The Passion of the Weiss

Sometimes I rhyme slow, sometimes I rhyme quick. But most of the time, I don't rhyme.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

What I Learned From This Month's Spin

Last month, I learned an important lesson. If something doesn't get put on the Internet in the world of 2006, it's almost as though it doesn't exist. The lesson was learned when I was discussing the latest issue of URB magazine, specifically a cover story the magazine ran on Dip Set. Since the article hadn't been posted on the web almost no one had seen it, since I'm guessing the average person doesn't read URB magazine regularly.

And yet the article had some of the most hysterical quotes I've ever seen inside a magazine article I've ever seen.

Check out these gems coming from Dipset Weed Carrier made good, Jim Jones:

"'Kanye's a twerp, I'm not really a fan of Kanye. He makes good music, but for him as a person I'm not feeling his integrity..."I got 60 grand in this pocket; Kanye can't even fit two bills," is one of Jones's favorite jokes...He has no problem calling West a 'homo."

"Don't get it twisted, in this hip-hop generation there are a lot of people that are gay homo, whatever, in whatever you do. You can't go through a day without seeing them or having to do these photoshoots, know what I'm saying. I ain't dissing on gay people, let the niggas do what they do, but that ain't how I feel over here...We in love with our women, our money and our cars, ya feel me? We love our families and nothing else, goddamn it. We heterosexual over here, the furthest we go is ghettosexual. Fuck a metrosexual, ya dig?"

Quite frankly, those comments are the most obviously closeted thing I've heard since Mike Piazza called a press conference to announce that he wasn't gay. (Like rocking that mustache and living next door in twin Manhattan Beach bachelor pads with Eric Karros wasn't a dead giveaway).

But it wasn't even the stupidity of Juelz Santana, Jim Jones and the rest of their gangs of flamboyant and violent yet suspiciously homophobic rappers, the writers in most music magazines are also easy targets for mockery. In the Dipset article, the writer Brandon Perkins, compares them to Jacques Derrida and de-constructionism. Sorry, dude. I know that English Lit degree was super expensive, but it's ultimately useless in the rap world unless you're studying something from Def Jux and MAYBE Doom. The only Jacques, Jim Jones knows is Jacques Rougeau, and we all know why.

The point is, this article inspired me to write a new feature here at the Passion of the Weiss, What I Learned From [Insert Music Magazine here], a place to savagely mock the bombastic and pompous nature of both music journalists and musicians themselves.

With that in mind, I tackle the most recent issue of Spin, a magazine that I only bought a subscription for because of Chuck Klosterman. About one issue into the subscription, he left the magazine and now I'm left with a magazine designed for a bunch of 14-year old girls (though it had been pretty bad before Klosterman left).

What I Learned From This Month's Spin:

#1 Cee-Lo Is Either Dumb Or A Great Liar
Naturally, Spin does a mini-thumbnail sketch of the Gnarls Barkley project (because how could any self-respecting music journalist not LOVE LOVE Gnarls Barkley. OMG!! OMG!!)

In the piece, Cee-Lo is described as singing like Sam Cooke and talking like a deranged preacher (I'm still going with Nate's call of him sounding like drunken old broken-down uncle).

"Cee-Lo says there's a perfectly reasonable explanation for the group's luck: It came about through divine intervention."

Apparently, Cee-Lo forgot to mention the gimmicky press photos, the "leaked" hot single and the decision to work with the "It" producer of the minute. Apparently, God intervened cosmically to make Cee-Lo and Danger Mouse produce the two great songs and 12 mediocrities and yet no one would know the difference. The Lord works in mysterious ways.

#2 Will People Ever Stop Talking About Pete Doherty?
Another problem with music magazines is that they pander, although I'm not sure who they pander to. Does anyone on the planet at this point actually care about Pete Doherty? Did anyone ever care about Pete Doherty? At this point, the Artic Monkeys look like the Beatles compared to the Libertines, and the Libertines have been broken up for over a year. Yet for some reason, Spin decided to run a small piece about how Pete Doherty went to go visit his son and forgot to wear a sock. I kid you not. Perhaps Spin takes Journalism tips from the Daily Mail.

