The Friday Music News Bootleg

“How did I raise such a soft ass n*gga?”

-The words of my father have never rang truer…

Welcome back to The Bootleg. The generation gap between me and my old man was never clearer than this past Tuesday. On my way home from another 10-hour day in the claptrap of crap that is my job, I made a few stops before finally pulling into the garage just after 6:00 PM.

Getting out of my car, I turned to notice that the Saturn was looking a little more…crooked. The driver’s side was noticeably higher than the passenger’s side. Since Eddie Guerrero and his traveling six-pack of percodan were nowhere to be found, I could pretty much eliminate “low-rider hydraulics” from the equation.

Upon closer inspection, it seemed that one of the tires had simply gone flat.

Now, that actually posed a little problem, since the last time I fixed a flat…well, let’s just say there was an inner tube, a little metal scraping thing and one of those butter-churn style bike pumps involved. It’s not like I could take off my car’s tire, fill it up with air and squeeze it, while holding it under water, to find the leak.

The truth is I’ve never changed a car’s tire and I wouldn’t even know where to begin. Now, as I saw it…I had three options:

Option #1: I could’ve Googled “changing a flat” and found explicit instructions on the entire process. With some trial and error, I would’ve surely had this ten-minute fix-it licked in two or three hours. Of course, I’m also the guy who cried as an eight-year-old, when he couldn’t transform Jazz from Autobot back to sportscar. Verdict: Nope.

Option #2: Swallow my pride and ask a neighbor for help. On the plus side, it would likely get done quicker, but on the minus side, word would get around just as quickly that my wife had, indeed, married a bitch. As a result, unmarried and middle-aged African-American alpha males with names like “Otis” would be lining up to take me down and muscle in on my marriage. Verdict: A little pain up front for a lot of pleasure on the back end. Maybe.

Option #3: Completely discount car safety and overfill the tire with air to compensate for the slow leak, until it can be taken to a professional who’ll perform the work. Verdict: That’ll do.

Over the last 72 hours, the leak has gotten progressively more pronounced, however. I don’t mind the once-a-day drive to the local service station or the fifty cents that it takes to feed the air/water machine…but, I’ve seen the same homeless guy sitting with a squeegee and bucket of soapy water each time. Yesterday, Olu Dara finally spoke:

“You want me to fix your tire? Been seein’ you a lot lately…”, he said.

“Nah, I’m straight…I’m taking it in tomorrow…”, I replied.

“Them white boys gonna rip you off, youngblood. We need to keep our money in our community…I’ll do it for $100.”, he said.

The Goodness is glad to see Black-on-Black crime is still alive and well…

Just A Quick Note: We’re taking next week off to prepare for Kid Cameron’s first birthday, but be sure you’re here in two weeks. If not for the 2 Year Anniversary of The Bootleg, then at least stay for the VERY special announcement about the future of this column!

Ruh-oh.

Moley, Moley, Moley…

As if our friends at ESPN haven’t done enough to (over)kill any interest in this year’s Super Bowl, word has already begun leaking out on what is annually the biggest non-news event of the year…the Super Bowl commercials.

Diet Pepsi and P. Diddy have joined forces for a 30-second spot that features Eva Longoria, token star of that one show with all the withered white women who are taken with temptation for teenaged boys. And, if that’s not enough, Cindy Crawford has crawled out from her carbonite crypt for a cameo, as well.

Cindy Crawford? Did we all wake up in 1993? Do we dare dig up Dan Cortese, just for kicks? And, besides, Cindy…it’s only been 10 years since Fair Game. America hasn’t forgotten.

As far as I can tell, it’s still the single worst performance by a mole since Angie Everhart and “every time Aaron Neville has appeared on TV”.

Who Wants to Scrub My Back…?

OK…this can’t be good. Insufferable lyricist, LL Cool J (stage name: DJ Durabol) has inked a deal with Caress Body Wash and will begin appearing in ads in a few short weeks.

Now, I’m not saying that a Black man can’t sell soap, but I think we all remember the resultant ill-fated fragrance when Zest soap tabbed back-fatted running back Craig “Ironhead” Heyward to tout the benefits of their body-wash brand.

See, kids…in an age when the FCC wasn’t our friend, we recoiled at the loofa-laced lather that could be achieved by the on-screen scrubbing of one’s body. Of course, the “one” in this case was a 275-pound brutha with hot water nipping the nape of his neck rolls.

For you younger fans, try to imagine Jerome Bettis betwixt a bevy of bathing products Bath n’ Body Works. Did someone let slip the news of their new brown n’ serve sausage scent?

