Pharyngula

Baby loves…disco?

Usually I’m complaining about some fresh inanity from the religious side, but I have to be fair: this is an example of secular child abuse. It’s the Baby Loves Disco franchise, that is driving parents to bring the little kiddies to a club, where they are forced to relive the horrors of the 70s, with Travolta-esque dancers and the shrill falsettos of the Bee Gees ringing in their ears.

I lived through the 70s. I was on the dating scene in the 70s. I have been to a KC and the Sunshine Boys concert; I have seen the glitter and the flash, and heard the maddening, endless beats. I would never inflict such a nightmare on my children, nor would I want to be in a room with a disco ball — it might trigger flashbacks.

Oh, well. It could be worse. It could be Christian disco (yes, there is such a thing.)

Comments

  1. #1 Raynfala
    February 26, 2008

    Must… close… italics… tag…

  2. #2 zer0
    February 26, 2008

    Open Italics own your face…

  3. #3 October Mermaid
    February 26, 2008

    I like how they chose the creepiest possible caption for that second picture “Some people actually borrow kids to come here with.” It’s the feel-weird story of the year!

  4. #4 DanioPhD
    February 26, 2008

    I, too, have scary memories of the disco era, but this phenomenon sounds pretty harmless in the greater scheme of things. My 5 year old daughter’s favorite song of the year (so far) is “Girls just wanna have fun”. If I could take her to a dance party like this to get her groove on, I’d be there in a heartbeat.

  5. #5 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    “It’s about a generation of people who have kids but still want to go out.”

    then maybe, just maybe, they SHOULDN’T HAVE HAD KIDS

    or keep the kids and join all the previous generations who didn’t want to give up parts of their own lives once they had kids, but did anyway. because that’s how it works

  6. #6 CJColucci
    February 26, 2008

    It was KC and the Sunshine Band.

    By now, though, they must be old enough to be portrayed by The Sunshine Boys.

  7. #7 Doug
    February 26, 2008

    That would be KC and the Sunshine Band, not Sunshine Boys. (and I was but a youngun’ when they were shakin’ their booty)

  8. #8 danley
    February 26, 2008

    Disco Institute.

  9. #9 Tosser
    February 26, 2008

    A Christian disco? Oh, do tell.

  10. #10 nal
    February 26, 2008

    Earlier BeeGee’s were better. (First of May)
    But didn’t you met the trophy wife during this time?

  11. #11 blf
    February 26, 2008

    Christian disco (yes, there is such a thing.)

    doubting the squidmeister, i did a quick internet search for same, vaguely hoping to find a video showing such. unfortunately, i did. at which point, my small intestine, recalling the strategy from a douglas adams book and attempting to save whatever’s left of my brain, pinned my arms to the chair before i could click the fatal link. fortunately for me, but unfortunately for those of you still reading this, i can type with my nose. fortunately for the readers, but not for me, i can’t cdesign’n’paste, so no linky clicky thingy…

  12. #12 paul lurquin
    February 26, 2008

    Disco bad, eh? You just try to out-orgasm Donna Summer. Yeah, just try.

  13. #13 Hank
    February 26, 2008

    Not only is there christian disco, but christian death- and black metal(!). The mind boggles.

  14. #14 Jonathan
    February 26, 2008

    Christian Disco… Chrisco? :) It even SOUNDS greasy :)

  15. #15 Cain
    February 26, 2008

    Shorter skyotter: Damn whippersnappers! We got by on alcoholism and adultery and you should too!

  16. #16 Brownian, OM
    February 26, 2008

    It’s half-past-two and the club is pumping. A badly dressed, sweaty man in his mid-30s is strutting his stuff to Night Fever, while a girl young enough to be his daughter smiles fondly.

    As the glitterball twirls above and the light squares on the dancefloor flash, the man is transported back to his youth, when this sort of thing happened every Saturday.

