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May 13, 1988 - Image 29

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1988-05-13

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lives any more. It all sounds like product. We've
been in the business for a while. We're aware of
how things are marketed. I think it's time for
another punk thing, like what we came out of. You
know, young kids trying to topple the old order.
Weymouth (pork chop): How do you explain the
popularity of John Cougar Mellencamp or Bruce
Springsteen?
DB: They're sincere. I think that's why they're
popular. You might not like the ubiquitousness of
their faces or their images or their styles or their
stances. But I think that's superfluous because
they're really sincere about what they're doing.
Harrison (chicken pot pie): They also make beauti-
fully crafted records.
Frantz (chicken pot pie): That song "Paper in Fire"
is great.
JH: He [Mellencamp] has very good people he
works with. And also he stayed in his home state
and represents a certain value. People, beyond
listening to the value of the music, want to identify
with the musicians.
TW: But how does that fit in with what David just
said, about so much of what's popular now is crap?
DB: I don't have a Top 40 list in front of me ...
CF: Well, George Michael's pretty high up there.
DB: That's pure marketing product. It's pure '80s

Today: 'Suddenly, we're
big,'says Weymouth

saying it's OK to be completely commercial. Not
that he's not a good songwriter.
JH: I think it's also when you see Beatles songs
for Nike commercials and Michael Jackson maybe
doing just as good a song for Pepsi as he does for his
album. Things like that. And every soundtrack of
every movie now, they're looking for hit songs to
sell a movie. Music becomes less and less special,
and less and less something that you find. It's like
everywhere in the culture. There's video stations.
Everytime you turn on the TV you hear rock mu-
sic. Even in elevators. So, it's allowed people like
Michael Jackson to be more ubiquitous and more
enormous, but it tires you out and degrades the
whole medium. It certainly loses any of the sense of
being a rebellious art form that it once was.
DB: I think there's ways of being rebellious with-
out safety pins and spitting. You can have a soft
ballad that can have some meat to it.
CF: It's not the meat, it's the motion.
Actually, with "Naked," it's both. As always,
Talking Heads gives you a lot to contemplate-
lyrically and musically-while you dance. Byrne
has come up with some of his most accessible
lyrics since the early Heads albums. "(Nothing
But) Flowers" is a hilarious twist on the notion of

MAY 1988

NEWSWEEK ON CAMPUS 9

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