Monday, October 22, 2007

The Money Shot: Feist, Banhart, Smiths' Reunion, Kid Rock, Death Cab, Bruce, Rock Sellouts...

Today's headlines...

U.S. Customs Clears Chris Walla's Hard Drive (Pitchfork)
MS: "We followed standard operating procedure...and when you start talking about...Guantánamo Bay [as Walla did in his blog post], you get my ire up. I go on Google News, and I see 125 different news stories out there with the headline 'Homeland Security Seizes Musician's Music', and it strikes me as unfair. And I will be spending the rest of the day trying to contact those people-- The Associated Press, the record company [Barsuk], and Mr. Walla-- to ask them if they can set the record straight."

How to Calculate Musical Sellouts (Washington Post)
MS: There is no longer even a debate, let alone a stigma. "If you did an advert, you were a sellout," notes Billboard Executive Editor Tamara Conniff. "The Rolling Stones broke that when they allowed the use of 'Start Me Up' for the Windows campaign. Though there was an initial backlash, it suddenly made it okay for bands of integrity to do commercials. Now, it's almost as if as an artist you don't have a corporate partner [or] commercial, you've not really arrived."

What Springsteen Can Teach CEOs (US News)
MS: There's been a lot of hype about Springsteen reuniting with his famed E Street Band for the first tour since 2003, but come on—Springsteen, the man, is the draw, pure and simple. Still, this is one maestro who spreads the glory across the stage. Not once during the show does a spotlight shine on Springsteen alone. He continually calls out "Steve," "Clarence," and the other band members. And when they bow at the end, they bow together. It's a pretty neat marketing trick to create a cult of personality around somebody known for humility. Quick—can anyone name a CEO able to pull that off?

A Place to Bury Strangers Shut Down by Cops, Tour (Pitchfork)
MS: "Six policemen stormed A Place to Bury Strangers' set at Loisaida after just two songs following noise complaints from local tenants. The promoter, Vacancy Records' Louise Fenton, was escorted by the officers toward the back of the building to have a word." [See photo above]

Fenton somehow convinced the cops to allow the band one more song, so APTBS did "Ocean", the epic closing track from their self-titled album. "Police officers then reported back to their dispatch to say they were in the process of shutting the event down, but that they were letting the band finish their song first, because, (directly quoted from the officer): 'This band is sick.'"

Johnny Marr: 'The Smiths might reunite.' (NME)
MS: He added: "It's no biggy. Maybe we will in 10 or 15 years time when we all need to for whatever reasons, but right now Morrissey is doing his thing and I'm doing mine, so that's the answer really."

Kid Rock Arrested For Assault After Waffle House Scuffle (MTV)
MS: "He and five members of his entourage were involved in a fight with a male customer inside the Waffle House," DeKalb County Police Department spokeswoman Mekka Parish told AP. "It escalated to a physical altercation between Kid Rock and that male customer, and moved outside to the parking lot."

Interview: Devendra Banhart (Pitchfork)
MS: I didn't start out playing with a booking agent, and a label, and a band. I started off playing through calling people on payphones, then waiting by the payphone to see if I could platy. Having my guitar, playing half of the set aquarelle and not getting paid. I've been charged to play before. Oh, we didn't make enough from the liquor. Do you have 40 bucks, man? I've been in that position, when nobody knows anything. I still managed to sell a couple of demos, but it isn't like I've always had all of these things.

Canadian singer's career goes into fast-forward after iPod ad (USA Today)
MS: "It was a case of having that video I made with my friends be seen instead of rolling the dice in the hopes that someday, someone might play it on one of those channels that plays five videos and a lot of reality television shows." The single-camera production number features four dozen dancers. "It was like being in kindergarten, but with all the knowledge of what you've grown up to decide you wanted to do with your life," Feist, 31, says. "We were just running around a gymnasium, making shapes together."

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