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The Stooges, First Ave., Smoosh and Sheba the Wonder Dog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, August 19, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE: I don't care if Monday's blue/ Tuesday's grey and Wednesday too/ Thursday I don't care about you/ It's Friday...

OKAY, NOT REALLY, BUT THE CURE helped secure the release of Belarusian scientist Yury Bandazhevsky, who was jailed in Russia after being convicted of taking bribes from students seeking admission to the Gomel Medical Institute. Amnesty International adopted him as a Prisoner of Conscience, believing that he was convicted o­n trumped up charges because of his open criticism of the authorities’ response to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. The Cure promoted a petition for his release during their last tour.

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: All the cutesy Flash games you can handle at Orisinal.

THE STOOGES REISSUES score 8.9 and 9.4 o­n the Pitchfork: "It should go without saying that these are two of the most important signposts o­n the way to the punk explosion, and that any rock fan with a sense of history owes it to themselves to check them out if they haven't already. What's often lost as we place them in the canon, though, is the fact that both albums sound incredibly good today o­n their own terms, raw and immediate and dripping with an aggression that's rarely been rivaled."

THE WHITE STRIPES: An L.A. Times review of their gig at the Greek Theater is dismantled at losanjealous. I can o­nly imagine what this blogger would do with this piece in The New Republic.

FIRST AVE. AND THE 7TH ST. ENTRY: The Minnesota Historical Society has an inventory of the clubs' band files for 1977-2004, including "correspondence with bands and/or agents, contracts, attendance and 'take' or 'numbers' sheets (financial breakdowns), photographs of performers and other promotional materials, tickets, post-performance reviews, and other miscellany." The list of shows posted o­nline is impressive, though incomplete, as I could not find the Golden Palominos show I saw there.  But they do note the Replacements/Young Fresh Fellows bill where Scott McCaughey -- wearing a wig he stole from the M-Shop -- heckled Music Works' Paul Miller from atop a monitor speaker during the guitar solos...

SEVEN BAND NAMES that would be impossible to book. I guess the Who is the exception that proves the rule.

GWEN STEFANI is reportedly boycotting the MTV Music Awards because she wasn't invited to play.

SUFJAN STEVENS gets mainstream attention in Newsday. Now that I know the band is dressing as Illinois cheerleaders o­n tour, I may have to break down and get those tickets...

SHAMELESS PLUG: Anyone who needs a guitar tech in Chicagoland should check out Andon Davis and the rest of the crew at Third Coast Guitar. Andon's a fine guitarist in his own right and knows how o­ne should sound and look. In fact, even non-musicians should take a peek at the site, as the image maps seem well-suited to the target audience.  No, I'm not being paid to say it, either; I just like Andon's playing.

SMOOSH: The pre-high school sisters rocked the office at SPIN magazine. I've mentioned them twice before. Check out the groovy video for "Le Pump," complete with Claymation, at Pattern 25, which also links to streaming audio from KEXP and more... Or stream a couple from NPR. Come o­n; how many indie bands get interviewed by Scholastic News?

RADIOHEAD frontman Thom Yorke has started a blog and used it to announce the band has begun recording its next album.

JUNKMEDIA: I hadn't visited in a while, but the site has been redesigned, complete with a newsblog called "World of Sound." Currently featured is an interview with the Decemberists' Colin Meloy. But it's really all about Ken King's review of the Pate box that keeps me going back, because I'm a tremendous narcissist.

COMEDY CENTRAL has started a blog chock full 'o' video clips. Excellent idea.

BANGLADESH: About 400 small bombs, suspected to have been planted by an Islamic militant outfit, exploded almost simultaneously in cities and towns across Bangladesh, killing at least two persons, including a child, and injuring 138. Leaflets found at the sites of the blasts said "It is time to implement Islamic law in Bangladesh. There is no future with man-made law," and "(US President George W Bush) and (British Prime Minister Tony Blair) be warned and get out of Muslim countries." We're occupying Bangladesh? Who knew? The targets of these bombs were courts, suggesting the real motivation was the first o­ne. Another target, the Grameen Bank is a micro-development lender; such banks often help third-world women get into business.

CLOWN ASSAILANT NABBED IN SEATTLE: The clown would have gotten away with it, too... if it hadn't been for those meddlesome kids!

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jolie was overheard saying thst she and Pitt are "working o­n" getting married and plan to adopt more babies. She was also overheard telling baby Zahara that "Mommy misses Brad." But a guy who dines with B.P. regularly told E!'s Ted Casablanca that Pitt "will not marry Angelina." And a "big producer" tells Casablanca that Pitt is risking his career: "Women don't like what he's done."

HOLLYWOOD is cutting back its ads in papers like The New York Times and L.A. Times. The studios would cut back more if they didn't feel they need to stroke the ego of the "talent."

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Rumor has it that Cruise's next PR mess will involve Lindsay Lohan.

BRITNEY SPEARS may name her son Preston, which I could almost see with the name Spears, but Preston Federline? Better keep him in private schools...

HUNTER S. THOMPSON is ready for blast-off Saturday.

DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES: Eva Longoria was struck in the head by a pole while filming a scene for Desperate Housewives and it was not in the script. Teri Hatcher has considered hiring a gigolo. Yeah, right.

JUDE LAW: At Defamer, an anonymous eyewitness defends Law's manhood. Could it be George Costanza? ALSO: Law and estranged fiancee Sienna Miller have been spotted together in public.

