Saturday, August 6, 2011

I Love Lucy!!!

It's Lucille Ball's 100th birthday but happy birthday Lucille Ball didn't seem like a sufficiently descriptive title. She is a pioneer of television, a woman with star power even after she turned 40 (as if!), and the first woman to run a major television studio. Oh yeah, she's an icon.

Lucy's pre-TV background in B-movies and vaudeville informed the style of broad comedy in the show. And Desilu produced a couple more enduring shows (The Andy Griffith Show, Mission: Impossible, The Untouchables, Make Room for Daddy, I Spy, and That Girl to name just a few). Imagine how much more successful she would have been if she hadn't married that Mexican Cuban! I totally kid--Arnaz is also a television pioneer, and he secured one of the most savvy business deals in television history by retaining the rights to I Love Lucy, garnering them gazillions of dollars from reruns, of which there have been some... and name another Hispanic television star besides him and George Lopez (Charo doesn't count).

I think I heard that every minute of the day, I Love Lucy is airing somewhere in the world. I'm not sure if that's still true, or if it's been replaced by Family Guy. But certainly more than Raymond, everyone loves Lucy.

FUN FACT: Ball and Arnaz had 2 kids together, and John and I met 1 of them: Lucie Arnaz (AKA Lucie Arnaz-Luckinbill). We saw her in the wonderfully fun Dirty, Rotten Scoundrels (he's seen her more) and walked her to the subway after the matinee. I told her to say hi to husband Larry for us (Luckinbill, duh)... I wonder if she ever did.

Happy birthday dude! Rest in peace!

Song of the Day: "Soon My Work Will be Over"

San Francisco band Blind Willies evades easy musical description, which is awesome. They started as a folk duo, but with their third album, Needle, Feather and a Rope, they are rocking 5 members, including a cello player. This song, a tribute to Vic Chesnutt, is Americana with soul, but even that description seems to miss a quality. Download the track free here.

Portland peeps can see them Friday Aug. 12 at the White Eagle (it's haunted you know). They're up and down the West Coast now through late August.

  Blind Willies - Soon My Work Will Be Over by PlanetaryOnlinePR

Song: "Soon My Work Will be Over"
Artist: Blind Willies

Friday, August 5, 2011

Liza with an FU

(h/t Towleroad, even the title of this post)
Liza Minelli by Terry Richardson for Love Magazine

Song of the Day: "The Once and Future Carpenter"

(h/t Jared)

A new track from the Avett Brothers (altogether now: "Wooo!!!!").

I don't see any details on a new album, but they're due. I mean, they're prolific as shit, but it's been nearly 2 years since I and Love and You, their last full non-live album. Not that I've released any albums in that time.

I remember them playing this live ("in Salem, WOOOO!!!!") and I'll go out on a limb and guess that there is a religious element to the song: "If I live the life I'm given, I won't be scared to die." Just a hunch.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Song of the Day: "Going and Going. And Going"

Icebird is rjd2 and Aaron Livingston and I fucking LOVE IT! This is some funky shit! Download it free here.
  01-Going-and-Going.-And-Going by rebelagenda

Song: "Going and Going. And Going"
Artist: Icebird

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Kenny Powers, MFCEO

I'm sure the customer service employees at Andrews McMeel Publishing are just sobbing and rocking in a dark room right now. "It's okay... they're only words."

Songs of the Day: "Invincible"/"Wonderman"

Tinie Tempah/Disc-Overy
We round out the dozen albums shortlisted for the Mercury Prize with Tinie Tempah. Disc-overy  is his debut, and among his guests is Kelly Rowland and Ellie Goulding. At the risk of judging too early, let me say "yawn."

It's complex but lacks warmth. I'm not interested in exploring more. Sorry dude.

I love comments!

This isn't from my blog, but still... adore! It's from a blog post about Dick Morris predicting Obama will lose in a landslide (here).... I mean in 2012. It's NOT about the prediction Dick Morris made in 2008 about how Obama would lose to McCain in a landslide. Morris likes that prediction apparently. It's cute that he's consistent.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Thanking the troops

Here's the screenshot of the patches (click to embiggen).

Red Willow Supercell

(h/t David Mixner)

Today's funnies

Songs of the Day: "Let England Shake"/"The Last Living Rose"

PJ Harvey/Let England Shake
10 down, 2 to go in our review of the Mercury Prize shortlist. PJ Harvey, 2001 winner, is up next. I've featured "The Words That Maketh Murder" from Let England Shake, and that's not enough for her to be Adele-d (skipped because of so many songs already featured), so here are 2 more tracks.

I remain a little confused by PJ Harvey. It's a band, I think, with a lead singer named Polly Jean Harvey (who sometimes records under that name). Just like Sade except the solo album part. Or the sound. If Eric were to ever read this blog I'm sure he'd be pissed off by now, so enjoy!

Song: "Let England Shake"/"The Last Living Rose"
Artist: PJ Harvey

Monday, August 1, 2011

"Oh, what use is it to pretend that I have the strength for this anymore"

It's Michael Penn's birthday and I want to post something that's not THE HIT!!! or even the other hit. It really sucks that this is the best version I can find for this visually elaborate clip.


And here he is playing Dirk Digler's recording engineer during the recording of the shoulda-been nominated original song "You Got the Touch" from Boogie Nights. Yes, it's intentionally bad, but it's still better than that song from Hercules (sorry Alan Menken, but even you can admit it).

