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Tom Petty RIP   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, October 03, 2017 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


TOM PETTY – singer, songwriter, and leader of the Heartbreakers – has passed away after suffering a full cardiac arrest in his Malibu home Sunday night.  He was 66. Here's the NYT obit. The confirmation of his death follows a day after premature reports from a variety of major news outlets.  His musical saga goes as far back as Petty's days in Mudcrutch, which led him -- and some future Heartbreakers -- to legendary A&R man Denny Cordell, who would produce the first TP records, with songs including "American Girl," "Breakdown," "I Need To Know" and "Listen To Her Heart." Melding the classic folk-rock sound of the Byrds with Southern rock made him sound like instant classic rock to mass audiences in the mid-70s, while his no-frills pop approach would appeal to those looking beyond over-produced and seemingly self-indulgent AOR to Punk and New Wave (only Cheap Trick could make a similar claim to be at this intersection).

In some ways, Petty was more Punk than the punks.  He fought -- and beat -- his label twice.  The first fight -- over the sale of his contract to MCA -- preceded the seminal Damn The Torpedoes album (the master tapes were kept in hiding during litigation) that would launch the band to super-stardom with tracks like "Here Comes My Girl," "Even The Losers," "Don't Do Me Like That" and the signature "Refugee."  The second fight was over the pricing of his follow-up, Hard Promises; here's Petty sharing the backstory for "The Waiting" from that LP.  During the Hard Promises sessions, he also recorded duets with Stevie Nicks, including "Insider" (which he kept for his album) and the smash "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around (which he gave to Nicks).

Petty later collaborated with Eurythmics' Dave Stewart, whom he suggested write more for Nicks, but ended up turning her breakup with Joe Walsh into  "Don't Come Around Here No More," a slab of psychedelic bubblegum unheard since the heyday of Tommy James.  It didn't really fit with songs like "Rebels" on the Southern Accents LP,but it was too good to leave off, and its Wonderland-themed video supplied Petty the Mad Hatter persona who would pop up in later videos for songs like "Into The Great Wide Open," which was expanded to almost seven minutes just because they had great footage from Johnny Depp and Faye Dunaway. While I'm less of a fan of Petty's later work, I did like the Traveling Wilburys, which reminds you that not just anyone gets to be in a band with Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne and the late Roy Orbison.  Indeed, TP & the Heartbreakers backed Dylan on tour (saw it) and later backed Johnny Cash. 

And Petty was still capable of turning out great stuff: TP's first solo LP spawned hits like "Won't Back Down," "Free Fallin'" and "Runnin' Down A Dream."  Indeed, it was Petty's biggest album to that point. He co-wrote "King of the Hill" with Roger McGuinn for Byrdsy karma; it's an keenly observed elegy for John Phillips of the Mamas & the Papas.  And "Learning to Fly" was huge, tho I prefer the more decadent side of his later years, including the wry, presumably Mel Brooks-inspired "It's Good to Be King."

Although Petty is sure to be widely remembered in the following days, I tend to doubt any tribute will beat what Steven Hyden wrote about him in 2014: "Here’s what I think I know: Tom Petty has been a rock star for almost 40 years. He has a dozen or so songs that will be played on classic rock radio for as long as there is classic rock radio. If you’re a music fan of a certain age, there was a time in your life when he seemed inescapable. Even now, Petty is still a guy that most people know, even if you don’t actively care about him one way or the other. Tom Petty’s music doesn’t necessarily demand a value judgment. It’s like having an opinion on tap water or concrete. Why bother? It’s just there, reliable to the point of invisibility. If it went missing, you would notice. But it’s never going missing, because Tom Petty has existed since the beginning of time, and will continue to exist until time is extinguished."

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Broken Social Scene, Dawg Yawp, Sonic Youth, Gatorland   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, October 02, 2017 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN joined BRYAN ADAMS for “Cuts Like A Knife” and “Badlands” at the Invictus Games .

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set.

DAWG YAWP plays a Tiny Desk Concert.

SONIC YOUTH:  The Fall Covers (John Peel Sessions, 1988).  Technically, "Victoria" is The Kinks.

