The Rolling Stone Cover You’ll Hate

Rolling Stone Cover 2013

Right now a lot of you are wondering why the F*** I would post something like this and I have three words for you, BECAUSE I CAN. That’s right, it’s a free country and according to my constitutional rights, I have every right to post this cover if I want to. And I have to say, the same goes for Rolling Stone Magazine. At the end of the day, yes it was in poor taste for them to make this photo their cover, BUT it took MAJOR HUEVOS for the magazine to print this cover. The best part, most people don’t even realize that by giving this cover all the attention in the world, it will just give the magazine more free press. You might say, yea but this is bad press Crystal… I hate to break it to you my loyal readers, there REALLY is NO such thing as bad press. All press is good press. Why you ask? Because it’s FREE. And anything that is FREE in this day and age, is a good thing.

What the “outraged” community has been claiming is that, RS’s cover is meant for Rock Stars. Really!?!? Have you seen some of the recent people on this cover? If being a Rock Star is a requirement, their editor is blind in one eye and can’t see out the other (EX: Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber and Taylor Lautner). And to clear up another claim, NO ONE said for ONE SECOND that RS was glamorizing this guy. It was people that saw the cover and automatically jumped to conclusions. If you read the fine print they call him a “MONSTER.” Before you get all defensive and pissed at me, I lived in Boston for 4 and a half years and when I saw those bombs go off, I cried realizing that my school was a mere two blocks away. I want this guy to get what’s coming to him and I think that making sure every person in America knowing what he looks like is just a piece of the very large punishment he deserves. He’ll never be safe here… that’s for damn sure.

Rock and Rock Hall of Fame 2013

There are only so many award shows in the industry that I actually still like to watch and this one is BY FAR the best one anyone will ever spend time watching. If you have no idea what the R&R Hall of Fame is then you have no business looking at this article. You need to go to Google and search “Rock and Roll Hall of Fame” and catch up on some history because you are FAR behind. With that said let’s get down to business. This year’s inductees included, Heart, Randy Newman, Public Enemy, Rush, Donna Summer, Albert King, Quincy Jones and Lou Alder.

The first song played was Randy Newman’s “I Love LA.” Don Henley was the speaker to present Randy with his award. After which he played, “I Think It’s Going To Rain Today.”One of my favorite things about

Randy Newman is his ability to be sincerely funny. He is a true musical comedian. So hearing him sing this sincerely sad “a la” farewell song was just not him. And then there comes Randy in his true nature singing, “I Am Died But I Don’t Know It.”

Next up was blues guitarist Albert King. “The Blues Don’t Change,” was the focal point of the speech given by John Mayer. Since Albert passed away 1992, his granddaughters accepted the award on behalf of the family. Gary Clark Jr played on his behalf, “Born Under a Bad Sign.” Brooker T. and John Mayer joined him. My favorite thing about Albert was his solos. Talk about grit and aggression. He gave the blues a whole new face. That much you gotta love.

Producer Lou Alder not only shaped the sound for Rock and Roll but managed to produce the legendary comedic duo Cheech and Chong. The duo was actually the two that presented Lou with his award. If you have NO idea who Lou has produced, just look at all the R&R groups of the 60’s and 70’s. Lou probably put his hand in on all of them. Carole King played, “So Far Away.” Not only does the woman look amazing but she sang like no years have passed.

Donna Summer “The Queen of Disco,” passed away last year but her music has managed to become more popular than ever before.

Kelly Rowland gave a cute and wonderful speech inducting Donna. Her husband and three girls accepted the award on her behalf. JHud sang “Last Dance” in a Tribute to Donna.

Heart has to be my favorite Rock and Roll sister duo EVER! They kick so much ass that even their presenter Chris Cornel could not deny it. My favorite part about Heart was that these two sisters managed to stay together for so long and are even more talented than the guys coming up right behind them. These women rock just as hard if not harder than any man in the industry. They joined their band in playing “Crazy On You,” and “Barracuda.”  Two words that perfectly describe them: KICK ASS!

Quincy Jones is a household name and a legend in many different fields. Oprah Winfrey spoke to inducted him and described her state of mind as “speechless.” The most wonderful thing about Quincy is that he never limited himself to one area of concentration but he made sure that he never stopped

going after what he wanted most. Usher sang Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You,” and I gotta say, I didn’t know that Usher could still actually sing. And when I say sing I mean, SANG!

