PopCult Rudy Panucci on Pop Culture

Dr Seuss Makes Me Think About Food Bullies

The PopCulteer
March 5, 2021

We are, as a society, becoming more mindful of discriminatory behavior. It may not seem that way, as a vocal minority has embraced racism, sexism and hate speech as their chosen means of political expression, but in general, we are, as human beings, trying to be kinder to one another.

Earlier this week Dr. Seuss Enterprises chose to remove six of the venerated cartoonist’s books from circulation because they contain hateful and hurtful images.

While it may seem trivial and inconsequential to some angry folks who like to bitch about “cancel culture” (like shunning such works is not a justifiable reaction by civilized people to abhorrent symbols) most people, upon seeing the images in question, can understand that we shouldn’t be including such things in books that are designed to nurture and shape young minds.

It is not a good thing to ridicule or harrass someone because of their race, religion, orientation, size, hair (or lack thereof) or any other superficial reason. I hope we can all agree on that.

But this week the PopCulteer looks at one area where society turns a blind eye to mob mentality and bullying. I am not trying to say that this is anywhere near the same level as discrimination against people due to race, creed, class or the other recognized put-upon segments of society, but it would be nice if people could consider the feelings of others when criticizing that person’s personal food choices.

In the last week on social media, I have seen a person called “sub-human scum” because they put ketchup on a hot dog. I have also seen a person declared to be “more evil than Hitler himself,” because they enjoy their steak well-done.

I realize that these comments were made jokingly (and before you ask, they were not directed at me…I’ll get to my personal story later), but jokes are not harmless. Ridicule is recognized as one of the most effective forms of political attack, and the risk you run with any joke is that somebody will think, “It’s funny because it’s true.”

Do we really need a world full of food bullies? Can’t you be funny without food-shaming someone else?

For some reason, it’s still considered okay to make merciless fun of somebody because of the way they eat. Nevermind that a person may have a physical limitation or medical reasons for eating (or not eating) a certain way. The fact is that we supposedly live in a free country, and how a person chooses to eat is really not any of your god-damned business.

I hardly ever eat steak. When I do, I like for it to be cooked enough so that it tastes good to me. You see, having your own sense of taste is perfectly okay. I don’t like to eat red or pink beef. It does not taste good to me. On those occasions when I do eat a steak, my preference is for it to be medium-well, or well done. You may eat your own steak any way you wish. I will eat mine the way I like it.

If this offends you, it does not make me a “monster.” It makes you someone who can’t tolerate somebody having different tastes than you have. And that makes you the asshole.

I happen to find cole slaw to be one of the most disgusting things on the planet. I would never, under any circumstance, consider putting something that dreadful in my mouth. Yet, I have been told that I can’t possibly be a “real West Virginian” because I won’t eat a hot dog with chili and slaw on it.

I’ve lived here my whole life. How I eat a hot dog has not one thing to do with that. I don’t tell other people that they don’t belong here because they don’t eat things the way I do. I have not tried to outlaw cole slaw as a food substance (not seriously, anyway). Why is it any concern of yours how I eat something?

There are foods that I can’t eat. Mushrooms could kill me, period. I am not going to tempt fate to see if a particular variety would only make me deathly ill instead. Strawberries, and many other berries, make me break out and itch, and if you’ve ever had a rash inside your mouth, you understand why I avoid such things.

Avocados and Guacamole, for some bizarre reason that apparently isn’t common, make my Myasthenia Gravis meds stop working. That is not fun, especially if I’m driving.

These are my personal quirks. If you accept me, you have to accept them. It’s one reason that I don’t often write about food in this blog. I know that I’m outside the mainstream.

And that should be okay.

In fact, whether I have medical reasons for avoiding certain foods or not, it should still be okay.

I don’t eat pork. I find the odor it emits when cooked to be nauseating. I don’t even like bacon. It’s not a religion or health thing. I just don’t like it. That stuff smells like burning human flesh to me. I can eat sausage, if it’s heavily spiced to cover up the taste, but even with that I prefer vegetarian sausage these days.

