Thursday, October 11, 2007

On Rock Countdowns, Hold Music, and Other Important Matters

  • When WXPN started hyping their 885 Music Moments Countdown, I was skeptical; it seemed like another excuse for baby boomers to congratulate themselves on the awesomeness of the sixties. (Seriously, if the top 10 vote-getters don't include the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, Dylan going electric, Woodstock, and the deaths of John Lennon and Kurt Cobain, I will buy a hat and eat it.) The countdown itself, however, has been pretty entertaining. Aside from the usual head-slapping rankings (in whose mind is the release of Flashdance more memorable than The Last Waltz?), there are some pleasant surprises to be found, from somewhat obscure but important events (the founding of Factory Records, for example), guilty pleasures (the Spice Girls' debut), influential TV shows (including The OC and Beavis and Butt-Head), and moments that don't technically exist (the release of Chinese Democracy). Be sure to check out the countdown's blog, which appends almost every entry with links and/or videos.
  • It was bound to happen eventually, but Pitchfork has finally caught on to the fact that Sally Forth is one of the most subversively hip mainstream comics around (see here for more evidence). And Ted Forth, a geeky, pop-culture obsessed trophy husband, is the closest thing you're likely to find to a Nick Hornby protagonist in your daily paper.
  • I have a newfound respect for the people who write the music that plays when your phone call gets put on hold. It undoubtedly a tough job; the music should be soothing to keep the caller from getting pissed at having to wait, inoffensive enough that they won't hang up the phone in disgust or complain about the filth they were forced to listen to, and on a purely basic level, it should be a subtle reminder them that they are still connected and keep them faithful that someone will answer eventually. All of this stands in stark contrast to the hold music I encountered the other day: a high-pitched, electronic of "Fur Elise" that sounded like a cell phone ring from 1998. My first instinct on hearing it was to hold the phone two feet from my ear. So hold music composers of the world, I salute you for merely annoying me rather than assaulting my eardrums.
  • It may be a bit melodramatic to say that there is a Veronica Mars curse, but it's certainly possible that none of the show's talented cast members will ever be involved in anything so good again. Just look at what some of the stars have been up to in the five months since Mars's demise: Kristen Bell's voice (but not the rest of her) is featured on Gossip Girl, and there's been no sign of her supposed role on Heroes. Jason Dohring is on that awful-looking Angel rip-off, while Chris Lowell is on that awful-looking Grey's Anatomy spin-off. Saddest of all is Percy Daggs III, whom I just saw in a television commercial for Jim Gaffigan's favorite frozen entree. I guess we'll always have Neptune, though.

1 comment:

yellojkt said...

Flashdance is very memorable movie and The Last Waltz put me to sleep.