Posts Tagged ‘entertainment’

Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Two deaths to report today. I guess I’m feeling morbid, but hey, I still want to pay tribute.

Today Zelda Rubenstein passed away from complications of a past heart attack. Do you not know who Zelda Rubenstein is? I didn’t either until I saw her picture. She’s the short lady who performs the exorcisms in the Poltergeist movies.

While her major roles were definitely in Poltergeist, she was also in some other famous flicks, too. She starred in Chevy Chase’s Under the Rainbow, did voice work on the Flintstone Comedy Show, and even had a small role in the teen 80s movie Sixteen Candles.

In an article from Movie Talk, Steven Spielberg’s words were used to describe her: “Good things can come in small packages, and that’s certainly true of Zelda.” She was only 76 years old.

The second death to report today is that of inspiring writer JD Salinger. Perhaps his most famous novel was Catcher in the Rye, a tale about hard times during high school. He was also known for his book of short stories, entitled Nine Stories.

Throughout his career, he was a very hard person to get in touch with, especially for people working in the media. He scoffed at journalists and photographers. To this day, there is evidence of a very small number of interviews with the author. Salinger felt that publishing his works ruined the special nature of it. He rather liked to keep it for himself.

You can read a full article on the life and works of JD Salinger at NPR.com. He was 91 years old.


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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Earlier this week, it was announced that a fourth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies will begin shooting in Hawaii this summer.

Johnny Depp will return as Captain Jack Sparrow, as will Geoffrey Rush as Barbossa. However, two of the movie’s major characters will not be returning for the film: Keira Knightly and Orlando Bloom. According to an article from Movie Talk, the two stars wanted nothing to do with the new film. In an interview, Knightly said, “It was a completely fantastic experience, and it was an amazingly large portion of my life, but I don’t think I need to go there again. I think that it’s done.”

So, I ask myself, how can this happen? More or less, how will this movie continue to be a success without two major characters? Disney will just have to find some other aspect to focus on instead.

To elaborate on that new focus, the newest Pirates of the Caribbean is actually based off of a book called “On Stranger Tides,” written by Tim Powers. It has to do with a boy named Jack who sets out on a quest to find the fountain of youth after he is captured by Blackbeard, the infamous pirate.

The film will open May 20, 2011. Until then, we will be seeing much more from Johnny Depp. Don’t forget — Alice in Wonderland will be premiering on March 5 of this year. I can’t wait to see him in the role of the Mad Hatter.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

If you didn’t know, I am a huge animal lover. My lifelong dream is to grow up, live in a big house with a big yard, and have lots of dogs. Not kids, but dogs. Part of me has always wanted to work in a veterinarian’s office, but I have always thought the sad parts would be too much for me to handle. Nonetheless, that is why I chose my latest book, Dr. Nick Trout’s Tell Me Where It Hurts.

The book gives you a day in the life story, told by Trout, about his vet office and the wonderful animals he works with on that given day. He wakes up in the morning to his beeper, a sure sign that a sick or injured animal will need his help immediately, then the day progresses from there. Each chapter is labeled with a time stamp, so you know which part of the day you are reading about.

Trout goes over all the topics you’d be curious to know about working in an animal hospital — dealing with overbearing owners, understanding the need for some animals to be put to sleep, animal surgeries, exotic pets, and even how he was introduced to his veterinary career…by a convicted murderer British vet, I might add. (That’s a good chapter.)

The book has funny little anecdotes, with facts sprinkled in here and there. In some cases, Trout goes off on a tangent and the result can be boredom for the reader, but I think that all in all, there’s something really special about this book. It actually made me reconsider wanting to be a part of a vet’s office. Who knows, maybe I’ll get my vet tech license…

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Woodstock will never get old…it will just keep getting better.

If any of you old-time rockers haven’t found out yet, the folks handling the original recordings of the Woodstock performances have recently released entire sets of certain bands. Those lucky few bands include Santana, Sly & the Family Stone, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, and Johnny Winter.

I just got my hands on a copy of the entire Santana set, and boy, am I glad I spent that 20 bucks. The band, virtually unknown before their famous performance in White Lake, New York, completely kills it in this live album. It’s full of strong, funky, latin drum beats, blaring guitars and organs, and a flavor unlike any other band that played at Woodstock. But would we expect any less?

The sound makes it pretty close to impossible for you to stand still. I keep listening to the cd over and over again, and always find at least some part of my body moving and grooving along with Santana’s charm.

