Freedom of Speech HBO Documentary

 

 

 

This documentary talks about the violation of the freedom of speech right by the United States government.  The first amendment states that congress will make no law “abridging the freedom of speech or of the press”.  This amendment was ratified in 1791. Even though freedom of speech is a right presented in the Bill of Rights, the government often feels a need to limit this amendment when there’s some sort of a threat to the country for example when a war is happening or a terrorist attack like what happened on September 11. It discusses civil liberties versus the country’s security. Despite the fact that the first amendment  gives the people the right to speak their mind even on controversial topics like gay marriages or racism, I think their opinions should be expressed in a respectful manner without any cursing or breaking any laws.  It can get difficult and may take time for their voice to be heard when expressing their opinions on such topics but it is still worth the wait. There are rules set up in society for it to run and we must follow them. We have to choose our actions and make our decision wisely making sure that it won’t affect another individual or group negatively.

 

 

This documentary also talks about a student name Chase Harper that expressed his opinion on homosexuality and got suspended for doing so. He wrote on his shirt that “Homosexuality is Shameful” and even though he is entitled to his opinion I think what he did was wrong. He doesn’t know how the homosexual people feel on this topic because he is not the one going through it. I think as long as the topic doesn’t affect you in any way, you should stay out of it and mind your own business.  Another matter discussed in this documentary was about a school principle that had to give her resignation because she sold shirts that had “Intifada NYC” written on them.  Intifada has many meanings to it. One is “shake off” and the other “an uprising by Palestinian Arabs”. She had to resign because she was thought to be “affiliated with a t-shirt and organization that promoted violence”. She says that the word was used in a positive way and was misunderstood. Another meaning of intifada is “wake up” so it could be taken in many ways. I wonder why the first thing that came into peoples mind was that it is something negative. Is it due to the 9/11 event that made Muslims all over look like terrorists? So I can just say that you should be careful on what you say and what you do. Always think it over and play your move according to the law (Do things legally so that nobody could hold anything against you).

Sources:

http://www.audioenglish.net/dictionary/intifada.htm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGJjk1xVM50

 

By fizza05

Final Review of Cold Fact By Sixto Rodriguez

This album is considered to be a masterpiece by many people especially people in places like South Africa and Australia. Sixto Rodriguez is thought as a cult hero and a legend in South Africa.  I think that although I certainly thought that this album was unique and Rodriguez had a different approach to music but I didn’t think it was a masterpiece. I thought it was close to a masterpiece because the songs were a lot similar yet different and a few of the songs could be improved. Some songs had great and interesting sound to it and a few had the guitar notes repeated constantly making the song boring. I know a lot of people would beg to differ but that’s what I thought.  The songs were all either about social, political or his personal problems that he dealt with in his past. Many also included drugs, sex, and rebellious acts (running away from parents in Inner City Blues). Basically covered many topics that happen in life. The only song that I thought was different from the rest was Inner City Blues since it talked about someone else yet still talking about the social problems in the inner city.

I think that he should be acknowledged for his work.  All of his songs were depressing and were about the negative things in life but were presented in a way made me want to move to them like Only Good for Conversation, Inner City Blues, Sugar Man, and Gomorrah. Oh I forgot to talk about Gomorrah, which is a nursery rhyme.  Adding this nursery rhyme to the album made the album even more significant and unique to me. This song was one of those songs that made me want to dance to it. However, the children singing with him on the part “Gomorrah is a nursery rhyme. You won’t find in the book. It’s written on your city’s face. Just stop and take a look” made the nursery sound creepy.  You have to hear it to believe it (the children made the nursery rhyme sound bad). He was better off singing solo. This was the only song in the album that had other vocals in it. This nursery is saying to the children to go to sleep so that they won’t learn the truth about life. The video for the song is presented below.