THE FRENCH HOTEL is now so infamous that she had a makeup artist spend three hours the other day fitting her with a prosthetic nose and a red wig so that she could take her brothers to Disneyland.

BOXERS, BRIEFS OR VICTORIA'S SECRET? It seems like when a Clinton runs for office, people start asking the candidates about their undies.

IRAQ: The New York Times (via the registration-free IHT) reports o­n the rebuilding of the Mosul police force; a couple of soldiers quoted think that the force could crumble unless the American troops stay for years. However, Michael Yon has reported that the ISF in Mosul is making remarkable progress, with the police a frequent target of the terrorists. Yon also did a radio interview this past week you can hear here. Fred Kagan argues in the Washington Post that security in Iraq is not as simple as decreasing our troops and increasing theirs, which is almost certainly true -- though more and improved Iraqi forces could allow the U.S. to draw down substantially and focus o­n providing logistics and support. I've noticed that local papers often get stories the national media misses, like Sgt. 1st Class Elbert Jetton of the 3rd ID seeing improvements, even in Baghdad, during his second deployment. (try bugmenot SOMEONE777@aol.com, 7777777)

OIL-FOR-FOOD SCANDAL: Guess who bought some of the oil? Enron.

THE FIREFLY PHONE is designed for kids -- and their parents, with parental management of incoming and outgoing calls. Links to reviews at Gizmodo.

NATURE OR NURTURE: A lengthy piece in the Boston Globe asks, "What Makes People Gay?" suggests it's at least half biology, but questions whether that matters: "Some advocates of gay marriage argue that proving sexual orientation is inborn would make it easier to frame the debate as simply a matter of civil rights. That could be true, but then again, freedom of religion enjoyed federal protection long before inborn traits like race and sex."

PODCASTING becomes a tool for academia.

DIGITAL VIDEO RECORDERS may be turning television into the Internet.

REAL-TIME SURGERY BY INTERNET: Scientists in Australia have successfully performed laser surgery and "optical trapping" in a Southern California laboratory via the Internet.

EDU-BLOGGING: The latest Carnival of Education is o­nline.

FOX NEWS CHANNEL did not affect voting registration or patterns in 2000, according to a new study.

INTERACTIVE 3-D DISPLAY coming to market. Now all we need are precogs. Or the plans to the Death Star.

NANOTECH: The intricate Fibonacci pattern-based spiral patterns seen o­n the heads of sunflowers, and thought to occur o­nly in plants, have now been spotted o­n nanoparticles. Gotta love the Golden Mean!

DRY SPAGHETTI doesn't break into two pieces. This baffled the late, great Richard Feynman, the Nobel laureate and father of modern quantum theory. Now the mystery is solved, complete with video.

BOY SCOUT LEADER ARRESTED on child molestation charges in Mesa, AZ. Which is o­ne reason why the BSA has been a bit exclusionary over the years; the civil lawsuits would already be filed otherwise.

CINDY SHEEHAN left her anti-war camp in Crawford, Texas o­n Thursday to fly to L.A. after hearing that her mother had suffered a stroke. That's sad news, but after 20,585 mentions in television news broadcasts, the saturation media coverage was about to focus o­n whether she was getting too much coverage anyway -- it's a time-honored part of any saturation coverage. Ronald R. Griffin, who lost a son in Iraq, but disagrees with Ms. Sheehan o­n policy, is in some way heartened "to have all this attention paid to her, because that means others in her position now have the chance to be heard." Griffin adds: "Those who lost their lives believed in the mission. To honor their memory, and because it's right, we must believe in the mission, too." Imho, o­ne need not believe in the mission to honor our troops' service (though Ms. Sheehan's own statements suggest she does neither); Griffin is closer to the mark in writing that no parent has the absolute moral authority to speak for all parents or troops.

SHEBA THE WONDER DOG can tell you the square root of 36, where Matt Lauer was today and much more. Videos at the link.

CATS: A little Friday cat-blogging, but click through o­n the "update" link for the payoff.

TAKING HER LYNX TO BE SPAYED AND NEUTERED may subject Karen Goeckect to wildlife charges in Utah.

LIONS, CHEETAHS, ELEPHANTS AND CAMELS could soon roam parts of North America, under a plan called Pleistocene re-wilding: "If we o­nly have 10 minutes to present this idea, people think we're nuts," said Harry Greene, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Cornell University, "But if people hear the o­ne-hour version, they realise they haven't thought about this as much as we have." And still think you're nuts.

A SIBERIAN TIGER kills a teenage girl posing for photos at a family-run animal sanctuary Thursday in southeast Kansas. See what I mean?

THE LAKE CHAMPLAIN MONSTER: It's no Nessie, Doc, but hundreds claim to have spotted the mythical beast.

2831 Reads

New Pornographers, Drive-by Truckers, Penguins & the ultimate Cats and Dogs link   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, August 18, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


NEW PORNOGRAPHERS frontman A.C. Newman is briefly interviewed in the Seattle Weekly about the upcoming album, Twin Cinema. You can download two tracks guilt-free from Matador.

NEIL YOUNG re-signs with Reprise. I'm guessing Geffen wasn't beating down his door.

INDIES AND MAJORS: The L.A. Times talks to Matador Records co-founder Chris Lombardi about the necessary evil of working with the big boys.

COVER SONGS: Sterogum links to a bunch of 'em, including the Drive-By Truckers version of "Like A Rolling Stone" from Uncut magazine's new Highway 61 Revisited Revisited compilation.

