UPDATE: Pickle Rick asks:
Why was there an explosion of female bass players in 90s bands? From White Zombie to Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth to Hole, the 90s were the era of the Alt Chick Bass Player. Who was the MVP, and show your work. Hotness and talent must be given equal consideration.
There was, wasn’t there? I have no idea why, but I remember it well. We even had a chick bass player on our dorm floor briefly, and bassed (get it?) on that experience, I can hypothesize that there’s a “guy magnet” effect for female rockers, too — not as pronounced as the “chick magnet” effect for guys, of course, but definitely there. This chick was at best a 6 — and I’m being generous here, taking full account of teenage male hormones — but she carried on like a 9, and lots of guys let her get away with it. (This was in the pre-internet age, mind you, so “a six carrying on like a nine” was a remarkable phenomenon, not “just another day on Facebook”).
As for who was the best… not being a musician, I have no way to judge on their technical merits, so I’m going to go with “who was most integral to her band’s sound?” For comparison purposes: I don’t know how musically skilled he is, but U2’s Adam Clayton is essential to their sound; his funky, thumping basslines are about the only things holding their late-90s electro-crap together.
I can’t comment on Hole or Sonic Youth. I’m sure I heard some of their songs, My impression of Sonic Youth was that they were the pretentious alterna-guy’s favorite band, and my friends, that is one high goddamn bar. Hole was “Kurt Cobain’s girlfriend’s band,” and based on her antics in The Game, Courtney Love is exactly what we all thought she was even back then. Nor can I comment on most of the rest of these acts, having either never heard of them (Concrete Blonde? Didn’t they do that godawful “What’s Up?” song?) or spent my time desperately trying to avoid them (L7, Belly, the Pixies). Aimee Mann was hot, and “Voices Carry” is one of the all time great 80s tunes, but it’s the only song of theirs anyone has ever heard…
Which leaves White Zombie and Smashing Pumpkins. The White Zombie chick probably has the edge on hotness — she definitely showed the most skin, which was not a thing in the 1990s, damn it — but since White Zombie’s records are indistinguishable from Rob Zombie’s solo work, I’m going to say she wasn’t that important to their sound. Smashing Pumpkins replaced one chick bassist (Melissa auf der Mar) with another (D’Arcy Wretzky) and sounded exactly the same. Which makes sense, since “Smashing Pumpkins” was pretty much always “Billy Corgan and the only other musicians who could stand to be around him at the time.”
Given all that, I’m going to give the nod to D’Arcy, since she made fun of herself on a Simpsons episode, which was pretty much the most Nineties thing a musician could do, short of recording a duet with a fossilized crooner. “Hey, I wasn’t a loser in high school! I was in the audio-visual club!”
UPDATE: Like the Ghostbusters lady says, we got one!! A reader* writes:
“Hey Sev. I’m thinking we’re being subject to our own ‘Century of Humiliation’ these days. Like the Chinese after the Opium Wars, turnabout is fair play, etc. Whattya think?”
Sounds about right to me. Certainly the Chinese subjecting out diplomats to anal swabs is some payback. And frankly, it couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch. Sucks for the rest of us, but I’m really starting to think my doofy hippie college professors were on to something, way back when: We ARE the bad guys. Not in the way those buttholes thought, of course, but look: We flail and fumble and fuck our way across the world stage like emotionally incontinent lunatics. I’d much sooner play three-card monte against a used car salesman named after a city than I would trust anything any American “statesman” had to say. About anything.
At least you know the Cincinnati Kid is just trying to take your money. No one knows, or possibly can know, what those imbeciles in Tubman DF are trying to achieve. Not least because they have no idea themselves — Rutabaga Joe has lukewarm tapioca between his ears, and as for Kamala, the smartest thing that ever came out of her was Willie Brown’s dick. It’s as mysterious to the rest of the world as it is to us Dirt People, who exactly is calling the shots. Now, regular readers of RC know that there has been a situation in which a large, important nation with an extremely powerful military effectively had no government at all for long stretches… and they know exactly how it worked out.
The only question is, does the truly horrible shit start before every nation we’ve wronged — which is pretty much every nation on earth — gets their chance to exact some petty revenge, or after?
*I don’t know if or how you want to be identified, so I guess please put that in your email, should you send one: Should I print your handle, and if so, what is it?
Since it’s Friday, I ain’t got no job, and I ain’t got shit else to do, I figured it might be fun to try a “mail” column. Kinda like “ask me anything,” but you can just email the questions to me, thus bypassing the WordPress registration and login stuff.
I’ll try to update this as questions come in. It shouldn’t be too hard, since there are only, what?, twenty readers? thirty, tops? but as I’m still trying to limit my online time I might not get to them all. In which case, I’ll do a roundup this weekend or Monday.
Alternately, there might not be too many questions, or any. That seems likelier, and if that happens, well, it’ll just confirm what I’ve long suspected — that I’m as popular as Joe Biden’s dogs at a hemophiliacs’ convention.
Either way, I hope all you doubleplus ungood badthinkers have a nice weekend. Looks like it’ll be sort of spring-y, maybe even summer-y, in lots of places across Former America, so grill some hot dogs, chug some brews, and know that this too shall pass.
My email is: rcseverian at proton mail dot com. Please don’t send me any great deals on penis pills — I’ve already stocked up for the season.Loading Likes...