Manu Chao, the Parisian-born musician of Spanish descent who has made a career of creating multi-influential, multi-cultural music (and who had one of the most energetic, lively and fun sets at Lollapalooza last year), has a new album on tap and slated for release in September. The first single, "Rainin in Paradise," is currently available for free download, which is a nice teaser for what's planned on the forthcoming La Radiolina, his first album in six years. Hit his website to either stream or download the single. If you want to hear a great night of music, try and catch Manu Chao during his current North American tour, which even makes a stop in Tijuana!
Legendary bluesman Bo Diddley suffered a stroke last week after playing a show in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He was taken to Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, NE where it was determined the stroke affected the left side of his brain. However, his camp just sent out news that the 78-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer was being moved out of the intensive care unit and into a regular room. "Bo's health continues to improve. He has little or no physical limitations from the stroke except difficulty with speech and speech recognition; but that is improving, as well," said Faith Fusillo, Diddley's business manager. "I was able to speak with him by phone this morning. He wanted to know where his stuff was: his guitar and the money from the gig. I was so happy because this is the Bo that I know and love, and a real indication that Bo is on his way back!" Diddley will be transfered to Shands Medical Center in Gainesville, Fla., closer to his home, once it's determined if he needs to be flown by medivac or private jet. Fans have been asked to not visit the singer at the hospital, but rather to send notes to email@example.com or TCI (Talent Consultants International, Ltd.),105 Shad Row, 2nd Floor, Piermont, NY 10968.
Lego ice trays ... sadly, they're not available in the US. What up with that?
Some Ecards have come out with a line of hilarious -- and free -- eCards that tell it like you really mean it. Designed in a variety of pastels with cartoon-like images, the ecards have witty, catty and campy sayings that include "You've been distant since the sexual harassment" (workplace), "Your boyfriend is gay" (friendship), "May you live long enough to shit yourself" (birthday) and "The good news is that she was a cunt" (breakup).
World famous Garrett's Popcorn is now available for worldwide consumption. The 58-year-old Chicago-based popcorn company, which always has lines out the door and down the street at its downtown locations, has set up shop online. One of Oprah's Favorite Things, this always-fresh popcorn comes in four simple flavors: plain, buttery, CaramelCrisp and CheeseCorn. You can order individual flavors or mix the tins, which come in a variety of sizes. Indulge yourself and get some of Chicago's finest for yourself -- or send someone a great gift. Prices for Garrett's tins start at $20 and go up to $180 (!!!). Start shopping!
Check out the ACL site for the full lineup.
Sure this may be a load of hooey, but it doesn't hurt to try and rally against the ever-increasing price of gas. But May 15 is a gas boycott day. If there were ever an argument for seeking out alternative fuels, the recent spike in gas prices -- with the countrywide average topping $3 a gallon -- is a pretty loud argument. On May 15 -- Don't Buy Gas. Don't Fill Up Your Tank. Don't Even Go To A Gas Station. If enough people around the country boycott buying gas on May 15, it could make a difference.
Brandi Carlile is back - and it seems like the world couldn't wait any longer. This alt-country singer who hails from Seattle, drew a lot of buzz for her self-titled, critically acclaimed 2005 debut - and picked up a lot of fans during two years of near-constant touring.
Last fall, she and her bandmates, twins Tim and Phil Hanseroth, stepped into a Vancouver studio with legendary producer T. Bone Burnett for two solid weeks to churn out The Story, a 13-song mini-novel capturing moments from throughout the singer's life.
I caught up with Brandi, who is currently on tour with singer/songwriter Cary Brothers, in Austin, Texas, to talk about working with legends like Burnett and the Indigo Girls, family and fishing.
Read the Q&A or just listen to the entire interview now. [You can also read the shorter version I did for the Associated Press that went out earlier today.]
[Photo credit: Jim Cooper/AP]
INTERVIEW WITH BRANDI CARLILE:
SomethingGlorious: The last time your album came out, you were named a RS artist to watch. Now there's definitely buzz around this release. How does it feel to have done that whole push, take a step back, record with an amazing producer and it's all starting again. How do you feel right now?
Brandi Carlile: A little bit overwhelmed. I got accustomed to being at home. I guess I'm like a dog who needs to be socialized again to learn how to be around people because I live so far out. It's been weird doing interviews again because I haven't done them since the last record. Now I have to remember to answer in answers that are detailed and long instead of yes or no answers.
SG: Last time we chatted in September you said you had just come off whirlwind tour and you said you wanted to learn how to get back to yourself. Then you went into the studio then took time off during winter. Were you able to figure out who you wanted to be again?
BC: I think I did that right after we spoke. The pre-production time was a good time for me to get it together and be confident about making the record. Going into the studio is a stripping humbling process.
SG: How so?
BC: Because there's no one there everyday to tell you how great you are and how amazing you sound. It's important to not believe the words that get thrown around so easily. In the studio, there's no one there to throw those words around after your performance and no one's clapping. You're just left with your thoughts - it's a humbling experience.
SG: Do you feel like there were moments in the studio - without the accolades from the fans - that you were broken down at all where you felt like you weren't good enough to do it?
BC: Yeah. There were times where I didn't feel like a good guitar player. There were times where I was nervous to mess the track up for everybody else. The whole time it was two weeks of questioning myself.
Sure the name conjures images of a sexual nature, but I assure you the only thing the Woody Popblaster is gonna do is play you some great tunes from your iPod or other MP3 player. That is, unless, you play some JT or R.Kelly and the people you're with start gettin' funky. Otherwise, just expect this stylish wood travel player to kick out some hot jams through its built-in semi-water-resistant speakers. The Popblaster is battery operated, has a headphone jack, has a compartment for cords and is small enough to fit in your carry-on. Available for $50 through Lifepod.
Browsing around the InterWeb today I stumbled across Eva Solo's new Fridge Carafe -- and I just liked its presentation. A simple, slim design, the carafe is made to fit on most refrigerator doors and can hold an array of liquid -- be it milk, lemonade or sangria. The lid removes to expose a mouth wide enough for ice cubes or full lemon slices and the carafe is dishwasher safe. It can come with one of the neoprene covers above to keep liquid warm or cold. The Fridge Carafe will become available in May so watch for pricing.