Red Pill Blues
February 2, 2019 10:47 AM   Subscribe

 
“Something unique to this band is that we have always looked to hip-hop, R&B, all rhythmic forms of music,” Levine told Variety last year.

...

"Something unique to this band"

"Something unique to this band"
posted by duffell at 11:07 AM on February 2, 2019 [78 favorites]


While I have limited knowledge in this area, it seemed like 'not do anything', down at no. 29 was the victim of a grave injustice.
posted by biffa at 11:20 AM on February 2, 2019 [3 favorites]


It's hard for them to notice what other bands are doing with their noses stuck in their navels like that.
posted by Brockles at 11:21 AM on February 2, 2019 [3 favorites]


Ever since Janet Jackson’s infamous “wardrobe malfunction” during her performance with Justin Timberlake at the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show (a cultural calamity that happens to have its 15th anniversary this year)


This is my standard reminder every time that incident comes up: I recall watching that particular Super Bowl halftime show as Kid Rock, the conservative Republican icon, wearing an American flag as a poncho, having cut a hole in it, and later throwing the flag-as-poncho to the ground.

(It also had Nelly singing while constantly grabbing his crotch.)

But it’s always the Jackson/Timberlake incident that’s a “cultural calamity”...
posted by darkstar at 11:26 AM on February 2, 2019 [68 favorites]


Indeed--and it was Janet's career that was ruined, not Justin's.
posted by duffell at 11:29 AM on February 2, 2019 [47 favorites]


i didn't know Maroon 5 was into this kind of thing so I'm really excited about this and I've been sitting outside for about two days, and so far I've only seen a couple of great owls and some screech owls but nothing I'd call superb. In fact my Birds of North America field guide doesn't have that owl listed at all.
posted by loquacious at 11:33 AM on February 2, 2019 [17 favorites]




Er...I watched that show not “as Kid Rock” but “in which Kid Rock”.

:-P


posted by darkstar at 11:33 AM on February 2, 2019 [3 favorites]


Too late, Bob. Your secret’s out.
posted by Barack Spinoza at 11:35 AM on February 2, 2019 [23 favorites]


If they’d let Madonna go full Sacred Sacrifice in 2012, the Gods would’ve smiled on us, and we wouldn’t be living in the worst timeline.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:40 AM on February 2, 2019 [6 favorites]


Left Shark forevah!!!1
posted by supermedusa at 11:42 AM on February 2, 2019 [18 favorites]


No, seriously, at this point, we’re going to have to burn the Patriots in a Wicker Man after the game in order to get back on track.

The Ancient Earth and Sky are not pleased.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:43 AM on February 2, 2019 [14 favorites]


Indeed--and it was Janet's career that was ruined, not Justin's.

Janet Jackson’s next album came out a month after the halftime performance. It went 3x platinum (3M sales), debuted at #2 and was nominated for a Grammy. It’s possible that she would’ve sold more if not for the incident, but it was also her first album on the wrong side of the file sharing boom. Timberlake’s album came out 2 years later and went 4x platinum.
posted by mpbx at 11:44 AM on February 2, 2019 [33 favorites]


No, seriously, at this point, we’re going to have to burn the Patriots in a Wicker Man after the game in order to get back on track.

works for me
posted by supermedusa at 11:44 AM on February 2, 2019 [18 favorites]


at last a super bowl that would meet my needs
posted by poffin boffin at 11:45 AM on February 2, 2019 [25 favorites]


Rolling Stone are idiots putting U2 above Prince owning half-time shows forever. Right down to the marching band trimmed in EL-wire.
posted by mikelieman at 11:45 AM on February 2, 2019 [23 favorites]


ESPN had an interesting article on superbowl stadium bathrooms, including a part where the guy in charge of one of the stadium systems was clearly concerned about the increased “volume” that $5 drafts and free soda refills were going to bring.
posted by jenkinsEar at 11:47 AM on February 2, 2019 [5 favorites]


Indeed--and it was Janet's career that was ruined, not Justin's.

Les Moonves waged a vendetta against her because he felt she was not apologetic enough.

