Tuesday, November 05, 2002

Hi Kid:



Just got the new George Harrison single in the mail today. It's funny, yesterday I received the new reissue of "Mind Games," and a couple days before that, an EPK for George's new record, "Brainwashed."



Oh yeah: An "EPK" is an electronic press kit, or basically a short promo video for a new record or whatever. It's one of those cute "insider" terms, like "J-card" and "hed" and "cutline" and "slug," that you feel kind of "cool" using, but also like an asshole if someone nearby doesn't know what you mean. To tell you the truth, i don't really know what a "slug" is myself, unless it's the short name that an article is given on the "run sheet"---oops, I did it again!



Special Secret Music/Journo Vocab Install. 1 (sshhh!):



1. EPK (see above)

2. J-card: a very '90s term, sadly rare today, for the cardboard thingy in a cassette tape

3. Hed: (LOVE it) Headline

4. Cutline: photo caption

5. Slug: short name given to a story on the runsheet? (MATT you would know)

6. Runsheet: The list of stories running in an issue or edition or whatever you want to call it

7. Flak: A publicity person (I never use this word. You have to be VERY cool to use it.)

8. Hack: Moi!

9. Lede: Cutesy journalistic spelling for Lead. A lead is the first line or so of your article. I do not understand the tradition of spelling lead "lede." I can understand "hed" because it saves letters, and it's just generally way cool. "Lede" does not save letters and is pretentious.



A Word On Leads:

Anyone who thinks that journalism is easy has obviously never understood the concept of leads. Such a person has probably never written a good lead, and doesn't even know it.



Writing leads is like breakups, like the first day of your period, like getting a tooth pulled: Incredibly unpleasant, and something you basically just know you're gonna have to go through (though you put it off for days or weeks or years), but it's not gonna kill you, and you'll feel much better when it's over.



That is, I have never heard of a lead killing someone---but that doesn't mean it's not possible.



But back to George Harrison. OK, now, here's the thing.



I live for E.L.O. It's nothing to brag about, but there it is.



Ask me how I spell Triumph, and I say E.L.O.



But Jeff Lynne's production/arranging instincts only apply within the alternate sonic universe of E.L.O. They only shine in all their glory on his songs, because only he knows how to write songs that aren't diminished by the je ne sais quack of it all.



I mean, OK, the Travelling Wilburys was fun, but come on: It wasn't one tenth as good as E.L.O., and anyway he wrote a lot of that stuff.



And yeah, Tom Petty had a lot of hits with Jeff Lynne's production, but that doesn't mean it was cool. So uncool.



So the point here is that on aforementioned "EPK," Jeff Lynne admitted that he didn't really follow George's dying wish to create a stripped-down, non-"posh" record. Jeff went ahead anyway and poshed the shit up, and even put in the mighty dangerous Jeff Lynne signature acoustic guitar strums.



I've only heard the first single, and the song itself is not that stellar, and the result is lame.



Why, o why?



Paul McCartney is currently re-producing "Let It Be," which seems very right and as it should be. (Don't you think he should George Martin in on that shit, too?)



I think one day someone else will re-produce "Brainwashed."



Then again, I've only heard one song, so don't listen to me.



Now, back to Charlie Watts. Jim Walsh wrote in:



"i was just telling my sister about why it's always worth seeing the stones: "charlie watts. he's the anchor, babe. allows mick (a great lead singer) and keith (a great guitarist) to be high-flying kites to his steady spool.



i thought bill wyman was a dork, but a pretty likable dork, and ripping those two apart still hurts.



i mean, hubba-hubba. just listen to charlie hit that fucking snare drum. no cooler sound in the world; like a gunshot you know isn't a gunshot.



they had rhythm together, which is all that matters. he should beg them to let him back in. who the fuck plays bass for the stones now, anyway? who cares?dude, all you have to do is just say, 'i'm back. i'm a stone. i'll do

whatever charlie wants for as long as he wants. playing with him is like playing with God.'"



Yeah, plus Bill Wyman had that weird Rolling Stone face that you either have or don't have.



Anyone else got some personal insight into Charlie?



Love,

Kate

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