Saturday, October 31, 2009

oh yeah...

i'm on facebook now. between t.tex, liles, and my sweetie, the peer pressure was irresistible. i might shift all the "here's what's happening in my life" blather there and use this for jes' music writin' like it was 'riginally intended (sort of). or not. as if it really matters.

11.1.2009, ftw

tomorrow: mailing out HIO cd's to press folk. writing rekkid reviews. maybe getting a run in. making a hpb run. calling my kids. sweeping and mopping the floors. maybe running mr. lawnmower. making dinner for my sweetie. playing with the cats. life's good.


cartoon trib to blue cheer's dickie peterson owen cook, from arthur.

HIO stuff

while terry's working on the packaging for the limited edition box set versh of our cd-r, i've initiated the low-budget p.r. campaign, which means i'm burning discs pretty much non-stop, mailing 'em to some media folks, and handing them out to folks at work a la mr. aggravated foe. if you want one, lemme know and i'll burn one for you as well (altho if'n you're into "the romance of the artifact," you're gonna wanna wait for the box set, since they are gonna be stupid inexpensive).

clash fans: get ready to fork over the dough

london's calling...again.

Friday, October 30, 2009

cat builds instruments from turntables

hey jude: the flow chart

is here.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

speaking of radio...

...kera's new all-music outlet kxt 97.1 goes live on november 9th. my suggestion: bring back dennis gonzalez!

radio dj's: the new buffalo?

speaking of donovan's brain, they're featured in keith lockwood's documentary about bozeman, montana's indie radio station kglt-fm, where the dj's roam. review to follow.

be glad you don't live in utah

but if you do, remember not to rap your fast food order. or else.

knitting factory records redux

it looks like the imprint of the former lower manhattan home for all that's outside is coming back, specifically to release remastered versions of the entahr fela kuti catalog. the only title announced so far, the best of the black president, appears to duplicate in toto mca's the best best of fela kuti from y2k, not that there's anything wrong with that.

bobby previte

my scrawl on the i-94 bar

reviews i penned of new cd's by arty '70s ohioans tin huey and long-lived montana psych collective donovan's brain are online now.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

pere ubu on youtube

hey, kids, it's ok to watch pere ubu vids on youtube now. well, theseuns, at least.

be glad you don't live in columbia, s.c.

...where a fan of bach, christmas carols, and crickets got all the bands that used to jam in a storage complex near his house evicted. boo! hiss!

josh alan friedman @ the kessler theater in oak cliff yesterday

playing "cat's squirrel!"

and more...

and talks about an old book...

and jams some jobim...

and spiels on his latest book...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

vanity googling

hahahaha. hembree found a PFFFFT! track on this dj website (surprisingly not from china). dude that posted it said it reminds him of "early police rhythms." wonder what he thought of the title?

HIO cutup on

terry horn put an 11-minute cutup from hentai improvising orchestra's recent recording session on HIO's virb page (it's labeled "HIO distorted 10.17.2009"). the full recording is 51 minutes long, plus matt hickey created a one-minute mashup in the style of his match of the day cd (as joe and the sonic dirt from madagascar). it's very different from anything we've done live in this format or as PFFFFT!; there's no drummer, and matt hembree performs on a number of instruments that include guitarron, plastic flute, percussion, zither, accordion, and ukelele as well as bass. terry's working on cover art now and we'll have cd-r's available at future HIO performances. so there.

Monday, October 26, 2009

happy berfday dylan thomas (b. 10.27.1914)


Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs
About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green,
The night above the dingle starry,
Time let me hail and climb
Golden in the heydays of his eyes,
And honoured among wagons I was prince of the apple towns
And once below a time I lordly had the trees and leaves
Trail with daisies and barley
Down the rivers of the windfall light.

And as I was green and carefree, famous among the barns
About the happy yard and singing as the farm was home,
In the sun that is young once only,
Time let me play and be
Golden in the mercy of his means,
And green and golden I was huntsman and herdsman, the calves
Sang to my horn, the foxes on the hills barked clear and cold,
And the sabbath rang slowly
In the pebbles of the holy streams.

All the sun long it was running, it was lovely, the hay
Fields high as the house, the tunes from the chimneys, it was air
And playing, lovely and watery
And fire green as grass.
And nightly under the simple stars
As I rode to sleep the owls were bearing the farm away,
All the moon long I heard, blessed among stables, the nightjars
Flying with the ricks, and the horses
Flashing into the dark.

And then to awake, and the farm, like a wanderer white
With the dew, come back, the cock on his shoulder: it was all
Shining, it was Adam and maiden,
The sky gathered again
And the sun grew round that very day.
So it must have been after the birth of the simple light
In the first, spinning place, the spellbound horses walking warm
Out of the whinnying green stable
On to the fields of praise.

And honoured among foxes and pheasants by the gay house
Under the new made clouds and happy as the heart was long,
In the sun born over and over,
I ran my heedless ways,
My wishes raced through the house high hay
And nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allows
In all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songs
Before the children green and golden
Follow him out of grace.

Nothing I cared, in the lamb white days, that time would take me
Up to the swallow thronged loft by the shadow of my hand,
In the moon that is always rising,
Nor that riding to sleep
I should hear him fly with the high fields
And wake to the farm forever fled from the childless land.
Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
Time held me green and dying
Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

them crooked vultures

it's their single, "fang." and it's more than 15 seconds long. imagine that.


came home from work tonight to find a stack of review cd's that arrived in today's mail, along with copies of hickey's mix of the 10.17.2009 HIO recording sesh for myself, terry, and hembree. in the fullness of time, they will doubtless appear online _somewhere_; we've also discussed making some cd-r's to sell at shows.

coincidentally, this very night, hembree uploaded his recording of the very last PFFFFT! set (fairmount, 12.21.2008). actually, that night we were PF(F)FFF(F)T!, since hickey and marcus brunt were also on board. kinda bittersweet, as we (matt and i) feel as though we got better at playing together as our audience dwindled, but everything for a reason, i suppose. now we get to decide what tracks to submit to indian casino records for inclusion in their the return of helldamncrap comp, to be released in january 2010.

