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The Patriots and the Seahawks will take the field for Super Bowl XLIX on February 2, and there's no shortage of story lines to follow.

  • "#DeflateGate" looks to be the newest scandal that won't go away.
  • Shiny new quarterback Russell Wilson comes to town taking on the aging sheriff in Tom Brady.
  • Wilson is the youngest QB to appear in two Super Bowls since Brady did it 2003 and 2004.
  • Settle is hoping to be the first team to repeat since the Patriots did it in those same seasons.
  • Seattle's head coach Pete Carroll led the Patriots from 1997 to 1999 before owner Bob Kraft hired Bill Belichick.
  • 2015 marks the first time both Super Bowl coaches will be more than 60 years old.
  • And so forth, and so on.

All kinds of stats, records and bragging rights hang in the balance. Fortunes will be made and lost on the game. Fans, bettors, pundits and writers across the country have been examining the game from any and all angles (well the ones not obsessed with firmness of balls anyway) to find any details that might affect the outcome of the Super Bowl.

But for all the blustering about keys to the game, for my money Super Bowl XLIX will be most impacted by New England's Rob Gronkowski and Seattle's Richard Sherman, the most important non-QB players on their respective teams, or as I've decided to dub them alien and predator.

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Events On Sale This Week

Here's a list of the hottest events with dates going on sale this week. Our event of the week is "The Boys of Zummer" Tour featuring Fall Out Boy and Wiz Khalifa. This is going to be one hot tour with new albums coming out from both Fall Out Boy and Wiz, so be sure to pick up your tickets as soon as possible. Billy Joel made a big venue announcement this week; the piano man will play Chicago's Wrigley Field this summer and will break the record for the most times a musician has performed in the iconic stadium. Lots of tickets are going on sale for Train (remember them?), who will be playing select tour dates with The Fray, as well as Motley Crue with Alice Cooper and Weird Al (a motley crew indeed). For tickets to these events and more, head over to Ticket Liquidator.

Concert Tickets On Sale

Event

Date

Cities

Billy Joel Saturday, 1/24/15 Chicago, IL
Bjork Friday, 1/23/15 New York, NY
Chicago Friday, 1/23/15 Cedar Rapids, IA
Clean Bandit Friday, 1/23/15 Cleveland, OH; Detroit, MI; Toronto, ON; Carrboro, NC; San Francisco, CA
Darius Rucker Friday, 1/16/15 Alpharetta, GA
Elton John Friday, 1/23/15 Augusta, GA; Fayetteville, NC; Greenville, SC; Huntsville, AL
Eric Church Friday, 1/23/15 Albany, NY; Wilkes-Barre, PA; Cincinnati, OH; Tallahassee, FL; Jacksonville, FL; Raleigh, NC; Newark, NJ; Lexington, KY; Syracuse, NY
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First things first: the New England Patriots did not win the AFC Championship Game because they used balls that may or may not have been below the legal PSI limit. The Patriots dismantled the Indianapolis Colts and absolutely deserve to be playing in Super Bowl XLIX.

Whether or not any discipline comes from the NFL remains to be seen. Fans who are on witch hunts to discredit the Patriots are quick to forget (or ignore) the fact that each ball is inspected by a referee before the game begins, and is then marked with a dot deeming it game-ready. It is feasible that the Patriots could have then deflated the footballs post-inspection, but if true, it is an incredibly brash an arrogant move. More likely, the weather caused a bit of a drop in pressure.

Regardless, the Patriots will play in Super Bowl 49. The Seattle Seahawks, seemingly forgotten this week, opened as two-point favorites when the Super Bowl matchup was originally known. Since then, the line has moved to pick 'em, or even favoring the Patriots by one point.

