Cheap Bastards

That’s the upshot here:  “Every freelancer deals with the stress of worrying that ‘If I ask for this expense to be reimbursed, are they going to stop working with me? Is there someone else out there willing to eat all their own costs and his work is good enough?’” Peter’s concern that less experienced journalists are willing to report from hostile regions and demand less from budget-conscious news outlets is a very real one, says Smyth, given the shifting media landscape. “What’s changed is that there is a shared interest between startups and aspiring young journalists to want to get … Continue reading Cheap Bastards

Soul Week: Rock My Soul

As a grand finale, I’ve decided to flip this thing on its head. Ouch. I asked for some ideas for a post title on FB but none of them rocked or rolled. So, I settled on the title of an old Elvin Bishop song. So it goes.

Now where the hell was I? Oh yeah,  today it’s time to hear some soul singers sing rock and roll songs. I’ll skip the originals and get down to the nitty gritty with some sweet soul music.

First, Otis Redding kicking some serious ass at the Monterey Pop Festival with a Rolling Stones numbah:

Continue reading “Soul Week: Rock My Soul”

Soul Week: I Heard It Through The Grapevine

I originally planned to go more outside the box (a phrase I dislike but find useful) but this is too great a song and story to skip.

 “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” is a song written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong for Motown Records in 1966, and made famous by Marvin Gaye in a single released in October 1968 on Motown’s Tamla label.

Originally recorded by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles in 1966, that version was rejected by Motown owner Berry Gordy, who told Whitfield and Strong to make it stronger. After recording the song with Marvin Gaye in 1967, which Gordy also rejected, Whitfield produced a version with Gladys Knight & the Pips, which Gordy agreed to release as a single in September 1967, and which went to number two in the Billboard chart. The Marvin Gaye version was placed on his 1968 album In the Groove, where it gained the attention of radio disc jockeys, and Gordy finally agreed to its release as a single in October 1968, when it went to the top of the Billboard Pop Singles chart for seven weeks from December 1968 to January 1969 and became for a time the biggest hit single on the Motown label.

This is the second tune I’ve posted from the songwriting team of Whitfield and Strong this week. I have an easy explanation for this duplication: they were GREAT. In addition to GladysKnight and  Marvin Gaye’s versions, there have been quite a few outstanding rock versions. I’ve picked out two: one of which you’re certainly familiar with and the other not so much.

First, Gladys Knight & the Pips. I had a friend who always called them the pimps. I always wanted him to run into Ms. Knight tell her that and get slapped. It’s not much of a dream but it’s mine:

Continue reading “Soul Week: I Heard It Through The Grapevine”

Cardinal Columns: Almost… Almost… Almost…

About six months after the Fond du Lac school district implemented a “censor them all, let God sort them out” policy regarding its student media, it appears the board of education has decided to act right. According to at least two sources, the board met in a “workshop” earlier in the week and agreed in principle to a document that declares the publications of Fond du Lac High School to be public forums. This will essentially provide First Amendment protection to all of the media at the school, including the award-winning Cardinal Columns news magazine and Fondy Today, the school’s … Continue reading Cardinal Columns: Almost… Almost… Almost…

Journalistic Passive Voice Part the 1,000th

Politico pretends to be stupider than they are, which is funny considering, you know, where the starting line is:  The president’s aim was clearly to defuse building expectations that U.S. military strikes in Syria were imminent as part of a broadening drive to defeat the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. But his awkward choice of words to describe a policymaking process still in midstream seems likely to haunt him for some time. “We absolutely know what is going on here, but we’re going to pretend we don’t, so that we can gossip like jealous little assholes, because that’s … Continue reading Journalistic Passive Voice Part the 1,000th

Soul Week: I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down


It was Declan MacManus aka Elvis Costello’s 60th birthday the other day. I remember when he was an enfant terrible who resembled Buddy Holly. Now he’s an elder statesman who looks like a rabbi. Anyway, here’s a belated get happy birthday to EC.

