Amoeblog

Lady Beware

Posted by phil blankenship, February 29, 2008 11:35pm | Post a Comment
 



IVE 63753

Amoeba Hollywood’s Auction this Saturday

Posted by Whitmore, February 29, 2008 08:57pm | Post a Comment


This Saturday is the first Saturday of the month and therefore, it is time once again for Amoeba Hollywood’s Auction, hosted by the inimitable Brently Heilbron.

Amoeba Auctions started as an on-going event to help raise money for the Gulf Coast Relief Efforts. Our auctions have included every conceivable kind of memorabilia from the entertainment world and beyond. Collectibles, promotional items, concert tickets, tour jackets, t-shirts, celebrity underwear, puzzles, toys and all kinds of swag that can make your heart go pitter-pat, have been won. And on top of that, Amoeba matches all individual donations and winning bids up to $1,000. Everybody is a winner!

There will of course be many interesting items to bid on this week, but we have one very special item to auction: An autographed copy of the classic comedy album, Weird Al Yankovic In 3-D.

Weird Al Yankovic was spotted in the Amoeba mezzanine perusing DVDs by yours truly. I mentioned it casually to Brently, who sprinted off as only a former track star and Texas State Champion can do, and I have to say Brently accosted Mr. Yankovic in the most courteous and polite manner I’ve ever seen. Weird Al gladly autographed the record even as we twisted one of his arms behind his back. Actually, he was incredibly gracious and happy to sign an album for the Amoeba Auction, personalizing it, “To the lucky highest bidder.” That can be you! Yes, you sitting at your computer! So come on down this Saturday March 1st @ 4PM. It's not everyday you get to bid on a rare chunk of vinyl, actually autographed by the artist as they shopped in Amoeba while at the same time helping the ongoing relief efforts for the Gulf Coast. Thanks, good luck and happy bidding.

The Employee Interview Part XVI: Corrie

Posted by Miss Ess, February 29, 2008 01:09pm | Post a Comment
Corrie
2.5 Years Employment
Register Mama

neutral milk hotel jeremy barnes jeff mangum
ME: What are you listening to these days?

CC: Neutral Milk Hotel, Vic Godard, Magnetic Fields, Iron Maiden and some Slayer have graced my headphones this week.

What's the best film you've seen this year?

CC: There Will Be Blood & Juno.

What song describes your life right now?

"Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want "-The Smiths

Is there a song you think is perfect, start to finish?  That every time you listen to you wish you'd written?

"Wave of Mutilation" -The Pixies

That's a good pick! What is your favorite music-related film?


It's a 3 way tie between Help, Don't Look Back and Krush Groove.bob dylan don't look back

Two of those are two of my absolute faves too!  So, in the grand scheme of life, it's probably an over-discussed topic, but what the heck:  name the best Radiohead album.

I'm a sucker for OK Computer-- it changed my life -- I mean, that's the one as far as I'm concerned-- but The Bends is AMAZING,and In Rainbows does not disappoint.

Continue reading...

Welcome to Casablanca Records

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 29, 2008 12:30pm | Post a Comment


1980 saw the Casablanca release of Tony Joe White's The Real Thang album, which contained the amazing track "I Get Off On It", in which he discusses various individuals and their predilections--  junk food, trannys, trenchcoat flashers, bondage. Combine with a couple of other album highlights "Disco Blues" & the disco-ized version of "Even Trolls Love Rock and Roll", add copious amounts of cocaine and you've pretty much 'crystallized' the Casablanca Records story. 1980 was also the year that Polygram final squeezed Casablanca's founder out of the picture.  Neil Bogart went on to put together Boardwalk Entertainment, signing Joan Jett.  He also signed Get Wet -- if anyone out there knows what the Lou Reed connection is with them, please chime in. Anyhow, Mr. Bogart's body gave out on him 2 years later. 





Haunted by the Brutal Splendor of old 45's, #4

Posted by Whitmore, February 29, 2008 11:20am | Post a Comment
Maybe it’s the spring thaw, and not self-doubt. This muddle I seem to be writing about is in reality a torrent of mud and ice pushing me down hill. Why? Because it’s almost March, Easter is around the corner, (at least I hope so … I gave up television for Lent!). If winter is done, spring must be near. Perhaps, there isn't a fiasco-muddle-shamble going on here after all. Nor is there a voice telling me I’m in the middle of a crisis of faith. (Then again, there may be a voice telling me I’m not experiencing a crisis of faith). Alas! Maybe I should just put away the Edgar Allan Poe collection; his gloomy narcotic influence has been forcibly illustrated here repeatedly and is perhaps detrimental to your entertainment, dear reader. What am I suppose to do? Just write a straight forward description / history about the ephemeral nature of 45 sleeves! It might be said of this blog, blather written in babble -"blab la bla blab la bla"- It does not permit itself to be read! And why not? There are ideas which do not permit themselves to be thought out. Ideas die often in their infancy: wringing their sweaty little hands, furrowing their soft miniature brows, pushing away ghostly acknowledgments as quickly as possible, otherwise something bad might reveal itself, and then the idea ... expires. Now and then, the conscience of an idea takes up a burden so immense that it can only be thrown into some late night rant. And thus the essence of this blog is divulged. There you have it, thank you Mr. Poe!

DEALING WITH HECKLERS

Posted by Billyjam, February 29, 2008 06:10am | Post a Comment

The act of heckling performers has to be as old as time itself. I'd bet even way back in the prehistoric, early days of mankind that whenever one cavemen got up to entertain his fellow cave dwellers that some neanderthal in the group would heckle him midway through his bit.

It just seems to be part of the human condition for those in the peanut gallery to feel the need and right to shout out their criticisms, even if unjustified, at those giving their all onstage. Those onstage include stage actors, musicians, comedians (perhaps the number one target of hecklers), and even politicians.  Additionally many self appointed critics have also been known to scream out their feelings at the movie screen, proving that heckling is meant as much for the benefit of fellow audience members as for the performer(s).

And even though it comes with the territory, especially for stand-up comedians, it has to be pretty tough for those up onstage, already performing a demanding draining job, to have some uninvited (often drunk) loud-mouthed bozo scream out his/her dissatisfaction with your performance.  For the rest of the audience, however, a heckler hounding a performer can often result in some entertaining interplay between the two parties. Of recent performer/heckler altercations, probably the one that first pops into most minds is the November 2006 incident at the Laugh Factory comedy club where Michael Richards (aka Seinfeld's Kramer) went off on a nasty tirade on some African American audience members (see below).  How he handled it is a textbook case of what not to do if you wish to remain active in showbiz, especially in these camera phone/YouTube digital days when every move is being documented to be later used against the respective parties.

But every performer handles hecklers differently and it is pretty interesting to study the different approaches applied.  Below I have included video clips of some that deserve a peep, such as the late great stand up comic Bill Hicks who, in a bit that superficially seems to rival Kramer's, really rips into a female audience member-- even using the "C" word  on this woman.  But the key difference is that, even in his most riled rant, he stayed in control and remained entertaining -- even if the audience didn't know where he was going with the bit. And at the end he made fun of himself.  More importantly, it was within character - the sort of thing that you might expect from the notorious comedian who ruffled many feathers by always telling it like it is (or was).

Rich Girl

Posted by phil blankenship, February 28, 2008 11:47pm | Post a Comment
 





RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video 91543

Boyd Coddington 1944 - 2008

Posted by Whitmore, February 28, 2008 10:36am | Post a Comment


As a kid I grew up around Southern California’s custom car culture. My Dad did custom auto body, paint and design. He was constantly chopping, welding, re-chopping, re-welding, filling in some Bondo here, pounding out a dent, re-filling in some Bondo there, pounding out another fender, painting, taping off, re-painting, all performed on some innocent Detroit family car, transforming your average Ford or Chevy into some kind of mutant So-Cal testosterone by-product of too much sun and youth. The smell of Bondo, the polyester fiberglass resin used to fill in holes, is the smell that takes me back to my childhood!  I may just drive a ’97 Toyota, but my heart has always been wrapped around the 1934 Ford Roadster my Dad owned when I was a kid. There was, and is, nothing like cruising around town in a hot rod - the rumble of glass-packs, or the pure simple beauty of pin stripping or the swagger of flames painted across the polished curves of a vintage fender and hood.

