Everybody has some can’t miss artists. People that when they come out with a new album, new book, or new movie, you will be there to experience it as soon as you can. Here are just a few of mine:
Leonardo DiCaprio – Movies
This is the one guy in Hollywood that hasn’t disappointed in a long time. Since DiCaprio did Catch Me If You Can he’s been great in everything and everything he’s done has been good. He’s pretty choosy about his movies which makes it easier, it’s not like he’s pulling a Nicholas Cage and showing up every three months at the bottom of the box office with new hair. Now this is my one category that has seen the most upheaval in can’t miss status. First it was Tom Hanks and then I don’t see Tom Hanks anywhere (I only heard him as Woody in Toy Story 3) and at one point it was Matt Damon and Brad Pitt. I will probably see those guys in just about anything, but I’m not giving them the status, DiCaprio has the status and I don’t think he’s going to be losing it any time soon. According to IMDB he’s going to be in J. Edgar and Devil in the White City, based off the great book. Well done, great choices.
David Gray – Music
If you know David Gray at all, most likely it’s because of his 1998 album White Ladder and the hit songs Babylon, Please Forgive Me, This Year’s Love, or Sail Away. He’s my favorite musician and I’ll see him any time he comes to Chicago and I’ve bought every album and will buy every future release as well. His sound has become richer over the years and he is always trying to learn something new in his sound but always he has been a lyrical poet as well. If you think you know David Gray or you know you don’t know him, the absolute best way to experience this artist is to see him live. He’s on tour again this February and March. Hint, hint.
Bill Bryson – Books
When I was in seventh grade I got it into my head to find the biggest books in my school library and just start reading. I’m talking about novels, too, I’m not talking about the Reference Section here. The first huge book I picked up was The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks (fantasy and as it turns out a total ripoff of The Lord of the Rings, but how could I know that, I wouldn’t read the Rings trilogy for another seven years), then Shogun by James Clavell and Roots by Alex Haley. I was huge into reading novels, I started reading espionage novels for a long stretch and eventually, I got to the point where I will read anything. Yesterday I picked up the new book by Bill Bryson titled At Home. I can tell already that this is going to be a great book. In At Home, Bryson literally finds objects around his house an delves into the history of these things that we completely take for granted. In a lesser writer the information Bryson conveys in his non-fiction books would be overwhelming. If these writers could ever sift through the words in the first place, readers would be completely lost and overwhelmed or bored out of their minds, but Bill Bryson is a brilliant organizer and he enlightens his readers from truly unlikely subjects. Most of the books Bryson used to write were travel books, through Europe or Australia, North America and they make for the best audio books out there (make sure to get the ones read by the author otherwise I will not endorse them). I can’t miss Bill Bryson and I’ll keep filling my mind and my book shelves with his work as long as he keeps writing.
Modern Family – TV
If you’re not watching Modern Family do not start now. We’re in the middle of the second season and there’s nothing I disapprove of more than when people think to themselves, “Well, a show is a show. It’s not a big deal if I don’t know who any of these characters are or how the previous story lines may affect tonight’s episode. I’ll just start watching right now.” It’s about the journey as much as the destination so please rent or buy, you won’t regret it, season one of Modern Family and catch up. This is the best show on TV right now, for sure the best sitcom. With a great mix of characters, clever dialogue that plays to the height of the show’s intellect this show should go on forever. Or until the kids are all grown up and things get awkward.
So, if I’m missing something, tell me. If you’re missing these…boy…Get on it.