I've got a whole city to hold down

August 12, 2004

There's a new rock critic in town...

... and his name is Alan Keyes.

Here's a little taste of the Keyes style:

"I think when we look at our cultural landscape we can see that a great contribution is made to our declining morals. By our tolerance for music of varieties that has [sic] become more and more debased, filthier and filthier lyrics. And it is now kind of accepted and people make jokes about it and people act as if it's not serious.

"Not long ago, Senator McCain, you were on a television program. You were asked what your favorite rock group was and you said Nine Inch Nails. They then embarrassed you by putting up the Nine Inch Nails lyrics and it was filled with the f-word and other kind of vulgarities. Don't you think that as leaders we ought to be a little bit more serious about the kind of influences that are now destroying the lives of our children? And before we open our mouths we ought to know what we are talking about instead of aiding and abetting the cultural murder that is taking place of our young people?

"I'm a father, sir, I've got to tell you, I'm a father and I'm not laughing."

That's Keyes from a debate during the 2000 Republican presidential primaries, by the way.

There's also Barack Obama to consider, though. He's gunning for Howard Reich's chair. From the New Yorker: "'You can’t always come up with the optimal solution, but you can usually come up with a better solution,' [Obama] said over lunch one afternoon. 'A good compromise, a good piece of legislation, is like a good sentence.' He nodded. Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue was playing in the background. 'Or a good piece of music,' he said. 'Everybody can recognize it.'"

Michelle "Mrs. Barack" Obama says: "If you were to go into his car and see his CD collection, he'd have some Sting, Eminem, Latin popular music…. He loves Thelonious Monk, he loves Miles Davis. He just took my OutKast because I can only play one song on it because I usually have the kids. There's too much cursing.... Marvin Gaye is one of his favorites. He loves to sing 'Let's Get It On.' You need to get him to get up and do that. He's not shy, if you sort of coax him."