Pop culture and all that.






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The Excitement Machine
The Onion
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In Passing...
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The Freep
The New York Times
The L.A. Times


    Friday, August 09, 2002

    Is My Blog Hot Or Not? Still at 7.3, which is good enough for me.

    • 'Seven Year Statute' Talks Reach Impasse
      Remember yesterday when The R.I.A.A.'s member record labels said they were slowly closing in on a deal with the Recording Artists Coalition on many of the issues they have been arguing about? Turns out they spoke a little too soon as negotiations between artists groups and the recording industry over California's "seven-year statute" have broken down and the artists will take their case for the repeal of the 7-year-statute exemption to the Califorrnia senate.

    • Tipping Their Hand
      Excellent column by Glenn Harlan Reynolds about the record industry's motivation behind digital rights management and trying to shut down file traders. "People in the record industry know that they face a problem. But rather than trying to deal with it, they've responded the way Mel Brooks, playing the Governor in the movie Blazing Saddles, did: by calling together their henchmen and saying 'Gentlemen, we've got to protect our phony-baloney jobs.'". Read it, link to it and forward it to everyone you know.

    • Nas Kills The Speculation: 'It's Murder!'
      On the remix to The Inc.'s "The Pledge," which has turned up on New York radio, Nas basically kills the speculation about whether he's signing to Murder Inc. and tells the world, "It's Murder!" The song also features Ja Rule shouting out Suge Knight, specualting that he would've hung out with 2pac if he was still alive and thowing a dis towards DMX. All in all, very weird. I don't know if I'll be able to buy Nas as part of a crew (see also The Firm).

    • Motley Crue Singer Wanted On Assault Charges
      Vince Neil allegedly taunted and then puched record producer Michael Schuman (an engineer on 90s albums by Billy Preston and Paul Jackson, Jr.) outside an L.A. nightclub on April 28.
      His rep says he expects to Neil expects to eventually be cleared of all charges. If convicted on misdemeanor battery charge , Neil would face a maximum of six months in jail and a $2,000 fine.

    posted by Randy on 10:10 AM | permanent link to this entry

    Thursday, August 08, 2002

    Is My Blog Hot Or Not? This morning, I ranked at 7.3, which I think is actually about right. I'm not the best, but I do a decent job. Plus, no pics of pets and not too much personal-too-much-information-journal stuff. So, if you're ranking me, I beg of you to try and keep me in the 7-point-something range. It'll keep my self esteem at a managable level.

    Distant Early Warning: Come check me out spinning as DJ MC Hesher @ The Attic (3326 24th St. in San Francisco) on Sat., Aug. 24th!! I'll be spinning a fun mix of hip-hop/funk/soul/mash-ups/club classics. Flyers and more reminders to come.

    Plug Dept.: My step-father Sandy Mann has his sunset cruise biz up and running. The press is amazed! If you're hanging out near Naples, Fla and wanna go out on the water on a catamaran-- peep the Raven Sailboat Charters website and tell 'em Randy sent you!

    • Music Companies Offer Concessions in Artist Dispute
      The R.I.A.A.'s member record labels are offering restrictions on the amount of damages labels could seek from an artist who breaks his contract after seven years compared to current law. Another concession would allow artists, in many cases, to satisfy significant obligations and avoid damages by delivering just one additional album, even if the contract requires more. One sticking point is that the R.I.A.A. doesn't want these changes to be retroactive. The Recording Artists Coalition A) doesn't want to negoitate in the press and B) says they're still pretty far away from a settlement.

    • Gnutella Bandwidth Bandits
      Will success spoil Gnutella? Says this Salon article: mmmmmmmmaaayyybbe. Some new clients are putting a strain on the system-- leading to a call for standarization, user limits and whatnot.

    • Jay-Z Challenges Nas To Battle
      On pay-per-view, none the less. Each man would put up a million bucks (which would go to charity) and battle for three rounds. Don King wants to promote it. Jay-Z, you know Nas smoked you in your last battle, why you wanna come back for more? Buried at the end of this story is the fact that Nas is readying The Lost Tapes for release on Sept. 3. It will consist of tracks left over from I Am and Stillmatic.

    • Eminem Gets In On The 'Girls Gone Wild' Action
      One of the next installments of Girls Gone Wild will feature the antics of girls attending Eminem shows during The Anger Management Tour. Eminem will, indeed, appear in the video.

    • Osbournes Facing Second Suit Over MTV Show
      Jezzum crow, how many people did Sharon Osbourne make deals with to produce reality shows about her family?