Spike Lee and Harry Belafonte spoke about Public Enemy, the rap group that broke through the industry with more words than you could wrap your mind around. And yes, this is where Flavor Flav came from. They performed, “Bring the Noise,” and “Fight the Power.” It’s funny listening to those lyrics. As old as these songs are, they still apply to what’s happening now. I would LOVE to see them come back.

RUSH was the last band of the evening inducted. Their speakers were Dave Grohl and

Taylor Hawkins. You gotta love it when the presenters have no filters and have more passion than the fans in the audience. This had to be my favorite presentation. Then RUSH played, “Tom Sawyer” and “Spirit of the Radio.” Now this is Rock and Roll.

The only down side to watching stuff like this is, now I’m longing for the days when the music industry was full of talented musicians like the ones on this stage. What a GREAT show this was. WOW… I can’t even put all the right words together to describe it. My favorite part of this show however, is when they bring all the musician out on stage and they jam for however long they have left. It’s by far the best part to watch over and over again.

TLC making New Music!

“I SEEN A RAINBOW YESTERDAY BUT TOO MANY STORMS HAVE COME AND GONE LEAVING A TRACE OF NOT ONE GOD GIVEN RAY…” If you have no idea what the next part to these lyrics are, you need to leave right now because you have NO IDEA who the hell I am talking about. TLC graced us with their presence back in the early 90’s when Hip Hop was still Hip Hop. With hits like “Waterfalls,” “Creep,” “Diggin’ On You,” “No Scrubs,” and “Unpretty,” how could you ever go wrong. Well Good news friends! TLC is making new music for a return to the beautiful music industry that is completely lacking in the Hip Hop department (You know I’m right). Yes, of course, it is with out their beloved “Left Eye” but it doesn’t mean this won’t work really well in the end.

So, the group has a VH1 biopic coming out and they’re supposed to perform this year at the MixTape Festival. Chili said,  “This is just the beginning. This is going to be a great year for TLC. It’s just time. It’s time for us to do everything.” However Chili does tell us that the group won’t be going high-tech with any kind of hologram version of “Left Eye,” “I think it’s very creepy. We’re still in the creative process in figuring out how we’re going to involve Lisa and stuff like that.” You think I don’t have anything from the other half do you? Well, you’d be wrong. Here’s what T-Boz had to say about their return, “We just really want to get out there and perform and do shows. And thank God people want to see us.”

Why am I so excited about this, you ask? TLC was a badass girl group that no body wanted to mess with. Hell, I still don’t wanna cross T-Boz. And I can’t wait to see what they’re gonna bring to the table. Maybe SOME people will finally have to STEP UP THEIR GAME!

Backstreet Boys 20 Years Strong

Backstreets Back ALRIGHT!!!! To all my BSB fans out there, that’s right, they’re ALL back now and coming out strong with a new album. They just celebrated their 20 years together, got a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and announced the 2014 release of a documentary. Can you believe it’s been 20 years? I sure can’t. Especially considering that I’ve been listening to them that entire time. Yes, I was in elementary school but you better believe I was rockin’ out to them even back then. As a long time, extremely AVID fan, there isn’t much of the BSB world that I don’t stay in touch with and constantly wish I could be apart of. A perfect example would be the BSB Cruises and the Backstreet Boys Live Stream Recording of their 20th celebration and their Star ceremony.  After having them in my musical life for so long, it’s hard to not want to be a part of a celebration like this one.

Of course now is when I get to talk about the songs that they played clips of at the afore-mentioned celebration. As much as I would LOVE to go on and on about these songs, there’s only one word that can really describe them: Mainstream. And you have NO IDEA how much it PAINS me to use that horrific word for a group of extraordinarily talented men. MY LORD DO I WANT TO LOVE ALL THESE SONGS! My favorite parts of the video were when they were having “technical difficultly” and they sang a cappella. Good lord I fell on the floor (literally) when they all came in together. I’ve decided that BSB is just like a fine foreign wine. They can ONLY get better with age. Now, I’m not saying that the songs are bad because after you hear the stories behind them, you really can’t help but love all the under tones. What I am saying is this, they’re not BSB from 1993. In fact, they’re not even BSB from 2009. Instead, they’ve managed to combine the more traditional BSB style and fuse it with massive over production and the dreaded technology known as auto-tune. Come on guys! Y’all don’t need auto-tune. It just seems like they’re hiding behind all this new technology just to make the wrong people happy. I will say this much, “Breathe,” “Try,” “Show Them What Your Made Of,” and “Madeleine” are the songs I’m most looking forward to. When you hear the guys talk about these songs, you can see how vulnerable they are. It’s beautiful and inspiring. “Madeleine,” was my particular favorite. Being a kid that was bullied all the time, I immediately connected with it. That song is the perfect example of who BSB is. Passionate, heart-felt, talented musicians that just want everyone to hear what they have to say. Those are the men I know and love.