I hate mayonnaise. It disgusts me. It is incredibly repulsive to me. I don’t even like to hear the word. I won’t eat anything that’s touched it.

I don’t like cucumbers, croutons or dressing in my salad. If they can’t be left out, I’ll pass on the entire salad.

I don’t drink beer or any alcoholic beverages. I can’t stand the taste, and alcohol burns my mouth. I realize that this puts me in a minority, and my whole life I’ve felt like an outsider because of this. Social drinking is like a big, exclusive club that I’m not willing to hurt myself enough to join.

These are all matters of taste, and they shouldn’t make life hard for me. I don’t try to impose my tastes on you. It’s not okay for you to try to shame me, or anybody, for having different tastes than you.

In terms of persecution, I don’t check off many boxes. I’m white. I’m male. I’m straight and married. Please don’t think I’m trying to play the victim here. This column was really inspired by attacks I’ve seen on other people. I’m only sharing my own experience because that’s what I have handy to write about.

I have not eaten in a restaurant for a year now. I’m better off for it. I’ve lost weight. I’m cooking way more now, and cooking healthier things (and smaller portions) than what we’d get if we were eating out. Mel and I still get takeout once in a while, but maybe one-tenth as much as we used to.

When we did eat out way too much, I continually ran into trouble when it came time to make substitutions. Some waiters seem to have a “You’ll eat what we tell you and like it” attitude. I don’t miss that. I don’t miss clearly and concisely giving a waiter my order, and having them bring back something that could potentially kill me.

Some waiters or waitresses think that, when I order “water with light ice,” the funniest thing in the world is to say, “Water with lots of ice, coming up!” You know what? It’s not funny. It’s as unfunny as me cutting my usual 35%-plus tip down to exactly 15%. I don’t know where people got the idea that telling somebody you were going to bring them the opposite of what they asked for is funny, but it isn’t. It stopped being funny the first time it happened…when I was five.

If, back in those restaurant-going days of yore, I would dare to post about a restaurantorial misadventure, I could always count on at least one person (usually a waiter or chef) to come down on me with a lecture about how I was “messing up the line” and “being difficult” and “acting entitled” because I want the food I’m paying my hard-earned cash for to be edible to me.

And I see those same people posting memes about what monsters people are for wanting their steak well done, or being told they don’t belong here because they won’t eat a hot dog with stuff on it that I don’t even consider to be food.

When that happens, I realize that some people just want to hate other people, and any stupid reason will do.

But I realize that some of you who share those memes and say things like that don’t really mean any harm. Dr. Seuss didn’t mean any harm when he published horribly racist drawings. It simply didn’t occur to him that such caricatures of Asian or Black people might be seriously hurtful to Asian and Black children. He didn’t even consider their feelings when he did those drawings.

Likewise, I figure that most folks who post jokes and images ridiculing people for their food choices aren’t trying to be malicious. They’re just being thoughtless, careless and insensitive. You know, like a bully.

I know that nobody ever went broke by making it easy to look down on other people, but do we really need to keep doing that?  Maybe it’s time we put a little more thought into what we post. Is your life really so perfect that you see your biggest enemy in somebody who likes their steak well-done?

Maybe it’s time we stop and ask if we’re really making the world a better place by calling someone else a monster because they eat their food a certain way…after all, some people even like green eggs and ham.

And that is this week’s preachy and self-righteous PopCulteer. Check back for all our regular features and fresh content every day.

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Funny Animals Return To Comics

The PopCult Comix Bookshelf

Today I’m telling you about a pre-order deal on what is sure to be a fun comic book, Cavalcade #1 will be the debut issue of a new Funny Animal anthology.

Three things you should know about this recommendation:

1. In addition to being a life-long fan of superhero comics, your PopCulteer is also a fan of the “Funny Animal” genre, which was far more prevelant in the Golden Age of comic books.
2. I am a sucker for revivals of public domain comic book characters from the Golden Age of comic books.
3. I’m a big fan of ACP Comics and their Forbidden Gallery horror anthology. I know these folks do high-quality work, and they do it outside of the traditional comics distribution system.

