The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wednesday. October 10. 2007 - SA
D ear Google:
Welcome to Ann
Arbor. It's so nice to have you.
Now that you've settled in a bit,
maybe we can talk about your
future, my future - our future
You see, I
have a cou-
ple of ideas
and you have
a couple mil-
lion things LU.YDi
Imaybe in. CARGO
the perfect team. But let's just
get to the point. We're both
busy and important and we
don't need to waste time on
" Googlediscjockey. How
freaking cool does that sound?
I'll tell you: notas cool as it
actually could be. Internet
radio is the future of radio, and
while it's already in process, it
could be done so much better.
Imagine a simplified version
of Serato Scratch: two (digital)
turntables and a large library
of streamable music, courtesy
of record labels smart enough
to get in on the free promotion.
Users could DJ live or they
As if Google
could program a set list and
then go out and listen to the
stream on their Google phones.
Googlediscjockey could be
the downfall of terrestrial
radio and the renaissance of
freeform wrapped together. I
can see all sorts of tie-ins with
iTunes and dollar signs. It's
time toput the power of influ-
ence back into the hands of the
people, which brings me to my
" Googlecritic. Everyone
knows a wannabe music critic
who loves to berate you with
his opinions. Googlecritic
could be an outlet along the
lines of Metacritic or Rotten
Tomatoes, but with the flex-
ibility of Wikipedia and the
database of All Music Guide.
Users could post reviews
and ratings alongside all
those "professional" critics.
Instead of allowing the indie
kingmakers over at Pitchfork
to have all the power, labels
could post new albums for
listeners to stream and review
prior to their release dates
- something anyone with any
amount of savvy and loose
morals already does with
leaked mp3s - and all of a
sudden the ever-elusive Inter-
net "buzz" can be quantified.
The only potential downside is
that underwhelming or over-
hyped albums will be exposed
for what they are. But is that
such a bad thing? Forcing
labels to release quality music
is win-win for everyone, and
the old models of promotion
aren't keeping up with the
* Googlecharts. One of the
best examples of the above-
mentioned antiquated busi-
nesses is Billboard. In what
world do those charts match
up with reality? That's why
Googlecharts needs to recon-
nect with the typical, alien-
ated music consumer. Google
has the power to track more
than just Nielson SoundScan
sales and iTunes downloads -
it can more accurately gauge
overall downloads, blog men-
tions, radio spins (including
Googlediscjockey, of course)
and physical sales. Goo-
glecharts has the potential
to be a useful tool for
everyone from record
execs to your average
Joe. Sort of like ...
I had a great time this
to thefader.com and its
excellent blog, but I think
Google could one-up them
by getting a hold of exclusive
content - free downloads,
video debuts and live per-
formances - and being more
It would require a staple of
young, hip and talented writ-
ers, but I don't think that'd be
See CARGO, Page 8
Out of the scrubs and into the ... scrubs
ABOVE: If only there were three of her. BELOW: The collaborators together.
Soul music to illhan
Jones & tne
This isn't a revival it's the real thing.
By GABRIEL BAKER
For the Daily
The album cover for 100
Days, 100 Nights looks like
a '60s soul record. Sharon
Jones stands solitary in a
sleeveless gold dress, white
pumps and all. The backdrop
is the same cream-orange
color as your grandfather's
Whether it's the album
cover art or the music, it's
tough to believe this album
wasn't made in 1969. On this,
their third proper album
together, Sharon Jones and
the Dap Kings unleash a med-
ley of thick horns and bass with Jones's
dominating vocal display to produce
an album oozing with '60s funk rever-
beration. But this isn't a revival - it's
the real thing.
Since 2000, Sharon Jones and the
Dap Kings have spearheaded the funk/
soul labelDaptone Records, co-founded
by Dap Kings saxophonist Neal Sugar-
man. The Brooklyn-based band's hard
funk sound, enhanced by analogue
recording equipment, has attracted a
relatively new cult following as well
as a handful of guest spots. The Dap
Kings play back up on more than half
of Amy Winehouse's Back in Black. But
on this album, the band plays back up
to nobody - except for maybe one of its
On the title track, bluesy, mournful
horns reminiscent of classic big band
jazz from the '50s erupt into a sultry
strut anchored by Jones's command-
ing, soulful vocals. Midway through
the song, Jones takes a cue from James
Brown and orders the band to slow it
down. Over a crawling pace that stays
just as funky, she passionately belts out
the slogan that a man's love lasts only
100 days, 100 nights.
