So I’ve been reading Peter Shapiro’s Turn the Beat Around: The Secret History of Disco, and I was tickled to read the parts about Chic. I already knew they were the greatest disco band ever, and that songs like “Le Freak” and “Good Times” really reward listening to the tongue-in-cheek lyrics. But I didn’t know that “Le Freak” was originally called “Fuck Off, Studio 54”, and was written after they—Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards!—couldn’t get into Studio 54 to meet Grace Jones one night.
But for me, “Good Times” really captures what Chic set out to do—they explicitly wanted to capture the mood of a lot of 30s and 40s popular music that was about dancing your cares away, with hat tips to the economic and political upheaval that compelled people to go to extremes to forget all about it on Saturday night. (Right up to explicit references to stomping at the Savoy.) In other words, as Rodgers and Edwards saw a lot of parallels between NYC in the 70s and the Great Depression, I see a lot in their music that resonates today. “Good Times” makes a lot of reference to the “let them eat cake” mentality that the country at large had towards NYC, an attitude that now defines the bank bailout and much of the discourse around health care. I listen to Rush Limbaugh’s statements, for instance, and the wry, subtle humor of lyrics like “Must put an end/To this stress and strife/I think I want to live the sporting life”—the joke is basically that you’re supposed to say, “If only it were that easy”—makes sense to me. Thus, the Genius 10 for Chic. Leave yours in comments.
Original song: “Good Times” by Chic
1) “Love Rollercoaster”—Ohio Players
2) “Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)”—The Jacksons
3) “Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)”—Parliment
4) “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)”—Sylvester
5) “I Wanna Be Your Lover”—Prince
6) “Jungle Love”—The Time
7) “Upside Down”—Diana Ross
8) “I’m Your Boogie Man”—KC & the Sunshine Band
9) “Think (About It)”—Lyn Collins
10) “I’ll Be Around”—The Spinners
Videos after the fold.
‘There needs to be a prosecution’ of cop who killed George Floyd: CNN guest says ‘call it what it is’
On CNN Wednesday, criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson walked through why the Minneapolis police officer responsible for George Floyd's suffocation death must be prosecuted.
"Bottom line, question here from looking at this, should the officer face charges?" asked host Erin Burnett.
"Erin, I don't think there is any question about that, and I think if you look at it, under any reasonable measure there needs to be a prosecution," said Jackson. "You know, when you look at issues of excessive force — and I know this comes with a lot of emotion, and it should because of the blatant nature of what occurred. But if you even look at it legally and forget about the emotion, you look and you see, was there an imminent fear that the officer was facing when he had his knee in the neck of Mr. Floyd? And the answer is resoundingly no. You look at the force he used, that is the officer, and you say is it proportionate to whatever threat was posed? The answer is no, you don't see any threat. You see a person detained and really not resisting at all."
Police clash with George Floyd protesters in Minneapolis for second straight day
On Wednesday, protests against the police killing of George Floyd continued — and once again, police and demonstrators clashed, with authorities using chemical agents to attempt to deter the crowds.
Protestors move further back into street after police shoot some kind of deterrent pic.twitter.com/yrvqziOMbD
— christine nguyen (@xinewin) May 27, 2020
Texas Supreme Court triggers outrage by denying mail-in ballots to at-risk voters: ‘Brazen and corrupt’
On Wednesday, the GOP-dominated Supreme Court of Texas ruled that voters cannot claim risk of coronavirus infection as a "disability" under Texas' absentee ballot eligibility law.
The decision triggered outrage immediately on social media, with some commenters noting that the justices themselves issued this decision remotely to keep themselves safe. Others noted that four of the justices themselves are up for re-election, and thus their own candidacies stand to be affected by the ruling.