Archive for Conan O’Brien

Pixies Perform “Bel Esprit” on CONAN

Legendary alt-rock band The Pixies showed off their new single, “Bel Esprit,” on Conan Thursday night, April 27, 2017.

 

“Bel Esprit” is a verbal pas de deux between Pixies frontman Black Francis and the group’s bassist, Paz Lenchantin. Lenchantin stepped in to replace Kim Shattuck, whose brief tenure as a Pixie spanned June-November 2013. Shattuck had been hastily brought in to fill in for original Pixies bassist Kim Deal.

 

The Pixies have released two studio albums since the group re-formed in 2004. A previous album, 2014’s “Indie Cindy,” was almost universally panned by fans and critics. The group released their album “Head Carrier” on September 30, 2016.

 

“This was feeling very much like our comeback record as opposed to ‘Indie Cindy,’ which felt like a transitional moment even when we were making it,” Francis said to a reporter for Rolling Stone. Music critics, including NPR’s Jason Heller, agree.

 

Originally formed in Boston in 1986, the original Pixies lineup of Francis, Deal, Joey Santiago, and David Lovering played together off and on through 1993. That year, Kim Deal reached some of her greatest commercial success not as a Pixie, but as the lead singer/guitarist of The Breeders with her twin sister Kelley Deal. The Breeders’ album “Last Splash” reached platinum status thanks in part to lead-off single “Cannonball.”

 

Although never very commercially successful, the Pixies have been greatly influential on other hard rock, pop-rock, and indie-rock groups through the 1990s and beyond. One pop culture claim to fame is the appearance of the Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind?” on the soundtrack to the 1999 film “Fight Club,” played over the movie’s ending credits.

 

Conan O’Brien and Vicente Fox: A Comedy Dream Team

Conan O’Brien’s show took its act on the road recently, and the resulting Conan Without Borders: Made in Mexico episodes have had everyone talking. Especially considering the recent political climate, it has been interesting to see America’s favorite late-night redhead bonding with friends across the border. In one of his most talked-about segments from south of the border, O’Brien interviewed former Mexican president Vicente Fox.

Right off the bat, it immediately became clear that this would be no standard interview. Vicente Fox presented Conan O’Brien with a pair of beautiful leather cowboy boots with a humorous epithet etched into them. From then, the two went on to talk about Fox’s well-known Twitter war with President Donald J. Trump. While O’Brien joked that he probably wouldn’t be allowed back into the United States, Fox went on to praise all of the many ways in which the Mexican people have been an asset to the United States.

As the audience cheered him on, Fox compared the relationship between the U.S. and Mexico to that of roommates. He also made claims that undocumented Mexican workers had worked for both the Bush family and the Trumps. When Fox joked about how white O’Brien looked, O’Brien made a humorous quip about how he had starred in a telenovela.

All in all, O’Brien’s trip down to Mexico seems to have been exceptionally fortuitous. Not only do the Mexican people seem to love him, but he’s also filmed segments with some of their favorite folks—including Gio Dos Santos. During Fox’s visit to the show, O’Brien also mentioned that it is impossible to walk around Los Angeles without noticing all of the wonderful cultural contributions that have been made by Mexicans.

Once again, some of the “guy/gal on the street segments” proved to be comedy gold for O’Brien. Also, it should be noted that O’Brien accomplished an outstanding, incredible feat when he performed his opening monologue entirely in Spanish. It’s difficult to think of any other late-night hosts who could have taken on this tremendous task, and O’Brien was able to come through the entire experience with flying colors.

Conan Gets Made in Mexico

Conan O’Brien was on the road again; this time to Mexico. Wednesday night, the late-night talk show, Conan, aired a special remote titled Conan Without Borders: Made in Mexico. O’Brien’s entire show traveled to and filmed in Mexico. It used a Mexican staff, studio, audience, and guests (Diego Luna and Vicente Fox). And like all of O’Brien’s travel episodes, it turned out pretty great.

Conan’s greatest skill as a comedian is his ability to relate to so many different people through using himself as the point of ridicule. He makes himself the butt of jokes, rather than poking fun at a different culture than his own. By ingratiating himself to the outsiders in this way, he becomes the outsider in the foreign land, allowing the television audience to relate to the people he is meeting.

Just in recent travel episodes, Conan has made his way to South Korea, Germany, Cuba, and now Mexico. Each time, he explores the culture he thrusts himself into. In Mexico, that meant meeting a lucha libre wrestler and joining the cast of a telenovela.

O’Brien’s comedy never ventures into politics. That isn’t his thing. But it was obvious that his trip to Mexico was to help prove a point, even if it was an obvious one. These people are normal, nice people! We don’t need a wall between the United States and Mexico. One of his funnier about-town segments saw him panhandling for money for the wall, which Mexican citizens excitedly turned down. Again, he was the butt of the joke here, not the citizens he was talking to. Either that, or Donald Trump was the joke without Conan even uttering anything remotely political.

