Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Disney music, pain, and suffering

Disney World and Disneyland attractions often incorporate musical themes. These can be fine if you are only exposed to them for a few minutes. For me personally, one exception is the "Electrical Parade" music - since the parade can take a half hour to pass by, the music seems to go on forever.

But what if you are stuck on an attraction for more than the usual few minutes?

And what if that attraction is "It's a Small World"?

A lawsuit could result from this, and the music could be part of the lawsuit:

Disneyland has paid disabled man Jose Martinez $8,000. Their crime? Not evacuating him from It’s A Small World after the ride broke down in 2009, leaving him listening to that song for half an hour....

Geffen [Jose Martinez's lawyer] said that half of the award was for pain and suffering, while the other half is for violating disability laws.

There have been a number of legal cases in which the major media companies, including Disney, have tried to get money from people who listen to their music (or watch their movies). This is the first case that I know of in which Disney had to pay someone else to listen to Disney music.

It's a world of suffering, a world of pain,
But the Mouse has promised not to do it again...

Monday, March 25, 2013

Glen Campbell, 1963

I recently re-read my 2009 and 2008 posts about musician Glen Campbell (not to be confused with others who have the same name). The earlier post opens with the following words:

Glen Campbell has had a varied career.

When you've been involved in acts ranging from the Champs to the Beach Boys, and when you've covered Green Day as a small part of your successful recording career, it's difficult to pigeonhole you into those categories that some in the music industry like. But Campbell is no pigeon.

Part of the difficulty in pigeonholing Campbell is that he emerged in an era before the pigeons were caged. It's hard to separate between country and rock when the stars of the time were equally comfortable in either genre. When the Beatles issued their most famous single ("Yesterday"), a Buck Owens song was on the other side ("Act Naturally").

A couple of years before "Yesterday," Glen Campbell appeared as a backing guitarist and singer on a TV show called "Star Route," accompanying George Morgan on the song "My Window Faces the South."

During the instrumental break, the band members take turns on various solos. Campbell's guitar solo comes last, and he treats the audience to a rockabilly-country lick festival.

But a musician has to eat, so one year later, Campbell adopted a Beatles haircut and appeared on Shindig.

Ignore the screaming girls and the haircut for a moment. Campbell's music doesn't sound all that different from his appearance with George Morgan.

I was unable to find a video of Campbell's touring days with the Beach Boys, but when you think about it, that music was similar in sound also - except perhaps for the vocal arrangements, which of course were not unique to surf and car music.

As to why Campbell's hit records from later in the decade were more countrypolitan than I said, a musician has to eat. Do you think a rockabilly song would go over in 1969?