The Coen Brothers roll on
First things first, congrats to my University of Georgia Bulldogs for earning a trip to the College World Series Super Regionals by beating rivals Georgia Tech 18-6—their fourth win in a row after losing the first game of the double-elimination tournament last weekend. If they beat NC State, they go to Omaha.
Beer of the Week
I've been asked the meaning of "high gravity." High gravity beers have a higher alcohol content (due to heavier sugar content) and are typically way yummier than a typical American (or mass-marketed import) beer. Many Belgian beers like Chimay or St. Bernardus or American craft brewers like Dogfish Head, Avery or Allagash are high gravity. This week's beer you must try is Dogfish Head World Wide Stout. It comes in a 12-oz. bottle, but it's a bottle you can share with a friend as the alcohol is about 18%. Unfortunately for me, that also makes it impossible to get in Georgia, but I recently enjoyed a glass at Chicago's Hopleaf, one of the best pubs in the U.S. not named The Brick Store. Brewed with "a ridiculous amount of barley," it's an abnormally flavorful beer and one of my absolute favorites.
Tori Amos Declares Independence
I'm not the biggest Tori fan in the world, but I find it interesting that another musician who rose to fame through the major-label machine has decided to go it alone. Digital Music News reported this morning that after three albums with Epic, she's quitting the Sony division cold turkey.
From her website: "This is an exciting time. There will be many ways in the present and in the future for artists to cross what has become the new unchartered Music Frontier. Ways that may seem impossible today but in a months time will seem probable. There are many ways to be involved in a structure. But what kind of structure will it be and what will be the make up of it's foundation? These are important questions, so important that I've been observing many different working templates in the music business for years now. The key word here is the word "working." In some cases these structures do not work positively for some artists. Only for those who have designed the system to specifically "work" for the corporate few. Artists need not fear structure, we just have to design and partner with expansive ideas. It is time for us as artists to stop being dependent, dependent on any system that has become undependable. Only then can we help to create a new system that propagates and secures independence for each creator."
Burn After Reading
Nobody switches speeds quite as well as The Coen Brothers. They followed Raising Arizona with Miller's Crossing, then followed Fargo with The Big Lebowski. Now on the heels of No Country For Old Men, they give us Burn After Reading. It looks like a Greatest Hits movie... George Clooney talking smooth. Frances McDormand talking funny. Brad Pitt as the new Dude. I can't wait for Sept. 12. Or for their take on Michael Chabon's Yiddish Policeman's Union sometime in 2010.