Randon Non-Rock Notes. Rock Notes, get it? I'm awesome.
Here's a baby rabbit eating a flower.
Best commercial on TV right now. You dang woodchucks!!
Quite simply, the greatest redneck car ramp jump ever. Period.
Slippery slide accidents are always money, aren't they?
Let's revisit this famous soccer bitch.
Yo. My man. Seriously, this is not the best way to get free ice cream.
I want this lamb! Oh, and this lamb!
Hey lady, watch where you're goin'.
Monday, February 14, 2011
* Nice tribute to The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, to open the show. I'm glad they didn't give X-tina the task of memorizing "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" - she left that in Dallas (hi-YO!). Sidenote: How is Jennifer Hudson not more popular? Beautiful & man, can she sing.....
* Lady Gaga unveiled her new tune, "Born this Way." Madonna called, baby, and she wants her 80's hit "Express Yourself" back, with royalties & throw in the wig too, bitch. What a crock of shit. Gaga's about to hit that same slippery slope Brit & X-tina experienced a decade ago called "overexposure." Say "hi" to Taylor Swift on your way down...
* Esperanza Spalding won "Best New Artist" over Justin Bieber & Drake. LMAO. Q: Who the hell is Esperanza Spalding? A: The Bieber-nator, that's who. Nice game of keep-away here, Academy. Seriously though, who is Esperanza Spalding?
* Speaking of The Biebs, Usher humbly was on hand to accept credit for "discovering" the Canadian sensation. Just wanted to type the words "Canadian" and "sensation" in the same sentence for the first time ever...without the term "frost-bite" accompanying the latter. BTW - how the fuck did Will Smith's kid get invited to the party...?
* Elton John came out of the closet....AGAIN! No, not because he's gay, but because he was horrified to discover Cee Lo Green and his Muppet friends rummaging through the 1973 section. Also, how many more times do we as Americans need to humor Gwyneth Paltrow about her singing? So what if she gets pissed? As Cee Lo sayeth, "Fuck you-ooo-ooooo....."
* Miranda Lambert = a doll. Katy Perry = a pussy cat, "meowww." Rhianna = damn, girrrrl. WhoeverthatgirlswassingingwithBrunoMars = gorgeous. Mick Jagger = crypt keeper in training. Seriously, Mick....did you need to throw out there every Jimmy Fallon-stereotyping-mocking you move you got? Geesh...
* The Avett Brothers (yay!!) and The Avett Brothers wannabees (aka, Mumford & Sons) joined Bob Dylan for a rousing version of "Maggie's Farm." Man, I was so psyched to see this but, daggone-it Bob, the voice is about toast, man. Love ya, though....
* I'm not a big hip-hop fan, but I gotta give big ups to my homeys Eminem & Dr, Dre. Badass mofos, fo' sho'. My only request is that 2012 be the year of the anti-collaboration - how do they fit all that "featuring so & so" shit on the back of their CD covers?
* Arcade Fire - Album of the Year. Tres bien, Quebecers! Love those guys, and whew, do they wear me out watching them perform. So glad to see hard work and perseverance pay off. I take back what I said aboot Canada earlier (aboot, get it?). One thing though, how do you lose Alternative Album of the Year to The Black Keys, but win the whole she-bang? Just curious how that works...makes my brain achy.
* For a list of some of what you didn't see on TV - go here. Black Keys, Them Cooked Vultures, Iron Maiden, Jeff Beck, Buddy Guy, Neil Young - all winners. Never made it on "the big show," but with the Arcade Fire upset and takeover of the finale, plus The Avett Brothers performance, we're gettin' there....just next time let Cee Lo sing his own goddamn lyrics.
Monday, January 31, 2011
Oh yeah, and then there's the Super Bowl which Kid Rock kicks off & The Black Eyed Peas (Fergie & some other dudes to me) play halftime. Here's a link for the Worst (and Best) Halftime Shows Ever as well, in case you need to divert your attention away from Terry Bradshaw laughing at his own jokes for a while.
