Give the Drummer Some's
4 Favorite Downloads from the MP3 Blogosphere
In addition to the usual download selections, this week's Mining the Audio Motherlode offers a brief commentary on the recent Kanye West imbroglio.
The entire event seemed preconceived: The staging appeared blocked; the camera angles locked in; the Hollywood happy-ending scripted as if drawn up on a lunch napkin at Spago. Even more telling is that all involved had so much to gain: Kanye re-upped his bad-boy bona fides; Taylor got boosted into the pop-star stratosphere; Beyoncé cemented her status as the #1 one-name überdiva. Of course the increasingly irrelevant music biz profited most of all.
Set piece or not, what's truly disturbing about this third-rate melodrama is how the roles played by its three principals conjure those familiar old racist paradigms: 1) Angry black man; 2) innocent white ingenue (menaced by angry black man); 3) benevolent black mama (who cuts the black man down to size, reassuring the white power structure).
The detestable irony in all this is the unwitting involvement of President Obama, whose "jackass" comment only served to legitimize these standard-issue racial stereotypes. Is it any surprise that his off-the-record utterance was leaked? How better to cut our African-American-in-Chief down to size.
The whole thing was a trap. The extent to which we as a collective culture lock-stepped so willingly into its steel teeth suggests that there are still many more miles to trudge through the backwoods of the American soul before coming home for some steaming post-racial porridge.
R.I.P. Luther Thomas
Human Arts Ensemble ~ Live, Vol. 1"
(Nothing Is V2.0)
Give the Drummer Some, Fridays on WFMU, 9 to Noon (ET).
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