Songs of the Grotesque and the Arabesque

Artist Song Buy
Fats Waller  The Sheik of Araby  buy on itunes
Keiko Matsui  Rose of Morocco  buy on itunes
The Clash  Rock the Casbah  buy on itunes
Mireille Mathieu  Sahara  buy on itunes
Santana  Caravanserai  buy on itunes
Maria Muldaur  Midnight at the Oasis  buy on itunes
Dave Holland Quintet  Bedouin Trail  buy on itunes
Chet Atkins and Les Paul  Caravan  buy on itunes
Madness  Night Boat to Cairo  buy on itunes
Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers  Abdul and Cleopatra  buy on itunes
Pink Floyd  The Nile Song  buy on itunes
The Bangles  Walk Like an Egyptian  buy on itunes
Roy Orbison  Shahadaroba  buy on itunes
The Might Be Giants  Istanbul  buy on itunes
Ray Stevens  Ahab the Arab  buy on itunes
Patti Page  You Belong to Me  buy on itunes
The B-52's  Mesopotamia  buy on itunes
David Bowie  The Secret Life of Arabia  buy on itunes
Camper Van Beethoven  Eye of Fatima, Part I  buy on itunes
Gene Pitney  Mecca  buy on itunes
Siouxie and the Banshees  Arabian Knights  buy on itunes
Spike Jones  The Sheik of Araby  buy on itunes

Comment:

(NOTE WELL -- For the subtlety-impaired: this mix is mocking Western stereotypes of Arabs and the Arab peoples, NOT Arabs and the Arab peoples. If you are offended, please look inward for the source of your offence.)

There exists a line between postModernism and antiQuarianism -- and a mighty fine line it is, mighty fine. When we consider the hidden processes of alteriority and the slow inculcation of the imagery of the mystic East into the Western Cartesian theatrum, well, we don't need to tell you, it's quite a howdy-do. When all is said and done, our images of the Arab as Other are far more interesting to us than our image of the Arab as Taxidriver or the Arab as 7-11 Guy or even the Arab as Filthy Rich 'n' Cruel Potentate.

Howsobeit, it is incumbent upon us that we focus our mind's eye upon an arid land of oil and economic disparity, a nation-state where the horizons are blackened by the smoke of the refineries and the atmospherics of despair, a far-off place where human rights and international law are routinely ignored and where religious fanatics control every aspect of the education and political indoctrination of the young. And while we're thinking about Texas, we can listen to these groovy songs.

No members of the RIAA were harmed in the burning of this CD. They're hard to find and they move around a lot.

Feedback:

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The_Stellar_Frequency1
Date: 4/12/2003
genius - couldnt of came at a better time
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Elsie D.
Date: 4/12/2003
Very impressive!!
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SMoss
Date: 4/12/2003
What a fantastic concept! I'd like to trade. Standing by your first paragraph, I'd suggest that the Cure's Killing an Arab would be perfect for the mix. They put a similar message on their Best-of CD also for the subtlety-impaired. And since it just came to me, Zappa's Sheik Yerbootie might not be out of place.
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Mitzi12
Date: 4/12/2003
Wow. No more words.
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joey de vivre
Date: 4/14/2003
Why did Constantinople get the works? That's nobody's business but the Turks!
A well-considered mix - looks well worth listening to.
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laufi
Date: 4/15/2003
congratulations and thank you for the liner-notes. great mix!!!
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J.M.
Date: 4/15/2003
You've got to be kidding. I've seen some pretty pretentious mixes on this site, but this one takes the cake. My motivations for this criticism are not at all political, nor even aesthetic, really. Who knows, maybe this mix is actually listenable (unlike many of the past Mixes of the Week which were generally stunts or gimmicks explicitly designed to compete for the M.o.t.W.), though I doubt it. My issue is with the liner notes, which are just so intellectually conceited and turgid as to border on the parodic. Which, if that is indeed the case, is actually quite brilliant. But I'm going to regard them as on the level, and thus insufferable.
I'm sorry, I've never left a criticism for a mix before, and am not enjoying the fact that I'm doing so now, but my B.S. Detector went of the charts when I saw this and it would not be denied.
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chapbell
Date: 4/15/2003
There's also a fine line between parody and abuse....sorry. The only part on the level is in italics.
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Nate Gansen
Date: 4/15/2003
This is not only an awesome idea for a mix, but it looks like it would sound pretty good too! While I can't disagree with JM and think it's somewhat pretentious, so what!? Aren't most of the mixes on this site pretty pretentious just by virtue of the fact that most of the people listening are "too good" to be listening to the music everybody else listens too? I know I feel that way at least : ) Sorry, tangent... anyhow, great mix.
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Adam Bristor
Date: 4/15/2003
I interpreted the liner notes as a light-hearted jab at academia, and as such found them amusing. And I understand criticizing the flow of a themed mix, as concessions may have to be made in order to make all songs fit the theme, but hell, a lot of people have submitted mixes with themes, and it seems rather foolish to attack that whole kind of mix. One can feel free to dislike them, of course, but it hardly seems worth it to criticize all the themed mixes, simply for being mixes with themes, and therefore subject to those restrictions. Anyhow, I got a chuckle out of the mix, so I say "good job."
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les_autres
Date: 4/15/2003
right on. love the fats waller song and the clash song and everything in between (that i've heard, anyway). wish i'd thought of it. nice jab at texas, my home state, by the way.
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Abu Atta Potentatta
Date: 4/15/2003
you forget Arab as fanatical, suicide-bomber & Arab as mutilator of their own people, and Arab palaces complete with "Rape Rooms", Torture Chambers, Tree/People Shredders and Arab as Gasser of own people. Other than that, we're really nice guys, "family men."
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cindy snyder
Date: 4/15/2003
nice mix.but between the cowboy and the Arab, I 'll take the cowboy.yeeha.
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rosalba santiete
Date: 4/15/2003
i agree with JM. pretentious as hell. and "Chapbell's" Email is fake. and how many people post 3 mixes and get mix of the week? i smell a rat.
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cowboy bob
Date: 4/15/2003
what rosalba said.this mix is ill picked and reeks of BS.but, btw, we sure are kicking those A-rabs asses over yonder.freeing up the *good* Arabs, whuppin' the BAD ones.All that and a 77% approval rating.well gawllee.
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myrna feldman
Date: 4/15/2003
as a Jew I feel this mix breeds anti-semitism and is sarcastic and hateful.
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punk
Date: 4/15/2003
rosalbas right the e mail *IS* fake
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Frank123
Date: 4/15/2003
Oh, how we all must bicker and quibble, all in the name of ideals such as "patriotism" and "freedom." I find it funny to see how our country views itself. We see ourselves as a supreme power and should rule over all of the land (oh, I'm sorry, I'm supposed to call it "policing the world" or "protecting our allies from foreign threats." What a bunch of horse manure. I love my country for the freedoms I have but I must say, what we were fighting for in Iraq was not to free the Iraqi people as the media and the White House would lead you to believe but rather to protect our president's financial backers' interests in the oil rich land. Yes, I know this is not a politcal web site but when I see posts like the ones I've seen for this mix, I cannot do anything but respond. My e-mail is real, respond to me there. I'll be interested in hearing if the bigotry, racism, stereotypes, etc. continue when there is not a public forum for all to read.
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psykomakia11
Date: 4/15/2003
Shawn Frank said: "I love my country for the freedoms I have but I must say, [criticism here]."

