Category: Entertainment Published on Wednesday, 21 December 2011 13:59 Written by Steve Holsey
In a recent column readers were asked to submit their thoughts on any entertainment subject, for inclusion in a new segment called “What’s On Your Mind?”
Rolling Stone magazine recently named The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, chosen by a panel of guitarists and other experts. Jimi Hendrix was No. 1, which came as no surprise.
“Why did they leave out Ernie Isley?” asked music aficionado Bud McQueen. “His solo on the Isley Brothers’ hit ‘That Lady’ alone is enough for inclusion on this list.”
I agree. Ernie Isley is fantastic and his intense playing has made Isley Brothers records that much better, from 1969 until now.
WE ALSO heard early on from Claudreen Jackson, a lady of many talents (poet, former educator, writer, etc.). The wife of the late Pervis Jackson of the Spinners believes today’s music is, for the most part, coming up short.
“I think there was more really good music in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s than in the ’80s, ’90s and ’00s,” she wrote. “The old school music not only had better singing, the lyrics were clean. When I was teaching we had many classroom discussions with me trying to expose them to real music.”
She concluded, “How many of today’s songs will stand the 50-year test of time?”
Jackson makes good points, although I am inclined to like a bit more new music than most people do in my demographic, even though, generally, music from “back in the day” and “back in the recent day” is superior on nearly every level.
Special thanks to Claudreen Jackson and Bud McQueen.
IN A WAY it’s kind of hard to believe that Redfoo (real name: Stefan Gordy) of the wild “electro pop” group LMFAO is the son Berry Gordy. When Mr. G first saw and heard the group, he was no doubt “taken aback,” but then adjusted, realizing that things have changed.
“LMFAO,” as you may know, is an acronym that sprang from the world of text messaging, tweeting, etc. It means (I kid you not) “Laughing my f---king a-- off.”
Their latest top-selling album is “Sorry for Party Rocking.”
Speaking of unusual “out there” acts, I have started really appreciating Lady GaGa. She is talented, totally free-spirited and, of course, daring. As Tony Bennett put it, “There’s something very special about her.”
ONE GROUP that is unlikely to ever do a reunion show, let alone a reunion tour, is Shalamar.
The trio, consisting of Howard Hewett, Jody Watley and Jeffrey Daniels, was red hot from the late ’70s to the mid-’80s with hits like “The Second Time Around,” “This Is For the Lover in You,” “Make That Move” and “A Night to Remember.”
But things were very often tense and sometimes downright ugly behind the scenes, according to Jody Watley who finally got fed up and left to pursue a very successful solo career.
Watley says the problem was Hewett’s ego and the record company constantly building him up, trying to make the other members think they could be easily replaced. Watley says Hewett even went so far as to threaten to “kick her a--.”
Of course, later Hewett “got religion” and surely is not proud of some things he did in the past. Young egos out of a control can be extremely damaging.
TEVIN CAMPBELL has never received his full props, for having such an outstanding voice and really knowing how to use it. True, he had major hits in the early ’90s such as “Tell Me What You Want Me To Do,” “Can We Talk?” and “Alone With You,” but that’s not enough.
Campbell had a serious career setback in the late ’90s onward due to a personal mistake, and due to narrow-minded people being way too concerned and judgmental about his sexual orientation.
People are what they are. It’s not good or bad, right or wrong. It just is.
Campbell’s career began to move forward again in 2005 when he was chosen for a key role in the Broadway smash “Hairspray.” He has been reprising that role in Australia.
In reference to our story about entertainers who like wear hats, reader Debra M. Bledsoe adds prolific producer/writers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and famed Latin rock guitarist Carlos Santana.
Correction: In a story about Jill Scott in last week’s edition, it said the Roots are the house band on David Letterman’s show. That should have been Jimmy Fallon’s show. Of course, I knew that. (Haste does indeed make waste.)
BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW…that the O’Jays were originally known as the Imperials, then the Triumphs, and after that the Mascots.
MEMORIES: “Friendship Train” (Gladys Knight & the Pips), “Heartbreak Hotel” (Whitney Houston featuring Faith Evans and Kelly Price), “Every Drop of Your Love” (Stacy Lattisaw), “Let’s Do It Again” (the Staple Singers), “Give Me the Night” (George Benson), “Getaway” (Earth, Wind & Fire), “Whodunit” (Tavares), “Uptown” (Prince), “Slip Away” (Clarence Carter), “Cruisin’” (Smokey Robinson).
BLESSINGS to Denise and Percy Cash (congratulations on your recent wedding!), Tim Dinkins, Ingrid Hatcher, Bettye LaVette (thanks for the touching message!), Sylvia Quarles, Henry Tyler, Scherrie Payne and Mary Wilson (thank you for the nice e-mails; you two ladies will always be “Supreme”), Willie Williams, Mike Jemison, Geneveive Johnson and Walter Godfrey.
WORDS OF THE WEEK, from Maya Angelou: “Nothing will work unless you do.”
Let the music play!
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