Skip to main content

Cover Version Redaction Criticism

So the first time I encountered this song was in a youtube clip shared on facebook by my friend Dale.  It is most notable for the extremely creative way 5 people (Walk off the Earth) are playing just one guitar simultaneously.  I have seen and even particpated in 2 people playingone guitar but five is pretty special.  As far as I know that was a first?  The girl is playing diads on the top, the long haired dude is playing the melody around her, and the guy next to him plays the bass line on the low E (top) string. Of the remaining two, fresh face plays percussion and hat+beard strum the strings above the nut. It is a cool song, but the unusual mode of delivery tends to overshadow the song. 
--

--
Then Nick Norelli linked to this video, by an a cappella group called Pentatonix.  This is another nice arrangement, with impressive beat boxing and gorgeous harmonies.  Notable consistency between the versions is the lyrics and bass line, the lyrics pass between a male and female singer and the bass line remains the same.  There is also a guy with a beard and a beanie standing on the far right with a strange expression on his face in both versions. So one might posit that we could expect to find these characteristics in the original. 

---
So after some digging on youtube I found this live version by the original artist.  Interestingly while the lyrics, girl guy exchange and bass line are consistent across versions, the original does not have a guy with a beard and beanie, standing on the right, or indeed anywhere on camera.  I would therefore posit that this development happened during the period of the first cover version perhaps due to the great wooly hat controversy that may have been raging at that time.  What we can see is that the original guy in a beard actual is on the right and wears not a beanie but a pair of headphones denoting status.  In the cover versions, however, the guy with the beard has been moved and given a wooly hat, denoting homelessness and an uncompromising right wing ideology.  We can see in these cover versions a clear example of the marginalisation and mockery of bearded men as part of the anti-beard culture which became prevalent in the music community early last year.  Thus the original message and purpose of the song has been subtly corrupted despite many features remaining otherwise undisturbed.

----

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

ANZABS 2018 program and abstracts

ANZABS CONFERENCE 2018
6-7 December, 2018


Venue: Wesley Hall, Trinity Methodist College,

202A St Johns Rd, Meadowbank, Auckland 1072

Thursday 6 December
9.30 am – REGISTRATION
10.00-10.10 – mihi
10.10-11.00 – Keynote speaker: Robert Myles – Fishing for Eyewitnesses in the Fourth Gospel
11.00-11.30 – Morning tea
11.30-12.00 – Lyndon Drake – Economic Capital in the Hebrew Bible
12.00-12.30 – Anne Aalbers – Resurrection and Celibacy: Two Sides of the Same Coin?
12.30-1.00 – Jonathan Robinson – "And he was with the beasts," (Mark 1:13): Ambiguity,
Interpretation and Mark as a Jewish Author
1.00-2.00 – Lunch
2.00-2.30 – Ben Hudson – Ethical Exhortation and the Decalogue in Ephesians
2.30-3.00 – Csilla Saysell – The Servant as 'a covenant of/for people' in Deutero-Isaiah
3.00-3.30 – Afternoon tea
3.30-4.00 – Jacqueline Lloyd – Did Jesus minister in Gaulanitis?
4.00-4.30 – Mark Keown – Jesus as the New Joshua
4.30 – AGM
Friday 7 December
9.30-10.00 – Ben Ong – Pākehā Readin…

That one time Jesus got the Bible wrong

It's so typical isn't it? You are preaching all day long, training your disciples, sparring with the Pharisees, encouraging the poor and down trodden, healing the sick and casting out demons, all day, day after day, and even when you go up a mountain to get a rest the crowds hunt you down and follow you up, and then the one time you get a bit muddled up with some of the details of a biblical text . . . that is the one they write down in the first gospel - verbatim. At least Matthew and Luke had the good sense to do some editing. But Mark, he always had his eye on giving the public the "historical Jesus" whoever that is supposed to be . . . warts and all. Thanks a lot Mark!

Some think I made the mistake on purpose, just to show the Pharisees up.

For some there is no mistake worth mentioning, only a slightly ambiguous turn of phrase.

Others think I am doing something tricky with Abiathar's name, getting him to figuratively stand in for the priesthood.

It really has…

Updated Current Research and Book Reviews

So, my PhD must be going well because I have just spent the morning updating my blog pages for Current Research and brand spanking new Book Reviews page. But it is not just procrastination, it is good to stop and and get an overview.

I had totally forgotten about half the book reviews I had done on this blog, they go back to 2009! I am still working on writing the sort of reviews I really enjoy reading, but now that I'm regularly doing reviews for journals it is great to also review books on this blog where I have stylistic freedom and no space limitations. I had always hoped this blog would be a good source of free books, but while it was a source of free books they were not good ones. Reviewing for journals (as a PhD student) has been much better and is helping me keep my broader education going even as I delve deep into my PhD subject. Looking at my old book reviews helps me realise how far I have come. Hopefully, much growth as a blogger, scholar and human being (perhaps not i…