West Coast custom car-building legend Boyd Coddington has died at the age of 63.  Coddington had been hospitalized during this past holiday season, but the cause of death has not yet been released.  Born in Rupert, Idaho, in 1944, Coddington started to build cars in his parents' garage as a teenager.  He became a machinist by trade, and at one point worked for Disneyland on the graveyard shift, but by day he would tinker in his home garage producing one car at a time. His designs soon captured the imagination and spirit of Southern Californian car-culture fans. Presently Coddington’s shop in La Habra, California has some 70 employees working in a 50,000 square foot facility which includes an in-house body and paint shop.

Harley Davidson And The Marlboro Man - Saturday @ Midnight !

Posted by phil blankenship, February 27, 2008 10:38pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music and Phil Blankenship are proud to present some of our film favorites at Los Angeles’ last full-time revival movie theater. See movies the way they're meant to be seen - on the big screen and with an audience!


Saturday March 1

When the going gets tough... the tough take the law into their own hands.

Harley Davidson

& The Marlboro Man

New Beverly Cinema
7165 W Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 938-4038
Midnight, $7

Writer / Producer Don Michael Paul scheduled to present this rare screening of his action comedy cult classic!


Upcoming:
Mar 8 Streets Of Fire
Mar 15 Can't Hardly Wait (10th Anniversary!)
Mar 29 The Funhouse

BUDDY MILES, R.I.P.

Posted by Billyjam, February 27, 2008 09:15pm | Post a Comment

Modern music lost another great with the passing of rock and funk drummer (and sometime singer) Buddy Miles, best known as member/co-founder of  Band Of Gypsys with Jimi Hendrix, who died yesterday (Feb 26th) at only 60 years of age. So far a cause of death has not been announced.

During Miles' long career, in addition to Jimi Hendrix, he performed with such artists as George Clinton, Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Barry White and David Bowie. Earlier on in his career, in his pre-Hendrix days, the young Omaha, Nebraska-born percussionist played with Wilson Pickett, Ruby and the Romantics, The Delfonics, and The Ink Spots. A child prodigy, he initially played in his father's (George Sr.) band The Bebops.

But it was as musical collaborator with Jimi Hendrix that he truly made his artistic mark - first teaming up with the guitar legend in 1969 when Hendrix produced an album for the Buddy Miles Express. (Express followed the short lived band Electric Flag that he was in with Mike Bloomfield and Nick Gravenites.) The Hendrix collaboration led to Miles' drumming on Hendrix's Electric Ladyland and soon after officially joined Band Of Gypsys with bassist Billy Cox.

Band of Gypsys' self-titled album recorded live at New York's Fillmore East was their only release, but to this day it is considered to be one of the best live albums from that era in rock music. After Hendrix's death in September 1970, Miles continued to contribute to tracks by the late guitarist (posthumously constructed in the studio with Hendrix recordings). Many, many years later he and Billy Cox would regroup to record a live album (The Band of Gypsys Return), which was released two years ago.

Hello Degrassi!

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 26, 2008 03:14pm | Post a Comment
I've been commissioned to write a blog about one of my favorite Canadian bands. As someone who spent a year and a half in rural Iowa with no friends and a satellite dish, I spent many Mountain Dew-fueled hours watching Much Music with the VCR remote in hand hoping to tape videos by the likes of the Dream Warriors, Zumpano, Leonard Cohen, Trans-X, Lime, Skinny Puppy, Frontline Assembly, or Eric's Trip whilst adroitly changing the channel within microseconds of a Bootsauce song's opening notes.



But there was one band who, I don't think, ever got any airtime on Much and will not likely ever be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. That band is ...  Zit Remedy. They formed in 1985 and only recorded one song, "Everybody Wants Something," which they sold for 2 dollars (Canadian) which, echoing Peter Saville's costly New Order packaging for "Blue Monday," cost less than the blank tapes they were recorded on. There's a Zit Remedy website that does a good job of providing the biographical information for the seminal band. I will say that a bit of the information is wrong, or out of date. Anyone who keeps up with Degrassi knows that after Craig Manning's dad died, he formed a band Downtown Sasquatch with Spinner, Jimmy and Marco which practiced in... legendary Zit Remedy frontman Joey Jeremiah's garage. And he performed his song "What I Know" at the Degrassi Battle of the Bands as a sort of apology to Ashley Kerwin. So, obviously there's a lot of musical talent coming out of Degrassi. In fact, there's a wikipedia entry devoted to them.

Streetwalkin'

Posted by phil blankenship, February 26, 2008 11:02am | Post a Comment
 




 

Vestron VA5118

Hit Clips and Minor Blips

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 26, 2008 12:35am | Post a Comment
The early days of MTV were spent pushing bands and recording artists, as it was Music Television.  Here's some fine evidence of that time period and of the power of the M in 80's advertising...


The "Hip Clip" phenom of the mid 80's, precursor 90's and the "alternative" and "buzz" words...



 

out today 2/26...the smurfs...dolly parton...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 25, 2008 11:38pm | Post a Comment

I always get that depressed feeling the day after the Oscars. It is sort of like the day after you go to Disneyland or the day after you get back from a vacation. It feels like what I imagine some people would feel the day after the Super Bowl. Of course as soon as they are over, I start to look forward to next year. There are some absolutely horrible movies out right now. It is a rare day when there is nothing that I want to see in the theaters, but that will all change in a couple of weeks or so when some great and exciting movies start to come out again. Luckily the DVDs are still coming out to keep us busy during these sad days at the movie theaters. You can start to catch up on the great films of last year if you missed any of them. Michael Clayton came out last week. Into The Wild comes out next week. No Country For Old Men comes out March 11th. There Will Be Blood comes out in April.

There are also some TV shows on DVD to keep you busy. I was too young to watch the original Bob Newhart Show when it was originally on in the late 70s. I didn't start to appreciate the genius of that show until years later when I got to watch the reruns on Nick at Nite. But I did watch Newhart when it aired from 1982 to 1990. I did really love this show for some reason-- maybe this is why I have always wanted to open up my very own little hotel... or this is at least why I love to stay at hotels. The first season of Newhart gets its debut on DVD today. But just like we had to wait until Season 2 of Dynasty for the debut of Joan Collins, it was not until Season 2 of Newhart that the great Julia Duffy first appeared. She was without a doubt my favorite character on the show and I think she probably had the best lines. I was really obsessed with TV comedies back in the 80s. There were just so many great hilarious comedies on TV back then. I am still not really sure what happened, but the great comedies just simply don't exist anymore. Maybe my sense of humor changed-- but how can you really compare 2 & 1/2 Men and Reba to shows like Newhart and Family Ties?

(In which Job writes in two worlds.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 25, 2008 11:14pm | Post a Comment

"Look Marge - I soaked in it!"

My right hand hurts. I keep bending my fingers back, trying to stretch it, but I’m “double-jointed” – the fingers go all the way back to my wrist – so it takes a lot of muscle-power to stretch the hand, causing me to worry that, in my effort to stretch my right hand, I’m going to injure the left.

I’m pretty sure there’s an ancient, Chinese proverb about this exact situation. If only I’d have paid attention in third grade, when they teach Chinese mysticism and philosophy – then I could quote it. Alas.


My 3rd grade class. Can you find me?

I suppose I should explain why my right hand hurts. God knows I don’t trust you to come up with a reason yourself. I know you, dear reader, and know that your twisted imagination has already concocted an offensive reason for why my right paw aches; something like:

“I’ll bet he was trying to knit a scarf with thick, Rowan ‘Big Wool’ yarn using only a 10 inch, single-point needle!”


You’re sick, y’know. You need help.

The reason my right hand hurts is because I have been addressing envelopes for wedding invitations, using large, calligraphy pens and ornate lettering. It’s my wedding gift to Carrye and Jared, who’s wedding it will be.

'ONCE' STARS GET IN A LITTLE SHOPPING @ AMOEBA BEFORE OSCARS

Posted by Billyjam, February 25, 2008 11:10am | Post a Comment

As reported in the Sunday Fashion & Style section of The New York Times, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova got in a little shopping at Amoeba Music while in Hollywood, in the days leading up to the Oscars. The musicians/actors and stars of the Irish indie film Once won an Oscar last night in the Original Song category for the film's moving composition "Falling Slowly"  --  which they also performed live at the televised event (see clip below). 

The picture above, courtesy of the New York Times' Emilio Flores, shows the couple shopping at Amoeba Music on Sunset where they reportedly spent time shopping for DVDs (Amoeba prices are way better than back home in Dublin) and talking to fans of the indie success film Once, fans who were pleasantly surprised to see its two stars in the aisles of Amoeba Music.