Right on man.(and i apologize for the second shameless plug in the past two days.)
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Peter Divito
Date: 4/16/2003
goodness. what a fuss. rosalba, do you know who picked this as motw? you smell a rat? maybe it is hiding in your room.
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chapbell
Date: 4/16/2003
Chapbell responds: Sorry, I didn't think the code was that hard to break. Just replace the (at) with the standard e-mail at sign and it will function just as any other e-mail address. The idea was to avoid spam, not your indignation. Please feel free.As to the notes -- yes, the notes are supposed to be parody. I know a lot of people who write like that and I like to make fun of them. And myself. If the notes were intended as a serious intro, yeah, they would be wicked pretentious.Pretentious? Moi?
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deckerd17
Date: 4/16/2003
Man what's the deal with all the negativity? It's just a mix. I happen to think it's a pretty good one, but regardless why is it turning into a damn political debate? Chapbell, up for a trade?
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rosalba santiete
Date: 4/16/2003
Joe exists in his own private little Idaho.doh.the comments section makes this a political statement.and negativity's an assumption on your part: it is, in actuality, an opposing point of view.
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The Misfit
Date: 4/16/2003
I think this is a great idea and great mix, and the liner notes made me laugh.
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Dubya
Date: 4/16/2003
ill be sure to thank all the people of Florida for this beautifully constructed mix --- if not for them, Bush may not have been President, and this may have never existed.
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g.a.b. l@bs
Date: 4/16/2003
amuzing MotW choice; "congrats"
here's something quite funny...



Iraq's Info_Mation Minister..as seen in other Historical settings.
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g.a.b. l@bs
Date: 4/16/2003
...which would fall under the "Arab as Comedian" category.
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ML
Date: 4/16/2003
Siouxsie, Bowie and Richman.

I am down for this mix.
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EL DAVO
Date: 4/16/2003
Great mix, and not pretentious at all, in my humble opinion. Maybe Don Henley's "Garden of Allah" would have fit too? You can't mention Arabs without thier motivation, you know.
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doorag
Date: 4/18/2003
none of those wonderful patriots down there ever even posted a mix here, where did they come from? the liner notes are funny, too bad you had to explain that they were meant to be. i ♥ america!
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Nic Diamond
Date: 4/20/2003
As a Texan, allow me to chime in by saying that I anxiously await the day of our liberation! There will be dancing in the streets (well, in MY street anyway).

As for the political debate, I will add that the anti-war protestors (such as myself) were right all along. Here's proof: this war was started because Iraq was supposedly stock-piling weapons of mass destruction, and because Sadam Hussein was a direct threat to the American people...but there were no weapons of mass destruction (except for a few warheads that were found, and would've been found if the inspectors were given an additional 30 days, like France suggested), and if the Iraqi army couldn't even defend its own capital for two weeks, how could they possibly have been a direct threat to America?

As for the mix, David Bowie, Camper Van Beethoven, Siouxie...what's not to like? The liner notes ammused me.
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DJ Lunch Boy
Date: 4/22/2003
I might have to make this mix for myself (but I think Ahab the Arab will have to come off in favor of the Cure's "Killing an Arab", for listenability reasons).
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Thomas Mohr12
Date: 8/14/2003
A mix breeding anti-semitism & racial hatred? As an atheist, I think stupidity knows no boundaries. As to the mix: Looks like a nice one, indeed. I especially (and strongly) approve of the inclusion of a Mireille Mathieu song ("Hinter den Kulissen von Paris" . . . Omigod!).
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Dom1
Date: 11/3/2003
As A Jew I do not find this mix in anyway anti-semetic or hurtfull - it's just a mix people - judge it on it's musical content...and the music is good!
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Nest of Vipers
Date: 1/30/2004
This is so cool!

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