    Night Fever might have been rocking the clubs in this man’s youth, but even if he’s 38 now he sure as hell wasn’t old enough to be clubbing when disco was in its heyday.

    This isn’t nostalgia; its creative anachronism.

  17. #17 Rey Fox
    February 26, 2008

    “A Christian disco? Oh, do tell.”

    Don’t. Please don’t.

    “Chrisco?”

    LOL! For real!

  18. #18 Bride of Shrek
    February 26, 2008

    ” Meanwhile the mums, dressed in tight-fitting glittery T-shirts and hotpants, dance manically around their changing bags, teaching their offspring some moves.”

    There are so many things so totally utterly wrong about that sentence I don’t know where to begin.

  19. #19 mona
    February 26, 2008

    Christian death metal? (#13) It makes sense. They’ve been self-contradictory for a couple millenia now. This seems a bit mild compared to the idea of an all-loving, all-knowing being deciding that, say, war, disease, and famine are acceptable creations. They might be able to reach that level of self-destruction once they manage to create a Christian-death metal-gangster rap- avant-jazz group.

    Remember: it is certain because it is impossible!

  20. #20 PZ Myers
    February 26, 2008

    OK, I got the band name wrong. I’ve been trying to forget, people!

    And yes, that was the era in which I was dating the Trophy Wife. We did not go to discos. In fact, for our first couple of dates, we went to…

    …church.

    (people never believe me when I tell them that.)

  21. #21 The Reality Based Dave
    February 26, 2008

    A few years back, I was digging through the used records bin at a Half-Price Books store. I saw an album from the 80’s of jazzercise music. OK. That’s cringe-worthy. I took a closer look when I noticed it was christian jazzercise music. Ok. Shivers with the cringes. I made the mistake of reading the back & saw it was produced in Waco, TX.
    I bought it.
    Never played it.

  22. #22 BicycleRepairMan
    February 26, 2008

    On a completely unrelated note, the Encyclopedia of Life has opened its doors today, it is the brainchild of EO Wilson

    The idea is to catalogue every known species in one slick, ever-growing online encyclopedia..

    http://www.videosift.com/video/2007-TED-Prize-winner-EO-Wilson-on-TEDTalks
    http://www.videosift.com/video/The-Encyclopedia-of-Life

    And of course, the site itself:
    http://www.eol.org

    Perhaps you should make an entry or comment, PZ?

  23. #23 Matt
    February 26, 2008

    How strange.

  24. #24 Jaycubed
    February 26, 2008

    Yes, most Disco music was awful to listen to. But it was not any worse than mainstream Rock & Roll of the same period. In my hometown (Las Vegas) there were still gay discos even at the peak of disco’s popularity, where it was a lot of fun out on a dance floor, even for heteros.

    Captain & Tennille, Partridge Family, Rupert Holmes, Lynard Skynyrd, Tony Orlando & Dawn, Blue Swede, Dr. Hook, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Harry Chapin, ELO, Elton John, Kiss, Starship, Journey…The fecal matter was piled so deep on the radio that disco could sound good by comparison.

    Just avoid the polyester clothes.
    .

  25. #25 Virginia
    February 26, 2008

    KC and the Sunshine Band are still performing, headed by the original KC (who looks like your next-door neighbor, except he’s wearing a rhinestoned jumpsuit). They put on a terrific show – a hot Las Vegas style review with a four-chick chorus line and first-rate rhythm and horn sections. If you have a chance to see them live – go for it!

  26. #26 Andrés
    February 26, 2008

    Why yes, Christian have even the Very Institute of Disco.

    /me runs away.

  27. #27 Andrés
    February 26, 2008

    Why yes, Christian have even the Very Institute of Disco.

    /me runs away.

  28. #28 Carlie
    February 26, 2008

    The Reality Based Dave, I can do you one better. I would bet that I actually worked out to that record, in church, with a bunch of church women who were trying to get in shape for their men. And thanks for bringing those memories back to the surface; it’s going to take the rest of the day to rebury them. (Hopefully there weren’t TWO Christian jazzercise records in the 80s.)

