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9/11 + 4   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Sunday, September 11, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council lost its offices, studios and an artist o­n September 11, 2001. How is the LMDC commemorating the fourth anniversary of 9/11?

With an exhibition titled "A Knock at the Door." The exhibition includes depictions of President Bush as Osama bin Laden or Momar Khadafi. Mug shots of Condoleeza Rice, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and the president. Fake postage stamps showing President Bush with a gun to his head.  An American flag reconstructed into a straitjacket. A painting showing Wizard of Oz characters prancing down a yellow brick road as the Twin Towers burn in the background. War hero and former NFL star Pat Tillman, who joined the military after the 9/11 attacks and was killed apparently accidentally by fellow Army Rangers in Afghanistan, is featured in what appears to be the cover of a mock magazine called Friendly Fire:

"My death was tragic. My glory was short-lived. Flawed perceptions of myself, my country and the War o­n Terror resulted in the disastrous end to my life."

And not o­ne, but two, people produced fake bombs that had to be checked by the police after o­ne claimed that he intended to build a real bomb from items o­n sale in stores and that could be detonated via cellphone.

This exhibition is part of Cities, Art and Recovery, a conference that "will consider how people remember and rebuild after tragedy and how the arts have been crucial to such recovery."

Oddly enough, some of the families who lost members o­n 9/11 do not feel helped by the exhibit or the conference.

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Dr. John, Nick Cave, Diamond Nights, Shoe-blogging and over 130 animals!   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, September 09, 2005 - 08:30 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: Our site admin Lance has plenty of games up at his site. Let's start with the classics.

SUFJAN STEVENS tells the Cleveland Scene that he is more comfortable with storytelling than with history or politics.

THE ROLLING STONES are having so much trouble getting their new single played o­n the radio that they’ve hired a "specialist" to help them. Former Sony International exec Rick Dobbis may be paid as much as 500K to "work" the stations. Roger Friedman blames Clear Channel for fracturing radio into so many genres that there’s almost no place for an "oldies" act with new material. I blame Karl Rove! Or maybe the new Stones record -- like all of them since at least Tattoo You -- just isn't that good.

RILO KILEY: The opening slot o­n the Coldplay tour is getting the band lots of press, even in outlets like the St. Petersburg Times.

RAY DAVIES: The Kinks frontman criticizes President Bush and the government response to Hurricane Katrina generally, but spends more time noting that the whole infrastructure of New Orleans seemed very fragile to him.

DR. JOHN, who lost a nephew in New Orleans, does not like celebrities being used as propaganda.

NICK CAVE scored a victory for rock and roll over health and safety laws, refusing to take the stage in London without his beer and cigarettes.

LAURA VEIRS gets a feature in NOW Toronto, in which she talks about rocking out and mentions that Mudhoney is working o­n a new record.

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE is not just the soundtrack for the upcoming movie Thumbsucker -- the band also pulled the director out of a depression following the suicide of Elliott Smith, who was originally going to do the soundtrack. You can stream a few cuts from the band's MySpace page.

DIAMOND NIGHTS are taking their "I Love the 80's" metal/rock/power-pop o­n the road. Check out the legal download of "Destination Diamonds" as an introduction.

MADONNA: We all knew her British accent was fake, but did you know her husband's accent is fake, too?

COURTNEY LOVE: Dean's Planet has a gallery of her scary faces.

GEORGE CLOONEY is angry that he cannot voice his opinions without fierce criticism from President Bush's supporters. Seems like Clooney can't stand to hear opposing viewpoints. He seems to think he's liberal, but that would include free and open debate, wouldn't it?

SUPERMAN RETURNS, set to open next June, has a budget of nearly 250 million dollars.

RUSSELL CROWE: As the studios plan to re-release Cinderella Man in hopes of recouping losses and boosting chances for Oscar nominations, Crowe says boxing is stupid. As is Crowe, apparently. Of course, he has a point -- why punch someone with padded gloves when you can just throw your cellphone at them?

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Wedding bells?

HURRICANE KATRINA: The Natural Hazards Center 2004 paper analyzing the local response to Hurricane Ivan noted: "A proposal made after the evacuation for Hurricane Georges to use public transit buses to assist in their evacuation out of the city was not implemented for Ivan. If Ivan had struck New Orleans directly it is estimated that 40-60,000 residents of the area would have perished." Thursday's Washington Post looked at federal flood-control funding for Louisiana and reported that during the Bush administration, Louisiana received far more money for Corps civil works projects than any other state. Moreover, Bush's funding requests for the key N.O. flood-control projects for the past five years were slightly higher than the Clinton administration's for its last five years.

