Saturday, January 30, 2010

Best of the Week vol. XXXI

Quote of the Week: When he does, you act like your little girlish self. Scream like a banshee so he doesn’t think you’re a threat. When he pulls you out, you find a weapon and flash. (Casey, Chuck)

Song of the Week: Respect – Otis Redding (Chuck)

Big News of the Week: The CW Is Going Back to the 90’s… Again: I haven’t watch a second of The CW since Everybody Hate Chris went off the air (to score bigger rating for repeats on Nick at Night and BET then it did for orginal episodes on The CW), on account that I am too old and too male to watch the channel. I still inadvertently catch news coming from the outlet like when it broke this week that the channel will once again be trolling the 90’s for television idea even after 90210 and Melrose Place have been miserable failures. But sadly my prediction last year that Models Inc. would be next on The CW docket (which itself was a spin-off of Melrose Place) though The CW I going with the equally laughable La Femme Nikita, the show that ran on USA for five series. Although I am not sure why The CW is even developing shows because either 1) the network won’t even exist next season (which some predict), or 2) it will cut its programming down to only four nights a week (which I predict). But if they are still around in 2011, may I suggest your next crappy 90’s reboot be Cleopatra 2525.

Gratuitous Token Hot Chick Picture of the Week:

Kristin Kreuk: the orginal Token Hot Chick

Free Download of the Week: Falling in Love (music video) – Raphael Saadiq (iTunes)

Deal of the Week: Up to 58% Off TV Shows (Freaks and Geeks, Leverage, Greek)

Video of the Week: Lana Lang in a Nerd Herd uniform? Yes please.

Next On: More Action, More Chuck

Next Week Pick of the Week: Lost, Tuesday at 8:00 on ABC: The long awaited final season of Lost commences this Tuesday and I am ready. I have been mentally preparing for a letdown since around the third season. And looking over Sci-Fi Wire’s The 100 Questions Lost Better Answer or We’ll Be Pissed, all I could think was, “Only 100?”

Friday, January 29, 2010

Around the Tubes vol. XXXVI

I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on Inside Polygamy: Life Is Bountiful, Fight Science, Temple Grandin, Caprica, and the new slate of TNT shows.

- For those that watch Big Love and enjoy the fictitious polygamy fun, will want to tune into the upcoming National Geographic Channel special Inside Polygamy: Life Is Bountiful coming February 10 at 9:00 which features Winston Blackmore who will be passing out more than twenty chocolate boxes this Valentine’s Day. But he will more than make that back on Father’s Day from his over one hundred children. For more, check out the cover story for February’s National Geographic magazine which went on sale yesterday.

- In other National Geographic news, a sneak peak at their new series, Fight Science airs this coming Monday February 1 at 10 before settling in on its regular timeslot on Thursdays. Here is a sneak peak of the sneak peak:

- For those of you with HBO, next Saturday, February 6 at 8:00, you can check out their latest film, a biopic about the best-selling author, animal scientist and autism advocate Temple Grandin starring Claire Danes in the title role. Check out the trailer below:

HBO Films: Temple Grandin Trailer (HBO)

- For those of you that saw the Caprica pilot long before it aired, just a reminder that the first new episode airs tonight at 9 on Syfy. But you will have to wait until the March 5 to get a first glimpse of Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s James Marsters on the show. Until then, here is a supertrailer for the show.

Caprica Season Preview

- As some networks are figuring out ways to air less programming, TNT is upping their slate of new shows greenlighting three new series including the much talked about (and still untitled) Steven Spielberg produced, Noah Wiley starring alien invasion series coming sometime in 2011, Delta Blues starring Jason Lee, and recent Chuck guest Angie Harmon starring in Rizzoli and Isles, both set to premiere sometime this year. All shows are set for ten episodes each. To get you used to a mustacheless Jason Lee, below is a promotional photo for the show.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

My Heart Recalls That It All Seems the Same

The Sea - Corinne Bailey Rae

It is heartbreaking listing to The Sea, the sophomore outing from Corrine Bailey Rae. For those unaware, Bailey Rae’s husband was found dead in March of 2008 after seven years of marriage. And she doesn’t shy away from that subject, even starting out the album with the one-two emotional punch of Are You Here, where you your heart swells when she asks the title question and ends the song with the line, “Wait till you see those eyes.” And even though it was written before his untimely death, I’d Do it All Again, it takes on a different meaning the way she sings it after the event.

But it is where tries something new where The Sea really shines. Feels Like the First Time starts off with an ominous piano riff before going back to her smooth self reminiscent of her first album, but that riff comes back for the chorus to much effect. She fulfills that genre defying promise of Feel Like the First Time with the bass heavy, near rock of The Blackest Lily complete with the organ flair of a rock group complete with Bailey Rae unleashing her inner rock star on the chorus and a weird Peter Frampton vocal distortion (which sound refreshing today with everyone else in her genre abusing auto-tune).