L7 shares “Dispatch From Mar-a-Lago," their first in 17 years.

THE JAGS: "Back of My Hand," from TOTP and the "Where Are They Now?" file.

LOU REED: The Guardian excerpts the new bio from Anthony DeCurtis, and briefly interviewes him about the book.

BILLY JOEL: The Stranger turns 40; Rolling Stone takes a track-by-track tour.

PROTOMARTYR takes All Songs Considered on a track-by-track tour of the new LP.

MARILYN MANSON cut his Saturday night show at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom short after a stage prop collapsed atop the shock rocker.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: The numbers may shift when estimates become actuals, but so far It topped the chart with 17.3MM, narrowly edging American Made, which placed with 17MM. That's bad news for Tom Cruise, whose recent record is spotty -- but for the overseas audience that will likely bail him out here (he made 65MM in foreign markets this weekend).  Indeed, Cruise could wind up behind Kingsman: The Golden Circle, which showed with another 17MM, albeit on a scary 56 percent drop when compared to the legs of the original.  The LEGO Ninjago Movie took the fourth slot with 14 MM on a 41 percent drop, the steepest of this franchise to date, a big problem for a franchise that makes more here than abroad so far.  The Flatliners reboot rounded out the Top Five with 6.7MM, which is less than the 10MM opening of the original back in 1990. Ouch.

SEX AND THE CITY 3 is not happening.

KRISTEN STEWART is being eyed for the Charlie's Angels reboot.

HUGH HEFNER'S WIDOW is well set, but may not inherit much.

THE PRISONER turns 50, with retrospectives from NPR, the BBC and the Telegraph.

THE VIETNAM WAR: How Ken Burns and Lynn Novick assembled an epic soundtrack.

MONTY HALL, the genial host and co-creator of Let’s Make a Deal, the game show on which contestants in outlandish costumes shriek and leap at the chance to see if they will win the big prize or the booby prize behind door No. 3, died at his home in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Saturday. He was 96.

SPAIN: There's a riot goin' on.

GATORLAND will loan 60 alligators to a Texas park damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

A BEAR, just chillin on a couch at the dump.

BOLD EAGLES: Angry birds rip pricey drones from the sky.

THE HIGH-END HORSE MARKET has finally recovered from the financial crisis. A grateful nation sighs in relief.

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Go-Gos, Wolf Parade, Dhani Harrison, Weaves, Pet Your Dog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, September 29, 2017 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE GO-GOs!  They made history as the first all-female band that both wrote their own songs and played their own instruments to top the Billboard album charts. Kind of a hard band to place seasonally. Their debut, Beauty and the Beat, which yielded hits like "Our Lips Are Sealed" and "We Got the Beat," as well as great album cuts like "This Town," "Lust to Love," "Tonite" and "How Much More," came out in late Summer 1981, iirc, and "Lips" was climbing the charts that Fall, so I mentally place the band in this time of year. And it's still warm enough that the title track to the too-quick sophomore album, "Vacation," -- or their cover of the Capitols' "Cool Jerk" -- doesn't sound too out of place. "Get Up and Go" was also a single from that LP, but it didn't make the Top 40.  The band would chart twice more -- in 1984, with "Head Over Heels" and "Turn to You" -- before splitting and the near-inevitable reunion tours.

WOLF PARADE advance streams Cry Cry Cry.

THE WEATHER STATION advance streams a self-titled LP.

WEAVES advance streams Wide Open.

DHANI HARRISON advance streams In Parallel.

BECCA MANCARI advance streams Good Woman.

LAURA JANE GRACE covers The Mountain Goats' "The Best Ever Death Metal Band Out Of Denton."

FIRST AID KIT shares "It's A Shame."

THE PSYCHEDLIC FURS broke through with this video for "Love My Way" on the MTV.

STEELY DAN:  SPIN reappraises Aja at 40.

STEVEN TYLER suffered a seizure in Brazil.

THE SMITHS:  Strangeways, Here We Come Turns 30: Contrasting Morrissey and Marr's Memories of Their Final Album.

DANIEL JOHNSON is profiled by the New York Times.

