Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Jimmy Fallon

His prepared material wasn't funny & he mumbled too much while Bob DeNiro spoke clearly. Nerves. But he has a great house band, got an amusing segment out of Justin Timberlake, & finished up with Van Morrison slipping & sliding life into a number from Astral Weeks. Wait & see how he does when he settles in.

As versatile as The Roots are (also an accomplished backing group), I can't see them grinding out the laughs on cue & second banana schtick for very long. There's a reason TV show bands are comprised of freelance session musicians. The entire Max Weinberg 7 is relocating to L.A. with Conan. When Max hits the road with Springsteen - very profitable, the other cats stay put & keep working their regular late afternoon gig.

The overall late night talk show audience is shrinking, & gets smaller minute by minute anyway. Craig Ferguson probably has the best approach for the 12:30 hour, dispensing with nearly all the trappings of a variety show & treating the camera as a lone, prone viewer in need of an occasional "Hey, wake up" tap on the shoulder. For me, it's mostly background noise, & with You Tube one need not hang around for a good band.


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