Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Rolling Stones = Little Boys Blue

Very rare early recordings including Mick Jagger with the Little Boys Blue in 1961.

Twenty-four of these 32 cuts come from such BBC sources, but what will pique the hardcore Stones aficionado's interest the most are the first eight tracks, which have rarely if ever before surfaced.

The first four songs are labeled as dating from a tape of Little Boys Blue, a just-pre-Rolling Stones lineup of the group, recorded (probably at a private rehearsal) in late 1961.

Track 1-4 : Little Boys Blue, recorded Dartford, South London, late 1961.

Track 5,7,8 : Regent, 20th & 21st November, 1963.

Track 6 : Chess, 8th November, 1963

Track 9-15, 19-26 : BBC Saturday Club, 1964

Track 16-18, 27-29 : Joe Loss Show, 1964

Track 30-32 : BBC Top Gear, 1964

Track list:
Little Queenie
Beautiful Delilah
Down The Road Apiece
I Ain't Got YouLeave Me Alone
Goodbye Girl
It Should Be You
That Girl Belongs To Yesterday
Ain't That Loving You Baby
Don't Lie To Me
Walking The Dog
Bye Bye Johnny
I Wanna Be Your Man
Roll Over Beethoven
Little By Little
I Just Want To Make Love To You
I'm Moving On
Not Fade Away
Beautiful Delilah
High Heeled Sneakers
Meet Me In The Bottom
You Can Make It If You Try
Route 66
Confessin' The Blues
Down The Road Apiece
It's All Over Now
If You Need Me
Around And Around
I Can't Be Satisfied
Crackin' Up

LINK Part 1

LINK Part 2

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Killer Shrimp

Source: BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen (Workman Publishing, 2003)
Serves: 8
Advance Preparation: 1 hour for marinating the shrimp
3 pounds extra-large or jumbo shrimp in the shell
3 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
3 tablespoons Cajun Rub or your favorite commercial rub
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon cracked black peppercorns
1 to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 bottle or can (12 ounces) beer
1-1/2 cups heavy (whipping) cream
3/4 cup dark corn syrup
6 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 thin slices lemon (with rind), seeds removed
3 to 4 tablespoons hot sauce (such as Crystal, Louisiana, or Tabasco)
2 tablespoons brown sugar4 cloves garlic, peeled and gently crushed with the side of a cleaver
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper
Crusty bread or Grilled Garlic Bread for serving
Grilled corn as an accompaniment

You'll also need:Kitchen shears; 3 cups wood chips or chunks (preferably hickory orPecan), soaked for 1 hour in water to cover, then drained;
2Aluminum foil pans (8 by 12 inches)

  • Rinse the shrimp under cold running water, then drain and blot them dry with paper towels. Using kitchen shears, make a lengthwise cut through the shell, down the back of each shrimp. Use the tine of a fork or the tip of a bamboo skewer to pull out the vein if you see one. Remember, not every shrimp has a visible vein. Place the shrimp in a large bowl.

  • Place the Old Bay seasoning, Cajun Rub, coriander, black peppercorns, and cayenne in a small bowl and stir to mix. Set 1-1/2 tablespoons of this rub aside for the sauce. Sprinkle the remaining rub over the shrimp and toss to mix. Stir in the olive oil and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice and stir to mix. Let the shrimp marinate in the refrigerator, covered, for 1 hour.

  • Place the beer in a heavy nonreactive saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Let boil until reduced to about 1/3 cup, 6 to 10 minutes. Add the cream and let boil until the mixture is reduced by half, 7 to 10 minutes more. Add the corn syrup, Worcestershire sauce, lemon slices, hot sauce, brown sugar, and garlic, and the remaining 3 tablespoons of lemon juice and 1-1/2 tablespoons of the reserved rub. Let boil until thick and syrupy, to 6 minutes. Whisk in the butter, piece by piece, and let the sauce boil until heated through and well-combined, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper to taste; the sauce should be highly seasoned. Keep the sauce warm at the edge of the grill. Do not let it return to a boil.

  • Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high. If using a gas grill, place all the wood chips or chunks in the smoker box or in a smoker pouch and run the grill on high until you see smoke. If using a charcoal grill, preheat it to high, then toss all of the wood chips or chunks on the coals.

  • When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Place the marinated shrimp on the hot grate and grill until just cooked through, 1 to 3 minutes per side. When done, the shrimp will turn a pinkish white and feel firm to the touch.

  • Transfer the grilled shrimp to aluminum foil pans and place the pans on the grill. Pour the sauce over them and cook for a minute or so to warm the shrimp in the sauce. Serve the shrimp at once with the sauce slathered over them and crusty bread and grilled corn on the side.

  • Note: To speed up the grilling process, skewer the shrimp on bamboo skewers. You'll need about 8. Use skewers that are 10 to 12 inches long and place about 6 shrimp on each. When you thread the shrimp on a skewer, insert it near the head and tail ends so that the shrimp looks like the letter C.

  • It's a lot faster turning 8 kebabs than all those individual shrimp.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

I said NO - NO - NO

This is the latest addition to the I-pod for my trip to Pittsburgh and Raliegh:

