Pearl Jam Outlasts Them All

In August 2017 Spin digitized and posted an oral history of Pearl Jam from August 2001. They did that because it’s really good–the Pearl Jam guys are nothing if not honest, and they openly share painful and embarrassing memories in a way that seems alien now. In many ways the band came together from the ashes of Mother Love Bone after lead singer Andy Wood’s overdose death. That was a tough spot for San Diego surfer Eddie Vedder to step into, and when he became the face of the band (and one of the biggest stars on the planet) it led a difficult transformation within the band. Pearl Jam famously struggled with pop culture stardom and there are choice anecdotes from aging superstars like Pete Townshend and Bono about the advice they provided. And, of course, there was the “rivalry” with Nirvana and the subsequent cataclysmic suicide of Kurt Cobain. Lots of meat on this bone. Two thumbs up!

Past Ten

Spin.com, 8.1.17

 

Williamsburg’s Kokie’s Coke Bar

Vice provides a typical Vice story about a Puerto Rican dive bar called Kokie’s that sold coke out of a closet. Want to read crazy coke stories from the turn of the millennium? This is the post for you. Of course it all went to hell eventually but they had a surprisingly long run selling shitty cocaine to strung-out proto-hipsters.

Please Snort Me

Vice.com, 6.1.08

Michael Jordan Takes A Swing At Baseball

When the astonishing news broke that Michael Jordan was quitting basketball at 31 to play baseball, few people gave him a chance to make the big leagues. They were proven right when he quit during the work stoppage after hitting .202 with little power in 1994, but plenty of baseball people think he would have made it if he had stuck with the game. He had natural ability, being named player of the year in North Carolina at age 12, but baseball is not forgiving to 13-year absences, and he needed more time. No one would ever outwork Michael Jordan. Thus, it’s a bit of a what-if that we’ll never know the answer to because Jordan got the basketball itch again and went back to dominate the NBA for years. Complex takes a look back at Air Jordan’s year riding the bus in the bush leagues.

The Oral History of Michael Jordan’s Minor League Baseball Career

Complex.com, 3.2.17

New York’s Photographer, Bill Cunningham

Bill Cunningham’s 38-year career with the New York Times will stand as one of the most unique and influential in photojournalism. Informally called the NYT‘s “artist in residence,” Cunningham quite literally told stories with images. Famed for catching the heart of both high fashion and the common man, he was a tireless worker and his bike and him were a cherished part of the city. The Times collected some insightful anecdotes from coworkers of what it was like to work with Cunningham, who comes across as a control freak who nevertheless enjoyed collaboration.

Working With Bill Cunningham

NYTimes.com, 7.2.16