PopCult Rudy Panucci on Pop Culture

STUFF TO DO: July 14-17

STD 03As always, there is a ton of STUFF TO DO  here in Charleston. There is indeed so much stuff that we had trouble fitting it all into our handy little audio guide, which you can hear on The AIR, or you can listen to right on this nifty little link thingy HERE. Your PopCulteer and Mel Larch tell you all about all kinds of stuff, and we sample the music of Hybrid Soul Project, Miniature Giant and J Marinelli, all of whom are playing in Charleston this weekend.

We don’t have graphics for everything we talk about in the show this week, so you really want to give it a listen to find out about several Pokemon Go events and music and theatrical shows from Beckley to Huntington to Ripley.

Here in town, the big show is on Sunday, as J Marinelli comes to Kin Ship Goods. There’s also a killer show at The Empty Glass tonight by Matthew Francis Anderson, which will be broadcast live on The AIR. You’ll find out more about these and other shows in the graphics below. Remember, this is just a sample. There’s always STUFFTO DO!





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NEW Shows All Day on The AIR!

WEDNESDAY ON THE AIRThe bold wave of exciting new programs continues with today’s line-up on The AIR. Wednesdays are when we showcase our talk shows, and you can tune in to hear our Always Interesting Radio shows beginning at noon at The AIR website, or on this swell little embedded radio machine…

Every Wednesday we will bring you some of the most entertaining and informative talk radio that you’ll find anywhere on the planet. Our mornings and afternoons will still be filled with music, but the mid-day period and evenings feature a line up of stimulating and enlightening talk, plus a healthy dose of goofy fun stuff, too.

Check out today’s line-up below the jump.

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RFCI BowieIt’s another exciting Tuesday on The AIR.  Today we have brand new episodes of Radio Free Charleston, Radio Coolsville, and Radio Free Charleston International, which blasts forth with a two-hour tribute to David Bowie.  You can listen to The AIR at their website or on this totally wicked little embedded radio player…

Radio Free Charleston debuts at 10 AM with a replay at 10 PM and brings you new music this week from Jonathan Mason, Jeff Ellis, and Qiet.  Jonathan Mason’s new CD is available today! Check out the playlist below for links to the artists who have music for sale.


Jonathan Mason  “We Can’t Fix This”

Jeff Ellis and 40 Days  “Nightshift”
Todd Burge  “The Longer”
Radarhill and Nick Weckman  “Petitions”
Mother Nang  “Land of the Free”

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Monday Morning Art: Showtime

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This week’s art is a glimpse at a new style of Impressionism that I’ve been pursuing in private for roughly the last three years. This one is a depiction of two burlesque dancers stepping through the curtains to take the stage. It’s a bit of a new approach for me that combines my rusty cartooning skills with an attempt at fine art, using a striking color pallette and some new (to me) techniques.

You’ll probably be seeing more pieces like this in Monday Morning Art in the future. Click to enlarge.

Sunday Evening Video: Befuddlement

fdLast week TNA Wrestling (moving soon to Thursday nights at 8 PM on the POP! Network) presented what they hailed as an innovative new type of wrestling match, presented in a way that wrestling had never before been presented. It was called “The Final Deletion” and you can see the entire match, along with its set-up, above.

Justifying the fact that “The Final Deletion” may be one of the most moronically cheesy titles for anything ever, this wrestling match is a masterpiece of fine, grade-A schlock. Bringing together elements of Ed Wood movies, really bad 1970s Kung Fu and Sci-Fi flicks, backyard wrestling and country music videos, “The Final Deletion” is wrestling’s answer to Monty Python’s “Confuse A Cat” sketch, with it’s constant barrage of head-scratch-inducing non-sequitors.

It will leave you wondering what the hell you just watched. The acting is so bad that it’s instantly endearing. Matt Hardy, who looks like he’s trying out for a community theater production of “Sweeny Todd” and attempts to speak with a Spanish nobleman’s accent that doesn’t quite make it through his thick North Carolinian brogue, seems to be having fun, so you don’t feel bad laughing out loud at his performance. Jeff Hardy, his brother, and the apparent intended object of “deletion” demonstrates a disinterest in acting that is equally amusing.  Both brothers deliver in the ring, until the match deteriorates into a garbage-gimmick free-for-all. There is something so wonderfully crazed about this that you can’t figure out if it’s the worst thing you’ve ever seen, or the best.

