Monday, July 25, 2011

Pheaturing Luke Temple

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Monday. Man, this is wearing me out doing two entries a week. A woman in Colorado was arrested for groping a TSA agent last week. On the bright side, today she was offered a job with the TSA. A group of rare snow leopards has been discovered in a remote corner of Afghanistan. So I guess traveling through Afghanistan isn't as safe as you thought. Hey, I just heard about a woman who is publishing 12 years of her own text messages in a new book. I don’t want to ruin the ending, but the last line is, “Hey, just thought of the dumbest idea for a book!” Rupert Murdoch said that he was embarrassed and that testifying before Parliament was the most humbling day in his life. That’s mostly because he spends every other day swimming in a bathtub full of money like Scrooge McDuck. Borders bookstores announced that it will liquidate its stock and close all of its stores nationwide. I don’t think this is what the Republicans meant by “closing our borders.” I actually went to a Borders this morning, this is a true story, and spent a hundred and fifty dollars. That should save them, right? Don't ask me what I got. Okay, ask me. The three "Kingdom Keepers" books, Ashley Judd's autobiography for my wife, a Star Wars graphic novel, an "Ultimates" graphic novel, the latest Narnia movie on Blu-ray and the three X-Men movies on Blu-ray. Pretty good, right? Philadelphia has a new plan to ticket pedestrians who text without looking up while they walk. As opposed to the previous punishment: lamp posts. A new study found that the show “Jersey Shore” hasn’t changed people’s views of New Jersey at all, which doesn’t say much about their views of New Jersey before the show aired. Weather experts say that 1 million square miles of the U.S. are under a “heat dome.” But don’t worry — we have plenty of shade under our $14 trillion debt ceiling. Why do they give heat warnings? I think I’m pretty good at figuring out that it’s hot on my own. I think we should switch to Celsius. In Europe, it rarely goes over 40 degrees. A new study found that only 20 percent of high school seniors are proficient in geography. Students weren't really bothered by that number because only 3 percent of them are proficient in math. Yesterday Logan and I went to see Captain America: The First Avenger, it's set in the 1940s, when people thought smoking was healthy and for breakfast, they would eat bacon smothered in beef fat with a side of asbestos. Back then, America had a ruined economy and was fighting wars with two different countries. It was a totally different time. Captain America is patriotic. Of course, Superman wore the American colors, but he wasn’t born here... much like our president. Just kidding, people! Captain America isn’t just patriotic, he’s also a real captain in the armed forces, not a made-up captain, like Captain Crunch. In a new interview, President Obama said he wants a “debt ceiling deal” for his 50th birthday. Then he was like, “But if I can’t have that... iPad.” Bank of America announced that it lost $9 billion in the second quarter. It’s not good. In fact, when I put my card in the ATM, it said, “Do you mind if I borrow this for a while?” The U.S. Postal Service will start offering online previews of the stamps in its 2012 collection. That’s right, stamp previews. Finally answering the question: “What’s more boring than stamps?” A new study found that your personality can trigger weight gain. Yeah, especially if you have the personality of a big fat guy. Hey, have you seen the ad for a new Fox TV show that is coming out in the fall? Check it out if you haven't.

So, I mentioned the new Captain America movie, but there's one movie I am wanting to see this summer more than any other movie, and I am talking about The Smurfs. I was excited when I discovered a new inspirational Smurfs themed poster.

So, when I went to Borders this morning, I thought I would have a little fun. Take a look.

And while I was there I discovered a...

Steve Rogers is a scrawny World War II recruit who’ll do whatever it takes to make the grade and fight those Nazi bullies, even if it means submitting to the U.S. Governments secret Super Soldier program. It’s there he becomes big, bold, brawny Captain America and learns to throw his mighty shield. And because this is a boilerplate origin story, he square-jaws his way into a conflict with a super-baddie and the fate of the world hangs in the balance. Guess how it ends! And yeah, stay till the end of the credits like you already know how. So, taking stock of the Avengers this far... Iron Man is sarcastic, Hulk broods, Thor is a glamorous pro wrestler who talks funny, Black Widow slinks around in a catsuit and kicks ass in gleaming hallways. And now comes Captain America. He's an L7 square, a slab of muscle and clean-living who knows himself best when he’s battling evil. And that’s great. All I need from a movie superhero is that level of productive self-awareness and the ability to create excitement and tension while he fights the enemy. Meanwhile, all I need from the people who make superhero movies is that sense of thoughtful momentum, the confidence that they're not flailing around, asking focus groups for tons of advice and making it all up as they go along. So this one is pretty good news. It ain't trailblazing, but it's solidly enjoyable. First of all, Cap's over 70 years old. This character really is, and the necessary World War II-era setting gives it a look and gee-whiz feel that are hard to resist. It helps that pretty much everything in the United States was at its handsomest from the 1940s until right around the time the hippies took over: clothes, furniture, cars, everything--and the movie knows it and shows it, hand in hand with its vintage, vanilla milkshake attitude. The Red Skull is one of my favorite villains in these Marvel movies so far. Conceptually, he's the easiest to understand, a Nazi monster with clear, evil intentions. And, frankly, design-wise, he's just better than the rest. HE HAS A BIG RED SKULL. It's a look. Until DC can get itself together and pull off a decent Justice League movie franchise, this is what we've got. And so far the Marvel output has been more decent than not. But it'll be good to get these same-y origin stories out of the way and, fingers crossed, move on to an Avengers series that allows these characters their differences, doesn't shift in tone every two minutes, and delivers on its already huge list of promises. Stay through the credits, people. I am a big comic book nerd and had literally tears of joy in my eyes. The movie gets a 10, and yes, I will buy it when it comes out, but obviously not at a Borders.

