Thursday, April 16, 2020

A new album from Diana Ross?

Is Diana Ross releasing a new album? According to her official fan club, she is supposed to release one this year. Last June, they noted:

Ms.Ross, who turned 75 early this year, announced last night during one of her concerts in Las Vegas that she is going to release an all-new album when one of her fans asked her about it. She yell “Yes!” and told the audience that the recording sessions would begin late this year. Everyone was taken by aback. In addition, she said “I´ve been interviewing different writers and producers” and, according to Ms.Ross, Mark Ronson was among them. Let´s not forget that Ronson was involved in the writing of the oscar-winning song, Shallow.
It was almost 14 years ago when Diana released her last studio album simply called I Love You. In 2015, an unrelased project, which had been storaged in the Motown vaults for years, saw the light of day, Diana Ross Sings Songs From The Wiz.

I reviewed DIANA ROSS SINGS SONGS FROM THE WIZ here.  Back to the new album, last June, BILLBOARD reported:

Diana Ross recently met with producer Mark Ronson to discuss her next album, the legendary singer told the sold-out crowd at Toronto's Sony Centre for the Performing Arts during the Q&A portion of her TD Toronto Jazz Festival concert.
The 75-year-old, who over five decades has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, enjoyed 18 Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hits -- six solo, 12 as part of The Supremes -- 14 top 10 albums and has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, mused how music is now streamed, but in her lifetime she has seen 33 1/3s, singles, 45s, 8-tracks and cassettes.
"I'm getting ready to go in the studio and do another album and I want to do songs from where I am at — is that the right English? — at this point in time in my life because I feel so incredibly grateful and appreciative of you," she said, pointing at the audience who erupted in cheers. "I don't want to sing the blues. I want to sing songs that really speak to you and where I'm at at this time in my life, and optimism, and positive.

Wouldn't that be something to help us through these dark days? A new album from Diana Ross. That sounds like a treat at any day or year but especially right now. I really would love that. I think most of us would. What's your favorite Diana Ross album? For me, it's THE BOSS -- where she works with Ashford & Simpson and they turn out so many beautiful songs including "I'm In The World" and "It's My House" and "I Ain't Been Licked" and . . . But I also love diana -- the album she did with Nile Rogers and Bernard Edwards -- "Upside Down" is a benchmark, no argument But I really love "Have Fun Again" and "Now That You're Gone" -- that's a really fun one to sing along with, by the way. And you can't listen to what she's doing vocally on "Have Fun Again" without grasping just how much Michael Jackson took from that -- I don't mean theft -- for THRILLER. She really influenced him on the album diana. If you listen to "Have Fun Again," you grasp why his vocals changed so much from OFF THE WALL to THRILLER. After those two, it's hard for me because I really love SWEPT AWAY but I also love EATEN ALIVE. In fact, if it weren't for the title song, EATEN ALIVE would probably be my favorite over SWEPT AWAY. And I don't mind "Eaten Alive" as a single but it really does not fit on that album because EATEN ALIVE is such a gorgeous album. Blame Michael, he co-wrote that song and it's the only song on the album he worked on (he also does backing vocals). But to listen to something lush and beautiful like "More and More" or "Experience" or "Don't Give Up On Each Other" and then to go over to "Eaten Alive"? It really doesn't belong on the album. RED HOT RHYTM AND BLUES is also a really great album. I think Diana's RCA work is vastly underrated and long overdue for a critical re-examination.

I tried to do my part on that back in December of 2016 with "Diana Ross's diana and the RCA Years."

I hope there is a new album coming.  Be sure to check out Elaine's "Pretenders and Tori Amos " for more music coverage.

Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Thursday, April 16, 2020.  More attacks on Tara Reade from an unholy trinity of women who are not feminists.

In the United States, Tara Reade has stated that Joe Biden assaulted her when he was a US Senator and she was a staffer at his office.  She states that she reported it as harassment (which would have been how it was handled in the early 90s at most workplaces) and, for reporting it, she was retaliated against, removed from her position as a supervisor of interns and required to ask permission before leaving for the bathroom.  That's sadly also the 90s, the last part.  Think of breast feeding and the way both Lynn Redgrave and Cybill Shepherd were treated on the set of their respective shows (Lynn with HOUSECALLS in the 80s, Cybill with MOONLIGHTING in the 90s).

Easter Sunday, THE NEW YORK TIMES published an article -- one that quickly edited when Joe Biden's campaign complained -- that, though we're not supposed to notice, confirms the removal of Tara as a supervisor of interns.