Timberlake went unscathed because he was willing to beg and leave her under the bus.
posted by srboisvert at 11:51 AM on February 2, 2019 [50 favorites]


"Something unique to this band"

That is exactly what a can of Axe Body Spray turned into a real boy WOULD say
posted by schadenfrau at 12:11 PM on February 2, 2019 [87 favorites]


Les Moonves is a disgusting piece of garbage.

I'm still mad about how Janet Jackson was treated. It doesn't surprise me at all that a man would try to wreck her career because she "embarrassed" him and wouldn't grovel for forgiveness, and it doesn't surprise me at all that he turned out to be a serial sexual harasser with an abuse of power fetish.
posted by Kutsuwamushi at 12:15 PM on February 2, 2019 [34 favorites]


There must be some mistake. The links say The Who played the Super Bowl in 2010, but I saw their Farewell Tour in 1982.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:48 PM on February 2, 2019 [20 favorites]


Rolling Stone are idiots putting U2 above Prince owning half-time shows forever. Right down to the marching band trimmed in EL-wire.

We're talking Rolling Stone here. The magazine that gives every U2 album 5 stars.
posted by octothorpe at 12:48 PM on February 2, 2019 [9 favorites]


It's interesting that U2 is nearly at the bottom of the 538 ranking and yet top spot on rolling stone.

I have no opinion because I am sure that I stepped away the moment they took the stage, as I find them to be unpalatably booooooooring. Prince rules.
posted by OHenryPacey at 12:55 PM on February 2, 2019 [2 favorites]


It's hard for them to notice what other bands are doing with their noses stuck in their navels like that.

I'm thinking their noses are inserted a little lower than that.
posted by Revvy at 1:11 PM on February 2, 2019 [4 favorites]


The 2001 Super Bowl Walk This Way was gloriously gonzo.
posted by sjswitzer at 1:18 PM on February 2, 2019 [5 favorites]


Wait, there are people that don’t think Prince had the best show???

Fuck this, I’m out.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 1:28 PM on February 2, 2019 [35 favorites]


more like craptime show amirite
posted by Bwentman at 1:47 PM on February 2, 2019 [2 favorites]


I was working at a division of Viacom that co-produced the 2004 halftime show (I wasn't involved in any of it). In the aftermath an all-hands meeting was called and it was clear our execs were pretty freaked out. These were people who were accustomed to working with badly behaved bands and flaky recording artists and were generally pretty easygoing folks, but something had put the fear of god in them.

We didn't know it at the time, but Moonves had completely flipped his shit and was making sure our division, along with CBS, would give the cold shoulder to Jackson and Timberlake. The messaging was very clearly emphasized to us: "We had no knowledge this was going to happen. We are very angry with the parties involved. They deceived us."

It quickly became clear though that none of the blame was going to fall on Timberlake's head and all of it would be on Jackson even before he started claiming it was an accident.
posted by theory at 1:48 PM on February 2, 2019 [25 favorites]


They should bring back Up With People.
posted by octothorpe at 1:50 PM on February 2, 2019 [6 favorites]


But it’s always the Jackson/Timberlake incident that’s a “cultural calamity”...

Well, actually... *pulls aside curtain revealing a cork board covered in pins and strings and pictures, pushes glasses up nose and snaps open a telescoping metal pointer* if you remember your internet history this is the very same incident that caused the birth of YouTube because some tech dudebros wanted to be able to look at and share video of Janet Jackson's nipple easier online which then gave a monitized platform to assholes like this *gestures at cluster of photos of known jerks* who have given legitimacy to the rise of this racist, nationalistic bullshit over here, and, well, this goddamn chucklehead being elected *points emphatically to an actual Cheeto pinned to the board at the center of a tangled web of red yarn* and while orthogonal to your point when you connect the dots the right way there is quite a lot of cultural calamity spilling chaotically from the wings of that particular big, dumb butterfly. *collapses telescoping pointer, drops it like a mic*
posted by loquacious at 1:54 PM on February 2, 2019 [87 favorites]


look I'm here to sweat hard sex feels for Adam Levine and I don't fucking care how my wife or any of you hosers feels about that okay?
posted by nikaspark at 2:17 PM on February 2, 2019 [8 favorites]


