March 11, 2008

"Thank you so much for reminding me that I wrote a couple of good lines."

Said Leonard Cohen to Lou Reed. It was the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony last night.

A bigger deal, of course, was made of Madonna, who gave a long speech that included a lot of thanking, and she's done so well she can thank anyone who did anything in any relationship to her, like the "ones that said I was talentless, that I was chubby, that I couldn’t sing, that I was a one-hit wonder. They pushed me to be better, and I am grateful for their resistance." Thank you for providing the contrast that makes my greatness all the more apparent.


rhhardin said...

I get Cohen mixed up with Jacques Brel.

George M. Spencer said...

Yeah, but he never wrote no lyrics like
"I Wanna Be Black."

titusinfirstposition said...

Please, I beg of you. Don't diss Madonna.

I love her so much.

I have been with her right from the beginning when I first heard Burning Up and saw her on the road in the video. I was 13 and purchased her first record and pretended I was her on the road singing Burning Up.

Her new CD is coming out in April.

I have been to everyone of her concerts-amazing!!

So please, no bashing Madonna-it is rude and unlady like.

Ann Althouse said...

"Unlady" -- I've never seen that word before.

KCFleming said...

Then I'll bash Madonna.

Apparently, she has not at her age learned to win graciously, or be even the slightest bit humble. It's a wonder she did not mock those who mocked her in high school. Her ego still needs constant stroking, but that will be harder to come by in the next years as she ages.

I am very glad she is sliding off the stage of relevance. I see a Nora Desmond moment in the offing.

AllenS said...

Madonna is a puke.

Last night I was watching Public Television, and they were having one of their many promos to get people to send them money. The feature act was the Everly Brothers. Today, I Googled them at their Wikipedia spot, and found out they were born in 1937, and 1939 and in 1963 they joined the Marines. They don't make performers like they used to.

KCFleming said...


Ed Wood.
Janet Reno.

Anonymous said...

Madonna is impotant only because she keeps telling us that she is.

She's deteriorated into a middle-aged harpie with a phony British accent. She's close to becoming a Monty Python parody of herself.

She never could sing as well as Buck Owens. Or Roy Orbison. Or the Everly Brothers. Or Elvis. Or kd lang. Or Kix Brooks.

Of course, they never published a book of naked photos of themselves, either.

TMink said...

Madonna was, and perhaps is, a genius at self promotion through sexual provocation. Forget that she could not sing prior to Evita, and barely passably since then, she has enormous media talent and savy.

There would be no slut feminists without Madonna. Not that it is unequivocally good, but she is a force of nature and should be acknowledged as such.

She no more belongs in the rock and roll hall of fame than Mae West though.


knox said...

Madonna should have thanked guys like titus, because it's those die-hard fans that keep her career going.

And she's starting to look freaky, she needs to ease up on the plastic surgery.

Smilin' Jack said...

Why all the Madonna-bashing? She's got a pretty good voice and has written some catchy, creative tunes (e.g. "Material Girl", "The Power of Goodbye") Considering the awful dreck that constitutes pop music today, she deserves to be a superstar. Maybe she has some personal issues, but come on, Sinatra was practically a member of the Mafia--does that devalue his singing?

Anonymous said...

Regardless of her contributions or lack thereof to rock n roll, the segment last night was an endless drone that caused me to turn it off and go to bed. The Timberlake introduction was weak,and her comments were even weaker. You might think someone as media savvy as she's supposed to be would put a little pep and pace and relevance into her remarks, but no, it was not to be. I wonder how many attendees nodded off into their desserts as she went on and on and on and on.....

The Lou Reed/Leonard Cohen part was pretty dry, too. If this is all the more animated that aging rock no rollers can be, just nail a plaque on the wall and get on with it. Please.

KCFleming said...

Why all the Madonna-bashing?
I liked her songs as well.
The animus is directed at Madonna the Everlasting Ego.

Self-congratulatory speeches are nauseating and tend to induce antipathy towards the speaker. Use with caution.

Chip Ahoy said...

All the above is true but I don't care.

I only have one of her albums and it's one of my favorites. I like every single song on it and I don't care about anything else. Listening to it makes me feel great. Plus, her videos are fantastic. Lookie, wut I dun with Vogue and Skrik. I could watch it over and over.

Now, self-promoting, egotistic, control freak politicians on the other hand, and it takes one to be president of this country, I find utterly intolerable.

titusinfirstposition said...

Madonna hasn't had any plastic surgery.

I happen to think her songs are great.

And for those of you that say she is irrelvant she continues to pump up out number 1 songs and albums every couple of years. Her concerts are huge and always sellouts and people are still crazy about her.

And her body is amazing. She is almost 50 and she looks great. All women should hope for a body like hers at that age or any age. I especially love her arms.

titusinfirstposition said...

Madonna has never been humble or gracious-that's what makes her fabulous.

titusinfirstposition said...

unbecoming for a lady-is that better?

titusinfirstposition said...

Also Madonna gave us these great songs that regardless of what you think of everyone has heard and can sing:

Lucky Star
Burning Up
Like A Virgin
Papa Don't Preach
Crazy For You
Into The Groove
Open Your Heart
La Isla Bonita
Like A Prayer
Express Yourself
Justify My Love
Beautiful Stranger
American Pie
Nothing Really Matters
Ray Of Light
Don't Tell Me

Now let's dance.

And please be respectful. This hurts me when I hear all of the nasty comments about Madonna.

And her videos are fricking amazing.

Zachary Sire said...

