This video (unexpected embarrass-me-while-I’m-at-work nudity and all) would have been pretty much perfect without the dialogue.

First, it’s not my relationship.

Then, it is.

Then, it’s what I want it to be.

Then it isn’t.

Then it leaves you utterly confused, like any relationship would. And it doesn’t feel good, but I keep pressing play. Which is probably what this couple does, too.

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It’s also way more effective than the original.

Artist.Album.Song.
Band Of Horses.Cease To Begin.No One’s Gonna Love You.

Watch the vid.

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I have been in this position twice, dim lit gymnasium and all: once at probably 16, and then definitely again at 17. Same dude. Two different homewrecking chicks. Which makes him the hoe. Not me. And that makes me feel better. Like Robyn, I, too, stared creepily from a corner, but unlike the Swede, I didn’t redeem myself, my cool points, or my “Independent Woman”-hood with aggressiveness cleverly disguised as dance moves – you know, so as not to give up my poker face or appear completely pathetic in front of my entire senior class. Nope, not me.

I get goosebumps at the 2:42 mark every time I watch this, but I don’t get the urge to drive past his house anymore. (Which, yes, I did once you left with her. And yes, I saw your bedroom light on. And yes, I know your dad was home. Which means you probably only got something PG. Lame.)

Thanks to Robyn for turning drama into disco.

Peeing my pants.

I had no idea Vampire Weekend (mentioned them before) was releasing “Giving Up The Gun.” Lucky Friday I’m having, I guess. My lucky Friday’s usually just consist of failed attempts at debauchery, so this, this is grand. And takes no effort of my own! So, make that a Lazy Friday, too. Hm. That sounds like the name of an alcoholic beverage. *stares off into distance* Aaand we’re back to square one (i.e. five sentences ago).

Anyway, imagine my surprise when I took a slight mini teensy-weensy detour from doing actual work at my job today and discovered that my favorite feel-good song on their “Contra” album (nope, “Cousins” didn’t do it for me) had some visuals to go along with it.

And those visuals consisted of RZA (all up in the video acting like the “Tao of Wu” advisor he thinks he is in real life), Lil’ Jon (paying his dues back to the band for mentioning his name in their breakout single “Oxford Comma”), Jake Gyllenhaal and a Jonas Brother. Seems like the type of hallucination you’d see after having one too many Lazy Friday’s. *full circle*

Lead singer Ezra Koenig felt the need to explain himself – “‘Giving Up the Gun’ just means turning your back on aggression and selfishness. The heroine of the video isn’t an amazing tennis player, but she has heart. She stays calm despite the unfairness of it all.” – which now just makes the song seem a bit too Kumbaya.

After all, you probably could’ve picked that vibe up from the lyrics:

Your sword’s grown old and rusty / Burnt beneath the rising sun. / It’s locked up like a trophy / Forgetting all the things it’s done. / And though it’s been a long time / You’re right back where you started from / I see it in your eyes / That now you’re giving up the gun.

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Dessa’s video for “Dixon’s Girl” is equal parts intriguing and uncomfortable. Like, I cringed when, 40 seconds in, she suddenly began to speed up her singing, therefore – oh no – turning it into rap…? Is that what this is? I just wasn’t ready.

And then I became disturbed with all the masks and pig heads, but I think that’s because the images reference classic(?) movies I have yet to see – “Clockwork Orange” and “Donnie Darko” – so I don’t get the creative genius behind it.

After I shrugged all that off though, then I became intrigued. But you can’t explain cross-genre music unless, of course, you call it just that. (As a writer, I hoped I’d be more adept with words but, turns out, I isn’t.) So, I Googled her because Bing will never catch on, and found out

1) she’s a spoken-word artist (which makes me feel better! because it explains the flow)

2) she was/is the leader of the a cappella group Boy Sopranos (no boys, one soprano – hah! means she’s ironic; ‘nother thumbs up)

and 3) she’s the sole female member of Doomtree, the Minneapolis hip-hop collective that sets out “to create some of the most forward-thinking beats and rhymes this side of 1987” (and I was born in 1986! So that means I’m just in time. Or something).

I’ve never asked to hear spoken word over 30’s jazz, but the result was pleasing. And now, I can’t stop listening.

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I would have thoroughly enjoyed Rihanna’s “Rude Boy” video that debuted today (see it below)…had I not seen it three years ago (see even further below).

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Originator, none greater, is that you?

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#imjustsayin.

it’s still fire though.

Kid Cudi Kick

December 8, 2009

So, this is the sixth time I’ve re-written this opening sentence and it’s only because I’m so nervous about sharing my ridiculous affection for the Kid.

