January 26, 2010 at 3:53 pm , by Ron Kelly
For my money’s worth, David Nail’s I’m About to Come Alive was the most interesting and addictive CD to come out of Nashville last year. Maybe it was how much fun it is walking around NYC with “Again” or “Red Light” blasting out of my iPod. Or how “This Time Around” — with its chorus of “I’m a little bit older, a little more figured out”— helped me get over my ridiculous fear of turning the big 4-0 last August.
Well, when Nail visited NYC in December, I was thrilled to meet him for a few drinks and thank him for the lyrical gut check. The CD, after all, served as kind of my own personal soundtrack to my post birthday months of 2009, and it’s one of the few discs I continually replay from beginning to end. Nail walked me through how passionate he was about the CD’s sequencing, and how every version he toyed with started with the Ray Charles-inspired “Mississippi” and ended with the intensely personal “Missouri,” a breakup song so raw and honest (“Every day that you forgive me, is just another one you’ll waste”) that it literally stopped me in my tracks when I first heard it.
During our visit, David also gave me the inside track on what the CD’s third single (debuting on country radio this week) might be. If you haven’t heard it on your local radio yet, find out what it sounds like — and two random and amazing things we here at LHJ admire about this rising star — after the jump.
January 26, 2010 at 10:12 am , by Gabrielle Porcaro
Gab, my jewelry box is not big enough for my bigger pieces… do you have any any unique suggestions for how to store jewelry? – Krista
I have struggled with the same thing in the past and finally came up with a system. I treat my jewelry (and sometimes my bags and shoes) as decoration and display them around my room. I found different ways to keep my pieces neat but also allow me to see everything. Here are some ideas:
Hang your necklaces on interesting hooks. I bought two of these door knob hooks from Urban Outfitters. Anthropologie is my all time favorite place for home shopping. You can find all types of cute things like this squirrel hook and inside out bowl.
I use unique dishes and plates to store my rings, bracelets and small necklaces. I like to line them up on my window sill or stage them around the room. I love these Warhol themed dishes my friend Tina got me from CB2. Trays or plates also can come in handy. Loving this decorative tray from Target (which is where I found my alphabet plate on the top right picture).
If you don’t have space in your bedroom (maybe you share a room with someone who doesn’t want to be reminded of how many necklaces you own!) try using a strip of hooks from The Container Store in your bathroom or closet.
So what’s your system? (Shoving your jewelry in a drawer is not the right answer!)
January 25, 2010 at 4:30 pm , by Khalil Hymore
There are some days when being a food editor really has its perks, like the day a big ol’ box of Q.bel candy bars showed up at my desk. Of course, this particular perk has made me quite popular with the staff—a good thing since I am one of the newest editors at LHJ, and it didn’t take long for them to become addicted to these all natural candy bars. (That’s right folks, I now traffic in candy.)
Launched a little over a year ago, Q.bel wafer bars and rolls ($1.50) are made with real Belgian chocolate and are free of any chemical additives. That means no preservatives, artificial colors, hydrogenated oils, or high-fructose corn syrup. (Yay!) More importantly, they’re super delicious and surprisingly low-calorie. My hands down favorite are the peanut butter Q.bels, but you can also find them filled with milk and dark chocolate, crispy rice, and mint!
Our love for Q.bels has definitely evolved into a full blown obsession around here. (Hmm…delicious candy makes people happy, go figure.) It’s pretty hilarious, every day at around 4 o’clock, editors sneak down to my desk hunting for a chocolate fix. We may need to stage an intervention.
January 25, 2010 at 1:28 pm , by Amanda Wolfe
In this video clip (which you really must watch!), Jacqueline Novogratz, founder of the Acumen Fund, tells the amazing story that sparked her do good efforts and inspired her memoir, The Blue Sweater. The book traces her journey from young idealist to a CEO whose organization brings affordable and sustainable healthcare, water, energy and housing to people in serious need. She’s even donating the proceeds from the paperback copies to her organization and other charities that tackle poverty. The paperback will be available on February 16, but you can pre-order a copy now. You can also order a cool “book club in a box” which comes with books, bookmarks, and discussion guides—perfect to bring a little do good flavor to your next book club meeting.
