Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Best concert, book and movies of 2011

Since the year is over. Thought I would share my views on 2011 with respect to music concerts, books and film.

            This year I was lucky enough to see Eric Clapton at the MGM in Vegas. Jeff Beck at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. Rod Stewart in Vegas at the Forum and Andrea Bocelli in Tampa.

Winner for best concert – Jeff Beck.
            An incredible performer at age 66 emits high energy and is considered one of the best guitarists in the world. Beck is one of three noted guitarists to have played with The Yardbirds; (Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page). He also formed The Jeff Beck Group with Rod Stewart and Beck, Bogert & Appice. Interestingly he does not use a pick but instead gets incredible sounds from his fingers and the vibrato bar on his Fender Stratocaster. Curious fact: Jimmy Page played bass for a short time with Jeff Beck in the Yardbirds.

Winner for best book – Top Secret America: The rise of the new American security state. Dana Priest and William Arkin.
            Both authors are relentless reporters. Priest has won two Pulitzer Prizes for her work. In this book they uncover the explosive growth of America’s secret world since 9/11, it’s staggering. The waste, redundancy and domestic surveillance steps the government is taking is scary. The novel focuses on the Pentagon’s secret army that has killed more terrorists than the rest of the US forces combined. After 9/11 Congress gave a blank check to America’s secret security agencies with no public accountability. We worry about the government checking our email…oh it’s much worse than that. All the money, in the hundreds of billions and over 800,000 employees doing “Top-Secret,” work and guess who they’re focusing on next??? Us…!

Winner for best movie – Martyrs
            Okay, this is not a new movie (2008) but new for me. I saw it this year, heard about it for a while and it is the best horror to come out in years.
            This is a disturbing movie!!!!!
It’s a French film written and directed by Pascal Laugier. It is being ranked as one of the scariest movies ever made. The last 30 minutes is gruesome, some say the most intense ever filmed. It’s not the bloodiest but it’s intense. The reason why the torture is happening is so unexpected…it’s brilliant.

As a side note here’s a few of my favorite Netflix streaming movies:
            Let the Right One In
    The Horde
    High Lane

Norm Applegate author of:

1 comment:

  1. I agree about Martyrs, Let the Right One In, and Frontiers. The rest of your list has been added to my Netflix Instant Que. Thanks Norm.