Tag Archives: Cee Lo Green

The Voice Finale and Rave On Buddy Holly

30 Jun

Javier Colon Wins The Voice

“The Voice” blossomed into a constant show for my sister and I. It also worked as an inside joke because we just could not figure out why we taped and watched every episode. We concluded early on that it was for Cee-Lo Green‘s smooth colloquy and gaudy custom-made outfits. If The Voice did one thing, it proved the verdant creativity of Cee-Lo Green to most of the country. But we both know that it could not have been just Cee-Lo Green.

“The Voice” was the ideal 10-week publicity stunt for all four judges. If you are not familiar with the premise, basically the show saw four celebrity judges (Cee-lo, Adam Levine, Christina Aguilera and Blake Shelton) blindly choose eight singers by voice only for their teams. Then the judges and country narrowed it down to a top four (one from each team) and eventually a winner, Javier Colon, of Team Adam.

The show was awfully predictable, but it’s 10-week format was the correct length and it didn’t give the audience an opportunity to get completely sick of it. The reason we kept watching was the talent. Out of the 32 performers, five had serious, unadulterated talent. Four of those singers made it into the top four. How do you like that? It seems America has finally figured out how to vote in singing competitions. We have had enough practice. The winner, Javier Colon, may not be as quirky and marketable as the runner-up, Dia Frampton (no relation to Peter), but his natural voice is simply better. He was the best singer and he won the money and the recording contract. The show actually worked. I think that is why we kept watching. If the best singers were eliminated early, there would have been no reason to sit through the judge’s specious praise of bad performances. Well, I’ll be honest, we fast-forwarded a lot of the show.

Congrats to Mr. Colon and I wish him well. Unlike the last few years on American Idol, I can actually see myself buying his work and, shockingly, Dia Frampton’s albums as well. Here is Colon’s first performance, a tremendous version of “Time After Time.”

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Modest Mouse Records “That’ll Be The Day”

Buddy Holly is the quintessential example of an artist who was struck down in his prime. The Day The Music Died, the McLean term for the day when Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper were killed in a 1959 Iowa plane crash, took Holly away when he was only 22 years old. I turn 22 in a month and that really gives some perspective. By the time Holly died, he released a good amount of material that would go on to inspire musicians like The Beatles. Holly’s rockabilly music was tinkering with what would become rock n’ roll. Rave On Buddy Holly, sees numerous performers, including Paul McCartney, re-imagine Holly songs. The album makes us ponder what would have happened if Holly did not die.

My favorite song off the album is Modest Mouse’s version of “That’ll Be The Day.” It is low-key and brilliantly original. Take a listen.

The Best Songs of 2010: #3: “Fuck You” by Cee Lo Green

28 Dec

New Years Eve is just a few days away and our countdown is coming to an end. Yesterday I featured “Another New World” by Josh Ritter which is a spectacular song off of his recently released album. I shared with you my thoughts on the remaining four songs. Each one can easily be the best song of the year. I actually feel bad slighting songs that I believe deserve #1 credits. But, I must realize that this is one person’s pretty much unimportant attempt to create a list of fantastic songs (that not all think are good) and nobody really cares where the songs stand. That does not mean that I will not feel bad (even though the artists couldn’t care less). I want to keep this countdown as fair and balanced as possible. That is one of the reasons why “Fuck You” by Cee Lo Green is on the countdown (and so high up). While most music that flourishes in the mainstream is garbage, Cee Lo Green has found a way to create popular music that demonstrates refreshing talent. “Fuck You,” despite its angry implications is an aboveboard example of this excellent talent. Let me explain.

Artist: Cee Lo Green

Song: “Fuck You”

Brief disclaimer: I like keeping the blog clean of unsavory language. Yes, call me a FCC puppet but I like to consider this blog a source for professional music coverage and, let’s face it, you don’t see imprecations lining the New York Times’ broad sheet. But, it is not my place to censor an artist’s vision and Cee Lo Green proudly tells his doubters “Fuck You” in the successful single. I will keep it the way it is. I understand why the radio must censor “Fuck You” and replace it with “Forget You,” but, I do find it funny that Cee Lo Green has actually made it so hard on them by creating such a popular single with a curse in its title. Here is Cee Lo Green with, uh, “Forget You”?

He must be laughing about this. And, truthfully, this is one of the reasons I love this song. Consider what Cee Lo Green does with this song. He creates a catchy pop single that the public goes wild about and fills it with obscenities. It is like a giant middle finger to…well…everyone. I love it. It’s raw and fresh. It’s just never been done before. The song is ruthless but so incredibly candid. A big problem with a lot of music is that it is disingenuous. Cee Lo Green takes that problem and defenestrates it. He then goes to the window and proudly shouts “Fuck You.”

Cee Lo Green’s odd musical life has taken him from being a hellion in a hip/hop group to a collaboration with none other than Danger Mouse (Gnarls Barkley). “Crazy” is an excellent song. Passion just erupts from it. “Fuck You” emits a different feel but it definitely evokes passion in both Cee Lo and the listener. He is musically diverse and wildly talented. I am going to make a bold statement. I don’t believe that anyone in the past 20 years has been able to crack into mainstream radio music and produce songs that actually portray musical talent with such diversity as Cee Lo Green. The only one I can think of is Eminem, and, despite a few exceptions, he has stayed in his rap niche.

“Fuck You” is a warped Motown song. Everything from the old-school video with the corny dance moves to the call and response to the soul swing and vocal. It’s funky and fun. Cee Lo Green displays his vocal range and at times even introduces humor into the song. It is bright Motown with a spiteful “Fuck You.” In the breakdown Cee Lo basically cries out and then proceeds to continue with his curse tirade. Seriously, “Ain’t that some shit.” At the end of the song (which portrays Cee Lo’s experience with numerous heart breakers) he has turned into the lady killer in a sharp suit. “Fuck You” juxtaposes a catchy pop beat with Cee Lo’s dirty mouth. It is excellent and well deserved of its spot on this countdown.

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