Monday, May 17, 2004

Headline writer cops a beauty...

"BANANAS GWYNETH NAMES HER BABY APPLE", from the Sunday Mirror
Says it all, really.

Tribute to Coxsone Dodd is an excellent site, put together by Rob Chapman, author of several extensive Studio One discographies. Have a look here.

Friday, May 14, 2004

Everyday people
Sly Stone on KSOL radio circa 1967, in real audio (8 mins) here, found this via Cocaine Blunts. Check the ad with Milt Jackson plugging malt liquor...

Christopher Porter's The Suburbs Are Killing Us MP3 blog has a cool tribute to reggae legend Coxsone Dodd, including Leroy Sibbles doing a reggae cover of Charles Wrights funk classic Express Yourself (Wrights original was also used by NWA). There's also a really sweet Charles Wright tune over at Music For Robots. Go lookee.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Hey Judith!
How much do you know about NZ music? More than your local MP? Here's your chance to find out. For the last four years, Associate Minister of Arts Judith Tizard has sent out a questionnaire to all MPs, challenging them on their knowledge of NZ music. Results in on May 19 - last year Trevor Mallard (Labour) and Pita Paraone (NZ First) came in tops.
Somehow it ended up coming my way, and so I pass it on to you, dear reader. Download it here - its in word.doc format. Print it out, challenge your flatmates/workmates, and see how much you know (its also over here). And overlook the horrible mispelling of Graham Brazier's name. Bonus question - what band sang Hey Judith?

I've been wondering who first published the photos of prisoners being abused in Iraq. Last night on Triangle TV, I caught Quadriga, DWTV's current affairs show featuring an interviewer and three journalists discussing "Torture in Iraq; losing the battle for hearts and minds". They noted that the photos were finally broken by the New Yorker, and that CBS had sat on the photos for two weeks, at the request ofthe Pentagon. The question came up of whether the US media had failed to do its duty, due to a misplaced sense of patriotism. Think back to post 9-11, when anyone in the US media who questioned events too critically after that event was labelled as unpatriotic.


Found this via the Underground Post,
The 10 Most Important Lessons Of The OC (WARNING: contains spoilers). It has just finished its first season in the US -we've got another 10 episodes to go here, assuming TV2 doesn't take it off mid-season - remember Joan of Arcadia?


Check this new documentary, just premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, called On The DL. It follows ?uestlove from the Roots and producer/DJ King Britt as they try to get a drivers licence...

'Yep, that's right, these two well-known producers weren't legal to drive a car -- until now. "The flick was shot in Philadelphia by filmmaker Andrew Gura and was the idea of King Britt. Gura says filming the two driving wild on the streets of Philly was an "ultra-nightmare."
"It's undeniably ironic that ?uest and King were so accomplished musically, yet unable to drive themselves around [Philly]," says Gura. The director was amazed that the two world-traveled musicians also was scared to take their road tests, as well. "We helped them conquer those fears," says Gura. The docudrama features interviews with legendary producer Larry Gold, soul man Vikter Duplaix and Dawn Thompson, ?uestlove's sister.' From BeatsnRants.



Still working out this new template, lost all my old comments, sorry bout dat.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Sssshhhh!
Just quietly, Leto is back, over here.

Cop dem acting skills...
Local lass Melanie Lynskey has landed in one of the new season comedies in the US, Two and a Half Men. Here's some fun with accents for you...

"... Lynskey's American accent on the show belies her overseas roots, which are evident in regular conversation with her. She reveals Sheen didn't realize her background until they were making the show's second episode: "He turned around and said, 'What's this, uh, voice? What are you doing?' I said, 'I'm just talking.' Then he said, 'Hmmm. Is that some kind of actor-y thing?'" read the full interview here.


Pop Life
O-Dub addresses this pressing issue ...
"One question I frequently get asked by young writers is whether or not you have to be an expert in the subjects you write about. In other words, if you want to write reviews of hip-hop albums, should you be an expert in all things hip-hop from the days of "King Tim III" up to the latest Sage Francis MP3? Or, if you're going to write about food, do you need to have a culinary degree or memorize the collected works of MFK Fisher?" Read his answer here.

