Tag Archive | Nirvana

Top Ten Memorable Moments of the 2014 R & R Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

R&R HOF P Gabriel Induction
Chris Martin Inducts Peter Gabriel. (Crappy Photos By Gail’s iPad!)

The Class of 2014 entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last night and it was an evening full of magical moments, even for jaded, old-school, Rock Curmudgeon like me. The show went on for over 5 hours – and 90 minutes of that was just the E Street Band members giving their individual ‘Thank You’ speeches! A televised version of the ceremony will air on HBO on May 31st and I’m guessing that, to get it edited down to two hours, they’ll cut out all of the juiciest parts (Courtney Love being booed in front of her dead husband’s family, that was painful to experience). But I got see it all from a comfy seat in the Barclay’s Center. Here are a few moments that stand out.

Listed in the order they occurred:

That Peter Gabriel introductory montage was something else. He’s always been a musical genius (Six Words: The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway), but the reminder of how much he’s done in his career was almost jarring. Because, wow. Peter Gabriel is awesome.

Chris Martin’s Induction speech for Gabriel was absolutely hilarious and man, does Martin look happy to be getting divorced.

After talking non-stop shit about each other in press for the past few months (it seems) all four original members of Kiss managed to not be total dicks to each other while accepting their awards (they were the only band to not have any kind of associated performance). I know that Gene thinks that Peter and Ace have no business being inducted along with him and Paul, but if he doesn’t understand that without those two that band would be residing in Nowheresville, he needs to pull his huge, ego-swollen head out of his ass.

I am pretty sure I had seen printed reports that Yusef Islam (FKA Cat Stevens) would not be appearing at the event, so no one was more blown away than me when he not only showed up, looking and sounding great, but also performed three of his classic songs including – wait for it – “Wild World” and “Peace Train”! Holy Effing Ess, “Peace Train.” I can’t even think about that song without losing my shit, so imagine what it was like to hear CAT FUCKING STEVENS perform it flawlessly, live in front of thousands of people. That’s a once-in-a-lifetime moment that you’ll never see again. I still can’t believe it happened, and I was there!

This out of chronological order, but it was so great to see Art Garfunkel induct Stevens. I love that guy.

Linda Ronstadt is an artist whose music I grew up loving back when AM Radio was a thing you listened to. Ronstadt is now retired and no longer travels due to symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease, but many talented ladies of rock were there to pay her tribute including Bonnie Raitt, Emmy Lou Harris, Stevie Nicks and Sheryl Crow. Carrie Underwood also performed a stunning version of “Different Drum” (written by Mike Nesmith of The Monkees. Way.) that knocked my socks off. She may have the stage presence of a shoe, but her voice has gotten completely insane since she won American Idol.

I was charmed by Bruce Springsteen’s Induction speech for his longtime musical companions, The E Street Band. They seem like a great family of musicians. Also, Max Weinberg is hot. Also, thank you E Street Band acceptance speeches for providing an excellent opportunity for me to make a much-needed trip to the Ladies Room.

My fondness for the music of Hall and Oates is pretty much restricted to “War Baby Son of Zorro” and, if forced to cite a more recent title, “Method of Modern Love,” on which I enjoy the part where Daryl Hall spells the song’s title. The thing is, despite the fact that songs like “Maneater” and “Sara Smile” serve as very, very effective emetic, their band is one of the tightest live bands I’ve ever seen, and Daryl Hall still ranks among the best voices in rock. I really enjoyed their performance.

I can’t even remember who said in their speech that the “Greatest pop song ever written was Beethoven’s 9th,” but that person was 100% correct.

Joan Jett Performs with Nirvana
Joan Jett Performs with Nirvana

Nirvana’s Induction started at 11:45 PM, but it was so worth waiting for, not only to see Joan Jett front the band for “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and the surprise performance of “All Apologies” as sung by teen singing sensation, Lorde, but also to hear David Grohl drop the F-Bomb at least four times. He is my new Hero.

About these ads

Video Clip of The Week: Minor Alps, “I Don’t Know What To Do With My Hands”

Confession: the primary reason I started this Video Clip of the Week series several months back is because I needed an excuse to force myself to write about new music. Pop music has reached an absolute nadir to the point where I’m 1000 times more excited to write about Food these day than I am to even listen to any new band. And that’s just a shame.

So, nobody was more surprised than me to discover a new group comprised of seasoned musicians who, rather than harnessing a retread, have dug deeply into their roots to unearth a vibrant-yet-comfortingly-retro sound. Minor Alps is the collaborative vision of Juliana Hatfield and Nada Surf’s Matthew Caws; two songwriting-based, music industry veterans who helped to blaze the trail for what became Alternative Rock Music back when Nirvana was still in its infancy. This week’s featured Video Clip is the duo’s “I Don’t Know What To Do With My Hands,” the latest single off their debut album, Get There (just released October 29th, 2013 on Barsuk Records).