Back to soul week. I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down was written by Homer Banks and Allen Jones. It was first recorded in 1967 as a mid-tempo soul torch song by Sam and Dave. Elvis Costello and the Attractions really rocked it up when it popped up on-you guessed it-Get Happy in 1980. It’s always been one of my favorite early EC tunes. As lagniappe, I’ve posted EC and the Boss singing I Can’t Stand Up…on the former’s former Sundance chat show, Spectacle.

First, the Soul Men:

Continue reading “Soul Week: I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down”

Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Liar’s Office

From Album 5 To Protect and Self-Serve In light of the murder of Michael Brown, the murder of Victor White is at long last receiving additional scrutiny, though the blue wall is still firmly in place…with an explanation that would be laughably absurd if not for the fact that a young man is dead. Parish officials, including the coroner, insist that White, after being searched, charged with possession, handcuffed with his hands behind his back, and seat belted into the back of a police cruiser, somehow managed to produce an undetected handgun…and shoot himself.The autopsy, recently released, contradicts the initial police … Continue reading Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Liar’s Office

Pulp Fiction Thursday: Suddenly


Frank Sinatra was on fire when he made Suddenly. He was hot off his Oscar winning performance in From Here To Eternity. Suddenly is an odd pulpy noir with Sinatra as the villain and Sterling Hayden as a small town Sheriff. Sterling rarely played cops except for crooked ones like Captain McCluskey in The Godfather. Btw, one thing that made me such a film noir fan was first seeing Hayden and Richard Conte in One and then in so many little gems from the Fifties on the teevee machine. All roads in my life that do not lead to The Sopranos lead to The Godfather. Where have you gone, Johnny Fontane?

Continue reading “Pulp Fiction Thursday: Suddenly”

Malaka Of The Week: ESPN

Those kooky kids at ESPN have been obsessed with the Michael Sam story. It *is* a helluva story but there’s a particular sub-plot that they cannot get enough of: Sports reporters generally don’t weigh-in on the shower habits of the athletes they cover, but ESPN’s Josina Anderson went there on Tuesday. During a segment on “SportsCenter,” Anderson was asked how St. Louis Rams rookie defensive end Michael Sam, the first openly gay player to be drafted by an NFL team, was “fitting in” with his teammates. The reporter then relayed some observations from an anonymous Rams player, who said that … Continue reading Malaka Of The Week: ESPN

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Garcia

I’ve been going through another Dead phase of late. Anyone surprised? I thought not. I decided to write a bit about Jerry Garcia’s eponymous 1972 solo LP. It’s his first solo outing and his best, featuring a George Raft of songs played live by the little combo he spent most of his time on the road with. Jerry played most of the instruments himself and very well indeed. It was the fad at that point since Macca had just done the same on his own eponymous debut album. Woo. Bob Seidemann’s cover is an exercise in hippie surrealism. I’m particularly fond of the … Continue reading Album Cover Art Wednesday: Garcia

Controversial Artwork

Good for illustrator Mary Engelbreit:  With Brown’s mother in mind, she created the picture of an African American mom holding her young son in her lap. His hands are raised in the familiar gesture of surrender as the two gaze at a newspaper headline that says, “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot.” There’s a single tear falling from the mother’s eye. Running down the side of the illustration are the words, “No one should have to teach their children this in the USA.” That, apparently, is a divisive sentiment. IF YOU’RE A FUCKING ASSHOLE: She posted the information on Facebook and her Web site. Then the onslaught of … Continue reading Controversial Artwork

The Libertarian Second

Earlier this month, the New York Times Magazine ran a piece by Robert Draper positing that the Libertarian moment may have arrived. I was skeptical when I heard of the article, more skeptical when I read it, and my skepticism was confirmed when I read about this Pew poll:  “Libertarian” conjures anti-interventionism in foreign policy and absolutism in civil liberties. Think of Paul’s now-famous filibuster of the nomination of CIA director John Brennan over the possibility of military drones being used on U.S. soil. But Pew’s research showed striking departures from the expected party line. Libertarians were more likely than the general U.S. population … Continue reading The Libertarian Second

