Saturday, December 08, 2007

Previewing Holiday in Handcuffs

Aw, the nineties, back when all the “it” girls had three names and all you needed to get on television show was a pair of dimples. Now the three named girls have virtually disappeared (Rachel Leah Cook, where are you?) and now you don’t even need dimples to get yourself on television. But ABC Family seems to love the nineties as much as VH1 and roll out a made for TV romantic comedy movie every couple months that resurrects some of your favorite forgotten nineties stars for some cheeky fun.

Being December, the latest in the line of movies from ABC Family brings a Christmas theme that teams up Sabrina the Teenage Witch with AC Slater for Holiday in Handcuffs. The plot is an age old story of a wayward twenty something that can’t quite live up to the image that their parent to have for them. The breaking point hits Sabrina, is currently using her college education to use as a waitress, when her boyfriend decides to dumped her when he arrived to pick her up to take her up to her families cabin to meet him for the first time.

Slater just happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, instead of proposing to his girlfriend at the restaurant, he gets kidnapped by Sabrina to be a stand in for the shady now ex-boyfriend because in her mind committing a felony is better than showing up to Christmas alone yet again. And of course hilarity ensues. Or as much hilarity you would expect from a made for TV movie. And you really need to suspend belief a lot when Clarissa explains it all to her parents to why her “boyfriend” keeps on telling them she’s keeping him prisoner.

The movie is a prefect fit for anyone who dreads yet another Christmas with the family that will involve questions about where your life is going, why you haven’t found anyone yet, and/or are you gay or if you want to reminisce about those days. You can catch the premiere of Holiday in Handcuffs this Sunday at 8:00 on ABC Family and it also repeats later that night at 10:00 as well as Tuesday December 11 at 8:00, Saturday December 15 at 6:00.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Previewing Oprah Winfrey Presents Mitch Albom’s For One More Day

December is the time for movies on television. There will be plenty of mainstays that will be popping up this month like It's a Wonderful Life, countless A Christmas Carol versions, and of course the twenty four hours of A Christmas Story. And like most years, there is a couple that hope to become future Christmas classics, two of which premiere this Sunday. I will get to Holiday in Handcuffs tomorrow, and today I am going to focus on Oprah Winfrey presents Mitch Albom’s For One More Day which airs Sunday, December 9th at 9:00 on ABC.

Being a guy, I only know Oprah from Peggy Bundy’s obsession for her and Bon Bons and her feud with David Letterman. But it was her Harpo Films that produced the best selling book from Albom who also wrote The The Five People You Meet in Heaven. The two’s previous collaboration, Tuesdays with Morrie landed four Emmy Awards. But despite the December premiere it isn’t your traditional Christmas movie in that it doesn’t have anything to do with the holidays aside from the It’s a Wonderful Life comparisons.

The movie starts off with a very dishelmed Chick Benetto (unless I missed it we never learned what is with the Chick nickname), who stops at a local convenient story for six pack and it is telling that he doesn’t also take his usual lottery ticket too. This is because he is off to his little league baseball field (Chick played for a World Series team) to breathe his last breath. Well that is until he sees his mom. Oh, and she’s been dead for about eight years.

Her death was one of many events that lead him to the dugout as well as being stuck in a job he wasn’t good at and his last phone call was to his ex-wife to ask why he wasn’t invited to his daughter’s wedding. The movies weaves between a present day writer, who is writing Chick’s life story (it shouldn’t take too long to figure out who it is), the day the writer interviewed Chick, Chick’s one more day with his mother, and Chick’s life from early childhood to college to life with his family. This gets a little cluttered at first figuring what is happening when, but once you are introduced to the main characters it is much easier to follow.

Chick is played by The Sopranos Michael Imperioli with the younger version actually played by Michael’s son Vadim in his first acting film. Ellen Burstyn (Requiem for a Dream) is his mom who shows up to put her son on the right path while Samantha Mathis (who you may remember as Princess Daisy from the live action version of Super Mario Bros. No? Oh never mind) as the younger Posey Benetto does her best to give her son what he needs after her husband leaves.

Aside from jumping around from era to era too much, the film is dogged by too many clichés like the former sports star who has trouble adjusting to real life after failing to make it and the dad who pushes to hard as if he was trying to live out his fantasies through his son. Not clichéd are the One More Day segments which may not be a good thing because instead of your usually this is your life and why you should live, momma takes her boy on these inane tasks. They do lead up to a theme (which again are easy to figure out where they are going), but it still doesn’t make them any less inane.

