Is Hip-Hop More Influential than the Beatles?

I was floored a few days ago by a headline I read at Digital Trends: “New Study: Hip-Hop, not Brit Rock, is the Most Influential Genre Since 1960″. My God. No. Could it be true? What kind of study was this? What were they smoking? Researchers at the University of London and Imperial College used …

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Guilty Pleasures: ‘Shadows of the Night,’ Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar was a rocker, plain and simple. Overlook her melodic hooks, keyboard-laden accompaniments and harmonies. She emerged from the 1970s as a sexually tough arena rock star, often getting lumped into AOR (Mom alert: Album-Oriented Rock) acts such as Foreigner, Journey and Heart. But as can happen with most hard rockers, they tend to …

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What Happened to Prince?

Yes, it’s my third post in a row on Prince. I just read two biographies of him (a third is on interlibrary loan), and the hyperfocus part of my ADD is in overdrive. Bear with me. I recently listened to Prince’s entire catalog as I read his biographies, trying to put each album in context along …

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Top 5 Prince Covers That Were Better Than the Original

Prince has been a very generous songwriter. He’s given away hundreds of songs to artists (mostly his protegé groups such as the Time, the Family, Sheila E. and Vanity 6). Others have decided to cover his songs, and most of the time a cover isn’t as good as the original. But in a few cases, the …

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Prince’s Greatest Album: Dream Factory

It’s a shame that Prince’s greatest album was never released. In the 1980s, Prince reached his commercial peak in 1984 with the smash album and movie Purple Rain. He followed that up quickly (and rather unceremoniously) with the eclectic and disjointed Around the World in a Day, which left many fans scratching their heads. But …

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Desert Island Discs: ‘Disintegration,’ the Cure

If you’re ever deserted on an island, with little hope of rescue, you’d want albums that would keep your spirits high and help you hope for the future. So I have to admit that Disintegration would make a lousy album to have with you; within two weeks you’d hang yourself from the nearest palm tree, …

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