dark carnival

sure, RON was never really ever in a good band besides the stooges, but this is some of the best vid i've found of his playing from the lick-stealing standpoint. when i saw him with mascis and watt at sxsw, i shot an entahr roll of film of him playing over a bin at tower records, and realized that everything he played was done in the simplest way possible. less _is_ more.

a RON memorial

john fahey and the crazies

a record store owner's memoir. (thanks to darrin for the link.)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

woo-hoo, the yankees won the pennant

generally, i know enough about sports to be able to fake knowledge/interest if i'm in a bar and there's a game on tv. but i'll admit to being a sporadic and opportunistic new york yankee fan (although i only caught one game the last time they were in the series). hey, jesse...i'll chill the beers.

pssst...wanna browse every issue of "life" magazine?

according to this flowchart, i'm an atheist


a couple of weddings

the son of the man that brought me here married his sweetie (they've been together eight yrs and lived together for four, altho he's 24 and she's 22) got hitched in the sculpture garden of artspace 111, amid the sounds of helicopters, air traffic, and a passing freight train. on the way there, we passed the former shakespeare in the park location and i remembered watching ry and his sister sliding down he hill with my kids on sheets of corrugated cardboard. got to see some old good friends that we don't get to see nearly often enough. the kids are honeymooning in noo yawk city.

big marcus, bass trombonist with HIO, and his sweetie (whom he met at tcu in 1995 and proposed to atop the eiffel tower) were married (by the same officiant as ry and natalie, coincidentally) in front of a dc-3 at the american airlines aviation museum (her late pop was a pilot). she walked down the aisle to joe morello's drum solo from dave brubeck's "take 5," which i found marvelously appropriate. marcus had to go back to work in nyc today, but charlsye's joining him wednesday to fly to rome for their honeymoon.

safe travels and many happy years to some sweet kids.

free streaming: threat or menace?

from arthur. (i'm with the commenters, btw.)

philip glass on "sesame street"

as i am constantly being reminded recently, tv didn't always suck (altho it does now).

music animation machine

this is pretty interesting. check out the site map. hey, jay...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

the symphony of science ADDENDUM

yo la tengo w/ex-flamin' groovie roy loney

once when nicholas girgenti and i were trying to make a band, we usedta play this song and i usedta sing it. it was pretty amusing.

Friday, October 23, 2009

the symphony of science

here's a site my middle dtr pulled my coat to, where they use pitch-correction software and vids of scientists to make music like t-pain's of their spiel. (still waiting for my underground hip-hop mixtape.)

richard hurley's trophy biz has a website where you can design your own award online. richard made the trophy we gave sir steffin when he "retired" from the stoogeband. (it's hard to see in the pic, but it's a clear plastic telecaster, inscribed with a pic of steffin playing at fredfest. i wish we'd gotten a better shot of it than the asian media crew were able to.) richard does good work, reasonably priced.

r.i.p. soupy sales

damn. soupy sales checked out yesterday. i still remember when i was watching his show on wnew out of nyc and he told us kids to take green pictures of presidents out of our dad's wallet and send them to him.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

freddie king and clarence "gatemouth" brown, 1966

my sweetie showed me some of t.tex's facebook posts, including a link to this first fab clip. i might have to go to the dark side after all, just to see stuff like this.

harvest of art

our friend henri mayakapongo is among 23 artists exhibiting at "harvest of art," an event at art on the boulevard, 4319 camp bowie blvd (two blocks east of hulen street), from 5-8pm, saturday, october 24th. the exhibition continues through december 1st. call 817-737-6368 for more info.

who but ac/dc?

...would think of packing a cd box set in a functional 1-watt gtr amplifier? from wired. (thanks to ray for the link.)


It's kinda ironic that just as the Fort Worth heavy band Caddis is releasing their self-titled CD -- after four years and change of existence as a band, and two years of handing out CD-R copies of the disc -- they're also going on hiatus due to one of their guitarists becoming a daddy (bassist Ben Schultz told me when he gave me the disc, but I forget whether it was Matt Thomas or Nathan Morris; I suck). But as we all know, good bands don't have to break up; they just don't have to play all the time. And anybody who thinks that playing thunderous metal and being a daddy are mutually exclusive just doesn't know that much about metal -- or daddies.

Caddis is cut from the same mold as bands like Sleep, High On Fire, and Mastadon. They play a brand of metal that draws from the wellspring of '70s hard rock, avoiding the operatic excesses of some of the genre. When the guitarists sing, they sound angry and aggressive, but they use their own voices, avoiding the Cookie Monster register that makes a lot of "extreme" music just sound silly. When Thomas and Morris solo, it flows organically from the songs' rifferama and serves to release the tension in the songs, rather than flaunt anybody's chops -- although the several acoustic interludes that provide a respite from the feedback maelstroms also display their instrumental finesse.

Drummer Andrew Tipps, who moonlights with Schultz in Magnus, is living proof that Art Blakey's dictum -- the head Jazz Messenger having once reputedly said, "If the drummer's not the best musician in the band, it's not a jazz band" -- is also applicable to metal. With Tipps handling the frequent tempo shifts, from roiling triple time to a cracking "punk polka," the band's pummeling riffs, replete with unison bass and down-tuned guitar, sound all the more impactful. These guys sound like they mean it. Here's hoping we hear more from them soon.

otis spann on french tv (doo-dah, doo-dah)

muddy's great piano player, in 1964. thanks to t.tex for posting!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

calibro 35

best italian funk band in the world. seriously.

my scrawl on the i-94 bar

a review i penned of the sons of hercules' new alb a different kind of ugly is online now.

my scrawl in the fw weekly

a review i penned of bassist linda oh's new cd entry is online now.

bobb trimble interview/blog/podcast here.

six australian foods worth trying

curiously, nothing here about beets on burgers. craig?

grocery store musical

Rodrigo Amado

Portuguese saxophonist Rodrigo Amado obviously digs him some Ornette -- his label's called European Echoes, and there's a track on one of his two new albums called "In All Languages" -- but the proximate model I'm hearing in his work is Sonny Rollins: the gritty rasp of his tone, the penchant for theme-and-variations. The difference is that Amado relies on his own imagination, rather than the handiwork of Tin Pan Alley songsmiths, as the framework for his extemporizations.