IRAQ: The operation to rescue hostage Roy Hallums was put together in under three hours. As noted here yesterday, Sunni voter registration surged for the contitutional referendum. Haqy Asaad -- an Iraqi expert in bomb disposal -- has been gunned down in an ambush. Peter Kann, who covered the Vietnam War, looks at differences and similarities.

THE SIMPSONS are flamed by famous photog David LaChapelle: "They're everything that's wrong with music. Out of everything combined, they're everything wrong with culture, and everything wrong with art, and what we think of as art and musical culture - in o­ne family!" Also: "They're reality-red-carpet, lip-synching television stars. I don't know what they are beyond that. I don't think they offer anything." The Simpson camp suggests LaChapelle is bitter that the sisters recently refused to pose for him for a Rolling Stone cover -- and LaChapelle's producer doesn't really deny it: "We've worked with everyone from Madonna to Janet Jackson, and have never had someone so o­n-again, off-again as the Simpsons. In the 10 years I've worked with David, I've never known anyone to be so difficult as they were." Someone who touts working with Madge and Janet probably shouldn't complain about lip-syncing... though the bit about being everything wrong with music still holds up.

BRUCE WILLIS will help pick Italy's most beautiful woman when he heads the jury of the "Miss Italia" pageant later this month. A decision made by people who should never run a henhouse.

THE FRENCH HOTEL and Colin Farrell sold themselves for hurricane relief. Shockingly, Farrell was cheaper.

THE MIDDLE EAST: The Economist looks at tentative steps down the road to democracy. The opposition is now claiming massive fraud in the Egyptian elections. The Big Pharaoh -- an Egyptian blogger -- thinks the Egyptian election was rigged, but still important.

OIL-FOR-FOOD SCANDAL: London's Times editorializes that "The United Nations would be better off without Kofi Annan."

SCARLETT JOHANSSON wants to tell budding starlets to eat something, already!

EVA LONGORIA: The Desperate Housewife has a euphemism for two-timing: "I end up overlapping people because I know I'm over the relationship, so I move o­n without telling them. It's not good. I've never broken up with someone successfully."

BRITNEY SPEARS is planning a cesarean section because she doesn't want to go through pain. So much for giving birth in the tub of Kabbalah water.

ENGLISH WOMEN: are just getting started in their 40s. But the pre-teen girls are fond of Playboy stationery.

IT'S THE SHOES: The Manolo, he is having a Super Fantastic Essay Contest with many shoe-related prizes.

HURRICANE OF BLAME: The new CBS poll shows people spread the blame around all levels of government. Though President Bush lost some public confidence in his abilites, his job approval numbers are virtually unchanged from prior polls and only three percent think he is most to blame for the situation in New Orleans. ALSO: The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee's online petition to fire the head of FEMA also tried to raise money for Democratic candidates. After an inquiry from the Associated Press, the DSCC quickly pulled down the page and said they would donate to charity any money raised by the petition.

CULT OF THE iPod: People like Walter Mossberg of The Wall Street Journal are raving about the iPod Nano: "it's stunningly skinny -- about the thickness of five credit cards stacked o­n top of o­ne another."

SOLAR ENERGY: Southern California Edison has agreed to purchase upwards of 500 megawatts of electricity from Stirling Energy Systems -- more than all other U.S. solar projects combined. But no photovoltaic panels are used.

NANOTECH: Ultrafast Electron Microscopy is a breakthrough that may allow scientists to to watch nanotechnology experiments as they happen.

HURRICANE RELIEF: Some evacuees will be stylin' in designer duds from Jay-Z and Sean "Diddy" Combs. What would Barbara Bush say? The linked article reports that Jay-Z and Combs are thrilled to be able to help "their people." What would Kanye West say?

HURRICANE EXPLOITATION: Guys o­n Craigslist are targeting women from New Orleans looking for a fresh start.

SANDY BERGER, former Clinton National Security Adviser, is fined 50K for illegally taking classified documents from the National Archives. Under the deal, Berger avoids prison time but he must surrender access to classified government materials for three years. The sentencing capped a bizarre sequence of events in which Berger admitted to sneaking classified documents out of the Archives in his suit (in his pants, really), later destroying some of them in his office and then lying about it.

L.A. GATOR UPDATE: A second renegade gator was seen basking in a drainage canal this week, not far from where wranglers have spent weeks chasing the first alligator, "Reggie," a/k/a "Carlito," around murky Lake Machado.

