Monday, August 31, 2009

juke jumpers reunion @ the keys lounge sat'day

when i first moved to fort worth in '78, there were three local bands i used to go see: the fort worth cats (new wave rock with the future icicle & the kid), master cylinder (exciting fusion jazz with the future jubilee theater pit band and mondo drummers mastermind), and the juke jumpers (blues, r&b, and rockabilly with a transplanted yankee from ohio via woodstock and a native son/rekkid store geek/leading exponent of the t-bone walker style of guitarissimo). they recorded for jim yanaway's amazing records ("if it's a hit, it's amazing"), graced local stages ranging from the fonky-but-inclusive new bluebird night club to the late, lamented tootsie's and caravan of dreams, and even toured some nationally before folding the tent in the mid-'80s. starting in '97, they've reunited periodically at venues including horny's, j&j's blues bar, and billy bob's. this sat'day, 9.5.2009, they'll do it again at the keys lounge, 5677 westcreek. myself, i'm gonna be playing at the firehouse gallery that night with PF(F)(F)T! and the hentai improvising orchestra, but if you dig bluesy roots music done less minimalist than the fabulous thunderbirds and less exhibitionistic than srv, you owe it to yourself.

doug 'n' bob

here's the adios lounge's take on the sahm-dylan connexxxion.

mo' sdq

dig doug making crazy eyes in this vid.

here they are hangin' at hef's pad in '69.

good song from together after five.

covering the kinks in the '80s.

my pop's death notice in the nyt here.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

mo' doug sahm

here's another download link, thisun to a bluesy '73 philly show with augie meyers, david "fathead" newman, and george rains. i also recently copped an aussie reish (on raven, the best li'l reissue label around) that paired sir douglas quintet's 1 + 1 + 1 = 4 and the return of doug saldana albs. pure goodness. thanks to lee jackson for rekindling my sir doug fandom.

here's the scoop:

Doug Sahm Band
Bijou Cafe
Philadelphia, PA
21 February 1973

Soundboard recording
Originally broadcast on WMMR-Philadelphia

This version was NOT taped from WMMR. A tape of that original show was broadcast on KUT-Austin, and this was recorded from KUT, so it's 2nd generation. An interesting note, however: in the outro, the KUT radio host says that he got the tape from Bruce Davis - who is the same person that gave me this recording!

The Bootleg Archive has this show with 14 tracks, including the WMMR intro; mine was chopped up into 26, Lord knows why. I have re-tracked it to 16: the KUT intro and outro (in case you want to drop those), the WMMR intro and the 13 songs. But the tracking will differ from a 1st generation version. Excellent sound and performance, Doug is in great voice.

01. Intro
02. Oh, Pretty Woman
03. I'm Glad For Your Sake (But I'm Sorry For Mine)
04. She's About A Mover
05. Are In-Laws Really Outlaws?
06. Talk To Me
07. (Is Anybody Goin' To) San Antone
08. Wolverton Mountain
09. Jambalaya (On The Bayou)
10. Right Or Wrong
11. Stormy Monday
12. The Rains Came
13. Papa Ain't Salty
14. Mendocino

Doug Sahm - Vocals, Guitar, Fiddle
Augie Meyers - Organ
David "Fathead" Newman - Sax
George Raines - Drums

if you harbor any curiosity about doug's texas rock for country rollers alb from '76, go here.

here's a nice no depression article about doug by fellow texan and ex-rolling stone scribe chet flippo.

home again

i've decided i can't really write any more about the week (his last) i just spent with my pop, or our complicated relationship, because he was a very private cat and i have to respect that.

inspahrd by a link terry posted to an essay by gtrist morgan craft on "a new black american avant garde," i'm re-reading greg tate's flyboy in the buttermilk while listening to ornette and george clinton (who, i forgot, headlines jazz by the boulevard on 9.11, which means _that's_ where i'll be if i'm not working that night). i read tate's scrawl -- which conflates b-boy street slang with highly convoluted academese -- in the village voice, and this book appeared when i was recently discharged from the military, about to get divorced, and listening to plenty ornette, miles, cecil, and p-funk, making tate my most influential music scribe between st. lester and clinton heylin. (the following year i'd return to rekkid retail on a moonlighting basis to help pay my child support and rediscover dee-troit ramalama. but that was later.)

on my one visit to the princeton record exchange this trip, i copped o.c.'s dancing in your head (the first place i heard shannon jackson's drums back in '76 and a joyous explosion that just might be its creator's masterpiece) and of human feelings (which really belongs to bassist jamaladeen tacuma and is ornette's most organic-sounding outing with prime time) while passing on body meta (which features the most disgusting distortion box-driven tone in all eternity from charlie ellerbee) and virgin beauty (which was released on columbia and had jerry garcia on it), as well as a last exit album (i forgot to look for power tools' strange meeting, dammit, and they had copies of every arthur blythe album except the one i wanted, illusions). also copped another david murray octet side (home); words can't express the delight i feel in seeing the black saint label spinning on my turntable after 30 years.

tomorrow terry invited me out for an early morning walk-run, then i have to mail a rekkid to dennis gonzalez, make a bunch of phone calls, and cook scallops for din-din. feels good.

dad's ashes

we were trying to decide where to scatter dad's ashes. the difficulty: there wasn't a single place on earth we could think of that he would have felt attached to. the closest i could come to was the house in honolulu where he grew up. then my niece in ohio inadvertently provided an answer when she wrote on her facebook wall, "ojih-chan has died. i'm going to go listen to wagner's ring." it made perfect sense: either at bayreuth in germany, where they have the annual wagner festival, or in seattle, where the opera performs wagner's der ring des niebelungen every year. i think his version of paradise might have included something like listening to that music forever.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

8.29.2009 new jersey

going to see mom this morning before i fly home this afternoon. had a bit of a scare with her yesterday after i gave her the news about dad, but thankfully she's ok. going to need some time to decompress and thankfully my boss put in my bereavement leave so i won't have to go back to work immediately (bless her). thanks to all who sent kind words and wishes. looking forward to spending this evening with my sweetie, midnight, and auggie, and sleeping in my own bed tonight.

