Monday, August 30, 2010


I finally woke up from my all day nap just to do a blog post. I don't know if that's dedication or a sickness.

After this weekend, I've made the decision that there will be no more live shows for me for a while. I'm completely music'd out (in a good way, of course). We'll see how long that lasts.

RockStar came back into town on Friday after almost a yearlong absence. We used to hang out when I worked in LA last year, and I gave her this illustrious nickname because of her ridiculous musical talent (she plays something like 900 instruments), as well as her ability to consume copious amounts of those disgusting energy drinks. Anyway, Unwritten Law was performing on Friday night, so I invited her to come to the show with me and get some catch-up dinner beforehand. And guess what we ate? Yup- milkshakes. She's lived here half her life and has never even heard of Millions of Milkshakes, the best place to grow cellulite on the planet. This was almost offensive, so I had to buy her one. Mine was coffee flavored and loaded with massive chunks of cookie dough and brownies. Yup, I'm a health nut.

BTW, they're open until 2am. Fuck, yes.

Unwritten Law was killer live. They only played a few bars of "Rest Of My Life," but I was so psyched to see them that I barely noticed. Everything else was included in their set list anyway, and I got a cool-ass t-shirt, so it was totally worth it.

I love going to shows with RockStar because she grew up around music, like I did. She doesn't embarrass easily and therefore doesn't give a shit when I freak out and start jumping up and down like a loon and screaming the lyrics out to all the songs. I actually think she finds it kind of awesome, and even if she doesn't, she never says anything.

On Saturday, LA closed down one of their most famous areas (ha... "areas") for their 2nd Annual Sunset Strip Music Festival. I spent most of the day chilling with RockStar again, eating bad pizza and checking out local unsigned bands.

First up was Saint Motel, who I was psyched to see again after discovering them last weekend at Sunset Junction. They were just as awesome this time around.

After watching Saint Motel and downing what was probably her fifth energy drink, RockStar had to pee and there was no way in hell we were using those disgusting Port-A-Potties, so we went into the Hustler store. They didn't have a bathroom, but they did have a really funny porn section and also a hilarious collection of shoes that would only be appropriate on Halloween or in a Lady GaGa video. After consistent urging from Rockstar and three salesgirls, I walked out with a pair of clear, ten-inch platform stilettos. I will probably never wear them again (at least not standing up) and I looked like a hot mess, so it was definitely the stupidest investment of my life, but it might make a good story to tell the grandkids someday.

Or not.

Yeah, good luck with these.
After being bestowed with Hustler beads (heretofore dubbed "Excalibur"), it was time to catch our friend Joe's band, Lady Sinatra, play at the Cat Club. We decided that I should definitely wear the shoes, so I ducked into the disgusting "ladies'" room and changed into the band's t-shirt and my new footwear. The look on Joe's face was absolutely priceless as I nonchalantly walked up to him all, "hey, what's up?" He was just like, "are you serious with this right now?" No one even noticed that my t-shirt was a clever marketing strategy because I was taller than everyone else in the room. Strangers were taking pictures of my feet and RockStar was laughing her ass off.

During all this, RockStar had met this incredibly annoying guy who was obsessed with touching us, not to mention he was a Close Talker, like the guy on Seinfeld:


He kept trying to hold my feet, which I can't stand. I HATE feet- I think they're gross. Mine, other people's, whatever. Foot fetishes are totally beyond me. During Joe's set, this annoying little elf kept putting his hand on the small of my back just above my ass, which was doubly irritating because it was really throwing off my balance in my new tranny heels. He mentioned that he was there to watch his friend's band, and that we should come, and I told him that we wanted to stay, but he should go, and he STILL stayed there! Note to all potential stalkers: if a girl tells you to leave, you fucking disappear. He followed us out the door and tried to guide us out of there again, and I let him know in no uncertain terms that I knew where the door was and that I didn't need his help. Finally, he left.

As soon as we got rid of that assclown we got pulled over by two other alcoholics who won our affections by ordering us to "come here." Unfortunately for me, RockStar actually liked one of them so I had to take one for the team while she flirted with the cute one until my dad sent me a text to meet him at a local restaurant. The plan was to get dinner with him and then go see Slash, followed by the evening's main event, Smashing Pumpkins.

I'm not THAT into Slash, but I do appreciate that the man is a guitar legend. I blocked out the part where he played with Fergie and just enjoyed the music.

The best part of the entire day, besides putting that annoying little troll in his place, was seeing Smashing Pumpkins. I grew up in the grunge era and will automatically give you cool points if you list Gish in your rotation. What's even cooler is that my dad loves them even more than I do, and RockStar is obsessed with them to the point where I was a little afraid of her, so the concert was a "fun for the whole family" type-deal.

The band didn't do "Disarm," which disappointed me a little, but they did do every other song you could possibly think of. "Cherub Rock," which is my favorite, was fucking fantastic. Their encore was "Zero," and it kicked a serious amount of ass until someone, and I have no idea who, let out the nastiest fucking blast of ass air that I actually choked on. I felt really horrible for my dad because he told me that it actually went down his throat, like that time with Mort Goldman and the dog in Family Guy. It was so awful that we were still reliving the moment the morning after the show.

Also, and completely off topic, I have to get in a quick EAT ME to the Emmys for completely pissing on Lost and letting it sign off with absolutely nothing. We get that you love Mad Men, but does it have to win EVERY year? Lost is over and will never have another chance to win anything. EMMY FAIL.

I'm trying not to let that bring me down, though. I'm stoked about Modern Family wiping the floor with the Comedy categories, and even though I don't really watch Big Bang Theory, I have seen it a few times and have to say that Jim Parsons' win is well deserved, especially because this probably means that nerds are one step closer to our eventual world domination. Also, A is actually friends with Jim Parsons, so I kind of look at this as a win for her too.

So even though it came an entire era of music later, I still got to see SMASHING FUCKING PUMPKINS live and have an awesome weekend with my friend who I hadn't seen in over a year. My concert list is almost complete now- I still haven't gotten to Radiohead or a few of the others on my list, which I might post soon, but for now, I think I'm taking a break and a couple of long-ass naps.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Q & T & A!

So you may have noticed the Formspring link on the bottom of this blog.

I figured that even though I'm still totally anonymous, it might be fun for you guys to pry into my private life and ask me some stuff, much like how I snoop through the medicine cabinets of new guys that I'm dating (hey, no one likes nasty surprises from the vadge doctor).

I got some pretty imaginative questions, so here are the ones I chose to address (someone actually asked what my astrological sign was. Are you serious? We're all writers here; that's really the best you could come up with? I'm ashamed for you. I'm a Capricorn, BTW). Nothing was held back; I don't get embarrassed or grossed out, obviously.

Here are some of my favorites, based on the creativity of the question or how funny of an answer I can pull out of my ass:

So how many brothers do you actually have? It sometimes seems like you only have one, but then sometimes you talk about having more than one.

My brother is a schizo with multiple personalities.

No, seriously, I have two. They're both younger than I am, and when we were kids we used to constantly kick each other's ass. Now we all get along and we're really close.

Do you have any tattoos/piercings/visible scars?