I love how each song in this album was relative to the album’s title “Cold Fact”.  The one message that all of the songs have in common is learning to deal with problems and realizing the cold, bitter truth about life. I think he presented the songs magnificently in this album as to (like I said before) the songs were relative to the album’s title, the titles of each song were self-explanatory, and the mixture of pop, folk and psychedelic music made the album unique. I kept mentioning that this and that in the album was unique and all because it’s true. There were many aspects in this album making it unique like when he expressed the downsides of life and at the same time making me want to dance to the song. The mixture of lyric and the sound was different. Instead of making the aggressive songs loud and noisy, he made the song soft and slow (for example the song I Wonder).  Rodriguez adding a nursery rhyme about the very topic his album was discussing made his album stand out. The lyrics in all of the songs were not all easy to understand but were catchy and rhymed, making it more fun for me to hear them.  I loved the way he uses that one guitar in all of the songs and played different notes on most of the songs in this album.  The fact that Rodriguez sang, wrote the songs, and also played the guitar was pretty amazing. It made me think that he was hard working.

This album made me realize how deeply people take the blows in their life. I know how it feels to lose people that are close to you but I never really thought about the political and economic problems people go through and how it can affect them. I had it easy on me since my parents provided me with everything I need and never really got to see the outside world. I go to college by car even though my house is near Brooklyn College (this should explain it). This album gave me an insight to the negative sides of life.

            I am glad that even though Sixto Rodriguez was not much appreciated earlier in his career but came to realize his fame outside the United States later (better late than never, right?). He went on many tours recently to Africa, Australia and even in the US, recently. His songs were rereleased and Sugar Man was also sampled in Nas’ album Stillmatic in 2001.

I would give this album the same ratings as I did in my second blog 8.5 out of 10.

Sources:

 http://www.sugarman.org/coldlyrics.html#gom

http://www.sugarman.org/coldfact.html

http://www.sugarman.org/rod_timforster.html

By fizza05

I wonder – Blog post # 7

I Wonder is a song that I felt everyone does (hopefully everyone wonders about what might happen in the future and not just me). I’m not going to just say that I felt that Rodriguez had a unique approach to this song because all of his songs did, whether it’s the mixing of music genres, or the lyrics and use of instruments combination (used in Only Good for Conversation). In this song, he talks about all sorts of things like sex, war, and other things occurring in the world.  I was surprised that this song was famous in South Africa (I’m assuming it was since the album was treated as a masterpiece, there) because it had lyrics like “I wonder how many times you’ve been had and I wonder how many plans have gone bad. I wonder how many times you had sex. I wonder do you know who’ll be next.”  Knowing history, back then sex wasn’t spoke out so openly especially in Africa since they were so religious. When reading the lyrics, I thought that it might’ve been controversial in South Africa but surprisingly enough it wasn’t. I read some comments on You tube and an African American said that this song was a huge hit in South Africa (huh). I guess this song is a general overview of the things Rodriguez wonders about.  I found an amusing comment on You tube saying “AND I WONDER IF CLIMATE CHANGE IS JUST STATING THAT THE PLANET IS DYING – SO FORGET ABOUT PUTTING ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET.I WONDER I DO.” This person added their own lyrics and I thought that was cool but I didn’t understand the second part about eggs (either I’m slow or he’s referring to something else). I just thought about adding this comment because it shows how you can go on and on with this song about the things you wonder a bout( you can add on to the lyrics).

This song is not a song to be heard at home or at special occasions since it talks about topics like sex and the depressing parts of life. Rodriguez talks about the negative sides of life quite a lot in this album. Oh and I forgot to mention that Forget It ( song mentioned in previous blog post) would only be played on the radio just like this song. I don’t think that there is one particular song in this album that would be heard anywhere besides the radio due to them being depressing and expressing rebellious thoughts. But I think the case would be different in places like South Africa and Australia, where this album was huge.

I would give this song 6 out of 10 because the the beat sounded familiar. It was a simple beat that kept repeating and bored me out a bit. It made me glad the video was short and lost my interest in the midst of the song. I also didn’t like the fact that he talked about sex so openly because I guess of the way he says that he wonders who’s going to be next in bed with the girl. It sounded so inappropriate to me. Other than that, the positive sides of the song was that it was one of the few songs in this album that I found easy to understand, and  I thought it had good lyrics. The lyrics expressed his thoughts on the topics he presented and how he wonders what’s going to happen to the world.

Sources:

http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/rodriguez/i-wonder-25827.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMHdq4jm0oQ    – This is the website where I found the comments at.

