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Posts tagged "Paul Westerberg"

Simultaneously Frazzled and Fragile: Surviving a Culture of Overachievement

Simultaneously Frazzled and Fragile: Surviving a Culture of Overachievement

It’s getting to the point where I’d almost rather not draw attention to articles like Frank Bruni’s “Best, Brightest–and Saddest?”. Not just because I wish their subject matter wasn’t as urgent as it is, or that their claims were more groundless, but because the whole thing has become so excruciatingly obvious. As performancism escalates, so too does its fallout, and the affected demographics only seem to be getting younger. Reading about each new upping of the ante feels like watching a massive collision unfold in slow motion, one where we’ve all had our turn at the wheel.

Bruni’s article focuses on the teenage…

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Jesus Rides Beside The Replacements

Jesus Rides Beside The Replacements

Taken from A Mess of Help.

There are no better poster-boys for “unrealized potential” than The Replacements. The Minneapolis band, affectionately known as The Mats, never quite made that one masterpiece or had that one smash hit. Their legend has only grown since they called it a day in the early 90s, but they are far from household names. And they mainly have themselves to blame. As talented as these guys were at writing classic songs and playing transcendent shows, they were equally talented at shooting themselves in the foot.

This story of the quintessential band-who-saved-your life is full of botched…

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Another Week Ends: Hitch, Facebook Blues, Baby Morality, Auden's Conversion, M:I4, The Replacements, Gorey Animation, and Knowing Yule

Another Week Ends: Hitch, Facebook Blues, Baby Morality, Auden’s Conversion, M:I4, The Replacements, Gorey Animation, and Knowing Yule

1. By now you’ve no doubt heard that legendary journalist/polemicist/personality/Atheist Christopher Hitchens died yesterday. Hitchens was always my favorite of the New Atheists, and not just because he was the funniest. Alone of his colleagues (and I’m sure he hated being lumped in with anyone!), he seemed to object to the Gospel itself, rather than the normal hangups about the Bible or the Church. He found the idea of Grace to be repulsive and morally reprehensible. “Vicarious redemption” is what he called it, insisting that the notion that a person could be forgiven by someone other than the one they…

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Paul Westerberg is Always Away in a Manger

You have to admit, if ever there was a band that embodied the spirit of manger-ness, it was The Replacements. No polish, a little desperate, rarely taken seriously, tons of heart, and hailing from… Minneapolis. A small flanneled light of garage rock righteousness coming into the hairsprayed 80s darkness, The Mats could wring moments of unexpected beauty out of total raucousness, as if by accident (and therefore all the more beautiful). As ramshackle as an ancient feeding trough, word has it they even smelled like animals:

Glen Campbell Is Still On the Line

Glen Campbell Is Still On the Line

I strongly suspect that Rick Rubin will not be remembered primarily for starting Def Jam records – you know, where he not only launched the careers of countless hip-hop stars, but played a key role in shepherding rap music into the American mainstream. He’ll go down instead as the man who taught rock stars how to age gracefully. How to bring their careers to a dignified end, Johnny Cash’s Rubin-produced American Recordings series being the template that an increasing amount of older artists are (thankfully) adopting, e.g. Tom Jones and Neil Diamond. These are sober records that embrace, or at…

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5.5. Covers in Remembrance of John Lennon

A couple days late of the 30th anniversary of his death, but with added feeling:

1. Jealous Guy – The Faces. Rockin’ Rod and crew proved their impeccable taste in solo-Beatles when they followed up their brilliant cover of “Maybe I’m Amazed” with an equally brilliant version of “Jealous Guy”:

2&3. Come Together. One of my least favorite Lennon songs has inexplicably been given the deluxe treatment by not one but three of my heroes. Of special note is the fact that in 1994 it marked Axl’s final public appearance before disappearing for six years.

A few years before in the Moonwalker movie,…

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Another Weeks Ends: Unemployed Conversion, Galli on Love, Westerberg on Chilton, Tiger, LOST, Elvis' "Life"

Another Weeks Ends: Unemployed Conversion, Galli on Love, Westerberg on Chilton, Tiger, LOST, Elvis’ "Life"

1. “What I Lost When I Lost My Job” by Dominique Browning is the sort of subtle conversion story that will leave you in tears. Published in this past weekend’s NY Times Magazine (of all places), she touches on pretty much every major theme of this website: justification by work(s), achievement-based identity, the death/resurrection paradigm of personal change, etc – and she does so eloquently, with deep feeling and hard-won insight. But don’t take my word for it – just be sure to read to the end. Here’s an excerpt from the beginning (ht SZ):

My nightmare had finally come…

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August Playlist

This one’s even more retro than normal. Blame it on the vinyl!

1. Down By The Lazy River – The Osmonds
2. Part Of The Queue – Oasis
3. The Obvious Child – Paul Simon
4. (Terry) Who’re You Gonna Marry? – Paul Westerberg
5. Massachusetts – The Bee Gees
6. Georgia – Boz Scaggs
7. The Girl From Cincinnati – Bobbie Gentry
8. Comeback – Glen Campbell
9. Eve Of Destruction – Barry McGuire
10. You Don’t Have To Walk In The Rain – The Turtles
11. Don’t Bring Me Down – The Animals
12. Look Out The Window – The Walkmen
13. Cain Said To Abel – Bloc Party
14. Last Day…

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