Friday, August 28, 2009

bye-bye, new jersey, i'm coming home

move on up

one possible positive outcome to all of this

my sister says she still has the japanese rock 'n' roll records our grandfather sent us when we were kids. and she says she'll let me have them.

ADDENDUM: or maybe not. but she at least remembers the song that sounded like godzilla movie soundtrack music with drums and saxophones. so i didn't make it up.

8.28.2009 new jersey

raining gently here now

one of the things i like about this place:
the tree frog and cicada sounds
that remind me of being a kid

i am really ready to be home

Thursday, August 27, 2009

My pop's obituary

Yoshio Shimamoto, a nuclear physicist who also did work in mathematics and computer science, died Thursday in Franklin Park, N.J.

In 1971, Dr. Shimamoto presented a proof of the Four Color Theorem that was subsequently shown to be flawed, but still served as the basis for Ph.D. theses and other works at Harvard, Princeton, Waterloo, and the University of Illinois.

Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, in 1924, Dr. Shimamoto served during World War II with the Army Signal Corps in Washington, D.C ., and the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey in Japan. Following graduate studies at Harvard and the University of Rochester, he joined the Reactor Department at Brookhaven National Laboratory in 1954 and went on to work in the Nuclear Engineering Department and Applied Mathematics Division there. In 1958, he was responsible for the logical design of Brookhaven's MERLIN digital computer.

From 1964 to 1975, Dr. Shimamoto served as chairman of the Applied Mathematics Department at Brookhaven, responsible for management of research in mathematics and computer science. In this capacity, he also managed the laboratory's central scientific computing facility and oversaw the funding, procurement, and development of a laboratory-wide computer network.

After resigning as chairman at the end of the first year of a third five-year term, Shimamoto devoted himself to research in combinatorial mathematics, the economics of Outer Continental Shelf oil and gas lease sales (on behalf of the U.S. Geological Survey), the architecture of supercomputers, and the linking of computers for parallel processing.

During his tenure at Brookhaven, Dr. Shimamoto held concurrent appointments with the University of Illinois; the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission's Mathematics and Computer Science Research Advisory Committee; the Technische Universitat in Hannover, West Germany; the Universitat Karlsruhe, West Germany; and the University of Tokyo. In 1972, he received the Senior Scientist Award from the Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung, a non-profit organization that promotes cooperation in international research. Dr. Shimamoto retired in 1987.

Dr. Shimamoto is survived by his wife, Kimie, of Skillman, N.J.; a daughter, Kiyomi Camp, of Belle Mead, N.J.; a son, Ken, of Fort Worth, Texas; six grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, and brother Frank Shimamoto of Naples, FL.

8.27.2009 new jersey ADDENDUM

my pop left this life at 8:40p eastern time tonight. my sweetie reports that at 7:45p central time, there was a big lightning strike, followed by a huge clap of thunder. my pop always was a big german opera guy.

8.27.2009 new jersey

no change.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

8.26.2009 new jersey

today my sis and i took a break from sitting with our dad to go to the stop 'n' shop and buy a half dozen klondike ice cream sammitches (only three dollars!), which we sat down on a bench in front of the market and ate, one by one. almost as good as the time we went out and got beer at eight in the morning while he was yelling at the movers whom he swore had told him he'd be picked up and delivered the same day. she also remembered the trip i made here a couple of yrs ago when i smoked pretty much continuously from when i arrived until i left. that was also the trip where i had the unique experience of crawling around the floor at 4am looking for more alcohol...with our mom. i'm now into reading murder mysteries by some dutch guy who writes as though english is his second language, but is pretty good anyway.

earworm o' the day

to really do this song za ri-i-ight vay, you've gotta sing it like you've got a mouthful of marbles.

r.i.p. ted kennedy

i once saw ted kennedy in penn station in manhattan. he'd ridden the train halfway out on long island with his entourage and a bunch of press folks, and i was standing by the gate to track 18 when they came bursting through. he had the largest head of any human being i've ever seen except for harry chapin, whom i saw in the airport in atlanta once.

if you don't drink beer, the terrorists win

(thanks to sir marlin von bungy; click on the image to make it big.)

if i'm not working that night, i'll be playing a noise show at wasted words house in arlington with terry horn, but this sure is one fine, fine, supafine bill, featuring two of my favorite bands on earth.

my scrawl in the fw weekly

a review i penned of a new cd by the banjo-led avant-garde power trio (i don't make this stuff up, i just report it) seabrook nuclear plant is in this week's paper (or at least in its online simulacrum; i'm too far away to pick up a copy).

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

8.25.2009 new jersey

my pop continues to decline. he at least appears to be having a gentle passing, and i think he's making peace with all of his past. not sure when i'll be home.

pssst! wanna buy some wrestling gear?

james williamson

...gots a website.

Monday, August 24, 2009

8.24.2009 new jersey

typing this from the public library in princeton.

the aide that brought dad's dinner last night tricked him into taking a couple of bites of hamburger, and my sister was able to get a couple of spoonfuls of pea soup in him. he also had apple juice and part of a boost shake. not a big turnaround, but a small victory.

he didn't cough as much last night, either.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

here comes a regular

this one's for hembree.

