Wednesday, February 28, 2007

good news

fred's is open again.

larry harrison and dan lightner, the last two old rekkid guys in fort worth, are now working at the borders on hulen.

i'm within one interview of having all i need for the wreck room book (except for cover art, preface, and massey's poem).

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

monk, spot

this friday's challenge: making it to arts fifth avenue in time for the "music of thelonious monk" show (with joey carter, dave williams, sam walker, rick stitzel et al.) at 8pm, thence to the wreck room for the spot reunion / goodwin / velvet love box trifecta. feets, don't fail me now.

Monday, February 26, 2007

arthur, we hardly knew ye

figures. free alternative arts 'n' politics magazine arthur was the closest thing to a late '60s/early '70s counterculture rag that i'd read since, um, well, rolling stone commenced eating the shit ca. '72. so of course, they're folding the tent. guess i won't get to read part III of their "history of all-ages" article after all. or any more of thurston moore 'n' byron coley's "bull tongue" columns. feh.

a bill made in heaven? perhaps.

that'd be professional juice opening for that one guy at the wreck room on wednesday, march 21st.

new stooges alb "sucks dogs balls"?!?!?

well, that's the word from a 'netbud from orstralia who's heard it in its entahrty. my response (via email): Ancestor worship does not require that the ancestors in question be present at your house a week from Thursday and bring the potato salad.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

word play @ jubilee tonight

tammy gomez writes:

Check me out at the upcoming "Evening of Spoken Word", which is happening on Monday, February 26th, at Fort Worth's premiere African-American theater--the Jubilee. Downtown on Main Street, plenty of parking curbside along Main on a Monday, i would think.

I'm particularly honored to be performing at the Jubilee because, as far as i can tell, I'll be the first Chicana/Latina to be invited to do her original poetry at the Jubilee. Thanks to the innovative thinking of new artistic director, Ed Smith, we'll probably be seeing alot of new forums and art forms at the Jubilee in coming years.

So, call (817.338.4411) the theater today, make your reservation. I'm hoping we fill the venue for a rockin' good time. You must check out the other poets who are performing that night, particularly Chuck Jackson, the UTA undergrad who is making a name for himself in spoken word and slam scenes rather quickly. Expect him to blow me away with his eloquent utterances.

Oh, here's the 'official' press announcement:

Jubilee Theatre's 26th Season continues with "Word Play: An Evening of Spoken Word" for one night only on Monday, February 26, 2007 at 8:00 p.m. at Jubilee Theatre, 506 Main Street, Fort Worth.

The evening will feature the area's hottest spoken word artist/poets, including: Tammy Gomez, nationally recognized leader in Latino Literary and performing arts; Chuck Jackson, one of the hottest young poets in Texas today; Michael Guinn, 13th in the World Poetry Slam 06 and a member and co-founder of the Emmy nominated Performance Poetry Troupe "Spoken Images;" and special guests the Fort Worth National Poetry Slam Team, ranked third in the country in 2005 and 8th at the National Poetry Slam 2006.

Tickets: general admission $10, Jubilee Theatre season ticket holders $8. For information: 817-338-4411 or check online at

Saturday, February 24, 2007

found a job; the book; fred's; house

so i found a new job. at central market. lucky for me it happened before the money from the last thang ran out.

working on the wreck room oral history. have a lot done, but still need to conduct four crucial interviews. my words, kat's pics. massey's helping me put it together. talked to a dude from the star-t about it yesterday. massey put him wise. i guess that means i have to finish it now.

bummed that fred's is still closed. latest missive from jennifer sez monday. we live in hope. i've been jonesin' for a fredburger.

we're getting our bathroom renovated. it's gonna look boss, but the cats have not been diggin' being locked up in the bedroom all day for the past week or so. soon come.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

art of the jam

another fun night, if sparsely attended (prolly a function of fat tuesday falling the night befo'). brian batson from confusatron was in the house, tho, and blew fiery sax the first set, and josh clark kicked some traps in the second. billy whitewater wilson returned on theremin and is becoming a regular. besides him, it seems like the lineup is stabilizing somewhat to include jam-meister lee allen and john "johnny peckerwood" shook on dueling basses; ron "the velvet hammer" geida and yr humble chronicler o' events on gtrs, and dave karnaggio on drumaggio. highlights: first three songs "before you guys got shithammered" [karnes]; first-ever peter tosh "legalize it"; reggae "war pigs". to satisfy ron 'n' dave's _passion for order_, the jam-meister compiled a list o' every song ever played at the jam from old "art of the jam" blogs. unfortunately, he didn't save the file (duh). so, this morning, i went back and repeated the exercise. hey, lee, am i the fucking _employee of the month_ or what?!?!?

la fiesta - chick corea (A section only)
maggot brain - funkadelic
come together - beatles
tomorrow never knows - beatles
manic depression - hendrix
stone cold bush - chili peppers
muffin man - zappa
cissy strut - meters
daylight - failure
who knows - hendrix
chameleon - herbie hancock
pictures of matchstick men - status quo/camper van beethoven
i will survive - gloria gaynor
third stone from the sun - hendrix (riff only)
voodoo chile - hendrix
dazed and confused - led zep
whole lotta love - led zep
rocky mountain way - joe walsh
helter skelter - beatles
standing on the verge - funkadelic
pepper - butthole surfers
cosmic slop - funkadelic
freaky styley - chili peppers
aerials - system of a down
bobo - sally majestic
rock and roll - led zep
willie the pimp - zappa
oye como va - santana
low rider - war
smooth criminal - alien ant farm
kashmir - led zep
hot for teacher - van halen
school days - stanley clarke
if you want me to stay - sly stone
my funny valentine - in C
proud mary - creence-uh clearwater
iron man - black sabbath
sexual harassment in the workplace - zappa
jane says - jane's addiction
summertime rolls - jane's addiction
impressions - coltrane
simple man - lynyrd skynyrd
personal jesus - depeche mode
jesus just left chicago - zz top
mountain song - jane's addiction
war pigs - black sabbath
sunshine of your love - cream
fire - hendrix
fire - ohio players
hotel california - eagles
sweet emotion - aerosmith
back in black - ac/dc
magic fingers - zappa
burning down the house - talking heads
paint it black - rolling stones
teen town - weather report
servitude - fishbone
you know what i mean - jeff beck
'cause we've ended as lovers - jeff beck
yyt - rush
tom sawyer - rush
why don't you love me (like you used to do?) - hank williams
take your whiskey home - van halen
goin' down - jeff beck
legalize it - peter tosh

Monday, February 19, 2007

dewey redman tribute

ok, here's an early candidate for "best night o' music in the fort this yr," and because i'm a shitty scene supporter, i did a pert lousy job of getting the word out about this last week (was sick, had a job int, blah blah blah). luckily, others were not as remiss, and sardines was fairly jam-packed for the duration; jam-meister lee allen informed me that they actually ran out of maker's mark, and bread! not bad for a sunday night. oh, by the way, i actually emceed the thang, too; jhon kahsen called me last friday and asked if i would, and since we were gonna be there anyway, i figured, why not? and it was filmed by the ppl i was working with on teen a go go for the fort worth public library's jazz archives.

actually, it felt like paying a debt. i was fortunate to get to interview dewey redman a coupla yrs ago, when i was still writing for the local giveaway rag. at that time, he told me, he was writing a book about his life, which i don't believe he ever completed -- a pity, because he had a wealth of stories covering not just the trajectory of his jazz career, but also dealing with growing up in the segregated south, an experience that marked evabody that went through it, altho these days we tend to gloss over what was happening here as late as the '60s (hell, depending on where you live and who you are, as late as last week). anyway, last summer, donna van ness from jazz by the boulevard called asking if i'd be available to interview dewey for the library. i told her no, i was too busy with my advertising job, and the next time i heard from her was when she e-mailed me dewey's obituary from the new york times after he left the planet from liver failure last september 2nd.

