Sports: If you have ever been to a boxing match, even a big time one, the shock is the lack of commentators talking through it, all you can hear is the audience and the thumping. I spent from 5pm to past midnight at MSG watching professional boxing, from feather to middleweight. The sport has changed, gone are the days of one match a year for major pros, with so many boxers for so many belts, a boxer like the IBF super featherweight co-main event with Kevin Farmer’s brutal 12 round toe to toe battle, his third this year. That is unheard of. The real main event was too much of a mismatch, Canelo Alvarez, pound for pound the best boxer around, pulmetting on the underqualified Rocky Fielding who had a belt Camelo wanted and gave it up. (Grade: B). The UK’s Heavyweight champ Anthony Joshua was at the girl and promises to return and fight in the States. Meanwhile, I signed up for DAZN’s streaming service, $10 a month to see every Camelo match.
Movies: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is an animated take on the webslinger, with a terrific soundtrack, a strange, oddly tired looking (it isn’t 3D but the lurredness suggests it for sure) with various Spideys from various ‘verses, battle evildoers. It was fun though on the light side (Grade: B)
New Music: As the year winds to a close, the Spider-Verse soundtrack is a goodie and on Friday we get… the new 21 Savage. A great rapper but a violent little fuck.
Television: CBS’s “God Friended Me” is a new fave, the sort of Highway To Heaven-ly thing US networks are capable of. Undoubtedly, this is the sort of dream of a fair world bending towards justice (Grade: B+). The Sabrina Christmas special on Netflix was a lot of creepy fun (Grade: B+)
Old Music: Susan Whitall of the Detroit News on Aretha Franklin pre-Atlantic Records: “I think Aretha has been too narrowly defined as a soul singer It’s in part because Jerry Wexler did a good job in explaining how he used her head arrangements on piano and encouraged her more soulful side–very timely, too, with the explosion of soul. But she could sing anything, and she often returned to some of her best Columbia work–she often put “Skylark” in her set, in recent years, and loved to sing “Moody’s Mood for Love”… her piano playing was as influenced by jazz players such as Monk, as by the church.”
Concerts: Annaleigh Ashford Tuesday at Lincoln Center then nothing till Post Malone at Barclay’s on December 29th!
Theatre: The raves for Aaron Sorkin’s “To Kill A Mockingbird” have come as a surprise to me, I figure a “B” to “B-” and certainly not the raves it has received. Speaking of which, I gave Springsteen On Broadway a “B+” when I caught in on stage in October 2017, watching the first half hour (I lost interest but will probably follow it through to the end one of these days) and I think I overestimated it. Close up, Bruce is so earnest and self-serving, passive aggressive and just plain aggressive, it is hugely annoying (Grade: C)
Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – September 1985 (Volume 17, Number 4)
Rock ‘n’ roll is dead. We’re just dancin’ on its grave
Brief Encounters: New Album Releases 3-17-23 – 3-23-22
a coming of age for modern Arabic pop and not Arabic Sahara garage
Back in 2009 We Went To The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Museum New York Annex Here Is Our Report (Before Its Abrupt Closure!!)
kids picking out songs on guitars and discovering they too can do it
Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – August 1985 (Volume 17, Number 3)
squirming around on her back like she’d just received a double dose of injectable pig wormer
Money, Money, Money: Buying Tickets In 2023
one of the worst endings to a major concert
Sharon Van Etten At The Troubadour, Sunday March 19th 2023
“I always dreamed of playing the Troubadour”
Single by Single review Of Paul McCartney’s The 7″Singles Box Reviewed
a master of melody and less so a master of genre
Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – July 1985 (Volume 17, Number 2)
Bill Holdship’s piece on Prince is excellent