Personally I was so happy Once won because not only did I fall in love with the film when I first saw it last March, but I saw it under the best possible circumstances: on the big screen in Dublin, Ireland, not far from where much of the film was shot.  And I saw it with two of my favorite people, my dad and sister, who both loved it and its soundtrack as much I did-- so much so that the next day, inspired by the film, we decided to take a short drive south of the city to Killiney, to that beautiful location overlooking Dublin Bay and the Irish Sea where the two main characters in the movie go on their memorable motorbike ride.

L.A.'s Favorite Spaniards

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 25, 2008 02:21am | Post a Comment
 

  

   

This Spaniard just won an Oscar.
Another is helping The Los Angeles Lakers get back into the finals.
She is one of the best MC's not only from Spain, but in the world!
This band's recent DVD is the best selling World Music DVD at Amoeba Hollywood,
three weeks straight.

Who are they?

L.A. Eats, Part 1

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 25, 2008 01:43am | Post a Comment

Their website claims that the Coffee Table is Eagle Rock's hippest restaurant. So why would they go out of their way to ruin a good thing? Personally, I like Eagle Rock and The Coffee Table exactly the way it is, which is slightly awkward, a clientele of families, college professors, students from Occidental College and Zack De La Rocha. It's like a college town relic from the 90's. Walking in there for the first time you'd expect  to hear Nirvana and A Tribe Called Quest, followed by The Pixies. The food is relatively inexpensive compared to Hollywood's prices and it's plentiful. Also, the coffee is good. Can't name your restaurant The Coffee Table if your coffee sucks.

I sometimes come here on my days off for breakfast. During the week it is quiet enough to have a decent conversation with a friend without having to endure someone else's conversation right next to you. You're not going to hear stories of a screenplay or a record deal, nor are you going to see people that looked like they stepped out of the pages of Vice magazine. If you are into that, this place is not for you. In fact, stay as far away from Eagle Rock as much as you can. It's my day off, after all!

The Coffee Table would like to be hip, but its far from it. And that's the way I like it.

The Coffee Table Bistro
1958 Colorado Boulevard
Eagle Rock California. 
Open daily from 7 AM to 9:30 PM.

Beef 2008

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 25, 2008 01:10am | Post a Comment

Alejandro Sanz
, a pop singer from Spain, has a beef with Hugo Chavez.  It all started with comments Sanz made back in 2004 while on tour in Venezuela. During that time, opponents of Chavez circulated a petition signed by 3 million people that would force Chavez into another election, which Chavez at first resisted. Sanz, not a fan of Chavez because he felt that Chavez was against free speech, said, "If I were presented with 3 million signatures to stop me from singing, I'd stop singing." Chavez’s people, upon hearing his comments, created a website that they hoped they would get 3 million signatures to stop Sanz from ever singing again. It was joke, but for Sanz, it was mean-spirited attempt at humor. Soon afterwards, Sanz claimed that the government of officials harassed Sanz and his crew, making it impossible for Sanz to play in Venezuela by forcing hotels not to let him stay there, thus forcing promoters to cancel the dates.

To add to the fuel to the fire, during a show in Miami, Sanz wore a Venezuelan flag draped over his shoulders, then held up a shirt that was handed to him that said “Chavez Sucks.”  Soon that footage was all over the Internet, thanks to Youtube.



After a third attempt to play in Venezuela was canceled, a petition in support of Sanz started to circulate, only this time his support came from artists from all over the spectrum of Latin entertainment. Pop icons such as Shakira, Penélope Cruz and Jennifer Lopez; to conscious artists such Fito Paez and Joan Manuel Serrat, as well as conservatives Gloria Estefan and husband Emilio, all signed in support of Sanz.

félicitations à Marion Cotillard &

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 25, 2008 12:47am | Post a Comment
Glad to see Ms. Cotillard get the serious nod; Esther and I thoroughly enjoyed her performance...In celebration of the award show buzz, here's a small gallery of award stickers...none of which are Oscar related...










OSCAR RESULTS

Posted by Charles Reece, February 24, 2008 09:55pm | Post a Comment

Welp, I got 67% (that's 16 out of 24) right.  Red is for what I got right, and blue what I got wrong .

Performance by an actor in a leading role
George Clooney in "Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.)
Daniel Day-Lewis in "There Will Be Blood" (Paramount Vantage and Miramax)
Johnny Depp in "Sweeney Todd The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" (DreamWorks and Warner Bros., Distributed by DreamWorks/Paramount)
Tommy Lee Jones in "In the Valley of Elah" (Warner Independent)
Viggo Mortensen in "Eastern Promises" (Focus Features)

Performance by an actor in a supporting role
Casey Affleck in "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" (Warner Bros.)
Javier Bardem in "No Country for Old Men" (Miramax and Paramount Vantage)
Philip Seymour Hoffman in "Charlie Wilson's War" (Universal)
Hal Holbrook in "Into the Wild" (Paramount Vantage and River Road Entertainment)
Tom Wilkinson in "Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.)

Performance by an actress in a leading role
Cate Blanchett in "Elizabeth: The Golden Age" (Universal)
Julie Christie in "Away from Her" (Lionsgate)
Marion Cotillard in "La Vie en Rose" (Picturehouse)
Laura Linney in "The Savages" (Fox Searchlight)
Ellen Page in "Juno" (A Mandate Pictures/Mr. Mudd Production)

Performance by an actress in a supporting role
Cate Blanchett in "I'm Not There" (The Weinstein Company)
Ruby Dee in "American Gangster" (Universal)
Saoirse Ronan in "Atonement" (Focus Features)
Amy Ryan in "Gone Baby Gone" (Miramax)
Tilda Swinton in "Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.)

Oscar Look Book...So I'm an Oscar Whore, So What?

Posted by Miss Ess, February 24, 2008 09:05pm | Post a Comment
As we all know, the Oscars are really about the fashion--  because, as my dear floor manaoscarger Don Ford always says, "It's about the pageantry."  Oh, yes. 

Please, just this once, allow me to be utterly self indulgent and....Let's look at some of my favorites from the red carpet!





Best Accessory:


amy adams oscars

To Amy Adams for her see-through birdy bag.  This bag is aaaaaamazing-- that's an arched winged flying bird on the top!  I saw her admit to Ryan Seacrest on E! that it holds ... nothing!  It's made of gold mesh and essentially is just there to look good.  (On the dress side of things, props to Miss Amy for wearing Proenza Schouler as well!  Lovely color on a redhead.)

Best Accessory Part 2:

johnny depp vanessa paradis oscars

To Vanessa Paradis.  She's got the ultimate arm candy.

Worst Accessory:

diablo cody juno oscars

To Diablo Cody for her exposed ink. I know this may make me unpopular, but as anyone who knows me knows, I firmly believe that tattoos (and chewing gum) have NO place on the red carpet on such a night as the Oscars.   I mean, I know she was a stripper and all, but the Oscars are all about glamour, people.  And leopard print, that's a whooooole other story.  Call me old fashioned.  Whatever. I can take it.

Haunted by the Brutal Splendor of old 45's, #3

Posted by Whitmore, February 24, 2008 06:42pm | Post a Comment
The truth - it’s my raw nerves - very, very caffeinated raw nerves eating away at the lining of my stomach. Goddamn! I’ve been, still am, crawling up walls and across ceilings. A few triple espressos and shazzam! I am the Fly! Caffeine has ripped a hole through my brain, certainly through my gut and, holy java juice batman, my sharpened senses wield machetes; heightened Terror Alert Level – “blood dripping magenta!” CRACK! Jesus H, what is that noise! My tinnitus is screaming like hordes of car alarms pinging in a Brentwood parking lot after an earthquake. I can hear all things in heaven and on earth and in hell, simultaneously. For Christ’s sake, I think my neighbor is playing a Ricky Martin CD! Whatever fell upon me has made my blood run thin. How, then, am I not expected to go mad? I have made up my mind to rifle through the recycling bin for that buried bottle of codeine-fortified cough syrup -- hideously expired or not … something, anything. The telltale pot of coffee brews stronger and stronger! And I can’t resist pouring another cup!
Anyway, for the time being, just relax at your desk with your own Cup o’Joe and take a look at some more 45 company sleeves from around the world.

They Call Me The Mercenary #11

Posted by phil blankenship, February 24, 2008 10:40am | Post a Comment
 



Return Of The Record: Vinyl Sales On The Increase

Posted by Billyjam, February 23, 2008 10:15pm | Post a Comment


CD sales are down but record sales are up. Vinyl, long written off by the industry as obsolete, has been experiencing a renaissance of sorts over the last several years, with vinyl sales on the increase, steadily building in momentum over the past few years. In 2007 there was an estimated 15% increase in sales of new records just from the year before.

