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In the course of Human Events...   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, July 01, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE BEACH BOYS!  Yep, time to "Do It Again."  Because folks my age will always remember their mammoth July 4th concerts at the Washington Monument -- as with this 1980 take o­n "Good Vibrations." Given the time of year, I have to include this 1964 clip of "Surfin' U.S.A." which I think is from the same gig that produced these takes on "Little Deuce Coupe," "In My Room," "Shut Down," "Surfer Girl" and "Fun, Fun Fun." Their take on "Dance, Dance, Dance" from Shindig! later that year is like a slice of Christmas in July.  There's also a nifty twofer of "I Get Around" and "'When I Grow Up (To Be A Man)" from their first UK TV appearance o­n Ready Steady Go!  The Andy Williams Show serves up "Help Me, Rhonda," while The Jack Benny Hour produced these quick takes o­n "Barbara Ann" and "California Girls."  There's a primitive video for "Wouldn't It Be Nice" that starts with a cameo from Brian Wilson's dogs (Banana and Louie), who appear at the end of the Pet Sounds LP.  And I'll finish with a live version of "God Only Knows" from the 1967 European tour -- one of the last Brian would do for a decade or so.

RAY CHARLES performs "America The Beautiful" like no one else.

INDEPENDENCE DAY: Bruce Springsteen, circa 1978, before it came out on The River.


THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER: From 2008, Hidden Track serves up 12 video versions. And the only ones not working now are Jimi Hendrix and Whitney Houston.

THE UNITED STATES prepares to celebrate the anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain on July 4, 1776. As the Wikipedia notes, this is a little arbitrary: New Englanders had been fighting Britain since April 1775; the first motion in the Continental Congress for independence was made o­n June 8th; and the Congress voted 12-0 for independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain o­n July 2, 1776. Even so, the publication of the Declaration was momentous .  If you're not in DC, the best way to see and learn about the Declaration may be through the Charters of Freedom website. But you can watch Mel Gibson, Michael Douglas, Renee Zelleweger, Kevin Spacey, Wynona Ryder and other Hollywood folk read the Declaration, after a short introduction by Morgan Freeman.

Of course, the holiday more broadly celebrates the American Revolutionary War, and the Founders' unlikely victory. People with the highest standard of living and the lowest taxes in the Western World fought a sometimes unpopular war for our freedom. Early o­n, the Revolutionaries (also known as "Americans" or "Patriots") had the active support of about 40 to 45 percent of the colonial population. By 1779, there were more Americans fighting with the British than with Washington, which is why Washington needed help from the French, the Spanish and freed Blacks. You can separate fact from fiction regarding the sacrifices and fates of the Founders at Snopes. You can hear two-time Pulitzer Prize winner David McCullough read from the first chapter of his 1776 via NPR. Or watch a nifty clip on the passage and public reading of the Declaration from the John Adams miniseries.

DAVE ALVIN: Hey, baby, it's the "4th of July."

POPULAR SONGS: Who Really Owns Them?

NINE HIT SONGS Musicians gave Away to Other Artists.

RETROMANIA: Simon Reynolds talks to PopMatters about his new book and pop's addiction to its own past.

IS THERE A FORMULA FOR HIT SONGS? Two grad students are working on it at Rutgers.

CUTOUT BIN: From Elvis Costello to Led Zeppelin, from Best Coast to Wilson Pickett, from Let's Active to Tom Petty, plus the Modern Lovers, David Byrne, the Beach Boys, the Feelies, Don Covay and more -- this Friday's fortuitous finds are now streaming from the Pate page at the ol' HM.

NOW SHOWING: In addition to Transformers 3, which opened Wednesday scoring 36 percent on the ol' Tomatometer, this weekend's wide counter-programming includes Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts in Larry Crowne, which is scoring 33 percent; and Selena Gomez in Monte Carlo, scoring 43 percent.

SHIA LeBEOUF & MEGAN FOX: More details leak after LeBeouf self-leaked to Details.

JONATHAN RHYS MEYERS (The Tudors) was hospitalized in London this week after a possible suicide attempt involving pills, according to the ever-reliable Sun.

