Archive: December, 2006
Damien Rice leaned into the mic and mumbled, "This one is about messing it up even more than the previous," and he was into another delicate song about a broken love. Bed hair and all, he arrived on stage at the World Cafe Live a good half hour late - transportation troubles, they announced. He said he was a little disoriented - just awakened at 12:30 p.m. - his bus having traveled all night from his last gig, in New York City. You wonder what route they took.
It didn't matter. The eight songs he picked out to play for the full lunchtime house were spell-binding, whether it was Rice on the Rhodes electric piano, or gently picking his guitar, backed by a cellist, percussionist, bassist and Lisa Hannigan on vocals. This was really lovely stuff, even if he stuck to the "low songs," as he called them. He said he wasn't sure he could hit any of the high notes, given the indelicate hour. When he had to, though, he soared.
"A skinny, young, Gentile, Leonard Cohen," my English-prof pal observed, adding Irish and dreamy.
Headline in the Colonial newspaper of Fort Washington:
St. David's Square's holiday decorations are supposed to be snow drifts festooning the roof of the building - or icicles. We don't know. But one reader, who sent this photograph our way, wondered if some of those designs - especially that middle one - wasn't a little angry at the season.
Laban was coming to read from his book of Inquirer restaurant reviews. His looks have been the subject of myriad profiles and blog posts - he visits restaurants anonymously - and a few unfavorably reviewed chefs have schemed to post photographs of him during his career here and in New Orleans. Laban takes great pains to obscure his identity - having friends make reservations for him, mumbling into hidden microphones when reviewing a meal, even changing his facial topiary and body type, although this later stunt might be due to the vast quantities of delicious food he is required by his work to sample, and then work off.
But product must be moved, and so Laban agreed to speak at the book store in support of The Philadelphia Inquirer Restaurant Guide. What's an anonymous critic to do?
In memory of the actor Peter Boyle, who died Wednesday at age 71. Known to many as the crusty, Lazy-Boy-bound grandpa from Everyone Loves Raymond, the son of a Philadelphia kiddie-TV personality had this memorable turn as a monster, in Mel Brooks' 1974 spoof, Young Frankenstein.
A friend over at WHYY sends this link to his favorite new search engine. Turn your speakers on. Don't forget to search for something.
I asked "Who is Ms. Dewey?" Found this.