George Carlin Music Commentary of the Day

White people ought to understand … their job is to give people the blues, not to get them. And certainly not to sing or play them! I’ll tell you a little secret about the blues: It’s not enough to know which notes to play, you have to know why they need to be played.

– from the George Carlin Day Calendar for August 26, 2005

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.

2 thoughts on “George Carlin Music Commentary of the Day”

  1. Tilted Edge says:

    Bravo, I have been saying this for years. Black people have deep rich earthy voices. White people have thin wimpy voices.

    “I got so blue, I threw my drink across the lawn.”

    It is interesting to note that the banjo was invented in Africa.

    Food for thought.

  2. Tony says:

    Yeah, good point about the voices and banjo. Did you know the accordian is an eastern european instrument and that’s why Tejano sucks? And the piano is European too, which is why piano has no business being played by Little Richard. I hate when black people try that, they always fail. And I love that point you make about black people being more equipped to sing the blues. I’ve been thinking that for years. I mean, obviously black people sing the blues better than white people, just like they play basketball better and Asians are better at math. Why can’t people accept that each race has it’s place genetically?

    I don’t think George Carlin would support any of the above racist ideas. I don’t think he was supporting some racist ideals about what white people and black people can or can not do as members of those races. What he meant, I think, is that anybody that plays a genre of music but obviously only plays the notes and doesn’t know why those notes are played is a phoney. Of course a white man could have the blues and even play them. But most white people who try out playing the blues are not blue, they are just playing the notes. there is so much country music that could be called “white people blues” both from the style it is played in and the true sorrow it expresses. Or look a The Rolling Stones. They were playing rock but the listened to nothing but the blues, and I’d say they got pretty close. One of the best examples is Kurt Cobain’s version of “Where did you sleep last night”, if you listen to that and think “what does he have to bitch about? His voice is so wimpy!” and you don’t hear the fact that his heart is breaking while he’s singing then the problem isn’t with Kurt, it’s with you. There are so many examples of black blues singers and white rock and roll singers that suck because they were faking it to get some fame and money. The problem isn’t with racial boundaries, it’s with knowing the difference between knowing which notes to play and why they need to be played.

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