SON VOLT frontman Jay Farrar talks to Paste magazine about the new album and the surprising easiness of Son of Son Volt: "I mean we’ve all seen the reality TV shows regarding bands. I’m surprised I haven’t been o­n o­ne."

TROUBLED HUBBLE: Sometimes, a perfectly good pop band will be right in your backyard without your knowing it. Pitchfork gaver their latest a respectable 6.8 at the end of May. Check out the guilt-free downloads. (Thanks to YANP.)

UNSEEN HENDRIX FOOTAGE: Jimi Hendrix's legendary performance at Woodstock is to be released o­n DVD in its entirety.

MADONNA: Her birthday fall from a horse will not delay the release of her new album in November.

IT'S A BOY for the Bride of Federline, based o­n Britney's after-hours shopping spree at an exclusive Beverly Hills area baby store. The source for the story -- like the reset of western civilization -- was "surprised" at Spears' good taste. Of course, if you worked at the store, you probably can't tell the press that she bought overpriced, tacky crap.

IT'S A GIRL for Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck.

IRAQ: Journo Steve Vincent, murdered in Iraq after writing articles alleging that Basra's police had been infiltrated by Shia death squads and pledging to marry his Iraqi interpreter, gets a standing ovation at his funeral. The International Monetary Fund reports that the economy is stable and the outlook for the medium term is reasonably optimistic, though security problems must be addressed; the downsides are emphasized more by Reuters; the London Times adds that high oil prices are helping. Iraqi blogger Mohammed notes friction between Sunni clerics and Al Qaeda, particularly o­n the constitutional referendum.

AL QAEDA: A Canadian al-Qaeda agent spent his last evening before being transferred to a U.S. prison drinking, smoking cigars and visiting a Toronto strip club. For raving fundamentalsists, the AQ do like the strip clubs.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: Change his tire and the troubled singer will tell you all you want to know and more about his relationship with galpal Kate Moss.

MUSIC IS THE SOUNDTRACK: A piece in USA Today about current and future movie soundtracks begins quoting a man who claimed that a cassette "is not just a mix tape... It is the soundtrack to my life." A piece in the Washington Post o­n the iPod quotes a man as saying, "If a song represents a memory in your head, then you listen to your life's memories -- faster than a mixed CD, definitely faster than a mixed tape -- as you listen to your iPod. It becomes an extension of you. It's like a window to your soul."  Which is another way of saying, "When I listen to my records they take me back to certain points in my life" or "the making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art."

LAURA VEIRS: Think Susanne Vega, but more rockin'. Check out her website or directly stream cuts from her upcoming album. (Thanks to Stereogum.)

INMATES USE CELL PHONES TO COORDINATE RIOT: The AP writes that this demonstrates the strength of Central America's growing gangs. Imho, it demonstrates the stupidity of the Guatemalan prison system for allowing prisoners to have cell phones and guns.

THE NOT-SO-GREAT ESCAPE: A gang of prisoners in a Brazilian jail spent months planning a breakout and digging a tunnel in their bid for freedom, o­nly to emerge in the prison yard. Clearly, these mopes could learn something from the Guatemalans.

THE MOUNTAIN GOATS' John Darnielle may have had an unstable home, but still muses about having children: "I envision an army of mini-John Darnielles forming a non-NHL hockey league with parity between owners and players, worker-friendly ticket prices, and severe penalties for icing the puck intentionally -- you buncha sissies, you!"

VASSAR CLEMENTS, a Bluegrass fiddle pioneer who played with artists ranging from Bill Monroe and Earl Scruggs to Paul McCartney and the Grateful Dead, has died following a battle with lung cancer. He was 77.

JACKO JUSTICE: The o­nly juror to attend a Jackson post-acquittal victory party apparently was modeling a jacket Jacko gave his accuser in the jury room.

FRANCE: With unemployment hovering at ten percent, a growing number of French can no longer afford a traditional August getaway -- a summer ritual that symbolizes the good life a la francaise. And who needs a vacation more than the unemployed?

JOHN JOHNSON: Jon Friedman of MarketWatch argues that the mainstream media did a shameful job of covering the death of John Johnson, a genuine media pioneer. He's right, and I didn't mention it at all, thinking that it was mostly a Chicago-based story. But it is an amazing American success story that should be read as widely as possible.

MARCH OF THE PENGUINS has overtaken Amelie to become the second most successful French film at the North American box office.

DENISE RICHARDS getting back together with with Charlie Sheen? Maybe those differences aren't as irreconcilable as she thought.

TARA REID was offended by the antics at Berlin's Kit Kat Club. Who knew she could be offended?

JAMES BOND: Producers have pulled Pierce Brosnan's license to kill. CBS News looks at some of Q branch's rejects.

REVENGE OF THE NERDS: The NYDN looks at Geek Chic. This is a theme that has been recycling since the dot-com boom of the 90s. Geek is not a trend; it's the future.

ARCHIE sues the Veronicas, claiming it really ain't the Archies without the Jughead beat.

SANTANA SUED for wrongful termination by a former personal assistant claiming he was fired after his consciousness was "calibrated" by "Dr. Dan" and determined to be too low.

JUDE LAW is apparently no Tommy Lee, which raises questions about a picture linked here previously. But the new pics are definitiely NSFW, so there's no issue of Derek Smalls' trouser helper to debate...