(speaking of which: _the point_ of all this is that weatherford college -- where dewey played a memorable '94 gig with bassist drew phelps, pianist johnny case, and drummer duane durrett -- has established a dewey redman music scholarship. to get information or make donations, call the college's scholarship office at 817-598-6275.)

i only got to see dewey perform twice in life: in 1979 at town hall in new york city, as a member of the ornette coleman alumni band old and new dreams with don cherry, charlie haden, and ed blackwell, and in 2003 at jazz by the boulevard with a san antonio-based trio led by drummer gerry gibbs. while he continued working in the free idiom that he helped trailblaze with ornette in the '60s, later in his life i believe he got real enjoyment (as well as steady work on the festival circuit) playing a mixture of musics that included the bebop, ballads 'n' blues he grew up playing in the fort, as well as some of his more innovative gambits: singing through his horn, reciting his own poetry, performing on a chinese multi-reed instrument called a musette. i think it meant something to this artist who'd been hailed all over the world to receive recognition in his hometown.

this particular night, there were five different bands slated to perform, followed by a jam session. (down the street, of course, dave karnes and the jazzcats from the old sunday night black dog tavern gang were holding forth at 6th street live, and i saw at least one muso sneak out through the back door to head over there in the course of the evening.) openers were "fm acoustic," a project of bassist jonathan fisher and gtrist paul metzger (of bertha coolidge fame; bertha bassist aden bubeck was in the house, sporting a scissorhead mohawk -- i guess that's what happens to these jazzbos when they spend enough time on the road with country acts like miranda lambert), joined by the ubiquitous joey carter on drums and percussion. now, fisher and metzger are both fine players, and their toons have an airy, rustic, methenyesque pastoralism about 'em, and i'd dig to hear 'em again in another venue, but i'm not sure zackley what this had to do with what we all were supposedly doing there (e.g., celebrating the life 'n' music of dewey redman). of course, i also usedta bitch when i went to blues "tributes" to freddie king, jimmy reed, elmore james or whoever and sat there for four hours without hearing a note of the nominal honorees' music, as extensive and widely-played as their catalog might have been. and dewey _did_ play with metheny on the gtrist's 80/81 alb and subsequent tour. but pat was playing out of his ornette bag then.

the next outfit to take the stage was, not to put too fine a point on it, the only one that actually "did the assignment": that is, they actually played music composed by or associated with dewey. since dave and daver, his band with drummer karnes, went south a coupla yrs ago, saxophonist dave williams has been involved in every jazz repertory project that's made it to the evening stage here in the fort, starting with paul unger's exhaustive miles davis exposition (focusing on the kind of blue / miles smiles / bitches brew-and-later incarnations), an effort with enough integrity to survive the ignominy of playing the tee-tiny stage in the children's face painting area of jazz by the boulevard. williams is also a participant in gtrist sam walker's monk tribute band "thelonious," which returns to arts fifth avenue on march 2nd and if you've read this far, you needs to be there too.

joined by chris white (the man who loves to play "outside" more than anyone in fort worth) on flute and trumpet, and the great flipside trio riddim section of bassist unger and drummer dennis durick, williams opened with "venus and mars," a redman composition old and new dreams cut as "dewey's tune" on their first album for black saint in 1976. now i wish i still had my long-lost copies of that record and ornette's new york is now; williams and co. also played don cherry's "augmented" from that old and new dreams debut disc, as well as the late trumpeter's "mopti" from the band's playing alb, and two ornette toons from the '68 blue note sesh that matched ornette 'n' dewey with the "classic" coltrane bass 'n' drums team of jimmy garrison and elvin jones: "round trip" and "the garden of souls." in between, williams essayed "i should care," the lovely sammy cahn ballad that dewey used to open his '97 live in london set. daver's tough tone and adventurous ideas were matched by chris white, who delivered a bravura performance on trumpet (his smears and cascades of notes invoked the spirit of cherry nicely), while unger and durick played as they always do, like twin whirlwinds communicating via mental telepathy -- this rhythm section is truly a joy to watch and listen to. dave williams has been wanting to do an ornette tribute for some time; here's hoping he'll find other venues to play this music with this lineup.

by this time there were some ppl in the house, so i read the proclamation from fort worth mayor mike moncrief in recognition of dewey. as it happened, marjorie crenshaw, an eminence of the local jazz scene, happened to be walking by as i did this, and she took the mike for some extemporaneous remarks about dewey. my fave: "he always said, 'you put your _technique_ up against my _tone_ and i'll beat you every time.'" amen.

the next set, by a sextet led by gtrist james shannon, had more of a jam session feel -- a buncha cats blowing on standards: along with shannon, joey carter on piano, dallasite james gilyard on bass, duane durrett on drums, and the twin trumpets of jack evans and chuck willis. evans and willis played well together, and shannon was a good, bluesy player in the vein of a kenny burrell or grant green. bassist gilyard seemed irritated, then resigned, when he realized he wasn't going to get to solo. (i saw sumter bruton in the crowd and wanted to suggest that maybe _he_ take over the hollowbody gibson for a toon. also in the house but not playing: drummer kory cook from austin's son's of hercules, a punk/garage rawker who also digs the jazz, and titanic trap-kicker clay stinnett, who's auditioning for the drum chair in max cady while ghostcar's on hiatus.) but again, relevance to dewey? yes, he probably played these toons thousands of times in his formative yrs, but...

dallas tenorman marchel ivery was next, and i mentioned in introducing him that he was the focus of my earliest experiences with jazz in texas, way back in the summer of '78, when my noo yawk buds 'n' i usedta go hear marchel's quartet with walter winn on drums and fort worthians charles scott (future sardines house bassist) and thomas reese (piano) at bill 'n' jeanie donnelly's recovery room on lemmon avenue in dallas -- "don't forget red garland!" marchel said, and it's true, miles' '50s pianist was also a regular on the gig. on this night, marchel was backed by joey carter on vibes, jhon kahsen on piano, daniel stone on bass (replaced midset by drew phelps), and duane durrett on drums. marchel comes from the same school of powerfully expressive tenor saxophonics as dewey; he provided several object lessons on the "tone vs. technique" dichotomy, and it was pure fun watching the expressions on joey carter's face while listening to some of marchel's wilder improvisational flights. marchel also managed to conjure the spirit of james clay, another departed fort worth tenorman, a great talent who spent too much of his short life working a warehouse gig in obscurity before restarting his career in the mid-80s. (later i had a convo with drew phelps about clay, who drew once spent two months of thursdays backing in a trio with drummer earl harvin, and don cherry's art deco record that clay played on back in '89.)

