Ladies and gentlemen, there are seven wonders of the world. On May 18, 2010, late night television’s David Letterman hosted the eighth. Janelle Monae, the hardest working android in show business, performed the single “Tight Rope” from her recently released album The ArchAndroid.
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On the day of this recording, Ian Fleming picked up Raymond Chandler at 11am, and already Chandler’s voice was “slurred with whiskey”. Undaunted, the creator of James Bond conducted a fascinating interview with the hard-boiled legend, which is available in four parts on YouTube.
Part 1 (of 4): Ian Fleming interviews Raymond Chandler for the BBC (note: the actual interview begins around 5:45)
From the moment the first piano keys reverberate on Soap & Skin’s “Thanatos”, you know you are in for a spellbinding ride. She introduces herself with a whisper, slowly lulling you into her spell, before shattering any preconceived notions you have of her with the wailing force of a Banshee. Any emerging female solo artist of her stature will immediately bring up comparisons of PJ Harvey, Björk, Kate Bush, and Nico. I will do the obvious and compare Soap & Skin to Nico and Björk for very good reasons, rather than from an unimaginative knowledge of female artists. She shares Björk’s inclination for experimentation with both electronic and organic sounds, while she can also powerfully hit the consummate depths of Nico’s vocal register. Born Anja Plaschg, this Austrian enigma has recently only turned 20 but has already built a reputable niche for herself in Europe and it will be just a matter of time before she’ll cross the Atlantic.
Best known as “Ginger Grant” from Gilligan’s Island, Tina Louise recorded several swingin’ albums, the most notable of which was 1957’s It’s Time for Tina. The single, “It’s Been a Long Time” is available for listening on the YouTubes (non-embeddable, dammit ... but there’s an excellent album cover). According to Wikipedia, the album featured Coleman Hawkins (!) on tenor sax, and Harkit Records may be re-releasing it. Their site is worth browsing for the album art alone. Also, Louise’s real name was Tatiana Josivovna Chernova Blacker, which is just awesome.
Idris Elba, the man known to most as The Wire’s Stringer Bell, wants to promote a new alter-ego. This time he’s “King Driis”, a multi-accented singer and rapper who has a new song and music video, “Hold On”, to share with the world. The British-born, half-Sierra-Leonean and half-Ghanaian Elba forces us to sit through a barely-decipherable, Mos Def (or a Mos Def look-alike) starring skit before we get to his new tune. It may well be worth it, however, thanks to producer 9th Wonder’s delirious dancehall beat, a laid-back, bouncy number which provides the perfect backdrop for “Driis’s” questionable range of patois.
// Moving Pixels
"The symbols that the artifact in Spirits of Xanadu uses are esoteric -- at least for the average Western gamer. It is Chinese culture reflected back at us through the lens of alien understanding.READ the article