PLAYGIRL magazine polled its readers (*cough*) and found a substantial number like their men scruffy and a wee bit chubby. These are probably the same people who, in Playgirl's "sexiest male newscaster" poll, picked Andy Rooney.

BLUE EYES work magic o­n women.

ABLE DANGER: Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer shed his cloak of anonymity to claim that the 9/11 Commission did not get all of the data o­n the data-mining project that allegedly identified four of the hijackers more than a year before the attacks. I have no idea whether this goes anywhere, but I agree that Able Danger is a cool name.

OHIO GOV. BOB TAFT will face misdemeanor charges for not reporting golf outings paid for by others. The OH GOP seems to have almost as many problems as the IL GOP -- which is o­ne reason I didn't think the recent special election for Congress in OH would be much of a bellewether.

BILL CLINTON, who has been chummy with the Bush family recently, suddenly decides to tell New York magazine that he "always thought that bin Laden was a bigger threat than the Bush administration did." Perhaps he heard that The New York Times was going to run a story that his administration ignored State Department warnings about OBL in 1996 and the New York Post was going to run a piece about then-Manhattan U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White's plea to tear down the wall between intelligence and prosecutors that went beyond legal requirements. Maybe there should be less finger-pointing and more working together to fix things four years after 9/11.

DOGS may end up carrying their own poop.

CATS AND DOGS, living together, real wrath-of-God-type stuff.

SHEEP generally do not take taxis.

GIANT CAIMAN UPDATE: Now they think the Caiman mentioned here yesterday is an alligator. But Carlito is crafty and has so far eluded Crocodile Jay Young, who has vowed to catch the beast in two days or do the job for free.

AGING CHICKENS have been plucked from the jaws of death by a Vacaville, CA animal sanctuary and several humane societies. They now must adjust to life away from the factory farm.

CROCODILES kill HIV and bacteria that resists antibiotics.

2765 Reads

Southern Rock, Leonard Cohen, Sin City, Dogs, Lions and a Fish story   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, August 17, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


WHO'S LEFT is going to tour next year. No Rock and Roll Fun manages two tweaks without mentioning the lyrics to "My Generation."

SOUTHERN ROCKERS talk about southern rock in a web exclusive to the Oxford American.

BILL CLINTON has a mix CD for you.

PASTE MAGAZINE gets profiled by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. And no such piece would be complete without lists from the mag's publishers and editors.

PAYOLA: Carl Wilson looks at its past and future.

LEONARD COHEN is almost broke, his retirement savings whittled down from almost five million dollars to 150K. Lesson: don't put all of your money into a company 99.5% owned by your personal manager.  I thought everybody knew this.

SIN CITY came out o­n DVD yesterday, for those who were waiting to enjoy Jessica Alba in the privacy of their own homes. Be warned, however, that there are next to no "extras," almost guaranteeing that Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez will try to hit fans up for the "collector's edition" later.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Holmes still gushing over Cruise. You would almost think she was under contract.

THE DA VINCI CODE: Shooting o­n the film adaptation of Dan Brown's runaway bestseller at Lincoln Cathedral began yesterday against the backdrop of demonstrations outside led by a nun.

JOHN CLEESE says his three American wives were beautiful, but had emotional problems.

IRAQ: Arthur Chrenkoff apparently hasn't been promoted yet, so he has another round up of under-reported news from Iraq. For example,the United Nations' News Service reports that nearly a quarter of a million Iraqis of all ethnic and religious groups have taken part in meetings to help draft their country's new constitution. Ninety-three percent of children have been vaccinated against polio. Electricity generation is well above the prewar peak, despite sabotage. The vast marshlands of southern Iraq, almost drained out of existence by Saddam, are recovering far more quickly than anyone had even dared to hope. "Operation Iraq Children," begun in March 2004 by actor Gary Sinise and author Laura Hillenbrand, has shipped more than 200,000 school kits to kids needing supplies. That's just scratching the surface.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: When he got stopped at Norwegian customs over the weekend, the troubled singer got the full rubber glove treatment. I guess that prior job experience as a gay prostitute came in handy! Doherty and another band member were fined 8000 Krone (£700) for attempting to bring crack cocaine and heroin into the country.

MARILYN MANSON is defended by a priest, albeit a priest who moonlights with his own heavy-metal band...

MADONNA is in the hospital after falling off a horse while celebrating her 47th birthday. Madge cracked some ribs and broke a collar bone and a hand, but she seems to be o­n the mend. I would go with the Catherine the Great joke, but the truth is that the Empress passed o­n in the same way as the King did 28 years ago yesterday.

ROBERT CHRISTGAU, Dean of pop music critics, goes public with plans by the Village Voice to slash payments for a substantial proportion of the writing in the paper by 20 to 45 percent.

BABY TERROR SUSPECTS: Infants have been stopped from boarding planes at airports throughout the U.S. because their names are the same as, or similar to, those of possible terrorists o­n the government's ''no-fly list." As much as I might dread being trapped o­n an airplane with an inconsolable infant, I think a little profiling by age might be in order here.

SEALED WITH A KISS: The language of love expressed with postage stamps makes a bit of a comeback after the invasion of Iraq. With inflation, I suppose the punchline has to be updated: "If you want to lick it, it's a dollar."

KIERA KNIGHTLEY loves being called a nasty b*tch by director Tony Scott.

HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING and love the gossip.

CHRISTOPHER WALKEN officialy denies he's running for President.

ROBERT DOWNEY, JR. getting married this weekend?

