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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Few Music artist who should call it quits by now

I have compiled the few music artist who should give it up already, call it quits, throw in the white hanky or better stop making music already!

I will not name names but their faces and pictures will tell the story.


10 Artists Who Should Stop Making Records

By Sean Nelson
Special to MSN Music


Even though the Who famously hoped "I die before I get old," plenty of veteran musicians have managed to stay relevant far past their predicted sell-by dates. Just look at Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, even Elvis Costello and Prince -- still making vital, interesting albums well beyond the age of 50. But what about the ones who don't age gracefully, or who don't know when to quit, who keep pumping out records year after decade? Some people just stay too long at their own party, and MSN Music is here to turn on the lights.





Madonna

In every imaginable way, the cultural force known as Madonna (as someone once joked, she could easily change her name to Phenomadonna) has transcended music, especially her own. Sure, she began as a pop star, but her legacy has been predominantly visual. The songs are Madonna delivery devices.

Have there been brilliant singles all along? Obviously -- right down to 2005's "Hung Up." However, the mere fact of her new album, "Hard Candy," makes it clear that Madonna's moment as a musical force has long since passed.

She defined the aesthetic of style as substance and gave birth to the teen-pop moment that keeps regenerating every few years. But despite whether she's a massive influence, she feels unnecessary. And pop can be a lot of things, but never that.




The Black Crowes

Remember the recent controversy in which Maxim magazine reviewed the new Black Crowes album before the writer had even heard it? Well, that is obviously inexcusable, but here's the thing no one seems willing to say: He was right.

You don't really need to hear a Crowes record to know what you're going to get, because you always get the same thing: roots rock with an overstated, Southern hippie twang. And it's coming up on 20 years since they had a good tune ("Remedy") to wrap their aesthetic around.

Absent a song, it's just dudes whipping their hair around a mic stand and soloing unto infinity, while a legion of hacky sacks bounce in time. You don't need to make a record to make that happen, dude.




The Who

Surely any list of the five most important rock bands of all time must contain the Who (they're No. 4 on my list; Nos. 2 and 3 are also on this list).

But let's be serious: Have they made a good album, or, OK, an important album since 1973's "Quadrophenia," which I don't even like that much but kind of have to grant you, otherwise we go back to 1969's "Tommy," because I don't like "Who's Next" (1971) that much? The answer is NO.

And it's not because they're old (though it is partially because their drummer died before he got that way). It's because people run out of gas, and Pete Townshend's gift for the short sharp vulnerability ran aground of Roger Daltrey's tendency to grunt and growl instead of sing.

"Endless Wire," the putative Who album from 2006 was one of the most painful listening experiences I can remember -- not one good song, not one good part. How was this the Who? Well, it wasn't. And now they're working on a new one. Here's hoping they never finish.



Ray Davies

A genuine heartbreaker on this list, Ray Davies, the songwriting master behind the Kinks, the second most important band in the history of rock music, has just released his second solo album, "Working Man's Café."

And although you'd have to think at least twice before suggesting that the man who wrote "Waterloo Sunset," "You've Really Got Me," "Lola" and about three dozen other perfect songs was anything other than a genius, you need only suffer through "Café" once to know that the pistons have stopped firing.

Davies' last solo effort, "Other People's Lives," was pretty slack, too. And while I'll fight to the death to support his right to do whatever he wants (if I were president, he'd be poet laureate), I humbly request that he stop making records -- at least till he remembers what he's good at: writing and singing songs about people he's actually interested in.



Joni Mitchell

This one hurts the most, because at her peak, Mitchell was basically the best there was, in the world, period. And then something happened. That something is called ego.

It was one thing for this former folkie singer/songwriter-turned-folk-rock innovator to compare herself to Dylan -- she had every right, especially in the mid-'70s. But when she started comparing herself to Beethoven, it was clear her editorial standards had gone out the window of her limousine.

She hasn't made a record you could even call decent since 1978 -- I would argue 1975, but still least 30 years. And "Shine," last year's "comeback" for Starbucks' Hear Music label, was effectively unlistenable. It may just be time for someone to get herself back to the garden. The great albums remain great, no matter how hard she tries to tarnish them.



