Despacito Conquers America

Forget the ramblings of xenophobes and threats of building walls.

Music demolishes all barriers to Love… Latino culture today is being embraced even more despite the vitriol in our political landscape. The success of this song is a reminder that America is more diverse today than ever. Yes….we may not live in an equal America, or a fair America, but it does mean we have the opportunity to experience America’s many rich cultures, listen to more stories, whether those stories are told in English or not. They still touch us.

Singer/songwriter Luis Fonsi stated on Instagram that “Music has no language”. Actually, Luis…Music is the language of Love…it is and has always been universal. If we want to understand humanity and love…we have to understand music first.

This is the first Spanish song since “Macarena” (1996-1997) to grace the US Billboard number one position for weeks while refusing to give up its number one position in the UK charts. You hear it blasting out of every sound system today in America. With a boost from Justin Beiber (who adds an English Intro to the extremely catchy Spanish lyrics and beats).

Personally for me though I prefer the original without Justin Beiber which has reached over 2 billion views on Youtube:

Advertisements

R.I.P. Robert Miles, Dance Music Pioneer

DJ Robert Miles has died after a brief illness. If you listened to music in the 90s, you can’t have missed the genius of Italian born DJ/music producer Robert Miles, even today DJ’s sample his music worldwide.

“Children” is the most iconic of hits in the history of dance music and really defined his career and revolutionized dance music, creating an entire genre “Dream House” which brought trance music to the mainstream. In clubs they used to have this as the last track of the night.

It is a track that is very moving and brings strong emotions.

After Miles performed this music in a club, a girl approached him in tears. “What music is this?” she asked him. It was a moment he will never forget that moment, realizing that his feelings had been conveyed through his music. His dream turned into reality.

Children:

Fable was another one of his fantastic tracks…featured in the movie “Ever After” (with Drew Barrymore).

Fable:

 

 

 

Obama is Now a “Fat Cat”

Hypocrite: Noun; A person who calls others “fat cats” for charging a lot of money, but then himself charges obscene amounts for speaking a crock load of bull shit.

Barack Obama, spent much of his eight years in the White House pointing critical fingers at Wall Street and Big Business, but today he isn’t as adverse to the almighty dollar as he let us to believe.

The ex-prez is about to earn $400,000 to deliver a speech (AKA a crock load of bull shit) at a Wall Street conference being run by Cantor Fitzgerald LP — the same type of people Obama used to blast as “fat cats.”

We can’t even count the number of times Obama blasted Wall Street for its greed — slammed Big Business for its salaries at the so-called expense of the little people. Fat cats, he called them — over and over, ad nauseum to the free-market, capitalistic crowd.

But now that he’s got a speaking gig with these undesirables that’s valued at $400,000?

It’s goodbye, principles; hello, greenback!

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2017/04/26/obama-under-fire-400k-speech-wall-street-fat-cats

 

Excerpts:

while Obama railed against “fat cat bankers” on the campaign trail, during his tenure as president he oversaw the massive bailout for the firms responsible for the 2008 crisis, picked former Wall Street executives for his cabinet, and not a single banker went to jail.

As Aaron Blake writes in the Washington Post, there are many problems with the arrangement:

George W. Bush and Bill Clinton did this, too, as have Hillary Clinton, Ben Bernanke and Alan Greenspan. And the more that Wall Street firms give out-of-office presidents and big-name politicians these paydays, the more they become the norm. Other presidents will know that such payments are on the table, and it risks coloring their decisions with regard to Wall Street and special interests.

Which is already happening with Obama, retroactively.

“Whether fair or not, it’s not difficult to look at Wall Street paying $400,000 to Obama as a reward for [the lack of prosecutions for anybody involved in the financial crisis]. In that way, it’s tough on both precedent and Obama’s presidency,” Blake observes.