DENISE RICHARDS adopted a baby girl domestically.

LINDSAY LOHAN stumbles leaving a social club on her first night out after the end of her house arrest.

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE takes a minority stake in MySpace after its acquisition by online advertising network Specific Media and will help the company develop its new strategy and creative direction.

TOBEY MAGUIRE categorically denies he participated in illegal celebrity poker games.

PRINCE HARRY is having secret trysts with lingerie and swimwear model Florence Brudenell-Bruce, according to the ever-reliable Sun.

CHRIS HANSEN of To Catch a Predator was caught cheating on his wife by the National Enquirer.

AMERICAN IDOL: Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson re-sign as judges; J-Lo remains on the fence.

THOR 2 is pencilled for Summer 2013, albeit without director Kenneth Branagh.

YEMEN: Islamic militants linked to Al Qaeda gained ground on Wednesday in fierce fighting with security forces just outside the strategic southern port city of Zinjibar.

EGYPT: The Victorious Islamists.

IRAQ: June was the bloodiest month for American forces in two years.  US Military officials in Baghdad and at the Pentagon blamed the mounting death toll on the growing sophistication of weapons that insurgents and Iranian-backed militia groups are using, including powerful rockets, armor-piercing grenades and jam-resistant roadside bombs suspected of coming from Iran.

TWIGGY: For the Fourth of July weekend, why not another look at the water-skiing squirrel? Great story. Compelling and rich.

A POLAR BEAR and his trainer...playing together...Mass hysteria!

MISTER PIP: World's Grumpiest Cat?

A GIANT SQUID was found dead off Port Martin, FL.

A SMALL, PLANT-EATING DINOSAUR that became extinct 65 million years ago was the king of the head butt.

2872 Reads

Sondre Lerche, Civil Wars, Low, Whiskeytown, Tiny Sheepdog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, June 30, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


GIVERS defy gravity in the clip for "Up Up Up." For fans of Vampire Weekend.

SONDRE LERCHE plays a session at Morning Becomes Eclectic.

THE CIVIL WARS played a Tiny Desk Concert at the offices of NPR.

LOW stopped by the World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

ALL SONGS CONSIDERED: Tracks from Fountains of Wayne, Wilco, Gillian Welch, Paul McCartney and more feature in the latest installment of the long-running series.

WHISKEYTOWN, Live at the 7th Street Entry, October 30, 1997.

LINDSEY BUCKINGHAM drops the title track to "Seeds We Sow."


THE 13 BEST SMITHS SONGS, according to PopMatters.

HOODOO GURUS: "Come Anytime" was the first single from Magna ***** Louder, which came out 22 years ago this week. Get. Off. My. Lawn.

BJORK talks to Pitchfork and Stereogum about the upcoming Biolphilia album/app/thingamajig.

MIKE WATT talks to Aquarium Drunkard about the influences on Hyphenated-man -- Hieronymous Bosch and the Minutemen (who were in turn inspired by Wire).

JOHN LENNON: Closet Reagan Republican? Imagine...

CLARENCE CLEMONS: Eulogy by Bruce Springsteen.

DAVID BAZAN talks to Birmingham Weekly about the making of Strange Negotiations. (Thx, LHB.)

KATE BUSH talks to Interview about The Director's cut, American pop, and more...

LINDSAY LOHAN's painfully relaxing stint under house arrest is finally over.

QUENTIN TARANTINO is on the business end of a nasty and perhaps hoaxy viral email.

CHARLIE SHEEN claims he took steroids for his role in Major League.

DAVID DUCHOVNY & TEA LEONI are separated. No shocka there. A long time coming, really.

PIPPA MIDDLETON was spotted with her supposed ex bf at Wimbledon.

TRACY MORGAN has offended the mentally disabled, just weeks after profusely apologizing to the LGBT community.

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 4 has a trailer online.

THE HOBBIT has new images online.

OUR FRIENDS, THE SAUDIS detained at least five women accused of defying the men-only driving rule in the ultraconservative Arab kingdom.

IRAN: Britain accused Iran of testing nuclear-capable missiles. the US said Iran is "bragging" about its missile program. Ahmedinejad denounced the arrest of four of his followers in the government.