More troubling in recent days than the problematic coverage has been alleged feminists attacking Tara Reade.  I said alleged feminist -- I'm not talking about a former child actor who's failed as an adult and become such an ugly human being that Atkins dropped her as their spokesperson due to repeated complaints.  I'm talking about women who try to self-present as feminists.  There's Michelle Golberg ("F**k you, Michelle Goldberg and the anti-woman pony you rode in on"), there's the original Mud Flap Gal Little Jessie Valenti (Trina was on to those awful 'feminists' that Jessie 'led' years and years ago) and now noted hater of Latinos and Latinas Little Miss Joan Walsh.

Before the latest three, there was Amanda Marcotte who not only published racist drawings but also stole the work of African-American women -- do that and you're a 'respected' voice in the country.

But back to Michelle, Joan and Jessica, all three have attacked Tara Reade which is why Twitter they're called rape apologists and much, much worse.

They've earned all of it.

This unholy trinity has written embarrassing pieces where one woman's story of rape has become an excuse to defend the comfortable silences of the hand maidens to the patriarchy.  The three women want to vote for alleged rapist Joe Biden.  They want to avoid criticism for doing so, they want to avoid criticism for selling out victims in the process.

So when not attacking Tara in their writing, they focus on who they insist are the real victims of this story:  White middle-class women who go through the day oblivious as always.

Ruth Conniff has not attacked Tara.  She also hasn't acknowledged Tara's story so let's include her on this.  Ruth is Joan, Jessica and Michelle and she proves it with her latest piece of drivel entitled "Democracy Wins in Wisconsin" (COMMON DREAMS).  She doesn't address the very real risks of that vote -- in the midst of pandemic.  A vote that never should have taken place when it did.  No, to Ruth it's just a victory -- a woman won an office, time so sing hosanna, insists Ruth.  THE NATION magazine noted that "tens of thousands" were unable to vote in that state due to the coronavirus pandemic and the justified fears that have resulted.  But, hey, what's denying tens of thousands the ability to vote -- to Ruth, it's nothing.

Just like the Iraq War was nothing to Ruth Conniff.  Remember when she went on KPFA to talk about the world as seen from a gated community?  Ruth didn't write about Iraq, she explained, because no one she knew had gone to Iraq.

Oh, Ruth, you're so privileged.  And so are Jessica, Michelle and Joan.  And that's why they write about what they write about.  Insipid columns about the troubles of the middle class White woman as she attempts to embrace the patriarchal structure in place so that she herself -- queen bee -- can rise in the structure.

That's not feminism and it never was.

Hugh Hefner 'feminists' that they are, they will get upset over any restriction on females (in the US only) that might impact sexual activity.  Therefore, abortion and birth control are topics they will tackle.  Rape isn't one they tackle unless they can use it to try to derail a political opponent.  That's why they're mad at Tara -- they don't care about rape but they do worship Joe Biden.  That's also why they never wrote about the  March 12, 2006 gang-rape and murder of Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi,

A child was raped and murdered.  The gang-rape took place while her younger sister and her parents were killed in the next room and, yes, she could hear them being killed.  US soldiers took turns gang-raping Abeer.  Steven D. Green went last because he was in the other room killing her parents and sister.  Steven then killed Abeer.  The US soldiers then worked overtime to make it look as though a terrorist had killed the family.  And they set Abeer's body on fire.

Steven D. Green went to prison.  The others got a lighter sentence because they ratted him out after a whistle-blower US soldier turned them in.  Please note that Green and the other soldiers actions resulted in the deaths of US soldiers who were not involved in any way in that crime.  Iraqis retaliated for this crime and they just went after a group of US soldiers.  That's when the whistle-blower came forward.

Grasp also that, tattle tales on Green or not, everyone of them should have been imprisoned for decades.  Green didn't surprise them with the crimes.  They plotted it out ahead of time at length.  They plotted to rape a young girl.  They plotted to go off base.  They knew they would take turns raping her.  They knew there could be no witnesses.  They knew they would kill her and any other family member in that house.

This was premeditated rape and murder.

And because they tattled on Green, they didn't have to spend the years in prison that they should have.  There is no excuse for what they did.  And yet they lurk in the shadows here in the US, (Paul Cortez, James Barker, Jesse Spielman and Bryan Howard, these murders and rapists.

This was not US soldiers in Iraq at a checkpoint killing someone who approached because they wrongly thought the person was a terrorist or suicide bomber.  This wasn't the fog of war.  This was Green studying Abeer for weeks and plotting with his buddies to leave base at night, break into her home, gang rape her and kill her and anyone who could be a witness.

Paul Cortez, James Barker, Jesse Spielman and Bryan Howard are supreme criminals.  They should not be walking in the United States.  The country is not safer with them on the loose.

