Smart ladies love lists, pop-culture-a-go-go, July 17, 2015

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Every week, I will post what I have been listening to, watching and reading lately (& maybe an “other”).

Listening

I haven’t discovered anything new this week, and mostly I’m still enjoying the stuff I’ve posted lately.

But this was recently added to my exuhcise playlist:

Song of the summer? It even has “summer” in the title!! It reminds me of British pop music in the best way.

A few weeks ago, we featured the trailer to A Poem is a Naked Person in MTM. Here it is again in case you forgot.

I was drawn to the slice-of-life shot strewn in the film and the 70s time period, but most of all I wanted to listen to Leon Russell. I received his self-titled LP and Carney for my birthday and have been obsessed with them ever since. He’s a songwriter who cowrote the Carpenters’ “Superstar,” but his most famous song is “A Song For You,” which has been covered by everyone in the universe.

And here is the (probably more famous) Donny Hathaway version:

Once you get through “A Song for You,” the first track on his first solo LP, you will be treated to just really great country-rock songs. As I was listening to him, I kept hear flashes of Hiss Golden Messenger and The Tallest Man on Earth. I felt like I unlocked a new secret influence to all the musicians I love.

Because Russell has a well-known songwriter and studio musician before going solo, this record is full of amazing guest musicians: Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Steve Winwood and most of the Rolling Stones.

Watching

John Oliver totally did it again:

I live in a small city, and we only have a single-A team that feeds into the San Francisco Giants, who are three thousand miles away, but have won a bunch of championships lately. Still, no one can get excited about a team when the owner keeps threatening to move and there are huge debates to move the stadium to a slave burial site, which even Oscar-winning actresses are against. Our stadium needs modernization, especially so it doesn’t take thirty minutes to get a beer because that is fucking ridiculous. I also wouldn’t mind a Shake Shack. But in our case, the Diamond is in the center of what is becoming a very bright and eclectic revival in a city neighborhood, though it is doubtful the owner of the Squirrels much cares about that–he just wants something shiny.

Oh Bryce Harper. I never get tired of this.

Oh Bryce Harper. I never get tired of this.

This has been a terrible week for watching things, because I had a lot of social stuff going on, it was the MLB All-Star Game week, and we generally played catch up on the DVR by watching the last few episodes of Bob’s Burgers and an SNL. I took off today, so as you read this, I am seeing Ant Man or Spy or Trainwreck and tonight Fresh Dressed is being projected outdoors as part of the Afrikana Independent Film Festival! I also just got Amazon Prime and I’m kind of overwhelmed as to what to watch next: The Shield or Hannibal or one of the many Amazon shows? NOTE TO FX: You are my favorite channel. Seriously. But not making You’re the Worst and Married available on Amazon or Netflix is not going to help your ratings. I can’t afford to buy a whole season of a show. Please remedy this soon. Thanks. [YES! Do it AMAZON! I really want to watch You’re the Worst! -K]

Reading

Astonish Me cover

My e-audiobook phase continues, this week with Astonish Me by Maggie Shipstead. I chose it because it was immediately available to borrow from the library, but once I started listening, I realized that the narrator, Rebecca Lowman, ALSO did the two Rainbow Rowell books I checked out a few weeks ago. According to this audible.com list, she has narrated SEVENTY-ONE books! So even though Astonish Me is written by a completely different author, I still associate it with Rainbow Rowell. I hope that goes away. Anyway, the book is about ballet dancers, but also the struggles of having a “normal” life. I think I would like it better if I was reading it–there are so many main characters and timehops that I am getting really distracted. I should have been done by now!

Also working my way through Station Eleven, sneaking it on lunch breaks and other opportunities. I’m such a slow reader because it’s so hard to give anything my full attention; I don’t think I have Attention Deficit Disorder or anything, I just like TV the best, and reading while watching TV isn’t always the most efficient. Next up: e-audiobook The Vacationers by Emma Straub, the Fug Girls’ The Royal We & Between the World and Me. Speaking of Ta-Nehisi Coates…

The Hard Truths of Ta-Nehisi Coates. I have long-admired Coates’ pieces on The Atlantic and elsewhere, and after this story, I am looking forward to BTWAM even more.

Workaholics Blake 4

Young offenders: how TV millennials became monsters. Of course, I fully disagree with this ageist piece–the author is clearly looking for pageclicks by making such an insane statement, and it comes off as “UGH YOUNG PEOPLE ARE THE WORST, EH?” The women on Broad City and Blake from Workaholics are all good people, if not a little lost and misguided. Plus these are all comedies!

The Cruel Truth About Rock and Roll. Great piece by Ann Powers about music’s obsession with young girls. It is a bit disheartening, but, like the story about the Runaways that I posted last week, it needs to be read and shared.

What pop culture have you been getting into this week?

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