At 20/05/98 14:18:40, R I Caddel <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
# Seems daft to me to use "better than/as good as" terminology to compare
# Mozart to Sinatra, as fundamentaly we'd be comparing unlike with unlike.
# Eliot with Wensleydale (district or cheese). Strauss with Celtic
# team or steam). It just isn't enough, given the gulfs between them, to
# level both down to consumables and say, they both did the music thing,
# which part of the cd rack shall we go to? Even if we (a) restrict it to
# vocal music, and (b) ignore issues in comparing composer with performer,
# you use different bits of organs to voice WAM's lines to those required
# for Frankie, and similarly, unless you're comatose, you listen
It reminds of that other fallacious debate about Dylan (Bob) and Keats.
# Moving that across to PO-etry, I'd say the same's roughly true - you
# a different voice to be Cris or Ira or Sweet Simon A. And different
# one hopes, to listen to each. Part of my whole problem with a (notional)
# hegemonic M**nst***m is the implied uniformity of approach from author
# reader, which leads to serious problems even at the Heaney=Hughes level,
# and gets more and more flawed as we try to build others in. Roy Fisher?
# It's getting rocky. Edwin Morgan? Have to throw out huge tracts to make
# float. Denise Riley? Over it goes.
Crufts, for me, provides the model here. Terriers v Irish Wolfhounds. Vets
roughly handling the body poetic. Heaney and Hughes paraded before the
cameras with nice blue ribbons (Best-in-show/champion-of-champions).
# This isn't to say it's impossible to make qualitative comparisons in
# disparate areas - gosh, I hope not, I do so enjoy doing it - only that
# the whole it's more fun to learn the individual voices. I've got to say
# never really learned Sinatra - never got past the I'm-so-wonderful aura
# which each line came packed in, never saw the range which people whose
# opinions I trust tell me was/is there. That's my fault, and my hard luck
# too. Mozart was full of shit too, of course, by all accounts, but the
# filters it out so that something else can shine out on the air.
I leave him just about the "Pal Joey" stage. Before, and there's less of
that "I'm-so-wonderful" schtick.
Listening to his stuff again over the weekend, and it amazes me at just how
sparse-seeming some of the arrangements on his songs were. Just lead to