Stillers by 6 on a last minute drive by Big Ben, set up by a fumble recovery by Troy Polamalu's hair.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
From Rolling Stone.com -
Remembering Don Kirshner, Who Influenced Pop From the Brill Building to BubblegumBy David Browne
Most music fans knew Don Kirshner, who died Jan. 17 at age 76 of heart failure, as the straight-faced host of Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert, the rock TV show that ran between 1973 and 1981. But Kirshner was more than just a TV presence — he was also an illustrious music publisher and manager, not to mention the man who helped launch bubblegum and American prog.
As Kirshner told RS in a 2009 interview, there was no better example of his renown than his negotiations to book the Rolling Stones on his show in 1973. “I was a nervous wreck because the Stones were being offered a million dollars by the other networks,” Kirshner said. “I got Mick Jagger on the phone and he says, ‘So what are you giving me?’ I said, ‘300.’ He says, ‘300 grand?’ I said, ‘No, $300 a man.’ He laughed and said, ‘Chap, I love your work and I’m gonna do it for you.’ The Stones and the Beatles, they were into our American songs and writers.”
Dubbed the “Man with the Golden Ear” by Time in 1966, Kirshner couldn’t play an instrument but was a key figure in the early days of rock and pop. Although he harbored dreams of becoming a pro athlete while growing up in New York, he started writing songs in the late Fifties with his friend Bobby Darin, which led to the creation of Aldon Music, a publishing house Kirshner co-founded with Al Nevins. Among Aldon’s stable of writers were then-unknowns like Neil Diamond, Carole King, Gerry Coffin, Barry Mann, Cynthia Weil and Neil Sedaka. “I believed they were the future Gershwins and Rodgers and Hammersteins,” Kirshner told RS. “I felt if I had a break, I could build that dream.”
By hustling their songs to other artists, Kirshner made his dream come true: It’s hard to imagine the Sixties without Aldon and Brill Building gems like “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,” “Breaking Up Is Hard to Do” and “The Loco-Motion."
“He was such a character, so colorful,” says Paul Shaffer, who worked on a TV pilot with Kirshner in the Seventies and became a longtime friend. “If he loved a record, he’d call people from the studio and hold up the phone to the speaker. He’d describe how excited he was when Neil Diamond came in with ‘I’m a Believer.’ He really loved this music.”
When Kirshner sold Aldon to Columbia-Screen-Gems in the mid-Sixties, Kirshner was given creative control over one of the company’s new TV series, The Monkees, resulting in their early hits “Last Train to Clarksville,” “I’m a Believer” and “(I’m Not Your) Steppin’ Stone.”
Kirshner’s tenure with the Monkees didn’t last long; the group grew to resent his control over their music. But even then, Kirshner emerged triumphant. At a meeting with the group at the Beverly Hills Hotel, Kirshner presented them with a new song he urged them to cover: “Sugar, Sugar.”
“Mike Nesmith said, ‘It’s a piece of junk — I’m not doing it,’” Kirshner told RS. “I came home and my son Ricky was reading an Archie comic book, and I thought that if I could give a voice to Archie, Jughead and Veronica, I could do the same thing, so I created the Archies.”
The all-cartoon band’s version of “Sugar, Sugar” was Number One for four weeks in 1969 and helped launch what became known as bubblegum pop. “That’s all because the Monkees wouldn’t do my song and got me PO’d,” Kirshner said.
Kirshner’s influence extended to the following decade. Rock Concert prided itself on live — not lip-synched — performances by nearly every major band of the time. For many rock fans in the Seventies, the show was their first exposure to David Bowie, the Allman Brothers Band, Kiss, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Ramones and the Mahavishnu Orchestra.