Disco Pioneers: Indian Born Music Producer Biddu and Tina Charles

Back in the ‘70s Tina Charles was a very talented English singer and at the time doing only backup vocals for groups, and wasn’t getting recognition. It wasn’t until she met Indian born British music producer Biddu who produced her immortal hit “I love to love”. I remember watching this song premier on “Top of the Pops” back in ’76. It still sounds fresh almost 40 years later!

Biddu is considered one of the pioneers of Disco, Euro-Disco and South Asian Pop (Indipop) music. He was hailed as one of the “50 Greatest Music Producers of All Time” by New Musical Express.  His international breakthrough came in 1974 with “Kung Fu Fighting” performed by Carl Douglas; the song became one of the best-selling singles of all time with eleven million records sold, helped popularize disco music. It was the first worldwide disco hit from Britain and Europe, and established Biddu as one of the most prolific dance music producers from outside the United States at the time.

He also produced “Disco Deewane” for Nazia and Zoeb Hassan which went on to become the biggest selling pop album in South Asia and launched an entire genre of South Asian pop music. I lived in Africa at the time, it was heard everywhere from corner shops to clubs.

The Obama Legacy – the Audacity of Dope

The real Obama legacy is nothing but broken promises, war crimes, illegally spying on citizens, assasinations of US citizens, the word’s most expensive “free healthcare” that stuck the bill to working class people in increased taxes, the world’s greatest ever deficit ($19 trillion?!@#&*!) looting the most productive members of society to pay for politicians to get rich including Obama. If you seek enlightenment, research what his net work was before he became president, and then what it is now.

By the way, MOST of the following articles below are commentaries by LEFT-wing, progressives. I guess there are a few principled left-wingers in the country who hold a Democrat President to the same moral standards that they hold a Republican President to.

http://www.nytimes.com/…/questions-on-drones-unanswered-sti…

“The Bureau of Investigative Journalism in Britain has estimated that, in the first three years after President Obama took office, between 282 and 535 civilians were credibly reported killed by drone strikes — including more than 60 children.”

http://www.democracynow.org/…/dirty_wars_jeremy_scahill_and…

“We’re looking right now at a reality that President Obama has essentially extended the very [drone war] policies that many of his supporters once opposed under President Bush,” says Scahill.”

Obama to boost US military in Iraq
http://www.stripes.com/…/in-reversal-obama-says-he-will-boo…

Obama Has Bombed Twice as Many Countries as Bush
http://alibertarianfuture.com/…/obama-bombed-twice-many-c…/…

To Defend Iran Deal, Obama Boasts that He’s Bombed Seven Countries
https://firstlook.org/theinterce…/…/obama-summarizes-record/

U.S. Dropped 23,144 Bombs on Muslim-Majority Countries in 2015
http://www.alternet.org/…/us-dropped-23144-bombs-muslim-maj…

Nearly 90 Percent Of People Killed In Recent Drone Strikes Were Not The Target
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/civilian-deaths-drone-strik…

Are Obama’s Record Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Egypt and Iraq Fueling Unrest in Middle East?
http://www.democracynow.org/…/are_obamas_record_arms_sales_…

“We are joined by William Hartung, who says that even after adjusting for inflation, “the volume of major deals concluded by the Obama administration in its first five years exceeds the amount approved by the Bush administration in its full eight years in office by nearly $30 billion. That also means that the Obama administration has approved more arms sales than any U.S. administration since World War II.”

Former Drone Operators Say They Were “Horrified” By Cruelty of Assassination Program
https://theintercept.com/…/former-drone-operators-say-they…/

Obama Backs Biggest Nuclear Arms Buildup Since Cold War
http://www.forbes.com/…/obama-backs-biggest-nuclear-arms-…/…

Donald Trump and other conservatives’ deportation fantasies are awful. President Obama’s actual record is even worse.
http://reason.com/…/always-worse-than-trump-on-immigration-o

“Obama’s government has deported more than 2.5 million people—up 23% from the George W. Bush years. More shockingly, Obama is now on pace to deport more people than the sum of all 19 presidents who governed the United States from 1892-2000, according to government data.”

