Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Thursday, November 21, 2013
One of the great frauds of the 20th Century has died. There is no such thing as a 'psychic' but there is an endless supply of people who want to believe in bullshit.
When you consider the money that Sylvia Browne has separated from people who are desperate to believe, it's easy to see how a lady could make a living for herself preying on others. There really should be laws against this sort of thing. It really isn't entertainment. It's fraud to claim psychic abilities and abuse the lack of sophistication of others.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
I was not a fan of Lou Reed, and that stems from the fact that I never fell in love with the whole David Bowie/Iggy Pop/Brian Eno/Lou Reed movement that captivated the kids in the 1970s and then allowed people to spend the 1990s living in the past. It's not hard to appreciate that there was talent and artistry and integrity there--Reed had that in spades and is rightfully lauded as a revolutionary and as an artist with few peers.
While the world was held in thrall of these men, you had Neil Young, Richard Thompson, and Robert Wyatt, to name a few, who were also doing things that were interesting and influential.
But, ultimately, I didn't get into it, probably never will, and I have noted that a lot of people somehow loved Reed without really acknowledging that he was a fogged-up pain in the ass for the majority of his life, often on purpose and in the presence of fanboys who loved him and wanted to record his every difficult rejoinder.
If someone was a pain in the ass, celebrate that in their demise.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
This is the album cover for Blue Oyster Cult's Some Enchanted Evening album, which was a live album that came out in 1978. Interestingly enough, it was their best selling album.
Allen Lanier passed away today, and he was responsible for much of their guitar sound.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
Jon Brookes was a spectacular drummer. He helped define the "Madchester" genre of music by providing a dance beat that helped propel the Charlatans well beyond their origins.
Monday, May 20, 2013
Saturday, April 27, 2013
There are a lot of polite things being said about the late George Jones, but, please. The greatest singer ever? The best there ever was? Hardly.
George Jones had great talent and ability, but much of that was thrown away. The vast majority of his career and his recorded output consists of treacly schlock and throwaway garbage. He recorded a staggering number of songs no one will ever hear and which no one will ever buy. He signed away his rights on terrible deals, abused drugs and alcohol like a champ, and leaves behind a few well-regarded phases of a career that was probably too long and too full of trash.
Johnny Cash was a polite man, and Johnny Cash loved George Jones. But it is Cash who leaves behind a career worth something, despite his own periods of creative decline.
Saturday, April 20, 2013
The entire reason for this blog can be summed up in the word "cover." I love album and CD covers and I love the art that goes into those things. To say that I am saddened by the death of Storm Thorgerson is an understatement. There will never be a graphic artist like him again.
The impact of those albums--Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin--is difficult to fathom in this post-music industry era. A Storm Thorgerson cover might have graced the walls of innumerable music shops, but most of those are now gone. His work went from hanging on walls and adorning album covers to being shrunk down to the size of a 5kb square on Amazon.com.
Thorgerson is the towering figure over graphic art that many people still appreciate. His passing has been big news, and I think it is because people remember the impact of album cover art from the 1970s. Here are three that stand out besides the iconic image of Dark Side of the Moon. This is a small sampling of his work, and it is by no means definitive. These are the three that I think symbolize the impact Thorgerson had on the culture.
|Pink Floyd Atom Heart Mother (Storm Thorgerson)|
|Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here (Storm Thorgerson)|
|Led Zeppelin Houses of the Holy (Storm Thorgerson)|
The controversial cover for Houses of the Holy by Led Zeppelin does not need further examination here. But try to imagine the 1970s without any of these iconic images--you can't.
Thorgerson worked on numerous projects in his later years and his passing is a great loss.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Monday, April 8, 2013
Monday, February 4, 2013
If you haven't heard the infamous "argument" in the recording studio, then here you go.
Friday, May 4, 2012
Monday, November 7, 2011
I have held a civil tongue for about as many days as I can handle. In a week, no one will speak of or remember Andy Rooney. The old sorehead worked for thirty years past his own expiration date. Whoever thought it was a good idea to keep him around didn't count on him living into his nineties and working as long as he did. Good riddance to him. His schtick was that of a hater of all things that most people didn't care about. His writing was tired and without inspiration. His persona was that of a small-town grandpa who hates kids and sets things on fire just because no one will stand up to him. And for this, he made a living? Good luck finding that gig now.
The reason why people read or listened to Rooney was for the sheer pleasure of hearing or seeing or reading something that someone should never have bothered to write, say, or do. He was the original Seinfeld. Yes, you observe something and you think you have a point. Great. Now, can we have our Sunday evening back? Thank you very much.
Rooney was, for all intents and purposes, a crank with a mean streak. He didn't like anyone or anything unless it came with a dollar in its hand or something for him to ram down his gullet. He was one of the last remaining links to the post-World War II elitism of modern American journalism. You sons of bitches better get off his lawn. That crazy old drunk has money and a gun, and he always made like he was going to use both to settle some imaginary score with no one who gave a damn about his views on staplers or postcards or money belts. Aye, you should have crossed the street and avoided him. Millions of children will be born in the coming weeks. They will no more know Andy Rooney than they will Arthur Godfrey. That's what Andy Rooney will become. He will become Arthur Godfrey. No one will speak of him, remember him, watch him or read of him. He shall become dust.
If it was inane and useless, Andy Rooney milked it like it was a fat cow squirting liquid gold. Not everyone who survived World War II was part of the Greatest Generation. Some of those old bastards were destined to haunt us for decades, using the glory of the dead as their calling card. Rooney was one of those jackasses. Shamed into admitting that the war was justified, he did what any fool would have done and used it to try and establish his own sense of moral superiority for "having been there." A lot of men came back from that war and appreciated the beauty of life. Rooney pissed on daily life and made money cheapening and belittling every precious thing he could use as material. Had he been an infantryman, he would have appreciated the 92 years he was given. Instead, he used his life to grouse and complain about everything. Finally, the old man shuts up. Finally, we have silence. Finally, we will not have to put up with his whining.
No one will ever make Andy Rooney money doing what Andy Rooney did ever again. No more executive washroom, no more office crammed with books, no more choice piece of broadcasting real estate for you, sir. You're done. And now they can tear down that old eyesore and put in something without any substance, flair, or intellect and replace him just the same. Rooney came with none of those things. He chiseled his way in and stayed there, like the late Don Hewitt's personal piece of dead wood, and stayed there until death took his bloated, screaming carcass away on a donkey covered in bees and motor oil.
Yes, a donkey covered in bees and motor oil. Can I have his gig now? What, this isn't the audition? Damn.
Andy Rooney. Small-minded sorehead. Dead. We're done here.