AWOPBAMBOOM, Volume 107 – Music News and Notes for Fellow Travelers
Hello internet locals and tourists alike, and welcome to AWOPBAMBOOM! We’ve got a lot on tap — the Weeknd, Coronavirus closures, a Billie Eilish controversy, and more — for today, so sit back and (figuratively) buckle up and enjoy the read!
THE WEEKND, LAST SATURDAY
The Weeknd gave SNL a snazzy performance of his new hit song, “Blinding Lights.” Of course, the set for the performance features a dazzling light show behind the singer. The Weeknd performs with infectious enthusiasm: gesturing to the audience, improving vocalizations, and dancing during instrumentals. Check out the video of the shining and jubilant show below.
A DRESSING DOWN FOR BILLIE
Despite recent praise for Eilish’s anti-body-shaming statement at her concert in Miami, redditor u/koosobie stands against popular opinion, outing Eilish as a hypocrite. Reddit Post Here. Another Eilish Concert Article for Reference Here. The post was made on one of Reddit’s more popular subreddits, r/unpopular opinion. I reference the reddit post to bring up a point about artists who make statements; an artist who’s held up as a paragon of a certain value should be held to the standards of a paragon of that value. I think it’s important to do a reality check; Eilish is only 18 years old and she’s absurdly famous. Being 18 years old alone is cause enough to — as the elders say — run off at the mouth. My point is not to diminish the opinions of the youth because I am the youth (20). But to, again, give a serious reality check and make sure people are praising a value over the person who claims to champion it.
Three minutes and 10 seconds in: “Listen, I’m not shaming people for their looks. But I am, though.”
Due to Coronavirus, many artists — Pearl Jam, Zac Brown Band, Madonna, and more — as well as festivals are postponing their tours, shows, and events; this is hitting the live music industry hard. Stagecoach and Coachella have been postponed until October, and, SXSW’s postponement date is TBD. Both workers and consumers in the industry are feeling the monetary and emotional toll the shutting down of live shows is taking. Many musicians, sound technicians, and venues rely on live shows in order to make a living/pay their employees. Music lovers save up for events like Coachella for a long time; tickets, hotels, travel, and other expenses are costly. While festival holders and musicians are doing their best to make up for it, the fact is that music is comforting and encouraging during times of crisis like these and for the privilege of people to congregate and inspire one other, revel, and connect to be lost is certainly disheartening.
For more on COVID-19’s impact on the music industry check out RollingStone’s coverage here.
Justin Timberlake continues his motivational streak — after his recent collaboration with Meek Mill — with a lyric video release of “Don’t Slack.” The song is also a collaboration between him and Anderson Paak for the Trolls World Tour. The lyrics cheer us on to “Imagine all the lives we can change.” And “Pick up your face/ and be proud for once.” Positive messages are so important in music precisely because it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important in the pomp and grandeur of the industry. Trolls World Tour is set to come out on April 10th.
While we’ve already covered Eminem’s recent album, Music To Be Murdered By,he has released the music video for his song, “Godzilla”—collaborated with JUICE WRLD—and it’s so brilliantly bizarre and monstrous that we’ve got to talk you through it.
Immediately, the Rap God is hell bent on getting shit-faced as he chugs a bottle of liquor five seconds into the video, and several others throughout. There are numerous oddities besides the eponymous Godzillas behind him at the start of the video: Bugsy eyes, Eminem face swaps, and lego vomit are only a few. The cast of characters features multiple Eminems, the two aforementioned Godzillas, a woman who’s (in my unprofessional opinion) way too attracted to a basketball, and special guest appearances from Mike Tyson and Dr. Dre.
Eminem also broke his own world record for fastest rap verse in “Godzilla”’s third verse. Eminem raps 224 words in the final 30 seconds, averaging 7.23 words per second. In “Rap God” he rapped 6.07 words per second. And it was 7.08 words per second on his verse in Nicki Minaj’s “Majesty.”
The end of the video pays tribute to JUICE WRLD, who passed away from an accidental overdose on December 8th 2019. We hear a recording of JUICE WRLD encouraging anyone who’s struggling to keep fighting, and text appears stating that he will always be remembered.
ABOUT GUY JAMES
Guy James is the pen name of Guy DeMarco, a young writer on the rise. He can be reached with music ideas and story suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lead-In Image (Eminem) Courtesy of Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com – “LOS ANGELES – JAN 30: Eminem, Marshall Bruce Mathers III at the 50 Cent Star Ceremony on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 30, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA.”