Monthly Archives: December 2012

Soul Man: The Rev. Al Green

By Steve Beard When British musician Elvis Costello was asked if he had ever had a religious experience, he responded, “No, but I have heard Al Green.” Not a bad compliment coming from Costello, a musical legend in his own … Continue reading

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Summer of Love

By Steve Beard As cultural mavens are more than aware, this is the fortieth anniversary of the infamous Summer of Love when the hippie counterculture christened its fashions, ideals, art, and music. The Flower Children pilgrimage to Haight-Ashbury was an … Continue reading

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Sly goes one more round

By Steve Beard I was 12 years old when I first saw Rocky. Thirty years ago, the film made such a deep impression on me that I actually arose early one morning and guzzled the raw egg concoction that Rocky … Continue reading

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Giving Sinead a second listen

By Steve Beard Some of my churchgoing friends were perplexed by my recent praise of Sinead O’Connor. They still have visceral memories of a brash young woman tearing up a picture of Pope John Paul II on national television fifteen … Continue reading

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The Shadow of Graceland

By Steve Beard It was an oddly surreal experience to be walking down one of the gold-record adorned hallways of Graceland and spotting Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy and his then girlfriend Ashlee Simpson in front of me checking … Continue reading

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Guitar Slinger: Brian Setzer

By Troy M. Meier With his overwrought pompadour rocking and his signature Gretsch hollow-body guitar twanging away, Brian Setzer arrived on the U.S. pop music scene with a vengeance in the early 1980s. Up to that point, American audiences were … Continue reading

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Rock Star as Theologian: Bono’s Blue-Tinted Witness

By: Steve Beard A review of Bono: In Conversation with Michka Assayas by Michka Assayas (Riverhead, 2005). Life is a stage for Bono. The charismatic Irishman has lived under the spotlight of countless venues around the globe. His bleeding-heart social … Continue reading

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Stray Cat Patron Saint: Brian Setzer leans on St. Jude

By Steve Beard In the early 1980s, Stray Cats front man Brian Setzer stood up in the moshpit of the punk-rock/new-wave revolution and daringly waved a big, greasy flag for rockabilly. Reviving 1950s-inspired rock ‘n’ roll was far more defiant … Continue reading

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The fevered love of June and Johnny

By Steve Beard On Thursday, May 15, 2003, June Carter Cash (1929-2003) died of complications from heart surgery. She was 73. It is strangely fitting that the last time the public saw the face of June Carter Cash was on … Continue reading

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Leigh Nash: The Right Time

By Steve Beard Six years ago, I was provocatively reminded of the pervasiveness of American culture while I was walking around an outdoor market in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia. Amongst the tables full of trinkets and indigenous crafts, I spotted a … Continue reading

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