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Wharton discusses the rape kit backlog on MSNBC

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. was on MSNBC Thursday, May 29, with Ronan Farrow to discuss the city’s untested rape kit backlog and announce a $750,000 challenge grant from the Plough Foundation. To receive the grant, the city must raise the gap between the $2 million it has now and the estimated $6 million needed to clear the backlog.

Also look for Wharton’s comments as Farrow presses him on how the backlog came to be.

Eddie Izzard’s Overton Square selfie

In light of his show in Memphis last week at the Orpheum, British comedian Eddie Izzard posted this photo to his Facebook page, showing the comedian at Overton Square. It’s a special place for him, he noted, because the square is where he did his first-ever performance in America in 1987 – a street show, he says, for Memphis in May.

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Resource Entertainment Group blows out 10 candles on the cake

Happy birthday, Resource Entertainment Group.

The business, which creates live music events around the Memphis area, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Clients over the years have included the RiverArts Festival and the Memphis Grizzlies, as well as St. Jude, FedEx and both the Madison and Peabody Hotels, with one of the latest additions being Thursdays Squared.

That’s the new music series on Thursdays at Overton Square. The inaugural event on April 17 drew a crowd of more than 1,100 to the Tower Courtyard.

In stunning move, Grizzlies part ways with executives Jason Levien and Stu Lash

The news coming from the Memphis Grizzlies Monday afternoon that front office executives Jason Levien and Stu Lash are out appears to have surprised just about everyone not named Robert Pera, who is the Grizzlies controlling owner and whose boot prints are on Levien’s and Lash’s backsides.

That laughter you hear is Lionel Hollins, who has to be thinking, “See, it wasn’t just me.”

And maybe it wasn’t. We’re not going to know about that or the juicy details of these sudden exits for a while and even then we are likely to get less than the full story.

But what you think and what I think about this isn’t what matters.

Zach Randolph can opt out this summer and go elsewhere. Marc Gasol becomes a free agent after next season.

When the team met with media at the end of the this 50-win season under first-year coach Dave Joerger and after a seven-game, first-round playoff loss to OKC, Gasol and Mike Conley both said they had complete trust in the people running the Grizzlies.

The key question is who was first in their minds — Robert Pera or Jason Levien?

For now, general manager Chris Wallace takes over “interim” responsibility for the running of basketball operations. Presumably, he had to be summoned from his office in suburban Siberia.

What happens next? Well, there’s a John Calipari rumor out there and about three million others.

So craft your own conspiracy theory and run with it. We’ve still got two months until SEC football media days. Maybe Robert Pera just understands how slow our summers can be.

 

 

 

 

Some miscellaneous Big Star ramblings

Former Big Star drummer Jody Stephens was shopping at the venerable Amoeba record shop in California a few years ago. He walked up to the counter to pay for the Big Star CD he was buying for someone, and the girl behind the counter told him, “Oh, my brother really like this band.”

Jody asked what her brother’s name was.

“Elliott Smith.”

Jody recounts the memory in this clip from “What’s in my bag,” a segment where Amoeba puts people in front of the camera to ask what they’ve discovered on the Amoeba racks. He says he went on to record with Elliott, the late singer-songwriter whose work was featured prominently on the soundtrack to “Good Will Hunting.”

In unrelated Big Star news, Jody will be part of a group performing Big Star’s “Third” on May 23 at the Levitt Shell. In addition to a slate of guests, they’ll be backed by a chamber orchestra, and the concert also will feature earlier Big Star tunes like “September Gurls” and “In the Street.”

Dansette

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