Tuesday, February 28, 2006

insiders (feat. chad and reggie rueffer)

...are at pearl's in the stockyards this saturday, 3/4. start at 9pm. boots optional but encouraged.

emperor naked, say financial analysts

"those _are not_ his pantaloons, and they are _not_ beautiful," analysts said. "au contraire, that's his big hairy naked ass hanging out there."

thanks to l.a. bassist / political wag doug lunn for the linkage.

Monday, February 27, 2006

wreckroom fwtx march 2006 (amended)

it's on:

4th -- me-thinks, darth vato
14th -- hochimen
18th -- sleeplab
20th -- this damn town

why cats purr

...from the library of congress. with sound sample goodness. and no, i do _not_ have "too much time on my hands."

Sunday, February 26, 2006

a few more quick thangs...

1) my sweetie's mom passed peacefully last thursday night. now kat and her sisters are all together, taking care of the funeral arrangements. busy with work stuff here and getting ready to move my middle dtr back in with us for a spell, but i'm thinking about her every day.

2) went along with goodwin when they played a birthday party after the arena football game at the american airlines center. they needed someone to help tweak their sound and damien's wife val didn't feel up to it. luckily, they're proficient at balancing their sound, so i had a pretty easy job, walking around listening to stuff a la andre and tweaking a coupla thangs here 'n' there, particularly when some drunk guy wanted to get up and sing "bad moon rising" but didn't realize you're supposed to sing, um, into the mic. to give the guy credit, he was left handed and did an o.k. job of playing the three chords upside-down on daniel's gtr. el presidente hisself was testing out a new homemade 2X12 cab with greenback celestions that proved to be a little more midrange-y than his 4X12. arena football is weird: _everything_ is sponsored, from the first downs to the penalties to the cheerleaders. because the dallas desperadoes scored 50 points last night, i can take my ticket stub to papa john's pizza and get a medium cheese pizza for free; woo hoo! the goodwin guys played great, the material from their upcoming sophomore c.d. sounded awesome (particularly "arm and mouth," which they still need to track), and they managed to pull off "february 3rd" sans rehearsal at the birthday boy's request. on the non-snazz side, the audience was polite but responded better to the covers -- "the monkey and me" by, um, the knack; "hungry like the wolf" (which tony wanted to introduce as "hungry like your mom"); and their usual "just like heaven" (with matt playing the signature gtr figure on his D string, which was cuttin' through like a razor for some reason) -- than they did to the 'riginals, and the staff unexpectedly turned up the lights in the middle of "airport," signifying the end o' the evening. and we saw a car fire in irving on the way home. hope the folks got out o.k., but it didn't look like it.

3) half-time activities at the game included a buncha kids from some dance school doing breakdance routines, including three tiny tots doing the whole zz top "sharp dressed man" routine. it occurred to me watching them that, to a younger person, it might have appeared that they were impersonating _a trio of matisyahus_ rather than the li'l ol' band from texas. similarly, my sweetie reported overhearing a convo between two seattle bimbettes wherein one of 'em was talking about the guy she's seeing who has a tattoo that sez "the who" and wondering whatthehell that was all about until her friend reassured her that they were a band that was _totally_ cool: "they did the themes to _all the c.s.i. shows!_" if pete townshend was here, he'd be turning in his grave, and perhaps realizing why, back in '65, he hoped he'd die before he got old.

4) "mighty 1190" (kfxr-am) here in the metromess just switched formats, from oldies-from-the-'60s-thru-now to _country_ oldies. this is actually good, as it now affords one who is so inclined the opportunity to hear george jones sing "he stopped loving her today" ("...and hung a wreath upon his door," wow) and burst into tears at a stoplight. (if you can hear possum sing this song without crying, you're not human. or at least need to live life a li'l bit more.)

5) took in "dave karnes night" at the wreck room friday. melee mouth (the intriguing lineup of karnage on drums, lee allen on bass/voxxx, and "confusajohn" stevens on gtr playing 'riginals by lee) wound up forfeiting due to lack of rehearsal time, but we got to see dave kick the traps with rahim quazi and sunward. rahim (ex-purple overdose, ex-ohno) plays a jangly melodic beatlesque pop-rock, and apparently has been getting some film work. the cat on gtr played a modded tele (why would anyone replace the lipstick tube from a tele? sacrilege!) with lotsa f/x and sounded like he was trying to sound like scott davis. sunward, fronted by ex-tabula rasa guy doug kershaw (_not_ the ragin' cajun, altho they play the same axe), sounds like radiohead (minus the uber-angst) meets the polyphonic spree (minus the grape kool-aid). their sound is big, dynamic, powerful, and jerko dabelic (who usedta play in a beatle coverband with ron geida and has a radiohead coverband up in denton) does a nice job of highlighting the dense (three chordal instruments when doug's not fiddling) soundscape with interesting colors 'n' textures. in the past week, karnage has also opened for allan holdsworth at hailey's in denton with a world-class jazz trio featuring clint strong on gtr and drew phelps on bass. their performance was videotaped and hopefully will lead to some other oppos for them out of the area, hint hint. meanwhile, a bill i'd like to see: sunward, alan, and the hochimen, maybe closing with a three-way fiddle jam between doug kershaw, doug polhamus, and reggie rueffer.

