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Eric, King of Penguins


In this new weekly WFUV feature, our staffers pick a trio of their current personal faves that we think you might want to check out too. Eric Holland, FUV's evening host, rounds up his three current obsessions:

The Raconteurs
Unlike 99 percent of bands, I can remember exactly when I first heard the White Stripes. It was 2001 and the album was White Blood Cells. I've paid rapt attention to what Jack White has been up to ever since. Among his various musical adventures, my favorite project is the Raconteurs — the group, like all great groups, is more than equal to the sum of their parts, which happens to be White, Brendan Benson, Jack Lawrence, and Patrick Keeler. My enjoyment of their first album in over a decade, 2019's Help Us Stranger (which was released last month), was complemented by a rare chance to interview White for WFUV. (That session will air again this Monday, July 22, at 8 p.m. and be available in the FUV Vault to stream that day. The Raconteurs play New York's Hammerstein Ballrom on September 5-6, and Brooklyn's Kings Theatre on September 7.)

I've had a lifelong love affair with nature's best-dressed bird, but it has become more intense recently. Beyond insisting on watching all documentaries or animated films that feature any species of the flightless birds, I traveled to South America last fall and saw majestic King penguins, as well as charming Magellanic penguins, in their native habitats. A few of their friends live nearby at The Bronx Zoo and the Central Park Zoo, if you'd like to get up close and personal yourself. A plastic penguin lives in my freezer guarding my bagels and turkey pot pies.

Spaghetti Westerns
I recently enjoyed, for about the millionth time, the entire Sergio Leone-directed "Man with No Name" trilogy of films starring an impossibly young Clint Eastwood: "A Fistful of Dollars," "For a Few Dollars More," and "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly." They never disappoint. ("Whoever double-crosses me and leaves me alive, he understands nothing about Tuco! Nothing!") The music by Ennio Morricone (on the latter two films) is magnificent, and eight years ago, Morricone inspired a nifty album by Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi called Rome.

Listen to Eric Holland on 90.7 WFUV Monday-Thursday evenings from 6-10 p.m., also streaming online.