DEMI MOORE AND ASHTON KUTCHER want to expand their family. They feel married, except for the actually not being married thing.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON gets an apology from the producers of The Island, who tried to blame the flop of the film o­n her and Ewan MacGregor.

BRITNEY SPEARS Able To Give Perfect Oral Sex!  That's an actual headline. Insert "headline" joke here.

LIONS think Mini Coopers might make a tasty snack.

ELEPHANTS overcrowded at a national park in Zimbabwe move into the northern resort town of Kariba.

FISH steals pole, lures fisherman to his death. Poor guy needed a bigger boat.

MODERATE MUSLINS issue a statement which, among other things, laims that equating "extremism" with the aspirations of Muslims for Sharia laws in the Muslim world or the desire to see unification towards a Caliphate in the Muslim lands indicates ignorance of what the Sharia is and what a Caliphate is and will alienate and victimize the Muslim community. Read the whole thing. If you're unsure as to what Sharia means, Ms. Aayan Hirsi Ali explains a bit of it in the context of Iraq and Canada, which is apparently a Muslim land -- who knew? And when you read the group statement's references to freedom of speech, keep in mind that the statement itself is almost certainly a response to press coverage like Sunday's piece in the Observer, which notes -- among other things -- that the Muslim Council of Britain's secretary general thought that "'death was perhaps too easy" for Salman Rushdie, given his great crime of writing a book deemed blasphemous by Islamists.

CINDY SHEEHAN is complaining that her peace vigil is becoming a media circus. Surprisingly, that's what happens when you offer yourself up for non-stop interviews, the Today show, another whirlwind of interviews, interviews with some network shows, a photo shoot for a Vanity Fair article and four interviews with CBS in a week. BTW, the blurry picture at the right is Ms. Sheehan and callous, insensitive President Bush kissing; for some reason, she's removed it from her family website, but Google cached it.

YOUR MOTHER SAID YOU WOULD GO BLIND: But it's the pictures that are to blame.

TRIPLE-X DOMAIN has been delayed over concerns that it would encourage more porn o­n the net. Not to mention the issue of who would be master of the domain.

GOOGLE has quietly been shopping for miles and miles of "dark," or unused, fiber-optic cable across the country for the past year, along with superfast connections. Is the gatekeeper of the world’s information about to become o­ne of the globe’s biggest broadband Internet providers?

NANOTECH: Carbon nanotubes crafted into the shape of a Y could revolutionize the computer industry. Research has shown that Y-shaped carbon nanotubes are easily made and act as remarkably efficient electronic transistors.

A COMPUTER WORM caused problems for CNN, ABC News and The New York Times o­n Tuesday.

JUST SEE IT: Nike has come out with contact lenses, called MaxSight, that are meant to replace sunglasses.

CULT OF THE iPod: More o­n the patent dispute that may force Apple to pay Microsoft ten bucks per gadget. Maybe Microsoft employees won't have to hide their iPods anymore.

DOGS are a staple at the Bau House Cafe in Seoul, South Korea... as customers, not an entree. (Thanks to Debbie.)

DOGS: The newest greeter at the Holy Cross Catholic Church in West Fargo, ND, is Lucky, a golden retriever puppy. The Rev. Dave Syverson: "I used to get 300, 400 handshakes. Now that number is less than 10."

GIANT CAIMAN IN L.A.: Since a gardener spotted it last Friday, people have tried to glimpse the 200-pound reptile wading and sunbathing at Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park. It has acquired a nickname matching its Latin American roots and its penchant for tortillas tossed by visitors: Carlito.

COPPERHEAD ROAD: More than 100 of the snakes overrun a yard in Marion County, Arkansas, o­n the way to hibernating, months ahead of schedule.

RABBIT SAVES MAN'S WIFE: Banging and jumping up and down in her cage o­ne night alerted the husband that his wife seemed to be sleeping heavily with her eyes wide open.

BAD HOMING PIGEON: Right address, wrong country.

2751 Reads

The Fictions, Bob Dylan, Pythons, Pig-Squealers and a Greedy Squirrel   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, August 16, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE FICTIONS are breaking up next week. So if you like bouncy, classic pop as much as I do, you'll want to be downloading the MP3s or at least streaming them from their MySpace and PureVolume pages.

ELVIS COSTELLO is providing a commentary track to the upcoming DVD collection of his videos.

BOB DYLAN is featured in the first in an irregular series o­n songwriting for the L.A. Times. Plenty of good stuff there, including this quote: "It doesn't really matter where a song comes from. It just matters where it takes you." You'll probably have a different favorite, so read the whole thing. ALSO: The Independent sees the rarely shown Dylan documentary, Eat the Document.

BRIAN JONES' body may be exhumed and a new police inquiry launched into his death, it was claimed yesterday. Trevor Hobley, a close friend of Jones's o­ne-time girlfriend Pat Andrews, has been told that the body should be in near pristine condition. It would have to look better than Mick and Keith.

THE DOOBIE BROTHERS RECONSIDERED on the Pitchfork: "In the pantheon of American rock the Doobie Brothers stand undeniably ensconced as the 11th most important 'Brothers' group of all time, behind o­nly the Everly Brothers, the Neville Brothers, the Walker Brothers, the Isley Brothers, the Louvin Brothers, the Brothers Johnson, the Palace Brothers, the Dust Brothers, the Blues Brothers, and the Smothers Brothers -- easily bettering the Blues Brothers 2000 and Pernice Brothers..."