8.23.2009 new jersey

kind of like when i spent a year in korea and read every book i'd wanted to read for a decade out of the base library, i'm reading a lot of stuff out of my sister's extensive library while i'm here. (they're all readers in her family, thank ceiling cat.) re-read mark haddon's the curious incident of the dog in the night-time the other day during my dad's naps, left joyce's the dubliners up there when we left to go eat dinner and got trapped at the house by flash flooding, and last night when i couldn't sleep, i picked up david sedaris' dress your family in corduroy and denim that my niece left behind when she went to college. her loss/my gain.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

captain beefheart: the video game



the bonesetter's daughter

well, i'll be damned. apparently the opera i heard was thisun, based on an amy tan novel.

also, a brit alzheimer's researcher is working with a writer and composer to create another dementia-themed opera. just in case you were wondering.

i don't make this stuff up, i just report it

you haven't lived until you've seen a dayroom full of dementia patients sitting around watching dr. strangelove. usually the movies they play in such places are more the fuzzy-bunny or jimmy stewart variety. in a weird way, the place my mom is staying for rehab after her hospital stay seems, dare i say, _hipper_ than the unit where she came from (and whence she'll return when she stops progressing in rehab).

also, who knew that there was an opera about ppl in my parents' condition? i've been listening to the classical station in my brother-in-law's car and today i heard an opera, in english, where one of the characters was singing, "i'm crazy!" and the chorus was singing about nursing homes and medicare. tried googling, to no avail. i'm really curious about this.

8.22.2009 new jersey

although i hate flying, i like the sight of a city at night seen from the air.

when we were getting off the plane, i overheard one of the stewardesses on the phone with someone -- the pilot? someone on the ground? apparently she'd gotten in an altercation with a lady who insisted on sending her soto the restroom when the plane was on final approach.

"she said, 'he has to take a piss. what do you want me to do, let him piss on the seat?' so i told her, 'well, ma'am, if you don't care about your child, neither do i, but it's really not safe for him to be going back there by himself.'"

my pop seems a little better, but he's still not eating, and he's at the point where his body is starting to burn muscle, since he hasn't eaten anything to speak of for the past five days. this isn't good. (your heart is a muscle, after all.)

he's conversing, altho he's very disoriented in time, and when he's not sleeping (which is most of the time), he spends a lot of time very laboriously hacking up phlegm. when this happens, i think, "take me out before i get to that point." i do, however, recognize that i might feel differently about that when i get to that point.

Friday, August 21, 2009

no stoogeshow saturday

i'm in new jersey because i got word yesterday my dad's condition was declining. here for the duration.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

speaking of easy action records

new stoogebox featuring audience recordings of the '71 pop-williamson-asheton-recca-asheton lineup ships next week, apparently.

this saturday in dallas

the rationals - "get rational"

for someone who's been geeked on this '60s dee-troit (well, ann arbor) band since i stumbled on their one self-titled album -- recorded for noo yawk-based crewe records in 1969, when they were on their last legs, just like the zombies' odessey and oracle -- in a bargain bin for a buck when i was 14, this is a wish-fulfillment release just like rhino's stooges funhouse sessions and easy action's sonic's rendezvous band box were, and smog veil's peter laughner box hopefully will be, whenever it finally appears.

big beat's double cd comp doesn't include anything off that album, but it does include all their early singles (released on manager/svengali jeep holland's a-square, allen klein's cameo-parkway, and capitol labels, which is part of the reason it took so long for this to come out), as well as the demos and alternate takes from their hideously rare (only two copies were pressed), widely-bootlegged "fan club album" from 1966, when the rationals were voted the most popular band in detroit in a radio station contest while they were still in high school.

sure, some of this stuff has been compiled elsewhere, but it's nice to finally have it all in one place, and this marks the first legit release for fully half of the set's 34 tracks. the way things break down, the first disc includes all their brit invasion-influenced stuff -- there's a pic in the booklet of drummer bill figg holding a copy of the first small faces album, which i'll betcha jeep ordered for 'em on his day gig at discount records -- while the second concentrates on their classic soul (influenced as much by slick, sweet, vocal harmony-driven northern soul as it was by the sweatier southern variety) and incorporation of west coast psych influences.

it's fascinating to hear them start out aping the zombies and kinks (gtrist steve correll was a master of the patented dave davies eruption-solo), then transform through the looking glass of jeep holland's record collection (he used to give them the keys to his apartment so they could go up to his crib and spin some sides while he was working) into bona fide blue-eyed soul brothers (the young rascals were their pals), with correll's throaty squall serving as the david ruffin to scott morgan's smoother eddie kendricks. by the end, they were copping influence from east west-era mike bloomfield, moby grape, and the buffalo springfield. from alpha to omega, bill figg and bassist terry trabandt were yr patented shit-hot motown riddim section.

the previously unheard demos provide fascinating glimpses of the rats learning to sing, and make clear just how much holland molded them, coaching them in the studio and even (according to alec palao's liner notes) directing them from offstage on gigs. for my money, their most sublime moment here is the slow "i need you" (altho the rats' cover of the kinks song of the same name still rips), followed by the demo versh of the knight bros. "temptation 'bout to get me" (my fave cut from the crewe album). there are demos of "sunset" and "ha ha" from the album as well, showing that the rats continued developing as musos after leaving holland's tutelage ca. '68, altho they kinda floundered in search of a direction for the remainder of their existence (the live grande ballroom set from around that time that alive released as temptation 'bout to get me kinda sucks for that reason).

as great as frontman scott morgan undoubtedly is -- he went on to cult hero-dom with sonic's rendezvous band, the scott morgan band, scots pirates, dodge main, the hydromatics, powertrane, and the solution -- the unsung hero of this set is steve correll, who sang as much of the rats' material as fred smith did in sonic's rendezvous band's early days, but never seems to get credit for his vocal prowess (he's at least the equivalent of, say, leslie west in his vagrants days as a tonsil-tearing shouter). it's curious that morgan's doing cd release shows in michigan with none of the other ex-rationals (who last reformed in the early '90s) on board.

