Hoax Museum Blog: Music

Did Morrissey predict the death of Princess Diana? — Here's an unusual theory. David Alice, webmaster of dianamystery.com, argues that the singer Morrissey (formerly of The Smiths) predicted the death of Princess Diana. I would dismiss it all as an elaborate joke, except that the guy seems really serious about it.

The crux of his argument (at least in the video posted below) is that one of the songs on The Smiths' album The Queen is Dead, speaks about two people getting killed together in a car crash. And this song was released as an exclusive single in France. He comes up with a variety of other clues and weird coincidences, all equally farfetched.

The guy's theory is like a strange inversion of the Paul is Dead rumor, in that the Paul is Dead rumor involved people combing through the Beatles's music to find clues referring to a car crash that had supposedly happened in the past, whereas this guy is desperately searching through Morrissey's music to find evidence that the singer was providing clues about a car crash that would happen in the future.

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2007.   Comments (13)

New Yorker on Joyce Hatto — Mark Singer has written an article for the New Yorker about the Joyce Hatto hoax, that was revealed earlier this year. I was busy finishing Elephants on Acid when it was making headlines, but Flora posted about it.

Hatto was supposedly a virtuoso pianist, whose talent was discovered only very late in her life, when she was already in her seventies. She was notable for being able to masterfully play a wide variety of works, including compositions by Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff. But it turned out that her husband had been taking recordings of other pianists and claiming they were recordings of Joyce. Singer tries to understand what motivated Hatto's husband to do this. It's a good article. Definitely worth a read.
Posted: Thu Sep 27, 2007.   Comments (4)

Internet amateur actually had big label deal — image Marie Digby has been one of YouTube's greatest stars. She started posting videos of herself performing covers of popular songs. Just her sitting in front of the camera, singing away and playing the guitar. Soon her videos were getting millions of page views, and her popularity allowed her to get a track on iTunes.

This success endeared her to the internet, who saw her as one of their own. She was a real talent who had succeeded on the strength of her ability alone. She wasn't one of those creations of the recording industry's hype machine.

But an article in the Wall Street Journal reveals that she actually was a creation of the recording industry all along.
a press release last week from Walt Disney Co.'s Hollywood Records label declared: "Breakthrough YouTube Phenomenon Marié Digby Signs With Hollywood Records." What the release failed to mention is that Hollywood Records signed Ms. Digby in 2005, 18 months before she became a YouTube phenomenon. Hollywood Records helped devise her Internet strategy, consulted with her on the type of songs she chose to post, and distributed a high-quality studio recording of "Umbrella" to iTunes and radio stations.

The record label devised the strategy of building buzz by posting amateur-style videos of her on YouTube, and her connection with the record label was hidden or downplayed.

Marie Digby, in response to the article, has apparently been claiming that she never hid her connection with Hollywood Records, but from the quotations in the article, it certainly appears as if she constantly presented herself as a "lucky nobody" who just posted some videos online and then got noticed.

Well, at least it was really her singing in the videos. (Thanks, Bob!)
Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007.   Comments (5)

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