February 15, 2017

"Beyoncé is very beautiful to look at and it’s more like modeling kind of music — music to model a dress — she’s not a singer, singer..."

Carlos Santana gets himself in big trouble.

65 comments:

Dave said...

Oye, ¿cómo va?

EDH said...

Santana has a point.

Much of Beyonce's live performance, at least in the past, is comprised of her periodically stopping the performance and freezing in place, posing imperially, expecting her fans cheer wildly.

EDH said...

Wasn't it Santana who said, "those who cannot remember Beyonce are doomed to repeat it'?

Jake said...

I like Bey. Nevertheless, He's not wrong.

Danno said...

So she's a black magic woman?

Quayle said...

But when Zappa said just such a diminution of music was coming, nobody cared that he said it.

Alan said...

Why should Santana be in trouble? Alot of those Woodstock sets were pure guts and energy, not to mention powerful musically, and I think Santana was one of the best ones. So much of todays music is so contrived and over staged. He's right about that.

Kate said...

Santana...doesn't sing. He hires an amazing band with great singers, and he leads them well. And, of course, he can shred. But he don't sing.

Beyonce, especially on "Lemonade", is amazing. Her technique and range are very commanding. Her showmanship is as baroque as his is minimal. (When I saw him perform recently he spent half the show with his back to the audience so he could jam with the drummer.) I just think, sadly, Carlos has become a cranky *old guy*.

YoungHegelian said...

So, musical artists expressing their opinions on other musical artists is now verboten?

I can understand that there are certain kinds of raw insults that should be out of bounds, but expressing an opinion on another musician's "chops" is something that is as old as performance itself.

What a crew of witless pussies we've become as a society!

Bad Lieutenant said...

I don't listen so I have no valid opinion on her singing, and I suppose I wouldn't know good dancing if I saw it, but why do people think Beyonce is pretty? To be worshiped? She seems rather a brute.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Meanwhile I dunno about his politics, but when Devadip Carlos Santana talks about music, people listen.

eddie willers said...

If good singing got you Emmy's, Emmylou Harris would be swimming in them.

stever said...

To the extent her image in my mind, based on everything I've heard and seen, is that of a performer with considerable vocal talent. But she's a whole lot more than that.

So he's right, although she's certainly good enough to look at. YMMV

MikeD said...

What Bad Lt. said!

Bob Loblaw said...

Santana...doesn't sing.

Beyonce doesn't sing in concert either. Nobody does any more - the fans expect flashy dance numbers and you can't do both at the same time.

I have no idea whether or not she can sing in the studio, but it's possible she can't. With the right post processing you can take a shower quality singer and turn her into a superstar. Modern pop stars are selected for their looks (or their "look"). The singing is irrelevant because they're never going to sing in public.

fivewheels said...

Huh, and I didn't think my opinion of Carlos Santana would get any higher at this point in history. Though my usual discussion on this issue isn't on behalf of someone like Adele, but say, Sarah Jarosz, who just won the roots and folk Grammys and can not only sing without autotune but can also kill it on banjo, mandolin and guitar. And as a songwriter. She probably wouldn't make it as a model, though.

What would Bey do in an Unplugged setting? Shake her butt?

buwaya said...

A boy plays electric and covers Santana. He can shred. Not quite like Santana.

R.J. Chatt said...

I'm not a fan of Beyonce so I went to Youtube to investigate. Watched a video purporting to demonstrate Beyonce's incredible vocal range. What I heard was her groaning into a mic. Of course she still might be a great singer but I've never been interested in her performances. I don't care for hyper sexualized entertainment.

Eustace Chilke said...

Santana is a musician musician. I can't name a single thing Beyonce has sung. I know whose expertise I favor.

mockturtle said...

I watched Dream Girls the other night where Beyonce played, essentially, Diana Ross. And the former lead singer, played by Jennifer Hudson, had by far the better voice but was replaced by Beyonce because of looks. Good movie, incidentally. Amazing performance by Eddie Murphy playing [kind of] James Brown. He did his own singing.

mockturtle said...
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mockturtle said...

Loved Santana! I had the hots for Michael Carabello. Their performance at Woodstock was one of the best.

PJ57 said...

What Bob Loblaw said. So much of current music and so over-produced and inauthentic (in a musical sense) that there is no way to critique it as music. So enjoy the show if you will but it bears the same relationship to music that Andrew Lloyd Weber does to Mozart.

chickelit said...

Santana is right.

Sally327 said...

I don't understand why we are supposed to feel sorry for Beyonce. She is wildly successful, incredibly rich and supposedly happily married with a child and more on the way. It's as if none of that is enough, she also has to be the one winning all the awards and when she doesn't it's racism and she is never to be criticized by anyone ever.

I can't carry a tune, I have no idea how technically great her voice is or isn't. I think she sings okay. She's no Tina Turner or Aretha Franklin or Ella Fitzgerald. But then I'm not sure those women would be successful in today's music environment if they were just coming up now. Tina maybe.

buwaya puti said...