  29. #29 pope guilty
    February 26, 2008

    PZ, I think you’d dig the latest Jesus and Mo: http://www.jesusandmo.net/2008/02/22/raft/

  30. #30 Carlie
    February 26, 2008

    My 5 year old daughter’s favorite song of the year (so far) is “Girls just wanna have fun”.

    My kids did DDR to that in gym at school. They came home singing it, which was quite surreal. Even worse was the other popular DDR song, “Angel is a centerfold”. I have yet to experience something quite as strange as having my 8 year old break out into Angel at the dinner table.

  31. #31 Orac
    February 26, 2008

    I lived through the 70s. I was on the dating scene in the 70s. I have been to a KC and the Sunshine Boys concert; I have seen the glitter and the flash, and heard the maddening, endless beats. I would never inflict such a nightmare on my children, nor would I want to be in a room with a disco ball — it might trigger flashbacks.

    I was in high school during the height of the disco craze (1976-1980). I still haven’t entirely recovered from the assault on my taste, sensibility, and sanity.

  32. #32 MikeM
    February 26, 2008

    They have Christian hip-hop, too.

    I’ve heard it.

    You don’t want to.

    Trust me.

    (I heard some at a Sacramento Monarchs WNBA game last season. They performed a dance to it. It sucked really, really hard.)

  33. #33 MikeM
    February 26, 2008

    Just in case anyone doubts me:

    http://www.christian-hiphop.net/

    You’re welcome.

  34. #34 MS
    February 26, 2008

    I saw this article on the TV news, and I didn’t think it looked exclusively 70s stuff… just a regular disco except with real brats.

  35. #35 Moggie
    February 26, 2008

    Christian disco, Christian rock, Christian hip-hop… anyone notice how often the word “Christian” appears to be a synonym for “not really”?

  36. #36 Steve T
    February 26, 2008

    Among the many, many blessings of pursuing the life scientifique is its all-consuming demands on one’s time and attention. I was in graduate school during the disco revolution (or whateverthehell it was called) and blissfully missed the whole thing. Based on what I’m reading here, I don’t think I missed much.

  37. #37 Badjuggler
    February 26, 2008

    The disco era was indeed the closest yet to hell on earth. The highlight was Disco Demolition Night at Comiskey Park in Chicago, where $0.98 and a disco record got you in the door. They blew up the records in centerfield between games of a doubleheader, which started the grass on fire and the crowd to rioting. Needless to say the second game was cancelled. We felt so empowered. Best t-shirt of the night: Disco Sucks. Death to the Bee-Gees. Ah, the memories…

  38. #38 Frederik Rosenkjćr
    February 26, 2008

    PZ, very admirable of you, to try and be even handed about child abuse, but I’m afraid you have been beaten by the religous once again. In the news in Denmark today:

    http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/1693.htm

    Hamas using CHILDREN’S TV to spout nonsense about the Muhammad drawings and what should be done to the artist – Islamic ranting now from a huge bunny!

  39. #39 Frederik Rosenkjćr
    February 26, 2008

    PZ, very admirable of you, to try and be even handed about child abuse, but I’m afraid you have been beaten by the religous once again. In the news in Denmark today:

    http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/1693.htm

    Hamas using CHILDREN’S TV to spout nonsense about the Muhammad drawings and what should be done to the artist – Islamic ranting now from a huge bunny!

  40. #40 Jim Baerg
    February 26, 2008

    & don’t forget Christian Science

  41. #41 MyaR
    February 26, 2008

    Hey, I have friends who dj/run the Brooklyn baby loves disco, and they’re awesome, not child abusers!

