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Local artist Jake Brennan tells the stories featured on Boston.com through his eyes in Pop-Ed. Read his blog to discover what he sang about - and why.

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May 11: Goodbye, so long

By Jake Brennan
May 11, 2007 | 04:00 PM

CHORUS
Goodbye, so long
Goodbye, so long

MONOLOGUE
EVAN: Hey, there, welcome to another breathtaking installment of Pop-Ed on Boston.com. We're here at Fast Phil's barbershop where Jake and I no longer get our hair cut.

EVAN: This is Jake Brennan. Jake, there's been a lot of talk on the message boards. You been called everything from a genius to a T-Rex with floppy hair. What is your opinion on this?

JAKE: (nonsensical backward vocal track)

EVAN: Quick follow up follow-up to your hair. Why are you so beautiful. (Mic to hair,
hair says nothing, obviously for comedic effect).

Behind me, we have the Folk Hero Industries team.

EVAN: Please introduce yourself.

COLIN: Colin.

EVAN: Please describe yourself in one word.

COLIN: Pampered

EVAN: You've been described as the Sam Peckinpah of the 617 area code. What is your take on his?

COLIN: Don't believe the hype.

EVAN: When is Jake playing this weekend?

LUKE: (lists some shows)

EVAN: Describe yourself in one word.

LUKE: Cheese (bleeped out for comedic effect)

EVAN: This is Mooch, he's our production manager. What do you have to say for yourself? (walks away before taking the answer.)

EVAN: We'd like to thank everyone for tuning into this week's installment of Pop-Ed. Jake, do you have anything you'd like to say to the people?

CHORUS
Goodbye, so long
Goodbye, so long

EVAN: We'd also like to give a shout out to Tony Blair and remind the
critics, don't hate the player, hate the game.

CHORUS (in British accent)
Goodbye, so long
Goodbye, so long

Read the story behind the song:
Blair parting robs president of an ally

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 11: Until next week ...

By Jake Brennan
May 11, 2007 | 04:00 PM

Our thoughts on PopEd ... Itís been a good week. Some ups, some downs, and most importantly, some great news stories. Weíre all a little fried, but we had a blast doing this.

Thanks to Boston.com and everyone all over the world for tuning in. We figured we'd do a little end of the week spring cleaning, give thanks, bid you adieu until next week, and address some of the more pressing questions on the message boards. Particularly all of the Mike Wallace-esque hard hitting questions pertaining to mine and Evanís hair.

Additionally it makes sense to tie into the fact that itís been a week of farewells. From Roger Clemens pretty much guaranteeing that heíll never be back with #21 on his back to Tony Blair, a man on the out and a man with his own set of detractors.

Thanks to Fast Phil for today's location, everyone who helped out this week both in front and behind the camera (Yo Chuck Young!), Adam and Paul at Camp St., and to everyone at WBOS and the rest of radio land for getting the word out. Oh, and a thanks to my mom - the best publicist a son could ask for. Happy Mom's Day.

See you next week!
Jake and everyone at Folk Hero Industries

PS - Get out this weekend and come see me live. I'm at St. Mary's in Clinton, Ma., tonight and at the Lizard Lounge tomorrow night with the Teenage Prayers and Eli Paperboy Reid.

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 10: Doing wrong is what I do right

By Jake Brennan
May 10, 2007 | 04:00 PM

DOING WRONG IS WHAT I DO RIGHT

bench warrants, prayer cards, and glass shards
and a lifelong love affair with the orchestral arts
i was there when the rite of spring blew everybodyís mind
because doing wrong is what i do right

i took a ten year sabbatical from juilliard
and my movements were all panned by the critics at large
my nerves are shot and just like wolfgang, my temper's always on the rise
and doing wrong is what i do right

iíve held balcony seats for eternity in this sacred hall
now a symphony of youth - theyíre tryin to ruin it all
tell ben folds that i said, "he oughta take five"
because doing wrong is what i do right

i ain't no good at being good
not like handel, messiah, humperdink and mendelssohn
donít wanna waste my season tickets on no ben folds jive
because doing wrong is what i do right

Read the story behind the song:
Shoving match disrupts opening night of Boston Pops

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 10: And we were swingin' (like Sonny Liston!)

By Jake Brennan
May 10, 2007 | 04:00 PM

Day Four of Pop-Ed. Woke up this morning (send the royalties to the Howliní Wolf estate for that line) and I was expecting to strike a more serious tone and write about the Dalai Lamaís call for compassion when I was hit with this whopper of a headline: Fight Breaks Out at Boston Pops!"

Are you kidding me? The news gods are smiling down upon Folk Hero Industries. What a headline. The story was a little light on details, so we had to rely on a little poetic licensing. Even better.

