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To respond to the above comments, all i will say is that unless you know a lot about the internal workings and conflicts within Pink Floyd AND have a solid background on English politics at street level, you will never come close to understanding what all of the hoopla is about with this movie or album. Even with good insight into both areas mentioned, one can watch this movie over and over again and still find new and hidden meaning almost every time.
As to being "over-rated", i'm probably going to step on a lot of toes here. Let's just say anything that Bruce Springsteen has ever put out. These alone might fill up the top 5 slots. Sean
PS... just my personal opinion. please don't hate me for sharing my point of view : )
Good to a see a nice negative post-I like most of the ones mentioned so far to some degree however I concede that they may be flawed or overblown or most certainly overplayed but in the spirit of the thread here goes......
1.In Utero-Nirvana-Let's not forget Cobain renegotiated his recording contract so that he got most of the cash just before this release,how punk,what a hypocrite,sadly this pile of junk reflected the mess his tragic life was in,,in a crippling bout of pretentious self-indulgence he tries to rebel against his misunderstood last album and produce an unlistenable mess-he succeeds,sadly Nirvana's legacy becomes a load of 13 year old kids the world over standing in shopping malls and street corners with their Slipknot sweatshirts........
2.Out Of Time-REM
Sometimes it's just the right time for a band but this uneven mess was their WORST album up to that time,right time,right place,wrong record.
3.Brothers In Arms-Dire Straits
A sign of the times,a greedy attempt to sell millions and millions of records that worked-apart from maybe 3 tracks a real mess of an album,with the most annoying keyboard sound in the history of rock,Knopfler takes his magpie style too far,rips out most that was good about the band previously and turns into a man whose arrogance is only matched by his dullness.
Always in the greatest albums ever-I always take it off right after Alone Again Or.............
Ah the last Neil Young album is always rated as his greatest since the 70's-this one got a particulary big cheer-featuring lyrics a 10 year old would be ashamed of.
He also reuses the same three chords to All Along The Watchtower in three different songs and well since he's using the chords may as well use the tune as well,like the sad sight sight of watching your grandfather playing his Gibson SG in the garden,Mr Young has neither the grace nor gumption to realise he is making a fool of himself.
Keep On Rocking In The Free World-somebody unplug that old geezer's guitar-pleeeeese.
Truly the worst collection of checked shirts in rock too...........................
Interesting how you picked five records to disparage and I happen to like all of them quite a bit. Oh well, to each his/her own. I'm not sure I could honestly pick out five recordings to slam, like Sean they tend to come in bunches from the same artist.
1)Anything by Genesis (including the early days with Peter Gabriel) is garbage. Quickest way to get me to turn off the tuner in favour of a record or CD, put some Genesis on. Phil Collins' nasal whining is worse than nails on a blackboard. You want art rock? Try Gentle Giant, Yes, Jean Michel Jarre on for size.
2)REM can't figure out if they should make an attempt at being art-rock or writing hooks to get radio play. They fail miserably at both. Fascinating to listen to their catalog, a band truly without a purpose.
3) This selection will go over like a fart in church with many here, but...The Grateful Dead. I'm Grateful the band is Dead.
4) Aerosmith. How can a band write lyrics that closely resemble random thoughts of an average four-year old, then back it up with even less talent and become a mega-band?
5) The Rolling Stones. The most successful 3 chord garage band in history. If you can find any real meaning behind any of their lyrics, my hat's off to you. The musicanship is sub-par as well, the guitarist sounds like he died. Come to think of it, if you've seen Keith in the last little while, he has died and nobody told him.
I thought the criticism of the Stones and Springsteen and some others was interesting. Its not supposed to be art. Mick got it right: "its only rock and roll but I like it." So what if its only three cords. Some great painters never used more than the primary colors. You can dissect it if you want but you miss the point. When you get the sound right, and turn it up does it light your candle? Without proclaiming something "is" or "is not" art I will answer the question on this thread as to what is "most overrated". For me that's anything by Jethro Tull.
Of course this is the silliest posting of all time-you do not need to be Einstein to realise everybody dislikes something that is highly rated-there is hardly an artist mentioned (including my own posting)that I do not own or rate to some extent--the reason being I love music.
