PGA pro Bubba Watson joins the guys from Traveler's Championship media day to discuss Dustin Johnson's US Open win and other tour issues, plus a preview of August's tour even in Connecticut.
Kirk Minihane's Monday 'Headlines' exploring the death of Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin and Gerry Callahan going back to a column writer.

[0:03:39] ... though you have it right. Yeah oh yeah those that watched the US open by myself right you're watching them. You know the Red Sox Red Sox and what's he was so open with him. We ...
[0:05:34] ... out whatever you can't. Wear your audio via paper that's what you new book the naked pictures only soft. She's she's she's a huge slopes with him in the kindly your disease figures you'd. My granddaughter ...
[0:08:52] ... sure I picked. Horry I'm happy for how much is a big box office hit she's the voice of stories we go off tonight so so kudos corporate owned jets Goodwin good things happen to good ...
[0:12:06] ... people who who who hate prequel rose as much as I do Bubba Watson Jones. ...

The guys continue the NBA Finals game 7 reaction, comparing how bad the choke job was for the Golden State warriors.

[0:00:50] ... night on Twitter. Was winning 73 and losing in the NBA finals LeBron James and the cavaliers. Worse than the patriots going sixteen and oh and losing in the Super Bowl I say not even no ...
[0:04:02] ... reminds him in the scores of course point guard of all the Cleveland Cavaliers who do you think got the drunk. Who's sick it's a dog right now on I got again. All the all I'm ...
[0:05:56] ... you this morning I'm talking about hangover levels would you rather be LeBron James. We're Dustin Johnson this morning after championship father. A rather be wholly Saunders now. So much out single bronze wife hours in ...
[0:09:59] ... was what was what devastating the sixteen and all patriots all the Golden State Warriors. Obviously a big will the patriots are. I think it's more devastating and away to step curry because besides I but he ...

PGA pro and Fox golf analyst Brad Faxon checks in on the Monday after Dustin Johnson's win in the US Open.

[0:00:34] ... us Saudi AT&T outline as he makes his way home. For an Brad Faxon good morning facts. Compared to try to exercise a get some good for all of think about. This if you didn't know ...
[0:07:18] ... think we were we are way better and it starts with a golf course it will. Any crude it would've done that's restraint if it would have been a disaster begin with and the whole crew. ...
[0:11:18] ... you feel you or him or anybody. The morning after. Playing the US open at a place like Oakmont. Any different on that Monday morning mentally and physically that you would after I don't know some random tour stop on the yep PGA. Well absolutely you eat your you know I think. Physically all these players they can handle it you know it is it was a tough week as the rain early and I when he around the guys had decision the next morning and make. You know Lee Westwood made a comedy get up at 5 o'clock in the morning or. Reported in a row which isn't gonna make you I ...

John, Gerry and Kirk open the show talking about the two big Sunday events, Dustin Johnson's win at the US Open and LeBron James leading the Cavs to the city's first title in 52 years.

Nothing I’ve ever expressed has gotten me more blowback than the simple opinion that I don’t like LeBron James. That while I concede he’s a tremendously talented basketball player, he’s also a self-absorbed, whiny, narcissistic diva who flops, baits officials, dishes out the trash talk but whimpers about having three kids if anyone dares call him “bitch” on the court, gets his coaches fired, works out with his ex-teammates in the middle of a season and blames his own teammates any time things don’t go his way.

And yet, if you make the pretty straightforward case that the man rubs you the wrong way, people react like you just used the American flag as a flushable wipe. That it’s not enough to say LeBron is a great player. Or even to state that after after this series, you’ll admit he’s recaptured the crown as the best player in the NBA. No, you’ve got to love King James. You’ve got to embrace him to your bosom and adore him for all he’s done for Cleveland, for the game of basketball, for all of mankind.

But I can’t. I won’t. And these two videos are my case in point.

In the first, LeBron hits the floor. And judging by his reaction, suffered a compound fracture of his forearm so severe that there should be six inches of bone sticking through the skin and might require an amputation right there on the court. After which he got up and hit one of his two free throw attempts. Watch the way he goes down in slow motion again and tell me that every guy on the court doesn’t hit the deck like that six times a game. Or that he even landed funny. Or that the broadcast team is even remotely worried he’s actually hurt. No one who’s watched this guy over his career believes he writhed around in agony like that for any reason other than he loves the attention. He wanted to add the story line that he courageously overcame an injury that would have killed a lesser man, but not The King. It’s classic LeBron.

As is that interview with Doris Burke. She asks James about his team winning, and he simply can’t get through it without all the variations of the first person pronoun.

“I gave everything that I had.”
“I poured my heart, my blood, my tears, my sweat into this game.”
“I don’t know why the Man above gives me the hardest road.”
“I just kept that same positive attitude. Instead of saying ‘Why me?’ I said ‘This is what He wants me to do.'”
“I had to change my approach a little bit on how I approached the game.”
“I was able to put some spectacular games after being down 3-1.”

He can’t help himself. Like his game all you want, but you can’t hold it against those of us who just find the guy to be a self-obsessed dink in love with the image he’s created for himself. Does that make him a monster? No. But at the same time, all his talent doesn’t mean we have to embrace a personality like his either. There’s a story from when  Lyndon Johnson was president, where allegedly he asked one of his aides why more people don’t like him. And the answer was, “Because, Mr. President, you’re just not that likable.” Neither is the other LBJ. Even if he is the best basketball player on the planet.

