…But, sometimes, Awesome is AWESOME!

Screw Lollapalooza, man. This is the festival to attend.

Seriously, you find me any other non-charity event in the last decade to have a line-up that features this many awesome acts. I’m willing to listen. Any festival that includes Depeche Mode, Echo and the Bunnymen, Franz Ferdinand, Morrissey, the Strokes, the Pixies, Placebo, Madness, Scissor Sisters, Futureheads, the Editors, Beth Orton, We Are Scientists, and Babyshambles – a.k.a. Pete Doherty from the Libertines – makes me more than half-tempted to throw caution to the wind and buy two tickets to Spain, baby…

Sometimes Bad Is Bad

Okay, over the years there have been innumerable concert tours featuring a variety of similarly-themed (or even not-so-similarly-themed) artists sharing a single lineup: Rockfest. Lollapalooza. Monsters of Rock. You get the picture.

The demand for these types of shows is both reliable and understandable. What is not so understandable, however, is why anyone thought it would be a good idea to trot out bland vanilla-pop white-boy wannabe soulsters Huey Lewis and the News, pair them with sappy overwrought overrated snooze-inducers Chicago, and send the whole boring kit and caboodle out on tour.

Never mind that the Boys of Blah will be launching fits of narcolepsy left and right all across the country, disappointing legions of the former forensics team captains and Glee Club members who used to listen to them. The real problem here is one of marketing: What do you call a tour this achingly, willfully, obscenely boring?

Many options come to mind. None of them, however, seem particularly encouraging with regard to drawing ticket buyers:

The Heart of Rock & Roll Is Not Here
Snoozefest 2006
Critters of Crap
Kings of the Wuss Frontier
Government-Approved Purveyors of Rocklike Auditory Modulations
25 or 6 to Snore

I’m sure you can come up with several better ideas than these. I’d love to hear them. Whoever submits the best suggestion will receive a free copy of Chicago’s “XXX,” or a bottle of Lunesta, whichever I can track down a free copy of first.

Joke of the day, courtesy of Kittenpants

Q: What’s the difference between an onion and Kevin Federline?
A: Nobody cries when you cut open Kevin Federline.

Seriously, go to Kittenpants.com. You’ll be glad you did.

Back from oblivion, at least for a little while

Doug Powell is one of the most underrated singer/songwriters in the business…both by major labels and, unfortunately, most consumers. Fortunately, however, his fellow musicians know who he is.

Powell got his first break because, in his words, he “assaulted Jules Shear” with a tape of his songs, which led to Shear producing a demo for Powell in hopes of scoring him a deal with Elektra. The plan failed – Elektra took a pass – but, by 1994, he had a deal with RCA, for whom he recorded Ballad of a Tin Man. Unfortunately, he was dropped before it was released. By ’95, however, Mercury picked him up and released the album, possibly because he’d appeared on the radar by touring as an opening act for Todd Rundgren. Perhaps predictably, Mercury threw little effort into promoting the album, then dumped him when it flopped. Since then, he’s released albums through Not Lame and Parasol, but, after his 2004 release, Day For Night, he more or less retired from the music biz to write a book on Christian Apologetics and work on his Master’s Degree.

Fortunately, he’s coming back…if only with an odds-and-sods collection of demos and rarities, to be released through Paisley Pop Records. Still, somethin’ is better than nothin’. Plus, he’s written some songs for the New Cars…which, at last, gives us a good reason to root for their success.

American Idol: Lisa Follows Chicken Little Home

So Spike Marley is a prophet once again. Either that or I rigged the whole freaking “American Idol” voting process. Nah, that would take too much time. This time Lisa Tucker pretty much booted herself off after a really bad rendition of Kelly Clarkson’s “Because of You.”

But there were two surprises last night. One, that they brought out Skakira and Wyclef to perform the opening song for Elimination Wednesday. What, were Neil Sedaka or Tom Jones not available? This was actually a cool performance to watch, and Shakira showed some of the Idol hopefuls just how far they have to go to really become a star.

The other surprise was the bottom three–Lisa, Ace, and Catharine McPhee. To top it off, Catharine was in the bottom TWO. I understand Ace, because he completely butchered that Train song and he’s just annoying to begin with. But Catharine? Is America that in love with Bucky Covington and Kellie Pickler? Or are there just that many banjo-playing, barbecue-eating, sweet tea-drinking types voting for them? Either way, they’re all going home soon, but I didn’t think Catharine deserved to be ranked that low.

Oh, and just how many ways are there to spell Catharine? I swear I’m spelling it right but it never looks right. People, don’t name your daughters Catharine anymore, it’ll be better for us all.

So now we are down to 9. I’m still sticking with my gut here and saying Chris, Mandisa or Paris will win it all. But getting there is half the fun, so see you next week, kids.

Marley, OUT.

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