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Kitty Dunn

What does Kitty have to say?


 


5 Things You Probably Didn't Know about Birthday Boy Neil Young

Happy 69th birthday to my favorite self-proclaimed "rich hippie," Neil Young. I remember when I was a kid, I hated Neil's voice. I didn't even particularly care for his songs CSNY albums, but the guy grew on me, and he's now one of my favorite artists. One of the things I admire most about him is that he never gives a crap about what anyone else thinks, and just goes where the music tells him to go.

Sometimes that's into the ditch, in my opinion, but I still love him!

Here are 5 things you may not have known about this Canadian curmudgeon.


1. Neil is especially creative when he's not feeling well. He wrote "Cinnamon Girl," "Down by the River" and "Cowgirl in the Sand," on the same day, with a temperature of 103. (That's Fahrenheit, or for you Canadians, 39 Celsius).

2. He thought it was "pretty great" that Lynryd Skynyrd mentioned his name in the song "Sweet Home Alabama."

3. Another member of Neil's family is very highly respected in Canada. There's a grade school named for Scott Young, who was a highly revered sports writer.

4. He was in a band called "The Mynah Birds" with future super-freak Rick James.

5. He says he composed most of his best songs, while in bed, stoned.

(Above photo credit, Kitty Dunn @Farm Aid 2010.)


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Freebies for Veterans

Today's the day to thank a vet! Many restaurants are doing their part to say "thank you" by offering free food items. Since restrictions vary depending on where you go, you may want to call first to make sure you understand what you need to do to prove veteran status.

Free meals are offered at Applebees, Chili's, Olive Garden, Texas Roadhouse, T-G-I-Fridays, Red Robin, Famous Dave's, or Hooters.

You can get a free pint of beer at Old Chicago, 50 percent off a meal at Sprechers, a cup of coffee at Starbucks, a Bloomin' Onion at Outback Steakhouse, some fro-yo at Menchies or Orange Leaf, free appetizer at Longhorn Steakhouse.

Getting the award for "absolute least you can do to honor a veteran" is Doubletree Inss and Suites. Vets who stop by today can get a free chocolate chip cookie.

I'm thinking vets would rather have good jobs and access to quality health care than a cookie. But maybe that's just me.
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Topics : Hospitality_Recreation
Locations : Chicago


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Kitty's night in a haunted house

Before Friday, my only experience with a haunted house, commercial or otherwise, was at the Recreation Department in Stevens Point when I was a teenager, and as I remember I was FREAKED out.

So I was a little nervous when Jonathan and I were asked to be part of the scare team at Wisconsin Scaryland, a Hollywood quality haunted house located on Highway M and 113. Somehow, I mustered up enough courage to go through with it, and joined the other actors that were doing the scaring.

I can't tell you exactly what my job was because I don't want to give away any of Scaryland's secrets. But I will tell you I startled the living daylights out of a lot of people! I feel kinda bad because a teenage girl had an asthma attack in the room I was stationed in!  The pros at Wisconsin Scaryland got her out of the building quickly, and she was okay.

I never thought I would say this, but I would like to go back and try it again sometime!
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Finally, recognition of Stevie Ray Vaughan by the Rock Hall

The new list of nomines for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is out, and finally they give a nod to Stevie Ray Vaughan.

The Rock Hall has passed Stevie by for the more than ten years that he's been eligible, causing me and other blues fans much irritation. One of the criteria the Rock Hall uses for induction is the contribution they made to rock and roll. I believe he's responsible for the resurgence of blues rock in the early 80s and 90s, and his influence on guitar players continues to this day. (How many Stevie Ray Vaughn-a-be's have you seen?)

Others on the list of nominees this time around:Green Day, Nine Inch Nails, N.W.A., the Smiths, Loud Reed, Sting, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Kraftwerk, Chic, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, the Marvellettes, the Spinners, War, and Bill Withers.

Sting is already in as a member of the Police, and Lou Reed as a member of the Velvet Underground, but their inclusion as solo artists is ineveitable. Green Day should make it in as well without any problem.

While I see no real problem with this list, I am still waiting for recognition for some deserving folks including Warren Zevon, Al Kooper, and Gram Parsons.

One of the inductees will be chosen by fan vote. You can make your feelings known here.

The list of inductees will be announced in December, and the ceremony will happen in the spring at the Rock Hall in Cleveland.
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You might want to see "Once" twice

I had the opportunity to go see "Once" at Overture Hall last night, and I guess the two word summary of my review could be "weirdly awesome."

The story isn't too complicated, which is good because I sometimes had a hard time understanding the dialogue because of the Irish and Czech accents that were used, but I got enough to be able to follow along.

According to the Overture Center's website, "Once" "tells the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up on his dream when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs."

I loved the mirror filled set, the staging and the seemless way they went from one scene to another. And of course the music!  It was fantastic--with the actors performing their instruments live on stage.