The most accessible song of the set, is the breezy Paris Nights / New York Mornings which may not have the sing a long vibe as her breakout hit Put Your Records On but is just as fun and will most like be over abused in upcoming romantic comedies. Add some new wave type synthesizers and some attitude to that and then you get Paper Doll. But those songs are just a diversion for the heart break that starts off the album.

Song to Download – Feels Like the First Time

The Sea gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I Want My Music Television vol. LXXII

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

On to the Next One – Jay-Z featuring Swiss Beatz

Pretty wise of Jay-Z to debut a video called On to the Next One as the first of the decade. But dude sure likes his black and white videos just like his last one. No comment on all the weird vinaigrettes aside from following up the Obama line with a picture of a crucifix and bullets.

Skeletons – The Yeah Yeah Yeahs

On to the next artsy video, this time courtesy of The Yeah Yeah Yeahs. But the video does fit the song very well.

Dreamer – K’naan

K’naan landed three songs on my Best Songs of 2009 list and it looks like he may land another one for the 2010 list and maybe be crack the Best Videos list with this one.

I’ll Never Let You Go – Flavor Flav

So this Flavor Flav video happened. If Jay-Z wasn’t able to kill auto-tune, this song may inadvertently do the trick.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Breaking Down the Best Songs of the Year

At the end of every year since 1996, I have gathered up my favorite songs from that year for a countdown of my favorite. I was interested in seeing who were the artist that appeared most on those list over the past decade and here are the top 25 (well since there was a tie there are actually 31). I counted any song of which they were listed as a featured artist, not just when they were the lead artist. Also keep in mind this list has nothing to do with my upcoming Greatest Songs of the 00’s which I promise to release before the next decade ends. I also included a list of the number 1’s of the past twelve years as well as Mr. Irrelevant (the song that was last that year).  For the full list for the past five years, click the Best Songs label at the bottom of the post.

1. Kanye West - 25

2. Alicia Keys – 15

John Mayer – 15 (Solo, 14 and John Mayer Trio, 1)

4. U2 - 14

5. Jay-Z - 13

6. Carrie Underwood – 11

Coldplay – 11

8. Nelly Furtado – 10

9. Beyoncé – 9 (Solo, 6 and Destiny’s Child, 3)

Dave Matthews – 9 (solo, 1 and Dave Matthews Band, 8)

Eminem – 9

The Killers – 9

Michelle Branch – 9 (solo, 6 and The Wreckers, 3)

Nas – 9

Ryan Adams – 9

Snoop Dogg – 9

Snow Patrol – 9

3 Doors Down - 9

19. Christina Aguilera – 8

Jack Johnson – 8

Jack White - 8 (The Raconteurs, 2 and The White Stripes, 6)

Lily Allen – 8

Maroon 5 – 8

Santana - 8

25. Common – 7

Death Cab for Cutie – 7

Jimmy Eat World – 7

Rihanna – 7

The Roots – 7

Taylor Swift – 7

Weezer - 7

Most Top Ten Songs

7 - John Mayer

Kanye West

4 - Michelle Branch (solo, 2 and The Wreckers, 2)


3 - Coldplay

David Gray

Death Cab for Cutie


The Killers

Ryan Adams


Shortest Song: Fell in Love with a Girl – The White Stripes (1:50)

Longest Song: I Will Possess Your Heart – Death Cab for Cutie (8:36)

Longest Break Between Charting: 10 Years (Ben Harper, Steal My Kisses in 2000; Fly One Time in 2009)

Number One Songs by Year

2000: Maria, Maria – Santana featuring the Product G&B

2001: Everywhere – Michelle Branch

2002: Fell in Love with a Girl – The White Stripes

2003: The Seed (2.0) – The Roots featuring Cody ChestnuTT

2004: All Falls Down – Kanye West

2005: Landed – Ben Folds

2006: Crazy – Gnarls Barkley

2007: Drivin’ Me Wild – Common featuring Lily Allen

2008: I’m Yours – Jason Mraz

2009: Use Somebody – Kings of Leon

Mr. Irrelevant

2000: The Bad Touch – The Bloodhound Gang

2001: Standing Still – Jewel

2002: Friends and Family – Trik Turner

2003: Make Me a Song – Kiley Dean

2004: Some Girls – Rachel Stevens

2005: Give a Little Bit – Goo Goo Dolls

2006: Lithium – Evanescence

2007: This Ain’t a Scene, it’s an Arms Race – Fall Out Boy

2008: Stuck to You – Nikka Costa

2009: Let’s Take a Walk – Raphael Saadiq

Monday, January 25, 2010

Recasting We Are the World

When Michael Jackson passed away, like most people I went back and listened to the music of his on my iPod which included We Are the World. That got me to thinking it that there was still plenty of poverty in Africa and it may be time to remake the song for a newer generation (especially considering Do They Know it's Christmas? is already on it'd third version). While doing research, I realized the twenty-fifth anniversary was this year so I sat on the suggestions I made at the time so I could release it to coincide with the anniversary. Then new came out last week that the co-writers of the song Lionel Richie and Quincy Jones (along with Jackson) were planning on doing so after the Grammy’s next week to benefit Haitian relief (so I guess they will be renaming the group USA for Haiti). So here are my suggestions next to those that did the original part. And as a point of reference, here is the original song:

