I’m going to say the Sox in Six, and for the second consecutive year, we’ll witness a historically jinxed franchise overcome the specter of their own failure. Sleep tight, Shoeless Joe.


There’s a Nip in the Air, Finally. Time to Put Away the Shorts and Pull Out the Sweats
Friday, Oct. 21
Coheed & Cambria w/Dredg,mewithoutyou and Blood Brothers @ Marquee , Tempe, AZ (all ages)

30 Seconds to Mars @ Cain's Ballroom, Tulsa, OK

Gang of Four w/Morningwood @ House of Blues, Anaheim (all ages)

WHFS presents The Bravery @ Sonar, Baltimore (all ages)

Jem w/The Southland @ Avalon Hollywood

Against Me! @ Pipeline Café, Honolulu

Saturday, Oct. 22nd
KTBZ Buzzfest
featuring Audioslave, 10 Years, 30 Seconds to Mars, Coheed and Cambria, Cold, Nickleback and many others @ Minute Maid Park, Houston (check listing for times).

USC @ Washington (ABC): Another test? We doubt it. The #1 Trojans probably aren’t taking anyone lightly anymore after escaping back-to-back-to-back close games. Look for Pete Carroll’s studs to jump all over Ty Willingham’s mangy Huskies. Other parts of the country will get Texas vs. Texas Tech in what promises to be a wild shootout.

Oregon St @ UCLA: Matt Moore leads the Beavers into the Rose Bowl to face the undefeated Bruins. Moore, once a quarterback at UCLA, will look to give his former teammates their first loss of the season.

Tennessee @ Alabama (CBS)

Auburn @ LSU (ESPN)

World Series: Astros vs. White Sox (Fox): Clemens against Contreras in the opening game. A big congrats goes out to Biggio and Bagwell, two Hall of Famers in my book, who finally get to the World Series at the tail ends of their careers. Game 2 Sunday, same bat time, same bat channel.

Porcupine Tree @ House of Blues Sunset (18 and over)

Stoney Curtis Band @ Steve's BBQ, Whitter (21 and over)

Morningwood @ Velvet Jones, Santa Barbara.

...and if you’re in the neighborhood, go see The Arcade Fire and Wilco @ TIM Festival, Rio De Janeiro.

Sunday, Oct 23rd
102.1 EDGE Fall Homecoming Concert:
Featuring Our Lady Peace, Panic! at the Disco, 30 Seconds to Mars, All American Rejects and many more, @ Smirnoff Music Centre, Dallas. Check with venue for more info.

Sherman Oaks Street Fair @ Ventura Blvd and Van Nuys. Highlights include pony rides, a climbing wall and works from local artists. Profits from the Street Fair will be used to benefit local Sherman Oaks Public Schools, for which over $250,000 has been raised over the years.

Southern California Blues Society presents Blues for the Bayou Hurricane Relief Benefit @ The Blue, Long Beach; $5 donation at the door.

Harley Davidson Rides for the Pink: Benefiting the Meredith Baxter Foundation for Breast Cancer Research. Ride starts at Glendale Harley Davidson and ends with live performance by Cindy Alexander at Grace Simmons Lodge, 1025 Elysian Park Dr., L.A. For more info, check out www.ridingforthepink.com.

Karla: Opening night of a new play written by acclaimed singer/songwriter Steve Earle @ The Culture Project¹s 45 Below Theatre (45 Bleecker Street).

Black Crowes @ Fonda Theatre, Hollywood. The last show of a five-night stand.

The Go! Team, Thunder, Lightning, Strike (Columbia):
If you’re looking for the perfect post-modern, multi-culti rockcrit flava of the week, this is it, but it does live up to the hype. Part soccer chant, part playground cheer, with a healthy dollop of spaghetti and Hollywood western brass, this sextet from Brighton, a U.K. beach resort probably best known as the setting for Quadrophenia, deliver an exuberant mash-up of music and lo-fi technology reminiscent of Malcolm McLaren’s Burundi beat cassette-pet fling with Bow Wow Wow. The brainchild of one Ian Parton, who put together the touring band, which includes native German and Japanese drummers, “Panther Dash” has the best use of a children’s choir this side of “Another Brick in the Wall,” while “Junior Kickstart” recalls the sunny horns of Hugh Masakela’s instrumental hit, “Grazing in the Grass.” This is the product of all those people squeezed together on a tiny island with lots of free time on their hands. But don’t let that stop you.