6) john shook gave me a copy of kulcha far i's unreleased cd, the future of which is kinda dubious now that roots 'n' kulcha frontguy chris hakata has pulled the plug on the enterprise. a pity, too -- it's a great rekkid, capturing all the signature strengths of what was in the process of becoming a great band. the confluence of shook's agile, inventive basslines, ron geida's compendium of classic rockgit (that's an adjective, not a genre) virtues, and jeffrey williams' solid one-drop provides a great foundation for chris to testify over. in the aftermath, shook's hoping to audition for triple-a, ron's playing jazz with james and myles on tuesday nights at the moon, and jeffrey's wanting to do a singer-songwriter thang, but hopefully they'll work again as a unit -- they're a strong triad.


i wouldn't live in l.a. for any amount of money, but if i was gonna be there this coming wednesday, i'd be at the viper room, where italo-surnamed zappa alumni gtrist warren cuccurullo and drummer terry bozzio will be holding forth with angeleno megabassist doug lunn and "surprise guests." makes me wanna arm-twist jam-meister lee into playin' some fz at the li'l wreckroom jam that night.

bridget mermikides

...wife of milt, scribes for the u.k. guitar techniques mag and has her own website with modal examples which, if i were to study and practice them, would enable me to understand whatthehell lee allen and darrin kobetich are talking about when it comes to this schitt.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

curious paradox

this from big tony, the patio king:

A country which proposes to make use of modern war as an instrument of policy must possess a highly centralized, all-powerful executive, hence the absurdity of talking about the defense of democracy by force of arms. A democracy which makes or effectively prepares for modern scientific war must necessarily cease to be democratic.

Aldous Huxley

English critic & novelist (1894 - 1963)

Friday, February 24, 2006

impulse of will, stoogeaphilia

in the interest of shameless self-promotion, i suppose i should endeavor to make you aware that myspace thingies exist for both of the musical projects (_not_ bands) in which i participate: impulse of will (which is the name jam-meister lee allen uses for the wednesday night jamcats or other cats he gets together to do similar gigs) and stoogeaphilia (stooges coverband). check the sites for showdates (admittedly the ones for impulse of will ain't hard to figure out, generally), pics, mp3s (soon, i swear, at least for i.o.w.), slander, and more.

unknown instructors

wow! here's a link to the unknown instructors, all-star improv rawk 'n' spoken word outfit featuring ex-saccharine trust 'n' minutemen peoples. yeah!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

old man bar

it was in places like this
that i learned how to be a man
watching the old hard-ons
that worked in the mill up the street
sit down and put their feet on a rail
and drink boilermakers
attending very closely to
the things they talked about
and the way they carried themselves
holding themselves in check
when the bartender (matt or michael)
would announce, on those rare occasions
when there were women in the bar,
"fellas, show these ladies
that this is a _gentleman's bar_"
(meaning, of course, that
you weren't supposed to say "fuck").
they were gregarious and demonstrative
(much more so than i felt comfortable with,
given the quiet and inward way i was raised)
and would put up their fists
when angry or drunk (usually both),
but never ever dream of
punishing those closest to them
with silence and withdrawal.

evening fw 2/23/2006

strolling around the periphery of the college
(a place where i do not belong)
breathing in the cold evening air
the only birthright i wish to claim


cd release party for tierra del gato! wreck room! tuesday! march 14! they play early! hooray!


when i was setting my gear up onstage at the wreck room last night, i found the rueffer brothers' setlist from monday. i'm gonna give it to my sweetie when she gets home.

art of the jam 40

well, um, i gotta say, the sets are gettin' more, uh, _consistent_ or something.

like the first one last week, or the first one _this_ week, for that matter, when the basic unit -- that'd be jam-meister lee allen on bass 'n' vox, joe "drumzilla" cruz on traps, steve "vikingo" huber on violin, ron geida 'n' me on gtrs -- is performing in its pristine state. this week we actually _rehearsed_ "daylight" by failure and then played it again when the dude that always requests it showed up later. and we broke in a coupla new funkadelic toons -- that'd be "red hot mama" and "cosmic slop" -- from a tape i gave lee a coupla wks ago. and "war pigs," with me-thinks mouthpiece ray liberio (who's also performing vocal duties in stoogeaphilia with me, matt hembree, and jon teague) on voxxx, is becoming one of our most, how you say, _polished_ numbers. (speaking of covers, ray sez the me-thinks have some surprises planned for their show next friday with darth vato. think scandinavian leather.)

second set, there were some, uh, _interesting_ moments when this chick who performed at the final darrin kobetich happy hour thingy with a drum circle of gtrists got up and sang a few while vikingo, drumzilla, bass scientist john shook 'n' i tried to follow her somewhat idiosyncratic gtr stylings (nice choice of a dylan toon, tho -- "tonight i'll be staying here with you;" pity i couldn't remember the groovy jeff beck arrangement of that 'un). eccentric muso russ walton showed up, plugged in his amp by the side of the stage, and jammed along with part of the last set, altho i was unable to coax him up on the stage. maybe next time. (will there be another cd release of this, russ?)

sally majestic's p.j. fry did the vocal honors on the jamcats' first-ever attempt at the talking heads' "burning down the house," then stuck around to do the same on his own band's "bobo." right on, p.j.! rose marine teatrista claudia acosta threw down some spiel en espanol on "maggot brain," but i gotta 'fess up that my piece o' that particular installment of the ongoing epic went out to my sweetie's mother up in seattle, sending her hope for a peaceful and pain-free departure from this planet, with love and thanks. (and appy polly logies i don't know any benny goodman jams.)