"British soul, jazz and R&B phenomenon Amy Winehouse made fun of her boozy reputation as her 45-minute set came to a close at The Mod Club Theatre on Sunday night. "I love these Shirley Temples," said Winehouse, 23, as she swigged from a red paper cup on stage, during the second of two back-to-back, sold-out shows. Essentially, the weekend gigs in Little Italy marked Winehouse's performing debut in T.O. given the last time she was here she only did a showcase performance for invited guests in support of her 2003 debut, Frank. This time out, Winehouse, backed by the stellar-sounding, 10-member Dap Kings, performed tunes primarily from her critically acclaimed 2006 sophomore effort, Back To Black, a Motown-style soul album that includes the breakout hit, Rehab. But before Winehouse took the stage, the Dap Kings, which included a three-man horn section, performed their own One Time to build excitement for her arrival. When she finally did appear, in a white tank top that showed off her heavily tattoed arms, all eyes were on her trademark beehive hairdo, heavy black-eyeliner-rimmed eyes, and tiny frame. The striking image did little to prepare the audience for the big-sounding voice to come on such Back To Black highlights as the title track, Tears Dry On Their Own, Love Is A Losing Game (which she dedicated to a male fan at the front who just had the title tattoed on a body part), Rehab, and Me And Mr. Jones, the jazzier Frank tunes Cherry and F--k Me Pumps, and a spirited cover of Liverpool band The Zutons' Valerie. As she belted out songs, Winehouse often stretched one arm high above her and bent down to accentuate the big notes although she could learn a thing from her two male backup singers' inspired dance moves. Winehouse was mainly on her best behaviour -- pointing out that her father and boyfriend were both in the audience -- "my two favourite men!" At times though, she did ramble on a bit, like her long-winded explanation about how she often screws up Me And Mr. Jones in concert, and when she sat down at the front of the stage on a couple of occasions mid-song, it seemed like she was running out of steam. There was also a noticeable titter throughout the audience when she asked for another drink during the show. Still, Winehouse, in her own unique, politically incorrect way, is a bit of a throwback as a performer and somehow she carries it off. Having talent helps. "We really love being in Toronto," she said. And we loved having her.


01 - Addicted
02 - Just Friends
03 - Cherry
04 - Back To Black
05 - Wake Up Alone
06 - Rick-stacy Rap
07 - Tears Dry On Their Own
08 - He Can Only Hold Her
09 - F*ck Me Pumps
10 - Love Is A Losing Game
11 - Valerie (w/ Band Intro)
12 - Rehab (w/audience)


13 - Amy Chats
14 - Me & Mr Jones
15 - You Know I'm No Good

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


"The curse of poverty has no justification in our age. It is socially as cruel and blind as the practice of cannibalism at the dawn of civilization, when men ate each other because they had not yet learned to take food from the soil or to consume the abundant animal life around them. The time has come for us to civilize ourselves by the total, direct and immediate abolition of poverty."- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Abbey Road

THE BEATLES - Abbey Road (1969)

01. Come Together02. Something03. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer04. Oh! Darling05. Octopus’s Garden06. I Want You (She’s So Heavy)07. Here Comes The Sun08. Because09. You Never Give Me Your Money10. Sun King11. Mean Mr. Mustard12. Polythene Pam13. She Came In Through The Bathroom Window14. Golden Slumbers15. Carry That Weight16. The End17. Her Majesty

PASSWORD: matt-o-rach

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The Dark Knight - Spoilers Attached

Date: November 6, 2007By: Kellvin Chavez
Source: Anonymous
This evening, here in NYC, I had dinner with an executive high up on the Warner Bros. food chain in which we spoke about the on going WGA strike and our conversation changed to one of the most anticipated films coming out next summer.The following is what he had to say on the introduction of THE JOKER in the upcoming THE DARK KNIGHT!
The Dark Knight begins with the Joker robbing a huge bank (we’ve seen photos of this everywhere). The bank is where the mob and all the gangs in Gotham keep all of their money. The Joker takes this money and holds it “ransom”. The Joker then says to the mob and the gangs of Gotham, “If you help me take down Batman, you’ll get your money back. If not, I’m going to burn it all.” This is how the Joker assembles his army to take down Batman

BBQ Primer #1

Corky's Ribs and BBQ
5259 Poplar Ave. (at White Station Road) Memphis TN

Everybody thought that when you wanted good barbecue you had to go into a bad neighborhood- in the ghetto or it’s not going to be good barbecue. [My father] wanted to open it up to the masses, where barbecue is something not only that the poor would eat but the rich would eat the middle class would eat. –Barry Pelts
Essay by Joe York

Some historians put the number at around three hundred, others simply say he had a herd of them, but they all agree that when Hernando de Soto and his six hundred soldiers landed somewhere near Tampa Bay in 1539, they had pigs.
As de Soto fought and finagled his way across the unseen South, his soldiers prodded the pigs from campfire to campfire, ate them by night, and by day breathed their pock-filled pork breath for the first time into southern skies.
From de Soto's ill-fated entrada (which left his febrile ribs forever marinating in the Mississippi) to the day Dan Quayle and his wife Marilyn strolled into the original Corky's on Poplar and strolled out with four slabs, pigs and politicians have been bedding down together all across the South.

But pigs and politicians share more than the sheets. They often fall victim to similar fates. Offered up daily to the masses, public opinion bears down hard on both of their shoulders. A few months and a Murphy Brown after leaving Corky's, Quayle was a lame duck. Four years later the man who sent him packing walked through those same doors and shook hands with the owner. Since then Clinton's seen his share of ups and downs as well, but through it all Corky's maintains a strong lead in the polls.

Voted #1 Bar-B-Q in Memphis for the last seventeen years straight, pigs would have to fly before Corky's ten state corporate conquest of the rib world comes unscrewed. And to make sure that never happens, Corky's will fly their pigs anywhere they want to go so they'll never have to do it themselves.

Oral History
Interview with Barry Pelts Conducted by Brian Fisher

Brian Fisher: Tell me the Corky's story
Barry Pelts: In 1972 the family had been in the furniture business for 40 years. In '72 they sold it to an insurance company out of Jacksonville Florida . That was when the insurance companies had lots of money and they were looking to diversify and my dad and his father and his brother sold it. And from '72 to '73, he was out of a job and he needed a job. He had a little money, a little chunk of change, nothing that he could live the rest of his life off of. He a little time where he could spend 6 months to a year trying to find out what he wanted to do.
He saw an ad in the paper for a restaurant that was for sale called The Public Eye which is in Overton Square in Memphis . He told his parents maybe I'd like to buy this restaurant. The restaurant was similar to -- it had barbecue on its menu it featured barbecue but it also had a big bar. it wasn't a barbecue joint. it just happened to feature barbecue on its menu and it was a bar mainly. Probably the mix was 60-40 food to alcohol which is a high mix of alcohol.
His parents thought he was crazy. He'd never cooked an egg in his life. He didn't know one thing about cooking. But he went to his father and said "you know this what I think I'm going to do this" and he said "I think you're crazy." But he went and bought it. He brought in my dad's brother and law- my mom's sister's husband who had some catering experience in Chattanooga . No barbecue experience but had been around food. More than my dad had been around.
They bought it in '72-'73 and they operated it until '84. But between '72 and '84, I would say probably closer into the late seventies, my dad had an idea of what he really wanted to do and that was to do a real barbecue "joint." Cozy. Instead of seating 260 people like this other restaurant, seat less than 100 people. Have the servers. When you walk in, you have the 50's music. You have the servers wearing a bow tie and a white jacket. Being the Old South, but making it a fun environment, not stuffy.