And it's not just DJs who are buying records these days. Nor is it just fans of hip-hop/rap and electronic/dance music -- the two genres most associated with vinyl -- but fans of other types of music, including different sub-genres of rock and experimental, among other genres. Additionally a lot of music fans, especially young fans who are tired of MP3s, are discovering the superior warmer analog audio quality of vinyl pressings -- be it on a 7" single or full-length 12" album.

In some cases artists or labels are pressing up vinyl-only releases, often as a way to beat the current rampant free-downloading of MP3 files. But even with a lot of vinyl releases, the record label includes free MP3s such with the new Cornelius vinyl copy of his Gum 12" EP on Everloving/Warner which comes with a printed card in its jacket containing information on the link to MP3 versions of the same songs on the vinyl just purchased.

"A lot of people appreciate the whole aesthetic of vinyl. There is something permanent about the LP format that they really like.  With MP3's, even with CDs, there is a disposability with the format," offered Chris Curtis of Hollywood Amoeba Music, where he is a vinyl point person between the floor and warehouse -- overseeing many smaller genres but getting a good overall grasp of the state of vinyl in 2008 with music fans. "To kids that were born after 1990, the LP was dead," said Chris, "but you see a lot of kids coming in to buy vinyl. I think there is a certain coolness connected with it."

GRAFFITI YOKOHAMA, JAPAN: PART 6

Posted by Billyjam, February 23, 2008 10:13pm | Post a Comment
         


          


           


                                



       

They Call Me The Mercenary #10

Posted by phil blankenship, February 23, 2008 09:31pm | Post a Comment
 



Celebrity Sighting - Diego Luna

Posted by Miss Ess, February 23, 2008 01:57pm | Post a Comment
diego luna milk y tu mama tambien

This week I had the pleasure of spotting Mexican actor Diego Luna in our fair store.  Remember him from Y Tu Mama Tambien?  That was such a gorgeous movie. Before I knew it, I was assisting Corrie in ringing him up!  For the curious, he bought mostly DVDs, including Eastern Promises (buffing up for harvey milk gay san francisco moscone the life and times of harvey milkthis weekend's Oscars, no doubt!) and was super sweet.  I pretended I didn't know who he was, and I am positive he realized I was pretending not to know who he was.  Agh.  He winked at Corrie when she handed him his bag and the end of the counter.  What a heartbreaker!

Luna is in town shooting Gus Van Sant's upcoming Harvey Milk biopic, Milk.  In addition to Luna, it's also reporthe life and times of harvey milk dvdted to star the likes of Sean Penn and James Franco.  I've seen them filming up and down Castro St. recently.  The street has been lined with old cars and camera equipment.  That movie will be Oscar bait next year, no doubt.

If you haven't already checked it out, now is the time to see the amazing documentary The Times of Harvey Milk.  It is a phenomenal, moving film.  I'm extremely interested to see just how Van Sant thinks he can top it with a fictionalized scripted film.  I will have to revisit The Times of Harvey Milk myself before Milk is out.

Haunted by the Brutal Splendor of old 45's, #2

Posted by Whitmore, February 23, 2008 10:46am | Post a Comment
With daylight, reason returned and gone was the previous night's debauchery, but both the sentiment of horror and remorse remained in regards to the conversations I elicited with … the Voice. Guilt, was it guilt I suffered? The voice’s disparaging remarks about 45’s and my love for such trivial objects. But I found myself sharing the same odious views! How can that be? I needed to convince myself, somehow, that my soul survived untouched by the experience. Again I felt obliged to plunge headlong into excess; quickly I made myself a triple espresso, straight-no chaser of cream, as I had to focus on the tasks of the day: a new blog.

Anyway, back to reality, here are some more 45 company sleeves from around the world.

Kidnapped

Posted by phil blankenship, February 22, 2008 11:51am | Post a Comment
 





Virgin Vision 70021

Haunted by the Brutal Splendor of old 45's

Posted by Whitmore, February 22, 2008 08:28am | Post a Comment
Convinced myself, I seek not to convince. But … a lone voice hesitated, yawned and, resonating a bit like Johnny Cash’s sonorous tone, drew closer to my ear. It geared down again to yet a lower, darker pitch, whispering something vague and unclear, a perfect combination of ambiguity and prophecy. The words eased the whiskey, my drunkenness. Entranced, my brain re-gathered just enough focus. Then, like a balmy zephyr blowing from a high desert squall, the voice crawled across my face, into my ear, into my head, breathing heat and sighing, little by little reminding me of the brutal splendor there is in … 7 inch 45’s. “You listen to a record for just a couple of minutes” the voice murmured, “and then you have to get back up, flip the son of a bitch over. Two and a half, three minutes vanish so quickly these days … It’s just wicked and brutal, don’t you think, don’t you know?” And then the voice added, wistfully, one more thing, almost as an afterthought, “Nevermore.”
That’s all. The voice also said something about pandemics, government corruption and fear, but I pretty much ignored the serious stuff. Since it’s been a while, I think it’s time to write about the little record with the big hole! So let’s start with some record company sleeves from around the world.



































Crime & The City Solution and Simon Bonney -- Criminally Underrated

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 21, 2008 10:51pm | Post a Comment
CRIME & THE CITY SOLUTION

Crime & the City Solution 31 December, 1977
Crime & the City Solution 31 December, 1977 (image source: Phil Turnbull)

It seems that almost from their inception the band Crime & The City Solution they were cursed to never be spoken of without a mention of famous Australian Nick Cave. It's really no one's fault. They were part of a incestuous web of musicians with frequent Nick Cave collaborator Mick Harvey at the center, a man who though a talented multi-instrumentalist, can only play one one band at a time, resulting in other pursuits being put on hold whilst he focused on his main gig.

Crime & The City Solution formed in Sydney, Australia in 1977. Their original line-up included vocalist Simon Bonney (the band's only permanent member, fresh from a brief stint with The Particles), Don McLennan on drums, Harry Zanteni on guitar, Phil Kitchener on bass and Dave MacKinnon on soprano and tenor saxophones. Simon Bonney, whilst born in Sydney, had spent some time on his family's remote farm in Tasmania where his they grew wheat, barley and opium poppies.

if i stop getting starbucks for the rest of the year....

Posted by Amoebite, February 21, 2008 05:58pm | Post a Comment

Gerhard Richter
Kerze (Candle)
1983
.... possibly I could afford to get this.

The Painting that adorned Sonic Youth's sixth double LP "Daydream Nation" is going to the auction block.

With a catalog price of £2.5m, I doubt many Sonic Youth completionists will be bidding.

I will happy to take it off your hands though if you realize it doesn't match your curtains. It will look great above my Ikea couch that I found in the street.
 
Read More About It Here!

O-TYPE CONTINUE TO INNOVATE

Posted by Billyjam, February 21, 2008 05:00pm | Post a Comment

Longtime self-described "experimental/psychedelic/freestyle" Bay Area group O-Type, featuring Bruce Anderson, Dale Sophiea, Jim Hrabetin, and Marc Weinstein (of Amoeba Music) are playing a very special and recommended mixed-media show titled "The Curse of the Fine Arts" this Sunday evening, Feb 24th @ 8PM at the Berkeley Arts Festival.  Additionally, tonight, Thursday Feb 21st, their music will be featured as the soundtrack to the short film High Heels (directed by founding member Sophiea) which will be screened at the Roxie Theater in San Francisco as a selection of the SF Indie Fest as part of the "Bay Area Shorts" segment at 7:15PM.

O-Type was born out of legendary band MX-80, which Sophiea and Anderson formed back in the mid seventies in Indiana before they moved west to Cali. MX-80, who defied categorization except maybe as "outsider" music, released several revered records on such labels as Island and Ralph (the Residents' label). Being hard to define doesn't sit well with labels, so Anderson and Sophiea started their own label, Quadruped, and busily cranked-out several diverse types of music under a slew of names, including O-Type, The Gizzards, Brutality, Half-Life, and of course MX-80. Marc Weinstein and Jim Hrabetin joined the fold in 1984 and have been part of the experimental musical family ever since.

Commando - This Saturday At Midnight !

Posted by phil blankenship, February 21, 2008 03:42pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music and Phil Blankenship are proud to present some of our film favorites at Los Angeles’ last full-time revival movie theater. See movies the way they're meant to be seen - on the big screen and with an audience!


Saturday Feb. 23

Somewhere...
somehow...
someone's going to pay!