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


...is _not_ opening for a-hummin' acoustical acupuncture at the wreck room on march 3rd. (boo, hiss.) however, head scientist jefa assures one 'n' all that the two bands _will_ be sharing a bill in the near future. from the mp3 he just posted on the sleeplab myspace thingy, with guest voxxx from head triple-a dude daniel katsuk, that can only be a good thang.

it's dave karnes week!

see da master drummer at work:

thursday night at machenry's playin' jazz w/his own quartet.

friday night at the wreck room rawkin' with melee mouth, sunward, and rahim.

baby wants milk!


it's astonishing to me how many ostensible rockarollas i meet who know nada about the stooges (as in "iggy and the...," not "the three..." -- guh). so, in an effort to redress this, here's a page with a buncha stooges links for yr edification 'n' enjoyment. consider it part of yr edjumikashun.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

a few quick thangs...

1) have actually heard surprising thangs on the radio that didn't suck in the last week: matisyahu's "king without a crown" on the edge (do we have sublime to thank for this?) and dylan's "masters of war" (which sounds surprisingly / sadly relevant 40+ yrs down the road) on ktcu.

2) spent six hours sunday night in the me-thinks' freezing-ass practice pad out in haltom city, jammin' stooges toons with "joebesser": me-thinks figurehead (are ya happy now, will?) ray liberio on voxxx, matt hembree (goodwin / underground railroad and now ph7, too) on bass, and jon teague (yeti / the great tyrant, a band which i've heard described as "a vampire backed by two monks") on drums. a dream project of mine (named for the stooge that _nobody_ loved), and some fun shee-ot that'll prolly be gig-worthy in a couple more months -- we just need to find a podium for ray and a tenor sax player who digs coltrane, sonny rollins, and the stooges...know one? now if i can just get jam-meister lee to play some zappa at the wreck room on wednesday night, my life will be complete, at least musically-wise.

3) saw a rare acoustic performance by those musical rueffer brothers, reggie 'n' chad (most often heard at pearl's in the stockyards playing the old, good kinda honky-tonk country with chad's band, the insiders, but sharing an illustrious history in local indie-rawk circles dating back over a decade that includes mildred, spot, and the hochimen, whose debut totenlieder is all-time top 10 material at mi casa, and whose sophomore disc tierra del gato is due for release any time now) at the fwac acoustic monday thingy. nobody, but _nobody_, is penning toons as knotty, challenging, and literate as reggie is, and he performs 'em with a quirky, focused intensity that puts me in mind of peter hammill, the most intense solo performer i ever witnessed. besides classics ("my lame ass," "little dead limb," "god is a flower") and new 'uns (my fave: "agree to disagree") from the hochimen canon , we got "horse's head" from spot daze and a heartbreakingly beautiful country ballad called "crumbling heart," as well as a nice vocal turn in the classic style from chad (backed by his bro's sweetly sangin' fiddle and harmony voxxx -- when you hear reggie play 'n' sing this stuff, it's easy to understand why marquee country artists like ray price and charlie pride have employed him so consistently over the yrs). unfortunately, we had to cut out early (schoolnight etc.), but here's hoping these guys do more than the customary two-per-annum hochimen gigs this yr. (also heard from chad that our mutual amigo capt. frank logan, the cat that used to work door at the aardvark who was just called up by the army reserve, is going to afghanistan, which is prolly better than if he was going to iraq right now. take care of yrself, sir. and congrats to ex-daddy's soul donut gtrist jim kisselberg on the birth yesterday of his dtr, ellen alexandra kisselberg.)

4) my sweetie's heading up to seattle tomorrow, where her mom's ailing. sparky, i wish i'd gotten to meet you, but thanks so much for adopting my sweetie and for raising her and her sisters up to take on the world. ya done real good! much, much love and respect.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

frank mcculley

local artist frank mcculley's wild things be at fort worth community arts center until february 28th. frank's giant papier mache animals look great in the space, and he's even got an evocative soundtrack of jungle sounds happenin'. you owe it to yrself to check out this fort worth 'riginal.

new horizons in online time wastage

woo-hoo! my sweetie just discovered that my ol' hometown rag the village voice has an online crossword puzzle. all riiiiight!

george clinton

back in the day, it seemed a revelation that george clinton (via the multi-headed hydra that was his p-funk empire) was synthesizing pert near the entahrity of his era of black music -- doo-wop, motown, the innovations of j.b., sly, and jimi -- a feat of ellingtonian proportions, and one mirrored (in an idiosyncratic way) on the rawk side only by frank zappa. course, the biz wound up putting the kibosh on said empire (was surprised to read in details in the mid-'90s that the final funkadelic alb electric spanking of war babies was 'riginally s'posed to be a _double_) in the same way as they did earth wind & fire's (cbs/sony's failure to promote all 'n' all).

nevertheless, george reassembled the funk mob and by '82 (when i was stationed in korea), "atomic dog" was the national anthem for all the brothaz (along with "the message"). since then, there have been big gaps in his recording career (last heard from a decade ago with the sprawling dope dogs), but now he's back with a new alb, how late do u have 2bb4ur absent?, a useful web presence, and a touring band that includes usual suspects like bernie worrell, mike hampton, and blackbyrd mcknight. hooray!

Friday, February 17, 2006

miss kim / b.t.a.

reminderama: lady pearl's b.t.a. band featuring miss kim and ray reed be at the bluebird at horne and wellesley tonight. hit about 10. $5 cover. sure, it'll be cold, but what better way to warm yrself than with the most legit blues thang (and galvanic frontwoman) in town? not for the faint-hearted (or anyone who's, um, not comfortable around middle aged white ppl wearing funky hats).


good news for fans of reggae-ska revivalismo here in the fort: the brokers are _not_, repeat, _not_ hanging it up. i misspoke in the recent art of the jam thingy. jayzus (or in these case, jebus -- he's the gtr player), but these musos are so damn tempestuous.

