This Week in Predictability
The musical universe was in perfect order Thanksgiving week. Willie Nelson was busted on his tour bus for marijuana possession by U.S. Border Patrol in Texas. The cop said he smelled pot when the bus door opened (though, if fishing for reasonable cause for a search, he could have just gone with “It was Willie Nelson’s tour bus”). Kanye West continued speaking or tweeting every single thought that entered his head and experienced the general public’s growing disdain for his cocky, self-absorbed rants when some of the tourists and families watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade in NYC reacted to being blessed with his extraordinary genius by booing and encouraging Kanye to jump off of his giant apple float. Has anyone thought to check Kanye’s backyard for the remains of his agent and publicist? And — newsflash! — Axl Rose doesn’t like Slash. The Guns ’N Roses braintrust filed a $20 million lawsuit against the makers of the Guitar Hero video game for including the original guitarist in the GNR game instead of whatever guitar player is stuck in Axl’s revolving door this week. Though, to be fair, taking that job is fairly heroic.
BitTorrents on Thin ICE
Unless you are gay, use drugs, decide to not keep your baby, are in the country “illegally” or otherwise operate outside of the traditional Christian family values this country was founded upon, the Tea Party wants government out of Americans’ everyday lives.
So we wonder what the Party makes of the acceleration of that damn institution’s involvement in policing the Web and seizing/shutting down sites that enable illegal file-sharing of music and films. Maybe we missed the Biblical passage about not coveting the money-making properties of industries with super-influential lobbying power. The Department of Homeland Security’s ICE unit recently cyber-raided several BitTorrent sites (as well as sites selling counterfeit products), replacing the content with an ICE “Seized” page which reminds visitors that “willful copyright infringement” can get you five years in federal lock-down and a $250,000 fine. Many site owners responded by simply moving to a new address. Perhaps ICE needs to add to its seizure “tag” a reminder about the U.S.’s open-ended rules regarding waterboarding.
Out With the Old, In With the Poo
The Super Bowl halftime show has featured legitimately legendary musical performers the past several years, a response to the silly backlash that followed Janet Jackson’s tepid “boob flash” stunt. But six years have past and the NFL is apparently ready to break from the “mature” artists who likely couldn’t find their genitals, let alone whip them out on national TV. If a famed (possibly doctored) Internet photo is any indication, Fergie has been known to piss her pants on stage (something those aging stars have likely learned to hide by being prepared and wearing adult diapers), but the Black Eyed Peas innocuous, lowest-common-denominator Pop and whorish commercialism makes them a safe transition from the vintage acts. Perhaps booking the Peas for this year’s Super Bowl show will help the NFL tap into a younger, more desirable target market, but, for older fans with slightly more discerning tastes, the booking marks the return of halftime traditions like beer runs, nacho gouging and seeing what else is on TV.