Larry Kart

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I don't get The New Yorker and I find very hard to judge from Gopnik's style just whether what he says is true. I don't ever get the sense that he's touched the ground - that is "Right, yes, this here is true and I know it." My impression is he does a variant on Hollywood movie schtick - that is to say he knows how to flatter his audience, in his case would-be intellectuals. Such an audience won't appreciate their hero being attacked, because it hits the facebook generation in its weakest spot, its vanity.

He did a lecture on Camus (2013), I watched a bit of (before he did an article for The New Yorker). This is because I was trying to find a subject he engaged with that I had some sort of handle on. I do know that Camus fell out of love with America - because he says so in his American Journals - stating, amongst other things, that "only the Negroes give life, passion and nostalgia to this country".

Gopnik doesn't mention this, instead concentrating on how American intellectuals fell in love with Camus and suggesting that this gives them a special insight into the man. Camus, however, doesn't seem to have rated them - and basically got bored.

This would be an example of what I generally sense - that Gopnik doesn't touch the ground - in this case, the key fact that Camus fell out of love with the US, preferring to concentrate on American intellectuals falling in love with Camus.

 

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30 minutes ago, ghost of miles said:

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, David Ayers said:

This thread is ridiculous. You mistranscribe Gopnik at least twice, despite lectures on fact-checking. You don’t actually challenge his central point about the “fault line” (not “fault” as you currently have it) in popular music history, as between the dominance of show tunes pre-1964 and the switch of pop with the Beatles etc. away from that.  So Sinatra just maybe a bit involved in musical theatre and film and Beatles maybe a bit less so. All said by the author in passing only in order to say that ALW came in to musicals at a point when they were less than dominant. 

Tell me where I mis-transcribed Gopnik, and I'll go back and correct that. His point about that particular fault line in popular music history is a hoary cliche. Further, though it doesn't have much bearing on ALW, the real fault line in popular music history (if one wants to call it a fault line) came with the advent of rock 'n' roll -- the crucial date probably being 1956 when Elvis' "Don't Be Cruel"/"Hound Dog" single climbed to the top of the pop, country, and rhythm and blues charts.

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18 hours ago, Larry Kart said:

I dunno. Yes, I brought it up, but I'm kind of sick of this whole subject now, especially after a friend of mine going back to high school days told me yesterday that my negative view of Gopnik was "utterly ridiculous." Didn't change my mind when he said that, but it sure was disturbing/depressing.

well you are not alone. I cannot stand Gopnik.

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15 hours ago, Larry Kart said:

Tell me where I mis-transcribed Gopnik, and I'll go back and correct that. His point about that particular fault line in popular music history is a hoary cliche. Further, though it doesn't have much bearing on ALW, the real fault line in popular music history (if one wants to call it a fault line) came with the advent of rock 'n' roll -- the crucial date probably being 1956 when Elvis' "Don't Be Cruel"/"Hound Dog" single climbed to the top of the pop, country, and rhythm and blues charts.

Larry, I pretty much share your opinion of Gopnik. Here's part of a review I posted on Goodreads:

"I've heard a very good friend of mine use the term "dabbler" more than once. That term fits Adam Gopnik very well. He's a writer for The New Yorker and will seemingly write about anything that catches his attention or, possibly, that he's been assigned to write about. (Though he's been writing for the magazine for thirty years now, and perhaps he chooses his own assignments.) Anyway, his modus operandi seems to me to be to cover a subject, but not dig very deeply into it."

That said, I think you obsess a bit about Gopnik. His writing doesn't warrant that sort of time and energy.
 

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50 minutes ago, paul secor said:

Larry, I pretty much share your opinion of Gopnik. Here's part of a review I posted on Goodreads:

"I've heard a very good friend of mine use the term "dabbler" more than once. That term fits Adam Gopnik very well. He's a writer for The New Yorker and will seemingly write about anything that catches his attention or, possibly, that he's been assigned to write about. (Though he's been writing for the magazine for thirty years now, and perhaps he chooses his own assignments.) Anyway, his modus operandi seems to me to be to cover a subject, but not dig very deeply into it."

That said, I think you obsess a bit about Gopnik. His writing doesn't warrant that sort of time and energy.
 

Yes, I obsess about Gopnik quite a bit, in part because, as I went into in an early post on this thread, in my own journalistic career, and well before I knew Gopnik existed, in the late-'70s/early '80s at the Chicago Tribune I definitely felt the temptation of trying to turn myself into a kind of resident culture vulture, though the opportunities there were less abundant and probably less consequential in terms of self-advancement than they were at, say, the New Yorker or the New York Times. For various reasons -- some of them moral (or so I like to think), some of them matters of personal temperament (I didn't want to be treated or regarded as a "pet" and/or as an agent of specific higher-ups who would expect me to do their bidding in those realms and thus further their own power operations) -- once I began to understand what  the lay of the land was, all I ever wanted and in effect used was my own byline and the freedom to say in print whatever I saw fit about what seemed to me to be right in front of me. Doing so got me into trouble at times, but I could sleep at night. If I had taken the other route, I'm pretty sure that at  times I wouldn't have been able to.

