Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Craig Brewer, writer and director of Hustle & Flow and Black Snake Moan, is directing $5 Cover, a series of fifteen web based short films in and around Memphis, profiling Memphis hometown heroes and musicians by showcasing them in their element: performance.
These shorts, each approximately eight minutes long, will be built around a particular song by the featured artist of the episode. Some of the musicians featured are:
Ben Nichols of Lucero
Cody Dickinson of the North Mississippi All-Stars
rapper Al Kapone
and many more...
Production was slated to start on July 18th, and as one of my Memphis connections told me today, she happened by the film crew set up outside of one of their locations in Midtown. I can't remember where she said they were at, as I am not too familiar with the Memphis scene. But she is on the lookout for more tapings...hopefully she will get in on the action of a couple of them.
Thanks for the heads up, JN.
The Mudcrutch album (which came out months ago in April...yes, I'm behind, but I have had it since then...so there!) is good, but I'd obviously take a good ol' TP & the HBs album any day over this. I would have loved to hear Mudcrutch 35 years ago, before the Heartbreakers, before the money, before (excessive) drugs and fame, before over-produced albums (thanks Dave Stewart). It would have been awesome, probably in the same way that you might have heard Sir Thomas for the first time...whether it was "American Girl" in the 70s, "Runnin' Down a Dream" or "Free Fallin' " in the 80s, "Mary Jane's Last Dance" in the 90s...and I guess whatever he's put out in the 2000s... Only with the original trek of Mudcrutch in the 70s, you would know that TP and the 'Breakers are youngsters by appearance, not by their ability by any means.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
In other KOL news, they are also releasing a series of "home" videos leading up to the release of the new album. Look for them on their website as well. They are kinda funny.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
His portrayal of The Joker is by far the best, and by the term of "best" I mean he was the worst. I don't know if there has ever been a more evil, maniacal and menacing character that will stop at nothing to destroy everything ever in any film. At least there shure hasn't been one like this in quite some time. His take on the Joker, most notably played by Jack Nicholson in Tim Burton's Batman, is simply unbelievable. You have to see it to even begin to have some sort of a grasp on how good of a job Heath did. And after you see it, you will understand why he alledgedly went crazy at the end of his short life.
However, you will not understand how he took this character that we all laughed at (and with) when Nicholson portrayed Joker, and turned it inside out, twisted it even more, ripped out any sense of compassion and reason, and put it on the screen for us to enjoy. Heath put everything he had into this character for all of us. This was a once in a lifetime role that he put his soul into. And it didn't make it out.
Go see The Dark Knight. And thank Heath for making this movie what it is. And what any future Batman movie (possibly any movie with a villain, or maybe any movie that requires any acting...at all) cannot and simply will never be.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
From Crackle: Everlast: "Folsom Prison Blues"
Hell, Everlast should have covered Stairway to Heaven while he was at it too. He could have sampled House of Pain's Jump Around as it's backing track.
Who let this happen at the Cash camp? Or was it Columbia? Who has the rights to "Folsom Prison Blues" these days? I think it's either House of Cash, Inc. or Sun Entertainment Corporation. Whoever it is, has chosen poorly by allowing Everlast to cover this.
The video is atrocious. Preposterous. Pompous. Blasphemous. I am appalled. Really. My spirit, and more importantly, Cash's legacy, just died a little bit.
I have no doubt that JC is rollin' over here.
(and yes, I took this picture of the Cashs' grave site in my pilgrimage there two years ago.)
Motorhead are releasing their new album Motorized on August 26th! Go ahead and brace yourself and prepare your ears to bleed! Here is the track list for the upcoming album Motorizer:
(Teach You How To) Sing The Blues
Time Is Right
When The Eagle Screams
Don't Die Ashamed
Back On The Chain
And if that is not enough, Motorhead is touring this summer and fall too. Click here for tickets and see below for dates:
Susquehanna Bank Center
PNC Bank Arts Center
Nikon at Jones Beach
Post Gazette Pavilion
DTE Energy Music Theatre
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
San Antonio, TX
Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
Cricket Wireless Pavilion
San Bernardino, CA
Glen Helen Pavilion
Mountain View, CA
MOTORHEAD NORTH AMERICA 2008
w/ The Misfits, Airbourne, Valient Thorr & Year Long Disaster
San Diego, CA
House of Blues
Las Vegas, NV
House of Blues
The Fillmore Auditorium
N. Kansas City, MO
St. Louis, MO
St. Paul, MN
Grand Rapids, MI
The Orbit Room
Newport Music Hall
Rams Head Live!