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Work Out at Concerts

How are your New Year’s resolutions coming? Did you already blow the money you set aside for a gym membership on upcoming 2015 concerts? No worries! There are tons of ways to get your exercise in at shows (no sassy personal trainers necessary). After all, the key to a successful work out is quality music, so why not have the ultimate body-building experience whilst seeing your fave act live? Check out TL’s recommendations for making the most out of your next night out:

General

1.) Transportation – If you live near the venue and the weather is agreeable, walk or bike to the event. You won’t have to worry about reserving a designated driver or paying for a taxi. If you’re driving, there will be multiple parking options. You could choose the parking lot closest to the venue, but that will most likely be filled, overpriced, and the patrolling of tailgaters will be much more strictly enforced. Choose the cheap $5 lot instead. You’ll need the few extra blocks of walking to work off all that beer and chips and Cheetos. Not only will you be adding more distance to your miles walked per week (because I know you count that sort of thing), but you’ll be saving a few bucks at the same time. It’s a win-win.

2.) Line-waiting – Unfortunately, standing-room-only concerts can create quite the commotion both inside and outside the venue. Long lines often form before doors open because fans want to be the first ones in to secure their spots in front of the stage. However, you don’t need to simply stand by idly while you wait. Inconspicuous exercises like calf raises (3 sets of 12) and butt pinches (to tone your twerking muscles) can be done with no one noticing, and if you simply don’t care what people think, you can try The Tree, a yoga position that focuses on balance and posture, or lunges.

Calories Burned Per Hour: 50-100

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Apologies to the Green Bay Packers and Indianapolis Colts, but next year is only eight months away.

It's just two days until Championship Sunday, when we find out which two teams will head to Arizona to participate in Super Bowl XLIX. Though anything can happen on Sunday, it's inevitable that we'll see Pete Carroll's Seattle Seahawks take on Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots on February 1.

It's not that the Packers and Colts are bad football teams; they're very good football teams. The Packers have likely league MVP Aaron Rodgers behind center, while the Colts are led by future MVP Andrew Luck. Those are two very, very talented quarterbacks, surrounded by explosive talent such as Jordy Nelson and T.Y. Hilton. Unfortunately for the Packers, Rodgers isn't at 100% -- he's battling a torn calf muscle. And before you say "it's not torn, it's just a strain," please remember -- all strains are tears. It's not going to be easy for Rodgers to go into Seattle and win on one leg.

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Event Tickets On Sale This Week

Here's a list of the hottest events with dates going on sale this week. Our event of the week is Crosby, Stills & Nash. From 1969's Woodstock to their 2015 tour, Crosby, Stills & Nash has been around the rock 'n roll block, so secure your seats to see these legendary musicians live in concert. Bob Seger keeps adding dates to the 2015 Ride Out Tour, so put some "Night Moves" back in your life with Bob Seger tickets. The X Factor's Fifth Harmony is going on tour as well this year, so round up the family and check out the next new girl band sensation! For tickets to these events and more, head over to Ticket Liquidator.

Concert Tickets On Sale

Event

Date

Cities

All Time Low Friday, 1/16/15 Lowell, MA; Rochester, NY; Baltimore, MD; Bethlehem, PA; Raleigh, NC; Charlotte, NC; Boca Raton, FL; Columbus, OH; Pittsburgh, PA; Atlanta, GA; New York, NY; Magna, UT; Philadelphia, PA; West Long Branch, NJ; Denver, CO; San Jose, CA; Los Angeles, CA; Houston, TX; St. Paul, MN; Dallas, TX; St Louis, MO; Anaheim, CA; Orlando, FL; Kansas City, MO; Chicago, IL; North Myrtle Beach, SC
Billy Joel Friday, 1/16/15 New York, NY
Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band Saturday, 1/17/15 Indianapolis, IN; Auburn Hills, MI; Lincoln, NE; Sioux Falls, SD; Salt Lake City, UT
Celtic Thunder Thursday, 1/16/15 Jacksonville, FL
Celtic Woman Friday, 1/16/15 Tallahassee, FL
Crosby, Stills and Nash Friday, 1/16/15 Atlantic City, NJ; Baltimore, MD; New Brunswick, NJ; Brooklyn, NY; Boston, MA; Wallingford, CT; Sioux City, IA; Milwaukee, WI
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Bonnaroo Survival Tips

