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Betty White RIP, and the post-holiday bleakness.   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, January 03, 2022 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


NANCY SINATRA: "These Boots Are Made For Walking." Are you ready?


SPOON's Brit daniel stops by KUTX.

ROYKSOPP returns with "(Nothing But) Ashes..."

SUFJAN STEVENS picks his most and least favorites of 2021.

THE TOP 10 COUNTRY & AMERICANA LPs, according to Paste.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at Michael Jackson's overwhelming media-blitz blockbuster "Black Or White" and Color Me Badd's sparkling uptempo R&B jam "All 4 Love."


WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Spider-Man: No Way Home threepeats easily atop the chart with 52.7MM on a 38 percent drop.  Sing 2 remained in second with 19.6MM on a mere 12 percent drop.  The King's Man shows with 4.5MM on  24 percent drop.  Overall, the 2021 box office was double last year's, but still down 60 percent from 2019.

BETTY WHITE, who created two of the most memorable characters in sitcom history, the nymphomaniacal Sue Ann Nivens on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and the sweet but dim Rose Nylund on “The Golden Girls” — and who capped her long career with a comeback that included a triumphant appearance as the host of “Saturday Night Live” at the age of 88 — died on Friday at her home in Los Angeles. She was 99.  Here she is cracking up her co-stars.

DWANE JOHNSON has publicly declined Fast And Furious series star Vin Diesel's request to rejoin the action franchise for its upcoming 10th mainline entry.

THE 10 BEST FILMS of 2021, according to The Atlantic.

THE 50 BEST MOVIES of 2021, acording to Paste.

THE 30 BEST TV SHOWS of 2021, according to Paste.

THE HIGHEST-RATED TV SHOW of 2021 has been around for decades.

WHAT THE MCU Doesn't Say about the End of the World.

COMEDY'S Post-Cinematic Universe.



A LIONESS looks eager to eat a toddler who looks like a zebra.

CATS have caused more than 100 house fires in the past three years, South Korea officials say.

A DOGGO, making his own fun.

360 Reads

This will be our year?   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, December 29, 2021 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE BEAT FARMERS!  Making a tradition of this more sober than usual, professionally-shot, early BF gig recorded at Universal Studios, including "There She Goes Again" (VU); "Road to Ruin," "Bigger Fool," "Reason to Believe" (Springsteen), "Powderfinger" (N. Young), "Happy Boy," "Big Ugly Wheels," "Bigger Stones," "Gun Sale at the Church," "Dallas Blues," "I Wanna Be Free," "Lakeside Trailer Park," "Death Train," and "Seven Year Itch."  If you're new to the band, my picks would be "Bigger Stones," "Happy Boy" and the cover of your choice.  BONUS:  Now how much would you pay?  But wait... there's more!  If you really want to see someone put the "bar" in "bar band," watch these NSFW clips from Houston, TX of the late Country Dick Montana leading the band through "Lucille" (K. Rogers) -- complete with his favorite beer bottle stunts -- followed by "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Wino," "Are You Drinkin' With Me, Jesus?" and "Mondo."  SUPER-SPECIAL BONUS: Country Dick rolls out "California Kid" and "Anarchy in the UK" (Language warning).

U2: Crushingly obvious, I know

NICK CAVE & SHANE MacGOWAN: "What a Wonderful World."

ABBA wishes you a "Happy New Year,"  but it doesn't sound anywhere as celebratory as "Take A Chance On Me." 

THE MOUNTAIN GOATS perform "This Year" at the M-Shop in Ames, IA.

OTIS & CARLA have a "New Year's Resolution."

CLAUDE PATE: Don't forget you can stream "New Year" on the Tube, with comments from a member of The Eclectics and Friend of Pate Ken King.

JOE JACKSON: Pate frequently attempted "One More Time" to often hilarious effect, so today I stick with Joe's early material, including "Sunday Papers" live on the OGWT, "Kinda Kute" on the Kenny Everett Video Show, and a Beat Crazy-era run of "On Your Radio."  The Rock Goes To College show provides live takes on "It's Different For Girls,"  "I'm The Man," and this pulsing version of his signature "Is She Really Going Out With Him?"  BONUS: The appropos finale, "Got The Time?