But what really separated him from anybody else is doing all that... three things. One is doing it with a drive through window that could put out food faster than a McDonald's. No one had ever done that before. You were either fast food--
'84 is when they opened. But in about '82, my dad said I'm doing it. he sold his interest in The Public Eye to my uncle. He waited for literally two years- maybe not that long. It was that long. But he had owned The Public eye with my uncle while he was looking.
He pinpointed this location you see on Poplar Avenue- 5259 Poplar. And he said, "if I'm going to do this, I'm going to go in with the absolute "A" location and, if it fails, I'm going to know at least I went in. . .You know a lot of people, if you don't go in with your gun loaded and it fails, your always going to question yourself.

I remember for a couple of years him just saying you know if this place will ever go out. Well a barbecue restaurant opened in here. Somehow snuck in and got it and they lasted six months and they closed. Then all his friends were saying "Oh that's the kiss of death. You don't want to go in there. They couldn't make it." He says well it was bad management, bad food, bad this. "But I'm telling you if its going to make it- if it's not going to make it won't be because of the location."

He did exactly what he said. He built the environment- the cedar wood and the music going. He had carpet on the floor to make it nothing modern with like stone. He had the brass railing. He had all the things to make it a fun 50's environment; had all the great music. You really felt like you were in a barbecue joint. But again, he came back to having the barbecue through the drive through window faster than McDonald's and nobody said that could be done.

BF: Vision for the barbecue joint?

BP: Everybody thought throughout Memphis that, if you're going to have good barbecue-, yeah you've got to go to a barbecue joint. And, he didn't wan to upclass it- except. . . Everybody thought that when you wanted good barbecue you had to go into a bad neighborhood- in ghetto or it's not going to be good barbecue. We'll, like he said 99% of the people that want to eat the barbecue don't want to have go to the ghetto if they don't have to.

If you live in the ghetto that's fine cause it's right around the corner. He wanted to open it up to the masses, where barbecue is something not only that the poor would eat but the rich would eat the middle class would eat. But also on any given day, he wanted all the high rise office buildings and the churches to be able to use it as if they ere eating any other meal. You had to make a conscious decision years ago to eat barbecue because you had to drive into the ghetto.
The other thing is service was never really. when you went into the ghetto the food was really what sold itself. He wanted to bring service up to the level where the quality of the food was. He did that.

The other thing is, and I say it to this day and he'll say it if he were here right now. If you're going to go eat at Corky's, yes, we want you to have the best barbecue in the world every single day. But also we want you to have the most consistent barbecue.
I could tell you a lot of our competitors and I'm friends with a lot them. I could go there on certain days and their barbecue I think is as good as ours. But the question is, if you go there 10 times in a row, is it going to be consistent.

What we've done is, the employees are great. But, management, it still starts at the top. My dad's theory all along was when he opened the restaurant he had 85 seats but he opened with 4 or 5 managers. Most little mom and pops open with the husband who owns it and that's it. His theory was; at every point of contact, he'd have a manager touching the food.

To this day, if you were to go through my drive through right now, yes the person taking your order is an hourly employee. The person collecting the money is hourly. 95% of the time the person sacking that order is a manager. The reason is, you go to Wendy's and say I want a hamburger with pickles and ketchup. Nine times out ten you get home and how often is it ever right? The reason is its hourly people doing it. We've put managers in that position so that we feel not only are we paying them more but they have a vested interest in this restaurant.
If you go into dinning the room the person at the expo station- that's a manager. You go out on a catering. We just don't send employees out. We have a catering captain that's a manager, a salaried manager. So everywhere you have contact with the food, its' a manager. We do food at the Pyramid. It's a manager out there supervising it.

The next thing that separates us really is we're bringing in a tractor trailer load of ribs about every nine days. There's probably no restaurant in America that moves the kind of ribs that we move- individual restaurant.

But we pay a lot for our ribs. People say I can't believe that your food costs are so high. The reason is that we're buying the absolute best quality ribs that's been trimmed to our specifications. It doesn't have excess cartilage and fat and the false lean meat. The reason is- it goes back to the very beginning. My dad said that he was going to have the best location, the best management, the best service. But also his theory was, if you take an "A" grade raw product, you have chance to have an "A" grade finished product. If you start with a "C" grade raw, you'll never have an "A" grade product.

Those are the things that separate us. And we still are cooking the old fashioned way. We're still slow cooking our ribs. We still hand pull all our pork. We have competitors out there who'll take a pork shoulder pull the bone out and send it through a bowl chopper. Yeah, you'll get a lot better food cost and yes it's a lot less labor. But if you go into our kitchen right now, we have multiple people where all there doing is just hand pulling pork. When the ribs get done, they're still hand trimming the ribs to our specifications.

We cook all of our ribs over charcoal. We have our hickory smokers. They're gas. They're turned electrically but they have the hickory chambers in the back that we use. We don't use Old Hickory (brand). We use Southern Pride (brand). We use, on a given day, 200 shoulders. Your charcoal pit would have to 200 feet long. It's just not physically practical to do that.

BF: Volumes. How do you answer the questions and criticisms of authenticity- about those people who say "but it's big time now. It's not like it should be."

BP: Why does someone go to an NBA game versus why they don't pack them into watch a local community center men's 30 and over basketball league. That's always been my analogy. I don't see people paying $20,000 for floor seats to a men's 30 and over.

And that comes back to what my dad, when he put Corky's on Poplar Avenue and didn't put it in the ghetto. Yes, you're going to have people that are going to say that." And there's people who are going to say "we'll I'm not going to eat in a place that has a table cloth or a place that has this or that. The bottom line is and it has shown that it works. If you put out great service and a great product and you put it in a fun atmosphere, where they feel like they're in a barbecue joint, it can work.

