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January 21, 2009

Shorties (Cover Bands, Lemonheads, and more)

Philadelphia Weekly profiles the Led Zeppelin cover band, Get the Led Out (and cover bands in general).

In Like a Rolling Stone: The Strange Life of a Tribute Band Kurutz theorizes that the essential notion of the tribute band, i.e., “something directly inspired by what has gone before,” extends beyond tribute bands and into society. “Steven Colbert is, in a way, a tribute band to Bill O’Reilly,” he writes. “Quentin Tarantino is a tribute band to 1970s blaxploitation and B movies … Karaoke is based on the same premise as a tribute band, as is the popular video game Guitar Hero, in which players replicate, note for note, famous guitar solos.”

The Guardian lists the top novels written by politicians.

PopMatters is listing its "slipped discs," great albums that didn't make its best albums of 2008 list.

HearWhere lists upcoming live music performances near you.

Books & Authors recaps 2008 in science fiction literature.

Grovel reviews Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo's graphic novel, The Joker.

nyctaper shares mp3s of last night's Animal Collective Bowery Ballroom show.

Daytrotter's Wednesday session features mp3s from sBach's in-studio performance.

NPR shares videos of interpretations of "The Star Spangled Banner," from Jimi Hendrix to Jose Feliciano.

The Santa Fe Reporter interviews Robin Romm about her recently published memoir, The Mercy Papers.

The Los Angeles Times gets writers' reactions to President Obama's inauguration speech.

"He is our first (in the best sense of the word) aristocratic president," said author and journalist Malcolm Gladwell. "Bush was a buddy. Clinton was the kindly uncle. Obama is a prince."

The Village Voice profiles Vampire Weekend and examines the causes of the band's inevitable backlash.

JamsBio lists the Beatles songs from worst to best.

At Bookspot Central, Alan DeNiro explains why he writes science fiction.

There is, of course, a cautionary tale in all of this: not to become a cheerleader for one mode of writing in ascendance above all others. Such rah-rah only seek to sequester and divide, especially when it forces people to defend poorly written fiction. Which, incidentally, is not in short supply on both side of the literary and genre divide. The worst of science fiction (unfortunately, the kind most easily translatable into film, and thus the kind that most people are familiar with) tends to be lurid, male power fantasies, filled with, as Bruce Sterling said, “rock-ribbed Competent Men,” cardboard cutout protags who barely sweat when killing the bad guys and getting the girl. But is a bland, third-rate Raymond Carver ripoff published in a literary magazine any more worth praise?

LaundroMatinee features video and mp3s from an in-studio session by the Lemonheads.

also at Largehearted Boy:

Online "best of 2008" music lists
Online "best of 2008" book lists
daily mp3 downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists


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