the rationals were unique among 'meercun garage-snot outfits in that they never made a bad recording. the evidence is here. they musta been hellacious live. this brit import is pricey, but i got it off amazon for around $25. there are much worse ways to spend your money.

hard to handle

if otis was here, he'd be giggling, i have a feeling...


hey, t.tex -- this one's for you.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

trout mask replica

i was introduced to trout mask replica a track at a time by my second college roommate/bassplayer. (he thought strictly personal was safe enough to play me all the way through, and taught me to play "kandy korn.") at first i thought the music was complete chaos, but several years of listening to live tapes by different magic band lineups, culminating in the two shows that i attended in the spring of '77, convinced me otherwise. in the fullness of time, i came to think lick my decals off, baby is a better album, but there's something about that mix of dada blues with free-jazz saxophonics, capped with surrealistic ecology-crank poetry, that makes trout mask a compelling lesson, even after you can see the strings.

my scrawl in the fw weekly

a review i penned of mick medew & the rumours' new alb all your love is online now and _maybe_ in the paper (forgot to pick one up on my way home -- duh).

legs still hurt from running monday

can't wait to do it again on friday.

rod poole

speaking of whom, here's a link to a downloadable solo improv: the death adder.

censored photos of hiroshima

my pop had a book of photos like these, which he took while he was in tokyo and nagasaki at the end of the war. he shared them with me when i was in SAC. i can only imagine how witnessing that destruction as a youth of 21 must have affected him.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

james newton on bobby bradford

like a candygram from the gods, this appreciation of the stalwart trumpeter by a former collaborator arrived within a few days of an album they made together in the '70s. (thanks, dennis!)

barack on health care

from the nyt via the rumpus. this has been a defining issue in this country since at least '92, when bill clinton was elected with a clear mandate to reform the health care mess in this country but dropped the ball by delegating it to his wife while choosing to focus on gays in the military. the party of lincoln having devolved to the party of fear now has the same kind of power it had back in '92, which is merely the power to stop things from happening (in this case, with flagrant horseshit about "death panels" that even the village idiots that promulgate it can't seriously believe). note to the democratic congress: shit or get off the pot.

reflections on about two hrs of sleep

woke up this morning with herbie hancock's "maiden voyage" in my head. first heard it on his live v.s.o.p. alb from our nation's bicentennial year, when i became a jazz snob for awhile.

lately, inspahrd by my crate-digging excursions at doc's, i've been rediscovering jazz from the yrs '71 (when i first became aware of ornette, dolphy, and mingus via the pages of creem, of all places) thru around '93 (when my first marriage split up and i lost the thread for awhile). ethan iverson has generated some interesting threads re: the period '73-'90 on the bad plus blog that i've also been revisiting. as much as i revere duke, bird, and trane, those years when i was following developments in the art in real time, and when miles, ornette, and cecil dominated the landscape (note to self: must remember to read howard mandel's book about those three) were the ones when i loved jazz most of all.

this thursday, since the stoogeband isn't practicing, my sweetie 'n' i plan to fall by formerly fonky fred's for the first time in eons to scarf some good chow 'n' hear my lawn guyland homeboy darrin kobetich so i can bestow what seems like a yr's worth of burned cd-r's on him and check out this new instrument called a cumbus that he's recently acquired. da kobe's expressed an interest in the murdered microtonal gtr genius rod poole, who apparently had similar tastes in rock music to yr humble chronicler o' events.

finally, was recently reminded that as recently as 2003 (before i met my sweetie, who has _never_ seen me clean-shaven), i was the owner/operator of a visible chin.

but my life was not complete. i wanted to look like the estimable "inside-outside" tenor titan joe henderson, of whose work i became enamored via his series of recordings for verve in the '90s.

there were obstacles to the realization of this dream. for one, the whole "not being black" thing. also, i can't grow sideburns. (my friend john wilmshurst could grow 'burns of neil youngian proportions, but no goatee. we used to joke about time-sharing the beard.) but a fella can try. can't he?

Monday, August 17, 2009

pssst...wanna buy some HIO merch?

no, i'm not kidding. go here.

oh, yes...the audio from our 7.11.2009 lola's stand is online here.

marcus garvey

born on this date in 1887. hear spear testify.

antony and the johnsons


inventory is tomorrow, so i'm working noon till 10:30p today, 4:30a till 1p tom'w. my sweetie has in-service this week and the kids come back next week. got up with her and had a bowl of cheerios, then instead of sitting on my ass in front of this box, i decided to go try out my new running shoes.

my wind is pathetic; i can barely jog a block, then i walk until i catch my breath, the way i did after i had pneumonia back in '85. i usedta be into this shit. back when i was an instructor, i usedta run twice a day sometimes. that was when i had a schedule that allowed for that, altho not much else. i'd do all my thinking on the road. maybe that's why i don't think so much now. doing better than thinking. my sweetie says that being in the service saved my life, which might be true, since it caused me to quit smoking from '82 until '99 (with the exception of an interval when i smoked cigars, '84-'85).

thinking about the neighborhood association meeting tonight, which i'll miss but my sweetie said she's going to attend. they're going to be talking about changing the zoning of some blocks to single family residential. cat i ran into at the market last night said it's to keep out the mcmansions, but aren't those single family? as long as it doesn't spell the end for the classic texas garage apartments that give our 'hood some of its character, i'm okay with it.