Bryan Adams

Umm ... how to put this gently? Never good (not "Summer of '69," not "Heaven," not even "Cuts Like a Knife," which I heard just last week), and only getting worse with age. If indeed, everything you do, you do it for me, I have but one request: Pull the plug.




The Rolling Stones

It's such a cliché by now to make fun of the Stones' advanced age in relation to their live act that you almost forget how long it's been since they've made a good album.

The answer is 36 years. The album was 1972's "Exile on Main Street." If you want to be generous, you could make the case for "Some Girls" in 1978.

Either way, it's been at least three decades since "the world's greatest rock and roll band" could genuinely lay claim to that title. And yet, every time they mount a new tour, a new album comes along to diminish the worth of what should, in fairness, be called "the world's greatest rock and roll brand."

I know, I know, you can't always get what you want, but if a couple of grizzled old glimmer twins are reading this, I hope it's not too much to hope that, with the recent release of "Shine a Light," this could be the last time.



Elton John

As his coffers swell (to say nothing of, well, anything else), the man who managed at least three second acts as a legitimate chart presence hasn't recorded a viable note since 1989 (and that's if you're reeeeeally kind).

His dew-stained do-over of "Candle in the Wind" should have gotten him banished from polite society. Instead, it saved his bacon for the millionth time. How many "Lion King"s can he pull out of his straw boater before the whole toupee comes flying off with it? Time will tell.

But if he wants to make it to his 62nd birthday extravaganza with a shred of dignity, he'll call it a very long day instead of pretending that he can keep trying to pull off a return to roots as he does every so often ("The Captain and the Kid," "Peachtree Road"). The whole point of Elton John was that he had no roots in the first place.



Carly Simon

Never as shallow as Linda Ronstadt or as deep as Joni Mitchell (despite what a recent book suggests), Simon was a talented '70s pop radio artist and sex symbol whose best work is dusted with very affecting melancholy and a very sharp tongue. But she was never a major artist.

By the time the '80s rolled around, her work for movies had steered her into a synthesizer wasteland with lyrics full of vacuous sentimentality and humiliating nursery rhymes. And she's been coasting ever since.

Simon became the latest pop veteran to join the caffeinated ranks of Starbucks' Hear label in late April, but I'm sure I'm not alone when I say the anticipa-a-a-tion didn't exactly drive me crazy.

©Retna Ltd.

Def Leppard (see also, Whitesnake)

There was a time -- let's call it the early '80s -- when it seemed like this good-looking, young Zeppelin/Sabbath-lite semi-hard-rock band's hit strewn "Pyromania" LP was a perfect expression of the MTV-defined pop times.

Then a few years passed, tragedies beset the band and they managed to earn a big comeback, in the form of "Hysteria," featuring the unstoppably dumb mega hit "Pour Some Sugar on Me." That was 1987, 21 years ago.

In the meantime, it has become clear that the meaningless (though somehow sill stupid) lyrics, good-time party attitude and retrograde iconography is better served up by bands that are young and dumb, not just dumb.

Not because it's more rock to be old, but because anyone who isn't 20 has no business making music so brainless -- just ask their new album. Pour some ointment on them; they're done.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Dumb Guy sells Life in eBay - says final price dissapointing

Guy auctions off life, selling price disappoints

Man put everything he owned as well as introductions to his friends on eBay


PERTH, Australia - A man who auctioned his life — his house, his car, his job, even his friends — on eBay said Monday he is disappointed with the selling price.

Ian Usher, a British immigrant to Australia, put everything he owned as well as introductions to his friends on the online auction site after a painful breakup with his wife prompted him to want a fresh start.

Bidding closed Sunday and reached $382,712 — an amount Usher said his house in the western city of Perth was worth on its own.

"I guess I'm a little bit disappointed at the final price, I'd hoped it to be a little higher than that," Usher told Nine Network television on Monday. "But I am committed to selling and moving on and making a fresh start."

He declined to reveal the buyer's identity, or what his next step would be.

Tony Ashby / AFP - Getty Images
Ian Usher, a British immigrant to Australia, auctioned his life on the Internet.


Usher said he had hoped to get at least $480,000 for his life — his house and all its contents, car and a motorcycle, a jet ski, skydiving gear, an introduction to friends and a trial period in his sales job — but that the final result was enough for him to make a new start in life.

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