July 17, 2016 |
When Dallas Police Chief David Brown stepped to the lectern last week to memorialize five officers slain by sniper fire, he chose to lighten the somber mood by first talking about his failures at teenage romance, and his love for 1970s rhythm and blues. Because he was so inept as a conversation starter, Brown recalled, he would break the ice with a girl he liked by reading aloud lyrics to songs by favorite soul singers. That meant regaling them with a little Al Green, or Isley Brothers, or Philadelphia's own 1970s master of the boudoir, Teddy Pendergrass.
February 2, 2016 |
René Marie is used to causing a stir. That's what made the velvety, Virginia-born, jazz songwriter and singer the perfect choice on Saturday to take on the tunes (but not the traits) associated with the late Eartha Kitt at the Perelman Theater. An often bluesy vocalist whose clarion qualities recall Ella Fitzgerald and whose verbal twists resemble those of Betty Carter, Marie has written and released controversial singles about homelessness ("This Is Not a Protest Song") and race struggles ("3 Nooses Hanging")
October 12, 2014 |
Neil Young's show at the Academy of Music on Thursday night served as a lesson on the perils of the intermission. After an absolutely sublime first half, the magical vibe went missing during a 25-minute bathroom break, and for the final hour the 68-year-old Young was inconsistent, rambling, and only intermittently brilliant. Strolling on stage in jeans and a flannel shirt, Young played most of the solo acoustic show seated, with seven guitars and a banjo within his reach. Not to mention a grand piano to his left, an upright to his right, and a pump organ behind him. There was an elephant in the impeccable-sounding 157-year-old room.
May 17, 2013 |
FRENCH filmmaker Olivier Assayas' "Something in the Air," a semi-autobiographical tale of revolution that manages to feel both shambling and urgent at the same time, takes its title from the 1969 Thunderclap Newman song of the same name, the chorus of which features the line, "We have got to get it together now. " The film's original French title, which translates to "After May," may help explain the reference. Set in 1971, during and just after the senior year for a group of high-school friends - a time of transition and new beginnings - the film is about finding oneself.
December 3, 2012 |
It's not every Hollywood guy who gets on the phone, obliged to promote his new work, who tells you right off the bat that he's hung over. Andrew Dominik , writer and director of the Brad Pitt gangster pic Killing Them Softly , is, however, that guy. "We had the premiere of the movie last night, and that's always nerve-wracking - you've got to have a couple of shots before you can do the red carpet," he explains, reached in New...
October 11, 2012 |
MOSCOW - One of the members of a feminist punk group convicted of hooliganism, for storming into a cathedral and singing a protest song, unexpectedly won her freedom on appeal Wednesday. Two other members of the band, called Pussy Riot, had their sentences upheld, and must serve two years in a prison camp. Their case has won worldwide notoriety, with calls for their release from rock stars and political figures. Their target was President Vladimir Putin, who said last week that he thought their sentences were just.
September 29, 2012 |
It's not exactly the Gutenberg Bible , but J.K. Rowling 's adult novel The Casual Vacancy made headlines on its release Thursday. There were one million preorders for the snarky satire, which debuted at No. 1 on Amazon's best-seller list. It's set in a dull Little Whinging-esque town populated by self-satisfied people much like Harry Potter's odious aunt and uncle. It's riddled with social commentary about the narcissism of the well-off and the misery of the poor. And it has rubbed some critics the wrong way. "The real-life world [Rowling]
October 21, 2011 |
ONE OF THE strange features of the Occupy Wall Street movement is its slow-burning fuse. The housing bubble burst in 2008, the bailouts followed immediately, and three years later, people finally took to the streets. There are many reasons for this delay, but surely one is the complexity of the meltdown and the bailouts. You have to plow though at least 20 egghead-y books to understand why you are outraged. This is the first scandal in history to come with a syllabus and reading list.
December 7, 2007 |
For the eighth year, 1812 Productions offers a holiday show, and this time, the homage is to the old television show That Was the Week That Was, affectionately known as TW3, a political variety show. This Is the Week That Is: Political Humor for the Holidays, now at the Adrienne Theatre, uses the same format-skits, songs, and imitations as the TV show to skewer the current political scene. Current is the operative word here; This Is the Week is updated daily, depending on what news breaks and what seems ripe for satire.
May 21, 2006 |
War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothin'! Edwin Starr got it wrong. "War," the Motown singer's 1970 hit, is not good for "absolutely nothin!' " War - or at least the ever-more-unpopular war in Iraq - can be good for at least one thing: protest music. As presidential approval ratings spiral downward, pop artists are letting loose antiwar and anti-Bush salvos, and venting their frustration with everything from the Hurricane Katrina aftermath to the mounting death tolls in a three-year-old war with no end in sight.