MP3blogs are damn fun - have a look at this one - scroll down to the Bill Cosby tune. Its his version of Sunny, backed by Watts 103rd St Rhythm Band, wickedly funky.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Bliss.
This article appeared the Sunday Star Times, under the heading "Fortune awaits NZ Idol winner" (excerpt)...
The NZ Idol television talent quest has both finalists poised for pop stardom, but it remains to be seen whether their fame will translate into commercial success. The winner receives a guaranteed album deal with record label BMG and a management contract with Idol judge Paul Ellis.

Pop writers from Sweden, Australia, the UK and the US have already put forward songs to feature on the winner's 12-track album, to be released in June.

But music industry veteran Simon Grigg said the winning idol was unlikely to make any money from the album. Grigg, who released internationally acclaimed OMC single How Bizarre, said most artists made little money in New Zealand due to the small volume of album sales.

"To be perfectly honest, this will probably be a flash in the pan thing. The winner will have lots of fun for a while but they won't make an awful lot, if anything," Grigg said.

But the record company behind the search-for-a-star show is promising financial rewards to the winning finalist.

BMG marketing manager Jake Shand said: "For them not to make any money is not a reality. I'd be astounded if they didn't."


Now lets take a look at that last statement. Based on the True Bliss/Pop Stars model, the outcomes for Ben may look like this.
One. The songs are being written for him - so no ongoing songwriting royalties, like True Bliss.
Two. The record company will be paying for the recording, videos, and a major promotional budget. Any income Ben will get from CD sales will come after the record company have recouped all their expenses. It's unlikely Ben will get rich off it, as Simon Grigg notes, due to the scale of the local market. He aint gonna be like Scribe and go and pay cash for a brand new car.

Ultimately, NZ Idol is about creating a television spectacle, not a long-term music career - that is basically what members of True Bliss said in the tv doco on The Pop Stars phenomenon that was on tv last year.

Jake Shand, prepare to be astounded.

Monday, May 10, 2004

Guilty.
Thanks to some extensive magazine browsing at the weekend, I now know that RJD2's new album Since We Last Spoke is out May 17, and he lists 'watching the OC ' as one of his top ten favorite things, labelling it his guilty pleasure (mine too). There's a sound sample of his new album over at Def Jux (scroll down). Sounds like he's gone all indie rock on it.

And what's naughty ol Courtney Love been up to, then? Behaving like a rock star? Shocking.

Friday, May 07, 2004

Getting Rawkus
The rise and fall of hiphop record label Rawkus is covered in a fascinating article in the Village Voice (tip of the hat to O-Dub - he's got some extra questions on Rawkus over here).

Rawkus came up in the mid 90s with Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Pharoahe Monch and Company Flow - El P from the latter outfit eventually left Rawkus and started Def Jux, home to RJD2 (new album out May 18), Mr Lif, Aesop Rock, Cannibal Ox, and more.

"... Rawkus Records was founded on 10 g's in savings and a hazily idealistic notion about promoting progressive music. They tried drum'n'bass, electronica, and rock. They were not taken very seriously. But they could write a business plan, and they knew how to pull strings. So they tapped their old friend James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch's kid. Pops agreed to invest in Rawkus even if it didn't have the gravitas. To get that, Brater and Myer would have to focus their vision a bit. They couldn't be all things to all genres. But they could be the only thing that mattered to you.

They got their first inkling from Company Flow. This was not true love—it was a marriage of convenience and opportunity. Orchestrated by abstract beatmaster-MC El-P, Co-Flo had little respect for Rawkus's business acumen or knowledge of hip-hop. But the Murdoch money was irresistible. Like almost every act that came to Rawkus, Co-Flo brought their own dream and asked the label to sell it: Funcrusher Plus. A few months later hordes of college geeks had an excuse for sitting sullenly in the back of the classroom: "Even when I say nothing it's a beautiful use of negative space."

Just prior to the label folding, after being bought by major label MCA (which was then swallowed by Geffen/Interscope, leading to the demise), they missed out on signing Kanye West. Bummer. If you want a local parallel, perhaps compare it to the shifting fortunes of Flying Nun, or more recently Kog Transmissions. NZ Musician did an excellent backgrounder on the Kog situation recently.

Thursday, May 06, 2004


Legendary reggae producer Coxsone Dodd dies.

"FOUR days after the City of Kingston honoured him by naming a street for his famous Studio One recording label, Jamaican music pioneer Clement "Sir Coxsone" Dodd died suddenly yesterday.
He apparently suffered a heart attack at his offices at 13 Studio One Boulevard, which, until last Friday's big civic ceremony in honour of Dodd, was Brentford Road. Dodd was 72.
In a statement last night, Opposition leader, Edward Seaga, a contemporary of Dodd in the music business in the 1950s and 1960s, described him as "one of the fathers of Jamaican music". He said that Dodd was "an extraordinary talent". Read more here, here and here.