  42. #42 Anon
    February 26, 2008

    I recall one bit of evidence of brain damage from that era: a local radio station in rural Ohio (the station may have been out of Indiana) asked their listeners to vote on their all-time favorite song, to play in their countdown. There was the predictable mix, with the predictable bias toward more recent songs, but as the top neared, the classics were far more prevalent. I only really remember the last two… number two was an Elvis hit–possibly “Hound Dog”, but I don’t remember for certain.

    Number one? “Disco Duck.”

  43. #43 Susan B.
    February 26, 2008

    Christian disco? This proves there really is a God, since only Satan could come up with something like that.

  44. #44 John C. Welch
    February 26, 2008

    K.C. & The Sunshine Band were rather underrated, because they skewed funk more than Disco, but got thrown into that mix due to bad timing. K.C.’s breakdown didn’t help.

    But anytime “Boogie Man” comes on, I’ll crank it, and if he’s playing well, seeing it live is pretty damned cool.

  45. #45 VWXYNot?
    February 26, 2008

    Sometimes I read a news story and wonder if PZ will pick up on it and blog about it later that day.

    I read this article on the BBC website this morning, but for some reason it did not conjour up an image of PZ…

  46. #46 Graculus
    February 26, 2008

    But anytime “Boogie Man” comes on, I’ll crank it.

    I prefer the White Zombie cover…

    I survived the disco era by not listening to it.

    (Cues up some Boomtown Rats)

  47. #47 CG
    February 26, 2008

    I also spent the 70s in HS and college, wishing I’d been born five years earlier, when they had better music.

    Later, tho, I realized I was the first/last generation to sow all those oats without ever having heard of AIDS but post-pill & thus not worried about pregnancy. Not to mention that using drugs had not yet become a capital offense.

    On the whole, I’ll go with the good times and put up with the disco music. Easy to avoid bad music; life’s other ills, not so much.

  48. #48 DrugMonkey
    February 26, 2008

    and they feature, ahem, chill out rooms.

    no doubt other local versions feature additional rave-related schmack.

  49. #49 BillCinSD
    February 26, 2008

    a church is an excellent place to go on a date. During the off hours, there are not too many people around to get in the way of some heavy petting. I’m 46 and more or less too young for the heyday of disco’s even in South Dakota where we are well behind the times

  50. #50 Aquaria
    February 26, 2008

    I’m not going to get into the worst music ever debate (the 60s had its share). I’ll reserve my comments to something upthread:

    Disco Duck was originally a joke about disco and trend-followers by Memphis Dj, Rick Dees. The song just happened to catch on, much to his surprise. Anyone who’s ever listened to a Rick Dees morning show knows he’s always joking around about the songs or artists he’s playing. When he was on KIIS-FM in LA, he did a fake interview with Diana Ross once that had my coworkers and me screaming so hard with laughter that we had to hide in the back storeroom to compose ourselves before we could face customers again.

    So the song was supposed to be stupid. It was supposed to be annoying. It was supposed to be bad. And it was all of those things. But that’s what makes the joke even better.

  51. #51 andy
    February 26, 2008

    I saw KC and the Sunshine Band live too.

    Alas, it was 1998 (or so) and at my company’s big gala Christmas party.

    Still, the memory haunts…

  52. #52 MAJeff
    February 26, 2008

    I have seen the glitter and the flash, and heard the maddening, endless beats.

    And then you add a hundred or so beautiful, shirtless men throbbing to the beats, and lights that flash in odd ways to distort your senses, and Deborah Cox’s voice wailing through the speakers, and….

    Damn, I need to go out soon.

  53. #53 deang
    February 26, 2008

    It’s probably fun for the kids. During the 1974-79 disco period, I was aged 9-14 and we were taught to do the Hustle during elementary school physical education class. It was pretty fun, made us feel like we were doing something celebrities were doing. I know the biggest putdown during the 80s was “That’s so 70s,” but really a lot of the music wasn’t bad. Musicianship was still valued, for one thing, since it was before punk, rap, and affordable sequencers and samplers made it unnecessary.

