Released 10 years ago today: Speakerboxxx/The Love Below. Outkast. 2003.
Dino, Desi & Billy.
I bought a record by these clowns for a dollar recently because Lee Hazelwood produced it. In case you’re unfamiliar with them, Dino is Dean Martin‘s kid and Desi is Lucy and Desi Arnaz‘s kid. Billy was their lottery-ticket-winner of a classmate. So I guess that makes Lee Hazelwood the go-to producer for the children of the Rat Pack. That job probably paid well. At least I hope it did because based on what is on the album I have, these kids were utterly talentless. They could sort of carry a tune but had voices that Lawrence Welk might have rejected for being a touch white bread and bland. Lee did his best to make something out of nothing so there are some interesting arrangements to be found — particularly on a pretty awesome version of The Lovin Spoonful’s Daydream that is given a reggae rhythm and an I Need You-esque organ part. I’ve listened to that song more times than I’d care to admit. I can’t find it anywhere online but to get an idea of how hopeless these kids were click here to watch a video of them stinking up the joint on some TV show (probably Dean Martin’s) in 1965. And here is their rendition of You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away. They are truly out of their depth on that one.
While writing this, I came across Billy’s website (it’s the kind of site that older rock musicians usually have, the type that looks like it somehow predates the internet) and it turns out he played on all of those pretty good 1970s Beach Boys albums including Holland and Love You so credit where credit is due on that. That he’s also selling a documentary about Dennis Wilson that he made (predictably entitled Forever) that looks as low rent as his website is perhaps less admirable. Particularly because he’s charging $25 for the film on a DVD-R and an additional $8 for shipping.
Fugees. Circa 1996.
The post-Ice Cube lineup of N.W.A. with The Fresh Prince, Will Smith! Circa 1991.