Kenny Rogers & The First Edition: “Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)”

Picture this: A few years ago, I’m watching “The Big Lebowski” for the second or third time and I hear this cool tune play during the Dude’s crazy hallucination scene. I wonder – who sings this?

Kenny Rogers? You mean “Islands in the Stream” Kenny Rogers?

Hell, yeah.

Kenny already built up some cred with “The Gambler,” but this track more than tripled it.

Listen to a sound clip here.

Lost Bands: Pleasure Thieves

Another one of those bands that seems to ring a bell only with former record store employees who used to snake any and every promo disc that came in, the Pleasure Thieves released one album on Hollywood Records – Simple Escape – in 1992…and not much else. (Further research shows that they did a cover of the Who’s “Boris the Spider” for the soundtrack to Arachnophobia, but, honestly, probably even less people own that than do Simple Pleasure.)

Lead singer Sinjin-William Dolan…and, no, I don’t know what kind of name Sinjin-William is, either…sounds almost like Neil Diamond at times with his husky voice, and the music’s very synth-heavy; neither were attributes that would’ve led any band to success in the early ’90s.

The group vanished so far into oblivion that they have no website, no MySpace page, nothing…but in a bizarre post-script to the band’s career, the band’s song “Blue Flowers” – a highlight of the album – was discovered by a DJ in the Phillipines and became a hit there…in 2002!

If anyone has any idea if the band or Dolan went on to record anything else, please leave a posting.

Shittiest mixtape blastarama

This is what happens when you get in a contest to see who can make the shittiest mixtape. The loser gets to walk around NYC blasting it from a huge boombox. Much embarrassment and hilarity ensues.

And speaking of Jessica…

…has anyone else heard her new single, “A Public Affair”?

I’m officially going on the record as saying that it’s my current guilty pleasure and, even more scandalously, it will probably end up in my Top 10 Songs of 2006.

You can watch the video for the song here…and if watching Jessica for four minutes isn’t enough reason to watch, it also features Christina Applegate and Eva Longoria.

Jessie pulls an Ashlee

Poor Jessica Simpson. It just shows to go how tough being a singer is at times. Simpson caught a bout of laryngitis at the exact same precise moment her new album A Public Affair dropped. She’s had to cancel morning and late night talk show appearances and all sorts of terrible things, like resceduling a morning concert for the Today show. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t Simpson actually sing less than Ashlee? I mean, her cover of “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’” basically had her pulling a breathy Lou Reed, all talk and no action. It’s funny how this shit runs in the family.

Two’s Next

Just when you thought it was safe to assume that Pete Townshend would not possibly entertain the idea of dragging out the quickly decaying dinosaur of The Who, it’s time to stop assuming. Oh yes kids, the two remaining members of The Who are gonna drop their first studio album in a long time this Halloween. Trick or treat? Ha! Excuse my cynicism, but I’ll be going with the former. What else is left to do, really, besides squeeze more money from the fans? Oh well, at least it’s not another best of disc, but that doesn’t mean it’s all new stuff, either. Included on the disc will be all the songs from the “group’s” latest EP, Wire and Glass. And if that’s not enough, then get prepared to be bludgeoned with the usual Pete Townshend pretntiousness in the form of “music culled from a 29 minute operatic work, described by The Who’s co-founder Pete Townshend as a mini-opera inspired by his novella ”he Boy Who Heard Music’.”

Not another opera, Pete. Please. It’s time to give up the ghost, man. Anyway, the new album is titled Endless Wire. Undoubtedly a tour will feature a full performance of Tommy somewhere along the line.

Diddy scrapes his mouth clean, pouts for grits

Oh, that Diddy. He’s always up to a lot of fun! And what fun he has when he wakes up! Here he threatens us by saying he’s going to tell us how he feels every morning. Gee, Diddy Kong, what will you think of next? That pout of yours is unreal. And thanks for ungunking the corners of your mouth for us. That’s really beautiful.

Get this video and more at

They make winning look good

And for your short attention spans, here’s a quick nugget of fun that I will not ruin for you by pasting any of the photos here. After all, you need a surprise for your eyes everyonce in a while. Though I will say the first entry in the bit is one I always manage to forget, only to have it come back to haunt me when someone who has a list like this decides to remind me all over again. Thanks so much. Anyway, here is Rolling Stone’s 10 Years of the Worst Fashions at the VMAs.

Hicks nixes trick picks

“Ain’t nobody gonna make me look good.”

Taylor Hicks’ old producer pal William Smith is being suid by the artist after Smith uploaded three of Hicks’ pre “American Idol” tracks from 2001 on to iTunes. Sez Smith,

“The whole thing with putting these songs out was, he was getting killed by that goofy single, and I knew he was better than that…I had a three-year relationship with him. That single (“Do I Make You Proud”) sucks, and this was purely altruistic on my part. I wanted to show critics that were killing him that he was way more than ‘American Idol.’ ”

C’mon Taylor, this guy is doing you a favor. A fellow music biz person comes out and honestly says your “American Idol” shit stinks, and you wanna sue him over trying to prove that you’re better than that? Mmmm, the smell of money.

The Incredible String Band: “Worlds They Rise and Fall”

Usually, I have some recollection where I first heard these so-called “deep cuts,” but this personal discovery eludes me. It’s a gorgeous yet melancholy piece of folk-rock from the 1971 album, Liquid Acrobat As Regards the Air, but the version I have is from BBC Radio 1 Live In Concert.

Listen to a song clip here, but I have to warn you, the live version is better.

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