Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Project Noir Songs to go live at NoirCon 2012

I've been talking about noir and crime songs for years at Detectives Beyond Borders, and next week I'll do it in front of an audience at NoirCon 2012 here in hurricane-ravaged Philadelphia.

My bit of the program is called Project Noir Songs, and it happens next Thursday. I'm not sure yet of PNS' final form, but Tom Waits will be a part of the festivities (in recorded form, alas. In person he'd make a fine MC), as will Shane MacGowan, the Band, Elizeth Cardoso, Luke Kelly and the Dubliners, Susana Baca, Fairport Convention, the Bobby Fuller Four, and, as usual, more.

That list includes Peruvian, Brazilian, English, Irish, American, and Canadian musicians; this is Detectives Beyond Borders, after all. If you can't make the scene at the Society Hill Playhouse, the Philadelphia Mausoleum of Contemporary Art and other NoirCon venues in person next week, be part of NoirCon in spirit and tell me what songs you think should be part of Project Noir Songs.

© Peter Rozovsky 2012

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14 Comments:

Blogger MysterLynch said...

Songs of crime?

Ballad of a Lonely Man by Material Issue!

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks. While searching for it, I came upon "Ballad of a Lonely Man" by Mike Ness, which I think is pretty damn good, too.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I’ve just found Peter Guttridge’s list. I like the top item.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Dana King said...

Tom Waits will be there? I'm insanely jealous.

Johnny Cash had several songs that qualify. (Almost anything from the Murder disk of the LOVE, GOD, MURDER collection, for example.) Three come to mind: Delia, Jacob G22 oguestfreen, and the Wall.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Johnny Cash has a closer identificaiton with prison than anyone else I can think of, though he qualifies (though he never served prison time himself). Thanks.

Tom Waits et al. will be there -- in recorded form.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Dana King said...

Ha. I just figured out why my first attempt at word verification failed. looks like I had the cursor in the wrong place. The name of the second song should be Jacob Green.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Yeah, I figured "Jacob G22 oguestfreen" was a bit weird for a song title, even for an "alternative," "indie" trying to show how arty it was.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Dana: I just listened to those three songs. They're great. At least one of them will make it onto my list. Thanks.

November 01, 2012  
Anonymous Elisabeth said...

I've mentioned before, but I'm still pitching "Paint It Black," by the Rolling Stones.

Tom Waits used to frequent the bookstore where I worked. He was a low-key browser, unlike some of our celebrity "Look at me, I'm buying a book!" customers.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

That speaks well of Tom Waits I used to sneer at him and what he stood for, but I am now in awe of his talent. Listen to the albums "Bad as Me" and the new "Big Time." He can bring a tear to the eye without going over the top, and he can be awesomely inattentive without seeming too much like an art-school showoff. Try the song "Hell Broke Luce."

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I should add that my selections will probably lean more to the country-blues and "world" music sides of things. I've been less thrilled with some of the rock and roll and metal suggestions readers have offered. But this to me indicates only that noir is such a fertile, vital, and versatile concept.

November 01, 2012  
Anonymous Elisabeth said...

Yeah, I know you don't like the Stones. Just so long as a speaker prefaces his presentation with a "in my opinion" disclaimer, I don't care if his selections are personal favorites and don't include any of mine.

I just wouldn't want to think that Marxist theory was "informing" your presentation. That is, have an idea and then go hunting for sources that bolster that idea and ignoring those that don't rather than going anywhere the idea leads.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

No, my only theory is that noir is life. And I like the Stones (one of the highlights of my visit to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was the placement of the Beatles and the Stones exhibits in dueling positions across a small corridor. The effect was that of two bands, each trying to outshout the other.)

Honky Tonk Woman and Jumping Jack Flash are two of my favorite rock and roll songs. I just find "Paint It, Black" a lithe artsy for my taste.

November 01, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

The musician who got me thinking about how wide and vital a field noir is is Nick Cave. His name came up more than any other when I solicited suggestions, and I realized when I listened to him that I was not a huge fan. And that, in turn, made me realize that noir and crime must be pretty damn big subject if they can be expressed in so many kinds of music.

Hell, I could find traces if noir in Mahler, Wagner, Beethoven and Berlioz if I looked hard enough. But don't worry; I won;t.

November 01, 2012  

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