last set o' the night (before the jam that my sweetie 'n' i had to miss, owing to the resurgence, following the last band intro, of the respiratory crud i've been fighting this past week) was by pianist daymond callahan, with his trio of bassist young hill and the ebullient drummer daniel tcheco along with special guests pat franklin on sax and chris white (again!) on flute and trumpet. callahan, an arlington native, was previously in "faces the band" (a pieces of a dream-type smoove jazz aggro) and released his music society cd last yr. while technically impeccable, the music sounded a little sterile and gritless to these feedback-scorched ears, reminiscent of a few generations of "young lions" that were getting signed by the majors back when major labels were still signing _any_ jazz artists, leaving veterans like dewey redman out in the cold. but maybe i'm just jaded.

all in all, 'twas very heartening to see so many turn out to support jazz in the fort. now, if only this could occur more 'n once or twice a yr...

Thursday, February 15, 2007

the worst band i've ever almost been in

there was this guy (whom i later discovered was the recently-separated father of one of my dtr's friends) who wanted to be the opening act for hard night's day, the beatle tribute band. to this end, he wanted to make a band that would learn all the songs by this scottish band called the kaisers that sounded like cod merseybeat even tho they were contemporary (like, late '90s). i actually went to the extent of going to the dude's house with a garage rawk-loving cat i'd jammed with once, and taking home the stupid cd's to woodshed the material. "when we perform," dude said, "we'll have a british flag onstage so ppl can see where our roots and influences lie." apparently a local blues muso of some repute, whose stage i usedta get thrown off fairly regularly back in sittin'-in daze, was gonna do it but realized he had more self-respect than that. so did i.

i am reminded of how much i truly loathe 'meercuns who affect brit accents and vibrato/distortion/grit-free gtr players that sound like they coulda been in gerry & the pacemakers of faeries across the mersey fame/shame. carducci had it right: the brit invasion didn't "re-introduce" 'meercun kids to anything. practically every muso i've talked to in connexxion with teen a go go who was active musically by '63 was already well versed in chuck 'n' bo, jimmy reed, freddy king, etc., and not just the ones from texas, either. same applies to the pac nw bands (wailers-sonics-kingsmen-raiders et al.), as carducci points out. and zappa and vliet out in the cali desert. and...point being, what the brits added to the equation was simply the idea that you could become a _celebrity_ by raising such a racket. but was that really progress?

big joe's

oh, btw -- big joe's pizza and pasta, the only pizza restaurant endorsed by stoogeaphilia, now has a web presence. their pie is the only food that makes me wanna have it again the day after i've eaten one.

art of the jam

'twas a night filled with surprises, starting with the tee-tiny number of ppl who were in "wreck west" when i strolled in 10-ish, which grew over time to be prolly the best crowd we've ever had in the li'l room, better 'n last week, even.

johnny "peckerwood" shook was absent due to a paying blues gig (and ron "the velvet hammer" geida 'n' i allowed as how it sounded kinda empty with only _one_ bass). dave karnaggio was back on drumaggio, but the _big_ news was the presence of billy "whitewater" wilson on theremin (which evabody in the club seemed to wanna play with; jam-meister lee allen said billy shoulda charged $5 for ppl to jack with it, kinda like an amusement park ride or somethin'). billy did a great 'n' tasteful job of blending in his axe (the one responsible for scary-movie sound f/x and the hook from the beach boys' "good vibrations"; anybody besides paul boll remember lothar & the hand people from the '60s?).

other news besides the size of the crowd and the presence of the theremin was the abundance of singers. usually the jam-meister's gotta handle all the vcl chores, or we go instrumental. not this night. there were so many of 'em lined up i almost felt like i was at a blues jam in a black club, where sit-in singers outnumber wannabe gtrists by the same proportion the latter outnumber the former in white blooze clubs. there was jam godfather/gideons frontguy carl pack, doing the honors on "freaky styley," "come together," and "war pigs," of course. ("mountain song" was also played; can the return of "pepper" be far behind?) ex-spitfire frontguy and home fire scribe cary blackwell got on the mic and split a beastie boys cover with wreck room impresario and ex-noo yawker brian forella.

prodigal fort worth daughter cynthia foster, back in her hometown from the left coast, showed her versatility and great pipes by singing both "my funny valentine" _and_ a led zep medley ("rock and roll" into "dazed and confused"). she should do this more, i'm thinking. also lee 'n' anne allen's friend amy from austin (sorry, i suck at remembering names) took the stage to sing over the jamcats' first-ever attempt at, um, "proud mary." she did a bang-up job, too, in spite of the fact that the tempo changed around 10 times or so. the jamcats played sabbath "iron man" for the first time ever, too, and almost got away with it. cameron from merkin did the drum honors on some of the rock-ola and didn't disgrace himself once, then he came back to flow what was apparently the theme from fresh prince of bel-air over some funky jamarama.

of the many thangs to do in the fort on a wednesday night, thisun has the loudest electric gtrs. and the unpredictability is returning...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

new date for fred's reopening

from jennifer chandler:

Tastes & Tunes of Texas
915 Currie Street
Fort Worth, TX
(817) 332-0083

Change the Date
due to unforseen red-tape
Friday, February 23!!
Fred's re-opening is delayed to Friday, Feb. 23.

And, Other News:
Upon Re-Opening:
Fred's will be open seven days a week.
Mon - Sat: 10:30 a.m. - Midnight

Sunday Brunch: 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Regular Menu 3:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Fred's will be changing to Non-Smoking inside the Cafe. However, you can smoke on the outdoor patio
(which will hopefully be soon operational if it would warm up a bit).
We are very excited to be having WINE ON THE PATIO.
Terry has been coming up with some festive
Frozen Sangria
recipes to debut this Spring!