Hanif Abdurraquib's "The Night Prince Walked on Water" is a useful corrective to spending time talking about shitty white dudebros playing their shitty music:

And of course there was rain, as if summoned by the man himself. The elements favor some of us more than others. When we speak of Prince in Miami, at halftime of Super Bowl XLI, let us first speak of how nothing that fell from the sky appeared to touch him. How his hair stayed as perfect as it was upon his arrival, wrapped tight in a bandanna. All of my friends leaned close to the TV on that night and wondered how someone could play that hard, that furiously, in the midst of a storm. This was Prince, on a stage slick with rain, walking on actual water. There are moments when those we believe to be immortal show us why that belief exists. I will only remember Super Bowl XLI by what happened at halftime. Nothing before, and nothing after.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 2:18 PM on February 2, 2019 [32 favorites]


MAaaan, I don't normally make it a point to catch the Superbowl or even the halftime show, but I can distinctly remember being out at dinner when Prince was doing the Superbowl halftime show, and walking by a TV on the way to pay the bill, and there was all these people just huddled around the TV watching Prince make it fucking rain while he was playing Purple Rain, and everyone was just mesmerized. Prince's Superbowl halftime show is better than all others put together, imo
posted by 23skidoo at 2:53 PM on February 2, 2019 [14 favorites]


I don't remember much about the U2 performance, but I do remember a glitch that was kinda shocking at the time. They're projecting the names of the 9/11 victims onto a tall, tower-like screen next to Bono. And during a high point of whatever bombastic song they were doing, the screen collapses. Just folds into itself and falls straight down.

I remember being jolted by that. Mildly arguing with my GF if that was on purpose. She didn't think U2 would have been that stupid. I wasn't sure. Kinda surprised this part of their show wasn't mentioned in the ranked lists and reminiscences, because it felt huge at the time.

Anyways, I don't want to think about U2 anymore. Here's Prince's Super Bowl press conference. Which was quite informative as he was willing to take a few questions.
posted by Teegeeack AV Club Secretary at 2:56 PM on February 2, 2019 [4 favorites]


They still have half-time shows? And Super Bowls ? I presumed Prince was declared perpetual winner of both.
posted by kersplunk at 3:08 PM on February 2, 2019 [7 favorites]


Footnote from the 538 rankings:
Beyoncé does not receive points in 2013 for Destiny's Child hits because that would double-count her presence on the stage that night. Yes, Beyoncé deserves twice as much credit as we give her for everything, but it just doesn't seem methodologically sound.
posted by lalex at 3:23 PM on February 2, 2019 [5 favorites]


lalex, that 538 ranking list seemed extremely pointless. However, I think that's the sort of calculation the people behind the halftime shows do, which perhaps explains why the shows are so mediocre.
posted by acrasis at 3:31 PM on February 2, 2019 [1 favorite]


The Super Bowl where Prince played was the first time I'd been invited to an honest-to-god Super Bowl Party (TM). It was at the house of a friend who had the game projected on a 12-foot wide screen, a hot tub, pool, tiki bar and one of those nacho cheese pumps. And PRINCE!

I'm not sure any Super Bowl could ever compare to that.
posted by vespabelle at 3:51 PM on February 2, 2019 [13 favorites]


Maroon who?
posted by iamck at 3:52 PM on February 2, 2019 [1 favorite]


Maroon 5 is kind of generically bland, which makes for an improvement over actively shitty bands like RHCP. Congrats, NFL.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 3:59 PM on February 2, 2019 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure any Super Bowl could ever compare to that.

I'm earnestly jealous.

I was living in downtown Seattle working for Postmates as a fat, old and desperate Gen Xer facing active eviction and trying to deliver burritos and Tom Douglas and shit trying to work what was supposed to be a busy day (it wasn't!) when the Seahawks won and the whole city exploded into an impromptu and generally harmless parade, traffic jam and street party and not only could I not even bike anywhere but I couldn't even use my contractor *cough/choke* defacto employee side platform app or phone access at all.

I gave up and made my way up to Pine and 11th area and SPD had to close off like 6-8 blocks of streets, and it was legit and just ridiculous.