I wish. My parents had my ears pierced when I was a baby, but I stopped wearing earrings a while ago so the holes closed up (haha... "holes"). As for tattoos, I'm dying to get at least one, but I have debilitating panic attacks even thinking about needles, so there's a 99.9999% chance that that's never going to happen. I know exactly what I would get, and where: It would be on my wrist, and it would be the Hebrew symbol for strength, which would be ironic because Jews aren't allowed to be buried in a Jewish cemetery if they "desecrate" their body. Oh well.

As for scars, I have a really stupid story  to go with mine. About eight years ago my mom asked me to get her a plate from the kitchen and the door to one of her cabinets fell off when I opened it, slicing my finger in the process. It was bleeding all over the place and took off about three layers of skin. So there's my retarded scar story. Most scars are cool but mine is really, really lame. I probably should have made something up.

How about this: I was in a bayonet fight with seventeen ninjas and twelve pirates. While I was defending myself and simultaneously guarding a barrelful of orphaned puppies I got distracted by a truck full of diamonds and one of the ninjas cut my finger with his sword.

There. Much cooler.

Which of your friends/family is the farthest away from you right now? How many of them are actually still in New York?

This is a good one. Thanks to blogging I have friends all over the country. I actually went to Google Maps to find out exactly which one of them is the farthest distance away, in miles, and that would be Ginntastic, in Boston.

How many are actually in New York? At last count, at least half.

Now I'm depressed. Thanks a lot, asshole.

Do you really love doing laundry that much?

Why don't you come over and see for yourself? Wait- are you hot?

What exactly do you in the music business?

Let's see if I can do this without giving anything away:

I work in management and promotions. I'm the manager/booking agent for unsigned bands back on the East Coast, and I handle their touring, merchandise, booking, etc. My hours are erratic and I get to drink on the job. Some of the people I deal with are total douchebags, but most of them are incredibly awesome. Also, I work with mostly dudes, which sometimes sucks but also means that no one starts shifting uncomfortably when I mention sports or comics, or pack away eleven pounds of fries in one sitting. I usually deal with New York City but I also cover a lot of the big cities on the East Coast. It's my passion, but unfortunately the pay isn't that great, hence my location switch and forceful shove into the employment hunt.

At my old job, I worked the A&R circuit for an indie record label, and ran the youth marketing division. I loved that too, but the label exploded faster than the Bob-Ombs from Mario Bros.

Do you really swear as much IRL as you do in your blog?

Fuck yes.

Where did you go to school?

Yeah, right; like I'm giving that away. I will tell you, however, that I studied Marketing with an Economics minor.

You probably have a hilarious sex story.

A) that's not in the form of a question, and B) yes, I do. A few years ago I was at work and I cut my foot open on a metal rack. It was really disgusting, I had to get a tetanus shot and I got to call out for two weeks. Awesome. Plus I was prescribed Vicodin, which left me higher than Lindsay Lohan in a hot-air balloon after a three-day bender. Sweet.

After being bedridden for weeks, my friends decided to take me to this bar where this dude worked that I was obsessed with. Everyone there knew it was only a matter of time before we were making sweet monkey love by candlelight on 4,000-thread count sheets. Or porking up against a dumpster in an alley. Whatever. He was totally hot so I didn't give a shit.

Anyway, I "ran into" him (read: circled the bar) and he told me he was going outside for a smoke. Of course he practically threw me against the wall outside where we groped each other like seventh graders for the next twenty minutes until he got off (no, actually got off- as in, it was time for him to clock out and go home). We wound up in a cab back to his place where we commenced with the groping while I ignored the "where the hell ARE you???" texts from my friends (like they didn't know).

Once the clothes came off I realized that this was, potentially, the best In-N-Out I had ever received IN MY LIFE. This guy was a total slut so I didn't expect anything really terrible, but nothing as earth-shattering as what was going on below the pelv. We were on what seemed like the eighth position switch when he did this move that required my leg to be up against the wall and BAM!- that's when my foot knocked against the plaster. Yup, THAT foot.

Dude- there was blood EVERYWHERE. It looked like a kindergartener's art project. It was on the wall. The ceiling. The dresser. The bed. It was like Jason Voorhees had come in and gotten slice-happy. It was fucking NASTY.

The worst part was is that this charming intellectual kept going. When I screamed out "OH SHIT!!!!" he thought it was for the reason most women yell that out in the middle of sexy times. I was in so much pain I thought I was going to pass out. When he was finally done, like nine years later, he looks at me and goes, "I didn't know you were on the rag. That's fucking gross." I got up, hobbled to the bathroom, wrapped my foot up in paper towel, and called a cab.

The invite to our wedding is in the mail.

What's your favorite website that's not a blog?

I'm not going to say 20SB again, because I've whored that out more than enough. So besides that, I'm going to have to go with

I LOVE your blog- you're an amazing writer. If you could have any writing  job, what would it be?

First of all, thanks; anyone that compliments me is automatically in the club. Second, whenever I read anything I always mock people's poor grammar and atrocious spelling, so if I could be an editor, I would take that. By the way, Y-O-U(apostrophe)R-E is you are, as in the descriptive, and Y-O-U-R is your, as in the possessive. It's not that fucking tough!

Also, if Chelsea Handler is reading this, and she needs a writer for her round table, I'm available. I love her.

However, my DREAM dream writing job would have to be in music journalism, like the William Miller character in Almost Famous. If I ever got an opportunity like that I would probably cream myself.

So there were my ten favorite questions. If there's anything I left out, feel free to click the link, and I'll cover them in my next round.

Also, my 69th post is coming up, so to celebrate, I'll be featuring a guest blogger. I'll keep you posted on that.

Monday, August 23, 2010


I think by now it's borderline superfluous to mention how obsessed I am with the band Shiny Toy Guns. I think I've probably written about them in this blog one or a hundred times, so I'll just start off this post with


Sorry. I'll stop now.

They performed at the Sunset Junction festival this weekend and as soon as I found out about it a few weeks ago I annoyed everyone right up until the second they went on. I've been furiously checking for years to see when this band was supposed to play near me, so short of winning a bajillion dollars, this was probably the greatest thing that could have happened to me right now (Honestly, I probably would have preferred the bajillion dollars. I'm broke as hell).

The Sunset Junction festival takes place in Silverlake every year, and for 20 bucks you can see close to 40 bands. There's also carnival rides, copious amounts of booze, spectacularly shitty food and street vendors from local stores, newspapers and radio stations. I hung out with the guys from KROQ for a while and they were both really cool.

Because it was a street fair, the prices were insane. I got a $5 milkshake- the only time that's acceptable is in Pulp Fiction, and even John Travolta got pissed. I also took major offense with the candy apples- mixing candy and fruit is like bringing your favorite stuffed animal with you to a maximum security prison- it's a surefire way to get plowed painfully up the ass.

Also, the ATM fees were $3.50. What the fuck???!!!! They didn't even bother to kiss me first.

The bands, on the other hand, were well worth the price of admission. When I was bothering the guys at the KROQ booth I discovered these guys called Saint Motel. They gave off a laid-back rock vibe that I was totally into, and the best part is that they're playing here next week, too, so I get to see them again.

I was also excited for Eastern Conference Champions. One of my old co-workers turned me onto them about a year and a half ago, but I've never seen them live. I ignored the fact that they contributed a song to one of the Twilight soundtracks because their sound is THAT good. They're just good enough for the hipsters back in Brooklyn without actually being hipster. Plus the guitarist is a chick, and I'm pretty sure the band name is a hockey reference. Check them out.

