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RIP Jim Dickinson, Copeland, Antony & the Johnsons, Dog Siblings   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, August 17, 2009 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


JIM DICKINSON, who recorded with and produced greats like Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Big Star, the Rolling Stones, The Replacements and Sam & Dave, died Saturday morning after three months of heart and intestinal bleeding problems. He was 67. That's Jim tickling the keys for Mojo Nixon and Skid Roper on "(619) 239-KING."

COPELAND did the four free songs thing for Daytrotter.

CULTURE REJECT also did the four free songs thing for Daytrotter.

A SCHOOL OF ROCK has been launched by the guitarist and manager of the Flaming Lips at the University of Central Oklahoma.

CAJUN PARTY: There are "songs of summer sweat" streaming via NPR... plus a recipe for shrimp stew.

ANTONY and the JOHNSONS cover Beyonce's "Crazy In Love." Really.

RICHARD THOMPSON talks to the Boston Globe about his new four-disc box set (out Tuesday), songwriting and more...

ACRTIC MONKEYS: Alex Turner talks to Spinner about some of the influences on the band's new LP.

NICK HORNBY talks to the Times of London about his collaboration with Ben Folds.

WOODSTOCK is still a thriving business, 40 years later.

BOB DYLAN was detained by police in Long Branch, NJ last month, when a young officer failed to recognize him.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: District 9 takes the top slot with 37 million on a 30 million budget.  G.I. Joe drops 59 percent to the second slot with 22.5 million; given the mammoth opening and bad reviews, it could've been worse.  Time Traveler's Wife comes in third with 19.2 million, mostly on the strength of Rachel McAdams.  Julie and Julia drops from second to fourth with 12.4 million; its 38 percent drop would be more cause for studio worry, but for the direct competition from the McAdams flick.  G-Force rounds out the Top Five, holding on as a bigger-ticket 3-D offering and the main kids' movie out now.  Below the fold, The Goods debuted in sixth, while Ponyo opened in ninth.  Indie sensation (500) Days of Summer stayed in the Top Ten in its first weekend of true wide release -- with ten Best Picture slots for this year's Oscars, who knows? And Funny People dropped out of the Top Ten in three weeks, which isn't funny at all for Universal, Adam Sandler or Judd Apatow.

ALYSSA MILANO got hitched to Hollywood agent David Bugliari at his family's estate in New Jersey on Saturday.

GEORGE MICHAEL was arrested on suspicion of drug-driving -- again -- after smashing his car into the back of a lorry.

MICHAEL JACKSON: Still not buried.

SARAH CHALKE of Scrubs and HIMYM is knocked up.

JESSICA SIMPSON and TONY ROMO: Their surprise break-up was largely a result of peer pressure from Romo's pals and Jess's love of adult beverages.

ROBERT DOWNEY, JR.: Lestat in a reboot of Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles?

THE WEINSTEIN COMPANY is under major stress.

ISLAMISM IN THE UK: British swimming pools are imposing Muslim dress codes for "special sessions" in a move described as divisive by Labour MPs.

IRAN:  Opposition leader Mir Hussein Moussavi announced the formation of a new social and political movement on his Web site on Saturday, following through on a promise made last month and defying a renewed government campaign of intimidation aimed at him and his supporters.

PAKISTAN: The government is backing Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud's rival Haji Turkestan Bhitni's tribe, which has in recent days been battling Mehsud's tribe in its South Waziristan stronghold.  But that's likely to be ineffective -- and not much of an improvement if it works.

AFGHANISTAN: An Afghan bill allowing a husband to starve his wife if she refuses to have sex has been published in the official gazette and become law.

SIBLINGS are pretty much the same, regardless of species.

FIVE the ELEPHANT has been serenading its keepers at West Midlands Safari Park, after learning to play the harmonica. Five is already a painter.

WHEN OTTERS ATTACK: An Austrian woman on vacation in Wisconsin is getting rabies shots after she said she was bitten several times by at least two otters while swimming in a lake.

SNAILS VS. OYSTERS: Who you got, Spartacus?