just went out about a mile, east on pershing to montgomery, turning around at the jazz cafe. when i got done i felt great. the endorphin high from running really is better than any drug i ever did.

drinking some water now in preparation for doing the trash/catbox/cans. then i'll hit the shower. could get back in the habit of doing this.

air lore

the blog destination out recently re-uploaded air lore, the 1979 album on which the forward-thinking trio of reedman henry threadgill, bassist fred hopkins, and drummer steve mccall explored the works of scott joplin and jelly roll morton. hear it while you can.


one i think i'm gonna go see: district 9, a south african sci-fi flick with a msg about racism, which unfortunately is always relevant here.

one i wouldn't go see for money: inglourious basterds or however they're misspelling it. fuck quentin tarantino and his pornography of violence.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

soul makossa

was thinking about this song when i woke up this morning. the kid at doc's always seems to have it (or nina simone) on the box when i shop his store.

yesterday i ran into my 30-year friend dan while i was crate-digging there. found a copy of the world saxophone quartet's revue as well as an ornette alb i was picking up for a friend. (i like giving rekkids almost as much as i like giving fruit.) snoozed on the beastie boys alb my sweetie was looking at last time and missed out. feh. we went to the showdown for "just one beer" (since dan was still on post-surgery antibiotics), then back to mi casa for leftover pizza. a happy accident. we need to hang out more often.

ray davies

my idea of shangri-la would definitely include the music of the kinks ca. '66-'71.

bye, elvis

thirty-two yrs ago, i rolled up to open the rekkid store on lawn guyland where i worked and was greeted by a line of sobbing, weeping elvis fans -- the men in greasy quiffs, the wimmin in beehives. they came to gaze at his visage on his album covers and to lovingly caress artifacts like having fun with elvis onstage, an album consisting entirely of snippets of onstage patter.

i'd always thought of him as kind of a joke. when i was a kid, i actually thought elvis was italian, because everybody i knew who looked and acted like that was italian. i also thought he had something to do with my uncle frank, because they were in the army in germany around the same time. later we had a teenage babysitter who used to insist on watching his crappy movies when they came on tv. i was unimpressed.

when i moved to memphis in '81 to open a rekkid store on elvis presley boulevard, i carved "elvis sucks" on the wall outside graceland. i'm not proud of it, i'm just sayin'.

i only finally "got" el back in '97, when i spent a couple of days flat on my back with a bout of flu, a bottle of nyquil and a copy of the sun sessions my only companions. even now, when i'm _not_ fucked up, that music still sounds like hank williams or robert johnson to me, and i think the music he made on his '68 "comeback" tv special was boss.

i hope he's really living in identity-changed anonymity somewhere in louisiana, the way nik cohn imagined.

city slang-a-thon

okay, because i'm in the mood for the willfully perverse, you get to hear a half dozen versions of the song some folks (like the i-94 barman) consider the greatest rockaroll song ever. the sole release by sonic's rendezvous band during their existence (a single with the same song on both sides!), i first heard this on dodge main's 1996 album and since then have encountered numerous versions, many of them by bands that featured srb alumnus scott morgan. but it was ex-mc5 gtrist fred "sonic" smith who wrote and sang it, and here he is in the sole bit of srb footage extant, ca. '78:

and here's dodge main in detroit (where else?) back in '98:

here's morgan with his euro band the hydromatics, with my towering dutch punk rock pal tony slug (nitwitz, bgk, loveslug) on gtr back in 2007:

and here he is with sweden's hellacopters at the euclid tavern in cleveland, 1998:

here are the hellacopters again, with guest gtrist john nolan from australia's powder monkeys:

here's a french band called chatterbox, playing it in their hometown of toulouse, 1996:

because fred never wrote down the lyrics, nobody really knows what they were, but here's a not-entahrly-successful attempt to decipher them, by a finn:

and just for some variety, here's tony slug playing _another_ srb song with a band called 4 way hit from who knows where (boy gets around) last year:


Saturday, August 15, 2009

speaking of old hipis

hawkwind is 40.

detroit around the world

here's a japanese sonic's rendezvous band tribute band from the barman:

and a pic of the terminal stooges lineup w/scott thurston from t.tex:

and the "mc3" (dkt/mc5) in london, 2003. in the first clip, michael davis sings fred smith's old feature "shakin' street." in the second, dave vanian from the damned sings "high school." rah-rah-rah, sis-boom-bah.

the remains

while we're searching for garage-snot clips on youtube (thanks, dopamine!), here's the best band ever from boston -- even if jon landau liked 'em.

the standells - "sometimes good guys don't wear white"

another '60s garage-punk fave, covered by some punk band or other in the '70s. shitty vid quality, but not so bad you can't see the gtr player's plaid pants. ni-i-ice.

the syndicate of sound - "little girl"

had this in my head since hearing some punk cover that ray played at stoogeprac. i had this alb for a buck in '72. now it's like $45 at doc's.

why you're addicted to the internet

it's dopamine. from slate.

hio: first recorded evidence

terry horn just posted vid of the hentai improvising orchestra's inaugural performance at lola's 6th street. it's live now on the band's page at check it out and tell us what you think. we'll be at the firehouse gallery, oakland and meadowbrook, on saturday, september 5th.

woodstock: still getting milked for $$$, 40 years later

from reuters.

PFFFFT!: the last hurrah

hembree has been busily updating katboy's PFFFFT! archive, finally getting around to editing and uploading our last two shows (from november and december last year). november's up now and it's a goodie, except for the "rapper/blues singer" who joined us at the end. if my shakey memory serves, december was a goodun too; evidence will be available soon. we knew we were getting fired from our recurring monthly gig at the fairmount (r.i.p.), but that was the night that mark cook and terry horn stopped in to check us out, which led to the hentai improvising orchestra coming into existence. clay, tony, matt hickey (on bass) and i will play a PFFF(F)T! set at the firehouse gallery on september 5th. another reason for hembree's spurt of audio editing activity is an invitation we received from jack bensonhurst of indian casino records to contribute a couple of tracks for a compilation they're planning to release. we figure it's our one shot at posterity.

