MUSIC MONDAYS: What the heck, Beck!
Happy Week! (Yep, there’s enough Beck out there to keep everyone attuned for weeks. Pun intended. Ha ha.)
Tonight, I’m taking on this late post while Rob is busy contributing to an upcoming book about duct tape (!!!). He will reveal all when he’s able. Exciting stuff!
The fab thing about Music Mondays is that no matter what band we cover, it happily forces us to immerse ourselves into the music. We ask ourselves to relive, discover, or learn more about a band. This weekend was no exception.
Beck is outrageous. In the best way possible.
One of Rob’s fave memories is blasting Odelay as a bartender at this super fun bar of yesteryear called Molly’s in Chapel Hill, NC. Since it’s one of his favorite party albums of all times, he’d crank it often.
Even cooler is that Rob remembers listening to it while reading literary sensation Dave Eggers’ A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius . Recollected Rob, “Somehow those two things seem apt together. I don’t think they came out at the same time or anything…just a random thought!” Ironic + apropos.
(Odelay was recently noted by Rolling Stone as one of the top 500 greatest albums of all time. #306.)
Beck is pretty darn super great. Sometimes he makes sense. Sometimes not. His wordplay is worth the ponder. He’s an artistic chameleon that is influenced by numerous musical styles from (anti) folk / indie to hip hop to country to psychedelic rock to Latin to funk to Blues. It’s crazy how he blends all! But somehow he does. To wit, his multi-facetedness:
- Street Musician.
- Mic Opportunist.
He’s kind of like a modern day Henry David Thoreau. Marching to the beat of his own drum – and then some!
I’m personally fascinated with his collaborations and contributions, including: Air; Emmylou Harris; Charlotte Gainsbourg; Jamie Lidell; Thurston Moore (of Sonic Youth); Twilight: Eclipse (soundtrack, “Let’s Get Lost” with Bat For Lashes); True Blood (song “Bad Blood”); supermodel Karen Elson (as in Jack White’s ex-wife + mother of his children) + others.
For Karen, Beck produced her really good upcoming cover of “Gold Dust Woman” (listen here) on the upcoming Fleetwood Mac Tribute album, Just Tell Me That You Want Me. (I pre-ordered it + looks fantastic!) 17 covers. Wild range of talent included on it.
He also offered a beautiful – teary for me – rendition of “Corrina Corrina” (listen here) for Christy Turlington Burns’ charity album in partnership with Starbucks, Every Mother Counts 2012, to stem maternal mortality particularly in developing countries. Other artists included David Bowie, Lauryn Hill, Patti Smith, Sade, Coldplay, Bono and the Edge, Rufus Wainwright, Eddie Vedder, and more. Wow.
And just when you thought you had Beck all figured out (not), tonight I found a cover of Woody Guthrie’s “Ain’t Got No Home ” (listen here) from the mid-90s on his website (he’s come a long way from open mic nights…). Very cool. Very old skool. Very dear.
Nope, Beck has not found his calling…No status quo for him…That’s what makes him interesting.
And that’s what keeps us listening.
Our combined playlist (album info here):
The Golden Age
The New Pollution
Lord Only Knows
Where It’s At
Pay No Mind
Nitemare Hippy Girl
Que Ondo Guero
One Foot In The Grave
Nicotine & Gravy
(for fun) DJ Reset - Mash-up of Beck, Pharrell Williams, Jay-Z
Frontin’ On Debra