So, tonight is the grand induction ceremony for this year’s class of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees. You’ll forgive us if we don’t get too excited, though, as the whole Hall of Fame experience these days is as notable for who isn’t included as it is for who is — and, specifically, for the ongoing lack of female inductees. There are plenty of worthy male artists and (predominantly) male bands whose continuing absence is inexplicable — Brian Eno, Nick Drake, Pixies, The Smiths, The Cure, Television — but the picture for women remains truly depressing. About this time two years ago, Salon ran a story pointing out that less than 14% of inductees were women, a picture that hasn’t exactly improved since — Heart and Donna Summer finally god the nod this year, meaning that a whole 25% of this year’s inductees are women! There are still loads of great female artists who remain on the outside looking in, though; here are some of the best. … Read More
The original Gidget and late ’50s, early ’60s cutie pie starlet Sandra Dee would have turned 70 years old today. We doubt the actress would still be willing to brave a surfboard in her senior years, but the scenario is funny to imagine given Dee’s clean-cut, wholesome image that often pegged her as a total square. While her peers were slinking across the big screen, Dee was busy perfecting her lifelong role as the wide-eyed ingénue and singing innocent songs about falling in love.
However, the performer’s career proves appearances can be deceiving. The teen idol struggled with drug and alcohol problems, and an eating disorder her entire life — having started starving herself as an up-and-coming model early in her career.
We looked at other Hollywood, chart topping teen idols whose clean-cut images betrayed their messy and often tragic lives. Although many fans assume their favorite stars are practically invincible, these teen talents prove the shocking truth about humans: we’re all flawed. … Read More
We’ve written several times over the last couple of months about how much we’ve been looking forward to Lee Ranaldo’s solo album Between the Times and the Tides, and how much we’ve been enjoying it now we’ve heard it in full. It’s a welcome step into the spotlight for Ranaldo, a man long-appreciated for his startlingly innovative approach to the guitar, but perhaps less so for his songwriting talents and vocals. The arrival this week of Between the Times and the Tides has gotten us thinking about other musicians who’ve perhaps been overlooked in comparison to more prominent band mates. Click through for a selection of our favorites, and let us know who you think deserves a place in the sun. … Read More
For pop music obsessives, the Internet is an infinite series of bottomless rabbit holes. One of our greatest recent distractions has been isolated vocal tracks: archived recordings of only the vocals from a song, or clips that have been digitally manipulated to remove the instrumental portions (sometimes it’s difficult to tell which of the two you’re hearing). While they’re prone to encouraging an undue amount of reverence — vocals-only tracks are often cited as definitive “proof” of a musician’s talent or lack thereof — they certainly add a new dimension to our appreciation of classic singles. At their best, they highlight the unadorned talent of a singer whose voice we’re used to hearing backed by a full band; at their weirdest, well… just click through to reacquaint yourself with David Lee Roth. … Read More
Recently, Rolling Stone conducted a poll asking readers to pick the 10 best drummers of all time. While we’re not particularly surprised by the results (and we love us some Keith Moon), we’re miffed at the omission of female drummers. Dave Grohl and ?uestlove, but no Janet Weiss or Moe Tucker? Historically, women might have been more likely to pick up a microphone than a set of drumsticks, but luckily there’s a host of great bands from the Vivian Girls to the Honeycombs that had some serious lady talent behind the drumkit. So listen up, all ye Rolling Stone poll-responders: We’ve rounded up 10 of the best women drummers of all time, after the jump. … Read More
Before there was The Bachelor or Dismissed, before Flavor Flav had given out his first clock to a gaggle of adoring scantily-clad ladies, before ____ of Love became a go-to formula, there was The Dating Game. Starting in 1965, The Dating Game and The New Dating Game planted the seeds of what would become the modern reality dating show — there was the sassy bachelorette, the suitors vying for her attention, the winking double entendres, and, of course, the celebrity guest appearance. From a pre-fame Steve Martin to young Michael Jackson, a host of celebrity guests stopped by during its heyday. Alas, many of the show tapes were erased (as was the standard in the day) but some of the hilarity has been preserved via some killer YouTube clips. Check out the best of them after the jump. … Read More