  54. #54 HP
    February 26, 2008

    Musicianship was still valued

    Yes! Most people today don’t even know what the hell musicianship is. And if you mention it, they don’t realize you’re talking about an actual, acquirable skill, but rather they think you’re just being an elitist dick. A message to young people: Actually understanding the structure of music, and knowing how to make music in real time in front of people, is not something I just made up. Grumble, grumble — get off my lawn!

    I grew up during the Disco era, and I was always torn between Disco on the one hand — this skillful, well-played music whose esthetic I simply couldn’t relate to, and on the other hand unmitigated crap like AC/DC and Foghat. I spent most of the 70s listening to old Clifford Brown and Dizzy Gillespie records, which didn’t exactly help my adolescent socialization skills.

    But, fuck yeah!, musicianship. Eventually I found groups like Tower of Power (“What is hip, tell me, tell me”), but by that time Disco was fading even in the Midwest, garage bands were ascendant, and then finally the synthetic, sampled, overproduced Thriller came out, and killed off the last shreds of traditional musicianship in pop music.

  55. #55 MAJeff
    February 26, 2008

    killed off the last shreds of traditional musicianship in pop music.

    I submit Prince. I’m sorry, his later work may be overproduced, but that little purple freak can flat out play. And I do not know if there’s anyone working he can lay down the funk like Prince and his band.

    The tiny purple one is a talented musician and a performer.

  56. #56 antaresrichard
    February 27, 2008

    And the spoon feeding the Man in the Moon? Vile, addictive, tooth-rotting, sugar! 54?! Hell, That’s my age!

  57. #57 antaresrichard
    February 27, 2008

    A typo every time! “Hell, that’s my age!”

  58. #58 jeffox
    February 27, 2008

    ring my be-e-ell
    ring my bell
    (ring ring ringalingaling)

    I just couldn’t resist that. :)

    the only act I took seriously back then was Joe Walsh. :)

    ok, terrible jokes, I know.

    Zappa’s “Dancin’ Fool” says it all. And, yes, I did live it. My 2c.

  59. #59 Kseniya
    February 27, 2008

    Hmm. Wasn’t Thriller before the sampling and looping culture really kicked in? Surely HP recognizes the musicianship of producer Quincy Jones (who has already built an impressive resume by the time The Beatles his the shores) on a landmark pop album that was recorded with real horns and strings. Pop sheen isn’t necessarily synthetic. (Over-produced? Maybe.)

    HP needs to let go of his quarter-century-old resentment against Michael Jackson and pull the cotton out of his ears. There’s a lot of decent musicianship on the radio. You just have to pay attention. Every era has its dreck. And its gems.

  60. #60 mothra
    February 27, 2008

    New mindworm for an old tune:

    I wonder why.
    I wonder, why.
    I wonder why,
    why I wonder why.

    I wonder why.
    I wonder, why.
    I wonder why,
    why I wonder why.

    I wonder why.
    I wonder, why.
    I wonder why,
    why I wonder why.

    [with apologies to Richard Feynman]
    Do I win the incongruity prize? :)

  61. #61 MAJeff
    February 27, 2008

    Back when I was an undergrad, I sang in the local Methodist Church Choir (all of us voice majors did–the director/organist was also the music history prof and we sang awesome shit). We had folks who swore up and down that there was nothing of value written after Bach died. Singing Poulenc drove them insane. Shit, now we got people complaining that there’s no musicianship in using the technologies of the day to produce moving music. Nuh-uh. Not buying. A DJ that can get a crowd dancing in ecstasy, get it so people are crying on the floor (even with out EXTASY), is someone who is a skilled musician.

    Shit, all Beethoven did was alter the form of thematic development. Just that one little thing exploded the symphonic form. I hate this kind of chauvenism.

