Welcome back to The Bootleg. Over the last week or so, there have been a lot of internal staff discussions about confidential 411 conversations that are aired out in public here in the Music Zone. Most of these discussions didn’t involve me, so in an effort to cause more discord and dissension amongst the writers, please allow me to continue to chew on this proverbial open mouth sore.
The Sword of Widro, in a brief IM exchange last week, asked if I wanted to move The Bootleg to Mondays. I seriously entertained the idea, before I realized this column is pretty much the epitome of Fridays. Hawaiian Shirt Day at the officeâ€¦High School Ditch Partiesâ€¦First in line to see Daredevil 2 at a matinee priceâ€¦and, yes, The George Lopez Show.
Besides, on what other day of the week could I get the sloppy seconds from the thousands who look for Melchor and Keith’s Smackdown rants or the tens who settle for Widro’s Voice ofâ€¦whatever column.
Vote Goodness in ’04â€¦
But, Before We Beginâ€¦
If I can be serious for a minuteâ€¦I’d just like to say THANKS to everyone who took the time to vote in our â€¦411 Music Awards, as well as anyone who cast their vote my way for “staffer of the year”. With all due respect to every other 411 Zone, I maintain that the best writers reside right here in the three bedrooms, two-and-a-half bath condo called “Music”. Sure, Cocozza spends way too much time in that half-bathroom, Katz chugs straight from the carton and Fernandez never cleans up the kitchen after whipping up a batch of his famous empanadas (which he eats right in front of us without offering so much as a bite).
Still, knowing I’m in such good company makes this honor that much sweeter. Oh, and a shout out to Bubba Ray Biscuiti. His was a thankless job of coordinating the Music Awards effort and despite an unavoidable hiccup or two, the end result had everything we look for in an awards show: deserving winners, losers, a little bit o’ controversy and slick production. Next year, Matt has signed on to coordinate our live web cast of the 411 Awards. That show will emanate from Kissimmee, Florida and vacation packages are available now with just one quick email.
The Hot Spot is the Unemployment Line
Anyone still remember has-been hoochie rapper Foxy Brown? She dropped one hit record back in 1996 and with each subsequent release, her sales have gone down faster than she does. Hell, her mentor (Jay-Z) abandoned herâ€¦Def Jam Records cut its ties with herâ€¦and a rumored alignment and album with P.Diddy’s label never came to pass. So, of course it must be time to give Foxy her own reality series. MTV has reached an agreement to produce 13 episodes of Foxy’s Family.
According to the press release, the show will “focus on Foxy’s business dealings, running her record label, seeking new talent and her family”. If that ain’t Must See TV, I don’t know what is. What possible “business dealings” could an out-of-work rapper have, anyway? Coolio has that slot on Celebrity Fear Factor locked up, while Tone-Loc and Heavy D are the preferred choice of studio execs looking to
blacken “urban” up their midseason replacement shows. Still, if Hollywood ever wanted to cast an all-girl, live action version of that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle cartoonâ€¦Foxy’s a shoo-in.
Shake It Fastâ€¦Watch Yourself (In The Shower)
Bayou rapper Mystikal was sentenced to six years in prison for the sexual battery of his former hairstylist. He’ll begin serving his time immediately. A Baton Rouge judge determined that the sex acts involved were not consensualâ€¦based on a videotape that Mystikal made of the incident. Amazing. Who, in the holy hell, tapes themselves in an unlawful sex act? Don’t these people know that there can only be two possible outcomes from something like this?
The first is pretty obviousâ€¦your ass goes to jail, but not before your local-Emmy-award winning anchor uses the last 30 seconds of the Wednesday newscast to induct you into Channel 8’s “Stoopid Crooks Hall of Shame” (complete with backwards ‘S’ in the logo and a cartoonish prisoner in stereotypical striped prison garb and dunce cap in the foreground). The second possibility is that the tape gets stolen during a European Vacationâ€¦and turns up a few days later in the red light district, with a title like The Wet Hot Wife. Co-Starring Ellen Griswold, natch.
And How Did His Kid Age So Much Between IV & V?