POLICE FIND 130 ANIMALS IN A BUS in Mexico City, including an eagle, two toucans, 41 mockingbirds, three iguanas, 14 parrots, 15 snakes, 55 tortoises and a tarantula. Insert really politically incorrect crowded bus joke here.

EL CHUPACABRA shot in Coleman, TX. Or it could be a mangy coyote.

SHRIMP apparently knew enough to evacuate from Hurricane Katrina's path.

IT'S ILLEGAL TO SERVE TIGER MEAT in China, but authorities discovered that a restaurant advertising it was actually selling donkey flesh marinated in tiger urine, according to a reprt in the China Daily. "The report didn't say how the urine was obtained." I'll bet they got it from tigers. Probably stuck sleeeping tigers' paws in bowls of warm water.

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Cream, Laura Veirs, Gilligan, Chachi, Sugar and Spanky   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, September 08, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

CREAM COMING TO NYC: Three nights o­nly in October at MSG. CD and DVD from their Royal Albert Hall shows also coming.

JOSE GONZALEZ: Gorilla vs. Bear says he's been described as "a cross between Nick Drake and Elliott Smith," which imho is probably a bit much, but still nice. "Plus, he's like, a Swedish dude named José González."

100 SONGS OF THE SOUTH are listed at Access Atlanta, with bonus lists of Texas and Louisiana songs. I could have used this last year, but nice to have now.

RILO KILEY'S JENNY LEWIS has a solo album coming in January.

COLDPLAY frontman Chris Martin thinks he'd sell ten times more records, if o­nly he had bigger breasts. Yeah, that's an image that moves units out the door. Besides, how could Chris sell more now that everything sounds like Coldplay?

LAURA VEIRS is getting generally good buzz for Year of Meteors at Metacritic. You can stream it from her label.

PAUL McCARTNEY is concerned about your retirement planning. Just give him your funny paper.

ROD STEWART must repay a Las Vegas casino two million dollars plus interest for a canceled show in December 2000. Jury foreman Stevan Jorgensen said, "We felt it was o­nly fair that if Mr. Stewart didn't perform the concert that he should give the money back." Rod will appeal. And probably lose.

IRAQ: Coalition forces acting o­n a tip from an Iraqi detainee Wednesday rescued American hostage Roy Hallums from an isolated farm house south of Baghdad. The L.A. Times reports a Sadr City Success Story, but can't resist writing that it is "one of the rare success stories of the U.S. reconstruction effort, say local residents, Iraqi and U.S. officials," none of whom are quoted in the story, not even anonymously. Not that you would do something as radical as ask USAID for comment. Milblogger warriorsvoice reports that things are gradually improving in Ramadi. At Iraq the Model Mohammed reports that there may be minor changes to the draft constitution and that voter registration increased by a million, with 50K new voters in the dangerous Anbar province.

GINGER OR MARY ANN? The answer to o­ne of life's eternal mysteries is answered. Or is it?

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT: Stunt-casting Charlize Theron is a no-brainer, but replacing the Fonz with Chachi?

KATE WINSLET not o­nly taks dirty in her new movie, but she's also good at it. Director James Tarturro reveals, "There were things that had to be cut out that Kate said, that were just too dirty for the film." But not the DVD, I'll bet.

HILARY DUFF is losing weight, while La Lohan, thankfully, has gained some back. Both were fine to begin with.

IN THE YEAR 2525: If man is still alive, Tara Reid will look even worse than she does now.

BRITNEY SPEARS may want to name her son London, but Federline wants to name him Vegas, baby!

JERRY SEINFELD'S act now has plenty of nothing about family life. How long until a network pitches him Everybody Loves Jerry?

SIENNA MILLER and JUDE LAW: Don't you just hate accdentally running into your ex who was doing the nanny?

OIL-FOR-FOOD SCANDAL: A yearlong internal inquiry into the program blames Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the Security Council and some member states for allowing mismanagement and corruption to undermine the program and enrich Saddam Hussein, but does not call for Annan to resign, saying the Security Council and others should share responsibility for the failures. For his part, Annan wants everyone to give him much larger sums of our money to fight poverty.

THE FRENCH HOTEL tells Vanity Fair that, "I think I'm sexual in pictures and the way I dress and my whole image, but at home I'm really not like that." Her fiancee is so lucky.

STEVEN SPIELBERG ENRAGES TERRRORIST for not being consulted o­n Spielberg's upcoming movie about the Mossad hit team that tracked down and killed 11 Palestinians after the massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: some people are merciless.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Holmes will go by the name Kate Cruise. She's very traditional. And brand-savvy.

JANE FONDA has canceled her anti-war bus tour to keep the focus o­n Cindy Sheehan's anti-war bus tour.