I am disappointed that Penn wimped out on singing "Voices Carry" when I saw him play with his wife (Mrs. Michael Penn) 11 or 12 years ago.

Happy birthday dude! Rock on!

Songs of the Day: "We Broke Free"/"She Wants"

Metronomy The English Riviera
Next stop on the review of the Mercury Prize shortlist is Metronomy's The English Rivieria. This is my first exposure to the band and I'm reading some effusive reviews citing everything from Boz Scaggs and Steely Dan to Pet Shop Boys and Wire. It took me forever to fall asleep last night so I'm very bleary eyed, but I'll say it sounds a lot like MGMT made a Steely Dan album and expect the anger to commence.

I do love the album cover. If it said Poco or Robbie Dupree underneath would you even question that it wasn't from 1979?

Song: "We Broke Free"/"She Wants"
Artist: Metronomy

Sunday, July 31, 2011

I love the milieu

How else could I possibly heckle Joe Biden and expect that maybe, in some tiny way, there's a chance of him hearing? So thank you Twitter.

I am also a regular heckler of Mittens Romney because, well, he makes himself such an easy target. I wish Mitt would actually come out as a reasonable moderate Republican so I can feel good about an alternative to Obama. As it stands Ron Paul is probably my best option: at least Paul cares about civil liberties. While Mittens is hunting varmints!
This is all I could find but there are many more.
Oh, another good option is the impeachment of Obama which yields President Joe Biden, and I can get behind that. Think of the antics!

My alma mater

(h/t Dan in OKC)

I'm a fan of Dan's blog (plenty of beefcake), so I was giddy that he posted a song from Stornoway (I may have written about them before [here]). Then I ran across a clip from Georgia State's inaugural football team members (6-5 last year and I'm guessing they play again soon, it's every year right?). It's not specific to GSU, I guess this dude does this schtick a lot, but still, go crimson panthers! I mean GENTLEMEN panthers.

Back to Broadway

(h/t to John at John Central)

The wonderful Jessica Walter is leaving the revival of Anything Goes (John really loved the revival, by the way), and Kelly Bishop will assume the role of Evangeline Harcourt in September. Yes, Kelly Bishop from the Gilmore Girls. Gilmore Girls Gilmore Girls Gilmore Girls infinity sqwee!!!

Bishop won a Tony for the original production of A Chorus Line and I had no idea I sang along with her on the cast album back when I used to clean the living room. Yes, totally gay, why do you ask?

Here she is performing her signature number, "At the Ballet" and rocking that leotard.

OMG why is there not a Gilmore Girls musical in the works?! Sqwee!!!

In the interest of fairness

Does this even need a caption?
Rep. David Wu (D-OR) is also resigning from a sex scandal, so the family values shit isn't exclusively a Republican phenomenon, but Wu really is exhibiting all flavors of crazy, so sexing up an 18-year old was just part of the fun (details here).

I lived in Wu's district and voted for him when he was first elected in 1998. He is the first Chinese American elected to the House of Representatives.

And last year I gave the Portland Mercury shit for endorsing his re-election (see it here).

I am fucking tired of being told I have to vote for someone because the alternative would be so much worse. And YES I'm talking about Barack Obama. Today's debt ceiling deal says a lot about Obama's priorities, and now he's establishing a bi-partisan committee... I'm sure that will go well. I hope to be drunk by then.

Another victory for abstinence

TN State Senator Paul Stanley
A Republican state Senator in Tennessee who opposes gays adopting and Planned Parenthood and is all crazy about the abstinence is resigning. On account of he was fucking his 22-year old intern. Details here.

Oh did I mention he's more than 2x her age (he's 47) and married and a father of 2? Or did that go without saying?

Now technically he believes unmarried people should not have sex, and since he is married, I'm sure it's okay.

I wonder if he voted in favor of the "don't say 'gay'" legislation that recently passed in that state (you know he totally did). He was probably totally in favor the impeachment of Bill Clinton.

Fun with the concepts of math!

Above: One of the Statistics Propaganda posters at Nausicaa Distribution's etsy shop.

Below: Doghouse Diaries illustrates causation vs. correlation. My dogs have this one covered. (Click to embiggen.)
Doghouse Diaries

Below (h/t Flowingdata): Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal probably gave some Americans a bad idea (here)

Songs of the Day: "Bubble"/"Your Own Spell"

Number 8 on the shortlist for this year's Mercury Prize is Diamond Mine, a collaboration between King Creosote and John Hopkins. I heard a track from this on Passport Approved a few months ago but Shazam wasn't able to identify it. I remember the name Creosote, but forgot to look further since I didn't have the tag to remind me. D'oh.

The music is lovely: impassioned yet languid, reminding me of the best parts of Bon Iver's For Emma, Forever Ago. And here's why: the guys describe the album as the "soundtrack to a romanticized version of a life lived in a Scottish coastal village." In other words SCOTS! You know I love my Scottish musicians, and this is TWO of them. So, duh. If Sheena Easton sang on this I would totally freak out from bliss. Something tells me I'll end up buying this one pretty soon (I did the same with Villagers during last year's short list review).

Song: "Bubble"/"Your Own Spell"
Artist: King Creosote/Jon Hopkins