The third artist to be pheatured in the P.P.A.G. is Max Carmichael, and this is one of his paintings.

Max will be a guest on the Phile next Sunday.

Okay, today's guest is is an American pop-folk singer-songwriter who gained attention from various media outlets when he and his new band, Here We Go Magic released a self-titled album. He has a new album out called "Don't Act Like You Don't Care". Please welcome to the Phile... Luke Temple.

Me: Hello, Luke, welcome top the Phile. How are you?

Luke: Good thanks!

Me: I have to say, I am a fan of your band Here We Go Magic. Where did that band name come from?

Luke: I was on a train and I was thinking of a little green area with a pond and the name came with it... somehow. Who knows how these things happen.

Me: I was hoping you would say you're an Orlando Magic fan, Luke. Where are you from? Do you still live there?

Luke: I don't live in Orlando but I have been there. There is a nice little pond in the middle of the city with strange birds walking around. I am from a little town in Massachusettes called Manchester By The Sea.

Me: Before you were a musician you were a painter, am I right? What kind of paintings did you do? Or did you paint houses?

Luke: I painted portraits for the most part, I dabbled in some other areas but the portraits always had the most power.

Me: Do you still paint when you are not doing the music thing?

Luke: Very occasionally.

Me: When did you first start to song write and become a musician?

Luke: I started playing music when I was 13 and started writing songs when I was 24.

Me: Your first album "Hold a Match for a Gasoline World" which came out a few years ago, is a great album, Luke. I like the song "To All My Good Friends, Goodbye". Man, what were you thinking when you wrote that song?

Luke: I was working as a house painter and that specific day I was on a top floor of a sky scraper in a very small, very hot apt, sanding the ceiling. If you have ever sanded plaster on a ceiling you would understand how difficult it can be. I was looking down at the street below feeling sorry for myself and the song began.

Me: You had a few albums out after under your own name before you formed a band. What made you start a band instead of releasing the Magic's music under your name?

Luke: I wanted to erase myself in a way, I wanted it to feel like a fresh start.

Me: Who is in Here We Go Magic with you? Give them a mention, Luke.

Luke: Mike Bloch, Jen Turner, Teeny Lieberson, Peter Hale.

Me: I downloaded the Magic's new EP "The January EP", and enjoyed it. Your latest release is "Don't Act Like You Don't Care" which is really good. It is very country sounding, Luke. Are you a country music fan? Luke Temple does sound like a country singer's name.

Luke: I like some country, yes. I like Roger Miller and George Jones, Willie, etc...

Me: The album was recorded a few years ago, Luke. What took so long for it to be released?

Luke: Here We Go Magic became too busy.

Me: I like the way the new album sounds, like it was recorded decades ago. Was that the intent?

Luke: Yes, we used an old producer named Rudy Vangelder as our model. He recorded alot of old Blue Note stuff

Me: Who plays on the album with you, Luke?

Luke: Tyler Wood, Adam Chelinski, Eliot Krimsky, Mike Bloch, Parker Kindred.

Me: I have to ask you about the song "Ballad of Dick George". Who is Dick George?

Luke: He was a man that lived in a town in Mexico that my mother lives. he was an old blue blood from Pittsburg, PA. He was an alcoholic when he was young and scwandered all his inheritance and burned many bridges. He ended up alone in Mexico as an old sick man, he finally died with my mother the only one to visit him. I found his story very sad. I liked him and he seemed gentle, perhaps he had reconsiled with his demons, let's hope.

Me: Well, like I said, I really love this album, and I am hoping you will record another like it. Will you?

Luke: Yes, I will record another Luke Temple record but whether it will be like this one I can't say.

Me: Luke, thanks so much for being on the Phile, sir. Please come back again when the next project comes out. Can you do that?

Luke: Yes, thank you.

There you go, kids, another entry of the Phile done. Thanks to Luke for a good interview, and of course you for reading. The Phile will be back next Sunday with artist and musician Max Carmichael, then next Monday starts Alumni Month with Marc Savoie from Infinity-Lane Highway. So, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

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