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Blog Author: 
Jerry Thornton
Billy Joel made a career out of using different voices. (Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Billy Joel made a career out of using different voices. (Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Billy Joel is like the “Friends” of musicians for me. Whenever someone has a take on either, I cringe because I don’€™t trust that anyone was ever as obsessed as I was and therefore might not be qualified to opine.

This piece on Vulture ranking all of Joel’€™s songs, for example, is garbage. It criticizes the production of “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” while not understanding that “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” was intentionally meant to sound like it was produced by Phil Spector in the early 60s. “Poorly recorded,” as the author writes? No. Accurately recorded.

Much of Joel’€™s charm is his fascination with seeing how much like another artist he can sound (which is why, down to the drum pattern, the author of the aforementioned piece should have been able to tell he was trying to sound like the Ronettes. OK, last time ripping that piece. We all turn in crummy work now and again). Like John Lennon, some of this was rooted in him not being totally comfortable with the sound of his own voice.

Yet where Lennon would call for effects and production tricks to mess with his vocals, Joel simply just tried to sing like other artists. The result was a career full of hits with remarkable vocal inconsistency. It’€™s a big reason why Billy Joel’€™s greatest hits albums will elicit many a “HE sings this?” from non-devotees. Despite him being one of the best-selling artists ever, there’€™s probably a large contingent of music fans who can’€™t pinpoint what his voice actually sounds like.

So, because I feel that I am qualified, here is a ranking of Billy Joel’€™s various voices, along with songs where they can be heard. Please note that just because a song is mentioned, it doesn’€™t mean that’€™s the voice he uses for the entire song. Another amazing thing about Billy Joel is that he could jump around with these voices from syllable to syllable, as he did in “€œThe River of Dreams.”€ Listen to the line “And I’€™ve been searching for something”€ in the second verse. He’€™s uses plain ‘€˜ol Billy Joel voice on “€œsome”€ and then goes full Ray Charles on “thing.” One word, two voices.€ He’€™s a crafty cat, that Billy Joel.

15. Uncomfortable bass — “The Night is Still Young”

Producer Phil Ramone did some amazing work on Billy Joel’€™s albums. Letting him double the verses an octave lower on “The Night is Still Young” is not an example of this. If you can, get some good headphones and listen to how the lower of the voices sings the word “side” in the first verse. That’€™s college cappella I-can’€™t-sing-the-note-so-I’€™ll-kind-of-whisper-it-and-it’€™ll-fool-‘€˜em at its finest. Then he tries singing lower!

14. New Wave baritone “No Man’s Land,” “Pressure”

13. Couldn’t-decide-which-Beatle-to-be voice “Laura”

12. Billy Joel as Frankie Valli“Uptown Girl”

A passable impression, but anything tied to “€œUptown Girl” loses points because it’€™s from an album full of tribute songs and the best of the bunch (“Tell Her About It,” an ode to The Supremes) didn’€™t need an impression at all.

11. Nasally young singer/songwriter croon“She’s Got a Way” (studio version), “Why Judy Why”

10. Billy Joel as Paul McCartney“You Can Make Me Free”

9. Billy Joel as a singing Christopher Walken“The Stranger,” “Sleeping With the Television On” 

8. Billy Joel as Sting“Running on Ice,” “Shades of Grey”

These two could have been bandmates, as they once discussed a supergroup with Don Henley. Instead, Billy had to settle for doing his own frantic mumble-singing on “Running on Ice” and sitting at the tippity top of notes during the verses of “Shades of Grey.”

7. Normal baritone – “Until the Night,” “Lullaby, Leningrad”

Until the Night is an amazingly romantic song until you realize it’€™s Billy Joel singing a duet with himself. Then it becomes an amazingly creepy song. Still great.

6. Billy Joel as Steve Winwood as Ray Charles“When in Rome”

5. Seventies scream — “Los Angelenos,” “Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)”

4. Billy Joel voice“Half a Mile Away,” “Only the Good Die Young,” “This Night”

If I had put this No. 1 and made some sort of “Just the Way You Are”€ joke, my computer would have burst into flames and I would have deserved it.

3. Billy Joel as Ray Charles“Everybody Has a Dream,” “52nd Street,” “Stiletto,” “New York State of Mind”

“You can do a lot of voices just trying to be Ray Charles,” Joel said on MTV back in 1982. Some of his other voices (such as the aforementioned Steve Winwood one) stem from his Charles voice, but none of them are better.

2. Billy Joel as Paul McCartney doing Paul McCartney’€™s ‘€˜out of college’€™ voice — “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant,” “I Go To Extremes”

If you haven’€™t clenched your neck while singing along with a Billy Joel song in the car, you haven’€™t sung along to a lot of his songs properly. The line “you could ever look so nice after so much time” is Joel’s best use the “out of college” voice on an album, though he added it to a ton of songs in live performances as well.

1. Mid-to-late 80s-early 90s scream — “Modern Woman,” “That’s Not Her Style,” “Storm Front,” “The Downeaster Alexa,” “Two Thousand Years,” “All About Soul,” “Famous Last Words”

Billy Joel’€™s intonation was never particularly good. Flat notes are common enough in his studio recordings that you have to wonder why Ramone and Joel’€™s other producers didn’€™t either push him harder or commit to punching in a whole lot of lines.

From “The Bridge” on — and especially in his final two albums, perhaps Jole just decided that if he wasn’€™t not going to nail every note, he might as well just scream the hell out of them and hope for the best. That was a good call.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean

A great game got a great viewing audience.

According to John Ourand, media writer for the Sports Business Journal, the Cavaliers’ Game 7 win offered the best television numbers for an NBA Finals game in 18 years.

Blog Author: 

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