Conan O’Brien Might Do a Weekly Show

Conan O’Brien has been making people laugh since he was surprising chosen to replace David Letterman after he left NBC and took his show to CBS. That was way back in 1993. Conan is still around today and funnier than ever. Remaining relevant comedically for 24 years is quite a difficult thing to do. Conan has been able to do it be constantly staying one step ahead of his competition. For example, making a quick trip to Cuba and becoming the first American show to film there in decades. However, much has changed since Conan first hit the airwaves in 1993. He is no longer on NBC. His show resides on TBS where it has been since his very messy departure from “The Tonight Show.” There is also much more competition than there was 24 years ago.

 

The issue of competition is a big one for the numerous late night hosts that populate the airwaves these days. Since Conan’s debut, many late night shows have come and gone. It is hard for a show to gain an audience when there are so many other shows to compete with. A recent report suggests that Conan is considering a weekly show that would replace his current show that he does four night each week. The idea is that less could be more. Perhaps a smaller supply of Conan on a weekly basis would create a greater demand for the show. John Oliver and Bill Maher have had great success with a weekly format on HBO.

 

It should be noted that neither Conan or TBS has confirmed the accuracy of the report. There might be nothing to it. However, it would be an interesting decision for Conan to make such a drastic change to his format. It remains to be seen if he will actually do it.

Conan O’Brien Experiences VR In Brand New Sketch

Late night host Conan O’Brien recently visited New York’s Chelsea YouTube Space to check out the very latest in virtual reality (VR) products. Of course, O’Brien also took his camera crew with him to film his candid reactions and share them with his audience on TBS’s Conan.

 

O’Brien first met with Tom Small, the head of the VR departments for all YouTube Spaces. Right from the start of their interview, O’Brien was interested in the possibilities for VR, especially in the field of pornography.

 

After O’Brien was done joking around with Small, the real fun began. O’Brien was led to a green screen room that helps viewers see exactly what O’Brien was seeing through his VR device. This green screen technique is called “mixed reality.”

 

O’Brien started off drawing the infinity symbol with his joystick. After he got more skilled with the device, O’Brien actually drew a cartoon version of himself. Once he went into outer space, O’Brien said that this VR technology will “put the marijuana industry out of business.”

 

When O’Brien was done exploring outer space for a bit, he went into a program called “office worker.” Here, Conan experienced daily life in a virtual cubicle. He immediately picked up a red velvet donut and began eating it in the virtual world. “I taste nothing,” O’Brien complained, “we’ve gotta work on that guys.”

 

O’Brien later had fun making copies at the Xerox machine. First he made a copy of a stapler, then he made a copy of his own brain.

 

As this hilarious sketch went on, O’Brien also tried out simulations in a restaurant and in a gym. Throughout all of these simulations, however, O’Brien was disappointed there was no pornography.

 

This clip currently has well over 250,000 views on YouTube.

 

 

Late Night Star Conan O’Brien Will Host 2016 Nobel Peace Prize Concert

Coco fans, rejoice! The late night TV sensation Conan O’Brien is going to host the 23rd Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway. O’Brien told reporters that his “good agent” deserves all the credit for helping him secure this prestigious gig.

 

O’Brien also bragged a bit to reporters, telling them that he will receive the Nobel Prize in Particle Physics at this event. Who knew Conan was so smart?

 

All joking aside, O’Brien said he was greatly honored to host this special event. Some former stars who hosted this event include Helen Mirren, Jay Leno, and Liam Neeson. To say the least, O’Brien has some big shoes to fill. But fans of O’Brien’s irreverent and Monty Pythonesque humor will probably be satisfied with his upcoming performance.

 

The musicians set to perform at this concert include the Norwegian indie pop band Highasakite, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra, and the American singer Halsey. This event will honor Columbian President Juan Manuel Santos, the sole recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize this year. President Santos is being honored for stopping Columbia’s civil war.

 

After graduating from Harvard University, O’Brien began his career in show business working as a writer for Saturday Night Live and The Simpsons. In 1993, O’Brien got his own TV show called Late Night With Conan O’Brien on NBC. This late night program lasted till 2009.

 

After a short and highly publicized year hosting The Tonight Show following Jay Leno’s disastrous move to primetime, O’Brien was forced to give up his slot to Leno again. O’Brien left NBC in 2010.

 

O’Brien immediately began hosting the popular late night show Conan on TBS after his departure from NBC. He is still hosting this show today.

 

This 23rd Annual Nobel Peace Prize Concert will air on December 11th around the world. This concert, which is being organized by the Nobel Peace Prize Research & Information and Warner Brothers, is going to be streamed live via YouTube.