Sunday, December 03, 2006


SECTARIAN 19.11.06

What about THE RIGHT TO NOT BELONG to a group defined by ethnos, nation, religion, gender?

DON COVAY--What's In The Headlines
One of the great singer-songwriters with a lament that fluctuates between resignation and bitter irony about the stuff that doesn't make it to the news writ large. Some media studies types used to call this agenda setting or gatekeeping. Features a disturbing kazoo.

I was thinking about that recent film Death of a President with that Zabruder-type fake still of GWB getting a bullet. This song is a gospel number about Lee Harvey Oswald and his buddies. But a week after I'd dubbed it Gemayal was killed in Lebanon and that former Soviet spy received the radioactive poisoned chalice. Weird. I suppose assassins are always at work, the norm rather than the extraordinary.

JACK PALANCE--The Meanest Guy That Ever Lived
Could have been written for Pinochet or Osama Bin Laden or any number of dead presidents. Reminds me of the recently deceased thespian's fantastic turn as the hired gun in Shane (see image above). I love the way he grins when he mows down Elisha Cook Jnr. The malevolent spirit of the Wild West is still alive and well beyond the western frontier. You don't have to watch Deadwood to appreciate that. I met Jack Palance once. I must have been about 10 years old. It was the early 70s and Majid this drinker friend of my Mum and Dad's--the only serious drinker friend they had I think--was walking with us around Hyde Park near Speaker's Corner one Sunday. Art vendors were peddling their wares, as they say. Majid shouted Jack Palance and rushed up to the actor with a smile on his face. Can't recall the words exchanged, just a shake of the hand and a nod our way.

SUICIDE--Ghost Rider (Live)
This is the ride of the valkyries after the apocalypse. Sounds like the buzz of a hundred helicopter gunships ready to land on your head.

JOHNNIE TAYLOR--Rome (Wasn't Built In A Day)
A crackly almost northern soul tune about the repair work needed for a relationship. Could work just as easily as a neocon fable for the reconstruction of Iraq.

THE WILD TCHOUPITOULAS--Big Chief Got A Golden Crown
It's ready to get knocked off though. Allen Touissaint with that whoozy Nawlins sound. Tribal.

EDDIE KIRK--Them Bones
There's a lotta dem bones scattered around the soil. Eddie Kirk's are still moving.

CANDI STATON--As Long As He Takes Care Of Home
Domestic policy is more important. It's the economy, stupid. That's what they said. If he fixes that, then all the stuff overseas is forgiven. Not--as Borat might say.

JAMES BROWN--Don't Tell A Lie About Me And I Won't Tell The Truth About You
Honesty in short supply. Make a deal.

DR WHO DAT?--March To Viberia
If only we could do that instead of leaping into Narnia or another tract of sand.

BEF--Groove Thang
We don't need that fascist g-thang. Heaven 17 without the vocals.

NICKODEMUS--Cleopatra in New York (Zim Zam remix)
Yes, she's a flaneur on Fifth Avenue.

NICOLETTE--No Government (In The Jungle)
What if, rather than the anarchist impulse of this anthem for the rave generation

Haven't heard KRS One so on point for a while.

LIL' LOUIS--Blackout
Is it global warming or the failure to manage the grid around the world? Mr French Kiss gives a fundamental(ist) warning about the almighty's possible actions.

BOIKUTT--Sabe3 Nomeh
Ramallah hip hop instrumental. So stark, so brutal, the meaning's in the space between the notes.

This isn't the Old Testament punisher of Lil' Louis's track, but power defined by a benevolent surveillance. That's the way conscience is pricked. The fear of god works many ways.

THE DEAD TEXAN--A Chronicle Of Early Failures (Part One)
Yes, that's GWB's presidency and his political fate. Music to drown the past and present.



