Monday, July 25, 2005

What have you been reading, listening to, watching?

Lewberry recommends the documentary "Devil's Playground", even though he admits it has an HBO doc feel. I'm thinking something along the lines of their, uh, brilliant series "Hookers and Johns." (Not that I ever watched all of those one weekend)

Faux Faulkner
Hemispheres, the magazine of United Airlines, holds a yearly Faulkner imitation contest. This year's winner took jabs at the Bush Administration, which is probably why it didn't make it into the magazine. You have to read it online. Even if you, like me, don't remember the Sound and the Fury well enough to recognize it, it's still funny.
“Dont you worry about him. He ll be ready,” Condi said. Condi stood up from the desk. Her legs were long and she smelled like the Xeroxed copies of the information packets they give me each day.

“Hello Georgie,” Condi said. “Did you come to see Condi?” Condi rubbed my hair and it tickled.

“Dont go messing up his hair,” Dick said. “Hes got a press conference in a few minutes.”

Condi wiped some spit on her hand and patted down my hair. Her hand was soft and she smelled like Xerox copies coming right out of the machine. “He looks just fine,” Condi said.
No sense in parodying Steinbeck that way. Apparently he was already a pretty good militaristic caricature of himself during the Vietnam War, if a recently unearthed letter to Jack Valenti--which was then passed on to Robert McNamara--is any indication.

Densmore v. Krieger and Manzarek
The Doors drummer won a suit last week against the other 2 surviving band members, requiring them to stop using the band name "The Doors of the 21st Century" (which is a pretty crappy name anyway).
"It's a sweet little democracy that Jim orchestrated with no lawyers, in a garage in Venice, California," Densmore told Rolling Stone after filing the suit in 2003. "And he included veto power in case anybody didn't like what went down. I'm just trying to keep the integrity of what we did a long time ago."
They can continue playing Doors songs with his blessing (not that he could stop that anyway). Since it's Media Monday, that reminds me of one of my favorite fast reads, the Morrison bio "No One Here Gets Out Alive."

Morris on DVD
IFCFilms is releasing a box of Errol Morris documentaries on DVD tomorrow, including The Thin Blue Line, one of my favorite all-time films, one of the most amazing acts of accounting for a miscarriage of justice that you will ever see. I'm hoping there will be interesting extras, but not optimistic. The set also includes Gates of Heaven and Vernon, Florida. Not sure why they can't get a Brief History of Time on DVD.

If you've never seen an Errol Morris film, take a weekend and watch The Thin Blue Line, A Brief History of Time (on VHS) and Fast, Cheap and Out of Control. Your brain will be filled with enough to think about for months.

New Bob Mould
Out Tomorrow. No better place to read about it than his own blog, Boblog.

Weekend Box Office
1. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
2. Wedding Crashers
3. Fantastic Four
4. The Island
5. Bad News Bears

In the love it or hate it category, Hustle and Flow won the audience award at the Sundance Festival but received an avoid at all cost rating in the Nashville Scene. And I've seen a couple of raves and pans for Rob Zombie's The Devil's Rejects.

I still haven't heard Frank Black's new album(waiting until I'm making a bigger Amazon purchase), but our local paper had a Sunday feature on it. It was recorded here in Nashville with the idea of imitating the approach of Bob Dylan's Blonde on Blonde.
"I could sit around and learn how to play all the songs and imitate Bob Dylan all day," Black says, "but that's not really what everyone's going to be looking forward to, myself included. We want some new original expression."

And how do you build that?

"All you gotta do is say, 'Well, what did Dylan do?' " he says. "He went down to Nashville and worked with a bunch of cats. Enough.
Producer Tiven collected the veteran musicians who appeared on the album,including organist Spooner Oldham and bassist David Hood (who both played in the legendary Muscle Shoals rhythm section), renowned soul guitarist Steve Cropper of Booker T. & the MG's and drummer Billy Block.

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