Friday, August 14, 2009

basic celebrity identification for new jersey's finest

bob dylan:

silvio dante:

jimmy hoffa:

you know the '60s are over

...when bob dylan gets arrested by a 22-year-old police officer who doesn't know who he is. (as in "who's bob dylan?" not "you're not bob dylan.")

"the spirit of woodstock is dead"

an interesting commentary on the way folks consume music today, from the guardian via arthur. even the comments aren't stupid.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

r.i.p. rashied ali

damn. we just lost coltrane's last drummer, the great rashied ali. say hello to ohnedaruth. and elvin.

mean town blues

r.i.p. les paul


detroit rocks

to help fund the production and reserve your copy of leni sinclair and gary grimshaw's book of photos 'n' poster art from the late '60s detroit rawk milieu, go here.

zanzibar snails & david lee price

last night/tonight

last night, my sweetie 'n' i went to the bull & bush with terry 'n' jo to help celebrate his b-day. while we were there, some guy tried to sell me real estate. definitely where i'd go to hunt for new prospects if i was in that biz. after talking to his mom and being reminded of how his high school band usedta make a grand a night playing parties at her house, terry has decided that hentai needs merch. i don't disagree. having such kinda legitimizes a band somehow, even if it's given away like the me-thinks' swag.

tonight we have stooge prac for the first time in eons and i get to see if i can still remember how to hold a gtr.

meow mix

this is both great and disturbing.

dodge main

speaking of scott morgan, here he is fronting dodge main, a bona fide detroit supergroup, back in the late '90s. in this instance, besides scott (rationals, sonic's rendezvous band) on voxx and gtr, the lineup includes wayne kramer (mc5) and deniz tek (radio birdman) on gtrs, gary rasmussen (the up, sonic's rendezvous band) on bass and dennis thompson (mc5) on drums. the song they're playing is the rationals' "guitar army." i liked the way the rats did it better; the D-A-E intro (not heard in this versh) has been my soundcheck warmup noise for years.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

fall gallery night is just around the corner

artwork by phil hemsley. (click on the image to make it big.)

ok, regan, you win

looks like i'm gonna be foregoing the next coupla weeks at doc's in order to own big beat (u.k.)'s double cd get rational, which compiles early singles and rarities by detroit garage kings the rationals, a band i've loved since finding their one self-titled album on crewe records in a bargain bin for 99 cents ca. '71. some of this stuff was included in their legendary "fan club album," which made it as far as the acetate stage back in '66 and was never released, although it's been circulating in bootleg form for years. i have the fan club album and some other early acetates on a cassette that i got from rationals frontman scott morgan, but i figure that tape won't last forever and i've gotta have that music, if only because the rats' cover of "smokestack lightning/inside looking out" has special significance for my sweetie 'n' me. big beat is planning a second volume to include the crewe album, and _someone_ is supposedly gonna release the fan club album on vinyl. we'll see.

ADDENDUM: from the motor city music archives, here's a 1970 creem article on the rats.

johnny case @ lightcatcher winery this sunday

johnny case sends:

I will be playing at the Lightcatcher Winery this Sunday from 4-7pm, with Duane Durrett on drums and Drew Phelps on bass. Carla Norris is our vocalist. Here's the details on the winery, which Kitty got from their website.

Cover - $10. You must be at least 16. No dogs allowed.
Address - 6928 Confederate Park Road, which is off of Jacksboro Hwy in Lake Worth.
Phone - 817-237-2626 for reservations.

It should be a fun gig - hope you can come.

it's on

the yanari/PFFFT!/hentai improvising orchestra extravaganza at the firehouse gallery (oakland and meadowbrook) has been rescheduled for saturday, september 5th. this time, the lineup will include original PFFFFT! members tony chapman (gtr/synth) and clay stinnett (drums), but not (sigh) usual suspect matt hembree, who has a gig with the underground railroad. in his place, matt hickey will be playing bass instead of electric gopichand (making it PFFF(F)T!, i suppose). more as it develops.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

slow death


hentai improvising orchestra t-shirt design


who knew it was hereditary?

Monday, August 10, 2009

research on david murray

unpubbed and fantastic scholarship. read it here.

guernica 3d

nervebreakers @ club dada, 4.11.2009

jazz death

been thinking lately about how, in spite of my continuing enthusiasm for the shit i was listening to as a snotnose between, say, '68-'74 and the proto-punk noise (detroit and other) that i got reacquainted with ca. '96, i'm still the jazz snob i became when rockaroll got lame in the pre-punk mid-'70s. these days all i seem to write about for the fw weekly is new obscuro jazz releases (thanks, ant'ny, for the forum), and i've spent a lot of time last year revisiting late '60s freeblow, '70s noo yawk loft scene denizens, das kinder von ornette, etc., and re-reading gary giddins and francis davis' post-'80s scrawl on the music. so today it definitely piqued my interest when hembree forwarded this article from the wsj. the writer's premise is that the jazz audience is getting progressively smaller and older, and the music has morphed into a "sophisticated art music" rather than the popular medium it was from armstrong to kind of blue: from the marketplace to the academy and the museum. a down thought.

happy 100th, leo fender

from wired. inventor of the telecaster, the stratocaster, the electric bass, the twin and the bassman. without him, no rock 'n' roll. thank you, sir.

are you glad to be in america?

