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BACKSTAGE WITH MARIAN
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Story outtakes, celebrity confessions and the latest pop culture news in the Bay Area

About Me
I'm a pop music writer for the San Jose Mercury News. I cover pop, hip hop, punk, rock, dance, and ethnic - well, basically everything you can dance to.

My Articles

MY PICKS
CD: Common:"Be"
Music Video Eminem: featuring Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
Trailer: The Year of the Yao
TV: Harvey Birdman
Videogame: Fable

MERCURY REVIEWS
Art: The New Art of India
Bar: Boswell's
Book: Jill Scott
Club: Forum
DVD: Kinsey
Movie: Cinderella Man
Music: Sleater-Kinney
Restaurant: The Melting Pot
Theater:The Mambo Kings

SICK SITE
Earth and Sun Kiss

MY PLAYLIST

1. R. Kelly: "Trapped In The Closet"

2. Weezer: "Hold Me"

3. Bright Eyes: "First Day Of My Life"

4. Ringside: "Miss You" and "Criminal"

ENTERTAINMENT RESOURCES
  • Billboard Charts
  • Encyclopedia
  • iticket.com
  • Moviefone
  • Music Dictionary
  • MTV
  • Pollstar
  • tickets.com
  • Urban Dictionary
  • ticketmaster.com
  • VH1

  • BLOGROLL
  • Adisa Banjoko : San Jose's Bishop of Hip hop
  • Angry Asian Man: Asian American media watchdog
  • Berkeley Blogs
  • Black Electorate : Inside Cultural, Economic and Political industries
  • BLT's Parry
  • Crayone: the trials and tribulations of a graffiti artist
  • Dan Gillmor : Grassroots Journalism
  • Dat Phan : Last Comic Standing season 1 winner
  • East Bay Livin' : Ellen Lee's EB hunt
  • Davey D: Hip Hop Daily News
  • Fortt: black american gen x journalist musician multicultural christian technophile
  • Jeff Chang: fellow Asian hip hop writer
  • Joe Grimm : Ask the Recruiter
  • In Passing : Random Street Conversations
  • Pacific Standard: Bay Area hip-hop
  • Pop And Politics
  • Pop Licks : O-Dub, a cultural critic
  • Scape: San Jose graffiti artist
  • SiliconBeat: News about tech money and innovation
  • Wednesday, November 24, 2004

    Christmas with the Kranks

    Yesterday I checked out the movie "Christmas with the Kranks." With Tim Allen, Jamie Lee Curtis and Dan Aykroyd, it has an A-list of stars, but I wish they saved on the star portion to work on the script.

    It's a charming enough premise - a couple which skips out on Christmas for a cruise because their only child decides to stay in Peru for the Peace Corps rather than come home. But with Tim Allen at the helm, the movie unravels like "Home Improvement," except instead of just "true meaning of Christmas." (link to trailer)

    This movie may be appropriate for parents to watch though, as a way to remind them not to skimp out on their kids this holiday season.

    Also, "Alexander" is out tonight - I haven't watched it yet, but the Merc's movie reviewer, Bruce Newman, gave it only one star. (link to trailer)

    So tonight, catch some live music instead, ch-check it out:

    WHAT: Seductive ... Pre-Thanksgiving Celebration
    WHERE: Back Bar, 418 S. Market Street, San Jose
    WHEN: 9 p.m. -2 a.m. tonight 11/24
    TIX: $10; basswayrecords@aol.com
    WHY: Hip-hop, R&B, reggae and old school Hip Hop, R&B, Reggae, & Old School; before 11 p.m. drinks are 2 for 1 and ladies are free (check this link for a free pass)

    WHAT: Green Day, New Found Glory
    WHERE: Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, 99 Grove St., San Francisco
    WHEN: 7 p.m. tonight, 11/24
    TIX: Sold out - but if you're really into them, check Craigslist (cover was originally $29.50 but they're going for around $50)
    WHY: Pop-punk at its finest

    WHAT: CALI COMM 2004 with DEL tha funkee homosapien, Aceyalone, Abstract Rude, Mikah 9
    WHERE: The Fillmore, 1805 Geary Blvd., San Francisco
    WHEN: 8 p.m. tonight 11/24
    TIX: $22.50; (408) 998-8497, Ticketmaster
    WHY: Oakland native Del Tha Funky Homosapien (aka Teren Delvon Jones) is rapper Ice Cube's cousin, but his music has a more jazzy, funky and funny vibe.

    WHAT: DJ Mark Farina
    WHERE: Ruby Skye, 420 Mason Street, San Francisco
    WHEN: 9 p.m.- 4 a.m. tonight 11/24
    TIX: No cover but bring a non-perishable food or toy for Toys for Tots. They will also be giving out free samples from ESSN Sparkling Fruit Juices
    WHY: He helped build San Francisco's house music scene.

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    Photo of Marian Liu by Stephanie Grace Lim, Mercury News
    You can e-mail me at mliu@mercurynews.com.