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Sunday Song Lyric:
Is it a sign of the apocalypse that "The Lonely Goatherd" from Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music is used to open the latest Gwen Stefani pop dance track, "Wind It Up" off of her new album The Sweet Escape? The motif infuses Stefani's video as well. I know classic show tunes are supposed to be timeless, but this is a bit much for my tastes.


This sort of post-modern pop music mash up is a long way from Stefani's beginnings in No Doubt, both musically and lyrically. Take for example, "Just a Girl," from No Doubt's breakthrough album Tragic Kingdom. It was better pop music with better lyrics. Here's a taste:

I'm just a girl
I'm just a girl in the world...
That's all that you'll let me be!

I'm just a girl, living in captivity
Your rule of thumb
Makes me worry some
I'm just a girl, what's my destiny?
What I've succumbed to
Is making me numb
I'm just a girl, my apologies
What I've become is so burdensome
I'm just a girl, lucky me
Twiddle-dum there's no comparison.
Rich B. (mail):
You write this as though Gwen Stefani had not recently had a hit with "If I was a rich girl" to the mangled tune of You-can-guess-what from Fiddler-on-the-you-know-where.
12.17.2006 11:37am
liberty (mail) (www):
I love that song. (Gwen Stefani's as well as the original)
12.17.2006 12:04pm
FC:
My reactions are the opposite. I find Tragic Kingdom Gwen whiny albeit strangely listenable and avant-garde geek-dance Gwen amusing and enjoyable.

But the Fiddler-mangling was a step too far.
12.17.2006 12:33pm
WHOI Jacket:
I sort of found the Fiddler-mangling amusing. At least it was catchy as heck, (stuck in my head for days, Man! Seared into my memory)
12.17.2006 2:40pm
sfurules (mail):
As one who has a degree in music as well as having played with many professional (be they classically trained) groups, I can't stand this pile of turd. Back in "the day" plagiarism was considered a high compliment...today there is no excuse except for a complete lack of talent. Nothing better than a tonic-IV-V-repeat structure for 5 minutes.....yup....nothing better. Tenacious D and Wagner have little Gwenny poo in a headlock when it comes to real music.
12.17.2006 4:23pm
PubliusFL:
I can't wait for her next hit, "I'm the Very Model of a Mega-Hyped Celebrity."
12.17.2006 5:23pm
Frater Plotter:
The JAMs used it in "Next" many years ago ...

(Who killed the JAMs?)
12.18.2006 12:52am
Gordo:
"The Lonely Goatherd" reminds me of a funny story from my youth (circa 1980). I had a girlfriend, Jewish, who refused to travel in Germany due to past events, but really wanted to visit Austria, especially Salzburg, because "The Sound of Music" was her favorite movie and the Austrians such as the Count and Countess von Trapp and all those wonderful folks at the movie-ending song contest had resisted the evil Nazis.

I lost track of her, but I assume Kurt Waldheim revelations awakened her to the truth later in that decade.
12.18.2006 1:58pm
Matt Bruce (mail):
Gwen Stefani pays homage to (or rips off, take your pick) some marvelous songs. On the bright side that means her songs are at least derivative of greatness.

Contrast that to some pop/dance artists who have no good ideas at all, original or otherwise; who can't carry a tune and who get by entirely on reputation and rumored sex appeal. (Fergalicious!)
12.18.2006 2:50pm