What time is it?
TV2 repeated the insightful documentary Hiphop NZ on Tuesday night after the Comedy Festival Gala (did you see Benjamin Crellin doing Paul Holmes as Gollum? Brilliant). This doco originally screened last year, and with a NZ Music Month logo tacked on the front gave TV2 the appearance of giving a damn about local music, so good on em. Directed by Sima Urale (King Kapisi's sister), the final word in the show went to DJ DLT, talking about what hiphop means to him;
"Remember, hiphop is the description that a journalist had to sort of encompass a feeling, and put it into a word so that Joe Coffeetable could go there and trip with this journalist. So we gotta be very careful with how we label things.
"Hiphop is about 'what are you thinking now?' - 'Show me!', and let's see if I understand what you're trying to portray - it's life itself".


School Principal suffers loss of irony, humour bypass.
"The headmaster of Nelson College today called for a boycott of Farmers stores over "man-bashing" products advertised in their Mother's Day catalogue.
Salvi Gargiulo said he had received three letters from people disturbed by slogans such as "Boys are stupid: throw rocks at them" and "Stupid factory: where boys are made" printed on slippers and bags in the catalogue. He said it was time for people to stop finding humour by putting people down. "I think a lot of bashing goes on under the heading of humour, but it's not humorous. If you joke like that you condone it."

A consumer writes...
I've long been a fan of Wrigleys Juicyfruit chewing gum. I bought a packet at the weekend, and it now comes in a new funky, hip packaging. Gone is the distinctive logo, replaced with some 'groovy' typeface, and a note saying "now longer lasting", but it felt like the packet has got smaller.
Then yesterday, I bought an old-style packet of Juicyfruit from a gas station that still had some of the old stock, and what do you know - the old packet weighed 17g and the new, longer lasting packet is 14g - for the same price as the old packet. So this new redesigned labelling comes with a catch - you are getting ripped off. How can gum be longer lasting? That's subjective. I'm never buying Juicyfruit ever again. If you happen to know anyone who works for Wrigleys, can you find out why they are screwing their customers like this? Thank you.

Monday, May 03, 2004

Why Aston Kutcher is a moron
From allhiphop.com... "A prank from the MTV show "Punk'd" has reportedly gone wrong when host Ashton Kutcher and crew attempted to trick Black Eyed Peas into a fake arrest. According to published reports, the BEP entourage began fighting with the shows fake cops after the attempted apprehension within a brothel."
They may be making them cheesy crossover hiphop/pop hits, but damn, don't mess with those Black Eyed Peas.

Friday, April 30, 2004

The real deal
Last night I caught The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, which screens nightly on Triangle TV. They had about 40 minutes of indepth coverage, focussing on developments in Fallujah, followed by a group of experts with diverging opinions discussing UN rep Brahimi's plans for Iraq which was quite lively, and then an indepth look at the cases of Jose Padilla and Yaser Hamdi, American citizens being held as enemy combatants - do they have the constitututional rights to a trial? They had a legal expert discussing the case, with audio excerpts from the courtroom. It was fascinating, detailed news reporting, and what surprised me was two things - one, it was far superior to anything on the mainstream tv channels, and two, it originated in America.

It sure beats the poor excuses TV3 seems to come up with for their lead stories on the 6pm news. Remember a few weeks back when they thought the identity of a mystery lotto winner was a lead story, over the renewed fighting in Fallujah? Try playing this game - we do it in our house frequently these days - start watching TV3's news til the lead story starts, then switch to TVOne and see what their lead is. And I'm over the sheep story - flogging a dead fleece? Ouch.


From Radio RDU's The Joint show...
We struck gold last week when we checked out Fluxblog and came across a entry about the 1971 album Bill Cosby Talks To Kids About Drugs. You heard right - Bill Cosby Talks To Kids About Drugs. We happen to use a sample from the very same album for our show promo and get a lot of people asking us where we got it from - but until this point we had never bothered trying to track it down.
It's a strangely compelling album - Bill er... talks to kids about drugs (and those little kids seem to know a bit about drugs), Bill breaks into twisted freaky songs (Captain Junkie has to be heard to believed), and there are some great funky breakdowns going on. So now you know...

