Week of 2/17: Live!

kryptonite

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They were off on Monday for the holiday, but they came back today with an update on what people did over the vacation, Benjy falling down and David Spade coming in.

Robin went to Australia and took photos with some koalas, Howard watched My 600-lb Life and Richard watched the Chiefs win the Super Bowl.

We also had lots of Super Bowl talk. Howard hated the halftime show.
 

scotchandcigar

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His opening rant was infuriating. First, he goes into disgusting detail about that 600 lb show. He loves all these depraved, classless reality shows. Well OK. So does that give him the right to criticize the halftime show for not featuring real, serious music? What a hypocrite.
 

kryptonite

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With that said, Richard and his dad and Richard at the Super Bowl was radio gold.

It'll be interesting to see what happens with next year's halftime show. The reviews seemed to be either:
1) Yay! Female empowerment!
Or
2) This is supposed to be a family-friendly halftime show. Why are they on stripper poles and barely-covered?

(Except these "stripper poles" seem to be called "pole dancing" which is more legit than the strip clubs they started at, but whatever.)


Howard had a point about the backup dancers. So much pop music has all the visual stuff as a distraction. Britney, Christina, whoever...they have 25 backup dancers, costume changes, big arial things and whatever else because the music...ehhh.

Compare that to a rock band where it's just the 4-5 guys on stage and they're playing instruments and the stage doesn't take a week and a half to set up.
 

scotchandcigar

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With that said, Richard and his dad and Richard at the Super Bowl was radio gold.

It'll be interesting to see what happens with next year's halftime show. The reviews seemed to be either:
1) Yay! Female empowerment!
Or
2) This is supposed to be a family-friendly halftime show. Why are they on stripper poles and barely-covered?

(Except these "stripper poles" seem to be called "pole dancing" which is more legit than the strip clubs they started at, but whatever.)


Howard had a point about the backup dancers. So much pop music has all the visual stuff as a distraction. Britney, Christina, whoever...they have 25 backup dancers, costume changes, big arial things and whatever else because the music...ehhh.

Compare that to a rock band where it's just the 4-5 guys on stage and they're playing instruments and the stage doesn't take a week and a half to set up.
Have you been to a good rock concert? Is it just 4 guys standing there playing, or is it a whole set and light show? Have you seen a show in Vegas? Have you watched that stupid show Dancing With the Stars, which Howard loves?

Howard makes up his own stupid rules. Who ever said the halftime show has to be 4 guys standing there? Why wouldn't the superbowl halftime show be full of flash and dancing? It's filling time between Bud Light and Doritos commercials.
 

sadchild

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I agree with Howard's rant about the state of music, but I've felt that way for years and it's simply a personal preference - not something I insist others agree with. I prefer an organic performance (even if it includes electronic instruments like synths) where musicians actually sing and play the sounds you're hearing. Watching people lip-synch while dancing around is kinda like watching the audience at a screening of Rocky Horror - that's not a real musical performance.

Despite my lack of interest in the half time show, there was talent and good choreo. Definitely not my thing, but it's not the job of execs to cater to me specifically. Nothing to go off ranting about. When I watched it, I just rolled my eyes, commented that they basically created an elaborate and expensive strip club routine, and moved on.

But yeah, the concept of performing music for a group of people is becoming a dying art, long ago (starting in the 70s I think) replaced with lip-synching, making it look like people who can't sing can, pre-programmed/pre-recorded sound, and hologram vocalists. I'd rather sit in a drum circle at my local music school than watch a phony pre-recorded performance, because for me it's all about people connecting, communicating and making the actual sounds you're hearing.

In related news, another rock station in New England bites the dust. WAAF 107.3 will become a Christian station in a few days after 50 years of rock. They were one of only a few rock stations in New England that were very stand-offish (and actually dead silent) to me when I was promoting my new music. The only way I got my band aired on the station (and we are exactly their format) was by going around the people that work there, and finding another way to make it happen (a guest DJ). It took about 7 years but I finally made it happen, with no help from the staff there despite trying to contact them several times in several different ways.