I first caught wind of Amado through his work with Dallas trumpeter Dennis Gonzalez in Yells At Eels, and with Dennis' sons in guitarist Luis Lopes' Humanization 4tet, but he's already had a couple of releases under his own name (as a member of cooperative groups), another three with the Lisbon Improvisation Players, and a dozen odd appearances on disc as a sideman.

On The Abstract Truth, recorded in 2008, he's joined by Chicagoan Kent Kessler (a regular Ken Vandemark collaborator) on bass and Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love. The sound they produce together, while free and fiery, also has a warmth that's unusual in this kind of music. Amado is equally expressive on tenor and baritone saxes. Kessler bows his bass with the same facility as David Izenzon in Ornette's '60s trio, sometimes playing flute-like flurries in the instrument's higher register, while Nilssen-Love varies his accompaniment from Sunny Murray-like abstraction to Elvin Jones-on-Meditations potboiling.

Amado -- himself a photographer whose images have the same elegant simplicity as his musical compositions -- dedicated The Abstract Truth to the surrealist painter De Chirico, and its cover is a painting by the musician's father, a kiss shared by cardboard cutouts; perhaps a comment on the artifice that underlies intimacy?

On Motion Trio, recorded a year later, the Rollins influence begins to sound more like Ben Webster as refracted through Rollins into Archie Shepp and David S. Ware. Here Amado fronts another trio, this time with Miguel Mira (a member of the bands Woods and Diatribes) on cello and Gabriel Ferrandini (who's played with Luis Lopes and saxophonist Nobuyasu Furuya) on drums. There are moments on this disc that are both more subdued and more expansive than anything on The Abstract Truth.

On "Language Call," Amado opens with a behind-the-beat insouciance before taking off on an encyclopedic exploration of the theme. Mira alternately functions as a bassist, playing deft pizzicato lines, and a restless melodic voice, bowing high harmonics and double-stops. Ferrandini has the textural variety and humor of a Han Bennink; he tends to clatter and splatter rather than rumble and thunder. When Amado turns up the heat, he's as likely to counter with an ironic comment as he is to equal the saxophonist's intensity. The aforementioned "In All Languages" is a tour de force of active listening by this well-matched trio.

A worthwhile pair of releases from a distinctive voice on the Euro improvised music scene.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

imperial dogs

speaking of proto-punk spew, occasional arthur mag scribes thurston moore and byron coley (i keep wanting to type "england dan and john ford coley" for some reason) posted a review and youtube clip of early-'70s stooges disciples the imperial dogs, who apparently have a live dvd out of a performance from back in the day. you know what to do.

9.19.2009 ftw

we went to see the great tyrant at the sunshine bar at 902 w. division in arlington (next door to caves lounge, my new favorite place to play). like caves, the sunshine kinda had a vibe that put me in mind of the late, lamented wreck room, and it was good to see former wreck barback matt day tending bar there, which he's been for the past couple of years. while i don't feel as connected to either arlington room as i did to the wreck (altho if i lived closer i'd prolly become a reg'lar), they both feel familiar in a good way.

the tyrant played a set that was all new to me, which is prolly indicative of how long it's been since i last saw 'em (maybe six months?) -- this was the material that they just recorded, as opposed to the material i remember that's _finally_ going to be released on dada drumming as soon as david d'andrea delivers the artwork. my sweetie posted some pics on her photo blog (click on 'em to make 'em big). unfortunately, since i had to open in the morning, we didn't have enough steam to go the distance, so i'll have to wait till another time to hear tolar, whom jon teague assures me are even more incredible than their alter ego band, unit 21, who impressed me at rubber gloves back during the summer.

ben schultz from caddis gave me a copy of their new cd, which in the fullness of time i'll review either here or in one of the usual places. ben's also in magnus; just what is it with local metallistas having multiple/overlapping identities?

i don't make this stuff up. my sister sends it to me. i _think_ this is a joke.

cat show

some ppl say we're nuts about our cats. but some ppl don't know these folks.

Monday, October 19, 2009

first HIO recording sesh addendum

terry sez my gtr recorded ok, other instruments not so well. hoping hickey got better results with his multiple mics.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

ray bradbury: "i ran away from death, and ran toward life"

how he started writing, from

vonnegut: "the clown was a poet"

from the l.a. times.

sons of hercules/snowbyrd

got a package from saustex media (home of the hickoids, t. tex edwards, and the loco gringos) the other day, bearing new ceedees by one of my fave bands, the sons of hercules, and another i'd never heard of but dig much, snowbyrd -- sort of a san antonio versh of woodeye or rich hopkins & luminarios. reviews to follow in the usual places.

first HIO recording sesh

i usually don't like "recording sessions," but it's not so bad when a bunch of friends come over for dinner and then make some low-volume music in my living room.

marcus brunt was unfortunately unable to make it due to a sick dog; hope old blue's doing better. din-din was broiled coho salmon rubbed with pepper, my mom's cucumber salad, and tomatoes and red onion drizzled with balsamic vinegar, with vanilla ice cream for dessert. a simple meal for a simple improvising orchestra.

hickey (bless him) brought his entahr recording rig from his waterlogged shed in weatherford, along with his electric gopichand and synth. terry brought a "minimal setup" of record player, laptop, and cigar-box gtrs; it was good to be able to hear him and hickey, which isn't always possible in live situations. terry was gonna do some spoken word (a reading from thomas more's utopia), but there was too much detritus scattered on the floor between him and the vertical mic hickey set up for hembree to play his "small instruments."

i used the 1/5 power setting on the twin and played bongos and harmonica as well as gtr; my sweetie said the latter was the only instrument that was occasionally too loud (prolly when i was using the e-bow, which i'm still getting the hang of). much of the melodic content came from a worn-out hembree (60-hr week at his straight and, what, five gigs in the past ten days), on guitarron, percussion, flute, zither, accordion, and gtr as well as bass.

we'll see what it sounded like; both hickey and terry got recordings. if it doesn't suck, we'll put it on cd-r to shill at shows.

