linkthink re: hip-hop, reggae, the US, jamaica, and anything else wayne wants to wax on


saturday morning link dump

  • must. feed. internet.: so i posted some purple haze punch over at da method

  • dr_auratheft has put together some new mixhibits - in blog form to boot ! - including a fine bit o' mirror-mirror exotica.

  • one of w&w's favorite local ahtists, jason chase, recently remixed repainted a switchbox in davis square with one of his vibrant, classic popcorn-box designs

  • how to make a bench: tips from clay ward, another one of w&w's favorite local ahtists

  • psy-ology: graham st. john on a goa festival

  • soul cocina: food blog, meet music blog

  • favela funk: mike davis holds forth

  • banned words from film criticism

  • jeff chang on merrittgate and the so-called rockism/poptomism debate (as usual, we're glad that jeff cantstopwontstop):
    Quite beyond the merits of Merritt's case for being a good white liberal (which, who cares? Right?) the fact is that music criticism is still a very white male-dominant field (as if I have to remind anyone, geezus), and the wounds are always fresh.


    But I don't think any of this stuff gets to the more important question of how our aesthetics function in the world.

    Point blank: Has the 5, 8, 30-year old discussion around popism and rockism helped us establish an aesthetic practice and discourse that changes the world for the better?

    Answer: Nope, it hasn't done shit.

    So I've figured out it's pretty much a waste of my time.

  • moreover, simon says:
    All these issues raised by Merrittgate (and this Marcus quote) dovetail beautifully with the P-ism/R-ism debate because they relate to this idea you get on the loony fringe of P-ism which is that listeners should step outside their own tastes/biases/preconceptions and achieve an impartial state in which things get understood "on their own terms." I don't think that is possible--not completely anyway--and I'm not sure it's particularly desirable, in terms of its effects of music writing. Oh, open-mindedness is good (although there's more to that statement to be unpacked, a lot more, but later for that; and as an ideal, catholicity tends to keep receding beyond one's grasp, given the dizzying multitude of kinds of music and sheer mass of sound) . But empty-mindedness, which is what a certain sort of "rid thyself of all preconceptions" strand of P-ism seems to propose, is not good. What are we, in the end, but our partialities (in both sense of the word)? Strong writing comes from a situated self, a self with preferences and history, but also blindspots. A piece of music (or any other cultural artefact) doesn't just happen to a listener; the person happens back. Experience is the chemical reaction between a cultural artifact and a self that carries plenty baggage with it. So this idea of achieving a self-erased and de-valued subject position from which an ideologically "clear" experience of music X or genre Y can take place is an illusion. And not even a useful illusion.

  • my 2 cents echo simon: anyone who thinks we can talk about music (or even experience music) "non-ideologically" does both music and people a disservice. and is probably a talking android. such stances do not help electric sheep at all. indeed, such stances give voice to a particular sort of ideology: the one that says music transcends the social, so why spoil the experience with all this talk of race and class and other tawdry matters? fuck that.

  • and in the slightly-old-but-relevant category... : DNA, schmeeNA, or how, when pressed on race in new ways, people's "gut" reaction is that genetics aren't so important, historical/social experience is

  • for more links: see my relatively recently formed del.icio.us ish (not yet backlogged through all my bookmarks), for more of what i'm looking at and liking and (likely later) linking to

    Blogger Raniandraja said...

    Interesting Dutch Bubbling link. Although I don't speak Dutch, I got the main idea. Germany also seems to have a huge reggae dancehall scene, or that's what it seems like from the Seed records. Seeed as musicians and producers seem to hit that dancehall feel I look for with tasteful dubish sound effects, heavy bass and hardcore beats with a roots touch. It is hard to dig Jamaican music from non Jamaican artists, but Seeed pulls it off strong, and they add there own touch as well. I wonder if you have any thoughts on Seeed and their Germarican record label. Also, I seem to find some Jamaican records from Soundquake.com (A German record store) that I cannot find here in San Francisco, even with all of our record stores that stock tons of Jamaican vinyl.

    11:23 PM  
    Blogger wayne&wax said...

    you must be referring to the del.icio.us page re: bubbling. yeah, the reason i found that is b/c someone posted an english translation of it in a comment on a post from way back when. definitely an interesting phenomenon.

    as for seeed/germaican stuff, i'm definitely a fan. i've liked a bunch of the seeed stuff i've heard, and the "cure" and "doctor's darling" riddims were among the last couple years' biggest and best, to my ears. surprising that it's not more available in san fran.

    6:17 AM  

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