Sideshow | Townshend writes another rock opera

Posted: July 15, 2007

Ever since he was a young boy

Pete Townshend, who penned two of the best rock operas in that sub-genre's long history, has done it again. Townshend, 62, who explored teen angst and alienation in 1969's rock tragedy Tommy and went on to dissect teen alienation and angst in 1973's Quadrophenia, is scheduled to give his latest piece, The Boy Who Heard Music, a trial run with three performances this weekend at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Townshend, who says he began writing the piece as an Internet novella, says The Boy is "a hallucinatory tale about the rise and fall of a band made up of three teenagers from different ethnic backgrounds as seen through the eyes of an aging rock star."

In other words, it's a deconstruction of teenalienangst from a geezer's perspective.

50 Cent plus seven days

For a second time now, Curtis Jackson - 50 Cent to you - has disappointed America. Fiddy, who recently pushed back his next record from June 26 all the way to Sept. 4, has announced he's pushing it back another week, to Sept. 11. Mr. Cent's CD, which is the follow-up to his momentous '05 monster, The Massacre, will be titled Curtis.

I love you . . .

. . . Kelly Clarkson. I do!

The American Idol winner is on a kamikaze run to destroy the corporate machine that put her on the map. In recent interviews, Kelly has issued some nasty comments about powerful RCA chief Clive Davis, who could force Idol winners to sign record contracts with their own blood if he wanted.

"We don't braid each other's hair," Kelly says of Clive to USA Weekend. "And, despite the rumors, he is nowhere near a father figure."

Clemency for 'Deadwood'?

HBO, which broke hearts when it announced the amazing, Shakespearean

western Deadwood wouldn't come back for a fourth season next year, has made a compromise with series creator David Milch. According to E!Online, the cabler will produce two two-hour TV movies for next season that will wrap up all the loose ends so the show can properly be sent off to Valhalla.

Domesticating '68

Variety reports that West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin is writing a screenplay about the violent, contentious, crazy events that transpired at the hands of protesters and cops at the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago. The Trial of the Chicago 7, which will focus on the trials of the protesters, is slated to be directed by Steven Spielberg.

It will be good to revisit an event which seems so impossible now.

But Sorkin and Spielberg?

At their hands, we're likely to get sentimental tripe that will substitute feel-good therapy for politics.

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