SEAN PENN: Historian Douglas Brinkley claims Penn rescued up to 40 people in New Orleans and is an American hero. Brinkley says Penn's boat took o­n water because it "was overloaded with people." Defamer notes the same thing I did about that. I would add that Brinkley's account is at odds with news reports that Penn "apparently forgot to plug a hole in the bottom of the vessel, which began taking water within seconds of its launch." As ridiculous as it may have been for FEMA to make firefighters sit through a sexual harassment class and give them promo fliers instead of information, it might be topped by the notion that Penn is a hero for riding around with his personal photographer, his entourage and a reporter from Rolling Stone and claiming (all evidence o­n TV to the contrary) that the government wasn't rescuing anyone. Nevertheless, I'm hankering to see the dramatic footage of Penn pulling drowning people out of the toxic soup wearing that flak jacket.

HURRICANE RELIEF: Still looking for the best way to contribute? Look no further!

HURRICANE OF BLAME: More than a week after the storm, ABC News gets around to asking experts: "In New Orleans, those in peril and those in power have pointed the finger squarely at the federal government for the delayed relief effort. But experts say when natural disasters strike, it is the primary responsibility of state and local governments — not the federal government — to respond." And this: "Instead of sending city buses to evacuate those who could not make it out o­n their own, people in New Orleans were told to go to the Superdome and the Convention Center, where no o­ne provided sufficient sustenance or security." Plaquemines Parish, where there was a mandatory evacuation 48 hours before Katrina hit, has had few fatalities.

A CNN/USA TODAY/GALLUP POLL released Tuesday doesn't give high marks to any level of government. "Respondents also disagreed widely o­n who is to blame for the problems in the city following the hurricane -- 13 percent said Bush, 18 percent said federal agencies, 25 percent blamed state or local officials and 38 percent said no o­ne is to blame. And 63 percent said they do not believe anyone at federal agencies responsible for handling emergencies should be fired as a result. In recent days, 62 percent said they believe progress made in dealing with the situation is satisfactory."

CULT OF THE iPod: Apple launches ROKR, the iPod phone, and the iPod Nano, which is 62% the size of the iPod mini.

OREGON may need more Clearasil than we can possibly imagine.

GIFTED BRAINS seem to be wired differently. What was their first clue? The general lack of social skills?

THE FEMALE ORGASM: You would think that it would be tough to write a boring book o­n the subject, even moreso that it was done by a woman.

"I SUSPECT THAT the sexual future of the forty-something woman involves having more than o­ne partner at all times." To quote the President, "Bring it o­n!"

STEM CELL RESEARCH The potential benefits of embryonic stem cell research have probably been oversold to the public, fertility expert Lord Winston says.

TIM BERNERS-LEE, creator of the world-wde web, thinks that in the future, we will be surprised by the creativity of our children, who have grown up with the 'net.

SPANKY THE SQUIRREL is behind bars after attacking a police officer trying to serve a warrant.

SUGAR THE MULE goes to what is believed to be the nation's o­nly mule obedience school outside Los Angeles.

BEES TAKE OVER a small community in Shanghai.

CHINESE MONKEYS shake down tourists at Mount Emei.

KATRINA CAT HOARDING: A New Orleans woman in is closed in with probably more than 40 cats - either dead or alive- and will not leave without them.

3355 Reads

Buzzcocks, June Carter Cash, CVB, Gilligan and Wiener Dogs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, September 07, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE PERNICE BROTHERS are re-offering their limited edition The Sandwich EP if you give more than five bucks to the Red Cross Disaster Relief fund. Wilco is offering signed posters for 60 bucks, personalized for 100 bucks, with proceeds also going to the Red Cross.

THE BUZZCOCKS are readying an album for next year. You can get a preview of the disc at the Buzzcocks' fansite, Secretpublic.com, which is streaming exclusive video from the band's studio sessions.

REVIEWS o­n THE PITCHFORK: Noise pop from Serena Mansheesh. The latest in the Bob Dylan bootleg series (also a soundtrack). The reissue of Shake Some Action by The Flamin' Groovies And the first-ever career retrospective of June Carter Cash!

THE STONE ROSES' Ian Brown has turned down an offer of £1 million to reform the band, according to reports.

IGGY POP will be the subject of a biopic starring Frodo Baggins? Wouldn't it have been better to cast Gollum?

ROGER DALTREY decides to slam the quality of digital downloads o­n the day Who's Left's re-recording of "My Genereation" is used to launch HMV's download service.

COURTNEY LOVE is nicely dissed by... Robbie Williams? Ouch!

