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The Day the Music Died

I drove down to Monroe, North Carolina, and spent a bittersweet day at Holloway’s Music Center–a musical-instrument store that, after 106 years of ownership by the same family, is turning off the lights. (They hope that if they liquidate enough stock, they’ll find somebody who wants to buy the business.) The air conditioning was busted, […]

posted 12 June 2018 in Articles, Outside. no comments yet

Neil Tennant Q&A

In early March, I wrote an article for The New York Times about the American debut of The Most Incredible Thing, a ballet based on a Hans Christian Andersen story, with choreography by Javier de Frutos and a score by the Pet Shop Boys. It was a pleasure to report for many reasons–not least getting […]

posted 27 April 2018 in Articles. no comments yet

The Golden Age of Francis Spufford

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing the brilliant author Francis Spufford for the Barnes & Noble Review. I suggest you go read our conversation, but I suggest even more strongly that you read his books, including Red Plenty (a brilliant fictionalized history of the Soviet Union) and the new Golden Hill (a exhilarating novel […]

posted 29 June 2017 in Articles. no comments yet

R.I.P. Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen, poet, genius, and gentleman, has died at the age of 82. I interviewed him two years ago in a banquet room at the Canadian Consulate in Los Angeles, and although I didn’t have a lot of time in his presence, every sentence he uttered was a pearl. I wrote two completely different articles […]

posted 11 November 2016 in Archives, Articles. no comments yet

99 Luftballoons

Have you been wondering what Nena, the German singer best known in the States for her 1984 single “99 Luftballoons,” has been up to for the past three decades? Then you’re in luck, because I wrote an article for the New York Times about her. Be warned: the history of the song becoming an American […]

posted 12 October 2016 in Articles. 1 comment

The Rocking Dead

I wrote an article for the New York Times about Jeff Jampol, who manages musicians including Kurt Cobain, Janis Joplin, and Rick James–as I put it, “the performers that the music business calls legacy acts and that the general public refers to as dead people.” If you’re interested in that niche of the show-business ecosystem, […]

posted 24 June 2016 in Articles, Outside. no comments yet

Custard Magpie

The jury is still out (literally) on whether Led Zeppelin plagiarized elements of Spirit’s “Taurus” for “Stairway to Heaven,” and whether that Wayne’s World scene will have to be updated with a sign that says NO STAIRWAY AND/OR TAURUS. But that’s not the only time Plant and Page cheekily borrowed somebody else’s work–I wrote up […]

posted 23 June 2016 in Articles. no comments yet

Tomato! (Tohmahto!)

Shaun White is on the halfpipe today in Sochi (no spoilers here!). If you want to flash back to his first Olympic triumph, eight years ago, you can read my Rolling Stone cover story on the Flying Tomato here. “I need a Crunk Juice glass with diamonds on it,” he told me. Something that didn’t […]

posted 11 February 2014 in Archives, Articles. no comments yet

Rolling in the Deep, 12/27/13

For your reading pleasure, some of my writing for the Rolling Stone website in the past month. I attended the annual KROQ Christmas show, with eighteen bands playing over two evenings. Night one had more guitar oriented-bands, such as Queens of the Stone Age and Vampire Weekend, while night two had more dance music, such […]

posted 27 December 2013 in Articles, Outside. no comments yet

Merry Christmas, Baby

You may have missed this one: I recently compiled forty of the greatest Christmas albums of all time for the Rolling Stone website. I wanted to include albums that rewarded repeated plays, not wacky Yuletide novelties–which means that I didn’t include Bob Dylan’s Christmas in the Heart, even though I really wanted to use my […]

posted 23 December 2013 in Articles, Outside. no comments yet