Welcome to This Week's Obsessions, a regular feature debuting today that touches on what has us buzzing in Eye Street.
I am in a nearly constant state of experimentation, especially when it comes to music. I listen to a lot of different stuff, most of which gets shoved aside so my brain can focus on the good stuff. Life's too short not to. The system also works for movies, TV, websites, food -- heck, everything.
Here's what I've latched onto currently: is coming to town Saturday for a show at the Crystal Palace. They are one of those bands that you have to see live to appreciate, and you should. They're being joined on this tour by Micky and The Motorcars, so it will be pretty much a Braun brothers reunion show. There are four of them between the two bands, and I have to take them all golfing while they're here. Since when do country-rock stars play golf?
The old iPod has been utterly dominated this week by an album called "This One's For Him: A Tribute To Guy Clark." Songwriter-wise, Guy is a giant walking among insects. One of the many reasons modern country music stinks is a profound lack of depth in the song department.
This record has 30 of Clark's best, sung by artists he's influenced over the decades. Rodney Crowell, Willie Nelson, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Emmylou Harris, Robert Earl Keen: They all bring their own style to these amazing songs. This record will revive your interest in actual country music. It did for me. This record is so Texas that the humidity will go up while you're listening.
On the tube, two new shows have captured my imagination, which is a pretty good trick considering that I've all but given up on TV. Not surprisingly, they're both on FX. "The Americans " (Wednesdays at 10 p.m.) is about Russian spies living among us in the '80s.
In a world clogged up with vapid fake reality shows and cookie-cutter sitcoms, this show gives me the one thing I need: something different. The other new gem is "Legit." Look, grafting a sitcom to a popular stand-up comic doesn't always work, usually because networks water the shows down to the point where the essence of the comic is lost. But Jim Jeffries, the Australian star of the show, is insanely funny and FX did a great job of maintaining the edge of his work. It's on tonight at 10:30 p.m., right after "Archer ," which is still my favorite thing on TV.
Finally, there's a new Dewar's chew, which is my new favorite thing in the world. Last year, Californian columnist Herb Benham and I settled the age-old argument of which flavor is best: peppermint and peanut butter, followed by almond, caramel and plain. Well, the new one is a game-changer. Dewar's -- teaming up with Tigerfight, a local organization dedicated to fighting leukemia and lymphoma -- came up with the Tiger Chew (starts at $4.95 a box) to raise funds and awareness. It's vanilla with a ribbon of orange, like a Creamsicle, only in taffy form. Never have we had a chance to eat something so good that we could feel so good about eating. Scott Cox, who hosts a daily talk show on KERN-AM, 1180, is a regular contributor to the Eye Street section.