Archive for the ‘Music’ Category
Posted in art, Communications, consumerism, Economics, Entertainment, fun, movies, Music, pictures, schools, Television, writing, tagged acting, art, entertainment, film, movies, music, soundtracks, television on August 22, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
While on vacation, I caught a delightful movie on HBO that I did not recall ever seeing advertised for showings in the theater. The film is entitled The Art of Getting By and stars Freddie Highmore (Finding Neverland and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and Emma Roberts (niece of Julia Roberts), Alicia Silverstone, Rita Wilson, and Blair Underwood.
The movie is about a gifted art student (Freddie Highmore) more or less coasting his way through high school until graduation approaches and he may not receive a diploma. This storyline intertwines with his budding relationship with Emma Roberts’ character. It is very well done and I enjoyed the movie. Also, the soundtrack is simply superb for this film with terrific alternative and indie rock tunes artfully blended into the score.
Hence the question, why no release in theaters? Best I could determine by reading between the lines on IMDb is some of the critics were not particularly kind to the film when it was release at the Sundance Film Festival. They praise Mr. Highmore’s and Ms. Robert’s performances, but otherwise were rather tepid.
As a result the film went directly HBO and similar outlets. Granted, I discovered the film there, but I think it would have been even a more impressive movie in a theater. Sadly, the critics’ response to the film and Fox Searchlight’s response to the criticism narrowed the public’s choices versus broadening it. Once again…money talks.
Is The Art of Getting By perfect? Of course not. Is it deserving of a general release – absolutely. I think a lot of people would like it, warts and all. If you, get a chance, check it out on HBO or rent the film – it is certainly well worth the time and cost.
Live albums are something you seldom see anymore, but back in the day, live albums were quite popular and could be the impetus to superstardom – several of the acts listed below got their big break from a live album release.
- KISS Alive
- Frampton Comes Alive
- Cheap Trick at Budokan
- The Rolling Stones - Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!
- Aerosmith Live Bootleg
Posted in Alternative transportation, Cities, civics, civility, Climate Change, consumerism, Economics, Economy, Environment, history, humanity, Land use, Music, Nature, politics, pollution, Renewable Energy, States, Transportation, Travel, writing, tagged bicycling, environment, music, politics, songs, Woody Guthrie on July 12, 2012 | 1 Comment »
Saturday, July 14th will be the 100th anniversary of Woody Guthrie’s birth. To honor him and express this eco-bicyclist”s concern beyond those expressed his original lyrics, here is a modified version of Woody Guthrie’s classic folk song This Land is Your Land. The original lyrics written by Mr. Guthrie may be seen through this weblink.
This land is your land, this land is my land
From Car-lifornia to Wall Street canyons
From clear-cut forests to oil-stained waters
This wasteland was allowed by you and me
As I was pedaling – a crowded highway
I saw above me – a concrete skyway
I saw below me – more golden arches
This wasteland was made by you and me
I’ve roamed on cell towers – and taken exits
To sprawling cities - paved over deserts
And all around me – neon signs were shouting
This wasteland was made by you and me
The sun dawns hazy - as I was rolling
Weeds were waving – and dust was falling
As the smog now settles - voices start shouting
This wasteland was made by you and me
As I tried walking – no sidewalks for me
As I tried biking – drivers scowl right at me
Few remaining places - of peace and safety
Those are the ones for you and me
Throughout our cities – empty seas of asphalt
Are clearly saying – whose really’s at fault
And some are grumblin’ – and some are wonderin’
Why this wasteland was allowed by you and me?
Chorus x 2
Happy 100th Birthday, Woody!
Posted in art, Books, Cars, Communications, consumerism, Economics, Economy, Entertainment, Food, history, humanity, Land use, movies, Music, pictures, politics, product design, reading, Technology, tagged arts, entertainment, history, marketing, music, products, TV on June 24, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
Here’s my initial list of things that will largely disappear in the next decade. Sure, you can still find buggy whips in certain places, but they don’t permeate the market like they did 100 years ago.
- Wristwatches – who needs them when everyone carries a cell phone?
- Alarm clocks – ditto
- Video rental stores – Can you say, “bye-bye Blockbuster?”
- Film – remember Fotomat’s? Forget largely any kind of film for photography and the equipment that goes with it.