Soul Week: Just My Imagination


I decided to ditch last night’s long title in favor of concision. I’m not known for being concise but I though I’d try it out to keep y’all off balance. Just My Imagination was one of the Temptations best songs and biggest hits. It was written by the crack team of Whitfield and Strong and was produced by Norman Whitfield. He was better known for  his hard edged, funky production on tracks like Cloud Nine and Ball Of Confusion but a light touch was required for this wistful and lyrical song. The rock cover is by-who else?- the Rolling Stones. It’s not so much a cover as a re-interpretation, which the best cover versions always are. I threw in a swell Jazz take on this Motown classic by Dianne Reeves just for the hell of it.

First, the Temptations featuring Eddie Kendricks with the main vocal and Paul Williams singing the bridge:

The picture on the video is of an earlier version of the Temps but I wanted the studio version. What can I tell ya?

Continue reading “Soul Week: Just My Imagination”

Obama Enters week one of presidency

It’s about fucking time:  He said service members leaving the military who are being treated for mental health conditions would now be automatically enrolled in a program in which mental health professionals help them move to VA care. Currently, service members must be specifically referred to the program by their Defense Department providers or seek out the program on their own. “Additionally, VA will implement a new policy to ensure that recently discharged service members enrolling in the VA health care system maintain access to mental health medication prescribed by an authorized DoD provider regardless of whether the medication is … Continue reading Obama Enters week one of presidency

Soul Week: The Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me A Little While) Variations

There’s something about the summer heat that makes me want to hear some sweet soul music. I also feel like playing compare and contrast by posting an original soul version followed by a rock and roll variation. Today, we’ll start with the Holland-Dozier-Holland tune Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me A Little While.) It was recorded by several soul artists before being turned into a monster hit by the Doobie Brothers who really rocked it Motown style.

Here’s the second HDH produced version from 1965 with Kim Weston on lead vox:

Continue reading “Soul Week: The Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me A Little While) Variations”

Quote Of The Day: Chickenhawk Edition

Have I mentioned how much I love Dan Rather recently? Here’s one reason why he’s my main man: My first question to anyone who is on television saying, “We have to get tough, we need to put boots on the ground and we need to go to war in one of these places” is, I will hear you out if you tell me you are prepared to send your son, your daughter, your grandson, your granddaughter to that war of which you are beating the drums. If you aren’t, I have no patience with you, and don’t even talk to … Continue reading Quote Of The Day: Chickenhawk Edition

Slap Ya Commish

The No Fun League is at it again. They have a habit of making Saints fans feel downright paranoid and this time they’re doing so by messing with our love of seasonings and hot sauce: Slap Ya Mama, a Louisiana-based brand of hot sauce and Cajun seasonings, will no longer get to splash its logo on television during preseason games when the New Orleans Saints reach the red zone. Walker & Sons, Inc., the parent company of Slap Ya Mama products, said Cox Sports Television had been instructed by the NFL to pull the advertisement “in light of domestic violence issues” facing the league. CST, based … Continue reading Slap Ya Commish

our apocalyptic culture

Something else to think about, when we’re thinking of Ferguson:  Much has been made of the weaponry used by the police in Ferguson. Technological determinism is the preferred intellectual habit of mind of the moment, so it’s natural. If you give tear gas to police officers, the logic goes, they will eventually use it. If you give them military-grade weapons, they will behave like they are occupying forces. And that transference has played out tragically. But the main narrative we have consumed for the past 50 years has been that the forces of law and order are up against apocalyptic … Continue reading our apocalyptic culture

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – black in the saddle again edition

Good afternoon, all!

Well, we seem to have gotten my WordPress account issue fixed, so my brief blogcation is over.

Let’s go!

First up – Flinch mob!

CNN Puts Out APB for #Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson
The Gateway Pundit ^ | 8/22/14 | Kristinn Taylor

Posted on ‎8‎/‎22‎/‎2014‎ ‎8‎:‎29‎:‎49‎ ‎PM by Nachum

Last week, CNN was in the lead of the media pack in drawing a virtual map to the home of Officer Darren Wilson, the Ferguson, Missouri policeman who shot unarmed robber Michael Brown in a case that has roiled the small town with riots and drawn the involvement of President Barack Obama.

