News

Remembering Prince

Prince

With the news of Prince’s passing yesterday there’s been an outpouring of sadness and love. From tributes to live performances to the sharing of favorite songs, late night appearances, live videos, and memories — it’s been a purple drenched world. My first exposure to Prince came when I saw the Batman logo on a cassette tape at the local store, and needed it, badly. I was six or seven and obsessed with everything Batman. My parents told me I had to wait until the movie came out on video because they wanted to talk to me about some of the themes and violence depicted in the film (and pause it if I got too scared). But that didn’t stop me from asking for anything, and everything, that had the Batman emblem on it. From cereal to toys to t-shirts: I wanted it all. I still remember seeing the tape and begging for it. I was a child, I don’t think I had any clue what a soundtrack even was. I just wanted this little plastic box because Batman. My mom bought it and told me she had to listen to it first, I remember her explaining to me that this artist sometimes sang about “grown up things” and she wasn’t sure if it was going to be appropriate for me. It was one of the first conversations I ever remember having with my parents about these “grown up things.” I ended up getting to listen to the album if I promised I wouldn’t repeat certain words. Of course, I loved it. It was different, fun, funky, and I could dance to it. Over the next two decades I discovered the rest of Prince’s discography. I loved the uniqueness and I loved Prince’s dedication to his vision. It’s now, in retrospect, that I see the phenomenal songwriter, the virtuoso guitar player, and the show stopping performer. Here’s to you Prince, thank you for everything you did for music.

I’ve compiled my favorite tributes, videos, and links below.

MTV Launching Lots of Podcasts and Cribs Is Coming Back

MTV has been doing some re-tooling. The latest announcements are that they’ll be bringing back “MTV Cribs” … on Snapchat … and that they have joined the podcasting game in a big way:

The podcasts will record in both New York and Los Angeles, and will be available via iTunes, Spotify and SoundCloud. More podcasts will be announced at a later date. They include: “Skillset with Amy Nicholson.” a film podcast featuring the critic in the title; “No Requests Live,” a weekly music and pop culture roundtable; “The Stakes,” a weekly political magazine; “North Mollywood,” featuring Molly Lambert and Alex Pappademas offering the California view of pop culture; and “Speed Dial with Ira & Doreen,” in which Ira Madison III and Doreen St. Felix host a bi-coastal program that tackles music, pop culture, sex and race.

So far, I’ve gotta say I’ve been really impressed with what they’ve put together. I still find their website to be an abomination, but the content and writing has been top notch.

Viet Cong Rename Themselves “Preoccupations”

The band Viet Cong have, finally, decided to rename themselves. They will be Preoccupations going forward.

After finishing our latest record and taking some time off, we are excited to announce that we will be performing and recording as “Preoccupations” going forward. We will be previewing new material from a forthcoming record in a series of festivals and shows in North America and Europe in the coming months. We apologize to those who were adversely affected by our former band name. This was never anticipated nor our intent. We are artists and not politicians, we understand that the name reflected pain to some individuals and we are happy to change it and move on and focus on our music. Thanks to all our friends and fans. See you all soon.