The Electric Factory
I have been seeing, reading and hearing about Rainn Wilson's upcoming movie The Rocker for quite some time, but actually just saw the trailer for the first time this week. This movie will obviously be extremely silly, but it will be a travesty not to check it out...at least at the matinee price.
Speaking of the Rocker, the word on the street, according to Variety, is that Paramount and Jack Black are gearing up for their next tour, with the School of Rock 2: America Rocks. Black will reprise his role as Dewey Finn, a down and out rocker posing as a school teacher in order to achieve rock god-dom, but this time taking his students, err, band, on a cross country tour.
And while we're on the subject of rock on the big screen, Harmonix and MTV Games have unveiled the setlist for Rock Band 2 this week. Some of the highlights include:
AC/DC - Let There Be Rock
Dinosaur Jr. - Feel The Pain
Guns N' Roses - Shackler's Revenge (from the "upcoming" Chinese Democracy album)
Mastodon - Colony of Birchmen
Motorhead - Ace of Spades
Sonic Youth - Teenage Riot
Talking Heads - Psycho Killer
The Replacements - Alex Chilton
Check out the setlist here.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Sir Thomas and the Breakers, of course, did not disappoint. Do they ever? I've seen Tom a handful of times, and I have certainly never been disappointed...well, at least with the show. Ticket pricing, the crowd, and the length of show are a different story.
I'll start with the ticket pricing. Tom Petty is fairly priced. Actually, I would be inclined to pay a little more than the $29.50 that I paid for my ticket. Hell, I'd go as far as $35, maybe even $40. But, when good ol' Ticketmaster gets involved, and rears it's head, a $30 tickets balloons into the small festival price of $52 and change...for one ticket. Ridiculous if you ask me. The fees amounted to over 75% of the face value of the ticket...I figure I should get 75% more show, or at least a beer or two included in the cost. Not the case. Instead I got:
- a(n) (in)convenience fee for me bending over so easily
- a facility charge for the location of the financial molestation and moral degradation of me (and 30,000 others at the sold out TP show)
- a TicketFast fee, which, luckily, the act and breach of my character and standards of paying an exorbitant amount was all over in just about the relatively short amount of time;(it sure was FAST!)
- a processing fee for my realization of what had just happened, and the guilt and shame that I will forever live with here on out.
I never thought that I would agree with Eddie Vedder so much...
I have always loved crowds. I like the feeling, the atmosphere, the electricity and the feeling of brotherhood and community that they exude. I went to Bonnaroo and loved it for God's sake. However, as I get older, and (un)fortunately more and more sober at shows (as I am learning that I actually like to remember them now), the crowd seems to get in my way at big shows. I love clubs,small venues and theatres. I like Bonnaroo, but that is a different scenario. For some reason, I felt like the old guy at the club that keeps getting ran over and made fun of for being a "square" when he was trying to enjoy himself out in the crowd. So then I would move over and feel like the nerd on the wall at the dance. I guess I was just the most sober person there, and with the drive back to our friend's afterwards, someone had to be. It felt like a big frat party with all the kids falling all over themselves, and more importantly me. It's no fun, unless it's me doing the falling, dammit.
Ok, the length of the show was two hours. That is great. My only complaint is that Sir Thomas isn't still playing nearly four days later. I could listen to the Heartbreakers all day and all night; all week even. They are the tightest band in the land, hands down. Want to argue? Argue. What'd ya got? Respond below.