She's no Eartha Kitt either.
And that's another that wouldn't do well today. Too intimate and fascinating and subtle.

Bill Peschel said...

I love Bey. It took guts to single "Single Ladies" to the theme of the Andy Griffith Show. What a great comment on race mixing!

https://youtu.be/r2kb9F4449k

chickelit said...

Beyonce, especially on "Lemonade", is amazing. Her technique and range are very commanding.

Beyonce is a warbling diva. She doesn't have a fraction of the vocal talent that Adele and Lady Gaga have. It's not her fault, she just doesn't have it.

SukieTawdry said...

She sang well enough in Dream Girls (back when she was plain old Beyonce Knowles), but I know what he meant. Adele definitely is the superior vocalist. Love Santana. His music takes me to good places, good times.

mockturtle said...

Buwaya asserts: She's no Eartha Kitt either.
And that's another that wouldn't do well today. Too intimate and fascinating and subtle.


C'est si bon.

Virgil Hilts said...

Here's how you can tell if someone is a great singer (as opposed to primarily a visual performer). Do they frequently engage in lip syncing? Answer for Beyonce is yes. End of discussion. I'm not a big fan of streisand but I don't recall her ever lip syncing -- because she didn't have to. Has Dylan ever agreed to lip sync? I don't think so; his music wasn't about his looks and his body, it was about his singing.

Dude1394 said...

Perish the thought someone having an opinion that goes against the liberal media.

Brent said...

This voice teacher of 42 years can say that Beyonce is very talented vocally, but definitely not top tier. Her range is thin on both ends, her power is limited. Her songgwriting, showmanship and world class beauty have added to her success. Her song choices --- and yes,this includes Lemonade --- are not breaking new ground in style or stretching her vocally. She is playing to her worshippers. She deserves respect as a performer. But taste is personal. Actual judging of the vocal instrument a person possesses is not. It's technical production can be quantified and measured against solid standards of capacity: range, intonation, resonance, pronunciation, enunciation, among others. And, it's not just having a high range or great volume (which fades over time --- Hello Mariah?), its what you do with it. The problem with seeking to defend Beyonce as a "great singer" (and being offended when it's pointed out that she is okay and above average but not measurably great) is that it perpetuates the unnecessary limiting of new styles of other great developing young voices. Everything is channeled into the flavor of the moment. Put it another way: Guitar players are measurable on whether or not they are a great guitarist. For instance, I enjoy Zac Brown, but no one on earth would say that Zac Brown is a great guitarist. Eric Clapton is a great guitarist. Zac Brown is a great entertainer. See where this is going?

Streisand? Celine? Great singers with measurable vocal talents. Above 99.999% of every other human being on the planet. Now, that is not to say that either of them will sell more than a well-marketed above-average vocal talent (Beyonce, Adele, Mariah) or mediocre vocal talent (Britney, Christina, Taylor, Janet) or even pathetic vocal talent (Rhianna, Lovato, just too too many). It does mean that they will sell in the top tier AND their catalog will go on and on.

So ..... Here's a quick test for you to check yourself, be honest with yourself now. Which of the singers above would you endure listening to if they had an a cappella album? Just them singing actual melodies, no rapping? Alone, a cappella? 10 songs? 3 times?

Now you get it.

Kyzernick said...

"Her songgwriting, showmanship and world class beauty have added to her success."

Just so we're clear, Beyonce don't write her own songs. As I recall, it took 5 writers to crank out the awful, repetitive, "Single Ladies". I'm sure her better songs took at least the same amount of outside effort.

Kurt Cobain wrote most of "Smells Like Teen Spirit" on his own just a week or so before Nirvana was scheduled to record their album "Nevermind". When the band demo'd it for themselves, they made a few changes to the tempo and Dave Grohl spun up the drum portion on his own. That song, and the album it was on, went on to change rock music forever.

Any of the three cardinal members of Nirvana has more raw musical talent than Queen Bey. She's just a pretty face who can dance and carry a decent tune from time to time, though not simultaneously.

Dave Grohl in particular is one of the greatest rock musicians of all time. All. Time.

Roughcoat said...

Not pretty to me. She's too big, a moose. Thunder thighs.

Sebastian said...

"3 times?" Teacher, do we have to? Here at Hillbilly Mansion we like Emma Kirkby and Nuria Rial.

Roughcoat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mockturtle said...

Virgil Hilts, lip syncing is probably necessary when the singer is dancing energetically. It's nearly impossible to do both simultaneously.

Kyzernick said...

Also, the music video for "Smells Like Teen Spirit" is routinely ranked in the Top 5 music videos of all time. Kurt Cobain edited the final cut himself to get the feel just right, and whaddaya know . . .

Clyde said...

He'd better hope she has a short memory. When the Democrats nominate her to run for president in 2020, he could really be in trouble if and when she wins.

Hagar said...

