Usually when I want a nice pie-in-the-face, I go to Billboard online:
Where I discover that a group of artists is remaking Fleetwood Mac's
"Rumours" (the horror, the horror!):
> More than 20 years after the release of Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours," an
> all-star lineup of current hitmakers has been assembled for a
> track-by-track reworking of the classic album. "A Tribute To Rumours"
> includes Jewel performing "You Make Loving Fun"; Elton John providing
> his take on "Don't Stop"; the cranberries doing "Go Your Own Way" their
> way; and Shawn Colvin remaking "The Chain." Also contributing: Tonic,
> the Corrs, matchbox20, Duncan Sheik, Goo Goo Dolls, Talulah, and Sister
> Hazel. Producers on the set include Mac drummer Mick Fleetwood, whose
> Fleetwood Music imprint is releasing the album in conjunction with
> Lava/Atlantic. Tentative street date is March 17. The original "Rumours"
> has sold more than 40 million copies worldwide.
Jewel performing on a Fleetwood Mac cover album?! Hoo ha. I continue
to be horrified as her ubersingle "Foolish Games / You Were Meant for
Me" uses the patented Elton John 2-sided single trick to (continue to)
break the record for most weeks spent on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles
chart (that would be, 63 weeks for Miss Jewel, as of 2/7/98 and
counting...). Too bad she's not allowed to add a third side to the
single (perhaps "You Make Loving Fun"?) and keep it up there well into
the next millennium...
Of course, overreleasing singles like Jewel does is far better than the
alternative: why the heck does Will Smith not make "Gettin' Jiggy Wit
It" a buyable single? Does he really think I'm going to FoRK over
fifteen bucks for his full album "Big Willie Style" (which, let's face
it, reminds us all a little too much of President Clinton)? I think not.
I haven't been that disappointed since I heard the voice that Scott
Adams chose for Dilbert in those awful Office Depot commercials.
Unfortunately, this not-releasing-my-song-as-a-single strategy has
worked gangbusters for Celine Dion: her not-released-as-a-single love
theme from Titanic "My Heart Will Go On" has locked the TWO albums it
appears on -- Titanic soundtrack and Dion's own "Let's Talk About Love"
-- in the #1 and #2 spots respectively for the last three weeks and
That Titanic, oy, what a juggernaut. The movie has made $25 million or
more now for seven weeks running (a record) and is the fastest movie to
gross $300 million domestic. It's now ensconced at #7 of all time
domestically, with a bullet: it will soon surpass Forrest Gump, Lion
King, and Independence Day, and passing Jurassic Park, E.T. ($399mill),
and Star Wars ($461mill after several releases) are well within its
reach. Heck, with a favorable Oscar bounce it could be the first
$500mill domestic grossing movie, and it most certainly will beat
Jurassic Park's $900mill+ total worldwide gross to become the first
$1 BILLION total worldwide grossing movie (and that's INITIAL release,
not to mention merchandising, video, cable, and network TV sales). I
mean, come on, the movie was good, but a billion dollar franchise!? I
saw on the news one woman who has seen the movie 45 times in 7 weeks.
Forty-five times. The world is filled with sick, twisted people.
Meanwhile, the Titanic soundtrack has surpassed the "Chariots of Fire"
soundtrack to become the topselling instrumental album of all time (or
at least since Billboard started recording these things, which is the
only time that matters). It sold more than 243,000 copies 2 weeks ago,
419,000 units last week, and 664,000 units (!) this past week. The
all-time record for most units sold in a week is only like 950,000 --
and that was a first-week sales figure during Christmas season (for
Pearl Jam's "Vs"), not an after-7-weeks sales figure at the beginning of
February. So naturally I bought it, and of course it's actually pretty
decent (much like "Titanic" as a movie is pretty decent), as composer
James Horner has learned the right stuff from scoring many decent movies
before that (including Glory, Apollo 13, and Braveheart).
File "Titanic" under phenomenon. And watch Hollywood start releasing
more $200million+ costing movies.
Celine Dion's trick to not release her song as a single may have paid off
bigtime, but what is the deal with Loreena McKennitt? Not only is her
"Mummer's Dance" not available as a single, but the cool version they're
playing on radio and MTV is not available to buy ANYWHERE! What genius
of marketing came up with this? The version on the album totally stinks;
it sounds like slowed-down Enya gone horribly, horribly wrong. Do not,
I repeat, do not buy this album if you want the single. Tape it off the
In another album that should be better than it actually is, Paula Cole
has been getting a lot of attention lately. Her single "I Don't Want to
Wait" has been adopted by screenager soap "Dawson's Creek" and she's
been nominated for seven Grammies. Unfortunately, more than half the
songs on the "This Fire" album are way to shrieky to be enjoyable. I
want an option in my CD player to strike out songs I don't like so it
will never ever ever attempt to play them again, which would make "This
Fire" much more tolerable: the other half of the album is decent enough.
Another album I bought for the single is Fatboy Slim's rock blockin'
beaty big and bouncy "Better Living Through Chemistry." Again, the
single wasn't available (though the shelves at Tower were FULL of Puff
Daddy remixes of the Police song "Roxanne"), so I had to pay 12 bucks
for an electronica album. I don't like electronica (with the exception
of Crystal Method, whose song "Trip Like I Do" I love), but this album
was surprisingly good: several cuts have that decent rock edge that the
single "Going Out of my Head" has -- that is, hard but danceable. Not
that I do a lot of dancing, but I like to keep my options open.
I continue to like Green Day's latest album, "nimrod.", even though the
new single "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" is getting airplay on
Adult Top 40 stations (ew!). This album is gonna be the primary album
wearing out my player until the South Park album comes out this spring.
Speaking of which...
NEW SOUTH PARK TONIGHT - COMEDY CENTRAL @ 10PM! "CARTMAN'S BIRTHDAY!"
Woo hoo! I love that show, man. Nothing but foul mouthed kids and fart
jokes -- everything I look for in entertainment, rolled into one!
I'll close with the top 5 albums currently wearing out my CD player:
5. PEARL JAM - "YIELD"
I just got this album yesterday, so I've only gotten a few listens,
but it ROCKS. With the exception of Metallica and Pearl Jam, I
have difficulty finding bands that continue to grow and put out
increasingly better rock albums with every release. This album is
like half Led Zeppelin, one fourth John Hiatt, and one fourth
Soundgarden before they split up. I like.
4. HENRY PHILLIPS - "ON THE SHOULDERS OF FREAKS"
You can probably only get this off the web, at
but it's worth ordering if you like folky music with a good sense
of humor. Kind of like a modern Arlo Guthrie -- think of him as
They Might Be Giants if they were one person playing just an
acoustic guitar. The guy's very talented, I hope he sells a lot.
3. SHANIA TWAIN - "COME ON OVER"
I admit it, this album is growing on me. I think it helps that
it's less country than rock, and that the producer made several
of the Def Leppard albums I grew up with in the 80s. It also helps
that I like her voice, and that she doesn't write her own material.
A decent album, actually.
2. CORNERSHOP - "WHEN I WAS BORN FOR THE 7TH TIME"
I disliked this album the first time, liked it the second time,
loved it the seventh time, and now I can't get enough of it.
Forget Oasis, THIS is what the Beatles would have sounded like
if they were in their twenties in the 1990s. Rohit likes them
because of their Indian heritage, but we both agree they have a
1. GREEN DAY - "nimrod."
Green Day rules. 'Nuff said.
FoRK the millennium.