The hardest working (alleged) statutory rapist in show business has a new music opportunity on the horizon. R. Kelly has been in contact with Broadway producers to compose the score for a musical based on the movie Rocky. Swear to God. In fact, the script is currently being written by Thomas Meehan, who had a huge hand in bringing Annie, The Producers and Hairspray to Broadway. And the more I think about this concept, the more I love it. In fact, an entire musical could be cobbled together simply by writing the script around the five Rocky soundtracks that have been released.
What better way kick off the proceedings and establish the characters than with Gonna Fly Now from the original? We’ll segue into the conflict with a quick hit of Redemption from Rocky II and right before intermissionâ€¦Eye of the Tiger. Once the audience has settled back in, they’re in for a treat as the entire soundtrack to the classic Rocky IV flick will be performedâ€¦from Living in America to Training Montage, with all the John Cafferty, Kenny Loggins and Survivor you could want in between. The big finish can only come with Go For It from the fifth and final Rocky. The tentative title for the whole project is Hey’o Tommyâ€¦I Dinn’t Hear No Bell.
Scent of a Woman
It was quite the week for pop culture’s omnipresent annoyance, Jessica Simpson. This past Wednesday, MTV aired the season premiere of her insidious Newlyweds series and a few days earlier, she sealed the deal on the release of a new line of body scents under the product name of “D’lish”. See how the simple removal of those problematic third syllables makes something cool and exciting? Take it from a former marketing majorâ€¦there are actually classes that teach this crap.
The highlights of “D’lish” include a whipped body cream, chocolate body gloss, powdered sugar body shimmer and aâ€¦”lip-plumping fragrance”. Who buys this shit? Anyways, the company promises that everything they offer will come in three edible flavors: “creamy”, “dreamy” and “juicy”. Meanwhile, the lip-plumping items will be offered in “Angelina Jolie”, “Julia Roberts” and, yes, “ESPN’s NFL Countdown Host Tom Jackson”â€¦with or without crust.
Released The Same Day As Tical 0: The Prequel
Here at 411, we pride ourselves on verifying all of the sources on a potential news story before we run with it. I’m going to forego the standard news authentication process this time around, however, because if you can’t trust an underground DJ named after an obscure British cartoon from the ’80sâ€¦who can you trust? A producer who operates under the pseudonym of “Danger Mouse” has allegedly taken all of the vocals from Jay-Z’s Black Album and recorded them over the sounds of The Beatles’ White Album. This union of so-so rappin’ and British beats will be calledâ€¦The Grey Album.
I don’t believe a word of any of this, but if it turns the spotlight on the old Danger Mouse show, if only for a minute, then it was all worth it. You see, in 1985â€¦new episodes of Transformers and Masters of the Universe gave way to cheap knockoffs like Go-Bots or (and I swore I’d never type these words) She-Ra: Princess of Power. Fortunately, we could find solace in the adventures of a one-eyed domineering white mouse n’ his faithful sidekick, Penfold â€“ a hamster in a three-piece suit. Coincidentally, 1985 was the last year that “gay” also meant “happy”.
She’s a Squirrel-Squashing Deer-Smackin’ Drivin’ Machine
Despite his modest commercial success, it’s safe to say that there aren’t a whole lotta people who know much about the rapper Cam’ron. No, he’s not my hip hop alter ego, like Bud Bundy’s “Grandmaster B”, he’s actually dropped a few albums and hung around long enough to build a stable unemployed gophers, hangers-on and cabin boys who put out their own record a few years ago. Well, for everyone who has wanted to live this nearly anonymous, yet stereotypical lifestyle of regional airplay, bling bling and bad grammarâ€¦you’re in luck!
Cam’ron has put his pink Range Rover up for auction on Ebay. Pink being his trademark color. See, every rapper needs a gimmick, so Cam’ron just lifted his from the preferred panty shade of 4-year-old girls. Hey, remember that Simpsons episode where Homer buys a Canyonero SUV, only to discover that he bought an L-Series model for women? Who else thinks that Juelz Santana and Jimmy Jones pulled Cam aside one afternoon and pointed out the lipstick holder where the cigarette lighter should be?