Shaffer affectionately parodied Kirshner’s famously wooden delivery and wide-lapel suits on Saturday Night Live. (“He got a kick out of it,” Shaffer says. “He would tell me, ‘Ed Sullivan was stiff, too, but he got the gig too.’”) Kirshner also signed Kansas to his label, Kirshner Records, during which they had their biggest hits, like “Dust in the Wind” and “Carry On My Wayward Son.”
At the time of his death, Kirshner was retired and living with his longtime wife Sheila in Boca Raton, Florida. Although he felt overlooked in the annals of rock history, Kirshner prided himself on his vast song catalog (recently estimated to be worth $1 billion) and the lessons he’d passed along to those who came after him, like controversial Beatles and Stones business manager Allen Klein. “One of the things I taught Allen in the beginning was that the value of a song copyright was like real estate,” Kirshner told RS. “I kept telling him, ‘There’s nothing greater than a song.’”
Friday, November 26, 2010
Thanks to our NYC correspondent, Miss Erin, for sharing this breaking news over Thanksgiving dinner!!
Listen: Ryan Adams releases 'Destroyer' in advance of 'Cardinals' set
By Katie Hasty - Double-disc 'Cardinals III/IV' gets a December release
Friday, Nov 19, 2010 8:17 PM
Aside from that "Sci-Fi metal" concept record "Orion," things have been fairly quiet on the solo Ryan Adams front. He helped out Norah Jones on a track, and the same with Weezer.
Ring the bell, now, though. The rocker and folker (and not-so-secret metal and rap lover) has assigned a Dec. 14 release date to "III/IV," an double-album of material recorded with his previous band the Cardinals during their 2007 "Easy Tiger" sessions, to be out via Adams' own PAX AM label. And, according to a release, it's a "concept rock opera about the '80s, ninjas, cigarettes, sex and pizza." Well, whatever.
As an enduring Adams fan -- through the jams and the firings and the podcasts and poetry and hiatuses and boring-as-hell last studio effort (sorry) -- I'm ready to try out whatever Adams wants to throw at the wall, to see what sticks.
One of these is "Destroyers," which is not on the "III/IV" tracklist (below) but is at least a taste of things to come, perhaps. A little trippy, a little soft-rock and totally imperfect, it's a decent tune that sounds somewhat unfinished... but I dig. Some of the songwriter's best material is when he sounds vulnerable and feral, and that's the MO here. And forget click-track: this is what comes out of d*cking around in the studio comfortably for a while.
There will be limited releases of red and blue vinyl and CDs of "III/IV," and the tracks will also be up for sale digitally.
Here is the tracklist for "III/IV":III:
Breakdown Into The Resolve
Stop Playing With My Heart
Lovely And Blue
Kisses Start Wars
The Crystal Skull
Sewers at the Bottom of the Wishing Well
My Favorite Song
Death And Rats
Kill The Light
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Start Me Up: The Top 10 Riffs of the 1980s
Somewhere deep in the primordial ooze of rock and roll there exists a phenomenon known as the “riff,” with the power to make a decent song great, and a great song an all-time classic. There were a handful of great riffs in the ’50s (“Susie Q” comes to mind), but the form really began to flourish in the ’60s, at the hands of Dave Davies, Pete Townshend, Keith Richards and other, predominantly British, guitar heroes. In the ’70s, it was part and parcel with “classic” rock. You couldn’t throw a pet rock without hitting some axeman coming up with his own “Iron Man” or “Sweet Home Alabama.” The ’80s kept the tradition running, with guitarists from decades past, like Keith Richards and Tony Iommi, still flexing their muscles, along with a new breed of riffmasters like Slash and Vivian Campbell.
It’s tough narrowing down the decade of Reagan and Rubik’s Cubes – and when all-stars like Eddie Van Halen, Tony Iommi and the boys from Iron Maiden don’t make the cut, you know you’ve got a tough list – but here are the 10 we deem the most totally awesome of the 1980s:
10. Rush, “Limelight”
You’ve got to love Alex Lifeson. Blessed (or cursed) with sharing trio space with one of the best bass players on the planet and probably the best drummer on Earth, Lifeson still manages to stand out with imaginative solos and, in the case of this Moving Pictures tour de force, major league riffage – his best since “Passage to Bangkok.”