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Elvis, Les Paul, 'Mats, Woodstock, Cutout Bin, Cow   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, August 14, 2009 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



with ELVIS PRESLEY! The King died 32 years ago Sunday, but remains a global pop phenomenon, so it's worth a recap of highlights from the bigh 30th anniverary last year.  Canada's Star-Phoenix, which discusses ten important parts of Elvis history worth reliving, notes: "His was a sequined coat of many colours: '50s Greaser Elvis. Military Elvis. Hollywood Elvis. Aloha from Hawaii Elvis. Vegas Elvis. And, ultimately, Dead Fat Elvis."  The BBC has friend and aide Sonny West recall life with The King. 

ACTION NEWS 5 has posted its local coverage from Aug. 16-17, 1977, on the Tube, where you can also see funeral footage from the BBC Archive.  Here's read the obit that ran the next day in the Washington Post. Elvis Presley News recaps the international headlines from the event and links to the eulogy at his funeral. On a happier note, check out what is likely the first footage taken of Elvis, with backstage shots of Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Buddy Holly in 1955; shades of Walk The Line!  You can also see him play "I Got A Woman" live o­n his first TV appearance in 1956. I also include his performance of "Hound Dog" o­n The Milton Berle Show six months later, not o­nly because it's historic, but also because Paul Miller and I often reached for it when we would stumble into our KUSR shift at the last minute -- Uncle Miltie vamps for awhile, which gave us time to pull records for the show.  He was also iconic in "Jailhouse Rock" that year.  Elvis sang a mashup of "Love Me Tender" and "Witchcraft" with Frank Sinatra when he got back from the Army.  All of his movies -- such as "Viva Las Vegas" --made money, but his musical career stalled in the 1960s until he electrified and charmed the public with his televised '68 Comeback Special, which you can see uncut and unedited on the Tube.  1970 finds him singing "In The Ghetto" and "Suspicious Minds" in the jumpsuit, though pre-bloated.  I'm going to throw in "Little Sister" just 'cause I like it.  Sadly, in a few short years, bloated jumpuit Elvis would be delivering a wacked-out take on "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" -- though to be fair, this audio-only version from 1969 is even more demented and he knows it.  I would rather remember Jumpsuit Elvis for the signature horns that open "See See Rider."  a tribute to his enduring legacy as the fact that he could hit the charts decades after his death with a remix of "A Little Less Conversation," a video subtly recalling "Jailhouse Rock,"  followed by Paul Oakenfold's remix of "Rubberneckin'" and even the bizzare CGI Elvis duet with Celine Dion on American Idol last year. The King may be gone, but the brand lives on, making millions and recruiting new fans under the watchful eyes of Elvis Presley Enterprises and CKX, Inc.

GREETINGS FROM GRACELAND:  It must be said, however, that Elvis Presley Enterprises did not have a good handle on the King's affairs in the years immediately following his death.  Chicago radio personalities Steve Dahl and Garry Meier won a local emmy for their 1981 comedic look at what was then a very seedy exploitation of Elvis in Memphis. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7.)

LES PAUL, the virtuoso guitarist with the shattered arm, whose invention of the solid-body electric guitar and multi-track recording changed the course of 20th-century popular music, died Thursday from complications of pneumonia. He was 94.  The NYT's obit includes a previously unseen, 15-min video interview with Paul.  In 2003, Paul talked to the NYT about his first encounter with Jimi Hendrix. Paul is enshrined in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Grammy Hall of Fame, the Inventors Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame.  Without him, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, ZZ Top and Claude Pate would never have had quite the same bite.

CAN'T HARDLY WAIT: Aquarium Drunkard has a two-part tribute to various versions of the Replacements classic. I and various Friends of Pate had heard the early incarnations live. I also recall driving Music Works owner Paul Miller to the UPS depot the day Pleased to Meet Me came out, and how jazzed we were to see "Can't Hardly Wait" in the track listing.  In fact, when we got back to the store, we slapped a copy on the turntable and immediately went to the final track -- and we both shocked and delighted with it.  Paul played the album all day long, and as 'Mats fans came in, he would keep resetting the needle to that final track, just for the pleasure of watching the reactions.

JOLIE HOLLAND does five free songs for Daytrotter.

PETE YORN stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set streaming via MPR.