There are guys that have opened up out here. Perfect example, there was a guy who had won the barbecue contest for years named John Wills. He opened a restaurant out near the Mid-south Coliseum on Central (Avenue). He had a little place and he did great. he went and decided to open right over here near the Clark t. He had marble this. It was a gorgeous place. When it opened I said "This place is drop dead gorgeous, but do you want to eat barbecue in it? It looks like a nice Houston's.

You've got to stay close enough to the perceived roots, which we have. I don't think we've crossed that point. You still see 15 air conditioning units sitting on our roof. I could tear this place down and rebuild it and be a hell of a lot more efficient with our electrical our heating. I could slick this place up to make a lot more money, but that's not the look we want. We still want to have that down-home feel.

BF: Perceived roots

BP: People want to come in- they want to see. I've got my T-111 siding in the inside of the building, and yet nothing is squared or grooved up together. You still have the openings and the black felt paper behind it still exposed. I've crammed in pictures on the wall. I don't have everything in the same frames. It doesn't look slick. It's not like a Houston's. I've got ceiling fans that still sort of shake a little bit. You've got to have that little bit of an edge and it's hard to really say what it is. The music is still the fun 50's music. It's good mix of the music. It's a feel.

BF: Marketing Family Ownership

BP: It's very important to us to keep it as a family owned type of environment. I'll give you a perfect example. I get guy who'll call me from New York, LA, Chicago; we shipped out over 50,000 orders through our mail order program.

People will say to me "well why don't you use an outside service to take all the calls?" I want that woman that works at Corky's and answers the phone with that accent. I got a call in from Boston, Massachusetts ordering food. First of all its fun for him to call down to Memphis Tennessee. They think that they're calling a little barbecue joint and that's exactly what we want them to think. That they're calling that little barbecue joint down in Memphis Tennessee.
They have no concept of how much volume we do in dollars and I don't want them to know that. I want them to think that we're still that that barbecue joint. It just so happens that we do a lot of volume. I still want to that we're a small, family owned operation.

BF: How Fast Did Corky's Grow?

BP: We were growing at a rate of about the first ten years we were probably growing 25-35% every single year. Which is huge. Now we're growing 10% a year. If I never grew another percent and just stayed where I was and just maintained it, it'd be enough to say grace over. No, we're never going to 25-35% growth again. No way.

BF: Movement into grocery stores

BP: In '93 we went under USDA federal inspection. We have our own plant. We have an inspector there every day. We have our own HACCP plan that's been in place almost four years. We actually had a tentative one until it became required and now we have a full-scale HACCP plan.

It was just a natural. We want to be where everybody is. We've got the catering. We'll go to you. You can come through our drive-through. There's so many people that don't live near a Corky's that we wanted to be able to fully cook our ribs, vacuum pack them, put them in the stores.
Let's face it. Nothing will be as good as when it comes right off the charcoal pits. We wanted to still be able to bring what we felt was an "A" quality rib- maybe not an "A+." We did that in '93. That business has been growing exponentially every single year and that's been great for us just like the mail order business. You've got the whole country to tap into.

BF: Any National Advertising?

BP: We have a database of about 150,000 of our previous customers through our mail order. We're now starting to get a list of all our customers coming in our restaurant. So were going to eventually direct mail them.

The best customer is a guy who comes in from Boston on business. He's got a meeting with Federal Express. He eats at Corky's. Loves it. He goes back. I send him a mailing. He says yeah god that's Corky's. you now I'm going to send some ribs to some friends.
National mailing, we'll advertise once or twice a year in the Wall Street Journal- not enough to make a dent.

Comments on Other's National Advertising

We tried doing some advertising nationally. If I were to go buy and ad that's going to make a difference, I could go run and ad in the Wall Street journal. I buy and ad this little and it costs $5,500. In the Wall Street Journal nobody runs ads that size. You almost need to spend 17 or 18 grand to make any kind of presence and you need to run frequency. We just haven't made that decision and you know what? It might work.

It comes back to my dad's theory. If you're growing 20% a year, with no risk- our advertising agency will tell you- if growing 20% a year doing nothing, you could grow 50% and do this. Again, we're very conservative. If I can grow 20% and not take any risk. We're getting to that point and we're really there right now, probably another year, to where our mail order is not going grow big numbers unless we start making a commitment to investing dollars to make it grow.

Talking about other companies buying customers

BF: Maintaining a Uniform High Grade Product

BP: We used to make our barbecue sauce. It got so big that we started seeing for a short period of time the inconsistencies of trying to make it ourselves. I've got a company that I've given our recipe to in Chicago. They're making it in big batches it's exact. They're taking samples and it goes into a lab. If there's any variance from viscosity levels to starch level, to this/that. That's number one.

When we know we can't handle it, we found a co-packer to do it for us. We've done that on our pies. My mom used to make all of our fudge and pecan pies. It got to the point even she couldn't keep up with what she was doing. Well now, they've got people who can make batches of 1000 pies at a time.

We're in Chicago a couple of times a year with our supplier on ribs watching to make sure. Between you and I, I had a truckload of ribs that come in not even three weeks ago that we sent that whole truck back because they weren't cut the way we wanted. We found out. Our , they have three plants, and they'd been running it out of the same plant since my dad started buying with them in '78 for 32 years.

Just this one time, we caught it. Something happened with the plant. They shut the plant down for more than 30 days. They tried to run it out of another plant. That line, those people know how to cut our ribs. It was very obvious that it wasn't our cut rib. We tracked it down. We found out it wasn't made at the plant where it was normally made. We sent all the ribs back. They probably figured that we weren't going to catch it.

(Other People's Ribs)

Ours is a 2 1/4 cut St. Louis rib cut to Corky's specifications. Meaning, if you go out and look at our boxes, it's got a Corky's stamp on it. It's not a rack rib.

If you were to cal SYSCO right now and you want a 2 and a quarter down ST. Louis rib. They've got one. But it's not a 2 and a quarter St. Louis Corky's cut. That's why I'm actually paying more per pound even though my volume is 10 times more than anybody else. Because, when they take that rib, we're making them trim out all that right in there, all that excess cartilage and stuff.