SYRIA: Security forces killed seven civilians during operations against anti-regime protesters in the villages of Mareyan and Ahsem. Britain accused Iran of supporting Syria's crackdown on anti-regime elements.

LIBYA: France confirmed that it is providing weapons to Libyan rebels fighting Gaddafi.

EGYPT: Security forces wounded more than 1000 protesters at Tahrir Square in Cairo. The protesters demand the prosecution of security officials who killed demonstrators earlier this year.

NANCY the CHIHUAHUA: World's Tiniest Sheepdog. Video at the link.

TURTLES forced a runway closure at NYC's JFK airport.

RABBITS enjoy the ganja, like the dormouse said.

A WATER BUFFALO gored an Australian pensioner to death in the Philippines after the man slammed into the beast while driving home from a nightclub on his motorbike.

2749 Reads

Sloan, Wilco, Black Joe Lewis, Beatles, Marathon Dog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, June 29, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SLOAN plays Gary Numan's "Cars" for The A.V. Club Undercover. And nail it, imho.

WILCO: Highlights from the Solid Sound Festival, including new songs and a cover of Split Enz's "I Got You," with Neil Finn.

BLACK JOE LEWIS & THE HONEYBEARS stopped by WFUV for a chat and mini-set.

TUNE-YARDS plays a session at Morning Becomes Eclectic.

MATT POND PA drops "Love to Get Used" from the Spring Fools EP.

THE BEATLES: Off-White (1968 demos from George Harrison's house in Esher).

EVERY MOTHER'S SON: "Come On Down to My Boat," baby.

RICHARD THOMPSON received an OBE from Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace yesterday. (via Jon Hahn.)

FRIENDLY FIRES: Ed Macfarlane talks to BlackBook about the importance of drinking before shows, losing his bassist to another band, and reconciling with New York. (Thx, Chromewaves.)

THE HORRORS take The Quietus on a track-by-track tour of Skying.

PASTE magazine relaunches as a multimedia application.

FEIST was the unlikely subject of a fight between Shia LaBeouf and Michael Bay on the set of Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON opens today, scoring 35 percent on the ol' Tomatometer (as if it matters).

SHIA LeBEOUF: Hollywood's Last Bad Boy? The juice in that piece is that he hooked up with Megan Fox, but didn't know if she was with Brian Austin Green at the time.

BLOW-UP: GQ has an oral history of Michael Bay, the most explosive director of all time. And the beat goes on.

TOM HANKS & JULIA ROBERTS showed up at Grauman's Chinese Theatre for the premiere of their new movie Larry Crowne...but it wasn't exactly a mob scene.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Gibson and soon-to-be ex-wife Robyn have settled their divorce case.

HALLE BERRY went to family court, complaining her baby daddy, Gabriel Aubry, violated the custody agreement they struck over their daughter Nahla.

EMMA STONE talks to Vanity Fair about dropping out of High School, adjusting to fame, and her hardest H'wood moment to date.

A STAR IS BORN: Clint Eastwood hopes to team Leo Dicaprio with Beyoncé, who's already set for the musical.

THE DARK KNIGHT RISES: Anne Hathaway's Catwoman costume reportedly will hew closer to the comic than past movies.

YEMEN: Wounded Pres Saleh, not seen in public since an attack on his palace in early June, is well enough to return soon to Yemen and will make a media appearance within the next couple of days. The ancient port city of Aden is now virtually surrounded by roving gangs of Islamist militia fighters - some linked to Al Qaeda - who have captured at least two towns, stormed prisons and looted banks and military depots in the south.

EGYPT: One of the country's richest men has been accused of mocking Islam after tweeting cartoons of Mickey and Minnie Mouse wearing conservative Muslim attire.

AFGHANISTAN: Analysts across the political spectrum say there is no clarity about what troops will be fighting for in the years to come.

DOZER the goldendoodle is running half-marathons now.

TWO DOLPHIN CALVES pass away at the Baltimore Zoo.

SAN FRANCISCO considers banning all pet sales.

AN INFLATABLE SHARK is among a treasure trove of hundreds of new species may have been discovered in the Philippines.