But the story does pay off in the end if you are willing to spend the two hours with it. And with the holidays upon us, which makes some people seem even more alone than the rest of the year, maybe this movie can help you remember what you have to live for. Although if you can wait another week, you may want to wait for NBC to roll out It’s a Wonderful Life as it does a better job at the story.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

We on Award Tour: 2008 Grammy Nominations

It is the start of the awards season as the Grammy nominations were announced today. No huge surprises as Kanye West and Amy Winehouse lead the pack with eight and six respectively. Of course it wouldn’t be the Grammy’s without a few head scratchers (Herbie Hancock released an album lately?) and there is no better indication that R&B as a genre is pretty much dead looking at the nominations. Here are some of the highlights, if you want to know who nabbed the Polka nominations, check out the full 110 categories here:

Grammy Nominations on iTunes

Record of the Year
Irreplaceable - Beyoncé
The Pretender - Foo Fighters
Umbrella - Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z
What Goes Around…Comes Around - Justin Timberlake
Rehab - Amy Winehouse

Who Will Win: Umbrella
Who Should Win: Rehab

I may get into this more later during my Year End lists, but this has been a mediocre year for music and this list just empathizes my theory. All these songs are catchy, but none are what I would label as great.

Album of the Year
Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace - Foo Fighters
These Days - Vince Gill
River: The Joni Letters - Herbie Hancock
Graduation - Kanye West
Back to Black - Amy Winehouse

Who Will Win: Graduation
Who Should Win: Back to Black

Kanye certainly had the most hyped album of the year and that may carry over here. Granted it may be better suited for the most disappointing album of the year even if it were one of the top five albums of the year.

Song of the Year
Before He Cheats - Josh Kear & Chris Tompkins, songwriters (Carrie Underwood)
Hey There Delilah - Tom Higgenson, songwriter (Plain White T's)
Like a Star - Corinne Bailey Rae, songwriter (Corinne Bailey Rae)
Rehab - Amy Winehouse, songwriter (Amy Winehouse)
Umbrella - Shawn Carter, Kuk Harrell, Terius “Dream” Nash & Christopher Stewart, songwriters (Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z)

Who Will Win: Umbrella
Who Should Win: Umbrella

Isn’t Like a Star two to three years old? The requirements for the Grammy’a are really screwy. And could it kill them to actually have the deadline in December instead of October? Do they really need four months before the deadline and when they hand out the awards? It is just strange that a song from Carrie Underwood’s 2005 album gets nominated for this year’s Gammy, but nothing from the album she released this year. But it is not as strange as Before He Cheats getting nominated for a songwriting award.

Best New Artist
Taylor Swift
Amy Winehouse

Who Will Win: Amy Winehouse
Who Should Win: Amy Winehouse

Nothing I love better that the laughable Best New Artist category. Would have liked to see Lily Allen or Sara Bareilles here but they already had your token pop act (Winhouse) and needed to have room for a token rock act (Paramore), token country act (Swift), and token R&B act (Ledisi). Then Feist gets your token Canadian nomination.

Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
Candyman - Christina Aguilera
1234 - Feist
Big Girls Don’t Cry - Fergie
Say it Right - Nelly Furtado
Rehab - Amy Winehouse

Who Will Win: Say it Right
Who Should Win: Rehab

There are very few songs I hated more this year than Big Girls Don’t Cry. Every time it would come on the radio, which was way too often, I would think, “Cool, they dipped into the catalog to play More than Words by Extreme” only to have that ruined by he la la’s. Ugg. I can take a look at my iPod to find ten or so songs by chicks that were better than that rip-off.

Best Male Pop Vocal Performance
Everything - Michael Bublé
Belief - John Mayer
Dance Tonight - Paul McCartney
Amazing - Seal
What Goes Around...Comes Around - Justin Timberlake

Who Will Win: What Goes Around...Comes Around
Who Should Win: Belief

It used to be really to predict Grammy winners; you just pick the oldest dude. Then a couple years ago Kelly Clarkson (who is not so conspicuously missing this year) beat out McCartney for Best Pop Album. How Timberlake became a golden boy is beyond me, his album was unlistenable, but I’d take an actual musician if I had a vote.

Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals
(You Want To) Make a Memory - Bon Jovi
Home - Daughtry
Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5
Hey There Delilah - Plain White T's
Window in the Skies - U2

Who Will Win: Makes Me Wonder
Who Should Win: Hey There Delilah

Seriously? Daughtry? Well I guess there is no Best Mom Rock Performance catergory to put them in. But certainly there spot could have been reserved for Snow Patrol or The Fray, I’d even take Lifehouse or The Killers over them. But then again, I’m not a soccer mom.

Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals
Steppin’ Out - Tony Bennett & Christina Aguilera
Beautiful Liar - Beyoncé & Shakira
Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On) - Robert Plant & Alison Krauss
The Sweet Escape - Gwen Stefani & Akon
Give it to Me - Timbaland Featuring Nelly Furtado & Justin Timberlake

Who Will Win: Steppin’ Out
Who Should Win: Steppin’ Out

Yeah, I just got done taking about how old dudes are no longer favorite to win, but the rest of this category is pretty anemic.

Best Pop Vocal Album
Lost Highway - Bon Jovi
The Reminder - Feist
It Won’t Be Soon Before Long - Maroon 5
Memory Almost Full - Paul McCartney
Back To Black - Amy Winehouse

Who Will Win: Amy Winehouse
Who Should Win: Amy Winehouse

I seem to be picking Winehouse a lot but I wonder if her British Lindsay Lohan routine will hurt her chances of taking home any awards even though it were her eccentricities that made this album so entertaining.

Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance
Timebomb - Beck
Only Mama Knows - Paul McCartney
Our Country - John Mellencamp
Radio Nowhere - Bruce Springsteen
Come On - Lucinda Williams

Who Will Win: Radio Nowhere
Who Should Win: Radio Nowhere

Anyone who has watched any football in the past year knows just how annoying Our Country is.

Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals
It’s Not Over - Daughtry
Working Class Hero - Green Day
If Everyone Cared - Nickelback
Instant Karma - U2
Icky Thump - The White Stripes

Who Will Win: Icky Thump
Who Should Win: Working Class Hero

Best Rock Song
Come On - Lucinda Williams, songwriter (Lucinda Williams)
Icky Thump - Jack White, songwriter (The White Stripes)
It’s Not Over - Chris Daughtry, Gregg Wattenberg, Mark Wilkerson & Brett Young, songwriters (Daughtry)
The Pretender - Dave Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Nate Mendel & Chris Shiflett, songwriters (Foo Fighters)
Radio Nowhere - Bruce Springsteen, songwriter (Bruce Springsteen)

Who Will Win: Radio Nowhere
Who Should Win: Radio Nowhere

Fun fact, Sabrina the Teenage Witch’s husband is nominated in this category. Keep in mind he has absolutely no chance to win.

Best Rock Album
Daughtry - Daughtry
Revival - John Fogerty
Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace - Foo Fighters
Magic - Bruce Springsteen
Sky Blue Sky - Wilco

Who Will Win: Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace
Who Should Win: Magic

It is a little surprising that the Foo Fighters grabbed the proper Album of the Year nod over the Boss in the big category. But I wouldn’t be surprised if Magic takes this award as it was the better album.

Best Alternative Music Album
Alright, Still... - Lily Allen
Neon Bible - Arcade Fire
Volta - Bjork
Wincing the Night Away - The Shins
Icky Thump - The White Stripes

Who Will Win: Icky Thump
Who Should Win: Alright, Still...

They really need to get rid of this category as it is about ten years past its prime. It’s a shame that this is the only recognition that Lily Allen got for her album as it deserved as much press as Amy Winhouse’s.

Best Female R&B Vocal Performance
Just Fine - Mary J. Blige
When I See You - Fantasia
No One - Alicia Keys
If I Have My Way - Chrisette Michele
Hate On Me - Jill Scott

Who Will Win: No One
Who Should Win: No One

Best Male R&B Vocal Performance
Woman - Raheem DeVaughn
B.U.D.D.Y. - Musiq Soulchild
Because of You - Ne-Yo
Future Baby Mama - Prince
Please Don’t Go - Tank

Who Will Win: Because Of You
Who Should Win: B.U.D.D.Y.

Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals
Same Girl - R. Kelly Featuring Usher
Disrespectful - Chaka Khan Featuring Mary J. Blige
Hate That I Love You - Rihanna Featuring Ne-Yo
Baby - Angie Stone Featuring Betty Wright
Bartender - T-Pain Featuring Akon

Who Will Win: Baby
Who Should Win: Hate That I Love You

Best R&B Song
Beautiful Flower - India.Arie & Joyce Simpson, songwriters (India.Arie)
Hate That I Love You - M.S. Eriksen, T.E. Hermansen & Shaffer Smith, songwriters (Rihanna Featuring Ne-Yo)
No One - Dirty Harry, Kerry Brothers & Alicia Keys, songwriters (Alicia Keys)
Teachme - Ivan Barias, Adam W. Blackstone, Randall C. Bowland, Carvin Haggins, Johnnie Smith II & Corey Latif Williams, songwriters (Musiq Soulchild)
When I See U - Louis Biancaniello, Waynne Nugent, Erika Nuri, Kevin Risto, Janet Sewel & Sam Watters, songwriters (Fantasia)

Who Will Win: No One
Who Should Win: No One

Best R&B Album
Funk This - Chaka Khan
Lost & Found - Ledisi
Luvanmusiq - Musiq Soulchild
The Real Thing - Jill Scott
Sex, Love & Pain - Tank

Who Will Win: The Real Thing
Who Should Win: Luvanmusiq

Best Contemporary R&B Album
Konvicted - Akon
Just Like You - Keyshia Cole
Fantasia - Fantasia
East Side Story - Emily King
Because Of You - Ne-Yo

Who Will Win: Because Of You
Who Should Win: East Side Story

I am just going to combine because it is just sad this is what R&B has come to that the horrible Bartender song can get a nomination. And should I even know who Tank is? And it is odd that Umbrella got nominations in the major categories but is left out in the R&B. Lukily next year they will have the Alicia Keys album to sweep everything.

Best Rap Solo Performance
The People - Common
I Get Money - 50 Cent
Show Me What You Got - Jay-Z
Big Things Poppin’ (Do It) - T.I.
Stronger - Kanye West

Who Will Win: Stronger
Who Should Win: The People

Really, this catergory should have just been filled with Kanye and Common. Everything else here is forgettable.

Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group
Southside - Common Featuring Kanye West
Make It Rain - Fat Joe Featuring Lil Wayne
Party Like a Rockstar - Shop Boyz
Int’l Players Anthem (I Choose You) - UGK Featuring OutKast
Better Than I’ve Ever Been - Kanye West, Nas & KRS-One

Who Will Win: Southside
Who Should Win: Better Than I’ve Ever Been

R.I.P. Pimp C

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration
I Wanna Love You - Akon Featuring Snoop Dogg
Kiss, Kiss - Chris Brown & T-Pain
Let it Go - Keyshia Cole Featuring Missy Elliott & Lil' Kim
Umbrella - Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z
Good Life - Kanye West Featuring T-Pain

Who Will Win: Umbrella
Who Should Win: Umbrella

Is what T-Pain does really constitute as “sung”?

Best Rap Song
Ayo Technology - Nate (Danja) Hills, Curtis Jackson, Timothy Mosley & Justin Timberlake, songwriters (50 Cent Featuring Justin Timberlake & Timbaland)
Big Things Poppin’ (Do It) - Clifford Harris & Byron Thomas, songwriters (T.I.)
Can’t Tell Me Nothing - A. Davis & Kanye West, songwriters (Kanye West)
Crank That (Soulja Boy) - Soulja Boy Tell'Em, songwriter (Soulja Boy Tell'Em)
Good Life - A. Davis, F. Najm & K. West, songwriters (J. Ingram & Q. Jones, songwriters) (Kanye West Featuring T-Pain)

Who Will Win: Can’t Tell Me Nothing
Who Should Win: Can’t Tell Me Nothing

I am really beginning to think that the Grammy people throw rap songs into a bag and randomly pick five for Best Song, a songwriting award. Seriously, who reads the Ayo Technology lyric sheet and say, yeah that was well written? They should have just gone and made this category completely laughable and thrown in This Is Why I’m Hot.

Best Rap Album
Finding Forever - Common
Kingdom Come - Jay-Z
Hip Hop Is Dead - Nas
T.I. vs T.I.P. - T.I.
Graduation - Kanye West

Who Will Win: Graduation
Who Should Win: Graduation

There really is an argument here even as disappointing as Graduation was.

Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Story Telling)
The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream - Barack Obama
Celebrations - Maya Angelou
Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World - Bill Clinton
Sunday Mornings in Plains: Bringing Peace to a Changing World - Jimmy Carter
Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself - Alan Alda

This is really a toss up between Obama and Clinton and may be a prelude to who will get the Democratic nomination. Of course Cater is still the afterthought to the party.

