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Monday, Apr. 03, 2006 | 9:21 am
I'd rather be working for a paycheck than waiting to win the lottery...
I decided that today will be an "Of The Day" day. Why? I don't know. Call it a whim.
Sightings of the Day: In an extreme measure of bizarre coincidence, I was taking a nice afternoon stroll to my brand-new and superbeautiful public library when I saw not one, not two, but THREE people wearing Strokes shirts! All in the space of fifteen minutes! (Guess who rolled through town last week.) I'm so glad to see apathy dying in this town. It gets old, people.
Speaking of the Strokes, you need to read Tour Manager Richard's tour diaries for some general hilarity. The transcribed conversation about blackcurrants had me crying with laughter. Part One and Part Two. Hee hee ho ho.
Obsessive Fandom of the Day: Twenty years ago, this guy loved the Smiths so much, he started a fanzine with a typewriter and gluestick, which led to a kinda-sort friendship with Morrissey. My favorite part?
"I remember we discussed why he chose the picture of French actor Alain Delon for the cover of The Queen Is Dead, which books he was reading (mainly Oscar Wilde), and the fact that the rain was flattening his hair."
Word, Morrissey. Total word.
Concert of the Day (well, technically, Night): If you're not going to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs 9:30 show in DC tonight, take heart, NPR's got you covered. Listen online tonight starting around 7pm PST. Or is it PDT now? I can't tell. All I know is that I lost an hour of sleep this weekend and I'm not getting it back any time soon.
Shoes of the Day: Because I'm tall with big feet and the grace of a stampeding yak, I'm usually not all that excited about shopping for high heels. Until my grandma talked me into trying on the Isaac Mizrahi Julia wedge sandals at Target. But wait! They are gorgeous! And the wedge part gives me the extra balance that I desperately need. Three kisses for Grandma because she's a footwear genius. Which lets me seamlessly segue into...
Fight of the Day: So after the Target trip with Grams, I wound up at a Palm Springs Trader Joe's with her, where she spent $3.88 on milk and wine, and I almost got into a full-on girlfight with some bat behind me who began trash-talking Grams when she paid with change. I mean, c'mon. You don't trashtalk other people's grandmothers. You just don't. It's like a global rule.
Never fear, though. I won. Grandmothers of the world are safe once again to buy their white zinfandel with quarters.
Song of the Day: After going five fast rounds in a Trader Joe's, I needed a calming song. Or some of Grandma's white zin, but she wasn't letting go of that bottle for anything. Cue Cat Power. "Dreams" is a bonus track from the Japanese import of "The Greatest". It does the job nicely.
Cat Power, "Dreams" (Japanese bonus track) (6.4 MB)
Video of the Day: I saw this Bright Eyes video--brought to us by our favorite Hedwig John Cameron Mitchell--very very very late at night and it totally made me cry and want to call everyone I love and tell them again how much I love them. So maybe they're reading this now because when I say, "I love you!" I mean it. Kisses and hugs, my friends.
Bright Eyes, "First Day of My Life"
Friday, Mar. 24, 2006 | 10:52 am
I remember when I lost my mind, there was something so pleasant about that phase...
So last night the lovely Dallas and I went to dinner (to 17th Street Cafe, if you must know) and on the way home, he started playing me all these songs that I had sent him a long time ago, Gorilla vs. Bear's "Top 50 Songs of 2005". I know it's three months late, but hey, good music is good music, right? Timeless.
So then Dallas said, "Hey, have you heard this song and puts on Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy".
I lost my mind.
It is a Repeat 1 song.
Then this morning, I'm drinking my coffee and reading the LA Times (I know, so domestic, right?) and there's this article on Gnarls Barkley! I love serendipity! And even Pitchfork liked it! And they're playing Coachella! And Lollapalooza!
A collaboration between Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo, the song's already huge in Britain, which seems to be a prerequisite of all the music I love. And maybe now you can love it too.
Sweet Lord, if this was off my radar for so long, what other amazing music am I missing? Being a music lover is a Sisyphean struggle, people. But I will triumph!
Gnarls Barkley, "Crazy"
Gnarls Barkley, "Smiley Face" (link from Republicum)
Happy Friday, homies.
Monday, Mar. 20, 2006 | 8:16 am
The stars came falling on our heads, but they're just old light...
I consider myself to be a patient person. Really, I do. I think that's because I've been waiting my entire life for an H&M to open in Los Angeles. You'd think it's a simple request, but no. Instead I'm forced to duke it out in midtown Manhattan for cheap pants and my red & white striped keychain (on sale for $1! So cute! And easy to find at the bottom of my purse!)
