1. Legendary jazz singer, actress, and civil rights icon Lena Horne died yesterday at the age of 92. [via NYT]
2. In a graduation speech at Hampton University on Sunday, President Obama called the iPad, and other popular electronic devices, a “distraction… rather than the means of emancipation.” Thoughts? [via CNET]
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1. TIME magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world is out; A-listers like Banksy to Conan O’Brien are namechecked and the cover pairs Lady Gaga with Bill Clinton. [via TIME]
2. OMFG, WTF is Paramount doing making a Magic 8-Ball movie? “Reply hazy, try again.” [via Vulture]
3. Interpol! Remember them? They’ve just released a new song called “Lights.” What does it sound like? No idea, since the download didn’t work, but if I had to guess I’d say “dark,” heavy on the reverb, and lyrically confusing. [via Stereogum]
4. Unlikely female triumvirate alert: Sarah Silverman is in talks to co-star with Michelle Williams (actress featured in several topographically-based dramas such as Dawson’s Creek, Brokeback Mountain, Shutter Island) in Sarah Polley’s directorial feature Take This Waltz. [via Variety]
5. New York mag’s veteran party reported Jada Yuan had dinner with the “capriciously moody” Bill Murray and survived to tell the tale. [via… Read More
1. Oprah is set to announce today that she’s ending her show on September 9, 2011, when her current contract expires, and moving it to her own network. [via USA Today]
2. Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning will kiss in The Runaways, that upcoming Joan Jett biopic. [via Pop Candy]
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1. Pitchfork reviews the Beatles reissues. A Hard Day’s Night scores a 9.7, but With the Beatles doesn’t fare so well — an 8.8. [via Pitchfork]
2. Charles Burnett will direct a feature-length documentary about Barack Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann Dunham. [via THR]
3. The shortlist for this year’s Man Booker… Read More
Remember when Williamsburg was just a collection of warehouses? Longtime Brooklyn dwellers Sam Brumbaugh and Bronwyn Keenan sure do. Sam Brumbaugh, writer of Goodbye, Goodness, and Bronwyn Keenan, the Guggenheim’s Director of Special Events, recognize how far Brooklyn has come in its artistic development, going so far as to dub it a “renaissance.” To commemorate the borough’s achievements and to celebrate the museum’s 50th anniversary, they’ve co-produced a concert series called “It Came From Brooklyn,” to take place in the famous rotunda, designed by famous architect Frank Lloyd… Read More
Julian Plenti is the alter ego of Interpol frontman Paul Banks, who releases his debut solo album this week.
While there’s no mistaking the inimitable singer’s ominously captivating vocals, as Julian Plenti, Banks is free to explore wider territory than with his suited-for-brooding band. In fact, Julian Plenti Is… Skyscraper sounds downright uplifting at times (most notably on the Polyphonic Spree-esque “Unwind”); at others, it relaxes into string-laced acoustic melancholy.
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Stellastarr* have been through a lot since forming at the start of the century. Coming up in the same NYC indie-rock class as Interpol and the Strokes, the band saw quick success with early singles like “My Coco” and “Jenny.” The quartet’s Pixies-meets-Talking Heads aesthetic and ear for hooks brought it to an international audience, and notably saw it touring with the Killers as its opening act. On July 7, Stellastarr* — Shawn Christensen, Michael Jurin, Amanda Tannen, and Arthur Kremer — release their third album, Civilized. The first single, “Graffiti Eyes,” was released on April 20, also featuring on an episode of Gossip Girl the same day. We caught up with frontman Christensen for a rapid-fire chat about the new record, public bust-ups, and his other connection to the CW’s most popular show.
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