The Pretenders first record is one of my favorite records of all time and a capstone to my collection. I am throwing on a song from it because another blogger was talking about this album and fired me up!
You can’t pick a bad song-even my least favorite “Brass In Pocket” is better than 98% of all commercial rock music produced since 1950- and it is only my least fav because the rest of this record is so damn strong.
The power and energy in this candy coated but bittersweet melodic punk music is unrivaled.
Chrissie Hynde is the Queen of Rock Music.
The Pretenders first record is nothing short of brilliant.
I love it and all it stands for.
It has got me working on a post to unveil my top 10 records ever made (long overdue) and will come out on a blog near you real soon.
And just in case you need to see this song in a softer light to feel the genius of it- I offer you this:
Warning! Nostalgia is coming up from the depths to sink your little ship of happiness. Nostalgia will rob you of great new experience happening all around you. Nostalgia will stop your brain from firing and creating new pathways as you learn and evolve…nostalgia is killing you! There is only one cure- new stuff for the brain.
I know this is rich coming from a guy that runs a blog about digging up good songs from everywhere. But the key here is: we dig them up and polish them off while trying to keep them in perspective; organizing these artifacts in line with their place in music history and go rescue some more. We don’t dwell on them and live with them…there is a reason that the past is gone and if you try to live there, you will diminish yourself to the point of an unfunny joke. Yes, nostalgia is that bad.
I can’t even listen to “classic rock” radio…Could you please play “Stairway” and “Freebird” again my brain is not numb; if I hear “Come Sail Away” or in fact anything else from Styx again…I am pretty sure with a good lawyer that I cannot be held responsible for the ensuing panic attack that will hit me. Why would you choose to live with this stuff and just stay there? The brain is not stretching and creating new things…it is stuck in dangerous limbo and suffocating on stale air. Get on that bus and head to the Church basement for a bingo game…it is over…you are done! (O.K, getting on a bus and attending a rousing bingo game is an upgrade for ‘Mr Classic Rock”)
So I strongly encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and find something different to tackle; I don’t care what it is. And when I say listen; I mean really get in to the depths of what they are saying and who they are saying it to, let the sound wash over you. Fall in love with a new band or genre…really listen.
And if you do this…magic might happen. The magic of understanding and really enjoying something that was unknown before. Now you are not just sampling something for the sake of exploration. You have added something new- you have forced the brain to change and grow. This does not mean that the old favorites will be replaced; the opposite happens as there is more variety to help frame them and place them in perspective. I did this a few years ago with Hip-Hop as I listened and listened ‘till I found something that would stick and gain traction in my rock n roll conscious. I discovered GZA from Wu-Tang and was blown away by the lyrical assassin. The beat is wrapped around the words and the words are something I did not expect- they are intelligent and insightful and relevant. The music is open to interpretation and can be enjoyed by people from all walks and ages and situations.
And this goes the other way as well. The 15 year old can learn a lot from ditching Mac Miller for a day and cranking up a little Led Zeppelin.