Sunday, August 09, 2009

i need that record!

wow! somebody made a documentary about "the death (or possible survival) of the independent record store." hey, john nuckels...


one of the best parts of our trip to ohio was going out hunting for fireflies with out nephew and nieces (and listening to the cricket and tree frog sounds i remember from summers when i was a kid). reading today's star-t, was sorry to read that lightning bugs might be on their way out.

old punk podcast - bloodstains across texass

go here to listen. thanks to t.tex for posting.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

the rain in spain

because i'm slow that way, it occurred to me for the first time while watching my fair lady last night that my sweetie, who's a speech-language pathologist, does the same job as professor higgins (although she's not as pompous and overbearing as he is and works with more interesting subjects). duh.

pssst...wanna see every episode of "star trek" -- complete?

go here. thanks to mckeever for the link.

the return of little junior one hand

if you live in fort worth, love blues, and never heard of freddie cisneros, you owe it to yourself to attend one of these shows. if you know freddie, you know why. coming of age in the early '60s, freddie played in jim jones & the chaunteys (see the fort worth teen scene comp), robert ealey & the five careless lovers (saw a copy of their t-bone burnett-produced lp from the late '70s at doc's for 50 bucks!), and his own band, little junior one hand & the blasting caps, who'll be reuniting for three dates here in the fort, october 16-18, so save the dates. (click on the image to make it big.)

tom waits for no one

nixon resigns

it was 35 yrs ago today. we were watching a met game at dave relethford's house when the news broke in. we were silent for a minute, then went uproarious, hooting and hollering, spraying shaving cream all over the tv. i think someone actually pressed their ass cheeks against the screen. before that, i'd watched nixon speeches with the sound turned off and pink floyd or some such on the stereo (this yrs before the wizard of oz/dark side of the moon linkage was discovered). my pop had been watching the watergate hearings as entertainment (his other fave show of all time: the army-mccarthy hearings). in retrospect, it all seems less amusing, because watergate was the beginning of _everybody_ in this country, regardless of age or political orientation, assuming out of hand that the ppl in charge were crooks (which was either ok or not, depending on which side of the fence they leaned toward and who was in power). and by resigning, tricky dick managed to avoid getting what he deserved for breaking that trust.

an old japanese doctor who survived hiroshima

from vice. my pop, who interviewed survivors of the nagasaki a-bomb and tokyo firebombing for the u.s. strategic bombing survey, always used to tell me (when i was in strategic air command) that the u.s. was a racist country that wouldn't have used the a-bomb on germany. maybe he was right. reading this int makes me glad that it hasn't been used since '45. may it always be so.

david murray octet - warsaw, 1983

same polish cat that posted the blood ulmer vid below also has this snippet of the murray octet, which looks to be from the same festival.

james blood ulmer

found a copy of this ornette disciple's odyssey (with his 1983 gtr-violin-drums trio, his best unit) at doc's. while retaining his gift for idiosyncratic riddim and melody, this is also the weirdest refraction of the country blues since beefheart's strictly personal.

Friday, August 07, 2009

joe baiza

gtrist with saccharine trust, universal congress of, mike watt & the black gang crew, unknown instructors, and puttanesca. took up the axe at 27. had his hands broken by skinheads in germany. free jazz _is_ thrash, asshole!

how to save newspapers

100 skills every man should know

pil on american bandstand

this one's for hickey. from the new yorker.

yardbirds w/beck & page in "blow up"

my second fave vid clip ever is back on youtube. hooray!

contest update

ok, so before we left for ohio, i posted an entry offering tixxx to see the documentary soul power at the modern, august 28-30. we haven't got a winner yet, and my sweetie says it's because i made the questions too hard. so if you want the tickets, hit me up at i'm just sayin'.

bobby mcferrin

i'm not a big fan of mr. "don't worry, be happy," but ash sent this clip which i think is pretty neat, in which bobby demonstrates the power of science geeks to anticipate the tones of the pentatonic scale.

World Science Festival 2009: Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates the Power of the Pentatonic Scale from World Science Festival on Vimeo.

my myspace profile song

ex-fw symphony violinist steve huber, who's now involved in something called pot! the musical, posted some old recordings on his myspace thingy, including a 16-minute snippet of one of the old wreck room jams that lee allen used to host. while most of it is steve and darrin kobetich going off, the first minute or so (which is all anybody typically listens to anyway) is all me. hooray! also on the track are brian sharp (tpt) and joe cruz (ds). hadn't thought about this stuff in awhile, but i dig the musical projects i'm involved in now a lot more. that didn't prevent me from adding it to my myspace thingy, however.

this sunday @ the metrognome

rene west sends:

The reception has been rescheduled for this Sunday with the extra bonus of a double reception with Mark Penland!

Yep it’s true - Mark and I both have new work up at the Firehouse Gallery, please join us on Sunday to celebrate!

Artist Receptions are Sunday, August 9th from 7-9pm at the Firehouse, and are free to the public.

Performances will follow the reception from 9-11pm - Nick Hennies, of the Weird Weeds will perform electro-acoustic improv, and James Talambas of the Theater Fire will play a no-input mixing board. $5 donation to pay the musicians.