WOODSTOCK:  On Aug. 15-17, 1969, hundreds of thousands of people gathered in a lovely natural amphitheater in Bethel (not Woodstock), NY for "three days of peace and music," including sets from Crosby, Stills and NashThe Who, Santana, Joe Cocker, Jefferson AirplaneArlo Guthrie, Canned HeatJimi Hendrix, and the proverbial many more.  CNN remembers, as does The New York Times with multimedia.

ZEE AVI stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set streaming via MPR.

RADIOHEAD has another new track, "These Are My Twisted Words."

THE DECEMBERISTS were busted for busking in Royal Oak, MI.  Guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Chris Funk talks to the Pittsburgh Post-Tribune about touring The Hazards of Love, the band's influences, and more...

THE CUTOUT BIN: From the Association to the Heartbreakers, srom Sly and the Family Stone to the Jesus and Mary Chain, from Primal Scream to Rose Royce, plus the Lyres, the Kinks, My Morning Jacket, Lloyd Cole and more -- this Friday's fortuitous finds are streaming from the Pate page at the ol' HM.

NOW SHOWING: This weekend's wide releases are District 9, the alien apartheid tale currently scoring 95 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; The Time Traveler's Wife, currently scoring 37 percent, Bandslam, which is scoring 80 percent, The Goods, scoring 12 percent, and the animated Ponyo at 95 percent.

ANNA FARIS got hitched in a small ceremony in Bali on July 9.

MICHAEL JACKSON's personal physician left the performer alone and under the influence of a powerful anesthetic to make telephone calls the morning the pop singer died, according to three people familiar with the investigation.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Tom and Katie reportedly had a public spat on the Melbourne, Australia set of Holmes' thriller, Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark.

KATE HUDSON isn't getting a warm reception at the plate from Minka Kelly, longtime squeeze of Yankee captain Derek Jeter.

BRAD PITT is not running for Mayor of NOLA.

SOUTH PARK has posted the unaired pilot episode of the series, made entirely by hand on construction paper.  You can watch it with or without a commentary track.

BATTLESTAR GALACTICA getting another reboot? Really?

JERRY O'CONNELL recently enrolled at Los Angeles' Southwestern Law School.

IRAN: The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps may just want to run the entire Islamic theocracy.

PAKISTAN: Although people worry about the security of the nation's nukes, a recent paper examines the possibility that the Pakistan Army could decide to transfer nuclear weapons to a terrorist group.

AFGHANISTAN: Michael Yon gives an interview under fire while traveling with British troops.

A PREGNANT COW bolts for freedom at the Kalamazoo County Fair. Video at the link.

A WOMAN and a DOE, living together...

A FISH smashed a car windshield near Marblehead, OH,  when an eagle dropped its catch from a height of about 40 feet.

RALPH the PENGUIN has gone bald, and now has a special wetsuit. Pics at the link.

THE SQUIRREL THREAT: Now they're camera hogs.

THE SWARM: Three peoplein Stuart, FL,  were attacked by a swarm of bees that came from a hive about the size of a car engine.

A VENGEFUL WEASEL harasses a family in eastern China's Hubei province.

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Jay Reatard, Joe Henry, Cave Singers, Meow Mix   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, August 13, 2009 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


JAY REATARD unleashes a new video for "It Ain't Gonna Save Me" off his new album Watch Me Fall.

JOE HENRY is advance streaming his Blood from Stars album via NPR.

THE CAVE SINGERS are advance streaming their Welcome Joy album via Rhapsody. 

STARLIGHT MINTS did three free songs for Daytrotter, two previously unreleased.

THE SWELL SEASON, familiar to those who have seen Once, did a Tiny Desk Concert at NPR.

ERIC BURDON and WAR "Spill the Wine" one very hot Summer's day...

CAGE THE ELEPHANT stopped by The Current for a chat and a twofer after Lollapalooza.

THEFT OF THE DIAL: Wilco's Glenn Kotche and Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth are among those recently Guest DJing at The Current.

THE TEN LEAST IMPRESSIVE SUPERGROUPS, according to New York magazine. And when they write, "You probably don't remember this now (nor should you, really)," I do, of course.

THE VERVE splits up. Third time's a charm?