#3 In A Desperate Bid To Gain Readership Spin Has Brought On a Sex Columnist, an "alt-porn" star named Joanna Angel (her website is here. It is not a pretty place.)
I'm sure this woman is quite good at taking off her clothes for money, though I'm not sure who would actually pay to see her naked. I'd pay not to see her naked. Okay, so that's a bit of an overstatement, what I'm getting at is this woman is the worst. sex. columnist. ever.

When a reader writes. "my boyfriend is into some kinky stuff that I haven't had much experience with. I'm down with a lot of it, but how do I turn down a request that skeeves me out without embarrassing him for bringing it up."

First off, who uses the word skeeve. What is this 1992? Second of all, peep Joanna Angel's response.

"Maybe you should try compromising a bit. Like, if he says, "baby I want to pee in your mouth," say something like "Honey, how about you pee on my stomach, in the shower." Or if he says, "Can you fuck me in the ass with a strap-on?" donate your finger to the cause.

The only applicable response to this query was: Oh, so your boyfriend's in DipSet. I see how it is. Break up with him. Because he is probably in the closet. Very much so.

But on a more serious note, I'm not trying to cop the Puritan card, but how can Spin consciously allow a woman to give such bad sex advice. If you're asking a girl to fuck you with a strap-on, you probably shouldn't be dating girls. Period. That's how you answer that question.

#4 LL Cool J Might Not Have Been a Good Rapper Since 1991, But He Is Much Smarter Than You Think
At one point in Spin's LL feature, the writer asks LL what he thinks about Kanye West's George Bush/Hurricane Katrina comments.

LL's response: "I felt like he was sincere. But I couldn't tell you if the government didn't care about the blacks or if they just dropped the ball. Everybody's not a racist. At the end of the day, if you do what you gotta do to take care of your family, then it doesn't matter. This is America. You can do anything you want to do. We shouldn't depend on the government to take care of us. So I'm not looking for George Bush to take care of black people. I'm looking for black people to take care of black people."

Then when the reporter tries to goad him by saying "Smaller government--that's a very Republican ideal." LL successfully ducks such labels.

"If that's Republican, so be it. But that's just how I see it. I'm not saying you shouldn't look out for the poor. However, in looking out for the poor, you have to teach the poor not to be poor. Give them a fish sandwich, but then teach 'em how to fish."

You might not agree with LL, but his statements were measured, moderate and obviously he's an intelligent man. I suppose you don't hang around in the rap game for 20 years without being a little smarter than everyone else.

#5 Matisyahu Is the Lamest Human Being On This Planet (and no, he does not count as a Jewish Rock Star)Just listen to these quotes from his interview and tell me this man isn't the biggest gimmick since Gabbo, the Ventriloquist act/television show whose slick advertising campaign managed to get the Krusty the Clown show pulled off the air.

Q: Do you have any pre-or post show rituals?
Sometimes I will have my tour manager go out into the crowd, find guys wearing yarmulkes and bring them backstage to pray.

Q: What's Your Perfect Idea of a Summer Da
There's a guy I learn about Jewish mysticism with over the phone. He lives in Hebron, Israel, where Jews are in constant danger. His apt. door is filled with bullet holes. It's just total faith in God that gets him through his days. Maybe I'd study with him and then I'd sit somewhere and meditate on what we were discussing.

Strangely, that was the same answer Tommy Lee gave on Page 74. Except instead of prayer it said coke and instead of Israel he said hooker-land. Same thing.

#6 Dave Matthew is a Pervert and Should Not Be Allowed Around Small Children (Or People With Good Taste in Music)

When asked what his perfect summer day would look like, Matthews answers:

"One of the greatest summer days I've ever had was last year when it was raining like a bastard. I was out in the woods, naked, running around with my daughters. We certainly shocked the nanny.

At this point, I'd bet on Frances Bean coming out in better shape than any of Dave Matthew's children. And how on earth does he think it's acceptable to talk to a national magazine about streaking with his daughters. God damn, Dave Matthews sucks.

#7 Kelis Takes Life Advice From the Movie ProofAccording to the Spin feature, "I was watching Proof, and there's this one little part where Jake Gyllenhaal says 'all the creative genius people do their greatest work in their early 20s and by the time you're 26, you're washed up. And I'm sitting there like, 'is this true? Am I done? And I was like no.'