I pick up records where I might only like one track and collect poor albums by artists I love....I find Beowolf's comment about the Stones and Springsteen not being art interesting because I think I could a very strong argument that both these artists at their peak did in fact produce some (even if only snippets) of the greatest popular music of the 20th Century and because to me their content and impact went beyond entertainment then to me that is art........
Ultimately though only the specific listener can make their mind up but I do cringe when I see artists as important as The Smiths,Springsteen,Gabriel and the Stones slaughtered-I do wish most of these posters would give some indication of some music that is better,so I can go out and buy some more music or alternatively fall off my chair laughing....why has nobody mentioned The Cowboy Junkies...........only joking Garfish.....
The Wall is a horrific album. One can create all the thematic nuance and depth and still sound boring. A complete rip off of Fritz Lang's Metropolis, Jean Paul Satre's No Exit, and too many others to mention. This was Rock's most pretentious excercise. While I don't deny it's social relevance (a lot of people were sucked in by this album) it's still musically lacking in ideas, originality, and insight. This is proof that any thing can be sold to any one. I feel dirty writing about. Always loved Roger Waters though, very candid and funny. My favorite quote from him? "We're just bloody awful, and bloody rich." He then went on proclaiming how stupid Pink Floyd fans were and how he could fart on record and it would go platinum. Very funny guy.
Thanks for your responses. I'm glad that I was able to stir up some discussion. I'm even more glad that eveybody seems to be able to kvetch about LPs that annoy us, without getting nasty and abusive. Some of your choices for inclusion on this list are truly inspired, especially those from Kthomas.
Truth be told, a fairly comprehensive top ten list of the most overrated rock albums of all time might consist of Hotel California in the #1 slot, and everything The Smiths ever did in positions 2 through 10. I am also glad to know that I am not the only punter who thinks that Green Day bite the proverbial big one.
I agree sean, The Wall is a great album, that does contain a lot of deep seeded emotion by its creators...and to criticize Bob Marley? Damn Tweek, was it your time of the month when you started this thread or what? With crap like Britney Spears, Cleine (however its spelled) Dion, M&M....I could go on for hours, why are you railing such visionaries/pioneers/trail blazers like Bob Marley. Its fine by me if you dont like the guy, but give him his due credit. Do you really think Rasta music would be what it is today if BMarley became a banker rather than a musician.
As for the original question, over rated music, see above...I've named several people who don't deserve to be called musicians...tack on Creed to the list.
Regarding The Wall-to me this album singles the end of Floyd-with Waters ego taking over but alternatively indicating that he pretty much was being left to do it all himself anyway,the musical contribution that they all use to make was long gone by then,as such the cohesion of their earlier work is gone....
It's always been flawed to me-it would have made a classic single album and it does feature some great music but it does also descend into pompositity as the album progresses.
There are some interesting ideas about the world of the rock star but these don't really get developed or realised-Tbadder is off on some of his analysis as it's obviously a very personal album to Waters,I mean surely you are not suggesting that Water's ripped off the idea of his father's death during WW2 which hangs over the first quarter of the album?
As for the social relevance mmm not so sure maybe about school but most of society doesn't get to become rock stars,I think most of the impact tends to be on the personal themes-self-worth,alienation,lonliness,childhood and yes you are right Waters is hilarious his commentary on The Wall DVD is exceptionally funny.
Anything by Moby, Creed, Korn, M&M, Bush, Filter, Garbage, Smash Mouth and Rage Against The Machine......whoops got caried away. Ben Campbell, Neil Young's newest release doesn't even come close to how pathetic Zuma was. Never-the-less, Neil Young still remains my hero.
Here's my question: When todays youth is old and gray are they going to be sitting around the campfire singing songs of the bands I trashed??
Seems like we've hit a raw nerve here. I've got to agree with Beowulf and point out that we would be well served not to take rock so seriously. If you are looking to drug-addled twenty-somethings to lay bare the true meaning of life, existence and everything for you, then you are in a world of hurt.
There is a reason for the saying "sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll." Take rock for what it is --- and enjoy it! If you are looking for truth and meaning, look elsewhere.
