Damn The Man/You’re The Man

The dual identity of “the man” in American slang perplexes me. We say “Damn the man” or “Don’t let the man get you down” to sneer at establishment figures, from the police to nameless powers-that-be. Yet at the same time, perhaps even in the same conversation, we praise peers’ success by declaring “You’re the man!” or “You the man!” (“You’re the woman/You the woman” is basically nonexistent, replaced instead with the cheer “You go girl!”)

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Friday Vibes Video: Jeannie C. Riley


On this date 50 years ago, country singer Jeannie C. Riley went number one with her instant classic “Harper Valley PTA,” a lyrical rebuke against gossiping, trash talking, shade throwing and general small mindedness. The track and the no nonsense narrative haven’t aged a day.

Have good weekends!

Friday Vibes Video: Led Zeppelin


Today’s a special day in music history: It’s the 50th anniversary of the first time the Led Zeppelin we know and love performed together, in 1968, at a spot called Teen Club in Denmark.

Of course, back then they were called The New Yardbirds, an updated version of a band called the Yardbirds that changed its name when Jimmy Page came aboard in 1966.

Internal factions led members to come and go, and it wasn’t until 1968 that John Paul Jones, Robert Plant and John Bonham came aboard, rounding out the magic mix that soon took the world by storm — under a new name, a play on “lead balloon,” thanks to a cease and desist letter from a former Yardbird.

Anyway, here’s Led Zeppelin with “Immigrant Song,” from a 1972 show. The footage is… lively.