James Bond, in DR. NO (1962) and SKYFALL (2012).
I was delighted to appear on Pop Culture Happy Hour again last week. (Listen here, you.) The show’s A-topic was movie action heroes, inspired by the publication of Arnold Schwarzengger‘s memoir Total Recall (which I’d only half-read prior to taping, on account of its 624-page girth and the fact I’m reading it in tandem with Salman Rushdie‘s equally substantial memoir Joseph Anton) and, I thought, Taken 2 (which I haven’t seen, and won’t, unless it turns up on Encore Action at 11:30 p.m. on a Tuesday eight months from now).
If they’d asked anyone but me to come discuss this topic, I’d have been crushed like Sarah Connor crushed the T-800’s microprocessor-controlled hyperalloy endoskeleton in a hydraulic press.
It turns out that the first half of Arnold’s book is a lot less annoying than the second half.
Happily, Taken 2 did not come up at all.
I’d come prepared to talk about the evolution of the cinema action hero: How the men (usually) of violence, reluctant or not, whose adventures fill seats around the world grew out of a conflation of the gangster pictures that dominated the 1930s and the westerns of the 40s and 50s. In 1962, James Bond arrives onscreen; by 1969, Bond one-timer George Lazenby is watching Telly Savalas (in his sole appearance as one of the series’ recurring characters, cat-loving Bond nemesis Ernst Stavro Blofeld) break his neck on a low tree limb during the film’s climactic fight atop a bobbing bobsled (!) and observing, “He’s branched off!” Continue reading
Posted in podcasts, Uncategorized
Tagged Arnold Schwarzenegger, Daniel Craig, Dirty Harry, Drive-By Truckers, Glen Weldon, James Bond, Mike Cooley, movies, NPR Monkey See, podcasting, podcasts, Pop Culture Happy Hour, Stephen Thompson, Trey Graham
Lucinda Williams, badass
I am experienced. I’ve reviewed the great Louisiana songwriter Lucinda Williams for the Washington Post before, in 2007 and 2009.
I’ve also reviewed Drive-By Truckers, one of my favorite bands, for the Post in 2009, and I’ve interviewed Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley, the band’s two frontmen, separately for DCist, The Examiner, the Washington City Paper and Washingtonian. I was at DBT’s year-ending shows at the 9:30 Club last December, which were amazing.
Saturday night I covered the bill Williams and DBT shared at Merriweather Post Pavilion for the Post. It was a beautiful night and a good show. Too bad almost nobody saw it.
Alabama Shakes opened the great show I saw the Drive-By Truckers play at the 9:30 Club with Booker T. Jones on New Year’s Eve. Their debut album, Boys & Girls, dropped this week.
I reviewed Alabama Shakes’ headling gig at Ram’s Head Live! (sic) in Baltimore Saturday night for the Washington Post.
Adams: "I got a plan."
I saw Ryan Adams and the Cardinals open for Oasis (!) in 2008 (!!!) but I only caught part of their set from across a basketball arena and anyway it was not an especially memorable experience. But I quite enjoyed the talky, sloppy Adams solo show — and opener Jason Isbell — that I review in today’s Washington Post. Continue reading
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Tagged Aimee Mann, Click Track, Drive-By Truckers, Jason Isbell, music, Patton Oswalt, pop music, Ryan Adams, Strathmore, The Birchmere, The Washington Post
It’s not much of a photo, but it was a pretty fantastic way to spend New Year’s Eve. That’s Booker T. Jones, stage-right, performing at the 9:30 with the Drive-By Truckers, a band I love and that I’ve written about a lot. The first time I saw them play was at The Troubadour in Los Angeles in 2003 or 2004. All I remember about that show is that my then-girlfriend had a pain in her leg and we left early. Since then, I’ve seen DBT play the 9:30 probably 10 times. When they were there for a Friday & Saturday night stay last February, I made a table to show how different the two setlists were. Hey, some people care about baseball statistics. (DBT singer-songwriter Mike Cooley does not.) Continue reading
(Okay, my questions. But still.)
The Drive-By Truckers are one of my favorite bands, and I’ve had the privilege of speaking with singer-songwriters Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley on several occasions during the last three-and-a-half years. I talked to them again, separately, for Washingtonian about their plans for their year-ending three-night stand at the 9:30 Club, which kicked off last night.
One of the things we discussed was Cooley’s two-night-only battlefield promotion to full-time frontman when Hood fell too ill to perform just before a weekend of 9:30 Club concerts in February 2009. I reviewed the first of those shows for the Washington Post. Continue reading
HOLY SHIT I KNEW THE DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS NEVER USED A SETLIST BUT IT SEEMS LIKE THEY MIGHT ALMOST NEED TO TO GET THE INCREDIBLE VARIETY BETWEEN THE TWO SETS THEY PLAYED AT THE 9:30 CLUB THIS WEEKEND ATTENTION MUST BE PAID HERE IS THE EVIDENCE THEY ONLY REPEATED SEVEN SONGS OUT OF A 28/9-SONG SET EACH NIGHT WOW. Continue reading