We weren't sure who was throwing haymakers at who up in the storied Symphony Hall balcony so we imagined it to be an older, crustier, Pops season ticket holder. Possibly a failed composer. A traditionalist with no patience for Ben Folds Five and his younger, "hipster audience." Somebody who has made an art out of doing the wrong thing in life like, oh I donít know... STARTING A FIGHT AT SYMPHONY HALL!

You canít make this stuff up.
See you tomorrow.
Jake

PS - A big hearty congrats to our producers at Camp St. Studios, Paul Kolderie and Adam Taylor. Yesterday their Grammys arrived. The actual statue/trophy thingys. They won for the mix they gave to Irma Thomasís last record. And I have to thank Doug Gessler for the last minute, early morning stage call and Sarah Borges for the makeup job.

Oh, finally... Tune in to WBOS 92.9 tonight at 6:00 p.m. Iíll be doing an interview on the Morse and Laurenti show.

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 9, 2007

By Jake Brennan
May 9, 2007 | 04:00 PM

MY DUCT TAPE PROM QUEEN
I wanna shake you like you never been shook before
Wanna get you out on the dance floor
I wanna take you where you never been took before
And I'll take you back in my hovercraft

I'm stuck on you, so will you be
My duct tape prom queen?

I wanna be him, the him you been lookin for
Wanna tape you, like you ain't been taped before
We'll get to talking, saying things we've never said
It'll take at least a week to get Journey outta our heads

I'm stuck on you, so will you be?
My duct tape prom queen

I'll come and meet you in a lot by the stadium
In my old man's pickup truck, in my duct tape shirt and cuffs
And they'll play us a duet, they're gonna do it do it do it now
I think I'm stuck on you, I think I'm stuck on you
Here at the Naraguagus prom, I think I'm stuck on you

Yeah, I'm stuck on you, so will you be?
My duct tape prom queen

Read the stories behind the song:

Prom is a wrap for pair garbed in duct tape

Classic prom songs

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 9: My duct tape prom queen

By Jake Brennan
May 9, 2007 | 04:00 PM

Day three of Pop-Ed. You know what that means? Neither do I. I do know that it's prom season and when I read Boston.com's piece this morning entitled, "Prom is a wrap for pair garbed in duct tape" it made me laugh and think back to my awkward junior year at Clinton High.

First off, I hated the thought of the prom. So much pressure for a kid who only cared about how he was going to get Dan Carr's older brother to tell him more stories about Bon Scott's AC/DC from behind the counter of City Hall Music.

Second, my parents "made" me ask a date. So I did - and she stood me up.

Whatever. I was glad. I rode in the limo with my friends Dutch and Richie and while they soldiered into the unknown, to what Iím sure was an incredibly cheesy soundtrack, I hung in the limo and watched the Miss America contest with the burnout chauffeur.

My third thought was, this duct tape thing is brilliant - and these two kids rule (dig those shoes!). What a way to take the pressure off and to poke fun at the ridiculousness of "Prom." Plus, the dudeís suit kinda looks like the nudie suit that Gram Parsons is wearing on the Flying Burrito Brothers album cover. And as far as "cool" goes, you canít beat that cover.

So I imagined myself at the big dance with "My Duct Tape Prom Queen." Figured we'd go light today with the subject matter given yesterday's song. Word.
- Jake

PS - Special thanks to Steph for her pre-office job/prom makeover. I owe you one (like always). Apologies to everyone at Narraguagus High. I know I butchered the pronunciation. Sorry.

What do you think? Share your thoughts here.

May 8: 456 billion reasons to write a second blog

By Jake Brennan
May 8, 2007 | 04:00 PM

It's day two of reporting from the blogosphere (Camp St. Studios in Cambridge to be precise). At 6 AM this morning, when I started this process it appeared to be a slow news day. Lesson learned: A lot can happen in 6 hours.

What started as a slow news day led me to write a song about the Boston.com article "What does $456 billion buy?" Since then the Amy Winehouse review went up and Paris Hilton rehired John Lennonís old pal, Elliot Mintz for some much needed damage control.

Hopefully these stories stay in the news because Iíd love to write about either of them tomorrow. Woody Guthrie wrote about Ingrid Bergman so why canít I write about Amy Winehouse? Who knows, maybe Scarlett Johansson will do something news worthy.

Anyway, on to the song in hand. As I said above, itís about the $456 billion price tag attached to the war. Thatís the consensus amount being bandied about in Washington. How to apply it - the when and the how - well, people with much bigger cuff-links and far more frequent flyer miles than I have are sorting that one out as we speak. Whatever... the divide over the war in Washington is far less interesting to me than the question posed in the piece: Other than the war, what else would $456 billion buy?