Producer of the Year, Non-Classical
Howard Benson
• Daughtry (Daughtry) (A)
• Devils & Angels (Mêlée) (A)
• Direction (The Starting Line) (A)
• Five Score And Seven Years Ago (Relient K) (A)
• Stay Inside (Sound The Alarm) (A)

Joe Chiccarelli
• Mercy (Burden Brothers) (A)
• The Narcotic Story (Oxbow) (A)
• Nightmoves (Kurt Elling) (A)
• Wincing The Night Away (The Shins) (A)

Mike Elizondo
• It Won't Be Soon Before Long (Maroon 5) (A)
• Under The Blacklight (Rilo Kiley) (A)

Mark Ronson
• Back To Black (Amy Winehouse) (T)
• Littlest Things (Lily Allen) (T)
• Rehab (Amy Winehouse) (T)
• Version (Mark Ronson) (A)
• You Know I’m No Good (Amy Winehouse) (T)

• Come Around (M.I.A. Featuring Timbaland) (T)
• Give It To Me (Timbaland Featuring Nelly Furtado & Justin Timberlake) (T)
• Make Me Better (Fabolous Featuring Ne-Yo) (S)
• Timbaland Presents: Shock Value (Timbaland) (A)
• The Way I Are (Timbaland Featuring Keri Hilson & D.O.E.) (S)

Who Will Win: Timbaland
Who Should Win: Mark Ronson

This is a no brainer to me as the sound of great music of 2007 was shaped my Mark Ronson. I’m not entirely sure why he is just credited for one Lily Allen track as I was under the impression he produced the whole album.

Best Short Form Music Video
God’s Gonna Cut You Down - Johnny Cash
1234 - Feist
Gone Daddy Gone - Gnarls Barkley
D.A.N.C.E. - Justice
Typical - Mute Math

Who Will Win: God’s Gonna Cut You Down
Who Should Win: God’s Gonna Cut You Down

Great song, great video, view my thought here: Go Tell hat Long Tongue Liar, Go and Tell that Midnight Rider.

Best Long Form Music Video
Live & Loud at the Fillmore - Dierks Bentley
Trapped in the Closet Chapters 13-22 - R. Kelly
The Confessions Tour - Madonna
10 Days Out - Blues from the Backroads - Kenny Wayne Shepherd & Various Artists
Liberacion - The Songs of the New Cuban Underground - Various Artists

Who Will Win: The Confessions Tour
Who Should Win: Trapped in the Closet Chapters 13-22

As much as I dumped on Trapped in the Closet, it still by far the greatest cultural movement of the decade.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

I Want My Music Television vol. XIII

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I though I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form so here they are courtesy of YouTube. I advise you to watch them before you read my reviews if you don’t want me to spoil things. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available, if not the link goes to YouTube where you can watch the video in full screen). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Sensual Seduction - Snoop Dogg

For the long time readers to the 9th Green you know I am never a lost for word, but words really cannot do justice to this new Snoop Dogg video. It is either the greatest thing ever in the history of YouTube, or the word.

Don’t Shoot Me Santa - The Killers

Um, yeah, see above. Well actually I would like to add that 100% of the proceeds of The Killers songs go to (RED), an African AIDS programs.

Saving My Face - KT Tunstall

After seeing all the debris I was hoping for something cooler than the guitar being blown up. How Freedom ’90. But anyways, if you like the song, you can currently get it free over at Amazon MP3 (download Saving My Face free here) which mean not only that you don’t have to pay a cent, you get it DRM-free. Of course if you want to know more about Amazon MP3, see: Introducing Amazon MP3.

Exclusive Nip/Tuck Clip

A couple a weeks ago I got invited to a teleconference with New York of I Love New York fame in regards to her appearance on Nip/Tuck but as much as I wanted to pepper her with Midget Mac it was at a time I was unavailable. But as it turned out New York was unavailable herself as she came down with a cold and instead I got to submit e-mail questions to her. Well I got an e-mail Monday saying that New York hasn’t returned the questions yet and her people are not responding either, so I was unable to post the Q&A or hype her appearance on the show last night, but here is an exclusive look at that episode, which I guess is not as exclusive anymore because it has already aired. Although as a wide man once said, if you haven’t seen it, it’s new to you. And if I am not mistaken, Nip/Tuck repeats a couple times throughout the week so check your local listings for that. And if New York gets around to answering the questions and returns them, I’ll be sure to post them in as timely fashion as she was returning them.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The Break Is Over Man I’m Back with My Ink Pen

The Carnival II: Memoirs of an Immigrant - Wyclef Jean

There is not a bigger anomaly in music than the Fugees. Their first album tanked, panned by critics and ignored by the general public. Then they hit it big with The Score, an aptly titled album as they kept on scoring hit after hit. And as we know now, it happened to be their only hit because we haven’t heard from the group as a whole since excerpt when an equally recluse Dave Chappelle brought them back together for his block part.