I suppose whether an album is "overrated" must be assessed in reference to how an album is rated. When I was growing up, Sgt. Pepper's was considered the greatest album of all time by many, and it was the first record I owned. By that measure, it is clearly overrated for the reasons Tweak mentioned. Listening to it in the 1990s I found it dated. With an upgraded system, I have returned to it and enjoy listening to parts of it again. An influential album but not as good as the earlier hype or the other Beatles albums listed or "Pet Sounds" in some ways. Though far less talented than the Beatles, I have also returned to the early Stones stuff and found it much more clever and enjoyable than when I was listening to it on car speakers.
Though sometimes enjoyable, by the measure laid out above, I would consider The Who overrated. However, The Who and much of the music dismissed above I like much better than the new stuff I hear on the radio. Where might I turn instead?
I don't think "pretentious" is enough to seriously damage a record. I think it can keep an album off a "greatest" list, but not relegate it to "Most Overrated", especially since this is all for fun. Iron Maiden's "Seventh Son of a Seventh Son" album, basically anything by Rush - of course this stuff is pretentious, but in some ways it makes it more entertaining.
For me, rock has to have energy. I nominated Hotel California above - I find the Eagles to be completely lacking in energy. I just can't get excited about any of their stuff. A lot of music is situation dependent - your age, where you're hearing it, etc. Guns 'N Roses in your car is great. Guns 'N Roses in the midst of some "serious" listening - well, you have to be in the right mood. The Eagles - I've never found a situation that makes me go, "Oh yeah!". Not that anybody would consider him highly enough rated to qualify for overrated, but Jackson Browne was/is the same way - geez, that's a tired sound.
hey, easy on the smiths. . . . . . johnny marr is some kind of living guitar god - one of the few true guitar-wizards who actually writes interesting licks instead of composing rediculous showcases of his ability that are boring and self-indulgent ie joe satriani, eric johnson, ect. (IMHO)
hmm, i guess i'm just adding fuel to the fire. . . . and after feeling insulted over the smiths comments. . . . . sorry guys.
I'll accept your challenge, sort of. First rule of any best album list is that greatest hits packages and compilations must be left off. To include them would be cheating. Second rule is that there is only one entry per pop star (I'm not going to dignify this silly stuff with the term "artist"). Also, none of my beloved Jazz & Classical recordings are included here. They play ball in a different league. Everything before about 1965, and almost everything from Jamiaca is excluded. The LP as a genre is largely irrelevant both to the 50's and to Reggae. You'll have to see my singles list for these. For the same reason, Soul and R & B are underrepresented here.
Ben, you are giving me a sort of Sophie's Choice. I cannot edit the list down past 18 entries. Here are Tweakgeek's fave pop music albums (in no particular order)
Van Morrison-Astral Weeks
The Pogues-Rum, Sodomy & The Lash
Pere Ubu-The Modern Dance
AC/DC- Let There Be Rock
The Cramps-Gravest Hits
Killdozer-12 Point Buck
David Bowie-The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust
The Rolling Stones-Exile on Main Street
The Stone Roses-The Stone Roses
Led Zeppelin-Physical Graffiti
Now folks, can we get back on topic?
Let the abuse of my faves begin!
I've never understood the appeal of Journey. Tweakgeek - yes, U2 'borrowed' mericlessly from Joy Division. Yes, Joy Division borrowed mercilessly from Can and a few others. Yo La Tengo 'borrows' from VU, but that doesn't make their albums any less great. Artists borrow things all the time. (None of this should imply that I don't think that Joshua Tree -and U2 in general- is horribly over rated.)
James Joyce's Ulysses - pretentious as hell. Still one of the greatest works of English literature.
I agree with lots of the above. Anything by post-Gabriel Genesis is overrated. Aerosmith -- anything since Toys in the Attic (which was a fun listen for its time). Sting -- come on, that's not even rock, is it? The Stones were great early on (Paint it, Black or Mothers Little Helper) but by the time they tried disco, "forget about it". While I love the Who, I've never been a Tommy fan. While I love Pink Floyd (Wish You Were Here and Animals in particular), I've never been able to convince myself to pick up The Wall. And if I never hear one of the top rated songs of all time "Bye, Bye Miss American Pie", I'd be a happy guy. Great post. Oh, Sugarbrie, I'm with you on the Ramones. Also, while the grunge movement was lots of fun, I do believe Nirvana was overrated in general -- there were a lot of other fine players in that game (I miss Sound Garden for example).
