Former Representative Barney Frank is not known for saying polite things to make people feel better. He will not "pretend everything in wonderful" when it is not. He will cause a scene when Fire Island ferry employees refuse his senior discount. He will not indulge an inquiry into his emotional state after getting passed over for John Kerry's open Senate seat, instead retorting, "If I wanted to talk about feelings, I would have called Oprah."
Bob Dylan's new album of outtakes, "Tell Tale Signs," has some great countrified blues numbers for coping with the coming depression. And in a seeming nod to the tough times, the folksinger streamed the album for free on NPR's website for a week ("Bob Dylan Understand The Weak Economy," said the Times). And yet when the compilation finally dropped earlier this month, aficionados had to pay $130 to get all 39 tracks. That you could buy a smaller, poor man's version for the usual $20 or so was no consolation to hard-core online fans, some of whom vowed to aid and abet piracy in an act of revenge. They shouldn't get too flustered at their hero, judging by Gustavo Turner's review in the Boston Phoenix. You can safely blame Dylan's "mafia" entourage.
Here is Boston Phoenix media critic Adam Reilly's backpedaling column on The Atlantic: The magazine is being ruined by its relocation from Boston to Washington, D.C.! "The Atlantic seems drier, wonkier, more focused on grabbing readers (and advertisers) by following the stories of the day, and less interested in examining subjects no one else is talking about." No! Grabbing readers? Horror! And now it is filled with graphs and buzzwords!
Revolving doors! The Boston Phoenix has named a new editor. The Phoenix notes that Lance Gould, a veteran New York journalist, will begin his tenure in Boston in late April. The former editor at the Daily News and Spy magazine (Unfunny Years edition), comes from a stint at Radar and replaces Bill Jensen, "who left the Phoenix to become director of online operations for Village Voice Media" (where he spends his time conspiring against editors and writing crazy-ass essays.) But times, oh they have changed for the alt weeklies.