The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story Unveiled for Nov. 16 Release‏


Bruce Springsteen’s The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story Unveiled for Nov. 16 Release

Columbia Records has just announced Bruce Springsteen’s The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story will be released on November 16.

For the first time, fans will have access to 21 never-before-heard complete songs from the "Darkness" recording sessions on 2 CD or 4 LP 180-gram vinyl sets that will be available as The Promise. "’Darkness’ was my ‘samurai’ record," Springsteen writes, "stripped to the frame and ready to rumble. But the music that got left behind was substantial." The Promise will also include the new essay from Bruce Springsteen, lyrics to all new tracks and unseen photographs from the Darkness On The Edge of Town sessions.

Containing a wealth of previously unreleased material, The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story offers an unprecedented look into Springsteen’s creative process during a defining moment in his career. In addition to the The Promise 2 CDs, the deluxe 3 CD/3 DVD and 3 CD/3 Blu-ray Disc versions include the Darkness on the Edge of Town album digitally remastered for the first time. Comprising over six hours of film and more than two hours of audio, The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story is packaged within an 80-page spiral-bound reproduction of Bruce’s original notebooks documenting the recording sessions for the album, containing alternate lyrics, song ideas, recording details and personal notes.

Visit for an exclusive sneak peek of the The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story video content as well as a first-listen of the song, "Save My Love," from The Promise, and complete details about this new release.

Click This Link to be taken to the page at that includes the video.

Pre-order The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story 3 CD/3 DVD or 3 CD/3 Blu-ray Disc deluxe editions with exclusive t-shirt and poster only at The Promise Online Store.

The Promise 2 CD and 4 LP packages can be pre-ordered at Amazon. Both 2 CD and 4 LP Vinyl editions with exclusive t-shirt and poster are also available for pre-sale only at The Promise Online Store.


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Why Eric Violette is No Longer the ‘ Guy’

Eric Violette’s latest Blog on why is no longer the ‘ Guy’!
This is a good article/blog regarding what really happened with the commercials.  Eric Violette, the star is actually a talented, trained French-Canadian actor and singer with his own band!
By Charlotte Chevalier
by Charlotte Chevalier
25 Aug 2010 

Eric Violette and FCR: Behind the scene

The TRUTH behind the commercials

Looks like the popular band has lost its gig. There will be no more commercials featuring the trio lead by the slacker dude with the impish smile and perpetual credit woes. is offering varying and rather nonsensical explanations for their decision.

The commercials which began airing in 2007 were an immediate hit. The infectious, sing along jingles had Americans, from babies to grandmothers, memorizing the tunes. Country singers sang them at their concerts, crowds at sports events did too. We hardly needed prompting to launch into “They say a man should always dress for the job he wants….”

As interest in the recurring characters increased, lead singer Eric Violette was revealed. Rather than the American garage band frontman he symbolized, we found out he is a French Canadian actor/musician lip synching the pre-recorded jingles and his “band” was not really a band. Nevertheless the public continued to love the character and the commercials while increasingly complaining about the product. Consumers seethed when they discovered the product the band was promoting was not actually “F-R-E-E that spells free”. We loved the commercials despite the product they promoted.

Helped along by a story line that everyone could identify with—the young man who dreams big, but rarely hits the mark—the public anxiously waited for each new installment of the band’s continuing saga. Ultimately nine commercials were filmed.

Yet with all the success of the commercials, the back story was quite different. Complaints against rose so much that the government stepped in to help consumers understand what they were signing onto when they accepted their “free” credit report. Using a video parody of the commercials to get out an accurate message, the FTC also began prosecuting Experian (owner of for their less than “truth in advertising” message. Federal laws were amended to protect consumers from unscrupulous vendors of credit reports which consumers were entitled by law to receive for free once a year anyway.

