You're browing the archives for the month of November 2008

If I Could Stick My Pen in My Heart

I apologize for the lack of posts this week; due to a family medical emergency, the regular schedule here at Rule Forty-Two HQ may be disrupted for some time to come. I did want to mention, in a followup to last week’s post about how various songwriting partnerships work, that in an effort to plumb […]

posted 21 November 2008 in Self-reflexive, Tasty Bits. no comments yet

Rock On

As promised last month, I’ve added another one of my Chris Rock interviews to the archives. This one’s from 2005, when he was promoting Madagascar and The Longest Yard. You might not care about either of those movies, or Rock’s ruminations on Jude Law and Sean Penn after hosting the Oscars, but you should check […]

posted 17 November 2008 in Archives, Articles. no comments yet

Friday Foto: Political Recycling

This is how the LA Times arrived on my front lawn the other day. Apparently losing politicians now get appropriately tattooed.

posted 14 November 2008 in Photos. no comments yet

Songwriting Partners

I’ve been thinking lately about the stylistic tendencies in songwriting partners. Not the words/music split of Gilbert/Sullivan or Hammerstein/Rodgers, but the Lennon/McCartney model: two long-running partners who share credit on everything even though they often write songs individually. The differences between the two Beatles are well-known: in broad strokes, Paul McCartney favored sentimental ballads and […]

posted 12 November 2008 in Tasty Bits. 5 comments

Ventures in the Slipstream

I was lucky enough to attend Van Morrison’s show at the Hollywood Bowl Saturday night where he performed the entirety of Astral Weeks. Single-word reaction: Wow. I should have a full-length review in the next issue of Rolling Stone, but I also filed a short dispatch (with a set list, which isn’t as pointless as […]

posted 10 November 2008 in Outside, Reviews. 1 comment

Friday Foto: Prague Astronomical Clock

  The clock dates to 1410; I took this picture in 2005, when I was visiting Prague to write about the TV miniseries Revelations, which was filming there.

posted 7 November 2008 in Photos. no comments yet

1988 Countdown: Demographic Breakdown

Okay, now that we’re one-quarter of the way through the countdown, let’s break down some of the numbers for those top 25 videos (not counting the bonus clips from Def Leppard and U2): United States: 14 England: 6 US/UK joint ventures: 2 Australia: 2 New Zealand: 1 White: 21 Black: 4 Male: 17 Female: 8 […]

posted 6 November 2008 in 1988. 1 comment

1988 Countdown: #100-76 Roundup

Back in 1988, I videotaped the MTV year-end top-100 countdown. Earlier this year, I unearthed the tapes and started watching them for the first time in two decades. I’ve been gradually working my way through the countdown, dissecting every single clip (and the commercial breaks too). Half a year later, we’re now two and a […]

posted 5 November 2008 in 1988. no comments yet

Top Five Election Songs

That is, songs specifically about elections and/or voting, not just miscellaneous political or societal change. 1. X, “The New World” 2. Radiohead, “Electioneering” 3. Arcadia, “Election Day” 4. Little Steven, “Vote That Mutha Out” 5. Talking Heads, “The Democratic Circus” There are fewer of these than I would have guessed (although Lyle Lovett and the […]

posted 4 November 2008 in Tasty Bits. 2 comments

Tina Fey in HDTV

The sets of some TV shows are Potemkin villages, just realistic enough to pass muster with the cameras on one side. Others are incredibly detailed simulacra: the most impressive ever, for my money, was the sprawling installation at Cinnecitta Studios for the HBO show Rome (more on which some other time soon). When I visited […]

posted 3 November 2008 in Articles, Outside. no comments yet