Another slice of Americanismo. I've been meaning to post this playlist for ages but Saghir (newly American with freshly minted blue passport) was visiting from San Diego, so it got sidelined. I do really love his country. Thanks again to the audioblogosphere which is primarily responsible for my ongoing musical education. This comp's loosely inspired by the fallout after the kickout of the Republicans from Congress and all that reconciliatory baloney. I hope that in the new year several committees will begin to investigate with rigour, purpose and speed the Republican administration's corporate mismanagement of the War on Terror (not just Iraq) along with the associated corruption. Loadsamoney. Not sure how much the change in the personnel will make to foreign policy. It's too late with scores of people being killed in Iraq every day. The Iraq Study Group's report (rather an inocuous academic name for a policy fink tank) has produced an old Republican spin on the neo-con strategy in Iraq and the Middle East. Back to the Texas/CIA nexus that have supported George Sr. for decades. (That reminds me of the time I bought the Dallas 1963 shooter team's getaway vehicle when I lived in Texas. Will save that one for another post though. ) The media is hyping the Iraq report as a major indictment of Bush and a new way forward, but as someone from the Institute for Policy Studies in the US said on the BBC today, it really doesn't have any clear plan for withdrawal. It doesn't acknowledge the illegality of the invasion and occupation. The Report is meant to show the US public that the Republicans have sorted themselves out, given Georgie Boy a slap on the wrist and got rid of the neo-cons in the administration. Georgie Boy is probably hoping for the compensation of Saddam's swinging corpse as a Xmas present before he departs the Oval office for good, having got the US into another war that it has lost. Georgie was always up for an execution, as we know from his time as the Governor of Tejas.

GROUCHO MARX--I'm Against It
I'm not sure if this is from Duck Soup (which may the greatest political satire in Hollywood history--certainly more anarchic than Chaplin's more acclaimed The Great Dictator)--but whichever movie it's from I'm increasingly appreciative of Groucho's Marxist commentary about political offices and hallways. Included here for its juxtaposition with the two-faced term that is the title of this playlist.

If we're still thinking cinematically, I'm conjuring up an early 1940s musical directed by Frank Capra in which a black janitor, played by Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson, steals the film from the white folks with some taps and a mop to sweep the incumbent losers of the Republican Party out of the corridors, down the steps and out on to the street.

Amazing NYC song about 'fabricating authenticity'. Just a great city slicker tune. Thought this fit Georgie since he's always going on about being so Texan and a ranching dude when he's really a spoilt east coast frat boy who tried to sound really western.

Not possible as a political or sexual formation when you've got it locked down by the Republicans and Democrats. Western swing vote.

FLOYD TILLMAN--Drivin' Nails In My Coffin
If only we could. More honky tonk.

DON GIBSON--Oh Lonesome Me
Yep, you should be dispatched back to your ranch in Crawford. Don't ever bother coming back.

LINDA LANE--Tribute To America
With a title like this, and on a country-ish collection, you'd expect this to be female redneck fare, but no it's a remarkably bipartisan paean to all that is great about the greatest country in the whole fucken world. They take the immigrants. They've given so many things to the rest of the world, like freedom and democracy.

Madame Clinton voted for the war, remember. She lurves Israel. Lots of anti-abortionists among the Democrats too.

KITTY WELLS--A Woman Half My Age

One for that Senator who wrote those emails to his interns.

JOHNNY CASH--That's Enough
Cut the bullshit. Only Jesus can save our boys in Iraq.


Yes, he will. A Lieber & Stoller Spanish Harlem-ish take on the Jim Reeves hit

THREE J's--Chalito, Part Two
Moody organ for that border fence.

Nuyorican boogaloo to hook up all interested parties for a diplomatic solution.

Can't forget the Latin sphere of influence and the canal in Uncle Sam's back yard.

SESAME STREET & THE POINTER SISTERS--Pinball Number Count (DJ Food remix)
This might help those counting the votes in the elections, especially if they hail from Florida or Ohio.

WILLIE BOBO--Fried Neck Bones & Some Homefries
Homefries are freedom fries, not French fries. Mmm, fried neck bones...

ENNIO MORRICONE--Death Rides A Horse (II)
It wishes to take the evildoers dead or alive.

Franz wrote Amerika without every having visited there. I wonder if this European starlet wrote Kafka without ever having visited Prague.

HANK SNOW--I've Been Everywhere
A round-the-country travelogue. 50 states in his truck. Hawa'ii, just. Even beyond, following the Monroe doctrine.

Also covered by the Everly brothers. I can smell the blue grass.

DIXIE CHICKS--Travelin' Soldier
It's always Vietnam in these songs though we know they're talkin' about this war.

JOSH RITTER--Girl In The War
'Talkin to Jesus is like asking Laurel to give Hardy a gun'. I know a girl in the war.

BUFFY SAINTE-MARIE--Lazarus (Dead Or Alive)
Back from the grave. Buffy is an angel of history here.

STAN FREEBERG--Heartbreak Hotel

Echo & reverb ad absurdum in this Elvis spoof.

13th FLOOR ELEVATORS--May The Circle Remain Unbroken

Echo & reverb ad absurdum in this psychedelicized country myth

BLUE SKY BOYS--I'm Here To Get My Baby Out Of Jail
Should be matched up with another great prison song, The Zombies' 'Care of Cell 44'. I want more songs about female prisoners. Guantanamo, here we come.