The other back story involved yet more deception on the part of Back in 2007 they hired the Martin Advertising Agency to produce the commercials. The agency was recently rated America’s top advertising agency and is the creative mastermind of other memorable commercials such as Geico’s gecko and cavemen. The Martin Agency chose to outsource the production of the commercials to Montreal. Flying under the radar of Canadian unions such as the actors’ union ACTRA (AFTRA and SAG’s Canadian affiliate), the Martin Agency was able to buy the silence of French Canadian production staff and actors’ agents. The unknown actors were paid a minimum day rate and an annual use buyout of a few hundred dollars. Consequently, the Martin Agency achieved its goal. The commercials were made for a fraction of the cost an American production would have demanded. This allowed them to spend their budget on air time and run the commercials ad infinitum.

While Violette became the face of and the public’s interest in him increased, took advantage of his popularity to again be less than forthright with the public. Not content to mislead consumers with the so-called free credit reports, nor content to produce commercials on the sly in Canada, they also impersonated Violette on their websites and Facebook pages. Fans posted messages on these sites clearly thinking they were communicating directly with the “band” members. FCR even created a Facebook character named Roadie Jack who pretended to be the “band’s” roadie. When Jack’s Facebook friends (there were thousands) asked him about the band, Jack would invent bogus answers. Unsuspecting fans did not realize the sites were simply a marketing tool.

The impersonation continued in 2008 when held a contest on Youtube. All you had to do was upload yourself singing one of the commercial songs. The grand prize was $15,000!! Ironically, this was more money than had paid to all three “band” members for acting in the commercials. During the contest fans posted comments on the Youtube page believing the members of “FCR band” were hosting the contest. Again fans’ presumptions about who they were communicating with were never corrected by the FCR.

Meanwhile Violette, who made only a few thousand dollars for the entire series of commercials, was still a struggling actor and musician trying to cope with his sudden pop icon status. Accosted by the American media, who naturally expected Violette to have reaped the financial rewards of his fame and the TV residuals, he graciously deflected their questions delving into how his new found “wealth” and “life changing” windfall had changed his life. Neither nor the Martin Agency offered him assistance with public relations. watched nervously as the actor began doing more and more interviews and making appearances in the US. Their discomfort with his popularity was because they knew the more media queried the actor or scrutinized the background of the commercials the more likely the truth behind the commercials’ productions and FCR’s disingenuous manipulation of the public might be exposed.

Last year, that is just what happened. As production for the third set of commercials began in Montreal, ACTRA heard about it and angrily intervened. Production could continue, ACTRA stated, but only under ACTRA guidelines. That meant the Martin Agency would have to pay union rates and residuals to the actors. Consequently, these last commercials were aired far less often than their cheaper predecessors and now they’ve been pulled completely. 

Apparently, the Martin Agency intends to continue the “band” concept but with different actors. What are they going to do? Head off to a third world country? No, they’re going to hire some inexperienced American band who is hungry for fame. That band will be exploited just as badly as Violette and his bandmates because that’s what does best–scam people. And in a few years, the decision to drop the original band will appear on the list of worst marketing decisions of the decade.

So ends the story of the guy.

By Charlotte Chevalier

Interview with KIMMI!!!!!!! – Eric Violette’s MySpace Blog

Interview with KIMMI!!!!!!! – Eric Violette’s MySpace Blog

Interview with Eric Violette and his band God Against God’s guitarist Sebastien!

A Follow Up To Some Recent Blogs…

I am writing this Blog to post some responses to subjects I have recently written about.  Rather than create an entire Blog I am just going to post links with (brief) summaries.

In relation to my recent Blogs I’m Glad Someone Finally Said Something About the NY Mag Piece!, Some Wonderful Johnny Weir Outtake Photos!, and NY Mag Comments:  Week of August 30, 2010, all related to the NY Mag article The Johnny Weir Spectacular and it’s aftermath; has published the article Some Johnny Weir Fans Angry at NY Magazine. The article was published August 24, 2010 and is written by Cyd Zeigler Jr..  This article focuses on the response to the NY Mag article, and mentions the NY Daily News mention of Johnny’s response, as well as a long but very well written letter by Lynn V. Ingogly that details point by point what was wrong with the article. Ms Ingogly is a free-lance writer who has also written the Blogs Guuuuuurrrrrrlll… and #YoureACar about this very subject. This article also contains links at the bottom to other pieces of interest about

Johnny Weir. There are also numerous reader responses to this article following the article itself.