FLUXBLOG 's massive 2021 Survey Mix, on Spotify and Apple Music.

DEERHOOF is streaming their live LP, Devil Kids.

PATTI SMITH: 75 Years, 75 Songs.

JIMI HENDRIX's forgotten holiday EP.

THE 50 BEST ALBUMS of 2021, according to Brooklyn Vegan.

GET BACK: Every song played in Peter Jackson's Beatles doc.

THE ZOMBIES: "This Will Be Our Year."

BETTY WHITE shares her secrets to a happy life.


BRITNEY SPEARS says her extended music hiatus is a “f—k you” to her estranged family.

THE BEST TV SHOWS of 2021, according to Uproxx.

THE BEST TV SHOWS of 2021, according to The Ringer.

24 GREAT PERFORMANCES of 2021, according to Roger Ebert dot com.

THE BEST PERFORMANCES of 2021, according to The Ringer.

ELEPHANTS reunite with their caretaker.

THE PERFECT CRIME, except for the camera.

A CHIMP, feeding the fish.

375 Reads

The Tuesday between.   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, December 28, 2021 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


ALEX CHILTON: Let's enjoy the Box Tops' "The Letter" and Big Star's "In The Street" for the final Twofer Tuesday of 2021.


JOSH RITTER, Live at the Sheen Center.


SEA POWER shares "Lakeland Echo."


PATTI SMITH was given the key to the city of New York. She and Lenny played a bit also.

MITSKI Had to Quit Music to Love It.

THE 40 BEST ROCK ALBUMS of 2021, according to Paste.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at P.M. Dawn's spacey "Set Adrift On Memory Bliss."


THE BATMAN drops a third trailer online.

KANYE WEST buys a house across the street from Kim Kardashian.

THE VIEW struggles to replace Meghan McCain.

JEAN-MARC VALLEE, who helmed the 2013 drama "Dallas Buyers Club," died Sunday near Quebec City, Canada. He was 58 years old.


THE BEST MOVIES of 2021, according to Uproxx.


WHAT a Wonderful World.

DON'T mock the goat.

DRONE FOOTAGE of sharks swimming through a massive school of fish near Bridgehampton, New York.

377 Reads

The post-holiday. The pre-holiday.   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, December 27, 2021 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


DAVID BOWIE: Rare footage of "The Jean Genie" from a 1973 performance on Top of the Pops.



BONO sang "Running To Stand Still" in this year's Simon Christmas Eve Busk.


NEIL YOUNG is sharing the "lost" Summer Songs album with subscribers to his archives.

LADBABY claimed the UK's Christmas number one singlewith "Sausage Rolls."

WANDA YOUNG, one of the lead singers of the Marvelettes, the girl group whose 1961 song “Please Mr. Postman,” recorded when they were teenagers, was Motown’s first No. 1 hit, died on Dec. 15 in Garden City, Mich. She was 78.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at: Karyn White's dance-funk hit "Romantic"; Prince's final chart-topper, the elegant blues-rock strut "Cream"; and Michael Bolton's wretched remake of "When A Man Loves A Woman."


WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Spider-Man: No Way Home continued to dominate the chart with a 5-day haul of 149.4MM, and crossed 1 Billion worldwide. On a 3-day basis it was down 65 percent, but that's to be expected afer its mammoth debut weekend.  Sing 2 opened in the second slot witha 5-day total of 41MM.  And Matrix Resurrections placed with 24MM, which should be viewed in light of the competition from Spidey, the fact that it's also streaming on HBOMax, and its general lack of quality.

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATON:  Spider-Man: No Way Home?

CHRIS NOTH: A fourth woman has accused the Sex And The City actor of sexual abuse and threatening to ruin her career if she spoke out about the alleged incident.

JAMES FRANCO spoke about the sexual misconduct allegations detailed in the Los Angeles Times in 2018, and subsequently in a 2019 lawsuit targeting his acting school. His accusers call him insensitive.


ALICIA WITT's parents were found dead inside their Massachusetts home by police.

