"Undermining my electoral viability since 2001."

Burn The Town Down Blues

So I posted a reference on the Twitter machine to this song I love from a concert some friends of mine recorded years and years ago in Portland at Reed College. There ain't no online version, so I thought I'd share:

John Henry Crippen — Burn The Town Down Blues.

Hopefully John Henry don't mind me postin' oldie-but-goodie MP3's on this old blog. If you like this you can listen to snippets and buy the whole double-length CD of Tom, Dan and John's legendary performance from CD Baby: Blue Language. I'm clearly no objective source — these are my friends — but I think there are many true gems in these tracks.

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Small World Moment

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Brooklyn Brooklyn, Take Me In

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Farsheed makes music!


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Coachella Trip Report

So, this is woefully incomplete; In fact, it covers only the up-to-the-event story... I almost don't want to post it but I think it's good to get the first part out there. More likely I'll write the rest. I have a few photos which I'll add once I get back to the HC and can get 'em off my camera, and for the latter part of the story I can lean on Stephanie and Andy for graphics. Indeed, the above is an Andy Smith original (some rights reserved). In very brief: I had a great time, and it was actually semi-Important for me to get out of my routine and mix it up. All work and not play is not a pragmatic plan.

Travelling from SFO, Cheney drops me off at the airport, ran into the Girth's lawyerly friend Eric at the terminal. He's delayed on the way to San Diego so we have a beer. It's a little hard to make small talk since we've only met a couple times, but there's basketball, Cavs getting trounced by the Wizards, and that's en entre, and he's a good guy so we pass 45 minutes like that.

Flight in to LA is fast. Julia picks me up. New haircut. We talk about the important things first, how our respective love lives are going. You already know my scene (nada). She's got a man-friend who's got a moustache he likes to wax (to good effect, IMHO) but also says she's really mostly interested in "good sex and working on myself." I tell her that's very LA, but I also think it's great, and tell her that too.

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Lyrical Moment

Sometimes I'm sexy, move like a stud
Like kickin' the stall all night
Sometimes I'm so shy, got to be worked on
Don't have no bark or bite, alright

That's all. Thanks Mick.

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Ribonucleic Acid Freak Out!

Flashing through the accumulated images of the past week, it's a heady mixed bag. Trying to work my way from being a direct-actor to a manager. Trying to get ahead of the curve. Trying to continue my studious avoidance of all feminine diversions. Trying not to get boring as I get old. Trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. Trying to communicate. Trying to love. Trying to speak correctly. Trying to listen. Trying.

And a few things occur to me.

In the smear of pint-night down at Everett's, veterans of the military and Gillman st telling stories early, Kelly and Zya creating interpretive dances to Neil Diamond, then the kids coming in as the evening sets in; there emerges a ray of light in shiny blue tights, sheer brilliance, such as to make me avert my eyes. She looks pretty good at the coffeeshop usually, but this is another level, enough to make a man reexamine his beliefs. It occurs to me that my "my head's not in it" excuse for studious avoidance of such is a self-fulfilling prophecy with real limits in its utility. Something's got to change, but for the moment, hey, at least you've got a collectable pint glass to duck into.

And from this, a potential remedy for my romantic listlessness, a possible self-concept, an avenue of habitual action. How does "power-dating" sound? It's more applicable than my retired manslut persona non grata, and it could be useful to get me out there in some way. It ties in with ambition and other shadowy forces that need outlets. I don't know how it squares with living half-n-half between here and the Bay -- where exactly do I set my sites? both? -- but it seems worth trying.

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Well There's Only So Many Ways You Can Give Your Loving To Me...

...But I'd give up my soul for just one of them now...

It's been a packed week down in the Bay. Wheeling and dealing, painting and sanding, whooping and shouting; the whole nine yards.

Went and saw The Avett Brothers on Friday night. They're pretty great showmen as expected, and I got me a t-shirt -- a much more effective way of supporting working musicians than paying for their music, btw -- but I felt the concert could have been more. Slims is not my favorite place to see a show, and the crowd vibe was a little off. That and I had great expectations, which is generally unfair and I try not to do for the sake of giving artists a chance, but c'est la vie. That's what you get for being real good.

They were touring on 2007's Emotionalism, which is a great album, the first one I heard -- coming via Pickathon and Chelsea late last summer -- and probably the most natural cultural fit for SF. But having been exposed to their entire catalog, I celebrate the mo' twangy stuff a bit more fully than that which leans indie. The crowd was on the other side of that leaning, didn't seem to know a lot of the other/older stuff, and just wasn't as lively as I'd hoped.

I suppose I was looking for something really wild and free, like when we saw The Devil Makes Three at the Starry Plough last month. That was hot and packed and foot-stomping scream-along-singing until you got light in the head and then another song would start up that was even better and more worth jumping around to; lather-rinse-repeat. By contrast, the crowd's energy at this gig made it tough to even break a sweat. I also felt the encore was a bit too scripted, and there wasn't sufficient demand in the room to draw out a spontaneous second round.

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Trouble on Every Corner / I Want You by My Side

There's trouble on every corner
I need a place to hide
the bad things follow us down
I want you by my side

Do we ever really know why
why the bad things come our way?
Do we ever really know
this is where we're headed
this is were we're going?

So, this is a lot darker than I actually feel. It's good music though, and the "do we ever really know" question seems prescient.

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Eagles Follow Radiohead

Another imageless post, but via Atrios check it out: The Eagles are also disintermediating record labels.

Building on early work by Prince, and several upstart indie successes, it looks like more and more established acts are taking this route. Look for a new kind of helper company to emerge that can do online distribution, fan-club stuff, and booking for tours.

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