Friday, October 16, 2009

bobb trimble

i am happy beyond words because jennings at doc's is holding for me an elpee by '80s (that's right, the decade i sat out _guarding freedom's frontier_) worcester, mass., psychedelic weirdo bobb trimble. plus who knows what other cool stuff he brought back from austin? we'll find out tomorrow.

ADDENDUM: iron curtain innocence is indeed badass. first side sounds a lot like the sorrow-era pretty things. second side sounds a li'l more like a guy sitting in his bedroom, but is still pert damn fine (especially for 1980). also scored a sealed vinyl reish of pere ubu's terminal tower and the celibate rifles quintessentially yours that i thought was gone last time i was there. hooray!

8 bit operators' "tomorrow never knows megamix"

this versh of my fave beatle song fucking rules.

i'm still waiting for my underground hip-hop mixtapes from my dtr and terry.

oh, and btw -- the flaming lips are covering dark side of the moon. (only on itunes, of course.)

shakespeare in the parking lot

arts fifth avenue sends:

Shakespeare In The Parking Lot
Fort Worth Theatre's Shakespeare In The Parking Lot
As You Like It
by William Shakespeare

Saturday-Sunday/October 17-18
Friday-Saturday-Sunday/October 23-25

Curtain at 8 pm - FREE Admission
concessions available for purchase.
Fort Worth Theatre gives Shakespeare a new twist... Bollywood style! Throw on a jacket, bring a blanket and join us for some fun on the outdoor stage! Enjoy Live Theatre Under The Stars!

them crooked vultures


blue cheer - "parchman farm" in big d

the fort worth cats have a gig

and closer to home, here's domestic eccentric david "kid" daniel with a message to you rudies. i admire the way he can speak and play bass at the same time.

mick farren - "song of the hired guns"

speaking of bo diddley and anarchic spoken word, here's the man my oldest dtr said sounds like an evil jeremy irons, rock 'n' roll renaissance man mick farren, performing in brighton on 10.3.2009. hopefully a better audio recording will emerge. (text below so you can declaim along.)





(c) 2009 by mick farren

Thursday, October 15, 2009

stoogeshow post mortem

we played the caves lounge in arlington last night and got off. it's a comfy spot, dimly lit a la the wreck room (r.i.p.), with a tv set playing a vid of a burning log in the fireplace. hembree said, "i wouldn't feel bad if i spilled beer here," but it doesn't feel as lived-in as the wreck or the old black dog did. functional a.c. and smoke-eaters (altho not enough to prevent me from feeling like i'd blazed two packs when i woke up this a.m.), and a good-sounding room to boot. one fingered fist used our backline and sounded like a hundred times better than they did at the moon on sat'day. i told josh that the secret to richard's boss tone is in the mids. (i also noticed that josh sings like a beastie boy.)

teague was all on about them crooked vultures, the josh homme-john paul jones-dave grohl supergroup, and a youtube channel he's been checking out that's all documentaries about colonialism. at his request, we shortened the set list, altho in the event, he wound up calling more songs than were originally planned. lesson: give the drummer more time between songs. ray shredded his voice and hurt his wrist falling off the (tiny) stage. prolly my bad for cranking the new amp up too loud.

had a better crowd than we'd have drawn anywhere in fort worth on a weekend. (it kinda reminded me of the whitewater tavern in little rock when i played there with nathan brown on a tuesday night to more ppl than would have been at el wreck on a sat'day. i mentioned this fact to the bartender, who replied, "yeah, and we're not even busy." perspective is all.) not sure how much of that was house crowd and how much was folks that actually wanted to see us, but we got a good response and the management wants us back. hoping we can book something the first two weeks of december, before matt heads to tennessee for the holidays. meanwhile, i've got a new fave place to play.

elle hurley told me the folks that run the sunshine bar next door also wanna book the stoogeband, but that'll require more time to put together, since they don't have a p.a. however, i might see if my fall-breaking sweetie wants to go see the tyrant when they play there next monday, just to check it out.

ADDENDUM: ...then the grocery clerk, the computer programmer, the graphic designer, the bookseller, and the trophy maker went home.

r.i.p. cap'n lou

was surprised to learn this afternoon that michael chamy of zanzibar snails fame is a wrestling fan -- and that cap'n lou albano had left the planet, aged 76. in high school, i used to watch the national wrestling alliance out of tampa, florida, on the spanish-language station that broadcast from linden, new joisey. during the bad boston-foreigner-journey-styx time, i became a jazz snob for awhile and started going to monday night wrestling at madison square garden instead of rock shows. it was much more entertainment for your buck watching an old italian lady in the black dress with the head scarf breaking a wooden chair over bruno sammartino's head than watching some equally fake arena rock spectacle. my college roommate/lead singer claimed to have dated lou's daughter once. maybe he did.

my scrawl on the i-94 bar

a review i penned of niagara & the hitmen's new cd st. valentine's day massacre is online now.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

my scrawl in the fw weekly

a review i penned of ben perowsky's new cd moodswing orchestra is online now.

crusader rabbit

speaking of which...

beany and cecil

t. tex posted this reminder of my second fave kid cartoon (after crusader rabbit), with a guest appearance by lord buckley.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

c.t. and tony oxley, 9.24.2009

Monday, October 12, 2009

r.i.p. dickie peterson

dickie peterson, bassist-vocalist of blue cheer, left the planet this morning, aged 61. he'd been battling cancer.