My patience, friends, has finally paid off because H&M is coming to both Old Town Pasadena AND the Beverly Connection, which is mercifully getting revamped. Maybe people will forsake The Grove and start shopping at the Beverly Center again. Will the world still spin on its axis if this happens?! Well, if Trader Joe's can open in Manhattan, anything is possible.
When Robert Hilburn left the LA Times last year, I thought the amount of Jack White-centric articles would slow to a trickle. But guess who came back to write about The Raconteurs, Jack's new side project? That's right. If you don't have a subscription to the LAT, read it over at The Little Room. It's a nice way to start a Monday.
Oh, and I have a crush on The Racounteurs website. It takes me back to my dot-matrix days.
Super-duper author Douglas Coupland writes about Morrissey in the new Observer Music Monthly. Actually, I can't tell if it's an interview or an article, but it's fun all the same.
And now for a story about me: when I was fifteen, "Shampoo Planet" was my favorite book, and in sophomore year spanish, we had to do a book report on our favorite book. Have you ever stood in front of 29 non-Spanish speakers and extolled the virtues of "Planeta del Champú" for 3 agonizing minutes? No, I do not think you have.
Just because "Project Runway" is officially over (sniffle) doesn't mean that I still don't love me some Tim Gunn. Check out this hilarious, wonderfully honest, and LONG interview with my favorite fashion icon. (Link from Bunnyshop, and if you aren't reading Bunnyshop obsessively, you're only hurting yourself)
Regina Spektor and the Strokes' Nick Valensi have teamed up for a new song, "Better", which I personally love. If you go to Regina's Myspace, you can hear it and love it, too! And if you need a little more musical lovin', check out this wonderful fansite, which has live mp3s, including two versions of one of my top-10 all time favorite songs, "Samson".
Regina Spektor, "Samson"
And to top off this excellent day, it's the first day of spring and daffodils are on sale everywhere. I'm more of a autumn/winter girl, but who am I to dislike happy flowers? Happy spring, everyone. Go buy some Claritin.
Monday, Mar. 06, 2006 | 8:40 am
I leave the party at 3am. Alone, thank God...
I know I'm supposed to blog about the Oscars, but really? I'm kinda over it. They're fun and all, but eh. Just eh. But oh my, how I heart Jon Stewart. But no one else does. And do you think if you wrung Jack Nicholson out, he would leak scotch? I do.
Another reason why I love my brother? On my way to a friend's Oscar party, I explained where I was going and he said, "Really? People have parties for these things?" Seriously, he's the best.
Oh, you know who else I love? Catherine Keener, because not only did she play Harper Lee in "Capote", but she skipped the Oscar after-parties and went to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs show at the Troubadour instead. So awesome.
Anyway, enough about all our LA brouhaha. I was in New York for the past week, just in time for that superfun cold spell that made my eyelashes feel like they were going to fall out. Brr brr brr. But oh how I miss it already. I drank so much coffee at Joe that I think I paid their electric bill this month. You're welcome, lovely Joe employees. The pleasure was mine.
(And maybe this isn't a surprise to you, but did you know that if you're a girl and decide to have a leisurely lunch at Balthazar, they will give you a free glass of champagne? Drunk by 2pm, that's the way to go. Makes the subway ride uptown that much more exciting.)
The Vines talk about 2006, now that lead singer Craig Nicholls has been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome and will presumably stop trashing every single backstage area he sees. And the Guardian is calling their new album "brilliant". You can listen to the first single "Don't Listen to the Radio" (ha, clever) any old time you want to.
I'm practically googly-eyed waiting for the new Neko Case album, "Fox Confessor Brings the Flood". The NYT quite enjoyed it this weekend. She's not going to be in LA until June, but she's playing a free show at Amoeba on Wednesday, 7pm. Yay for free things! And yay for Neko! Two singles are available for download now, and I can't stop listening to them.
"Star Witness" & "Hold On, Hold On", Neko Case
The other song I'm currently obsessing over is "Juicebox Rock", a mashup between "Rock Show" by Peaches, "Juicebox" by the Strokes, and a healthy smattering of "The Munsters" theme song. It's the best song for driving on empty freeways or riding the 2 express train. (Scroll down about halfway to download.)
And if you're ever wanted to see a real-life "Simpsons" intro, here's your chance! It's your lucky day!
Thursday, Feb. 16, 2006 | 9:03 am
You're a sweet, sweet girl, but's it's a cruel, cruel world...
In a move that surprises nobody, our Los Angeles weather has gone bipolar. T-shirts on Monday, wool socks and peacoats by Wednesday night. Oh, L.A., why do you jerk us around? Don’t you love us anymore?
So anyway, I've decided that today is a day of favorites. Why? Because I said so, that's why. And I say that with all the love in my heart.
Now, about my favorite...