Surprisingly, one of the best acts of the night was Fishbone, who I wasn't going to go see because I'm not into them at all, but they were right next to where I brought my diamond-encrusted milkshake so I couldn't help but overhear. They did a kick-ass cover of Ozzy's "Iron Man." Yes, you read that right. I was kind of blown away, actually. It was out of their genre, but extremely well done. I may check out more of their material because of it.

Unfortunately I couldn't make Ghostland Observatory or Bad Brains because they were both on at the exact same time as SHINY TOY GUNS! and there was NO WAY IN HELL I was going to miss a single second of that show. I was pretty bummed about Ghostland, but I'd already seen Bad Brains a while ago so it wasn't that huge of a loss.

As it got darker out it crept closer and closer to SHINY TOY GUNS! time. I had run into a friend of a friend and I had warned him that he was going to witness me make a complete ass of myself. I don't think he took me seriously until 8:55 rolled around and some dude came out with the SHINY TOY GUNS! banner. I started growing restless and my friend began to back away.

SHINY TOY GUNS! were supposed to go on at 9pm but, with a background in the music business, I knew that probably meant around 9:15. At 9:20 the lights dimmed and I started jumping around like a dying caterpillar on meth. This could also probably be attributed to the contact high that I most likely received from the joint that was being passed around right next to me. Gotta love Silverlake.


The show itself was absolutely fucking incredible. SHINY TOY GUNS! is mostly an electronica act so they relied largely on awesome visuals. Some girl in a bikini top and skirt came out and fucking ATE FIRE.

There were weird creatures that danced around on stage and fondled their own boob-type-things.

Some dude came out and did gymnastics/ballet-type stuff.

The thong was highly unappreciated.

There was an androgynous alien-like thing that moved around on stage like it was evil.

The cheapest way to get rid of crabs.

I took so many pictures that the batteries in my camera lasted about twenty minutes. Unfortunately my camera blows and has a delay on it so a lot of the pictures came out blurry. Fuck you, Nikon Coolpix.

I was waiting for about eight songs and they played every single one. When they got to "Rainy Monday" (my current favorite) I went totally fucking nuts and started dancing around like a lunatic. I put up so many Facebook updates during the day that one of my friends sent me a text that read "Shut the fuck up about Shiny Toy Guns." No, YOU shut the fuck up. You're jealous (probably not. I was just being really obnoxious).

Apparently SHINY TOY GUNS! play in SoCal a lot so I'll get to see them again. I'm piss broke but I would gladly dip into my non-existent bank account to see them over and over again because they are SICK live.

Not like you need it again, but here's their official link:


I think I've effectively gotten the fever out of my system for now. I know I was really insufferable, and everyone around me was probably looking forward to the show just so I would shut the hell up. Thanks for putting up with me.

There's another music festival next weekend, which you'll hear about, but I won't be nearly as irritating.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


A couple of posts back I predicted that Scott Pilgrim vs. The World would do well at the box office. As mind-blowing as it is to believe, I was wrong (I know. Try not to fall over). Despite generally favorable reviews, massive promotional efforts and dizzying Comic-Con buzz, Scott Pilgrim scraped in just $10.5 million and came in FIFTH, behind The Expendables, Eat, Pray, Vomit, and two films that had already been in theaters for some time. So what the hell just happened?

I think I might have an idea. I completely geeked out in the theater (let's just say I'm glad I went alone), and I'm sorely disappointed that Scott Pilgrim didn't decimate the competition, but I've been turning this over in my head and I've finally come to the following conclusions as why the film didn't do as well as it should have:

THE CURSE OF MICHAEL CERA- I don't mean to be a bitch (really), but the kid hasn't exactly proven to be a box office draw. Since the culmination of Arrested Development, he's done several movies that have come out in wide release where he's had top or equal billing, and the reviews and box office intake have, for the most part, not exactly insured this guy a lifetime career. Let's go over his so-called "bankability:"

SUPERBAD ( Aug. 17, 2007)- Box Office Intake: $121.5 million Rotten Tomatoes Scale: 87% (7.4/10)

JUNO (Dec. 25, 2007)- The obvious exception to the Curse, indie flick Juno pulled in $143.4 million and scored a 93% on the RT scale. The movie also garnered the Best Screenplay Oscar and was also nominated for a bunch of other Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

According to imdb.comJuno also cleaned up at numerous other film festivals, both domestic and international.
I might be the only one on the planet that actually hated this movie. I thought it was really boring and the stupid made-up slang annoyed the shit out of me. Then again, looking at all of the accolades it received, I guess my opinion doesn't matter.

NICK AND NORAH'S INFINITE PLAYLIST (Oct. 3, 2008)- B.O. Intake: $31.5m RT Scale: 73% (6.5/10)

YEAR ONE ( Jun. 19, 2009)- B.O. Intake: $43.3m RT Scale: 14% (3.8/10)

YOUTH IN REVOLT (Jan. 8, 2010)- B.O. Intake: $15.2m RT Scale: 69% (6.4/10)

SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD (Aug. 13, 2010)- Opening Weekend Gross: $10.5m RT Scale (so far): 81% (7.4/10)

It seems as if Cera just can't carry a project on his own. One could argue that Arrested Development had its own success, but even that was cancelled after only three seasons and had more of a cult following even though it was one of the most hilarious, most demented programs ever to grace the small screen.Word is is that Cera was the one holding up the movie because he wanted to concentrate on his burgeoning film career, until he probably realized that he didn't have one and then finally signed on. I would have been fine with them doing it without him anyway- George-Michael was the worst part of the show. Hopefully the writers will focus mostly on Jason Bateman, Will Arnett and David Cross. Can you tell I was not a fan of the show AT ALL?

PROMO OVERLOAD- Here in LA there are STILL Scott Pilgrim billboards every three feet. They're like Starbucks. In the months leading up to the film's release, I couldn't turn on the TV without a commercial during every single ad break. I was totally spazzing out for this movie, and even I found it gratuitous. Comic-Con attendees and other fanboys/girls got their own advanced screenings as well, so by the time this movie actually rolled into theaters, a lot of the graphic novel devotees had most likely already seen it- for free.

These are still EVERYWHERE.

SPLIT MARKETING TACTICS/RELEASE DATE HELL- Scott Pilgrim could also have been a victim of its own indecision. In order to land opposing demographics, there were different ads that ran on TV- one that featured the romantic side of the film and another that focused on the video game/fighting style. Unfortunately for Scott Pilgrim, it was hit with the release date of August 13th, which also saw the opening of two other films where both of those genres were already covered. The Expendables is basically two full hours of solid ass-kicking with legendary action stars, and Eat, Pray, Stab is the token summer chick flick. It's feasible that men heading to the movies this weekend were either drawn to The Expendables, which opened at number one at $34.8m , or were dragged by their significant others to the Julia Roberts shitfest, which took a distant number two (how appropriate) at $23.1m.

IMO, another example of a less-than-stellar marketing choice is Jennifer's Body, which was advertised as a horror movie. I went to see it with a friend because we were bored and were looking for a bad movie that we could make fun of, but we were surprised that the film fit into the "black comedy" genre and was actually funny. It's in no way an excellent film, but I didn't find it to be nearly as horrible as I was expecting. If Jennifer's Body had been marketed to moviegoers looking for a comedy, perhaps the box office and the reception wouldn't have been as terrible.

