August 19, 2015

Letter from a correspondent

Dear Front,

It is never too late, I suppose, for a second rater to notice something that has been plain to the best thinkers in a field for decades.  Just as the investment world has come to notice that beta is an incomplete descriptor of systematic risk - an empirical fact noticed by Fischer Black in the early 1970s - so you have dawdled and driveled your way to a rudimentary understanding of Venus.  Congratulations on this.

You note, from your close reading of Wikipedia, that the song appears to have some significance in Russia.  This is true in the same sense that Pelé has some significance in Brazil.  Russia without Шизгара?  Inconceivable!  This song entered the bloodstream of a people and now is as integral to them as this Taylor Swift thing is to your decadent feminized transgender whatchamacallit yankee doodle democracy.

For Russia, the song is a point of cultural connection across class and geography.  As my finished work on the topic - Шизгара Have It - will not be completed for quite some time, I generously share with you my working materials, in the form of a few representative performance of this folk art tradition, in descending order of musicological significance, both within and among groups.  I omit ANOVA at this time.

  • Formal performance
    • Petr Akimov - Confronts folk art with formalist instrumentation, a great success
    • Kristall-Balalayka - A lively performance for a television show
    • Sunny Moon - Exact opposite of original recording - emotional vocal, repressed music
    • Balalaika and accordion - Harmonious and correct but arguably tepid
    • Various - Fascinating novelty performance gives insight into the cabaret class
  • Semi-formal performance
    • Martina Šulcová - Even Yeats could not cast a cold eye on this
    • РЕТРОДИСКО - A glorious expression of the masculine animist spirit
    • ROL Band - Instrumentalists seize control of the song and redeem awkward beginning.
    • Discoband - Strong musical performance marred by self-conscious female expressions 
    • Band at a mall - Band at a mall

Let us not insult one another's intelligence with kind wishes.  You are in the water, and I throw this anvil to you.  I hope you choke on this song like a bone, and that it utterly defeats you.  Then my life will have meaning.


Sepp Gruentag
Doktor von Musik, emeritus
Abteilung von Musicology
Universität von Heidelberg


Blogger Laird of Madrona said...

Sir: Step. Away. From. The. Internet.

August 19, 2015 at 8:58 AM  
Blogger The Other Front said...

I know, right? Martina Šulcová isn't even Russian, for goodness sakes. Dude needs a rest, and maybe some new glasses.

August 19, 2015 at 6:44 PM  

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