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The Annals of Rock Snobbery

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ODDS AND SODS, a new addition to our Snobroll of “vaguely Snobbish blogs and sites you may enjoy,” has an amusing, Mad-magazine-ish exchange with its readers called “You might be an Indie-Yuppie if…” You can connect to it here. We might add, You might be an Indie-Yuppie if, every time someone responds to one of your e-mails with “LOL,” you think not of the phrase “laugh out loud,” but of Lol Tolhurst, the keyboard player who Robert Smith putsched from the Cure for drinking too much.

For an authentic experience of unvarnished Rock Snobbery, check out this extraordinary piece of writing from the Village Voice, which actually includes this passage: “‘Crazy Love’ is a Nick song I at first took for a weak Polly number, which he should take as a compliment. He’ll never have Polly’s gravitas, and certainly not her brains: ‘Desperanto’ (‘the language of despair’) re-creates the disco skronk of Faithfull’s notorious ‘Why D’Ya Do It’…”

Perhaps there is no stranger phenomenon in the art-versus-mammon struggle than the penchant among European automakers for hiring Tom Waits soundalikes to sing (or, better yet, growl) the praises of their products. Opel, the German auto manufacturer (as opposed to Opel, the Syd Barrett album), is the latest offender, having incurred the Swordfishtrombonist’s wrath for running commercials in Scandinavia featuring the voice of a Waits-alike. Waits, who has already endured similar situations with Audi in Spain and Lancia in Italy, issued a statement expressing his extreme displeasure, concluding, “Commercials are an unnatural use of my work… It’s like having a cow’s udder sewn to the side of my face—painful and humiliating.” Spoken from experience.

April 21, 2005 More Rock Snobbery »

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