Thursday, February 16, 2006


brothers reggie and chad rueffer of the hochimen will be playing the fwac acoustic monday thingy next week (um, that'll be the 20th). sounds like a good reason for my sweetie 'n' i to take a walk to the li'l wreck room.

valentine's day

belated respect to outlaw chef terry chandler for cooking what, so far, is _the best meal i've eaten in 2006_ (new year's eve was still 2005, remember) at fred's on valentine's day. while still under the weather, i wasn't gonna miss the oppo to escort my sweetie out on the day (altho she 'n' i tend to take less notice of hallmark card holidays 'n ones we make up ourselves), knowing as we do that terry 'n' his staff are quietly brangin' _high end hospitality_ to the neighborhood fave eatery on special occasions like thisun.

the five-course extravaganza commenced with a pork empanada in chipotle cream sauce, a small but mighty li'l meat-filled, fried pastry that proudly announced, "soy un empanada, beeyotch -- eat me!" next up: a mango and jicama salad with guanabana dressing that both cleansed the palate and brought a li'l heat of its own. (a neophyte at this stuff, i learned that a jicama is a tuber and a guanabana is something like a pear. live 'n' learn.) the star of the meal, my sweetie 'n' i agreed, was terry's green chili oyster stew, each spoonful of which was a bouquet of flavors (smoky, creamy, buttery, with little bits of caramalized onion -- sublime!).

the bit of my sweetie's quail with rose petal mole sauce that i tasted was yummy, but i'm the kind of carnivore that doesn't like to mess with all the li'l bones in quail, so the fiery stuffed pork loin (and when terry sez fiery he means _fiery_) was, heh heh, just my meat. the heart-shaped potato pancake was the perfect medium for soaking up the red wine reduction sauce (and big props to brandon for the heart-shaped pats o' butter, recognizing the fact that presentation is a crucial part of food prep). in a rush to pick up my middle dtr at tcc south, we had to take dessert to go (fresh strawberries coated in dark chocolate -- insanely good).

add to all of that a beautiful sunset and the pleasure of seeing a fave joint reach beyond its normal fare and succeed spectacularly and you've got a meal we'll be talkin' about until...well, the next time terry pitches one of these wang dang doodles. ya mo' be theah -- maybe you, too?

art of the jam 39

not bloggin' much of late -- been sick as a dog, but not sick enough to miss da jam (altho taking antihistamine that feels like trucker speed, not a good thing in my world, where i prefer not to have pharmaceuticals clouding my mindspace).

an unusual number of first-time (or first-time-in-awhile) jammers graced the li'l wreck room's invitational jam stage this week. chief among 'em: justin pate, bindle/ph7/confusatron ivory-tickler, who'd previously _drummed_ at the jam back during the summer, when the improvs tended to last longer 'n' be more amorphous (sigh). j. pate's using the current lull in pablo activity (while they break in a new bassplayer) to advance his solo thang, which so far has taken the form of gigs at the moon and black dog (as "...and his amazing machines") and now includes a recorded artifact -- to wit, a 4-song e.p. (and myspace thingy) under the rubric tapereporter. not surprisingly, the rekkid is toonful, poppy, and accessible (remember, this is the man who brought beatle-like chord changes to pablo's rootsy reggae mix, in between singing sublime covers, and even added structure to confusa-groove), with "videos" being the champ o' the bunch (possessing, as it does, vocal harmonies that put one in mind of brian wilson and a sweeping arrangement that hits with the force of...well, justin's own "next year" from back in bindle daze).

the presence of an actual listening 'n' improvising keyb player inspahrd the jamcats to bust out a flurry of "keyboard songs" (including booker t.'s "green onions," which the blues-playing musos in the pack used as an oppo to get gritty, and chick corea's "la fiesta," featuring jam-meister lee allen's beloved phrygian mode). another noteworthy addition to the jam-mix: great tyrant drummer and wizard o' sound andre edmonson's most reliable understudy jon teague, who deftly negotiated the tricky 7/4 meter on one of fw symphony violinist steve "vikingo" huber's inventions, then returned later to provide the underpinnings for the closing "war pigs" (sung, once again, by head me-think ray liberio, whose tortured tonsils -- he's sick, too, kidzzz -- also featured on this week's "come together"). justin 'n' jon will share a bill this weekend when the great tyrant and confusatron form the estimable undercard for sat'day's skeleton key show.

vikingo took a turn behind the keys as well, on a bit of funk propelled by groovemaker john shook on bass (who's assembling an ernest ranglin cover band with jam regular ron geida and confusatron's andrew skates on gtrs) and joe "drumzilla" cruz (whose berfday it was last monday -- happy b-day, joe). sleeplab snare drummer michael preble tried his hand at the full trapset and didn't disgrace himself. sleeplab's supposedly opening the a-hummin' acoustical acupuncture show on march 3rd, but they're not on the club's calendar for that night. film, as they say, at 11.

regrettably, william bryan massey III couldn't stick around long enough to spiel with the jammers, but regular friday happy hour songstress amy royer did an early vocal turn on "paint it black" (are ya happy now, ron?), and russ walton, who's never actually performed at the jam (altho he released a snippet of post-jam chatter with the jamcats' names prominently displayed on one of his cd's), briefly mounted the stage carrying a fake (?) bomb which he balanced on a stool with much ceremony before departing into the night, slinging cd's (which are still prolly there) around the room.

the crowd was small and mostly musos (including bassist mark mcpherson, who brought the sad news that his band, the brokers, is folding the tent). musta been a good night, tho, judging by the fact that afterwards, the jamcats hung around for longer 'n usual, chewing the rag (shook talking about a possible audition with triple-a, the jam-meister reminiscing about playing in "the one o'clock lab band of hand bell choirs" back in his college daze).

in march, of course, there'll be the usual number of mid-week sxsw shows, so the jam will be back over on the _more intimate 'n' interactive_ li'l stage in "wreck west." before then, we'll still have a couple more weeks of boss andre edmonson mixes (and recordings!) and the "big rock show" on the main stage. check it out, why doncha?