You Wreck Me
Listen To Her Heart
I Won't Back Down
Even The Losers
Mary Jane's Last Dance
Cabin Down Below
End Of The Line (Traveling Wilburys)
Breakdown (with a "Give It To Me" freestyle verse or two)
Saving Grace (jammed out!)
A Face In The Crowd
You Don't Know How It Feels
Learning To Fly
Don't Come Around Here No More
Runnin' Down A Dream
Tom never disappoints, and I hope he never will. I'm just glad he's out there still doing it, and doing it better than ever. Better than anyone today. Yes, I said it, again. What you got?
Thanks to KC for the "Look arrow" graphic.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Watch the Boss plays "Thunder Road" for Big Russ, as he called him, via satellite from Europe. My friends all agreed that if this didn't make you tear up just a bit, you have no soul.
Well, do you?
Monday, July 7, 2008
Most of my friends are Johnny Cash fans. Actually, they are fanatics, as am I (but who isn't a self-proclaimed JC fanatic these days?). Even the girls are. But most all of my buddies hold Cash up to a higher level of like and respect, as there really isn't anyone live or dead that can compare to the Man in Black. (Insert your own comment or begin your argument here. I'm ready. Trust me.)
So, two weekends ago, one of the aforementioned buddies had his bachelor party in Tunica, Mississippi. And being that Tunica is just a short ways from Memphis, I naturally wanted to stop by and see Sun Studios, Graceland, Beale Street, etc... Alas, there was no time for that, as we had other vices that needed tending to rather than another rock n roll history tour...maybe next time.
After the weekend was over, we all went our separate ways back to Atlanta, Knoxville, Memphis, Nashville and a few other places that we have spread out to over the last few years of adulthood. Two of the gentlemen in attendance held a seven hours Johnny Cash marathon on the ride back to Atlanta, complete with Live from Folsom Prison, American Recordings I-V, and I think one of the multitudes of his greatest hits collection. During this epic listening session of Cash, one of the fellows brought to the attention of another of the fellows that he had come into contact with a friend of a friend that was not versed in the ways of Cash, at all. This is obviously a travesty, even in the eyes of a day-to-day, casual, in passing acquaintance of Cash's music and catalog. (If you too are not versed in the House of Cash, please let us know, and we'll see if we can get you caught up to speed)
As a result of the discussion, and fueled by the 7-hour enduring Cash-athon, a one-disc, listener takes all, greatest hits compilation would be made for the unenlightened person of discussion in hopes of reversing their misfortune of ignorance and to fill a void that is certain to exist in their heart and and certainly in their soul.
Upon a group email to the core of the Cash-heads of the group, an invitation was extended for suggested tracks, or for a full disc's worth of Cash material: career encompassing. My first thought: It can't be done. My second thought: No way in hell. There's no way. No way to squeeze 50 years of music into less than 80 minutes of bliss. Yes, 80 minutes is easy. All encompassing for the non-believer, not so much. But nevertheless, we continued in the debate. A debate that is still going as a matter of fact. One that is at 60+ emails in a group of five or six great debaters. Individual songs were discussed and tossed around at first, then handfuls of the obvious, the not-so obvious and a few hidden jewels and gems of the Man in Black.
The taxing debate then turned to full on track listings of the mythical "perfect Cash collection". Everyone had a full list. Consequently, everyone had revisions, corrections, additions and subtractions after seeing other lists, and remembering that perfect song that they had forgotten during the first rounds of their official rough draft. Every era was included of course, and probably weighed heaviest on the American Recordings songs, as they seemed more likely to convert not only a Non-Cash fan, but a naysayer of country music altogether, due to the reasoning that if JC doesn't speak one's soul on the American songs, then no soul existed to begin with and the listener was destined for damnation anyways.
Some are wanting to make it the run of the mill, typical greatest hits disc with a few deeper cuts and not so familiar tunes. Some are wanting mostly obscure Sun tracks, a Columbia Records take or two and a few criers from the American series. Some have suggested a collection of all time periods, with equal representation from all time periods from the 1950s on through now, as there still seems to be "new" Cash material still popping up every year or so, even nearly 5 years after his death, Tupac and Biggie style.
