Team Taylor

Oh, Kanye.

So, on one hand, this Kanye taking the mic from Taylor thing from last night’s MTV VMAs is laughable. Seriously. Part of me wonders if it was planned between MTV and Kanye. Everyone is talking about that award show this morning.

But, let’s assume that’s not true, and that Kanye really is that selfish.

19-year old Taylor Swift won the first award of the night, Best Female Video. Kanye jumped up on-stage as Taylor was beginning her acceptance speech and took the mic from her. He proceeded to tell her he was happy for her, blah, blah, blah, but that Beyonce had “one of the best videos of all time.”

That’s great, Kanye. We all appreciate your opinion on a matter that clearly required you to steal the spotlight from one of the hottest musicians out there right now.

I love the irony of Beyonce going on to win Video of the Year later in the show, then completely giving her time to Taylor Swift.

That is class.

Kanye didn’t commit a crime, technically. But, in the minds of countless Taylor Swift fans, he did worse than that.

We will all (likely) continue to be hooked when we hear Kanye’s next melody, but you do have to wonder sometimes when it will all slow down for him. His infamous interruptions, comments and antics aren’t that big of a deal (technically), but they are starting to get kind of old.

When I woke up on Sunday morning at Bonnaroo 2008 and was looking for breakfast, I kept hearing random shouts of “f*ck Kanye!” I hadn’t waited up for his 2 am performance (which was changed at the last minute at his request, and he was still late!), and I’m glad I didn’t.

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The Wanderer

“It was, like, all of a sudden, Generation X had fallen in love with Johnny Cash.”

Shares Joe Nick Patoski, a senior editor of Texas Monthly, in Michael Streissguth’s book, Ring of Fire. Patoski is talking about Cash’s South by Southwest performance in 1994, at Emo’s. A few months prior, in December of 1993, Cash had performed solo at the Sunset Strip’s Viper Room, in LA. The latter was Rick Rubin’s idea. Johnny was in town to record the first American Recordings album, with Rubin, and Rick thought it would be cool for the Man in Black to play out.

So began Cash’s resurgence. Years prior, he had been on his way to the usually imminent rockstar-black hole.

Suddenly he got cool. Real cool. And his reach kept getting wider. I’d argue that one of the strongest symbols of this is the wide variety of figures in the music video for “God’s Gonna Cut You Down,” from the album American V: A Hundred Highways. Graham Nash, Keith Richards, Brian Wilson, Justin Timberlake, Billy Gibbons, Kate Moss, The Dixie Chicks, Kanye West, Johnny Depp, Travis Barker, Kid Rock, Tommy Lee, Chris Martin, and many others. Check it out if you’ve never seen it.

But I love that U2 found it a good idea to have Johnny sing on the 1993 album, Zooropa. Cash sang the last song on the project, a song called “The Wanderer.” Here are a couple of lines from the song:

I went out there / in search of experience

To taste and to touch / and to feel as much

As a man can / before he repents

In Steve Turner’s book The Man Called Cash, the story goes,

“That same year (1988) Cash met Bono, who came to Hendersonville during a driving trip across America with U2 bass player Adam Clayton. When they sat down for a meal, Cash intoned a long and elaborate grace, thanking God for his wonderful provisions and asking him to bless the food to their bodies. Then he opened his eyes, winked at Bono, and said, ‘Sure do miss the drugs though’.”

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