Weekly Wire

Volume I, Issue 12
August 25 - September 2, 1997


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The Radio Pirate
How Rush Limbaugh exploits rock music for his own right-wing agenda. [2]
David Corn and Sam Munger

Why Lollapalooza should die. [3]
Jim Ridley

Knocking at Your Back Door
Soak hasn't been sitting around waiting for Austin to make them famous -- they hit the road and made their own buzz, and Austin is just now catching up. [4]
Raoul Hernandez

Tango's Last Dance?
The tango--it's not just for lust-crazed traditionalists anymore. [5]
Brendan Doherty

African Teacher
Winston Rodney Shines Brightly as the Burning Spear. [6]
Michael Henningsen

A Slick Guitarist
Big Jack Johnson's transformation from oilman to bluesman didn't come overnight. [7]
Mark Jordan

An Honest Story
Matraca Berg hits her stride. [8]
Michael McCall

Tiny Tunes
Luna, & Fuck. [9]
Michael Henningsen

Rhythm & Views
Jean-Paul Bourelly & The Bluwave Bandits, Mike Ladd, Lauren Hoffman. [10]

Turn Up That Noise!
An eclectic survey of recent recordings. [11]
Edited by Stephen Grimstead

Now What?
If you go gaga over the sultry smoothness of a symphonic glissando, just wait till you experience our transitions to cool and useful music links on the Web. [12]

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I   don't want to make any enemies here but...I hate Rush Limbaugh. I applauded when my local TV station dropped his show, and I visit the Punch Rush Limbaugh web site at least once a day for therapeutic purposes. As far as I'm concerned, Rush is just All in the Family's Archie Bunker without any Meathead playing counterpoint. Talk about monotony.

Ya gotta hand it to Rush, though, for his non-monotonous use of rock music. The conservative tubbo uses great, pounding tunes by the likes of Peter Gabriel, Jimi Hendrix, and Garbage to spice up his program. He may have stepped over the line, however, in his use of The Pretenders' "My City Was Gone" for his main theme. Looks like vocalist Chrissy Hynde, an animal-rights activist and ideological opposite of Limbaugh, wants to sue. Go, Hynde! An article from The Nation gives the low-down.

While we're on the subject of hate, alternative fans might want to read this writer's analysis of the Lollapalooza tour. First he says the concert "sucked on every conceivable level," then he proceeds to describe each level's suckage. Good plan. Apparently the once-cutting-edge show, which combined some of the best and rawest new acts in alternative music, now showcases a bunch of pompous sell-outs.

Maybe that writer should have gone to the R.O.A.R. concert instead. Sure, the alternative-based tour lost most of its steam when Iggy Pop dropped off the bill, and the crowd tended to be full of idiotic fashion victims wearing thick black clothes in the summer heat. But the proceedings gained a splash of much-needed cool thanks to the presence of a band called Soak. An interview dives into the details.

We've also got well-informed biographical articles about jazz-tango-classical king Astor Piazzola (whose music can still be heard thanks to Pablo Ziegler); reggae's elder statesman Burning Spear; 57-year-old oilman-turned-bluesman Big Jack Johnson; and the hot Nashville's songwriter Matraca Berg, whose sweet choruses really "dish out the gravy." Hmm, that last one sounds like music Rush Limbaugh would like.

Album reviews this week:

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