For more info

Date: Sunday, August 9, 2009
Time: 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Location: Firehouse Gallery
Street: 4147 Meadowbrook Dr.
City/Town: Fort Worth, TX

Hope to see you there,


what's going on

had a scare with my mom's health while we were in ohio, which appears to be less serious than we originally thought. we live in hope.

some of our improv shit may appear on a compilation that indian casino records is putting out later this year. i might be helping a member of a band that i've been a fan of since i was a snotnose to write a book of his recollections. and someday before i die, i may book another gig. (the september stoogedate now sleeps with the fishes.)

never say never again

so it appears that retired sony exec james williamson is playing a gig with a local band in san jose to warm up for his return to the stooges lineup next year.

mo' gunslingers vid

Thursday, August 06, 2009

don't speak ill of the dead

finally met my ohio poetry-rock pal dan mcguire in person for the first time the other night. among other things, we were talking about the grateful dead. so i come back home and find a coupla relevant posts on the arthur mag site: a 56-minute dead mix by contributor greg davis, and a downloadable 80-minute show from the avalon ballroom, 1968. go wild.

indian lake

just got back from ohio. i've had this fucking song (the cowsills as the beach boys, from 1968) in my head for four days. pity me.

seriously, it was a nice relaxing time, even though there wasn't a fish market for 30 miles. glad we went.

Monday, August 03, 2009

off to ohio this is it until thursday night, unless it's possible to steal wi-fi from sassafras point on indian lake.

Sunday, August 02, 2009


my sweetie bought me a coupla old-school composition books (_not_ "college-ruled") to take on the trip to ohio and i'm gonna use a method my middle dtr taught me for gettin' unblocked (basically sit down for 30 minutes and keep the pen moving without trying to self-edit or revise) to get offa my chest some of the stuff i've been thinking about lately, mainly about my folks' illnesses and our weird family dynamic. i haven't done anything like this since the year i got out of the service, when i journaled pretty extensively about my job search trials 'n' tribs and the stuff that led to my exit from the air force. (and i wasn't a "writer," back then, mind you.) when it was all done, i took my notebooks to the house of a guy i knew i was never gonna see again and left 'em with him. don't know what i'll wind up doing with these, but it'll give me something to do on the plane, anyhow.

mo' danny fields talk

here's part 2 of thirsty magazine's talk with the fella that's always the coolest guy in the room.

good news

looks like my youngest dtr and her kids are moving in with my middle dtr and her husband. saw the latter and my grandson-with-whom-i-share-a-b'day today and talked to my oldest on the phone. when we get back from ohio, i need to get some strings so i can restring her gts and we can play together s'more. she asked me to bring over some fz and deniz tek cd's for her 'puter, so i burned her le bonne route, equinox, roxy and elsewhere, and a mix cd-r of jams from weasels ripped my flesh, bongo fury, lather, and you can't do that onstage anymore, vol. 1. while i was on a roll, i also burned her some nels cline, boris with michio kurihara, and matt baldwin. who knows -- maybe in a coupla yrs, she'll be a better gtr player than i am, in the same way as her middle sister is already a better writer.

mo' crate-diggin'

besides the murray octet rec, i was also happy to see that no one else had copped cecil taylor's nefertiti, the beautiful one has come (the double elpee on arista freedom) before i made it back to doc's. i had this when it was new (along with the solo piano silent tongues, another arista freedom fave). half of the material was released on debut/fantasy as live at the cafe montmartre; i understand revenant added even more when they released nefertiti on cd. basically, this '62 sesh (with jimmy lyons on alto and sunny murray on drums) represents the birth of c.t.'s mature style. even though he does play one "standard" here (burke and van heusen's "what's new"), it's rendered unrecognizable by the pianist's signature force-of-nature attack. to these feedback-scorched ears, this set has the same open-ended quality as 1978's one too many salty swift and not goodbye, with a smaller group giving lyons and the leader more space to elaborate and murray's mercurial sprung rhythm in place of shannon jackson's thunderous backbeat.

also in the racks was the sire reish of lenny kaye's original '72 nuggets, which i got shit for buying from the older guys in the hipi rekkid store where i usedta work when it appeared in '76. this set opened the floodgates for what eventually became the "garage revivals" of the '80s and '90s -- the latter of which included a rhino reish which expanded kaye's double elpee into a four-cd behemoth -- but i still like hearing these toons in the form in which i first discovered 'em. compared to later releases of this ilk (my faves being larry harrison and david campbell's three-volume fort worth teen scene on norton, the obscuro '90s michigan mayhem! vol. 1 and the swedish searchin' for shakes), the selection seems pretty spotty (the fey, twee studio pop that's clustered on side four, f'rinstance), but side one's pretty much immaculate (the electric prunes! the standells! the knickerbockers! the vagrants! the blues project!) and all the other sides include songs that i played over and over (the nazz's "open my eyes") and bands i came to appreciate more in other forms (the remains' "don't look back" still can't hold a candle to a session with the remains, which was still just a rumor in '76; i actually liked the count five album that i bought after reading lester bangs' frothings over them in creem). my sweetie's take: "cursed hipi music!"

ADDENDUM: listen to any '60s garage comp and you can't help but conclude that "i'm a man" by the yardbirds was _the_ most influential record of the era. that rave-up raga pops up _everywhere_.

david murray

i snoozed on his first three octet records back in the '80s, but i scored a copy of murray's steps at doc's yesterday, my interest piqued by the presence of pianist curtis clark, who plays on a coupla new sides by dennis gonzalez and his sons. it's like a classic mingus sesh: great writing, fiery playing by a band that includes two reeds (murray and henry threadgill), three brass (bobby bradford, murray's longtime conductor butch morris, craig harris) and riddim. reading morris' ideas about conduction in howard mandel's future jazz -- morris, clark, and murray were part of fort worth expat charles moffett's workshops in oakland, where they bumped up against moffett's musical sons charnett and codaryl -- and thinking how they might be applicable to the hentai improvising orchestra.

Saturday, August 01, 2009


thelonious monk's the complete genius. if there's a bad monk rekkid, i haven't heard it yet. before that: pat metheny's song x with ornette, which is becoming my fave ornette rec (altho i still dig in all languages and town hall concert real much). i'll admit to being jealous of terry horn because he got to see o.c. in austin.