Sunday, February 12, 2006

townes van zandt movie @ the modern march 3-5

got this from muso, soundtrack composer, and man-about-the-fort paul boll:

March 3–5

John Townes Van Zandt will introduce the Friday 8 pm film and play
some of his father's music for moviegoers.

"A dignified and wistful look at the unusual life, difficult career,
and lasting influence of singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt." This
poignant documentary follows the life of Fort Worth native son Townes
Van Zandt, the ultimate songwriter's songwriter who had a profound
effect on generations of musicians.

99 minutes

screenings be at 6 and 8pm friday, 5pm saturday, and 2 and 4pm sunday. tixxx be $7.50 ($5.50 for museum members).

jack endino

from the wit 'n' wisdom of seattle uber-producer jack endino, here's some advice on how to overproduce a rock record.

thanks 'n' a tip of the hat to foat wuth megabassist jeremy hull for the link.

bodega train

hooray! ex-fort worth cat kid daniel is back in the blogosphere! catch him before he disappears! again!

Friday, February 10, 2006

slunky side

had a very welcome surprise in the mail a few days ago -- a cd-r from my friend yukiko in japan, who runs the mc5 japan website (dig her splash page -- greatness!), of a japanese band called slunky side, who've been together for 15 yrs, have six albums, and whom i'd never heard of until their gtrst nabeji backed mick farren on a 2004 japanese tour. from the stuff on her cd-r, as well as the samples on their label's website and the snippets of vid on their own site, these cats are pert stupendous and i wanna hear more.

nabeji has crafted his sound from disparate materials -- cranked-up surf gtr moves; tribal, primal stooges drone 'n' thump; blooze-drenched rifferama direct from the hendrix-cheer school; in places, orstralia's new christs; and on "a letter to me," even the '67 kinks! -- so that the end result is much more than a hodgepodge of influences, and he has his own lyrical voice, as well (albeit in a language i can't understand); i'll let yukiko 'splain it:

he's one of the best three lyricists in the entire Japanese rock circuit. It's surreal, simple but profound, and most notably, this guy knows how to play with words to the extent of an art! Not knowing how much you understand Japanese, did you realize the seminal song "God" is comprised of a quite interesting word trick?

Kami-sama, Kami, Sakasama
(Kami-sama and Kami both mean "God", Sakasama mean "upside-down".)

Ma-ssakasama Kamisama
(Ma-ssakasama is used to describe "to fall upside-down".)

Also, the sentimental song, "Broken Hope", is a monologue of a teenage girl, which goes:

I hate me most
I hate me most
But I'm the prettiest girl

I believe nothing
I believe nothing
I distort myself
So that I feel nothing
Give me words
Give me you
Won't you fix it for me?
Won't you?
Give it to me right away
Give me everything
Won't you fill me?
Won't you?

I personally know the band and they are sweet guys. The bassist Totoki said he decided to stick with Nabeji because of his lyrics and song writing. I approached Patrick at Alive/Total Energy for a possible release of their album. He instantly admitted this is a great band (and as you know he's not a guy who talks empty compliments) but seems to have judged their commercialability in the U.S. is not big enough.

what else can i say? it's super-stylized, but in a totally organic (not cartoon-like) way; nabeji has the best afro i've ever seen on an asian dude; between these guys, pummeling power trio boris, and folk-bluesman kan mikami, maybe i need to start paying more attention to sounds from the ol' ancestral homeland.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

mo' jampixxx

oh yeah -- my sweetie caught a coupla jam sets last night and took these shots of a buncha damn sangers: 1) three bass hit: ray liberio (wearing invisible bass), the jam-meister, and stand-up guy jeremy hull; 2) ray 'n' lee wreak retribution on the war pigs; 3) wbm3: only daddy that'll walk that line; 4) dazed and confused with bryan massey; 5) bosquez proves that writers _can_ look like rockstars; 6) rob 'spressin' hisself. (helpful hint: click on the pixxx to make 'em big.)

art of the jam 38

first of all, my appy polly logies to anyone who read my myspace bulletin and showed up at the li'l wreck room for lee 'n' carl's invitational jam last night expecting to hear a _bass choir_ performing on jaco's "teen town." that got started from overhearing jam-meister lee allen and kulchafarian john shook discussing the possibility over in "wreck west" last saturday. but as we all know, there's many a slip 'tween the cup 'n' the lip, and in the event, only jeremy hull (collin herring, jason davis, etc.) showed -- albeit with his upright, fresh from rippin' thru twelve choruses of "cherokee" behind clint strong at my martini in arlington. and we _did_ play "teen town." i've got the cd out in my car. tonight, i'm actually gonna _listen_ to it. then, by the _third_ time we've played it at the jam, i'll have some idea of what's going on (besides the changes the jam-meister mapped out for us on a sheet o' paper last week).