By fizza05

Forget it- Post # 6

The song Forget it is about how Rodriguez’s relationship didn’t work out. He says that he is able to deal with a breakup and literally just forget about it after she “walks out the door” (meaning his life).  He says “But thanks for your time then you can thank me for mine and after that’s said. Forget it.”  I think I mentioned this before but the titles of the songs in this album are  pretty much self-explanatory. This was actually one song in the album where I had no problem figuring out what he was talking about. This song contained an acoustic guitar. I find it surprising that this guy actually sang, played the guitar, wrote the songs, and still wasn’t appreciated much in America, where people come to for a better life, and was appreciated in places like Australia and South Africa(shocker). I’m not saying that this song was one of his best song in the album but the fact that he did all that in this album should’ve gained him some appreciation from Americans.

This song reminds me of a song in Nickelodeon by Big Time Rush called Til I Forget About You and the concept of the song is the same as Forget It except BTR (Big Time Rush) is also talking about the things they will do to forget the girl (I know nickelodeon, really?).  The image above is the lyrics of the song Til I Forget About You by Big Time Rush.  Both songs talk about being able to handle themselves after a break up. Many people are able to relate to the song Forget It by Rodriguez because in life you meet some people that you begin to like but  realize that you can’t live with  them and so you have to break up. I’ve seen this happen with many of my friends, which helped me relate to this song. I chose this song to do a blog on because of the fact that I was able to relate to it, it was easy to understand the concept, and the song wasn’t that long (I tend to switch songs in between songs sometimes). The video below is of this song and yeah, it’s really short ( it could be just this particular video but I couldn’t find a longer version with him in it, so I decided to stick with this one as all the lyrics from the website were mentioned in the video).

Now that I discussed the positive things in this songs. Let me tell you why this song wasn’t the best song in the album. I just thought that this song was so simple and easy that it could’ve been written in ten minutes. I know that some songs that are written in  less time turn out to be great songs but I just felt that this song was too simple. There was nothing too special or unique about it like the other songs. There was no important message being conveyed. I tried to think of one that he might be saying in the song and the only thing that came to me was that he is just discussing his past relationship. I know I mentioned the video being short as a positive thing because this song just made me lose interest in the midst of it. It just kept repeating and I’m not talking about the lyrics it was the guitar playing the same notes over and over. I thought it was nothing special so I would rate this song a 6 out of 10.

Sources:

http://www.lyricsmania.com/forget_it_lyrics_sixto_rodriguez.html

By fizza05

Establishments Blues- Professors Album Choice Post # 5

Establishment Blues also called This is Not a Song It’s an Outburst is a song in this album describes the social and political problems people were going through at that time. He is talking about how frustrating it is to wake up and the first thing you hear on the news is how bad the world is turning out to be.  The lyrics rhyme in this song, making the song a little bit more fun to hear to, like for example when he says “Gun sales are soaring, housewives find life boring. Divorce the only answer smoking causes cancer. This system’s gonna fall soon, to an angry young tune.”  He talks about clever politicians and people being fed up with their lives.

You would expect this song to be like loud (rock music type) and up tempo but it’s not. It’s just a simple soft song with Rodriguez only using an acoustic guitar. The reason why I decided to blog about this song is because it expresses a lot of frustration without making the listener too aggressive about what’s happening or at least that’s how I felt when I heard the song. Also, I felt I would have more to write about.  This song can be used nowadays too with all the economic problems arising and all. Normally a song like this would be expressed with anger and loud electric guitars but this one isn’t. It reminds me of Taylor Swift’s song A Picture to Burn because in that song, she also had a unique way of expressing her anger for her ex-boyfriend. While Taylor adds comedy to make the song kind of lighter (picture of this song with the lyrics is below), Rodriguez makes the beat simple and soft (that’s the best way I can describe it). In The Devil Made Me Do It, the band (Juice Head) expresses their frustration with life, loudly. The video is down below of their song, which I thought was of them screaming their lungs out and going crazy. They literally go crazy with the instruments and yell the lyrics (yes it actually sounded more like yelling than singing in most of the songs in their album).

