Monday, February 2, 2009

Download This

Yesterday, soon after posting my blog, “Post Rock,” I happened to read about Neil Young’s hilarious new single, “Fork in the Road,” in the latest issue of Rolling Stone (Issue 1071, February 5, 2009, p. 68). Having watched the video for the song on, I was so struck by the similarity of theme between his single and my blog on “Post Rock” that I’m providing a link to the video here. The video depicts Young rocking along to a blues groove holding what appears to be a pair of iPod earbuds plugged into a big red apple. He sings, “I’m a big rock star/My sales have tanked/But I still got you... thanks.” But he then continues, “Download this,” he sings as he holds up the apple, “it sounds like shit,” only to then take a bite out of the apple and throw it away in disgust, and then pines for the old days of radio. The difference, of course, between his form of communication and mine is that my presentation is more conventional, expository in nature, written for an audience that is expecting me to deliver a particular kind of information. His video, on the other hand, is an example of what Gregory L. Ulmer has called “a dramatic, rather than an epistemological, orientation to knowledge” (Writing and Reading Differently, p. 39). The ideas contained in the two forms, however, are remarkably similar. Rarely has Young been funnier: “There’s a bailout comin’, but it’s not for me/It’s for all those creeps watching tickers on TV.” I urge you to check out the video by clicking on the link above.

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