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She & Him: "Don't Look Back" (Live On Ferguson) (Video)

 

Being introduced by a glove puppet may not be the most appropriate way to usher in a She & Him performance, but that’s the chance you take if you run the full gamut of the late night talk shows. At least M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel gave a more confident, less nervous performance than their previous TV exploits with this version of “Don’t Look Back” on Craig Ferguson's show last night (July 26).

 

This is the duo at their poppy peak, with the fluffy Motown feel beautifully combining with some Hawaiian guitar stylings from Ward and the country-ish twang in Deschanel’s voice. The touring undertaken to promote Volume 2 has clearly helped crush Deschanel’s awkward disposition onstage, which should fend off any more of those "crazy coke eyes" blog posts.

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She & Him

Being introduced by a puppet seems perfectly appropriate for this band. This group is sort of a hipster-friendly substitute for a real band, in the way that Ferguson uses puppets as a joke substitute for himself. Once again the focus is on how nervous the cute actress is or isn't, what the bloggers will say, if her skirt is up to its nominal levels of swooshiness. Not on, you know, the music. Which isn't especially interesting.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/GregIngber/gaywayswiththejello.jpg GregIngber

Seriously? What a crappy comment for no particular reason. Quit being so angry man, it's music.

Keith

You know what? You're right. I am angry. I'm angry when the vanity music project of a cute young actress sucks up oxygen that could sustain the existence of 10 bands that actually produce worthwhile music. The music business has gotten exponentially tougher in the last decade, and we're already starting to see great artists consider retirement because they can't make a living (see Ted Leo). So when the music press turns into drooling sycophants every time a cute actress puts on an adorable dress and pretends to be a singer a few times a year... yeah, it pisses me off. They should know better.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/GregIngber/gaywayswiththejello.jpg GregIngber

Hmm, well I wrote about the music in the second paragraph, and I don't see any mention of her skirt/dress, so I'm baffled as to what prompted you to comment on that (twice!). And I think She & Him are more of a bona fide band than most actress vanity projects. What about M. Ward's contributions? Do they count for nothing?

/site_media/uploads/images/users/nick/461770063_f6a8d92e3a_s.jpg nick

Is She and Him a better vanity project than, say, those bewildering Scarlett Johansson records? Yeah, I guess. Not a particularly high bar, but I'll give them credit for stumbling over it. And yes, M. Ward, *an actual musician* is part of She & Him, just as those Johansson albums featured contributions from Pete Yorn and someone from TV on the Radio. But again, I think whatever coverage this band receives is mostly due to a cute actress wearing cute clothes. Stick a fat girl with a great voice in a pair of overalls, put her on stage with M. Ward, and I don't think we've having this conversation. This is nothing new, I suppose. But we live in an age when people become spectacularly famous for doing practically nothing, and then are relentlessly re-injected back into the popular culture as singers, authors, actors, etc. Neither Zooey D, nor She & Him, are the worst examples of this... obviously. But I think it's reasonable to be suspicious when someone leverages fame as an actress into easy success in the music industry.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/GregIngber/gaywayswiththejello.jpg GregIngber

Sounds like Greglngber is a fat girl in overalls who can't make it in the music biz. When the going gets tough, the weak bash the successful.

ANON

I don't think she's at the level of Cat Power or Neko Case, but I think Zoey is pretty good. If anything people seem to hate on her because she's a successful actress. Greg I'm curious as to who you think are some better current women singer songwriters than Zoey. I think she's a very credible singer.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/daba/me-bermudajpg.jpg Daba

Dude, it's an *acting job*. She's doing an impersonation of a singer. Credible isn't good enough, when there are genuinely talented people out there who can't get a tenth of this exposure. Case in point: Nikka Costa. Her most recent album was ignored by virtually everyone. I would put her up against anyone in terms of raw vocal talent. Also, there's Saint Saviour. Who is she? Good question, since God knows she's received no coverage on this or any other major music publication. She's currently working with Groove Armada, she was in an amazing electro-pop band called the RGBs (which broke up way too early) and has some amazing solo stuff already, and more in the works. But she's never going to get the attention she deserves, because it's so much easier to let a glamorous actress leverage her fame into a singing career.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/GregIngber/gaywayswiththejello.jpg GregIngber

I think this is a good song.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/Shuffles/27370_1427928132_1464_njpg.jpg Shuffles

i love zooey. the girl on tambo is a bit distracting though

richelle

She & Him are awesome!

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