What made the one album wonder group more bizarre is that it spawned two one album wonders itself (lest we not forget Pras who did appear on a soundtrack to a forgettable Warren Beaty movie). Of course their post album careers were completely different. After her Miseducation album, Lauryn Hill seemed to disappear except for her MTV Unplugged 2.0 appearance of all new material before disappearing again. Wyclef Jean on the other hand after The Carnival kept at it musically with each subsequent album garnering less attention.

That was until he jumped on the Shakira bandwagon for the international smash Hips Don’t Lie. And now ‘Clef says he has his swagger bank and has recorded a follow up to his 1997 solo debut with The Carnival II: Memoirs of an Immigrant. Much like the original, the sequel is disjointed; one or three tracks too long and is chalk full of guest stars, this time around only having one song without a featured guest. But in true Wyclef fashion, the guest list is eclectic, running from your typical hip-hop staples of Mary J. Blige, and Akon along with the dude from System of a Down, Norah Jones and Paul Simon. No seriously, Paul Simon makes an appearance on Fast Car. And despite Wyclef never meeting a pop culture reference he wouldn’t drop, the song has nothing to do with the Tracy Chapman classic. The most bizarre of all the guests is the Minister Louis Farrakhan plays the violin on Welcome to the East.

And like his previous outing, the mish-mash of sounds and styles for the most part works though there is no emotional high here like on previous albums such as Gone ‘till November, 911, and Two Wrongs. Nor are there any completely absurd cover songs on songs that are untouchable which ‘Clef likes to put his touch on (see No Woman No Cry, The Gambler, Wish You Were Here, and Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door) unless you count the remix to Sweetest Girl (Dollar Bill) which samples the great Wu-Tang C.R.E.A.M.

That song points to some disjointment of many tracks on the album. Is the song about girls or is it about money? And I am sure that Wyclef and T.I. didn’t bother to discuses what Slow Down was about when they trade lines with ‘Clef talking about global problems and shouting out Guns ‘n’ Roses while T.I. focused on the hood and his legal problems, yet the song still works. The album is at its best when Wyclef breaks out the acoustic guitar and gets introspective like on the Norah Jones assisted Any Other Day and Heaven’s in New York.

But Wyclef still doesn’t know how to trim the fat. Hollywood Meets Bollywood (Immigration) is ill-conceived and instead an actual Indian to guest he gets Chamillionaire of all people to guest. Sadly the Mary J. Blige song, What About the Baby falls flat and Shakira’s King and Queens doesn’t come close to matching their original collaboration. But Memoirs of an Immigrant shows there is still some swagger left in the former refugee.

Song to Download - Fast Car

The Carnival II: Memoirs of an Immigrant gets a Terror Alert Level: Elevated [YELLOW] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Feed Your iPod vol. X: Tell Him

Recently I happened upon of version of Lauryn Hill’s Tell Him performed by Colbie Caillet (you may know her best as the Bubbly girl). The only bad thing about this was the realization The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill turns ten years old sometime next year (more on that next year). Nothing like a landmark album from your formative years having an anniversary to make you feel old. But anyways. What is incredible about Tell Him was that it was a hidden track even though it is better than most people’s lead single these days. Not so hidden anymore, the song should be a prerequisite for any baby making mix tape or just any iPod in general.

Tell Him - Lauryn Hill Lauryn Hill - The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill - Tell Him

Bonus: Tell Him - Colbie Caillat (Crappy Live Version)

Sunday, December 02, 2007

57 Channels and Only This Is On vol. X

Quote of the Week: 2-0, you know to be honest you try to sleep with a lot of the girls I’ve previously slept with, so I just left town for a little bit just to give you a break. (Tim Riggins - Friday Night Lights)

Song of the Week: Ring of Fire - Johnny Cash (My Name Is Earl)

Big News of the Week: The Democratic Party are Morons: Remember earlier this week when the Republicans gathered to take questions from random Americans (see: Jesus Was too Smart to Ever Run for Public Office)? Well the very next day all the Democrat nominees said they won’t be showing up to the scheduled debate in two weeks on CBS. The reason: none are willing to ask questions from scabs because the CBS News writers are on strike. Hey Jackasses (get it? because it is their symbol. Oh never mind.), are you serious? I know Hilary Clinton wants to get out of any situation where she can’t plant he own questions or plant one of her staffer to ask the other candidates a question, but this is insane. Did you not notice the debate the day before that was able to get around using scabs to ask questions? If any candidate misses a debate for a reason this stupid I will never vote for them. So if Jackasses stick by their stance (or the writer’s strike isn’t resolved by then) it looks like I will be voting Republican next year. Unless Rudy Giuliani wins the nomination then I guess I will have to go with Nader.

