The News Release 01.14.03

Y’all made it back. Congratulations.

To try and make up for the half-assed job I did for The Weekend Hotline, I’ll shoot news report so extra jam-packed it would make it would make Peter North’s fluff girl gag.

Note to Marshall: Not a problem.

Note to Claire: f*ck’s the Pearl Jam dissing? I was expecting to find out why Eddie Vedder is not really angst-ridden and why Mike McCready never did drugs. WHY DID YOU DISAPPOINT ME?

The Awards Section

And it gets to be Jam Packed because I got a lot of awards to talk about.

The awards season officially kicked off last week with the People’s Choice Awards. This is the only of the awards shows that is actually chosen by scientific means rather than by some stuffed suits on the take. Well, I’m sure these are awarded by stuffed suits on the take, too… but at least they have the decency to pretend otherwise.

So, the music section of those awards:

Favorite Male Music Artist: Eminem. No big surprise here. Eminem has had possibly the biggest year of any artist in recent memory. He’s managed to have two enormous albums (though it’s arguable that 8-Mile really isn’t HIS album, but it’s his likeness that sold it), a movie, and now a clothing line. Eminem is one of those guys who’s music I can’t stand, but who I have to have a grudging respect for. He’s accomplished quite a lot in an industry that’s currently on the ropes. Not only that, but he managed to make a successful crossover into films… which not a whole lot of people can do. Of course, most crossover stars try to sell an awful script on their likeness alone. Eminem had the benefit of a great script, a huge likeness, and a bunch of kids who were willing to drop $10 to see him.

Favorite Female Music Artist: Faith Hill. Somewhat surprised here, though I don’t know exactly who I would have picked. Once again, behold the power of country music. Then again, the competition wasn’t all that stacked either. Celine Dion, who hasn’t really had a hit since the Titanic Song, and Jennifer Lopez who, in the same way as Eminem, has been a successful crossover star, but people are starting to burn out on her. Em is smart enough to know when he’s getting overexposed, and when he’s getting huge. So much so that his music is starting to turn onto other things. Jennifer Lopez, on the other hand, is writing Jenny From the Block which is possibly the worst cesspool of pop filth I’ve ever heard. Faith Hill… sure, why not.

Favorite Musical Group or Band: Creed and the Dixie Chicks (tie). Haha, that’s right Scottie, you can’t even beat out three yaks who probably don’t even write their own shit. Ain’t that a shame? In fairness, I don’t know how Creed got as high of a nod as they did… After all, N’Sync is a musical group, and they were on the poll. Seeing as Creed is an actual band with actual instruments, I wouldn’t think they’d stand a chance of holding up to the power of five possibly gay guys who can dance. Of course, they couldn’t stand up to three possible lesbians… but lesbians > gays.

And as of the writing of this article, the AMA’s have not gone off yet, but let’s take a look at them anyway. I’m going to pretend I’m reporting on them, when actually I’m just bullshitting. But, in this case I will draw upon rule number one of teaching: Speak authoritatively, if not accurately.

Favorite Male Artist: between Nelly, Eminem, and Enrique Iglasias. Come on… at least give Eminem some competition here. Enrique’s biggest claim to fame this year was the fact he gave ABC their “Can’t Escape My Love” Daytime campaign. Can someone like him… love someone like you… Get Ready… ABC Daytime, this summer. And Nelly is basically a One Hit Wonder on the year. No surprise here.

Winner: Eminem.

Favorite Female Artist: between Sheryl Crow, Pink, and Celine Dion. Once again, I don’t really see the appeal of Celine this past year. Out of the three of them, Pink had the best album and the biggest presence this year. Just Like a Pill and whatever her new song is where she says she’s sick of being compared to Brittney are actually good songs. Sheryl, I just don’t think she’s done enough this year to be considered and, well, she has talent… a definite NONO for the AMA’s.

Winner: Pink

Favorite Band or Group: between Nickelback, Linkin Park, and Creed. Nickelback had, hands down, the best year out of any of the three bands. Breakthrough hit and a best-selling album. Linkin Park could have contended for this if the AMA’s were in June, but Nickelback has had serious staying power. Half a million spins on one song for the whole year? Yeah… no problem pickin here.

Winner: Nickelback

Favorite Album: Pop or Rock: Ashanti: Ashanti, Eminem: The Eminem Show, Nelly: Nellyville, Pink: M!ssundastood. I figured Eminem would grab the top slot here without a problem… Ashanti, on the other hand, shouldn’t even be considered for awards, as should Nelly. Big upset by Pink here.

