Category: Music

Simmons Doesn’t Kiss Up

Although I wouldn’t call The Henry Rollins Show a favorite, I do find myself occasionally tuning in to listen to his rants and his guests. Rollins is extremely opinionated and vocal. The episode today, which featured Gene Simmons of Kiss was particularly interesting because Rollins and Simmons came off as polar opposites.Rollins gives off a working class vibe. Each week he is dressed in t-shirt and jeans and his set has the abandoned warehouse look. It’s obvious that Rollins cultivates the “I’m just an everyman” appeal. Simmons on the other hand, never backed away from how rich he is and that he doesn’t care about how Kiss is perceived. He was cocky, but honest in all of his responses. When Rollins questioned him about how Kiss has merchandised everything from Visa cards to caskets, Simmons stopped him short with his response. Simmons said that ALL bands sell t-shirts and once you cross that line into merchandising it’s no longer about the music. It’s about making a few extra bucks. So why do people get upset that Kiss has optimized their merchandising power? LOL!

Now I’m not a Gene Simmons or Kiss fan [although I did like their song “Beth”], but I have to admit that I found Simmons and his “this is who I really am attitude” interesting. I know that Simmons has his own show on A&E and I’m not intrigued enough to start tuning in. I just wanted to give him props for his honest answers and not “kissing up” or coming across as another “everyman.”

 

Carrie Meet Jessica

I don’t have a lot of music posts on the ZONE because most of what I listen to is older stuff. I’m especially fond of 70’s music, but my tastes run all over the board.

Today I’m linking to a popular video/song by Carrie Underwood. It’s called “Before He Cheats.” What’s surprising to me is how enjoyable I find the song. It’s not surprising because the song is country, it’s surprising because the song is about an obsessed, vengeful, hard-drinking, law-breaking woman who is not only out for revenge, but gets it. Kind of reminds me of Jessica Walter from “Play Misty for Me.” Still it is a catchy tune.

American Idol Down to 11

Tonight the American Idol 12 will become 11.

Before I say who I think will be going home, let me compliment Chris Sligh. Not only can the young man sing, but he did exactly what the judges have been encouraging the contestants to do… and then got slammed for doing it.
 
Week in and week out, we hear the judges say, “make the song your owndon’t be an imitatorshow your personality.” It was Diana Ross week and Chris took took “Endless Love” and modernized it. Was it as catchy as the original version? No, but then again we’ve heard the original for over 20 years. It’s engrained in our memory banks so no new version will initially sound as good. Still, Chris took the judges’ advice to heart and made the song his own and he sounded really good in doing it. So it ticked me off to hear the judges slam him when it was their suggestions that led him down that path.
 
Sanjaya Malakar should be the next contestant to leave [and Brandon Rogers needs to kick it up a few notches or he’ll soon be on the bubble], but my guess is it will be Haley Scarnato. Haley forgot her words and appeared to be really nervous. Still, I felt it was one of her better performances and hope that she gets another chance to prove herself. Unfortunately I think that Sanjaya has a teeny-bopper fan base that will keep him around for another week.

100 Greatest Love Songs

Recently Jim Farber, the New York Daily News music critic posted his list of the 100 Greatest Love Songs of All Time. Here’s what it took to qualify:

 

“Eligible songs had to have endured at least a decade in the public consciousness, if not two or three. And they had to have been popular enough to have ranked among the top 20 pop songs in whatever year they were released. These aren’t necessarily the sexiest songs. If they had been, you’d see cuts by James Brown and Prince. But they are all classic serenades to a love achieved, the kind of songs meant to make listeners swoon.”

I took a look at his list and compiled my top ten favorites [ranking could switch depending on my mood]…

“Wonderful Tonight” Eric Clapton
“You Are So Beautiful” Joe Cocker
“The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” Roberta Flack
“Killing Me Softly With His Song” Roberta Flack
“(You’re My) Soul and Inspiration” The Righteous Brothers
“When a Man Loves a Woman” Percy Sledge
“This Guy’s in Love With You” Herb Alpert
“The Long and Winding Road” The Beatles
“How Deep Is Your Love” The Bee Gees
“Just the Way You Are” Billy Joel

So ZONErs… do you agree?

Rae of Sunshine

I don’t recommend a lot of music because I don’t buy a lot of cds. When I do breakdown and make a purchase, odds are, it’s a soundtrack or someone “tried and true.”