Bonnaroo can be a crazy good time - good music, good food, good friends. However, summer festivals like this can pose some health risks. Remember the following haikus to make the most of your stay in Manchester, TN:

Bonnaroo

Music is groovy
But so is cool hydration
Drink your H2O
Billy Joel

Tennessee is hot
Protect against skin cancer
SPF it up
Mumford & Sons

Festivals are fun
Not the time to try new drugs
Or stalk Spoon’s drummer
Deadmau5

Hipsters love camping
But vintage tents are faulty
Buy new equipment
Bassnectar

Friendship bracelets break
Be wary of fake new pals
Thievery is real
Slayer

Slayer will melt faces
With guitar solos and screams
Support metal bands

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"Iris" is raw, emotional, melancholy

January 13, 2015

Songs of Innocence thematically could very well have been U2's first album. Each song on the album brings us back to U2's early days -- you know, before they became the biggest band since The Beatles.

"Iris (Hold Me Close)" is one of Bono's most personal songs to date. Bono's mother Iris, specifically, the death of his mother when he was just a teenager, has been a driving motivational force in his life. Her death pushed Bono toward eventually finding his way into a band, and once in U2, she's "appeared" in many songs throughout their discography -- such as "Tomorrow," "Lemon," and "Mofo."

Unlike the aforementioned songs, "Iris" tackles Bono's acceptance -- but not in the traditional sense. It's Bono accepting that he's always going to feel the loss of his mother, and that it's something that he's not going to be able to get over.

Like most great U2 songs, "Iris'" lyrics are polysemous.

"The star that gives us light
Has been gone awhile, but it's not an illusion
The ache in my heart
Is so much a part of who I am"

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Foo Fighters

Though the Foo's have produced eight albums over the past twenty years, “Everlong” remains their most beloved hit. Famous for being David Letterman's favorite song, it has topped charts all over the world, and Urban Dictionary describes it as “the best goddamn song ever, no matter what you say,” providing the accompanying example sentence: “I just heard ‘Everlong’ for the first time, and if I die right now I have still lived a full life because of it.”

Part of the song’s popularity is due to its universal appeal. “Everlong” is both a rock anthem and a love ballad. The original version shreds, while the acoustic version has become a common wedding song. In an interview with Kerrang!, Dave Grohl said that the song is “basically about being connected to someone so much, that not only do you love them physically and spiritually, but when you sing along with them you harmonize perfectly.” Though Grohl was going through a divorce at the time, he realized the possibility of new, meaningful love and penned these timeless lyrics:

Hello
I've waited here for you
Everlong
Tonight I throw myself in two
Out of the red
Out of her head she sang

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Coachella vs. Governor's Ball

It’s that time of year – summer festivals are making their lineup announcements and selling out tickets. While there’s always a general overlap of performers, the festivals do have different pros and cons in the ways of location, dates, number of stages, headliners, weather, promotion, and lodging.

The Politics of Font. Coachella produces a similar-looking poster every year with their list of performers arranged in a hierarchy of popularity, but what varies from the Governor’s Ball poster is the font size used. While Governor’s Ball keeps all the names in the same-sized font, Coachella slowly reduces the font of each performer according to their importance. No matter how obscure your indie band is, I’m sure it’s an honor to be featured on the Coachella bill regardless of how readable your name appears, but it’s still slightly insulting and suggests that perhaps Coachella has an excess of bands. The Governor’s Ball lineup is more manageable. After all, fans are only likely to endure a few artists they’ve never heard of before, not twenty or more.

Female Presence. Where the ladies be at? All three of Coachella’s main headliners are male, and the rest of their lineup has a surprising lack of women. Though Florence and the Machine and St. Vincent are billed as the sub-headliners, almost all of the small-name acts are men: Charles Bradley, Pete Tong, Chis Malinchak, Jon Hopkins, Ryan Hemsworth, and Benjamin Booker, to name a few. Where are First Aid Kit and Kim Gordon, or even Courtney Love? Not only do I have no idea who any of those male acts are, but I’m offended there aren’t at least an equal amount of unknown female acts. Plus, Governor’s Ball has my girl Lana Del Rey.

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