Olympian: Please. Like it's even a contest. Johnny Weir has a costume designed to look like a swan, complete with a red glove (named Camille, of course) which symbolizes the beak, and compares skating routines to shots & snorts. Even the Washington Post and Gawker have the love. This is my kind of Olympian, people.
Concert That's Already Sold Out: Surprise, surprise, it's the Arctic Monkeys at the Henry Fonda on March 15th. Just once, I tell you, I'd like to dance to "I Bet You Look Good on the Dance Floor" while being on an actual dance floor. Until then, however, I'm stuck with the video.
Song that I Keep Playing Over & Over Again: Bloc Party's "Two More Years". Honest to God, I love this song so much I want to make it dinner and tuck it in at night. It's especially great for freeway driving, which, as any body will tell you, is essential for survival in L.A. Just spend the $.99 and buy the song. Trust me. I would never lead you astray.
Video that I Want to Live In: I don't know what a "Mushaboom" is and really, I don't care. I just want to live in the happy la-la land of this video from Feist.
Restaurant that Hasn't Opened Yet: Apparently early 2006 is the scheduled opening date for the new Katsu-ya in Brentwood, but we all know how restaurant openings are. Either way, Philippe Starck is doing the interiors, so happy day! (Side note: isn't the Philippe Starck website one of the most soothing things you've seen? I could look at it all day.)
Band That I Got Into After They Broke Up: So of course The Libertines have already sailed into the sunset, but I was reading Pete Doherty's prison diaries and I'm like, "Good Lord, what's all the hoopla about?" So I dug out an old promo copy of "Up the Bracket" and guess what? I freaking loved it! Where have I been for the past four years? And then I heard their second self-titled CD and I FREAKING LOVED IT! Seriously, I'm such a goober. Things go right past me and I don't even see them. Anyway, I've been singing "What Katie Did" and shoop-shooping all over the place. Yeah, that's right. I said "shoop-shooping".
Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2006 | 8:21 am
I'm sorry you were thinking I would steal your fire...
So I have to go to work and arrange piles of books and drink lots of coffee from Joan's, but before I go...
The Strokes' official video for "Heart in a Cage" has leaked. It's officially supposed to premiere Friday on Launch, but that's boring. Who likes to wait? Time is money, people. Either way, I think you'll enjoy it. It's got that sort of cool Wim Wenders "Wings of Desire" feel to it, only without wings and Julian gets stepped on by a bunch of New Yorkers
The Strokes, "Heart In a Cage" video
Monday, Jan. 30, 2006 | 10:27 pm
What comes is better than what came before...
If I had a tail, it would be between my legs. I have neglected you and I think that makes me a bad person, but I'm not sure. Either way, I'm deficient in my blogging karma.
Can I bribe back your love with fun gifts? I thought so. Let's begin!
First, the Strokes album finally came out and it makes me drive like a maniac on the freeway and bounce up and down in my seat. These are all good things. Current favorite moment: when Julian's voice climbs the scale on "Ize of the World". I don't even know what he's saying, but it sounds like it hurts.
However, you haven't heard anything until you've "The Bluegrass Tribute to the Strokes". At first, I thought it was just going to be some funny little thing, but actually, it's one of the most gloriously beautiful things I've heard in a long time. I know, I'm a dork. I hate to see tiny labels get ripped up by free mp3 downloading, so try listening to clips of "Hard to Explain", "New York City Cops", and "Someday" and tell me they're not awesome. (A big THANK YOU! to whatsthatsound.org for the link)
And if you've ever wondered what it would be like to ride the Tilt-a-Whirl with Jack White & Loretta Lynn, this is for you. An alternative version of the "Portland Oregon" video surfaced last month and seriously? I can't watch it the whole way through without feeling my eyes start to spin in their sockets. Which is gross.
Apparently it was done by Michel Gondry's brother, Olivier "Twist" Gondry, but I have no idea how true that is. I can only bring the facts as I get them, people. And speaking of getting the facts, I can't remember where I found this link, so if I've stolen your personal link, please let me know and I'll credit/take it down/wash your car for a month of Sundays.
And of course, I'm obsessed with "Project Runway". It's just amazing to me--a person who almost gave herself an arterial wound when her grandmother tried to teach her how to needlepoint--that people can actually create clothes from scratch. The mind boggles.
As you might have guessed, I'm not a huge fan of Santino's (he makes me feel edgy), but I do lovelovelove his impression of Tim Gunn reciting the lyrics to NIN's "Closer". And Daniel V. having a laugh attack is pretty cute, too....as is the rest of Daniel V. Ahem.
This song makes me both cry and feel hopeful all at the same time. I love when that happens.
I hope it does the same for you.
Cat Power, "I Found a Reason"
Sea of Angels
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