Elizabethtown (Paramount): To say Cameron Crowe’s latest is better than his last, Vanilla Sky, is to damn it with faint praise, but the movie isn’t nearly as bad as many critics would have you think. An attempt to plumb the emotions of Crowe’s romantic successes Say Anything, Jerry Maguire and Almost Famous, the new Elizabethtown is like an indie film (last week, our own Je-C pointed out the plot similarities to Zach Braff’s similarly themed Garden State) in the clothes of a major Hollywood studio production. Cameron goes for a populist piece of Capra corn with his depiction of Orlando Bloom’s athletic shoe exec returning to his dead father’s Kentucky home to bury him after being fired when his new sneaker design bombs, only to fall in love with a wacky stewardess played by Kirsten Dunst along the way. Trouble is, he should’ve mixed in some of the cynicism of his mentor Billy Wilder, which exits the screen shortly after Alex Baldwin—playing a Phil Knight type who low-keys losing a billion dollars but makes it clear he’s not going to pay the price—does. And for a guy who made his reputation as a writer (even if a rock critic), the script is full of dead spots, holes and extraneous scenes (you could have cut out the entire Susan Sarandon subplot and not missed a thing). Still, you can’t question Cameron’s heart, or his use of a soundtrack that artfully employs his faves Tom Petty, Elton John, Ryan Adams, wife Nancy Wilson and My Morning Jacket, whose kick-ass version of “Free Bird” that sets off the fire sprinklers at the memorial service is one of the movie’s highlights. That use of music extends to the film’s lovely coda, as the Dunst character prepares a mixtape and roadmap for Bloom’s final voyage of discovery…into her arms. And while the epiphany is generated by the soundtrack and not necessarily earned by the narrative, it is still a magic moment. If only there were more of ’em.

World Series: Baseball been berry, berry good to us these last few years. With all the hoopla over big market domination, the last four champions have been first-timers like the Arizona Diamondbacks (’01), the Angels (‘02) and the “Reverse the Curse” Red Sox (’04) as well as unlikely expansionists the Florida Marlins (’03). This year’s Fall Classic offers a couple of other long-suffering franchises in the Houston Astros, who have never been to the Series, and the Chicago White Sox, who last won it all in 1917, only two years before sullying their reputation by tossing the infamous “Black Sox” series with immortal “Shoeless Joe” Jackson and wandering for almost 90 years in the desert since. As we approach this year’s match-up, these two squads are far and away the best in their respective leagues, with a combination of timely hitting, solid starting pitching and strong bullpens. That’s Clemens, Pettitte and Oswald vs. Contreras, Garland, Buehrle and Garcia. This is a pick-’em match-up in every way, so the only measure I have is that the American League seems stronger, and motormouth White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen seems to have his team peaking at around the right time, so I’m going to say the Sox in Six, and for the second consecutive year, we’ll witness a historically jinxed franchise overcome the specter of their own failure. Sleep tight, Shoeless Joe. And you, too, Arnold Rothstein. Which means Astros fans will have to wait one more year, and us Mets boosters another four months before pitchers and catchers report to Port St. Lucie.

James Woods on Howard Stern: The reborn poker player’s philosophy of the sexes, that women love men when we don’t care and hate us when we do, is pure Leykis 101, but he made some potent points on Thursday morning’s show that kept me in the car at the parking lot for another 15 minutes of slack-jawed listening. As a current XM subscriber (I inherited it from a car we just sold), I’m wrestling with whether to follow Stern to Sirius, and while some claim an unfettered Howard won’t be nearly as clever as the slyly subversive version we hear on terrestrial radio, remember, the same thing was being said when he split with his wife some five years ago. There is no question the pop culture landscape is moving inexorably towards niche marketing, and a fan base encouraged to pay for what it wants when it wants it. It’ll be interesting to see if Stern can entice even 20% of his listener base to cough up $13 a month for him. Or will they merely grab the $1.99 podcasts inevitably offered by iTunes as a second window? We’ll soon see.

Jackson Browne, Solo Acoustic, Vol. 1 (Inside Recordings): This long-time Elektra veteran goes out on his own with a fairly predictable acoustic live set, spotlighting some of his greatest hits, like “These Days,” “For a Dancer,” “For Everyman,” “The Pretender” and “Take It Easy.” Hearing them like this, though, spurred an appreciation for the man’s back catalog, which had me reassessing my pegging him as a minor player in the whole SoCal singer-songwriter thing to the likes of The Eagles and Linda Ronstadt. The intimate setting, recorded at a variety of venues, helps bring out the pleasing side of Browne’s sometimes prickly personality, and the spoken word intros gives him a humanity he seemed to lose after this days opening as a duo with David Lindley, when I first saw him way back in the Saturate Before Using Asylum days. In other words, the self-deprecation fits, and the slightly mournful quality of the songs gains from his experience. Browne was always an old soul in a young man’s body… His body of work has now caught u with him.