Then to solidify themselves as the dumbest party (which says a lot considering the other one is home to George Bush), decided yesterday to strip Michigan of all its delegates at next year’s convention. Way to piss off a whole state that would have been in play next year. Make that two because they also threw out Florida delegates, another swing state, earlier this year. And why, because both states scheduled their primaries before Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina. Way to go idiots; pander to the states with three or less elector college votes than those with over twenty. And it is reasons like this you couldn’t beat the incompetent Bush. We might as well just have the presidential inauguration at the Republican convention this year because the Democrats won’t whiff the White House with these type of bonehead moves.

Gratuitous Token Hot Chick Picture of the Week:

Yvonne Strahovski all sweaty

Collation Links of the Week:

BuzzSugar: This week, we mulled the Cashmere Mafia vs. Lipstick Jungle debate, got all excited over new promos for The Wire, and wondered if 30 Rock's product placement is brilliant or annoying.

Daemon's TV: This week, Sandie took a first look at some pictures of the new season five of One Tree Hill and got to interview Moonlight star, Alex O'Loughlin. And this week, Araya found 30 Rock funny again.

Glowy Box: Liz bemoaned the hideous results of the latest challenge on Project Runway, enjoyed the predictable over-the-top-ness of Desperate Housewives, and (for the zillionth time) questioned the judging panel’s sanity on America’s Next Top Model.

Mikey Likes TV: After a long, healthy respite from the Internet, Mikey mused on the much-needed shot of Battlestar Galactica and his continued frustration with Dancing with the Stars.

Tapeworthy: As a Canadian, Vance is totally fascinated by your Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and the fact that you'll put ANYBODY on TV (see: Menudo). He has some reasons for ending the writers strike, if anything, to save all of humanity. And while there is still TV left, he's loving Mondays where there's something for all (in Chuck, How I Met Your Mother, Samantha Who? and Notes From The Underbelly).

Televisionary: This week, Jace was ecstatic over this week's awesome Bryce Larkin-themed episode of NBC's Chuck (picked up for a back nine, no less!), pondered about the sudden disappearance of Chuck's gorgeous 1950s-inspired ensembles on Pushing Daisies, and had to recover from laughter-induced pain after watching this week's stellar installment of 30 Rock.

TiFaux: Jealous yet? Kyle and Maggie took a trip to see Tina Fey and company perform a yet-to-be-aired episode of 30 Rock. Dan discussed the sexy, sexy lives of the characters on Cane, a show you probably aren't watching. He also wondered who you'd rather have as your Project Runway gay uncle: Tim Gunn or "Uncle" Nick Verreos.

TV Filter: Raoul interviewed Lorena and Jason from The Amazing Race, then talked with Lisa from ANTM. Kate was freaked out by Chuck's What About Brian? moment but loved the Flowers in the Attic episode of Gossip Girl.

TheTVAddict: It was interview madness on as we posted interviews with The Unit star Abby Brammell and The Game star Hosea Chanchez. We also managed to anger the Supernatural Army and post some great behind-the-scenes photos with Summer Glau on the set of the Terminator.

Chuck: The ending has to be up that as one of the lamest cliffhangers ever in the history of the word. Like the Token Hot Chick is really going to leave her assignment and go with Bryce. Had this been a season finale cliffhanger it may have worked better and we could guess if she would be back the next year, but to do it in the middle of the season is pretty stupid. And it didn’t help the suspense that she showed up in the preview for next week. Oh, and if I haven’t mentioned it before, they really need to kill off Morgan and promote Captain Awesome to a regular? Check out the latest episodes over at You can also download Chuck on iTunes.