"Heee takes me off his income tax!" is subtle?

Tarrou said...

Yo, miho, you can't be telling the truth like that, rada?

Laslo Spatula said...

Santana will be scolded, but he is Mexican, so there will be no true blood-letting.

Have, say, Jackson Browne say this and THEN watch the knives.

The only reason I used Jackson Browne as an example is that he is annoyingly White and he hit Daryl Hannah.

His hitting Daryl Hannah was when the Eighties officially became the Nineties.

On the other hand, Don Henley sleeping with underage girls was when the Seventies became the Eighties.

I'll leave it to the Boomers to discuss when the Sixties became the Seventies. Frontrunners: Yoko Ono, Nixon.

I am Laslo.

Angel-Dyne said...

Laslo: Santana will be scolded, but he is Mexican, so there will be no true blood-letting.

Depends on whether identity politics trumps (hahahahaha) standards of talent and excellence. Carlos Santana sins against equality. In the end, that cannot stand.

Laslo Spatula said...

"Frontrunners: Yoko Ono, Nixon."

Good idea for a book:

"From Abbey Road to Watergate: How Yoko Ono and Richard Nixon Made the Sixties Into the Seventies."

I'm gonna have to work on that.

When I'm drunk.

I am Laslo.

exhelodrvr1 said...

He's right - she's a great entertainer, but not the singer that Adele is.

Hagar said...

Can any of these people sing without a microphone?

who-knew said...

Of course Santana is getting raked over the coals, he spoke the truth and that's just not allowed these days. And I have to agree with eddie willems about Emmylou.

Freeman Hunt said...

My nieces showed me that "Hello" song. Nice set of pipes. Stop calling that guy.

Jason said...

Autotune is fucking ruining music.

dwick said...

Myles E Johnson informs us that "Black people have great imaginations, not just in the arts but in everyday life."
(Myles is black, I would guess...)

According to Myles, Beyonce has ran the table on life and all of us in the process of changing the world.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/14/opinion/what-beyonce-won-was-bigger-than-a-grammy.html

Freeman Hunt said...

If I were going to the opera, I'd want to hear Adele over Beyoncé. If a friend were dumped, I'd want her to listen to Beyoncé over Adele.

Freeman Hunt said...

Browsing complete. Saying, "You don't sing as well as Adele," isn't saying much. Hold the offense.

Freeman Hunt said...

"You don't sing as well as Freeman Hunt." No one would know who that was, but it would be extremely offensive. Even to people who sing badly.

donald said...

There weren't too many, but every single duet Gram and Emmy Lou put's everything else to shame. Everything.

donald said...

There weren't too many, but every single duet Gram and Emmy Lou put's everything else to shame. Everything.

donald said...

Sorry for the double post and terrible grammar/actually typing.

Emmy Lou. Hubba hubba.

harryo said...

I don't understand any concert with fireworks, hundreds of dancers and strobelights. I don't understand it. It's not on the radio.

Adele, she just stands before the microphone, you listen to the band and her, and you go home praising all the good things in life. A singer-singer, not a vaudeville act.

Now there is a time for theatrics. How many of you remember that Angela Lansbury was a doll at 18:

Little Yellow Bird

n.n said...

He should have credited Whoopi Goldberg. It's not too late, late.

openidname said...

Bad Lieutenant ("brute") and Roughcoat ("moose"):

Just don't call her a guerrilla.

Guildofcannonballs said...

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/earshot/kid-rock-flabbergasted-by-beyonces-778423

"Beyonce, to me, doesn't have a f—ing 'Purple Rain,' but she's the biggest thing on earth," Kid Rock said. "How can you be that big without at least one 'Sweet Home Alabama' or 'Old Time Rock & Roll'?"

"People are like, 'Beyonce's hot. Got a nice f—ing ass,' " he continued. "I'm like, 'Cool, I like skinny white chicks with big tits.' Doesn't really f—ing do much for me."

SF said...

No idea if her raw vocal talent is better than Beyonce's, but the mention of a hypothetical solo a cappella album made me think of the real thing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yo4Woq80wBY&list=PLF3mNateMbiIdankQH6oE5MB-NtOy2gb3

I wouldn't listen to that every day, but when I'm in the right mood it is exquisite.

Fernandinande said...

Alan said...
Why should Santana be in trouble?


He criticized someone who was less white than he is.

Alot of those Woodstock sets were pure guts and energy, not to mention powerful musically, and I think Santana was one of the best ones. So much of todays music is so contrived and over staged. He's right about that.

Exactly. I watched Santana's @Woodstock a couple of weeks ago and the energy, talent and love of music were obvious.

The Beyonces, Princes and their ilk all sound like elevator music written by a committee.

Lucien said...

@Brent:

I'd listen to Sara Bareilles sing a capella, because that's where her roots are.

Florence Welch?

Scott said...

@Brent:

Ray Charles

Yes, I know that it was never truly a capella, but close enough for me.