  62. #62 Masks of Eris
    February 27, 2008

    Christian rap? Ewww. But how about atheist rap?

    http://www.myspace.com/greydonsquare

    Now, I’d be happy if I could just find an atheist Iron Maiden clone…

  63. #63 Voice 0'Reason
    February 27, 2008

    It could be Christian disco

    [shudder]

    But naturally this brings to mind a variation on a disco “classic”:

    Burn, baby, burn! Dante’s Inferno
    Burn, baby, burn! Burn them sinners down!

  64. #64 Moses
    February 27, 2008

    It could be Christian disco (yes, there is such a thing.)

    It’s really called “Gospel Music” not “Christian Music.” And within gospel music there are all the genres: Rap, Hip-Hop, Rock, Grunge, Pop, Glam, Disco, Techno, Country (shudders…), etc.

    You ought to go to a decent gospel act sometime if they hit your neck of the woods. Once you get past the mindless praise and the obligatory “call for conversions” some of it doesn’t suck.

    Now, I also have to tell you that despite the Holy Rolling schtick of the concerts, most of the artists are the biggest effing hypocritical, money-whores you’ll ever see. They make the money grubbing bastards in Country and Rock look like Saints. Believe me, the old “Jesus was poor” shit bounces off their heads like a .22-short against an M-1 Abrams as almost all of them are eaten-up by the “Gospel of Prosperity” which dominates the industry.

    The industry is also full of shady operators and confidence men. It’s trying to clean itself up, but my friends who’ve been around longer than I say it’s still as bad now as Country was back in the ’50s.

    Anyway, some of them don’t suck. Tony Vincent was pretty good, but he’s been blowing up his career trying to go mainstream and had a throught problem. Jars of Clay had some nice mainstream stuff where the message wasn’t horrbily explicit. Amy Grant whored her way OUT of Gospel and I don’t know what hell she’s doing now, but she didn’t suck. And there are some others who, like the above, don’t suck.

    OTOH, most of them do suck. Just not all.

  65. #65 Kseniya
    February 27, 2008

    Two words: Robert Randolph.

    Anyways, Rock’n’Roll wouldn’t exist without Gospel and Country.

    all Beethoven did was alter the form of thematic development. Just that one little thing exploded the symphonic form. I hate this kind of chauvenism.

    Right. It’s a kind of reactionary elitism. (Baroques longing for the good old days before the Classical era came along and ruined everything – LMAO!)

    As far as pop music goes, the music of the Sixties completely changed the landscape, and the rock artists of that era were groundbreakers of a type that rarely even have an opportunity to come along. It was only a few short years between the likes of “Doggy In The Window”, “Mr. Sandman” and “Lollipop”, and “Crimson and Clover”, “Hey Jude” and “Purple Haze”. But nowadays the players are better, production values are higher, recording technology is superior, a many of the hits of those days though charming and fun, sound pretty dated due to their lax performance and engineering standards.

    Jeff, have you ever sung Debussy’s “Trois Chansons”? It’s gorgeous stuff. I don’t have a recording to recommend, but if you can find one in which the members of the chorus don’t sound as if they’re all auditioning for leads in Lohengrin, so much the better. A pure tone, sans vibrato, serve this music well. The French is somewhat archaic, for the text is by Charles d’Orléans, but is easily understood even even high-school level Francophones. :-)

  66. #66 PZ Myers
    February 27, 2008

    Actually, I very much like gospel music and have a lot of it in my itunes playlist right now. It’s too bad it’s got the religious nonsense in it, but I listen to it as an expression of passion, not religious music.

  67. #67 Epikt
    February 27, 2008

    Moggie:

    Christian disco, Christian rock, Christian hip-hop… anyone notice how often the word “Christian” appears to be a synonym for “not really”?

    I always assumed it was an apology.

  68. #68 RedMolly
    February 27, 2008

    Disco?! Pshht. Amateurs. Now if anyone comes up with “Baby Loves Speed Metal,” give me and my brood a call. We rock too hard for just one hand!