9. Guns N’ Roses, “Sweet Child o’ Mine”
Appetite for Destruction ushered in a new age of stripped down, rip-out-your-throat rock and roll. And while the album was stacked with heavy hitters like “Welcome to the Jungle” and “Mr. Brownstone,” it was the ballad of the set that had the most unique and memorable riff. Kudos to Slash, Izzy and company for finding a way to wrap a love song around this torturous hand exercise.
8. The Clash, “Should I Stay or Should I Go”
Sometimes you only need two chords to kick an audience in the teeth, and certainly Mick Jones and Joe Strummer did just that with this Combat Rock fave. Beginners, if you need a showpiece for that school talent show but only know a handful of chords (no pun intended), you could do a lot worse.
7. Michael Jackson (featuring Steve Lukather), “Beat It”
Even metal dudes had to cop to the fact that this Michael Jackson track freakin’ rocked. Yes, it had that insane guitar solo by Eddie Van Halen, but the engine driving the song was a weighty bounce by session whiz Steve Lukather.
6. Judas Priest, “Breaking the Law”
Priest fans might argue that “Livin’ after Midnight” or “Heading Out to the Highway” are more deserving – fair play, I actually prefer “Highway” – but it’s hard to deny the brutal simplicity of this British Steel classic. Kinda makes you want to rob a bank with your guitar, doesn’t it?
5. Def Leppard, “Photograph”
There’s a bit of alchemy on this one, not unlike the opening chord of The Beatles’ “A Hard Day’s Night.” There are actually two guitar parts interwoven on this seemingly simple blast from Pyromania. It proved to be a memorable entrance for Phil Collen into the band, just as their career was about to kick into overdrive.
4. Scorpions, “Rock You Like a Hurricane”
Maybe the heaviest combination of simple power chords ever, Rudolf Schenker’s five-chord opening on this Love at First Sting track is instantly memorable – the key to any great riff. Case in point: I defy you to attend an air show and not hear this song 10 times!
3. Ozzy Osbourne (featuring Randy Rhoads), “Crazy Train”
In the 1980s, you couldn’t throw a dead cat in a music store without hitting some kid playing this Randy Rhoads warhorse. The churning, sinister opening section hurls the song forward and creates a momentum that never lets up, even as Ozzy takes it off the rails.
2. The Rolling Stones, “Start Me Up”
Twelve years after “Honky Tonk Women,” Keith Richards could still conjure an open-tuned gem like no one else. This 1981 classic is so stirring that nearly 30 years later you’re still unlikely see a football stadium not use it to psych their fans up for a kickoff.
1. AC/DC, “Back in Black”
Perhaps the greatest riff-oriented album of all time is the band’s 1980 farewell to dearly departed singer Bon Scott. Brothers Angus and Malcolm Young cooked up some of the greatest riffs of their career on this magnum opus (including “You Shook Me All Night Long,” “Hell’s Bells” and “Have a Drink on Me”), but none is more memorable than the hard and heavy title track.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
8 Cliff Burton, age: 25 – Metallica
Cliff Burton helped provide the groove to Metallica’s domination of thrash metal in the 1980s and lived up to the hard partying lifestyle with his fellow band mates. However, it wasn’t the booze that d brought the reaper knocking. While sleeping on the bus in route to gig in Sweden, the bus flipped over sending Cliff out the window and then rolling over and crushing him. The cause of the accident isn’t entirely clear. Some say weather conditions were to blame others claim the driver was drunk, either way Metallica forged ahead. Cuz, that’s metal, man!