    • Star Canadian Band Going Unnoticed
      Best. Headline. Ever. Coming up next is a story about me: "Star North of the Panhandle DJ Going Unnoticed." By the way, it's an article about The Tragically Hip

    • Naomi Judd Pens Advice Column
      1 American dollar to the person who A) writes a letter that asks advice on a situation that basically outlines the situation in The Judds song "Mama, He's Crazy" or B) Gets her to answer a question with the words- "Love Can Build A Bridge." Ask Naomi fwill appear in or Country Weekly magazine, beginning with the issue on sale now.

    • Webcasters, Music Labels Appeal Online Royalty Rate
      Webcasters say the webcasting royalty rates are too high. Music labes say they are too low. I'm shocked, shocked I tell you!

    • Two Flaming Lips Box Sets Coming Soon
      Finally The Punk Rockers Are Taking Acid 1983-1988 and The Day They Shot A Hole In The Jesus Egg 1989-1991 will be issued on September 30. Finally is a 3CD set that compiles the band's first three full-length albums, Here It Is , Oh My Gawd!!! The Flaming Lips and Telepathic Surgery in addition to 16 bonus tracks, including a cover of Neil Young's "After The Gold Rush." The Day will be a 2 CD set of the band's 1990 album In A Priest Driven Ambulance and a whole batch of unreleased tracks.

    • Stranger in a Strange Land
      Very nice piece in Salon about the Anna Nicole Show. Best quote: "Cheap, crass, deeply committed to unapologetic gawking, "The Anna Nicole Show" is to "The Osbournes'" what US Weekly is to People magazine. If "The Osbournes" humanized fame and made it seem familiar, "The Anna Nicole Show" deconstructs it and makes it seem monstrous. Tawdriness notwithstanding, this may be the more honest, and more valuable, view."

    posted by Randy on 11:03 AM | permanent link to this entry

    Wednesday, August 07, 2002

    Bill Was The Mole!!! I knew it! I knew it! I even got one of the clues right-- in one of the games they had to write down names on a dollar BILL. The Mole is actually one of the better "reality" shows-- if they do it again you should be sure to peep it.

    Distant Early Warning Come check me out spinning as DJ MC Hesher @ The Attic (3326 24th St. in San Francisco) on Sat., Aug. 24th!! Flyers and more reminders to come.

    So, is my blog Hot or Not?. Right now I'm at 6.8. Bump me up a little bit, eh? I think I do an okay job. Perhaps a 7? Hook a brother up!

    • Net Services Want Better License Deals From Labels
      Remember how Pressplay just revamped their service so it allows users to pay for the privlidge to recieve unlimited downloads and the abilty to burn or transfer to another device? It seems they aren't allowing their partners (such as's Rhapsody) to do the same. Hello, Department of Justice Anti-Trust Division-- you're needed on line one.

    • Clear Channel Is Still Evil
      Lots CC stories today. It turns out they control 14 stations in the San Diego market becuase they own stations in Mexico, thus avoiding U.S. ownership caps. In the good news department-- Salon reports that Clear Channel's lawsuits, anti-trust troubles and generation of bad will in the industry is beginning to take a toll on the media giant. Salon also reports that record labels are changing the way they pay indie promoters becuase CC has driven up prices so much.

    • Mariah Returning With First Def Jam Release In December
      No title for the album yet, but it's coming out on DefJam and will feature production work by Jermaine Dupri and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and 7 Aurelius, who, as part of the ubiquitous Murder Inc. camp, had a hand in hits by Ja Rule, Ashanti and Jennifer Lopez. For more on Carey's signing to DefJam and an interesting look at the behind-the-scenes of the music biz, check out this Financial Times profile of DefJam big wig Lyor Cohen.

    • Where Are All The Other White Rappers?
      My old SonicNet co-worker Gil Kaufman has an interesting piece at about the post-Eminem scene of white rappers.

    • Nine Inch Nails, Tool Frontmen Recording Together
      The long-awaited Tapeworm project from the two creepy and ecentric front-men is finally getting down to business. The group recently checked into Atlanta's Southern Tracks Studios to work on its debut album, which will be released on Reznor's Nothing Records. No release date has been set.

    • Oasis Members Hurt In Taxi Crash
      Oasis members Noel Gallagher, Andy Bell, and Jay Darlington are recovering after being hurt in a car crash yesterday (Aug. 6) in downtown Indianapolis. The musicians were in a taxi when it was involved in a head-on collision with another vehicle. They were treated for cuts and bruises-- lives were definetly saved becuase they were wearing seat belts. Particularly Noel's life, since he was sitting in the front seat.

    • Cincinnati Lifts GA Ban For The Boss
      Cincinnati banned general admission seating after eleven people were trampled to death Dec. 3, 1979, when fans rushed the doors of the Riverfront Coliseum for a concert by The Who. That ban will be lifted for a Bruce Springsteen concert this fall after Springsteen requested that the city reinstate general admission seating for his Nov. 12 concert at what is now called the U.S. Bank Arena. Given the average age of Spingsteen fans these days and the traditional length of his shows, one would think his fans would apperciate having seats. At least that's how I see it.

