Imagine if you will, a world parallel to our own, identical in many ways, disparate in others. Long story short, in this mirror universe, Bands I Useta Like was optioned by a major independent film studio, and made into a hit movie. It combined animation and live action, and because the producers had deep pockets, licensing songs for a decent soundtrack wasn’t a problem.
Whether I allowed the film to be produced at all was contingent upon the quality of the music choices. If they balked at a crucial song, or refused to include it, I would walk off the project. Which I did, and they replaced me on-screen with a real actor. Like I said, the movie was a hit.
The 2-disc soundtrack sold out of stores overnight. Even though it came packed in that shitty double jewel-box, which just winds up broken, on the floor of a car.
When you listen to a professional newscaster, you are hearing an “all-purpose” American accent, very similar to how black comedians make fun of white guys. It’s a mode of speaking designed to be understood by a wide variety of ages and backgrounds. It’s also totally alien sounding, especially when they lapse into a Spanish voice for words like “Nicaragua”.
Outside of America, accents are seldom a focal point.
In 1990, I relocated from New Jersey to Georgia. Originally, I had a curt New Jersey accent, like Jim Norton. My first year, I roomed with a guy from Rhode Island, and when I went back to Jersey for vacation, my friends couldn’t believe what a horror show my speaking voice had become. I was the caricature of the braying Yankee.
I strive to be fair in my work, I really do. Except for when I don’t, and I’m not.
Meaning, there’s a handful of musical acts for which I have no love. All I have for them is contempt, which I lamely try to carve into humor. It’s best that I come clean about it, to put an end to wondering why I don’t mention some bands at all. Ever.
I don’t want to know how many times it’s been tattooed. I assume a lot.
In the next ten years, the entire experience of seeing a concert will have changed. Forever.
These things and infants are everywhere, and you complain about guns?
Hunter S. Thompson claimed that no Doors recording existed that captured the grandeur of Jim Morrison and company on stage. I believe this, although I never bore witness to the spectacle myself. Regardless, the only real evidence will always be the albums the Doors released. Thompson’s historic experience either died with him, or ended up on the wall behind his office chair. This is, needless to say, unfortunate. Continue reading →
When was the last time the name “Pearl Jam” sounded weird to you? Can you even remember when it didn’t sound like a band?
Vitalogy, Pearl Jam’s experimental third album, was finally released in November of 1994. By that time, the record store I had assistant-managed was consumed by Blockbuster. Originally, I worked at “Tracks”, which was where I experienced Pearl Jam’s debut disc Ten, around ten times a day for several months. This resulted in a loathing of that album that burns to the present day. Continue reading →
Parallel universes figure into popular science fiction every so often, but whereas now they are used to explain inconsistencies, in the past they were an intriguing alternative to outer space as a setting. The short-lived TV show Otherworld from 1985 is one example, with its no-frills labels (like in Repo Man) and dumb upside-down pistols. A better-known version of the concept is the cartoon Kidd Video, which aired on NBC Saturday mornings around the same time.
(l-r) Ash, Whiz, Kidd, Carla. Yes, the nerd with yellow hair is called “Whiz”.
Everything I’ve mentioned thus far sucks to varying degrees (well, except Repo Man). But because of that “parallel universe” icing, the crap tasted sweeter than cake. Continue reading →