FRANCES BEAN COBAIN gives her first interview, telling Teen Vogue of Courtney Love's look: "I prefer when she's more 'classy starlet.'"

CAMPER VAN BEETHOVEN AND CRACKER announce their 1st Annual Campout for this weekend, near Pioneertown, CA.

BUMBERSHOOT: the Seattle Post-Intelligencer has a few reviews from Seattle's Labor Day weekend festival.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: Art Brut urged o­ne of its audiences to “Steer clear of crack, and steer clear of Pete Doherty, he’s a very bad man.” Meanwhile, o­n-again, off-again galpal Kate Moss has reportedly set her sights o­n Ricky Wilson of the Kaiser Chiefs, after seeing the band in Ibiza.

WWOZ is listing New Orleans-area musicians who are safe, including Peter Holsapple and Susan Cowsill.

SEAN PENN proves he's a big liar. Penn is claiming to the foreign press that he was assisting with rescue efforts in New Orleans and that "There are people dying and (the US government are) not putting the boats in the water, I think that's criminal negligence." Meanwhile, the AP reported o­n Monday's activity in N.O.: "Pleading and threatening, cajoling and frightening, rescue boat crews are sweeping through New Orleans trying to get the holdouts to leave before disease, stench and mosquitoes become unbearable." Efforts to evacuate holdouts were stepping up Monday, with boat rescue crews from around the country searching for people to rescue. The Coast Guard has rescued more than 18,000 people from the flooded areas of New Orleans since Aug. 29th, using helicopters, boats and cutters. But maybe Penn missed all of those boats while he was bailing out his with a plastic cup and paddling back to the dock because his engine wouldn't start. Indeed, his boat was already filled with his entourage, so it's unclear where he stacked up all those drowning people. Or, as Spicoli himself might say, "You dick!"

GILLIGAN IS DEAD: Bob Denver died Friday of complications from treatment he was receiving for cancer. He was 70 years old.

JOE PESCI joins the cast of The Good Shepherd to play a mobster. You think that's funny? Funny how? Like a clown?

XTINA AGUILERA was paid over a million bucks to sing two songs at the wedding of a Russian billionaire.

BRITNEY SPEARS snubs a rumored deal to play Vegas., leaving more room for Michael Jackson. ALSO: The Bride of Federline "is really into Kabbalah — even though she doesn’t, like, really understand it all."

STACY'S MOM wants to have another baby. And her biological clock is TICKING LIKE THIS...

J-LO: Pregnancy rumors.

KIRSTEN DUNST has furiously denied she had a fling with Orlando Bloom, presumably much to his relief.

THE PASSION OF... C-3PO?

FORMER FIRST LADY BARBARA BUSH said that many of the people housed at the Astrodome following the hurricane "were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them." So maybe Page Six was right, after all...

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY has mixed feelings about the magic of Photoshop. And she's trying to keep her new rocker boyfriend o­n the QT. And isn't everybody glad I bumped Barbara Bush up a notch so we didn't have to look at her mug instead of Ms. Knightley? Even Photoshop has it's limits.

HURRICANE OF BLAME: o­n Tuesday, the White House Press Corps repeatedly demanded accountability... from President Bush. The o­nly example cited in the press gaggle is this:

"Q But, Scott, more concretely, an officer of the Northern Command is quoted as saying that as early as the time Hurricane Katrina went through Florida and worked its way up to the Gulf, there was a massive military response ready to go, but that the President did not order it. It could have been ordered o­n Sunday, o­n Monday, o­n Tuesday -- the call didn't come. Why not?"

This was o­ne of the concerns I raised yesterday, but the reporter's question is based o­n a story that may not be accurate. As for the reporter's gloss about ordering the military response o­n Sunday and Monday, it should occur to people that you can't do damage assessments before the hurricane actually strikes. And that you're not going to be flying around in the middle of the storm, either. Meanwhile, no o­ne is asking for accountability from Lousiana Gov. Blanco, who still has control of the LA National Guard. o­n CNN, Soledad O'Brien sought accountability from N.O. Mayor Nagin regarding his failure to evacuate the poor, which I noted yesterday. Now Nagin wants to send the N.O. police o­n paid vacations to Vegas right now. Why didn't Rudy Giuliani think of that?

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE from New Orleans: "To whom it may concern: Please send with immediately, (one) ice cold chest of Coors Light. I'm out at this time. Down to wine. Some shrimp and oysters would also be appreciated. Thank you."

IS FEMA OUT OF WHACK? This is just so wrong. Your tax dollars at "work."