In relation to my recent Blog Unfortunately It’s All About Hate and Ignorance…, which focused partly on the ordeal of umpire Billy Van Raaphorst, I am posting a link to an article that appeared in  This article details the outpouring of support Van Raaphorst has received since the incident in a game on July 31st.  The article Gay Umpire Overwhelmed By Positive Response appeared in the August 18, 2010 issue and was written by Jim Buzinski.

Memorial to My Brother and P.O.M.C. Conference in Philadelphia

My brother Jimmy’s name is somewhere on one of these plaques, but I’m not sure which one. This is a nice ceremony, very somber. I did go to two of these conferences, one about fifteen years ago in Lansing, Michigan; and one several years ago held a few miles away in Scottsdale, Arizona.  My mother went to one other one with some of her friends, but I can’t remember what city it was in.  The one this video was shot at took place the weekend of August 13, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  The  National Organization of Parents of Murdered Children (P.O.M.C.) was founded in Cincinnati, Ohio.  Here is the link to the Valley of the Sun Chapter of Parents of Murdered Children.
My brother Jimmy was shot to death at the age of twenty-five on April 19, 1994 at his apartment in Dallas, Texas.  He is buried at National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona in this location: SECTION 43 SITE 1444.  His killer, Geremy Lamar Sledge, was convicted of First Degree Murder, and is currently serving a thirty year to life sentence in the Beto Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.  His earliest chance for parole is July 18, 2024.

DATE OF BIRTH: 08/19/1968
DATE OF DEATH: 04/19/1994
BURIED AT: SECTION 43  SITE 1444 Click to view the cemetery map
(480) 513-3600 View Map

Here is his memoral site (still a work in progress): Memorial Site for James Joseph Turley, Jr. 
Posted on Fri, Aug. 13, 2010

Homicide victims’ families gather to bond and grieve

Philadelphia Daily News 215-854-5218

The tragedy that struck the Jenkins and Varga families in 2008 brought them closer together in a way they couldn’t imagine.

Both families lost their children – Marine Sgt. Janek Pietrzak, 24, and his wife, Quiana Jenkins-Pietrzak, 26, were slain in Southern California two months shy of their one-year wedding anniversary in October 2008.

The couple were found gagged, tied and shot execution style in their home. Four Marines were charged in their deaths.

Two years later, those two families and 300 other people from around the country have become part of a group of parents and relatives of slain children.

The National Organization of Parents of Murdered Children opened its 24th annual conference last night at the Philadelphia Airport Marriott with the unveiling of the "Murder Wall," a traveling tribute to the memories of slain sons and daughters.

"It was very touching, giving them honor which they deserve," said Henryka Varga, of New York, mother of Sgt. Pietrzak.

Her eyes were glossy as she stared at the wall’s wooden panels.

Henryka and her husband, Milan Varga, were attending the ceremony for the first time. Quiana’s parents, Roy and Glenda Jenkins, invited them.

"It helps you because this is where you can let your shield down," said Glenda Jenkins, 54, of San Bernardino, Calif.

The ceremony was an emotional one for Deborah Cunningham, 51, of Dexter, Maine.

Her eyes welled with tears as she watched the Pennsylvania State Police Honor Guard and New Jersey State Police Lt. Andre Curtis unveil the last plaque with 117 names.

Cunningham lost her 21-month-old grandson, Treven Jacob, and Mindy Gould, a friend of the family, in December 1999, after they were murdered execution style by Gould’s ex-boyfriend.

