Songs I Love: ‘Reflections’

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Songs I Love will be a Series I’ll return to without much notice nor with any regular schedule, mainly I’ll seek a spur of the moment rehashing of singular songs that have marked the music landscape with which I define my tastes.

Amid growing tensions within the group and the Motown label at large, their 26th release, ‘Reflections’  became the Supremes first single adorned with the name Diana Ross & the Supremes. Much like the Miracles had done 2 years prior and became Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, Diana Ross was seeking to assert herself as a creative force outside a mere template, not just for recognition and additional economic stature, but as something of a trailblazer within the label and industry at large. Much has been said of Barry Gordy’s mafioso like control of his artists, and Diana Ross seeing her name busted out on the marquee must be looked at as a monumental break from the ordered power of the industry at the time. It wasn’t that she was a remarkably talented performer, but that she was no longer a pay check player to Gordy (or larger, the entire music industry) and that see deserved the autonomy and respect that went along with it. That she didn’t hurt the other artists in her wake makes her move all that more remarkable; men had done it (previously I’d mentioned Smokey Robinson for example among many others), but women really hadn’t. You can’t imagine Ronnie Spector getting more power than actually dating (and later marrying) Phil Spector and yet it never became Ronnie Spector & the Ronettes. No, Diana Ross was the first to breakdown the barrier, and with her group almost single-handling representing the States against the British Invasion in the charts for several years, you can’t begin to imagine the legacy this entailed. Continue reading

October 2015 Horror wrap-up

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What follows is my part in a correspondence with friends who do an annual Horror film binge during the month of October. Years ago it was dubbed ’31-in-31′ where we attempted 31 Horror films in the months 31 days. In recent years, various events in our lives have greatly lessened the scope and attempts made, but alas, this year was a return of sorts, which saw me complete 26 films. I cheated a little, Queen of Earth and Rosemary’s Baby were watched mid-September but counted towards my list here. I didn’t think it that much of a cheat since both works—which speak to each other wonderfully—really got me in the mood for the coming splatters, shrieks and scares. For my thoughts on Queen of Earth, please go here. Without further ado… Continue reading