Saturday, June 04, 2005

Clueless Critics

East coast yupsters criticizing ULA writing probably at the same time listen to Bruce Springsteen on their stereos. (He was always popular with prep-types searching for a sense of reality.) Yet the ULA offers with writing what "The Boss" did with music. Listen to his "Rosalita" and see how Springsteen has substituted for slickness, polish, and musical rules and training-- musical "taste"-- his brand of immediacy, authenticity, and passion.

For Springsteen, rough grittiness, the expression of his background and life, IS the music-- not lilting harmonies and carefully placed exactly-hit notes.

No one argues that Springsteen isn't an important pop culture phenomenon. Well-schooled intellectualized rock critics have gushed over his relevance for decades. Yet these same kind of intellectuals close their minds to the true diverse roots-lit stylings and happenings of the Underground Literary Alliance.

What's striking about the ULA, in its appearances, publications, and its fan site, is how DIFFERENT it looks and sounds from mainstream literature. We're strikingly simple, strikingly "pop," strikingly real, strikingly new.

Lit critics who fail to awaken to the new zeitgeist will ultimately marginalize themselves. They appear to us already as obsolete dinosaurs, slow-thinking and heavy of foot, placidly munching weeds and cabbage while the world dynamically changes around them.

12 comments:

King said...

p.s. I glanced at the "Galley Cat" blog for the first time in a while, and see no evidence of the depression she's supposedly suffering. Most depressed people are in bed, hiding under the covers-- not flouncing around on vacation in Los Angeles.
What's the yuppie definition of depressed? Being maxed out on a Lord & Taylor charge card?
I'm afraid we've been scammed.

Emerson Dameron said...

A bad mood that interferes with normal activity and persists for two weeks qualifies as clinical depression, so I'm willing to take GalleyCat's word that she's had it. I don't think it's relevant either way.

The most hyped medical developments of the last few decades concerned impotence and depression, which, I imagine, are *diagnosed* primarily among the rich. It's an assumption, and correct me if I err, but I don't think there are a lot of Wellbutrin 'scripts in the projects. They must be a happy bunch over there.

No antidepressant currently on the market has out-tested placebos. Not one.

Noah Cicero said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Noah Cicero said...

I fucked up my earlier post, kind of drunk.

YOUNGSTOWN

Here in north east Ohio
Back in eighteen-o-three
James and Danny Heaton
Found the ore that was linin' yellow creek
They built a blast furnace
Here along the shore
And they made the cannon balls
That helped the union win the war

Here in Youngstown
Here in Youngstown
My sweet Jenny, I'm sinkin' down
Here darlin' in Youngstown

Well my daddy worked the furnaces
Kept 'em hotter than hell
I come home from 'Nam worked my way to scarfer
A job that'd suit the devil as well
Taconite, coke and limestone
Fed my children and made my pay
Then smokestacks reachin' like the arms of god
Into a beautiful sky of soot and clay

Here in Youngstown
Here in Youngstown
My sweet Jenny, I'm sinkin' down
Here darlin' in Youngstown

Well my daddy come on the 0hio works
When he come home from world war two
Now the yards just scrap and rubble
He said, "Them big boys did what Hitler couldn't do"
These mills they built the tanks and bombs
That won this country's wars
We sent our sons to Korea and Vietnam
Now we're wondering what they were dyin' for

Here in Youngstown
Here in Youngstown
My sweet Jenny, I'm sinkin' down
Here darlin' in Youngstown

From the Monongahela valley
To the Mesabi iron range
To the coal mines of Appalacchia
The story's always the same
Seven-hundred tons of metal a day
Now sir you tell me the world’s changed
Once I made you rich enough
Rich enough to forget my name

In Youngstown
In Youngstown
My sweet Jenny, I'm sinkin' down
Here darlin' in Youngstown

When I die I don't want no part of heaven
I would not do heavens work well
I pray the devil comes and takes me
To stand in the fiery furnaces of hell

The Boss wrote that. Note: Jenny was a huge blast furnace they tore down several years ago.

King said...

What about being in a bad mood for two decades??? What does that qualify as?

frantic said...

nobody is criticizing you.

people do laugh at you, but that's way different.

jimmy the hyena said...

I found that part about all these supposedly anti-establishment literary groups actually being CIA covert operations pretty funny as well. Makes a person wonder what Mc Sweenys really is don't it?

- Leopold said...

Yeah. It was funny how much of this covert 'literature' stuff showed how delusional a lot of these groups are. They are a bunch of little boys making forts behind couches and firing pop-guns at each other. 'No one else gets into our club unless we give them the secret password, ok boys?'

The ULA can appreciate them trying to have fun, but they've been playing the game so long it seems, they forgot about reality. Or maybe they've never had the misfortune to live in it.

frantic said...

"a bunch of little boys making forts behind couches and firing pop-guns at each other."

for a minute there it sounded like the ula had a moment of self-knowledge.

jimmy the hyena said...

What I find amusing is that you feel that what you do and are has an intrinsic value when really it's of a rather limited usefullness and only within the present order of things. Even your humour is derivative in the third or even fourth degree. One can chuckle at the Zoolander reference only if they watched the movie and found it amusing and to watch the movie and find it amusing you'd have to be the sort of person who reads magazines like GQ or Details. What are you going to be good for when your world comes crumbling down around you? Maybe you'll have a moment of self knowledge before they put you up against the wall piggy or maybe you'll just get frantic and poo your pants.

frantic said...

you must remember the take your meds, jimmy.

seriously, jimmy. it is important that you take the medication. it won't help if you don't, and you'll just go on drooling and muttering to yourself like that.

jimmy the hyena said...

just keep believing that the america that is soon to come will have a need for you

you're becoming obsolete faster than you'd like to know