I think pro sportsball is dumb but that was pretty amazing, and I'm still not entirely sure if I would trade with you even as much as I love Prince, hot tubs and junk food in roughly that order.
posted by loquacious at 4:18 PM on February 2, 2019 [5 favorites]


In case anyone's interested in counter-programming besides Puppy Bowl, WWE will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Mankind/Rock Halftime Heat show with another Halftime Heat show, this time a 3-on-3 tag match pitting NXT's best against each other, free on Youtube and other places.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 4:37 PM on February 2, 2019


MetaFilter: nacho cheese pumps. And PRINCE!
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:01 PM on February 2, 2019 [1 favorite]


Teegeeack AV Club Secretary, I thought you were going to bring up a different catastrophic technical failure at a U2 gig.
posted by duffell at 6:24 PM on February 2, 2019 [2 favorites]


Maroons 1 through 3 were all destroyed during their construction by acts of sabotage. Finally, Maroon 4 was constructed and brought online, but it disappeared a mere twenty-four hours later.
posted by under_petticoat_rule at 7:27 PM on February 2, 2019 [28 favorites]


They should bring back Up With People.

I have a super-vague memory of actually seeing a part of one of the Up With People halftime shows, and being a little bit impressed with the concept of the Up With People organization for a couple minutes.

I also swear that I've read somewhere that some person of note - I want to say John Cusack - watched another UWP halftime show while on shrooms and would prefer not to repeat that experience.

....The real question I have is - how are the ads this year?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:06 PM on February 2, 2019


The reason Maroon 5 is not just "Maroon" as they were initially, is my friend had a really good Jazz duo called Maroon before those tools came along, and a firmly worded letter from their lawyer forced the Red Pill dudes to add a 5.

/braggin'
posted by latkes at 8:28 PM on February 2, 2019 [14 favorites]


This is also why Dinosaur Jr. is "Jr."
posted by sjswitzer at 9:11 PM on February 2, 2019 [6 favorites]


This is also why Dinosaur Jr. is "Jr."

Dinosaurs Live at Ritz on 1991-02-02 ( Feel free to skip track 01: wavy gravy & the coyote's penis , if it gets tedious )
posted by mikelieman at 1:59 AM on February 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


New information to me! I did not know that Dino Jr's conflict came from the Dead Zone!
posted by sjswitzer at 2:58 AM on February 3, 2019


My neighbor and college classmate was in Up With People for a year, and though I don’t think she was at a Super Bowl, she says it was a great experience.

I would be cool with Patty getting some of her UWP crew together and singing some songs with like an acoustic guitar or a boombox or something. I mean, if the alternative is Maroon 5... *shrug*...sounds like an upgrade.
posted by wenestvedt at 4:19 AM on February 3, 2019


Also, not for nothing, but I don’t believe for one damn second that Maroon 5 “didn’t know” what references to the red pill mean. Best case scenario, they’re idiots who didn’t know and didn’t care once someone explained it to them. Worst case, they’re red pill assholes who think they’re clever and they’re trolling.

I know which one seems more likely to me.
posted by schadenfrau at 4:54 AM on February 3, 2019 [7 favorites]


Maroons 1 through 3 were all destroyed during their construction by acts of sabotage. Finally, Maroon 4 was constructed and brought online, but it disappeared a mere twenty-four hours later.

Maroon 5 was our last, best hope for peace.

It failed.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:31 AM on February 3, 2019 [12 favorites]


Also, not for nothing, but I don’t believe for one damn second that Maroon 5 “didn’t know” what references to the red pill mean. Best case scenario, they’re idiots who didn’t know and didn’t care once someone explained it to them. Worst case, they’re red pill assholes who think they’re clever and they’re trolling.

Ehhh. A few years ago, there was a truly breathtaking interview in which Eminem was shocked to hear that one could find porn on the internet. If he'd become famous a few years later -- after high speed internet and web video became commonplace -- there's no way he'd be so befuddled by the internet. Being a successful celebrity is like being a vampire in that you're stuck, comfortably, in the age that made you successful. (The older and richer you are, the less reason you have to stay involved. See also, "why most rich comedians stop being funny.")