That being said, I will always and forever KTBSPA. They got me through some of the hardest times in my life. Songs like “As Long As You Love Me,” “Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely,” “What Makes You Different Makes You Beautiful,” “Never Gone,” “Helpless When She Smiles,” and “Undone,” came along just at the right time to pull me back up. It’s cheesy yes, but every word I say I mean. They were a huge influence on me becoming a musician and songwriter. Their voices and styles have ruined my ears for any other male quintet that even tries to sing together. And they’ve managed to consistently invade my Spotify, Pandora, Slacker and CD player nearly 6 of the 7 days of the week. BSB is the best-selling boy-band of all time and one of the world’s best-selling music artists. They have released 7 albums, all of which have reached the top 10 of Billboards Top 200. And they have won of the hearts of millions of girls and women across the globe.

So BSB fans make sure you check out the link above to watch the live recording of their 20th Anniversary celebration. You will not be disappointed. I know, I sure the hell wasn’t.

“Woodstock – 3 Days of Peace and Music”

As a requirement for one of my classes I had to watch the movie “Woodstock – 3 Days of Peace and Music.” Not only was I looking forward to the music but I couldn’t wait to see the people who actually went and made this little festival the biggest peace gathering in the history of the 20th century. I watched the movie earlier this week and to be honest, I needed some time to really think about what I had just witnessed. It was interesting listening to the people in the crowd talk about why they were there. It was even more interesting to hear what the people of the town had to say about the festival in general. Adults that you would think would hate everything about a bunch of teenagers to young adults making their town a disaster area, actually had nothing bad to say about the people and the festival. Watching this movie and knowing the history of the time before hand, it surprises me how true the turn of phrase, “History repeats itself” holds up. Maybe the specific details of the history have altered in some way, shape or form but most of the meanings can be compared to the cultural issues of today. Moving on…

After having enough time to think about the movie and how I felt about what had just happened, I decided that there was only one true way that I felt. Disappointed, NOT at the movie at all but at my generation. That’s right, I said MY GENERATION. When you watch something that was so significant in making social and political change happen it makes you really think about what you’ve witnessed in your life and what you might have contributed to. My generation is responsible for the beginning of horrific entertainment and disgusting manners. Oh and being PC of course. Watching all those 400,000+ people come together in complete peace was uplifting and inspiring. Could my generation do that? HELL NO. 400,000+ teenagers and young adults of my generation coming together on 10-12 acres of land for 3 days with no expectations? We’d have a better chance if parents were a requirement. Even then there’d be fights, arguing and hurting each other before we’d make it through the first afternoon. Maybe I’m not giving my generation enough credit but when you come from the people responsible for having amusement parks torn down because of gang fights, there’s not much more you can hope for. However, I would LOVE to see something like Woodstock happen again. Where no one made a profit, everyone was there for the same cause and no one even mentions the word “violence.”

The performances from the movie were all wonderful but the one that got me the most would have to be Jimi Hendrix. Or to be more specific, Jimi Hendrix playing the national anthem. I HAVE to say that watching him play the national anthem was FAR more stupendous than anything I’ve ever seen. I’ve never seen someone so animated become so humble and respectful while playing our countries song. I don’t care what anyone says, it was the BEST version of the song I’ve ever heard and ever will hear.

In closing I’d simply like to say, I’m sorry. On behalf of my generation, I’m sorry that we haven’t made many significant changes and that the ones we have, have ended in blood and tears. What a thing to live up to…

This week in Entertainment

Talk about being behind in the world BUT my friends, I’ve returned with some really interesting news. I will tell you that there’s nothing in the entertainment world going on right now that will make you jump out of your seat. Maybe that was mean but anything that really makes you jump out of your seat, you would’ve read already. So here’s this week in entertainment. You’ve got to read all of these.

Robert Plant, lead singer of Led Zeppelin, has signed off on the rights to his biography written by Paul Rees. The biography is set to be release January of 2014. It is said the book will cover Plant’s personal life, his rise to fame with Led Zeppelin and his solo artist career. So it’s a year off? Is that enough time for you to make the pre-order?