   Picture to burn taylor swift

Although, I normally would not want to hear a song expressing the down sides of life but this song expresses the truth. In this song he talks about social unrest and political apathy like he does in Rich Folk Hoax and  Inner City Blues (mostly talks about social unrest in the Inner City Blues).

I would give this song 6.5 out of 10. Even though, the combination of the aggressive lyrics and the guitar being used in a soft way was unique, I just wasn’t into this song. This blog is  very opinion based. This song just didn’t appeal to me much and isn’t a song I would want to hear often because it made me feel depressed and think negative about everything (life). I don’t like feeling depressed (I’m sure most people don’t) but if this song discussed a different topic like about relationships ( not break ups) than I would be more interested in this song (I’m a girl and we love romantic love songs) . I did not hate this song as it changed my view on rock music but like most teenagers nowadays, I don’t really want to think about the bad things occurring around me because I already have so much stress on my head from college and knowing that there are less jobs available just adds on. Other than that I felt that this song was uniquely presented, lyrics were also good and was a great song to add to this album because it talks about the cold fact of life. It discusses the cruel realities (the bitter truth) of life. The video below is Rodriguez performing the Establishment Blues live.

Sources:

http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/rodriguez/this-is-not-a-song-its-an-outburst-25823.html

By fizza05

Another great song- Only Good for Conversation- Post #4

Only Good for Conversation was another great song in this album. I loved the beat. It  had a different beat to it than the other songs. The haunting vocals and the electric guitar ( or at least it sounded like an electric guitar) made the song all the more better and different from the other songs. This song sounded more like rock music because of the guitar, the loud instruments, and the lyrics. The part where he says ” My pocket don’t drive me fast. My mother treats me slow. My statue’s got a concrete heart. But you’re the coldest bitch I know” made this piece sound more aggressive and hilarious at the same time. The couplets rhyme in this single.I love when songs rhyme because it’s easier for you to remember the lyrics. In my other blogs too, I mention how the songs have rhyming couplets as a good thing because it’s easier for a person to remember the song and makes it more catchy. Like the “I love you, you love me. We’re a happy family” song  from Barney. It is well known due to it’s rhymes making it catchy. You can go on the streets and ask someone the song and they’ll be like “Oh” and continue singing the song.

The video above was the only video I found with a clear audio of this song. If you listen to it then you’ll surely like this song as much as I did when I heard it. Anyways,  I think this song is for adults as it has a lot of aggressiveness displayed. Also, adults or maybe even people over 18 years can relate to this song because of their past bad relationships ( either boyfriend- girlfriend relationship or  just bad friendship). This song is talking about a ‘cold bitch’ he knows that isn’t helping him. I had to like analyze the song’s lyrics to understand what the song was about, which was a negative point or else this song probably would’ve been one of the best songs in the album. The beat made me want to dance. The instruments and vocals came at the right time. I did not understand this song as well as I did the others but I loved just listening to it. It’s like when you’re completely lost in the song. I made my brother hear this song without giving him any details about it. He said that this sounds like rock music that also sounds funky and is 70’s song . wow he identified it spot on. I think guys are more into rock music than girls but that’s besides the point.

          VS     

This song was different from all of the songs in the album The Devil Made Me Do It by the rock/punk band The Juice Heads because I actually heard the words. I got a headache listening to The Devil Made Me Do It album and hated myself for doing the first blog project on them.It was tough but I had to bear with it. I did not like the themes and the scary things like sculls, and blood presented in their album. The reason why I am comparing Only Good for Conversation with The Devil Made Me Do It album because I actually like this rock song.Only Good for Conversation changed my view on rock music because at  first I hated rock music.  But now I realize that there are various kinds of rock music. Even though rock music is still at the bottom of my list, I still like Only Good for Conversation like I loved In the End by Linkin Park (another rock music song).  I think this song by Rodriguez was great because it takes a lot to change someone’s point of view on something.  I’m going to give this song a 8 out of 1o because it wasn’t as crazy and rebellious as other rock songs and had a good tune to it. I would not hear this song anywhere except the radio either because it doesn’t give off a good message and would not be a good influence on young children due to the cursing in this song.

