Program Notes

Our continuing coverage of censorship in America recently included the anti-music-video rantings of Sen. Robert Byrdbrain, who says MTV and the others are bad, bad. From Lydia Lunch to Rap's Most Wanted, I've seen a few "controversial" videos in my day (as few as possible, but what the hell). I've yet to see anything that should be banned. Then again, I've yet to experience the new one from the Nymphs. The group's debut clip (for "Sad and Damned") features singer Inger Lorre's mouth full of maggots. The vid makers had 200 of the wiggly larvae Fed Exed to the set. They - the maggots, that is - were refrigerated (slows 'em down, I hear) and then placed on a rose petal, which was then placed on Inger's lovely tongue. The shot required four or five takes, the director says, adding, "It was important to see them squirm." Save your animal-rights protests - the mags were released unharmed. Inger sums up by stating, "I've had worse things in my mouth."

Pick hits: Marianne Flemming folks up at Uncle Sam's tonight (Wednesday), One with Livid Kittens and Skin Tight rock the Plus Five on Friday, and the Wait is slated for Saturday at Washington Square. Enjoy.

"I just read both your articles about Axl Rose and I just want you to know, not one seventeen-year-old girl will come to his defense, look at the 44,000 who were at the Joe Robbie Stadium concert New Year's Eve. I don't think there's only one person," says Jason re: Guns N' Roses. In New York, Village Voice reports, Axl threatened to put the New York Times's Jon Pareles in the hospital after a negative review. I'm still waiting.

Butthorn of the week: Back to the topic of elected censors: Congressman Philip Crane (R-Ill., and I do mean ill), the man who wants to cut all federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, is now wagging his anti-art weenie in the face of homeboys the 2 Live Crew. Crane, who's been in office since 1969 and sits on the Ways and Means Committee, has written letters to the U.S. Attorney in Chicago and the Attorney General of Illinois, asking each to do everything possible to get the Crew's new album off the market. According to Crane's chief of staff, Robert C. Coleman, the congressman was moved to censorship efforts by his old friend in Miami, MC Jack the Worm Thompson. "My boss feels very strongly about that issue," Coleman says cheerfully. "The letter to [U.S. Attorney] Fred Foreman even has a p.s. on it." Indeed it does. Scrawled at the bottom of the missive - which alleges that retail giant Rose Records "may be selling obscene material to minors" - is this wonderful congressional sentiment: "Jack [Thompson] is the one who initiated action against these scumbags in Florida." Better a scumbag than a butthorn, I always say.

The media circus: Send the clowns on vacation, 'cause we're running out of space in this space. I know times are tough and just getting tougher (really, George, I swear, man), but if anyone has an honest job out there I might be suited for, please call. I feel like a maggot being part of the media after reading the Joe DiMaggio obit, whoops, I mean feature story, in the Miami Herald on December 29. The story told us the Yankee Clipper needs no introduction, then introduced him a thousand times over. Joltin' Joe was a great baseball player? Now there's some breaking damn news, boy. Duh. Not one mention of Mr. Coffee, either. Reporter drool all over the place.

Less offensive was Greg Melikov's year-end showcase of highlights from the indispensable "End of the Line" feature, which spotlights one-sentence news of weirdness around the state. "End of the Line" is, apart from Hiaasen and "Setting the Record Straight," my fave part of the daily. Melikov's wrap-up was great. Except he left out what was without a doubt the coolest and weirdest of all the items of 1991. In fact, this item is so interesting someone should go and write an in-depth feature about it: "When Rose Smith went to feed her horses Tuesday, she had to rub her eyes: Lil Bit and Rosie Gingor had been spray-painted. On Gingor: `I am a pig.' On Lil Bit: `I am a cow.'" In addition, Rosie Gingor's hooves had been painted red. What is this? A joke for farm animals only? I am a cow???

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Greg Baker