Starting NOW and going until March 24th, Doubleday publishing has announced TODAY that a FREE e-book edition of Dan Brown’s “The Da Vinci Code” will be available at select online retailers. The e-book will include the prologue and the first chapter of “Inferno,” Brown’s next novel being released in May. So if you haven’t read it yet, I think now might be the time.

THIS IS THE BEST NEWS! Danny Devito and Rhea Perlman have “reportedly” reconciled and are back together. I know there are a lot of you saying, why the hell should I care however, let me say this. This Hollywood couple split last year after a 30 YEAR marriage. 30 years in Hollywood is like being the first star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Now you should agree with my joy.

Xbox Entertainment announced that voting for the Xbox Entertainment Awards is now open to the public. That’s right friends, they have opened up the ballots and you can vote for the following categories: Games, TV &Movies, and Music. Obviously there are a bunch of sub-categories but those are for you to go check out here! Have fun.

Vevo, the ever so loved channel on YouTube has decided it’s time to get away from internet only and expand into cable providers. It will begin webcasting linear, pre-programmed videos and diminishing its reliance on Youtube, according to CEO Rio Caraeff. “It’s human programmed, like the way it used to be,” Caraeff said. “It complements our on-demand business and it’s not at the expense of what we already do.” Will it last? Who knows.

HBO bought The Pussy Riot documentary titled, “Pussy Riot – A Punk Prayer,” at the Sundance Film Festival in mid January.  The documentary follows the feminist punk group when the were arrested and prosecuted after they staged a prayer protest in a Russian Cathedral. Member Yekaterina Samutsevich said she has no regrets even though other members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina are both still imprisoned. Russia has banned footage of the performance.

Another Week Losing Legends

It may be one of the saddest subjects to bring up while the Oscars are going on but it’s news that MUST be shared. Especially considering the fact that these aren’t just any artists that came and went from the industry, these contributors brought so much to the table and losing them takes another spot in this growing industries history.

From Britain, Kevin Ayers, the founding member of the band Soft Machine and singer-songwriter has died at the age of 68. Ayers has worked with other artists including, Mike Oldfield, Brain Eno, Teenage Fanclub, Neutral Milk Hotel and Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci. His last released album was in 2007 entitled The Unfairground. Ayer said in a 2003 interview, “I think you have to have a bit missing upstairs, or just be hungry for fame and money, to play the industry game. I’m not very good at it.” Soft Machine are considered a KEY psychedelic band of the late 60’s. May Kevin Ayers rest in peace.

From Chicago, Cleotha Staples, the founding member of the group The Staple Sisters, has died at the age of 78. After battling Alzheimer’s for 12 years, Cleotha was recently put under 24 hour home care and her caretaker was with her when she past. As the soprano of the ever so soulful group, her harmonies are some of the most recognizable in the industry. Cleotha was the oldest of her four sisters. Her sister Mavis, had this to say about her sister, “I credit Pops’ guitar and Cleedy’s voice with making our sound so different. Her high voice… A lot of singers would try to sing like her… Her voice would just ring in your ear. It wasn’t harsh or hitting you hard, it was soothing. She gave us that country sound.” The Staple Sisters made their first nationwide hit in 1957 and their music lives on to this day. May Cleotha Staples rest in peace.

From Baltimore, Otis “Damon” Harris, a member of the legendary group the Temptations, died at the age of 62. The family spokesperson, Chuck Woodson, said that Harris had been fighting prostate cancer for 14 years. Harris joined the group as lead tenor in the 70’s and can be most recognized for singing the lead on the song “Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone.” Under his stay, the group won three Grammy awards. In 1975 Harris returned to his high school group for a hit record in 1976. In 1978 he released his solo album and soon after retired to finish college. In his most recent years Harris launched the because he had waited too long to get checked by a doctor. “He didn’t want anyone to suffer the consequences that he suffered for not doing that.” May Otis Harris rest in peace.

And Finally

From Mississippi, Magic Slim, blues singer and guitarist, died at the age of 75. Slim was best known for the “intensity of his performances.” No Depression magazine once said, “Magic Slim doesn’t just play the blues, he body slams his audiences with a vicious guitar attack that pins them to the floor.” In Chicago in the 60’s Slim formed the group Magic Slim and the Teardrops. They went on to be the regular band at the local night club, later headlining at blues festivals, recording regularly and winning numerous awards. The last album released by the band was Bad Boy in 2012. “There’s probably not another bluesman who had quite the repertoire that Slim had.” May Magic Slim rest in peace.