In Brightest Day, In Blackest Nightâ€¦
After weeks of welcome silence from both sides, the war of words between Eminem and Benzino flared up yet again. Earlier this month, the February issue of Benzino’s Source magazine hit the newsstands. Along with the usual six pages of reader mail (with signature lines like “High in Bed Stuy” or “MC Cap’n Crunch”) and the semi-monthly feature articles on the release of Suge Knight from prison, this issue includes a CD with audio snippets of the controversial Eminem shots at Black women. In response, Em has released an untitled freestyle diss towards Benzino that’s been making the rounds on DJ Green Lantern’s latest mixtape effort, The Invasion Part IIIâ€¦.
One can only assume that this is not the same Green Lantern that wears the ring and fights crime alongside the rest of the Justice League. And if you haven’t watched many cartoons since the days of the Superfriends, you’re in for a shock. First, the Wonder Twins are deadâ€¦eaten by their monkey Gleek. Apache Chief was spun off into his own show, featuring other stereotypical heroes like Unshaven Italian Woman and 7-11 Turban Man. And, finallyâ€¦this Green Lantern is Black. Kinda reminds me of the time I played Santa Claus in a third grade play. We performed for the kindergartners and I hear they’re just now coming out of therapy.
Sometimes The News Just Writes Itself
Here’s another early contender for news story of the year. Jane Carter, the mother of androgynous pop stars Nick and Aaron Carter, was charged with battery against the girlfriend of her soon-to-be-ex-husband. Crazy Jane has been accused of breaking into her hubby’s house, dragging the demure victim (29-year-old Ginger Elrod) from bed and then beating the shit outta herâ€¦with a remote control. I guess she couldn’t find Aaron’s Game Boy.
Seriously, with the extra weight of those two AAA batteries combined with the feeble swings of a middle-aged woman, those blows had to cause one helluva mild discomfort. Personally, I hope the judge throws the book at this hag. As this parable outlinesâ€¦it’s perfectly acceptable for a man to leave his wife, if he finds a woman just five years older than his firstborn son. It’s a lot like that movie The First Wives Clubâ€¦except all the bitches get what they deserve at the end.
Bootleg Anniversary Contest!
On February 14, 2003â€¦the first ever Friday News Bootleg was published. I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity to bring my skewed views of the music world to you each and every week and I appreciate all the feedback that my work on 411 has generated.
So, what better time to announce the first-ever contest here in The Bootleg? The prize up for grabs is a $50 Best Buy Gift Card! Buy a few CDs, some DVDs or even 7/8 of a PS2 or Xbox game. What do you have to do to winâ€¦?
In 50 words or less, tell me why you should win the card.
Provide a name for my unborn son that’s better than “Baby Bootleg”.
The only rule is that you be funny. Longtime readers of The Goodness have a good idea as to what I think is funny, so have at it. Enter as often as you like. The winner will be announced in the February 13 edition of The Bootleg and the deadline for entries is February 5 at midnight.
Sorry, but 411 staff is not eligibleâ€¦Seriously, f*ck you, Widro.
conceptualized by Nick Salemi
The Pride of Connecticut returns with your Super Bowl Previewâ€¦from deep in the heart of Patriots Countryâ€¦
Greetings, Bootleggers. I’ve been tossing around the idea to AJC of doing “Back to the Future” retro reviews in the next couple of weeks, with short reviews of classic hip hop from the 90s. Let Aaron know if you’re interested, but I’m doing them either way!
And now your regularly scheduled irrelevant non-music commentary. The Super Bowl is on its way. Only two entire weeks to go. I can smell the cheese, bean and sour cream stains on my shirt already. Not to mention those damn Tostitos chopping up my gums like a great white shark. They’re like freaking razor blades, for god’s sake!
Anyway as a New Englander, I can’t tell you how amped up I am to see Patriots in the big game against the Carolina Panthers. Well, I’m not being entirely truthful. I really don’t like them but I have to follow them because all their games are on TV. And Carolina…hasn’t the dirty south ruined rap; they want the Super Bowl, too?