Winner: Pink, Missundastood

Favorite New Artist: Ashanti, Kelly Clarkson, Puddle of Mudd. The AMA’s wouldn’t embarrass themselves by admitting that they’re a fan of processed pop, so Kelly is out. Puddle of Mudd has talent, so they’re out… and I suppose Ashanti has to win something so no one calls racism. This is hers.

Winner: Ashanti

Best R&B Artist: Nelly, Eminem, and Ja Rule. Once again, Em has had the biggest year and the best stuff. No surprise again. Benzino will just have to deal.

Winner: Eminem

Best Female R&B: Ashanti, Mary J Blige, or Jennifer Lopez. I might get shot if I don’t report Mary J won. It may be wrong, but some people reading this know where I live. Mary J won, honey, see?

Winner: Mary J Blige

Favorite R&B Album: The Eminem Show, Ashanti, or Nellyville. Pffft, guess

Winner: The Eminem Show.

I’m skipping Country because I don’t give a damn… although I can’t see Toby Keith losing after ALF carried him to some of the high points of his career this year.

Favorite Artist: Adult Contemporary: Vanessa Carlton, Celine, and 5 for Fighting. Hm… two one hit wonders, one of which was a super-sellout, and Celine. I think we finally found one for Celine tonight!

Winner: Celine Dion

People’s Choice Award: I’m not even transcribing all the nominees.

Winner: Eminem.

Coming soon, probably next week… a Grammy preview that will actually be a preview… not a preview written as a recap to which I have no idea who actually won. But I can do that because I HAVE THE KEYBOARD!

Top Story that Ins’t Fake Awards Recaps

As reported earlier in the week, Tommy Mottola has stepped down as president of Sony Music. Honestly, the dude’s probably bored. He’s had Mariah, J’Lo, and every other yak worth her salt in the music industry. It’s time to move onto his own label, where he can discover the next big thing.

And all the young up and coming yaks can discover his next big thing.

Anyway, Sony wasted no time in announcing their replacement. Andrew Lack, current president of NBC. Sony had decided to tap someone with no prior experience in the music industry in a move that stunned their shareholders… which is never a good thing… because stunned shareholders eventually recover and start dumping their stocks. Lack did tell Daily Variaty though that the problems he would face as head of Sony are about the same as head of NBC. “Talent issues, management issues, digital piracy and digital delivery, distribution, managing large content companies … what the consumer will pay for, and how.”

Lack is known as a cost-cutter, so a lot of the excess baggage at Sony is looking at the unemployment line sometime soon. My guess is they also want to get some fresh ideas to combat us evil piraters. Also, someone brand new to the music biz will not base all their decisions on who they’re banging, or who does their hair. It will take Lack at least a good couple years to get that inundated in the industry, and by then the cost cutting measures will have been taken.

Buried Treasure

Recordings from the final Beatle’s recording session have been recovered after having been stolen almost 30 years ago. Recordings of the Get Back Sessions, which would be the last before the band broke up permanently, were stolen 30 years ago very soon actually they were recorded. London police say they may have unreleased recordings on them.

And now that Yoko has a say in them, they may never be.

Beatles fans, on the other hand, have been able to buy pirated copies of the sessions for years. Now that EMI has their hands back on them, though, don’t expect any official release to come from the 500 reel set of recordings anytime soon… and REALLY don’t expect to get anything in their entirity off them.

David Munns, An EMI Vice President had this to say: Music Piracy is a serious crime.

No it’s not… child pornography, rape, and murder are serious crimes. Music Piracy is an irritant to a lot of people who make WAY too much money.

Speaking of Kiddie Porn

Who Guitarist Pete Townsend has been arrested on suspicion of possession of child pornography, according to Scotland Yard. His explanation? It was research material for an autobiographical book he was writing… since he believes he was sexually abused as a child. He had this to say:

“I have looked at child porn sites maybe three or four times in all, the front pages and previews

That’s actually enough for me. Lock him up, throw away the key, and let him get man-raped. If he looked at it, he helped create the market that ends up mindf*cking these kids for the rest of their lives. The front pages and previews? That makes it better? So what… he sees a five year old getting penetrated by a dirty old f*ck who should ALSO be shot with little blurs in front of the “good stuff?” I’ve seen front pages of regular porn sites… they’re good enough to tell you what’s inside.

But I have only entered once using a credit card and I have never downloaded.

