In a nutshell: "Following in the tradition of...one of modern pop music’s true giants...the always-amusing foil Jeffrey Jones...offers a glossary of...MTV-style jump-cutting and mercurial editing...sure to leave you with pains in your...chalupa."


You Can Try Soaking, You Can Try Scrubbing,
But The Weakness Remains
Now that it’s summer, all the rules have changed—especially when it comes to writing up intro paragraphs to the weak-end planner. As far as finding a theme to write about goes, there’s really not much on the calendar between now and Labor Day besides the Fourth of July—which, this year, falls on July 4. Sure, I guess since it’s actually, officially summer the theme could be something sweaty or maybe play off some summery image like bare legs on vinyl seats or bug repellent or food cooked on a Weber grill. Ah well, whatever the theme, you can bet that this week’s planner is every bit as weak as it should be. Maybe it’s the heat. Maybe it’s been wilted from the humidity. Sure, just tell yourself that. We’re sure it has absolutely nothing to do with us slacking off.

The Nick Tosches Reader
(Da Capo Press): Following in the tradition of similar anthologies from seminal rock crits R. Meltzer and Nick Kent, this S.F. publisher, the special markets division of HarperCollins, has published this annotated collection from Tosches. Nick, a contemporary of Lester Bangs, made the leap from the pages of Creem and Rolling Stone to write acclaimed fiction and bios on the likes of Jerry Lee Lewis, Dean Martin and, most recently, Sonny Liston. This selection of pieces written for various publications shows Tosches combined Meltzer's stream-of-consciousness, Bangs' hell-bent, self-lacerating morality, good pal Greil Marcus' classical erudition and contemporary Cameron Crowe's effortless ability to transcend his pulp roots. Check out the Patti Smith interview for Penthouse, which he starts off by asking, "Were you a horny teenager, Patti?" Or his only New York Times piece, which he breezily disavows, where he reveals the favorite TV shows of novelists like Robert Penn Warren, Joan Didion and Louis Auchincloss. Then dig his conversation with the late Screaming Jay Hawkins, who tells him: "I don't wanna be a black Vincent Price. I'm no monster. I wanna do goddamn opera. I wanna do Figaro, Le Sacre du Printemps, 'Ave Maria,' 'The Lord's Prayer.'" You could just hear Tosches railing against his own rockcrit stereotyping. But from the breadth of his work on display here, it would seem Nick got to do exactly what he wanted…his way. Roy Trakin

Weezalicious, Weezalicious (self-released EP):
Here’s a band in love with rock & roll in the purest sense. Vocalist Zack Rabinowitz, bassist Chet Bentley and the Gilmore brothers, guitarist Scotty and drummer Kenny, play with a degree of devotion to the notion of letting it all hang out that you simply don’t encounter these days. On their debut EP, the guys tackle four Weezer songs—including a sublime take on "Hash Pipe"—with a careening energy that’s both exhilarating and adorable: The spirit of these performances reminds me of the first time I saw the New York Dolls at the Mercer Arts Center in 1972. That said, A&R weasels should give the band—two of whose members have dads in the music biz—some time to develop…say, seven years. At that point, they’ll be 18 and pondering the question of whether to go to college or turn pro. Until then, don’t try to find them—just let them enjoy their childhoods. —Bud Scoppa

Brian Wilson, Live At The Roxy Theatre (Oglio):
One of modern pop music’s true giants has enjoyed a real renaissance in the last decade, transcending his old rep as the troubled soul behind a sunny California surf band to achieve adoration as a genius-level composer and producer. While his voice is occasionally uneven, Wilson shines on this two-disc concert set recorded at the venerable Los Angeles club. Live covers Beach Boys smashes ("California Girls," "Good Vibrations," "I Get Around,"), more recently canonized, sophisticated work ("God Only Knows," "Caroline No," "In My Room") and even some new tunes. Backed by a large and skillful band that includes members of L.A. wizards the Wondermints, Wilson soaks up the cheers of a worshipful crowd like, well, sunshine. You’ll probably have the same response to this heartfelt, joyous double album. Meanwhile, the Oglio label has launched an online contest to promote the set; the lucky winner receives a Squier bass guitar autographed by Wilson. Click here to enter; the promotion ends July 31. Wilson and the Wondermints share a live bill with Paul Simon in 28 cities this summer. —Simon Glickman

Dr. Dolittle 2
(Fox): It must be the year of the animal in Hollywood. Eddie Murphy's already been a donkey in Shrek and Rob Schneider's a horny hound in The Animal, while the all-talking Cats and Dogs and Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes remake are right around the corner. Throw in the new generation of digital actors, and you'd think today's Hollywood stars would be trying to raise the issue of non-human "toons" putting them out of work in their current SAG talks. That said, this sequel to the $100 million-plus grossing 1998 version has even less to do with the Hugh Lofting original upon which the 1967 Rex Harrison bomb directed by Tora! Tora! Tora!’s Richard Fleischer was based. This time, it's Murphy who talks to the animals and the animals talk back, wisecracking their way through the movie in a way sure to delight every last person who saw Babe: Pig In The City. Anyway, one-time music video director Steve Carr segues from his smash hit Next Friday into big-budget territory, with Murphy's now-successful vet out to save the home of some displaced forest dwellers from evil human developers as well as play matchmaker with a pair of star-crossed bears. Kristen Wilson, the always-amusing foil Jeffrey Jones and Kevin Pollak co-star. The soundtrack is the first for Clive Davis' J Records, which includes the club smash, "Cluck Cluck" by the Product G&B and Wyclef Jean. The rest of the album is a showcase for his new label's acts, including Deborah Cox, O-Town, Alicia Keys, Luther Vandross, Angie Stone and LFO. The website at www.drdolittle2.com almost makes seeing the film superfluous.