  69. #69 Epikt
    February 27, 2008

    MAJeff:

    A DJ that can get a crowd dancing in ecstasy, get it so people are crying on the floor (even with out EXTASY), is someone who is a skilled musician.

    What exactly, do you mean by DJ? Somebody who simply selects what to play in what order for a crowd? Or are you using it in the more modern sense, meaning somebody improvising songs in real time out of prerecorded material?

  70. #70 Rey Fox
    February 27, 2008

    It’s really called “Gospel Music” not “Christian Music.”

    Hmm. My understanding is that gospel music is a specific genre of uptempo religious music with repetitive choruses performed by a choir (or “chorus”?). I could be wrong.

  71. #71 Kseniya
    February 27, 2008

    There’s more than one kind, Rey. The subject matter is the key. It’s not all the rockin’and’swaying good-time gospel churchy thang that first comes to mind. There’s plenty of “gospel” music that you’d categorize as old-time country or bluegrass. (In any case, it’s not all up-tempo, either.) These subgenres don’t cover all the bases (or basses, hahah) either.

    Google = Friend! :-)

  72. #72 Kseniya
    February 27, 2008

    Ooops, didn’t need the scare quotes. Ignore’em, plz. Tnx.

  73. #73 MAJeff
    February 27, 2008

    What exactly, do you mean by DJ? Somebody who simply selects what to play in what order for a crowd? Or are you using it in the more modern sense, meaning somebody improvising songs in real time out of prerecorded material?

    The best are those that can combine the two. Junior Vasquez or the Chemical Brothers, for example. Mixing, remixing, sampling, spinning, etc. There is talent, there is musical talent (including improvisation) and interaction with an audience that occurs. Reading an audience, knowing what music to play, how to mix it, etc….I’m not saying all talent is equivalent, but there are many media through which it can be expressed….

    and trying to remember that culture is lived…when it’s reified and reduced to content, it’s stripped of its, well, its life.

  74. #74 Rey Fox
    February 27, 2008

    Nevertheless, “Christian contemporary” doesn’t count as “gospel” just because of the religious message, right?

  75. #75 BaldApe
    February 27, 2008

    No one who lived through disco the first time should ever have to hear it again.

    Disco caused me to understand that anything popular was complete crap (unless we’re talking about phenomenally popular blogs, cephalopod overlord sir!). Drove me to Zappa and Tull. (Well even disco can’t be all bad, huh?)

    “I’m a moron and this is my wife,
    she’s frosting a cake with a paper knife…”

  76. #76 shane
    February 27, 2008

    In fact, for our first couple of dates, we went to…

    …church.

    Yo PZ, what’s this church thing? Sounds groovy.

    Actually I’ve heard that many religious or formerly religious went to church on dates. Um… how does that work exactly. How do you do something… intimate?

  77. #77 shane
    February 28, 2008

    Now, I’d be happy if I could just find an atheist Iron Maiden clone…

    I’m guessing that’d be Iron Maiden then. Any band that generates that much anti metal hysteria and charges of Satanism…

  78. #78 shane
    February 28, 2008

    unmitigated crap like AC/DC

    Acca Dacca are the best *genre unto themselves* band ever.

    Punk came out of the 70s too. So that’s another reason to forgive that decade for disco. Not that there’s much wrong with disco. It… er… rocks.
    Is there christian punk?

  79. #79 MAJeff
    February 28, 2008

    Actually, I very much like gospel music and have a lot of it in my itunes playlist right now. It’s too bad it’s got the religious nonsense in it, but I listen to it as an expression of passion, not religious music.

    That’s how I performed it. My BA is in music, my areas were voice and history. You can’t sing classical music without singing religious music at some point. And you know what? Bach and Handel and Poulenc and Holst and Respighi and….are a hell of a lot of fun to sing. Blasting through the “Allelujah” of Bach’s Cantata 4, and even the “Hier ist das rechte Osterlamm” section…that shit is technically complex and difficult, and fun as shit. It takes little imagination to understand the feelings behind “Sometimes I feel like a motherless child.” Religious belief may have gone into their composition, but humanity is all that’s necessary to perform them.

