Monday, December 17, 2018

Song of the Day: "Girl in the Movies"

I was a little surprised to see the 3 Golden Globe Original Song nominees that aren't the big song from A Star is Born or the big song from Black Panther: an awful Annie Lennox song, a well-intentioned but forgettable song by the dude from Sigur Ros (and someone else), and a song by Dolly Parton from a movie about falling in love with Dolly Parton!!!

The plot of Dumplin' is a bit confusing (read about it here), but it's on Netflix so shut up and watch it tonight. Dolly wrote 6 new songs for the movie and recorded another 6 (making 12 songs from Dolly in total, duh). Can it beat "Shallow"?



Song: "Girl in the Movies"
Artist: Dolly Parton

Notes on Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Can You Ever Forgive Me? is a downbeat movie that is matter-of-fact about its unlikeable characters. Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant, who are both very good in the movie, don't try for anything but portraying grim and very real people. And they succeed nicely.

The movie's best shots at Oscar nominations are Richard E. Grant for Best Supporting Actor (an award he's picked up from 5 critics associations, and nominated for by the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), Melissa McCarthy for Best Actress (an award she's won from 3 critics associations [plus 2 nebulous awards from film festivals], and nominated for by the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), and Best Adapted Screenplay (received from 2 critics associations, with a handful of nominations pending as well). 

The movie is too austere for me to see it getting additional nominations (although, frankly, the costume design is great, the production design is nice, and the cinematography is good--but none of these things is sufficiently flashy to get attention come Oscar nomination time).

All 3 (Grant, McCarthy and Adapted Screenplay) are likely nominees, with Grant the most likely of the 3 to win.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Song of the Day: "King of Alabama"

That Brent Cobb's Providence Canyon is a really good album doesn't mean he's not a record label's attempt at having the next Chris Stapleton. Or does the success of one long-haired, blue collar, Nashville songwriter stepping up with a musical combination of country, rock, and bluegrass, naturally mean that Nashville record labels have always supported this exact kind of act for decades?

It's like Adele getting signed right after Amy Winehouse hit big, or Coldplay after Radiohead, or Tracy Bonham after Alanis Morrisette, or Counting Crows after the Dave Matthews Band, or, wait, what's my point? I forget.

This song is about Wayne Mills who probably shouldn't have been smoking there.



Song: "King of Alabama"
Artist: Brent Cobb

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Song of the Day: "Fulton County Jane Doe"

This week I learned that I've been spelled Brandi Carlile's name wrong for years now. I took my dad to see her open for Shawn Colvin a decade ago. Literally the summer of 2008, 10 years, 5 or 6 months... I'm not just some lame blogger who is only now learning of her.

I am a lame blogger who is only now learning to spell her last name.

Whatever. There's a real story behind the song (allegedly), according to this comment on the song's YouTube page:
For anyone curious this song is about a real woman who was found beaten but still alive on the side of an expressway on January 13, 1988. She died a few days later in the hospital and still remains to be unidentified (I'm pretty sure the writer meant she remains unidentified or that she remains to be identified, since it's probably not possibly to unidentify someone). This song is heartbreaking and this poor woman went to the grave with not so much as her name and a family wondering what happened to their child. Here's her DoeNetwork page. 
There is something about the story of this unidentified woman's death that reminded me of a wonderfully written, justifiably angry piece on a serial killer in Toronto and the relationship between Toronto's police and the GQ-BLT community there: "Death in the Village" by Anthony Oliveria. Devoid of context, "We have no superheroes. We are alone," is a grim quote.

Within the context of the article, it's worse. The article is an emotional gut punch and I highly recommend it.

If anything is keeping me going, it's knowing that Avengers End Game is coming. I hope to hold on until then.



Song: "Fulton County Jane Doe"
Artist: Brandi Carlile

Friday, December 14, 2018

Quote of the Day: the weakly standard edition

"TAKE THAT YOU NEVER TRUMPERS"--former game show host Chuck Woolery, on Twitter, giddy over the "death" of the Weekly Standard
I started reading the Weekly Standard's daily email recaps of the news because, after the fucking election, I needed to understand how much of a bubble I was living in, with my regular diet of The Daily Show, the Washington Post, and SNL's Weekend Update (fair and balanced, right?). This would force me to confront the real truth on things, like Hillary Clinton selling uranium to Russia in the completely unsupervised Uranium One deal immediately after she personally killed Americans in Benghazi and gave the order to the Super Friends to stand down when they totally could have saved everyone, no problem, and, more than anything, her emails.

Also, she killed Seth Rich, was running a child sex slave ring out of Comet Ping Pong, and was responsible for countless false flag operations.

Meanwhile, a great man, a billionaire, stepped up to fight for freedom and make America an un-laughing stock again. Okay, Jesus, I just can't at the moment. People watch this and think it rocks?!!!

Weekly Standard had the audacity to call Trump out on all his bullshit occasionally suggest that maybe the rhetoric about the fake news was a bit much. And for that, they have been killed.

Stay classy Chuck Woolery...
See ya.

Song of the Day: "Run James Run"

Today's song was an unreleased gem (until last year's Playback when it was, obviously, released) from Brian Wilson.

I'm torn between liking it for its own merits, liking it because it eschews theremin-heavy experimentation, and liking it because I'm rooting for Wilson.  One of those, for sure.



Song: "Run James Run"
Artist: Brian Wilson

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Song of the Day: "Wonderfully Made"

I don't recall how or when I first started getting promotional emails for Besides Daniel. If I clicked the links in the email, they must not have sent me to any place particularly memorable before. Today's email sent me to a lovely, lyrical piece, teeming with sentimentality and accentuated with lovely harmonies. 

Besides Besides Daniel, the song features Adam Sams (any relation to Sam Adams? probably not) who is from the semi-oxymoronically named North Augusta, South Carolina. 

So much word play tonight. I think it's past my bed time.


Song: "Wonderfully Made"
Artist: Besides Daniel/Adam Sams