Commando

New Beverly Cinema
7165 W Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 938-4038
Midnight, $7


Upcoming:
Mar 1 Harley Davidson And The Marlboro Man
Mar 8 Streets Of Fire
Mar 15 Can't Hardly Wait (10th Anniversary!)
Mar 29 The Funhouse

They Call Me The Mercenary #9

Posted by phil blankenship, February 21, 2008 12:48pm | Post a Comment
 



(In which pop eats itself.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 20, 2008 09:11pm | Post a Comment


This is a video to a single from an album by Rough Trade called “For Those Who Think Young.” I’m pretty keen on the lead singer, Carole Pope; I dig her husky vocals and her facial expression when she sings. Her face often twists, ugly, and looks close to screaming in horror, then suddenly breaks into a plaintive sadness – a combination which reminds me of Joan Crawford before she was doped out on [insert any liquor here].

Interesting to note is that Carole Pope was lovers with another singer, Dusty Springfield.


That’s Dusty Springfield singing. I hope you already knew that, because it would mean you’re acquainted with her. If not, my sympathy lasts only long enough for you to rush out to the nearest Amoeba Music and find her out. Accompanying her on piano is Burt Bacharach. He’s the dude who wrote the music for the song.

Burt Bacharach, along with lyricist Hal David, also wrote “Walk On By” for Dionne Warwick. It was one of many collaborations between the songwriters and singer. She was their muse. Between them they released a dizzying amount of Billboard Hot 100 hits.

A lot of people from my generation (unfortunately) associate Warwick with two moments in her career: the schmaltzy #1 hit “That’s What Friends Are For” (which – laugh at it though you may – did raise a few million dollars for AmFAR) and her stint as co-host of infomercials for the Psychic Friends Network, along with celebrity psychic, Linda Georgian.

In the mid-1980’s, my sister Jacquie was Linda Georgian’s personal assistant and housemate. My Mom and I visited her at Linda’s house in Fort Lauderdale. When Linda wasn’t reading tarot cards for Liza Minnelli or casting out evil spirits from the summer home of David Hasselhoff, she liked to make her own jewelry, and she taught me how to string necklaces. She also read my aura and saw a lot of “lavender.”

Manhunter

Posted by phil blankenship, February 20, 2008 05:51pm | Post a Comment
 



TransWorld Entertainment 38009

They Call Me The Mercenary #8

Posted by phil blankenship, February 20, 2008 02:41pm | Post a Comment
 



GRAFFITI YOKOHAMA, JAPAN: PART 5

Posted by Billyjam, February 20, 2008 01:54pm | Post a Comment
        

         

         

         

                                       

        


As with all previous Graffiti in Yokohama pics - all of these were shot by Acco - over last few months

Synth Heroes

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 19, 2008 11:40pm | Post a Comment
Guitar heroes are a dime a dozen...what about synth heroes?  There are many examples. Keith Emerson threw knives and carried his own antibiotic kit to deal with some of the gifts bestowed upon him by groupies. Ray Manzarek rocked the perverted professor persona pre-synthesizers and then sort of recast himself as a late night sleaze demon in the 70's.  Robert Mason had a very interesting take on his Stardrive records, head cocked back with a can of beer in hand.  Here's a gallery of men who dared to forge their version of "Synth Hero," see if you can match the picture to the name & band lists...

12

34

56

78

The Lemonade Diet -- Master Cleanse Miracle or Dangerous Snakeoil?

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 19, 2008 08:13pm | Post a Comment
The Master Cleanse diet was developed in 1941 by Stanley Burroughs. It calls for the practitioner to starve his or herself except for a concoction of lemon juice, cayenne pepper and maple syrup. At night you're to take a laxative tea and saltwater which, through a top-down enema, is said to remove toxins from the body, help one lose weight and even cure chronic diseases. Salt, salt, lemonade, turn the corner and you know the rest... Such famous celebrities as Robin Quivers, Jared Leto and Beyoncé Knowles have all used it to lose weight and it seems to be exploding in popularity.


Who needs the advice of doctors when you've got Howard's sidekick, Jared looking like a magician and Mrs. Jay-Z?

So why is the dangerous diet so popular? Well, I live in California, for one, where all New Age hokum is defended with a "Don't knock it til you try it" acceptance irreconcilable with my Show-Me skepticism. Also, I suppose, because of the very real effects coupled with observational and speculative science. Practitioners get, after not eating, light headed and euphoric, which Burroughs assured dieters was a byproduct of toxins leaving the system. But Burroughs was a dictatorial nudist who insisted his children not wear clothing, not a scientist or doctor. Blindly assuming some charlatan's logic infallible is akin to accepting a lunatic's observation that rain comes from a celestial being shedding tears because we eat cashews. It reminds me of Scientology more than science... only creepier.

THE WORLD'S LARGEST MUSIC COLLECTION COULD BE YOURS

Posted by Billyjam, February 19, 2008 03:02pm | Post a Comment

It reminds me a comedy skit that I heard years ago about a once in a lifetime opportunity to get every recording ever made. But apparently this current offer to attain the "world's greatest music collection" and to own the "largest collection of recorded music in the world" is for real. 

Very real but at a real high price: $3 million dollars precisely for this ebay item, which closes on Thursday, Feb 21st at 6AM PST, and boldly boasts to include "3 million records and 300,000 CDs containing more than 6 million song titles...From Thomas Edison to American Idol, this is the complete history of the music that shaped and defined five generations."

Damn! And you thought Amoeba had a lot of records and CDs!  The seller claims that it is "the undisputed largest collection of recorded music in the world. About half of the recordings are new and never played, and every genre of 20th century music is represented. There are countless rare recordings worth hundreds, or even thousands of dollars each on the collectibles market. Organized and cataloged, the collection is meticulously maintained and housed in a climate-controlled warehouse. The estimated value of this amazing collection is more than $50 million."

The item, which claims to be the "most viewed and watched listing ever on ebay," has gotten an awful lot of attention alright, but not so much from potential big spenders as much as curious music fans like the folks at Mojo magazine who really want to interview the seller, eBay member jpaulhenderson5a4e, about this whole collection. The two photos here are part of the alleged collection which the seller claims  "was purchased by the collection's owner over the past fifty years and represents a lifetime of work and his desire to see the music preserved for future generations. Advancing age and health concerns are forcing the owner to sell." 

Cross Country

Posted by phil blankenship, February 19, 2008 12:15pm | Post a Comment
 




Charter Entertainment 90139

Angels & Incest: When Is Your Sister Not Your Sister? When She's Only Acting!

Posted by Charles Reece, February 19, 2008 01:06am | Post a Comment
The "love that dare not speak its name," which Oscar Wilde shared with Lord Alfred Douglas was cited at the former's trial for gross indecency.  Accepting homosexuality as morally permissible has often been cited by conservative moralists as providing a slippery slope to Gomorrah, setting precedent for even lewder acts, such as bestiality or incest.  However, regarding incest (but I'm betting bestiality, as well), its lure seems to have been with us as long as homosexuality.  If not always accepted in practice, incest is a longstanding part of mankind's fantasies as a seedy imaginative otherworld, suggesting what's always possible if man-made laws didn't get in the way.

clash of the titans laurence olivier zeus

Greek deities and demigods, for example, were a saucy bunch: Zeus, the longest running head of the Gods, was the son of brother and sister Titans, Chronos and Rhea.  Following in the family tradition, Zeus's second wife was also his aunt Themis, goddess of law.  After things went south with that, he hewed even closer to his father's matrimonial views and married his sister Hera, who gave birth to Hephaestus, buttfugly God of blacksmithing.  Hera, being the Goddess of chain-smoking trailer trash with a thing for two-timin' goodfernothins, had little need or love for such a ghastly son and kicked the poor fuck out of Olympus.  Despite this treatment, according to some versions of the myth, Hepahestus sided with his Ma's henpecking his Pa, resulting in Zeus beating the tar out of him, giving him an eternally permanent limp.  Those kind of mommy issues point towards meth addiction and a life of petty larceny, if these had been mere mortals.  But they weren't, so Hephaestus managed to marry the most beautiful of all the Olympians, Aphrodite, Goddess of love, who was also his half-sister by way of Zeus's tryst with Dione.

out today 2/19...atlas sound...baby dee...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 18, 2008 11:15pm | Post a Comment

Every once in a while a magical sort of album comes out. I guess what is magical to some people is not always magical to everyone else. I am also pretty sure not many people would even use the word magical when describing their new favorite album, but "magical" is exactly the word I feel that best describes the new album by Atlas Sound. It is a bit dreamy and ethereal and ambient. Just all around fantastic. The man behind this new Atlas Sound is Bradford Cox. He is the man behind the band Deerhunter as well. This new album Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel is out on the label Kranky, the same fantastic label that put out the Deerhunter album. I am not always in love with everything Kranky puts out, but every once in a while they put out a fantastic little album like this. I might just really like the label because I like seeing my name on albums and in liner notes. Kranky has put out albums by Labradford, which I have to admit that I bought one day at a record store simply because the band was named after me. The dude in Deerhunter also shares my first name, which is also what I think first intrigued me to pick up the Deerhunter album and give it a listen. These might be selfish reasons but at least they brought me to discover some great albums.