night started out with three young cats (_of course_ i missed the name of their band) playin' instrumental rifferama. they were s'posed to be there last week but the gtrist couldn't make it. anyway, while they weren't no pearls and brass (you have to play together for half yr life to get unison git-bass thunder _that_ tight), they did it up fine while the jamcats were in the bar, soaking up some libations in preparation for the evening's musical depredations.

returning to the jam this week: fw symphony violinist steve huber, with his gypsy fiddle 'n' battery of f/x that seems to cancel the signal from my "amplet" onstage. sigh. that aside, 'twas nice having his solo voice back in the mix, which has been kinda gtr-heavy of late. also on board: trombonist marcus brunt from local reggae-skatalites the brokers (most of whom were in the house, wednesday being their rehearsal night, but not jammin' 'cept for marcus this time) and burning hotels drummer wyatt adams (whose arrival i celebrated by spilling a full beer in my lap; hi, wyatt). and yes, the "regular" jamcats: jam-meister lee, joe "drumzilla" cruz, ron geida, me. (need a superhero name 'n' powers for ron. any suggestions?)

it's on nights like this, when a large 'n' varied array of musos is present, when the jam-meister gets to show off his bad-ass conducting chops to their best advantage, organizing and directing the "jam orchestra" to astonishing heights of in-the-moment invention, like a trip-hoppy vamp with wyatt on drums that skirted the edges of confusa-groove; a land-speed-record tempo "standing on the verge" that morphed into a gospel-tinged breakdown and thence into a country-fried shuffle with jasper stone axeman geida and maestro huber rippin' it up on their respective axes like hayseeds on crank; and a "voodoo chile" that shape-shifted into "personal jesus" and back again.

the icing on the cake: the dizzying array of guest vocalizers, starting with head me-think ray liberio, who was overheard discussing, in hushed tones, a secret project with great tyrant drummer jon teague, and did a worthy job of singing _harmony_ with lee on "war pigs," unaccustomed as he is to torturing his tonsils without a big block of wood in front of him; continuing with anti-hero artist william bryan massey III, who laid down some characteristically uninhibited spiel over the jamcats' auto-destruction of "dazed and confused;" culminating with the debut jam appearance of local playwright rob bosquez, whose new work paloma will premiere april 28th and be performed by the butterfly connection troupe at various area locations, including artistic blends coffeehouse. rob improv'ed lyrics and sang 'em soulfully over a mind-melting "maggot brain," complete with bowed upright bass solo and slide-bass (!) coda played by the jam-meister with a beer bottle.

best of all: there were actual civilians in the house, many of whom purchased beverages from graham, and a couple dozen of whom stuck around till the very end. this weekend, wizard o' sound andre edmonson and i will be ensconced in his home studio, brainwashing ourselves with another 36 hours or so of jamtapes with an ear toward compiling another cd-r's worth o' jamtoons for kidzzz that care. we filter all the clamblow so you won't have to. yeah!

Monday, February 06, 2006

hunger 2

when i was really stoopid
i usedta spend nine dollars
a payday on groceries
and $60 on alcohol

later, my first wife 'n' i
ate a shitload of beans
'n' cornbread in memphis:
it's a complimentary protein

what i learned over the yrs:
what you eat is important
especially if you intend
to stick around for awhile

jesse sierra hernandez

inasmuch as spring gallery night (that be april 1st, fool) is a ways off, you need to know that jesse sierra hernandez's gallery 4 -- conveniently located behind the li'l wreck room -- has a stellar lineup planned for that night. besides jesse his own self (whose works adorn the main room at the wreck, and whose gallery 414 solo show from a coupla yrs back folks are _still_ talkin' about), there'll be works on display by his high school bud 'n' sleeplab bandmate fernando palomo, pussyhouse propaganda art criminals ray liberio and calvin abucejo, and photog extraordinaire christopher blay. why drink anybody else's boxed wine when you can hang out 'n' dig such a diverse array o' talent in one location, and even get yer own lixxx in on the interactive piece jesse always has out on these occasions (reviving a tradition from the old fort worth artists & co.)?

btw, sleeplab be at the li'l wreck this thursday. ya mo' be theah...maybe you too?

here's a detail of a mural jesse painted on the old tequila's (before some fuckin' philistine painted over it). my sweetie shot a coupla other exposures that'll let you see what the rest of it looked like, if i ever get it together to post 'em. enjoy!

Sunday, February 05, 2006


when i was poor, i usedta eat peanut butter sammitches
while perusing me mom's old joy of cooking
(really a form of culinary masturbation, i s'pose).
i'd do stuff like subsist for weeks on those
or hebrew national franks with grey poupon
(nothing but the best shitfood = "gracious living on a budget").
a nadir of sorts was achieved when i was reduced to eating
albertson's pico de gallo with tortilla chips for a week.
at least i was eating my vegetables.

one jack rose that i mean

i don't know much about this glenn jones cat, but i like the fact that the title to this toon of his cleverly alludes to both the virginian gtrist in whose style it's played and captain beefheart's solo gtr piece "one red rose that i mean" from lick my decals off, baby.

sunset fw 2/5/06

pink 'n' purple clouds,
wash away my overwhelmed
and hopeless feeling

super bowl sunday

a few yrs ago, when i had recently relocated from the "divorced dad apartments" to my own house in benbrook, a buddy of mine from the reserves gave me a line on a washer 'n' dryer for $150 out in rockwall. so i called up dan lightner and on a sunday, we rode out there in his pickup truck to get 'em.

