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Culture, Music

Concrete Jangles

by Nathan Zeno / 22.08.2009

File under deeply sarcastic, post-ironic, shameless PR bashing.

For those of us who make part of our living following the inane babble of “celebrities” on Twitter and Facebook, life can become a giant suckhole, a yawning chasm that swallows up any hope that we might have once had for the human race. Until something comes along that makes sifting through all the drivel, worthwhile. This week it was the building rush of excitement that this last Thursday night Louise Carver, the radio friendly songstress (emphasis on stress) was going to appear on (our favorite smorgasbord of aspirational lifestyle advertorials) Top Billing with her Brand Ambassadors. Nothing could have excited me more.

Now I’d like to apologize before I begin, I was so stunned (like as in with a Tazer) by the story just before Ms Carvers’ about a dating service in which a presenter tested the service by going on a date, all the while admitting he wasn’t single and shouldn’t be doing this (oh, such a trusty handsome devil!) and then the service boasted about their excellent screening process that guaranteed that all the people you can meet (if you’re black and rich) will be single that I forgot to press record. What I’m trying to say is that I may not quite quote them 100% correctly.

First off Louise supplied us with the back-story as to how she came up with the fabulous name “Jingles and Chimes”, it was something to do with the sounds the jewelry makes when it moves around. I thought Jingles were horrible songs that session musicians make for radio ads; you would have thought Louise would know that. Also for the jewelry to “chime” it’s going to have to be pretty solid. Just a thought. Then she went on to tell us about how she came to her own range of jewelry design. Apparently Jewelry brands kept asking her to model their products and she thought that if she was going to wear it she wanted to “design it myself” and then I guess all those jewelry brands said yes, what a fabulous idea because Louise has put out her own jewelry brand. And also singers know so much about designing jewelry, I mean that’s the thing, when you’re creative, you’re creative, right? I mean who needs skills? I will not stoop at this point to making any remarks about the music of Louise Carver.

I was also interested in Louise’s statement that she was making this for women over 25 who were tired of costume jewelry and “still had a bond to pay”, this I think was her way of saying it’s not glass but it’s still cheap. Advertising your product as something desirable for stylish women on Top Billing by saying it’s cheap might be a teensy bit counter productive but what do I know?

Then to up the stakes Louise took three South African celebrities (Elena Afrika, Catriona Andrews and herself) and someone I’ve never heard of and dressed them up to look like music icons of “yesteryear” (Maybe I was having aural hallucinations by then). Elena was Billy Holiday or Ella Fitzgerald, I couldn’t tell. Louise did a pinched face scary Liewe Heksie, although the stylist kept saying ‘80’s look and Kate Bush, Catriona tried to look whimsical like Joni Mitchell and ended up looking like she was dreaming of working on Egoli again. Then the other person was made up to look like Barbara Streisand, I thought it was funny that she took the fact that they told her she had the same stunning profile as Barbara, as a compliment.

Anyway, so Louise also sent out an invitation to announce that she has, “decided to bring the concept of late night shopping to her music shows” because, “why should you have to go to the shops? Why can’t the shops just come to you?” That is, if where you are is Tanz Café, because the moment you sit down with your cosmopolitan and vogue cigarette to watch a Louise Carver show you immediately think “Hey, I want some cheap, not glass, noisy shit to hang off my ears right now, I wish a shop would come to me,” and then in a burst of pearl dust and glitter appears Elena Afrika dressed as Billy Holiday or Ella Fitzgerald or something holding a “Music Box” of jewelry. “Now” according to Louise “that’s rock star!”

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