The Atlas Sound album opens up with a tape recording of a young boy telling a ghost story. It is a nice little introduction to this secretly beautiful album. I didn't really fall in love with it the first time that I listened to it. It was not until track 13 that I actually started paying attention. I then went back and started to really appreciate the entire album. I really like albums that take you on a journey. The album may not be full of big amazing powerful songs one after the other-- some of the songs take a while to build up into anything at all, and other songs just sort of fade into each other without any real transition. The album reminds me of Slowdive or Seefeel at times. It could easily fit in with some of the albums that came out of England in the early 90s. Some of the songs could easily lull you to sleep and put you in a nice little dreamland. But if the album is not working for you, just skip ahead to track 13. The song is called "Ativan." He could have easily opened up the album with this song, but it is kind of nice to have a little fantastic surprise saved up for you at the end of the album. Then you can really go back and appreciate the whole album more. The final song is also a great little ambient song to finish of the album for you. This album could easily slip through the year without very many people finding about it, but I think enough people will talk about it and share it with their friends. It could also easily charm its way into everyones music collection.

Quarterlife

Posted by Miss Ess, February 18, 2008 04:54pm | Post a Comment
I'm so relieved that the writer's strike is finally over!  We will still have to cope with mainly repeats for a few months on TV though, while they start up writing/filming again. 

quarterlife We've all had our own ways of coping with the interruption of the season during the strike, and one of mine was to go online and watch Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick's (My So-Called Life, Thirtysomething) new show Quarterlife.   Has anyone out there besides me been watching this show?  Has anyone else out there even heard about it?

It's an online only show that's about a group of post collegiate 20-somethings.  It's a strange, kind of irking format-- 8 min or so segments are posted twice weekly for our streaming enjoyment.  Give me an hour, hell, even a half hour-- I need more of a story arc!  But you won't have to wade through it the way I did.  Apparently (thank you, writer's strike) the show is coming to NBC in about a week and I am guessing they will sew the bits together into a full hour. 

The 20-something group of friends live in a crappy apartment complex somewhere in Los Angeles. quarterlife bitsy There's a main character, Dylan, a too-pretty-to-be-an-outcast outcast.  She lives with her friends Debra and Lisa, both skinny-as-all-get- out but burdened with complex problems of course.  Note to casting agent: you can't make a model-esque actress more relatable simply by slapping some eyeglasses on her!  Oh well.  Anyway, Dylan has a video blog where she talks about her own inner thoughts and her friends' lives.  I have no idea why someone would do this and think her friends would not discover and watch the blogs....but I guess on this show it's used as a catalyst for drama. Also causing drama, in a nearby unit there are three 20-something guys, ladies man Danny and film nerds Andy and Jed.  Also, Debra's hippie style friend Eric moves in with the gals after a few episodes and starts filling the house with his aggro leftism.

Putting the "Balkan" in "Balkanization"

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 18, 2008 02:26pm | Post a Comment

Kosovar musicians (left) and independence-celebrations... with American Flags- nice touch (right)

If you're like me, you love a new country. Yesterday, Kosovo took the plunge. Of course, Serbia is predictably bitching and moaning, but haven't they gotten used to rejection, what with being successively dumped by Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia? And didn't Serbia ignite the Great War when they were trying to assert their independence? And didn't Serbia only include Kosovo because it invaded it in 1912? Let it go, Serbia. You are too possessive. You smother your mates and now you're alone and forsaken.

Of course, from looking at new countries, choosing independence seems like a pretty tough row to hoe. Look at some of the Earth's newest countries.


 
East Timor, approaching ten years of independence, is still plagued with violence, corruption, lack of economic development or infrastructure.

    

Eritrea, independent for 15 years, enjoys an uneasy peace with its neighbors Ethiopia and Yemen.



GRAFFITI YOKOHAMA, JAPAN: PART 4

Posted by Billyjam, February 18, 2008 02:03pm | Post a Comment
         
    
Thanks to Acco in Japan, Amoeblog presents the latest photo gallery of graffiti from Yokohama, Japan.  Back in September, Acco, a fan of both graffiti art and of Amoeba Music and the Amoeba website, took a series of photos of graffiti around Yokohama that were displayed here in three Amoeblogs. Since then she went out and took more photos for this (Part 4) and the next two Amoeblogs in this series: Graffiti Yokohama, Japan Parts 5 & 6 ,which will run over the next week.

      

       

     

    

    

                                                                                    

Robot In The Family

Posted by phil blankenship, February 18, 2008 10:30am | Post a Comment
 





A-Pix Entertainment APX 21007

Timeless Classics

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 18, 2008 02:48am | Post a Comment










Uncle Bob

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 18, 2008 01:54am | Post a Comment
This was inspired by the yacht rock movies.

In the 70’s, I was in my single digit years. (Christopher Cross- Ride Like The Wind) Even though I was raised in a Mexican immigrant family, I still lived in 70’s-mellow Los Angeles. We were inundated with those laid back, playing on the beach, (George Benson-Breezin’) Mimosa drinking, macramé wearing, big sunglasses wearing, sitting on wicker furniture on our balcony with our Southern California vibe, thanks to the media. The media made some of us forget we were growing up in the ghettos of Los Angeles in dilapidated housing with no jobs or low-paying jobs. It made us forget the Vatos down the street were smoking Angel Dust.  It made us forget we never had time or the funds to get to the beach, even if it was only a few miles away.

Television was full of it. (Boz Skaggs - Lowdown) Three’s Company, The Love Boat, even the local T.V. news fluff piece shows like Eye On L.A. had us believing everyone lived on the beach and had a yacht. Even my heroes as a kid, the Los Angeles Dodgers, seemed to succumb to the laid-back images with their gold chains outside their uniforms, porn 'staches and long hair.

Radio was worse at perpetuating the myth. Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, Steely Dan, (Green Earring) Boz Skaggs. Even former funksters like The Commodores and Earth Wind & Fire went soft. Everyone was in such a mellow haze that my impressionable siblings and I thought that’s how normal adults lived their life. If that was the case, what was wrong with our parents? They worked all the time, looked horribly unhip in their work clothes and they never went out on the town. (Gerry Rafferty - Baker Street) My father was always stained with paint from his job; my mother listened to big band music as she sewed us our clothes because we couldn’t afford to buy clothes from the store.

Todos Tus Muertos

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 17, 2008 11:18pm | Post a Comment


In the forwarding of Ernesto Lechner’s 2006 book, Rock en Español: The Latin Alternative Rock Explosion, Lechner explains how the rock groups coming out of Latin America in the 1990’s helped change his outlook on Latin Rock. Growing in Argentina, Ernesto had a bias against Latin American musicians hell-bent on imitating their Anglo counterparts. However, it was groups like Los Fabulosos Cadillacs, Café Tacvba and Gustavo Cerati that showed him that Latin Rock had more to offer the world of music than sheer imitation: these artists had something to say.

In the mid-nineties I had a similar revelation. My friend Juan Carlos educated me on the music of the groups that I no knowledge of growing up in the states. It was instant love for me when he played me Maldita Vecindad, Fabulosos Cadillacs and Mano Negra, all of whom sang about issues that related directly to my life: songs about not belonging, of immigration and the effects of colonialism that affects indigenous people to this day. One of my favorite groups of this era was Todos Tus Muertos.

For one, I grew up as a huge fan of The Bad Brains and there were many similarities between the two bands. Todos were a rock band at heart, with excellent musicianship that  meant they could play both heavy and fast. Then much like The Bad Brains, they could switch gears and play Reggae. Todos Tus Muertos (translation: All Your Dead) were energetic singers. Pablo and Fidel were both black. But that is where their likeness ends. Todos were Dancehall based compared to The Bad Brains’ Roots Reggae style. Also Todos would add elements of other Latin music like Cuban Son. Lyrically, Todos were leftist, influenced by both Latin American & Jamaican icons such as Che Guevara, Augusto Sandino, Emiliano Zapata, Marcus Garvey and Subcomandante Marcos.