The Fast and the Furious (Universal): Veteran director Rob Cohen (A Small Circle of Friends, Dragonheart) was the producer of such popcult music-related flicks as Mahogany, The Wiz and Thank God It's Friday. From the full-tilt barrage of trailers, it looks like he brings that kinetic touch to this unabashed b-flick about the search for speed and thrills in the illicit culture of car-racing on the mean streets of L.A. Of course, the only time most of us have witnessed this sport is back when James Dean played chicken as Sal Mineo rode shotgun in Rebel Without a Cause. The fast and furious plot, as it were, revolves around an undercover cop's attempts to infiltrate the street racing gangs to crack a series of big-rig hijackings. The stars might seem to lack household recognition, but the aptly named Vin Diesel has already turned heads in both Boiler Room and Saving Private Ryan, while Michelle Rodriguez is ready to invade J.Lo territory after her star-making turn in Girlfight. Soap opera alumnus Paul Walker, who's appeared in She's All That, Varsity Blues, Pleasantville and cult film Meet The Deedles, is also familiar among the teen set this movie is obviously aimed at. The Murder Inc./Def Jam/IDJ soundtrack features a who's-who of hip-hop, including Ja Rule, Scarface, Faith Evans, R. Kelly, DMX, Method Man, Redman and Limp Bizkit, and takes center-stage in the film's marketing. The website, www.thefastandthefurious.com, offers a glossary of street-racing terms, a list of related links, a rundown on the various muscle-mobiles featured prominently in the flick and a warning not to try this at home.

The Princess and the Warrior (Sony Pictures Classics): The second film from the German team of Run Lola Run director Tom Tykwer and his companion/star, the flaming red-headed Franka Potente, deals in the first movie's preoccupations with fate, destiny and synchronicity, but apparently in a much more languorous, dreamy, sleep-walking way, as opposed to its predecessor's MTV-style jump-cutting and mercurial editing. The story, set in the director's German hometown of Wuppertal, involves a naive, childlike psychiatric nurse (Potente) who suffers a horrible car accident, her life hanging literally by a thread, only to be saved by a "sad, angry and frustrated" one-time soldier-turned-petty criminal (Benno Furmann) who promptly disappears. That leads Potente on a physical and spiritual journey to discover the key to what brought them together—pure chance or a higher plan. Tykwer's Run Lola Run was the highest-grossing German film in the U.S. since Das Boot, and he's set to direct Heaven, with Cate Blanchett, for Miramax, the adaptation of a story by the late Polish director Krzysztof Kieslowski. Potente recently starred in Blow with Johnny Depp and just wrapped The Bourne Identity opposite Matt Damon. Like Run Lola Run, techno music plays a large role in the film, with the Trauma Records soundtrack featuring Pale 3 collaborations with Alison Goldfrapp, 12 Rounds and Anita Lane, among others. The rather slim website can be found at www.spe.sony.com/classics/buyitonvideo/2001/princesswarrior.html.Roy Trakin

"Genius is born, not paid." —Oscar Wilde

If you weren't lucky enough to score tickets to the now sold-out K-Rock Dysfunctional Family Picnic Friday night at Jones Beach, featuring the likes of Jane's Addiction, blink-182, Papa Roach and more, there's always the dysfunctional-sounding Dismemberment Plan at Bowery Ballroom. Not wanting so much testosterone? Then get girlie with the Go-Go's at Cenral Park's Rumsey Playfield. Saturday night's a major toss-up between Ted Leo at Brownies or Calexico and Archer Prewitt at Maxwells. My money's on Ted, as lately his live shows with a full band have been totally kicking. By Sunday, you'll be needing some laughter and luckily you've got some options: The comedic drag stylings of Kiki and Herb at Fez are always a good bet. Or, there's Atom and His Package at Brownies. His songs, with titles like "Mission 1: Avoid Job Working with Assholes," are sure to leave you with pains in your side. Heidi Anne-Noel

George Bush, our 41st president, was born June 12, 1924, in Milton, MA. The youngest pilot in the Navy when he received his wings, Bush flew 58 combat missions during World War II. On one mission over the Pacific as a torpedo bomber pilot he was shot down by Japanese antiaircraft fire and was rescued by a U.S. submarine. Some of the jobs held by Bush include: cofounder of the Zapata Petroleum Corporation, president (later chairman) of Zapata Off-Shore Company, U.S. House of Representatives, Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations, chairman of the Republican National Committee, head of the U.S. Liaison Office in the People's Republic of China, director of the Central Intelligence Agency, chairman of Houston's First National Bank and Vice-President of the United States. Best Anagram Of His Name: See Borg hug.