when we got to rockwall, around lunchtime, we noticed a strange phenom: there was _absolutely no one_ on the road with us. a fucking ghost town. we nervously joked that maybe the rapture had come. we stopped to get a bite to eat. there was a mexican family eating and a coupla goobers behind the counter, watching tv. then we realized what was going on: it was super bowl sunday.

for t.s.b. III

so who are all of these horrible children with cellphones?

why, they're the spawn of all the kids that usedta get run out
of the bluebird, back when you usedta play there with robert.

but dig: the next generation of horrible hipstaz will be conceived
as the result of negotiations which are taking place here tonight.

i'm 48 and i'm starting to think i might be too old for this shit.
you're 60something and i can tell that you're not even close.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

stuff we been listenin' to

laura nyro - the first songs: i usedta _hate_ this rekkid when i was in high school and my formerly broadway musical-listenin' big sis usedta throw it on, 'cos it didn't have loud electric gtrs, but since then, i've revised my opinion. nyro was the precursor of fiona apple, lower manhattan boho weird chick, but her music was something _entahrly other_. as quirky as she wanted to be, she was a songwriter in the grand tin pan alley tradition. today her toons hit the same way burt bacharach's from around the same time do -- both of 'em were among the hipper pop toonsmiths of the day; laura had songs ("wedding bell blues," "blowin' away," and "sweet blindness" among 'em) covered by the likes of the fifth dimension, blood sweat & tears, and barbra scheissand (when la barbra wanted to appear to have rawk quotient). nyro also sang like a jazz chanteuse, with plenty more soul than most of her white hipi-chick contemporaries. this was nyro's first alb, originally released in '67 as more than a new discovery on jazz label verve (that also had the blues project, velvet underground, mothers of invention, and tim hardin for a minute), and it's my fave alb of hers except for possibly 1971's gonna take a miracle, on which she sang acapella r&b wonderment backed by the former patti labelle & the bluebelles, no less. died of ovarian cancer, 1997.

bill evans trio - portrait in jazz: the intro to nyro's toon "bilie's blues" was stolen almost verbatim from the one bill evens played to "so what" on miles davis' epochal kind of blue, and evans was a stone original: introspective whiteboy pianner player back in the late '50s, when jazz was filled with flamboyant bud powell imitators. he went his own way, played his own song, and inspired legions of thoughtful, lyrical players in his wake (which i suppose means he's partially to blame for keith jarrett, the whole ecm label, and even new age abominations like george winston, but nevermind). he was at his best on the sides he cut for the riverside label with his late-'50s trio with bassist scott la faro (r.i.p.) and drummer paul motian. kinda ironic that the owner of such a deep muse would destroy his health with cocaine and die from a bleeding ulcer and pneumonia, 1980.

rova: orkestrova - electric ascension and nels cline / greg bendian - interstellar space revisited: i love coltrane's a love supreme in the same way as i love the stooges' funhouse, the who sell out, van morrison's astral weeks, the beach boys' pet sounds, marvin gaye's what's going on, maybe a coupla others. for me, it's a _perfect rekkid_; you don't need to "know" anything about jazz to understand its simple, spiritual message. the first coltrane i ever heard, though, was the roof-raising group-improv freeblow of ascension -- a burst of pure energy from a year later (1965) that polarized coltrane fans the same way bitches brew would miles fans a few yrs later. inevitably, late-period coltrane -- when the restless seeker started paring down his "sheets of sound" to the root sounds of horns 'n' drums -- has achieved the status of repertory, and musos who grew up listening to this sound like heartbeat have dared to take on works as daunting as ascension (which the rova saxophone quartet essayed with the help of electric gtr and bass -- nels cline 'n' fred frith, no less -- turntablists, electro-noise wonks, and a coupla string players taking the place of the original trumpets) and interstellar space (in which cline and drummer greg bendian take on coltrane's '67 duets with drummer rashied ali and transform them into a facemelting shitstorm of improvisational fury, with a version of "lonnie's lament" from crescent at the end to bring thangs back to earth). recontextualized, you can focus on the shapes of the compositions and realize that there was more going on here than listeners might have twigged when these sounds were new -- that it wasn't total fucking chaos, just a new kind of order that, today, oddly sounds oddly reassuring (at least to these feedback-shredded ears).

Friday, February 03, 2006

john fahey

nice village voice piece on the late acoustic solo gtr innovator john fahey. fans of darrin kobetich, take note.

quaker city, chatterton

hmmm, i might have found a show to go to tom'w night after all. quaker city, ex-woodeye gtrist scott davis' rootsy project with his grievously angelic wife kristin and partner-in-crime, drummer kenny smith, will be at the unfortunately-named jack's off the wall (the old pedro's trailer park location on white settlement road near downtown), opening for scott's "main" band, chatterton. speaking of which, kevin aldridge and the boyzzz are headed for sxsw this year, and plan to release an e.p. at the li'l wreck room on april fool's day.


hooray! there's a new arthur mag out february 15th. now i just have to wait for that justin cat that nevereverever shuts up to dump his stack on the floor at the wreck room. all i _ever_ need is something to look forward to.

james hinkle, jim colegrove

straight ahead blues papa james hinkle is cutting his next rekkid with lost country / juke jumpers top cat jim colegrove doing the production honors. outside the studio, the dapper mr. hinkle has upcoming gigs at the bluebird (tom'w night), j&j blues bar (saturday, february 11th), the keys lounge (sunday, february 12th), and his annual krewe of kowtown mardi gras extravaganza at the longhorn saloon (121 e. exchange) on tuesday, february 28th. as for colegrove, he's featured on this month's dfw music podcast, and lost country will be at the 6th street grill on saturday, february 18th. whew!