How I Met Your Mother: One of the greatest Barneyisms with him hanging out at a gym. I know this first hand have worked at a gym in my youth. Although his method was all wrong because fat chicks rarely ever go to a gym and the rare ones don’t make it back a second time. But there is no higher concentration of token hot chick in any given area than the local gym. I remember having to do hourly body counts and spend fifty-five minutes hovering over the aerobics area (that was until we moved into a new building that made lurking much harder so I have to move to the nautilus area which unfortunately has a higher concentration of dudes.) Check out the latest episodes over at Innertube. You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

Heroes: Once again this episode sucked massively so let me move onto the promo which promised that two Heroes will fall. If I had my way it would be some combination of Absorbing Guy, Hearing Thoughts Dude, and Split Personality Chick. And I think my wishes just may come true. First, someone has to die in the showdown at Prime Tech paper and as much as I want it to happen, Absorbing Guy, I doubt it will be him (not that he won’t die, he will just come back to life anyways (and if that counts as one of the deaths, I’m throwing something at my television (I’m wondering just how many parenthesis within parenthesis I go get)), same with Adam Monroe) and as dumb as the people over at Heroes are, I doubt they’d kill off Hiro, so that leaves Hearing Thoughts Dude. The only other Hero that I think is even in danger is Split Personality Chick. She already has an incurable virus and they have already assimilated her son with his cousins. Check out the latest episode over at

Journeyman: This was easily the weakest episode of the series so far. It bugs me that Dan went into the past busted into the dude’s house, bleeding, says he is the one that shot him and yet none of that changed the molester’s history. I would say that would be a life changing event some how. And if the boy was 10 in 1980 that would make him 37 today, and he definitely didn’t look that young in present day and definitely wasn’t in his mid-twenties the previous episode in the first flashback. Check out the latest episode over at You can also download Journeyman on iTunes.

Pushing Daisies: Maybe the best episode yet. Love Olive and Chuck working together and the Bitter Sweets is just as entertaining as the Pie Ho with its Willy Wonka feel to it. Then there is the surprise ending that Ned actually told Chuck that he killed her father. Should make the next couple episodes interesting especially with the now creepy Molly Shannon still lurking around. Check out the latest episodes over at

Bionic Woman: First off, they really need to give back the Friday Night Lights cameramen. The jumpy camera works for that show because it is gritty, but the Bionic Woman should be slick and shiny. Other than that and Becca’s choice of music, a thoroughly enjoyable episode. I loved how they gave Walking Herc more screen time because he is easily the most entertaining part of the show. Yeah you have to wonder how he possibly still lives at home considering Berkhead is so loaded that can make it rain Pacman Jones style with millions of dollars when Jamie rescued the CIA dude a couple episodes back. And the show even had the best lines of the week that weren’t on Friday Night Lights when the lesbian chick said she slept with the gay-basher which I laughed more at this week than anything on television this week aside from the debate. And you gotta love anyone who has to memorize the Theme to The A-Team. Check out the latest episodes over at

Survivor: After all the hype they kept them after Tribal Council for an reward challenge? I would like to say that was a let down but honestly I didn’t have high expectations that it was going to be something. But at least we got a shake up. I can’t believe James didn’t play the immunity idol. You can only use it at three more tribal and you are the biggest physical threat. You deserve to leave if you didn’t figure out those odds. Check out the latest episode over at Innertube.

Survivor on iTunes

Friday Night Lights: I think they have pretty much hit the tipping point for out there storylines between Riggins and the meth lab, Julie living out her own personal The Police song, Smash running from a angry boyfriend in his boxers and there is the ever present Landry killed a rapist. But the most absurd was Saracen dumping Kim Smith so he could nail the help. That’s not happening in real life. It is time to dial it down guys. Check out the latest episodes over at

My Night at the Grammy’s: Just another example of why America as a whole cannot be trusted to vote on anything. Seriously, in the fifty years of the Grammy’s, with all the surprised performances, once in a lifetime duets, the best performence over that span was Green Day performing a song that didn’t stray too far from the album version? Then Shania Twain and Celine Dion both make the top five?

Next Week’s Pick: MTV/MySpace Presidential Dialogue with John McCain, Monday at 7:00 on MTV: In a story I broke earlier this week, John McCain easily won the YouTube Debate even though he seemed openly opposed to that setting for a debate. So it should be interesting how he does on yet another new media outlet of MySpace. I guess as long as Hilary Clinton doesn’t sneak any of her henchmen in to ask questions it should be fine. Of course I believe the last time a Republican appeared on MTV was the disastrous train interview George H. W. Bush had with Tabitha Sorin back in 1992. The forum will be hosted by MTV News correspondents Gideon Yago and John Norris, with online questions, polling results and commentary delivered again by moderator and political reporter Chris Cillizza.