MTV Music Generator 2:
Yo, party people, LPzeee iz back with anutha hottt PS2 game, & this iz tha type of shittt that I need to let you guys know about. DJz, or wannabe DJz, you need to try this—it iz sum mind blowin’ shittt. Skim your own beats with tha new version of MTV Music Generator for the PlayStation 2. Busting a groove to dance clips is fun, but that'z nuthin compared to mixing your own tracks. Far & away tha coolest "gadget game" on tha PlayStation 2 console (or any other system, for that matter), MTV Music Generator 2 updates tha underground fave original, offering thousands of riffs & beats to work with. This get-up is so pro-styled, it's got Apollo 440, Bentley Rhythm Ace and Funkmaster Flex's endorsement. With a little hands-on experience, you can mix your own rock, pop, garage, trance, house, indie and R&B songs. For shittz & giggles, there iz a game in here. You can watch trippy 3D videos of your music compositions, or swank out a party with a four-player "Music Jam"—everybody gets to jam over a running beat (tie in a multitap for PlayStation 2 and include up to eight riffers). Still, tha real draw of MTV Music Generator 2 iz itz ability to do some near studio-quality tracks. How real can this thing get? Try buzzing into the Riff Editor to write your tunes note-for-note, using a guitar or other instrument, then sweeten it with effects like echo, delay and reverb. And for true beatmasters, send in tha mail-in cert from the box and order the MTV Music Generator 2 Sample Kit—a USB peripheral that lets you import your own samples from CDs, tapes, or even your own voice! Puff Daddy, you're about to get some challengers, so try it and holla back. —Latin Prince

Try Our New Crime-Fighting Chalupa! A 17-year-old on a bicycle held up a Fort Worth, TX, Taco Bell but had to wait so long for a chalupa that he ended up getting caught, authorities say. The robber pedaled up to the fast food outlet's drive-up window just after midnight on June 18. Waving what appeared to be a gun, he threatened the staff and demanded money and a chalupa. A Taco Bell worker called police, who arrived while the thief was waiting for his food. The teen pedaled off and kept bicycling even after an officer shot him in the arm and leg. He surrendered once a second cruiser cut him off. The gun turned out to be a toy. "He got the money but then waited there while his food was being prepared," said Fort Worth Police Lt. Duane Paul. Sadly, he never got his chalupa. —Jeff Drake

Upcoming Birthdays
June 22-28

22—Billy Wilder (95) & Todd Rundgren (53)
23—Bob Fosse (would have been 74)
24—Ambrose Bierce (would have been 159) & Jeff Beck (57)
25—George Orwell (would have been 98) & Carly Simon (56)
26—Peter Lorre (would have been 97)
27—Bob "Capt. Kangaroo" Keeshan (74)
28—Mel Brooks (73)

Special Events
June is Gay Pride Month
23—Bullwhacker Days (Olathe, KS)
24—Gay Pride Day
27—Snausage Appreciation Day (Emporia, KS)

The Days Are Getting Shorter:
June 21 marked the first day of summer, the day with the most sunlight. During the summer the Earth is actually farther from the Sun than in the winter. As I was explaining to Jon O’Hara, the heat of summer has to do with the angle of the Earth in relation to the Sun, rather than pure distance. Soon, the Earth will wobble off of its axis into space and we’ll all be plunged into darkness and death. If that doesn’t happen this weekend, here’s what you’ll have to look forward to weather-wise: In Rudy Giuliani’s sex-starved playground, Friday night will be mostly cloudy, with a chance of thunderstorms, low in the upper 60s. Saturday will be cloudy with scattered storms, high in the mid-70s and lows in the mid-60s. Sunday will be cloudy but should be rain-free. High near 80, low in the upper 60s. Yummy. For those in the greater Los Angeles area, where it sometimes feels like the world is spinning off its axis, tonight will be wonderful. Temps will drop to the mid-60s, with calm winds. Saturday will be a mix of clouds and sun, hitting the 80-degree mark. The night will be dark, with a low in the mid-60s. Ditto all that for Sunday. If you’re looking for fun and adventure, might we in the weather department suggest the Oakville Waterfront Festival this weekend in Oakville, Canada. There will be a pancake breakfast on Saturday. Of course, it’s going to be rainy and all weekend, with highs in the upper 60s and lows in the low 50s. But those Canadians are hardy. They can take it. —David Simutis, Senior Meteorology Correspondent

While visiting her family, Jo tries to pretty up her lovesick tomboy cousin.

Starring Doja Cat, Nipper and Ms. Larry David (5/13a)
Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. (5/14a)
Beam us up, Uncle Clive. (5/13a)
Todd gets in. Finally. (5/13a)
She also reviews the best outdoor Bluetooth speakers. (5/13a)
The musical tapestry we know as R&B.
Predicting the next big catalog deal.
Once we all get vaccinated, how long before we can party?
How is globalization bringing far-flung territories into the musical mainstream?

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