Happy Hour Draft Beer Price
Happy Hour: Mon - Fri: 3:00 - 6:00

Monday, February 12, 2007

hochimen! wreck room! february 23rd!

while it's still a big deal that his old band, spot, is reuniting at el wreck on march 2nd, it's no less significant that reggie rueffer's current rawk outfit, the hochimen, who made what i do believe to have been last year's best alb, will be there a week earlier (that'd be friday, february 23rd, if you don't have a calendar handy). you should be there on both nights. i know i will.

vote for bernie!

bernie scheffler, owner of panther city bicycles, is running for city council district 9 on a platform that includes a bicyle- and pedestrian-friendly fort worth. with some of the major changes coming to cowtown (including the reconstruction of the lancaster and 7th street bridges to downtown), this is certainly an important time to have these issues on the council's radar. district 9 encompasses the area generally referred to as "fort worth south." if you live there and want to help, fall by the bike shop -- bernie still needs some signatures on his petition to get on the ballot may 12th. political engagement gives you the oppo to do more than just bitch when things don't go your way, so for gawd's sake, register 'n' vote!

new rob bosquez drama; dewey redman tribute

big news at mi casa this week (besides the re-opening of fonky fred's, if the lord be willing and the creek don't rise): a new drama by rob bosquez opening at rose marine, and sardines. details from the star-telegram:

Feb. 16-25 My Brother and Sister With Wings A new work by Fort Worth playwright Rob Bosquez, about two children born with wings. The Butterfly Connection at the Rose Marine Theater, Fort Worth. $10. 817-333-4028.

and from saxophonist dave williams:

A Dewey Redman Tribute SUNDAY FEBUARY 18TH 5PM – Celebrating the life and music of legendary Fort Worth jazz saxophonist and composer Dewey Redman.

Performing original works by Dewey Redman, Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry and Charlie Haden from 6-7pm

Dave Williams – Tenor/Alto
Paul Unger – Bass
Dennis Durick – Drums

Sardines Ristorante Italiano
509 University Dr
Fort Worth, Tx 76107

Also appearing:
Michael Ivery, James Gilyard, Jhon Kahsen, Duane Durrett, Roger Boykin, Drew Phelps, Joey Carter, plus many other artists. A scholarship fund will be established in Dewey Redman's name. Call 817-332-9937 to make reservations.

so there.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

xx communicator; doing the work

tammy gomez fell by the li'l jam at the wreck room the other night. she's writing a poem every day this yr and pubbing them on her blog. she told me one of 'em ([poem 28) was inspahrd by something i wrote. i should only have her discipline and intentionality -- there's a lot more to do at the 'puter besides dinking on youtube, after all.

i got another cd-r from wes race that includes the stuff he cut with sumter bruton last fall. it's boss. need to get in touch with wes. (i think i saw him in a car turning onto hulen street from i-30 when i was coming home from the market the other day.) evabody needs to hear "mr. wes-ola's lucky number dream book."

figured out how we're gonna pub the wreck room book before it closes. now it's time to do the heavy lifting. and maybe find me a payday this month, too.

king crimson

let us speak once more of prog, and then we will do so no longer. i was always real divided about this band, altho i had friends whose opinions i respected who dug 'em beyond all reason. i will say this: that i like the red alb (to which this toon was the title track) unreservedly, and this version by the "two-of-everything" '90s lineup -- including a longhaired adrian belew (who looked like a scrub when i saw him twice with fz in the '70s but here appears to be having enough fun for both himself and robert fripp while doing interesting thangs w/whammy bar 'n' feedback) and a very dapper bill bruford (whom i saw kicking it around with allan holdsworth in u.k. scant weeks after arriving in tejas) -- is mighty fine.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

gentle giant

while prog remaineth the guilty pleasure that dare not speak its name, i still 'member the show of these guys' i saw at avery fisher hall in manhattan ca. '77 with a bud of mine who was 7'2". they were a hoot live, changing instruments mid-song and playing stuff that was absolutely pulse-quickening.

rory gallagher

was also reminded of this cat today...proof positive that the phrase "irish blues gtrist" is not an oxymoron. back when i was a snotnose, i ranked him right up there with hendrix, jeff beck, and johnny winter. my college band usedta play his version of this junior wells toon, which stephen the drummer and i learned off rory's scorching live in europe alb. rory made flannel shirts cool long before the minutemen and all those seattle boyzzz. during the height of the troubles, he'd play belfast every christmas and have i.r.a. and u.d.a. mofos standing shoulder to shoulder, in peace. rory passed in 1995. now there's a movement afoot to name the airport in his native cork in his honor. they could do a lot worse.

manic depression

this vid of vernon reid (living colour), jack bruce (cream), and terry bozzio (fz, missing persons) playing a math-y version of hendrix "manic depression" is kinda interesting in a way and kinda gives me a headache in a way. proves there's more 'n one way to skin a cat, at least.

what freezes well vs. what doesn't

spaghetti sauce and chicken 'n' rice casserole freeze well.
beef stew doesn't.
my theory is that there's something about the tomatoes
in the first two (c'n'r casserole has rotel in it)
that makes it more conducive to freezing.
plus the stew has flour in it.
will have to test this hypothesis.

Friday, February 09, 2007

jeff beck

speaking of ppl who were produced by mickie most, we actually got _requests_ for jeff beck at the li'l jam this wk, which was cool 'cos it gave us a chance to feature the gtr stylings of ron geida, a.k.a. (at least by me) "the velvet hammer." while i saw jeff twice on his wired tour back in '76 (got my ears blown out once, to where i couldn't hear _anything_ for around four hrs after the show, but the second time was pure hair-standing-on-neck bliss), i still kinda prefer his group in its earlier rod stewart-ron wood-nicky hopkins and bob tench-max middleton-cozy powell incarnations, the first of which is on display in this studio vid clip from the 1969 sessions that produced beck-ola alb.

terry reid

was just reminded of this guy, on the subject of "now that's what i call a rawk singer." there but for fortune, he coulda had robert plant's gig in led zep. understand he now lives and gigs in l.a.

watt from pedro

listening to the watt from pedro show and watt's talking about how gentrification-yuppification is overtaking his hometown of san pedro, cali.

"everything lames out when the mersh those four projects going on downtown with artists lofts starting out at $740,000. what kind of artists -- toothpaste tube artists?"

his on-air partner brother matt adds, "all the ppl in the ads don't look like they're from pedro."

things same-same all over, it seems.

fred's redux (again) ADDENDUM

now sked for friday, feb. 16th. stay tuned...

art of the jam

to hell with it, i'm not gonna bother trying to number these things anymore -- more trouble than it's worth.

so dave karnes made it back to "wreck west" for the li'l jam this wk. the drummer's managed to migrate the sunday jazz thang with joey carter 'n' usual suspects to 6th street live (6th and foch, just up the street from the new la familia location), so he decided to come out 'n' slum with the jamcats (who, with the exception of ron geida, met his suggestions that we "just II-V it or I-VI-II-V it" were met with mute cro-mag bemusement; later, the two jazzcats could be overheard plotting in secret while running the chords to steely dan songs). it's always a gas to play with karnage. he and jam-meister lee allen have a special chemistry and even though he claims not to know any of the toons, he managed to nail the forms to jam standards like "war pigs" and "teen town" as well as a coupla jeff beck toons that have recently been added to the canon (which i like to think of as "the fast one" and "the slow one," but whose true titles are "you know what i mean" and "'cause we've ended as lovers"), dragging the rest of the jamcats along behind him. during the, um, lengthy break between sets, he 'n' i recalled scuffling for cigs (he just quit) on tour with nathan brown, and the night the club (i think it was somewhere in south carolina) comped us more beer than we could drink. with sunward losing their keyb player, maybe he'll have more time for jammage (altho he might be more interested in, um, getting paid 'n' shit).

