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Thread: Long Live Celebrity Chefs!

  1. #11
    Senior Member Seth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mano View Post
    I don't completely get the analogy of bad jazz being a gateway to good jazz.

    For me, Hendrix was. In about 1970 I transposed numbers ordering a Hendrix album from the Columbia record club and got Coltrane's My Favorite Things instead. It was great so I got Love Supreme next and on went on to Charlie Parker, Les Young and Coleman Hawkins. Good food for the soul.

    Rachel Ray admits she's no chef but if she uses fresh ingredients that's a good thing. Who is that blonde tv cook with the nice figure that makes horrible concoctions from packaged food? IIRC she's married to Chris Cuomo or somebody famous.
    Craig,
    I am commenting on the thought that the 'gateway people' seem often to be of lesser quality than the real thing, not advocating - and asking why this should be the case. Clearly this is marketing, popularity, etc that helps pull people into whatever art or learning they are attracted to. The Rachael Rays of the world serve a function I suppose, as you point out. But why could it not be that 'gateways' are both popular and excellent? (Occasionally they are.) The low expectations placed on the lowest common denominator, the general public, is a sad state of affairs. Wouldn't it be nice if Charlie Parker had been more of the draw in the first place into the art form rather than Kenny G.

    There was a youtube of Joshua Bell playing violin in the NY subway with his case open for donations. Almost everyone just walked by - a musician you probably would have paid $200 to see the night before a Carnegie Hall. This was just a little experiment and I guess illustrates that the general public likes what it is told to like (marketing again) and, out of context not able to perceive the difference between a student performance and an inspired performance. Where was the person who would stop to listen to Bell and say 'Holy sh%t, that is an amazing violinist'

    I am not naive about this; just remarking on the average ability to distinguish between crap and quality - a social/education system topic.
    Everywhere you go, there you are.

  2. #12
    Drinky,
    Never thought about it that way, and you're right. Kind of like inner city kids sacrificing an education for the possibility of being a pro athlete.

    My take is that these celebrities created an industry that resulted in better restaurants that hire people and led to an overall positive food culture.

    Both POV are true.

    As far as the tv value is concerned, IMO the best probably went out with Child and Pepin, who actually showed good technique. A. Brown does that but often he's just a silly man. The tv execs wouldn't allow a real cooking show. Too boring.

    Good you tube instructional videos like Theory and Salty's are golden.


    Seth, you're right on all accounts. The short answer is when it comes to culinary and music appreciation most people are average or below and that's what they aspire to. Nothing wrong with that, it's a bell curve.

    When it comes to athletics, put me on the left side of the curve.
    "Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough." —Mark Twain

  3. #13
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    All in all PBS puts out quality programing.Alot of the lowest common denominator stuff that floods the airways started wt. Rupert Murdock,streaming out of Anglo Saxson tradition at it's best,Australia,England,USA.Give it to em bawdy & simple minded play to the lower emotions of dem Monkies.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Lucretia's Avatar
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    Seems like the Joshua Bell thing was done during morning rush hour (and in a Washington DC subway station). I have to wonder if they would have had the same results if he played in a park where people were walking by at their leisure and not rushing to catch the next train on their way to work.

    Unfortunately it's not just the food shows that have gone downhill. Most TV is drek. How much news is on the "news" channels these days? They'll have a big long segment on "johnny sees sister sue for the first time in 5 years" (I don't freaking CARE!), then a teaser "local gas farm ablaze! Will you have to evacuate? We'll tell you when we come back from commercial."
    Now is not the time to bother me. And it's always now. Wiley Miller

  5. #15
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    I feel like there has been a steady devolution in the (actual) skill levels of the most prominent individuals in many artistic media, specifically cooking and music. TV plays a large role in this it would seem; celebrity chefs don't necessarily have to be great chefs, but they DO have to have great on-camera personalities! Yes of course there are still amazing artists and chefs out there and more rise every day, but the quantity of crap one has to wade through to find the golden nugget has increased dramatically. An example from the music side: four hundred years ago, we had Bach. Now we have Britney?! Seems like a few steps backwards if you ask me
    Restaurant Murphy's Law 101: If you have 5 and don't prep any, you'll sell 6. If you do prep some, you'll sell 4

  6. #16
    Senior Member/ Internet Hooligan
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    Not sure I'd actually trust her to boil water in my kitchen. But I'd let her.

    I'd let her do anything she wanted.

  7. #17

    Zwiefel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumjockey View Post
    I feel like there has been a steady devolution in the (actual) skill levels of the most prominent individuals in many artistic media, specifically cooking and music. TV plays a large role in this it would seem; celebrity chefs don't necessarily have to be great chefs, but they DO have to have great on-camera personalities! Yes of course there are still amazing artists and chefs out there and more rise every day, but the quantity of crap one has to wade through to find the golden nugget has increased dramatically. An example from the music side: four hundred years ago, we had Bach. Now we have Britney?! Seems like a few steps backwards if you ask me
    Agreed...but that's a simple function of the exponential increase in the total size of media...which has given rise to many many niche forms of media...which allows things like this forum to exist. upside: lots of narrowly targeted communities of common interest creating historically aberrant numbers of people with high skill levels in obscure disciplines. downside: even more dreck to wade through to find the special ones.
    Remember: You're a unique individual...just like everybody else.

  8. #18
    When I was young it was Graham Kerr - "the galloping gourmet". Then along came Julia and Jacques Pepin followed along with Martin Yan & a little Justin Wilson too for good meassure. Those were the people that sparked my interest in being a better cook. Oh I cooked in the Boy Scouts and hung around in my grandmother's kitchens and worked in a carry out BBQ joint in my teens, but those were the core influences. I still watch Pepin's two shows on PBS as well as Ming and a couple of others. I'm always learning something from them. The Food Network on the other hand I don't miss.

  9. #19
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    For a while I had a strange obsession with the cooking show: New Scandinavian Cooking on PBS. There were at least a couple versions. One was with Andreas Viestad and the other Tina Nordstrom. They both would speak in halted English with Scandinavian accents and mispronounced words. It was pretty corny at times, but I enjoyed it -- or maybe I just thought Tina was hot. Nothing like watching a blonde Swede track wild boar in the woods.

    I'm can't imagine what our Scandinavian members think of the show, but for a while I enjoyed watching it.

    Here is an episode.

    k.
    "There's only one thing I hate more than lying…skim milk, which is water that's lying about being milk." -- Ron Swanson

  10. #20
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    Mr Drinky,enjoyed that pretty blond going after wild bore alright.

    One thing about this media is you better watch what you say on air.Scott Caan who plays Danno on Hawaii 5 O.(watched 1 episode that was it).On some talkshow Chelsea,never heard of her until splashed all over Hawaii News Scott talking stink about Hawaii.People move too slow,Food sucks,Surf is better in California.He gets big bucks acting in a show in Hawaii,obviously has not surfed much here.He will be lucky to paddle out in any break now.We have crusine fr. all cultures,made wt. fresh ingredients.Now if you act Dumb wt. camera's you pay.His apology was prob. writ. by someone else.

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