// Category Archive for: Today In Pop Culture

Today In Pop Culture: The First Rock & Roll Concert

Published on March 20th, 2016 in: HIstory, Music, Retrovirus, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


They call Cleveland, Ohio, “The Mistake by the Lake.” It’s an unfortunate nickname, stemming from their wretched winters, a river that has a tendency to catch fire, and a seemingly permanent place on any Most Miserable Places to Live in America list. But for as much guff as Cleveland takes, it is a rock and roll town, perhaps the rock and roll town. There’s more than one reason the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is in Cleveland, and today we celebrate one of them: the very first rock concert, held in 1952.


Today In Pop Culture: Caligula Takes Power And Rome Goes To Hell

Published on March 18th, 2016 in: Movies, Retrovirus, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


We made it through the Ides of March, which saw the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC. But before Julius Caesar began his dictatorship, there was another leader of the Roman Empire who was as infamous as Caesar was famous. His full name was Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus. That’s a mouthful, so he was most often referred to by his nickname, Caligula. That very word still brings up images of debauchery and madness today. He came to power on this day in 37 BC.


Today In Pop Culture: St. Patrick Was A Schmuck; Here’s Some Irish Music

Published on March 17th, 2016 in: Kiss Me I'm Irish, Music, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


‘Tis the day of Saint Patrick, that old bastard, and as much as I would love to talk about how he single-handedly attempted to destroy Druidism and the rich heritage of Ireland’s pagan folk like the Great White Missionary he was, this is probably not the place for that.


Today In Pop Culture: Wings Fills The Post-Beatles Void

Published on March 16th, 2016 in: Music, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin

Wings Over America

You can’t do a daily column about pop culture history without running into the Beatles. They are a constant. On this day, George Harrison blew his nose on Paris. On this day, Ringo Starr learned a new time signature. The entertainment calendar is dotted with such Beatles minutiae and who cares? Folks, it’s time for a stark confession.

I have always been a Paul McCartney fan, and I would rather listen to Wings than the Beatles.


Today In Pop Culture: I Only Have Ides For You

Published on March 15th, 2016 in: Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


Odds are high that somebody will come up to you today at work and say, “Beware the Ides of March.” Yeah, that’s creepy, but if you wheel right around and ask, “What’s an Ide, Todd, and why are you in my cubicle?” they probably won’t have an answer for either question.


Today In Pop Culture: Como Goes Gold, But What Does That Mean?

Published on March 14th, 2016 in: Media, Music, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


“Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket/Never let it fade away…”

Scientifically and astronomically, this is a terrible idea. Not only will you get burned, but that thing could be radioactive. While these instructions are no way to treat a meteorite, they are enough to get you a gold record. “Catch A Falling Star” by Perry Como was the first single ever to be awarded the RIAA status of gold record, and it happened on this date in 1958.


Today In Pop Culture: Right On, Frankenstein!

Published on March 11th, 2016 in: Books, Horror, Movies, Science Fiction, Today In Pop Culture |

By Tim Murr


Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was born to a philosopher father and a feminist author mother. She lost her mother just a month after her birth. Her father brought her up with a more intense education than most women of that time period. At 17, she began her relationship with her future husband, poet/philosopher/radical Percy Shelley. In 1818, came the fateful holiday near Geneva, Switzerland where Mary, her sister, and Percy stayed with Lord Byron. They amused themselves with German ghost stories and then challenged one another to write their own ghost stories.


Today In Pop Culture: The Incredible Hulk Crushes It On TV

Published on March 10th, 2016 in: Comics, Movies, Today In Pop Culture, TV |

By Less Lee Moore


Although actor Mark Ruffalo is the one many now associate with The Incredible Hulk, thanks to the Avengers series of movies directed by JJ Abrams, it’s not the first time the green rage monster has appeared onscreen.

Eric Bana portrayed Dr. Bruce Banner and The Incredible Hulk in Ang Lee’s much-derided 2003 Hulk movie (remember the Hulked-out poodles?). When that film didn’t thrill audiences like they hoped, Marvel tried again, this time in 2008 with Edward Norton as the titular character and Louis Leterrier (The Transporter) behind the camera. Although both films doubled their budget in ticket sales, and received about the same amount of critical acclaim, the latter film was much more popular with audiences, at least according to Rotten Tomatoes.


Today In Pop Culture: Barbie Movies Are A Thing, But Why?

Published on March 9th, 2016 in: Today In Pop Culture, Toys and Collectibles |

By Jeffery X Martin


The Barbie doll was introduced on this date, back in 1959. That chick is 57 years old and, suffice it to say, she looks great. She looks even better now that Mattel has decided to make Barbies in different skin tones and body types. I can’t be the only one to see those wasp-waisted blonde Barbies and think, “Damn. Eat a toy sandwich or something.”


Today In Pop Culture: The Fillmore East Opens

Published on March 7th, 2016 in: Music, Retrovirus, Today In Pop Culture |

By Jeffery X Martin


Bill Graham was a rock and roll man, a promoter with a feel for the underground. He knew which bands were going to be hot and how to get their music out to their fans. He opened the famous nightclub, the Fillmore, in San Francisco. That venue, along with Graham’s promotion skills, were instrumental in the success of the Grateful Dead.