Sources:

http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/rodriguez/only-good-for-conversation-25821.html

By fizza05

The Best Song In the Album- Inner City Blues- Professor Album Choice Post #3

In this entire album, if I had to choose the song I liked best it would be Inner City Blues. This song was different than the other songs in this album as it was the only upbeat song in the album with the song Only Good for Conversation. The topic is also different. He is not talking about what the people are going through at that time politically or socially or drugs or his past relationships but he is simply talking about a teenage rebel. It was easy for me to relate to it.

At first, I thought that this song wasn’t going to be that good because of the title “Inner City Blues”. I thought it was going to be depressing and slow like Crucify Your Mind or Establishment Blues. But it wasn’t. It was not at all slow and was about inner city life. I guess the titles of each song in this album is self explanatory. I think this song was the only upbeat song in the album. The song is about a suburban girl who ran away from home. She rebelled against her parents. In this song he mentions “The curfews set for 8. Will it ever be straight? I doubt it”(this and the fact that she ran away proves my point of her being a rebel). The song like Establishment Blues had rhyming couplets, making the song catchy. I can also relate to this song because my parents also tell me at this age ( I just turned 19 yesterday!) to go to sleep early and not to be on my phone at night. I find it really annoying when they say that because I am old enough to take care of myself ( I know it’s because they care but still they need to accept the fact that I’m growing up). I loved the way the song started. It starts off slow with the guitar and then a few seconds later it picks up the pace. It’s not crazy upbeat like most of the songs being released nowadays ( like On the Floor by Jennifer Lopez or telephone by Lady Gaga).

It was between Sugar Man and Inner City Blues. I really liked both of these songs as they both were catchy and conveyed important life messages. Sugar Man delivers the message to youngsters of never taking drugs because they will regret it in the future and Inner City Blues is about where life may take you. I think Inner City Blues is more relatable to any teenager because it talks about a teenage girl wanting her parents to treat her as an adult and everybody wants their parents to treat them like that. I would want my parents to do so, too.  It talks about wanting to grow up and being more independent and at the same time being unknowingly naive.  It’s a phase that most teenagers go through(being rebellious and wanting to grow up faster) .

If I were to be asked where the songs in this album would most likely be played? I would say the radio and that’s it.  The songs in this album are depressing and are about the cruel realities of life so they won’t be played at a happy event or an occasion like a birthday party or a wedding. The radio seems like the best place it may be heard at.  Even this song, being one of the few upbeat song in the album, is still not likely to be heard at a happy occasion or at someone’s home because it describes a rebel.

The video above is of Rodriguez playing this song on You tube as an acoustic.  I thought it was great. Even without the other instruments and just a guitar it sounded upbeat, catchy, lyrics were great (according to the topic), and contained rhyming couplets, making the song more fun to listen to. I would rate this song an 8.5 out of 10. I enjoyed listening to this song more than the others in this album.

Sources :

http://www.lyricsmania.com/inner_city_blues_lyrics_sixto_rodriguez.html

By fizza05

My Opinion on Cold Fact a Week later- Professor Album Choice Post #2

            Okay, so initially I thought the album was good. Now, after better understanding the songs and constantly hearing them, I like this album better than I initially did. I love how hearing a song more than once can help change your view on it. I listened to it on the way when I  was being driven to my friends house(downloaded the songs on my ipod for easier and faster access). Not just Crucify Your Mind and Sugar Man but various other songs in the album (it was a long ride there) just so I can see if I would normally want to hear these songs. My answer yes.  I would listen to this album even after this project  but not on a regular basis because I listen to songs according to my mood.

At first,  I thought the song Sugar Man was about  a girl name Mary Jane breaking his heart and him asking her to give back the time he spent with her ( I mentioned this in blog post #1). But then after hearing the songs over and over, I was confused with why he kept mentioning jumpers, coke, and Mary Jane. I wondered what he was truly referring to. I did some research (I looked up another meaning for Mary Jane and some background info on Rodriguez’s history), which helped me understand the context of this song.  I found out that Mary Jane refers to marijuana (mari-huana – see how they sound similar).I thought coke may be referring to cocaine since it also sounds similar and also because  by sugar man (since he is talking about marijuana) he is referring to a drug dealer and cocaine is also a drug. So, this song is about a guy pleading to his drug dealer to make him go back to the time before he started taking drugs as it turned his heart in to “dead black coil” and took away “all those colors to my dreams” (by my, he means his).