So when I heard that ACP was working on a Funny Animal anthology featuring public domain characters like Tubby the Scout, Bruno Bear, Pudgy Pig, Timmy the Timid Ghost, Hucky Duck, alongside new anthropomorfic creations, I was in.

As you can see from the credits, much of ACP’s crew from Forbidden Gallery worked on this book.It’s a great mix of veteran creators and newcomers. This is going to be fun throwback to the days when every comic book didn’t have to be a test balloon for a movie or TV series.

This book has been in production for a while, but now it’s almost ready to go to the publisher, and you can pre-order it HERE. The 36-page comic book is a mere six bucks (or ten, if you buy two) and you can also find back issues of Forbidden Gallery at the link. If you don’t have them already order everything they have. You won’t regret it.

That price is a pre-order deal. If you order now, during ACP’s PRE-SALE CAMPAIGN before the official release, you can get this FIRST ISSUE COLLECTOR’S ITEM for just $6.00 with FREE shipping! After March, there will be an additional $3.20 charge for shipping & handling.

Delivery is expected in four to six weeks. I’m telling you about this ahead of time so you can save a few bucks on shipping. My readers know I love to plug fun, independent comics, and I think Cavalcade #1 lives up to both of those things.

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Keeping Showtunes Alive On Curtain Call Wednesday

Wednesday afternoon The AIR brings you a brand-new episode of  Curtain Call!

You can listen at The AIR website, or on this embedded radio player…

At 3 PM on Curtain Call, Mel Larch Takes us into March with the show that begins like a lamb, but goes out like a lion. Mel begins with a great tune from the Van Gogh-inspired musical, Starry, and the first half of the show features ballads, lovely, gentle melodies and bluesy meditations.

The second half of Curtain Call this week shakes everything up with songs that swing, go Disco and echo prog-rock. The subject matter this week ranges from artisitc endeavors to presidential assassinations to King Tut, archangels, lunch and more. Check out this playlist:

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“A Starry Night” from Starry
“The Ballad of Booth” Composer Demo from Assassins
“Edward and I” from Sense and Sensibility
“Let’s Me Help You Now” from Flowers For Mrs.Harris
“Ain’t Got No Tears Left” From Leonard Bernstein’s New York
“Cost of Living” from Cases
“Her Name Is Aurora” from Kiss of the Spider Woman
“Disco Symphony” from The Boy In The Dress
“Demon’s Proof” from Tut Ankh Amon
“The Hardest Hill” from Coming From Inside The House
“Blow Gabriel, Blow” From Anything Goes
“Let’s Have Lunch” from Sunset Boulevard

Curtain Call can be heard on The AIR Wednesday at 3 PM, with replays Thursday at 8 AM and 9 PM, and Saturday at 8 PM. A six-hour marathon of classic episodes can be heard Sunday evening starting at 6 PM, and an all-night marathon of Curtain Call episodes can be heard Wednesday nights, beginning at Midnight.

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Tuesday on The AIR we once again deliver a brand-new episode of Radio Free Charleston.   If you want to hear this spectacular new episode  yourself, you can listen at The AIR website, or on this embedded radio player…

You can hear our brand-new Radio Free Charleston at 10 AM and 10 PM Tuesday.  This week we open with the title track from David Synn’s new album, Legacy,  and we also bring you new local music from Boldly Go, Unmanned, mediogres, Jim Lange and more. Plus we smack you in the ears with new stuff from Tautologic, Lene Lovich, Foo Fighters, Weezer and more. This tightly-packed three-hour aural assault also has some wild and obscure album tracks and stuff from the RFC Archives.

Check the links in the playlist to buy music from the artists on the show this week.  We have tons of exciting new and old music from West Virginia and around the world for you here.

