Friday, September 30, 2011

TV: Thursday CBS Comedies (9/29/11)

Thursday night - just one more work day to get to the weekend. So, I certainly love to unwind with my favorite the Big Bang Theory. And this week we have the added bonus of the series premiere of How To Be a Gentleman.

Let's get to the episode reviews (***spoilers*** to come)...

Ready For the World - Ready For the World

Founded by Melvin Riley (lead vocals, keyboardist) and Gordon Stozier (lead guitar), the R&B group Ready For the World came out of Flint, Michigan, in the middle of the 1980's. Their June 1985 self-titled debut Ready For the World did very well, reaching number 17 on the US Billboard Album chart (with a forty-eight week run) and number 3 on the US Billboard R&B charts. It achieved Platinum sales status. While they would release two more albums in the late 80's and one in the 90's, this debut was their best selling record to date thanks to a number of hit singles on the pop and R&B charts.

Being from Michigan, Ready For the World found a way to pick up that Minneapolis sound made popular by Prince, the Time, Alexander O'Neal and more, and merge it into their own compositions. There are many times listening to this album that some uninformed could confuse these songs for ones done by Prince as they share similar music elements and a penchant for sexually suggestive lyrics.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

TV: Survivor South Pacific (ep. 3)

Week three of the new season of Survivor and things are definitely heating up in the South Pacific. Redemption Island comes into play with a duel plus people can't seem to keep their big mouths shut.

Let's take a look at the details.

INXS - Kick

The sixth studio album and final release in the 1980’s for the Australian band INXS was 1987’s Kick. It was the second album from the band to go to number 1 in their native Australia. In the US the album went to number 3 and in the UK it went to number 9; in both countries it was certified Platinum a number of times over.

Side one starts with the funk and grunts of “Guns in the Sky”. The percussion by Jon Farriss is a simple but effective pattern.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

TV: Monday CBS Comedies (9/26/11)

The second week of TV is upon us and Monday night I am firmly parked over on CBS. Here are my impressions of this week's shows (warning: there will be plot *spoilers* - proceed with caution).

Peter Gabriel - Peter Gabriel III

On May 16th of 1980, the former member of Genesis released his third studio album. Like the first two and the fourth, it was simply titled Peter Gabriel but it is also known by its designation of three (III) and by the name “Melt” due to the melting facial image of the artist on the front cover. No matter what you call it, it was his best selling solo album up to that time as it went to number 1 in the UK and number 22 on the US Billboard Album chart. It spent a total of twenty-nine weeks on the latter chart.

The album was ranked number 45 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 Greatest Albums of the 80’s. Q magazine ranked it at number 53 on its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever and number 29 on its list of the 40 Best Albums of the ‘80s.

TV: Tuesday FOX comedies (9/27/11)

Another Tuesday night at our house meant another round of FOX Tuesday comedies for me. All in all, a pretty decent night. Let's get to them:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

TV: Pan Am (series premiere)

This weekend, a new drama debuted Sunday night on the ABC network. Pan Am is a period drama that focuses on pilots and stewardesses working for the world-famous Pan American World Airways in 1963. The program is written by Jack Orman, who wrote for ER, and is directed by Thomas Schlamme, who directed the West Wing.

The Cars - Heartbeat City

This review of the Cars fifth studio release, from March 13th of 1984, is by request from some of my followers on Twitter.

Heartbeat City benefited from radio airplay of a number of hits as well as music videos in heavy rotation on MTV. As a result, the album went to number 3 on the US Billboard 200 charts and was certified multi-platinum; in the UK it went to number 25 on the charts.

Monday, September 26, 2011

TV: Charlie's Angels (2011, ep. 1)

This past week, the ABC network debuted a new series with a very familiar name - Charlie’s Angels. The new series stars Annie Ilonzeh (Kate), Minka Kelly (Eve), Rachael Taylor (Abby), Ramon Rodriguez (Bosley) and Victor Garber (as the voice of Charlie). The three women and Bosley work for a boss they've never met at the Townsend Detective agency. Sounds familiar? It should.

But this is not your father's Charlie's Angels.

State Cows - State Cows

The end of last week I got an unexpected email from one Daniel Andersson. Turns out he is the lead singer and guitarist for a group he formed with Stefan Olofsson (keyboards and bass) in Umea, Sweden. For awhile they were the foundation of a short-lived Steely Dan tribute band called “2nd Arrangement”. Eventually, though, they began to play their own music under the name State Cows. In 2010, they released their self-titled debut album with the help of a number of guest musicians.