Obama’s War on medical marijuana
http://www.rollingstone.com/…/ne…/obamas-war-on-pot-20120216

“But over the past year, the Obama administration has quietly unleashed a multi-agency crackdown on medical cannabis that goes far beyond anything undertaken by George W. Bush.”

New Report Finds Obama Spends $180K Per Day Undermining State Medical Marijuana Laws
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/obama-medical-marijuana-cos…

“”What’s the Cost?” confirms how much the U.S. Justice Department has spent over three presidential administrations to investigate, raid, arrest, prosecute, and imprison hundreds of medical cannabis patients and their providers — nearly half a billion dollars. Far outspending all of his predecessors, the report reveals that President Obama has dedicated nearly $300 million to such enforcement efforts, despite his repeated pledges to not use Justice Department funds in this way.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/bill-clinton-marijuana_n_43…
“Clinton’s successor, President Barack Obama, has spent more taxpayer money fighting medical marijuana than former President George W. Bush did during his two terms, according to a June 2013 report released by the pro-medical marijuana group Americans For Safe Access. In August, the White House announced Obama does not support changes to the legal classification of marijuana, despite growing evidence of its medical benefits.”

Obama Administration suing to keep Black people in prison
http://www.guardian.co.uk/…/us-v-blewett-obama-justice-depa…

“Last month, President Obama quietly did something that should shake every American to the core. Seeking to enforce federal crack cocaine laws that have since been repealed, the Obama administration asked a federal appeals court to ensure that thousands of human beings, mostly poor and mostly black, remain locked in prison — even though everyone agrees that there is no justification for them to be there.”

Obama’s War on whistleblowers
http://www.motherjones.com/…/obamas-whistleblowers-stuxnet-…

Obama Administration Fights To Withhold Over 2,000 Photos Of Alleged U.S. Torture and Abuse
http://jonathanturley.org/…/obama-administration-fights-to…/

Obama Wants to Spend a Trillion Dollars on New Nuclear Weapons
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/on-the-a-bombs-70th-anniv_b…

The White House Has Been Covering Up the Presidency’s Role in Torture for Years
https://firstlook.org/…/president-obama-covering-presidenc…/

Obama’s War on civil liberties
http://m.guardian.co.uk/…/26/drones-yemen-fbi-occupy-terror…

http://www.salon.com/2010/05/13/citizens_2/

Noam Chomsky: Obama’s Attack on Civil Liberties Has Gone Way Beyond Imagination
http://www.alternet.org/…/noam-chomsky-obamas-attack-civil-…

Obama is Bad on Civil Liberties, But That Shouldn’t Surprise Anyone
http://www.motherjones.com/…/obama-bad-civil-liberties-shou…

“Obama voted for the 2008 FISA amendments, a position that outraged liberals at the time. He continued the Bush-era surveillance of communications networks. He ramped up the war in Afghanistan. He vastly increased drone use overseas. He’s declared a war on leakers. He participated in the assault on Libya. He’s approved the assassination of American citizens abroad. His DOJ has aggressively made use of the state secrets privilege. He’s fought relentlessly to block lawsuits challenging privacy violations and presidential abuses.”

Obama administration asks Supreme Court to allow warrantless cellphone searches
http://www.washingtonpost.com/…/obama-administration-asks-…/

Obama Has Already Broken His Pledge on Surveillance Reform
http://www.theatlantic.com/…/obama-has-already-brok…/278613/

Obama protects Wall Street bankers from going to jail
http://www.guardian.co.uk/…/untouchables-wall-street-prosec…

Obama still hasn’t closed Gitmo
http://www.washingtonpost.com/…/…/05/21/AR2009052104045.html

Obama promised to close Guantánamo. Instead, he’s made it worse
http://www.guardian.co.uk/…/obama-promise-close-guantanamo-…

(Thanks to David Kramer for compiling these).

