Thursday News Threads

  • In the spirit of Ricky Gervais, Ben Wolfinsohn (the director of Friends Forever) has created a mock documentary in which its subjects ride “a continual wave of embarrassment” — but the casting is a bit more eclectic, and the setting’s far from in the office. Members of four LA bands, No Age, Mika Miko, Lavender Diamond, and Minutemen, are starring in High School Record, a film that follows “four awkward 17-year-olds as they struggle through their senior year,” all as purportedly caught on tape in the course of a documentary being shot by fellow classmates. The film has already earned official selection at Sundance, SXSW, and New York Underground, among other film festivals, and the trailer is available online.
  • The Rock Hall of Fame nominees were announced Monday morning, and the list included the following: The Stooges, Metallica, Jeff Beck, Chic, Wanda Jackson, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Run-D.M.C., War, and Bobby Womack. In 2009, five will be inducted. To be eligible for nomination, the artists had to release their first single or album no later than 1983.
  • The steady march towards Election Day continues: Wilco is now offering “an audio postcard of sorts from a summer’s night in Oregon with our friends the Fleet Foxes & a lovely Bob Dylan tune” if you’re willing to pledge to vote in the 2008 election.
  • Mercifully refraining from co-opting the slogan “Barack the Vote,” continues to solicit and promote songs meant to inspire participation and donations for the Obama campaign. The otherwise “unreleased tracks and demos” are “only available here and now,” according to the website.
  • Veering down a more commercial path, the Obama campaign itself is offering for a sale an album entitled Yes We Can: Voices of a Grassroots Movement, which includes songs by artists such as Stevie Wonder, Sheryl Crow, John Mayer, Adam Levine, and John Legend. It includes no song by Lindsay Lohan.

  • In the interest of being fair and balanced, we note that Republicans get at least the occasional love from musicians: Bono, co-founder of the ONE Campaign (among other professional pursuits) spoke this week by telephone with Senator John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin about the issue of extreme poverty, particularly in Africa. No word on whether Bono challenged the Senator on his decision to omit U2 in favor of ABBA (twice!) on his list of top 10 songs of all time.
  • Mogwai has canceled their Canadian and American performance dates after drummer Martin Bulloch was hospitalized due to complications from his pacemaker, as reported on the band’s website. Mogwai plans to reschedule the shows for 2009. We wish Mr. Bulloch a safe and speedy recovery.
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