happy to report that the probs i'd been having with the li'l roland amp seem to be in the past and its tone is happenin' once again. ex-yeti axe-slinger eric harris (whom i've given up on trying to get to sit in) was in the house, along with what the jam-meister characterizes as "the merkin-chili's crew," a berfday party, and a few ppl who'd been around earlier to watch adenine from dallas play. adenine features wreck carpenter extraordinaire tim burt's son on drums and they have a heavy-yet-precise sound that one listener likened to early slow roosevelt, altho i'd guess the similarity was unintentional. adenine was unique among metal bands i've heard in the last coupla yrs in that their singer hits actual notes, rather than just growling or belching. always a plus; call me old fashioned.

i'm not that much of a luddite, apparently

i preordered the stooge alb from amazon last night. i was thinking, "i'll have to walk across the hwy to borders to get it on march 6th or whatever the date is" when it occurred to me, "no i don't -- i can get it cheaper online." plus i now have a pkg in the mail to look fwd to: xmas in february. as one who bemoans the death of rekkid stores, this gives me cause for pause.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

robin sylar

here's the bio of the late guitarist robin sylar i wrote for his memorial website.

stooges @ sxsw

yep. it's on. march 17th in austin. i will prolly not be there, but still.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


lovers of '60s/'70s dee-troit ramalama should be well acquainted with the hydromatics, an outfit formed by ex-rationals/sonic's rendezvous band frontguy scott morgan along with musos from sweden's hellacopters and holland's nitwitz. now there's a good chance the band is about to become even more transcontinental, with the addition of ex-rendezvous band bassist gary rasmussen (i would say "srb," but the last time i did, katboy thought i said "sr_v_" and spit coffee through his nose) and gtrist kent steedman from orstralia's national treasure, the celibate rifles. were this to eventuate, it would be well worth the massive amounts of airfare 'n' jetlag involved.


well, there'll still be a wreck room in may, evidently. saw on their myspace thingy that there's a black tie dynasty/ppt show on may 4th. nice.

meth addicts demand government address spider menace

mi amigo terry gallagher reposted this on myspace and i just thought it was funnier 'n a damn fish. remember, kids, there are no old speedfreaks, only ones that _look_ like they're old.

(I ripped this from Tommy Pallotta's blog because it has to be shared...)

Meth Addicts Demand Government Address Nation's Growing Spider Menace

January 30, 2007 | Issue 43•05

WASHINGTON, DC—Following the tragic falling death of 32-year-old methamphetamine addict Phillip Diggs, who was reportedly attacked by spiders while scaling a large construction crane near Palo Alto, CA, thousands of outraged and confused meth addicts marched frenetically on Washington as part of a week of activities urging the federal government to address the nation's growing spider epidemic.

Harlowe pleads with senators to ask the King of America to do something about "all the goddamned spiders."

"Something needs to be done and it needs to be done soon—these spiders are everywhere," said Rich Harlowe, event organizer and founder of Tweakers' Rights NowNowNowNowNowNowNowNowNow!, in testimony before a Senate committee Tuesday. "The government must address this problem before the situation gets out of hand and these poisonous, acid-shooting spiders develop the powers of mind control or—God forbid—flight."

"America cannot afford to ignore this any crisis any longer," Harlowe added.

The rally drew addicts from every part of the country, many traveling on foot through the night, trading sex with truck drivers for rides, or stealing their brothers-in-law's bicycles. At dozens of rambling public speeches, organizers decried the fact that it took the spider-related death of an innocent meth addict to raise awareness of the issue, while lauding the bravery of meth addicts, and methamphetamines themselves.

A 45,000-word proposal was drafted by members of TRN during a marathon, 72-hour meeting under the Roosevelt Bridge, and presented twice to the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. The document, which includes schematics for the development of a giant "spider bomb" the size of Rhode Island, concludes repeatedly that the problem would best be combated with large quantities of methamphetamines and steel wool.

The TRN proposal closely mirrored the plot of the 1990 horror film Arachnophobia.

"This very morning, I saw a small child completely covered in hairy, bloodsucking, screaming tarantulas while his parents stood by and did nothing," said protester Joe Lopez, pausing to spit out a black and decayed tooth. "I was appalled. I shouted horrible profanities and incantations at them, but they ignored me."

"I, I, I don't—this is just, just, just—I, I, I—guh, ah," he added.

TRN activists claimed that they called for federal assistance only as a last resort, after months of trying to contain the problem with diplomacy, force, cathode rays, and methamphetamines.

"These spiders are unstoppable," meth addict and self-described spider-hater Christine Mitchell said. "We've tried everything from scrubbing ourselves raw with bleach, to burning them off with lit cigarettes, to scrubbing ourselves raw with bleach. We've even tried burning them off with lit cigarettes. We're out of options."

Mitchell urged senators to form an anti-spider task force, but cautioned that the creatures' ability to appear and disappear at will would rule out a bleach-related "quick fix" solution to the infestation.

Several other unnamed addicts who wandered in and out of the hearings described their efforts to establish "an open dialogue" with the spiders, but said the arachnids responded by growing dramatically in size and speaking with the voices of John Goodman, Gene Hackman, and Rosie Perez, bringing the first round of negotiations to an abrupt end.

"We tried talking to them, we tried screaming at them, we tried bursting into uncontrollable crying fits in front of them, but nothing seemed to work," said one witness, who refused to divulge his name, age, or "who sent [him] here." "Even with human heads, they would not listen to reason."

Though most committee members had left the hearings before Harlowe's closing remarks at 3:30 a.m. Wednesday, some indicated a willingness to investigate the addicts' claims more closely.

"I believe it is our duty and responsibility to act before we lose even more Americans of voting age," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D–CA), who noted that her home state had more meth addicts than any other in the country. "Pollsters tell us that one in five voters is, has been, or will be a meth addict at some point in their lifetimes. That's a voting bloc too big for us to ignore."

minority report

they let me vote in the village voice critics poll thingy again. woo-hoo.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

"rockin' robin" expands

having garnered some ink from malcolm mayhew in last sunday's star-telegram, rockin' robin (that'd be the shop in the montgomery street antique mall dedicated to the memory of mad gtr genius robin sylar and operated by his former wife, carol galt) is expanding and needs stuff to sell. so, if you have stuff you wanna donate or sell on consignment -- robin's sis virginia sez they're looking for "musical equipment, western stuff and funny/weird stuff of all types" -- go see carol at the mall, 2601 montgomery at i-30, or give her a call at 817-738-9939.