Uma Thurman Nude! (Well, those words appear below…)

Ludacris is courting controversy…again. Activist groups out of Atlanta, Georgia are up in arms over Luda’s recent release party for his Red Light District album. The down south rapper apparently took the title to heart amid claims that he featured dozens of nude women mingling with the invited guests.

Luda actually admits that the women were strippers who were hired out for the evening and brushed off the entire incident as “a tasteful marketing strategy”. Y’know…I could’ve saved four six years of my life and thousands of dollars in student loans, if someone had simply shown me the shortcut to my eventual Marketing Degree.

Naked chicks sell!

Remember Revenge of the Nerds? Everyone credits the big musical finish with putting the Tri-Lams over the top in the Greek Games competition, but face it…the foundation was laid when the picture of Betty Childs bonded with banana crème.

To the surprise of no one, nudity was nowhere to be found in any of the insipid sequels…yet Robert Carradine remained a constant. Help me out on this one, movie fans…I know he’s David’s half-brother, but when exactly did Uma Thurman drop the five-point palm on his career?

Just Because The ABC Networks Says These Women Are Hot…

Depending on who you believe, Kylie Minogue recently underwent lip enhancement surgery…or not. The Pop tart attended the Chanel Fashion show in Paris and was photographed with what was described as “a swollen mouth”. Judge for yourself on this one, kids, but it seems like much ado about nothing to me.

Besides, if we’re going to unleash our judgmental Catholic wrath on any post-plastic surgery segment of society, then it would have to be those men and women who line up for ABC’s Extreme Makeover (Original Title: This Ol’ Face). Have you watched the show?

These unattractive hobbits and hags go through hours of surgery and months of rehab…so that they’ll look a little better than when they began.

For example…here’s Aimee before. And, here she is after. Still looks like Glass Joe with jugs, to me.

Besides, she’s not even…whoa, wait a minute. Let’s see that before picture again.

OK, it might be time to rethink our government’s work release program.

Sometimes The News Just Writes Itself

Former ’80s pop star Jemm & The Holograms Debbie Gibson is going the same route that brought enduring fame and fortune to former WWE man-beast Chyna (Doll). Yep, Miss Gibson has miss-placed her clothes and will be posing for an upcoming issue of Playboy magazine.

Now, on the surface, this seems akin to casting Mayim Bialik from Blossom to bare it all. However, it seems that time has been kind to Debbie Deborah. I’m talkin’ “Comeback Player of the Year” kind.

Now, I first brought this up over on our Inside Pulse Reader Forums (the only place where you can get more of me…occasionally), but last year’s Comeback Player of the Year has to be Josie Davis.

See, I only remembered her from her time in syndicated servitude (far right). But, a few weeks ago, during one of my several trips to the floor, I found out that Josie is a pussycat!

Come on…who saw that coming? The Vegas odds had her as the second biggest long shot among “awkward child stars that would someday recover”, right behind “The Cast of the Facts of Life from Molly Ringwald all the way up to the fat one(s)”.

Nick’a Please
conceptualized by Nick Salemi

Murder Inc. Going out of Business Sale! Everything must go!

I’d like to send a shout out to Irv Gotti for putting the latest stain on Hip Hop. He’s trumped the usual concealed weapons, assault and narcotics possession charges that usually populate the headlines Hip Hop gets in mainstream news coverage that continues to not only give it a black eye, but rip it out and stomp on it for good measure.

Short of the number of unsolved murders of several rappers, (which is beyond surreal and I STILL don’t think has sunk in yet and never may…) Gotti’s situation may be the worst yet: a federal investigation has led to him being charged for money laundering in association with known drug dealers.

Now, the way media covers Hip Hop is partially to blame, as 99% of the time it covers the negative. Although one could make the argument that 99% of ANYTHING on the news is negative anyway. Hip Hop has never cared much for what the mainstream society thinks of it and that’s a good thing.

But, he’s not getting off the hook that easy. He seems pretty unapologetic and it sounds like he’s proud of it. Unfortunately, the rest of Hip Hop suffers from an incident like this.

The U.S. Attorney made sure to say that none of the artists (Ja and Ashanti count as artists?) on Murder Inc are charged or affiliated with the investigation in any way. Has Ja’s fall actually become the living breathing manifestation of the cliché that he literally “can’t even get arrested”? The irony! I think we all know the real crime is the sh*tty music they’ve been spewing out at us for years.

He’s got 99 problems but a hit ain’t one.

This might actually explain why the music was so bad. They made the same songs over and over again using tired samples with little or no creativity whatsoever. It was a front, and they had other business to attend to.