The Matrix came out in 1999, the sequels came out in 2003, and Wikipedia tells me that Maroon 5 got its first big brush with success in 2001. Google says Adam Levine is almost 40. He's got a few day jobs (face and singer for Maroon 5, judge on the Voice, various musical collaborations) and a fairly new family. I've never gotten the sense that he's extremely online. The band might stay relevant by putting Adam Levine on TV a lot and working with young musicians, but they're not exactly in the zeitgeist. I suspect they remembered The Matrix fondly and knew, vaguely, that the term "red pill" had become topical. They thought the title would be clever. When they started getting questions about Trump or misogyny -- not what you want to talk about to promote your Top 40 pap -- they realized people took this stuff seriously and backpedaled accordingly.

The NFL got what they wanted. I can't stand Maroon 5, but if you want apolitical entertainment that doesn't mean anything, you couldn't do better than Maroon 5. (Other than Bruno Mars, who has done a couple of Superbowl shows already and is also probably too smart to sign on.)
posted by grandiloquiet at 10:34 AM on February 3, 2019 [5 favorites]


Agreeing with the Billboard article and the Babylon 5 jokes.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:45 AM on February 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


I threaded a bunch of fun Maroon 5 facts on twitter, they might be relevant here.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 10:49 AM on February 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


The cover of Red Pill is a bunch of Snapchat photos with the ears and stuff. I might be wrong but I think they know about the internet and surely someone in their employ is paid to discuss marketability of every single thing they say and do? Even if somehow they knew nothing about it, they know now. If I had accidentally titled my album in such a way that I'd both coopted groundbreaking trans women artists and suggested allegiance to misogyny, I'd apologise massively and donate a lot of money to the right places in penance.
posted by latkes at 6:07 PM on February 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


I agree being rich and famous does make people dumber though
posted by latkes at 6:07 PM on February 3, 2019


Michael Jackson 1993 thing was pretty weird...
posted by ovvl at 6:33 PM on February 3, 2019


I’m not going to get into religious debates like Prince vs. Beyonce vs. Bruno Mars, but Maroon 5 SUCKED. No songs, no chops, no chemistry, and no dancing. I’ve made my peace with glittery pop bands but you better glitter and you damn well better dance! How does a shallow pop celebrity not even try to dance? Their only relevant hit is named “Move like Jagger” and he didn’t move like Jagger! FFS

On top of which, “Maroon” means “escaped slaves in the Americas and their descendants.” How TF can Levine & co. own that moniker?
posted by msalt at 1:09 AM on February 4, 2019 [2 favorites]


On top of which, “Maroon” means “escaped slaves in the Americas and their descendants.” How TF can Levine & co. own that moniker?

While it's true that "maroon" was used thus in the past, I believe you'll find that today "maroon" is more commonly thought of as a color. I'm assuming that this is the meaning they were thinking of since it is the most common meaning people are aware of today.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:46 AM on February 4, 2019 [5 favorites]


Sure, and there's no reason to think that Levine investigated the etymology. But it's a shame that no one took advantage of this teachable moment yesterday.
posted by msalt at 4:23 PM on February 5, 2019


.....Possibly because such a "teachable moment" would first have to involve telling people about this older usage, simply to discredit it?

Personally I only know about the older usage because I spent 10 years working with a theater company that did older American works. I appreciate your concerns, but I suspect that if they did say something about the older usage of the word, most people wouldn't be listening anyway because it's halftime at the super bowl, and of the ones who did listen, they would file that information away in the same mental folder as "and here's where Adam Levine got his last tattoo".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:08 PM on February 5, 2019 [1 favorite]


Way late here, but I'm surprised neither the post nor the comments mentioned the SpongeBob angle to this whole mess. After beloved series creator Stephen Hillenburg passed away from ALS last year, there was an internet petition to recreate one of the show's most iconic moments (playing cathartic rock ballad "Sweet Victory" at a stadium halftime show). It started off as a jokey tribute, but owing to the widespread popularity of SpongeBob memes on Twitter and elsewhere, soon racked up over a million signatures -- and when Maroon 5 started dropping hints online, people started going nuts that it was actually going to happen.

And it did... for about ten seconds. Folks were pissed. Here's a surprisingly well-edited video showing what could have been.
posted by Rhaomi at 1:14 AM on February 23, 2019


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