7 Bon Scott, age: 33 – AC/DC
Hey there, young rockers, we know you like to party after the show with the groupies and what not. But take a note from former AC/DC front man Bon Scott — don’t get so plastered that you pass out in a car in below freezing temperatures and choke to death on your own vomit. It’s gross and really pisses off your band mates. Some say Scott choked others claim it was hypothermia, but regardless, rock lost a great front-man. And what about lil old AC/DC you ask? Well, they went on to finish the monumental album Back in Black, which they had already started writing with Scott before he expired.
6 “Mama” Cass Elliot, age: 32 – The Mamas & The Papas
Part of the popular 1960s folk group, The Mamas & The Papas, Cass Elliot was… how should I say, on the bigger side of the scale. After a string of shows in London, Cass was found dead with a partially eaten ham sandwich by her bedside — and behold, the legend of Mama Cass choking to death while shoving food into her face is born! Whether or not this actually happened has been debated for years, but the coroner’s cause of death was ruled, “fatty myocardial degeneration due to obesity.” Damn, that sounds even worse than choking to death! Take note, Kirstie Alley, that’s all I’m saying…
5 Darrell “Dimebag” Abbott, age: 38 – Pantera
Probably one of heavy metal’s best guitarists, Dimebag was generally known as a friendly outgoing guy among his peers and fans, which made it even more surprising that he was murdered. Here’s the scoop, Darrell was performing with his new band Damageplan in an Ohio nightclub when a schizophrenic fan, charged the stage and shot Darrel, killing him and three others. It’s one thing to be shot while walking home to your pad (John Lennon) or by your father (Marvin Gaye) but c’mon, let the guy finish his guitar solo!
4 Brian Jones, age: 27 – The Rolling Stones
A founding member of the Stones, Brian Jones was always a bit of an outsider from the rest of the group, but a talented multi-instrumentalist nonetheless. The guy liked to party and was found motionless at the bottom of his swimming pool by his model girlfriend at the time. The official cause on his death certificate read, “death by misadventure” which I gotta say, sounds a lot cooler than how Elvis went out. Some rock historians attribute that this “misadventure” was actually homicide at the hands of a construction worker who had been working on the rocker’s home.
3 Randy Rhoads, age: 25 – Ozzy Osbourne, Quiet Riot
Okay, so a lot of rock stars have died in plane crashes- Stevie Ray Vaughn, Buddy Holly, half of Lynyrd Skynyrd, etc etc. But I’m gonna mention Randy Rhodes simply because he was so awesome and it’s my list (go make your own if you don’t like it). Ozzy Osbourne probably wouldn’t have had a career after Black Sabbath if not for hiring young axe virtuoso Randy Rhodes. During a tour stop, Rhodes and the band’s hairdresser went for a plane joyride while the rest of the band napped on the bus. Upon flying too close to the ground the plane’s pilot clipped the bus and crashed the plane, killing all on board. Bummer.
2 Michael Hutchence, age: 37 – INXS
So whatever get’s you off sexually that’s your own business, just make sure it doesn’t kill you in the process. Before David Carradine kicked the bucket with a belt around his neck while getting his rocks off there was Aussie singer Michael Hutchence of INXS. Some say it was a suicide over distress from problems with his girlfriend, others claim it was autoerotic asphyxiation. Whatever the real reason, Hutchence bit the dust too early and INXS went on to appear on a horrible American Idol type reality show to find a new singer.
1 Johnny Ace, age: 25 – R&B singer
It’s probably a good idea that if your kid tells you he wants to be a blues musician to talk him out of it. Death, heartbreak, deals with the devil… there’s just too many cons in that profession. Memphis born Johnny Ace was a rhythm & blues singer with a bright future ahead of him… until he shot himself in the head. Apparently, while “killing” time on the bus (get it, get it?) Ace was playing with his .22 revolver after a bit of drinking. Upon being warned by another passenger to be careful Ace said, “It’s okay, gun’s not loaded… see?” and the rest is history.
Man, I miss that little dog.
By the way, this link stays up as long as RHT is in existence.