it's the final countdown
Songspeak headquarters are located on the opposite side of the state, but this Mad Men spoof of typical eastern Massachusetts “Massholes” is classic. And it’s got a New Kid On The Block in it, so you know it’s good.
I was truly amazed by their repertoire, but by far the biggest shocker was a song from the early 90s that had totally escaped my consciousness, “Move This” by Technotronic. Thankfully recommitted to memory once again, I found myself humming the bassline in the days since.
Thanks, Intrigue. You really pumped up the jams.
Lyrics after the jumper… (more…)
This past Friday night was a night 17 years in the making. Matt and I attended One Night of Queen at Springfield Symphony Hall in Springfield, Massachusetts. The ticket stub can be seen on the right. Would we play games with you?
You see, our relationship blossomed 17 years ago in high school, where we would talk about music on the bus ride home. Wayne’s World had just come out and repopularized Bohemian Rhapsody. This was my first real exposure to Queen, but Matt would tell me about all the quirky songs in their vast library of work, like Fat Bottomed Girls and Bicycle Race. This prompted me to get Classic Queen and Queen’s Greatest Hits on cassette. So when we found out that One Night of Queen was coming to Springfield, we realized that a bromantic evening of dinner and music must be had.
Before the show, we went to Theodore’s Booze Blues and BBQ. We started with a heaping plate of nachos, and we each got a ribs combo dinner. I opted for the popcorn shrimp, while Matt went with the brisket. Don’t we look thrilled?
After dinner, we arrived at Springfield Symphony Hall. The smokers were stinking up the front steps as we saw the huge banner for One Night Of Queen. We took our seats (after a quick trip to restroom to drain our bladders of the 3 or 4 soda refills we had at Theodore’s) and anxiously awaited the start of the show. We had been curious about what kind of crowd this show would attract, and it was surprisingly diverse. The audience was comprised of a few middle-aged folks dragging their kids to the show (and most of these kids couldn’t look less enthused to be there, and likely have no idea who Queen was), quite a few people our age, lots of other guys out for a bromantic evening themselves, and quite a few older folks who were probably our age when Queen was in their prime. Matt even spotted a celebrity in attendance; the guy from the local Bertera Chevrolet commercials. We found it odd that they were playing Queen songs over the speakers before Gary Mullen and The Works took the stage.
And speaking of Gary Mullen, he really channelled his inner Freddie Mercury. He must have really studied old Queen concert footage in preparing for this role. He leapt fabulously, pranced flamingly, slapped his ass, spit water, used the mic stand as a guitar, swung it like a golf club, drop-kicked his bottled water (Matt was slightly mad that he was drinking bottled water, as it didn’t exist in the 70′s and ruined the illusion of the era we were supposed to be in), supplied plenty of innuendo, and walked through the crowd, looking to have sex with anything that moved. At one point, he left the stage for an extended period of time while the band played. We assumed it was a costume change, but the only change we noticed when he came back on stage was that he had no shirt on.
The setlist was as follows:
And here, my best friends, is choppy cellphone video for ya… (with annotations!)…
We were disappointed that Radio Ga Ga wasn’t performed. This was especially shocking considering Gary Mullen’s affinity for having the crowd put their arms in the air and clap to the beat. Of course, there’s Matt’s disdain for the presence of bottled water. We also weren’t thrilled that Gary Mullen forced us to stand for most of the show as he maintained that the seats were “redundant” and that we should be off of our asses dancing. We were also convinced that Gary Mullen was putting on a fake British accent to stay true to his Freddie Mercury character, only to find out that he’s actually British! And one of my personal favorite moments was near the beginning of the show, when he said, “How are you doing Springfield?” *crowd cheers* “Where’s Homer Simpson?” Who doesn’t love an antiquated Simpsons joke? It’s like having your grandmother forward you an email about how Bill Gates is going to pay everyone a bunch of money for forwarding said email. In other words, topical.
All in all, we had a great time, and it was much better than we thought it would be. Gary Mullen and The Works have been doing this for a number of years and are currently on tour. If you’re a Queen fan, you would be stone cold crazy to miss this show.
Tags: 70s music, 80s music, 90s music, bbq, bertera chevrolet, bicycle race, bill gates, booze blues and bbq, bottled water, brisket, bromance, bromantic, classic queen, dave mustaine, david bowie, davie brockett, elvis presley, freddie mercury, gary mullen, homer simpson, i'm going slightly mad, innuendo, massachusetts, megadeth, nachos, northampton high school, one night of queen, play the game, popcorn shrimp, queen, queen's greatest hits, radio ga ga, rapper's delight, ribs, simpsons, springfield, stone cold crazy, sugar hill gang, symphony hall, the works, theodore's, wayne's world, you're my best friend
There is a public service announcement commercial about strokes that’s been rearing its head often lately from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and no matter how many times we see it, it remains hilarious. The actual commercial, with the dude’s funky voiceover, can be seen here.
But in researching this commercial, I found a full three and a half minute cartoon music video detailing the stories of all the characters in full:
I know there’s nothing funny about strokes, but I’ll be damned if these commercials don’t try their hardest to make strokes hilarious. I mean, we even saw this commercial last week during Lost (though, to be fair, sometimes trying to figure out what’s going on on Lost can almost give you a stroke).
And always remember, bof fry flew.
Tags: 00s tv commercials, act FAST, bof fri fleu, bof fry flew, funky voiceover, gold jerry gold, lost, massachusetts, massachusetts department of public health, public service announcement, stroke, stroke commercial
Ah, the holidays. It’s that special time of year where we travel around to holiday parties and spent time with parents, relatives, etc. My wife Kristen and I have family all over the place: Pennsylvania, Long Island, Eastern Massachusetts, Western Massachusetts, Florida… all this involves long road trips in the car and many family functions.