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On 01/04/2018 at 1:51 AM, Larry Kart said:

Tell me where I mis-transcribed Gopnik, and I'll go back and correct that. His point about that particular fault line in popular music history is a hoary cliche. Further, though it doesn't have much bearing on ALW, the real fault line in popular music history (if one wants to call it a fault line) came with the advent of rock 'n' roll -- the crucial date probably being 1956 when Elvis' "Don't Be Cruel"/"Hound Dog" single climbed to the top of the pop, country, and rhythm and blues charts.

 the place where hits happened always happened” !

For the rest, just seems to me that’s a reasonable generalisation in the context of a book review, although ‘huge hits’ seems to be an over-the-top of what hapened with Manne/Previn and the follow-ups (did we mention Peterson). 

 

I don’t go to New Yorker for my history, find it to be mostly naively over-written guff even where the material covered is worth knowing about, and have noted Gopnik’s name there. Maybe he looms large for you, just a page-filler for me. Those cartoons would look wrong if they weren’t surrounded by print.

 

re. the writing of history, that’s never going to be a straight line. And journalism is a significant object of study in any history, so.

PS I tried to find sales figures for the Manne album and can’t, not even a standalone let alone in period context compared to popular/jazz sales. 

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18 hours ago, paul secor said:

I think you obsess a bit about Gopnik. His writing doesn't warrant that sort of time and energy.

Gopnik on Camus

This is a link to the lecture I talked about. There's a long intro and he only starts talking around 7 and a half minutes in. Skip the intro and then take a look at his eyes while he's delivering this "elevated" discourse. They're horrible.

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6 hours ago, David Ayers said:

 the place where hits happened always happened” !

For the rest, just seems to me that’s a reasonable generalisation in the context of a book review, although ‘huge hits’ seems to be an over-the-top of what hapened with Manne/Previn and the follow-ups (did we mention Peterson). 

 

I don’t go to New Yorker for my history, find it to be mostly naively over-written guff even where the material covered is worth knowing about, and have noted Gopnik’s name there. Maybe he looms large for you, just a page-filler for me. Those cartoons would look wrong if they weren’t surrounded by print.

 

re. the writing of history, that’s never going to be a straight line. And journalism is a significant object of study in any history, so.

PS I tried to find sales figures for the Manne album and can’t, not even a standalone let alone in period context compared to popular/jazz sales. 

6 hours ago, David Ayers said:

LK replies:  the place where hits happened always happened to a place where they rarely did” versus what Gopnik actually wrote and I mistranscribed,  "the place where hits always happened to a place where they rarely did."

Don't see how my mistake, a simple stutter of the fingers that seems both obviously so and easy enough to disentangle, alters or was an attempt to alter the sense of what Gopnik was saying.

Yes, "over the top." My point was the the Manne-Previn MFL was quite notable in its commercial impact, certainly among jazz albums of the time, while the  commercial impact of the other jazz MFL albums, which came in the wake of the Manne-Previn album, was nowhere near as great. Actual Manne-Previn MFL album sales figures -- on that I'm not an expert; and perhaps such record-keeping, for jazz albums in general and for independent labels like Contemporary in particular, was not what it would have been for majors like Columbia or RCA-Victor.  But as others on this thread who were around at  that time have said, the Manne-Previn MFL album seemed to be ubiquitous.

Sorry for the repeated "David Ayers said" above. It carried over, and I didn't see how to get rid of it.

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2 hours ago, Larry Kart said:

Sorry for the repeated "David Ayers said" above. It carried over, and I didn't see how to get rid of it.

That KEEPS happening to me. My fingering on the keyboard is getting more and more lackadaisical as I get older, I think.

I leave the board for a couple of hours and it's often gone when I go back.

No comprendo.

MG

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The Manne-Previn-Vinnegar Contemporary "My Fair Lady" was 1 of the first 2 LPs I ever bought, away back around 1957 or '58.  They were also the only 2 jazz records in my neighborhood record store in South Bend, In.  At the time Down Beat, every 2 weeks, published a list of the 20 jazz best-selling albums.  That "My Fair Lady" was number one back then.

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On 3/31/2018 at 4:48 PM, JSngry said:

oh yeah, Man Of La Mancha, although, jeez, that impossible dream song, if that's not justifiable homicide, then nothing is. not even Maynard Ferguson could make it tolerable.

 

Well, look what's just been released. Hope springs eternal, I guess!

MI0004391919.jpg

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