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by Eli Johnson 10.03.2011
Posted In: Holidays, Fun, Music, Life, TV/Celebrity at 01:02 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music, Movies and the Not So Mundane

The Flaming Lips are releasing a 24-hour song on Halloween. According to frontman Wayne Coyne, "it's a song about death and it's a song about fucking and it's a song about life." The Lips will be releasing five limited-edition versions of the track that will be placed on a hard-drive and then inserted into human skulls provided by Oklahoma business, Skulls Unlimited. Coyne said, "There's a place in town that's called Skulls Unlimited that's been here for almost as long as The Flaming Lips have been here, and it sells human skulls." By the way, those skulls have already been sold for $5,000 a piece.

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by Jac Kern 04.03.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Humor, Music, Movies at 01:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

As the weather gets warmer, music lovers tend to get antsy looking forward to summer concerts and music festivals. There’s Bonnaroo, Forecastle, Bunbury all within a reasonable drive from Cincinnati, plus tons of touring concerts like The Shins, The Lumineers, country acts galore and the most anticipated tour of them all: The Package.

Boy band lovers of the ‘80s and ‘90s will unite for this music spectacular from New Kids on the Block, Boyz II Men and Cincy’s own 98 Degrees. The tour kicks off next month and Nick Lachey & Co. may not officially come home until the sold-out concert June 25, but Buzzfeed is already getting in the spirit with this collection of photos that reminds us about how Justin Jeffre was essentially the Michelle Williams of 98 Degrees. Upon looking up some 98 deets on Wikipedia, I realized dude is the only bandmate who doesn’t have his own page. And he ran for mayor in 2005! Poor Justin.

At least he took a break from rehearsing to stop by our Best of Cincinnati party last week (and if you obnoxiously asked him for a photo or just squealed and pointed at his presence…Shame on you), which was just one day before the release of the reunited band’s newest single. “Microphone” (which, according to The Daily Beast’s painstaking analysis, could have also been entitled “Penis”) has all the ingredients for a killer boy band tune: a danceable beat, barely-subtle phallic references that preteens could unknowingly sing on the back of the school bus, and lyrics that pay tribute to the group’s barber shop quartet past (“Say, ‘do-re-mi-fa-sooooo’ ”).

Remember Ryan Cabrera? He was an early-2000s Pop singer who dated pre-Pete Wentz Ashlee Simpson and was later resurrected on that post-Lauren Conrad final season of The Hills that probably only I watched. Well, in a move I can only wish I was bold enough to pull first, he got Ryan Gosling’s face tatted on his calf.

One glance at the InAPPropriate Comedy trailer and it was obvious — that shit was going to be bad. But as this Huffington Post live-blog of the — ahem — “film” describes, it was baaad. Like being-inside-Lindsay-Lohan’s-vagina bad (Spoiler Alert).

The Walking Dead’s third season finale was Sunday night and, though the season closer was full of ample zombie/Governor scariness, the most terrifying part of the night came during the live after-show, Talking Dead. Somehow, this dude managed to make it on the air:

Hey, if you want a captive, conspiracy-loving audience to stir up, TWD fans are it.

OK, time to get serious for a minute. I don’t usually like to discuss serious matters like death or illness on this silly pop culture blog, but this latest news from MTV is just too crazy to ignore. A cast member from Buckwild, MTV’s take on the rednecksploitation trend that replaced Jersey Shore, was found dead in his car after having gone missing over the weekend. While full details have not officially been released, it’s looking like the accident is a result of off-roading after a stint at a local watering hole. Shain Gandee, 21, was found dead with his uncle and a friend in Gandee’s truck, which was partially submerged in mud. Their deaths have been ruled accidents, caused by carbon monoxide poisoning (with the car's exhaust stuck under mud, fumes filled the car).

Obviously, this is tragic and not something to make light of. What’s really disturbing is that, had this not taken a terrible turn, the whole drinking-and-mudding scenario is something that easily would have been included in an episode of the series. Not that MTV needs to be a beacon for safety (see: Jackass, Ridiculousness, the Jersey Shore's “smoosh room,” etc.) But maybe it’s time to seriously re-think what we promote via reality TV bullshit. Production on the show's second season has since been halted and it has been reported that Gandee's funeral expenses will be covered by Buckwild producers.

And here’s a cute video of baby Gorilla Gladys at the Cincinnati Zoo to help you recover from that story.

 
 
by Jac Kern 04.02.2012
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Performances, Music, Fun, Events, Eats, Food, Drinking at 11:43 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
to do_geoff tate

Your Monday To Do List

Goeff Tate's comedy recording, cheap and tasty eats

You know when you discover something new, like a word or band, and suddenly, they're everywhere? Well, if you've recently started following comedian Geoff Tate, you're probably having a similar experience. Dude is popping up left and right.

Two weeks ago, the Cincinnati native appeared on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson after the host saw his stand-up in Wichita, Kan. Tate's five-minute set definitely brought the laughs. Check it out:


Hearing Craig Ferguson say "MOTR Pub" on television did kind of make me squeal.

Tate is back in Cincy this week to record a CD/DVD at MOTR tonight through Wednesday. Comedy starts at 8 p.m. each night and admission is just $5. Have a couple laughs (and beers) and support this up-and-comer. Find details here.

Keystone Bar & Grill nabbed a Best of Cincinnati staff pick for "Best Comfort Food All Jazzed Up," and tonight is a perfect opportunity to check it out for yourself. Famous for their killer macaroni and cheese, Keystone has locations in Covington and Hyde Park. Their twists on the homestyle classic include the Fleetwood Mac (fresh mozzarella, pesto and tomatoes) and The B.B. King (grilled barbecue chicken and bacon). Best of all, mac-n-cheese is half-price on Mondays.

Speaking of staff favorites, downtown dive bar Knockback Nat's also made this year's list as the "Best Place to get Smoked Out." OK, get your mind out of the head shop — we're talking about Knockback's delicious smoked wings. Knockback Nat's transcends typical bar food with these meaty wings they smoke outside behind the bar. On Mondays they're just 50 cents a pop, so enjoy the smoky goodness and wash it all down with a cold brewski.

Find art exhibits and other daily events on our To Do list and check out music blog for tonight's live shows.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.08.2012
Posted In: Culture, Music, Drinking, Events at 10:57 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Thursday To Do List

Spring is a time of change and new beginnings in nature, so why not apply that to our lives? A-Line's Spring into Action event tonight celebrates Cincinnati's nonprofit and volunteer organizations and it's a perfect opportunity to find out how to get involved. Meet with representatives from Planned Parenthood/STOP AIDS, Visionaries & Voices, SCPA, Women Helping Women and many others in the fun setting of Japps Since 1879. After you've been inspired by these organizations, enjoy music, free food and tasty cocktails – this is Japps, after all. Representatives from OYO Distillery, Central Ohio's award winning 100 percent "grain-to-bottle" micro-distillery, will be on hand to give a presentation and answer any questions. We'll also be giving away tickets to St. Vincent and River City Extension featuring Young Heirlooms, both at Bogart's! Have fun, help others and learn about amazing people doing amazing things across Cincinnati and Ohio. The free event runs from 5:30-9 p.m. RSVP on Facebook.

All this talk of cocktails and distilleries got you thirsty? The Cincinnati International Wine Festival kicks off tonight with winery dinners at various Cincinnati area restaurants. Winemakers from around the world are in town tonight, paired with chefs at the area's best restaurants to create amazing wine and meal pairings. Many of tonight's events are sold out but tickets are still available for dinners at Bouquet (pairs with Aurelio Cabestrero from Grapes of Spain), Embers (with Trichero Family Estates), Jag's (with Tom Clare from Longboard Vineyards) and a few more. Check out their site for more details. The actual festival at Duke Energy Convention Center begins tomorrow, with grand tastings Friday eventing, Saturday afternoon and Saturday evening. Find ticket information and a full schedule of events here.

You've probably heard about Cincinnati music's awesome invasion of South By Southwest. Can't make the trip to Austin? Swing by The Redmoor tonight for its Midwest by Southwest: From Cincinnati to SXSW Tour Launch. Wussy, The Sundresses, Oh My Me and They Whiskey Daredevils will perform just before heading south to the fest. Doors open and 6 p.m. and the shows kicks off around 8 p.m. Be sure to bring the sexy — a regional TV pilot is being shot at the show tonight. The program, hosted by Tracy Walker, will focus on Cincinnati's music talent. Tickets to the tour launch are $10 at the door.

Covington's Carnegie Center hosts Juliard-trained pianist and Harvard-trained psychiatrist Dr. Richard Kogan this evening. Kogan has studied Beethoven extensively and focuses on the relationship between the composer's mind, motivations and music in his performances. Stimulating the left and right sides of the brain, Kogan's performances are "eloquent, compelling and exquisite," says the New York Times. The 7:30 p.m. performance is $25, $19 for Carnegie members. Find details here.

Check out our music blog and To Do page for more theater, art and live music events happening around town tonight.

 
 
by Eli Johnson 10.04.2011
Posted In: Life, Music, Animals, Culture, Fun at 12:36 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music, Movies and the Not So Mundane

Broken Social Scene is on indefinite hiatus. Band leader Kevin Drew told The Huffington Post, "This is the healthiest thing we can do. There's no bad blood, no problems, everyone is at peace. We've had a lot of inter-relationships, some have worked, some haven't. But we all loved what we were doing. And I think we we're always fair."

Work it out, guys! We love you together.

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by Jac Kern 05.16.2012
Posted In: Events, DIY, Culture, Music, Drinking at 11:21 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Wednesday To Do List

GOOD Ideas for Cities is an opportunity for problem-solvers to tackle some of their cities’ greatest urban challenges. GOOD has an excellent magazine, but the company is also a collective of innovative individuals, nonprofits and other organizations united to push the world in a positive direction. The GOOD Ideas for Cities program will be presented in six cities this year, including Cincinnati. Local urban leaders met with GOOD to determine some of the city’s urban issues and, last month, GOOD put out a call for creative Cincinnatians with bright ideas. Six teams of problem-solvers were selected and each given an urban challenge Cincinnati currently faces. Tonight at the Contemporary Arts Center, these teams will present their solutions and join the urban leaders for a Q&A. After the 7 p.m. presentation, enjoy drinks and conversation and learn how to help make the ideas a reality. Admission is free, but you must RSVP here. Doors open at 6 p.m., so come early as reservations do not guarantee entrance after 6:45 p.m. It’s a pretty big deal that Cincinnati was selected to participate in the program, and tonight is sure to be an engaging, inspirational evening.

An after-work summer destination for many yuppies Tri-Staters, Party in the Park returns tonight for its 32nd year tonight. Every Wednesday through July, Party in the Park brings booze and popular area cover bands to Yeatman’s Cove from 5-10 p.m. Happy hour runs 5-6:30 p.m. and for the first time, wine and cocktails are available in addition to beer. Tonight’s music comes from Naked Karate Girls. Check out the full lineup here.

Perhaps contemporary Classical is more your style? World-renown composer Yanni performs at the Aronoff Center tonight. Known for being the sound of New Wave and providing the music for the Olympics (since 1988) and countless other televised sporting events, Yanni presents a new touring show featuring new music from Truth of Touch, his first album of original studio music in almost a decade. Tonight’s performance begins at 8 p.m. Go here to find tickets.

Interior decorator and HGTV host/designer Monica Pedersen will stop by Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Rookwood Pavilion to discuss and sign her new book. Monica Pedersen Make It Beautiful: Designs and Ideas for Entertaining at Home combines the author’s DIY nature and design/décor expertise to turn readers into party-throwing pros. The event begins at 7 p.m. tonight.

Check out our To Do page for more art exhibits, theater shows and other events happening tonight and follow our music blog for a daily live show lineup.

 
 
by Hannah McCartney 11.07.2013
Posted In: Music, Culture at 01:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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This Could Be Ohio's New State Country Song

For whatever reason, Americans deem it a necessary source of pride for us to award the states we live in all sorts of symbolic attributes, such as an official state amphibian (Ohio: spotted salamander), official state muffin (Minnesota: blueberry) or an official state "sport" (Maryland: walking?). And Oklahoma's unofficial state sport is apparently obesity — their official meal is "fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken-fried steak, black-eyed peas, and pecan pie."

Now, there's a very real possibility that sometime soon, the state of Ohio will add to its arsenal of symbols (our state drink is tomato juice?) by adopting its own state "Country" anthem: On Wednesday, Nov. 6, Ohio Rep. Nick Barborack (D-Lisbon) introduced House Bill 330 to the general assembly, which would give the state an official Country song called "Ohio" by Lisbon, Ohio musician Zach Paxson.

Here's the song that's been Ohio's official, official song since 1969:


Old-timey, for sure, but at least there's some pretty imagery thrown in there. Everybody likes moonlit streams and freedom.

And we all know "Hang on Sloopy," the '60s Pop Rock ditty that was actually wasn't designated our state Rock song until 1985, when the House passed a resolution with a bunch of references to the song, including phrases like: 

WHEREAS, "Hang On Sloopy" is of particular relevance to members of the Baby Boom Generation, who were once dismissed as a bunch of long-haired, crazy kids, but who now are old enough and vote in sufficient numbers to be taken quite seriously; and

WHEREAS, Adoption of this resolution will not take too long, cost the state anything, or affect the quality of life in this state to any appreciable degree, and if we in the legislature just go ahead and pass the darn thing, we can get on with more important stuff.