DJ Danger mouse mashed up the Beatles with Jay Z, now someone has done Jay Z meets Pavement! It's called The Slack Album.
"London Booted is essential listening, a bootleg mash-up of the entire Clash London Calling LP made by some of the best bootleg djs in the biz. McSleazy's "Lost Souls in The Supermarket," Miss Frenchie's "Fuck Em Boyo" ("Wrong Em Boyo" + "Fuck The Pain Away"!!!), Jimmi James' "This Girl Wants A Cheat," and Blo-Up's mix of Tiga's "Burning Down" and "London Calling" are all must-hears.," says Fluxblog.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Holmes caught in new foot in mouth outbreak.
"A confused bag of lard," was Holmes's description of Turia as she wrestles with how she will vote on the Government's Foreshore and Seabed Bill. He made the comments on his Newstalk ZB morning show yesterday.
Yesterday's outburst focused on Turia's apparent indecision over the Foreshore and Seabed Bill.
"She (Turia) ain't got the guts to vote," Holmes said after talking to Prime Minister Helen Clark on air.
"Like all bullies she (Turia) is folding under pressure."
"Tariana Turia has been shown to be all mouth and no trousers – all talk and no walk. In the end she don't want to lose the cars and perks." ... taken from stuff.co.nz
Mister Holmes, I think I hear retirement calling you....


Toazted.com has free MP3 interviews with Chuck D, John Cale, The Datsuns, DJ Shadow and more. Have a listen - large files tho, you will need a speedy connection to download them. Unfortunately there's little information on who did the interviews, so no vouching for the quality.


He didn't want to keep his ex-wifes wedding dress, so he was going to burn it. Then his sister told him to put it on Ebay. Read his story, its very entertaining...

"..Personally, I think it looks like a $1200 shower curtain, but what do I know about this. We tried taking pictures of this lovely white garment but it didn’t look right on the hanger as you can see, so my sister says, "You need a model." Well, quite frankly my sister isn’t exactly small, (like a size 12 is?) so she wouldn’t pose for the picture. Seeing as I have sworn off women for the time being and I ain’t friends with any, it left me holding the bag.
I took the liberty of blacking out my face - not to protect the ex-wife but to protect me from my bar buddies and co-workers finding out about it. I would never live it down. Actually I didn’t think my head would fit in the neck hole, but then I figured she got her Texas cheerleader hair through there I could get my head in it. Though, after looking at the pictures, I thought it made me look fat. How do you women wear this crap? I only had to walk 3 feet and I tripped twice..."

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Whatever.
Thanks to the amazing investigative skills of those diehard journos at TV3's 60 Minutes, I now know what Generation Next think. Oh joy! I also know what an out of touch TV3 journo thinks of the young people of today (thanks to his stream of loaded questions), but that's largely irrelevant.

The reporter rounded up some likely looking young people of today and talked down, I mean talked to them. The kids have been tagged with the overlying attitude 'whatever'. When the journo put this to them, they agreed, saying that they are happy just to go along with whatever happens, just chill and enjoy life. You know, whatever.

The item seemed to suggest that these kids know what they doing, know where they're going, and the Gen Xers and Baby Boomers generally resent them for being so much more confident then they were at that age. They also have no problem with living with massive student debt as they start out their adult life, and they have no illusions about ever owning their own home. What's the long term effect of that likely to be, if it's a major generational trend?

Monday, April 26, 2004

Scribe Outernational.
From the Guardian's arts section, with guest editors - Scottish band Franz Ferdinand (via Hard News - Russell suggested the local equivalent would be getting Dimmer to edit the Star-Times magazine section for a week. I'd like to see the Back of the Y lads edit the Sunday News. Can you picture that?).

"Blog all about it ..."
Salam Pax: A tip on how to make your blog popular: position yourself in a place where a bomb might fall on you. Tickles everybody and makes your hits-counter happy. Possibility of death is a downside, but hey! You get linked by A-list bloggers.

Gregor Wright: It's nice to be able to keep a record of things, but I'm more interested in keeping a record of the minutiae of life that I would otherwise forget rather than a catalogue of inner thoughts and feelings. Nutters on the bus are more interesting than angst. Don't put angst-ridden stuff on the web; write it down and hide it somewhere.


Oliver Wang is a very talented US writer/DJ/editor (check his book Classic Material: The Hiphop Album Guide) who has come across our own Scribe. Here's some of his thoughts via Soul Sides...