Lionel Richie – Ne-Yo

Stevie Wonder – Maxwell

Paul Simon – John Mayer

Kenny Rogers – Taylor Swift

James Ingram – John Legend

Tina Turner - Beyoncé

Billy Joel – Norah Jones

Michael Jackson – Michael Jackson

Diana Ross – Christina Aguilera

Dionne Warwick – Alicia Keys

Willie Nelson – Keith Urban

Al Jarreau – Justin Timberlake

Bruce Springsteen – dude from Green Day

Kenny Loggins – dude from Fall Out Boy

Steve Perry – dude from Maroon 5

Daryl Hall – Robin Thicke

Michael Jackson – Michael Jackson

Huey Lewis – dude from The Fray

Cyndi Lauper – Lady Gaga

Kim Carnes – Kelly Clarkson

Bob Dylan – Dave Matthews

Ray Charles – Jamie Foxx

Stevie Wonder – Stevie Wonder

Bruce Springsteen – Bruce Springsteen

Dan Akroyd – Adam Sandler

Jackson Family Chorus – Jonas Brothers and other Disney stars Chorus

Naturally the hardest singer to recast was Michael Jackson himself and came I up with three alternatives; Bono, who technically is not American; Prince, who was actually supposed to duet with Jackson in the original but didn’t show up the first time; or have a chorus do all his part. But maybe it would be best to just pipe in his original vocals. And even though I recast their earlier parts, I still have to bring back Bruce Springsteen and Stevie Wonder to recreate their duet which was the highlight the orginal. Not bringing them back would have been like not asking Bono to sing "Tonight thank God it's them instead of you" for the new Do They Know it's Christmas? versions.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

57 Channels and Only This Is On vol. CXIV

Hope for Haiti Now: Stevie Wonder singing Simon and Garfunkel, Taylor Swift covering Better Than Ezra, Jay-Z teaming up with Bono, The Edge, and Rihanna, Neil Young and Dave Matthews dueting, Chris Martin playing piano for Beyoncé, The Roots backing Shakira, Mary J. Blige, and Jennifer Hudson. It almost seems like a steal to buy all these performances, twenty in total, for $7.99, but you can download Hope for Haiti Now on iTunes and Amazon MP3 (see below) both of which also includes a studio version of the Jay-Z, U2, Rihanna song Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour). And you can also download the whole video in both places for $2.99. 100% of all purchases from either site will go to various Haitian relief charities such as Red Cross and the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.

Chuck: We finally get to meet Shaw and no surprise it is Superman even though I still don’t see how he pulls rank on Beckman when, as Casey puts it, he has back issues of Guns and Ammo older than him. And it is not surprising dude is a tool either. And his big secret: he’s married? When he pulled out the ring I thought, Oh my, he’s part of THE Ring, then he put it on his ring finger and thought, that is an odd reveal. Could Superman’s wife possibly be the upcoming guest star Lana Lang? And the drunken Casey excuse: hilarious. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Castle on iTunes.

How I Met Your Mother: Nothing groundbreaking as we have all had the Settler vs. Reacher debate (well, at least I have) and created our own stupid drinking game (well, at least I have). It was a little odd that they would bring in Amanda Peet for such a thankless role, especially when I would put a good chunk of change on her in a real fight vs. Alyson Hannigan. You can stream recent episodes over at You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

The Big Bang Theory: Of course Sheldon hates Windows 7 because it is more user friendly. But I am shocked that he didn’t have a contingency plan in case, or to keep someone from robbing him. Like he hasn’t put a GPS on his gaming systems. You can download The Big Bang Theory on iTunes.

Castle: I was just wondering when they were going to bring up Beckett’s mother’s death and here they do in a big way. And she kills the person who did it. Wow. But one thing that bugs me is who in the police force is signing up to be a decoy (sorry unlucky token Asian guy on the NYPD)? While putting on his bullet proof vest all I could think is the mark is a trained assassin, former marine and could probably easily take someone out with a headshot. Lucky for Token Asian Dude the plan itself was a decoy for the assassin. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Castle on iTunes. Also be sure to check out my chat with Stana Katic.

Mercy: Oh snap, Ronnie gets turned down because of a cat. I didn’t see that one coming. Although why was that Still Bill’s one premonition? Did I miss a scene wit Ronnie telling the comatose Still Bill she was? But I love how Dr. Sands’ inner circle consists of his drugged out sister, and the emotionally stunted bearded doctor. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Mercy on iTunes.

Modern Family: Holy Dylan sighting! The really need to get this guy involved more often. I miss him and the Rusty Zippers. But I wonder if the show is getting too stale already. Last week it was pretty easy to figure out it was Phil downloading porn and this week it didn’t take a detective to deduce that Manny’s date was going to overaged (and then come on to the gay Cameron). You can stream recent episodes on Hulu.

Modern Family on iTunes

Also check out my First Impressions of The Deep End.