Jackson Browne, Solo Acoustic, Vol. 1: Those carefully etched panes of glass from the windows into our souls hold up three decades later, because Jackson Browne's lyrics excavated the vulnerabilities, sadness and faltering points of lives lived beyond the balance. And with an acoustic guitar, a grand piano and a voice that still has the questioning resolve of a young man on the brink of deepest understanding of why we live out lives and loves but now knows, Solo Acoustic is a powerful article of social consciousness, romantic exploration and broken hearts on a quest to healing. "Fountain of Sorrow" alone—with its shimmering ripples of single piano notes and rising and falling chords—is every lost moment of sensitive youth, while "These Days" is a pensive marking of time as the river of days flows past reflection on the recognition of the sweetness of innocence. Indeed, the opening "Barricades of Heaven" offers a manifesto about responsibility for personal happiness, and it's reinforced by "Your Bright Baby Blues." To understand the magnetic pull of singer/songwriter confession, "For a Dancer" embraces the possibilities of loving in the moment and the potential of risk and loss—because of how it opens one's soul up to greater prospects. Breathtaking.

Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking: Joan Didion is one of our nation's best essayists and non-fiction writers - and she brings that clear-eye, soul-stirring insight and imagination-capturing prose to a book addressing the grief at the death of her husband of 40 years, John Gregory Dunne. Aside from a deep rumination on loss, sorrow and the process of experiencing the wholeness of it, Didion offers up her fragility, her pain and her tender resolve as both catharsis and communion. That her daughter would go through a parallel illness, improvement, second health crisis and ultimate death makes this a stoic-tied-to-the-tracks-of-survival-through-waves-of-undeniable-mourning-and-emotion witness. To lose a companion, co-creator (Didion and Dunne wrote screenplays together for years) and soulmate is its own journey; this careful, tender examination of all that goes with this human experience is a textbook of emotional amputation and longing turned with a grace and elegance that has been the trademark of a voice that merges clarity with images that capture our imagination at the crossroads of truth and how-it-is.

Starring: Dwayne" The Rock" Johnson, Karl Urban, Rosamund Pike, Deobia Oparei, Ben Daniels, Raz Adoti, Richard Brake, Al Weaver, Yao Chin
At a remote research facility on Mars, a team of scientists cracks the genetic code. But when communication fails, the place gets a Level 5 quarantine, and the only people allowed in to investigate are the Marines of the Rapid Response Tactical Squad, including their commander, Sarge. They discover that the researchers inadvertently opened up a portal to hell and unleashed a slew of demons.
Thoughts: I think this movie has the potential to be really cool considering they made it like the video game. The video game, which I used to play all the time and is a classic, is a first person action game, and they shot some of the movie that way giving it a unique look. Of course, tomorrow, I’ll probably read that the movie is horrible, but you know what, I don’t care, because it’s not supposed to be up for Oscar considerations it’s just a cool video game that they made into a movie.

North Country
Starring: Charlize Theron, Frances McDormand, Sean Bean, Richard Jenkins, Jeremy Renner, Michelle Monaghan, Woody Harrelson, Sissy Spacek
After her marriage hits the skids, Josey Aimes returns to her North Minnesota hometown and takes a job at a local mine with her friend Glory. Unfortunately, she's subject to nonstop sexual harassment from her male co-workers. Despite the risk of losing her job, Josey decides to put a stop to it by filing a lawsuit.
I don’t care what anyone says Charlize Theron is a pretty talented actress and I think she will deliver another amazing performance in this film. The only thing I don’t like is that the rolls that are oscar worthy are ones in which she plays a character that it is not that good looking and we all know she is SUPER HOT!!. I guess I’ll just have to wait to see Aeon Flux.

Kurt Russell, Dakota Fanning, Kris Kristofferson, Elisabeth Shue, David Morse, Freddy Rodriguez, Luis Guzman, Oded Fehr, John Gatins
Ben Crane was once a great horseman, but now he bides his time training the horses of rich businessmen. Sonya was a great horse whose career was suddenly cut short by a broken leg. Considered as good as dead by her owner, who also happens to be Ben's boss, Sonya is given to Ben as severance pay. Ben's young daughter, Cale, convinces him to pursue a seemingly impossible goal: winning the Breeders' Cup Classic.
It is hard to be critical about a movie when family is involved, and my cousin is involved in this one so all I am gonna say is that this looks like a good family film.

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Naomi Watts, Ryan Gosling, Janeane Garofalo, and Bob Hoskins
A psychologist at an elite East Coast university tries to prevent the suicide of one of his patients, who keeps seeing dead people and successfully predicting the future. While investigating the case, he meets a woman who claims to know the young man's mother.
Ok, so when I saw the coming attractions for this movie, I was confused it hurt my head to try and figure out what was going on or what the movie was about. I do, however, have some curiosity about this movie because it has a good cast and it was made by the guy who did Finding Neverland, Marc Forster.

Opening in Limited Release:
Starring Steve Martin, Claire Danes and Jason Schwartzman and based on Martin’s well-written book (or so I hear, ’cause I don’t read), the movie is generating a really positive buzz.