Saturday, March 28, 2015

Willie Nelson: very much the Paul Newman of his market segment

Willie Nelson Is Planning His Own Brand Of Weed And Shops Named 'Willie's Reserve'
Of course he is. Of course.

Friday, March 27, 2015

New music from a long-silent source

This is probably one for the old people. Remember when Ministry wasn't the Jesus Built My Hotrod Ministry, and was the I Wanted To Tell Her new wave band?

They're back.

Well, no, they're not. But the question 'I wonder if Al Jourgensen would rather that the world forgot about the synthpop years' has been soundly answered. It's 'no, he's not ashamed of those years', as for Record Store Day the archives have been opened, and this is out for the first time:

Thursday, March 26, 2015

T in the wrong park

The Woodland Trust is calling for T in the Park to be moved somewhere where it'll do less damage:

You might remember we recently raised concerns about T in the Park's new venue at the Strathallan Estate. The area is surrounded by old, rich woodland used by many protected species including bats, otters, red squirrels and ospreys.

T in the Park is Scotland’s biggest music festival, attracting 85,000 people every year. The festival brings employment and trade but with so many ancient woodlands under threat in the UK we need to be more mindful of the impact events like this have.

Logistics, noise, light, litter and general disturbance would drive many rare species away from the woodland because the event's main arena would be just metres away.

We know DF Concerts can move the festival away from Strathallan Estate: it was just one of 14 potential venues identified by the council!

We need your help now to make them realise that it is an unsuitable area for an event of T in the Park’s magnitude to be held - the impact on precious wildlife is simply too damaging.

There's a petiton, as you might expect.

Oh, and if you're thinking "well, T in the Park is a responsible sort of event, I'm sure they wouldn't do anything dodgy that would harm wildlife, you're wrong. They're actually arseholes who are deliberately setting out to frighten birds away:
An attempt by T in the Park bosses to discourage ospreys from returning to their nest at the festival's new Strathallan home has been criticised by a leading wildlife charity.

T in the Park promoters DF Concerts are flying a Saltire from on top of a cherry picker festooned with CDs in a bid to deter ospreys from returning to their nest at Strathallan Castle Estate.

Two ospreys have regularly used the nest but its proximity to the main stage at T in the Park means organisers want them to move to a new nest site further away.

There's a response to Zayn Malik quitting you didn't expect

You might have thought what with the struggle Universal Credit is proving to roll out, the Department of Work And Pensions might have been too busy to pass comment on boyband splits.

You'd be wrong:

I think Zayn should heed this tweet. Given the way the DWP slap sanctions on people at the merest opportunity, ignoring that Tweet will probably leave Zayn unable to draw down his pension in the future.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

David Crosby hits jogger

David Crosby has hit a man. Unfortunately, Crosby was in a car driving at 55 miles an hour, and the man he hit was a jogger.

Crosby's people have issued a statement:

“David Crosby is obviously very upset that he accidentally hit anyone. And, based off of initial reports, he is relieved that the injuries to the gentleman were not life threatening,” his rep tells Us Weekly in a statement. “He wishes the jogger a very speedy recovery.”

"Mr. Crosby was cooperative with authorities and he was not impaired or intoxicated in any way. Mr. Crosby did not see the jogger because of the sun," California Highway Patrol Spokesman Don Clotworthy told CNN.
So, it sounds like a terrible accident, and that Crosby is pretty shaken by it.

Indeed, the police seem to be happy to put most of the blame on the victim:
Clotworthy also stated that the jogger was on the same side of the road as Crosby. Pedestrians, including joggers, are supposed to be on the left side of the road going towards traffic.
Although in this case, the traffic was clearly going towards the jogger.

Realityobit: Lil Chris

Sad to hear that Chris Hardman, who became known for a while as Lil' Chris, has died.

Chris was the breakout star of Channel 4's Rock School reality series. The format saw Gene Simmons attempting to turn a group of Lowestoft schoolkids into pop stars; he nearly pulled it off with Chris.

He managed to make the most of his time in the spotlight - hosting a strand of celebrity features as part of the now-defunct T4 programming on Channel 4; releasing a couple of albums, and a few singles.