CNN broadcast video of Officer Wilson’s house, street number and neighborhood while other media outlets named the town and other descriptors where he lives. One local TV station apologized for showing Officer Wilson’s house.

After a week without being able to flush out the media-led lynch mobs’ prey, an apparently frustrated CNN put out the call to its viewers Friday afternoon: “Ferguson shooting: Where’s Officer Darren Wilson?”

Thursday the Washington Post, which published the name of the street Officer Wilson lives on, lamented that, “Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson is nowhere to be found”

CNN acknowledges Officer Wilson is in hiding from death threats–which has become the norm in Obama’s America. If the liberal lynch mob believes you are guilty even before an investigation is completed to decide whether you should be charged with a crime they will hound you with death threats with the tacit approval of the Obama administration.

When Attorney General Eric Holder toured Ferguson this week he made no mention of protecting Wilson from the lynch mob nor did he reprove the New Black Panther Party for leading a rally that called for the death of Officer Wilson.

Likewise with the investigation in to the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, Holder allowed death threats against George Zimmerman and his family made by the New Black Panther Party and others to go unprosecuted.

1 posted on ‎8‎/‎22‎/‎2014‎ ‎8‎:‎29‎:‎49‎ ‎PM by Nachum

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen – the understudy to The Stupidest Man On The Internet has just referred to the reporters covering the shooting of an unarmed black kid as a “lynch mob”.

For reals.


How dare they ask such questions in a public forum? People who do that should be…Oops.

To: Nachum

Ferguson shooting: Where’s Officer Darren Wilson?

4 posted on ‎8‎/‎22‎/‎2014‎ ‎8‎:‎32‎:‎26‎ ‎PM by 2ndDivisionVet (The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself.)
To: Nachum

Can someone find the CNN reporters in St. Louis and draw maps to THEIR homes?

2 posted on ‎8‎/‎22‎/‎2014‎ ‎8‎:‎30‎:‎47‎ ‎PM by SoFloFreeper
Pretty easy to do, actually. If it wasn’t for the fact that none of them killed an unarmed black kid, someone might actually give a fuck.
To: Nachum

When white liberals go overboard on PC cops shoot unarmed kids to death and leave them in the street for four hours while they try to get their story straight, then put the cop on paid leave and hush up the incident report, this kind of crap happens.

9 posted on ‎8‎/‎22‎/‎2014‎ ‎8‎:‎37‎:‎52‎ ‎PM by dowcaet
More after the jump, if I can figure out how to work this AIEEEEEEE!!!

Continue reading “Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – black in the saddle again edition”

takedown of the day: john kass edition

He’s just wrong on the facts and Chuck Sudo has the definitive response.  If Kass is looking for outrage at Antonio Smith’s killing, he needn’t look far. He could (and, to his credit, did) speak with the Rev. Michael Pfleger, who called Antonio’s death an “execution,” helped establish a $13,500 reward—Pfleger called it a “bounty”—for information leading to the arrest of Antonio’s killer, and added, “If you kill a child in our neighborhood, you are a terrorist.” [snip] If Kass is looking for outrage, he could attend any of the scores of small demonstrations, community meetings and CAPS assemblies across the city … Continue reading takedown of the day: john kass edition

St. Louis County Police Officer Suspended, And Needs Help

Jesus doesn’t want you for a sunbeam, pal:  Having invited this guy to speak, how do you stand there and let him keep talking? If I was running that program I’d have pulled the fire alarm. Forget his deep thoughts on Muslims and women and gay people and black people. That’s all stuff we hear from the mouths of Teawad congressmen and distant relatives. I’m still stuck on the very beginning of the video, where he alleges that Hillary Clinton produced a secret slideshow detailing how America is going to be divided up into sections based on where people there … Continue reading St. Louis County Police Officer Suspended, And Needs Help