Cleaning-up to a surfing’ trip-hop rap


As week two of my potentially 30-day neo-bachelorhood unfolds (as reported last week, Jane’s in Colorado helping her sister mend), I find my taste in music and movies as scattered as my methods for housekeeping and cooking. [Don’t worry, Jane, Margarita and a small A-bomb will restore your kitchen.]

In random exposition:

As someone drawn to blues, rock, soul, r&b, Americana, and hip-hop—in that order, I decided to get out of the lonely house to catch the flick “Straight Outta Compton” from curiosity more than an affection to the music. I was familiar with N.W.A.’s back-story and thought I knew the tunes. Okay, so I confess, I didn’t know a rat’s ass about how infectious the group’s work, as well as solo efforts by Dr. Dre and Ice Cube, had been and still is. My bad. I highly recommend the movie and intend to pick-up the soundtrack this week.

While on the subject of movies, Paul Drano, who played Olive’s 15-year-old step-brother in “Little Miss Sunshine, marvelously portrays Brian Wilson in the small, summer flick “Love & Mercy.” Though John Cusack gets top billing (and likely the big pay check), I couldn’t get past knowing it was Cusack pretending to be something he isn’t. As a Beach Boys fan since the group’s first single aired in Spokane in the very early sixties and someone familiar with all the brothers’ pathos, I easily suspended reality to believe Drano was Brian. And, Elizabeth Banks, well, hell, she is Elizabeth Banks. Need I say more?

Finally, if you’ll forgive my employing the phrase synonymously with “out of left field,” my recent discovery—thanks to son Brian—of LA-based Bitter:Sweet came straight outta Compton. The duo, which is apparently on hiatus, performs a genre to which I’m rarely drawn: gentle jazz and bossa nova with a trip-hop foundation. I would liken it to work by Thievery Corporation, which I like a lot and for whom B:S lead singer Shana Halligan has provided vocals. Close your eyes, and you can imagine the group appearing on the soundtrack of an early Bond or original Pink Panther series movie. Bitter:Sweet also consists of Kiran Shahani, who composes and produces Halligan’s understatedly sensual delivery of her lyrics. She releases a solo album October 16.

Okay, now back to the important duties of cleaning the casa and creating a grocery list.


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