So you paid for it. You generated the market. You paid someone to take pictures of a naked kid. You sick f*ck.

With hindsight it was very foolish but I felt so angered about what was going on it blurred my judgement. I was not breaking the law at the time. This was in the winter of 1996/1997. It was then illegal to download, which I did not do, not to search and view.

Got news for you Pete… everytime you visit a website, you download. Every time an image comes to your browser, you’re downloading. Downloading to save and Downloading to view are not two different things.

I did not think using a credit card was illegal either at the time. As a public figure I would never have given details had I known I would be breaking UK law.”

As any figure, if you’re giving personal details to a kiddie porn site, you’re just stupid. Yeah, I’m sure they burn those numbers as soon as they get them. They have your f*cking credit card number and you’re famous. What do you think they’re going to do? Let it go? Fuck no… personally, I would charge vehicles on Petey’s card. What’s he gonna do, sick the cops on me?

Roger Daltry, David Bowie, Bono, and Jerry Hall have all stepped forward in Pete’s defense. Good friends, say I… for not distancing themselves like Townsend was on fire. Besides, the power of Bono got that freak from REM cleared of Air Raid charges… never underestimate the power of giant bug glasses.

Speaking of People getting smacked by God

Godsmack will realease their third Studio album, entitled Fearless sometime in April. The leadoff single is called Straight out of Line and should hit radio stations at the beginning of February. It should be hitting Kazaa a couple days ago.

Superstar Weddings

The ugly kid from Silverchair (ha, YOU figure out which one I’m talking about) is now engaged to Natalie Imbruglia. If I’m not mistaken, aren’t the kids from silverchair like 12… and isn’t Natlie Imbruglia like… 35?

If so, it could be the first cool thing the kids in Silverchair have ever done… except Anthem For the Year 2000, which is possibly the only thing non-seizure inducing they ever put out.

Silverchair’s publicist said: “Daniel and Natalie have spent the holiday season together at home in Australia relaxing and celebrating. They have no immediate plans to marry. Neither they, nor their representatives, will be making any further comment about this personal and private matter.”

Uh huh… until one of them releases an album, in which case the wedding will be broadcast for free on the new reality TV “Wacky B-level Rock Stars Get Married.” I can see it in TV Guide now: Watch what happens when two irrelevant music stars get married. Will their marriage last the whole season? Tune in to find out. Soundtrack available from Virgin.

AC/DC Reissues

AC/DC have a new deal with Epic/Sony Music. You will see their old albums reissued and repackaged throughout 2003. The first wave are coming out in February and include the albums Back In Black, Live, High Voltage, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, and Highway to Hell.

No stupid humor here… though I hope, for Angus’s sake, they don’t tour. I don’t think the fuzzy leprechaun can take too many more.

Yeah, We Sucked… SO WHAT, SUCKAS

As reported here and around on 411 last week, Scott Stapp of Creed was so high he could barely perform a concert in the Allstate Arena. Fans got the following letter from the Creed Mailing List:

“Dear Creed Fan,

Ex-Creed fan might have been a better opening.

“The band has heard that you are unhappy with the quality of the recent Creed show in Chicago.

Jeez, you think they had to hear that through the grapevine? The guitarist and drummer look utterly embarassed onstage and the singer can’t walk, and they just kinda heard it. Picture them sitting in the studio jamming and a messenger comes in and says “shit, y’all ain’t gonna believe this.”

“We apologize if you don’t feel that the show was up to the very high standards set by our previous shows in Chicago.

Or, our singer was bombed out of his mind. Not our fault.

We also understand and appreciate the fact that there has been much concern about Scott’s health

Um, of all the reports I’ve seen, I don’t think anyone was concerned with Scott’s health… other than being concerned he WAS healthy and wanted to take care of that for him quick as possible.

and we want to assure everyone that he is doing very well and is taking a much needed break at home in Orlando after a very long and rigorous touring year.

Wah, I’ve had a tough year doing a real job that doesn’t involve wearing leather pants and banging anything with a pussy (or a willing cornhole).

“The band has plans to start writing material for their next record later this year and plan to return to Chicago next year to play a show that will hopefully be better than any of the numerous shows we’ve played there.

Please, please, please, come again.

“For now we hope that you can take some solace in the fact that you definitely experienced the most unique of all Creed shows

And more to come, I’m sure. If Scotty’s heading down that road, he’ll be Axl in two years. Vedder will be taking over for Stapp.

and may have become part of the unusual world of rock and roll history!

