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Archive for the ‘James Gandolfini’ Category

  grantland8SOUNDTRACK: RALPH STANLEY-Tiny Desk Concert #31 (October 13, 2009).

ralpRalph Stanley is apparently a living bluegrass legend, although I’ve never heard of him.  He plays a clawhammer banjo (and apparently has for 63 years).

The concert lasted only 6 minutes, but in that time he sang three a capella songs: “Gloryland,” “Turn Back, Turn Back” and “Amazing Grace.”

It’s hard to assess a legend based on this performance.  I’ve no idea how good his voice was back in the day.  He sounds fine here, albeit understandably quite old.  I’d have liked to hear his banjo.

[READ: January 3, 2014] Grantland #8

It is becoming apparent to me that Grantland loves basketball.  Like, a lot more than any other sport.  This issue had a ton of basketball in it.  And, I have to admit I was a little tired of it by the end–there was a lot less pop culture stuff, too.  So, it felt especially basketball heavy.  I realize of course that the time frame covered was the playoffs, but still.

BILL SIMMONS-“Searching for a Superman”
A lengthy article about Dwight Howard, discussing the pros and cons of signing him again.

MARK TITUS-“How Did He Get So Good?”
A look at Paul George and Danny Green doing better than expected in the NCAA playoffs.

CHARLES P. PIERCE-“A Dark Day in Boston
Pierce wonders about Boston after the Boston Marathon bombing–he says the city will come back stronger. (more…)

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CV1_TNY_10_14_13McCall.inddSOUNDTRACK: HORSE FEATHERS-Tiny Desk Concert #14 (May 8, 2009).

horseI’d never heard of Horse Feathers before this Tiny Desk Concert.  Justin Ringle is the lead singer and guitarist of the band (which in this incarnation includes a violin and cello).  Ringle’s voice is soft and kind of high-pitched.  They seem very well suited to the Tiny Desk, (and are in stark contrast to Tom Jones!).

They play three songs, “Working Poor,” and “Curs in the Weeds” are beautiful with the wonderful strings accenting his voice and guitar.

In their interview they talk a little about their instruments (all of which are very old!).  Indeed the guitar is old, but the violin (one of only 4 made) is even older and the cello is nearly 100 years old.  Very impressive.

For the final song, “Heathen’s Kiss, ” the violinist busts out singing saw.  It’s awesome.

I really enjoyed this simple and beautiful set.

[READ: January 7, 2014] “Caught Napping”

This New Yorker has several small essays about work.  They are primarily from people who I wasn’t familiar with–only Amy Poehler saved the five from being unread.  When after reading all of them I enjoyed them enough to include them all here.

The pieces are labelled under “Work for Hire” and each talks about a humiliating job.

Nicole Holofcenter is a filmmaker.  She has directed a number of films that I have liked (including Walking and Talking) and most recently James Gandolfini’s last movie (which I haven’t seen), Enough Said.

In this essay she talks about a job working for “Mr. Stone” (which I’m not sure if we’re supposed to assume is Oliver Stone or not).  At any rate the job paid a fortune at the time ($500/wk) and all she had to do was answer the phone. (more…)

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