January 22, 2010 at 3:07 pm , by Lisa M. Gerry
You may recognize Canadian singer (and soon to be star) Meaghan Smith’s voice from the 500 Days of Summer soundtrack, where she covered the Pixies song, “Here Comes Your Man.” That was how I personally discovered her, and that’s all it took…now I’m a super fan.
Her style, which she describes as “modern vintage,” makes me want to put on a cloche hat, pour a glass of wine and kick up my heels. So, as you can imagine, I was so excited to find out that she has a new album coming out, Cricket’s Orchestra, which is currently available on iTunes and will be available everywhere February 9.
I got the chance to speak with Meaghan, and you can read some highlights from our chat after the jump, but first—because hearing is believing—check out her music video below.
January 22, 2010 at 12:55 pm , by Emily Chau
Inspired by a real life story, Extraordinary Measures is a tearjerker of a tale. John Crowley (Brendan Fraser) is a rising corporate star and loving family man, but two of his kids have Pompe disease, a neuromuscular disorder. Told that they have a year left to live, Crowley gives up his high paying job and enlists the help of researcher Dr. Robert Stonehill (Harrison Ford) to design a miracle drug. What Stonehill lacks in interpersonal skills (and funding), he makes up in terms of brilliance, and the two begin an unlikely partnership. Working around the clock, Crowley and Stonehill race for a cure while battling the hurdles of big pharma and each other.
Extraordinary Measures adds an interesting perspective to the ongoing health care debate. Crowley comes up hard against the realities of pharma: It’s not personal, it’s business. More inspired by dollar signs than the faces of the disease, these companies will only invest if the drug seems profitable.
But in the end, big, bad pharma comes out as being not-quite-so-evil after all. While their bottom line philosophy sounds cruel, their need for objectivity is actually quite necessary. The movie tugs on your heartstrings and unless you are devoid of human compassion, you can’t help but become emotionally invested in the Crowleys’ crusade. Interestingly, it’s this very type of emotional involvement that the pharmaceutical company warns Crowley against. Passion and personal interest may drive research, but in the end, the science has to speak for itself.
Photo courtesy of CBS Films
January 22, 2010 at 10:32 am , by Catherine LeFebvre
1. Massachusetts Becomes Brown-ville
Massachusetts, often considered the “bluest of blue” states, has elected a Republican to Senate. Scott Brown will head to Washington this week, taking over the seat held for over 40 years by Ted Kennedy and breaking the Democrats’ filibuster-proof super-majority. Brown is pro-choice, against gay marriage but pro civil unions, has vowed to vote against the health care reform bill, and was voted “America’s Sexiest Man” in 1982 by Cosmo.
2. Supreme Court Blocks Ban on Corporate Political Spending
The Supreme Court campaign finance ruling on Thursday means corporations can spend freely on political ads leading up to elections. “Government may not suppress political speech on the basis of the speaker’s corporate identity,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the 57-page majority opinion. “No sufficient governmental interest justifies limits on the political speech of nonprofit or for-profit corporations.”
3. Conan Leaves the Tonight Show
The last few weeks of late night haven’t been pretty. Ever since Leno’s experiment in prime-time failed, there have been an awful lot of cheap shots, finger-pointing, and jokes that weren’t so much funny as really expensive. But this week NBC and Conan O’Brien reached a deal in which the network will pay around $45 million for him leave his job as the host of The Tonight Show to make way for the return of Jay Leno. As for Coco, he’ll probably head to Fox.
4. A Pug Plays the Piano!
Wow, that was a lot of serious news. So for a little comic relief, TWO puppy stories!!