when we were in ohio this summer, i was surprised to discover that cornhole is actually a game (and no, hickey, not _that_ kind of game). it's played with beanbags. there's even an american cornhole association. who knew?


weekend post mortem

i dunno if anybody got any pics of ray rubbing peanut butter all over himself, but i hope they did. my sweetie had her camera, but once she sat down at the bar at the moon, that was pretty much it for her; if she'd had cats and a crossword puzzle, she probably would have gone to sleep.

the one fingered fist boys sound better every time i hear them. josh is doing most of the singing now, including a cover of arlo guthrie's "comin' in to los angeles," which will introduced as "a song about drug smuggling." the fist will open for the li'l stoogeband at caves in arlington (900 w. division) on wednesday. hooray!

the bipolar express to' it up with organ-driven, r&b-inspahrd garage-rock grunt, including covers of "i don't need no doctor" the ray charles way and the minutemen's "this ain't no picnic," with hank tosh from the gospel swingers and the deadites on drums.

my rig was giving me fits before sir marlin von bungy (bless him) suggested i dispense with the f/x loop and just plug in direct. it seems i'm not meant to use any piece of equipment that's smarter than i am, and besides, i didn't have any more cords to replace the dead one(s). simpler is better.

we put "funhouse" earlier in the set than planned to get bob fisher onstage earlier. ray added "johanna" (which i'd somehow forgotten) on a whim and we pulled it off about 95%. matt pulled my sleeve and said jon wanted to play "t.v. eye"...oops, i mean "i wanna be yr dog" instead of "search and destroy." jon teague says he's going to write the setlists from now on. an important consideration: don't kill the drummer.

daron beck wasn't able to sit in as planned, but i got to meet his sister danya, and jon says that dada drumming will release the great tyrant's full length lp there is a man in the house early next year, with a couple hundred digipack cd's as well. then the tyrant will go out for a couple of weeks to support it. sounds good to me.

john and karrizza's wedding afforded us an oppo to see lotsa folks that we hadn't seen in months since we've become such homebodies. it was a kick for me to see cats i've known through playing music for a dozen years or more like ron geida, jason thompson, and geoff west, and think about the convoluted paths we've all taken. the longhorn saloon is really coming along, and lee allen, fluff, and brendan put out a great spread. (i told my sweetie on the way there, "those guys can do anything," and they really can.)

goodwin played a great, emotion-packed set with one new number (out of the handful they've been working on), including damien and matt taking a pablo break in the middle of "weight." dapper blues papa james hinkle, looking on, was muy impressed.

the me-thinks gave my sweetie (who was shooting reception pics for karrizza) one song without the smoke machine so she could get some clear shots of them. surprisingly, ray hadn't shredded his vocal cords the night before, and the boys from haltom city sounded as mighty as always. it being a school night, we unassed early and were home in bed before midnight.

today i'll get a run in before my eye doctor appointment, then cook dinner for my sweetie. HIO drinkie-talkie has been postponed till tom'w night, but i've got the john fahey rekkid that terry had been snoozing on. will have to hit doc's later in the week to try and sell some stuff the guy couldn't buy on sat'day because jenkins was in austin at a record convention. be interested to see what he brings back, too.

ADDENDUM: wound up being a lazy ass and lying around all day since i've been feeling a li'l under the weather. after my eye doctor appointment, came home and made my sweetie 'n' myself big half-pound burgers with lightly sauteed shallots, grated cheddar and tomato slices.

other high point of the wedding reception was seeing how well some of the old wreck room crew are doing -- carl, tina, and stormy pack; graham and robin richardson, etc. sometimes good things _do_ happen to good ppl.

rodrigo amado

speaking of portuguese jazz, saxophonist rodrigo amado (who co-founded the clean feed label) has a couple of new sides coming out on his own european echoes imprint that i'm looking forward to hearing soon. rodrigo's worked with dennis gonzalez and luis lopes' humanization 4tet, and leads the lisbon improvisation players. he's also an accomplished photog. talented cat.

josh alan friedman interviews tiny tim

...on wimmin, being big in orstralia, and the history of popular song. originally from oui, now on josh's blog.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

october is the new june

lots of weddings to go to this month. today it's the gal that cuts my sweetie's hair (whom i've known for about 12 yrs now) and a cat i usedta play music with. on the 23rd, it's the son of the man that brought me here and his sweetie, who've been together four eight yrs and lived together for four, even tho they're only 24. the day after that, it's my HIO trombone player and his sweetie (whom i actually thought were married already), who are having their honeymoon in rome. my middle dtr and her husband missed last night's stoogeshow (and ray rubbing peanut butter on himself) because they had a wedding to go to out of town. and so on.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

maybe next time...

my pal tommy from schenectady sent this. i think it's a hoot. (click on the image to make it big.)

Clean Feed Records

Like a candygram from the gods to start a three-day weekend, a package appeared in my mailbox bearing what looks like the entahr September release from Clean Feed Records, the Portuguese label that's doing an exemplary job of becoming for the millennial decade what Blue Note, Impulse, and BYG Actuel were for the '60s and Black Saint, India Navigation, and Arista Freedom were for the '70s -- that is to say, home to a plethora of interestingly-conceived and well-executed jazz releases of the forward-looking variety. (Also, my sweetie points out, they're packaged in attractive and environmentally-responsible paper sleeves.) These discs are a testament not only to the music's continuing vitality, but also to its internationalism, reminding us (if such reminders are needed) that the days of American jazz hegemony are long gone.