    And I still wanna shake my ass to disco divas, too.

  80. #80 Kseniya
    February 28, 2008

    Rey:

    Nevertheless, “Christian contemporary” doesn’t count as “gospel” just because of the religious message, right?

    I’d say “Right – it doesn’t,” though I suppose that point could be argued.

    Gospel, in its various forms, is folk music. Xtian Contemporary is pop music with godly lyrics. Not the same thing.

    That’s how I see it. My authority is boundless. Oops, I mean groundless. :-) Anyway, I think the music industry (with all its categories and chart divisions) agrees. Billboard does, anyway.

  81. #81 Epikt
    February 28, 2008

    What exactly, do you mean by DJ?

    MAJeff:

    The best are those that can combine the two. Junior Vasquez or the Chemical Brothers, for example. Mixing, remixing, sampling, spinning, etc.

    Ah. Just wanted to make sure we’re on the same page. There are still those for whom “DJ” means somebody wearing an ill-fitting powder blue suit who plays bad music at weddings and looks disturbingly like Wayne Newton.

    Personally I find modern music tech to be mostly a good thing. Some with traditional music skills see it as a threat; I think it’s better to look at it as an opportunity to expand your palette. After working for years to get your soprano saxophone tone pure and musical, there’s something deliciously subversive about using a Kaoss Pad to damage it to the point that it sounds like an industrial process.

  82. #82 Kseniya
    February 28, 2008

    Mr. Epikt, meet Mr. Eno. Mr. Eno, meet Mr. Webern. Mr. Webern, meet Mr. Zappa. Mr. Zappa, meet Mr. Branca. Mr. Branca, meet Mr. Coleman. Mr. Coleman, meet Mr. Varese. Mr. Varese, meet Messrs. Renaldo and Moore.

    (Repeat until spanked.)

  83. #83 jeffox
    February 28, 2008

    Disco was better than Abba and Barry Manilow. But that’s like saying 0.2% is better than 0.1999%. :)

    Abba is a norse anagram for “poop”. :)

    and then the weasels came and took Dick Clark back home.

    Ewwwww, I’m inna mood now. :)

  84. #84 coffeedryad
    February 29, 2008

    Just to horrify everyone, one of my little favorites… A disco classic, being performed at a metal festival, by a band containing an accordion. http://youtube.com/watch?v=HpwNJGr8EM4

  85. #85 MAJeff, OM
    February 29, 2008

    Well, my favorite disco diva at work.

  86. #86 Epikt
    February 29, 2008

    coffeedryad:

    Just to horrify everyone, one of my little favorites… A disco classic, being performed at a metal festival, by a band containing an accordion.

    Hey, be nice to the accordion. For a long time I held the same prejudice–that accordions were useful only for polkas and as fuel for a bonfire. But then I played a theater gig where the bass player improvised some solo incidental music on one. Atmospheric, moody, beautiful stuff, and the only unpleasant sound was the wet pop as my preconception exploded.

  87. #87 Kseniya
    February 29, 2008

    #82, in which the barbarians reclaim dance music, with the help of an accordion!

    Yup, the much-maligned accordion is capable of producing beautiful sounds. That’s true for just about any instrument when in the right hands. It’s more striking in cases where the instrument is heavily associated with a genre we personally dislike. Example: Country-haters often fail to understand how achingly beautiful (or blazingly exciting, or slippery-cool, or mind-bendingly psychedelic) the pedal steel can be.

  88. #88 RamblinDude
    February 29, 2008

    Glad to hear the lowly accordion getting some accolades. In the right hands, the right setting, the accordion is a very classy mood setter. Tango, anyone?

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