Virgin Galactic rolled out its new space vehicle, Unity on Feb 19. The ship is the second prototype in Virgin Galactic's plan to make space flight possible for anyone able to buy a seat. It comes on the heels of the catastrophic failure of Virgin Galactic's first space plane, Enterprise, which crashed in the desert in October 2014, killing one of its two test pilots. The troubled company brought the press corps and its celebrity founder Sir Richard Branson to the Mojave Desert for a big space nerd party to celebrate the new ship. Even Han Solo—err, Harrison Ford—was there. There were messages from Malala and Stephen Hawking; the latter gave the ship its name. But despite the glitz, the glam, and the Branson popping out of a car roof, the sad reality is that Virgin Galactic promised us commercial space travel by 2015 and we're still nowhere near it. Going to space is a universal childhood dream. Find me a kid who has not thought … [Read more...] about It’s 2016. Why can’t I book a space vacation yet?
Justin Timberlake, a former animatronic Disney-bot who became a real boy, then a real man, and then a real musical tour de force, is now being sued by Cirque du Soleil. Is this reality? The kerfuffle stems over a sample the former lover-but-not-sex-lover of Britney Spears (sticking with my OTP from the aughts, yinz guys, ain’t too proud to beg) purportedly used for a song from his 2013 album The 20/20 Experience—specifically the track “Don’t Hold the Wall.” According to Variety: “The lawsuit claims that Timberlake borrowed from ‘Steel Dream,’ a song that originally appeared in ‘Quidam,’ Cirque’s ninth stage production, and later on a 1997 album of the same name. The suit, filed Thursday in a New York federal court, is seeking $800,000 in copyright infringement damages.” Timberlake isn’t the only one named in the suit: song co-writers and collaborators Timbaland, J-Roc and James Fauntleroy, as well as WB … [Read more...] about Cirque du Soleil Sues Justin Timberlake, Because This Is the World We Live in Now
As a member of the old-people-who-used-to-play-in-rock-bands demographic, I've never found much appeal in Rock Band or its competitor/predecessor Guitar Hero. But they obviously have a lot of devoted fans, including, apparently, "the only Beatles in the world" (and the others' designated heirs). On Thursday, Rock Band creators MTV Music-Harmonix teamed up with Apple Corps and announced a forthcoming video game that will let you play along with Beatles songs. The game won't merely be another Rock Band version or Track Pack, but will rather be an entirely new game that will presumably work with the Rock Band peripherals. Album art will be prominently featured, as will the original mixes, presided over by Beatles engineer George Martin's son Giles (who also worked on the Beatles/Cirque du Soleil tie-in project, Love). Personally, I'm hoping for an interactive Yellow Submarine portion and a new Rock Band keyboard so I can try to play "Hey Bulldog." It doesn't seem like there'd be much … [Read more...] about Happiness is…Beatles version of ‘Rock Band’
LOS ANGELES--If you were among the thousands of people at Microsoft's E3 press briefing on Monday, it's a pretty sure bet that the appearance on-stage there of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, and Yoko Ono was one of the most unexpected things imaginable. But if you think about it, the very existence of the game that led to their showing up during the Xbox press briefing, Harmonix and MTV Games' "Beatles: Rock Band," is even more surprising. After all, the Beatles have, over the years, maintained a stranglehold over control of their music. For example the Beatles are still the holy grail that iTunes has not yet been able to corral. The game will be released on September 9 (09.09.09) on the Xbox 360, the PlayStation 3, and the Wii. So how did the game come to pass? Since the two remaining Beatles weren't able to come to the phone for this article, I decided to stop by the Harmonix booth at E3 and ask the game's lead designer, Chris Foster, for the skinny behind what has got to be one … [Read more...] about How ‘Beatles: Rock Band’ came together