To begin with, Marty Ehrlich Rites Quartet is led by the Minnesota-born altoist who spent his formative years in St. Louis, where he was mentored by Black Artsts Group members Julius Hemphill and Oliver Lake before attending the New England Conservatory and studying under Jaki Byard. The debt to Fort Worth expat Hemphill is freely acknowledged on Things Have Got To Change, with Ehrlich and Co. essaying three of his compositions, including the monumental "Dogon A.D.," a blues-drenched theme in 11/16. Drummer Pheeroan Aklaff has performed with Ehrlich since the '70s. Trumpeter James Zollar is equally effective on open or muted horn, while cellist Erik Friedlander is particularly noteworthy, soloing with deft, guitar-like pizzicato lines on the opening "Rites Rhythms." Among Ehrlich's compositions, the lovely, elegiac "Some Kind of Prayer" particularly shines.

Ze' Eduardo Unit's A Jazzar - Live in Capuchos is a concert recording by a bassist-led Portuguese trio whose previous releases include homages to Portuguese cinema, musician-activist Jose Afonso (whose "Grandola" is the subject of an extended extemporization here), and animated cartoons (the most familiar to American ears probably being their deconstruction of Danny Elfman's theme from The Simpsons, also included here). The musicians' approach is often playful and humorous in the same way that, say, Ornette's music can be, and Ze' Eduardo's deep song on bass recalls Charlie Haden's. At other times, he and his bandmates -- tenorman Jesus Santandreu and drummer Bruno Pedroso -- can be dark and intense; they're always adventurous and engaging.

More minimalist in intent is Pieces of Old Sky by the Samuel Blaser Quartet, a New York-based crew led by a Swiss trombonist. Blaser's an expressive instrumentalist who's absorbed the influence of players like Albert Mangelsdorf (dig his growls and use of multiphonics on "Mandala") but really shines as a composer; his writing is as interestingly knotty and impressionistic as Andrew Hill's, displaying the influence of modern classical composers. His best compositions -- the 17-minute title track, for instance, or the aforementioned "Mandala" -- unfold slowly but deliberately, giving the players ample opportunity to interact within their structures. His accomplices here include Todd Neufeld, an Abercrombie-esque guitarist with a warm, fuzzy, and occasionally dissonant sound, and drummer Tyshawn Sorey, who's probably best known for his work with pianist Vijay Iyer. Sorey's drumming is reminiscent of early Tony Williams, when the teenage Bostonian was was still playing like a composer and hadn't yet succumbed to being a mere virtuoso; just listen to the way Sorey shadows the leader's line on "Mystical Circle."

Also currently based in New York, drummer Harris Eisenstadt is proud to be Canadian -- so much so that he's dubbed his new band and album Canada Day, after the Great White North's version of the Fourth of July. Eisenstadt's a thoughtful composer as well as a thunderous trap-kicker; his record has an Out to Lunch/Point of Departure feel, anchored by Chris Dingman's vibes (recorded with magnificent presence and clarity by Michael Brorby at Brooklyn's Acoustic Recording). On the opening "Don't Gild the Lily," trumpeter Nate Wooley's muted smears and long tones emit enough harmonics to sound almost like an analog synth; he and big-toned tenorman Matt Bauder are agile and inventive improvisers, but the standout in the ensemble just might be bassist Eivind Opsvik. Eisenstadt's "Kategeeper" is somewhat reminiscent of Ennio Morricone's theme from The Untouchables.

Nobuyasu Furuya Trio's Bendowa is an anomaly -- a set of explosive free improv played by a Lisbon-based Japanese reedman and his Euro (Italian?) rhythm section. On tenor, Furuya moves a big column of air to get a burry, braying tone a la Archie Shepp in his Four for Trane period. On flute, can be introspective, almost Zen-like -- reflective, perhaps, of his youthful sojourn in the kitchen of a Buddhist temple -- or fiery, singing through his instrument like Roland Kirk. On bass clarinet, he's plaintive and searching, only rarely begging the inevitable Dolphy comparisons. Furuya switches between axes the way Sam Rivers used to in his '70s small groups, but within a more concise format (the tracks here average about nine minutes). Behind him, Hernani Faustino on bass and Gabriel Ferrandini on drums back their leader to the hilt, whether he's whispering or screaming. They alternately expand to fill every interstice in the music or recede to leave space that throws each sonic event into bolder relief.

Twentysomething Lisbon pianist Julio Resende's Assim Falava Jazzatustra is an eclectic effort, propelled by the kickin' tag team of bassist Ole Morten Vagan and drummer Joel Silva. The infectious "Sakatwala (Progressive Kuduro for My Family)" -- an example of the hybrid African/Afro-Caribbean '80s style that originated in the former Portuguese colony of Angola -- is nearly as danceable as Henry Threadgill's "Try Some Ammonia." On "Ir e Voltar," Manuela Azevedo sings Resende's opaque melody over shimmering piano chords that bristle with menace. Like The Bad Plus essaying Nirvana, Resende takes on Pink Floyd's "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" as a solo showcase, then follows it with a number ("Boom!") that utilizes heavy rock dynamics. "Caixa Registadora," on the other hand, grooves like a classic early '60s Blue Note funk jam, while "Jazz.Pt" (named for the local Downbeat equivalent) pays homage to the freebop side of that classic label. Resende's is a distinctive, if developing, voice.

Speaking of internationalism, Alberto Pinton's an Italian-born reedman who lives in Sweden. On Chant, he leads a quartet that includes two, count 'em, two baritone saxes. (One of the tunes is a fitting dedication to Hamiet Bluiett.) Pinton doubles on clarinet, his collaborator Jonas Kullhammar on tenor. The two hornmen and the rhythm section (Torbjorn Zetterberg on bass, Kjell Nordeson on drums) have played together in various combinations and contexts; here, they lay down a set of nasty freeblow that's equal parts composition and invention. Of course, what sounds like a blast from a mid-'70s Lower Manhattan loft is really a natural outgrowth of the Euro free jazz scene that's thrived since the mid-'60s. (But thank Ayler, Cecil, and Ornette for visiting Scandinavia back then, yo.) These guys have a nicely self-aware sensahumour, too; one tune's entitled "How Much Can You Take In One Evening?" The somber tone poem "Let Ring" features Nordeson on vibes is a surprising dynamic shift that grabs the listener's attention.