I gave one of their tunes a listen and was an instant fan. I knew I had to hear the rest of their album as soon as possible.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Marineman: A Matter of Life and Depth

Last month, Image Comics released a trade paperback collection of the first six issue of Ian Churchill’s Marineman comic (the first issue of the comic originally appeared in December of 2010). Churchill does double-duty as both writer and artist on this book, with assists from Alex Sollazzo and Nichola Chapius on the coloring. The collection also features a forward by famed comic book writer Dave Gibbons, sketches, the original cover gallery and more.

Vision Quest (soundtrack)

Welcome to another edition of Soundtrack Sunday.

In 1985, a coming-of-age film that starred Matthew Modine, Linda Fiorentino and Daphne Zuniga hit theatres. Vision Quest told the story of a high school wrestler who falls for an older woman that is renting a room at his father's house. Madonna also makes an appearance in the film as a club singer. The film was moderately successful in theatres in the US, grossing $13 million.

The soundtrack album for Vision Quest was released three days prior to the film's opening. It boasted an interesting mix of performers.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Book Review: Reality 36

From the publisher Angry Robot comes the debut novel Reality 36 from a British science fiction writer named Guy Haley. Set in the 22nd Century, an investigative duo is hired to locate a missing Artificial Intelligence Rights activist. Their mission takes them into the digital realm known as Reality 36 and through the Great Firewall of China. But there is more to this mission than meets the eye. And that’s good because there is more to these two investigators as well: Richards is a Level 5 Artificial Intelligence himself while Klein is an ex-military special ops cyborg.

Captain and Tennille - Love Will Keep Us Together

Welcome to another edition of Seventies Saturday.

After meeting while working on a musical together and later touring with the Beach Boys, keyboardist Daryl “the Captain” Dragon and singer Toni Tennille discovered that they made beautiful music together. 1975 was a big year for them. First off their debut album Love Will Keep Us Together was released and then the two were wed (their thirty-five plus years and still going strong marriage is proof that the album title is true).

Friday, September 23, 2011

Rick James - Street Songs

On April 7th of 1981, Buffalo, NY, native Rick James released his fifth studio album. Street Songs was certified Platinum in the US, reaching number 3 on the Billboard Album charts and number 1 on the R&B Album charts. Three singles were released from the record, all of which went to number 1 on the US Dance Singles chart.

TV: the Big Bang Theory (season 5, ep. 1 and 2)

Yes, yes, yes. Thursday nights with the return of the Big Bang Theory - not one but two new episodes this week. Our household was very happy with this. My wife, my teenaged son and I all enjoy this show a lot.

Let's comment on them, shall we? (***spoilers*** ahead)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

TV: Survivor South Pacific (ep. 2)

Last night was the second episode of the season, and once again I was watching the show with iPad in hand (for live Tweeting from @JeffProbst and watching his Tout video answers to questions during the commercial breaks).

Lots of great stuff this week. ***Spoilers*** ho below.

The Vapors - New Clear Days

Coming from Guidford, Surrey, the four member England new wave band the Vapors made their recording debut in 1980. The album title New Clear Days included the play on words for “nuclear”, given that concern over nuclear weapons and power stations was a major headline at the time.

The line-up for the group was David Fenton (songwriter, guitarist and vocalist), Howard Smith (drummer), Edward Bazalgette (lead guitarist) and Steve Smith (bass guitarist and vocals).

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

R.E.M. Calls It Quits

Today, September 21st, the Athens, Georgia, based band R.E.M. have announced that the band is breaking up. After a thirty-one year run and a number of amazing albums, they decided that it was time for a good thing to come to an end.

And while I haven't always been the hugest of fans, I do appreciate their musical contributions. Through my wife, who is a fan, I got to know their albums from the 80's and the 90's. This added quite a bit of great music to my library.

Here are the three album reviews I did from their 1980's offerings. Enjoy.

For R.E.M. - Murmur click here

For R.E.M. - Document click here

For R.E.M. - Green click here

TV: Fox Comedies (9/20/11)

So, last night Fox debuted their new Tuesday night comedy line up, with a bit of a musical theme running through all three shows. After a long, crazy day at work, a little comedy was just what I needed.