I love that people still take the time to talk about how worthless she is. If they weren't at least mildly interested in her, they wouldn't say anything. Her new album, "Hard Candy", happens to come out on my birthday. I am so excited I can't stand it.

"Bedtime Stories" is her most underrated and amazing albums. Buy it if you don't have it already. (It includes her longest running #1 single and biggest hit, "Take a Bow.")

I know everything about Madonna and would win in a Madonna trivia contest, by the way. So, like Titus not disrespect M.

Unknown said...

Leonard Cohen is heads above all the rest of them.

ak said...

Madonna is insufferable, and she's looking more and more like Baby Jane Hudson these days. If I were Guy Ritchie, I'd get out while I still could.

The last time I watched a Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame show, people like Bruce Springsteen, Jackson Browne, and Robbie Robertson fell all over each other about what enormous contributions they've made to American music. But when it came time for the Dells to give their speech, the above-mentioned performers couldn't even be respectful enough to listen. They all talked, backslapped, and socialized while the poor guy from the Dells was speaking. It was such a turn-off. They'll all slaver about how important African American music is to them, but they were so disrespectful of an actual classic black band right in front of them.

John Stodder said...

I divorced pop music when Madonna became a star. My problem was, I still listened to music on the radio, not MTV. To me, she had a thin voice and sang undistinguished songs reminiscent of disco but without the verve. It wasn't that it was bad music, it was just completely anonymous.

The idea that she is in a "rock and roll" hall of fame is testament to corporate power. Not like I ever took it that seriously, but I would have gained respect for the RRHOF if it had denied Madonna entry on the basis that her music wasn't good enough.

If MTV ever has a hall of fame for music videos, I suppose you could put her there, because in that area she had some kind of talent for dancing and choosing clothes. Although I would have preferred watching her move to good music.

Cedarford said...

I never liked much of Madonna's singing. As a teen I went to one of her shows only because my then-GF was wild about her.

I don't even think she was a very talented vocalist.

But no one female deserves to be in the Hall of Rock & Roll more. She is a Star, a phenomenon that has had profound cultural impact - on music, dance, fashion, contemporary erotica, songwriting fusion, fitness, marketing, new promotion and branding that carefully avoided over-exploitation (no Madonna toys, Madonna-drink, TV show), ability to execute successful creative change.
(Madonna's ability to reinvent and launch new creative phases of great artistic and commercial impact is studied in universities, MBA programs, by Japan's MITI).

She created the Madonna-whores, the Madonna Material Girls, etc. Wave after wave of emulators always called "Madonna Wannabes".

Her global appeal is immense and goes across cultures with little impact of her popularity. And Madonna has influenced other genres- rap, country, the musical..

The singer/songwriter has a lengthy string of hits that total more than 200 million albums sold worldwide, and her 2006 Confessions Tour was the highest-grossing tour by a female artist ever. She is named the top-earning female singer in the world by both the Guinness Book of Records and Forbes, and the best-selling female rock artist of the 20th century by the Recording Industry Association of America.

Not my cup of tea, but no one was more worthy a first round "Hall of Fame" pick. Not a great singer, but she made up for that with brains, originality, relentless hard work, and creativity.
Only thing she didn't make it at, as a true star, was crossing over into cinema.

TMink said...

Frank Sinatra could sing! He could carry a tune, he had wonderful phrasing, and great tone.

This is not Madonna! There is no comparison between the two as singers. Madonna's gift in self promotion far eclipsed Frank's.

My beef with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is that Madonna does not sing Rock. She is a Pop, Disco artist. Leonard Cohen is not a rock singer either.

I have no animosity toward Madonna, but neither do I adore her to the point of losing all my critical faculties. She was a pop phenom.

She has never been a singer of note. But she has sold some records! I can only find three number one albums, so saying that every thing she releases goes to number one is not factual.

I can appreciate her as a business woman, as smart enough to hire great producers who made some fantastic music with her singing, and she is amazing at self-promotion. But more than that strains credulity.


Trooper York said...

Madonna should definitely be in the hall of fame. She has been hit in the face with more balls than Yogi Berra.

Stephen said...


blake said...

tmink is right, except that the "Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame" is only nominally about rock 'n' roll.

So, yeah, go ahead and put Cohen in. Next, in a fit of irony, put in Glenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey.

What's the diff? Hell, George Harrison was a big Hoagy Carmichael fan, put Hoagy in there! He was an influence!

Titus, I assure you, I have not heard of most of those songs and cannot sing any of them. That said, Ms. Ciccone "wins", for some values of "win" that include not being a footnote next to "Dexy's Midnight Runners".

Smilin' Jack said...

Madonna's gift in self promotion far eclipsed Frank's.

Well, I don't know--I don't think Madonna ever had a horse's head put in the producer's bed in order to get a movie role.

(Yeah, yeah, that only happened in the movie--but the movie was, as they say, "based on actual events.")

Trooper York said...

"Well, I don't know--I don't think Madonna ever had a horse's head put in the producer's bed in order to get a movie role."

Whats the big deal with that. Sarah Jessica Parker puts a horse's head in the bed every time she lays down next to Matthew Broderick.

TMink said...

I always liked the line about "your signature or your brains will be on that contract."

Frank just had some special friends to get him out of a jam.


Ann Althouse said...

LOL, Trooper.

Where were you in the Idol thread?

Eric said...

"I don't think Madonna ever had a horse's head put in the producer's bed in order to get a movie role."

I'll have to ask the producer of her first film (A Certain Sacrifice), but my recollection is that she wrote a rambling three page letter to get the role, and then later sued him when the film was released.