Weekend Miscellany, Part I: Matt’s Picks (Beatles Edition)

It’s a little late in the day for our usual weekend links post, but I was hungover earlier, and better late than never. I encourage you to look at this stuff with a beer rather than with a cup of coffee. I had a lot of time on my hands this week and came across some Internet gold, which mainly involved the Beatles.

Weekend

Matt’s Picks

Beatles Stuff

  • “We Buy White Albums”  (from Dust and Grooves). 693 copies of the White Album in one place? It’s as cool as it sounds. Dust and Grooves has a great interview/photo-essay on artist Rutherford Chang’s exhibit of hundreds of copies of the White Album in LA.
  • “Is Jonathan Franzen More like John Lennon or Paul McCartney?” by Benjamin Nugent. A brief but deeply interesting read exposing the underestimated formal complexity in Jonathan Franzen’s writing (drawing a comparison to the underrated sophistication in Paul McCartney’s work). The article also begins with a great comparison of DFW and Franzen to Lennon and McCartney — then uses the rest of its space to explore the accuracy of that comparison. Probably the best thing I’ve read this month.
  • George Martin‘s discussions of the Beatles (available on YouTube). Martin, “the fifth Beatle” and legendary producer/musician/polymath, shares some great insights on Beatles music in a number of videos available on YouTube. This is the guy who played piano on “In My Life,” so just shut up and listen.

The Rest (Louis C.K., the Oscars, and more)

  • “Is Louis C.K. our Gogol?” by Avi Steinberg. An in-depth look at Louis C.K.’s current stand-up material, what makes his comedy great, and what it’s like to experience a Louis C.K. show in person. A great article on one of today’s most influential comics.
  • “Beer Maps: Two Giant Brewers, 210 Brands” by Caitlin Kenney. A really, really interesting infographic depicting the 210 global beer brands owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev and SABMiller. If you’re in Zimbabwe, settle down with a Lion Lager and check this out. 
  • “The Record Books” by Christophe Gowans. Gowans’ experiment here is to imagine “if best-selling albums had been books instead.” The results are great, and often hilarious. Gowans takes on Blood on the TracksAbbey Road, and more. Are You Experienced? is my personal favorite.
  • “‘Zero Dark Thirty’s’ Sharp Turn from Oscar Glory” by Steven Zeitchik and Nicole Sperling. A nice piece on the controversy surrounding Zero Dark Thirty and why it is no longer the Best Picture favorite. Also, I learned from this article that such things as “award consultants” exist.
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