Today I’m giving the highest recommendation possible for Corrine Bailey Rae‘s self-titled album. Don’t take my word, click on this link, and then scroll down and give it a listen. After you do, my guess is you’ll be recommending her to your friends!

"Jazzman" Does It All

Ernest “Jazzman” Resendes is something of a throwback. He’s a talented artist, musician, actor, director… and a heck of a nice guy on top of everything else. Jazz still has that childlike wonder about the world, no, make that the universe. He’s constantly branching out and using his talents on various projects.
Want to see what Jazz has been up to? Then check out his site, you’re sure to find something that appeals to you!

A Man With Grand Ideas

I get a lot of e-mails from people who have all kinds of grand ideas about things. 99% of the time, these ideas go nowhere.

Thomas “Tiger” Vidmar recently contacted me. Tiger hosts a talk show program in Vegas. He said he was going to send me a copy of one of his programs [a call in with Elvis!] and a t-shirt.

Today the package arrived. It contained a nice workout t-shirt, a very nice golf hat, a soundtrack album [?] that he produced [!], and a copy of his call in show with Elvis.

So I listened to the call-in with Elvis. Funny and strange. I listened to the soundtrack for “Puckhead” which is a Tigar Vidmar production. It was an ecclectic mix of everything. Bob Dylan, Louis Armstrong,. Gene Autry, Dean Martin, The Mighty Mouse Theme song and more are on it. I’ve listened to it twice! LOL! I like the crazy mix.

So then I visted Tiger’s website. There I discovered that in addition to hosting a radio program, creating a “soundtrack album,” and producing shirts and hats [with his “Hombre de Palo” character], Tiger has also written a book which will be available this fall, and created a series of prints featuring his character!

Tiger seems to be a man with all kinds of grand ideas… but he’s doing something with them!

Gnarls Barkley is Crazy!

If you haven’t heard the song “Crazy” by Gnarls Barkley, you should give it a listen. Better still check out the video by clicking HERE.

I can’t remember the last time I liked both a song and the video for it so much.

And Then There Were Three – Shocking!

Remember when I posted here about the shocking ending on Lost and how surprised I was, especially since it wasn’t the season finale?

Well, last night American Idol had an equally surprising ending. Chris Daughtry, who many thought would BE the next winner, was sent packing. Everyone was shocked.

And. I. Mean. Everyone.

Look at Chris‘ face in the banner above and you can see even he was stunned.

So what happened?

My guess is that everyone thought that Chris was such a shoe-in to reach the finals that many folks decided to vote to keep in their 2nd favorite contestant. The strange thing is that before the show started my wife predicted that it could be Chris‘ night to leave for just that reason. I thought that either Elliot or Katherine would get the axe.

So, who’s going to win now that Chris is gone?

I’d predicted a showdown between Chris and Taylor [with Chris winning], so I’ll stick with Taylor as the next American Idol. [Of course, my wife may have a more accurate prediction…]

American Idol – Predictions

It’s American Idol and we’re down to the final 11. In a few hours it will be 10… so let’s see who might be going…

Katharine McPhee did well and looked great. She’s safe.

Ace Young was in the bottom three last week and just did “ok” last night. He could be in danger of leaving soon… but not tonight.

Chris Daughtry had the best performance of the night. I loved his take on “Walk the Line.” He’s safe.

Bucky Covington didn’t impress me. I predict the bottom three tonight.

Elliott Yamin can sing but didn’t live up to his potential last night. He’ll be back next week though.

Kellie Pickler is safe again… but the cuteness factor is fading fast.

Lisa Tucker was one that I initially thought would easily get to the final 4 or 5. She was in the bottom 3 last week [shows what I know]. She didn’t impress last night and could be in the bottom 3 again tonight.

Mandisa can sing and has a great personality…if she wasn’t the best performer last night, she sure wasn’t third… but I still don’t think that she’ll win.

Paris Bennett has so much talent. She is safe as can be tonight.

Taylor Hicks might have had the third best performance of the night… and the most fun! He’s safe.

Kevin Covais had one of his better performances… still I don’t think that he should still be around, but I’ll bet he’s safe for at least another week.

My bottom three for tonight: Lisa Tucker, Bucky Covington and Ace Young.

My prediction for the one leaving: Lisa Tucker [although I’d rather see Kevin or Bucky taking the trip].