By the end of the second track, it's
clear that Jones is the unquestioned
centerpiece of the group. She sings
lines like "I ain't nobody's baby / I ain't
nobody's fool" with such authority that
comparing her to Aretha or Tina Turn-
er just seems silly. She's a different
species of soul singer with
an inimitable vocal feroc-
ity that shows up on almost
every track. At the heart of
the album, songs like "Let
Them Knock" and "Some-
thing's Changed" showcase
her dexterity. "Let Them
Knock" starts with tense
anticipatory guitar pick-
ing and Jones's passionate
whine before unfolding into
a calamity of cries and horn
blasts. Likewise, on "Some-
thing's Changed," Jones's
voice stretches along with
the instrumentation before
climaxing at the song's end.
But even on the record,
the song never really ends. Fade-outs
seem to be the only thing capable of
stopping the band's rhythm or Jones's
voice. Jones sounds as if she could
keep belting out impassioned love les-
sons for hours without getting hoarse.
Unlike other artists reveling in the suc-
cess of funk and soul homage, Sharon
Jones and the Dap Kings have created
an album that owos as much to Otis
Redding and James Brown as it does
to their own interplay. The combina-
tion of tight downbeat, sleek horns and
Jones's powerful, sultry voice amount
to an album bursting with undeniable
melodies and frenzied beats. It's the
sound of a collaboration that still has
something to prove.
By BEN MEGARGEL
Daily Arts Writer
Do career women in their early 40s usu-
ally dance around naked like hormonal tee-
nyboppers? It seems so in the new "Grey's
Anatomy" spin-off "Pri-
vate Practice," in which
star Kate Walsh boogies
in the buff at the begin-
ning and end of the pilot Private
episode. Fortunately, Practice
Walsh has the body of a
20-year-old and the cha- Wednesdays
risma of a TV veteran to at 9 p.m.
pull off such a stunt in her
first leading role. ABC
follows Walsh's charac-
ter, neonatal surgeon Dr. Addison Forbes
Montgomery, as she makes the transition
from Seattle Grace hospital in "Grey's" to
privately owned Oceanside Wellness Cen-
ter in Los Angeles. The show nearly breaks
clean from its predecessor in terms of plot,
deserting many of Walsh's old storylines in
exchange for a fresh start.
It might be a spin-
off, but old 'Grey'
formula is still there.
But while "Private Practice" abandons
the McDreamy plot arcs, it still stays true to
the to the "Grey's" formula. Under the helm
of that show's writer, Shonda Rhimes, the
show has the same style as its predecessor
as witty banter and workplace relationships
dovetail with high-octane medical drama.
That made "Grey's" a success, and it's most-
ly profitable - and at times powerful - in
The show is at its best when it focuses on
the professional lives of its characters. Sup-
See PRACTICE, Page 8
ARTS IN BRIEF
What dreams may come fer to thin
i clOne of
in clay. I Put Yo
"Oneiric Artifacts" green past
9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Today and tomorrow clouds, as
9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday the realm
At the Residential College Art Gallery, East seemingly
Quad lection of
Free es, their s
Don't scoff at the power of dreams. power ofc
"Oneiric Artifacts," a ceramics exhibition, "Oneiri
could change your skepticism of the sub- at the Re
scious. Sculpted by Susan Crowell, a pro- East Quad
fessor of ceramics in the School of Art and
Design, "Artifacts" is a collection of seven
of her most recent works.