Tweak surprisingly we have semi-similar tastes-I would disagree perhaps about specific albums-Roxy etc....The Cramps well I would guess you were a big fan at the time and you see it as great rock and roll no doubt,to me fun stuff big energy-not great....likewise The Pogues a drunken bigot fronting a folk band who want to be the Clash does not great music make-Clinic surely too soon.
But I see why you don't like The Wall-you read the NME for too long..........keep fighting kids it's fun and I actually like Hotel California mostly because I don't listen to radio and I only play it about once every five years
Docwarnock you've obviously buying all the wrong records,I heard a record once (forget it's name) it was really quite though-provoking...:-)
I like that idea where you can decide what people can and can't get out of music,remember you are only limited by your own imigination and I AM looking for truth and meaning..so where exactly should I look?
Tv,under the bed,better speaker cable?
I find Rush to be wildly entertaining, and consider them to be the funniest Rock band in the business. Your post brings to mind one of the most common criticisms of the film "This is Spinal Tap." Everyone can name at least a dozen real-life rock bands that are way funnier than Spinal Tap. Did anyone else catch that hilarious VH-1 "Behind the Music" segment on Styx? It was everything "This is Spinal Tap" should have been, but wasn't.
Yes indeed, Rush wouldn't be Rush, and Rick Wakeman wouldn't be Rick Wakeman, without their signature over-the-top pomposity. Our world would be a more somber place without them.
Ben, about The Pogues,
when I was hanging out in London in the late 70's, I knew Shane Mcgowan as an impossibly ugly obsessive Clash fan. His Gaelic sensibilities apparently came to him later in life: his t-shirt of choice back then usually bore the Union Jack.
In 1992 I was at a Pogues concert at the Town & Country. This was when Joe Strummer was singing for them. The experience was a bit of a mise-en-abime. I was standing by the bar watching Joe Strummer immitate Shane Mcgowan imitating Joe Strummer. In the midst of it all, Shane McGowan & his wife walked right up to the bar next to me. Very wierd.
That being said, I nevertheless nominate The Pogues for the dubious distinction of the best band of the 80's. There is hardly fierce competition for this honor (the Jam? Run DMC?)
While I'm at it, the following albums also deserve a place on my all-time best list:
The Residents-Commercial Album
Captain Beefheart-Trout Mask Replica
MC5-Back in the USA (do not attempt to play this one on a high-end system)
Tom Waits-Heartattack and Vine
Let's get back on the topic of trashing crappy rock albums that somehow enjoy outsized reputations. Does anybody else get an uncontrollable urge to take an axe to any speaker from which emanates the saccharine sweetness of Supertramp's "Breakfast in America"?
Here a few that come to mind:
Radiohead-OK Computer--Way Overrated. Not a bad album, but not the album of the Nineties.
Moby-Play--Not even a pleasant album to listen to.
Chemical Brothers-Dust--Horrible Album.
Pearl Jam-Ten--A well constructed pop album. More like Brittany Spears than Seattle grunge of its era.
Mettalica-Anything by this band--I just do not get it with this band. Average music at best.
That being said, I love Hotel Calfornia, any Rush album from Moving Pictures and before, and The Wall. Great thread.
Heart - Dreamboat Annie - another one that didn't appeal when it was new, it doesn't appeal as a "classic", it doesn't get the juices going if you happen to hear it at "just the right time."
I can't believe we're 30+ posts into this thread and nobody has bashed "Frampton Comes Alive". At least you don't hear the "talking guitar" song still coming at you from all angles, but it was painful while it lasted.
1)Pink Floyd, 'Dark Side of the Moon' - Is this thing still on the charts? 'Wish You Were Here' is a much better album.
2)James Taylor, anything except 'Fire and Rain'- Maybe a cheap shot to include a singer-songwriter as frothy as Sweet Baby James on this list, but I had a girlfriend once who LOVED him. He's just so sensitive, you know. We're broken up now, so on the list goes the Prince of Smarm.
3)Dire Straits, 'Brothers in Arms'- Yes, they've got a sound and they've got their MTV and they've got their beach homes. They just ain't got much to say. I'll be fine if I never hear "Money for Nothing" ever again.
