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  • Article

    Still Smokin'

    Crabapple, Georgia, isn't exactly a hotbed of musical inspiration. It's not crawling with cutting-edge, college-age scenesters pushing the boundaries of modern rock. It's not flush with fancy country pickers or earthy blues singers. Hell, it's not ev...

    by Adam St. James on June 25, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Garbage Version 2.0 (Almo Sounds) Almost three years have passed since Garbage's self-titled debut blew a hole through the grunge-obsessed alternative gold standard, selling four million records, grabbing three Grammy nominations, and makin...

    by Adam St. James on June 25, 1998
  • Article

    One More Reason to Live

    A lesson from Music Biz 101: Profit margin is not part of the equation when an unknown, greenhorn punk band leaves home for that first cross-country tour. Still, more and more, ambitious young bands are discovering that if they cut out the booking ag...

    by Adam St. James on June 18, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Jerry Cantrell Boggy Depot (Columbia) After five platinum-selling records with hard rock gladiators Alice in Chains, guitarist/songwriter Jerry Cantrell's first solo album finds him in the catbird's seat. The much-publicized drug problems o...

    by Adam St. James on June 18, 1998
  • Article

    Priestly Confessions

    "Knowledge reigns supreme," says Killah Priest. "When Christ was on Earth, he walked among politicians and people who were ignorant. Why would I want to go somewhere where people already know?" Priest is calling from Virginia, where he's in the middl...

    by Adam Heimlich on June 18, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Public Enemy He Got Game Soundtrack (DefJam/Polygram) Various Artists Bulworth Soundtrack (Interscope/Fox) Rap is dead. It's tired. It's wack. It's no longer phat. The glory years are dead, thanks to the ungraceful aging of early ...

    by Adam St. James on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    The Congo, by Way of Cuba

    A Congolese singer performing Cuban dance music in Spanish may strike some people as odd, but to Ricardo Lemvo it makes perfect sense. As it should: The interchange of African and Caribbean music constitutes one of the most harmonious roundtrip journ...

    by Judy Cantor on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    How'd They Do That?

    Skeptical audiences are nothing new to the members of the Cuban sextet Vocal Sampling. When the group starts to perform, concertgoers inevitably fidget in their seats, turning to each other and whispering, one eye on the stage. The group is unfazed b...

    by Judy Cantor on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    Get the Funk Ow!

    It's three seconds before airtime at local radio station WHQT-FM, a.k.a. HOT 105. Funk impresario and part-time Miamian Larry Blackmon, long-time frontman for the band Cameo, bounds across the room, hops onto a tall stool, and hurriedly throws on a p...

    by Nina Korman on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Straight Outta ... Kendall

    California, it would seem, has pulled a Microsoft on punk rock. If punk is your thing, you'll almost certainly have to buy the California variety, because Golden State bands have handily crushed the competition. Look around. You've got your Green Day...

    by Adam St. James on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Tori Amos From the Choirgirl Hotel (Atlantic) Tori Amos has followed her muse to the end of some pretty thin branches, documenting her soul's perpetual churning. So far fans have happily crawled out there with her. Little Earthquakes (1991)...

    by John Floyd on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    The Specials Guilty 'Til Proved Innocent! (MCA) Go figure: After returning to the revivalist ska scene in 1996 with the listless Today's Specials, the reunited Specials -- the Coventry outfit that started the whole ska-punk thing back in 19...

    by Michael Yockel on May 28, 1998
  • Article

    Country Discomforts

    If, as the dear departed Frank Sinatra once claimed, L.A. is a lady, then Nashville must be her sleazy sister -- a fickle, powerful, vampiric whore who flits from from one new artist to the next, sucking each dry of all airplay and record sales befor...

    by John Floyd on May 28, 1998
  • Article

    Rasin in the Sun

    Last week Haitian refugees made headlines again, and once again Jacquecine Etienne had to explain. For some of Etienne's American colleagues in the Miami law office where she works as a paralegal, the whole notion seemed incomprehensible: Haitians jo...

    by Judy Cantor on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Gary Numan Exile (Cleopatra) Gary Numan The Mix (Cleopatra) Synth-crazed robot and occasional musical innovator Gary Numan has been responsible for some of new wave's most laughably dated moments, from "Are 'Friends' Electric" and...

    by Theresa Everline on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    Sinatra: The Voice, the Spark, the Image

    Frank Sinatra never gave a better performance as an actor than he did in The Man with the Golden Arm (1955), in which he starred as Frankie Machine, a poker dealer and junkie who emerges from prison hoping to kick all his bad habits (heroin included)...

    by Michael Sragow on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    The Flesh Made Word

    "You know that feeling when you're in big trouble and you know it, but you just feel like laughing?" Mos Def asks from the stage at El Flamingo, a club on the western edge of the revitalized New York City neighborhood of Chelsea. Indie rap's rookie o...

    by Adam Heimlich on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    Do You Believe in Retro?

    In 1970 Steve Boone, onetime bassist for the Lovin' Spoonful, went down to St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands, bought himself a sailboat, and made it his home. For three years he sailed around the Florida Keys and the Caribbean. He lived frugally, eati...

    by Rafer Guzman on May 14, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    Miles Davis/Bill Laswell Panthalassa: The Music of Miles Davis 1969-1974 (Columbia) Listening to Bill Laswell remix, reconstruct, and recycle the work of trumpet legend Miles Davis on Panthalassa brings to mind Natalie Cole dueting with her...

    by Michael Yockel on May 14, 1998
  • Article

    Rotations

    The Mavericks Trampoline (MCA) Trampoline, the fourth record by the Mavericks, wasn't recorded in Miami. It doesn't have any songs about Miami. And yet it has Miami in its blood. Once upon a time the Mavs were Miami's brightest, newest musi...

    by Larry Boytano on May 7, 1998
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