PAUL WELLER has a new album due in October.

ELIZABETH HURLEY is the Simon Cowell of fashion. Me-ow likes it.

DIRECTOR TERRY GILLIAM of Monty Python was charged an extra day for checking out a few minutes late from a NYC hotel, so he searched for a homeless person to occupy the room.

DIRECTOR TERRY JONES of Monty Python talks about Python, when we really want to hear about how his wife kicked him out of the house after he hooked up with a Swedish Python fan more than four decades his junior. Later in the interview, Jones syays he doesn't watch the BBC anymore because you won't hear about Cindy Sheehan there. I can't speak for the BBC, but I note its website has at least three Sheehan stories o­nline at the moment.

IRAQ missed the deadline for the new constitution and MPs granted a o­ne-week extension. It's silly to blame this o­n the sandstorm that hit Baghdad recently, but given the alternatives of punting issues like federalism, womens' rights and the role of Islamic law to the legislature, or calling a new election, waiting a week may be tolerable. As noted at Publius Pundit, polling shows the Iraqi people are moving in the right direction, so a week of hearing from them may help the process along (more o­n that poll here). Patrick Clawson, of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, thinks the process got off o­n the wrong foot with a largely inactive parliament and a constitutional drafting process led by a small group of men behind closed doors. "That's not a way democracy should operate," he said. "So quite clearly, Iraqi democracy is going to be highly imperfect, quite limited." I love it when an American expert shows no understanding of our own history.

IRAQ II: The constitution story ensured that other stories would not get as much coverage. For example, Abu Zubair, a top aide to al-Zarqawi, accused of masterminding high-profile suicide bombings in the country, was killed in an abush by Iraqi security forces in Mosul. Alenda Lux takes a stab at following in the footsteps of retiring blogger Arthur Chrenkoff in rounding up other under-reported stories.

LAURA CANTRELL: The alt-country singer tells us about her Aunt Edna. And there's a point to it. I have previously pointed y'all toward legal Cantrell downloads.

BASS GUITARIST makes comedy from gigs with Madonna and Michael Jackson.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer was held by Norwegian customs officers last Friday o­n suspicion of possessing drugs -- and was o­nly freed when concert organisers came to his rescue. When his band Babyshambles finally took to the stage, Doherty proceeded to vomit in full view of 4,000 fans.

FIONA APPLE is releasing a reworked version of her long-shelved and leaked third album, Extraordinary Machine, and is nervous about how it will be received by folks who heard the leaked versions.

AL QAEDA'S SEVEN PHASE PLAN for global domination is analyzed at the Fourth Rail.

OIL-FOR FOOD SCANDAL: The official investigation into corruption in the multi-billion dollar program is now looking at the brother of U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan. For his part, Annan ordered a broad independent review of U.N. procurement practices o­n Monday following the discovery that a senior U.N. purchasing official was shaking down contractors.

BONO: An excerpt from Michka Assayas' book of interviews with the U2 frontman and activist is o­nline at Christianity Today. U2 have been awarded Portugal's highest honor for their humanitarian efforts.

BRIAN ENO: You have probably heard his most famous piece of music; it's 3.25 seconds long.

LIZ PHAIR AND LESLIE GORE: I'll bet that was some party.

ERIN McKEOWN assures an interviewer from PopMatters that having a degree in Ethnomusicology is not such a big deal.

JAMES LILEKS has Amazon.com's secret 1-800 number.

DOES THE ASSOCIATED PRESS HAVE A BUNKER MENTALITY when it comes to Iraq? Editors of the AP's member papers are asking the question. "The main obstacle we face," said Mike Silverman, managing editor of The AP, "is the severe limitation o­n our movement and our ability to get out and report. It's very confining for our staff to go into Baghdad and have to spend most of their time o­n the fifth floor of the Palestine Hotel." However, it seems like the AP may try to do more stories looking at the big picture beyond the daily body count.

JESSICA SIMPSON: It seems like she's everywhere these days; Worth1000 based a Photoshop contest o­n the idea.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Perez Hilton has a completely unsubstantiated rumor that Jolie is pregnant.

LOHAN LOWDOWN: The teen starlet moves behind the camera.

THE DONALD is blogging, but he hasn't written about these photos yet.

SHARON STONE, in London during the bombings, sought refuge from the man most feared by global terrorists -- Elton John.

HUGH JACKMAN: The name is not Bond...

EVA LONGORIA: We knew that the Desperate Housewife liked to give them as gifts. Is she re-gifting?

HEATHCLIFF... come back Heathcliff... I'm not finished with you, Heathcliff...

RUSSELL CROWE has an 11 million dollar phone bill.

KEVIN BACON seems headed back toward Wild Things country, but imho, Matt Dillon still comes out ahead.

LOST STAR Naveen Andrews left his violent home when he was 16 and moved in with his private school maths teacher, with whom he fathered a son after her disgusted husband divorced her. He now dates actress Barbara Hershey, who is 21 years his senior, and was last year accused of cheating o­n her.

RYAN SEACREST will co-host New Year's Rockin' Eve with Dick Clark, in hopes of finding out where he can get a portrait done.

CULT OF THE iPod: Apple still has no plans to enter the subscription music market... yet.

NANOTECH: Carbon nanotubes can function as scaffolds for bone regrowth, according to researchers at the University of California at Riverside.

BRITISH BREASTS have grown by a cup-size in the past decade.

SCHADENFREUDE and "keeping up with the Joneses" proven in a new study from Penn State.

...AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT: A Viking ship made of 15 million ice cream sticks.

INSERT YOUR DELIVERANCE JOKE HERE: A father-and-son team were named France's official Pig-Squealing Champions for 2005.

THOUSANDS OF BEES INVADED a matinee at Saddleback College's McKinney Theatre, stinging the lead actress and forcing cancellation of the 16-show run of Babes In Arms after just three performances.

TURKEY TOSSER cops a plea, will receive 6 months in jail and 5 years probation.

A GREEDY SQUIRREL ballooned in size and got wedged inside a bird feeder after gorging o­n nuts. And I'm disappointed that the Internet Movie DataBase has the quote wrong!

DOGS: Marmite the labrador survived after falling 40 feet down a cliff near Weymouth, Dorset.

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Huey Lewis, Road Songs, Cover Albums, Ferrets, Ligers and Surfin' Mice   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, August 15, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


STARTING THE WEEK WITH A SHOUT for our vast audience o­n the Continent...

GANG OF FOUR is streaming all over the 'net. Brooklyn Vegan has the linkage.

HUEY LEWIS has a fan base among the developmentally disabled, according to an article that seems way too politically incorrect for the SF Weekly.

SUB-POP label co-founder Jonathan Poneman is interviewed by Reuters, about the label's history and how the Internet made the Postal Service the label's second-best-selling act.

INDIE LABELS are joining the Recording Industry Association of America.

THE RIAA, having not gotten much from its battle against filesharing, is gearing up to fight CD burning.

DIY MUSICIANS, including Ani DiFranco, the Churchills, Christopher Dallman and the Sharp Things, are profiled in the Free New Mexican.

CHRISTOPHER WALKEN IN 2008? There is a website, which appears to be a hoax. But the cool slogan and poster could draw him in...

JULIA ROBERTS may become a stay-at-home mom.

THE DA VINCI CODE: Sony studio officials have consulted with religious experts o­n how they might alter the plot of the novel to avoid offending the devout.

JANICE DICKINSON: I have to agree with The Superficial that the self-proclaimed first supermodel has a super driver's license photo.

SUSAN SARANDON joins Jamie Lee Curtis in criticizing cosmetic surgery: "I'm scared of plastic surgery. You're somewhere between a burn victim and a female impersonator, and then there's kind of an Asian thing going o­n..."

TOM SIZEMORE has been diagnosed with priapism -- a rare medical condition that leaves him sexually insatiable -- which doctors believe could have been caused by years of alcohol and drug abuse. It would explain why he dated Heidi Fleiss...

IRAQ: Bomb attacks o­n U.S. supply convoys have doubled over the past year but casualties have declined with increased armoring of vehicles, according to the U.S. general in charge of logistics. A major chemical production facility, suspected to have been built by insurgents, was uncovered by US forces during a raid this week near Mosul; early tests suggest substances that could be used in explosives. Iraq's Oil Minister said that his country posted the highest level of crude sales in the country's petroleum history in July.

THE 9/11 COMMISSION releases its statement o­n the "Able Danger" controversy. The full statement is available as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file.

GUIDED BY VOICES: Robert Pollard has more GbV demos posted. And former GbV force Tobin Sprout has set up his own website.

THE LENNON LEGACY is assessed at the London Observer.

ROAD SONGS: USA TODAY's travel and music writers each select a favorite road-trip song, with a link to other playlist recommendations.

REVOLUTION IN THE HEAD is just killing music, with "albums" of covers performed by Belle and Sebastian and Elliot Smith.

IRAQ EXIT STRATEGIES: Gen. George Casey, the U.S. ground commander in Iraq, reportedly has been privately rebuked by the Bush administration for openly discussing plans to reduce troop levels there next year. Although many suspect that Bush wants to draw down troops ahead of the 2006 election (and all things being equal, I'm sure he would like to if he can), it's notable that the drawdown talk was coming from the military, not the Administration. Although no o­ne wants to set a timetable to encourage terrorists to wait out the coalition, I suspect the military wants to make clear it won't be there in full force forever, for reasons of: (a) Iraqi politics; (b) assuaging concerns of military families; and (c) perhaps most important, sending a message to Iraqi forces not to become dependent. And for those who see an anlogy between Iraq and Vietnam, Henry the K offers lessons o­n exit strategies.

LONDON: Radical Muslim cleric Omar Bakri Mohammed has been banned from setting foot o­n British soil again. Britain launched a crackdown o­n foreign-born Muslim ideologues Thursday, arresting ten and announcing they would be deported.

GOOD SAMARITAN races up a fire escape and catches a six-year-old girl who fell from the roof of her day care center.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer's band, Babyshambles, had their equipment seized by police after a secret gig in London, due to noise complaints. And he's trying to get back in with galpal Kate Moss by buying her expensive lingerie, which we really know is a gift for him. Graphic footage of Doherty deliberately harming himself will not appear in a forthcoming fly-on-the-wall documentary about the former Libertines' singer, much to his chagrin, I'm thinking.

t. A. T. u. RETURNS: Be afraid. Be very afraid.

TOP FIVE WAYS MP3 has changed the world, according to C|Net.

FAUXRENER: Mick Jones is restarting Foreigner without Lou Gramm. Caveat Emptor (which would be true anyway).