Other commercial rock stations in New England (and others around the country, 50 of them) were putting us in regular rotation throughout the day, having us on their morning and afternoon shows live on the air, we were winning regional awards (Best Hard Rock/Metal Band, Best In State), and being voted best band by readers of our state's biggest newspaper, etc, but WAAF remained that impenetrable wall of silence for years - until I found my own way to get our songs aired on the station. So for me personally, no love lost. The stations that supported my band (and several other locals) got my support in return, and they are still on the air (and rightly so, they are good people who genuinely support the rock scene both nationally and locally). The two most standoff-ish (with stalest playlists) are either gone (WAAF) or got rid of most of their staff (WZLX) recently.
 

scotchandcigar

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I was not aware that WAAF is going away. I guess that speaks to the state of FM radio as a source for mainstream music. I still listen to 92.5 the River and 88.9 WERS, although I mostly listen to SiriusXM.

We disagree on the outlook of todays popular/rock music, so I'm not going to rehash that argument. But the thing about today's musical performances revolving around lip-syncing makes me LOL. Back in the old days, there were few avenues for presenting live music on TV. One of them was American Bandstand, which was 100% faked (lip-synced). When MTV came along, it featured fake live performances. And without researching it, I believe many other TV shows had lip-synced performances.

Today, there are many, many more sources for seeing bands performing live on TV and on the internet. Of course, this has nothing to do with the halftime show discussion. Here's a sampling of superbowl performances from that "golden era" you and Howard seem to be longing for:

Year: 1980, performers - Up With People, Grambling State University Marching band
Year: 1981, performers - Southern University Marching band, Helen O'Connell
Year: 1982, performers - Up With People
Year: 1983, performers - Los Angeles Super Drill Team
Year: 1984, performers - U of Florida & FSU marching bands
Year: 1985, performers - Tops In Blue
Year: 1986, performers - Up With People
Year: 1987, performers - George Burns, Mickey Rooney, GSU and USC marching bands
Year: 1989, performers - Elvis Presto (not a typo) with South Florida dancers
Year: 1991, performers - New Kids on the Block with Disney characters
Year: 2013, performers - Beyonce', Destiny's Child

And many other years, they had performers whose music I hate too. So while I love The Who, I didn't think their halftime performance went over that well. It's not a good venue for a serious rock performance. The glitz and glam and dancing seems to be more appropriate.
 

Neigh

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The half-time show did nothing for me but others in my family enjoyed it a lot. I really like Jennifer Lopez from her American Idol days and a few movies she's made. She is a true beauty and I like her Bronx personality. But I am embarrassed for her when she inevitably turns around and shakes her ass. Not necessary JLo and not sexy. As for the music, they really made an effort but half-time performers rarely rock the joint. Everyone raved about Beyoncé's halftime show but that fell flat for me also. Poor old Adam Levine was crucified by almost everyone ("grandpa rock") but his music had more of an impact for me than JLo and Shakira. For some reason I am thinking back to Alice Cooper stadium performances...Seemed he could fill up the place.
 

kryptonite

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At this point, we could have entire week of "Best of Creepy Ronnie" with no Thursday/Friday repeats.
 

sadchild

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@scotchandcigar

We both agree that music performances have been faked for decades now (I said above that I think it started in the 70s). I remember seeing Tina Turner lip-sync on a music show in the 80s (to "Better Be Good To Me"). I distinctly remember hearing her voice while she wasn't at the mic, and watched her grab it quickly when she realized it was happening lol. I didn't like it back then and still don't now.

But as for me longing for past Super Bowl performances, I'm not sure where that idea came from - but it wasn't from me. That's an interesting list for sure, I enjoyed the read and appreciate the work you went through presenting it. But like I said above, I don't expect actual music performances at the half time show, I would just prefer them. Like Tom Petty's performance in 2008, for example. And I agree with Howard that these lip-sync'd performances are garbage, but in the same way that McDonalds is a billion dollar chain, people like garbage so I understand that's what we're gonna get.