My opinion changed slightly for the song Crucify Your Mind after hearing it again. Before I thought it was just a really depressing song based on life, which made me not want to listen to the lyrics and how the instruments were used as carefully as I did with the others. Later, after hearing the song again, I discovered that the lyrics were poetry based on life and contained subtle instruments, making the song have a unique touch to it. Like in the song Sugar Man, he is talking about drugs in this song, too.  I would rate this song 7 out of 10 because of the reasons provided above. This song had the ability to make me think about life and how a person should think twice before making a decision because you only have one life. Life is short and you never know what might happen next, so try to live it to the fullest. That is what I got out of this song.   I was able to relate to it more on a personal level due to the recent death of my loved ones ( grandma had a stroke and uncle died of stomach cancer). The picture above depicts a person with their mind crucified.

I think that this album consists of songs talking about life, poverty, overcoming hardships, and life experiences (also mentioned in post #1 but are in more details here). The mixture of genres made the album all the more unique. There were some nice messages displayed in this album but I didn’t think that they were carried out nicely. I had to keep on looking up different meanings of different terms, which I thought was a  real bother. The song sugar man conveyed the message of not to take drugs because it can ruin your life.

I would give this album 8.5 out of 10 rather than a 7.5 because this album discusses the cruel realities of life ( emphasizing the title “Cold Fact”). I don’t usually like depressing or rock music but this mixture of music genres made this album unique, stand out and worth listening to. I think his songs are also relatable since they talk about regrets and when a person is going through rough times. I think that Sixto Rodriguez should definetly be recognized for his music, just like any other musician should. I would recommend this album to everyone because like I said above it is relatable, and besides getting up and wanting to dance to the songs, you can actually learn life lessons from this album (or at least I did like think twice about making  decision , etc).

Sources: 

http://forum.grasscity.com/apprentice-tokers/375059-how-did-weed-come-about-being-called-mary-jane.html

By fizza05

My First Impression on Cold Fact by Sixto Rodriguez – Album Choice Post #1

                

                                                             About Sixto Rodriguez 

Sixto Rodriguez was born in Detroit, Michigan on July 10, 1942. The reason behind his first name (Sixto) is because he was the sixth child in the family. His full name is Sixto Diaz Jesus Rodriguez.  He belongs to a middle class family of immigrants from Mexico. Throughout his career, he kept a low profile (was not well known).

Some Background Info on the Album- Cold Fact

Cold fact is the very first (debut) album of Sixto Rodriguez. He is the songwriter and the singer in this album. This album contains psychedelic rock music. This album was famous and well known in places like Australia, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, and especially in South Africa but was not famous in other countries. In South Africa, he was treated as a cult hero and this album was accepted as a rock classic there, which Rodriguez learned about a few years later (image above depicts his tour in South Africa in 1998). He wasn’t acknowledged much in the U.S.  This album was recognized years after it was released by most people. Oh and this album was released on March 1970.  It consists of 12 songs (which I will briefly talk about in my other blogs).  The album Cold Fact received mixed reviews when it was first released and it did not sell much in the states. Spin and Blender magazine gave this album a 3.5 out of 5 ( sources are listed below).

                     

            First Impressions on Cold Fact- The Album

After reading the professors description of the album I wanted to hear at least one of the songs from the album (because there were so many other albums to choose from) so that I can have an idea of what the album might sound like. The first song I ever heard from this album was actually Sugar Man. When I saw the word “Sugar Man” on You tube, I thought it was going to be a fun, loud and up tempo sort of a song but it turned out to be a sad song. To me, it wasn’t like the other rock music songs. The song wasn’t loud and up tempo but was slow and catchy. The first time I heard the song, I took a different meaning out of it.  I thought he was talking about a girl, who broke his heart and is asking her to give him back the time he spent with her or something like that because he said “Jumpers, Coke, Sweet Mary Jane. Sugar man met a false friend.”  But after looking up some words and hearing the song again, I found out the true context of the song (which I will discuss in blog post # 2). So my first ratings for this song is 7.5 out of 10 because of the lyrics being stuck in my head and I thought it was catchy despite being a depressing song.