Monday, February 05, 2007

red devils, cub koda

not all blues-rawk sucks balls. for proof positive, seek out king king, the rick rubin-produced 1992 alb -- recorded live at the j'int that gave the set its name -- by the red devils, an l.a. aggro who added a hot young denton gtr-slinger named paul size to the lineup for their debut recording. the disc got lotsa spins back when i was moonlighting at blockbuster music ca. '93, but these days, a copy of the out-of-print artifact fetches big buxxx online. feh.

but fear not: from chuck nevitt to paul boll to me to you, here's vid of the red devils at the '95 pinkpop festival in the netherlands that'll give you an idea of what they were about. dunno what's most amazing: paul size's gtrismo, which has all the jimi-srv referents you'd expect but scads more energy 'n' drive (believe it, citizen: the kid's opening salvo here is _pure momentum_ on a stooges-mc5 level); frontman lester butler (r.i.p.)'s grace in sharing the spotlight with this fiery yoof, and in dealing with the sitch when he realizes his harp mic has come unplugged; ex-blaster/future cramp bill bateman's relentless four-on-the-floor; or the dutch hipi audience's ability to clap along, not just in time but _syncopated_, unlike most crowds of their ilk who are more likely (like my dear old grey-haired mom) to clap _against_ any beat they hear.

in a similar vein, discovered today (in between dealing with a plethora of exciting animal 'n' automotive isu's) a website dedicated to the late cub koda, muso-scribe extraordinaire who fronted dee-troit garage brats the del-tinos in the early '60s, went on to score a national #3 hit with "smokin' in the boys room" as leader of brownsville station in '73 (the last year i was in high school, doncha know), then worked with the riddim section from hound dog taylor's houserockers in the '80s. besides that, he authored loads of great historical articles for goldmine, discoveries, the all music guide, and blues for dummies, as well as liner notes for worthy retrospectives galore. he remained active in both fields (gtr and pen) right up to his premature death, at 51, in 2000. as writers-who-were-also-players go, only lenny kaye has had comparable impact. much respect.

back to the wreck room book.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

new stooges alb "the weirdness"

from the stooges' myspace thingy:

March 5, 2007: Europe
March 6, 2007: USA


You Can't Have Friends
My Idea Of Fun
The Weirdness
Free & Freaky
Greedy Awful People
She Took My Money
End Of Christianity
Mexican Guy
Passing Cloud
I'm Fried

william h. johnson's world on paper

harlem renaissance icon william h. johnson's paintings, woodcuts, and prints will be on display at the amon carter museum, 3501 camp bowie blvd in the fort, through april 8th. i usually suck at making it to things like this but intend to make an exception in this case.

Friday, February 02, 2007

kristina morland

oh by the way...kristina morland has thursday night happy hour at the wreck now. i'm trying to save money and write a book, so i prolly won't see her until the next time stoogeaphilia plays there (last thursday of the month), but that doesn't mean _you_ can't go.

john fahey

dig the work of a master. darrin kobetich does. me too.

metal hand sign abuse

cleaning out a yr and half of myspace email (note to self: there is _nothing_ worth keeping in myspace email) and found this, which i still think is pert damn high-larious:

Metal Council Convenes To Discuss 'Metal Hand Sign' Abuse

VATNAJÖKULL GLACIER, ICELAND—In an emergency session Tuesday, members of the Supreme Metal Council strongly condemned the increasing use of the metal hand sign in lay society, claiming that its meaning has become perverted by overuse.

"The metal sign, or 'sign of the goat,' has all but lost its impact as a token of respectful recognition for something truly 'rocking' or 'metal,'" SMC president Terence "Geezer" Butler said. According to Butler, members are upset that their sacred gesture is being used to acknowledge and celebrate "favorable but clearly non-metal events."

"We have all heard the reports of people using it to greet their in-laws, or after starting their lawn mowers with a single pull," Butler said. "But recently it was brought to our attention that someone used the gesture in a Texas convenience store after snagging the last box of carrot cakes. This simply won't do."

Formed in 1972 and comprising 12 of the most revered leaders of the metal community, the council meets annually in its majestic hall atop Vatnajökull, Iceland's largest glacier, to discuss metal affairs. The SMC convened for a special session after Nikki Sixx, Overlord Of Glam Metal Affairs, was sent hard photographic evidence of metal-sign abuse across the nation. Sixx's fellow high priests said they were "shocked," calling it "one of the most serious affronts to metal's integrity since the rise of rap-metal in the late 1990s."

"I remember a time not long ago when the Devil Horns were reserved for only the most righteous of person, deed, or riff," Grand Elder Lemmy Kilmister said. "To see someone throwing the horns to his mate at the launderette because the clothes dryer came to a full stop just as he finished reading his copy of Circus... It breaks my heart."

Nodding in silent agreement were council members Adalwolfa, a curvaceous Frank Frazetta-drawn Teutonic she-warrior magically brought to life by the council, and the spirit of slain Pantera guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott.

Compounding the problem, Sixx said, is the fact that many people who use the sign are not recognized members of the Metal Roster, the list of true metal acolytes engraved in medieval calligraphy on gleaming pages of steel.

"This man here, who invokes the sign merely to indicate his joy that his microwave popcorn is done: He is not metal," Sixx said. "We have it on good authority that he prefers the music of Tim McGraw and that the magic word of 'Zoso' has never passed his lips."

The council discussed several harsh punishments to deter further metal-sign abuse. Paulo Pinto, bassist for the Brazilian thrash-metal band Sepultura and Overlord Of International Metal Affairs, suggested that the hand of a suspected signer should be immediately cut off. A contingency of death rockers from Gothenburg, Sweden recommended that any sign abuser, or anyone who is not sufficiently metal, should be forced to eat his severed hand while having his eyeballs burned with a superheated metal crucifix, and then be slowly skinned alive.

More charitable members, such as former Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine, suggested that "a helpful list of guidelines could educate others, allowing them to distinguish between metal and non-metal occurrences."

"A lot of people who incorrectly make the sign have traces of metal in their hearts and minds, they just need the proper direction," Mustaine said. "Remember that many are outcasts and losers. To punish them further is to destroy the future of metal."

Until the council decides what course of action to adopt, Butler said he believes that a simple rule of thumb will help reduce the incidence of metal-sign abuse.

"If your head is neither banging nor thrashing, you should not be throwing the sign," Butler said. "It's that simple."

Yet, in a later interview in his private, skull-bedecked chambers, Butler expressed the concern that the problem has grown too widespread for even the mighty SMC to solve. He said he worries that metal standards have been on the decline for so long that few have any clear idea as to what is metal and what is not. The SMC has experienced deep ideological rifts in the past that have affected its ability to make strong decisions, most notably during the lengthy trial and eventual sentencing of Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich, who was indicted in 2004 on charges of cutting his hair, pussing out on Napster, and contributing to the original motion-picture soundtrack of Mission: Impossible 2.

"To this day, there are many on the council who deeply resent the presence of [Poison guitarist] C.C. DeVille,'" Butler said. "In fact, so do I. Despite our differences, the council still remains the sole arbitrator of all things metal. We must get through to those who wantonly abuse the sign of the goat. They must be informed that watering down the sign's meaning will result in serious consequences."

Should the abuse continue, Butler said the council "will defer the matter to Satan."

tom waits

here he is, singing "tom traubert's blues" on brit tv back in '77. he and carey wolff have these things in common: they both sing like they gargle with sulfuric acid, and they can both write songs that'll bring a tear to the eye of the crustiest old bahstid in the house.

on this day 25 yrs ago...

