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The Rooftop Ripoff

July 5, 2002

"There are vultures, vultures everywhere"
-Pickpocket in Casablanca

"Bite your tongue for no one and whatever is said
Take it how they want, a closed mouth don't get fed..."
-Jay-Z "Anything"

"I've thought about the ways we could be"
-Home Town Hero "Twelve Ounce"

Hope all of you had a happy 4th. It was a good one for me, albeit one bookended by work.

This week flew by incredibly fast. I'm taken aback at how the five days flew by. Especially after that tough turnaround following the St. Louis trip. But so it goes.

I had a great time at last night's "Rooftop Ripoff" concert in Clearwater. Carli was at the door, so I talked with her for awhile and met a friend of hers from high school and her boyfriend (who gave me one of those "are you invading my territory?" looks when he shook my hand). I missed some of the earlier bands, but I caught the end of the Riddlin' Kids set (who have a sound reminiscent of Blink 182 and Green Day). Then came the main event -- Home Town Hero.

I'd never heard anything from Home Town Hero before the show. In fact, at the beginning of the week I'd never heard of them at all. But, wow, they put on a great performance. Remember their name -- this time next year they could be huge. They have the potential to really break through. The Home Town Hero sound is somewhere between alternative and punk and hard rock and pop-rock. But they have a distinctive style within the melding of those elements, and they put on an intense, crowd-pleasing live show. I downloaded a few of their songs from their website in MP3 form this morning, and I intend to buy their CD (titled "Order") sometime soon. The song "Twelve Ounce" has real radio potential...

One strange thing was feeling much older than the crowd. Most of the crowd was the teenage variety; there were some select people there in my age group or older (including one woman who came up to me and started rubbing the back of my head -- these things happen when you have a shaved head). But it was interesting to notice the age gap.

The Snipers fantasy football draft board is starting to shape up nicely (with a July 15 draft deadline looming). Now working on a fantasy football draft list might seem like a waste of time to you, but believe me, it can be amazingly engrossing and entertaining. Especially in a league where there's so much history and pride and bragging rights on the line. A smart sleeper pick could pay off for the next decade.

I want to echo something my brother Matt put on his 7/2/2002 Commentary about rappers and originality (or lack thereof). There can be a fine line to that; sometimes a riff or sample can be taken to really enhance a song (think "Hypnotize" by Notorious B.I.G.). But other times, it makes it sound like a tired, played out, unoriginal effort. Like Mace said, "Take hits from the 80's and make 'em sound so crazy". But in my estimation, a cover should be a cover, not 80% of a song taken and put into a "new song". But, music is a business, and if people are buying rehashes and retreads... who am I to bicker?

The more I watch of Mr. Show, the more I'm amazed. I think the DVD of the first two seasons will be a must-buy...

July 2002 Commentary Page

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