miss kim

lady pearl's bta band featuring miss kim and ray reed will be at the bluebird blues club, corner of horne 'n' wellesley, on friday, february 17th. cost you a five spot to get in.

too many strings?!?!?

wtf -- an 11-string bass?!?!?

v.u. "jam review"

hahahahahaha. here's one i'd forgotten: the "jam review" phil overeem and i co-wrote for his site, the "first church of holy rock and roll," of a "legit / bootleg" velvet underground release from a coupla yrs back. boy, we sure were enthusiastic back then.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

dave karnes, clint strong, drew phelps, oaklin bloodworth

just came home (early -- schoolnight, and my sweetie's got an important mtg in the a.m.) from machenry's, where i witnessed what had to be the hottest band playing here in the fort on this particular night: clint strong, a gtrist guaranteed to make the hottest axe-slinger you know sound like a terrible tyro, combining as he does the fleetness and facility of a joe pass with the slidin', smearin', country soul of a pedal steel player; drew phelps, a bassist blessed with prodigous melodic imagination and rhythmic force; oaklin bloodworth, a warbler with a wizened, world-weary persona and deep songbag of ballads 'n' blues; and dave karnes, a force of nature on drums whose gig this was, who says this is one time he's happy to be violating art blakey's dictum that "if the drummer isn't the best musician in the band, it isn't a jazz band." these cats are musical conjurers, so deep into their art that they give palpable form and life to the classic structures, but not so intense that they can't have fun with it, cracking themselves and each other up with their own musical witticisms. this is high art that hits with the forward motion of a speeding train, and woe to the muso who slacks off for even a second. if you weren't there, you missed it, but you can catch clint and dave opening for titanic jazz-rawk gtr legend allan holdsworth at dan's silverleaf in denton on saturday, february 18th, and dave will be back at machenry's on thursday, february 23rd. if you dig musical alchemy of any stripe, you owe it to yrself.

ADDENDUM: the holdsworth thang might be a private party rather than an opening slot. feh. will write more when i know more.

art of the jam 37

listen: elvis has _returned_ to the bldg.

that'd be elvis the bartender from "wreck west," who recently spent some time in the j.p.s. emergency room and recuperating at his mom's house. he showed up for work unscheduled this past wednesday, looking and sounding better than anybody had any right to expect. the jamcats love us some elvis; welcome back, bro, and for gawd's sake, take care of yrself.

the return of elvis allowed wednesday night jam godfather and ex-gideons frontguy carl pack to log more stage time than he usually does, singing lead on "come together" and "pepper," backup on "standing on the verge," and even doing some freestylin'. (one of these days, the jamcats need to work up a gideons toon or two. jam-meister lee allen, wearing his fred's patio-meister hat, sez we'll get an oppo to witness same at close range when the reunited gideons perform at fredfest next june. apparently we'll be there, too, in some form or other, as "impulse of will," along with more great bands than you can shake a stick at over two full days. film, as they say, at 11. lee's also seeking new digs for the fort worth academy of music, the school having recently unassed its former location at the ex-axis. if you know of an available space with four 10 X 14 practice rooms where it's safe to store equipment, contact lee via fred's or the wreck.)

the other major event o' the evening: the fantastic return to jamdom of super-soulful gtrist b-rock miller, who'd been absent from the festivities for a few months but is back with a rawkin' vengeance, having recently walked his gtr ctr gig, and is in the process of starting up his own amp company. brother brock pushed his most blueswailin' sound into the night air alongside fleet-fingered kulcha far i / jasper stone / james and myles axe-slinger ron geida and yr humble chronicler of events, making for a very blue-hued suite of string-strangling. brock's down 'n' dirty style was a perfect fit with the jammers' sleaze-'n'-grease treatment of "personal jesus."

ron and i actually started the night out _reading a chart_ (something ron does routinely with james and myles and i do somewhat less expertly; we'll not speak again of the night i tried sight-reading "my funny valentine" over the jam-meister's shoulder) for a run through weather report's jaco pastorious-penned "teen town," trying to float all those swelling 13th chords in the manner of josef zawinul while lee led joe "drumzilla" cruz through the dense thicket o' syncopation. (frequent jam listeners / participants prolly wouldn't believe it, but prior to his first night out at the jam last spring, drumzilla hadn't kicked the traps in eight whole yrs since the demise of his last band, a florida-based hair-metal outfit called "circus," in which he once shared the stage with the cheap trick cats. since then, joe's active listening and responding skills have blossomed in the hothouse o' wednesday nights at the li'l wreck room.)

further drum-wise, dave karnes didn't show, but the burning hotels' wyatt adams did and proved once again that he has the chops and ear to hang with the old mofos. new fort worth weekly scribe caroline collier imparted a nice organic feel to the proceedings on a fonky groove and a slow bluesy numbah, and her editor got a shout-out in lee's spoken intro to "standing on the verge" (after mariani, unlike elvis, had left the bldg). the jam-meister got some bass relief from kulchafarian john shook, who solo'd tastefully on a coupla toons and flexed his shuffle muscle in preparation for an upcoming gig with bluesman hosea robinson. anti-hero artist william bryan massey III took his turn at the mic, talking up a tempestuous tale over the sturm und drang of a noise-and-feedback-laden "dazed and confused."

only non-snazz aspects from my perspective: the persistent whistling from one of my voltage-challenged pedals (note to self: stock up on 9-volts so this schitt doesn't happen again, hokay?), and the fact that "confusajohn" stevens didn't get to solo on the three-gtr "maggot brain." oh well, maybe next week.