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The Lost Weekend

It only ends once

Everything that comes before that is just progress.

***

Speaking of Lost Weekends, I had many of those at The Lost Horizon in Syracuse, New York. If you ever played music or hung out in Syracuse, you knew the place and you knew of Greg Italiano, the man behind the club. Sadly, he passed away this week at 59; he would have been 60 this August.

I never got to know him personally but I did know many promoters and hundreds of musicians who always spoke highly of him. He gave countless bands their first break, and I’m sure the thoughts and well-wishes will pour in from around the globe as the sad news spreads through the music community.

Once Wanda’s and later The Yellow Balloon, Greg started running The Lost Horizon in the 70’s. In my stomping years, the club was anything but the Shangri-La the name implies, but in fairness Syracuse was known for having many clubs where it would be healthier to pee your pants than enter the bathroom.

But what it lacked in decorum it made up in solid bookings. My mind is clouded but a Who’s Who of rock bands played in that room – The New York Dolls, The Ramones, Jason and the Scorchers, The Beat Farmers, and on and on. Every local band worth seeing rocked that stage and probably put a few guitar necks through the low ceiling.

In its recent incarnations it was primarily an alternative and metal club, but ask any touring bands of that ilk where to play and draw the crowd and they’d drop that name. As always, that was Greg – finding out what kids want and providing it for them.

R.I.P. Greg – thanks for everything. 

Condolences here.

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Get LOST, Again

The Lost Supper

It’s about time. 

It’s time for LOST to put up or shut up, and hopefully it will be the former not the latter. The creators have insisted that they have had the endgame in place since the very first season, and with a negotiated timeline for these past couple of seasons, they have had the opportunity to structure the final path with great precision. Rarely has an episodic show been given that kind of leverage, but I will be the first to admit that they have earned the shot. 

I’m a bit skeptical that the endgame was that specificBen Linus, after all, was initially written as a marginal character. But Michael Emerson’s dynamic performance led to Ben not only getting more screen time but ultimately becoming arguably the central character on the show. So unless the creators simply transferred another character’s storyline onto Ben’s shoulders, an audible was clearly called somewhere in process. 

And I’m fine with that. After suffering through what happened on The X-Files, I’ve been far more skeptical when labyrinthine plots and conspiracy theories are at the center of a program, but it appears that Lost has weaved a pretty airtight mosaic of people and events. It’s amazing to watch early episodes and notice something in the background that resurfaces several episodes (or years later). The X-Files once had a brilliant alien conspiracy theory in place but didn’t invest in the continuity with the same diligence as the fans did, and eventually the logic contradicted itself. The show ultimately backed itself into a corner by presenting two scenarios that could not co-exist, and a loyal fan base was justifiably frustrated and disappointed when no resolution or explanation was delivered. You don’t want to invest that kind of time into anything and be left hanging. 

(Chicago Tribune’s three-part interview with the creators; Maureen Ryan was kind enough to also include a summary of information for those of you with short attention spans.)

And that’s what’s so fascinating about this show. There are people (like me) who have been in deep since the first episode, and others who bailed during the show’s mid-life who have comeback into the fold when the announcement was made that the full story would get to be aired to its conclusion. The excitement for the last season is palpable, from the fan blogs with simple theory posts to incredible websites dedicated to in-depth psychological character evaluations and doctorate-level theses on the symbolism and meaning of the show. The writers and creators of LOST have had the gauntlet thrown down, and they have eighteen hours to pull it off. 

Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof have gleefully dispensed tiny clues and hints over the years but are already throwing the caveat out there for the endgame.  Lindelof suggests that “Some people will think it’s enormously satisfying. Other people will think it’s not satisfying enough. It all depends on the way that you watch the show”. Hmmm… 

Will it be frustrating like The Sopranos, or perfect like The Shield? We’ll find out soon enough, but first things first. And don’t forget to tune in tomorrow as the final season starts. 

Wikipedia of Lost episodes. 

Lostpedia  

The Season Premiere is certain to cook up some Big Numbers

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