Last Christmas, Kristen and I decided to travel from N. Merrick, NY to Harrisburg, PA by way of Philadelphia, for the sole purpose of stopping at Jim’s Steaks on South Street for a cheesesteak. It was a little over an hour out of the way, but totally worth it. We’re hoping to make this an every Christmas tradition, so both of us are looking forward to it this year and keeping our fingers crossed we can make it happen.
For Thanksgiving weekend, besides traveling with my mom to Long Island and back (stopping at Ikea briefly for some Swedish meatballs), we also attended a party in Acton, Massachusetts for my grandmother who turned 90. After the party, my mom, Kristen, and I were a little zoned out in the car on the way home… reeling from all the family shmoozing we had to do. My mom was asleep in the back and Kristen was the passenger. I was the driver.
Now all I can think about is the sweet sweet taste of a Jim’s Steak cheesesteak sandwich whenever I hear this song from now on.
Tags: acton, cheesesteak, elton john, harrisburg, holidays, ikea, jim's steaks, long island, ma, massachusetts, new york, ny, pa, pennsylvania, philadelphia, philadelphia freedom, philly, south street, swedish meatballs, tradition, whiz wit
There is a band trying to “decimate” the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, Massachusetts on Thursday, October 16th. This band is Tragedy, the “all metal” tribute to the Bee Gees. Someone posted a link to Tragedy’s myspace on MassLive’s SoundBoard forum and it looks like they’re AWESOME.
They play 80s metal versions of popular Bee Gees songs like Stayin’ Alive, Jive Talkin’, How Deep Is Your Love, More Than A Woman, Tragedy, and others.
How does one combine heavy metal and the Bee Gees?
It’s easy: We love disco, and we love metal. On the surface, they’re polar opposites, sort of like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, I guess. But it works, and it’s fun to go against the grain.
How did you get so popular so quickly? You’re headlining an 1100 capacity venue.
We’re fucking awesome, that’s the main thing. As we like to say, we rock sweet balls and do no wrong.
What’s with the popularity of tribute bands now?
Our success doesn’t really come from the tribute band scene. We play with some, like this weekend, but we play with some non-tribute bands as well; we’ve played with jam bands like Umphrey’s McGee and punk bands like Murphy’s Law. This isn’t a standard tribute—I mean, it’s songs people know, and that does help—but it’s a concept turned on its head.
Who’s your fanbase?
It varies. See, I think almost everyone like the Bee Gees, and almost everyone loves heavy metal, either genuinely or an ironic way. Admittedly, we don’t get many hardcore Bee Gees fans, but they have a universal appeal.
What’s your stage show like?
It’s mayhem. We have the three brothers up front, singing, playing cowbells, wearing tight white satin. And we have our beautiful back-up singers: Women’s Gibb, Angelpussy, Olivia Newton-Chong and Linda Gibb. Oh, and we have an intern/towel boy named Lance. He’s kind of an idiot.
Tragedy has an album coming out on October 20th called “We Rock Sweet Balls And Can Do No Wrong”. You can hear many of the songs on their website, letsmaketragedyhappen.com. Here’s a video for “Stayin’ Alive”…
Tags: 70s music, 80s music, bee gees, decimate, disco, heavy, how deep is your love, iron horse, jive talkin, let's make tragedy happen, massachusetts, metal, more than a woman, new york city, northampton, nyc, stayin alive, tragedy, tribute band, we rock sweet balls and can do no wrong
This past Friday was the Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2008 induction in Springfield, MA. For some reason, reading about basketball in the news this weekend made me recall some basketball stars who have explored other opportunities career-wise…
Michael Jordan has hawked everything from underpants to sneakers and steaks. And then there’s Magic Johnson, who has his hand in tons of businesses and charities, had a short-lived talk show and had a hand in the deliciously tasty Fatburger franchise. Even Dr. J is selling Dr. Pepper these days. These players have had some level of success in the business world by NOT RAPPING ABOUT THEIR DADS.
Shaquille O’Neal though, had desires to become a rapper. And he rapped about his dad… his REAL dad. Check out this gem, Biological Didn’t Bother.
The Shaq didn’t have a very illustrious rap career. But at least he gave his his best shot (har har har– I kill me!)… His other aspiration was to become an actor, but he never really had any slam dunks with his film career either. Sorry– that joke was a little out-of-bounds. It’s too bad, because many would argue that there are some fine fine moments in Kazaam, still it was Academy-overlooked.
Tags: basketball hall of fame, class of 2008, doctor j, dr. j, earving magic johnson, fatburger, hanes, kazaam, magic development, mass, massachusetts, michael jordan, new york, nike, philip arthur harrison, rap, rapper, shaq, shaquille o'neal, sneakers, springfield, steakhouse, underwear
Kid Rock, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and The Army National Guard are invading your cinema previews this September and October. I found this out when Kristen and I went to see Tropic Thunder this past weekend at the Garden in Greenfield, Massachusetts. With lyrics like, “Freedom ain’t so free” and “citizen soldier”, and some dramatic guitar solos… plus the fact that we were seeing a Ben Stiller movie– I actually thought it was a joke at first. But it’s not.
Kid Rock wrote the new song, ‘Warrior’, for a national recruitment campaign directed by Academy Award winning director, James Mangold for The National Guard. The commercial will air at movie theaters across the U.S. in September and October. Lucky you, moviegoer (and future recruit, I’m sure). To get you pumped up before basic training, why not dowload the song at NationalGuardWarrior.com
Tags: america fuck yeah, army, ben stiller, cinema, cineplex, citizen soldier, coming attractions, dale earnhardt jr., freedom isn't free, garden, greenfield, james mangold, kid rock, massachusetts, movie, national guard, previews, theater, theatre, trailer, tropic thunder, warrior