Check out the playlist to see all the goodies we bring you this week…

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David Synn “Legacy”
Lene Lovich Band “Savages II”
Jim Lange “Fireflies”
Tautologic “Rocket Surgery”
TC&I “Scatter Me”
Rockwell’s Ghost “Heretic Pride”
Boldly Go “Way Down Below”
Unmanned “Wayward Girls”
Three Bodies “The Trax”
mediogres “Daymare”
The Sweet “Teenage Rampage”
Aretha Franklin “I Surrender, Dear”
Lady D “Gone Away Too Soon”
Foo Fighters “No Son Of Mine”
DEVO “Praying Hands”

hour two
All Torches Lit “Summit”
The Bounty “Bridge To Nowhere”
The Empty Hearts “The Best That I Can”
Wolfgang Parker “I’m Dead”
Andy Prieboy “Cannot Not”
Crystal Bright and the Silver Hands “Toy Hammer”
In The Company of Wolves “Forgot To Wait”
Feast of Steven “Mystery Hole”
Dukes of Stratosphear “My Love Explodes”
Farnsworth “Erased”
Seven MInutes Till Midnight “The One In Two”
Frenchy and the Punk “Strangers After Midnight”
Speedsuit “Falling Star”
Frank Zappa “Stinkfoot (Live)”

hour three
Redbone “Fate”
Rasta Rafiki “Perspective of Love”
The Special AKA “What I Like Most About You Is Your Girlfriend”
The Science Fair Explosion “Appetite For Apology”
No Pretty Pictures “100 Long, 100 Proof”
American MInor “Buffalo Creek”
The Defectors ‘Hesitation”
Weezer “La Brea Tar Pits”
Sugarloaf “Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You”
Underdog Blues Revue “Ecstasy”
Jack Griffith “Axis Will Turn”
Bobaflex “Show Me”
The Cranberries “Daffodil Lament”

You can hear this episode of Radio Free Charleston Tuesday at 10 AM and 10 PM on The AIR, with replays Thursday at 3 PM, Friday at 9 AM and 7 PM, Saturday at 11 AM and Midnight, Sunday at 11 AM and the next Monday at 8 PM, exclusively on The AIR.

I’m also going to  embed a low-fi, mono version of this show right in this post, right here so you can listen on demand.


The rest of our AIR Music Specialty programs are encores today.  Listen to them anyway. They’re all good!

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Monday Morning Art: More Chicago From Memory

This week, due to power outages while I was working on the art for today, I decided to use a piece that I’d done last weekend, and rejected. This was from the same batch of cityscapes that I knocked out while my fingers were cooperating. As I said las week, with the world on hold, I haven’t been able to travel, and I find myself, just like the last two weeks missing Chicago. Here we have another random cityscape, doogled from memory, of some of the buildings in the Windy City.

Like last week, this was done with pastel crayons on airbrush paper, and then It was scanned through a layer of plastic to keep me from schmutzing-up my scanner. Because of that, I did a little color correction to make it look more like the original piece.

If you want to see it bigger, just click on the image.

Meanwhile, Monday at 9 AM on The AIR, we bring you three episodes of Six Degrees of Separation, bringing you interviews with local musicans, conducted at The Empty Glass (a few years back). Then you can tune into a recent episode of  Prognosis at 3 PM.

Due to the lockdown in the UK, the Haversham Recording Institute programs will be in rerun mode for the next few weeks.  Luckily we have a pretty extensive library of high-quality repeats to share with you.

You can hear Prognosis on The AIR Monday at 3 PM, with replays Tuesday at 7 AM, Wednesday at 8 PM, Thursday at Noon, Saturday at 10 AM and Sunday at 2 PM.

You can listen to The AIR at the website, or on this embedded radio player…

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Sunday Evening Video: Jethro Tull Live In 1977

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of Jethro Tull’s breakthrough album, Aqualung, and as such, they are the cover feature of the latest issue of Prog Magazine. I got my copy direct from the UK, and I’ve been reading about the band, so I figured it’d be cool to run one of their concerts here in PopCult.