OSCARS VS. THE GROUCH

Posted by Charles Reece, February 17, 2008 01:54pm | Post a Comment
             


I'm sick as all hell, grumpy, and my mind ain't much good for nothing but thinking about the Oscars.  So here are my choices (at least, who I think will win in terms of my model Academy voter).  And, in case you're wondering, here's how the nominees are chosen and then voted for.  My selections are in red, with my reasoning in italics.

Performance by an actor in a leading role:

George Clooney in "Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.)
Daniel Day-Lewis in "There Will Be Blood" (Paramount Vantage and Miramax)
Johnny Depp in "Sweeney Todd The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" (DreamWorks and Warner Bros., Distributed by DreamWorks/Paramount)
Tommy Lee Jones in "In the Valley of Elah" (Warner Independent)
Viggo Mortensen in "Eastern Promises" (Focus Features)

There's no competition here: the juiciest part being played by the juiciest actor and in a film that's anti-capitalist and anti-fundamentalist.

Performance by an actor in a supporting role:

Casey Affleck in "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" (Warner Bros.)
Javier Bardem in "No Country for Old Men" (Miramax and Paramount Vantage)
Philip Seymour Hoffman in "Charlie Wilson's War" (Universal)
Hal Holbrook in "Into the Wild" (Paramount Vantage and River Road Entertainment)
Tom Wilkinson in "Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.)

PURE HATE BERLIN SHOWCASES GRAFFITI IN GERMAN CITY

Posted by Billyjam, February 17, 2008 10:56am | Post a Comment

Pure Hate
Berlin 2004 is a great film of graffiti from Berlin, Germany. The DVD, which came out four years ago and is hard to find (not sure if Amoeba has it in stock but you should ask to be sure) has some really well-produced footage (lots of killer post production work) with a perfect soundtrack to match the imagery as you can see from the video excerpt above. 

I find the clip above to be so intense because of the ninja-like team work of the dozen or more all-masked graf artists descending in the dead of the night on the abandoned Berlin train platform to carry out their obviously pre-planned, choreographed art crime.  And the new Pure Hate Berlin 2008 looks like it will be even tighter in terms of production, visuals, and content. See another movie excerpt clip below.

Night Eyes

Posted by phil blankenship, February 16, 2008 11:00pm | Post a Comment
 



Prism Entertainment 51007

Label Design Gallery-Animals

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 16, 2008 01:00pm | Post a Comment




WESTERN SOCIETY'S WAR ON KIDS AT ALL TIME HIGH

Posted by Billyjam, February 16, 2008 12:32pm | Post a Comment

A couple of days ago someone sent me a link to the video clip above, shot in Baltimore, of a cop clearly abusing his power and harassing a 14 year old boy who had been skating in a park with his buddies.  Apparently the kid, when first beckoned by the cop, didn't respond fast or respectfully enough, and that just ruffled the cop's feathers (especially at been called "dude").  He proceeded to curse out the kid, critique his upbringing, slap him, take his skateboard, and make what seem like threats on his life, saying how he could get "killed" if he continued behaving in this (as the cop says it) "disrespectful fashion."

Anyway, this particular YouTube clip in turn linked me to a never-ending thread of other "skaters versus cops" or "skater vs. rent-a-cop" themed videos, all of which had footage that pretty much repeated the same storyline of kids (usually teenaged boys) skating in places like vacant parking lots or streets/steps where "no skating" is allowed.  And in nearly every case the tension level rose between the two sides: kids who just want to have fun and skate wherever they can (which means anywhere since few US towns & cities have adequate space assigned for skate parks) and cops or security guards telling them "you cannot skate here."

Of course in the battle between 14 year old skaters and cops with all that power (and often a low tolerance for what they perceive as back-chatter), guess who wins? Not the kids. Never the kids. In fact it seems there is a ongoing trend in Western society to first off provide few or no skate parks and other recreation areas & centers for teens to use, and then secondly when these same kids are out on the street or at the mall or other public place just trying to occupy themselves, authorities accuse them of loitering and then harass them into moving on. And if they don't move, they are arrested in order to get them in the system.

Sgt. Clarin... Bala Para sa Ulo Mo

Posted by phil blankenship, February 15, 2008 11:42pm | Post a Comment
 




 
Regal International Inc.

February 14, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, February 15, 2008 12:37am | Post a Comment




men's bathroom at Grauman's Chinese Theater:                                                                      

49 square inches and an invitation to party like it's 1958

Posted by Whitmore, February 14, 2008 08:45pm | Post a Comment

This is one of the dullest 45 picture sleeves I’ve ever seen! It’s actually a recorded invitation to come on down and experience the “modern expanded facilities” of Columbia Records Distribution. How exciting … it’s a party, the party to end all parties on February 3rd 1958 … with booze, hats and noise makers to boot … I presume today this building has either become overpriced artist’s lofts, or more likely, a parking lot. Anyway, here are some of the other big news events that took place in the ‘I like Ike’, cold war, atomic age, sci-fi world of February 1958:

Feb 1st - The #1 album in the UK for the next seven weeks is the Original Soundtrack to the Pal Joey, starring Frank Sinatra.
Feb 1st - Egypt & Syria unite to form the United Arab Republic.
Feb 1st - The #1 single in the U.K is Elvis Presley’s "Jailhouse Rock."
Feb 2nd - The word Aerospace is coined, from Aircraft (aero) and Spacecraft (space).
Feb 3rd -  “Get a Job,” the Silhouettes' only hit, is #1 on the Billboard R&B charts for the next six weeks. “At the Hop" by Danny and the Juniors is #1 on the Billboard Pop charts.
Feb 5th - A hydrogen bomb known as the Tybee Bomb is lost by the US Air Force off the coast of Savannah, Georgia, never to be recovered. Actually, there are at least ten other American nuclear warheads thought to have been lost and un-recovered over the years, but more about that another day.
Feb 5th - Gamel Abdel Nasser is nominated as 1st president of the United Arab Republic.
Feb 6th - Munich air disaster kills 21, including 7 players for the Manchester United soccer team.
Feb10th - The #1 album in the U.S. is “Come Fly with Me” by Frank Sinatra.
Feb 11th - Marshal Chen Yi succeeds Zhou Enlai as Chinese Minister of Foreign affairs.
Feb 11th - Ruth Carol Taylor is first African American woman hired as a flight attendant.
Feb 13th - Georges Rouault, French painter dies at the age of 87.
Feb 14th - The Iranian government bans rock & roll, saying that the music is against the concepts of Islam, and is also a health hazard. Iranian doctors warn of the risk of injury to the hips from the "extreme gyrations" of rock & roll dancing.
Feb 14th - The #1 single in the U.K is Michael Holliday’s "The Story of My Life".
Feb 14th - The Hashemite Kingdoms of Iraq and Jordan unite in the Arab Federation of Iraq and Jordan with the Iraqi King Faisal II as head of state.
Feb 16th - Tracy Lauren Marrow, better known as Ice-T is born in Newark, New Jersey.
Feb 17th - Pope Pius XII declares Saint Clare the patron saint of television. Of course all you good Catholics already knew that!
Feb 20th - Test rocket explodes in Cape Canaveral.
Feb 21st - The Peace symbol design is completed by Gerald Holtom, commissioned by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.
Feb 23rd - Cuban rebels kidnap 5-time world driving champ Juan Fangio; he's released 28 hrs later.
Feb 23rd - David Sylvian, leader of the band Japan is born as David Alan Batt.
Feb 23rd - Arturo Frondizi wins the presidential elections in Argentina.
Feb 24th - Chuck Berry’s biggest hit, “Sweet Little Sixteen,” is released.
Feb 24th - The Music Man debuts on the Billboard charts. It will hold the #1 spot for twelve weeks and remain on the Billboard charts for 245 weeks.
Feb 25th - Bertrand Russell launches the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.
Feb 28th - One of the worst school bus accidents in the US history kills 27 at Prestonsburg, Kentucky.
Feb 28th - For the next eight weeks Perry Como’s "Magic Moments" will be #1, but there is light at the end of the tunnel, in February 1958 George Harrison, age 15, joins the Quarry Men.

THIS IS NOT A LOVE SONG AMOEBLOG

Posted by Billyjam, February 14, 2008 02:40pm | Post a Comment

Happy Valentine's Day!

And remember every day should be an occasion to buy flowers or chocolates or music (at Amoeba of course) or to make dinner reservations, or whatever-however you demonstrate your love for that special person in your life.  

Of course if you have no significant other in your life at this time, today of all days can be a constant reminder (and not necessarily a bad one) that you are indeed alone with no one to call your own.

