, or not?

What I’ve always found fascinating is the ability of an idea, concept, demigod, or huckster that can separate the buying public from its’ money. Not matter how smart you think you are, or how you’re not going to get fooled again, the snake oil sales person has got a deal for EVERYONE – it’s just a matter of technique, and timing. It has happened to all of us, and it will happen again.

Now, I’m not going to tell you about some biased list that I have of musicians, and music, that need launching to one of Jupiter’s moons. As soon as I mention some group, or music style that I have no use for, then somebody writes in, and says, ”Gosh, Mr. Polich, you sure were awfully cruel on so-and-so, and such-and-such.”  Then, my Catholic, and catholic, guilt gets the better of me, and I mea cupa my way out of the verbal snag.

But you know what? I’m going to bash the living poop out of some musicians and music, because little Johnny, even Santa Claus gets beat up!

Cruel, maybe, but hey, isn’t a little spice worth a few laughs???

Here’s my hit list….

Britney Spears: You would expect avoiding such an easy target, oy vey???

Given this latest episode with the Aussies, America’s rep as over-bearing hicks and slobs continues. Seriously – get a clue here. But I doubt anything earthshaking will happen with her life or career that will help her wake the @#$#@ up, but I could be way off base. Like Rosanne Barr said years ago about fearing white trash with money, the Spear Factor keeps going. The cultural dumbing - down apocalypse is nigh. And all this, without a HINT of irony…….

David Hasselhoff: Never got the Hoff, never will. Remember his ‘80’s pop rock album that he made right around the time he was starring in “Night Rider”? Neither do I, but it’s out there, because I’ve seen the bloody gloves. And how the hell did he get that gig on “America’s Got Talent”? Probably Dave’s apex was the You Tube video of him eating the hamburger. At least they love him in Germany….

Jessica Simpson – you know, she’s an o.k. singer, better than what I could do, but the tabloid stuff??? Fahgettaboutit – just move on, and ‘mature up’, please. I really think she gets nervous if she’s NOT in the Enquirer. Get married, see if you could settle into motherhood (don’t you people roll your eyes about ‘a woman’s place’, because that’s not what I mean), because hey, parenting is an eye - opener on sooo many things. One thing, it could jump-start your creativity because you’re forced to focus on someone else other that yourself for awhile. Find a nice Texas boy who doesn’t play football, and just settle in for a spell, will ya???

Slickly packaged, this lot  - oh, and yes, their lives are far more interesting than ours!!!!!

(Yawn) ……..oh, excuse me, is “SportsCenter” on yet?

O.k., o.k., so far, these choices are fairly obvious. You could go anywhere on the ‘net, and find some deeper cuts and bashing about these folks. But you’re here, and you’re reading so far, so let’s continue. I mean, really, am I off here? No matter who you pick, or what music style, you’re going to break some eggs.

You guys want me to hit on rap, right? Nope, won’t do it. Honestly, I got left at the door once Public Enemy went, but rap has been historically such an easy genre to target ( angry, violent, misogynistic). Metal – same thing. Sorry.

Emo-pop, emo-folk, emo-metal, etc. - yeah, again, this genre sets itself up because it’s basically a young persons’ music that is getting older by the minute. Admittedly, I do enjoy some groups from the caldron (Dashboard Confessional, Fallout Boy, My Chemical Romance), but really, they’re touching on subjects I’ve left behind, so ‘emo’ – tionally, I’m not there all the way with them. Fun, though.

BLAST FROM THE PAST STUPID: I’m almost done with the umpteenth bio on Led Zeppelin. I swore to all that was rational and sane I would never read another Zep bio again – wrong. It is an excellent read, sure to generate lawsuits from the principals’ right and left, but a treat to us fans. Anyway, I’m to the part of the 1985 Live Aid concerts, and the on-stage Zep reunion with Phil Collins guesting on drums. I remember this all too well – we had some time off from the music store, and gigging, and I remember tuning in to MTV when the ‘VJs’ were breathlessly awaiting the arrival of Phil Collins from London to Philly to play dual drums with Tony Thompson of Power Station and Chic fame. You thought it was the Royal wedding, Second Coming, and the Northern Ireland peace accord rolled into one by all the coverage by MTV.

Honestly, I had been disappointed by Zep since “The Song Remains The Same” movie, which I went to see with some high school buds and bud-dettes when it premiered. Man, was I bummed with that movie – what the living HELL was all this crap???!! Mediocre versions of classic Zep songs, ‘fantasy’ sequences – WHAT???!!

Now, ”Live Aid” – well, time to give the ol’ punters the good college try, and…. again…. WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING????!!! Robert Plant, hoarse, and off-key, Jimmy Page, WAY out of tune Les Paul. Plus, Phil Collins – Phil doesn’t even KNOW the songs. Tony Thompson summed it up beautifully, with something like, ” Apparently, Mr. Collins didn’t feel the need to learn the numbers.” My buddy, guitar wiz John Salak, put the exclamation point on with,” Wow, it sure HAS been a long time since Robert Plant rock and rolled!”  Indeedy,do…….

Yet, a brief aside into sports ‘stupid’: normally, I will watch “Monday Night Football” until the cows come home, or I fall asleep (usually, the latter). Last night, I watched, and actually felt moist eyes of sadness, while shaking my head in disbelief at what was happening on the field with the Cleveland Browns. Shut out by the Baltimore Ravens, it was a study in ineptitude that I haven’t witnessed since my Philly Eagles’ Hindenberg Disaster of 1998. It went way, way beyond feeling sorry – these poor guys, YIKES!!!! You will have some champions someday, Cleveland - ites, just not the Brownies of this season…..

I could go on, but you all get the point by now.

Stupid is as stupid does, Bubba!




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