LANCE ARMSTRONG mount a comeback at the French Grand Tour 2006, just to annoy the French. And he proposed to that Sheryl Crow woman, so he may need to leave the country after a while.

IRAQ: U.S. jets struck targets Tuesday near the Syrian border, about six miles east of the border city of Qaim, major parts of which have fallen under control of al-Qaida-linked foreign fighters. Shiite and Sunni negotiators abandoned efforts to amend the draft constitution o­n Tuesday. Saddam fesses up. The U.S. Army handed over its base in Najaf to the Iraqi Army.

AFGHANISTAN: Arthur Chrenkoff posts o­ne of his final round-ups of under-reported news. Quite a bit about the upcoming election, including that 328 of the parliamentary candidates are women.

TECHNORATI: The Washington Post has inked deal with blog search engine Technorati that will make it easy for readers to find blog entries about Post stories.

GENTLEMEN NO LONGER PREFER BLONDES, according to a new study commissioned by a hair products company.

GIRL CAPTURES GATOR, having learned how by watching Crocodile Hunter. The gator's owner said neighborhood cats opened the fence in her backyard, enabling the reptile to escape.

ALBINO PYTHON caught in a tree in a Spanish resort town. Can you blame it? Summer's almost over, and no tan...

WIENER DOGS will parade at the annual Belfast Wienerfest in Maine this Sunday.

BEAVERS given implants to prevent theft.

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The Spinto Band, RT, Maximo Park, Katrina Leskanitch and Animal Stories   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, September 06, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

ALEX CHILTON who was missing over the weekend (as followed here) is alive and well. He rode the storm out and had food and water, but was most concerned during the week about roving gangs.

THE SPINTO BAND: Their debut disc, Nice and Nicely Done, is drrawing raves at MSNBC and the Village Voice. The Kinks, The dBs, The Cars, David Byrne and Brian Wilson all get mentioned as influences. You can stream a few from MSNBC and the band's website, with the latter having "Brown Boxes," as mentioned at MSNBC.

THE WHITE STRIPES will do their first webcast o­n NPR September 27th.

THE FLESHTONES were garage rock revivalists when garage rock wasn't cool. Frontman Peter Zaremba talks to PopMatters about the band's renaissance, its new album Detroit, George Jefferson, and the band's signature drink, the blue whale.

EIGHT UNCONVENTIONAL SONGWRITERS are profiled by the Boston Globe, including Bill Callahan (a/k/a Smog), John Darnielle (Mountain Goats), David Berman (Silver Jews) and more.

JAY FARRAR talks to JamBase about Son of Son Volt and the state of the union.

TRAMPS LIKE US, baby we were born to ride polo horses.

RICHARD THOMPSON: You can stream a few of his Front Parlour Ballads at NPR (Thanks, Debbie).

MAXIMO PARK gets a profile in London's Telegraph. You can stream the band's album, A Certain Trigger, through Torr Leonard's blog.

GREEN DAY: In The New York Times, Jon Pareles opines that it is now a band that it o­nce would parody.

CAMILLE PAGLIA thinks that Hurricane Katrina has demolished the Bush Administration's mask of confidence, Angelina Jolie is bewitching and "Like a Rolling Stone" is not the greatest rock & roll song of all time.

CONCEPT ALBUMS: Are they coming back into vogue?

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS try to explain their albums and the South to The Scotsman. Patterson Hood also notes that his Dad was a session musician at the Fame studios where Percy Sledge recorded "When A Man Loves A Woman," Wilson Pickett cut "Mustang Sally" and Aretha Franklin laid down "Do Right Woman."

GREG DULLI talks Twilight Singers with the Cincinnati Enquirer. And he's investing in taverns: "Rock 'n' roll doesn't always pay the bills, and I've been interested in bars -- obviously -- for a long time," says Dulli.

SEAN PENN and his entourage, including a personal photographer, set sail in New Orleans to rescue folks still stranded after Hurricane Katrina. Almost immediately, the boat began taking o­n water, its motor failed to start, and those aboard were forced to use paddles to propel themselves down the flooded New Orleans street, as Spicoli tried to bail out the boat with a plastic cup.

CELINE DION is offering her expertise o­n disaster relief, no doubt gained in working o­n the theme song from Titanic. About the seeming delays in aid, Dion said, "I know there's reasons for it, I'm sorry to say, I'm being rude, but I don't want to hear those reasons." Well, of course not. Didn't Dion hear Kanye West explain that it's all because George Bush doesn't care about black people? OTOH, West also believes that AIDS is a man-made disease placed in Africa, just like crack was placed in the black community to break up the Black Panther party. It's that sort of penetrating insight that makes West the darling of Time, Newsweek and NPR, and "arguably the dominant creative force in mainstream popular music," according to the L.A. Times.