3715 Reads

New Releases, My Morning Jacket, Booker T, Shark Jump   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, June 28, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


ARCHERS OF LOAF went "Wrong" on Fallon. Eric Bachmann watched the show and told Vulture about his encounter with Madonna back in the day.

NEW RELEASES incuding Marianne Faithfull, YACHT, Handsome Furs, Jolie Holland, Alina Simone, plus the Buddy Holly tribute, a Capitol soul comp, plus releases from Fleet Foxes, The Antlers, Black Lips, Yuck and Smith Westerns and even more are streaming this week at Spinner.

MY MORNING JACKET plays Rock The Garden.

BOOKER T. JONES also plays Rock The Garden.

JAMES BLAKE stopped by World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

THE TUBES: "She's A Beauty" and "Talk To Ya Later" are your Twofer Tuesday.

IAN MacKAY (Minor Threat) talks about music and other things that matter at Tablet.

BLOOD ORANGE: Dev Hynes (last known as Lightspeed Champion) talks to The Fader about his new project.  Dev's home recordings are also embedded. (Thx, LHB.)

YUCK guitarist Max Bloom talks festival gigs at DIY.

BOB MOULD: Another excerpt from his autobiography, this time at the SF Chronicle.

CHARLIE SHEEN lost another Goddess, and his Two and a Half Men character is being killed off, but he inked a deal for a new sitcom with Lionsgate Television and with a bidding war underway he is set to make more money than ever.

MICHAEL JACKSON's "Thriller" jacket sold for 1.8 million at auction.

PRINCE HARRY denies any sort of fling with Pippa Middleton.

SHIA LeBEOUF gets a Transformers-promoting profile in the L.A. Times.

MADONNA: Back on with her latest boy toy.

ANNE HATHAWAY talks to Harper's Bazaar about her many figurative hats.

GREEN LANTERN may well get a sequel, according to THR.

IRAN unveiled underground missile silos as part of military exercises on Monday.

LEBANON: The United Nations special tribunal investigating the assassination of former prime minister Rafik Hariri will indict five Hezbollah members for the 2005 killing, the Asharq Alawsat newspaper reported on Monday.

LIBYA: The International Criminal Court issued arrest warrants for Gaddafi, his son, and his military intelligence chief for "crimes against humanity."

EGYPT: Opposition groups seek to postpone September elections amid fears that the more unified Muslim Brotherhood and members of the former regime will gain too much influence.

SOMETIMES, the shark jumps you.

THE LOST PENGUIN in New Zealand is more lively and eating fish after undergoing endoscopic surgery Monday to remove some of the beach sand and twigs it swallowed, apparently mistaking it for snow.

COOKIE the COCKATOO turned 78 at the Brookfield Zoo near Chicago, the oldest Major Mitchell cockatoo in any zoo.

NORMA LYON, the "butter cow lady" whose sculptures were a primary Iowa State Fair attraction for decades, died of a stroke early Sunday, relatives said. She was 81. Lyon's apprentice, Sarah Pratt of West Des Moines, became the Fair's fifth butter sculptor in 2006, so food-on-a-stick will presumably taste as sweet.

2684 Reads

Soul Asylum, Gillian Welch, Jason Isbell, Wilco, Yoda   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, June 27, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SOUL ASYLUM played Taste of Chicago Saurday night, opening with "Marionette" (one of my faves) and closing with "Stand Up and Be Strong," working in the joke where "Misery" morphs into McCartney's "Silly Love Songs" in between. Playing for folks mostly there for free music, the set lacked the urgency or edge of set for fans, or a set from the period where the band was ascending to major labels and radio hits.  But Dave Pirner and Dan Murphy still have great chemistry and their songs have a poignancy and laconic humor that works well even on the family-oriented festival circuit.  When Pirner joked between songs, "It's great to be here... great to be anywhere, really," he sounded half-sarcastic and half-postmodern, equal parts self-aware, sad and amused.  They still seemed to be having a certain type of fun and it played well with the audience, too.

GILLIAN WELCH is advance streaming The Harrow and the Harvest.

JOLIE HOLLAND is advance streaming he Pint of Blood.