PLAYBOY AFTER DARK ran for only two seasons, but it had a great ear for music.

NOW SHOWING: This weekend's wide releases are Tom Cruise's American Made, which is currently scoring xx percent on the ol' Tomatometer; and the remake of Flatliners, which was not screened for critics.

JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUS has been diagnosed with breast cancer.

KATE McKINNON is profiled by Vanity Fair.

KATE WINSLET once cut off a piece of someone's ear. Accidentally.

HOCUS POCUS Tthe 1993 cult classic Walt Disney feature may move to the small screen.

MICHELLE WILLIAMS is in talks to star opposite Tom Hardy in Sony’s Venom movie.

THE HORROR CLASSICS on TCM all October long

RELAX AND PET YOUR DOG: The More You Know. Swoosh.

A HITCHHIKING RACCOON hopped onto the hood of a Colorado Springs police officer’s large major accident van en route to a car crash.

IT'S RAINING FISH in northern Mexico.

A MASSIVE CROC strolls through Cutler Bay, FL. As one does.

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Isley Bros + Santana, R Hitchcock, Rainer Maria, Poodle   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, September 28, 2017 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



U2 crashes NYC in “You’re the Best Thing About Me.”


ROBYN HITCHCOCK visits Morning Becomes Eclectic for a session.

RAINER MARIA stops by WFUV's Studio A for a conversation and performance.

ROBERT PLANT & CHRISSIE HYNDE share the vaguely Zeppelin-esque version of "Bluebirds Over The Mountain."

BECK teases the title track “Colors.”

THE ELEPHANT SIX COLLECTIVE shares a new single with The Patient's “Extension 9,” and Breathers' "Colony of Taste."


THE NATIONAL covers the Talking Heads' "Heaven."

BLONDIE's Debbie Harry talks about moving to NYC in 1965.

SHILPA RAY takes All Songs Considered on a track-by-track tour of the new LP.

BRYAN ADAMS is co-writing the Pretty Woman musical.

BRAD COOK: Indie rock's Rick Rubin?


HUGH HEFNER, who parlayed 8K in borrowed money in 1953 to create Playboy, the hot-button media empire renowned for a magazine enriched with naked women and intelligent interviews just as revealing, has died. He was 91.

KYLIE JENNER and Travis Scott are not ready to get married — not even close — despite they're having a baby.

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE may return to the Super Bowl.

MANDY MOORE talked about her engagement to Dawes' Taylor Goldsmith for the first time, but she's not making a big spectacle of the news.

JAMES CAMERON doubled down on his criticism of Wonder Woman.

TERMINATOR 6:  July 26, 2019. Part of a trilogy?

CLEOPATRA may return to the big screen with Denis Villeneuve directing.

ANNIHILATION, a sci-fi thriller with Natalie Portman, drops a teaser trailer online.

RIC FLAIR got around back in the day.

CHLOE SEVIGNY shares the soundtrack of her life.

SCANNERS may head to the small screen. Mind blown.

THE DEATH OF STALIN drops a second trailer.

GERALD'S GAME: Stephen King comes to Netflix.


A POODLE steals a scooter from a toddler.

THE SQUIRREL THREAT: A militant rodent attacked the grid in idaho.

A NEW SPECIES OF GIANT RAT can crack a coconut in its jaws.

THE CODFATHER was sentenced to 46 months for evading fishing quotas, money smuggling.

1652 Reads

Almost a day off, but I have some showbiz.   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, September 27, 2017 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



KHLOE KARDASHIAN is pregnant with her first child, and the baby daddy is her NBA star boyfriend, Tristan Thompson.

GAME OF THRONES co-stars Kit Harington and Rose Leslie are engaged.  BTW, the final season reportedly will cost 15MM per episode.

JULIA STILES and Preston J. Cook have tied the knot in a "shotgun wedding."

SOFIA VERGARA sixpeats as the world's highest-paid TV actress, according to Forbes.

MARTIN SCORSESE & LEONARDO DiCAPRIO are re-teaming for a teddy Rossevelt biopic.

AVATAR's sequels began production. The cost may exceed one billion dollars.

I should be back at full strength tomorrow.

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