"As you can see, every single one of these people here has lost someone," Cunningham said. "You can feel their anguish."

The three vacant spaces on the 31st plaque will undoubtedly be filled by next year’s ceremony, said Nancy Ruhe, the executive director of NOPMC.

"There are families sitting there watching TV with loved ones," Ruhe said. "Little do they know they’re going to join a group that no one wants to join. All you have left is a name on a plaque."

Related Stories:

‘Murder Wall’ recalls Sarah, 3,714 others

Family Hopes to Solve Murder With MySpace Page, Award Money


Some Wonderful Johnny Weir Outtake Photos!

Even though the article ‘The Johnny Weir Spectacular’ contained a number of factual errors (some of which have since been corrected, at least in the online version of the article); there were some wonderful photographs taken by Cass Bird that went along with it.  It’s hard to describe what was wrong with this article other than the writer did not do a good job of describing the completely unique personality that is Johnny Weir, and focused instead on a piecemeal approach that did not appear to have been properly edited, fact checked or written; and did not even approach doing justice to Johnny Weir.  Sadly, like so many articles and interviews in the past about Weir, this one focused far too much on the non-issue of Weir’s sexuality. 

The NY Daily News ‘Gatecrasher’ Gossip Page with Frank Digiacomo describes the reaction of Weir’s mother to how he was portrayed in the article, as well as his unhappiness with how his friends were portrayed; as does this Blog I wrote a few days ago;

Wheres My Koppy’s Blog ‘I’m Glad Someone Finally Said Something About the NY Mag Piece’.

The following two Blogs by my friend Misfit Mimes do an excellent job of describing what is wrong with this article:

MisfitMimes Blog ‘Guuuuuurrrrrrlll’

MisfitMimes Blog ‘#Youre A Car’

However, despite the issues with the article itself, some of the photographs of Weir alone, especially in the print version, are worth the price of the magazine. 

Enjoy looking!

These four photographs accompanied the article itself:

This gorgeous head shot appeared on the first page of the article.

Page Two of the article gives us this wonderful photo!

Page Three gives us this ‘Babushka’ photograph.

Page Four gives us this uh, ‘interesting’ photo!

The following seven photos appeared on the NY Magazine website a few days after the article as a slideshow of outtakes:

The beauty of Outtake Number Four  is hard to even describe!

Outtake Number One evokes 1970s era Bruce Springsteen.

Outtake Number Two could be a rock album cover photograph!

Outtake Number Five

Outtake Number Six is just…beautiful!

Outtake Number Seven

Outtake Number Three

I’m Glad Someone Said Something About NYMag piece!

I am SO glad someone other than skating forums and Blogs and Johnny Weir’s fans is addressing this article! And in a reputable source like the New York Daily News on top of it!  You tell them Johnny and Patti Weir!  We love you both!

About halfway down the page on this New York Daily News gossip page you will find this three paragraph item:


Johnny Weir can take a few insults, but don’t upset his mom. The Olympic skater tells us he wasn’t thrilled with how New York Magazine portrayed him in its current issue, but what really cheeses him off is that his mother "was offended" by the feature.

"She said it seemed I wasn’t serious and I was just another New York-area person just going to parties," Weir says, before explaining: "Yes, I was getting ready for red-carpet events, but I was going to them to work and network." Weir also grouses that the feature "attacked my people. … I can be told to be subjected to a gender test, I can have my clothes attacked, but when you attack my people, my army, that’s when I get pissed off!"

A spokeswoman for New York magazine responds: "We love Johnny Weir – as Amy [Larocca] writes in the piece, he’s ‘talented and clever and beautiful,’ and we think that comes through in the profile and photos."

Read more:


Obviously they have not read their own piece, because though it’s true that Johnny Weir IS talented, clever and beautiful, the piece as written does not portray that very well at all.  My friend Misfit Mimes did a wonderful job of describing what was wrong with this article in her brilliant Blogs Guuuuuurrrrrrlll and #YoureACar.

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