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The new Chief Executive has a harder job on his plate than the next coach of the Jets.

THOUGHTS & SONGS FOR A VERY SPECIAL DAY

At a Moment of Huge Transition, We’re Left Speechless…but Roy Isn’t. And Bud Has Come Up With A Playlist for the Occasion
This historic occasion provides us with some much-needed perspective. In the big picture, the music biz is a mere gnat on the back of the elephant that is the global economic crisis, and HITS is a gnat on the back on the music biz. Obviously, we have no words of wisdom to offer, but our in-house pundit Roy Trakin put down his own thoughts so well last Friday that we feel compelled to isolate them today. Below that, our resident anal-compulsive Bud Scoppa has made a playlist of songs that sound especially resonant today...

This should be a week of celebration, a confirmation of the fact this country is truly a melting pot, a glimpse of what Tracy Morgan so optimistically dubbed a post-racial America, as Barack Obama takes the oath of office against a backdrop of partying and enough rock and roll stars to book the next Woodstock. I’m not immune to the symbolism of a (half) black President standing where Martin Luther King Jr. (whose own holiday will occur just a day before) had a dream a little more than 40 years ago, but this new Chief Executive has a harder job on his plate than the next coach of the Jets. Can he rise to the occasion like FDR or his own role model Abraham Lincoln? Certainly the historical moment makes the man, and these are some incredibly challenging times indeed. It will undoubtedly be nice to have a leader who can string together sentences into paragraphs and coherent thoughts, but I’m also afraid we’ve gone past the point of rhetoric. We need more than blind hope, we need actions to drag us out of this morass, which doesn’t just threaten the American way of life, but reverberates around the world in this contracting, digitally connected global universe. We want leadership, sure, but we also need solutions, novel ways of thinking, new revenue streams, jobs, and not just paving roads or building bridges. The infrastructure that needs fixing is both physical and mental; not just our public works, but our private lives, are in need of renovation. I’m willing to be optimistic, but the clock starts ticking Jan. 20. And while Obama’s first 100 days might not be as crucial as the average 24 hours, the stakes are way higher…after all, this is real life.

TODAY’S PLAYLIST
American Tunes
"Chimes of Freedom," Bob Dylan
“Begin the Begin,” R.E.M.
“Golden Age,” TV on the Radio
“Sun It Rises,” Fleet Foxes
“A Change Is Gonna Come,” Sam Cooke
“My Mathematical Mind,” Spoon
America,” Simon & Garfunkel
“Troubled Land,” John Mellencamp
"Ashes of American Flags," Wilco
"Don't Let It Bring You Down," Neil Young
“Don’t Dream It’s Over,” Crowded House
"Walk On," U2 
“Divine Intervention,” Matthew Sweet
“Welcome to the Boomtown,” David & David
“What’s Going On,” Marvin Gaye
“Scare Easy,” Mudcrutch
"
Flume,” Bon Iver
“Time of the Season,” The Zombies
“Every War,” Pictures and Sound w/Willie Nelson
“Don’t Stop,” Fleetwood Mac
“Chinese Translation,” M. Ward
“Revolution,” The Beatles
“Chicago,” Sufjan Stevens
“The Rising,” Bruce Springsteen
"Turn! Turn! Turn!," The Byrds
“American Tune,” Paul Simon
"I Shall Be Released," Wilco w/Fleet Foxes


NEAR TRUTHS: SECRETS AND BUYS
We'll miss those smoke-filled rooms. (5/11a)
GRAMMYLAND'S CEO SEARCH: CLUSTER
OR PANTOMIME?
It's turning out to be a tough sell. (5/12a)
1 TRENDING TOPIC: BILLIE AND THE GATEKEEPERS
Alert the media: She can really sing. (5/12a)
ROCK HALL INDUCTEES:
NEW & OVERDUE
Todd gets in. Finally. (5/12a)
'IT'S THE REAL SCHOOL'
Alan Jackson brings back hard country. (5/10a)
RHYTHM, BLUES AND THE FUTURE
The musical tapestry we know as R&B.
WHO'S NEXT?
Predicting the next big catalog deal.
JUST THE VAX, MA'AM
Once we all get vaccinated, how long before we can party?
WORLDWIDE GROOVE
How is globalization bringing far-flung territories into the musical mainstream?
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