(Drawing and Rib Trim Example)

Now the supplier is stuck with this and that's a by-product and they've got to go sell that off. We argue with them. They say that they can only get .25 cents a pound for it in Korea ad we say it's worth this and that. But the bottom line is we're paying for that. We're paying for it. That rib right there is what everybody else is buying. I don't know anybody out there that's got a custom cut rib. They might say they do, but nobody does.

I bought 14 tractor loads in March. They'll put those up in the freezer. They're not going to do that for a guy who wants to buy 200 cases of ribs. It slows their production down.

BF: Kitchen Operation

BP: 24 Hours a day seven days a week. I can't remember when we haven't- not a day in 15 years.

This weekend I know that we've got a catering for 2,400 a catering for 1400 and we've got bunch of them for 500- this that. Our plant might need to cook a couple of hundred shoulders to supplement and bring over to the restaurant.

We can't physically- on busy days; we can't cook enough here. It's lucky that we have our plant now. The only thing that happens, if you cook your shoulders for 22 hours, you can cook your shoulders in 11 hours and the customer is not going to know the difference. the problem is, instead of that 18lb shoulder yielding six pounds, you might only yield 4 and 1/2 lb. It's just going to hurt your yield. Sometimes you have to that.

That's what we had to do in the old days. But now that we have the other facility. Now we can still cook it the long period of time and get the better yield and it's more profitable for us. It's more profitable and it makes more sense. You don't have the pressure of having to do a double round. You'll cook a round at 6 in the morning to come off at 8 and then you have to switch another round at 8 to come off the following morning.

BF: Plant Size and Location

BP: It's out near the airport. It's the exit that you get off for Graceland. 25,000 square feet we have now.

There doesn't have to be someone there but they're cooking 24 hours a day. Right now, they're going seven days a week. Your tax dollars pay for 5 days a week, then you pay extra for Saturday and Sunday inspection. We're paying for Saturday and Sunday inspection right now. We're in the summer season right and the grocery store is out of control. Everything for grocery and mail order both of those fall under USDA. This is our time for grocery and mail order.
Grocery, Memorial day to Labor Day are your crazy time, but the business is great year round. The month of December mail order you'll do 40% of your annual business in 14 days. We'll have days when we'll ship 4,000 orders a day during Christmas. On Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, we'll ship out 130 packages a day. Big Difference.

If you come here during Christmas, we'll have three assembly lines of 8-11. Probably around 24 people just in the assembly line. We probably have 40 people out there a day just packing of mail order.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

The Beatles and Raymond Jones

The stuff of legend: Forty-six years ago (October 28, 1961), an 18 year-old man by the name of Raymond Jones entered NEMS record store in Whitechapel, Liverpool, to place an order for a local band's German-only 45 of "My Bonnie." NEMS manager Brian Epstein, who prided himself in having a copy of every record available, had never heard of this single nor the band who recorded it: Liverpool's own Beatles.
The next day, two girls stopped by NEMS and asked for the same record. Epstein inquired further about this group and made a plan to visit the Cavern to watch them perform...Over the years, many people have tried to refute the existence of Raymond Jones, citing that Epstein invented the character in his mind. Sam Leach and Alistair Taylor have both claimed to be the "Raymond Jones" who ordered "My Bonnie." However, Merseybeat expert Spencer Leigh was able to track down the real Raymond Jones and interview him for Mojo magazine. The article can be found in the fantastic book, The Beatles: Ten Years that Shook the World. According to Jones: "I never wanted to do anything to make money out of the Beatles because they have given me so much pleasure. I saw them every dinner-time at the Cavern, and they were fantastic. I never heard anything like them...I used to go to NEMS every Saturday to buy records by Carl Perkins and Fats Domino because I heard the Beatles playing their songs....Brian Epstein said to me, 'Who are they?' and I said, 'They are the most fantastic group you will ever hear.' No one will take away from me that it was me who spoke to Brian Epstein and then he went to the Cavern to see them for himself. I didn't make them famous, Brian Epstein made them famous, but things might have been different without me" (p. 21). Jones produced a letter from Brian's staff, thanking him for the tip concerning the Beatles.
In this post, I've included a picture of the real Raymond Jones; pictures of the Cavern's interior; and a wonderful picture of a drunk Mike McCartney with Pete Best and new buddy Brian Epstein, taken sometime in 1961

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Born to Run - the original Rolling Stone review

"As a determinedly permanent resident of the West Coast, the furor Bruce Springsteen's live performances have kicked up in the East over the last couple of years left me feeling somewhat culturally deprived, not to mention a little suspicious. The legendary three-hour sets Springsteen and his E Street Band apparently rip out night after night in New York, Province-town, Boston and even Austin have generated a great tumult and shouting; but, short of flying 3000 miles to catch a show, there was no way for an outlander to discover what the fuss was all about.

Certainly, I couldn't find the reasons on Springsteen's first two albums, despite Columbia's "New Dylan" promotional campaign for the debut disc and the equally thoughtful "Street Poet" cover of the second. Both radiated self-consciousness, whereas the ballyhoo led one to hope for the grand egotism of historic rock & roll stars; both seemed at once flat and more than a little hysterical, full of sound and fury, and signifying, if not nothing, not much.

A bit guiltily, I found anything by Roxy Music far more satisfying. They could at least hit what they aimed for; while it was clear Springsteen was after bigger game, the records made me wonder if he knew what it was. Whether he did or not, with two "you gotta see him live" albums behind him, the question of whether Springsteen would ever make his mark on rock & roll -- or hang onto the chance to do so -- rested on that third LP, which was somehow "long awaited" before the ink was dry on the second. Very soon, he would have to come across, put up or shut up. It is the rock & roller's great shoot-out with himself: The kid with promise hits the dirt and the hero turns slowly, blows the smoke from his pistol, and goes on his way.

Or else, the kid and the hero go down together, twitching in the dust while the onlookers turn their heads and talk safely of what might have been. The end. Fade-out.

Springsteen's answer is Born to Run. It is a magnificent album that pays off on every bet ever placed on him--a '57 Chevy running on melted down Crystals records that shuts down every claim that has been made. And it should crack his future wide open.