GEOGRAPHICAL PURGATORY- The humungous chasm in the center of Julia Robert's head swallowed the remaining cash that Scott Pilgrim pulled in.

My consolation for Scott Pilgrim's dismal performance at the box office is that nerds such as myself are incredibly loyal to the pop culture fixtures that we love. I'm hoping that it will find a rabid audience and top DVD sales and downloads, and will at least break even in theaters eventually. Director Edgar Wright has made some respected cult films (Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead), and is well-respected among my fellow geeks, who are continuing to dominate pop-culture, so at least we can probably anticipate more from him. People did actually go to this movie (you can't pull ten and a half mil out of your ass), and everyone I know that did see it raved about it. We will have our day, and we will prevail!

Sunday, August 15, 2010


This post goes out by request.

A few days ago I got an email from N, one of my first friends in LA, who invited me to a 30th birthday party in Santa Monica. I LOVE N- she's a world traveller who speaks a multitude of foreign languages, is college-educated, classy and cultured, but also isn't afraid to act like a total three-year-old whenever we go out to dinner and order little kid milkshakes (sometimes they have Scotch in them, but whatever). None of her friends and family are of the typical LA variety, either- meaning I can actually hold a conversation with them where I can use words that contain more than two syllables. The first time I met N she told me that she loved to read and without even thinking I replied, "books?" Luckily, she laughed. Also, she loves Lost.

So I got to this party last night and was immediately introduced around as "the writer." Despite the fact that I don't get paid shit for keeping this blog, I do love it and it's nice to be recognized. Some money would be nice, though. Ha! I kid. Kind of.

I also finally met N's boyfriend, Mr. N. We work in the same industry, or at least we did- we're both currently dealing with the shitstorm that is the job-hunting process. He's a really nice guy, and we had a lot to talk about. The insane part was that N was actually really excited that I was monopolizing Mr. N for a solid ten minutes and that we got along so well. That's just how she is- she's one of those girls that's so fun and sweet and pretty that you kind of want to punch her in the face, but you don't because she's such a great friend, which makes you angry at yourself for contemplating violence in the first place. I love you, N! You're awesome.


So in the midst of my hanging out with all these cool-ass people last night, some douche came over and interrupted the conversation I was having with one of my friends. He was really weird-looking- he kind of resembled a giant prehistoric cicada.

I politely brushed him off, even when he creepily stared at me for the rest of the night. N tried to come to my rescue and kind of pretended to make out with me, but it was a wasted effort since I don't think he saw it. It was still hilarious, though.

No more than twenty minutes after I dodged that speeding bullet, another little troll came over to where I was unsuspectedly sitting on the couch with the rest of my group. He shook my friend W's hand and actually used this as his opener:

"Now that I know your name I feel more comfortable making eye contact rather than staring at your chest."

To W's credit, she looked like she wanted to stab him in the eye. Then he proceeded to inform her that he would "guess her ethnicity" and ran down every possible Asian culture he could think of. I have a ton of Asian girlfriends and they ALL hate this. I resisted the urge to laugh out loud because I just had to see how this would play out. The kicker- this tool was also Asian. Also, I was infuriated by the fact that he was wearing his tie inside out. I didn't know if that was a look he was going for, or what, but I was really biting my tongue.

At this point, W had politely excused herself, which left an empty spot next to me on the armchair. Everyone with me was excited by this because they knew I was going to be a total bitch. While this clown had been busy bombing out with W, N and the rest the group had been pleading with me to say something to this asshole about his stupid tie. I had to- my public demanded it.

Ass-Backwards shimmied over to a spot on the chair where our legs were touching and threw his arm over the back like we were dating or something. Excuse me, NO. "Do you know your tie is on inside out?" I asked him. He told me he did it on purpose, and that it was "a look." "Do you like it?" He asked. "Not really," I replied. "You should probably have put it on right. It's a nice tie, though." I couldn't be too nasty right away. N called out to me to blog the encounter right in front of him as he continued to make an ass of himself. Then he touched my leg. FUCK, NO. I moved over to the other side of the couch. "You look really pissed off. It's bringing me down."

"I'm about to bring something else down on your crotch. It's called my knee." Ass-Backwards still didn't vacate, so N called me over to her couch (YES! PLEASE!) and he moved on to his next victim in our circle. All of us watched in part horror, part awe, part hysterics as he moved on from one girl to the next. Finally, he left- maybe he got the hint; maybe his drink wore off. I don't know. What I do know is that I polled my girlfriends and we're all going to wear inside-out ties for Halloween.

In concurrence with this being too good a writing opportunity to pass up, I was actually requested to do a post about this idiot. This one is for you, N.

Friday, August 13, 2010


Today was a big day for me because I actually had some stuff planned. It's Friday the 13th, and every time one of those comes up, I make it a point to watch the movie (the real one, not the stupid, shitty one that just came out). I usually watch the original Friday the 13th, which, let's be honest, is the only one that doesn't suck, and sometimes I throw in Freddy vs. Jason if the mood hits.

It was also an interesting opening weekend for the cinematic box office. There are three big films that came out today, all geared towards a different demographic. I'm intrigued as to what's going to take this one.

The movie that most of my girlfriends are tweaking out over is Eat, Pray, Love, that nauseating Julia Roberts movie that the studio had better hope makes a shit-ton of cash because of all the promo they've done. I personally can't stand Julia Roberts because she never shuts up about how great her life is and how everyone should love her even though she's done the same movie over and over for the last fifteen years.

I really hope this doesn't claim the number one spot on Monday, but I kind of angrily suspect that it will. The only reason I'm looking forward to Eat, Pray, Love releasing into theaters is that the sooner it comes out, the sooner it leaves, and we never have to hear about it again.

Except for the DVD release. Shit, I forgot about that.

Anyway, I'm waiting for a movie called Eat, Sleep, Fuck. I'd definitely go to see that. Especially the "sleep" part- that's where I'm a Viking.

There's also a movie that's specifically geared towards dudes and that's The Expendables. I actually want to see this and that's due to the fact that my boyfriend, Jason Statham, is in it. He of course doesn't know he's my boyfriend. I might decide to tell him eventually, but I like my relationships to have that element of surprise.

I might go see this next weekend, but I'm a little apprehensive. I went to the last Rocky and the whole time I was looking at Stallone like, "Dude, you're sixty. Please, just stop." I was a little scared for him, like he might break a hip. I might decide to wait and just Netflix it or something so I can fast-forward to whenever Jason Statham is on the screen without his shirt on, because you know that's going to be in there.

For me, of course, this weekend's major release (pun intended) was the nerd epic Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. I prepared for this movie like it was a first date or a job interview. Last night I went to Fandango and checked for the earliest possible showtime, then picked out my Karate Kid t-shirt to wear to the movie to proudly display my geek solidarity. I woke up at 9am to get to the 11:00 show 45 minutes early to make sure it wasn't sold out. Since I had almost an hour to kill, I stopped at Barnes & Noble to pick up a fantasy football guide because it's almost time to set up my team.

I got a few good trailers- including one for Devil, the upcoming M. Night Shyamalan movie. It looked pretty cool until I saw the "M. Night Shyamalan" part. That ruined it for me. His movies blow.

There was also a preview for that stupid Drew Barrymore movie with the guy from the Mac ads. Normally I can't stomach her and her dumbass chick flicks but this one has Charlie from It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia. That's the funniest show on TV right now, so while he's not enough to make me pay 12 bucks, I might rent the DVD when it comes out two weeks after the movie hits theaters and inevitably bombs.

So, Scott Pilgrim.

I almost lost my shit when the movie opened with an 80's-Nintendo version of the Universal Pictures logo, complete with the music. Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) is in a band, and the lead singer is named Stephen Stills. I was the only one in the theater who laughed at that- did no one else get that reference? Even Moviefone's article, "Every Scott Pilgrim Video Game & Pop Culture Reference," missed that one, too. I refuse to believe that I was the nerdiest person watching that movie. Either that, or I'm just REALLY getting old.

Anyway, Scott Pilgrim is stocked with geeker joy- not only is it based on the second in a series of graphic novels, but the whole movie is a gigantic 80's video game, complete with sound effects and animation. It reminded me of when I used to kick ass at Super Mario Bros., Duck Hunt and Mortal Kombat. Two of Ramona Flowers' (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) evil exes are played by two big names in the world of movie superheroes (Brandon Routh is a former Superman; meanwhile, Chris Evans was Johnny Storm in Fantastic Four and just hit the jackpot with his casting as Captain America- don't even get me started on that one, BTW). Not only that, but the soundtrack is amazing- the music was written by Beck, Broken Social Scene and The Pixies.

The opinions on Scott Pilgrim have been mostly favorable, but I've read a few of them that seem to have been written by reviewers who just don't have any business watching movies in this genre. Anyone who refers to Scott Pilgrim vs. The World as a "comic book movie" clearly doesn't get it- there's a distinguishable difference between comic books and graphic novels. Comic books are stapled together like magazines and are mostly found only in comic stores and newsstands, whereas graphic novels are bound like books and are longer, and are generally sold in bookstores and specialty stores as well as comic shops and OH MY GOD I just found another reason why I'm single.

Anyway, the best part about Scott Pilgrim, besides the fact that it was obviously made specifically for losers like myself who are always anxious to embrace their love of 80's geekdom, is that it's one in a series, so if this movie does well, which I'm guessing it will, chances are that there could be sequels. I will be at every single one of them, on opening day. Nerd-tastic FTW!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I'm interrupting our regularly scheduled music programming to bring you an awesome gooey treat. A few blog posts ago I gave an award to Dan at From the Head of the Danaconda and it took him this long to acknowledge it (thanks a lot. A-hole). I can't be that pissed though, because this was how he thanked me over at his place:

I don't know her name and I don't know if I should. She gave me an award just for being me. It kind of gave me a boner. Her blog is fun and eclectic and she's a Jew from New York who shares my appreciation for disgust.

Those of you that know me are aware that I've been the cause of (and solution to) quite the shitload of boners, most of them regrettable, but this is the first one that has made me feel all warm inside without having to take care of a hefty gyno bill later. Dan is up for Featured Blogger for September at 20 Something Bloggers, so if you're a member get over there and vote for him. NOW. Don't make me bullwhip you... unless you like that.
PS- Dan- you'll eventually find out my name. I'm planning my homecoming where you make your requisite appearance, so I figure you'll probably need that detail. Oh, and I also bit the balls and got Formspring (there's a link on the homepage), so if anyone really needs to know anything about my personal life that badly, I guess you can always just ask. Don't be a stalker though!

Now on to the tunes!

Lately I've been listening to A LOT of Shiny Toy Guns, the band made famous by their covers of cheesy 80's tunes for the Lincoln car company, and they inspired this month's post on Most Awesome Covers. Qualifications include how hard the band doesn't suck, how their version holds up to the original, and in some cases, cultural significance.

I also don't want any shit about Whitney Houston or The Dixie Chicks. I really, really hate those two versions and refuse to put them on this list. I'm giving you my favorite covers, not chart toppers. Go to Billboard for that.

PS- I must say that it was really fucking obnoxious finding all the videos for these. It took me upwards of two days to write this post, and that's why it's going up so late. I'm not kidding. So don't complain about the quality.

Anyway, here are the Top 40 Greatest Cover Songs, according to me:

RICHIE KOTZENSara Smile (this version is from May 2010)

Richie is actually a family friend who's an accomplished session and touring musician. He's also obsessed with Hall & Oates and has been performing this at his live shows for years. I'm not a Hall & Oates fan, but I have to say, after listening to the two versions side by side, it's pretty fucking close. If you get the chance, you should check out his other Youtube stuff- he writes his own material too. Try to ignore the outfits though- some of the videos are from the 80's.

The original- Sara Smile

Written by Daryl Hall and John Oates

Performed by HALL & OATES, 1976

THE MELVINSThe Green Manalishi (1999)

I threw this one in for my brother. He's a massive Melvins fan and asked me to acknowledge this version of the classic Fleetwood Mac song when I told him I was doing a post on my favorite covers. It is pretty good, actually. I love when artists from another genre interpret a song in an entirely different way- it leaves room for a new audience to discover the band.

My brother is an incredibly talented musician in his own right with a moderately successful unsigned band, and while we definitely don't share the same musical taste (that's putting it mildly), I do respect his opinion and will always promote what he suggests.

The original- The Green Manalishi

Written by Peter Green

Performed by FLEETWOOD MAC, 1970

BEAVIS & BUTTHEAD & CHERI Got You Babe (1993)

I had to put this in because it's hilarious. Just check out the video. This was in 1993, so Cher was about 107 years old, and she actually re-recorded the song with Beavis and Butthead and is talking to them like they're actual people. I laughed my ass off.

The best part is when they insult Sonny Bono and call him a "dork" and a "wuss" and Cher is like, "well, kinda, yeah." I also love when Beavis sings the musical interludes. This might be the greatest cover of all time.

There's a rumor that MTV is working on bringing this show back. This needs to happen. I'm 100% serious when I say that I will start a petition and mail it to MTV.

The original- I Got You Babe

Written by Sonny Bono

Performed by SONNY & CHER, (1965)

BEN FOLDSSuch Great Heights (this video was from May 2010)

Ben Folds is interesting because he's so eclectic. He wrote that funny prom song for Not Another Teen Movie and encompasses multiple genres. The Postal Service is one of my favorite bands (they're on this list too- keep reading), so I was really excited by this cover.

The original- Such Great Heights

Written by Ben Gibbard and Jimmy Tamborello

Performed by THE POSTAL SERVICE, (2003)

THE ATARIS- The Boys of Summer (2003)

This a superior punk cover of an already good pop song from the 80's. I especially love how they add a modern twist by changing the band reference to "Black Flag"- it showed their influence, and I'm always down with that. When I love both versions, I have to put the song on the list.

The original- The Boys of Summer

Written by Don Henley and Mike Campbell

Performed by DON HENLEY, 1984

INCUBUSTurning Japanese (live shows)

Forget for a second that this song is most likely about rubbing one out. This is the complete opposite of The Ataris cover because in this case, I happen to think the original sucks, but I'm an Incubus fan and I really like a lot of their stuff. Another one of my criteria for a great cover is that it makes me look at a tune in a different way, and this version does. So, nice work there.

The original- Turning Japanese

Written and performed by THE VAPORS, (1980)

ORGYBlue Monday (1998)

This one just kicks ass. It amps up New Order's 80's new wave-goth vibe just a little bit and takes it thatmuch over the edge.

The original- Blue Monday

Written by Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, Stephen Morris and Gillian Gilbert

Performed by NEW ORDER, 1983

CAKEI Will Survive (1996)

The original is already kind of cool because it's an anthem for women as well as gay men, but Cake played around with it and added their own spin. Also, they put in a bunch of swear words, and we all know how I'm totally against that.

The original- I Will Survive

Written by Freddie Perren and Dino Fekaris

Performed by GLORIA GAYNOR, 1978

SID VICIOUSMy Way (1978)

I love the Sex Pistols. Not only are they an icon of punk, but they're also a marketing scheme that actually worked. Sid Vicious is a fucking nutcase, and his version of this Sinatra classic proves that. The dude can't sing at all, but that doesn't stop him.

There are two other noteworthy versions of this track. One is from the iconic punk film Sid & Nancy, with Gary Oldman as Sid Vicious. This can also be considered a great cover in its own right:

The other one is from the Buffy, the Vampire Slayer TV show, which ran my life while it was on the air. I was in love with the Spike character and in one of the episodes there's a short clip of him getting loaded and singing part of the Sid Vicious version of "My Way." It's pretty awesome. Unfortunately I couldn't find it online. Bitches.

The original English version- My Way

Translated by Paul Anka

Performed by FRANK SINATRA, (1969)

BOW WOW WOW-I Want Candy (1982)

I love this just because the song rocks. The girl is only 15, and you KNOW that's not a Snickers she's reaching for. Of course, the first time I heard this song I was like, four, so I head no idea and was like, "Ooh! Chocolate!" Kind of like the first time I heard "I Touch Myself" and I used to run around the house singing it. I was like seven years old or something so I didn't figure it out until much later, and then I was like, "EH???"

The original- I Want Candy

Written by Bert Berns, Bob Feldman, Jerry Goldstein and Richard Gottehrer

Performed by THE STRANGELOVES, 1965

THE RAMONES- Theme from Spiderman (1995)

This cover is awesome as fuck. It combines two of my greatest loves, the NYC 70's punk scene and comics, so of course this is making the list. The Ramones are an icon of music and Spiderman is one of my favorite characters, so when I first saw this video I got super excited. Mocking begins... NOW.

BTW, have you ever looked up "spiderman" on Urban Dictionary? It is fucking repulsive.

The original- Theme from Spiderman

Written by Paul Francis Webster and Robert Harris

Performed by various artists

FIONA APPLE- Across the Universe (1998)

Fiona Apple covered this song for the Pleasantville soundtrack, and it's a beautiful version that really frames the culmination of the movie if you listen to the lyrics. They could have gone with the original Beatles track, but without giving anything away if you haven't seen it, the fact that they got a newer artist to cover an older song really ties in with the plot. The whole thing works really well, and the film itself is worth watching, too.

The original- Across the Universe

Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Performed by THE BEATLES, (1969)


Eric Clapton can do no wrong. That's all I have to say.

Except for that whole "drug addict deal." Yeah, that was a real kick in the ass.

The original- Little Wing

Written by Jimi Hendrix


OUR LADY PEACETomorrow Never Knows (1996)

Admittedly, not a lot of impressive shit comes out of Canada- they are, after all, responsible for the apocalypse that is Justin Bieber. However, I do occasionally enjoy listening to Our Lady Peace, especially when they churn out lofty Beatles covers like this one. Even though this was released on the soundtrack to The Craft in 1996, there's just the right amount of modern psychedelia in there to keep the spirit of the 60's intact. Also, it kind of makes you feel like you just took a bunch of drugs. Word.

The original- Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Performed by THE BEATLES, 1966

THE WHOSummertime Blues (1970)

This one is a famous re-do of a shitty 50's pop song, made incredible by one of my favorite bands of all time, who would later be massacred by Hilary Duff (ugh. More on that later). Just listen to both versions and note the differences.

The original- Summertime Blues

Written by Eddie Cochran and Johnny Capehart

Performed by EDDIE COCHRAN, 1958

VAN HALENYou Really Got Me (1978)

Both of these versions are two of my favorite rock songs- each of them measures up to the other. As far as Van Halen goes, I lean more towards Hagar than Roth, but this track is easily in their top five.

The first time I heard the Van Halen version was in 1996 in an ad for Nissan. I didn't even know it was a cover, and then I discovered the Kinks version later. I honestly couldn't tell you which version I like better, although I do think the commercial is hysterical.

Here's the commercial.

The original- You Really Got Me

Written by Ray Davies

Performed by THE KINKS, 1964

SHINY TOY GUNSMajor Tom (Coming Home) (2009)

I don't think I need to reiterate what a huge fan I am of this band. I keep checking to see when they're playing live so I can sell myself for tickets (UPDATE- August 21st in LA!!!!!). They actually might be best known for their remakes of shitty 80's songs, but they're actually accomplished artists with their own catalog. It was tough to pick which of their covers I liked best, but "Major Tom" has a slight edge.

You've all seen the commercial for Lincoln, but I'll post it anyway:

And here's the Lincoln ad.

The original- Major Tom (Coming Home)

Written and performed by PETER SCHILLING, 1983

THE SUNDAYSWild Horses (1992)

If I hadn't known this was a Stones tune, I would have thought that The Sundays had penned it themselves. Harriet Wheeler's vocals are perfect- I actually like this one better than the original. I first heard The Sundays' adaptation during one of the best and most emotional episodes of Buffy, "The Prom." The placement was so amazing that again, it seemed like they wrote the song just for that scene. Now whenever I hear it, I get a little knotty inside. Before you make fun of me, check out the clip below.

Look at how perfect it was in the Buffy prom scene. Shut up! You would get it if you actually watched the show
religiously like I did.

The original- Wild Horses

Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

Performed by THE ROLLING STONES, 1971

THE BEATLESTwist and Shout (1963)

This is another one that I didn't know was a cover until my mom told me it was. The Beatles version is much, MUCH better than the boring original.

The first time I heard "Twist and Shout" I was ten, and I was watching the parade scene in one of the most
incomparable movies ever made, Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I'm still jealous of  the Ferris character because if I ever pulled any shit like that I would definitely get caught. Anyway, here's the song in one of the greatest movie scenes of all time.

The original- Twist and Shout

Written by Phil Medley and Bert Russell

Performed by TOP NOTES, 1962

FOO FIGHTERSBlackbird (live performances)

I couldn't find a video of the whole performance, but I've seen Foo Fighters in concert five or six times already. I've seen Dave Grohl perform "Blackbird" on multiple occasions and it's always incredible.

The original- Blackbird

Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Performed by THE BEATLES, 1968

Also, here's a video that has nothing to do with Blackbird, but it's Dave Grohl, one of my musical idols, recreating Tiny Dancer, one of the most excellent songs of all time, from my favorite movie. A while ago I did a guest post for Allison at My Quarter-Life Crisis on the song that I feel most defines my life, and I so identify with this moment that I had to throw it in.

RED HOT CHILI PEPPERSHigher Ground (1989)

I've loved Red Hot Chili Peppers for years because they've managed to shift genres so many times without selling out. This Stevie Wonder cover expertly brings in the funk. PS- Check out the last ten seconds.

The original- Higher Ground

Written and performed by STEVIE WONDER, 1973

GUNS N' ROSESLive And Let Die (1991)

Don't have me killed for saying this, but I'm not a fan of Lennon or McCartney's solo stuff. This version is better
than McCartney's because it doesn't make me want to fall asleep, plus any song where I can listen to Slash bring it home works for me.

The original- Live and Let Die

Written by Paul McCartney and Linda McCartney


STEVIE RAY VAUGHAN- Superstition (live performances)

This is another legendary remake of what was already a classic. After listening to them both several times to find
a good Youtube video I still don't know which one I like better.

The original- Superstition

Written and performed by STEVIE WONDER, 1972

SINEAD O'CONNORNothing Compares 2 U (1990)

The first one doesn't even count. Even the video was an instant classic- it cleaned up at the VMA's. Play the whole
thing- Sinead's voice wrecks that shit.

The original- Nothing Compares 2 U

Written by Prince

Performed by THE FAMILY, 1985

THE CLASHI Fought The Law (1979)

The Clash is my favorite band ever. When Joe Strummer died I was depressed for a week. When I remembered that they covered "I Fought The Law" I was ecstatic that I had an excuse just to put them on this list. I got lucky that it happened to be a stellar rendition of a song that blew in the first place- The Clash changed the whole meaning and what it stood for. To this day it remains one of their best.

The original- I Fought The Law

Written by Sonny Curtis


THE POSTAL SERVICEAgainst All Odds (2004)

This one is how I stumbled across The Postal Service- I used to work for a guy that loved them and he played me their cover of this Phil Collins song. It had just come out at the time as part of the soundtrack to Wicker Park, and the electronic effects completely changed the dynamic and made the tune creepy and surreal. It actually made me NOT want Josh Hartnett to wait for me naked in my shower, and that's saying a lot.

BTW, the New York Post agrees with me- this made their list of the best cover songs of all time.

The original- Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)

Written and performed by PHIL COLLINS, 1984

IKE & TINA TURNERProud Mary (1971)

I don't like Tina Turner's music at all, but I have to give it to this one. Ike used to regularly beat the shit out of her, and let's compare the spiral of their careers. And we're done.

Tina's version is radically different than Creedence Clearwater Revival's, but hers is probably better known, and is now used as a feminine anthem. It was also covered on Glee. Sorry, CCR- you've been booted.

Also, I have to give props to Tina- she's like 70 and her body is better than mine. I hope I look like that when I'm old. Only I won't be black.

The original- Proud Mary

Written by John Fogerty


FAITH NO MOREEasy (1993); War Pigs (1989)

Yeah, I'm cheating, but I couldn't leave out either of these. "Easy" shows off Mike Patton's vocal skills while adding a blend of rock to The Commodores' original R&B. Meanwhile, their "War Pigs" cover sounds so much like Black Sabbath that it's almost uncanny. Check out both links and judge for yourself.


The original- Easy

Written by Lionel Richie

Performed by THE COMMODORES, 1977

War Pigs: 

The original- War Pigs

Written by Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward

Performed by BLACK SABBATH, 1970

THE BANGLESHazy Shade of Winter (1987)

Fun (or irrelevant) fact about me: The Bangles were the the first band I ever saw live, when I was three, unless you count Raffi (please don't). I still think they rock because they were an all-girl band that didn't dance around in bikinis and played their own instruments and wrote their own songs.

If you watch the Simon & Garfunkel video, it's really fucking boring. The Bangles revved it up with pop-rock guitars and cymbals and shit like that. When you're a kid, that's about as kick-ass as it gets. All my babysitters in the 80's wanted to be them.

The original- A Hazy Shade of Winter

Written by Paul Simon

Performed by SIMON & GARFUNKEL, 1966

PEARL JAMLove, Reign O'er Me (2007)

Pearl Jam performed this during VH1 Rock Honors, which I cancelled plans to watch (I'm a loser). Their cover is unbelievable- it sounds just like  The Who. I'm very reluctant about Who covers but this definitely does the band justice.

The original- Love, Reign O'er Me

Written by Pete Townshend

Performed by THE WHO, 1973


Maybe this version is so good because Billy Corgan sounds a lot like Stevie Nicks. I don't know if that's a compliment or not. Anyway, when someone mentions "Landslide" covers it's usually that horrible Dixie Chicks abortion, but this one is clearly the more appropriate choice. The Dixie Chicks eat ass.

The original- Landslide

Written by Stevie Nicks

Performed by FLEETWOOD MAC, 1975

TALKING HEADSTake Me to the River (1978)

The Talking Heads have become a symbol of punk rock, and this is one of the reasons that their version of "Take Me to the River" holds up just as well as the original. I happen to be more partial to this one, but that's because I grew up listening to Talking Heads.

Try to forget about that stupid singing fish when you listen to this.

The original- Take Me to the River

Written by Al Green and Mabon "Teenie" Hodges

Performed by AL GREEN, 1974

JEFF BUCKLEYHallelujah (1994)

I know this is almost a cop-out considering that this has been redone 17 kajillion times, but when a remake compels me to download the original, it needs to go on a list. Also, this song closed out the night during my recent Massachusetts trip, so I'll always think about Ginntastic and the rest of my Boston crew whenever I hear it.

The original- Hallelujah

Written and performed by LEONARD COHEN, 1984

JANIS JOPLINPiece of My Heart (1968)

This is another case where the teacher has been eclipsed by the student. I thought this was a Janis Joplin piece until I had to look up the 10 worst covers (see below) and found out that she took it from somebody else. There's a clear winner here, and it's not Erma Franklin. This is now Janis Joplin's song. Sorry. FAIL.

The original- Piece of My Heart

Written by Bert Berns, Jerry Ragovoy

Performed by ERMA FRANKLIN, 1967

ERIC CLAPTONCocaine (1977)

Eric Clapton is one of the greatest guitar players to ever walk on this Earth. The fact that he's probably done
enough of the substance in the title track to kill a baby elephant just makes his version even more relevant (seriously, how is this guy still alive?). Even if you're not a musician yourself you have to appreciate his stunning talent.

The original- Cocaine

Written and performed by JJ CALE, 1976

RADIOHEAD feat. SPARKLEHORSEWish You Were Here (2009)

I would push any one of you into a flaming cesspool of urine for Radiohead tickets. Considering Thom Yorke could release an entire LP of dogs shitting and I would buy it sight unseen, this was going to go on the list anyway. Luckily for me, it's actually an excellent cover.

The original- Wish You Were Here

Written by Roger Waters and David Gilmour

Performed by PINK FLOYD, 1975

TODD RUNDGRENWhile My Guitar Gently Weeps (2004)

My dad is a huge George Harrison fan and this might be his favorite Beatles song. When I told him my music
column this month was about cover songs, he asked me to put this one on the list. I would have done it for him anyway, but check this video out. Todd Rundgren absolutely fucking nails the guitar solo. I mean NAILS it. The vocals sound similar, too- if you look away from the screen you'll swear you're actually listening to The Beatles.

I make fun of him all the time, but my dad actually used to be pretty cool. Believe it or not, he used to shred with the best of them, before he got really old and started doing finance shit. I think he still picks up the axe sometimes, when he assumes that I'm not looking.

The original- While My Guitar Gently Weeps

Written by George Harrison

Performed by THE BEATLES, 1968

JEFF BECK & ROD STEWARTPeople Get Ready (1985)

This song has been covered so many times that I almost don't want to put it on the list, but Jeff Beck is a guitar prodigy that didn't even read music. The solo in this piece alone is worth the inclusion. Also, say what you will about Rod Stewart's music blowing goats (I have proof), but when he and Beck were with Faces, it was the best work of his career, and this reminded us of what could have been. Too bad they want to murder each other.

The original- People Get Ready

Written by Curtis Mayfield

Performed by THE IMPRESSIONS, 1965

JOHNNY CASHHurt (2003)

I actually saw Nine Inch Nails perform this live, and their version is pretty outstanding in itself. That being said, even Trent Reznor admits that Cash's version is better. I even heard that Nine Inch Nails don't like to perform it anymore. Reznor's been quoted as saying that he wrote it, but Cash has lived it. It's true, and you can hear it in Cash's vocals. I don't know anyone who doesn't like this version. I love it, and I detest country music.

The original- Hurt

Written by Trent Reznor

Performed by NINE INCH NAILS, 1994


Here it is. My absolute favorite cover EVER. Before you give me any shit (like, "are you high? You have Hendrix, Clapton and The Beatles on this list."), first of all, I have to say, Fuck You. This is my list, and if you have a problem, make your own. Second- no, I'm not high, but if you are, and you're not sharing, you're obviously not a loyal follower and get the hell away from my blog.

Third- I grew up listening to grunge and SoCal punk. Social Distortion has been heavy in my rotation for at least the last fifteen years. They're on tour right now and I'm heartbroken because they're not coming anywhere near the LA area. But ANYWAY. Social D has managed to take a lauded country song (which even I have to admit isn't that bad) and completely switch it up. There's a wall of guitars and heavy drums and it's all-around bad-ass. Mike Ness screams a lot and sounds really angry. This came out in 1990 and I still listen to it at least twice a week. On the off chance that anyone from Social Distortion's camp finds this blog, please, PLEASE come to LA. I'll clean your trailers for tickets.

The original- Ring of Fire

Written by June Carter and Merle Kilgore

Performed by ANITA CARTER, 1963

The Greatest Cover Artist Of All Time: JIMI HENDRIX

I couldn't pick which of Jimi Hendrix's covers should go in the number one spot, so I just made the list without him and gave him his own category. While he had a bunch of hits on his own, Hendrix could also have built a solid career on his cover acts alone. His first single, "Hey Joe," was originally done by The Leaves in 1965, but honestly, does anyone really care about their version? He followed that one up with one of his most famous tracks, "All Along the Watchtower," which was a Dylan cover. He did another Dylan hit, "Like A Rolling Stone" (one of my personal favorites, if you care) at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967.

After going through my entire list, I've decided that the most prevalent cover, not just from Hendrix but from anyone, is his cover of the Star-Spangled Banner that he used to close out Woodstock and define an entire generation. Both my parents still talk about it like it was the second coming of Jesus. I give them a lot shit, but it's probably because I'm bitter that I was born way too late to have been there.

The Star-Spangled Banner at Woodstock: 

His other most well-known covers:

All Along The Watchtower (1968)

Like A Rolling Stone (1967)

Hey Joe (1966)

There's my Top 40. And, just to stay with the spirit of my cynicism, here are some truly awful ones:

FAITH HILLPiece Of My Heart

Here's an amazing classic song once again ruined by genre and lesser talent. Janis Joplin's vocal styling is so distinguishable that Faith Hill has no business coming in and messing it all up with her stupid country shit and making it all sweet. Congratulations on getting one of my Top 40 Best into my Top 10 Worst, Faith Hill!

The Janis Joplin version- Piece Of My Heart

Written by Bert Berns and Jerry Ragovoy

Performed by JANIS JOPLIN

See the Top 40 Greatest Covers for the Janis Joplin version.


I'm not really a Joni Mitchell fan, but I will say that she's a tremendous songwriter and I have great respect for
her work. I grew up listening to my mom sing along to her CD's, so shit like this pains me. What makes this even worse is that I can't stand Vanessa Carlton, so I have to hear her butcher a huge chunk of my childhood.

The original- Big Yellow Taxi

Written and performed by JONI MITCHELL, 1970


Remember this one? This came out right after September 11th and featured a bunch of irritating famous people singing along to one of the greatest R&B tracks ever recorded. Of course it was produced by Bono, who'll jump at any chance to shove his "charitable efforts" down the public's throats. The obnoxious video featured all the celebrities with blindfolds on- if you ask me (which you kind of did, since you're still reading), those cloths covered the wrong facial feature.

The kicker was that this was supposed to be for AIDS awareness, but proceeds eventually went to a September 11th charity too. Before you all get on my ass about hating something that was for a good cause, I'm only pissed off that they ruined the song and that Bono is playing Jesus again. Can't you ever just donate money anonymously or something? Jerkoff.

The original- What's Going On

Written by Renaldo "Obie" Benson, Al Cleveland and Marvin Gaye

Performed by MARVIN GAYE, 1971

311Lovesong (2004)

This pissed me off bigtime when it came out because not only was the cover really shitty, but the movie it was featured in sucked balls, too, which made this version even worse. I've always hated 311 and loved The Cure, so I was really mad about this one.

The original- Lovesong

Written by Robert Smith

Performed by THE CURE, 1989

BRITNEY SPEARS(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction (2000)

The most offensive part about this cover is that Keith Richards actually liked it. Then again, he's perpetually stoned, so he could have been played a recording of pigeons vomiting and it would have had the same effect.

The original- (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction

Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

Performed by THE ROLLING STONES, 1965

CELINE DION & ANASTACIAYou Shook Me All Night Long (2002)

The only reason this isn't lower down on the list is because the dancing and air guitar are fucking hilarious. The only person less bad-ass than Celine Dion is the toddler that lives down the hall from me.

The original- You Shook Me All Night Long

Written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young and Brian Johnson

Performed by AC/DC, 1980

LIMP BIZKITBehind Blue Eyes (2003)

If I ever made a wishlist of people to kill, Fred Durst would be on it. I hate, hate, HATE Limp Bizkit. The Who is one of my favorite bands of all time and Fred Durst is destroying this song. It sounds like there's a hamster in his throat trying to claw its way out. I can't even listen to this. It gets me way too angry.

Now, I'm not saying I would push Fred Durst towards the speeding truck. I'm just saying that maybe I wouldn't warn him that it was coming.

The original- Behind Blue Eyes

Written by Pete Townshend

Performed by THE WHO, 1971

SHERYL CROWSweet Child o' Mine (1999)

There is nothing worse than taking a classic, instantly recognizable guitar riff and turning it into cheesy pop. Sheryl Crow manages to take all that is holy and awesome about this song and transform it into evil. No, Sheryl Crow, NO.

The original- Sweet Child o' Mine (1988)

Written by Axl Rose, Slash and Izzy Stradlin

Performed by GUNS N' ROSES

AVRIL LAVIGNEImagine (2007)

Avril Lavigne loves to pretend she's all hard and shit and then threatens to "crash the mall" (ooh... bad-ass). Then she goes and pulls crap like this. I'm confused. That's not how this works. I don't like this at all.

The original- Imagine

Written and performed by JOHN LENNON, 1971

HILARY DUFFMy Generation (2004)

What the FUCK? This is really happening. I can't even believe this. This is the most horrible thing I have ever seen. Please get this away from me.


The original- My Generation

Written by Pete Townshend

Performed by THE WHO, 1965

I have a bunch more, but this post is going on 2 days and I'm starting to cramp. I'm also stumped as to the topic of next month's column, so I'm taking suggestions. Shoot me an email at or leave me a comment.