Music Monday: 17 by Cross Canadian Ragweed

Going back to your small hometown after you’ve left is a funny thing.  It is a significant theme in one of my current reads, Empire Falls by Richard Russo.  I’ve been gone for almost twenty years now, although I did three short stints during that period crashing at home.  I think I am finally past always feeling 17 in my hometown (and clenching up every single time I see the cops).  Having a baby will do that to you.  But with a roadtrip home impending, my thoughts are turning to my hometown and my old friends.

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Music Monday: Charley Pride

Charley Pride recorded somewhere between 29 and 40 #1 hits, depending on how you count.  It was funny, then, when someone posing as an expert on country music claimed only four black men had ever topped Billboard Country Charts.[1]  One of those didn’t—Lil Nas X.  And there was one massive omission—Charley Pride.  The most likely explanation is the most obvious.  This guy doesn’t know who Charley Pride is because he doesn’t really know shit about country music and is lying to make a cheap point.

When called on it, he responded flippantly.  I could argue here that if you expect any credibility in arguing country music[2] that you need to get your facts right.  He might perhaps argue in return that his cause[3] is more important than getting it right about Mr. Pride.  But those are utilitarian arguments.  I’m not interested in making utilitarian arguments.  In Kantian terms, Mr. Pride has the right to be treated as an end, not as a means.  In Christian terms, he is inherently deserving of dignity as a human being created in God’s image.  He is a man, not a tool in your box of arguments.

So fuck that hack.  Let’s listen to some damn fine music.

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Music Monday: Side Pony by Lake Street Dive

It’s hard to believe I have quasi-successfully shepherded a tiny human through an entire year of life (well, a year after my wife did all the work for the first nine months of her life).  no-angel is sweet and silly.  Weirdly so, given her people on both sides run more to dour and ornery.  She is a mountain of a baby, tough as nails, and has the strong, careful hands of a skilled tradesbaby.  She is also known to rock a side pony.

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Music Monday: Celtic Punk

It is a grand American tradition to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by pretending to be Irish.  My heritage runs Scottish and English (to my knowledge), but what red-blooded American ever let that stop them?  And what better way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a little Celtic punk from a band out the U.S. and a band out of England?

The two songs, by the way, were prominently featured in the two greatest TV series ever made.

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