- CDs – the music and data storage disks, not the investment option. Not sure if I am thrilled about his one. Seems like every time I get all my crap transferred onto a new storage medium it goes out of date. Everything’s going digital or to the cloud, wherever the heck that is?
- Chain bookstores – personally, I am sad about this one. Love wandering through a good bookstore. Used and niche bookstores will remain, but the chains are being replaced by electronic options.
- College bookstores – same reason, but I won’t miss the price ripoffs, especially on returns.
- Daily newspapers - neighborhood-oriented and specialty ones may remain, as well as national publications like the New York Times, but most small to mid-sized cities will have none.
- SUVs – the sooner the better for these gas hogs.
- Schedule planners and non-photographic calendars – who needs them in our electronic world?
- Dial-up internet – sorry AOL hanger’s on, time to join the 21st century.
- Phone books – despite how many they pile up at your doorstep.
- Land lines for homes. Haven’t had one for a year myself. Still may be necessary for work.
- Keys – with electronic door locks, keys may all but disappear for many uses. This prediction will not be true for Florida where they have many lovely keys dotting its coastline. : )
- Key chains – ditto.
Radiohead hit the stage at 8:30 pm and proceeded to put on a terrific and inspired 2.5 hour performance in all regards except for one – the lack of playing some of their most famous and popular tunes.
While I enjoyed the show and thought Radiohead’s on-stage performance was great, I was left wanting to hear “Creep,” “My Iron Lung,” “High and Dry,” and “Fake Plastic Trees.” That is one of the inherent risks with attending a long-term supergroup’s concert. You want to hear the recognizable hits and the band wants to play their new and favorite stuff too.
Don’t get me wrong, there were some classics included on the playlist such as “There There” (my personal favorite) and “Karma Police,” but of the 25 song set, the majority were either songs from more recent releases or a few newly written compositions.
Aside from the playlist, the entire band was in top-notch performance mode last night and Thom Yorke is simply an incredible stage presence. In addition, the light and video show during the concert was the best I have seen aside from U2′s 360 Tour.
If you have an opportunity to see Radiohead, definitely make the effort, but especially if you are a die-hard fan and are familiar with the band’s entire discography.
With some help from boston.com, Here is my list of rock bands the have used a well-known person’s name in their band name:
- Jody Foster’s Army
- Jethro Tull
- Kathleen Turner Overdrive (innovative takeoff on Bachman-Turner Overdrive)
- Mr. T. Experience
- Mary Tyler Morphine
- Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head
- Norma Jean
- Ringo Deathstarr (really like the song in the video below)
I saw Dark Shadows last night with two of my sons. While it will not be an Oscar contender, it was an entertaining and fun film. Johnny Depp was terrific (as usual) as Barnabas Collins – I particularly liked his attempts to adapt himself to 1972 society as well as his subtle facial reactions to the modern world. I also enjoyed the performances by Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, and Chloe Grace Moretz.
Below is one of the trailers for the film:
Posted in architecture, art, Cities, Communications, Entertainment, fun, movies, Music, pictures, Travel, tagged cities, entertainment, fun, marquees, movie theaters, photos on May 9, 2012 | 6 Comments »
Here are a couple of photos taken Monday evening of the State and Michigan theaters located in downtown Ann Arbor. Always have loved old movie theater signs and marquees and these two are iconic.
Shortly after the new television season began last fall, I indicated that I thought Two Broke Girls was the best new comedy program for the 2011-12 viewing season. While that show is laugh-out-loud funny at times, there is another new comedy that I now believe is much better written, has funny story lines, and stars an endearing, “adorkable” lead actress.
The new show I am referencing is New Girl starring Zooey Deschanel. The situation comedy is broadcast on Tuesday evenings on Fox at 9:00 p.m. Each of the primary characters is very likeable, but it is Zooey Deschanel (Jess in the show) who absolutely lights up the television screen with her charm and wit.
Perhaps this isn’t the most politically correct thing to say, but I believe Zooey Deschanel has a great chance to replace Tina Fey as America’s sweetheart. For those of you who are not aware, aside from being an accomplished actress, Ms. Deschanel is also a popular singer and songwriter who makes up one-half of the music duo She and Him.
If you have not had a chance to check out New Girl on Tuesday nights at 9:00 p.m., I highly recommend the show. It is slightly irreverent, but worth every minute. I know it has largely replaced NCIS Los Angeles on my regular viewing schedule.