Sounds a lot like a record label on the other coast that curiously operates to this day without having had a hit in this decade (outside of claiming partial credit for the endless stream of posthumous 2Pac albums) and has driven every artist that ever had any success there away.

I particularly liked Irv’s one comment, “In no way have I done anything wrong except make great music”. Huh? Damn, that’s the one thing he’s innocent of! Can you hear the attorney now?

“Your honor, the prosecution would like to point to every album Ja Rule and Ashanti have released to establish that the defendant is not telling the truth in that previous statement.”

The bottom line is he’ll have his day in court and may not be guilty of the charges. However, guilty or not, his arrogant attitude as displayed by his comments do nothing to shed a positive light on the music form. Don’t you get the feeling he’s like a 12 year old that somehow is enjoying the attention? Grow the f*ck up and turn in your copy of Scarface.

It’s over.

Agree? Disagree? Get at me at nicksalemi@yahoo.com

General Haberdashery

So, last week I pound out about 10 pages of music news n’ goodness and what is the one subject I get the most feedback on? El Pollo Loco. Well, never let it be said that I don’t know what my readers want…this week’s links come directly from their menu.

Jeff Fernandez favors the Chicken Caesar Pollo Bowl. His is a satisfying mishmash of meat, music and creamy cilantro dressing. Read the latest on the Phoenix Suns gorilla mascot, eating J-Lo’s ass and the most ridiculous items of 2004.

Oh, and FYI to Jeff…”avocado salsa” is a watery, neon green condiment that bears no resemblance to guacamole or salsa.

Gloomchen reminds me of caramel flan. A sweet, crowd-pleasing staple that the masses eat up with a spoon. Can you get this stuff in Iowa? Anyways, she reveals her lone “weakness” in her final paragraph, types marijuana in all caps and mocks those of you who can’t see U2 in concert.

And, just so you know, they’re coming to San Diego on the first Vertigo tour stop and I’m not going. But, at least I have a choice! Plbbbbbbt!

Mathan can only be a three-piece white(!) meat, flour tortillas, with a side of macaroni and cheese and coleslaw. Which just so happens to be my favorite thing to order. This week, the focus is on instrumentals. Although, in what has to be considered an upset, there’s not one mention of Training Montage or War from the Rocky IV soundtrack.

Gordi is an order of their fries. Even the regulars don’t know what the hell papas fritas are doing at a “Mexican” joint, but when they finally try ’em…man, they do that batter-dipped thing with ’em, so they’re crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.

Oh, almost forgot…read Gordi. He’s giving away a 90-minute mixtape and has a kick ass Simpsons theme running throughout most of his column!

The Most Controvertial (sic) Column in IP Sports History!

Hey, speaking of which…I’ve been added to the RSS Feed Family of writers here at IP. ‘Course, I’ve got no idea what exactly RSS is, but it must be cool, since I was the last person around here to get one. Lousy Daniels.

Just click on the link at the bottom of this page.

J.A.M = the fourth in the line of short-lived novelty writing nicknames for a trio of Inside Pulse and 411 writers.

J is for Movie Joe Reid. And congratulations are in order for our favorite cinematic columnist, as he finished first second…well, let’s just say in “the top two” for Movie Writer of the Year. He bested 79 other nominees, from “Siskel” to “Ashish”, and plans to celebrate with a big bowl of George’s Stuffing…which, curiously, he doesn’t tolerate.

And, make sure you check out his pre-Oscar predictions. Where else can you mock his lines like, “Which means that (Don) Cheadle is the odd man out…” Yeesh…I change my vote to Rutherford.

A is for me.

M is for TV Mathan. Boy Meets World? Oz? MacGyver? Lancelot Link? It’s like reading me…again! Oh, and confidential to Math…I can’t do the shaved head thing. As we’ve previously noted, I share a certain, uh, “profile” with this guy and the baldie didn’t look too good on him.

Junk Mail

LOVED your retelling of the near-death experience at the hands of some Mexican fast food. Imagine how proud your son would be to know his daddy died at the hands of a two-piece meal. I just want to know why in a room full of patrons not one of them came to your aid? Christ, you were choking!…P.C.

Apparently, the relationship between African-Americans and Hispanics isn’t all chitlins n’ chorizo. After all, they gave us Gerardo and we gave them our spot as the largest minority group in the United States. The least they could do is throw in Elizabeth Peña and a bag of buñuelos.

Life With the Bootleg Family

In Loving Memory of Our Aunt Chele: May 14, 1960-January 28, 2005

I promise to take good care of your niece and your godson…

Be safe, kids. I’ll see ya in two weeks. Get at me on AOL or Yahoo IM: ajcameron13

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