Thursday, February 19, 2004

Mr. McKinley Morganfield (Muddy Waters) asks, "What is that she's got?" in "Nineteen Years Old". Mac Rebennack (Dr. John) moans "Why don't my dog bark when you come around?", in the song with that same title. Ponderings of the salacious sort, the studious inquisition type, or, even the saintley splendour direction start churning in your head. Depending on what room or bar you're sitting in, the company you're keeping (at the moment), the level of emotional ravage your heart's just gone through, or maybe just the strength of the drink you've been pulling on for the past hour or so, your interpretation comes through. Humph?! Man, WHAT is it that she's got?!!??
So, your take on "What is that she's got?" will be affected by various external and internal goings on. The meaning is clear....well..yeah..but it's dependent on your particular state of mind at a particular point in time. That's what makes the blues so much more interesting than the majority of rap & hip-hop, that dumpf-dumpf-dumpf-pa-dumpf verborrhea that punishes our ears on a daily basis. With the blues, you are given possibilities. While I don't consider cursing, of the mild sort, a moral shortfall, the staccato repetition in songs of "bitch" or "fuck" and other usual verbal suspects leaves me with a sadness that Grandpa Subtlety has died and the surviving grandkids are Severe Lack of Verbal Skills and Wordplay. Do I want to hear Shakesperean rap ripping up my woofers? Not really. Just a little more respect for the intelligence of the listeners and for the Word. Cuz right now, what is that rap's got? It's got shit..

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