Let's look at the shows. (warning: plot *spoilers* might be leaked out here)

"Weird Al" Yankovic - "Weird Al" Yankovic

In the early 80's, musician and parodist Alfred Matthew Yankovic became known the world over as “Weird Al”. With his self-titled debut album released on April 26th 1983 “Weird Al” Yankovic, the 24 year old from Lynwood, California, began a musical journey of comedic songs that continues to this day. This first release had moderate success, reaching number 139 on the US Billboard 200 charts and certifying Gold. There were three singles released from the album which also included his very first song from back in 1979.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Huey Lewis and the News - Picture This

After their 1980 debut album (click here for that review), Huey Lewis and the News spent a little time to put together their sophomore release. The extra time seemed to be just what the band needed as Picture This, released January 29th 1982, helped the band breakthrough. With the help of three hit singles and the advent of the video music format on MTV, the album spent thirty-five weeks on the US Billboard album charts, peaking at number 13, and was certified Gold.

The first track on side one is “Change of Heart” This mid-tempo rocker tells the tale of a woman who has decided to end a relationship. Drummer Billy Gibson delivers a nice steady beat here.

TV: Monday CBS Comedies (9/19/11)

Ah, TV premiere week is now in full swing. And last night my typical Monday CBS comedy line up had two hours of new programming. Here are my first impressions (warning: there will be plot *spoilers* - proceed with caution).

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Clash - London Calling

Though it was released during the final two weeks of the 1970’s in the UK, in the US the Clash’s third studio album London Calling came out during the first month of 1980. This double album sold very well, going Platinum in the US and Gold in the UK and Canada. In the US the album went to number 27 on the Billboard album charts; in the UK it went to number 9. Rolling Stone magazine ranked the record number 1 on its list of the 100 Best Albums of 1980 and number 8 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All-Time.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Book Review: Anything

Anything, the fifth fictional novel by author Michael Baron, is the story of Ken and Melissa, two engaged lawyers who are madly in love. As the couple prepares for their upcoming wedding, Ken wants to give her a special gift from an odd jewelry store they often frequent. However, the mysterious proprietor Stephon also gives Ken a unique opportunity as well - the chance to see the love of his life as she grew up from a child into a young woman. This blessing turns into a nightmare though when he discovers a dark secret in Melissa's past that forever altered her life. Will Ken do anything for the woman he loves? Would he alter events to prevent the tragedy, even at the risk of everything he holds dearest?

Eddie and the Cruisers (soundtrack)

Welcome to another edition of Soundtrack Sunday.

With the crisp autumn weather in the fall of 1983 came to theatres a film about a fictional 1960's rock 'n roll band called Eddie and the Cruisers. Based on a novel by P.F. Kluge, the film starred Tom Berenger, Michael Paré, Joe Pantoliano, Matthew Laurance and Ellen Barkin. While the film did not do very well at the box office and received quite a bit of mixed to negative reviews, the movie found new life on cable television. Thanks to music provided by John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band, the accompanying soundtrack album reached number 9 on the US Billboard album charts and sold over four million copies by the fall of 1984; two hit singles from the record also received a good bit of air play.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

DVD: Glee (season 2)

This week, the complete season 2 of Glee was released on DVD (also season 2 volume 2 for those folks, like me, who bought the first half of season 2 on DVD back in January). The six disks contain all twenty-two episodes from the season in widescreen format. The extras are plentiful with behind the scenes info and more. My favorite part is the Glee Music Jukebox feature that allows you to jump to the musical performances within each episode, for when you want to hear that favorite song.

For me, the sophomore season of Glee was a mixed bag. There were aspects I loved and aspects that just didn't work for me. I thought I would take a few paragraphs, broken down by topic, to hit what I consider some of those highlights and lowlights of the season.

Pablo Cruise - Worlds Away

Welcome to another edition of Seventies Saturday.

So this week I was chatting with my friend and up-and-coming comedian Michael O'Connell (click here to go to his blog and find links to his YouTube comedy clips) and he mentioned that tonight (September 17, 2011) that he would be opening for Pablo Cruise in Loomis, California (at the CCD Expo). As a fan of this pop/rock band from the 70's and 80's, I was sufficiently thrilled for Mike.

