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Unusual Tag Revisited

Oldiesmann

Managing Editor
Posts: 2336

Oldiesmann @ 2021-03-12 04:38:37 UTC

I agree with you on this one. I don't think anything by The Chipmunks (or Chipettes in this case) is unusual, especially considering they've been around for a little over 60 years now.

VirileVagabond

Member
Posts: 5485

VirileVagabond @ 2021-03-12 04:48:18 UTC

It again begs the question, "unusual" relative to what? I never get an answer. "Unusual" relative to the "usual"? What is the "usual"?


Unusual relative to the original? The definitive recording?


I've seen reggae covers tagged as "unusual". Are these unusual in Jamaica and elsewhere in the islands?


At best and in practice, "unusual" is relative to the specific tagger's listening experiences and expectations. How useful is this? I increasingly despise this tag.

Oldiesmann

Managing Editor
Posts: 2336

Oldiesmann @ 2021-03-12 05:27:59 UTC

I always use it relative to the original or at least the most well-known version (for instance, Wally Cox's version of "There's a Tavern in the Town" compared to Rudy Vallee's version). It's one of those subjective tags.

VirileVagabond

Member
Posts: 5485

VirileVagabond @ 2021-03-12 06:08:58 UTC

It's one of those subjective tags.


That's the problem. A subjective editor's pick is fine, as a user can decide to rely on the suggestion or not. In contrast, "unusual" should be objective and based on a generally accepted benchmark, most likely the original or definitive recording.


Yet a benchmark doesn't really resolve the problems with the tag. For instance let's take an original/definitive country recording. Would all covers in a materially different genre (e.g. hard rock, reggae, jazz) be "unusual". We could quickly get more "unusual" covers than "usual".


The benchmark for Tainted Love is likely Soft Cell's Tainted Love. Of the ~199 performances currently on site, how many are materially different than synthpop? Is the original now "unusual"?


The tag simply doesn't work in practice. Why do we continue to keep things that may have been worth trying but are found to not work in the real world?

walt

Editor
Posts: 5607

walt @ 2021-03-12 08:39:36 UTC

The tag simply doesn't work in practice. Why do we continue to keep things that may have been worth trying but are found to not work in the real world?


I've seen "unusual" also tagged to Scott Bradlee performances, same thing...


From day one, I was opposed to all grey zone tags. But management insists on "brighten up" the site this way... what can you do?

VirileVagabond

Member
Posts: 5485

VirileVagabond @ 2021-03-12 08:46:46 UTC

But management insists on "brighten up" the site this way...


Light pollution keeps us from seeing all of the stars and other objects in the night sky....

Oldiesmann

Managing Editor
Posts: 2336

Oldiesmann @ 2021-03-21 02:57:20 UTC

The tag simply doesn't work in practice. Why do we continue to keep things that may have been worth trying but are found to not work in the real world?


I've seen "unusual" also tagged to Scott Bradlee performances, same thing...


From day one, I was opposed to all grey zone tags. But management insists on "brighten up" the site this way... what can you do?


To be fair, many of the PMJ/Scott Bradlee performances are unusual (such as their version of Radiohead's "Creep"). However, that's kind of their thing so it gets a bit ridiculous to tag every one of their performances like that

VirileVagabond

Member
Posts: 5485

VirileVagabond @ 2021-03-21 03:22:40 UTC

To be fair, many of the PMJ/Scott Bradlee performances are unusual (such as their version of Radiohead's "Creep"). However, that's kind of their thing so it gets a bit ridiculous to tag every one of their performances like that


On the other hand, should an artist no longer qualify the an unusual tag just because it's their thing.


On a third hand, a song like "Creep" has been covered in practically every shape and form, so is any one usual?


Again, something like editor's pick is openly and clearly subjective to everyone. I see unusual as soft objective, but others apparently see as subjective. Nothing open and clear about it. Unusual also requires proper discretion and restraint in my view, something clearly lacking in many, most, if not all currently so tagged.


Blinding white noise if this is the desired brightening.