YouTube An arrest warrant has been issued for a "dead" rapper. Bronx native Tim…
- Posted by Spinner
The Review: The notorious New York landmark has been home to countless artists, writers and musicians over the years. Cohen was one such patron, and this 1974 song tells of the tryst he enjoyed with Janis Joplin in graphic detail.
Travel Rating: Five stars. Don't come here if you're on a budget -- or expecting any sleep -- though you might bump into some interesting characters.
'Hotel California,' The Eagles
The Review: A surreal guide through a visit to a less-than-wholesome hostelry in which the Eagles give their take on, as Don Henley puts it, "the dark underbelly of the American dream." You can "check out any time you like/But you can never leave."
Travel Rating: One star. A place to avoid, due to the overzealous staff, those strange aromas in the air and a limited wine selection.
The Review: In this 1956 hit, Elvis's girl has run off, leaving him to seek solace in a heaving hotel located "down at the end of Lonely Street" where the world's rejected Lotharios immerse themselves in communal grief. To check in here in a state of romantic mourning would probably be OK. Any other time would be unbearable.
Travel Rating: Three-and-a-half stars. Anyone looking for a good time should avoid this hotel, and girls who break boys' hearts might do well to steer clear, too.
The Review: This 'Definitely Maybe' track from 1994 is said to be about the Columbia Hotel in Liverpool, from which Oasis were banned for doing things like throwing televisions out of windows. Liam Gallagher sings, "I can see the signs but they're not very clear" -- perhaps a reference to concerns over fire safety, which is not what you want from a hotel.
Travel Rating: Three stars. The Columbia has a central location and is a useful base, if you can stand the antics of some of the other guests.
The Review: In this 1996 track from Wilco's 'Being There,' Jeff Tweedy tells us "the hotel in Arizona made us feel like stars." However, by the end, he endures "one more worried whisper right in my ear," suggesting all is not right. Staying here would involve intense self-reflection and some visits from paranoia and confusion.
Travel Rating: Two-and-a-half stars. Good service -- at first -- before staff seem to forget you. Remember to tip.
The Review: This energetic hoedown-style number from the White Stripes' 2001 album 'White Blood Cells' is a tribute to this former hotel in the duo's native Detroit. Jack White sings, "I got moving on my mind," which leads him directly to the Yorba, built in 1926, where "all they got inside is vacancy."
Travel Rating: Four stars. Those with a nose for nostalgia will enjoy the Yorba, where the colourful past of ramblin' men and traveling salesmen seeps out of the walls.
The Review: The hotel that these Aussies from Adelaide are referring to is that in the traditionally seedy Kings Cross area of Sydney. Singer Jimmy Barnes paints the place as full of character as well as filth. His aims are clear: "Come on up to my room, baby/I need a co-star/And I can't afford to be too choosy."
Travel Rating: One-and-a-half stars. Put simply, stay here if your standards of personal hygiene are, shall we say, "flexible."
The Review: There are more than a thousand Motel 6's in North America. Yo La Tengo's song from their 'Painful' album of 1993 is a fuzz-baked effort in which Ira Kaplan sings of the existential stupor brought on by one such faceless yet affordable accommodation: "Blank stare on the TV/'The Howling II''s on channel 3/Oh, I drift off to sleep/While the snow falls on the screen."
Travel Rating: Two stars. Does the job and no more. Functional, unfussy and a little depressing. Don't come here for your honeymoon.
The Review: This catchy but intense track from Spektor's 'Begin to Hope' album of 2006 is a frank assessment of a troubled, but somehow fun, hotel life with hints of drug addiction ("A little bag of cocaine," she sings) and possibly worse. The hotel itself sounds perfectly habitable, certainly one where discretion is assured.
Travel Rating: Four stars. A classy place where service is good and the indulgences of city living can be fully enjoyed.
The Review: Isaak's track from his 'Wicked Game' LP of 1991 begins with the line "Blue hotel on a lonely highway/Blue hotel, life don't work out my way." Another moody lost soul traverses the American landscape, only to stop into an inn where "every room is lonely." At least at Elvis's Heartbreak Hotel you'd have some company.
Travel Rating: Two stars. This dreary hotel does little to endear itself to guests, and its proximity from anything of interest makes it pointless for those in town for sightseeing.
The Review: The Bad Seeds improvise as Cave screeches his poetry about a hotel where "everybody got a room" and where "You'll never see a sign hanging on the door/Saying 'There ain't no rooms available here anymore.'" Although the typical Cave irony is in abundance, this hotel sounds fine on the surface -- though sinister goings-on may lurk inside.
Travel Rating: Three-and-a-half stars. Comfortable, but strict entry codes apply. Marriage certificates might be a good idea, and don't get up to no good.
The Review: Despite being from Manchester, Elbow evoke the same mystical Americana as many on the list with this 2003 hotel song -- this is a tale of sparse landscapes, moonlight and the anonymity of indifferent little inns "somewhere in the Dust Bowl." This motel sounds comfortable. Perhaps a little too comfortable.
Travel Rating: Three stars. Another stop-off for when you're weary on the road ... or on the run. Affordable, ugly and, if you've got any sense, for one night only.
'Honeymoon Suite,' Suzanne Vega
The Review: Vega's wonderful hotel song from her 1996 album 'Nine Objects of Desire' is about ghostly happenings for a pair of newlyweds during a stay in France, such as characters magically coming to life from paintings to chat to the singer's husband. A night here would certainly be otherworldly.
Travel Rating: Five stars. Decadently decorated in typically Gallic style, this ornate hotel's history is positively alive, making for an intriguing stay.
The Review: From 1980's 'Get Happy!' album, with Costello claiming that upon his first night in a Los Angeles motor lodge, he was told his room was the very same where Sam Cooke was murdered in 1964. Different motel altogether, though Costello's is still one where vice abounds: "Boys everywhere, fumbling with the catches" he sings.
Travel Rating: Three stars. As with a lot of accommodation in Sin City, a body in the swimming pool never seems off the cards. Still, the freebies are good.
The Review: This eerie hotel song from Death Cab's 2005 'Plans' album uses the image of two brothers sharing a bed with their backs facing each other to illustrate the way relationships disintegrate as time goes on. This lodge would be comfortable and quiet, even if a heavy atmosphere hangs in the air.
Travel Rating: Four stars. One for families, where staff keep out of your way and the beds are comfortable.