JASON ISBELL & THE 400 UNIT stopped by World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

WILCO: Hear "I Might" and "I Love My Label" (Nick Lowe), both sides of the band's new single. The B-side is presumably a play on the fact that band has started its own label.

NEKO CASE & NICK CAVE cover The Zombies' "She's Not There" for the season four premiere of True Blood.

BJORK: Hear "Crystalline," the first single from Biophilia.

ELVIS COSTELLO & THE IMPOSTERS cover "Purple Rain."  Speaking of which...

THE ARTIST CURRENTLY KNOWN AS PRINCE talks to The Guardian about the evil of ringtones, the Internet and cover songs (sorry, Elvis)... and the fun of ...Islamic countries. Dude.

FLEET FOXES: Robin Pecknold talks to the Irish Times about reviews, songwriting, influences and more...

THE ROSEBUDS talk to San Diego CityBeat about their divorce-inspired(?) album, Loud Planes Fly Low. (Thx, LHB.)

PETER FRAMPTON has filed for divorce from his wife of 15 years.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Cars 2 meets the chequered flag with 68 million, well above the 55 million tracking number, above the original and comparable to most Pixar openings (excluding the mammoth Toy Story 3 opening). Critics weren't thrilled, but all the toys that will be sold help pay for the Pixar movies they do like, so there's that. Bad Teacher debuts in second place with 31 million on a reported 19 million budget, a strong opening for Cameron Diaz and a career boost for Justin Timberlake and Jason Segel.  Green Lantern drops 66 percent to the third slot with 18.4 million, with an 118.7 million worldwide total against a 200 million production budget. Hafta think the Cars and bad word of mouth did damage here. Super 8 fell 44 percent with 12.1 million, but is well in the black, having taken in 95 million to date on a 50 million budget.  Mr. Popper's Penguins rounds out the Top 5 with 10.3 million, which ain't bad, considering the Cars debut was the major draw for kids this weekend. 

DANIEL CRAIG & RACHEL WEISZ secretly wed last Wednesday.

OWEN WILSON is said to have split from the mother of his only child.

JENNIFER ANISTON brought new beau Justin Theroux to her interview with James Lipton for Inside the Actors Studio. The couple was also soptted on a double date with Jason Bateman and his wife.

HUGH HEFNER: Crystal Harris is trying to cash in on her engagement ring.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Goth model Stella Mouzi denies she's Gibson's new galpal.

DONALD SUTHERLAND collided with a bicyclist in the People's Republic of Santa Monica.

FLORENCE HENDERSON  reveals in her upcoming memoir that she got crabs from fmr NYC Mayor John Lindsay.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, and the US Supreme Court upheld a ruling denying her descendants the 89 million-plus judgment previously awarded to her from late oil baron husband J. Howard Marshall's estate.

WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER 2? Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Christopher Meloni, Janeane Garofalo, and David Hyde Pierce have all told Entertainment Weekly they would appear in a sequel to the camp movie spoof.

PETER FALK, beloved as TV's Columbo, but also great in movies such as "The In-Laws," "The Princess Bride" and "Made," died on Thursday night at his home in Beverly Hills, Calif. He was 83.

PAKISTAN: A husband and wife carried out a suicide attack on a police station in Dera Ismail Khan that killed 10 policemen.

AFGHANISTAN: The Taliban used an eight year old girl as a suicide bomber in Uruzgan.

IRAQ: A court sentenced Hasna Ali Yahya, the Yemeni wife of Abu Ayyub al Masri, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for facilitating communications between terrorists and assembling suicide vests. Al Masri was the head of al Qaeda in Iraq before he was killed by US and Iraqi troops last year.

YODA: Her short tufts of hair, protruding tongue, and long, seemingly hairless legs were enough to earn her the World's Ugliest Dog title in northern California.

A MACAQUE skips exams at Emory University.

THOU SHALT NOT abuse thy neighbor's goat. In lingerie.

LIONFISH: Killing bait fish from Brazil all the way to Maine.

LUNA, a six-year-old Husky, alerted her owner, Jenny Conarroe and her family to a gas leak at their home.

2951 Reads

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