HARRY CONNICK, JR. criticised the fact that troops and the aid columns o­nly made it into the city o­n Friday, four days after the storm, saying his friend, singer Charmaine Neville, had commandeered an abandoned city bus to help evacuate refugees. Connick might be interested to know that the first bus of New Orleans refugees to reach the Astrodome in Houston was commandeered by a 20-year-old. Connick might want to consider that it's much easier to drive a bus out of the area before the hurricate hits than it is to deliver aid or pluck people out of a flooded area after it hits. Then he might want to ask about the over 500 buses that weren't used to evacuate the city. I have more o­n that if you click the "Read more..." link at the bottom of today's entry.

KATRINA LESKANITCH, former lead singer of you-know-who, is planning to launch her first solo album o­n Oct. 17th. Maybe she could get PR tips from Kristin Hersh.

KATRINA ANIMAL STORIES: Ever since the story of Noah, those facing floods have been concerned about the animals. Hurricane evacuees were distraught over having to abandon their pets. Some who stayed in the city attempted to rescue pets. Various groups have set up hotlines and are coordinating efforts for pets and their owners. In the famed New Orleans aquarium, more than a third of the 4,000 fish died because there was no power to pump oxygen into the tanks. But zoos in the Gulf Coast area fared well overall. I hope the survivors recognized that snakes and gators were also been displaced by the flood.

HURRICANE FINGER-POINTING: I'm o­n record from last week as saying there will be plenty of time for this o­nce the situation has stabilized. But that hasn't stopped some -- particularly in the media -- from getting started before the bodies are recovered. ABC News and the Washington Post rushed to take a poll, which says that two-thirds think federal government should have been better prepared to deal with a storm this size, but three-quarters say state and local governments in the affected areas likewise were insufficiently prepared. o­nly 45 percent blame President Bush. Anyone surprised by those results should click the "Read more..." link at the bottom of today's entry. But let me tease you with the lead sentence from a New Orleans Times-Picayune story published July 24, 2005: "City, state and federal emergency officials are preparing to give the poorest of New Orleans' poor a historically blunt message: In the event of a major hurricane, you're o­n your own."

GEORGE CLOONEY condemns television news journalism, saying that the public was worse informed today than 15 years ago despite the proliferation of channels: "When I was growing up there were three networks and basically the same information. Now, because we’ve fractioned into little pieces, you go look for the things that reinforce what you already believe to be fact and don’t get a common truth." That certainly can happen. OTOH, when mass media was in fewer hands, New York Times reporter Walter Duranty could cover up Stalin's genocide in Ukraine. And anchors like Walter Cronkite could completely misreport the Tet Offensive in Vietnam, persuading LBJ not to run for re-election. Now the self-appointed watchdogs have their own self-appointed watchdogs. If Clooney wants a "common truth," he might try countries that restrict or outright control the media to see how he likes it.

FOUR WEDDINGS, A FUNERAL and a couple of implants, according to The Superficial.

BRITNEY SPEARS wants to land a deal in Vegas, like Celine Dion and Wayne Newton. Sounds about right to me. Looks like Michael Jackson is trying to cut a similar deal and butching up his look to boot. And congrats to the Federlines for making US Weekly's worst-dressed list! Tough to think of anyone more deserving. Except maybe Jacko...

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Pitt's parents reportedly are leery of Jolie based o­n her two prior marriages. What doesn't everyone wear a vial of their husband's blood around their neck?

IRAQ: Marine airstrikes pounded a train station being used as an al-Qaeda weapons storage depot and headquarters after "numerous reliable sources" saw about 50 al-Qaida-linked insurgents using the facility. Bill Roggio notes this is further proof that the U.S. is working closely with the Albu Mahal tribe, gaining good intelligence, both human and electronic, and of an o­ngoing offensive targeting al-Qaeda fighters in the region. He also has two posts o­n the battle in Tal Afar -- easily the largest since Fallujah. Zarqawi's foreign-led Al Qaeda in Iraq have taken control of the border town of Qaim, at least for now. The Iraqi government and armed forces seem to have re-opened the northern oil pipeline to Turkey, which saboteurs had largely shut down for a year.

THE IRAQI CONSTITUTION: o­n Friday, discreet talks were under way to refine language of the draft constitution in a bid to win Sunni approval. At Iraq the Model, Mohammed writes about today's terrorism and tomorrow's constitution.

HALLE BERRY now says she went topless in Swordfish so she could get past her nudity fears in time for her Oscar-winning role in Monster's Ball. So why didn't she mention this when she was making non-denial denials that she was paid extra for the scene?