    • 'Plea For Peace' Tourdates Taking Shape
      Emo-palooza, they should call this. Jimmy Eat World, Le Tigre, (International) Noise Conspiracy, the Promise Ring, Thursday, Anti-Flag, The Donnas, Northern State, Common Rider, Cursive, Snapcase, and Poison The Well are among the artists who will take part of this tour, with 10% of gross door receipts from the tour will be donated to the the National Hopeline Network (1-800-SUICIDE). City-by-city line-ups can be found at the tour's website.

    posted by Randy on 9:53 AM | permanent link to this entry

    Tuesday, August 06, 2002

    • Former Ozzy Bassist Bob Daisley Discusses His Lawsuit Against The Osbournes
      Interesting twist to this story that I didn't realize before: Bassist Bob Daisley and and drummer Lee Kerslake have been trying to get Ozzy Osbourne and co. to pay them for 20 years for their work on 1980's Blizzard Of Ozz and 1981's Diary Of A Madman. The fact that those albums were just released withthe bass and drums replaced by new players is just icing on the cake.

    • Dead Survivors Plan Tour
      Surprise, surprise--- not. In the wake of two sold-out shows that attracted 30,000 fans per day in Wisconsin last weekend, the surviving members of the Grateful Dead -- joining forces for the first time since the death seven years ago of guitarist Jerry Garcia -- have planned a 15-date tour of the East Coast and Midwest. What, were they concerned that the Dark Star Orchestra was running out of material? Dollars to donuts says there will be a big Bay Area show on Holloween or New Year's Eve.

    • Country Stars Mauled over Mawkish 9/11 Tributes
      English drag queen Tina C (a.k.a. Chris Green ) is taking on overly-sappy 9/11 tributes. More power to her! Call me insensitive, but the article cracked me up.

    • Jurassic 5 Fights The 'Power'
      Jurassic 5 will release Power In Numbers on Oct. 8. It will feature appearances by Nelly Furtado, Big Daddy Kane and was produced by the group along with Sledge and Omas and the Beatnuts' Juju. I'm psyched- I love the J5 and they brought the rukus most righteously at Smokin' Grooves.

    • Musicians Fight for Right to Royalties
      Nice article from the Detroit News about artists fighting with labels to get their royalties. This one is uniqeu becuase it has a main focus on session musicians who have been purposely mis-or-uncredited for their work.

    • Moz Back In The States
      Don't call it a comeback! Morrissey is heading out for a late summer/fall tour. My wife saw him the last time he was in the states and said it everyone was on the verge of hysteria and a riot almost broke out. His closing words at the show she was at? "My ass is leaving town in five minutes. I suggest you be on it." Excellent.

    posted by Randy on 11:00 AM | permanent link to this entry

    Monday, August 05, 2002

    • Who's That Girl?
      If you're truly curious about what's killing the record industry (not that that's a bad thing) peep this article from The New York Times Magazine about J Records' attempt to make Amanda Latona a star. It's really informative and sad-- in ways that probaly the writer and all the subjects involved didn't intend. It is kind of long, so brew yourself some coffe or something. When you are done, peep this commentary about the article from The Velvet Rope.

    • Ozzfest Keeps Miner Out Of Danger
      Roger Shaffer was supposed to be among the miners who were trapped underground, but he took a vacation day to go see OzzFest. Heavy Metal Saves Lives! The bad news is that the miners who were down there are geting $150,000 each to sell the book and film rights to Disney. They need better representatives-- that's a pittance compared to what the project will bring in over time. Not only that, since this was a big news story, it is in the public domain and this movie could easily be made with other parties.

    • French Rappers Tune Into Positive Vibe
      Great story from Reuters about gangsta vs. positive rap-- in France. Very reminicent of the Native Tongues or Gangsta Rap debate that many U.S. fasn had int he late 80s-early 90s. When the governemtn gives up hope on the inner cities, should an artist make angry music to protest or uplifiting music to inspire? The question still remains-- but me thinks we need both for the most complete picture.

    • DMX Teams Up With Rage Against The Machine
      Fianlly, a new lead singer for RATM that we all can agree on. Well, a boy can dream. DMX completed two songs with the rap-rockers for upcoming soundtracks to "Jackass: The Movie" and
      "Cradle 2 the Grave," which will star DMX and Jet Li.

    So, is my blog Hot or Not?. Right now I'm at 5.2. Bump me up a little bit, eh? I think I do an okay job. Perhaps a 7? Hook a brother up!

    posted by Randy on 11:48 AM | permanent link to this entry

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