“I’ll Go On Like Nothings Happened, Instead, Somethings are better unsaid”


(So I’m starting to import music pieces over from my Livejournal account that fit this blog. This one from 2008 commemorates the 20th Anniversary of The Supremes entering into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame)

Photobucket

So it was 20 years ago this year,

The Supremes were inducted in the R&R hall of fame…

It just struck me as the soaring chorus of “He’s All I Got” came blaring on.

That righteous shameless plea….Hidden on a B-side, of a Top Ten single from Spring 1966….That last track on their “I Hear A Symphony” LP…

A favorite on Englands Northern Soul scene some 40 years later

“Please go to him, tell him, before he finds someone new. ‘Cause if I ever lose him I dunno what I’d do” (insert Florence Ballard “tell it sistah “oooh”).

And part of me wonders, in the great pop lexicon of music, will they ever get respect beyond the glitter?

The candied coated colors
painted on their lips…
Their hips….

Photobucket

Repackaged,
again,
and again to fill the coffers of someone’s royalty check. Something to sell on the latest TimeLife infomercial of them on some variety show long gone…

There’s so many layers of criticism levied at them, granted, in 20/20 hindsight, a lot of it, with a grain of salt, is understandable

They didn’t write their own songs,
Or
Diana Ross was Evil,
And
Berry Gordy used them (for multiple purposes),
Remember?
They were superficially glittery,
and therefore fake,
they adhered to white standards of beauty and success….

And the criticism goes on and on….

But I kinda get defensive, and say, at the end of the day, nearly 50 years after they recorded their first single, the music, their artistry is still entertaining, and intriguing. And dare I say, even good enough to give repeated listens

Weirdly hard to imitate too. I got in an argument with a 60 year old lesbian about this. Her statement that the Beatles musical was some big whoop, where all the songs were strung together as some storyline.

I’m sure its entertaining, but my argument is that The Supremes first 5 #1 records (unintentionally) played out life a Dramedy, even to 1964-65 ears, from “Where Did Our Love Go” to “Back in My Arms Again” played out like a television season, in music, from the nonchalant grief of a breakup, to the triumphant touchdown of making up, when all hope seemed lost…

Not planned that way of course, because Berry Gordy just wanted to bankroll his operations, since his biggest cash cow, Mary Wells, jumped labels..

Despite what I know from education and Pop Music lore, how calculated a multitude of efforts of theirs were, I’m always suprised how enjoyable their efforts were…

How unvarnished, and sincere the results can seem to a human heart…

Then I defend myself and say its primarily their early efforts (1961 thru the Summer of 1967) that are the moments. Not Diana Ross’s solo career, not the excess baggage of the Dreamgirls pastiche…

….not the glitsy gowns, or wigs, the jetsetting they got to do, the fabulous houses they got to own, them brand new Cadillacs they rarely got to drive, the endless hours of work, the 50 weeks a year of touring, recording and promoting they did…

Hell, as girl groups go they aren’t even my favorite. But maybe because its such a long story, there’s so much to know, thousands of songs to sing along to….gossip that’s turning into faded memories…

The Supremes,

a Supremely complicated piece of art. A psychological drama, a fashion statement, a commentary on race, feminism, and identity politics, a mighty fine 4/4 groove…

Photobucket

And people wonder why I hold them more important than the Beatles…

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s