IRAQ II: Camp Liberty, o­ne of the best-appointed compounds in the constellation of American military bases in Iraq, has the vague feel of a college campus, albeit with sand underfoot, Blackhawks overhead and the occasional random mortar attack. The New York Times version of this story also has photos. The Altlanta Journal-Constitution blogs conditions at Camp Taji; the comments show that not all the troops live like this.

AFGHANISTAN: U.S. Marines and Afghan troops launched an offensive Saturday to take a remote mountain valley from insurgents tied to the deadliest blow o­n American forces since the Taliban regime was ousted nearly four years ago. And they are using donkeys for their supply chain. Meanwhile, several hundred former Taliban members have returned from exile in Pakistan to join a government reconciliation program.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Trouble in Crazytown? The infallible Star magazine reports that Holmes may be getting cold feet about marrying Cruise, as a rift develops over wedding plans. Holmes still wants a Roman Catholic priest at their wedding out of respect for her parents, but Cruise wants o­nly a few family members and close Scientology friends. He also wants to hold the wedding in a Scientologist-friendly location, according to the source, such as the Scientology Celebrity Center in Los Angeles or aboard the Scientology yacht.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jennifer Aniston gets an apology from Kimberley Stewart, who may have noticed she's living in a glass house.

THE ISLAND: The producers of the laughably-bad Parts: The Clonus Horror have finally filed a copyright case, asking a New York court to have the sci-fi thriller pulled from theaters.

IRAQ III: Michael Yon sees more battle in Mosul and photographs it, but the words are compelling, too. A piece from the American Forces Press Service reports that nearly three dozen Iraqi army or police units are assessed as in the lead or independent; it seems like logistics and supplies are the sticking points for many units (which is better than having problems with training or morale). Major K meets the Iraqi Soldiers of the 1st Brigade -- the Brigade that took back Haifa Street in Baghdad -- and is impressed. Sunni Muslims in Ramadi fought Saturday to defend their Shiite neighbors against a bid to drive them from the western city, Sunni leaders and Shiite residents said.

IT'S ALL ABOUT THE BENJAMINS: Memo to aspiring counterfeiters -- Benjamin Franklin appears o­n the 100 dollar bill, not Abraham Lincoln.

RECORD OIL PRICES? Not after adjusting for inflation.

HOWARD ZINN, author of A People's History of the United States, claims that America is an occupied country. Which I would take more seriously if Zinn did not already think that America has been occupied since 1492.

LONDON II: The Guardian, having published a column by an employee who was a member of a radical Islamic group, follows up with an op-ed by Saad al-Fagih arguing that, "No o­ne will be more pleased than Osama bin Laden with the new measures announced by Tony Blair." Not mentioned was that al-Fagih seems to be a member or associate of Al Qaeda. And Harry's Place rounds up links o­n the investigation of the allegedly moderate Muslim Council of Britain.

CINDY SHEEHAN continues her anti-war vigil near President Bush's ranch. She has supporters holding vigils for her. David Duke backs her. Members of her family members disagree and she is now separated from her husband. At Iraq the Model, Mohammed responds to her question of why the U.S. is in Iraq. At the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, columnist Robert L. Jamieson, Jr. will probably have his e-malibox fill with hate mail from folks who normally agree with him. And Newsweek has a piece suggesting that President Bush does not treat meetings with grieving families like a frat party as Sheehan has charged. Sen. McCain, often a thorn in Bush's side, says ""any charge of insensitivity or uncaring o­n the part of this president is absolutely false."

MILBLOGGING gets an article in the Washington Post titled "The New Ernie Pyles." The Post Watch blog notes that the article manages a negative tone, when most milbloggers are not anti-war. It was hard to avoid noticing that the WaPo article was less representative than John Hockenberry's article at Wired. But if you put both together you get a feel for the range of opinion.

PODCASTING: KEXP's pioneering ways get coverage in the Seattle Times. In the next few weeks, KEXP says it will become the first to make its live radio broadcasts suitable for cellphones and handheld organizers.

FERRETS: After nine years of slippery, slinky competition, the Ferret Olympics is being forced to change its name because the U.S. Olympic Committee has threatened to sue.

SWANS are taking advantage of the gay-friendly atmosphere of Massachussetts. Yet there are still eggs, which aren't faring well.

CATS: Two teenagers performed a caesarean section o­n a dead cat they found along a New Brunswick road, saving two of four kittens.

DOGS are graduating from bomb-sniffing school. ALSO: Quite by chance, I came across this at Ask Yahoo: "Why do dogs love to stick their heads out of car windows?"

CATS AND DOGS: Jo Shoesmith, and her ex-husband, Marty Stephens, are having to rethink the joint custody arrangement for their aging dog, Misha. At the outset, friends and family had thought the notion of a pet custody arrangement a bit extreme -- even their lawyers scratched their heads when they thought about how, exactly, to word such a thing.

LIKE BUNNIES? New Zealander Brendan McMahon likes bunnies like bunnies. It landed him in jail.

LIGERS get coverage from National Geographic due to the Napoleon Dynamite factor. And "Liger" is o­ne of the top search engine requests that brings up this site.

PETA sought to have Minnesota ban the catching of the state fish -- the Walleye. Gov. Tim Pawlenty responded by planning to go out for a walleye dinner.

FOUR CHEETAH CUBS were born at the San Diego Zoo. Awww...

THOUSANDS OF TOADS invade Big Sandy, Montana. It was just two years ago that the town's streets were blocked by 10-foot drifts of tumbleweeds.

SURF'S UP for Aussie Mice. Kowabunga! Columnated ruins domino...

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