MUSTO ON EMINEM
Michael Musto, the colorful Village Voice columnist, has New York gossip circles atwitter with his Dorothy Parker-esque review of the new Eminem film, "8 Mile," in this week's "La Dolce Musto" column. The film, Musto comments, "has you weeping for downtrodden, troubled Eminem, who's not -- well his character's not -- a dried-up dog turd after all.
"In the flick -- which touchingly starts with the rapper vomiting from nerves -- it turns out the guy you mistook for a big bully actually is a victim of the bullies, who want to oppress his spunky spirit. And this version of Eminem is not a misogynist -- in fact, women are the abusers, one lying to him and another heathen harpy betraying his trust. What's more, Eminem -- I mean 'Rabbit' -- doesn't really want to dig a grave for his mama, he just wants her to lose her bully boyfriend, get focused, and stop talking about oral sex," Musto continues.
"And by the way, 'Rabbit' hasn't appropriated anyone else's art form," Musto notes. "Oh noooo, it's his black rap opponent who's unmasked -- by him -- as a real phony and not a real gangsta at all."
Wait until Triumph the insult comic dog hears about this.
MOCKING BIRDS AT LAKESIDE LOUNGE
Indie favorites the Mocking Birds make a rare New York appearance Thursday at the Lakeside Lounge at 10 p.m. The quartet, based out of New Haven, Conn., is led by the quirky singer/songwriter James Velvet. "Still Here" is the band's eighth release, on its own Mr. Lucky Records. Velvet has a back catalog of some five dozen recorded songs, "some of them way too good for the industry, some of them lousy, and all of them self-published," says a bemused Velvet.
"Still Here" is a nuanced look at one American's winter of 01-02. Songs like "Gas Masks And Vaccines" and "Freedom Ring" address specific cultural and political trends while "I'm Still Here" and "Sail Away" examine images of home and loss, and the identities of place and possession. The tracks are stitched together in suite-like fashion with percussion loops by producer Vic Steffens of Horizon Studios.
Rapper Jay-Z is on a unique tour to promote his new album, "The Blueprint 2: The Gift and the Curse" (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam), appearing at various high schools around the country as guest principal for a day. The dozen schools will be treated to a speech from Jay-Z and a question-and-answer session, followed by a live performance later in the evening before an audience of approximately 300 people. The schools on the tour and the audience participants are the winners of contests held by local radio stations. The tour winds up Nov. 26 in San Francisco.
INXS HOLDS BALI BENEFIT
INXS, the popular Australian rock group, is headlining a benefit for victims of last month's terror bombing in Bali next Tuesday, Nov. 19, at Hammerstein Ballroom in New York. Tickets for the concert are available at the Hammerstein Ballroom box office or through Ticketmaster.
WILL THE REAL EMINEM PAY THE BILL?
The New York Post reports rapper Eminem, or a lookalike, stiffed a Los Angeles-area resort hotel for a $7,000 tab. "Someone who either claimed to be Eminem or merely claimed to be 'with' him skipped out of the exclusive Bacara Resort and Spa without paying a $7,000 bill last Wednesday," the Post reports. That was the day (Nov. 6) Eminem attended the premiere of "8 Mile" in Los Angeles and the opening party in Westwood.