Weightless is a cooperative group that brings together a pair of Britons (saxophonist John Butcher and bassist John Edwards) and a couple of Italians (pianist Alberto Braida and drummer Fabrizio Spera). All four are veterans of the Euro free music scene: Butcher has played with Derek Bailey and in the Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Edwards with Evan Parker; they first performed with Spera and then added Braida to make a quartet. Their collective improvisations on A Brush With Dignity teem with inspiration and energy and are not for the faint-hearted. In "Centri," for example, different episodes feature the pure organic sounds of strings, skins, and reeds, as well as surreal space sounds that seem electronically generated but are actually produced by using extended techniques on the same instruments. "Vista" ventures even further outside the realm of tonality. The most challenging listen of the discs reviewed here, A Brush With Dignity is also among the most rewarding.

Finally, Two Kinds of Art Thieves is the debut as leader of Charles Rumback, a Chicago drummer with strong avant-jazz, alt-rock, and electronica credentials. Rumback's quartet boasts a two-sax front line that includes altoist Greg Ward, whose work I recently dug on About Us by Mike Reed's People, Places and Things (on 482 Music, another label that's doing yeoman work in documenting contemporary creative music). Ward and tenorman Joshua Sclar play the same kind of intertwining contrapuntal lines that he and Tim Haldeman did on the Reed disc, although here it's in a more ruminative context. Rumback's often on mallets, providing punctuation or percussive undertones more than pulse for his compositions. The cover art of a gaggle of business-suited Asians facing the sea is appropriate; the music on Two Kinds of Art Thieves evokes the oceanic feeling one gets regarding an overcast sky that native Chicagoans must get to experience often.

All in all, then, a worthy stack of discs from a label whose output is notable for its consistent quality, and further proof (if more is needed) that rumors of the "death of jazz" have been greatly exaggerated.

the clash in new joisey

this cat has a bunch of youtube vids of joe 'n' the boyzzz from the london calling tour (same one where i saw 'em in austin and dallas). best live band i _evah_ saw.

Friday, October 09, 2009

samuel blaser

just got a pkg from portugal's clean feed records bearing their entahr september release, and i've got the next three days off (except for a stoogeshow tom'w night and a wedding sunday), so i'll be doing a lot of listening this w-e. one of the highlights so far is a quartet led by this 'bone player, with tyshawn sorey on drums.

the uneducated american

from the nyt. my sister-in-law posted. also, um, on facebook. in tough economic times, it's worthwhile remembering that public education isn't a cost to society, it's an investment.

berlin reunion

big puppets walking through the streets of berlin to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the wall coming down? it's really pretty magical. my sweetie said rene west posted this on facebook. from

st. john

my favorite beatle woulda been 69 today.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

10.8.2009 ftw

since my knees are still sore, opted to try speed-walking today as an alternative to sitting staring at the 'puter screen until worktime. prolly got a better (more prolonged, if not as sporadically intense) cardio workout than i'd have had otherwise, and got to see the botanic gardens, a place i always like to linger. resisted the urge to stop at doc's on the way home in favor of some hills. now i prolly won't do anything else until sat'day a.m.

mo' mth

jeez, who'd a thunk there'd be such a cottage industry in archival mott the hoople releases? not me, but then again, my name's not jeff jarema. listening to two miles from heaven this a.m., it occurred to me: no the band, no mott...or faces. (of course, mick ralphs liked leslie west and neil young real much, too. and ian, who was older, dug him some little richard and jerry lee lewis.)

the flaming lips' "embryonic"

listening to this now. as much as we love the soft bulletin and yoshimi, it seemed like they were getting stuck in a rut for awhile there. wayne probably needed the time he spent finishing his sci-fi movie to recharge his batteries. this is weirder in a krautrock sorta way -- more like, say, in a priest driven ambulance, but better executed. lotsa spacey psych jams and blasts of noise, apparently recorded during live jams at stephen drozd's house and later fleshed out. nice that a band as popular as the lips can still do something this surprising.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

10.7.2009 ftw

ran this morning and my knees are kinda hosed, which is weird, because i've run when it was rainy before. think it might be because i was pushing a little harder yesterday. we'll see. still good to see the river (such as it is) in the morning before i go to work. and i like being under an overcast sky because it reminds me of being near the ocean, for some reason.

my scrawl in the fw weekly

a feature i penned on indian casino records and the new compilation cd the return of helldamncrap _and_ a review i penned of tyshawn sorey's cd koan are online now. hooray!

pssst...wanna hear the mott the hoople reunion?

a pal sent me this. files will be online until 10.11.2009. i was surprised how affected i was to hear it. this was the band my no-'count high school posse usedta play air gtr to even after a couple of us had actually started to play in bands. brain capers remains my fave side of theirs (most of all: "the journey"), but the songs from all the young dudes, mott (especially the slowuns like "hymn for the dudes," "i wish i was your mother," and "the ballad of mott the hoople"), and even the less-snazz the hoople sound great. ian hunter (who's 70 now, for chrissakes) hasn't lost a step since i saw 'em in '74, and it hardly matters that mick ralphs (always a mess due to sheer ineptitude vice drugs, he kinda inadvertently paved the way for johnny thunders) and overend watts can't really hit too many of the notes on their vocal features, altho it tugged on my heartstrings to read that martin chambers from the pretenders had to sub for dale griffin because of buffin's alzheimer's. as great of a '70s band as the faces, yo.

los hooligans

these guys actually look like more fun than los rockin' devils...or maybe i'm just a cat guy.

los rockin' devils

mexican garage rock ca. '66. you might recognize some of the toons.

the return of freddie cisneros

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

the real HIO cutup

pssst...wanna hear the new flaming lips alb?

on, um, npr?

new hours at doc's

jenkins sez 11:00a to 7:00p, monday-saturday, and 12:00 noon to 7:00p sunday. yeah!!!

