The Age of Enlightenment was the period of intellectualism, civil rights, and a tremendously fruitful period of music. This revolutionary age – evolving out of the Baroque period – focused mainly upon civil human rights, reason over faith, and philosophy; such principles were examined in the ancient history of Greeks and Romans, inherently deeming the name “Classical” upon the eighteenth century. These aspects inevitably were assimilated into the various music genres, namely the genre of symphony, and the multi-layered idealisms coincided closely its formal and stylistic characteristics; thus, this genre of Western art ultimately revealed how “enlightened” the fundamental music paradigm came to be.
I admit that I was and still effectively am a Deadheaded individual.
I was recently watching the 10 episode show Texas Rising and was intrigued with the character, Emily West, a woman of mixed racial heritage. At the end of the final episode, clips were shown of the actors who portrayed the characters, images of the real people, and a brief history. I was surprised to find that Emily, also known as Emily Morgan was the inspiration for the popular song, The Yellow Rose of Texas. I had never associated the color of the rose with the hue of the woman's skin but suddenly it all made sense.
Heartbreak Hotel was Elvis Presley's first million-selling record in and in 1956 it topped the Billboard charts for seven weeks and the Country and Western chart for seventeen, "The King" had arrived.
"You have to know someone."
"It's not open to the public, you have to be invited."
"They send a car, they won't let you drive there."
"They are more Covid careful than the CDC."
It's 2009. You French kiss your middle school crush Alex for the first time while Usher's "Love in This Club" blasts from his family desktop's crappy speakers. On your walk home, you play "Fergalicious" on your hot pink iPod Shuffle. Later that night, you watch the music video for this song called "Paparazzi" by Lady Gaga with your best friend. Honestly, it's pretty weird, but you like the song anyway.
The use of language is so particular and phenomenal. We give words to concepts that are nothing but a construct of what goes on inside our heads. We applaud and reward the ones who do it well. These are the people who understand how to use the sounds coming out of their mouths as more than a means of communication. These people give us a new thought process; it becomes guerrilla warfare in your head because what you have accepted as normal is now being challenged. We either accept it or we don't. Either way, we appreciate these people who seem to get the idea of language.
Alex Harvey, the man, the legend: there are several ways to describe him, ‘wunnerful’ being another that comes to mind. One thing that strikes me about him today is that he only seems to be known to an older set of fans. On the whole, mention him to anyone in my age ground and younger, and the response is more than likely going to be a blank face. Ah, but aren’t they in for a treat!
On its first release in January 1955 it spent five weeks on top of the British charts, on it's second in April 1968 it reached number 20 and on a third release in March 1974 it got as high as number 12. In all it spent 57 weeks in the British charts and was the only release by the legendary Bill Haley to reach number one in the UK.
I write this article the day before my country's birthday. With everything happening within our fifty states, I find it difficult to plan for tomorrow. Thinking about sparklers, frankfurters, fireworks and cheer makes me feel like I'm ignoring many elephants in the room. The 4th is the best holiday to celebrate outside, yet this year we need to stay home. Additionally, anti-racist protests demonstrate that while the Declaration calls for "certain unalienable rights," not everyone in this country enjoys those rights equally. How can we celebrate freedom in America when not everyone is truly free? I don't know about you, but it feels hypocritical to me.