But a first album, pointed at the 2006 Christmas market, only scraped through to 54; a follow-up took two years, and stalled at 94.

As Chris got older, the work started to dry up; he had a spell in musicals and then had a crack at Christmas Number One in 2013 with Christmas Number One (#FeedEmYellowSnow). As you might expect from a single with a hashtag in the title, it didn't worry the charts.

Lil' Chris was 24; Police in Suffolk say his death was not suspicious.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Inkwell doesn't like 6Music

Earlier today, 6Music was having a bit of gentle fun:

Okay, it's hardly Danny Baker Morning Edition level stuff, but it's fun if you like that sort of thing. (Not as much fun as listening to Michael Fallon twisting in the wind, spewing out reasons why we shouldn't ask about Cameron's bollock-drop last night like a shiny pinata, of course, but people make their choices.)

Oddly, this turned out to be a red line for York's Inwell vinyl and book store:

One tweet from one show, and the whole place - from Marc Riley's session support for new bands through to Stuart Maconie's Freakshow - is dismissed as "a sniggery, wrong-headed indie-kid" type of place.

I'm not a fan of breakfasts on 6 myself, but would rather have a bit of knock-about fun than a po-faced 'music is a temple and must always be treated with quiet respect' approach. There's a lot of places on 6Music where you'll be read the sleeve notes from a Lou Reed album; a few shows which try different approaches are going to make the station attractive to a wider number of listeners. Some of whom might go from enjoying some light entertainment over breakfast to buying obscure vinyl some day.

Taylor Swift porn site shows the problem with dot porn

From Taylor Swift's perspective, you can see the justification for her (or her management colossus) lashing out to buy and

Because if she doesn't, someone else will.

When the .porn and .adult top level domains were announced, some voices suggested that these might be problematic as some brands or people might feel they have to buy their own names in the spaces to stop other organisations snapping them up.

And that's what's happened here.

In other words, Taylor Swift has been approached by an organisation and offered the opportunity to hand over thousands of dollars, in order to protect her image.

That's a shakedown, surely?

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Songwriterobit: Jackie Trent

Jackie Trent, singer, songwriter, and actress, has died.

It's perhaps a shame that the obituaries are hanging her on the peg as 'the woman who wrote the lyrics for the Neighbours theme song'; it's a fact, sure, but the real-life soap opera played out in her earlier lyrics which reflected her first-affair-with, then-marriage-to, eventually-divorce-from Tony Hatch is far more interesting and artistically accomplished than the plodding, sodding Erinsborough jingle.

As a taste, her website tells the deeper story behind Couldn't Live Without Your Love, a hit for Petula Clark:

I wrote the lyrics in 1966: simply expressing my love and commitment to Tony Hatch – the man I would marry the following year. The lyrics speak for themselves.

Angela Kon’s (unauthorised) biography of Petula Clark: ‘Colour My World,’ page 178, allegedly records conversation of the 1980’s between the author and Tony Hatch: where he speaks of my loving words defining our relationship ‘from my point of view.’ If true, how deceitful and cold-blooded; with 25 years of marriage then ahead of us?

Eve Taylor, my manager did warn me: ‘Don’t marry him. He’ll just use you!’

Mind you, I still love those lyrics...
(Trent's website is well worth a visit; she's generous and open with anecdote, although writes in the overblown showbiz style parodied by Alan Partridge.)

Jackie Trent was 74; she died March 21st in Menorca.

This week just gone

The most-popular 2015 stories so far:

1. Liveblog: The Brits
2. NME puts Gallagher on front page, again
3. Did you wonder what Conor McNicholas is up to these days?
4. Brits 2015 shortlist
5. Thick, Williams pinched the rape song's tune from Marvin Gaye
6. UK picks its brave losers for 2015 Eurovision
7. The Dears force The Deers to become Hinds
8. Sony dumps Omnifone
9. RIP: Steve Strange
10. Mark Feehily has a van selling coffee in lay-bys

These were interesting releases this week:

Laura Walsh - Soft Control

Download Soft Control

Marc Almond - The Velvet Trail

Download The Velvet Trail

Julian Cope - Trip Advizer

Download Trip Advizer