With a refreshing and understated, artsy video directed by Animator/Musician Clyde Petersen “I Don’t Know What To Do With My Hands” is a remarkably strong track that harkens back to a time before American Idol, Emo and Autotune ruined 99.9% of all pop music. Caws’ guitar playing is as original and compelling as anything on a 90s-era Bob Mould record, while the 20 intervening years since Hatfield fronted The Blake Babies has allowed her vocals to mature into a rich and sweet aural nectar with just enough bite in it to favorably recall The B52s’ Cindy Wilson.

Minor Alps will be on tour across the US during the month of November. Enjoy!

Minor Alps Band
Juliana Hatfield and Matthew Caws are Minor Alps

Poster Child By Bruce Pavlow at Shoot The Lobster Gallery

Marilyn Manson By Bruce Pavlow
Marilyn Manson Poster By Bruce Pavlow (All Photos By Gail)

Here’s a crazy fun exhibit that Geoffrey and I literally stumbled on during our recent fall season-launch art crawl: Poster Child, a series of new photographic works by Bruce Pavlow.

Culture Club Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Culture Club Poster

Viewing Poster Child in the gallery is like walking into an imagined tween or teenagers bedroom. Pavlow has photographed various posters of popular culture icons including bands, pop star pin ups, animals, landscapes and motivational mottos – which the artist asserts have been created by fictitious characters that have enhanced and personalized the images by incorporating ready-made slogan bumper stickers and colorful icon stickers from craft and toy stores.

Boy Band Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Boy Band Poster

With the embellishment of these memes and slogans, each poster illustrates a personalized narrative and context, reflecting the thoughts and desires of the fictitious characters as well as the culture at large.

Britney Spears Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Britney Spears Poster

Sex Pistols Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Sex Pistols Poster

The re-created posters are then photographed (no Photoshop was used) and digitally printed at near actual size on watercolor paper, giving them a photo-realist quality that amplifies the subsequent transformation. The humor, as you can see is quite sardonic and subversive. Check out Poster Child before it closes!

Drugs Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Drug Enhanced Nirvana Poster

Poster Child By Bruce Pavlow will be on Exhibit Through October 12, 2013 at Shoot The Lobster Gallery, Located at 540 West 29th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District, New York City.

Shoot the Lobster Gallery Signage

Romance Poster By Bruce Pavlow
Romance Poster

Favorite Late Summer Playlist

Playlist Thursday Orange

Presented here without comment.

“All The Young Dudes,”  Mott The Hoople

“Fade Into You,” Mazzy Star

“Suedehead,” Morrissey

“Kickstart My Heart,” Motley Crue

“Ceremony,” New Order

“Hair Of The Dog,” Nazreth

“Love Hurts,” Nazreth

“About A Girl,” Nirvana

“On a Plain,” Nirvana

“Drain You,” Nirvana

“Spirit in the Sky,” Norman Greenbaum

“I Can’t Wait,” Nu Shooz

“Roll With It,” Oasis

“She’s Electric,” Oasis

“Superman’s Dead,” Our Lady Peace

“Crazy,” Patsy Cline

“My Love,” Paul McCartney

“Kicks,” Paul Revere & The Raiders

“Black,” Pearl Jam

“Always On My Mind,” Pet Shop Boys

“Set Adrift On Memory Bliss,” PM Dawn

“Standing Outside A Broken Phone Booth With Money In My Hand,” Primitive Radio Gods

“Go With The Flow,” Queens Of The Stone Age

“Radio Free Europe,”  R.E.M.

“Karma Police,”  Radiohead

“Everything In Its Right Place ,”  Radiohead

“Summer Breeze,”  Seals & Croft

“Stand!,”  Sly & The Family Stone

“Hot Fun In The Summertime,” Sly & The Family Stone

“1979,” Smashing Pumpkins

“Outshined,” Soundgarden

“The Day I Tried To Live,” Soundgarden

“In The Meantime,” Spacehog

“Connected,” Stereo MC’s

“I Wanna Be Adored,” Stone Roses

“Meant To Live,” Switchfoot

“Across The Universe,”  The Beatles

“Things We Said Today,”  The Beatles

“Do You Want To Know A Secret,” The Beatles

“Cry Baby Cry,” The Beatles

“How Deep Is Your Love,” Bee Gees

“Eight Miles High,” The Byrds

“Pictures Of You,” The Cure

“There She Goes,” The La’s

“Just Like Honey,” The Jesus and Mary Chain

* Playlist Originally Created by Mark Tortora and Edited by Gail

Must See Attraction: Seattle’s Experience Music Project

EMP Building Exterior
All Photos By Gail

When I was planning my recent four-day stay in Seattle, one of the attractions I knew I couldn’t miss was the Experience Music Project pop culture Museum. I’ve been curious about visiting the EMP. since it was first in construction, which was about 15 years ago. Originally, it’s my understanding that the museum was being built and funded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen to house his extensive Jimi Hendrix memorabilia collection. But obviously, it’s expanded quite a bit since that original, rather narrow concept.