Pablo Cruise was formed in California back in 1973 when members of former bands Stoneground (Cory Lerios, David Jenkins, Steve Price) and It's A Beautiful Day (Bud Cockrell) came together. They put out their first two albums with some minor success. Then in 1977, they hit it big with a couple Billboard hits. The band went through some line up changes in the mid-80's before an initial break-up in 1986. A decade later, they reunited briefly; in 2004 they came back together once more. Today they continue to tour, mainly in and around California, with three quarters of the original line up (bassist Bud Cockrell passed away in 2010). You can find out more about the band's touring dates at their website (click here for that site).

Today I'll be reviewing Pablo Cruise's fourth studio album, 1978's Worlds Away. The record went to number 6 on the Billboard Hot 200 album charts. It was a platinum seller in the US, and it went gold in both Canada and Australia.

Friday, September 16, 2011

DVD: the Big Bang Theory (season 4)

This week, season 4 of the Big Bang Theory came out on DVD.

Besides the 24 episodes as seen on TV, the set also includes a few features like: looking at the theme song by the Barenaked Ladies, a gag reel, and three segments where the actors ask each other questions. I picked up my copy at the local Target which had an exclusive fourth disk that included the show's San Diego Comic-Con panel discussion from the summer of 2010 (bridging season 3 and 4).

As most know, this happens to be one of my favorite comedies on TV right now. I love the whole geek-vibe of the show (from the science terms to the social awkwardness to the comic book references).

Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814

Coming off the success of her previous release, the youngest sister of the Jackson family clan put out her fourth studio album in 1989 entitled Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814. Her idea was to create an overall concept album that addressed social injustices. Once more she worked with producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis (formerly of the Time) to create another powerhouse record.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

TV: Big Brother (season 13) finale

I was an original fan of the US version of the reality show Big Brother. I watched faithfully from that first season in 2000 through the first All-Stars season in 2006. After that, this show sort of fell off my viewing radar. When this summer started, someone was talking about it on Twitter and convinced me to check it out. The twist this season was that six veteran players were coming back to play along side eight newbies. I decided to tune in, and I was instantly sucked back into all the twists and turns this game holds.

TV: Survivor South Pacific (ep. 1)

Last night, the 23rd season of the popular reality game show started. And already out of the gate Survivor: South Pacific looks to be very entertaining.

As done last season, the show features two returning former Survivor players (this time Ozzy - from the Cook Islands and Micronesia seasons, and Coach - for Tocantins and Heroes Vs. Villains) as well as the new twist of Redemption Island. There are also sixteen new players with interesting backgrounds.

The Kinks - Give the People What They Want

In 1981, the Kinks entered into their third decade of making music with their twenty-first studio album Give the People What They Want. While the record failed to chart in their native UK, the album did reach number 15 on the US Billboard album charts.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Any Trouble - Where Are All The Nice Girls

The British rock band Any Trouble was formed in Crewe, England, in the late 1970’s. The roster consisted of Clive Gregson on vocals, Chris Parks on guitar, Phil Barnes on bass and Mel Harley on drums.

In 1980, the band put out their debut album Where Are All the Nice Girls on the Stiff Records label. Any Trouble gained instant notoriety in the UK after a glowing article in Melody Maker magazine, but it was a double-edged sword as lead singer Gregson was unkindly compared to Elvis Costello. While there are a few similarities (guitar based pop songs with a pleasing male lead voice), that’s about as far as the comparison goes really. Gregson doesn’t have near the angst or attitude of early Costello. Most of the songs here are straight forward love songs.

For this review, I’ll be doing the original UK vinyl release. The US release had a couple extra tracks and a play different order.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising

The trio of hip-hop performers from Long Island, NY, known as De La Soul (Kelvin Mercer aka “Posdnuos“, David Jude Jolicoeur aka “Trugoy“, and Vincent Mason aka “Pasemaster Mase“) made their recording debut on the 1989 release 3 Feet High and Rising. Produced by Prince Paul from Tommy Boy Records, the release was certified Platinum in the US where it reached number 24 on the Billboard album charts, number 1 on the R&B album charts, and number 13 in the UK.

The album was a critical success as well. It appeared in the top 10 of a number of publications best of lists for 1989. Rolling Stone listed it at number 346 of its 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. Q Magazine ranked it number 20 on its list of the 40 Best Albums of the 80’s.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Meat Loaf - Dead Ringer

After much success with the 1977 debut Bat Out of Hell (for that review click here), Jim Steinman was ready to start work on the next album for Meat Loaf. However, things didn’t quite pan out the way Steinman had hoped; the combination of touring, drugs and exhaustion caused Meat Loaf to lose his voice. It would be a few more years before the time was right for them to come back together on 1981’s Dead Ringer.

As a sophomore effort, there was a lot of expectation for the album. Compared to Meat Loaf’s debut, though, some might consider this one a bit of a disappointment. It did, however, get certified Platinum in the UK (where it went to number 1 on the charts) and Gold in Canada. In the US, the album reached number 45 on the Billboard Album chart.

Book Review: the Broken Teaglass

I have read many books about writing, being an amateur writer myself for most of my life. One of the things the books always recommend is to write about what you know.

Emily Arsenault certainly does that with her 2009 novel The Broken Teaglass. The story is set at a fictional dictionary publisher the Samuelson Company. Emily herself worked as an editorial assistant at Merriam-Webster for four years herself, writing definitions. One of the book’s lead characters Billy Webb was a philosophy major before joining the world of lexicography. Emily herself majored in philosophy as well.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Queen - Flash Gordon (soundtrack)

Welcome to another edition of Soundtrack Sunday.

In researching yesterday’s blog post, I realized I had nearly forgotten about the soundtrack to the 1980 science fiction film Flash Gordon, which starred Sam J. Jones, Melody Anderson, Timothy Dalton and Max von Sydow. With its campy style and bizarre costumes, this film adaptation of the classic comic-strip failed to win over large audiences.

The soundtrack, with music performed entirely by the rock band Queen, fared only slightly better. This, their ninth studio album, went to number 10 on the UK charts (where it was also certified Gold), number 2 in Germany and number 23 in the US.

Remembering 9/11/01

Today marks the tenth anniversary of the September 11th attacks on the United States. Back in 2001, as most people were arriving to work for another day, two planes crashed into the World Trade Center towers in New York City, killing hundreds of people, shaking the American spirit to its very core and forever changing the familiar skyline. Soon we'd learn of another hi-jacked plane on a course for Washington DC, and how the brave passengers risked their own lives to take the plane down before it reached its final objective.

This was one of those events that always stays in your mind. Just like the generation before me who can tell you exactly where they were when they heard about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, I can tell you exactly where I was when we heard the shocking news of 9/11.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Queen - A Night at the Opera

Welcome to another edition of Seventies Saturday.

This past week would have marked the sixty-fifth birthday of Queen’s amazing, energetic, charismatic and matchless front-man Freddie Mercury. As such, I thought it was only fitting that I do a review of one of his band’s albums, their fourth studio release from 1975 A Night at the Opera.

Taking its name from the classic Marx Brothers comedy film from 1935, the album was a commercial success; it has been certified multi-platinum and went to number 1 in the UK and number 4 in the US. A Night at the Opera is also recognized on a number of critical lists. The BBC ranked it at number 9 on its poll of the Top 100 Albums. Q magazine ranked it number 17 on the list of the 50 Best British Albums Ever. Rolling Stone magazine ranked it number 230 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All-Time.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Yazoo/Yaz - Upstairs at Eric's

Around the rest of the world they were known as Yazoo; in the US (due to copyright issues) they were known as Yaz. However you refer to the duo of Vince Clarke and Alison Moyet, there is no denying their amazing collaborative efforts. Though their time as a group was short-lived, their musical influences have been felt in other bands for the past three decades. Their synth pop sound perfectly combined the electronic trends of Europe to the American approach to R&B.

In 1981, Clarke was coming off his time with Depeche Mode. The songwriter and keyboardist teamed up with a newcomer singer Moyet and together they put out two albums. The first was Upstairs at Eric’s, a debut released on August 23rd, 1982, that was certified as Platinum. In the UK, it reached number 2 on the charts. In the US, it only reached number 92 on the Billboard charts but got an incredible amount of play in clubs and on college radio stations.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tracy Chapman - Tracy Chapman

The American singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman is just a year older than me. She was born in 1964 in Cleveland, Ohio, and was inspired to be a musician by watching shows like Hee Haw. After playing her guitar in coffeehouses while in college, she eventually was signed to the Elektra Records label and released her self-titled debut Tracy Chapman in 1988.

