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He went after her like she was made out of ham.
You probably thought this column was dead. Wrong. Like Bette Middler (1) in Hocus Pocus after Max flamed that ancient candle, the 50 References lives to see another day. Just don’t sucker punch it in the stomach. That’s how Houdini (2) died.
In case you’re Tom Hanks (3) in the Saturday Night Live Mr. Short Term Memory sketches or just new to the magic of Cinema Blend Music, I’ll give you a little run down of how this article works. I was at Lollapalooza all weekend. You probably weren’t. Therefore, since I’m an affable sort of guy, I’ll fill you in about all the goings on. Along the way, I’ll make fifty arguably unnecessary references, keeping tally along the way for convenience sake. Ready? Than like Japanese fighter pilots on December 7th, 1941, I’m off…
Rumors spread throughout the entire weekend that Illinois Junior Senator and Presidential Candidate Barack Obama (4) would make an appearance, possibly to introduce either Wilco or Kanye West (5). He never showed, but that didn’t stop a whole host of bands from dedicating tracks to our generation’s Bobby Kennedy (6). I normally endorse a full political discourse with the audience, but most of these shout-outs were about as genuine as Johnny Fairplay’s (7) crocodile tears over his “dead grandmother” during Survivor.
Contrary to what you may have read elsewhere, Radiohead ended Friday night on a decidedly underwhelming tone. Thom Yorke (8) played what very well could have been every low-key sad bastard song in his arsenal, accompanied by an average light show, which, for the first few songs, seemed more like a laser tag game gone wrong than a coordinated production put on by professionals. Nick Drake (9) would have loved it. In retrospect, it probably had a little to do with it not really being dark yet and my intense hatred for Radiohead. So, take all of this with a grain of salt or, in the case of Steven Page (10), other white powder.
I caught G-Love and the Special Sauce late Sunday afternoon. Why didn’t the little Lollapalooza program mention G-Love (11) is more of a wigger than Whiteboy (12) from I Love Money and the entire state of New Jersey combined? Just listening to that man drone on about booty calls and smoking weed made me wish John Hinckley Jr. (13) was in one of the sponsored cabanas.
Has anyone heard of Spank Rock? There might be more people in that band than in all The Allman Brothers reincarnations put together. Someone tell XXXchange (14) to stay away from peach trucks. Along the way, the group brought singer/ rapper Amanda Blank (15) on stage by introducing her as “the greatest bitch in the world.” Apparently, no one in the band’s ever met Mona Lisa Vito (16) from My Cousin Vinny. Now, she’s the greatest bitch in the world.
Blues Traveler’s John Popper (17) played the fiddle solo from Charlie Daniels’ (18) “Devil Went Down To Georgia” on harmonica. Too bad he didn’t play it with that arsenal of weapons he got arrested with. Unlike Radiohead, which avoided doing both “Creep” and “Karma Police”, Blues Traveler tore through a nice rendition of “Runaround”, much to the delight of the crowd. I have little to no respect for bands who think they’re too cool for the songs which made ’em famous. I bet Bonnie Raitt (19) plays “Something To Talk About” at every concert.
On Saturday, I stopped by one of the food pavilions and picked up some unhealthy snacks. For three dollars, I got five steak fries. That’s more than fifty cents per fry! In retrospect, I should have burned the money for warmth and made a few jokes about being in Hitler (20) controlled Germany after the economy went busto near the end of the war. I guess I’m no Lenny Bruce (21).
Trent Reznor (22) favorite Saul Williams (23) played U2’s “Sunday Bloody Sunday”, in what may have been the worst cover I’ve heard since Fred Durst (24) ruined The Who’s “My Generation.” I’m all about busting out a cover or two during festivals (Cat Power thrilled with Forgery’s (25) “Fortunate Son”), but for God’s sake, don’t just speak-scream the whole time. He sounded like an angry, amusical Lou Reed (26) minus the cool.