I felt for this album immediately (just like the professor). The music was catchy and put together well in a weird way. Usually, sad songs make me all teary and depressed but most of the songs in this album also made me want to shake my head while listening to them. However, the song Crucify Your Mind was an exception. The part where he says “Soon you know I’ll leave you and I’ll never look behind ‘cos I was born for the purpose” reminded me of my grandma and my uncle (both of them just passed away a couple of months ago). This song made me all teary because I could relate to it. The last time I felt like that was when I heard the song “Bye bye” by Mariah Carey (awesome yet depressing song). I guess going through the same situation makes it easier for you to relate and understand the song. I would give Crucify Your Mind 6 out of 10 because I just felt too depressed to listen to the lyrics or the sound.

I felt that I needed to hear the songs repeatedly to understand the true context and message being delivered by the songs (I don’t think it’s the writers fault, it’s probably just me being slow).  I had to look up some words to truly understand the songs (which I will talk about in the 2nd blog post).

Overall, initially I thought the songs in this album were good due to the instruments ( the way the guitar was used)  making me want to shake my head and the lyrics describing his hardships in life and life experiences ( which is a weird and unique combination because usually sad songs are not suppose to make you want to move and feel down at the same time ).  I’m not saying that the songs did not give off the feeling that they were sad songs. It did. The simple , slow melody gave the song the depressing touch and the guitar gave it a “move yourself” kind of a touch. I did not feel that the songs were just psychedelic rock music but they also felt like a mixture of folk and pop music( even though I am not good with identifying a song’s genre, I realized that this consisted of more than one type of music genre). I thought the mixture of the genre’s was weird but  unique and cool since it made it stand out.

So I would rate this album 7.5 out of 10. I liked this album because it was nothing like I first expected it to be (before I heard the song Sugar Man). I thought it might be loud rock music and since he was not well known I thought he might be like JuiceHead, the rock-punk music band that I wrote about in my first blog project (ugh, listening to their music gave me a headache). This album consisted of a unique mixture of things ( music genres and instruments).  The part I did not like was that I had to keep on looking up words to understand the song because if you look at my blog post # 2, the songs were not what I first thought it was about ( like Sugar Man). I think a song should give off a clear message because there are  people( like me), who don’t know some terms like marijuana also being called Mary Jane or at least provide another term that can help give off the true meaning. I  got confused and thought he was referring to a girl by saying Mary Jane since the other words also seemed like he was deceived ( which he was but not because of what I initially thought was the reason).

Sources : 

http://www.cduniverse.com/productinfo.asp?pid=7046168

http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/12189-cold-fact/

http://www.lyricsmania.com/sugar_man_lyrics_sixto_rodriguez.html

By fizza05

Extra Credit- Before Sunrise

                    

          Before Sunrise is a simple, romantic, comedy movie starring Ethan Hawke, and Julie Delpy.  This movie was released in January 27, 1995. It was directed by Richard Linklater. Richard Linklater helped out with the screen writing with Kim Krizan. It was produced by Anne Walker-McBay. The Guardian rated Before Sunrise number 3 at being the most romantic film of all time. When it was first released it received many positive reviews.

                                          Summary of the plot of Before Sunrise

This movie is about James also known as Jesse, an American tourist and a French student named Celines, encounter on a train from Budapest to Vienna. The train reaches Vienna and Jesse asks Celine to spend the day with him in Vienna because he thought that they really connected and didn’t have enough money for a hotel. They both roam around and enjoyed each other’s company. They goofed off by prank calling their friends and talked about their recent broken relationships. They both were dumped by their ex’s and were depressed. They start developing feelings for each other. They spoke about things they would never tell anyone. They basically wanted to make the most out of the time they had left together. Jesse specifically says that if he was given a choice, he would have married Celine.  As the day went by, they decided to meet back in the same place in 6 months.

