Author Archives: Alan Cross

Going on the Road with Capt. Kirk (No, I’m Serious)

September 26th, 2011 | by Alan Cross

I was having breakfast in Beijing after a music conference when the email came in.  It was from Tara, the person who does her damndest to get me speaking gigs.

"Be at the Royal York Hotel at 11am tomorrow.  Go to the concierge and ask them to call up to the room of Bill XXXXXXXXX.  He wants to have brunch."

"Er, okay.  But who's Bill XXXXXXXX?"

"William Shatner."

"Oh.  Wait, what?"

The Wife Says: Who Would You Do?

September 25th, 2011 | by Alan Cross

[Yes, this really is from my wife.  She says "I have things to say. You should use me on your blog!"  Like I'd have a choice...]

Here’s something to yak about over wine with girlfriends while ignoring the tsumami of laundry waiting at home: who would you do?

Did Facebook Borrow Their Music Service Idea from Virgin?

September 25th, 2011 | by Alan Cross

Thanks to Rupinder for the tip.  (I like news tips, by the way.  Send 'em to 

From The Register:

I saw Facebook's music service 3 years ago. Done properly

Three years ago I caught a glimpse of a new social network built around music. You could follow people, chat with them, and enjoy the same music stream in real time.

BMW’s New M5 Audio System Delivers More Than Music

September 25th, 2011 | by Alan Cross

Part of the reason anyone buys a performance car is for the sound of the engine.  Legend has it that Ferrari begins designing a new model with the exhaust note.  They even (allegedly) employ musicians to find that perfect sound.  Then they work backwards.

I love the sound of a great engine.  I once waited on the street next to a Bugatti Veyron hoping that the owner would come out of the tony hotel and fire up that W-16.  In Singapore, I sat on a sidewalk waiting to hear what a Zonda sounded like in person.

But even I--an uber petrol head--have my limits

20 Things About Nirvana’s Nevermind on Its 20th Anniversary

September 24th, 2011 | by Alan Cross

Yes, kids, it was twenty years ago today.  Were he alive, Kurt Cobain would be middle-aged.

1.  DGC didn't have much faith in the album's potential, shipping only 46,251 copies to stores.  Some estimates put Nevermind's worldwide sales as high as 30 million copies.

2.  Spencer Eldon, the baby on the front cover, is also 20 years old.  He was paid $200.  In exchange, he now has the most famous penis in rock.

3.  "Smells Like Teen Spirit" wasn't supposed to be the first single.  Label bosses wanted "Come As You Are."  A compromise had "Teen Spirit" released to the small alt-rock market and college stations.

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