You’re kidding right? The dude can’t even sing, and you’re STILL comparing yourself with Rock and Roll history. God, I’ve heard of spin doctors before, but this shit would make Bill Clinton Blush.

Again, we apologize if you didn’t enjoy the show but remember, ‘It’s only rock and roll but we like it!’

We charged you $50 – $75 to see us and you ain’t getting it back. Damn shame, but come back and see us next year.

“Have a great year! Creed”


I can see this whole thing coming out of Stapp’s mouth. Just ignore it… no explanation, not even an apology. Just a “it was STILL a good show, just not AS good as you’re used to.” If there is ANY justice in the world, no one will buy a single ticket to Creed’s next tour… to teach them a lesson.

Just ONCE, I’d like to organize a strike against the music industry… and have it work. Just to make a point.

Those people should have gotten their money back, without question, or at least had a new concert scheduled… with free admission with a ticket stub. I mean, gimme a break guys, have a little bit of respect.

The Government’s Getting Involved

Clear Channel is having some anti-trust proceedings beginning to stir in the senate. A joint bill between John McCain (the republican) and Russ Feingold (the democrat). They believe Clear Channel is using some unfair business practices. Basically losing localism in radio programming (ie: be the five millionith nationwide caller to 1-800-YOU-AINT-WINNIN to win concert tickets YOU CAN’T USE), soaring ticket prices ($50 for a lawn seat to an AMPHITHEATER this past summer to see, conveniently, Creed), and shrinking playlists (I Got XM, I got yer shrinking playlists here). The Senators believe some “shakedown systems” have been used.

Good thing the Democrats are willing to focus some energy on music, but are ready to filibuster federal judge appointments. Democrats are useless.

Problem is, I don’t see anything getting done even with the government involved. Possibly THE most plain example of a trust in the country today is Microsoft, and the government can’t even break THEM up… and they think they’re going to conquer Clear Channel? Jeez, maybe they’ll get another class action suit that can get everyone $20, whether they bought 1 or 500 CDs in the ninties.

A Story Claire Can Love

Avril Levine has been immortalized with her very own computer virus.

An email virus began circulating yesterday promising users some pictures of Avril Levine if they just downloaded and opened the file. On download and run, it exploits Outlook (no way… The Fort Knox that is Microsoft Outlook) and propagates itself. It also shuts down your anti-virus software and steals password stored on your computer (no way… The Fort Knox that is Microsoft Wallet).

I find it amazing that viruses that don’t self-propigate can still move throughout the world. Rule Number One of the IT world… never underestimate the stupidity of your users. Easy thing to remember folks: if it says it’s a picture, and it ends in .exe… IT AIN’T A PICTURE.

Tomorrow’s Releases

Benzino: The man who’s been all over Eminem the last few weeks for some free publicity. The album comes out tomorrow. A couple more weeks of him running his mouth about the evil of the white devil rapper, and we’ll be done with him for a while.

Chicago Soundtrack: “He Fell Into my knife… he fell into my knife ten times.” Not a bad flick, all in all… although Richard Gere should’ve stuck to non-musicals. And Rene Zellwigger might look like Jewel, but she ain’t Jewel.

String Quartet to Garbage: No shit? Gotta to try to hunt this one down.

Roger Waters: “Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking” Gotta love the music industry, once again. One of the more talented Songwriters and Guitarists of our time, and I betcha wouldn’t even know he had an album coming out if not for me. Of course, his albums sans Floyd haven’t been all THAT great, but they’re still worth $10.

Janis Joplin: Essential Janis Joplin. Not quite sure what this is… greatest hits album maybe. Couldn’t care less, but thought some of you would like to know.

Best Named Release of the week: Tied, between Gospel Gangsta’s and Yidcore. Don’t know what the hell they are… but paradoxes, as a general rule, own.

In Other Reading…

Joseph Weathered Dissects the Osbournes.

Cody could be your father. Click to see a picture of what Brittney looks like when receiving anal. You know, when you can’t see her body, she looks a little like an Oompa-Loomp. If that don’t raise yer hitcount, nothing will.

More Matt R Jones Revies… and there’s nothing wrong with that.

In Closing

Time for Daniels the Internet geek to start losign weight. Can he do it? Do you care? Tune in next week to find out if he has lost any weight in his first week of dieting and exercise. Join him on his goal of travelling from 235 down to a lean, mean 200.

Cankaya, Claire, Jeff Mod, and some other folks will be in to do the news over the next few days. I’ll be back next week.

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