My thoughts on the Movie    

When I first saw the movie, I got confused because I thought that I chose the wrong video and was watching the movie dubbed in another language due to the German couple arguing in German but a few minutes later the guy (Jesse played by Ethan Hawkes) starts talking in English. I thought the German couple arguing in the beginning was hilarious because I did not understand a bit of it. I found it odd that the two main characters, Jesse and Celine, hit it off while being such complete strangers to each other. Coincidentally, in my people power politics class we were having this argument that Americans, except the people sitting in the classroom, are stupid for only knowing one language but that has a lot to do with English being a common language and the need for knowing another language (that’s what my class made said). These two were talking about this topic, too.  On the train, they talked about their past experiences, parent’s expectations of them, fears, and goals.  Personally, I would never talk to any stranger by themself on a train but eh, it’s just a movie. Also, the fact that she agreed to go roam around Vienna with him without even knowing his name made me think that she is careless. Honestly, I thought that was really stupid of her to do that but like I said it’s just a movie. But what I liked about the part when Jesse was convincing her to stay with him in Vienna is how he reassured her that if she thought that he was a psycho she can still grab another train. Also, the way he says that she might regret it in the future when she is tired of her married life and thinks back to when she could’ve enjoyed her time with him in Vienna. I loved it when they both realize that Jesse’s stop came. The expression on both of their face was like “No, I want to talk more to this person.” I think that’s when I realized that they are already falling for each other. I liked the part when Jesse moved his hand to take her hair out of her face but then at the last second he backs away.  That was a really cute moment. I loved that Celine talks about how she hates that the “media” is trying to control their minds and is a new form of fascism because it reminds me of this class. Basically in this film nothing much happens and they just talk about random things like if they believe in reincarnation and the things they hate. That sounds boring but it was portrayed in such an entertaining way that it was not boring. It is a chick flick. It contains comedy, romance, sad moments, and hilarious moments. The last train station scene in which they both give there farewells to each other reminds me of a Indian movie scene ( which I will compare this movie with down below) where the main leads give their farewells to each other but that is just the beginning of their love story. Many people think that Before Sunrise was realistic but I did not (I read some people’s comments on YouTube which said that this movie was realistic). I think that no one in the right mind would go out with a total stranger in a city that they have never been to. It just seems so stupid and illogical. I thought the movie was very romantic and good but unrealistic in some ways that i described above ( where I mentioned it’s just a movie means it does not happen in real life or is less likely to happen.). I felt that if they had added more problems in this movie it would have turned out better. But I would rate this film 7.5 out of 10 just because it did not make me lose interest in it and the funny aspect in it was good. I think that this is one of those movies you at any time. This movie made me want to watch the sequel Before Sunset, which is when Jesse and Celine meet after 9 years( or so i have read). Before Sunset, the sequel was considered to be better than the first one by some critics so I really want to watch it.

                           Similarities between Before Sunrise and a Bollywood movie

This film reminds me of a Bollywood movie called Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (The brave hearted will take the bride), which was also coincidentally (hmm) released in 1995 but on October 20. It is also a romantic comedy and is about two people meeting in a train going to the same place however, they, at first, did not like each other. Due to them missing the train, they had to work together to get back home. They, like Celine and Jesse, start talking about their personal lives and start to fall in love. They also  goof off as Simran (the heroine in the film) gets drunk like when Celine and Jesse make prank calls. Later, Raj (the hero in the film) goes to her home to declare his love to Simran (the heroine in the film). Although, this film has a lot more going on it has a lot of similarities with Before Sunrise. In Before Sunrise  at the end, the main leads separate promising to meet again in the train station but at the end of DDLJ,  the two main leads actually meet while the train is going. The picture below is that scene in the film, which is considered very epic. This movie was one of the best Indian films and is still remembered today.  I actually liked both ending scenes of the two movies.  In DDLJ, the intermission scene in which they return to their homes ( it’s a song sequence) is quite similar to the ending scene of Before Sunrise but I won’t post it so that it won’t be too confusing.

The other two pictures below are the first meetings of the two couples in these two movies , which happens on a train.

      

I would recommend both of these movies to anyone who loves romantic comedy films. ( I know I’m mostly suppose to be discussing Before Sunrise but I can’t help but recommend DDLJ, too).

Sources :

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0112471/

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/before_sunrise/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNk4tRlco7Y

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0112870/

By fizza05