"... What's interesting about both these songs is that after years of finding int'l hip-hop (i.e. anything outside the parochialism of American hip-hop) to be subpar, it's pretty damn that at this point, folks outside of the U.S. can easily hang with many of the Yankee rappers out there.

To be sure, Scribe really does owe Jay-Z some royalty points for how blatantly his style borrows from Jay's...their voices aren't that similar but on the album, he uses very similar phrases, from a simple, "yep" to proclaiming, "we made it" just like J does. That said, Scribe's flow is mostly his own and he pops nicely in the pocket with his rhymes, rhyming sans-accent and if you told me dude was out of L.A. or N.Y. I certainly would have believed you without question...." There's more, read the whole review here to get the picture.

Oliver also makes a mean mixtape - check out his latest one of cover versions, and peep his review of the Grey Album. He's even down with Mo Show. Cool.

And here's hiphop meets Hobbits - the Lord of the Rings Rap.

Beatdiggers alert!
Searching for old funky records is a lot of fun, and here's an Oz cat who has set up The Tasman Connection, a tribute to such records from this part of the world. Everything from Renee Gayer to Claude Papesch to Doctor Tree.

And getting back to where we started, I saw the new Dimmer video at the weekend, at Semi-Permanent, a one day design seminar featuring local and overseas designers/animators. Local designers Kelvin Soh & Simon Oosterdijk from The Wilderness talked about designing cd covers (amongst other things) - they did the cover for the new Dimmer album, and Shayne Carter liked it, so he asked them to do his next video. They said yes, and went away and panicked for a bit, as they'd never done a music video. After calling in a few friends for advice, they shot the clip - using 3000 polariod snapshots. Then they talked some mates into scanning all them into a computer, and then they animated the vid. The record company wanted more shots of Shayne and Anika, so they shot another 500 polariods, scanned em in, and animated them. Its for the song Come Here, and it looks absolutely wicked.

Other notable guests were UK designer Vince Frost, a gentleman with a very dry sense of humour, who designed the literary mag Zembla - it's an incredible read; great layout, intelligent content (Seen it once in Mega Mags - somebody please distribute it here!). He talked about one of his projects, a book design for photographer Nan Goldin. She was quite difficult to work with, he said. She was in rehab for 3 months during the books production, after a suicide attempt. Frost said there was also some conflict between Goldin and the publishers - she tried to stab her editor at one point - and his role was more one of mediator than designer. There was some amazing animations, clever fonts - like the embroidered font used by Black and White - inspiring stuff.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

All hail, subserviant chicken!
Okay, it's some tacky fast food promotion, but subserviant chicken is twisted. It's done by a Miami advertising company called Crispin Porter + Bogusky; if you visit their website, they have some more BK ads, plus a video clip called The Package, described as "an unofficial and unauthorized documentary of an inter-office prank."

They've also done ads for the American Legacy Foundation, which includes a homeless man reading out some information about Project Sub Culture Urban Marketing, also known as Project SCUM. It was a campaign set up by a tobacco company in the mid 90s to target gays and homeless people as a potential growth market.

From the SF Weekly: "In its efforts to increase cigarette sales in the mid-1990s, tobacco company R.J. Reynolds hit on a novel bit of niche marketing in San Francisco, according to recently uncovered documents. It created a campaign that focused mainly on two groups of smokers: gays in the Castro and homeless in the Tenderloin [San Francisco]. The company called its new project "subculture urban marketing" and gave it a memorable acronym: "Project SCUM."
Project SCUM details how R.J. Reynolds hoped to capitalize on groups it termed "consumer subcultures," including "alternative lifestyle (gay/Castro)" and "street people (Tenderloin)." The cigarette maker wanted to improve the presence of its venerable Camel brand among gays in San Francisco, amid the relaunch of its retro Red Kamel spinoff in 1996. Meanwhile, plans were being made to push the company's discount brand Doral to Tenderloin residents." Documents on this came to light in 2001.

From thetruth.com...
keyword = :08
Every eight seconds, someone in the world dies due to tobacco.
keyword = Cause
In 1990, a tobacco company put together a plan to stop Coroners from listing tobacco as a cause of death on a death certificate.


Beautiful Music (in Pitt St, off K Rd) are having their closing down sale this weekend, last day saturday. All CDs/Albums $10, 12"s $5. Sad to see em go.

I was going to write something about this picture....