Ezel – Turkish Series on Netflix

Three of my addictions… I like to read books from foreign authors (Japan and Scandinavian countries mostly but also some South and South East Asian); listen to foreign music (from everywhere) and watch foreign movies and TV series (Korean, Japanese, Scandinavian, Eastern European, Latin American). I find most American music is just noise – nothing really artistic; and American films and TV series are clichéd, predictable and overrated. Made using the studio cookie cutter formulas – rarely something inspiring comes along. These days even here in Hollywood, they are buying rights to scripts and plots from foreign films and TV series and re-making them as American.

Turkey is one such place where the hottest TV shows come from now. Turkey went from nothing to become the largest producer or TV shows.

Angelina Jolie, Cristiano Ronaldo, Nancy Ajram and other celebrities will appear in roles in a new Turkish series about Syrian refugees…that’s the power of Turkish TV. The production values are higher and licensing fees around the world for many of the Turkish TV series are even higher than American ones, that’s how much the demand is for them. As one Hollywood studio executive said “We’re all learning Turkish now”. When the Turkish drama 1001 Nights aired in Chile in 2014, the ratings beat all the Latin telenovelas and there was a sudden rise in the number of children named Onur and Sehrazat – the main characters in the series. In Israel-Palestine, there were reports that between 3-4pm when a popular Turkish drama airs, everyone stops fighting….governments can’t bring peace there but Turkish dramas can it seems. In India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, the number one ratings aren’t for Indian or Pakistani shows but Turkish ones. Turkey is mounting an attack on some of the foremost sources of entertainment for the world. Here’s looking at you, Hollywood and Bollywood.

Currently I am a big fan of a slick Turkish series called Ezel. The story is a revenge crime drama inspired by Alexander Dumas’ novel “The Count of Monte Cristo” (one of my favorite books of all time I have read it so many times but still enjoy it so much that I stay up to finish it).  Normally though I get disappointed by the screen adaptations as they don’t live up to the novel.

However, Ezel was a game changer. Hailed as the best Turkish series ever produced, it tells the story in present and in flashbacks. Originally Dumas wanted to tell the story of “The Count of Monte Christo” in flashbacks, Ezel uses time as a tool going back and forth. However the tale of Ezel doesn’t follow the novel. It is set in present day Turkey and Cyprus instead of 19th century Paris and defies genre as it is a revenge crime thriller, drama, action, mystery, romance. The actors are all brilliant in their roles and the story itself is very poetic….Betrayal tears them apart, revenge brings them together.

 The soundtrack is a masterpiece. Every musical piece in the thrilling scenes or dramatic is moving and fantastic. It has one of the best soundtracks by Toygar Isikli who has created a masterpiece of music that lives up to legendary screen music like the ones from “Last of the Mohicans”, “1492: Conquest of Paradise” and “The Godfather”.

 The series was licensed in about 100 countries, dubbed in many different languages and has even been re-made by Mexico (as Yago) and Armenia (as Ancanoty). A Hollywood re-make is also in the works.

 Here’s one of the gentler tracks from the soundtracks that is one of my favorites:

Menu Kehn De – Himesh Reshamiyya (Akbar Sami Remix)

Here is Akbar Sami’s electro-house remix of “Menu Kehn De” with its energetic vibe is sure to haunt dance clubs around the world for years to come!

Out now in stores on T-Series, the album “Aap Se Mausiqui” by Himesh Reshammiya features this track.

Taking a look at the past, Akbar Sami and Himesh Reshammiya Bollywood collaborations have made history;  their partnership has brought us some of the biggest and most memorable Bollywood remixes and dance tracks such as the award winning remix track Aashiq Banaya Aapne and Aap Ki Kashish, Jhalak Dikhlaja, and many more tracks that still set fires to dance floors around the world.

Reshammiya’s debut album “Aap Ka Suroor” in 2007 is considered the bestselling album (that was not a Bollywood film soundtrack) in Indian history. I bought it mainly for the seven dance remixes on the album including the title track which were produced by Akbar Sami – sheer magic!