Cudi, that is. If you know me at all, than I think I’ve made you endure more than enough of my rambling regarding the duder. But I’m on a Cudi kick today, receiving double my daily dose – in my own mind, that means something different, but here I’m referring to music.

First, Shakira (I don’t discuss girl crushes online) made this ill ass video for “Did It Again” (or “Lo Hecho Esta Hecho”), doing some “contemporary dance that was produced in Iceland.” I plan on learning this style of dance by Christmas and putting on a show, most likely inappropriate for family and/or dangerous by a chestnut-roasting fire, but at the very least, a good fitness routine. And she’s smart…not smart enough to marry the son of the President of Argentina after 8 years of dating…but smart enough to enlist Mr. Solo Dolo to drop a few lines on it for her.

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P.S. All couples should fight like this.

And then, Cudi releases a video for my anthem, “Pursuit of Happiness.”

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1. HUH? to having Josh Hartnett produce it.

2. FAIL for not including MGMT or Ratatat in it and replacing them with Drake and Consequence (why?)

3. PASS for implying that happiness can be achieved with champagne and glitter. Cuz it’s true. Clearly this guy is some sort of Boy Wonder.

And I’m already working on my opening line: “So, I hear we’re both one-dimpled freaks.”

In there.

Steph Jones, I Approve.

December 7, 2009

I used to confuse Steph Jones for Michael Whats-His-Face…another light-skinned dude with an afro. He sang a song about how we should all love each other…because, you know, he was mixed and was probably subject to ridicule during his childhood. And I think he was Wyclef’s protege. I don’t feel like Google-searching him, but he existed. And then I started to confuse Steph Jones for Beyonce because he dressed up like her for Halloween and the likeness was uncanny.

But then, a month after its release, I happened upon his mixtape…or “lifetape” as he calls it (he loses 2 points for that)…and was more than pleasantly surprised, because he’s more than just Jordin Sparks boyfriend. And DeRay’s brother. And a model turned singer (because those usually go wrong, like here and here.)

Artist.Album.Song.
StephJones.Gravity.SouthernLove.
StephJones.Gravity.UpUp&Away.

Learning about politics is hard, so I propose that watching and listening to this is the equivalent of reading the wordiest part of a newspaper. After all, Marina & The Diamonds do in 3-and-a-half minutes what frustrated New York Times writers do for a lifetime, and that’s conclude that America, is in fact, a mess. Prepare yourself for earth-shattering material.

And yes, always be advised on national issues by those who are Welsh-born and London-based. They know best.

Ok, so maybe not. But she’s dope.

9. Because she can rock shades made of razor blades.

8. Because she’s using that Mac Photobooth “Bulge” effect in all seriousness. Cartoon-y eyed bitch.

7. Because she can chug Ukranian vodka straight and not gag.

6. Because she’s managed to merge The Twist with The Monster Mash and make it modern.

5. Because I can’t remember the last time I crawled toward any man and gave him a lap dance in front of all his friends so confidently.

4. Because her shoe game is sick, and I’d need an instructional video, picture-only pamphlet, and color-by-number worksheet explaining how one could ever walk in them.

3. Because for months I’ve been trying to train my pet polar bear to follow me everywhere, and I have yet to figure it out.

2. Because she’s apparently immune to fire.

1. Because I’m pretty sure there is absolutely nothing she fears and won’t at least try.

*Learning a thing or two.

melaniesafka

I love when I can show my age and give old people the chance to point and laugh at me about how supposedly ignorant and uneducated I am in musical classics, when the truth is I really had no choice in what year I was born, and therefore had no say in what epic anthems may have slipped under my radar.

So, I hear this little diddly (check it below) on some random station the other night, and think, “Wow, another Regina Spektor, but damnit, it’s catchy.” I picture “Melanie,” the artist, as some blonde with a guitar, and the music video as a slew of scenes with sun rays bouncing off the camera lens. I think she should change her stagename to something more memorable. I think this is a good diversion from the usual “stalker-y” violent songs you hear on the radio nowadays; quite refreshing. But then I go to Wiki-search this up-and-comer and, what the hell, she’s 62? And she’s played Woodstock and Glastonbury. And this tune I’m lovin’ was the only #1 she ever had in the U.S. And maybe 5 different artists have covered it since it’s release – back in 1971. And the lyrics I’m thinking are so damn bubbly and innocent once resulted in the altogether banning of the song from several radio stations for being interpreted as sexual innuendos. (“New key” = nookie? I can see it.)

Why have I never heard of her before? Old-timers, I blame you. Do your effing job and educate the young.

Artist.Album.Song.
MelanieSafka.GatherMe.BrandNewKey.