...i enlisted in the united states air force, in which i served 10 yrs, seven months and 13 days active duty and another nine 'n' change reserve. lotta lotta water under the bridge since then, but i learned stuff there that i still use every day.

stuff we're listening to this week

the very best of jussi bjorling: bjorling (1911-1960) was a swedish operatic basso who my sweetie digs much. i was raised listening to this stuff and thought i had an aversion to it, but after _finally_ watching the vid of puccini's tosca that my old man gave her when we were in jersey last summer, i find i have not-bad memories of parts of the same composer's la boheme, mozart's die zauberflote, and wagner's die flieglende hollander that were not erased by having my pop 'n' his pals play my cream rekkids at 78 when they had a bag on. hell, if i was garrruuunnnk and had a cream rekkid and a turntable with 78 speed on it handy, i'd prolly do the same thing today. in a day and time when ray liberio goes to the symphony, anything is possible. es verdad.

petra haden sings the who sell out: charlie's girl arranges 'n' sings (on eight separate tracks) all the voxxx _and_ instruments from townshend's _real_ masterwork. these days i actually listen to this more than the 'riginal, which is one of my two or three fave rekkids on the planet.

pere ubu, ray gun suitcase: i totally missed this when it came out in '95, but to these feedback-scorched ears, it sounds every bit as good as the early stuff that made their rep. david thomas' weird career trajectory has kept faith with the ideals of the late-'60s/early-'70s underground that inspahrd him.

johnny cash at folsom prison: i wasn't familiar with the 'riginal alb, so i'm not put off (as i often am) by the extra shit they added to the pristine artifact for remastered ceedee release. i'd guess, however, that johnny's joke about needing a glass of water after "cocaine blues" and his remark about how "this is being recorded for an album on columbia records, so you can't say 'damn' or 'shit'" weren't on the 'riginal. talk about connecting with yr audience. pure, unvarnished, raw, ragged, right.

laura nyro, the first songs: back when i didn't like any music that didn't have loud electric gtrs, my big sis usedta drive me up the wall with this singer and joni mitchell. while i still like the _idea_ of joni mitchell better than i like most of her actual music, this '67 alb (and nyro's gonna take a miracle with labelle from '71, the yr i saw patti, nona, and sarah get booed offstage by racist noo yawk hipi scum when they opened for the 'oo at forest hills) is nothing but '60s northern soul music of the sort i grew up diggin' 'cos it was _in the air_ where i come from. and she even made a song ("buy and sell") that sounds like it was based on "flamenco sketches" from miles' kind of blue.

tom waits, orphans: too much of a good thing is never enough. while the "bawlers" disc remains the fave at mi casa, the "brawlers" one (with larry "mole" taylor on bass and marc ribot on gtr) is a great blues rekkid, like captain beefheart minus the obliqueness.

wreck room ADDENDUM

spoke with wizard o' sound andre edmonson yesterday and he sez that 4/28 isn't necessarily the _last_ night, just the _anniversary_ weekend. we live in hope.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

fred's redux (again)

word from jennifer chandler is that fonky fred's will reopen on monday, feb. 12th. good news, as my fredburger jones hasn't been sated in close to a month now. we live in hope.

captain beefheart

last night while i was setting up my gear at el wreck, i was surprised to hear "i'm gonna booglarize you baby" from captain beefheart's the spotlight kid alb come across on chris' satellite radio station. i wanna be in a band that plays this song.

this one time, at rock camp...

this from fort worth academy of music honcho lee allen:

Rock Camp USA

Now in its eleventh year, Rock Camp USA features intensive performance-oriented instruction given by some of the finest professional musicians in the country. Rock Camp USA has grown into one of the countries’ top Camps, offering participants this once in a lifetime experience! Each Camp is two weeks long and culminates with the young Rockers giving a live performance in front of hundreds of people in their own Concert.

Dates offered:

SESSION 1: June 4 through June 8 / June 11 through June 15
Concert June 16

SESSION 2: June 18 through June 22 / June 25 through June 29
Concert June 30

SESSION 3: July 9 through July 13 / July 16 through July 20
Concert July 21

SESSION 4: July 23 through July 27 / July 30 through August 3
Concert August 4

Hours of camp: 1pm-5pm
Registration deadline: N/A
Age requirements: 10-18
Cost per child: $495
Presented by: Fort Worth Academy of Music
Contact name: Lee Allen
Phone number: 817.732.2208
Camp location: Ridglea Theater
Web site for more information:

another live music venue marked for death

this time it's the gypsy tea room, the _good_ room over in deep ellum. is it my imagination, or do ppl just not wanna pay for live music anymore? (in clubs, i mean. big concerts -- which i consider sporting events, not music -- are prolly a different matter, but i wouldn't know, not having been to one in like six yrs.) farewell, g.t.r., where i saw wayne kramer, patti smith, j. mascis & the fog, and the hochimen, where frank campagna painted a succession of gorgeous murals, where i met kevin pearce from dead sexy before i knew who he was, and where sir marlin von bungy once acted in a movie.

tony slug

my dutch pal, punk-rock pioneer, ww2 buff, turbonegro uberfan, raconteur and bon vivant tony leeuwenberg a.k.a. tony slug is 6'2", far too tall for any nederlander, and wears his les paul lower than jimmy page. (this means that he holds it in a vertical position all the time.) one smart 'n' funny sumbitch he is, too. i've been corresponding with sluggy for yrs -- interviewed him for the i-94 bar webzine out of orstralia around '99 or so and encountered him in the flesh just one time, at sxsw 2003, where i was ostensibly working for a newspaper and he was playing with a band from eindhoven called the spades. he has quite an illustrious history, having played in the nitwitz, b.g.k. (with whom he toured the u.s. of a. way back in '86 or so and actually played a show in odessa, texas), and loveslug before hooking up with dee-troit eminence scott morgan in the hydromatics. if you never heard of any of these bands, you're in luck: tony's got a blog where you can hear clips of most of the above. for the hydromatics (one song, anyway), you've gotta go to scott morgan's site. break things and get dirty.

top 25 punk albums

i don't play video games (the phrase that pays is "50 yrs old this yr, punky"), but katboy sent me this list of the top 25 punk albums from a gamer site that also does entertainment boo-shee (and "babes"...hmmm). because i am _that guy_, i'd quibble with their inclusion of generation x but not the damned (who were fustest wit' the mostest in the u.k. punk stakes), and i shouldn't say anything about green day (who are prolly what the average user considers, um, "old school"), but for the bands i care about, they picked the right albs. have fun seeing how much you disagree!

