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Riding Across the Desert on a Fine Arab Charger

Although the Rolling Stones are one of my favorite bands, somehow I had never seen them live until this weekend. I had opportunities over the years–in the ‘9os, I was going to get tickets, but Pat, my officemate at Details, talked me out of it, arguing that I didn’t really want to see “the dancing […]

posted 5 May 2013 in Outside, Reviews. 3 comments

The World Is Rated XX

Monday night I checked out the XX (or, if you prefer, the xx), who kicked off their U.S. tour at the storied Henry Fonda Theater in Hollywood. I then stayed up late to write about the show–but you can see the fruits of my labor right now on the Rolling Stone website.

posted 25 July 2012 in Outside, Reviews. 1 comment

Game 162

On Wednesday night, while most of the nation was glued to their TV sets, watching the best night of baseball ever–except if you’re a Braves or a Red Sox fan, I suppose–I was in Las Vegas, basking in the presence of Elton John. (Sir Elton’s been a big favorite around Rule Forty-Two HQ lately, due […]

posted 29 September 2011 in Outside, Reviews. 2 comments

Just Like a Muse to Me

A Monday-morning five-star review from the Rolling Stone “Hall of Fame.” Madonna, Like a Prayer (1989) When people talk about Madonna exposing herself, they normally mean her tendency to drop her knickers. But her fourth proper album, 1989’s Like a Prayer, is filled with nakedly emotional songs such as “Promise to Try,” (about her mother, […]

posted 9 May 2011 in Reviews. 4 comments


On the day of Prince’s second show at the L.A. Forum, some stray thoughts and observations from the amazing first show that I didn’t have room for in my review last week: 1. Los Angelenos show up late and leave early. Although the ticket said 7:30 and there was no opening act, at around 8:45, […]

posted 21 April 2011 in Reviews. 1 comment

His Name Is Prince

And he is funky. And I saw him last night at the fabulous Forum, on the opening night of his 21-show residency in Los Angeles, and I reviewed it for Rolling Stone‘s website.

posted 15 April 2011 in Outside, Reviews. no comments yet

Remixed But Still Jingling

Another five-star review from the Rolling Stone “Hall of Fame”: L.L. Cool J, Mama Said Knock You Out (1990) “Don’t call it a comeback!” L.L. Cool J shouted at the start of “Mama Said Knock You Out.” By 1990, for all his bravado, L.L. was sorely in need of a career boost. As he rapped […]

posted 22 March 2011 in Reviews. no comments yet

Used to Sing on the Mountains But the Mountains Washed Away

Monday morning seems like a good time for Zeppelin appreciation. Led Zeppelin, Houses of the Holy (1973) When George Harrison met John Bonham, the Beatle told Led Zeppelin’s drummer, “The problem with your band is you don’t do any ballads.” Singer Robert Plant and guitarist Jimmy Page could have taken umbrage–they had written the gorgeous […]

posted 31 January 2011 in Reviews. 7 comments


With Prince William announcing his engagement and people simulating interest in the British royal family, it seemed like a good time to roll out another of my “Rolling Stone Hall of Fame” entries, this one a four-star review for the Kinks’ Arthur (not to be confused with Christopher Cross’s tribute to getting caught between the […]

posted 16 November 2010 in Reviews. 4 comments

Nashville Skyline

For your consideration, another five-star review from the “Rolling Stone Hall of Fame.” This time around, an often-ignored Dylan classic: Bob Dylan, Nashville Skyline (1969) When Nashville Skyline, the last of Dylan’s brilliant ’60s albums, was released, fans examined every one of its twenty-seven minutes for portents of musical revolution like fortune-tellers poring over the […]

posted 1 November 2010 in Reviews. 1 comment