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Any Major Awards 2008

December 30th, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

Last year I inaugurated the highly prestigious and sought-after The Major Dude Awards, recognising musicians and bloggers for their sterling that year. Alicia Keys” people were so excited, they told DivShare to delete the album track I posted. Oh, the days of innocence when The Man just had links deleted”¦

I”ve already posted my Top 20 albums of the year, so I”ll dump the music section (after all, Dave Grohl never acknowledged winning the Rock Album of 2007 Major Dude award), and concentrate on my fellow bloggers instead. With song dedication, some of which may be obvious, others are inspired by private observation (for example, I discovered one blog onTotally Fuzzy through a post on old German music).

This year, I”ve modified the categories a bit, and skipped the nominations process. To be truthful, I almost didn”t do this awards post because I feel guilty about not mentioning so many of the fine blogs which have provided me with so much enjoyment, entertainment and education. If your blog didn”t win its category, be assured it probably came a close second. I”ve decided to disqualify last year”s winners from consideration; all of them (well, those still active) are still among my favourite reads. And Whiteray from Echoes In The Wind remains something of a legend among music bloggers. The doyen”¦

And now, ladies and gentlemen, presenting the first award of the night is recording superstar Barbra Steisand and football legend Pat Crerand.

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Album blogs:
Most album blogs just upload a CD or twelve without comment, and you download it. I have no problem with that; some of these blogs offer extraordinary and tough-to-find material. I am grateful for their existence and the efforts made. Other blogs offer commentary and/or reviews, and that extra input is the difference between a good take-away and a good eatery. The winner then is like a restaurant run by a TV chef (but not that hateful Ramsey guy). It goes the extra mile of offering highly educational mixes with commentary, often presented in form of a series. Almost like a university course.
And the winner is: ZAKKORAMA

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Hans Albers – Auf der Reeperbahn.mp3

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Singles blogs:
Oh, the choices. I said I wasn”t going to single out any particular non-awardee, then made a list of blogs that merit an honorary mention, and then dropped the idea when that list ran to a dozen or so names. I”ll single out Fusion 45 for uploading Rodriguez”s I Wonder especially for me. But the winner merits the award for his astonishingly prolific rate of posts (551 in seven months!) with intelligent commentary, imagination and a wide range of subjects.

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Sandy Bull – Memphis, Tennessee.mp3

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Comedy blogs:
There aren”t very many of those around, so nominations were limited. But the winner is one of the most impressive blogs in any category, the sort of blog that is manically updated every 12 seconds with material that makes you wonder: where do they get that kind of stuff from? And who listens to that? Well, quite a few people, evidently. I mean, who wouldn’t want to check out the music that goes with the album covers depicted on the many “the worst cover art of all time” websites. This is a blog where the wonderfully bizarre lives.

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Mrs Miller – Downtown.mp3

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Music blogs:
This is a deliberately vague category. Here I”d like to honour a blog which provides me with a musical education. Echoes In The Wind, a winner last year, is one such blog, AM Then FM is another (great new post on Bobby Gentry). This year, the gong goes to a quite new blog which is superbly written, highly erudite and features music I often have never even heard of. I am always in awe when I visit. Should you require illustration of just how brilliant the blog is, perhaps this post on the various versions of Kris Kristofferson’s Help Me Make It Through The Night might help make my case.
And the winner is: THE GENTLEBEAR

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Frank Sinatra & Celeste Holm – Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.mp3

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Mixed media blogs:
Another new category, to cover blogs that post music, but only incidentally. The winner is always among the first blogs I open when I trawl through my bookmarks. As I noted here a few weeks ago, the winning blog also influenced me in a small way. The concept is simple: photographs, mostly of buildings, and a song that in some way relates to the photo. It works beautifully. The photos provide a glimpse of intriguing sights which most of us probably would not even notice, and the songs are selected with care and knowledge from what must be an impressive collection.
And the winner is: ALL EYES AND EARS

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Loudon Wainwright III – The Picture.mp3

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Non-MP3 blogs ““ Music:
I was considering sharing this award three-ways. MyHmphs ““ the name is an exasperated play on the title of possibly the worst song ever recorded ““ is well written and presented, offering views which I almost invariably agree with. It”s a nice blog to hang out at. Uncle E is busier, investing much humour in his writing (the fake biographies of rock acts are very good indeed). Both are among my favourite blogs; so much so that when MyHmphs went on a bit of a hiatus, I hassled him to get back to posting. But the winner snags the award for his depth of writing, over a long period of time, with excellent CD reviews and some innovative ideas, such as analyses of big acts” least respected albums.
And the winner is: 3 MINUTES, 49 SECONDS

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Pixies – Where Is My Mind.mp3

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Non-MP3 blogs ““ General:
This year, I spent much time on some fantastic blogs dealing with the US election, and I always get a kick of Stay-At-Home Indie Pop“s all to sporadic posts, and a few other blogs dealing with, well, life and culture. But the best non-music blog takes as its focus a subject dear to my heart: sex. The winning blog discusses the subject from a male point of view. Where many such blogs might go all blokey and investigate such pressing matters such as readers would prefer to shag Jessica Alba or Halle Berry, or how to obtain your partner”s consent to engage in anal sex, the winning entry (dyswidt) takes a much more integrated approach. Subjects range from the art of flirting to frienditis “” when the object of your desire sees you as just a friend (argh!) “” to Nottingham”s Mr Sex”s reviews of sex toys for men, plus a column where women can find out just what the guys are thinking. The blog treats sex with respect, and it does so with a massive dose of sharp humour. Best of all, the comments section is essential reading. I can”t wait for the book of the blog!
And the winner is: TODGER TALK

Performing tonight in honour of the winner is:
Marvin Gaye – Sexual Healing (Extended Version).mp3

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And, as last year, a huge, massive round of thanks to the wonderful people of Totally Fuzzy, the most important music-related blog of them all.