MOLLY RINGWALD writes about her relationship with the late John Hughes -- and some of it may surprise you. PLUS: Hughes is remembered by Edward McNally, rumored inspiration for Ferris Bueller.

WILL FARRELL is interviewed by Beck.

PAULA ABDUL is in talks to guest star on Ugly Betty, and to be a contestant on "Dancing With the Stars."

NATALIE PORTMAN is producing a high school comedy.

SIENNA MILLER has being getting close with a new fella who goes by the stage name of Slinky Wizard.

MEGAN FOX delivers an NSFW public service announcement on peer pressure to promote her upcoming horror film, Jennifer's Body.

CHARLYNE LI talks to USA Today about the pseudo-documentary Paper Heart.

THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK is headed back to the big screen, to be be written and directed by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Mamet.

AFGHANISTAN: US Marines and Afghan troops launched an operation to take the town of Dahaneh in the Now Zad district in Helmand province from the Taliban; seven Taliban fighters have been killed.

IRAQ: Shiite clerics and politicians have been successfully urging their followers not to retaliate against a fierce campaign of sectarian bombings, in which Shiites have accounted for most of the 566 Iraqis killed since American troops pulled out of Iraq's cities on June 30. 

MEOW MIX: Let's go to the video.

LUCKY the DUCKLING, who faced being put down after fracturing a leg has been given a new lease of life thanks to a specially-made sandal. Pics at the link.


SCORPION on a PLANE: US Customs and Border Protection Agriculture Specialists intercepted a scorpion on the luggage of a passenger arriving at Miami International Airport from El Salvador last Wednesday.

A GREEDY PIG called Ginger is thought to be responsible for the theft of a £1,000 diamond from a woman's ring.

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Yo La Tengo, Bat for Lashes, Silversun Pickups, Monkey + Dog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, August 12, 2009 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


YO LA TENGO goes "Periodically Double Or Triple" in the fruity second clip from Popular Songs.

BAT FOR LASHES stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set streaming via MPR (plus video.)

SILVERSUN PICKUPS also stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set streaming via MPR.

PASSION PIT stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set streaming via MPR, too.

WOODEN BIRDS stopped by Oregon Public Broadcasting for a chat and mini-set in audio or video.

JOHNNY MAESTRO: "The Worst That Could Happen." A great self-indulgent song written by Jimmy Webb, sung by the man who made it a hit with the Brooklyn Bridge.

TORTOISE co-founder Dan Bitney talks to PopMatters about the past, present, and future of the band that changed indie rock forever, and continues to thrill their power base on their first original record in five years, Beacons of Ancestorship.

MOUNT EERIE: Phil Elverum talks to the Village Voice about touring with a full band, Buddhism, plus his enduring love and artistic affinity for David Lynch's Twin Peaks.

FRANZ NICOLAY of The Hold Steady talks to The Hook about his solo adventures.

ST. VINCENT: Sax man Evan Smith talks to Renegade Bus about watching the Dallas-born band take the music world by storm.

JON HAMM talked to The A.V. Club about the upcoming season of Mad Men (debuting August 16), and his recent forays into comedy on 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live.

WILLIAM SHATNER talks to TIME about his off-camera relationship with Conan O'Brien, buying dinner for J.J. Abrams and why, when it comes to musical collaborations, he's not unlike Dracula.

PEE-WEE HERMAN returns for a stage run in L.A. this November.

LINDSAY LOHAN surprised "on-again" girlfriend Samantha Ronson in Chicago for Sam's birthday over the weekend.

TWILIGHT star Ashley Greene is treatening suit against those who post nude photos of her on the Internet.

THE TOP MOVIE NUDES (minus the dudes) according to Mr. Skin. (SFW link) Shaping up as Gratuitous Wednesday, it seems.

ZOMBIELAND, starring Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg and Abigail Breslin, has a red band trailer online.

REGGIE MILLER is denying accusations he got down with someone else's fiancee - but the former basketball star does admit he flirted a little bit ... well, actually a lot.

IRAN: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad tightened his grip on Iran's powerful intelligence services, ousting four senior officials in a widening purge against authorities who challenged the harsh crackdowns after June's disputed elections.