Drummer Michael Shrieve, who happened to be the youngest (and maybe the best?) drummer at Woodstock, is one of the main driving forces that makes this performance so powerful. His beats, along with the addition of the congos and bongos, make the entire set sound so intense that it’s almost tribal. And of course, where would we be without Carlos Santana, the lead singer and guitarist? His latin flavor brings even more authenticity and spark into the music.

Here’s a list of the tracks on the Woodstock Experience:

  • Waiting
  • Evil Ways
  • You Just Don’t Care
  • Savor
  • Jingo
  • Persuasion
  • Soul Sacrifice
  • Fried Neckbones and Some Home Fries

 If you’re any kind of Santana fan, you might want to consider picking yourself up a copy of this cd. It comes packaged with the band’s album “Santana” and also a poster capturing them onstage at Woodstock. Also, each one is individually numbered, so you can feel like you’ve really got something special there.

If you’ve never been a Santana fan before, but are considering giving them a go, start with this cd. It is one of their best.

 On a side note, I still can’t believe Carlos Santana was on mescaline for this whole performance. Imagine that.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

What’s my latest guilty pleasure? Well, that’d have to be Dexter, the wonderfully grotesque Showtime drama about a forensics expert who doubles as a serial killer while no one is watching.

I can’t lie to you — because it’s winter, I am going into hibernation mode. While I am camped out in my warm winter den (aka my bedroom), I have spent much time watching the show. But I have merely been catching up…I just started watching it three weeks ago.

The show has been grabbing the attention of some Hollywood related people as well. Today, Michael C. Hall, our loveable serial killer, received a Golden Globe for best actor in a tv drama. Also, John Lithgow was awarded a Golden Globe for best supporting actor in the show.

According to the Associated Press, Lithgow said, “”I’ve had the most wonderful time creeping out the entire country for the last six months.”

Indeed, the show is creepy. Some people may find themselves grossed out, but unable to look away, while others may find the show’s concept utterly disgusting and refuse to watch. I’m in the first category….and looking forward to season 5 of the serial killer everyone loves.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

On Tuesday, a major 7.0 richter scale earthquake hit Haiti’s small city of Port-au-Prince. Now, just two days later, many celebrities in the entertainment industry are reaching out their hands and their wallets to help in the ongoing relief efforts.

Some of the big names lending their time to the earthquake’s victims are Ben Stiller, Brad Pitt, Anjelina Jolie, and Wyclef Jean,  just to name a few.  Pitt and Jolie contributed $1 million towards the funding for emergency medical operations in the areas most desecrated.

Others, like Oprah Winfrey and Shakira, have asked fans to start donating their money to organizations like the American Red Cross to help with earthquake relief.

According to an article in the Associated Press, ‘Viacom Inc. announced Wednesday that it was setting up a $500,000 matching gift program, with donations going to the Red Cross. The Walt Disney Co. also announced it was contributing $100,000 to the Red Cross.’

Chris Martin of Coldplay asked people to donate to a charity called Oxfam, which deals with helping countries fight poverty and injustice. Since the announcement of the earthquake, the group of 14 different organizations has been focused on helping the people of Port-au-Prince.

You can help by donating to any of the above mentioned charities. Simply click on the link to view a website.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

He’s a crooner and a swooner…a folk lullaby spooner.

That’s right, James Taylor is back in action. Not without the help of Carole King, of course. The two have just recently announced that they will begin a United States tour, starting in Portland, Oregon on May 7. The tour will kick off in Australia earlier this year, then head to the U.S.

King and Taylor started out playing their music together, as she was in his band when he started touring. She was also a first class song writer, lending her writing abilities to many songs. Eventually, King played a few songs on Taylor’s albums until he encouraged her to set out on her own and explore her own musical aspirations.

The tour will reunite other former members of the band as well, including guitarist Danny Kortchmar, drummer Russ Kunkel, and bassist Lee Sklar.

In an article by the Associated Press, Taylor said he wanted King and himself to remain on stage throughout all the performances on the new tour. “I think we’ll do two sets, both of us will be on stage the whole time, either singing backup for each or playing behind the other. We’ll sort of skip back and forth, do a song of hers, a song of mine, but we’ll stay on the stage,” he said.

Ticket presales for many of the dates on the tour will begin this Saturday, the 16th, at 10:00 a.m. You can find tickets by visiting ticketmaster.

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