Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Music Genres - Round 4 (The Final Four)

Wow! We had a nail biter there towards the end of the Final Four voting. Rhythm 'N Blues had the lead all day and within the last hour of voting Classical had pulled within two. But Rhythm 'N Blues stuck it out and won with a score of 18 - 15.

Well here we are. We started out with 32 genres and now we are down to only four. And oh boy what a four! If you thought some of the past match ups were hard to decide on wait til you get a load of this.
(1) Rhythm 'N Blues vs (3) Funk - How did this happen?! This is like a set of twins fighting each other. Let's look at Funk first. Coaching Team Funk is James Brown. His starting 5 are Parliment/Funkadelic, Rick James, The JBs, Earth Wind and Fire, and Sly & The Family Stone. And backing them up on the bench is Cameo, Kool & The Gang, Roger & Zapp, Slave, The Bar-Kays (to be honest funk should win just based on that Bar-Kays video link), and The Gap Band.
Now coaching Rhythm 'N Blues is Marvin Gaye and his starting 5 are Stevie Wonder, Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Aretha Franklin, and Curtis Mayfield. On the bench we've got Isaac Hayes, Roberta Flack, Donnie Hathaway, Prince, Mary J Blige, Lauren Hill, Ashford and Simpson, Teddy Pedergrass, Whitney Houston, Anita Baker, and Frankie Beverly and Maze.
But the lines are blurred. Some songs from these artists apply to both categories!
My vote goes to Rhythm 'N Blues.
(1) Rock 'N Roll vs (3) Blues - There is no doubt. None at all...that Rock 'N Roll is a direct decendent of The Blues. The Rolling Stones took there name from a line in Muddy Waters's "Mannish Boy". The words rock and roll appear in many many Blues songs long before they come to be used to define a style of music. But once Rock & Roll comes into its own there is no stopping it. It becomes a juggnaught that changes the way America thinks not just about music but even about life. While Blues was the soundtrack to Black American life during Reconstruction and the Great Depression, Rock & Roll was the soundtrack to America's coming of age. The 50s, the 60s, the 70s and the 80s. Both can encite a riot. Both can make you fall in love. Both can make you cry. Both can make you understand.
But for my money, The Blues is what it's all about.


1 comment:

  1. It's the final four and it's down to the end.

    So, what would be the most exciting match up? Will the R&R/R&B showdown bring out the soccer match style riot we know we're all wanting to see? Or will Funk and Blues be the match of the century? Who will come out the victor in a Rock & Roll vs. Funk match up? What if it's Blues vs. R&B? Would you even want to show up for that vote?

    Right now, it looks like it's going to be rock versus funk, but no one knows how last minute voting can change that. I think Rock versus Funk would be an interesting match-up, mainly because there are some great acts that are tremendous and some horrible acts in each genre that lifts them up to unknown heights or drops them to unplumbed depths. I think, if I'm considering the finals in this one, I would have to think about who's bad parts I've hated the most and whose slip ups I can most forgive.

    Also, Roger, is there any new funk being created?