The '80s were a weird time for a lot of things, so this makes a lot of sense. The introduction of Paxson's song, however, feels a little out of the blue.

Paxson's video, and the lyrics to the song, from Paxson's website (SIC to the errors):


Austin Texas was a great place
but I couldn’t wait to get home with a big smile on my face
and see those green farms and factories
as I made my way through my favorite city’s
Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO
Every morning I pass them
in their work boots and their business suits but we all come from the same roots
and we’re the keeper of great names
cause we got the rock ‘n’ roll and the football hall of fame
Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO

Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO, we’re the pulse of America here in the heart of it all
OHIO

What do you think of it? I only made it through the first 30 secondsI grew up in a rural town and any varietal of  Country music makes me hurt inside. Plus, I found the video, which is a kind of schizophrenic mix of a bunch of really blurry photos accompanied by WordArt lyrics, hard to watch.

Clearly, I'm biased, and I don't really get why there are several politicians taking the time to lobby for this to join "Hang on Sloopy" and "Beautiful Ohio." The bill is just waiting to be signed to a committee, so it will be awhile before a decision is made. But it's worth thinking about. Does it deserve to join the ranks of Ohio's tomato juices and bullfrogs? Or are state symbols just generally not supposed to make any sense?

 
 
by Eli Johnson 01.10.2012
Posted In: Movies, Music at 11:29 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music, Movies and the Not So Mundane

Jay-Z is now the spokesman for Duracell Powermat, the joint venture whose inception came in September of 2011 thanks to Procter and Gamble, Duracell and Powermat Technologies. “I believe in the future of wireless energy and I believe that Duracell Powermat is the company to bring on the revolution,” said Hova. “I’m partnering with Duracell Powermat because they’re providing the solutions for the future.”

“Jay-Z is power personified. He inspires millions of people all over the world on a daily basis with his music and his story,” said Ran Poliakine, CEO of Powermat Technologies. “There is no better face or voice that can move people to adopt a new paradigm in power delivery."

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by Jac Kern 03.12.2012
Posted In: Events, Drinking, Music at 10:20 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Monday To Do List

Wash down your Bock with the sounds of Bach tonight at the German Brass and Beer, hosted by Arnold's Bar and Grill. The concert:nova brass qunitet has a set of traditional waltzes, dance numbers and marches in store for the 6 p.m. concert. At 7 p.m., enjoy a dinner of authentic German fare. Tickets are $55, $35 for pass holders, and can be purchased here.

The Civic Garden Center holds another gardening class tonight: "Vegetative Propagation; Plant Cloning Made Easy." With patience and care, any gardener can reproduce almost any plant. Join instructor Paul Koloszar to learn how to make more of the plants you love. The program runs from 6-8 p.m. and is $10 (free for CGC volunteers). Go here for more information.

JGourmet is a regular cooking class presented by Jewish Young Professionals (JYP) Access. Tonight's event is centered around the best meal of the day — breakfast. Bakers from Pigasus Bagel and Bread, along with JYP members, will teach guests how to make perfect homemade bagels and delicious omelets at A Forkable Feast. After the class, enjoy the delicious meal you've created. Who can resist breakfast for dinner? The 7 p.m. event is open to Jewish young professionals and their significant others (of all faiths). Admission is just $10. RSVP here.

Mayday presents its bi-weekly Bombs Away! comedy open mic tonight from 8-11 p.m. Register for a five-minute spot or just come to enjoy the hilarity of others.

Milton's on Propsect Hill also continues its weekly Vinyl Night. Bring your favorite records to share or have a DJ play them for you. Find musical suggestions and event details here.

The Covedale Center for Performing Arts holds auditions for two Showboat Majestic shows tonight. Men, women and children are welcome to audition for Rounding Third (Aug. 8-26) and The Music Man (Sept. 12-30). No appointments are necessary. Find requirements and performance details here.

For today's list of gallery shows, check out our To Do page. Follow our music blog for live shows.

 
 
by Eli Johnson 01.18.2012
Posted In: Movies, Music at 12:58 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music, Movies and the Not So Mundane

In a taped messaged to Betty White, who today turns 90, President Barack Obama wrote a note saying, “Dear Betty, You look so fantastic and full of energy, I can't believe you're 90 years old. In fact, I don't believe it. That's why I'm writing to ask if you will be willing to produce a copy of your long-form birth certificate. Thanks. Happy Birthday, no matter how old you are.” Video here.

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