There are performers you can’t enjoy unless you learn to ignore or tolerate some aspect of their music. If the challenge is worth it, what seemed at first annoying or bewildering later seems essential. In the case of Destroyer, the obstacle is the voice of singer and songwriter Dan Bejar. A native of Vancouver, Mr. Read More
It’s easy to forget that in the early 1960’s, when the Beatles and their Brit-pop clones were invading this country, the real story was the enormous changes being wrought on British culture by postwar America. After 15 years of rebuilding, the English were finally entering a period of economic expansion, one of international optimism and Read More
Up at SEIU Local 1199‘s auditorium on West 43rd Street, a packed auditorium of union healthcare workers hollered and danced to an upbeat soundtrack of funk and salsa, played so loud the bass vibrated in my teeth and the most placid of press photographers were tapping their feet.
“Is 1199 in the house?” yelled Read More
Paul McCartney is rumored to have at least 800 rubber ducks. Though his official spokesman denies this, the story persists on Beatles Web sites. “I’ve seen the collection-or at least part of it,” writes Robert B. on Beatlefan.com. “Most of the ducks are quite small, but one is the size of a desk.”
“Paul-who, remember, Read More
I have played the part of a screaming fan girl only twice in my 54 years.
The first time, I was a quivering 14-year-old chaperoned by my father at a Beatles concert in 1964. A dog-eared photo taken by a friend caught me at the height of my reverie as tears fell onto the Peter Read More
Sonata for Jukebox: Pop Music, Memory, and the Imagined Life, by Geoffrey O’Brien. Counterpoint, 328 pages, $27.50.
All pop criticism is bad. Like a boring dinner guest, it’s garrulous and name-dropping. Under the pretense of informing you, it glories in your ignorance. It reeks of junk-strewn garrets and a degrees in semiotics from Brown. Read More
Sir Paul McCartney is a fool. I just wanted to get that on record before I proceed to the chief focus of this column, which is the Phil Spector tragedy. I’ll get to Sir Paul, and his idiocy in relation to Phil Spector and the “Naked” Beatles album-Sir Paul’s deluded ego trip-in due time. But Read More
Bendel up, kids! Is it just us, or does increasingly waxen Playboy founder Hugh Hefner and his league of Bunny friends have a “retrospective,” oh, about every four minutes? Henri Bendel , a swish department store in midtown that we can’t afford, thank you very much ( where is our Christmas bonus? Read More
From George Martin’s classically inspired production of the Beatles to Peter Gabriel’s early solo masterpieces, to Stereolab’s beautiful loops and blips, U.K.-based bands have often found a way to squeeze warmth and compassion from the stone-cold-especially now that the tubes are gone-machinery of the recording studio.
Certainly, the British embrace of technology has gone haywire Read More
Will the almost-Ivy Lolitas of Barnard College meet their match in the glossy-lipped gamines of Glamour magazine? Will young women who stay up late scrutinizing Thomas Hardy’s use of pathetic fallacy embrace the Blahnik-shod gals of Glamour as role models who prove that all the toil in college will one day be Read More