Women were the ones who broke this story.  From the July 3, 2006 "Iraq snapshot:"

Developments in the Mahmoudiya incident where four Iraqi civilians died, allegedly at the hands of the US forces, in March continue including the age of one of the alleged victims and the arrest of a US soldier. To recap, one of the four was allegedly raped
and this morning Ellen Knickmeyer (Washington Post) broke the news that the town felt the "woman" was a fifteen-year-old girl who had complained about the 'interest' some US forces had in her. Sandra Lupien noted on today on KPFA's The Morning Show, the military had put the age of the female at 20 years-old when they announced their investigation last week (Friday). Reuters reports that the mayor of Mahmudiya declared today that the woman "was no more than 16 years old when she was killed along with her parents and young sister". Lupien also noted the arrest of Steven D. Green. Green, is 21 and was with the 101st Airborne Division of the US Army. Friday, in Asheville, North Carolina, he was arrested and charged with both the four deaths as well as the rape. According to the US government press release, if convicted on the charge of murder, "the maximum statutory penalty . . . is death" while, if convicted on the charge of rape, "the maxmium statutory penalty for the rape is life in prison."

We covered it the day the news broke -- July 3, 2006.  We covered it through the US military trial and through the trial in Kentucky.  We covered it when War Criminal Steven D. Green took his own life while in prison.

Rape is an issue feminists have always covered.  The powerful have always thought they could get away with rape.  They thought they could get away with shaming and attacking the women who were raped.  And there was a time when they could, when they could put the victim on trial and not her attacker.

There was a time?

There clearly still is as Jessica, Michelle and Joan make clear.

It's as though Susan Brownmiller's AGAINST OUR WILL (1975) was never published -- or Marilyn French's THE WAR AGAINST WOMEN (1992), or Susan Faludi's BACKLASH: THE UNDECLARED WAR AGAINST WOMEN (1991), or Shulamith Firestone's THE DIALETIC OF SEX: THE CASE FOR A FEMINIST REVOLUTION (1970), or Alice Walker's THE COLOR PURPLE (1982) or POSSESSING THE SECRET OF JOY (1992) (or really anything of Alice's work which is all rooted strongly in the world we actually live in), or Robin Morgan's THE DEMON LOVER: ON THE SEXUALITY OF TERRORISM (1989) or . . .

What Jessica, Michelle and Joan are doing is taking a big eraser to the blackboard and erasing all the work that feminists have done for decades, for centuries to ensure that a space existed for a woman to tell her story.

And they're doing not to benefit women, but to benefit a man named Joe Biden, a man who is clearly a war monger, a man who has done nothing for women (tell me how The Violence For Women Act actually improved women's lives because, as WSWS' David Walsh notes, it didn't).

The unholy whores want you to know that Joe Biden is innocent and their vagina's apparently told them that in some sort of Vagina Whisper.  See, Joe is pro-woman, so Joe could not do anything wrong to women.

That sounds so familiar . . . why is that?  Oh, yes.  Bob Packwood.

Yes, it is a lot like that.

When Abeer was gang-raped and murdered, 'feminists' like Jessica, Joan and Michelle had other things to do.  Couldn't cover it when Ellen reported it, couldn't cover it during the military procedures, couldn't cover the civilian court procedures in Kentucky.

The gals had other things to do.  Jessica, for example, was busy during that time leading the trashing of MS. MAGAZINE and Jane Fonda -- little Jessie and her cohorts didn't like the cover photo -- they couldn't review the article because they hadn't read it -- it was literally judging a book by its cover.

Now Jane could and did speak out about Abeer.

Maybe that's another reason Baby Jessica trashed Jane?

But what we see is a pattern where a bunch of privileged women only cover the issues that effect them directly.  In their minds, life is a gated community.

They are not feminists, they are not aware enough to be feminists.

They are tools of the patriarchy, used to harm other women, used to protect powerful men.

They're upset right now because -- let's be honest -- not one of them can write worth s**t.  I'm not talking their viewpoints, I'm talking basic writing.  They've got their jobs because they're women -- that's the only reason.  And to keep their jobs they need to keep the pretense that they're feminists out there because they are employed to control the thoughts of other women, to keep them in line.  If they can't do that, they can't justify a pay check.

Again, they are not writers.  They have never written a single sentence that anyone was impressed with.

So they attack Tara.  And they think we don't know why.

Worse, they think we're as ignorant with regards to feminist history and theory that we're not aware of (a) what they're doing and (b) that they are not feminists.

 Marie Solis has an important piece at VICE.

The following sites updated: