Earlier this week, the lawsuit against AEG Live over Michael Jackson's premature passing rumbled past the point of weird and drove straight into crazy town. The culprit was AEG CEO Randy Phillips, who claimed that his friend Brenda Richie -- ex-wife of Lionel Richie -- had spoken to the spirit of Michael Jackson. Phillips said on the stand: "[Brenda] said Michael told her that it wasn't Dr Murray's fault -- that he had accidentally killed himself." Clutching at straws much, Mr. Phillips?
But this isn't the only time that claims have been made about famous musicians communicating with the living after they've died. Here are five other strange examples.
As we all know, the most irritating Beatles song in history is "Yellow Submarine." Well, we learned yesterday that the second most irritating Beatles song in history, "Octopus's Garden," is about to be turned into a children's book, which will come with a CD of unheard Ringo Starr tracks. (Joy.) The book thing wasn't actually the drummer's idea, but when Simon & Schuster approached Starr and asked to use his song this way, he agreed. Ringo's not the first musician to get involved in children's publishing, and he won't be the last. Here are some that have gone before him.
Back in her Blond Ambition days, if Madonna had made a reference to "Mr. Peabody's Apples," we'd have assumed it was a euphemism for Warren Beatty's nether-regions. Sadly, it's actually the title of one of her children's books about a school teacher/little league coach who is the victim of slanderous gossip in the small town of Happville. In addition to writing an entire series called "The English Roses," Madonna also wrote what is actually quite a splendid tale of pompous dog-hood called "Lotsa de Casha." Which is kind of awesome. Dammit!
As anticipation grows for the release of Brad Pitt's zombie epic, World War Z, he's been singing the praises of the work Muse has done for the movie's soundtrack. Pitt recently called Muse's involvement "nice kismet." Given who's involved, we think he's either crazy or exaggerating -- a lot. And given what kind of flick this is, it might be a good time to look back at five pictures whose soundtracks were actually better than the movies.
The third eye logo of Oakland hip-hop crew Hieroglyphics.
By TAMARA PALMER and IAN S. PORT
Having a great band logo is more than art; it's also part science, alchemy, and business smarts. To create something impactful is like capturing lightning in a bottle, and a successful effort results in an image fans will want to show off for years. A few local greats have managed to do pull that off. Here are our picks for the seven best band logos in Bay Area music. Leave yours in the comments.
So. Word on the street is that both Drake and Kanye West are filming cameos for the upcoming Anchorman 2 movie. We'd love to see both of them doing something self-deprecating and hilarious, but Kanye is involved, so we'll not hold our breath. Truthfully, the only thing better than musicians showing up in movies when we least expect it is when they do that and then mock themselves. Here, then, are our favorite examples of musicians mocking themselves in movie cameos.
Daft Punk's latest single, "Get Lucky," from the upcoming album Random Access Memories, was heralded as the Song of the Summer weeks before it was even released. The Internet was salivating like a starving puppy awaiting a leak of the track. Fake remixes a-plenty were being shared in droves. When the official radio edit finally started to show up, it was like sweet manna from the heavens above. The slick collaboration between the robots, vocalist Pharrell Williams, and funk legend Nile Rogers on guitar delivered on everything we expected and more.
As the days following the release passed, the song gained a lot of momentum in the clubs and on national Top 40 radio. This, of course, was a cue for all fame-hungry, self indulgent YouTube "musicians" to record their own cover of the track in order to gain a tiny bit of Internet notoriety. There are now literally hundreds upon hundreds of terrible "Get Lucky" covers on YouTube, and we have done the heroic deed of finding the very worst for your viewing and listening displeasure. You can thank us later.
We all know that story about how mad people got when John Lennon said the Beatles were "more popular than Jesus." There was uproar! There were banners! There were protests! But these days, musicians have the audacity to compare themselves to actual Gods and no one bats an eyelid. Let's take a look at the five main offenders.
Boobs. Everyone loves 'em -- even gay men. So can we really blame pop starlets for coming up with outfits that push the appearance of their breasticles to cartoonish levels? The answer is: Yes. Yes we can. Not only are there small children watching, but presenting breasts as cakes and/or flamethrowers just seems a little overblown, no? Here are five degrees of boobylicious stage outfits.
As with many things lady-pop-star-related, Madge was the first to do it. Her Jean Paul Gaultier cone bras, made for the 1990 Blond Ambition tour, were both controversial and a breath of fresh air for women everywhere who wanted to let their assets speak loud and proud. Madonna has never been one to hide her sexuality, and she's been a vocal proponent of female strength since, well, forever. So if she was gonna put a corset on, it had better make her baby-feeders look like weapons. Mission accomplished!
As you are no doubt already aware, earlier this week, Brad Paisley and LL Cool J released one of the most embarrassing songs ever written. In "Accidental Racist", the two try to solve national issues regarding racial tension and the legacy of slavery with lyrics like "If you don't judge my do-rag, I won't judge your red flag," and "If you don't judge my gold chains, I'll forget the iron chains." Ta-daa, everybody! Problem solved! Now, can't we all just get along?
These two idiots aren't the first musicians to reduce complicated issues surrounding racism and history into over-simplified solutions and hokey objections to injustice. Here are five other examples of artists tackling racism with all the gravitas of upset five-year-old children. "Where is the Love?" Black Eyed Peas
This is one of those tracks that will remain in our personal Worst Songs Ever list forever. "Where is the Love?" has some of the most incredibly facile lyrics we've ever heard anywhere. Here's one of our favorite bits: "But if you only have love for your own race, then you only leave space to discriminate, and to discriminate only generates hate, and when you hate then you're bound to get irate." And there we were, thinking that discrimination and hate and feeling irate were good things! Thanks for clearing that up, Black Eyed Peas. Now that racism has been dealt with, would you mind solving world hunger? Cheers.