The show you see above was recorded at The Capitol Center, in November, 1977. This was NOT the Aqualung tour, but they do play several tracks from that album here. In fact, I happen to have the setlist handy, but I’m not sure if every song here made it into the video…

1. Wond’ring Aloud
2. Skating Away On The Thin Ice Of The New Day
3. Jack-In-The-Green
4. Thick As A Brick
5. Songs From The Wood
6. Instrumental/ Drum Solo
7. To Cry You A Song
8. A New Day Yesterday
9. Flute Solo/God Rest Ye Gentlemen/Bouree/A New Day Yesterday
10. Living In The Past /A New Day Yesterday (reprise)
12. Velvet Green
13. Hunting Girl
14. Too Old To Rock ‘n’ Roll: Too Young To Die
15.Minstrel In The Gallery
16. Cross-Eyed Mary
17. Aqualung
18. Martin Barre Guitar Solo/Wind Up
19. Back Door Angels / Guitar Improvisation /Wind Up (reprise)
20. Locomotive Breath/Land Of Hope And Glory/ Back Door Angels (reprise)

The RFC Flashback: MINI SHOW number 47

This week we go back to January, 2015 for an episode of The RFC MINI SHOW starring the not-local experimental music group, Platinum Burrito.

Plutonian Burrito is a duo consisting of Charles Pagano and Scott Bazar, and they brought their Outsider Music to The Empty Glass. This episode of The RFC MINI SHOW presents an excerpt of their avant-garde improvised soundtrack music.

With a background in FREE PLAYING thanks to the Woodstock, NY scene, Creative Music Studio, Charles Pagano (DRUMS/PERC) is a mostly self-taught drummer & composer. His own music is very film score-ish.

Scott Bazar played with The Negro Problem/Stew, Beck, Kevin Ayers, Larry Willis, Enrico Rava, James Emery (String Trio of NY), Gene Bertoncini, Russell Kassoff, Giacomo Gates, Cedric Lawson, and Bobby Keys. He attended Creative Music Studio NY & studied with (& did workshops and/or concerts with) Dave Holland, Leo Smith, Oliver Lake, Ed Blackwell, Karl Berger, Bob Moses, Don Cherry. Bazar has recently filling in for Jabo Starks (James Brown) with the Red Bar Band.

Together they produce free-form experimental improvised noise-jazz. It’s quite a trip, but is best experienced live.

The PopCulteer
February 26, 2021

Your PopCulteer is still a bit under the weather due to a Myasthenia Gravis flare-up, so for the second week in a row, we’re just going to bring you some short Pop Culture news items.

Hasbro Almost Has Toy News

We will have more toy industry news in the coming days, but Thursday, when Hasbro held their virtual investor’s conference, they talked way more about television projects than they did about new toys.

In 2019 Hasbro purchased EntertainmentOne, a massive world-wide entertainment conglomerate, and as a result, this subsidiary of Hasbro has their hands in everything from two upcoming feature-film musicals from Steven Speilberg to animated and live-action TV series based on Hasbro properties and a world-wide network of movie and television distribution deals.

In the coming year we can expect a new animated Transformers series on Nickelodeon, another animated Transformers show for younger kids on Netflix, a live-action GI Joe series for Amazon Prime that focuses on Lady Jaye, a CGI My Little Pony series for Netflix and if you dig deep enough, you find an animated series based on Micronauts toys, which doesn’t have a home yet.

It’s a little bizarre to learn that Hasbro controls not only GI Joe and Transformers, but also PJ Mask and Peppa Pig…and Deathrow Records and the merchandising rights for Wu Tang Clan and The Lumineers.

Hasbro previously announced a slew of projects like G.I. Joe: Snake Eyes, which is due in theaters in October after being delayed from last year; a Dungeons & Dragons feature film starring Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez and Rege-Jean Page, and an animated television series based on the board game Clue.

In addition, the toymaker revealed plans for unscripted projects based on Monopoly, Mouse Trap, Easy Bake, Operation, Nerf and Play-Doh. Yep, they’re making reality and game shows, too.

In toy news, they did announce that Mr. Potato Head will be dropping the “Mr.” and will be sold as male, female and child tubers. I’m certain that some far-right-wing news outlets will fly into a rage over this so that they can continue to ignore the fact that the last Republican President attempted to engineer a violent coup to overthrow Democracy.

They also announced that characters from Lord of the Rings and Warhammer 40K  will be turning up in Magic: The Gathering later this year.

