Happy Belated Anniversary to Myself
It seems I let my Blogiversary pass without an appropriately self-indulgent posting. What have I become?
I've been occupied with a few other writing assignments that I'll fill you in on as they come to press. Here are some of the things that I've been ruminating on:
- Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame: Among all the major sports, baseball is probably the most protective and careful in its screening of HoF candidates (though they certainly make mistakes); football is among the least selective, yet it makes a huge amount of mistakes (no Art Monk?). However, no HoF is as ridiculous as the RnRHoF. What are the criteria? Let's look at the "Performer" category since that's what I care about:
Artists become eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first record. Criteria include the influence and significance of the artist?s contributions to the development and perpetuation of rock and roll.
The Foundation?s nominating committee, composed of rock and roll historians, selects nominees each year in the Performer category. Ballots are then sent to an international voting body of about 1,000 rock experts. Those performers who receive the highest number of votes, and more than 50 percent of the vote, are inducted. The Foundation generally inducts five to seven performers each year.
O.k. The criteria are 1. age and 2. "influence and significance." Of course, it's the nominating committee who proposes these people, then anybody getting 50%--50%!!!--of the vote gets in. For comparison, baseball requires 75%.
Somebody explain to me Traffic's lasting significant contribution to rock-n-roll? Yes, it provided a place for Steve Winwood to work, and once Eric Clapton, but what the hell? What is ZZ Top's lasting significant contribution to rock-n-roll, except a couple of music videos and a lasting permanence in America's strip clubs? Oh yeah, and the beards and spinning guitars. They've got what, 5 songs max that get airplay. Does anybody own a ZZ Top album? Were it not for the videos, they'd be relegated to obscurity.
Bob Seger is one of those close but no cigar people for me. Lots of really good songs and a characteristic sound--you wouldn't mistake his band for anybody else's. Still, where is the influence and significance? That he sang "Old Time Rock-n-Roll"? Does that mean Huey Lewis and the News get in for singing "The Heart of Rock-n-Roll"? His contributions to songwriting as advertising for "Like a Rock"? I don't begrudge him selling the song, but that's not a lasting influence on rock-n-roll. He's the guy who makes a lot of All-Star teams, but is clearly not a legend.
- Hank Kingsley Fan Club: If you're like Hank Kingsley and have a thing for the Asian ladies, give a peak at the LPGA sometime. The final group was three women of Asian descent--Grace Park, Aree Song, and Jung Yeon Lee, the first two finished first and second--and of course Hawai'ian Michelle Wie. There are at least a half dozen others sprinkled through the leaderboard.
I'm also surprised that people are surprised how good Wie is. Don't teenage girls dominate just about every individual athletic sport? Gymnastics, tennis, diving, skating. Why should golf be different?
- The Canadian Influence?: Maine apparently is moving to universal healthcare. It'll be interesting to see how this plays out. Maine has been at the forefront of efforts to use market power on behalf of its citizens to control pricing of pharmaceuticals. Good for them. I can't wait to see the evaluation results.
O.k., I guess that's it for now.