BARBRA STREISAND wants to be o­n the same floor at the New York Sheraton as Bill Clinton when attends the Clinton Global Initiative Sept. 15-17. Just to talk about global politics, I'm sure.

50 CENT is very popular with Icelandic Valkyries.

WARREN BEATTY: A new warts-and-all biography could become a thorn in his side should he decide to run against Arnold Schwarzenegger for California governor.

AFGHANISTAN: Coalition intelligence agencies believe that the recent surge in violence is not related to a reinvigorated offensive by the remnants of al-Qaeda or the Taliban, but the work of unconnected and uncoordinated groups. Hope so, but also hope they planned for the worst in the run-up to the election.

PAKISTAN: The foreign ministers of Israel and Pakistan, met publicly for the first time Thursday, a diplomatic breakthrough that both ministers linked to Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. Muslim clerics denounced the shift in policy in fiery sermons during Friday prayers, but planned street protests fell flat.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY overcame dyslexia to become an actress who hates her legs, but loves her stomach. I dunno about her legs; I think I would have to make an extensive investigation to offer a truly informed opinion.

SIENNA MILLER, promoting Casanova, says, "I've met a few Casanovas that I like and some that I haven't and I hope to meet a few more." Sounds Law-less at the moment. Plus, she's showing a Nietzsche streak. She's becoming Sienna the Barbarian!

HEATH LEDGER had to destroy his career to save it, if you believe that.

KATE WINSLET is named top MILF in a new British poll taken for "National Yummy Mummy Week," which runs from September 16-25 in aid of a children's cancer charity.

MUSICAL BENCH: President Bush nominated John Roberts to replace the late William Rehnquist as Supreme Court Chief Justice, instead of taking Justice O'Connor's place. The remaining Justices (except Souter) paid tribute to Rehnquist. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg began: "Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist was the fairest, most efficient boss I have ever had..." As before, there's plenty o­n this topic at the SCOTUS blog. With people like Prof. Cass Sunstein, whose liberal credentials are sterling, urging folks to keep an open mind, I think most of the action will be o­n President Bush's second nominee.

AL QAEDA'S PROPAGANDA WAR with the West has become as important to the movement as terrorist attacks o­n western cities and interests, according to analysts studying a videotape featuring o­ne of the London bombers. Azzam Tamimi, director of the Institute of Islamic Political Thought in London, said the aim was to exploit the worsening crisis in Iraq and to revive debate in the UK about British foreign policy. Abdel Bari-Atwan, editor of Al Quds, a London-based Arabic newspaper, said "When they show this tape with Ayman al-Zawahiri speaking o­n the same tape they would like to confirm that they are behind the London bombings and to say to those people who doubt this 'You are not telling the truth. We recruited them and we groomed them.'" MI5 and the police have found no evidence of outside involvement in the bombings and they do not believe the video conclusively proves the operation was run directly by al-Qaeda.

SEN. HILLARY CLINTON is deeply unhappy with the country's energy policy: "We've had 30 years to do some things we haven't done," she said. "In fact we've gotten, we've gone backwards in many respects." Doesn't that 30 years cover the Clinton Administration? Sen. Clinton also accused oil companies of manipulating energy markets to enhance profits. She has no evidence of this yet, but given her expertise o­n the subject of manipulating commodity markets, people would be well-advised to listen.

IS HILLARY CLINTON POLLING HERSELF? The New York Observer seems to think so.

WHO'DA THOUGHT A LAP DANCE is an offer you can't refuse?

WE CO-EXISTED WITH NEANDERTHALS for at least 1,000 years, according to a new study. When did we stop?

CANE TOADS love the nightlife, they've got to boogie -- which is their downfall.

PIGS are scaring seagulls at a duck club. And you get a free o­ne when you buy a luxury holiday home in the Gloucestershire Cotswolds. BTW, I recommend the Cotswolds; if you are in the neighborhood, check out Wordsworth's pad and the estate of Beatrix Potter.

GIANT POUCHED RATS are detecting landmines in Africa.

WATCH OUT, YOU MIGHT GET WHAT YOU'RE AFTER: A German woman burned down the house by trying to kill spiders in a garage with a can of hairspray and a cigarette lighter.

DOG saves his owner from jumping off a bridge.

CATS: Scientists are studying catnip-sensitivity.

ANIMAL HOARDING: Seventy cats and a ton of trash in Marietta, GA.

Read full article: 'The Spinto Band, RT, Maximo Park, Katrina Leskanitch and Animal Stories'
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