Just to recap: My new Think Again column is Tax Cuts: The Faith and the Facts.
My Nation column is Rupert Murdoch and the 'Jewish Owned Press.'
Gift-Giving, Part III
It’s taken five years, but we finally have a decent account of the the 2007 Led Zeppelin reunion (with John Bonham replaced by his son Jason, a decision I find pretty weird), that took place on December 10, 2007 at London’s O2 Arena in tribute to Ahmet Ertegun (who fell backstage before the Stones played the Beacon). And man were the levees breakin’. They did 17 songs but not, criminally, “Immigrant Song,” or “Dancing Days.” But they look and sound pretty great, particularly in the Blu-ray (which also comes with a DVD, something else I don’t understand), and two CDs. The sound is really clean and powerful. And Plant does not preen so much so as to make one squirm while watching. All in all, Zep enthusiasts will be thrilled by its total predictability. And congratulations, once again, to 19 year old Danny Goldberg for the fine job he did as the band’s PR rep, in staying out of (real) trouble and growing up to be such an outstanding citizen. It’s called Celebration Day and you can read more about it here.
Another release that will get a lot of people excited under the Hannukah bush this season is the release of Elvis Presley’s only Madison Square Garden shows—and, for some reason, the only time he’d play the city since he appeared on Ed Sullivan in the fifties—recorded in June 1972. Both have been put together in this handsome package from Sony Legacy called Prince From Another Planet: 40th Anniversary Edition. You get two of the four shows he did that weekend, June 9-11, 1972, plus a bonus DVD filled with previously unseen footage of the Saturday afternoon show, captured on hand-held camera by a fan, purchased by Legacy forty years later for this package. The DVD also includes footage from the June 9th press conference, the June 9th evening show, the June 10th afternoon show plus a documentary with interviews with Lenny Kaye, James Burton and Glenn D. Hardin, Joe Guercio, and Jerry Schilling. What’s more, the packaging is excellent—adding vastly to one’s enjoyment of the material—and the price is prettydecent. More here.
The old-timey concert video market is also a rich one this seasons. One of the biggest finds is a show the Doors did at the Hollywood Bowl in 1968, which looks terrific on Blu-ray. This was the band at its peak and Morrison at his most self-loving. Personally, the Doors to me are a greatest hits band, but if they are more than that to you, you will want this peformance for certain. Bonus material includeds Echoes From The Bowl, The Doors route to the Hollywood Bowl, You Had To Be There, memories of The Doors performance at the Bowl, Reworking The Doors, an in-depth look at how the film was restored, and three bonus performances: Wild Child from The Smothers Brothers Show in 1968, Light My Fire from The Jonathan Winters Show in Dec 1967 and a version of Van Morrison's Gloria with specially created visuals.