Shit, all she had to do was roll over in bed and ask her man Nas, what it's like to peak in their early 20's and spend the rest of their careers as a shell of their former self.

#8 Eddie Vedder is Okay in My Book. However, He IS Probably an alcoholic

In the article, Vedder claims "I want to play shows we are proud of. Am I disciplined? Extremely so, yes. I have to have at least two bottles of wine a night."

Say what you want about Pearl Jam's post-Vitalogy output, you have to respect them. They made a conscious effort not to sell out and they never did. And in the words of Hansel talking about Sting, the fact that they're doing it, I respect that.

#9 You Know Who Else Is Not A Sell-Out: Jack White
Regardless of what any of the critics think, I like the Raconteurs album, quite a bit. So much that it may even make my top 10 list at the end of the year. But before the album came out, a lot of people gave Jack White heat for doing a Coke jingle. I was not one of those people, but if you want to read a good analysis of the issue, check out this Spinach Dip post.

Regardless of your beliefs on the topic, here's White's take.
"Nobody's heard it or seen it. I don't even know why I bother talking about it. They assume someone drove up to my house and said, 'crack open a coke on television and give the thumbs-up. That's not what happened. I saw a beautiful ad and I wrote a song because I was inspired by that."

I can't argue with that.

#10 Bill Maher Might Be A Douchebag But He Is a High Douchebag Which is Better Than a Sober One
When asked what drug he'll never do again, Maher responds, "Cocaine. The only drug I'll ever do is pot."

Then they ask, bong, joint, or pipe.
Maher responds "vaporizer."

Well played, Maher. Well played.


At 6:55 PM, Anonymous Slav said...

Hey, do The Source next.

At 8:26 PM, Blogger Nate said...

Vaporizer for Maher...hmmm.

Glad you feel me on Matisthatisnotevenhisrealname. That dude is as authentic as Gnarls Barkley.

Speaking of Gnarly Gnarls, it's funny how you and I were listening to Crazy back in January, and it is just now becoming this crazy hit. It's a good song, but the album sucks!

In regards to crazy Dave, I don't think there is anything wrong with what he was doing with his kids. I think it was more hippie like, then perverted. I think the Dad's to watch out for are the ones that are sexually repressive. Those are the ones that are usually going to end up sexually abusing their children. You were just looking to get a dig in on Matthews. And although he is not the greatest musician on the planet, you have to respect a man that tours every single year, when he clearly no longer has to.

And I don't care if Kelis is past her creative prime or not. She is hot like Hansel.

After the first listen I was not that big of a fan of The Racontuers new album, but then I listened to it on headphones and can't get enough of it. It's fucking brilliant. Broken Boy Soldiers is my favorite song on the album

Lastly, I am glad that LL Cool J has a mind of his own. But I have to say that if those people stuck in Katrina were members of Bush's voting constituency, I don't think he would have hesitated to get those people out. Race is just the user interface for socio-economics. It's not so much that he didn't care about black people in that he didn't care about poor, uneducated, unemployed people that don't vote, and certainly don't vote republican. But he is right that effort needs to be made to not only aid the poor, but to teach them how to succeed and to prevent the social ills that allow them to fall into such a state.

At 9:16 PM, Blogger Douglas Reinhardt said...

skeeveed out is coming back or at least, its a jersey/new york thing.

they say it all the time on stern.

At 3:54 PM, Blogger Passion of the Weiss said...

The problem is I wouldn't pay for the Source, if you wanna' give me each month's copy after you finish reading it, I would love to do so. After watching the Source give the Hot Boys album 4.5 mics then follow it up with covers of Trina and L'il Romeo, I vowed to never buy it again. This was about four years ago and I've kept to it. Thank god.

As always, Nate, i agree with your points, but let's get real, there is only one time that a daughter should see her father naked and that is never.

I can't believe skeeved out is coming back. This means I have to bring back "fresh" which I've been meaning to resurrect for some time now, mainly because every time I feel like I'm somehow on an early De La Soul album. Sorta.


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