Category Archives: Music

Eminem and Rihanna: The Monster Tour

Eminem is practically a recluse. He rarely does press. His latest album is a brilliant re-visiting of the territory he scorched in The Marshall Mathers LP, with new more adult and, in many ways, more pained examinations. There is also … Continue reading

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Elvis Marginalia

Elvis was a voracious reader. He wrote in the margins of all of his books, underlining sentences obsessively (sometimes every line on the page), writing notes to himself on the side. I had to be asked to step back from … Continue reading

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Saying Good-Bye to Elvis

Graceland at sunset, 2013, on Elvis’ birthday. Taken by yours truly. Where Were You When Elvis Died? by Lester Bangs The Village Voice, 29 August 1977 Where were you when Elvis died? What were you doing and what did it … Continue reading

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“Down there we got a plant that grows in the woods and the fields … eeeeverybody calls it Polk Salad.”

Elvis getting dirty with the swamp-funk anthem “Polk Salad Annie.” In other words: You hot-shot snobby folks from the two coasts wanna look down on us Southern boys? Well, I’ll give you Southern. I’ll give you Southern Gothic. I’ll give … Continue reading

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It’s Got To Cost You Something

Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977. Here is a re-post. I don’t care who you are. If you think you are worth watching, it’s got to COST you something. The great performers understand this. People with great pipes are … Continue reading

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He Shook It Like a Chorus Girl

37 years ago today, Elvis Presley died. Every time he performed, his “soul was at stake.” And so we will always miss someone like that. As Dave Marsh wrote in his Elvis book: There is no explanation. And if one … Continue reading

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20 Feet From Stardom (2013); directed by Morgan Neville

There’s a moment in Morgan Neville’s 20 Feet From Stardom, the fantastic Oscar-winning documentary about the world of the backup singer, that I can’t stop thinking about. Merry Clayton, a busy and hard-working backup singer, who had recorded with Ray … Continue reading

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Brian May on Doris Day

“Was watching a Doris Day movie out of the corner of my eye while writing, this evening. I really think Doris Day is the most wonderful lady singer in history. I spend a lot of time watching old movies out … Continue reading

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60 Years Ago Today: July 30, 1954: Elvis Steps Onstage at the Overton Park Shell

The Overton Park shell, Memphis 60 years ago, on July 5, 1954, Elvis Presley recorded “That’s All Right” at Sun Records, with Scotty Moore on guitar and Bill Black on bass. Sam Phillips hustled the 45 over to Memphis DJ … Continue reading

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Because This Is the Best Thing I’ve Ever Seen

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