THE TEN (OR SO) BEST FILMS of 2021, according to Sonny Bunch.

JOAN DIDION, whose mordant dispatches on California culture and the chaos of the 1960s established her as a leading exponent of the New Journalism, and whose novels “Play It as It Lays” and “A Book of Common Prayer” proclaimed the arrival of a tough, terse, distinctive voice in American fiction, died on Thursday at her home in Manhattan. She was 87.


THE CORGI Express.

A PACK OF WOLVES reunites with the woman who took care of them when they were cubs.

A CAT, stepping carefully.

393 Reads

Sleighing into Christmas like...   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, December 21, 2021 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



... with CHRIS ISAAK, live at Universal Studios. Your holiday-themed numbers include "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," "Hey, Santa," "Last Month of the Year," "Blue Christmas," and "Christmas on TV." Bonus: Dreidel banter!

THE CURRENT has a holiday-themed stream.

LIT UP LIKE A CHRISTMAS TREE, Vols. 1 & 2:  A Vintage Holiday Mixtape.

CHRISTMAS JAMBREE:  A Vintage Jamaican Yuletide Mixtape.

A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS:  Mental Floss has "The Real Story Behind A Charlie Brown Christmas (and why it almost wasn't shown)." There's more reflection at Aquarium Drunkard. The WaPo has reflections from producer-director Lee Mendelson.  And Caitlin Flanagan asks what gives the special its power.

DARLENE LOVE & RONNIE SPECTOR duet on "Sleigh Ride" and "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree."

THE POGUES:  It's not Christmas Eve in the drunk tank (or even St. Patrick's Day) without a "Fairytale of New York."  From 2012, here's the backstory. And at The Week, Michael B. Dougherty argues that it's the greatest Christmas song of all time. NME has 25 Things you didn't know about the tale.

ANTON BARBEAU, an occasional collaborator of the late Scott Miller, crafted his own "Xmas Song."

THE 10 BEST PUNK CHRISTMAS SONGS, according to L.A. Weekly.



NORAD will be tracking Santa, per usual. CNET has a history and behind-the scenes story.

THE 50 BEST HOLIDAY SONGS, according to The Ringer.

THE 25 BEST CHRISTMAS ALBUMS, according to Complex. BONUS: The L.A. Times rounds up the Merry and the Meh, including the evolving Christmas Time Again, by The dB's and Friends.

15 BIZARRE CHRISTMAS ALBUMS, courtesy of Mental Floss.

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY of Christmas Songs.

2021's BEST HOLIDAY MUSIC, according to The AV Club. ALSO: The Best and Worst, ranked by NME.

EIGHT HOURS of vintage department store holiday music.

BILLY MACK: Because "Christmas Is All Around."  ALSO: Is Love Actually is an awful movie? Or a rom-com masterpiece? PLUS: We now know for sure what happened to Harry and Karen.

THE FLAMING LIPS perform "White Christmas" as only they can.

WHITE CHRISTMAS: A Snapshot Of The Most Successful Song In Music History.

SUPER FURRY ANIMALS: "The Gift That Keeps Giving."  Not to be confused with "The Gift," which is not Christmasey at all.

THE COURTEENEERS drop a video for "Winter Wonderland" that's not that Winter Wonderland.

CALEXICO: Speaking of presents, here's their "Gift X-Change."

THE MUPPETS: "Ringing of the Bells." Not to be confused with Super Furry Animals.

MICHAEL CAINE looks back at The Muppet Christmas Carol.


AN XMAS FLASH MOB from the Berklee College of Music broke out into an impromptu performance of the classic Christmas carol “O Holy Night” at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts.

GLAM XMAS:  I started the month with Wizzard's awesome "I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day" and Slade's "Merry Christmas Everybody" (1973's UK Xmas No. 1). The circle is now complete.

LADBABY is trying to get "Sausage Rolls" to the Christmas Number One, with help from Elton John and Ed Sheeran.

HALL & OATES: "Jingle Bell Rock," reduced to its molten kitchy essense.

THE MOST COVERED CHRISTMAS SONGS, according to FiveThirtyEight.