The song titles by themselves --"Thunder Road," "Night," "Backstreets," "Born to Run," "Jungleland"--suggest the extraordinary dramatic authority that is at the heart of Springsteen's new music. It is the drama that counts; the stories Springsteen is telling are nothing new, though no one has ever told them better or made them matter more. Their familiar romance is half their power: The promise and the threat of the night; the lure of the road; the quest for a chance worth taking and the lust to pay its price; girls glimpsed once at 80 miles an hour and never forgotten; the city streets as the last, permanent American frontier. We know the story: one thousand and one American nights, one long night of fear and love.

What is new is the majesty Springsteen and his band have brought to this story. Springsteen's singing, his words and the band's music have turned the dreams and failures two generations have dropped along the road into an epic -- an epic that began when that car went over the cliff in Rebel Without a Cause. One feels that all it ever meant, all it ever had to say, is on this album, brought forth with a determination one would have thought was burnt out years ago. One feels that the music Springsteen has made from this long story has outstripped the story; that it is, in all its fire, a demand for something new.

In one sense, all this talk of epic comes down to sound. Rolling Stone contributing editor Jon Landau, Mike Appel and Springsteen produced Born to Run in a style as close to mono as anyone can get these days; the result is a sound full of grandeur. For all it owes to Phil Spector, it can be compared only to the music of Bob Dylan & the Hawks made onstage in 1965 and '66. With that sound, Springsteen has achieved something very special. He has touched his world with glory, without glorifying anything: not the romance of escape, not the unbearable pathos of the street fight in "Jungleland," not the scared young lovers of "Backstreets" and not himself.
"Born to Run" is the motto that speaks for the album's tales, just as the guitar figure that runs through the title song--the finest compression of the rock & roll thrill since the opening riffs of "Layla" -- speaks for its music. But "Born to Run" is uncomfortably close to another talisman of the lost kids that careen across this record, a slogan Springsteen's motto inevitably suggests. It is an old tattoo: "Born to Lose." Springsteen's songs -- filled with recurring images of people stranded, huddled, scared, crying, dying -- take place in the space between "Born to Run" and "Born to Lose," as if to say, the only run worth making is the one that forces you to risk losing everything you have. Only by taking that risk can you hold on to the faith that you have something left to lose. Springsteen's heroes and heroines face terror and survive it, face delight and die by its hand, and then watch as the process is reversed, understanding finally that they are paying the price of romanticizing their own fear.

One soft infested summer/Me and Terry became friends/Trying in vain to breathe/The fire we was born in.../Remember all the movies, Terry/We'd go see/Trying to learn to walk like the heroes/We thought we had to be/Well after all this time/To find we're just like all the rest/Stranded in the park/And forced to confess/To/Hiding on the backstreets/Hiding on the backstreets/Where we swore forever friends....

Those are a few lines from "Backstreets," a song that begins with music so stately, so heartbreaking, that it might be the prelude to a rock & roll version of The Iliad. Once the piano and organ have established the theme the entire band comes and plays the theme again. There is an overwhelming sense of recognition: No, you've never heard anything like this before, but you understand it instantly, because this music--or Springsteen crying, singing wordlessly, moaning over the last guitar lines of "Born to Run," or the astonishing chords that follow each verse of "Jungleland," or the opening of "Thunder Road" -- is what rock & roll is supposed to sound like.

The songs, the best of them, are adventures in the dark, incidents of wasted fury. Tales of kids born to run who lose anyway, the songs can, as with "Backstreets," hit so hard and fast that it is almost impossible to sit through them without weeping. And yet the music is exhilarating. You may find yourself shaking your head in wonder, smiling through tears at the beauty of it all. I'm not talking about lyrics; they're buried, as they should be, hard to hear for the first dozen playings or so, coming out in bits and pieces. To hear Springsteen sing the line "Hiding on the backstreets" is to be captured by an image; the details can come later. Who needed to figure out all the words to "Like a Rolling Stone" to understand it?

It is a measure of Springsteen's ability to make his music bleed that "Backstreets," which is about friendship and betrayal between a boy and a girl, is far more deathly than "Jungleland," which is about a gang war. The music isn't "better," nor is the singing--but it is more passionate, more deathly and, necessarily, more alive. That, if anything, might be the key to this music: As a ride through terror, it resolves itself finally as a ride into delight.

"Oh-o, come on, take my hand," Springsteen sings, "Riding out to case the promised land." And there, in a line, is Born to Run. You take what you find, but you never give up your demand for something better because you know, in your heart, that you deserve it. That contradiction is what keeps Springsteen's story, and the promised land's, alive. Springsteen took what he found and made something better himself. This album is it. "

GREIL MARCUS(RS 197, October 9, 1975)

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Have I told you.....

His biggest hit ever "Brown Eyed Girl" was originally titled "Brown Skinned Girl"...think about that next time you are listening to the oldies station...

Brown Eyed Girl (Alternate Version)

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Damn it Jim - I'm a Doctor

You probably already know what eventually happened to STAR TREK; how NEMESIS (the most recent theatrical film in the franchise) underperformed both fiscally and artistically. How ENTERPRISE…TREK’s most recent television incarnation…failed to keep the attention of fans or find new viewers - and was jettisoned four years into its projected seven year run.

This conjunction of unfortunate events left The Powers That Be in a quandary. Clearly, STAR TREK had the potential to continue generating a great deal of revenue for all involved. And, just as clearly, the current style & vibe of STAR TREK were not being embraced by the masses.

What to do? What to do?

One proposal came from (then) TREK overlord Rick Berman & a production team which included Jordan Kerner and Kerry McCluggage. They considered a STAR TREK variant that was part re-launch, part prequel, and maintained established franchise continuity while exploring a period of TREK lore that had previously been spoken of only in broad strokes.
The result was a project tentatively titled STAR TREK: THE BEGINNING. I’m assuming this name would’ve changed…it’s a crappy title. Scripter Erik Jendersen (HBO’s BAND OF BROTHERS) was brought in to develop the concept, which resulted in a first draft screenplay that ran 121 pages long.

This project was ultimately scuttled; word is it was ditched due to a dramatic regime change at Paramount.