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

I'm Having A Bart Moment
I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics, I must not write about Americans and politics (see comments below Steve Earle item)


Speed kills, so do morons.
Karl Tairi; you are a stupid idiot, a coward, a killer, and you should never ever be allowed a drivers licence as long as you live. Eight people in your car, and you think you can escape the Police? No, you crashed into a power pole at speed, killed or injured your mates, and then you ran off from the crash scene.

Monday, April 19, 2004

Five hundred days
I've never been to a mosque - until yesterday.
I went along to a candlelighting service to mark the 500th day of confinement of Ahmed Zaoui in a New Zealand prison, to find out a bit more about this case. The event was organised by Amnesty International, and started out at the Ponsonby Mosque in Vermont St, then crossed the road to the Catholic church. Inside the mosque, after taking off my shoes, two speakers from the mosque talked. One of them, Mr Javed Khan, talked about why was it every time a terrorist was talked about in the news, was it a Muslim terrorist? Someone called out 'because they are', which sent a wave of tension through the room. One of the organisers jumped in, saying 'that's out of order'. (Later, before heading over to the church, the same organiser said that 'we're here to support Ahmed Zaoui, and anyone who feels they can't probably shouldn't be here'. No room for dissenters here.)

Mr Khan went on to talk about how these terrorists were doing what they did for political reasons, not religious ones. He talked about the hatred being generated by talkback hosts and their listeners on radio, and thanked TV1, TV3 and Radio NZ for attending, and sent out a plea for them to please report what they saw in a fair and balanced way.

The Catholic reverend and bishop were in the mosque too. Their counterparts from the mosque came across the road (I wonder how often they visit each other?), and several people spoke, including Amnesty Internationals NZ executive director Ced Simpson. He talked about the sticker he was wearing, that says Ahmed Zaoui - Freedom or Fair Trial. He was wearing it on Friday, catching a plane back from Wellington, waiting in the airport with 60 other passengers for a flight that was eventually cancelled, when a man came up to him and engaged him in a conversation about the sticker, opening with 'You're a bloody disgrace'.

I've been trying to find out more information on Zaoui's case, and it's not easy, especially as Aunty Helen won't release all the information on the case in the interests of national security - her "Helen knows best" attitude is getting up my nose, like her snide comments on the Refugee Status Appeals Authority last week. She's started making an annoying habit of fumbling the ball too often, like the Blues (what was that shambles all about?).

I think Zaoui is entitled to his day in court. He deserves a fair hearing. That's how we do things here, isn't it?
Amnesty International says 'It is a red herring to suggest that a fair trial is not possible because a full disclosure of the sources of specific classified information would endanger New Zealand's security. How a fair hearing can be conducted within national security constraints has been clearly established in Canada and, in cases before and since 11 September 2001, by the European Court of Human Rights.'

And I think Rosemary Mcleod calling Zaoui a dodgy person (and we have enough dodgy persons here already, she claims) is not the sharpest piece of journalism to emerge from the Sunday Star Times. Her logic is dodgy, that's for sure. People are being sucked in because Zaoui is charismatic? Bah.

If you want to find out more about this, check Amnesty's site, or the NZ Herald also has their own take on events.


If you're a Kiwi musician, have a look at the latest issue of North and South magazine - there's an excellent article by Hannah Sperber on Eldred Stebbing and his family business, Stebbings Recording Studios. Its a fascinating insight into one of the great pioneers of the Kiwi music scene, and also contains some sobering tales of how not to make your first album, from the likes of The Dudes and Hello Sailor.

The Dudes first album was done as a deal with Stebbing, where he gave them free studio time,and in return the band gave Stebbing the rights to their album - he owns it, not the band. With Sailor, they have been a little more forthright in claiming their royalties from sales; Harry Lyon talks about how he's been shut out by Stebbings, after hounding them for many many years to get a bits of money out of them. We're talking about albums that feature Kiwi classics like Gutter Black and Right First Time.


And thumbs up to Brooke Fraser on 20/20's cheesy item on Kiwi musicians who are Christians (Zed, Steriogram, Fraser), with her response to the question on how do people take her being a Christian? "When I talk to other musicians, if I say I'm into new age or Buddha', they go 'wow, thats really spiritual', but when I say 'I'm a Christian' people go 'Ohhhh' " (Brooke does the obligatory look of disgust). She says that she goes to church and shakes her booty - "its my mission to bring bootyshaking back to church!" Still can't stand her music, tho.


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