4)Pearl Jam, 'Ten'- A very earnest, well-intentioned band, and they have improved. But the debut failed to live up to the hype, and then some. Sodden, dreary, dead on its feet, its weakness was brought into sharp relief by the brilliance of Nirvana's 'Nevermind'.
5)Beatles, 'White Album'- Some great stuff interspersed with some crap. I'd vote for this one over 'Sgt. Pepper's'. For that matter, I'd vote for 'Abbey Road' over 'Sgt. Pepper's'.
The best bands of the 1980s were, in no particular order, Talking Heads, X, the Feelies, the Minutemen, the Replacements, Husker Du, and Prince and the Revolution.
As to those who warn us not to look for deep meaning in our music or take it too seriously, I can only shake my head in wonder. It seems people in this hobby fall into one of two categories--those who build their systems to bring them closer to the music, and those who buy their music to bring them closer to their systems. Music not that important? Mister, in my house, it's a basic food group.
Anybody want to go for a Top Five Underrated Albums thread? I'd rather learn about 'obscure' stuff that moves people than bash...well, come to think of it, bashing is fun, too.
Hey Tweakgeek,Looks like you started a lively thread and was most intrigued to see a few of your 'best of' inclusions. I'm a bit disappointed that you pick 'Siren' as the best Roxy Music album, but kudos for throwing the Residents in there (what about 'Duckstab' and 'Third Reich of R&R' though?). 'Modern Dance' and 'Funhouse' for absolute-sure, but Killdozer....wow, there's a band I haven't thought about in a long time. Let's dig into the same vintage and put Meat Puppets 'II' and 'Up on the Sun' in that list. I appreciated and sympathized with at least a few of your initial comments that began this thread as well. As far as Marley is concerned, I just may have to say 'thank you' for voicing your opinion on that. I am definitely not gonna dismiss Marley and his significance. A couple of his earlier works and some of the stuff he did with Lee Perry is pretty vital stuff, and I've heard a couple of live sets that really did rock. That aside, as something of a reggae fan/collector who has dug into the veritable labyrinth of the recordings that came from the classic era of Jamaican music, it is disappointing to see Marley get such exposure to a degree that shrouds everything else in the scene. I'm definitely sick of the weekend 'reggae warrior' type...you know, the guy who has one, maybe two Marley albums (and one of them has got to be Exodus) and likes to occasionally blast them out of the frat-room living area while proclaiming that they are really 'into' reggae. When anything gets a little too popular, I suppose it's easy to begrudge it. OK...let the thread continue with even more astute observations.
Tweekgeek, I'm with you on the Marley thing, and always believed that Bunny Wailer and Peter Tosh were far better musicians. Bob couldn't really sing for that matter, but he sure did have business savvy and that's why he took top billing among his dred friends. Yet, many reggae greats including the late Dennis Brown and the Grammy nominated (finally!) Beres Hammond have always spoken with reverence about Bob Marley because of what he made possible in their lives. Somebody had to take it out of Kingston, and Bob just happened to be the man. A lot of life is luck, but I guess that's another thread.
Thank you Waltersalas, for including the Beatles' White Album--way too uneven for me. They could have made it one disk and had a great album. I don't agree that Sgt. Pepper is overrated, but must admit the Beatles' albums that preceded it were much better artistically, some of their best stuff. And I would include the Stones' later albums on the list, but not their earlier efforts.
Ya know I can't get this thread out of my head, but thinking about it so much has made me realize some simple facts;
1) Mankind will always differ in matters of personal preferences...maybe that is what really makes us different from the rest of the animal world. My dog don't care what window he can hang his head out, as long as he can hang his head out.
2) Ya'all are a lot older than me:p I'm scared of how much $$$ I'll have into my rig by the time I'm your age;)
Some one please tell me at least one of you know more than 1 of David Gray's songs.
So many musically pedestrian and mediocore records and so little time... Can't really disagree w/ the titles named so far. Might add Jethro Tull, Thick as a Brick. Most Pink Floyd and Alan Parsons releases are weak, predictable and as tasty as styrofoam when compared to the work of Blast, Universe Zero, Tipographica, Il Berlione, Massacre, Mahavishnu Orch., Present, X legged Sally, Fermata, Kollektiv, Soft Machine and dozens of other bands that expanded rock music w/out becoming fluff peddlers. hope anyone who is offended will check out some other stuff and dig it.
