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By Burt A. Folkart and Burt A. Folkart,Los Angeles Times | April 15, 1995
Burl Ives was a beloved balladeer who sang so convincingly of being a Wayfaring Stranger that he instead became a longtime friend.The rotund folk singer, Academy Award-winning actor and concert hall artist, once called by poet Carl Sandburg "the mightiest ballad singer of this or any other century," was 85 when he died yesterday. He had a history of circulatory problems and congestive heart failure.Last summer, doctors discovered that he also was suffering from mouth cancer and had undergone "a number of little surgeries in the last few months," said Marjorie Schicktanz Ashley, his longtime agent.
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By J. D. Considine and J. D. Considine,Sun Pop Music Critic | April 26, 1994
Bad love has been very good to Reba McEntire.Blessed with a voice that moves easily from a wounded-heart quaver to full he-done-me-wrong fury, she's a natural for songs about mismatched lovers, cheating spouses and unrequited passion. As a result, her albums boast more bad relationships than the average soap opera.But even by McEntire's usual standards of love-gone-sour, the songs on "Read My Mind" (MCA 10994, arriving in stores today) (( seem a tad extreme. Every song here, from the sassy "Why Haven't I Heard From You" to the maudlin "And Still," is built around a broken heart -- and while that may leave some listeners reaching for their hankies, it left me lunging for the eject button.
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By J.D. Considine and J.D. Considine,Pop Music Critic | March 13, 1992
Six months ago, the members of Mr. Big were beginning to wonder if they weren't becoming Mr. Forgotten. Sure, the band's second release, "Lean Into It" was an even better piece of work than its first; the trouble was, nobody but the band and a smattering of its fans even knew the album was out there."
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By Michael Sragow and Michael Sragow,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | April 22, 2005
Like a soldier squirreled away in a bunker months after the end of a war, the tortured hero of Rebecca Miller's The Ballad of Jack and Rose remains on an island commune in 1986, a decade after the waning of the counterculture. A Scottish engineer, Jack knows America isn't the country he hoped it would become when he bought his land, applied for citizenship and established his radical enclave. But staying self-sufficient, keeping his distance from commercial pressures and commercial culture make him feel as if he can save his soul - and protect his teenage daughter, Rose, from the ugliness of the outside world.
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By Corey Moss and Corey Moss,Chicago Tribune | July 22, 2001
Metalheads have feelings too, and these days it pays to show them. Just as country stars like Faith Hill and rappers like LL Cool J have used ballads to widen their audiences, tattooed, leather-clad rockers are slowing down the tempo and finding more people listening. In recent years, metal, industrial and punk bands like Metallica, Filter and Green Day have scored with songs much slower than what their fans are accustomed to. Dominating the album charts this summer has been Staind, a hard-rock band that had only a modest following until radio programmers began playing singer Aaron Lewis' live acoustic ballad "Outside."
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By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,Sun Pop Music Critic | January 20, 2005
Ambrosia Parsley is just waking up, so that lilting, little-girl voice of hers sounds a bit worn. It's 8:30 in the morning in San Fernando Valley, Calif., where she's calling from her brother's home. The 33-year-old New York resident is on the West Coast gearing up to promote the latest album by her group, Shivaree. Who's Got Trouble? is a sophisticated, darkly witty collection of twangy saloon ballads. The CD is the trio's third full-length release and another dazzling showcase for Parsley, the group's focal point and chief songwriter.
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By Tom Moon and Tom Moon,KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | July 29, 2002
Hush, friend. The High Church of Rock and Roll, Asbury Park branch, has resumed services. Look inside your heart and answer truthfully: Don't we need that sound, those three-chord parables about faith, now more than ever? With the release tomorrow of Springsteen's The Rising, it's time once again to drop the needle and pray. Deeply affected by the events that shattered us all in September, the iconic soul reverend is talking a language we can understand: "This too shall pass." "An eye for an eye."
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By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | March 25, 2004
The young actress steps in front of the stage in the basement hall at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church and recites the first speech of a new play: "October 3, 1967. Queens, New York. A man lays in bed in Creedmore State Hospital. His entire body is shaking almost imperceptibly like a dry leaf in a slow wind. Woody Guthrie is dying. But he is also dreaming." Woody Guthrie (1912-1967), the prolific poet-troubadour of Dust Bowl America, died of Huntington's chorea, a hereditary and progressive neurological disorder, the disease that killed his mother.
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By Clarinda Harriss and Clarinda Harriss,Special to the Sun | December 19, 1999
Contemplate sentiment. Say it aloud. Sentiment. Now hold your nose and say it aloud again.Hear what you just said? Sediment.Without really trying you have defined sentimentality, the vile pile of goo that sinks to the bottom of the emotional vat wherein sentiment, or feeling, is being distilled. Continue to hold your nose! Sentimentality emits a sickly-sweet stench. Hold on firmly as you pass through the book precinct of the Christmas-decorated Mall: 'tis the season when sentimentality reeks most ripe.
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May 7, 1997
PETER COOPER built the locomotive Tom Thumb and raced it against a horse on the B&O tracks to Baltimore from Ellicott's Mills in 1830. The horse won when the locomotive's blower belt broke.John Henry was a steel-driving man, smashing rock for a rail tunnel, when the steam drill came to put men out of work. He challenged it, won, and died with his hammer in his hand.Whether these legends are true is less important than their tribute to human and equine fortitude, traits of character no machine can match.
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