For sale: second-hand classic; slightly Marked

Read a few dozen Radiohead interviews, especially around the time of their collaboration with Humphrey Lyttelton’s band on Amnesiac, and you quickly learn that they’re greater or lesser fans of jazz, depending on the band member. Jon Greenwood is particularly fond of the genre, and Wikipedia (that godsend of lazy bloggers everywhere) confirms that he loves Miles Davis.

This is why Mark Ronson’s version of Just is so annoying, apart from it being a pedestrian, “straight” interpretation of the original into the genre. Listening to it is like someone explaining a joke to you; only, for some reason, they’re doing it in the voices of the adults from Peanuts. You sit there and squirm while Ronson spends four or five minutes poring and obsessing over every intentionally dissonant nuance of the original song; he makes each one in turn painfully, boringly obvious; then finally he looks up at you, with a fat-faced speccy grin that awaits adulation but invites a fist in the face. I bet he doesn’t get invited to many parties.

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One Response to For sale: second-hand classic; slightly Marked

  1. Quinn says:

    I take it you haven’t had the pleasure of listening to Mark Ronson’s album “Version”; if you haven’t then don’t, save yourself, it’s bloody awful. My brother wanted it for his birthday so I bought it for him then copied it before handing it over; it seemed like a good idea at the time, but about four tracks in you go “oh right, I get it”, and you know exactly how he is going to “re-imagine” all those various cover versions. In short, “funk up the bass line and add horns”.

    You know how with Jamie Cullum you could pick a song, any song, say “Hickery-Dickery-Dock”, and you instantly knew what he would do to it (change the time signature, add cocktail-jazz piano, and whine?) Well it is the same with Mark Ronson, he is just the new Jamie Cullum; and I can’t think of a better insult for the time being.

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