16 WEIRD FACTS About Big Christmas Hits.

MARIAH CAREY's “All I Want For Christmas Is You” threepeats atop the chart.

WHY Are There No New Christmas Songs

HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS, online. Also, a 5-year-old called 911 on the Grinch.

DAVID BOWIE & BING CROSBY'S cross-generational duet o­n "Little Drummer Boy." This historic event was recreated by Will Farrell and John C. Reilly. Plus, Jack Black and Jason Segel have done a cartoon cover

THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTA CLAUS:  Many people believe human activity is causing global warming.  I blame Snow Miser and Heat Miser.

CHICAGO CHRISTMAS MEMORIES:  If you grew up in Chicago (and I suspect other places), the season is not complete without watching the short cartoons of "Hardrock, Coco & Joe" (a story fantastic, a story so queer), "Suzy Snowflake" and the jazzy version of "Frosty the Snowman."

THE BEATLES fan club messages, complete.  And the strange story behind the bootleg albums.

A CHRISTMAS GIFT FOR YOU...FROM PHIL SPECTOR: Essayed by Aquarium Drunkard and NME.

THE TRON 1982 HOLIDAY SPECIAL, courtesy of Funny Or Die.

T. REXMAS is available for download.

THE SEX PISTOLS & THIN LIZZY played "A Merry Jingle" for Top of the Pops.  BONUS: The Pistols' final UK show was a Christmas benefit.

IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE: Pate even had a song titled "Rope Around The Moon." BONUS: Vintage Bailey backlash from warped, frustrated old people at FEE, the New York Times and Portfolio. DOUBLE-BONUS: 22 TV variations on It's A Wonderful Life.

RUDOLPH, THE RED-NOSED REINDEER:  Pull up an ice block and lend an ear!  Herbie wanted to be a dentistNTTAWWT.  BONUS:  The Rankin-Bass classic continues to inspire ads like 2009's Verizon ad, following 2008's Apple ad, even more so 2007's AFLAC commercial, and AT & T bringing in Rudolph, Bumble, and Santa for 2015.BONUS: NPR has a piece on the original manuscript.  DOUBLE BONUS: Don't Subject Your Kids to Rudolph.

FESTIVUS:  For the rest of us.  Technically already started, so I can be one of your grievances.

SCARY GHOST STORIES: I overheard Andy Williams crooning "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" in a store a few years back, and the lyric about "scary ghost stories" never really struck me before.  Took me a second, but I supposed he was referring to Dickens.  It turns out -- as noted by a coworker -- that this was a thing in Victorian England...  and the modern day. BONUS: Krampus, which has now inspired a major motion picture, and a Nativity set. DOUBLE BONUS: NME rounds up 10 Deliciously Scary Christmas Movies. TRIPLE BONUS: 18 Killer Santas From Film and TV.

LIAM NEESON auditions as a mall Santa.

TEN UNFORGETTABLE Musical Christmas Moments On Film.

THE 30 BEST CHRISTMAS MOVIES, according to Empire magazine.


FIVE REASONS Why Die Hard is a Christmas movie, not including the ornament.

HOME ALONE: Did Kevin McCallister grow up to become the Jigsaw Killer?

THE ICE HARVEST is a Christmas movie?

DRECK THE HALLS: A Holiday TV Specials Retrospective.

23 TV EPISODES based on "A Christmas Carol."

A CHRISTMAS HAM: CNN's Mary Katherine Ham and Commentary's John Podhoretz break down the Hallmark Christmas movie genre.

NAT KING COLE:  His chestnuts are roasting.

MAYMO THE BEAGLE gets 210 bottles for Christmas.


27 DOGS That Do Christmas Better Than You Do Christmas.

17 WEINER DOGS make the perfect Christmas photo.

THE DOGGO who stole Christmas.

29 CATS Trying To Figure Out This Whole Christmas Thing.

A SHETLAND PONY in a Christmas foursie.

CHRISTMAS ON CHRISTMAS ISLAND involves millions of crabs.

AN AUSTRALIAN FAMILY shot into the Guinness Book of Records in 2011 after decorating their home with an astonishing 331038 Christmas lights. If the video at the link doesn't work, try this one.

405 Reads

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