Hopefully if there’s a Super Bowl preview issue of Sports Illustrated, the editors will request that Tom Brady keep his shirt on and spare us the “glamour shot” on the cover. As much as I hate him, the guy just wins. He put up decent numbers; 3600+ yards passing 23 TDs vs. 12 INTs, but take it from someone who’s seen all their games and ISN’T a fan, their offense is brutal to watch.
Explosive? I mean two 600-yard rushers…ON THE SAME TEAM? Has that ever
happened before? Not to mention they don’t even have a receiver that would be a number
TWO guy on any other team yet they win every game. The bottom line is their defense makes an obscene amount of huge plays.
My pick for this weekend: Panthers 0, Patriots 0â€¦because they’re not playing. Seriously, I’m going with Tolerable Cold Weather 24, Freezing Cold Weather 6.
Tolerable Cold was due for a win after last week’s column.
Fernandez kills his own Monday rumors and details his failed plot to kill Cocozza and claim miercoles, tambien.
Smilo was inadvertently left off the linkage last week. He gives you a peek at his 411 Music Awards Ballotâ€¦but only the first one is free.
EM is supersized like McDonald’s fries and tries his hand as a wrestling promoter.
Eric Katz gets two more mentions in this column than he ever has before.
Y’all had a lot to say in response to last week’s Nick’a Please segment on cold weather states and the fools who live thereâ€¦
First off, congrats on winning the best music writer award. You deserve it, but I hope you gave 10% of the trophy to Nick Salemi. I’m from Warren, Rhode Island and he pretty much nailed our existence over the last few weeks. What’s even worse is that I’m a smoker and at our plant we have to go out back where the trucks pull up. Try & picture six guys warmed only by the glow of a half-dozen lit butts in a semi-circle of frostbite and blackfoot. â€“ Craig Newbury
Tell Nick he was dead on with his winter rant. He forgot to mention the shitty architecture of the greater New England area though. It’s like every house and apartment here was built without a shred of insulation. When the wind is really blowing, it’s like listening to the fat kid in class whose nose whistles when he breathes. Ask him to explain the marvel of curtains that actually sway when every window is shut “tight”. â€“ Marco
Yeah, we all love that Nickâ€¦y’know, it’s ok for y’all to send me feedback on the parts of the column that I writeâ€¦
No offense, but there’s no way you should’ve won for best writer on music. All you talk about is rap and not everybody likes rap. Sometimes you’re funny but not as much as you think. Don’t take this personally because its just construct criticism â€“ AOL user
And I have some “construct” criticism for youâ€¦kiss my black ass.
I’ll admit that I laughed out loud at the shots you took at your wife’s feet (last week), but I just hope you ain’t crossing the line. One day, she’s going to see the things you write about her and cut off your nuts. â€“ Vegas662
Every week, Mrs. Bootleg asks what I’m gonna write about her and gets a bigger kick out of it than I do. She’s got nothing but good humor towards her fat pregnant belly, her flat potato feet, her apple-round cheeks or her third and fourth chins. Now, if I told you that she weighs 134 pounds and has gained about 24 lbs. since that conceptual injection of “Vitamin ajc”, she’d probably kill meâ€¦
Life With Mrs. Bootleg
So you’re thinkin’ about getting your girl knocked up? Here’s what you’re in store for:
These cravings are getting out of control. Do you know what we had for dinner last night? Lasagnaâ€¦garlic breadâ€¦and a green salad. Afterwards, the wife opened up a can of Van de Kamp’s pork and f*cking beans, chopped up one of those Hebrew National hot dogs and heated the concoction over an open flame before oinking it down in two bites.
Lasagna and pork n’ beans. The taste sensation that’s sweeping the nation.
Wanna know what else is in our kitchenâ€¦? Fish sticks. Who over the age of eight eats fish sticks? And I’m sure even the kiddies aren’t putting ketchup on ’em like my wife does. Oh, we’ve also got about four gallons of soy milk, too. The wife took a few sips before declaring that it “upset her stomach” (deflecting all the blame from the demon seed that kicks her innards for 16 hours a day). I’d throw the shit out, but it’s got an expiration date of June 2004 and it would seem like such a waste.
Only four more weeks until pitchers and catchers report. Get at me on AOL or Yahoo IM: ajcameron13