Friday, June 06, 2008

Somos todos monos con memes

(Salvador Dalì, Six apparitions of Lenin on a Grand Piano, 1931)

We are all monkeys with memes. This felicitous dubbing of Richard Dawkins for a Spanish TV interview has stayed with me, a comical appendix to his utterly unworkable concept. That said, interpellated by Poetix, to further another such "meme" (or meh-meh, as I like to pronounce it in Spanish) here go my Seven Songs of Spring.

1. The Tuvan Internationale
This throat-sung call for the proletariat of the steppes to rise up against their sedentary oppressors, should accompany every political march. It might, to quote Mario Tronti, "once again make capitalists scared".

2. Geeshie Wiley, "Last Kind Words"

One of the most infinitely, wrenchingly sad blues songs I know, recorded in March 1930. Capable even of instilling in R. Crumb "a love for humanity".

3. Battles, "Leyendecker"

Somehow a band featuring the drummer from Helmet and the son of Anthony Braxton fills a niche. I like its cheery relentlessness.

4. Om, "Pilgrimage"

This is probably a substitute for my fantasy of having the complete Sabbath with the rhythm section alone. Irrationalism writ large of course - wish it had been out when I was in my stoner teens. I might have even appreciated the Song Remains the Same effects on the fire in the video...

5. Madvillain, "Monkey Suite"

Somos todos monos con memes.

6. Jedi Mind Tricks, "Outlive the War"

Just remember, you "get laced with the Luger / If you sympathize with the Hellenization of Judah". From an Islamist Italian-American from Philly (Vinnie Pazienza, great name) and my favourite DJ, the wonderfully named "Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind".

7. Atahualpa Yupanqui, "El Poeta"

A great communist folk-singer from the pampas of Argentina.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Giro (you blopody arsenist you!): Why do you say Dawkins' notion of 'memes' is an "utterly unworkable concept"? Seems to me it's caught on like ... well, a meme, and has thereby, in some key respects at least, proven somewhat self-vindicating (?). There are problems with it, for sure, as with every concept, but inasmuch as many people apparently find it to be a useful concept/metaphor (just google 'meme' and you'll get about half a billion hits), I hardly think calling it "utterly unworkable" is a reasonable assessment. So what's your particular 'beef' with it?

9:04 AM  

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