I tried answering it in todayís song, ďFOUR HUNDRED FIFTY SIX BILLION REASONS TO...Ē

See you tomorrow,
Jake

PS - a special thanks to all the Clinton and Central MA kids for checking out PopEd and big ups to Adam Taylor over at Camp St. for the pre-caffeine production. This, as always, has been a Folk Hero Industries production.

May 8, 2007

By Jake Brennan
May 8, 2007 | 04:00 PM

FOUR HUNDRED FIFTY SIX BILLION REASONS TO...

Four-hundred fifty-six billion dollars more buys a whole lot of war. So what more could we afford?

Thirty big digs, dig a big, another big dig
we can dig our whole lives but we're never gonna find any peace

Free gas, at last free gas, we all want a free ride
but soon enough somebody pays, somebody always pays.

Take a pass, at last we could take a pass
own up and go green because it's the right thing

And from now on - until the end of time
we can pay to expand our minds, expand our minds
don't that blow your mind?

Will we be safe? Will we be free?
On and on - for eternity, for eternity

And we could all take a seat - at the table.
We could eat, but will it buy peace?

May 7, 2007

By Jake Brennan
May 7, 2007 | 08:40 AM

21 OVER 22

back in 84 number 21 soared (but now heís just number 22)
two twenty K games and three Cy Young awards (but now heís just number 22)
number 21 never bowed to no one
but now heís the Bossí boy for 28 million
like jilted lovers weíre licking our wounds
say hey, so long, see you soon 22

a hundred and ninety-two wins for number 21 (but now heís just number 22)
and just one more win to pass Cy Young (but now heís just number 22)
was number 21 throwing heat for the fans
or was he really Will McDonoughís ďTexas Con ManĒ
another rocket relaunch or a bomb in the Bronx
say hey, so long, see you soon 22

a first ballot blowhard, a pinstripe diva (whoh-oh-oh 22)
if he canít carry his bags howís he gonna carry their season (whoh-oh-oh 22)
number 21, a savior to no one
a nation hangs itís head after being shunned
another rocket relaunch or a bomb in the Bronx
say hey, so long, see you soon 22

May 7: See you in October, big boy

By Jake Brennan
May 7, 2007 | 08:37 AM

First off a quick hey and how are ya. I'm Jake Brennan and as you've probably read on the previous page I'll be writing and recording an original hard-core folk song a day, a song based on the news and ripped from the headlines here at Boston.com. Me and my cohorts here at Folk Hero Industries will produce an accompanying video and I'll be writing a daily blog that tells the tale behind the tape. Real time, baby. We aim to have the whole kit and caboodle wrapped up and posted by 3:30 p.m.

So here we go...

Today's song is titled "21 OVER 22." Obviously it's about Roger Clemensí decision to once again ignore the Nation's pull on his heartstrings in favor of George Steinbrenner pulling on his purse strings. Pathetic.

He rationalizes that he's "...come back to do what they only know how to do here with the Yankees, and that's win a championship." Give me a break. As if the Yankees invented winning. If he really wanted to win he'd have suited up in a rotation next to Beckett, Schilling, and Matsuzaka. I think his real reason is that he feels that pinstripes are thinning.

And what about the high drama in the Bronx yesterday? What a diva. I wonder if he's used any of that prorated $28 million to hire Mariah Carey to carry his bags for him. Maybe he can get her number from Derek Jeter.

Sour grapes? Maybe. But we shouldn't be surprised. Since the Rocket left the Bean he's always followed the cash and why shouldn't he? I'll tell you why. Because coming here to finish his career would have been different. The season would have been a PERFECT ending to an amazing career and would have been worth more than whatever Georgie Porgie could fish out of his deep pockets.

I miss the old Clemens. The old #21. Lean and hungry to win. Maybe #22 is the same "Texas Con-Man" that Will McDonough warned us about.

This barely happens but I actually agree with most of what Dan Shaughnessy has to say in today's column "Rocket Lands With Yankees Again." (Everything but his obligatory jab at Schilling - give it a break, Dude).

So with that I take my cue from Mr. Zimmerman's great folk song about Catfish Hunter and give you "21 Over 22." Bring it on, #22. We're ready for you. We've got a young lefty on the mend with the heart of a lion. He's coming back from CANCER not some cushy Texas mansion. And in case you haven't noticed, our current #5, Julian Tavarez is loco, bro.

See you in October, big boy.

P.S. - Special thanks to the kids at Fenway High for co-starring in the video with me. Also, much appreciation to Ian Kennedy for the fleet-footed fiddle work.

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