NEWSWORTHY

THE SHUCK AND JIVE OF “AMERICAN IDOL” AND “THE VOICE”

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
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And so “American Idol” and “The Voice” had their finales a day apart from each other. Who won? Anyone care? Really?

Having watched each sporadically and appalled at the lack of talent on both shows, the programming/content/whatever proved just how much the world has changed and as Pete Towshend wrote, We Won’t Get Fooled Again.

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SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE COMEBACK OF THE INFERIORITY COMPLEX

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

See, we’re allowing in so much of everything into our minds that we’ve lost all sense of prioritising what really matters because of this ridiculous need to stay informed 24/7 through social media and 24-hour so-called news channels where the most absorbing programmes have to do with cooking.

It’s why so many have stopped creating. Sure, they doodle on the fringes of creativity, but where’s the beef? Most of the time it’s clutter that’s somehow on our timelines taking up quality time as we check whatever apps are on our “smart phones” to dumb us down even more because, whether we care to admit it or not, many of us are slaves to technology. This can be fought by killing the enemy within and tame bad habits.

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ANYONE ELSE SEARCHING FOR THE INNER LIGHT?

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

“The more one travels, the less one knows”. George Harrison sang that line on “The Inner Light” about how life flows within you and without you. It was one of those token Harrison songs that had to be included somewhere and ended up as the throwaway B Side to the Beatles’ hit single “Lady Madonna”.

Here was this meditative raga based track with George singing about something very spiritual. I didn’t get it and, probably like most, just ignored it. But as one grows older, the song has taken on a new relevance.

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MUSIC: NEXT STOP: ASIA

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

When one of the very very very few people you respect and with a globally proven track record writes to say, “The music industry has never been in such a mess”, one not only listens, there’s a certain sense of vindication- that what you have been saying and questioning for years isn’t just talk from Sleepy Hollow and how so many have allowed themselves to be bamboozled for so long that they’re utterly burnt out, desperately clutching at straws and believing this is taking them somewhere. Please.

Social media might be a nice place to show off that you’ve made yourself a nice salad and show some happy snaps from a holiday, but as platforms to market and sell music, especially if an unknown, please don’t embarrass yourself by uploading mawkish self-promotional jive on Facebook and Instagram even if you’re wearing a hibiscus behind your ear and wobbling trying to stay in tune. All this does is highlight the terminal deficiencies when it comes to having actual talent.

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WHY IT’S GOT TO BE MUCH MORE THAN SOME SONGS AND LOOKING AT THE CHINA ENTERTAINMENT MARKET WITH THOSE WHO REALLY KNOW IT

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

Writing this with a repeat of Britain’s Got Talent flickering in the background and some random Spotify Playlist playing what could be described as “coffee shop music” while thinking about one particular well-known name dropping music blogger who is clueless about the world outside of America writing incessantly about embracing new technology and The New, but then goes on and on about the need for artists to tour and how touring gave the Grateful Dead their loyal Deadheads shows just how unfocused, hypocritical and confusing trying to make a career out of music has become. All the excitement and enthusiasm seems to have been sucked out and replaced with bland clutter and speaking in the vagaries of circles.

Trying to make a livelihood out of music today is almost an impossibility. Or so it seems. To those who’ve worked in music companies run as successful businesses by visionaries like Ahmet Ertegun and Chris Blackwell and grown up watching, and even getting to know, unknown artists become legends, it’s easy to come across being know-it-all windbags and dreadful bores in the process.

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WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? WHAT’S MUSIC SAYING TO YOU

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

It probably started with Chris Cornell: Slowing down an uptempo song and giving it a new twist just as he did with his amazing version of “Billie Jean”.

Michael Jackson and producer Quincy Jones had given the world a slice of slick, danceable pop aided by a hugely important music video during those early days of MTV which helped enormously in breaking a black artist into the mainstream consciousness when Sony Chairman at the time- Walter Yetnikoff, below, played hardball with the new music channel: Put “Billie Jean” on Heavy Rotation or else you don’t get any other video by Sony artists- Springsteen, Journey, Billy Joel, Cindi Lauper etc etc.

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THE OSCARS AND THE PHONINESS OF IT ALL

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
Visit Hans-Ebert.com

I fretted for a few hours that I wouldn’t be able to see the Oscars. The person with me told me to exhale and then bitch slapped me into reality about how I was being a lemming and just doing something I have always done because of some pre-conditioned state going back to when I was dating and trying to figure out the marriage thing.

In the end, my PA told me the Oscars was on terrestrial television and which somehow calmed the beast within. “Happy now?” asked my friend as she casually walked towards the kitchenette au naturelle and made herself some breakfast. She might have called me a baby. Or something else.

She’s anti establishment and very anti Hollywood. Frankly, she’s anti American- all the showbiz afflicting the country and how it’s always only about them and damn the rest of the world.

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MISSIONARY SHOES AND BIBLE BLUES (A SONG CYCLE)

It might have not gone according to plan and with no Happy Ever After, but the time spent together when the bells rang out and the music chimed in perfect harmony will always be there.

You were the girl with the missionary shoes, short brown hair and bible rules, and I was the Saint and sinner sent your way.

Messengers have a strange way of appearing when least expected. And so, there we were building an existence in the Lost And Found.

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THE LOWELL GEORGE JOURNEY OF LIFE AND LIGHT

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk
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Sometimes things happen for a reason- not often, but when they’re special things that reset your thinking and help bring about some form of clarity, it’s no doubt coming from some higher power without tripping over that unforgiving ninth step.

The night before I had seen someone I had known for around a decade have a meltdown. It was the alcohol talking mixed with anger, frustration and desperation. When after years of trying and with still nothing to show for it and all those wasted years trying to be what you hoped to hell you’d be with nothing to show for it, something snaps.

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