Friday, 3 May 2013

when somebody is at the top of her game

As the middle aged look back on their heroes of
previous decades, we reassess them based on what
we know now.

One thing that I've noticed is that those rare
public figures who could do no wrong, for
a certain period of time were just an
amazing thing to behold. They just look on
top of the world.

You cannot easily tell if somebody is truly awesome,
even over the long term. That takes maturity, reflection
and a lot humility. I mean, what we thought was
cool at different times, as kids, was usually manufactured
by the media, stoopid, odd, or of its moment only.
[idea for a new blog series- That wanker was cool?]

One such person who was just floating on air during
the late 70s and early 80s was Debby Harry, of
Blondie. Even though her whole crew (wacky dudes) was
on  some serious drugs from before their big
days, and they were shoe-horned by a record company
into music that they didn't want to  play, they
still put out some pretty amazing stuff.
It would be a mistake to look at her "disco" hits that
her company used to get rich. Disco was the reason
I rejected Blondie for a couple of decades. Now, I
know better.

Debb could do no wrong, for a fair chunk of time.
Very often success in culture is a combination of self-
abuse, drugs, ego, youth, piss and vinegar.

Well, by the time the people involved realise how
amazing they were, it's all over. This case is no
different. It probably helped that they were
blithely unaware.
Debb was on the trajectory of female pop musicians
and set her own prototype that has often copied or
used as a launching pad for later musicians.
You'll see signs of culture well beyond CBGB
punk, or disco. I count reggae, Latin and blues music
amongst her repertoire, and acting.

Of course, this is all subjective. so, enjoy this
Hall of Cool moment.
I did one long ago for Iggy's Stooges
Future ones? RHCPs, Kinks, ZZTop

[Debb and Igg- check their tune, below. Nuts!]

[Debb and plane]

[am I to understand that Debbie was advertising Ray Bans?]
Apparently her personal story was that she was an orphan, and she
was made aware of it. She imagined that she was Marilyn Monroe's
kid. She's not far off, looks-wise, and became almost as iconic as
her idol and for many of the same bad reasons.

[mirror shot 0:20. leaves me stupefied][Best growler award]

[best growler award, part 2]

[enjoy watching this lip sync. not the video of this song that made her famous]

early days

[a bit rough, but magnetic]

Their actual preference was for reggae music, probably because
of their pot use. Great tunes, though:

Die Young

[a song for Marilyn]


[she still had it. she not only rapped, but survived. art of a sort. even some French]

Tide is High

[the Desmond Decker reggae tune, Latinised, with horns.
great tune, but she's looking pretty ragged]

some acting, with blues singing, of course: