….where we’ll dish red carpet faves and flops and livetweet the awards.
Hi there! Welcome to Pop Culture Squad!
It has occurred to me that I might not leave enough of a personal footprint here on PCS. It also occurred to me that I’ve never sat down with you, Dear Reader, and told you what I and this site are all about.
So in a bit, I’m going to rattle off a bunch of hashtags, slogans and sayings that summarize the core operating beliefs here at PCS. Continue reading “Don’t Let’s Start #004: Overdue Introductions”
This past weekend turned out to be a double whammy of grief for roots music lovers. We lost the Godfather of Surf Guitar Dick Dale on Saturday March 16th and R&B Legend Andre Williams on the 17th.
Dick Dale was born in Boston in 1937, his family moved to California when he was 17. He began playing musical instruments as a child; moving from piano to trumpet to ukulele and tarabaki before the guitar. His father was Lebonese & he cited the tarabaki and Arabic music as strong influences on his playing style. That style was a mixture of rhythm and lead played left-handed on a guitar strung for a right-handed musician. He tested equipment for Leo Fender. After blowing up several amps by playing too loud, a custom 15-inch loudspeaker was made. That amp is now the JBL-D130F model, more commonly known as the Fender Single Showman Amp.
Dale’s health and the British Invasion lead him into early retirement from music. He became an environmental activist after a pollution related infection nearly too his leg in the late 70s. He began recording and touring again in the 1980s, was nominated for a grammy in 1986. He appeared in 1987’s Back to the Beach playing Pipeline with Stevie Ray Vaughan. And in 1994 was discovered by a new generation of fans thanks to his song Misrilou being featured in Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction.
Dale continued to have health issues which lead to his having to keep touring in order to stay on top of his medical bills. He had tour dates scheduled through November of this year at the time of his death. He was 81.
Andre Williams was born in Bessemer Alabama in 1936. He moved to Detroit at 16 where he befriended the owners of Fortune Records. He found success with singles like Bacon Fat and Jail Bait; with Bacon Fat hitting #9 on the R&B Chart in 1957.
He co-wrote Thank You For Loving Me for Stevie Wonder in 1963 as well as penning Shake a Tail Feather, a hit for The Five Duo-Tones. Shake a Tail Feather was also recorded by Ike & Tina Turner as well as James & Bobby Purify who went to #25 on the Hot 100 with it in 1967.
In 1968 he signed to Chicago’s Chess Records and hit #46 on the R&B chart with Cadillac Jack. The 1970s saw Williams write songs for Parliament and produce Ike Turner. The 1980s were particularly bleak for Williams, as his drug addiction took its toll, he eventually found himself homeless.
By 1995 Williams had returned to recording and touring, releasing an album of new renditions of his earliest releases, Mr. Rhythm in 1996. He continued to tour, a lot in Europe, and record through the 1990s and 2000s.
Andre Williams was diagnosed with colon cancer and passed away after 2 weeks in hospice care in Chicago. He was 82.
Director James Gunn Reinstated For ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy 3’ By Disney
Gunn was fired by Disney after old tweets that he’d already apologized for were dug up by alt-right “journalists” looking to weaponized Gunn’s words against him. Gunn quickly issued a renewed apology. The cast wrote an open letter of support and David Bautista went as far as to say he wouldn’t do the movie without Gunn.
Police are investigating the assault and battery, which occurred early Tuesday morning.
Last night in Chicago an African American man was assaulted. Homophobic and racial slurs were hurled at him by his MAGA-supporter attackers. They poured bleach on him. THEY TIED A ROPE AROUND HIS NECK.
That this horrific attack was against the actor/singer Jussie Smollett shouldn’t be the only reason this story is newsworthy. Smollett is best known for his role of Jamal Lyon on FOX’s Empire. The idea that a gay man or a black man or a gay, black man cannot safely leave a restaurant and walk down the street in a major US city should enrage us all.
Smollett also recently received a death threat in the mail from self-described MAGA-supporters. The imagery included a poorly done drawing in red marker of a a gun firing at a frowning stick figure that has a noose around its neck. The words “You will die black fag” were cut from magazines like a tv-show ransom note.
Jussie has been a social activist since before gaining stardom on Empire and has used his capital to continue his activism.
As usual, the CW made the bulk of its pilot pickups in one fell swoop, and the network is betting heavily on IP this year. It greenlighted four pilots tonight — all based on well known titles — two spinoffs of existing CW series, Riverdale and Jane the Virgin, a Nancy Drew drama and The Lost Boys reboot. The join the recently greenlighted Batwoman pilot starring Ruby Rose.Source: ‘Riverdale’ & ‘Jane’ Spinoffs, ‘Nancy Drew’ & ‘The Lost Boys’ Get the CW Pilot Orders | Deadline
So much awesomeness could be coming to CW. While I’m not sure what The Lost Boys is without the Coreys and Kiefer Sutherland leading the fang-gang, but as someone who literally watched The Lost Boys everyday after middle school until the tape broke, I’m here for it. Especially since Rob Thomas is involved.
Add that to the excitement for a musical driven Katy Keene spinoff from Riverdale AND a new Nancy Drew series, I think I just had kittens!
We’d heard the rumors, but now it’s official: Michelle Yeoh will helm her very own Star Trek series. But she won’t be taking to the Captain’s chair—CBS has altogether more secretive plans for her.
CBS All Access is adding yet another show to their Star Trek stable. This time they’re not giving us the Michelle Yeoh show we wanted since they launched Star Trek: Discovery but one taking place in the Mirror Universe.
It’s Michelle Yeoh, so I’ll take it.
Our columnist Ed Catto is adding a new line to his resume: College Course Pioneer. The 2019 Spring semester at Ithaca College will be offering student the first course of its kind in the country: Creating and Promoting Ithacon. Students will help organize and promote Ithacon, the second-longest running comic convention in the nation!
Here’s the press release in full: Continue reading “PopCultureSquad’s Ed Catto to Teach 1st Of Its Kind Comic Con Course”