Postmodern Jukebox
01-16-2015, 07:27 PM,
#41
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
I agree the song is too fast. The guy has an impressive voice but it ends up being like a novelty song. I wonder if this song was recorded before the move to California by PMJ. Mykal Kilgore sings backup on the Maps video with Morgan James.
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01-17-2015, 11:39 AM,
#42
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
Quote:I agree the song is too fast. The guy has an impressive voice but it ends up being like a novelty song.

There's been been a great deal of "spot on" observation here in the less than 24 hours.

And, John, you've given me the opportunity to discuss something that I realized last week, when listening to the Morgan James version of ...Man's World.

As good a musician as Scott is, something he often lacks is either respect for, as Tusk called it, the "essence" of a song or he doesn't care -- or, perhaps, he lacks that final component of good musicianship, which is knowing whether a different "take" on the song both respects the original and enhances, as opposed to simply changing for the sake of change. I've been the most outspoken here when I don't like the approach that he has used, but when listening to the Man's World, an incredibly strong observation struck me.

And that observation is that I fear that much of PMJ's success is based on novelty/gimmick. The unfortunate thing about gimmicks and novelties is that they tend to have a short shelf life -- until the next gimmick/novelty comes along.

Because Scott is a good musician (and I think that recognizing and supporting other good talent is part of being a "good musician"), I don't want that to happen to him, just as his career seems to be taking off. But it could.
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01-17-2015, 02:46 PM, (This post was last modified: 01-17-2015, 05:30 PM by john.)
#43
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
MAE, I appreciate your perspective. I watched many PMJ videos over the past few months and there are a lot of them that I do not like. In some cases because they lose the heart or essence of the song, and in other cases I just don't care for their performance.

When it comes to many current pop songs, I often do not know the song or they have no "essence" that I care about. In those cases the PMJ versions just stand on their own for me. One criticism in the comments about Haley's "Habits" is that it loses the essential pain of the original, although aside from Tove Lo shown crying in the video, I don't find much of that in her rendition. I like the way Scott arranged the songs that Haley and Casey did.

IMO there are a few gems among the covers PMJ has done, but there are many more that I don't care for. Their are too many gimmicky type videos like "Fever Variations - Karen Marie sings Peggy Lee's "Fever" in 12 Different Styles" or ones with a giant clown. Nonetheless, I appreciate their effort and like that fact that they are self made and injecting something different into the contemporary music stream.

In assessing what Scott does, I quoted Linus Pauling earlier in the thread: "The best way to have a good idea is to have lots of ideas." Although it doesn't always work, sometimes it does. He has created interest and a following, and provided a platform for performers that include Haley and Casey, to reach a bigger audience. And with respect to Haley and Casey, their PMJ performances give examples of ensembles and arrangements that work well for them IMO.
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01-17-2015, 04:00 PM,
#44
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
I like this cover of Blank Space - Taylor Swift

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01-17-2015, 05:07 PM, (This post was last modified: 01-17-2015, 05:08 PM by Miguel.)
#45
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
(01-17-2015, 11:39 AM)My Alter Ego Wrote: As good a musician as Scott is, something he often lacks is either respect for, as Tusk called it, the "essence" of a song or he doesn't care -- or, perhaps, he lacks that final component of good musicianship, which is knowing whether a different "take" on the song both respects the original and enhances, as opposed to simply changing for the sake of change.

Part of the problem is there is a production schedule to keep.

Quote:With "Gentleman," as with all of the songs she sings with Postmodern Jukebox, Anderson explained that the end result is the result of both individual work and live collaboration between the musicians.

"Usually we kind of do our own thing and then come back together and try to put it together," she said.

..."I make up a melody if it's necessary or alter the melody either to make it more interesting or more stylistic. And then at the end we just make little changes here and there, where necessary. By the end we have this beautiful finished product."

Yet, "Gentleman" presented Anderson with the additional challenge of learning Psy's, mostly Korean, lyrics.

...And there were the usual time constraints.

"We're always pressed for time. We'll think of a song and we'll say 'okay, we have to do this in 10 days. Figure it out,'" Anderson said.


"I would have like to have sounded more intelligible, slightly more authentic. But in the end, it was a lot of things to think about at once, so I'm sure it suffered a little. I've heard praise from Korean people saying 'I can understand some things.' And then other people are saying 'I don't understand anything. This sounds like gibberish.' I think they pretty much just appreciate that I tried. It was a very humbling experience."

http://www.kpopstarz.com/articles/73913/...tleman.htm

That was January of last year.
Of late, they're posting two videos a week.
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01-18-2015, 05:18 PM, (This post was last modified: 01-18-2015, 06:45 PM by My Alter Ego.)
#46
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
Quote: Part of the problem is there is a production schedule to keep.

Perhaps, but that's a choice they are making, and if it's not working for them they could change it. The example you mentioned might have benefited from more time so that the singer could have had longer to learn such an unfamiliar language, but 10 days for most of what we hear shouldn't be a problem.

And, with Greatest Love of All, it is possible that Mykal wanted to change the tempo in order to avoid the inevitable comparison to the original -- and Whitney, to a certain extent. The problem is, of course, that the comparison will always be made, and frequently, changing songs just to change them doesn't work.

For me in the case of PMJ, for every song that I find acceptable there is one (at least) that is not. And Scott is definitely not the only person with this "malady." When people know that I've been a trumpet player, most immediately assume that I love the Canadian Brass. And no, while the musicians are excellent, I've never known a group that so consistently chooses/uses arrangements that pander to an audience. (I have heard some recent recordings that haven't done that, so perhaps the group has turned a corner. For the sake of the musicians, I hope so!) And there are many other examples.

A colleague of mine and I frequently have a discussion about good vs. poor arrangements, and he uses an analogy that I very much like. He compares it to cooking. To quote him: "a little salt is a good thing. It can enhance the flavor of the dish you're making, but if you use too much, the dish is ruined. You can't take the extra salt out, and there is not much you can do to rescue it." (That specific analogy is in reference to superfluous/gratuitous -- ornamentation, for lack of a more precise way of describing the line in Amadeus: "too many notes.")

Staying with that cooking analogy for this PMJ version of Greatest Love, it's as though they were trying to cook a dish that requires time to develop, and they turned the stove on high and walked away.
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01-18-2015, 10:09 PM,
#47
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
Scott is just so savvy and proactive about his career. He looks to be taking full advantage of the spot light shining on his project Cool

Quote:Scott Bradlee ‏@scottbradlee 34s34 seconds ago
Think iTunes is the devil? Get the new @PMJofficial album on Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/music/albu...fluljb6spu
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01-19-2015, 09:48 AM,
#48
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
(01-18-2015, 10:09 PM)Tusk Wrote:
Quote:Scott Bradlee ‏@scottbradlee 34s34 seconds ago
Think iTunes is the devil? Get the new @PMJofficial album on Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/music/albu...fluljb6spu

$9.99 on itunes, $16.49 on Google Play
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01-19-2015, 10:31 AM,
#49
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
It doesn't seem to be available on Google Play at the moment.
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01-19-2015, 12:01 PM,
#50
RE: Postmodern Jukebox
(01-19-2015, 10:31 AM)Miguel Wrote: It doesn't seem to be available on Google Play at the moment.
It's there...You have to do a search starting with Scott Bradlee
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