PopCult Rudy Panucci on Pop Culture

To Bury The King, Not To Praise Him

The PopCulteer
July 10, 2009

The people all turned you away…

With this being the Pop Culture blog here at The Gazz.com, I’d be remiss in not commenting on the year’s biggest pop culture event, the spectacle surrounding the death of Michael Jackson. I think I can bring a unique perspective to this because I was not a fan. I did not idolize him, nor do I consider him a great, innovative musician or humanitarian. He was a human being and an artist. His fans and family have my sympathy, empathy and condoloences, but I cannot share in the spectacle.

He was not MY “King Of Pop.” I resented the hype surrounding him, and I didn’t like the way he swooped in and bought the publishing catalog of The Beatles, then turned around and started pimping the songs for use in commercials. I feel he was over-rated in many ways, but also underestimated in some areas. Ultimately, he led a sad and tragic life, a tragedy which is compounded by the amount of joy he brought to others. A joy which seemed to escape him in his own life.

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Radio Free Charleston celebrates three years of terrorizing the internet with local music, film and animation with our 75th episode! “Unknown Hinson Shirt,” our third-anniversary Rock And Roll Extravaganza, is online now!

This landmark edition of RFC features music by The Pistol Whippers and Unknown Hinson, both legends of honky-tonk psycho-billy stage. We also have a snippet of Princeton’s Option 22 over the end credits.

With this being our third anniversary, we took it upon ourselves to corner a few really cool people with our camera to get them to say nice things about us. Among those who weren’t quick enough to escape are Ann Magnuson, Necrobutcher (featured in the OSCAR-nominated movie “The Wrestler”), wrestling legend Gypsy Joe and GWAR’s front-man, Oderous Urungus.

Many thanks to the kindness extended by these fine folks.

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Today’s art is a digitally-assaulted photograph I took in Brawley Walkway during FestivAll. There’s lots more cool stuff I can do to this one, so it’s numbered as the first in a series. Click it to enlarge the image.

Later today, look for Episode 75 of Radio Free Charleston. This is our big third anniversary show, with music from The Pistol Whippers, Uknown Hinson, and a snippet of Option 22. Plus we have well-wishes from several big-name cult personalities!

The Drive To 75: “Lucha Mask Shirt”


Today we flash back to January 2008. Our first “Show Without Words” presented instrumental music from Raymond Wallace, Josh Buskirk and Duo Divertido, plus a non-verbal visit from then-president, George W. Bush, and yet another installment in Frank’s animated existential journey.

Production notes are here. Tomorrow we’re taking the day off to finish RFC 75, our third anniversary show.

A Cavalcade Of Images From FestivAll And More!

The PopCulteer
July 3, 2009

Photopalooza!

This week, in honor of the founding of this country, and in recognition of the fact that I put off writing the PopCulteer this week until the last minute, we’re going ALL PHOTOGRAPHIC! We’re going to present images from FestivAll, plus my side trip to Wheeling for The Marx Toy Collectors Convention last Friday.

Not only does this mean that you get the pure unadulterated eye candy of the last two weeks of mighty wonderment here in Charleston, but you also get to see the nine photos that the Gazette servers wouldn’t let me upload last week. To the right, you see some of Heidi Richardson Evans’ terrific artwork, which you can find at Visions Day Spa. I took that photo during ArtWalk, last week, moments before finding out that Michael Jackson died.

After the jump, with as little typing from me as possible, you’ll find even more images of the pure cool fun that was FestivAll….plus toys. I’ve also included photos of my day trip to Wheeling in search of Johnny West.

And you’ll find today’s classic episode of Radio Free Charleston.

And a cool comic of the week.

Plus a visual joke that some may consider to be in very poor taste.

But it’s still funny.

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The Drive To 75: “West Virginia Shirt”


Today’s classic RFC entry in our march to Monday’s 75th episode is “West Virginia Shirt,” our Christmas show from 2007. We have music from 69 Fingers and Mountain Laurel Ensemble. You also get treated to the Holiday episode of The Android Family and an animated Christmas tree courtesy of Brian Young and Yours Truly. You can read the original production notes, here. Tomorrow’s Drive To 75 classic RFC will be part of The PopCulteer, our regular Friday blogular polyglot, which will be loaded with photos this week.

The Drive To 75: “GI Joe Shirt”


From November 2007, comes “GI Joe Shirt,” an episode of Radio Free Charleston with music from Raymond Wallace and Doctor Senator, plus RFC’s Official Barista Chelsea Cook introduces our animation, which is “Perky Dang,” the first of Frank Panucci’s Existential Journey cartoons.

Production notes can be found here. Check back tomorrow for another classic episode of the show. Next Monday, you can warm your cockels by the glow of our third anniversary show, episode 75. After that, we’ll probably just post one or two classic shows a week. We posted thirty in June, for crap’s sake!