Posts Tagged ‘Barack Obama’

By Carrie Waite

Growing up as a little one in the 1970s, my father ALWAYS had a beard. Always, in some form, in some various stage of growth, he was hairy and scary. I had this photograph of him that I was slightly obsessed with because you could actually see his bare face in it. It was either a mugshot or one of those photo booth pics. Let’s go with mugshot.  And I really hated his beard. Every time he’d pick me up for one of those “Dad Weekends”, he would insist on kissing my delicate little face and it felt like sandpaper ripping my skin off. But now, I seem to surround myself with the very thing that frightened me as a little girl. Hairy scary men.

So, tonight we started talking about how all the bands that are popping up in my iPod mix freaking have beards (maybe we’ll cover the ironic mustache trend in a future post, but don’t get me started on that right now). Half the magazine covers at Borders sport a beard (either a beard or Obama this week).

Death Cab For Cutie on The Big Takeover, Fleet Foxes on Under The Radar and even Zach Braff was all sorts of fuzzy on the cover of Geek Monthly. I heard your band must have at least one bearded member to get signed to Sup Pop nowadays and the New World Brewery is like a gang, no make that a secret club for boys with beards most nights. It makes me jealous that I can’t grow one.  

I admit it.  I think beards are pretty sexy, now. Even the scraggly, unkempt ones can have a certain Grizzly Adams charm to them. What is it about the beard? Is it simply a fashion accessory? A resurgent cultural phenomenon? Just plain laziness (this one gets my vote)? Damn manly though, if you ask me.  

Perhaps it’s a sign that my beloved indie-rock has become a “mature” genre. God forbid, are we getting old? Why do all my favorite men look homeless?

Carrie’s favorite hairy bands

The Dirtbombs
Drag the River and Cory Branan
Band of Horses
TV On The Radio
Fleet Foxes
Jeff Tweedy has had some adorable ones
and some really scary ones.
Most iconic beard goes to Lemmy
Sexiest beard has to be Dave Grohl’s

Some Blogs about beards:
John McNicholas even participated in a beard contest a few years back. He still has the stinkin’ thing. It’s adorable, John. 
And I hear jojoba oil is great for when you’re finally ready to rid yourself of the hairy beast on your face and shave it off.

But don’t.


By Trish Bendix

Barack Obama has won his place in the White House, so naturally, the next topic of discussion: What music will he be Barackin’ to at his inauguration?


Beyonce and her boo Jay-Z have already been secured, and rumor has it Britster Leona Lewis will also be on hand, but what about Obama’s hometown pride? Most media outlets and blogs have nominated a handful of Chicago-based artists (those recognized in the mainstream, anyhow) and they all look very similar:

Fall Out Boy
Kanye West
Smashing Pumpkins

One thing these dudes all have in common? Well, they’re dudes. (As of press time, D’Arcy still hadn’t rejoined the Pumpkins but that could certainly change at a moment’s notice. Also, Pete Wentz still counts as a dude, I don’t care how andrgynous your tween sister says he is.)

Jennifer Hudson would be a great Chicago pick, as she wowed with the National Anthem at Barack’s request for his accepting of the democratic party’s nomination. However, family issues might be keeping her out of comission as of now, and I can understand why it might seem insensitive to say, “Hey, Jen. Care to come croon for our country?”

Obama Music

Judging from Rolling Stone’s profile of the president elect, I can conclude that he might enjoy more dude performers, generally:

“…growing up, he listened to Elton John and Earth, Wind & Fire but that Stevie Wonder was his ultimate musical hero during the 70s. The Stones` track “Gimme Shelter” topped his favorite songs from the band. His selection also contained 30 songs from Dylan.”

However, there was also a mention of having Sheryl Crow on his iPod. Sheryl Crow, not from Chicago. (Sorry, Obama.)

So if he were to stay true to Chi-Town, he’d most likely be picking a singer-songwriter with a little pop-edge to their soul, and maybe someone over the age of 30. If he really wanted to get crazy, he could choose someone not only older, wiser and with some amazing chops, but with some civil rights history of her own.

How about Mavis Staples, Barack? I urge you to consider her. Her songs echo basically echo is campaign: “Have a Little Faith,” “We’ll Never Turn Back,” “Eyes on the Prize.” Beat that, Beyonce. Just try and follow one of those songs with “Bootylicious.”


One of the original Staples Singers, Mavis recently released a statement about Obama’s election, saying, “It is so surreal, so completely overwhelming. This young black man has inspired and brought the country together. There’s something about him that makes me feel he is the chosen one. There’s something about his leadership that makes people feel calm and safe.”

Someone get Mavis on the phone. (I bet she still has a 312 area code.)

And if all else fails, Sheryl Crow was born in Missouri. That’s close enough, right?