swordmage: (Aloof)
There’s an article on the BBC today about how two words were blanked out of the Rolling Stones half-time show on Sunday. The first was in Start Me Up: “You can make a dead man cum” and another when Rough Justice hit “Now I’m just one of your cocks.”

“TV censors deemed two lyrics too sexually explicit to be broadcast and they were cut from the three-song show.”

Sexually explicit? I could understand that if they did something like Starfucker, but they’re moaning over the words “cum” and “cocks”? Yes, I understand the logic is probably along the lines of the half-time show and American Football are “wholesome family entertainment” and we wouldn’t want the little ones to be scarred by (mild) sexual references.

But if you look at the lyrics of so many “pop” songs today, they’re far more explicit. Yes, I’m making a broad generalization here, but look at rap. Songs to have made it to the top 40 list in recent years include 50 Cents’ Candy Shop. This is the first one that springs to mind simply because if you look at the lyrics and watch the video, dear god is it more blatantly explicit. And yet, it was on the radio constantly. Granted, they didn’t ask the 50 Cent to play the half-time show at the Superbowl, but I’m sure this song is much more familiar to the younger members of my generation then say The Stones’ Sister Morphine. Even then though, Sister Morphine doesn't’ bug me, with the blatant drug references. Under the cut are excepts from the lyrics of both songs.

Candy Shop
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Sister Morphine
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I’m disgusted in a way that I’m not after hearing “You can make a dead man cum.” Seriously, I want to take a shower. And I wouldn’t consider myself a prude when it comes to musical lyrics. Shall we talk about Leonard Cohen’s Chelsea Hotel No. 2? “I remember you well in the chelsea hotel,/You were talking so brave and so sweet,/Giving me head on the unmade bed,/While the limousines wait in the street.” But Cohen’s lyrics, in my opinion, give his women a humanity that rap seems to lack. I can’t help but think that he really loves women - and not just in a sexual way. He’s a wonderful lyricist (even if you consider his music, as someone once called it “music to commit suicide to”), and even something like the opening line of Chelsea Hotel No. 2 doesn't seem to be dirty, but instead is something beautiful. If you’ve never heard the song, I’ve got a yousendit link at the bottom. Download it.

To get back to the Stones, they weren’t half-bad. Granted, the sound was sort of crummy (and dad said they’re a great live band, he’s seen them a few times), and the set was short (it was a football half-time show), but I liked them. Certainly better then the debacle of two years ago - Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake. I didn’t see what I heard was a snorer last year, Paul McCartney. I don’t think I saw U2 when they played a few years back.

To be honest, I’d rather the younglings heard The Stones’ lyrics then 50 Cent’s. At the least, there’s a tune behind them and Mick, while not the best singer, is still pretty damned good. (And certainly knows how to work a crowd.) They’re, among other things, classic rock and roll. I'm not saying that they're the pinnacle of family-friendly lyrics, but The Rolling Stones have still done a good number of very good/great songs - Satisfaction, Wild Horses, Tumbling Dice, Dead Flowers, Jumping Jack Flash, and more.

Not to mention, The Stones have been on the circuit continually for about 40 years. In 10, I’d be surprised if anyone remembered/knew who 50 Cent was.

Chelsea Hotel No. 2 - Leonard Cohen
swordmage: (Default)
Am I the only one who thinks JKR/her lawyers/publishers/etc are going a bit overboard?

Spoilers are a part of life in this age-there are spoilers for books, movies, tv shows, you name it. We accept them, and know they're out there and easy to find.

So why the extra security over Half Blood Prince?

Yes, it's an obscenly popular series. But does that make it much different from any other book or movie? I understand the want to preserve the surprise of what's going to happen, it's part of the joy of reading a book. But when about a dozen copies are accidentally sold, must the people be asked to return the books unread and swear not to talk about them? Seems a bit excessive. The security around them? Again, excessive. I doubt that, eager though they may be, fans will storm the warehouses they're being held in.

By now, all the books are in place for release on Friday night, at a standard, pre-set time (so those in Australia don't et them before those in the US and UK). The best thing to do is let the spoilers stay out there, I suspect that the people who read them already have purchased the book, or are planning to do so very quickly. It's not going to seriously (if at all) affect sales-a few copies here and there aren't going to make a difference in the 10 million plus already sold.

But no matter what, spoilers or not, around the world, fans will be lining up tomorrow night to get their hands on the book. Nothing now is going to stop this from jumping to the top of any best-seller list it's not already on. It's been anticipated for a few years*, and it's going to be flying off shelves like as if it was only going to be on sale for a few hours.

*-Two years (has it been that long?) isn't that bad really, I waited four for The Amber Spyglass, which was well-worth it. This'll probably be the same. And yes, two years is still a crazy amount of time to wait for a book you seriously want to read. especially when you're young.

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Willa

April 2014

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