I must protest the inclusion of Pavarotti in a list of schlock. The man has made some horrid missteps, but his mention in the post of Mr Mingus77etc implies that the man is a charlatan. No one who heard the man at his best would ever doubt his status as one of the greatest singers ever to live. I say this as someone who wanted not to like him...
rcprince states that Sgt Pepper is not overrated, but he thinks other albums are better. My understanding is that the "rock establishment" such as it is, regards Sgt Pepper as the #1 greatest album ever, in which case, if there is even one album better, then Sgt Pepper is by definition overrated. A small point, and not a profound one, but I thought I'd make it nonetheless. In any case, I'll say I think it's great but overrated. Give me Revolver and Pet Sounds.
Loved seeing Funhouse mentioned on the good lists. That album is primordial, evil genius. To see it on a list with Abba is more interesting still. Shows an open minded listener.
As for the originality argument, I'll take Stravinsky's view that decent artists imitate, and great ones steal. A big part of Art is using the source of your inspiration to its maximum, then covering your tracks. Many of the greatest classical works are actually arrangements and expansions of folk tunes. Pet Sounds is an inspired response to Rubber Soul. Doesn't bother me one bit. Originality does count for something, but it is not everything.
As for those who think giant egoes and arrogance are part of the fun of rock, I disagree. A humble, big hearted genius like Woody Guthrie is much more my speed than an arrogant fraud like Geddy Lee. Peacocks (except for Mick Jagger) cheapen a whole genre and blur the image of more sincere, lasting musicians. Okay, Woody's not a rock musician, but there are many in rock who have learned from his example.
That said, I agree The Wall is pretentious, but I think it is musically superb. Sad to hear Roger Waters' contempt for his audience, but that probably says more about him than it does his audience.
And I'd like to agree with the post that instists that rock is a valid artistic form. Maybe 50million Britney fans CAN be wrong, but rock as a whole is a durable, flexible, expressive art form, and if it were not, it would have gone the way of ragtime by now. And even ragtime was good art.
As someone who doesn't particularly listen to Reggae, I think it is worth noting that Bob Marley is the choice of most reggae dilettantes, and I think that's because his greatness is bigger than his genre. Just like lots of rockers love Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, and Willie Nelson. When someone earns respect of people who don't necessarily dig his chosen style of music, that gets my attention. I think Bob is an amazing musician. Am looking into Toots and the Maytals and some of the others mentioned all the same.
Pawil71 I liked your post but I did take exception to your description of Geddy Lee as an arrogant fraud-the wee man may have a voice like Daffy Duck on helium and been responsible for some silly music but I think you maybe got him mixed up with somebody else,he is certainly not arrogant nor has he ever claimed to be Bob Dylan,Miles Davis or Woody Guthrie.
As a teenager I was a massive Rush fan and had the fortune of meeting Geddy Lee a few times,he always had time for the fans and was a nice guy,he is actually one of the world's most talented bassists.
This thread has been fun and I can't get too precious either way about music I like or don't like,I can argue to the cows come home but it won't change a lot....
As you get older and understand music more you can see some of the obvious flaws in music you like or liked but I can still get a lot of fun from music like Rush,partly is nostalgia but I do think at their peak they produced some innovative music in their field,they certainly inspired a whole bunch of folks,it's clear reading through this thread some people have just used it to blast artists they didn't like,that's really not the point of the original post certainly my listing features 4 artists I actually like but thought specific examples deserved the tag overrated..
Alanis Morissette- Jagged Little Pill
I think this beats all! Every song on this stinker is worthy of heavy rotation on NPR's "Annoying Music Show."
For that matter, how about:
Joni Mitchell- Court & Spark
After listening to "Tears of Stone" only 2 or 3 times, I decided that this disc by the otherwise reliable Chieftains was due for a trip back to the used cd store. However, I gave it one last listen; this time programming the song delivered by Joni Mitchell out of the track sequence. This trick revealed a collection of remarkable and beautiful songs that I still listen to with great frequency. If you don't believe that Joni Mitchell is overrated, you should read her self-appraisal of the value of her own work. She credits her music with artistic merit, not on a par with such contemporaries as Joan Baez or Melanie, but rather with Ludwig Van Beethoven and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart!
Has the English language any phrase more horrifying than "Canadian singer-songwriter"?