Beacon of Speech vs. Cleveland.com
Updated: Feb 15
Came across this article earlier today and disagreed right away. But you know what? I'm an old dude, what do I know? I spent the week listening to Miles Davis' Agharta (1975) and Big Fun (1974).
So strictly from a curiosity standpoint, I wondered if the young people agreed with AP. Then I remembered that cleveland.com was littered with old dudes like myself. When I was in the comments section, I found absolutely no one who thought Lemonade was the Album of the Decade. I didn't plan on saying anything until I found a fellow Miles Davis fan....
As I typed, cleveland.com autocorrected the word Bitches with asterisks. I had 5 minutes to edit my entry and I did. I added the sentence in parenthesis. Then I got blocked.
I wasn't using the word Bitches for effect, that's the name of the album. And Bitches Brew is not an obscure album, it won a Grammy and got perfect ratings from both Jazz Publications and Rolling Stone Magazine.
I was going to let it go, then I became more reflective. If I wrote the article, what would be my album of the decade?
I don't know, maybe Clearing the Path to Ascend by Yob? Not a lot of artists kept my attention for an hour this past decade. Tool's Fear Inoculum seemed more bloated than special. I spent a lot of time this past decade listening to post metal from the 00's and jazz from the 70's.
What did other respected music publications have as the Album of the Decade?
Pitchfork: Blonde by Frank Ocean (2016)
Billboard: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West (2010)
Rolling Stone: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West (2010)
Stereogum: To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar (2015)
Paste: To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar (2015)
Vice: A Seat at the Table by Solange (2016)
or if you prefer your music a bit heavier:
Consequence of Sound (Rock): Modern Vampires of the City by Vampire Weekend (2013)
Loudwire (Rock): House of Gold and Bones Pt. I by Stone Sour (2012)
Loudwire (Metal): The Satanist by Behemoth (2014)
Consequence of Sound (Metal): The Satanist by Behemoth (2014)
So it wasn't a consensus about Beyonce, but we're not done here. Local cleveland.com writer Troy Smith named Beyonce Artist of the Decade just last month. I thought Troy may have found the AP article and asked the editors to print it.
I was a smart ass, but not outside of community standards of smart-assedness. This second banning really irked me. There is literally nothing I can do. I'm not going to sue, getting banned from the comments section of a dying news site is more sad than being any sort of impropriety.
But I couldn't let it go. Even responding on my Blog does't make me feel any better. I didn't want to write this article today, I'm trying to finish a missive about Billionaires.
Maybe one day I can take a hard run at cleveland.com and block them from responding....
12 hours later: Why does an innocuous example of corporations suppressing speech still bother me a day later? Because it's a death by a thousand cuts.
What happens when there's a real American threat versus some mindless debate about music?