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Showing posts from March, 2006

Cake (Lions Gate Films, 2005)***

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Heather Graham is positively radiant in Cake as the fish out of water editor of a traditional bridal magazine. It is unclear whether ABC's quick axe on Graham's prime time sitcom ( Emily's Reasons Why Not ) in early 2006 had anything to do with the lack of U.S. theatrical release, but Cake is so well written, cast and acted that it deserved better than to be released straight to dvd; it saw theatrical release only in Canada and Isreal. Cake seems formulaic at first (equal parts Just Shoot Me and Down With Love ), but the writing is smart and funny and continually surpasses all expectations. Graham plays Pippa McGee, a freelance and free sprited travel writer whose father is a magazine publisher who after suffering a heart attack, consents to allow his daughter to help out by editing one of his magazines, Wedding Bells Monthly. Graham immediately attempts to shake up the previously staid publication and the results are genuinely funny. To illustrate just how utte

Johnny A - World Cafe Live, Philadelphia, 3/11/06

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Johnny A played the World Cafe Live downstairs stage Saturday night with his trademark set of electric guitar music that makes a strong case for the notion that while many have mastered this instrument, none have done so with a greater combination of taste and technique than this guitar slinger from Boston. While Johnny can hold his own blowing the doors off referencing Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Chet Atkins, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page, his repertoire consists of more originals than covers and has thus managed to forge his own guitar identity amongst these gods of the electric guitar. His set included healthy helpings from his two cds, Sometime Tuesday Morning and Get Inside as well as some material from his new instructional dvd, TASTE • TONE • SPACE which is available from his website. The subdued red and blue lighting suggested the atmosphere of the Sometime Tuesday Morning cover shot. The World Cafe Live sound was perfectly clear, loud when Johnny cranked it up and soft