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  • Cameron Crowe’s documentary “The Union,” takes a very detailed and superlative look at the recording of the album, The Union, by Elton John and Leon Russell. If you’re a fan of Crowe’s style, this was a must-see HBO film for sure.

    Many of the best scenes consisted of Crowe just talking with one or both of his subjects alongside vintage footage of a performance.

    Some of the archival footage is just sensational. John performs “Burn Down The Mission” from some 30 years ago, juxtaposed with a new version, just now recorded in the studio. Simply brilliant.

    I loved The Union album; it was a pitch-perfect snapshot of the two artists at their prime. One scene is just brilliant. It’s when John literally breaks down while Russell sings “In the Hands of Angels,” his song of thanks to Elton. One of the best rock docs ever!

    Madonna Shines in Super Bowl Performance

    Madonna performed a near-perfect half time show at the Super Bowl. Despite a rather complex stage show, she nailed it for sure with style and grace. “Vogue” was exceptional with a dynamic stage performance that took full advantage of a full lit stage.

    “Give Me All Your Luvin’,” her new single, which quite frankly I didn’t love when I first heard it, was tonight dynamic and ultimately compelling. She ended with her “Like A Prayer.” The music business’s most valuable player of late, Cee Lo Green, joined in. Having worked with Madonna years back, she’s still in a class all by herself.

    There have been many imitators to the throne, but she still sits at the top.

    X-Men: First Class: Something You Can Love

    I finally watched last summer’s No. 1  hit, “X-Men: First Class” and loved it. From the rather kitschy direction (from Matthew Vaughn) to the terrific performances by Kevin Bacon, Michael Fassbinder, Rose Byrne, James McAvoy and Jennifer Lawrence, it was a fun ride through and through.

    At times, however, the pacing was so ’60s-ish, I thought that Vaughn would have made a more-than-suitable director for the next James Bond. I especially enjoyed hearing Freddy Cannon’s “Palisades Park” in an early scene in the movie.

    According to the artist himself, “I was sitting there with my wife when it came on … what a surprise!”

    Names in the News

    Alan Rothstein, Warren Schatz, Angelo Barbaro, Angelina Mod, Melissa Daniels, Michael Zilkha, Deb Caponetta, Coatimundi, August Darnell, Howard Bloom, Ellen Smith, Don Wardell, Billy Smith, Steve Leeds, Larry Yasgar, Doug & Cheryl Breitbart, Jennifer Lopez, Cate Sage, May Pang