Thursday, October 2, 2008

Now We're Cookin' / Michael Franti and Spearhead

On my iPod there is a very important playlist called "Now We're Cookin'" which is a list of toe-tappin, feel-good (okay, my favorite) tunes to have playing in the kitchen while the weekend dinner prep is on. And can I say that this playlist just got a whole lot more fun for having picked up the latest Michael Franti and Spearhead disc All Rebel Rockers.

Sure this album isn't one that is going to be so critically acclaimed that I will be hearing my grandchildren play it and wondering where music went wrong, but dang, it is a bunch of fun. It has so much going on it is hard to know where to start. It opens with a slow-burning reggae tune but then jumps into a whole variety of funkilicious, rappy, skaful and soulful pop dance music that it is hard to resist. Even when the lyrics are a bit simple and corny (really, who say's frickin' on a rock album), it is impossible to resist the beat of these tunes.

As PopMatters notes, some of what you have here is just a bit too preachy, but mostly it just really makes you feel like music is a positive force in the world even when it is critical. And you feel like the celebration that is this music might just have the power to make people think differently about the world we face--probably not, but then I listen to "Hey World" and I think, well, maybe! In fact, the first time I heard that cut--I thought now there is a good theme song Obama (except for the whole angry black man thing).

Here is that opening slow burner, followed by my proposed BHO theme tune and finally the most delightful dance tune on the disc. So get ready to boogie and stir the stew with Spearhead.

Rude Boys Back In Town
Hey World (Remote Control Version)
Say Hey (I Love You)

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