On my way to the promised land


Even by the loony, loopy standards of the anti-rock-preacher circuit, Sketch Erickson stood out. He was obsessed with Elvis — tracing all the evils in pop music, pop culture, and the entire world back to “Elvis. Aron. Presley.” He always said the name like that — first, middle, last, emphasizing each one. That serpent in the Garden of Eden with its sinuous hips? Elvis. Aron. Presley. [Read more...]

‘Softly and Tenderly’ reprise, and a recommendation


The plot of “Junebug” is easy to summarize — the older son who moved off to the city up North returns home with his city wife to visit his family. But it’s much harder to say what this movie is about. I think maybe, in part, it’s about the possibility and impossibility of ever knowing another person. [Read more...]

People Get Ready: St. Paul at the Grammys


Proven liar Todd Starnes tweeted that “The Grammys mock God, marginalize the Bible” at the very moment that Mary Lambert was belting words written by the Apostle Paul. “Macklemore launches a hate-filled, bigoted, intolerant diatribe against Christians,” Starnes tweeted. “Love is patient, love is kind,” Lambert sang. It doesn’t get much more traditional than having someone read 1 Corinthians 13 at a wedding. [Read more...]

A song for Epiphany: ‘So why love anything?’

I like the original from Vampire Weekend, but Phosphorescent’s take on the song “Ya Hey” finds something sad and beautiful and heartbreaking in there. Stripped down like this, it becomes a love song about an unrequited love that never gives up. That’s Epiphany in a nutshell. Through the fire and through the flames You won’t [Read More...]

Dear Capt. Stubing: All TV theme songs are about Jesus


Gavin MacLeod was surprised to realize the true meaning of “The Love Boat’s” theme song, but if you’ve ever paid attention to TV theme songs, you won’t be surprised at all: All TV theme songs are really about Jesus. [Read more...]

The Apocalypse of St. Peter (Garrett)


“Bible prophecy” teaches gullible Christians to mangle the words of the Bible. So I guess it’s not surprising that those poor folks would turn around and apply the same interpretive method to the songs of Midnight Oil and of 1980s hair band Europe. For those who can’t watch the video, it’s an earnest word of “prophecy” [Read More...]

Everything I’ve had but couldn’t keep

Lou Reed (right) with Vaclav Havel, after the revolution.

“Lou Reed, a massively influential songwriter and guitarist who helped shape nearly fifty years of rock music, died today on Long Island. …” [Read more...]

Tune That Name: W-Z


It’s the Friday music game — I’ll show you mine and you show me yours. This week we wrap up the failed experiment of Songs with Names in the Title — including Walt, Wendell, William, Willie, Winona, Woody and Ziggy. [Read more...]