The Big Show Changes Channels

Paul Wight, the large athlete formerly known as “The Big Show,” made a big jump this week, leaving WWE after more than twenty years to jump to AEW, the upstart rivals who offer serious competition for Vince McMahon’s wrestling behemoth.

This is actually a rare instance where the move will probably turn out for the best for all three parties.

The Big Show (who will no longer be able to use that name) was not happy with the new contract that WWE offered, which was reportedly a “Legends deal,” where he would be paid a stipend to make public appearances, but would be considered semi-retired from the ring.

Basically, WWE, which has a problem right now attracting younger viewers, didn’t have a place for him to work full-time. Big Show’s WWE-produced sitcom for Netflix, The Big Show Show, was not renewed for a second season (it was unwatchably awful) and even though Wight is in really good shape, they just couldn’t justify paying him what he felt he deserved.

Meanwhile, AEW swooped in and signed Wight to a contract that will have him acting as a commentator for a new weekly YouTube series, and working the occasional match in the ring. For AEW it’s a visibility-raising move, bringing in somebody that wrestling fans have been watching for more than two decades, but not forcing him to carry the wrestling end of their show.

For Wight, this keeps him in the public eye, and gets his very large foot in the door with Warnermedia, who broadcast Dynamite, AEW’s flaghsip show, on TNT, in case they want to develop a project for him that isn’t as awful as The Big Show Show.

Wight is a very likeable, gifted comic talent who has proven that he can hold his own in an acting setting, if he isn’t saddled with poor material. Wight gets instant street cred by working with the hipper, younger new wrestling company. Plus he can now use his real name, and build that as a brand, instead of just being a WWE trademarked character.

AEW gets the rub by having a popular legend on the staff who has great recognition among non-wrestling fans. I know they just added Sting to their roster late last year, but to non-wrestling fans, “Sting” is the guy who used to sing for The Police, not some guy who dresses like The Crow. Wight has a higher “Q” rating, and that can’t hurt.

WWE doesn’t have to figure out how to make a guy who’s pushing fifty seem fresh to a viewing audience that’s been steadily shrinking for twenty years. It’s a shame that they probably won’t put The Big Show in the WWE Hall of Fame any time soon, but the last thing they need right now is another wrestler past the age of forty chasing their major championships.

It’s a win-win-win.

Sir Paul Writes A Book

It has been announced that Paul McCartney, who has resisted offers to write an autobiography for decades, will be releasing a book on November 2 that will come pretty darned close to telling his life story.

The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present will present annotated lyrics to every key song McCartney has writen to date. The pre-order price is a hundred bucks, for 960 pages in two volumes, enclosed in a slipcover.

Let’s just quote the PR:

A work of unparalleled candor and splendorous beauty, The Lyrics celebrates the creative life and the musical genius of Paul McCartney through 154 of his most meaningful songs.

From his early Liverpool days, through the historic decade of The Beatles, to Wings and his long solo career, The Lyrics pairs the definitive texts of 154 Paul McCartney songs with first-person commentaries on his life and music. Spanning two alphabetically arranged volumes, these commentaries reveal how the songs came to be and the people who inspired them: his devoted parents, Mary and Jim; his songwriting partner, John Lennon; his “Golden Earth Girl,” Linda Eastman; his wife, Nancy McCartney; and even Queen Elizabeth, among many others.

Here are the origins of “Let It Be,” “Lovely Rita,” “Yesterday,” and “Mull of Kintyre,” as well as McCartney’s literary influences, including Shakespeare, Lewis Carroll, and Alan Durband, his high-school English teacher.

With images from McCartney’s personal archives―handwritten texts, paintings, and photographs, hundreds previously unseen―The Lyrics, spanning sixty-four years, becomes the definitive literary and visual record of one of the greatest songwriters of all time.

If you wish the pre-order this epic tome, check it out at Amazon, and set aside a few weeks to read it.

And that is this week’s PopCulteer. I hope that this MG flare-up subsides so I can bring more cool news, photos and reviews. I’ve got a teetering stack of cool stuff in my living room, but haven’t felt like jumping into it. We will have fresh content every day, as well as all our regular features.

By George! It’s The Beatles On The AIR!

One day before what would have been George Harrison’s 78th birthday, The AIR pays our respects with a brand-new episode of Beatles Blast, hosted by your humble blogger, premiering Wednesday at 2 PM. You can listen at The AIR Website, or on the nifty little player embedded right here…

This is the fourth of our solo Beatles spotlight shows, and for this one I decided to go with deep album cuts instead of smash hits, because this shows off the depth of Harrison’s post-Beatles career. We offer up at least one track from each of his solo albums (except for Wonderwall Music) and toss in a couple of surprises along the way.

Check out the playlist…

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George Harrison

“Under the Mersey Wall (excerpt)”
“Wah Wah”
“Try Some Buy Some”
“Hari’s On Tour Express”
“This Guitar (Can’t Keep From Crying)”
“Woman Don’t You Cry For Me”
“Soft-Hearted Hana”
“Save The World”
“Wake Up My Love”
“Dream Away (Theme from Time Bandits)”
“Fish On The Sand”
“Wreck of the Hesperus”
“P2 Vatican Blues (Last Saturday Night)”
“Any Road”
“Cheer Down”
“Going Down To Golder’s Green”
“It’s Johnny’s Birthday”

Beatles Blast can be heard every Wednesday at 2 PM, with replays Thursday at 10 PM, Friday at 1 PM, Saturday afternoon, and the following Tuesday at 9 AM.

At 3 PM on Curtain Call, Mel Larch we continue our Bealtemania with an encore of an episode devoted to excerpts from the very rare Beatlemania original cast album. This episode first ran three years ago, during The AIR’s “Beatles Week” event that was tied to the Rubber Soul marathon concert of (almost) every Beatles song.

Curtain Call can be heard on The AIR Wednesday at 3 PM, with replays Thursday at 8 AM and 9 PM, and Saturday at 8 PM. A six-hour marathon of classic episodes can be heard Sunday evening starting at 6 PM, and an all-night marathon of Curtain Call episodes can be heard Wednesday nights, beginning at Midnight.

Special note: PopCult may disapper from this location at The Charleston Gazette-Mail soon. Don’t miss out on our new posts at our NEW HOME. Bookmark the new site, and subscribe to our RSS feed. You can also follow PopCult and Rudy Panucci on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

A Sudden and Unexpected RFC Marathon On The AIR Tuesday

This wasn’t originally in our plans, but as regular readers of PopCult know, sometimes plans change.

We are running a 24-hour Marathon of Radio Free Charleston V5 on our sister internet radio station The AIR from 9 AM Tuesday to 11 AM Wednesday.

There are two good reasons for this. First, our server is filling up again, and after we play these shows, they are going to have to go into storage for a while.

Second, when I began to work on a new RFC for this week, I realized that I was in the middle of Myasthenia Gravis flare-up, and between double-vision and wonky fingers, it was going to be a pain in the ass to put a three-hour show together (not to mention an extra hour of The Swing Shift).

I do plan to return with a new show next week.

Instead of slogging away and craking out a show where I’d seem grumpy and distracted, I plugged in a marathon so I could take a week off, and also give these older episodes from the middle of last year one last spin on our virtual turntables before they go into hiding.

In the unlikely event that you aren’t familiar with Radio Free Charleston Volume Five, this is a weekly (ish) three-hour show that blends tons of local music in with my fresh take on free-form radio. You will hear local music from my 30-plus year archive, and you’ll also get to hear a wild assortment of whatever the hell I feel like playing, whether it’s indie-rock, progressive, punk, jazz, classic rock, deep cuts, weird novelty tunes, ska, New Wave or whatever.

My plan is to take it easy for a couple of days. I hope to have a special new episode of Beatles Blast ready for Wednesday, and I may slap on an eyepatch so I can catch up and review some of the books and comics that I have piling up. I’ll also be sorting out some toy news this week. That’s my idea of taking it easy. There will still be fresh content here in the blog. It just might seem a little half-assed.

You can listen

listen at The AIR website, or on this embedded radio player…

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