Aaron’s Favorite Albums So Far, 2021

So the Grammys today listed theirs. Here’s mine.

I Told You So — Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio
Revolutionary Love — Ani DiFranco
Les Filles de Illighadad — At Pioneer Works
Como La Piel — Rita Payés
Welfare Jazz — Viagra Boys
People Don’t Change — PJ Harding, Noah Cyrus
Blame It On The Youts — Tiggs Da Author
Yellow — Emma-Jean Thackray
Torres — Thirstier
Human — Shai Maestro
Glowing in the Dark — Django Django
Debussy, Chopin, Mussorgsky — Behzod Abduraimov
Notes With Attachments — Pino Palladino & Blake Mills
Breathe — Dr. Lonnie Smith
Sketchy. — Tune-Yards
Korolen — Toumani Diabaté and The London Symphony Orchestra
When God Was Great — The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
So Low — Lowland Hum
We Are — Jon Batiste
sketchy. — Tune-Yards
In Defense of My Own Happiness — Joy Oladokun
The Girls Are Back In Town — Chapel Hart
Foo Fighters — Medicine at Midnight
Exiles — Max Richter
Intra-I — Theon Cross
My Bluegrass Heart — Béla Fleck
Smile Real Nice — Courtney Barnett. Single. Released for the ATV+ program “Harriet the Spy.”
Soberish — Liz Phair
If Words Were Flowers — Curtis Harding
Of All Joys — Attacca Quartet
Grizzly Peak — The Dodos
Fun Fun Fun — Millington (single)
Deciphering the Message — MaKaya McCraven
Open Arms to Open Us — Ben LaMar Gay
30 — Adele
Raise the Roof – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss

Cecily Strong Saves The Universe

Once in a while, a performer does a thing that is astonishing, sublime, real, and of such a quality that it has to make their colleagues perk up their noses into the air and understand that a a new floor has been established in the expectations of their shared craft.

This was, for example, recognized as such when comedian Tig Notaro revealed a certain diagnosis to her audience.

This performance garnered praise from her colleagues, her audience, and generally. As The Guardian wrote at the time: “It’s a startling release; one that redefines the boundaries of what comedy can achieve.”

Or like Prince at the Super Bowl in 2016.

I feel that on this past SNL episode, long-running cast member Cecily Strong achieved such a moment with her appearance on “Weekend Update” as “Goober the Clown Who Had an Abortion When She Was 23.”

There is the brilliant absurdity of the personage of a clown there to discuss the matter at hand, and yet the absolute sense of it. Why does our society allow ourselves to be so held hostage regarding this topic that its mere discussion among polite company is rendered impossible? Then there is her demeanor throughout, the frustrated frazzle of it all. This clown’s next step may be to go outside and to light something on fire, and why isn’t every clown at that point now?

SNL doesn’t often endeavor to make statements as it does to achieve caricatures or to just be outright silly. Cecily Strong with this sublime appearance used the silly to punch hard. Any of her colleagues who don’t view this thing as the new benchmark for their craft, well, they’re doing it wrong.

Cecily Strong just played “Purple Rain” in a torrential downpour.

Favorite Album Releases So Far, 2021

Happy Halloween.

I Told You So — Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio
Revolutionary Love — Ani DiFranco
Les Filles de Illighadad — At Pioneer Works
Como La Piel — Rita Payés
Welfare Jazz — Viagra Boys
People Don’t Change — PJ Harding, Noah Cyrus
Blame It On The Youts — Tiggs Da Author
Emma-Jean Thackray — Yellow
Torres — Thirstier
Human — Shai Maestro
Glowing in the Dark — Django Django
Debussy, Chopin, Mussorgsky — Behzod Abduraimov
Notes With Attachments — Pino Palladino & Blake Mills
Breathe — Dr. Lonnie Smith
Sketchy. — Tune-Yards
Korolen — Toumani Diabaté and The London Symphony Orchestra
When God Was Great — The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
So Low — Lowland Hum
We Are — Jon Batiste
sketchy. — Tune-Yards
In Defense of My Own Happiness — Joy Oladokun
The Girls Are Back In Town — Chapel Hart
Foo Fighters — Medicine at Midnight
Exiles — Max Richter
Intra-I — Theon Cross
My Bluegrass Heart — Béla Fleck
Smile Real Nice — Courtney Barnett. Single. Released for the ATV+ program “Harriet the Spy.”
Soberish — Liz Phair