JJ Abrams was subsequently brought in to re-launch STAR TREK in an entirely different fashion, and THE BEGINNING slipped quietly into history…forgotten by most, and understood by precious few.

Let’s change that.

What follows is a detailed write-up about the screenplay for Erik Jendersen’s STAR TREK: THE BEGINNING.



This is, simply, a geeky exploration of STAR TREK history; a (hopefully interesting) insight to a TREK that might have been…not dissimilar to an article I posted earlier this year about Harve Bennett’s defunct STAR TREK: THE ACADEMY YEARS screenplay.

And, even though this project has been canned and will almost certainly never be made, please know that...


With this in mind, let’s get started…

First off, I'd like to offer a huge, heartfelt, hug of a thanks to Nasty Nick for making this article possible. Deeply appreciated.

To put a pretty fine point on it, this is very much a classic War story set in the STAR TREK Universe. This is a sprawling tale…its structure evoking countless World War II films in particular.
THE BEGINNING takes traditional war genre structures/clich├ęs and applies them to STAR TREK; a formula we’ve never seen before. For example, there are (literally) love letters written between characters…read in voice over…as one character heads off to battle, and the other sits at home worrying and waiting. THE BEGINNING is about a group of folks newly graduated from the United Earth Stellar Navy who are forced to go their separate ways in a time of great upheaval. Some head into war, some find other purposes, while all hell is breaking loose around them.
In structure, the story very much resembles STARSHIP TROOPERS mixed with the madness surrounding Pearl Harbor. As a whole, the script is extremely military in nature. How extreme? In one sequence…during a crisis…an Admiral orders two guards to stand down from their positions. The first guard receives a set of instructions from the Admiral, ending with “I’m ordering you to leave your post.” The first guard scurries off. The Admiral gives the second guard his orders, but the guard doesn’t budge. The Admiral then remembers to tell him “I’m ordering you to leave your post” – only then will the guard stand down.TELL US MORE ABOUT THE SETTING…TREK’S GETTING KINDA CONFUSING!
It begins on Earth during August-September 2159 (this would place it between ENTERPRISE and ORIGINAL SERIES continuity).
The human race has a lot going on: the United Earth Stellar Navy (UESN) is a military attempting to find its place in the changing political landscape, and hone its interaction with a recently formed Coalition of Planets. Earth is changing…politics are changing. Extraterrestrials are becoming accepted and common members of our society, but this is also altering the way humans think, and the way things are done.
There’s talk of UESN merging with Starfleet, which would essentially militarize the exploration-based Starfleet. “Peace is too important to be left to politicians” intones one Commodore.
The NX-Omega is ready to fly – the first Warp 8 capable ship ever built (Warp 8 was the maximum warp stated for THE ORIGINAL SERIES Enterprise).
And…oh, yeah! There’s that mammoth Romulan attack fleet approaching Earth using a trajectory which conceals it behind Earth’s moon.
Sort of.
There’s one character we’ve seen before in TREK - it’s Andorian Commander Shran. He’s the blue dude with antennae played by Jeffrey Combs in ENTERPRISE.
Another character we’ve heard about (but never seen) also appears. Skon. Who is Skon? There’s a line in STAR TREK III: THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK in which Vulcan High Priestess refers to Sarek (Spock’s dad) as “Sarek, child of Skon…” Skon appears here as a Vulcan Ambassador to Earth. I.e. Spock’s grandfather is a principal character in THE BEGINNING.
The NX-02 (Columbia) – also seen in ENTERPRISE - appears twice in the script. It’s in an orbital shipyard and gets blasted pretty thoroughly.
References are made to Archer & Enterprise being at Risa (TREK’s “pleasure planet”). Figures; they’re as ineffectual as always.
Denobluans ( Dr. Flox’s species from ENTERPRISE) are seen, but don’t play a critical role.
MACO (Military Assault Command Operations –
the supertroopers introduced in ENTERPRISE) are present, and do play a role.
Tellarites (
the pig guys) appear.
There are several allusions to the future TREK
universe, which are mentioned below.OK…THEN…WHO ARE THE MAIN CHARACTERS?
This is principally the story of Tiberius Chase. He’s the UESN’s best pilot but can’t get into Starfleet because of his family’s bad rep. He has the heart of a warrior and the soul of a poet. He’s extremely talented and highly ambitious, but he’s being held back in life because of his family name. The Chase clan, it seems, is associated with a para-military militia here on Earth who fear for the purity of the human race…they feel our gene pool will be contaminated because too many alien species are coming to Earth.
I.e. they are Terran isolationists, who’ve fashioned a cult-like community in the Muhlig-Hoffman Mountains in Antarctica. They found a place once used by Nazis who escaped to the remote locale after World War II. There is Nazi tech around them – like prototype aircraft shaped like saucers. Tiberius left this funky bunch…his urge to see what’s out there…to grow and expand…was too strong to resist. Despite this defiance, many around him still will not trust him. They’re all about embracing new life and new civilizations, but aren’t sure what he’s about.
Tiberius is in love with Penelope Gardner, an Admiral’s daughter. Penelope is “a school teacher from Iowa”. For those who don’t remember, James Tiberius Kirk is from Iowa. There’s a lot we can infer from the above few paragraphs. My conjecture is that these are Jim Kirk’s ancestors, and that the “Kirk” family name may have been adopted to escape the shadow of the Chase legacy. Could be wrong about this, though.
Tiberius rides a Harley Davidson Aero-Bike.
Other characters include (but are not limited to) Lieutenant Jaxx. Skal – the Vulcan who designed the NX-Omega’s warp engine. Admiral Gardner (Penelope’s dad – who struggles valiantly to marshal Earth’s defenses against the Romulans). Ensign Ogg (Maori from New Zealand), Otto (Tiberius’ father).OKAY, SO WHAT’S THIS THING ABOUT IN BROADSTROKES??
Tiberius has graduated UESN academy but his efforts to get into prestigious Starfleet are being stonewalled. He occupies his time by courting (and banging) Penelope (the Admiral’s daughter) while the NX-Omega Warp Tests are being conducted at the Saturn Flight Range (Chase was expected to fly the mission, but got canned from that as well). He’s a little lost, and finds himself increasingly lacking in purpose: he’s deeply devoted to a system which does not view him with affection.
While hanging out one morning with Penelope, Tiberius can’t peel his eyes from the sky. There’s something different about the sky this day…he’s not sure what it is. Then he sees the tiny speck of light, an odd star in a clear morning sky. But the star unleashes beams of death towards Earth: Romulans are attacking us, wrecking full-scale devastation in very short order!
But this isn’t even the PRIMARY attack force, which (we learn via Vulcan intelligence) is a little over two weeks away. At this point, segments of the movie are identified by superimposed titles (i.e. “D-Day Minus 3”, “D-Day Minus 2”, etc.)
Attacks on Honolulu, Beijing, Moscow, Athens, Cairo, London, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and the Lisbon Power Station are either referenced or seen. A mammoth, ongoing space battle between Earth forces (UESN and Starfleet), factions who rush to Earth’s defense (Tellarites, Andorians under Commander Shran, Vulcans) ensues. The line against the Romulans is being held, but barely. Think TREK space conflict on the scale of a George Lucas film (the opening of EPISODE III comes to mind).
UESN and Starfleet facilities swing into action globally. We see Subterranean Facilities (SUBFACs) in Victoria, Paris, and China assembling munitions, churning out fighter craft, processing war supplies, etc. – action is set in several of these facilities.
What do these damn Romulans want? Our surrender. Why? Seems those green blooded bastards have been engaging in ethnic cleansing across the galaxy – they want to ride the universe of their wussy Vulcan offshoots once and for all. They’ve been moderately successful thus far, but Earth won’t surrender its Vulcan population (a defiance for which the Romulans were thoroughly unprepared, hence the need for the second wave of ships). Earth’s response to the Romulan demand for surrender? “Nuts”.
But…the truth of the matter is…we’re slowly, and certainly, losing & don’t stand a chance when the other Romulans get here. Reinforcements won’t reach us quickly enough. And Tiberius Chase doesn’t like to lose…
He hatches a plan…a foolhardy, dangerous plan no one will listen to: he wants to fly to the heart of the Romulan Star Empire and wreck havoc there before the primary Romulan attack fleet arrives “offshore Earth”. He wants to fragment the Romulans’ war making capability from within.
The higher-ups will not listen to him & summarily dismiss him. But a few folks are willing to embrace his glorious madness.
Chase and his bizarre, make-shift crew (including Skal – the Vulcan Warp Engine designer mentioned above) acquire a nuke from the Antarctica isolationists, then hijack a small ship called the U.S.S. Spartan - forcibly staffing it with hostages taken at its Saturn Drydock anchorage. Some of these hostages are confined to quarters, as they’re unwilling to participate in such a direct violation of orders. Others begin to understand that even a desperate, crazy, final hope for victory is better than no hope at all – and become willing crew members (and accomplices).
The brave little Spartan and her misfit crew leave our solar system with its nuclear bomb on a lonely trek to Romulus – where danger, uncertainty, and probable defeat await.