Having dished out praise, I want some myself (now, how does one insert an appropriate winking emoticon into a post?). Well, I”d be interested to know from the regular readers of this blog “” all four of them “” what they have enjoyed here this year, where they thought I wasted their time, and where I simply annoyed them. Feedback is always welcome; now seems a good time to solicit it. The comments section is free.

A couple of words on some of the songs: Sandy Bull’s Memphis, Tennessee is a marathon mind-fuck instrumental the recording of which in 1965 might have involved the consumption of mind-altering drugs. Hans Albers’ song is a German classic from the 1930s, pretty much the anthem of German drunkards everywhere (incidentally, English-speakers, Reeperbahn is not pronounced Rieperbahn. Listen to Albers pronounce it). I dont know if Mrs Miller requires introduction. If she does, Downtown is a good place to start. Note the great part when she gets the lyrics in a twist but, flustered or not, troops on like the trooper she was. And the whistling part is one of the most legendary in pop music.

And with that, a Happy New Year to all. May 2009 bring lots of love, happiness, peace and health in the order of your preference.

  1. December 30th, 2008 at 16:56 | #1

    Let me be the first to comment. I have lurked at your blog since early summer and have found you to be a entertaining and education font of information. In other words great posts with some awesome music. Keep up the good work in ’09.

    Though I have to admit I have never done very well in you contests.

  2. Lisa Bruce
    December 30th, 2008 at 18:10 | #2

    Can i just tell you that I love your blog and I am delighted to find a couple of others that feature interesting stuff. Blogs are the only way I discover new music these days — I’m a refugee from college radio in the 80’s and early 90’s. Thanks for all that you share!

  3. December 30th, 2008 at 18:34 | #3

    Eh… Words fail me, AMD. Thanks for this.

    I’m definitely humbled by the company in this list; hats off for your decision to award The Gentlebear a big mention.

    One thing, though. What’s your gripe with Gordon Ramsey ?

  4. December 30th, 2008 at 19:18 | #4

    Apart from the fact that he used to play for Glasgow Rangers? Nah, I just find him utterly obnoxious. It’s not the swearing — I’d probably out-swear him on a sunny day — but his tendency to humiliate those he believes to be his inferiors.

  5. December 30th, 2008 at 21:20 | #5

    Hey, cheers for the mention! I have enjoyed your posts from day 1. You are a true muso with great taste…and you can write, which is a major bonus!
    Please keep it up in ’09, and thanks again. New bogus band bio on Devendra B coming very soon…

  6. December 30th, 2008 at 21:32 | #6

    Thank you Dude.
    Still very remarkable as I rarely offer full albums here.
    But for the rest of the judge’s comment:
    There is indeed an educational element involved here.
    I am just trying to get you, visitors, into music you otherwise might never get to hear.
    First through the two-weekly mixes to pay attention to anything from past to future, And through the Spotlights, which aim at something special. And ofcourse the Wednesday series: always surprising. There are no boundaries,
    Above all, the main objective is as described right above in the right column.

    As a consequence:
    Enjoy Zakk’s Hootenanny tomorrow (compiled mainly by my visitors)

    With love from me to you

  7. shadreck
    December 31st, 2008 at 01:53 | #7

    Enjoy your blog immensely.

    Great choices in your blog awards.


  8. gentlebear
    December 31st, 2008 at 06:40 | #8

    Thanks for the nod, AMD! The respect is mutual, but you know that already. Happy New Year, and all that jazz.

  9. December 31st, 2008 at 07:58 | #9

    I am absolutely bowled over. Thank you so much! I am really touched. I’m running what feels like a two bit operation over there, so kind words from someone who’s knowledgable and eloquent mean the world.

    As for comments on your own, I can’t imagine what I could suggest. This site is professional looking (especially over here in your shiny new digs), well-written (more importantly, interestingly written) and talk about songs chosen with knowledge and care, and a huge collection, that’s you.

    You’ve made my day.

  10. December 31st, 2008 at 07:59 | #10

    Oh, P.S. -> Thanks for posting the Frank & Celeste.

  11. December 31st, 2008 at 23:58 | #11

    Happy 2009 Major! Spandex jackets, one for everyone! X

  12. January 1st, 2009 at 14:08 | #12

    I like never knowing what to expect!

  13. January 2nd, 2009 at 06:59 | #13

    AM, Then FM thanks you for your support. Please continue to drop by in 2009. We have lots of vinyl to dig through.

  14. January 2nd, 2009 at 21:36 | #14

    Happy New Year!!!

    Excellent posts, as always. Your blog is where I come to expand my musical knowledge beyond what I grew up with. Keep up the excellent work in 2009!

  15. January 3rd, 2009 at 04:16 | #15

    I’m humbled. Thanks for the grand compliment, and congratulations on another fine year here. Were the rest of us handing out awards, you’d have a good collection.

  16. January 6th, 2009 at 06:42 | #16

    Ah! If only I hadn’t stopped blogging…Thanks for the mention. You’ve been an inspiration – and a damn good blogger yourself.

  17. January 6th, 2009 at 20:49 | #17

    Thanks so much for the nod! I am humbled to even be noticed, really!

    I always enjoy your comments, but didn’t realize you had your own thing going on here. I’ve got some catching up to do!

  18. February 12th, 2009 at 21:45 | #18

    Just got around to tracking this post down…and I’m honored to be honorably mentioned…Namaste, Music Junkie @ Fusion 45.

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