Dan DeWeese Makes Absurd Argument Connecting Willie Nelson, Travis Scott, George Frideric Handel
Propeller’s Editor in Chief goes off the rails on The Steer.
ON THE LATEST installment of The Steer, a radio program / podcast on which writers discuss music and musicians discuss writing, hosts Jeff Alessandrelli and Sunny Bleckinger chat with Propeller editor Dan DeWeese about a list of songs DeWeese apparently brought to the studio. Because DeWeese is the founder of this website, and because this post is supposed to be an unsigned publicity post written quickly, one would normally announce this in a vaguely objective tone (probably even including use of vaguely-objective singular-pronoun constructions like “one would.”) The problem is that what unfolds over the hour of conversation is a somewhat-direct and somewhat-only-implied argument DeWeese makes regarding connections between Willie Nelson, Sade, Travis Scott, and Handel, and that, to be again vaguely objective: one may find this absurd.
Here is a small sample of what one encounters during the conversation. While discussing the Robert Redford and Jane Fonda movie The Electric Horseman:
DeWeese: The assumption is that whatever Robert Redford says in this movie, people are going to be on his side. The movie has all sorts of great character actors in it too, playing corporate executives who want that horse back, because it’s their corporate logo and this is embarrassing them. It’s a pretty standard template for an anti-corporate movie, but I mean, I was six, so I didn’t care that it was a standard template.
Alessandrelli: Have you rewatched it recently?
DeWeese: Oh, I watch it every few years.
So he chalks up his fascination with The Electric Horseman to having been six years old when he saw it, but then immediately admits that he watches it every few years. Later, after listening to a bit of Sade’s hit “Ordinary Love”:
DeWeese: I’m really attracted to the Willie Nelson thing and the loner vibe, and Sade is similar. You’re not going to see Sade on some reality tv show making herself look stupid. She’s not interested in that. She’s super-smooth, technically super-proficient, so I think there is a way in which—again, you can kind of start to think of the individual vibe as being like, also scruffy and deliberately avoiding too much polish, but I think when you listen to Sade, it’s like: Oh, polish isn’t the problem. In fact, polish is pretty cool. Being masterful about exactly what you’re doing has nothing to do with whether you are or are not pursuing your individual creative vision. She’s clearly pursuing her sound and her vision, and she’s also completely polished, way more polished than any of us will ever be.
Alessandrelli smartly tries to point out contradictions in some of these thoughts by bringing up Hunter S. Thompson, but DeWeese just starts talking about how Hunter S. Thompson is…like Sade? What’s weird is that he sounds sober.
If you’re into this kind of thing, the conversation also includes discussions of liking George Michael while playing sports in the 80’s, whether Kubrick movies are dramas or comedies, and the suggestion that while playing Handel’s “Sarabande,” one should say very serious things aloud in order to start laughing. Alessandrelli and Bleckinger are great and extremely patient throughout the entire conversation, even up to and including the point at which their guest begins demonstrating his serious-talking-over-Sarabande theory.
You have been warned.