This debut record was very popular, going multi-platinum the world over. It went to number 1 in many countries (the US, Canada, the UK, Germany, Italy, Austria, and the Netherlands). The record helped her to win the Grammy Awards for the Best New Artist and for Best Contemporary Folk Album in 1989. Tracy Chapman was rated number 10 on Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest Albums of the 80’s and number 261 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All-Time.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Happy 60th Birthday, Chrissie Hynde

Today, September 7th, is the birthday of rock's amazing front-woman Chrissie Hynde. 60 years ago today she was born in Akron, Ohio.

Chrissie is one of those people you would want to use when playing a "Six Degrees of Seperation" game of the music world. This singer/song-writer/guitarist was in a band with Mark Mothersbaugh (later of Devo) while attending Kent State University (and was on campus on May 4, 1970, on the day of the famed shootings). In 1973 she moved to London and worked for a time at Malcolm McLaren's famed clothing shop. She was friends with a young Sid Vicious, and even attended auditions with the likes of Jon Moss (later of Culture Club), Tony James (of Generation X) and Mick Jones (later of the Clash). Finally in 1978, she formed the Pretenders with Pete Farndon, James Honeyman-Scott and Martin Chambers. In 1983, Chrissie had a daughter with Ray Davies (of the Kinks). She later married Jim Kerr (lead singer of Simple Minds) with whom she also has a daughter.

I've reviewed a few of the Pretenders albums previously. For your convenience, the links are below. Enjoy.

For Pretenders - Pretenders (debut album) click here

For Pretenders - Pretenders II click here

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Thompson Twins - Into the Gap

After much success with their previous release Quick Step and Side Kick (click here for that review), the Thompson Twins moved on to their fourth studio album Into the Gap on February 13th of 1984. The album
had multi-platinum sales, reaching number 1 in the UK and number 10 on the US Billboard Album charts.

Book Review: Boom

What would you do if you woke up and realized you had a strange tattoo on your arm that you don't recall getting? Even worse, what if you realized the tattoo was changing by the minute, counting down the time until the final word - BOOM!

That is the premise of Boom, the latest novel by author Jim Brown (@JimBrownBooks on Twitter).

Monday, September 5, 2011

Men at Work - Business as Usual

One of the best selling albums of 1982 was the debut album Business as Usual by the Australian band Men at Work. The record went multi-platinum in four countries (Australia, Canada, the UK and the US) and went to all the way to the top of the charts to number 1 in five countries (Australia for nine weeks, New Zealand, Norway, the UK for five weeks and the US for fifteen weeks). It also earned Men at Work the Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1983 (beating out Asia, the Human League and the Stray Cats).

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Book Review: Jagger

Mick Jagger has always been a bit of a mystery. The famed front man of the Rolling Stones was one who shied away from in-depth interviews. Music journalist Marc Spitz felt though that Mick’s story needed to be told, and he went about compiling recollections of others to create this biography. Using over thirty interview, fifty magazine articles and seventy biographies, he pulled together the facts to tell the tale. The end result is Jagger: Rebel, Rock Star, Rambler, Rogue, an interesting look into the life of Mick and those around him - from the childhood days in middle-class, postwar London up to his most recent performance at the Grammy Awards in 2011.

Prince - Graffiti Bridge (soundtrack)

Welcome to another edition of Soundtrack Sunday.

In 1990, Prince wrote, directed and starred Graffiti Bridge, the sequel to 1984's highly successful Purple Rain. The film follows the Kid (Prince) who is now a performer at his own club Glam Slam. Morris Day also returns, playing himself, as the owner of a number of clubs including Pandemonium. However, rivalry still exists between the two which culminates in a showdown between the venues. The film also stars Ingrid Chavez, Jerome Benton, the Time, Mavis Staples, Tevin Campbell, and George Clinton.

Critically, the film was panned. At the box office, it barely managed to recoup the original production cost.

The double-record soundtrack album, however, did fairly well. I went Gold in the US, the UK and Canada. It reached number 6 on the US Billboard 200 chart and the US R&B Albums chart, number 4 in Germany and the Netherlands, number 3 in New Zealand, number 2 in Norway and Switzerland, and number 1 in the UK. It also produced a number of hit singles for Prince and the other artists on the record.