Zappa dappa do, nuttin but

October 2, 2008

Oh, well. I should have known that “America’s Got Talent” wasn’t going to end my way last night when Queen Emily was sent home as the No. 5 contestant. I had her in the top three. America may have talent, but it also has millions of morons who wouldn’t know real talent if it — well, fell into their living rooms. The act that should have won — Nuttin but Stringz — was dispatched in third place. At least the winner — operatic singer Neal E. Boyd — was also one of the top three in talent. He does have a remarkable voice. I’d probably appreciate him more if I liked opera more.

Nuttin but Stringz is still the act I’d pay my own money to see, especially if someone is smart enough to hook them up with the right people. Put them in front of a rock-funk-jazz-fusion-don’t follow no stinkin’ rulez band, and the avant-garde might finally meet popular culture.

Where’s Frank Zappa when we really need him? One of the birthday gifts I asked for and got last month was a CD of his “Grand Wazoo” album from the early ’70s. I’d listened to it on vinyl until the grooves wore out, and now I’m listening to it every second I’m in the car. You know how you listen to a song a few times and get used to its structure and then can anticipate what’s coming up next — even a complex, strange piece like most of the cuts on Miles Davis’ “Bitches Brew”? Frank’s music isn’t like that.

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