THE WRECK of the EDMUND FITZGERALD: The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down of the big lake they called Gitche Gumee. Today marks the 36th anniversary of the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald -- 729 feet-long, 75 feet in breadth, 39 feet in depth, weighing 13,632 gross tons -- an ore bulk carrier with a capacity of 25,000 tons. When it was launched on June 7 1958, at the Great Lakes Engineering Works in River Rouge, Michigan, Fitzgerald was the largest ship on the Great Lakes. Here's misty, water-colored video of the launch.
The "Queen of the Great Lakes" sank in the eastern end of Lake Superior during a fierce storm -- including snow squalls -- that pounded the ship with 30-foot waves. The crew of 29 men perished; without witnesses, a definitive reason has never been determined. A Coast Guard report suggested that faulty hatches failed to keep water out of the ship's cargo holds, though others believe the ship struck an uncharted shoal and took on water. A documentary created and aired by the Discovery Channel concluded the loss was due to freak waves that overwhelmed the faulty hatches.
After the wreck, the Rev. Richard Ingalls went to Mariners' Church in Detroit and rang its bell 29 times, once for each life lost. The church continues to hold an annual memorial, which includes reading the names of the crewmen and ringing the church bell. Here's video of Rev. Ingalls recounting that night.
At the request of family members surviving her crew, Fitzgerald's 200 lb. bronze bell was recovered by the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society in 1995, as a joint project with the National Geographic Society, Canadian Navy, Sony Corporation, and Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. The bell is now on display in the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum, and will be rung at today's memorial. Here's a brief video from one of the underwater explorations of the wreck. Throw in the 3-D animation, and you'll feel just like Bill Paxton.
The song by Gordon Lightfoot spent 21 straight weeks on the pop charts, peaking at No. 2. And there's a homemade video for it, which I highly recommend. Beats the tar of Celine Dion! (PS: Ken King -- who has lived on the U.P. of Michigan, says the gales of November are quite something.)
CROOKED FINGERS stopped by WNYC for a live performance.
THE WOMBATS stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set.
SLEEPING IN THE AVIARY stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set.
FIRST AID KIT stopped by Morning Becomes Eclectic for a session.
GIRLS drop "Lawrence" as a single.
CEE-LO GREEN drops a lyric video for "Anyway," cowritten by Wallpaper and Rivers Cuomo. Content warning, but not as good as the really profane Cee-Lo.
DURAN DURAN rounded up classic supermodels for the "Girl Panic!" video, having cracked the code on what made them popular in the 80s.
LAURA VEIRS talks to PopMatters about the influences and aims behind Tumble Bee, discusses the calculated creative risk it represents, and offers reassurance that this is not "the beginning of the end" of her songwriting for adults.
SUZANNE VEGA discusses tracks spanning her career with The A.V. Club.
ARCTIC MONKEYS frontman Alex Turner tells BBC 6 he's done things on stage he never thought he'd do. (Thx, Chromewaves.)
TEGAN QUIN, in criticizing Tyler the Creator, really criticizes the music industry.
SUMMER CAMP is profiled by The Independent.
FRANK BLACK (Pixies) talks to The Guardian about his new record label.
BRIAN ENO talked to Sound Opinions about his unique philosophies on writing, recording and the studio as an instrument. (Thx, LHB.)
BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: Last show or another hiatus?
WHY DON'T I LIKE COLDPLAY? Sasha Frere-Jones investigates.
KIM KARDASHIAN is not reconciling with Kris Humphries, and the divorce is full steam ahead, according to sources with first-hand knowledge of the situation.
COURTENEY COX & DAVID ARQUETTE are also not reconciling.
EDDIE MURPHY is dropping out as the host of the Oscars telecast, after the show's producer, Brett Ratner, stepped aside amid a storm of criticism over his use of an anti-gay slur.
GEORGE CLOONEY talks to Rolling Stone about sex, politics, and fame... which is mostly what that mag has been about for decades.
JESSICA SIMPSON says she doesn't want to be a Bridezilla.
MICHAEL JACKSON's death bed is up for auction. Somewhere, Joseph Merrick laughs.
MADONNA talks to Harper's Bazaar about women, power and sexuality.
DAKOTA FANNING's new perfume ad is banned in Britain.
OPRAH WINFREY is getting a humanitarian Oscar.
WERNER HERZOG talks to Movieline about acting, Americana, and journeying Into The Abyss.
FIVE GREAT SHORT FILMS Inside Longer Ones.
EIGHT HORROR MOVIES that inspired real-life crimes.
SYRIA: Grand Mufti Sheikh Hassoun, the highest Islamic authority in Syria and a close confidant of Assad, talked to Der Spiegel about the threat of civil war, possible suicide bombings in Europe and his son's murder at the hands of Islamist insurgents.
PAKISTAN's president promised to work with the US to "eradicate" the militant Haqqani network, a pledge made during a meeting with visiting American congressmen, according to one of the lawmakers.
IRAQ: Insurgents killed an Awakening leader in Salahadin and attempted to assassinate the mayor of Mosul. The US has turned over the massive airbase at Balad to the Iraqi military.
A DEER visits the Taco Mac in Alpharetta, GA, for the Falcons game.
AN ALLIGATOR sough sanctuary at a southern Michigan church.
MAN PUNCHES DOG: The definition of news.
CATS EAT DOG: The definition of news.