cellar reunion

speaking of jamarama, a reunion of musos who played at the cellar, a legendary cowtown nightspot where loads of local players cut their teeth between '58-'73 (and where jfk's security detail notoriously dallied the night before his assassination, as noted in the warren report) will be held at the ridglea on sat'day, feb. 10th. the event will be hosted by former manager jimmy hill, with 8mm home movies, a slideshow, dancing girls (in the day, cellar waitresses wore a "uniform" of bras and panties and would occasionally strip, as would female patrons of the j'int; not sure how wesley and richard are gonna handle thisun), and "cellar drinks" (presumably including everclear -- bleaggghhh!). performers include blues daddy arvel stricklin (whose website has a wealth of cellar history), rocky hill (who played gtr in the american blues with his brother dusty of zz top fame), the band l.b. stone (featuring point blank dude rusty burns), the neurotic sheep (fronted by mike harrison, a coupla whose bands were on the fort worth teen scene comp), the dream (featuring shuffle king bugs henderson), and a jam with special guests that'll include bloodrock toonsmith john nitzinger. anyone into '70s blooze-drenched gtr ramalama is encouraged to attend.

last night i had the strangest dream

on the way to el wreck, i heard what sounded a whole lot like a b-52 surge coming from the joint reserve base (the installation formerly known as carswell air force base). funny, 'cos there haven't been "heavies" based there since the early '90s. woke up this morning half expecting to read that we were bombing iran or something. bad dream, bad dream.

r.i.p. molly ivins

molly ivins, who scribed for the texas observer (not to be confused with the dallas one) before going to the big apple to write for the new york times, left the planet yesterday, aged 62, from breast cancer. a texas brawd with much to say, who said it well. much respect.

git shit

i actually practiced twice this wk, which is something i ordinarily don't do, but stoogeaphilia is getting ready to break in new toonage and i've been noticing lately how the li'l roland amp has been sounding less snat than it did when we started doing the jam a year 'n' a half ago. i had z-man at sessions give it a once-over back in the fall, but last week in particular, the sound on the li'l stage seemed more cloudy and indistinct than i'm used to. possibly i could have alleviated this by _just turning up_ (all-purpose gtr player solution), but i didn't wanna upset the balance. anyway, in dicking around with my rig (one component at a time, za r-r-r-right vay), i discovered that while it's still not as pristine as, say, a twin would be, the tone clears up considerably when i dime the treble and set bass and mids to around 1 o'clock. it's really weird having these kinds of isu's with a solid-state amp, but one of the cool 'n' unique things about the roland is the warmth of its tone (thanks, keith). my theory: in a year and a half of jams, the internal workings have gotten so crusted with nicotine and bar funk that it's affecting the sound. worth fixing? prolly not, if it's even possible.

other discovery i made is that when the marshall bluesbreaker pedal i traded steffin the new russian big muff for is in its "blues" setting, it gives a pretty nasty edge to the tone, which you can make creamier and more well-behaved by backing off the gain, so it's actually useable for both jam and stoogeband situations. (the big muff was too in-yr-face for the jam no matter how you set it.) with this knowledge, i was able to sell zasko the yellow dod overdrive that i've never been real happy with (altho it was more reliable than the big muff), along with a coupla broken pedals i found in our storage shed and a box of assorted parts i inherited from robin sylar. good on two levels: 1) i like divesting myself of shit and 2) it gives me walking around money until i get a payday. as they say in corporate america, "it's a win-win."

art of the jam 1.1

ok, i can't remember what number in this series we were up to before i took some time off from jamdom back in the fall, and it appears that things are not well in google's evil empire this morning, as both this blog and my gmail account have been on the fritz. no matter. to paraphrase penthouse forum, i am a muso-scribe in a small southwestern city, and i never thought i'd be writing you [again], but this week, i had an experience i just _had_ to share. but first, some promo hype.

as it appears forella has let the "wreckroomfortworth" domain go south for the last time, it's fortunate that he's now updating the li'l wreck room's myspace thingy more frequently. taking a gander at his page there this morning, i feel an air of _finality_ approaching. when he announced that the wreck was going to be closing its doors this spring, brian said he was going to book as many bands that'd played there through its 10-year existence as he could, and he's kept that promise. the lineup on his calendar for the next three months includes all braves no chief (feb. 2nd), blood of the sun (feb. 17th), confusatron (mar. 1st), a killer spot reunion / goodwin / velvet love box bill (mar. 2nd), two nights of aaa (mar. 30th with sleeplab, mar. 30th with villain vanguard), eleven hundred springs (apr. 6th), flametrick subs (apr. 14th), and pablo and the hemphill 7 (on apr. 20th, natch). apr. 28th, which looks to be the _last_ night, will see two reunions: daddy's soul donut and woodeye -- the latter of which, depending who you talk to, was the first band to ever play the wreck (which makes it fitting that they should be on hand to bring the curtain down), and a guarantee that there won't be a dry eye in the house (as if carey wolff's songcraft needed any help in that regard; why, i got a tear in my eye listening to woodeye's terminal ceedee such sweet sorrow while i was typing this).

it seems colossally ironic, then, that for the last three weeks, the impulse of will jamcats have actually had a reg'lar crowd -- sleeplab at embargo and amy royer at 6th street live notwithstanding. the merkin boyzzz (who open the legends of the south show this sat'day, feb. 3rd) brought 'em in the first time, and they seem to mostly work in the hospitality industry, but they (and another factor i'll get to in a moment) have given the li'l jam a kick in the ass that it prolly needed (because it's always more _motivating_ having ppl to play to than not having etc.). and several of these folks have told me that they'd never been to el wreck before, so hopefully they'll get as much enjoyment as they can out of it for the next few weeks (and stick with the jamcats when we migrate, if allah is merciful and fortune smiles, to 6th street live after they turn out the lights and lock the door at 3208 w. 7th for the last time).

so at the end of the day, it comes down to this: jam-meister lee allen on voxxx and dueling basses with barber mack leader john shook, with shook's barber mack / ex-kulcha far i / occasional jasper stone bandmate ron geida and yr humble chronicler of events (who also playeth with stoogeaphilia) on gtrs. the drum chair has been problematic of late, but on this particular night, lucas white (confusatron stickman who's now working with shook in both barber mack and top secret, as well as teaching lessons together at sessions music) kicked the traps and was _the secret ingredient_. lucas kept saying how out of practice he felt, but to these ears (and indeed, evabody's on the stand), his energy and _situational awareness_ brought thangs to a fever pitch where they haven't been in awhile, making tonight's jam one of the very best evah. here's hoping he comes back next week (when we'll be sho' nuff doin' it on the big stage along with dallas metalheads adenine).

first set ran almost two hours, second one to about 15 minutes after closing (by bar time), and i think all of the ppl involved could have gone on for another hour if the clock on the wall hadn't said it was time to close. what we play? lessee...i remember zappa's "sexual harassment in the workplace," failure's "daylight," meters "cissy strut," hendrix "manic depression" into "third stone from the sun," chili peppers "freaky styley" (with gideons frontguy / jam godfather carl pack on voxxx), jaco "teen town," zep "dazed and confused," sabbath "war pigs," a first attempt at jeff beck's "'cause we've ended as lovers," some p-funk here, some rush there, a little z.z. top "jesus just left chicago" at the end (earlier, jam-meister lee favored us with a reading from the song of solomon). what it sound like? hard to describe, but i once said "rawkbluesfunkreggaemetaljazz" and i still think that covers it. so there.