It is.

One of the most interesting elements of THE BEGINNING is how it knowledgeably and consistently embraces the tenets and principles of STAR TREK, but tells its story in a decidedly Un-STAR TREK way. This is a formula I’ve championed for quite a while – whenever people say TREK is “tired” and should be allowed to “rest”. My contention is that there’s nothing wrong with the TREK franchise in essence…and there’s still plenty of juice to be found in it. The problems its currently experiencing lie in the way TREK was telling its stories, and in the stories it was telling. It has lost the edge and vibrancy which drew audiences towards mythos to begin with.

Jendersen addresses these issues from its opening sequence: it’s comfortably TREK, but clearly told through very different eyes – through which see the TREK universe in a decidedly different style.

Is THE BEGINNING perfect? No – not by a long shot. There is a TOP GUN vibe running through portions of the script (Academy graduation material & how space fighter combat is conducted) which could’ve worked…but would probably register as a little too jarring in the final product. The young heroes call each other “bro” on several occasions – I get the modern
informality they’re going for here, but…you know…

The last quarter of the script (the anti-alien anarchist having a nuclear weapon that Chase drags off to Romulus) seemed a little too convenient & over-the-top…but there’s a funky, Verhoeven quality to it that, if directed right, could’ve been rather amusing (deliberately).
Finally, I don’t know if Chases’ desperate plan actually makes a whole lot of sense.
Obviously, it would’ve been feasible to address all of these issues in future drafts (again, this was the first & only draft written).BUT…WOULD IT HAVE WORKED?

It’s hard to know when such a radical reboot is in play. Whether or not they liked the story’s rough-and-tumble, balls-to-the-wall, semi-retro vibe…I think fans would’ve appreciated the heart of this story, as it picks up on one subtlety that often defines the most successful TREK stories:
TREK is, essentially, a duality…a contradiction. One on hand, it’s about heroes bringing values and their definition of “civilization” to societies and worlds who do not yet think like we do. Which is, at its core, a bit imperialistic. On the other hand, our heroes often achieve their objectives…even their survival…by bucking the same standards they attempt to spread, and by doing things their own way. It’s not that the system is “bad”, necessarily…it’s just not always the best means to an end.

This conflict is very much at the core of THE BEGINNING, evidenced by one single comment by Chase in a message to Penelope:

”…I will still, and forever, wonder how one can go boldly and follow at the same time?”

Jendersen’s script understood the heartbeat of STAR TREK, which is more than can be said for much of the TREK we’d seen in the years before it.

THE BEGINNING doesn’t exactly end. It partially resolves, but also promises TO BE CONTINUED. Where Jendersen’s macro story would’ve headed is unknown at the moment – although I’m told the tentative arc called for three films.

Given Berman’s track record throughout the franchise, especially towards the end of his tenure, it seems dubious that the right style would’ve been brought to THE BEGINNING…the right sense of wonder, abandon, or roughness. Berman’s work was too homogenized to make room for such profound changes in artistic approach.

None the less, Jendersen’s script is an imperfect-but-hugely tantalizing glimpse into a STAR TREK that might have been. And, some may argue, a tasty sampling of what it should become.

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