Saturday, September 6, 2008

History Songs


This is historical, right?

Jean Redpath--Mary Hamilton
Carter Family--John Hardy
Mississippi John Hurt--Talking Casey Jones
Bob Dylan--Talking Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues
Dylan--Pawn in their Game
GSH--Whitey on the MOon
Mos Def--Dollar Day
Talib Kweli--The Proud
Bushonomics--Talib Kweli
American Terrorist--lupe fiasco
pharoah monch--agent orange
Nina Simone--Go Limp

20 comments:

ToffeeBoy said...

Loved the Mary Hamilton and the Bushnomics - who's that by?

Have to admit I skipped the two Dylan tracks...

TracyK said...

Is it wrong to have a crush on Michael Palin? I heart him...

ejaydee said...

Did Saneshane fix boxstr? "Do you find it wisible".

I'm loving Jean Redpath's spoken word, how much of hers do you have?

saneshane said...

ejaydee.. it's taken a while to get boxstr to play.. and 3 different systems!

steenbeck said...

We have a few albums. I just love her. Her fuzzy voice, Her sense of humor, her spare and beautiful treatment of potentially too-sentimental subjects...I'll do a post!

steenbeck said...

No it's not wrong to have a crush on Michael Palin! In Highschool my best friend and I fancied Eric Idle. Nothing so sexy as humor, no?

ejaydee said...

I was asking because I'd like a single CD and was wondering if there was a suitable collection available.

steenbeck said...

Ah, I see, you might try First Flight, which contains songs from her first three albums, I believe, and is quite a few songs for the money...

TracyK said...

Exactly Steenbeck, he has such a naughty twinkle. Perfect manners too, which is a bonus for me...

Abahachi said...

Just wanted to comment on your moon question from Friday night - I haven't taken a viw of silence on the 'Spill as well as RR, I was just busy building a woodshed over the weekend.

I think - on the basis of only sketchy knowledge, but when has that ever stopped me having an opinion? - that you're absolutely right that the significance, cultural, political and psychological, of the moon landings has faded over time. I do wonder whether, by 1969, it had already begin to fade in comparison with the 1950s, esp. when the Russians were in the lead in the space race and the whole thing was overtly an extension of the Cold War. There seem to have been attempts in recent years to try to reinvigorate enthusiasm - all the fuss about the Mars landers, and hasn't Bush been making ambitious promises about sending men to Mars? - but it doesn't seem to have had that much effect.

Not sure why. One possibility is that we've lost faith in visions of the future, or at any rate in that vision of the future, once we actually got to 1999 and there was no sign of Moonbase Alpha. I wonder too about the impact of Star Wars and the ability of film since then to produce visions of the future that created disconcerting mismatches with the humdrum reality of actual space travel. 2001 was connected to our world; it was amazing, but was also conceivable as an extension of what was already possible, whereas now we've lost any sense of wonder at the sort of space travel currently within our reach and there's no sign of any dramatic chance in the near future.

What this question really brought to mind was one of my heroes, as noted last week, J.G.Ballard. Ballard gets labelled as SF, but he has no interest at all in conventional science fiction (and coined a brilliant put-down for Star Wars: "hobbits in space"). His focus is on 'inner space', and one of his themes (esp. in his brilliant short stories; much better, and certainly much more accessible, than his novels) is the psychological impact of the moon landings on astronauts and on culture as a whole. His argument was that even in the 70s no one had properly come to terms with what the landings meant or how they would change things, and he's written more recently about his despair at the effective cessation of real space exploration, as a betrayal of the human spirit of adventure and drive to investigate the unknown. Almost all my books are in boxes in the loft, but I'll try to look out a couple of the stories to recommend.

steenbeck said...

Thanks, Abahachi, I would be curious to read those stories.

I actually asked my father (the history professor) about this whole space travel/national insecurity idea and he said there was some truth to it. (he remembers watching the moon landing while everyone in the room passed around a collicky 1-month-old, trying to get it to stop crying. Ahem). Anyway, he said that, to many people at the time, it felt as if the world as they knew it was falling apart, and the moon landing was some kind of unifying gesture they could all be proud of. (USA USA USA)

And now that Bush couldn't have further screwed things up at home or made America more hated abroad, what's left but to colonize Mars??

Just out of curiosity, what is your area of historical expertise?

nilpferd said...

Meanwhile, my parents were handing round a scrawny 4 month old, unaware that his relatively rare first name was about to become as common as dust...

FP said...

No can do ladies - I'd rather cuddle up to teddy bear Jack Black (given the choice) than Michael Palin. He's all yours. :-)

steenbeck said...

Nice story, Nilpferd. Or can we call you "Buzz?"

Mmmm, Jack Black in sky blue tights in Nacho Libre. Actually, I like Jack Black and he might be fun to hang out with, but that's about as far as it goes. Same for Palin, I'm afraid.

nilpferd said...

No! It never happened, alright?!

I seem to remember having a discussion with TonNL at the end of an RR blog last year, where it transpired that it was actually the Swiss who made the landings.. something to do with the moon being out of cheese, and the Swiss inventing the plastic wrap cladding for the space shuttle..

steenbeck said...

Of course, Nilpferd and TonNL. And that would fit with my national insecurity theory, because the Swiss have always been SO anxious to prove military might and world domination!

Abahachi said...

The Swiss are on my list of scary nations upon whom it is always wise to keep at least one eye: centuries of peace and neutrality, but delve into their history and you discover that they were once the most feared and savage fighters in medieval Europe - why do you think the Pope has Swiss guards? The Swedes are another lot, suddenly cutting a bloody swathe through central Europe during the Thirty Years War for no terribly good reason...

@Steenbeck: I'm mainly an ancient historian - Greek and Roman history, largely from the economic and social perspective - but with side interests in historical theory, historiography, modern conceptions of antiquity and its relation to modernity, ideas of historical development, and an ability to use this knowledge to generate pretentious comments on more or less anything...

ejaydee said...

Damn right about the Swiss Army. They only lost one battle (Marignan, 1515), and it was the last one they fought. They knew when to quit.

FP said...

But how do they do it with those amazing diddy little army knives?

Abahachi said...

Their main weapon was an enormous pike - presumably the knife includes a foldaway fish-hook.