PAKISTAN: US officials stuck to their belief that Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud was killed last week, amid reports a CIA drone fired missiles at him as he was getting a leg massage on the roof of his father-in-law's house. A leg message?  Meanwhile, Pakistan's nuclear facilities have already been attacked at least thrice by its home-grown terrorists in little-reported incidents over the past two years.

AFGHANISTAN: Gen. Stanley McChrystal says he is comfortable with the prospect of lower-level Taliban commanders and fighters rejoining the country's political process.

MONKEY & DOG, riding together... mass hysteria!

KODA, the mini-horse who suffers the double-whammy of being born a dwarf. Pics at the link.

CATERPILLARS been spotted 'dancing' to put off predators as they eat their way through a leaf.

LADYBUGS have mounted their biggest invasion of the British Isles since the long, hot summer of 1976.

SHARK ATTACK: A 26-year-old tourist from Spain was attacked and bitten by a shark Monday in the waters off Volusia County, FL -- the seventh shark bite in Volusia County this year. What say you, Police Chief Brody?

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New Releases, Deerhoof, V Morrison, Caplin Rous   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, August 11, 2009 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


DRAGONETTE: This video for "Gone Too Far," cut to clips from Urban Cowboy, is not official, but it should be.

NEW RELEASES: Jay Reatard, The Woodstock box, Patrick Wolf, and more are streaming in full this week via Spinner.

DEERHOOF did three free songs thing for Daytrotter.

LOCKSLEY did the four free songs thing at Daytrotter, one previously unreleased.

VAN MORRISON has an interview plus videos at NPR about his revival of the seminal Astral Weeks LP.

BAD VEINS did an interview with Gothamist, inlcuding performances of "Gold and Warm," "Falling Tide" and "The Lie." It's like Twofer Tuesday, but one more.

FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF: The unofficial soundtrack.

COWBOY JUNKIES play a Mountain Stage mini-set streaming on demand via NPR.

THE STONE ROSES: Ex-Stone Roses bassist Mani tells the BBC that he would love to see former band members Ian Brown and John Squire finally bury the hatchet.  Mani also talks about the 20th anniversary edition of the band's debut (coming out in the US this September).

THE SHINS: Jesse Sandoval, ex-sticksman for the indie darlings, claims his departure was not down to 'aesthetic' differences - he was sacked for not being able to play the parts.

EIGHT THINGS in JOHN HUGHES MOVIES You Won't See in Today's Teen Movies.

JEREMY PIVEN can't take a joke when it comes to the alleged mercury poisoning that caused him to ditch Broadway.

MICHAEL JACKSON: Longtime Michael Jackson friend Mark Lester is not the father of Jackson's daughter, nor is he claiming paternity, despite a tabloid report indicating Lester says he's Paris Jackson's biological dad, sources tell People. Meanwhile, the judge overseeing the singer's will approved several business deals, including a 60 million dollar agreement with Columbia Pictures to make a movie from video of the King of Pop's final rehearsals.

THE TEEN CHOICE AWARDS went to these folks, by which I mean vampire kids and Miley Cyrus.

E.T.: Where are they now? Aside from E.T., who is presumably home.

THE IMAGINARIUM OF DR. PARNASSUS the next film from Terry Gilliam -- and the last from Heath Ledger -- has a trailer online.

THE AVENGERS: Louis Leterrier, director of "The Incredible Hulk", flots the idea of bringing the Avengers to the screen in four interlocking movies by four different directors that would be released over one summer. 

IRAN: Revolutionary Guard generals, top politicians and senior clerics have called for the arrest and punishment of opposition leaders, including defeated presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, Iranian state media reported Sunday, while the national police chief acknowledged that protesters had been mistreated while in custody.

AFGHANISTAN: The Taliban have gained the upper hand, the top American commander there said, forcing the US to change its strategy.

CAPLIN ROUS BEGS FOR A POPSICLE: Let's go to the video.

MAYBE THE CAT downloaded that illegal material.

SHARK ATTACK: After a day of spear fishing and lobster diving, a group of Florida boaters got the scare of a lifetime when a shark jumped into their boat.

PYTHONS: The latest weapon for Alex and his droogs.

HORSES get hitched at an English pub. You hope they don't wake up with drinken regret.

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