Chicago-native Lupe Fiasco (27) came out to the theme from Rocky before telling the crowd they were all attending Lupe-a-looza. Nice wordplay there, ace. He must have hired J.K. Rowling (28) and Dan Brown (29) to write his crowd interactions. Makes Jurassic Park III sound like a fucking masterpiece.
Girl Talk founder Gregg Gillis (30) invited a harem of beautiful women to dance behind him onstage. Unfortunately, the stage almost collapsed and everyone was forced off, possibly through the Underground Railroad. Noted philosopher Marc Carlson (31) once told me the only easier place to get ass than a frat house is a Girl Talk concert. Judging by the fugly bastard a few rows in front of me grinding all over one of the hottest women I’ve ever seen, I’d have to agree. Someone convince Anthony Michael Hall (32) to take Molly Ringwald (33).
Rage Against The Machine lead singer Zack De La Rocha (34) called for a violent overthrow of the government during the band’s Saturday performance. Drunken yuppies cheered, mistakenly thinking he was endorsing White Knight Barack Obama and not throwing up the middle finger toward the entire political process. I can’t tell you how refreshing it is for a band to actually speak out against the two-party system (Whatever happened to the Whigs? Zachary Taylor (35) anyone?). In 1912, Teddy Roosevelt (36) ran under the now-defunct Bull Moose party. A protester shot him. He smiled and said, “I don’t know if you fully understand I’ve just been shot, but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.” Damn right. It’s going to take a lot more than a century of shitty presidents to destroy the Constitution, but people need to wake the fuck up.
During one of the lulls in Rage‘s set while medical staff attended to injured concert-goers, a guy next to me unleashed this blistering tirade: “I can’t believe people actually chose to see Wilco over Tom Morello (37). In thirty years, who the fuck is going to tell their children, ’I saw Jeff Tweedy (38) at Lollapalooza.’ Fucking idiots. No offense to Wilco, but they aren’t and never will be Rage Against The Machine.” I bet at least fifty buffoons got up to take a piss right before Hendrix (39) played the “Stars Spangled Banner” at Woodstock and regretted it ’til the day they died.
As always, many in the crowd were bizarrely dressed with numbers offending me as a celebrity gossip editor. I saw one chubby rapscallion with a circular hole cut out of his shirt around the belly button, another one with a jock strap coming out of his jean shorts, and literally hundreds with trendy, cut-off t-shirts. Thank God Yves Saint Lauren (40) didn’t survive long enough to see this. Mugatu’s (41) Derelicte line in Zoolander was less traumatizing on the eyes.
What To Expect This Week: Quite a few news stories, and in typical CB fashion, some glorious, offensive-to-all rants. Metallica also has a long-awaited album coming out in a month or so. That’ll probably be discussed. You just can’t pass up opportunities to mention Lars Ulrich (42) and his expansive art collection.
What I’ve Been Listening To: James Taylor (43). I’ve seen fire. I’ve seen rain. I’ve seen lonely times when I could not find a friend. And now I’ve seen Lollapalooza corporated out to the highest bidder. MySpace Tom (44) had his own stage this year. Come back in twelve months to see tents sponsored by Haliburton, General Motors, and disgraced Enron CEO Kenneth Lay (45).
What’s On At This Exact Moment: Chris Knox’s (46) “It’s Love.”
That’s all for this time, dreamers. Lollapalooza is a spectacle unlike any other (except for maybe Celine Dion’s (47) Vegas Show at Caesar’s Palace or The Saint Valentine‘s Day Massacre). If all goes according to plan, Cinema Blend should be back again next year, bringing you our wildly subject viewpoint, which I like to think of as an inebriated pot roast of Hunter S. Thompson (47), Elizabeth Wetzel (48), Dylan Klebold (49) and carrots.
Here’s this week’s YouTube video. It’s Hulk Hogan’s (50) theme song…
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