As of today, this imaginary disc is still in the works. It's still a toss up. I have my track suggestions that I will review once more and will post tomorrow. If I remember correctly, I believe that it's at 24 tracks and right at the 80 minute threshold of a compact disc.
If you have a suggestion, please send it in. All eras of Cash are fair game; however, do not send in suggestions of "Ring of Fire", "Hurt", "Folsom Prison Blues", "Walk the Line" or any other JC song you'd hear at a frat party or on the radio. We already have them covered, and probably have discarded a few of them as deemed appropriate. Please note that this also includes "A Boy Named Sue".
This boundless task has been hard to nail down, my friend. And it will continue to be...
However, you can still check out the first video for the single "Two Angry Kids" here. While you're clicking and wasting time at work or at the crib, stream some of the new tunes at their myspace. See what you think.
Think of the movie Good Will Hunting. Will and his buddies/brothers are shown all around a certain town, oh wait, it's Boston too (coincidentally). The brothers stick together. They work together. They live together. They drink together. They fight against and for each other, together. Like a band of brothers; a gang. Except rather than the five guys in the Street Dogs, there was "Marky, Ricky, Danny, Terry, Mikey, Davey, Timmy, Tommy, Joey, Robby, Johnny, and Brian...and Willy", and they would do anything for each other, as would the Street Dogs. As a listener and a fan of them, one feels like they belong to something special, a tight, close-knit group of brothers, even if no one is actually related by blood. This is due to the cliched growing up songs (that the Dogs pull off I might add), dealing with everything from school bullies, partying, girls, getting into trouble, etc. The songs go back to the basics of adolescence, but touch on the undeniable and unforgetable facets of growing up and moving onto the next level of life with and without your crew. However, the ol' gang is still in tact, as they are bound by a common bond of unity, a sense of belonging and one of brotherhood.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
And yes, Daniel Craig is a hard ass. He might not be as quote-unquote suave as Connery and others before, but he still pulls it off, and adds another layer of ruggedness and badass-ity that Bond typically doesn't display.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Upcoming Friday highlights, for better or for worse:
Tegan & Sara
The American Plague
My Morning Jacket
Meanwhile, check out My Morning Jacket's already legendary, 4-hour late night set on Friday night in the rain-soaked fields of Manchester, Tennessee.
**Thanks to The Steam Engine for the MMJ link and graphic
Here's his six song set that I taped in three segments:
Hard Livin' and Ain't Glad I'm Leaving
The Ghost of Virginia and Biscuits
Lone Pine Hill and South Georgia Sugar Babe
Justin and company went on to play a great show later that night at the World Grotto, too, but I felt that this performance felt more like home and more indicative of JTE and what his music feels like, sounds like and strangely enough, looks like.
What makes JTE so unique is that he is ironically, unique. He is not trying to be his Daddy. In all actuality, he is completely different from his Daddy, musically (their personal lives and bad habits are somewhat synonymous with each other, as both have led lives on the road and battled drug addictions for many years). As Steve's music has changed over the years from county and rock, to folk and faux new-age, the younger Earle's music harkens back to days of old, where your family and you, after Saturday night dinner, would crowd around a small radio that the father saved up for for months and bought with savings from his hard work in the fields or at the factory. After dinner, you would rush over to the radio to tune in to the one station that that small wooden box with the bright light in the center could pick up. But what a big, bright sound that small radio would make, and that big, bright sound would sound something like JTE sounds today: Tales of love and leaving, death and destruction, addiction and salvation; complete with his southern drawl and fast-talking lines that creep out of the side of his mouth as if they have been sneaking out for years.
And it helps that Justin doesn't resemble his famous Daddy at all. He is slender, and tall. And by tall, I mean tall. At least 6'5". When he puts on his going-out-on-the-town suit for his evening shows, his sly smile, long, slender body and silver tongued honky-tonk and occasional desolate and despair-ridden lyrics from times gone past might just maybe remind you of someone from yesteryear.
And his name was Williams.
Check JTE out at: