Arts Bites: Nov. 18, 2009

Elvis gains posthumous income via hair sales

Keeping the cult of dead celebrities alive, an anonymous buyer purchased a single strand of Elvis Presley’s hair for over $2,000 this week.

Even more disturbingly, a chunk of the King’s apparently precious locks went for $15,000 last month.

Should you wish to obtain your own piece of Elvis’ mane, his former barber has been selling off strands in a Memphis souvenir shop since 1977. Because that’s not creepy at all.

-Sarah Murphy

Pooh troubles

Looks like there’s a little trouble in the land of milk and honey. After almost 20 years, the estate of Stephen Slesinger – the man who acquired rights to the lovable Winnie-the-Pooh characteries and stories by A.A. Milne over 80 years ago – is still suing Disney for infringing on his rights.

The estate’s lawyers suggest Slesinger is rightfully owed millions in royalties. The case suggests Disney coupled Mickey Mouse franchise profits with that of Winnie-the-Pooh projects to hide its true revenues.

While a Los Angeles judge dismissed the case in 2004, lawyers raised it again last week. Talk about retroactive, considering Disney hasn’t made a decent Winnie-the-Pooh release for 20 years.

-Rebecca Vasluianu

Bob Dylan’s Yuletide release

Of the most unexpected things the king of grungy folk and rock-and-roll, Bob Dylan, could have done at this point in his life, releasing a Christmas album is probably among the strangest.

Garnering a variety of somewhat positive reviews from sources like pitchfork.com and the Rolling Stone, Christmas in the Heart is a 15-track full-length mix of traditional songs like “O’ Come All Ye Faithful” and new arrangements like “Christmas Island”, fearing a variety of artists like American songwriter Ray Evans.

What’s more, all of the profit from U.S. sales will go to the charity Feeding America.
Needless to say, hearing Dylan’s raspy vocals mixed with Nat King Cole staple “The Christmas Song” should be an interesting treat.

-Rebecca Vasluianu

Super Bowl goes geriatric for sixth year in a row

It’s been revealed that The Who will be playing at this year’s Super Bowl Halftime Show, following on the heels of performers like Bruce Springsteen, the Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney and Tom Petty.

Perhaps it’s time the organizers find a headliner who doesn’t run the risk of keeling over and dying from old age in the middle of a sporting event.

And let’s try to ignore the irony that will ensue when Roger Daltrey proclaims “I hope I die before I get old” in the first verse of “My Generation”.

-Sarah Murphy

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