"I see (dreams) as big opportunities," TELEVISION
Crowell said. "They allow me to see thingsu
in a different way. They're mysterious and Half v
ing, and though science may have
ons for why dreams occur, I pre-
the installations, "Ever Since
ur Picture In A Frame," was
y a dream that involved laying on
tures and looking atbleach-white
scenario perhaps only possible in
of untamed imagination. The
y innocuous dream became a col-
multiple cloud-like ceramic piec-
uspended nature and surrealistic
nce to each other translating the
dreams into reality.
ic Artifacts" is open to the public
sidential College Art Gallery in
d until this Friday.
ing confusing techno-babble, we could get a
weekly action show in which the lead char-
acter's adventures are actually kinda cool?
There's the promise of "Bionic Woman,"
and it could produce decent episodes even-
tually. But now the show has the overbaked
melodrama of a CW show, coupled some of
the worst trends in modern television: the
shaky cam, the faux-governmental realism
and pace of a "24" episode. The worst comes
when hyper-bodily-motion fight effects
from the "The Matrix" movies appear.
That said, "Bionic Woman" isn't terrible,
it's just not off to a great start. A lack of'70s
irony and transparent female-empower-
ment schlock could make it a mainstay. But
the show is going to have to come around
quickly if it's to say on the air.
woman, half TELEVISION
ine, little direction NBC breathes new 'Life'
into cop dramas
breaks the standard police-drama mold.
He isn't presented as the by-the-book cop
forced to make tough, moral decisions.
Instead we get Charlie Crews: ex-cop, ex-
con and aberrant detective. In a world of
endless cop dramas, Charlie Crews sets
The TV culinary formula
turns into a 'Nightmare'
Wednesdays at 9 p.m.
In his grating new reality show "Kitchen
Nightmares," host and guru restaurateur
Gordon Ramsay swears often and uncontrol-
lably. His expletory sentences are practically
incomprehensible and push the show into an
obnoxious monotony of bleeps.
Still, as annoying as they are, those bleeps
probably aren't making us miss out on much.
In the show, Ramsay attempts to salvage a
different underperforming restaurant each
week, transforming not only the menu and
decoration but the management. He has a
week to complete this makeover, and if past
reality series are any indication, he'll suc-
ceed every time.
Ramsay's brash style of dictatorial rule is
undeniably entertaining, but it's not enough
to support an entire series. While Ram-
say's other reality show, "Hell's Kitchen,"
allowed for a continued emotional attach-
ment to the contestants, the non-serialized
style of "Kitchen Nightmares" never allows
the viewer to connect with the struggling
businesses. Instead the show is left to rely
solely on Ramsay's overbearing rants and
faux-motivational pep talks.
With just Ramsay's over-the-top antics to
anchor the show, watching "Kitchen Night-
mares" isn't worth the effort.
Wednesdays at 9 p.m.
For a drama based on an extravagantly
campy '70s TV show, "Bionic Woman"
shows much more promise than it might
have. That's not to say the show isn't silly.
This expensive NBC sci-fi drama borrows
a loose and potentially interesting concept,
runs with it for about 20 minutes and then
gets lost in action-fueled gimmickry.
Newcomer Michelle Ryan is Jaime Som-
mers, a pretty, hip bartender in love with
Will Anthros (Chris Bowers, "Rescue Me"),
a college professor of bioethics and secret
consultant on government-electronic test-
ing. Only on television could a professor of
bioethics find true love with a bartender, but
whatever. More to the point: After a not-so-
accidental car crash, Jaime's body becomes
the subject of electronic experiments.
What if a woman defied gender roles tobe
much more than a hero? What if after endur-
Wednesdays at 10 p.m.
Twelve years in prison will mess anyone
up. Twelve years in prison as a former cop
who was framed for a crime, nearly beat-
en to death in jail and then miraculously
acquitted is, well, different. Still, Charlie
Crews (Damian Lewis, "Band of Brothers")
wanted to go back to work.
What makes NBC's new police drama
"Life" so refreshing is that the writers use
the thickly layered character development
of Crews to remove us from the easy, con-
ventional trap of stuffy, true-to-reality
police dramas. The writers create a unique
and believable back story for .Crews that's
critical to his seemingly erratic behavior,
lending itself to more undefined and origi-
Crews's atypical detective work also