10 years of RFC Flashback: Episode Two

RFC 002 "RVD Shirt" from Rudy Panucci on Vimeo.

Rudy RFC 002Our second episode, from August 2006, presented music from Stephen Beckner and The Sleeping Dons. The Sleeping Dons were Sean Richardson, Jay Lukens and Deron Sodaro. We also had animation from Frank Panucci and a special sneak preview of the then-upcoming Batman movie, which eventually got this episode banned from YouTube. That’s a story we’re saving for the RFC book.

“RVD Shirt” began the Radio Free Charleston tradition of naming the show after the shirt I was wearing. Over 200 shows in, this once-nifty idea is beginning to take up a lot of room in my house. With this episode, we established our basic format, but we still had a ways to go to find our voice. Host segments were shot at the late, lamented LiveMix Studio by Brian Young.

Not Gonna Call Ghostbusters

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I don’t plan to see the new Ghostbusters movie when it’s released next week. I have many reasons, which I will lay out later in this post, and I realize that I’m late to the party when it comes to commenting on this film on the internet, but there has been a very disturbing twist to the marketing of this movie that needs to be addressed.

The producers, director and Sony Pictures, the studio financing the film, have mounted a bit of an attack campaign, portraying anyone who doesn’t absolutely love this movie as a mouth-breathing, sexist and misogynistic fanboy who has no life, lives in their mother’s basement and only hates the movie because the new team of Ghostbusters are all female.

This is cynical and reeks of desperation. It’s like they know that they have a deficient product, so their only hope is to somehow turn liking the movie into some kind of political cause and then they can trick Social Justice Warriors into shouting down their critics. The viciousness of the attacks has been pretty severe coming from an industry that has spent more than the last decade pandering to mouth-breathing, sexist, misogynistic fanboys.

ghostbusters_ver6_xlgSo for the record, I breathe quite well. I am a happily-married adult who loves and accepts people of all types and while I do love what some folks call “geek culture” (I personally hate the term), I have a pretty well-rounded and full life. I own my own home and I think the idea of an all-female team of Ghostbusters is intriguing, if done right.

It’s that last part, “if done right,” that makes me not want to see this new movie.

Let me explain first, I am a student of comedy. I have been for my entire life. Way back when I was a toddler, before I got into comic books, animation or music, I rabidly devoured comedy of all types. I loved the classic comedy of The Marx Brothers and Jack Benny. I listened carefully to every stand-up comedian on the Ed Sullivan show, from aging Borscht Belt types to then-young Jackie Masons and George Carlins. I never missed the best of the golden age of televison variety shows like The Dean Martin Show, The Carol Burnett Show or Flip Wilson. Before I entered first grade I was well-versed in the political satire of The Smothers Brothers.

As I got older, I was in the front lines supporting Monty Python, National Lampoon, Saturday Night Live, SCTV and anything comedically cutting edge. When Ghostbusters was announced in late 1983, I was geared up for it as a big fan of Murray, Ackroyd and Ramis from their prior work. I really wanted to see their take on the “comedy team vs. ghost” premise that had previously been done by The Three Stooges, Hope and Crosby and Martin and Lewis.

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STUFF TO July 7-10 (Now With Audio!)

STD 02We have a new twist on STUFF TO DO this week as we add an audio component to this weekly feature in PopCult. You can click on this neat little link/player HERE to llisten to this week’s half-hour STUFF TO DO radio show/podcast, hosted by yours truly and Mrs. PopCulteer, Mel Larch. You can also hear STUFF TO DO several times a week on The AIR.

In this week’s show you’ll hear about the big East End Block Party Flood Benefit that happens tonight on Charleston’s Historic East End. In addition to a killer line-up of music in the street, there will be a silent auction of art, autographed items and custom musical instruments at The Empty Glass, and a second stage of music at Little India with music from Mike Pushkin, Stratus and more. That’s in addition to the main stage with music by Creek Don’t Rise, 600 Lbs of Sin, Pete Kosky, Spencer Elliott and many more. It’s going to be a killer even with stuff happening all over the place and the proceeds going for a good cause.

One event that slipped under our radar is a flood benefit to be held Saturday at the Elkview Dairy Queen, with music by Bad Blood, Tommy’s Triple Threat and other great bands. See the graphic below.

Untitled-e1465307775117Another event that will benefit the flood victims is a book signing in Huntington on Friday. Michele Zirkle Marcum has written an account of a time when there was a demon in her house. Evil entities also attached to her. The supernatural experiences profoundly changed her life and she felt compelled to share her story. Marcum wrote a book about the paranormal occurrences, and after four years in the making, Rain No Evil will be released this Friday, July 8, both at Empire Books  and News (with a book signing at 5 PM) in Huntington, WV, and online. 100% of the proceeds from sales that day, both in-store and online, will be donated to Mountain Mission to assist those affected by the flooding that devastated so many WV counties. Empire Books is donating their usual share of the profit as well. For the remainder of July 10% of Rain No Evil sales will be donated.You can hear Michelle talk about her book HERE.

As usual, we also present some graphics to help you find your way to the cool STUFF TO DO this weekend, but there’s way more than this going on, like the Sherlock Holmes play at The Alban. Listen the the podcast at the above link for more info…



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It’s A Bold New Wednesday On The AIR!

WEDNESDAY ON THE AIRThe revolution continues with the revamped programming line-up on The AIR. Wednesdays are when we showcase our talk shows, and you can tune in to hear our Always Interesting Radio shows beginning at noon at The AIR website, or on this swell little embedded radio machine…

We’re still building the new station, but things are coming together well.Wednesday we plan to bring you some of the most entertaining and informative talk radio that you’ll find anywhere. Our mornings and afternoons will still be filled with music, but the mid-day period and evenings feature a line up of stimulating and enlightening talk, plus a healthy dose of goofy fun stuff, too. Plus we debut our first news program, even if it is just local-oriented infotainment.

Check out today’s line-up…

10447091_1130056640343111_6109515187865479288_nAt Noon, it’s The Lynn Browder Show about Autism. In 2015 Lynn Browder began producing a show for Voices of Appalachia chronicling her son’s diagnosis with autism and the adjustments that she’s made in her life. In a few weeks Lynn will resume production of her program, bringing us up to date with Owen’s progress and sharing their personal journey. Until then, The AIR will re-present the original, striking and often emotional installments of Lynn Browder’s Autism discussion program. Lynn is one of the people behind the scenes who make The AIR possible, and it’s great to have her back in front of the microphone. Lynn’s show will replay on Friday morning and Sunday afternoon.

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Radio Free Charleston is AIRborne Today!

7 5 16 graphicRadio Free Charleston returns in a big way on The AIR. Today at 10 AM and 10 PM, it’s a brand-new Radio Free Charleston, bringing you incredible local music. At 11 PM Radio Free Charleston International debuts on its NEW NIGHT AND TIME, with a show packed with the best music in the world!

You can tune in to The AIR, or listen right on this tasty little embedded radio player…

On Radio Free Charleston you’ll hear just-released music from local acts Jeff Ellis and 40 Days, Radarhill, HARRAH, Larry Groce and more. The RFC radio show is now a tightly-packed one-hour show, which will be followed in the morning by a replay of the previous week’s episode. This week our second hour will feature the RFC Interview with Mark Wolfe that debuted last Friday.

The playlist for RFCv4 015:

Superfetch   “Popcorn Time (Live)”

Jeff Ellis and 40 Days “South Charleston City Beat Blues”
Jonathan Mason  “Ohio Is Killing Me”
Hybrid Soul Project  “Hate On Me”
Radarhill & Nick Weckman  “Spider Respects Nothing”

HARRAH  “Pay The Piper”
Farnsworth  “Everything Must Go”
Under Surveillance  “99 Reasons”
Todd Burge  “Jesus Night Light (Live)”

Michael Cerveris  “Tenth Grade”
Larry Groce  “When The Mist Clears Away”
The Company Stores  “Dear Universe”

Mark Wolfe  “A Kinda Blues”

All day long there’s great programming on The AIR. At 3 PM you can listen to DJ Betty Rock’s Radio Coolsville.This is a great show, origininating out of WMUL in Huntington, and any show that opens with Elvis Costello’s “Radio, Radio” is destined for greatness.

You can also tune in for indie music and sneak peeks of our other new programming. Then, at 11 PM, it’s a brand-new two-hour Radio Free Charleston International, which is also loaded with tons of new music. Check out the playlist:

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Steve Vai (featuring Mohini Dey) “Bop!”

Ultravox  “Some of Them”
Jerry Lee Lewis  “Lewis Boogie”
The Incorruptibles  “Lowdown and Dirty”
Laura Mvula  “Show Me Love”

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