Stegzy's Music Project

A commentary on Stegzy's album collection

Has Been – William Shatner [#570]

For those unfamiliar with William Shatner, you might know him as the original Captain Kirk from the original Star Trek or maybe as T J Hooker or the priest from Horror at 37000 Feet. Maybe you might know William Shatner from his sci-fi novels, TekWar . Regardless, what you might not know is that like many other stars of stage and screen, Bill has turned his hand to music.

Shatner’s first album, Transformed Man, was received and ridiculed by many as Shatner’s “singing” style amounted to nothing more than speaking the lyrics to the songs. Surprisingly, if you just accept it as a style, it does actually work well.

I really enjoyed the quirkiness of Transformed Man so when I heard he was working on a collaboration with Ben Folds I was really excited. The fruit of the collaboration is Has Been. Possibly the most famous song on the album is the cover of Pulp’s Common People but there are many other absolute gems here too.

The title track, Has Been is an amusing slant at the “I can do better” people, while the song That’s Me Trying (a song about a father who’s never been there) never fails to raise a smile. The whole album is a priceless gem.

 

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Godspeed and Silver Linings – Sugarplum Fairies [#531]

Godspeed & Silver Linings - Sugarplum Fairies This is the penultimate album from Benny and Sylvia’s Sugarplum Fairies (SPF).

I’ve been a fan of SPF since buying their first album Flake through the late lamented Peoplesound website in 1999 and since then I’ve bought all but one of their albums, even to the point of being one of the first to pay towards the crowd funding of Images We Get.

Late last year I learnt of the band splitting and the release of their (to date) final album Sunday, Suddenly which is the only album of theirs I cannot bring myself to buy. I used to wonder why some people got hung up when their favourite band broke up. I’d seen Yes split more times than a gold medal winning gymnast, The Tubes went their own way too as did Dead Can Dance but I didn’t really feel anything about them splitting. But something about SPF splitting just made me feel like a close friend had died. Sad.

Godspeed has a distinctly different sound to Flake, Chinese Leftovers and Country International MusicMore mature and professionally produced, the last sweet drips of juice from a perfectly ripened musical fruit.

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