10.6.2009 ftw

wound up not running this past w-e, but i edited six chapters of the book and wrote three record reviews (did a fourth this morning). ran this a.m. and was pleased to note that my endurance, while still not great, is improving -- was able to include more running (vs. walking) legs, and increase the duration up to three times what i was capable of last week. hooray!

discussing the possibility of a hentai "threesome" with terry and hembree somewhere in downtown fort worth halloween night. the sundance square folks (who say it's not illegal as long as you don't solicit money, block a pedestrian thoroughfare or biz entrance -- altho there's no permitting as such) told me it "wouldn't be encouraged" for that night, since the ranch radio station has a big country show happening in the square, but we may try it somewhere else downtown. hembree's got a bunch of acoustic instruments at his house, and terry has his homemade things plus tape recorders, etc. film, as they say, at 11.

pssst...wanna hear some new jazz albs?

speaking of threadgill, you can hear a coupla tracks from his new zooid alb at destination out.

and you can hear the new vijay iyer album historicity here.

Monday, October 05, 2009

henry threadgill

you have to like a rekkid like threadgill's too much sugar for a dime that opens with a song called "little pocket sized demons" and sounds like arthur blythe's tuba band going _all_ the way off, or maybe an ivesian collision of a high school marching band with tabu ley rochereau's orchestre afrisa international, and a gtrist (masujaa) that played in shannon jackson's decoding society too boot. what's it all add up to? heap big fun. like this...

my scrawl on the i-94 bar

a review i penned of the intercontinental playboys' cd hymns of the flesh is online now.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

maggie lee's fall jams

here's a link to a mix that my sweetie digs real much (can't figure out how to download to itunes, but i'm such a techno-illiterate). it starts out with nico singing a jackson browne song, so what can i say?

breakfast at tiffany's

no, not the stupid song. i loved the way early '60s flicks could make nyc look so glamorous. and i love this song much better when marnie nixon is singing it for audrey than when andy sings it.

fz: "gateway drug"

i can relate to this post from the rumpus because it was frank's list o' influences in the liners to freak out! (and all of his shows i attended in the mid-'70s) that pulled my coat to free jazz, modern classical, and a lot of other stuff i wouldn't have heard otherwise. for some folks a bit younger than me, it was the nurse with wound list. for a young person of today, i have no idea what it might be.

henri mayakapongo

henri mayakapongo is a sculptor and jeweler from the democratic republic of the congo. he learned his craft in a refugee camp before he came to the u.s. with his wife and three sons under the auspices of world relief. his son joseph, now deceased, attended my sweetie's school, and henri sculpted a magnificent panther (which we call "battle cat") that now resides in our living room. some of his work is on display at artful hand (3408 w. 7th st.), and he takes commissions. dig him.

andy williams: psychedelic pioneer?

i don't make 'em up, i just link to 'em.


even more than the japanese rock 'n' roll records my sister couldn't find the last time i was up in jersey, i wish i still had some of the crappy mechanical toys our grandfather used to send us. my favorite was mcgregor, a mechanical scotsman in a tam o'shanter. press the button, and he'd very laboriously stand up -- making a noise like "G-R-R-R-R-Z-Z-Z-Z-N-N-N" -- and take a puff on his cigar (the ember of which, i seem to remember, would light up) before blowing a greasy smoke ring that smelled like electric trains. awesome.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

10.4.2009 ftw

those record reviews (one of which has now been promised to the phoenix project collective's inaugural 'zine) might have to wait awhile longer, as a couple more chapters of the book-in-progress arrived this evening. tom'w i need to run, even if it's raining, and we have a guest coming over around noontime. then in the arvo, we're gonna head for formerly fonky fred's so i can give my buddy darrin the cd-r's i've been burning for him for the past year or so. where _has_ this year gone, anyway?

mott the hoople reunion

live tom waits alb coming

glitter and doom drops 11.24.2009, at least according to twentyfourbit.

david peel

speaking of 1989, here's david peel of have a marijuana fame, singing "up against the wall" at tompkins square park in that year when the berlin wall came down.

dennis gonzalez/frank lowe

this weekend, i'm off for two days and i'd planned to spend the time writing some record reviews and working on the four chapters of a book i'm collaborating on with an ex-interview subject that providentially arrived last night. the reviews might have to wait, though, until i can get the dennis gonzalez band of sorcerers featuring frank lowe cd unstuck from my player.

lowe was a memphis-born tenorman who came to prominence in the early '70s, working with sun ra, rashied ali, don cherry, eugene chadbourne, and billy bang before succumbing to lung cancer in 2003. he had a fiery, post-coltrane/ayler sound with a ben webster growl behind it. back in 1989, dennis played a gig with lowe and a pair of chicago musos (carter mitchell on bass and reggie nicholson on drums) at freedom plaza on the mall in washington, d.c.

dennis recently acquired a board tape of the show and released it on his daagnim label, and it's rapidly become one of my favorite items in his vast discography. rough though the recording quality might be, the raw excitement of the music comes through. the disc's zenith is an 18-minute workout on dennis' "hymn for john carter" which features a greasy, fatback r&b groove (not unlike the art ensemble's "theme de yo yo"), against which lowe and the composer intone the slow, stately theme in the manner of the memphis horns essaying an ornette coleman dirge before the soloists careen off on explorations which, while lengthy, never wear out their welcome. you can hear the enthusiastic d.c. crowd going off, with one member blasting a blues harp at one point. who said free jazz wasn't social music? cop from dennis via the talismans store.

here's a good frank lowe int from all about jazz.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

mostly other people do the killing

ha. cute kittens and "out" jazz. if this hadn't existed, i'd a had to invent it.


destination: out's "best jazz of the '90s."

and npr's a blog supreme on "jazz now."

joe morris

terry digs him and dennis gonzalez made a rekkid with him (joe on bass), but i can't get past the comparison some wag on youtube made to those "shred" videos. i like a little more blood (and cosey, and especially sharrock) in my gtr tones. but i'd be delighted to be wrong.

ornette talks