A half time show doesn't have to be music, it could be a magician for all I care. But if people are going to hold a microphone, I'd prefer they actually sing. Bruno Mars actually sang (even though the Peppers didn't actually play). If you're gonna have a bunch of people dance to music, don't give them a mic. Make it half time show of dancing to a music track. My 2 cents.
 
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scotchandcigar

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I liked Tom Petty too, and given a preference, I'd pick an act like that. But a visual spectacle is good for international audiences, and sports bars and the like. And dance-heavy acts rarely sing live.

I just find it hypocritical that Howard, who loves all those shitty, vacuous competition shows, feels entitled to complain about a halftime show that's aimed at the billions of people who aren't him.
 
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kryptonite

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It's also my understanding that the NFL "demands" that the halftime acts don't sing. Was it the Foo Fighters or RCHP who pretended to play and they weren't even plugged in?

As it was told to me several years ago... A lot of the pop acts like Britney, Christina, boy bands and the like don't actually sing on stage because it's "hard to impossible" to sing while doing the dancing, being flipped over, hanging from a trapeze, etc.

For years, Pearl Jam has released their shows on CD and digital format. The only thing they cut out was:
One song that was a terrible performance
Nine times a song was played, as it was a tribute to nine lives lost
Times of crowd noise and nothing else, in order to keep the running time a bit shorter. (There's no reason for them to release a 5:02 encore break if 2:31 of that was random cheering and nothing else.)

Other than that, every flubbed lyric, every cough, every goof...all released.


So yeah, the rock acts still generally sing. :)
 

Neigh

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@scotchandcigar

Totally agreed. And I hate those Idol-esque shows he likes, even Bachelor etc. I often tune out when he goes on about them.
I like American Idol. It is not just a singing competition. It is a reality show.. Unknowns take a shot without back-up tapes or accompaniment other than a piano or guitar. They can't fake it. I love it when some unlikely looking person thrills the judges with his or her performance. Check out this one. 'American Idol': Nepalese Singer Arthur Gunn Wows Luke Bryan
 

kryptonite

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They replayed Richard at the Super Bowl.

Richard and his father stuff NEVER gets old...but with that said, do we know anything about his mom? She almost never gets mentioned.

What they gotta do...send a video crew to Kansas to film his dad while he calls Richard. I gotta get a visual on that.

And as much as that never gets old, why the hell did they have to get rid of "This Day In Howard History" or the MasterTape Theater stuff or everything else? It seems like replays with random live shows these days... we're definitely much, MUCH closer to the end than the beginning.

There was a discussion elsewhere about the Cincinnati soccer coach getting fired for using the n-word and I was joking about how he could hang out with Marge Schott and then I got sad because I missed all that stuff with Billy West and they never play it on SiriusXM, even though they paid all that money for the tapes. Hopefully they release everything in archive format when Howard retires. I'll still listen to "In A Mellow Tone" and "Tilt-a-Whirl" on Amazon Prime.
 

Neigh

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Honestly, Richard and his father got old for me years ago. I turn off the radio when the show starts with Richard doing a phony phone call in the same old voice and the victim is some non-celebrity just trying to make a living. And there is something cheesy about Richard recording himself crying or reporting on himself for acting wacky. He has had his moments. Sal and Richard making out in front of that investment banking firm that went bankrupt was funny. And before he was on the staff and it was easier to fool celebrities, he was a great phony phone caller.
 

kryptonite

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Tuesday:
Howard said the song The Hook is about how stupid the audience is. He said it's about coming up with a hook in a song and no one really listens to the lyrics. He said listen to the words. He played some of the song and recited the lyrics. He said he'll let you play it at home and figure it out.
I'm at a hockey game and these college students (maybe a bit older) were rocking out to these lyrics played over the PA... I'm telling you right now they were not paying attention to the lyrics and probably neither are the people who had the job of filtering music.


Killing in the name of
Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses
Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses
Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses
Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses
Huh!

Killing in the name of
Killing in the name of

And now you do what they told ya
And now you do what they told ya
And now you do what they told ya