I had never seen the movie, but now I feel I should go rent it so I can make some comparisons.

"Once" runs through Sunday at Overture Center. Ticket info here.

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Topics : Entertainment_Culture
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Locations : Dublin


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In honor of National Punctuation Day

Today is National Punctuation Day! It's a day to geek out about exclamation points, semi-colons, ampersands and commas.

It's also a day to go back into the Radio Way-Back Machine, and listen to this song by Dan Baird.

It was a minor hit in 1992 for the lead singer of the Georgia Satellites.

Wait. What? 22 years ago?

(Sigh.)

 

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5 Things You Probably DIdn't Know about Bruce Springsteen on his 65th birthday

Bruce!!! 

If you've seen pictures of Bruce Springsteen with his shirt off lately, you might find it hard to believe that he's a senior citizen. He turns 65 today!

Here are a few things you may or may not have known about that guy who doesn't really like being called "The Boss."

1. Bruce has never had a number one single. That is unless you count Manfred Mann's cover of "Blinded by the Light."  That made it up to #1.

2. He has a comet named after him.

3. He was once visited backstage by Dr. Ruth Westheimer. She reportedly suggested he work some lyrics about contraception into his songs.

4. After a 1976 show in Memphis, he jumped the gates at Graceland, hoping to meet Elvis. Even if he got past the guards, that wasn't happening as Elvis was in Lake Tahoe at the time.

5. Bruce's kids used to burst into tears whenever they saw his bandanna-wearing guitarist, Little Steve Van Zandt, because they thought he looked like a pirate.

and one more, even though you already probably know about this one

6. At a John Kerry for President rally in Madison, he accepted some college kids' invitation to come up to their balcony and have a beer.  He was joined by Tom Brokaw and his wife Patti.  I'm pretty sure the beer was from Capital Brewery!

(Picture above taken by me at a rally for President Obama in 2012.)
 
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Like WifeSwap, only different

BandSwap is back in Madison!

The Madison Arts Commission is supporting this event, in which bands from different cities change places. This time, a band from Fort Collins, Colorado is heading to Madison, while Sexy Ester from Madison will be hitting the stage in Colorado.

The Madison Arts Commission is making a day of it this Saturday, with other opportunities for you to catch local music, and a way for musicians to network as well.

You can find all the info you need about Saturday's activities right here.

More info can be found on the BandSwap website.

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Locations : Colorado


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Are the new Beatles mono remasters on vinyl worth it?

Last week, the Beatles re-released their catalog on vinyl, in mono, the way the Beatles wanted you to hear their music.

Is it worth spending 400 dollars or so on the box set, or would it be better to just pick up some of your favorites--for around 22 dollars and up?

That depends how big of a Beatle fan you are! So far, I've only had a chance to listen to Sgt Pepper and Revolver--and I was blown away. Admittedly, that may be partially because it's been a while since I've sat down and listened to both those albums in their entirety, and I was just REMINDED of their awesomeness. But it's also because these songs are completely different mixes of the albums, as supervised by members of the Beatles. When the stereo versions of their albums were mixed, the Beatles weren't as interested as it took a while for stereo to catch on in England. So much more attention was paid to every detail of the mono mixes, back in the day.

I used to think that a mono version was just like pushing the "mono" button on your stereo--so the same sounds would come out of each speaker. But that is not the case...often different guitar solos are used, the vocals are more upfront, or there are completely different sound effects, etc.

Casual Beatle fans might not notice differences in the mono versions, unless they have someone like my boyfriend Mike pointing out the differences. But they'll still love how the albums sound.  Hardcore Beatle fans might just spend a week sitting in front of their stereo, gaining a new appreciation for the incredible music that was created all those years ago.

"We're not trying to recreate the originals but we're trying to (reproduce) the original intention." Sean Magee, Abbey Road Mastering Engineer.

 
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People : MikeSean Magee


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Worst souvenirs ever?

When most people go on vacation, they usually spend some of the time perusing gift shops, checking out cool souvenirs like snow globes depicting ocean views, miniature spoons, t-shirts, or potpourri and candles.

When my boyfriend Mike and I go on vacation, we avoid those kind of stores like some horrible illness, but we do hit a lot of pawn shops and secondhand stores, and on this vacation we managed to hit quite a few.

I found a couple of items that were so off the charts horrible. So horrible I had to take pictures.  I can't decide which is worse--the lamp, complete with glued on foreign coins of some sort, and a lampshade that appeared to be made from a sweater--or the flower bedazzled telephone.

I am feeling a little non-buyer's remorse, as I left both items for some other lucky individual to find. But that's good news for you, as they both still might be available. I think they were at a Goodwill store somewhere north of highway 10. Good luck and happy hunting!

   
 
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Topics : Human Interest
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