Despite fans' disappointment at the choice, there are some killer moments
As we've noted in the past, with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band doing so many albums in their entirety on this tour - including "The River" and "The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle" - it's a little perplexing that he chose a show that was widely available on the internet already. "London Calling: Live in Hyde Park" is in stores now. Springsteen explains:
That said, the highlights are still stunning. Check out "London Calling."
"Racing in the Street" isn't as compelling as it was in '78, but it's not bad -- Roy Bittan never disappoints.
Entertainment Weekly has an exclusive version of "Seeds" that's worth the click-through.
But most stunning is the blow-out version of "No Surrender" featuring Brian Fallon of Gaslight Anthem sharing the song. He has shared the stage with Springsteen in the past, but not like this. Unbelievable.
New Leonard Cohen Album this year!
Leonard Cohen has spent the last two years globetrotting through a marathon tour, but when Rolling Stone caught up with the poet last night in New York — where he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame — he revealed he's working on a new album, his first disc of fresh material since 2004's Dear Heather. "God willing it will be finished next spring," he said.
"I'm producing it," he said, wearing his typical dapper black suit and fedora. The 75-year-old added that the disc will contain "10 or 11 songs," mostly composed before he hit the road in May 2008 for the first time in 15 years. "One song was written on tour, the rest were written before," he said, noting that he wrote some tracks with longtime collaborator Sharon Robinson and with his longtime companion Anjani. What will it sound like? "Something good, I hope."
Cohen said not much has changed on his playlist in recent years and rattled off a list of his favorite artists with long breathy pauses between names: "The same people — Tom Waits, Van Morrison, Bob Dylan, Judy Collins."
Last year, Cohen debuted one new song live, the slow, moonlit blues "Feels So Good." This summer, Cohen embarks another leg of his tour, and in November he'll play Cambodia's Olympic Stadium with proceeds going to chartiable groups like the Cambodian Red Cross. "That's a long story," he said. "But if we can help there I'm very happy to be able to do it." Cohen's tour grossed $21 million in 2009 and earned stellar reviews. "I don't examine these things too closely," he said about his success on the road. "Otherwise they may evaporate."
At the ceremony, Cohen made a brief-but-spellbinding speech, said he was "overwhelmed" and then recited a stanza from his staple "Hallelujah." After the ceremony, fellow icons Paul Simon and Billy Joel made an early exit, but Cohen hung around his table, posing for photos and accepting accolades. When a couple forced electric guitar pickguards in his face, Cohen calmly told them, "You know I don't like signing these," but then signed them anyway.
Scummy blogger defends scummy blogging
Perez Hilton appeared on HLN’sThe Joy Behar Show tonight to tell his side of the Miley Cyrus photo scandal. Dressed in a suit he apparently borrowed from the Riddler, Hilton took the moral high ground. Behar asked him if he had purposefully pixelated the photo to suggest the absence of undergarments. “I did not pixelate anything, I did not photoshop anything,” said the gossipmonger. “I can’t help it, Joy, if America has a very dirty imagination.”
Hilton was unapologetic. He refuted child pornography charges, and in the process offered the most curious defense I have ever heard: “I think it’s insulting to children to accuse that of child pornography.” He also insisted that he would do it all over again: “If the photo agency that took that photo let me [post it], I would. It’s not showing anything inappropriate.”
Listen, this controversy has become overblown. Hilton is right that most people are overreacting, “upset over an image they didn’t see.” But to me, his basic defense is beyond disturbing. He claimed that the photo isn’t any more inappropriate than any of the pop star’s recent spate of un-Disneylike activity: “grinding up on her 40-something year old director, pole dancing, all the oversexualized things she’s been doing.”
So, basically, a teenaged girl is dancing inappropriately and pretending to be a grown-up. (Horrors!) And that gives actual grown-ups license to do pretty much anything they want to with her? That’s like saying “She was asking for it.” PopWatchers, that’s just bullplop. Bullplop! (It doesn’t help that Perez kept on finding new ways to imply that the whole controversy is Cyrus’ fault, couched in weirdly inappropriate language: “Miley has been around the block.”)
Did any of you watch the Hilton interview, PopWatchers? Are you on Team Perez, Team Miley, or Team Who Taught These Two To Dress? I never thought I’d say this, but I think I’m with Joy Behar: maybe it’s not an invasion of her privacy, but we can all agree that it’s definitely an invasion of her private parts.
"California Gurls" video
Free show ends in chaos
Tuesday night, a riot broke out at free Drake concert in New York City, where the Toronto rapper was set to celebrate the release of his debut album, Thank Me Later. The NYPD shut down the show and used Mace to stop fights between patrons, who threw bottles and chairs.
Thousands of people began congregating for the gig -- sponsored by Paper magazine and also featuring Hanson and Ninjasonik -- at 3 P.M. By the time the gig was scheduled to start, at 8 P.M., a crowd of around 25,000 packed the city blocks near South Street Seaport's Pier 17.
There were no regulated entrances to control fans, resulting in extreme congestion. Trying to find breathing room, concertgoers scaled various kiosks and overhangs, and crowded balconies above the shops and restaurants on the north side of the Seaport, to the left of the stage.
Local punk-rap outfit Ninjasonik tried to soundcheck, but, as member Jahjah tells SPIN.com, "the kids were too rowdy. You can't integrate a free show when a guy's album is dropping and have 15 security there." Soon after, the melee started with ballcap-sporting youths fighting near the stage; the scuffling quickly escalated into a massive brawl. Beer and water bottles flew, striking people in the crowd and up on the balconies. People on the balconies retaliated by tossing down metal chairs.
Police armed with batons stormed the area and used Mace on concertgoers who refused to disperse. Two police helicopters circled overhead with spotlights on the scene.
"This is fucking crazy. I was seriously scared for my life," said one fan, fleeing the scene. "We just wanted to see Drizzy perform. That's it."
Numerous patrons were seen seeking treatment in ambulances. CBS reported that two arrests were made. One officer was overheard advising a girl standing solo to "find and stick with your friends. This place is full of gang members. Don't be a victim."
Immediately after the fracas, Drake issued a statement: "I am humbled by the crowd that showed up in support of my performance and the release of Thank Me Later. I love performing for my fans but unfortunately the show was canceled by the NYPD due to over crowding, leaving me without the chance to give my fans a real show. I'm thankful for the support that the fans have been giving me... I thank you now."
Drake also tweeted, writing, "I'm disappointed. The police told me to turn around," and later, "To all the devoted fans that came out I wish you could have seen what I had planned! Until next time."
Newly surfaced tapes "prove" a massive Beatles cover-up
Apparently that man onstage this summer claiming to be Paul McCartney as he sings “Yesterday,” “Hey Jude and “Helter Skelter” is Billy Shears and/or William Campbell after all (controlled by mysterious secret agent “Maxwell,” according to the new conspiracy theory).
Yes, more than 40 years after the “Paul is dead” rumors were debunked by McCartney’s appearance on the cover of Life Magazine, the rumor is revived – by tapes allegedly recorded by George Harrison before his death. A new DVD, entitled “Paul McCartney Really Is Dead – The Last Testament of George Harrison,” and its website, www.PaulReallyIsDead.com, are both an attempt to rehash (and re-cash) the rumor.