Space Needle Reflected in EMP Building Exterior
Space Needle Reflected in the Exterior of the EMP

Conveniently located in the Seattle Center, literally in the shadow of the Space Needle, and adjacent to several other top tourist attractions, the EMP is certainly one of the most unusual examples of modern architecture I’ve ever seen. When viewed from the top of the Space Needle, this Frank Gehry-designed structure looks like a Giant took a handful of various boxes of different shapes and colors, and stuck them all together. But this unique approach to modern design has created a fantastic space that provides exhibit halls for not only local music history and an extensive trip down memory lane with the Jimi Hendrix Experience in London, but separate wings for science fiction, fantasy film and literature, horror movies, and the current temporary exhibit highlighting Women Who Rock. Here are a few photos I took during my visit this past July.

Hendrix Experience in London

Any Jimi Hendrix fan is going to be blown away by the Hendrix Experience Hits London section, which fills several ground floor galleries.

Hendrix Experience Costumes

Not only will you see vintage, authentic stage costumes worn by Jimi, Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell, but the walls of the galleries are plastered with photographs, news clippings, magazine articles, vinyl albums and posters that telegraph the band’s rise to stardom after their initial visit to the UK. All I can say is, it must be nice to be Paul Allen.

Nirvana In Utero Prop

Around the corner from the Hendrix exhibit is an exhaustive documentation of the Nirvana’s impact on the Seattle grunge punk music scene during the 90s. You could easily spend a couple of hours in this section, just reading all about some of the best bands that came from this genre-defining region of the country such as Mudhoney, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam and many other Sub Pop signings as well as projects from legendary genre producers such as Jack Endino.

Kurt Cobain Green Sweater

In addition to extensive documentation, Photos, Personal Letters, CD covers, magazine articles, costumes and props, there’s also one of Dave Grohl’s drum kits and other one-of-a-kind memorabilia. Whoever created this part of the museum did so with a good deal of love.

David Bowie Costume from Labyrinth

Fantasy film enthusiasts will not want to miss the Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic exhibit where I enjoyed seeing costumes such as those worn by David Bowie in the film Labyrinth as well as many other props and costumes from classic films such as The Hobbit, the Wizard of Oz and Clash of the Titans, to name but a few.

Wizard of Oz Guard Uniform

Captain Kirk Chair and Tribbles
Captain Kirk’s Enterprise Command Chair and Tribbles

On another floor there’s an exhibit dedicated to Icons of Science Fiction. Not only are there props and costumes from science-fiction films, but also there are small exhibits on popular books of the genre that laid the foundation for much of the visual media that came in their wake.

Dalek from Dr. Who
Dalek from Dr. Who

Lure of Horror Films Signage

Can’t Look Away: The Lure of Horror Film is also a very fun exhibit. Aside from the expected props and costumes, you can personalize your experience by participating in interactive exhibits including the Scream Booth and Philip Worthington’s interactive shadow monster installation – which is just insane.

Creature from Black Lagoon Mask

Rest your weary feet with time spent in a dozen video kiosks where you can sit in near darkness and watch horror film clips (commentary included) curated by directors Roger Corman, John Landis and Eli Roth. Super fun and also very educational!

Pretenders Kim Gordon EMP
Outfits Worn by Chrissie Hynde and Kim Gordon (Image Courtesy of the EMP)

The museum’s top floor is home to a large interactive studio recording exhibit, where you can actually play instruments and record your own music. It’s also where you’ll find the museums latest exhibit, Women Who Rock, which just opened in June. Women Who Rock does an ambitious job of documenting female artists from the 50s through to present including pioneers such as Brenda Lee, Leslie Gore, Loretta Lynn, Ronnie Specter and many of the girl groups through to the punk rock movement, groundbreaking all-female rock groups such as The Runaways and The GoGos and on to superstar solo artists from Madonna to Shakira and, of course Lady Gaga. Unfortunately, my camera battery ran out just as we were entering this particular exhibit, so the only photos I have are ones I pulled from EMP’s website.

Rihanna Awards Outfit EMP
Rihanna Music Awards Outfit (Image Courtesy of the EMP)

The Experience Music Project is a must-see destination for any music and film fan’s trip to the beautiful and vibrant city of Seattle. Exhibits change from time to time so make sure you consult the museum’s website to find out what they have in house during your planned visit.

If Six Was Nine Guitar Sculpture
If Six Was Nine Kinetic Guitar Sculpture

The EMP Museum is located at 325 5th Avenue N, Seattle Center, WA, convenient to the Seattle Center Monorail. Hours are 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM Daily. Visit This Link for additional exhibit schedule and admission information.

Happy Birthday, Dave Grohl!

Neal Smith and Dave Grohl 2011
Alice Cooper Drummer Neal Smith with Dave at the Golden Gods Awards in Los Angeles, 2011

Foo Fighters front man and former drummer for Nirvana, Dave Grohl celebrates his Birthday today, having been born on January 14, 1969. Have a rockin’ Birthday, Dave!

Nirvana Release Nevermind

On this Date, September 24th, in 1991: Nirvana released its sophomore album, Nevermind — a record that was inarguably responsible for bringing alternative rock into the mainstream. Nevermind would enter the Billboard 200 album chart at 144, peaking at Number 1 in January of 1992.