Category Archives: Music

Hundreds of Lions – Erin McKeown

mckeown9/9/09, huh? It’s an exciting day! It marks the last set of repeating, single-digit dates that we’ll see for almost a century (until January 1, 2101), and the Remastered Beatles catalog, Beatles Rock Band, and the new Apple iPod are all being released today.

But my favorite celebration today is my third wedding anniversary with the extraordinary Christopher Gandin Le. Suicide prevention expert, exquisite photographer (still and motion pictures), beloved friend, and the best damn husband and partner I could ever desire.

For our anniversary, he gave me the gift of music from one of my favorite artists: Erin McKeown. Since I first heard Distillation 9 years ago, I have loved this woman’s music, and have had a total crush on her as well. She’s excruciatingly talented across a wide variety of instruments and musical styles, her lyrics are poetic, her style is fantastic (check those Fluevogs!), and her live show is always fabulous. Oh, and she’s only 31; she’s been making great music since she was in college.

Her newest album, Hundreds of Lions, comes out this October on Righteous Babe records, and to raise funds for this self-financed album, she launched a very cool endeavor this summer.

Photo Credit: Nancy Palmieri

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Filed under Art, Beauty in a Wicked World, Career/Life, Music, Pop Culture, Writing

(500) Days of Summer: A Love Letter to a Not-Love-Story

500-days-of-summerDear Scott Neustadter, Michael H. Weber, Marc Webb, Eric Steelberg, the producers, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Zooey Deschanel, and everyone else involved in making the movie (500) Days of Summer,

I’ve been subconsciously writing this letter for four months, since I first saw your movie at SXSW. I wrote on this site about my screening experience, but looking back, my post seems flippant and doesn’t indicate the depth to which your story delighted me. My husband wasn’t with me at the SXSW screening, which was unfortunate, because as soon as the credits rolled, I knew he would see himself on that screen. (As will many, many men my age.) Last night, I took him to see the movie at another screening in town.

I loved the movie again, maybe even more this time. You have created a masterful film that captures countless desperately honest moments. It was a visceral pleasure to watch. And I want to articulate some of the reasons why it has touched me so significantly.

I’ll cut here so I can spill lots of spoilers below. (Crucial Minutiae readers, if you’re going to see this movie, bookmark this post and come back once you’ve seen it. I don’t want to ruin your viewing experience.)

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Filed under Beauty in a Wicked World, Gender, Movies, Music, Pop Culture, Random, Relationships, Writing

Celebrate Loving Day TODAY in NYC!

loving_day_invite_nyc_2009There’s a free party happening on the East River in Manhattan today from 3pm-7pm, and it celebrates the anniversary of Loving v. Virginia (1967), the Supreme Court decision that legalized interracial marriage in the U.S.

DJ Dhundee and DJ Tyler Askew will be spinning, there’s free BBQ all day long, and there’s free beer for the 1st hour. It’s at Solar 1, on the East River Waterfront at East 23rd St, NYC.

Go soak up some of the beautiful day in the company of beautiful, happy people and families!

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Filed under Health, Music, Politics, Pop Culture, Race, Random, Relationships, Writing

Presidential Proclamation: PRIDE

On Monday, President Obama officially proclaimed June 2009 as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. This made my jaw drop and my heart soar. Yes, there is much more work to be done to truly “turn back discrimination and prejudice everywhere it exists,” as Obama asks Americans to do. But formal acknowledgments are a big deal in our country, and this is definitely an important first.

~ ~ ~

On a fluffier note, check out this re-recording of “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” with the vocalist singing/narrating what’s actually happening in the video (which is, by the way, completely creepy). Clever and hilarious!

Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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Filed under Art, Beauty in a Wicked World, Music, Politics, Pop Culture

Validation, A Short Film Starring TJ Thyne

I got the tip on this clever, well-shot short film via Facebook. “Validation” is a fable about the magic of free parking, starring TJ Thyne (on “Bones”) and Vicki Davis, and directed and written by Kurt Kuenne (“Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father”). Spending 16 minutes watching this film is highly preferable to reading panic-bloated coverage about the swine flu, I promise.

Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.


Filed under Art, Beauty in a Wicked World, Health, Movies, Music, Relationships

On A Dance Break

I am done talking, and have decided I need to dance. A LOT!

Therapy Thursdays


Filed under Music, Therapy Thursdays

American Idol

Susan Boyle is this year’s Paul Potts.

Potts, a Carphone Warehouse salesman and 2007 Britain’s Got Talent contestant, rocked audiences with his rendition of “Nessun Dorma.” He went on to win the competition and was subsequently signed to Sony Records, where his debut album sold over 2 million copies.

Boyle seems poised to do the same.

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Filed under In The News, Music, Pop Culture