And if that last bit sounds like the lyrics to some song you've heard, it probably is. In fact it's probably the lyrics to countless songs as there are as many songs out there of love gone sour or unrequited as there are happy songs about being in love.

Personally I often find the sad, anti-love songs more profound since I am of the belief that some of the best art is created under times of heartbreak, upset and anger. Or when, as in the case of Joe Jackson's "Happy Loving Couples," there is no love past or present.  Of course there are some artists whose anti-love songs are thinly masked as love songs; think R.E.M.'s The One I Love. Then there are some artists  who seem to base much of their lyrical content on themes of alienation, unrequited love, and love lost-- think Patsy Cline and Everything But The Girl.

Of course Elvis Costello has quite a chunk of anti-love ditties while some genres (think country) appear to have more than their fair share of sad songs about love and relationships.  Then there's a whole strain of anti-love songs that are laced with irony and/or humor which are most effective. Morrissey and The Smiths, Jilted John, and Loudon Wainwright III would be included in this group.

2 Days in Paris - Suitably Quirky

Posted by Miss Ess, February 14, 2008 02:18pm | Post a Comment
two days in paris julie delpy adam goldbergJulie Delpy has written, directed, and starred in a suitably quirky, very French film-- 2 Days In Paris.

I had loved two films Delpy previously starred in-- both Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, dirdirector julie delpy two days in parisected by Richard Linklater-- so I had wanted to check out this film that Delpy herself created ever since I heard about it last year.   Now 2 Days In Paris is finally out on DVD. It's style is somewhat similar to those earlier films:  loose, casual, conversational.

2 Days in Paris is about a French woman, Marion, who lives in New York with her American boyfriend, Jack (Adam Goldberg).  They have just been on a trip to Venice which was less romantic than perhaps they had hoped.  They have to stop over in Paris on their way back to New York to see Delpy's family.  It's a simple plot, which leaves ample space for character development, something I happen to enjoy in films.
two days in paris julie delpy adam goldberg
The film contains a pretty realistic vision of a relationship -- ittwo days in paris julie delpy adam goldberg shows a neurotic, cloudy person (Jack) in love with a floaty, free person (Marion).  It's a total case of opposites attracting. The couple's clashes inevitably made me cringe and laugh as I saw flashes of my own relationship onscreen.

Happy Valentine's Day

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 14, 2008 12:51pm | Post a Comment

      

It's Valentines Day. Pshaw! A Hallmark Holiday, you say. Singles Awareness Day, another jokes. I guess every holiday has its Scrooge. I have my Ngoc-Thu. My friend Nick Pinto would gripe about Valentine's, Christmas or (especially) 4/20. He doesn't need holidays to legislate his behavior. And yet his love of Halloween never once carried into the rest of the year. Why not don a Boba Fett costume and go door-to-door stating "Trick or Treat!" in March, you rebels? Despite what cynics claim about the supposed commercial origins of Valentine's Day, the oldest known association of St. Valentine's Feast Day with romantic love occurs in Geoffrey Chaucer's Parlement of Foules which was published back in 1382. In it he wrote,



For this was on seynt Volantynys day
Whan euery bryd comyth there to chesehis make.

It was written to commemorate the engagement of the 13-year-old Richard II to 14-year-old (cougar) Anne of Bohemia. The "volantynys" or "valentine" is variously assumed to be either Valentine (Valentinus) of Rome or Valentine of Terni, who may've been the same person or, more likely, never existed. Valentines, from at least that point on, have held special significance for lovers. By the 1850s, Esther Howland was mass-producing and selling Valentines after taking her inspiration from an English Valentine. Hallmark, the Missouri-based mass producer of greeting cards, began producing Valentines 532 years after Chaucer's remark, making accusations that they're behind the holiday somewhat less than likely.

Quad pt. 2

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 13, 2008 09:35pm | Post a Comment








February 13, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, February 13, 2008 05:30pm | Post a Comment

 




i was the only person in the theater.










*spoiler*            the nottie is actually the hottie.


good grief.

NEW VINCE VAUGHN MOVIE POSTER IS SO MONEY

Posted by Billyjam, February 13, 2008 02:41pm | Post a Comment


In this second part in today's Reworking Previous Proven Marketing Images, I draw your attention to the promotional poster for the new movie by the tallest member of Hollywood's so-called frat pack, actor Vince Vaughn, the just-released in theaters Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show.

To my eye this poster, in terms of  the angle of how its main star is photographed from and how he is  posing for this promo shot, is pretty reminiscent of the poster for his breakout movie, 1996's Swingers (written by co-star Jon Favreau and directed by Doug Liman). Yes? No? I think so and say that they did it to subliminally trigger our memory of its star.

Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show, which is a look at a group of comedians on tour (onstage and backstage) is currently playing in theaters while Swingers is on DVD and for sale at Amoeba Music (just ask if you can't find it). Check a clip of the classic 1996 film below:

ROLLING STONE MAKES THE BRITNEY, KURT COBAIN CONNECTION

Posted by Billyjam, February 13, 2008 07:25am | Post a Comment

  




















Tell me I am not imagining things or reading too deep into a magazine cover when I see the new Rolling Stone cover image of Britney Spears (Inside An American Tragedy) as a not-so-subliminal revisit to one of the magazine's most famous covers from fourteen years ago: the June 2nd 1994 Rolling Stone cover of Kurt Cobain that appeared in the wake of his tragic death. I think its a pretty obvious (and well done in my opinion) reworking of that earlier cover.

But if so, what does it all mean? Nothing, just a way to sell more magazines? (By the way, the Britney story is quite a good read.) Or is it a way of comparing the self-destructive lifestyles of two American pop idols from two different musical backgrounds & eras, and basically predicting that the latest "American tragedy" will end up like the Nirvana frontman, six feet under?

Thoughts? Theories? Anyone? If so, COMMENTS box is below. Thanks!

Innocents From Hell

Posted by phil blankenship, February 12, 2008 05:56pm | Post a Comment
 



Premiere Entertainment International.

BLOG BLOG BLOG, BLAH BLAH BLAH, TV TV TV, KILL KILL KILL

Posted by Billyjam, February 12, 2008 02:54pm | Post a Comment

While actual numbers and statistics vary greatly depending on where you get your information, according to one World Live Web data source  Technorati there are currently in excess of 112 million blogs with the estimated number of blogs worldwide doubling every six months. That's a lot of blogs out there to read! 

But when will this current cultural obsession with web-logging or blogging end or slow down? Answer: never. It's only going to get more ubiquitous as time evolves with more and more voices opining on every fickle thought that pops into their collective craniums, and entering the infinite blogosphere by the minute, nay second.

The only thing that is going to change (that has already begun to change, especially in the past two years) is that the amount of blog readers (per blog) will shrink in numbers since there are simply only so many readers to go around for all those blogs. I predict it will be soon one reader to every blog. 

But for now it is more than one reader per blog - but not much more - and so I am most grateful to both of you for reading this far on this Amoeblog (hi Mom, hi you).  But I digress,  Hey, did you see that clip of (Amoeba Music fan) Kanye West with Daft Punk on the Grammys? It and Amy Winehouse's satellite fed performance were the highlights of an otherwise dull broadcast that tried too hard to be all things to all demographics.

Speaking of TV watching, with the writer's strike finally coming to an end the average person's life will be enriched by not having to watch so many re-runs and reality shows, as they had to during the strike. But why, I ask, didn't the average adult (who watches approx 5 hours of television everyday) not think outside the box (pun intended) and consider other alternatives to TV watching such as picking up a book to read,  listening to an album, chatting with family members or friends, playing a game of chess, taking a walk, or other activities? Why? Coz they're all hooked on the drug.  Because TV is the biggest drug there is.

As Michael Franti so famously noted in the old Beatnigs & Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy song "Television" (see/hear below) television is "the drug of the nation, breeding ignorance and feeding radiation." For proof check the results of a recent UK survey of 2000 men were asked if they would give up sex for six months in exchange for a 50 inch plasma TV.  Without much consideration 47% said they would.

(In which Job goes to the theatre.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 12, 2008 11:28am | Post a Comment
‘Sup.

A few days ago I got to see Joan Rivers’ new show “A Work in Progress by a Life in Progress,” playing at the Geffen Playhouse until early March.

I’ll be honest, I went with the promise of meeting her after the show and I really wanted to see that face up-close.

I walked into the lobby and noticed that everyone there fell in two categories: grey-haired, elderly people who slowly moved in pairs of two, and young, muscled men in tight shirts who traveled in cliques, glimmering with hair product. Since I fit in neither group, I was a little suspect, and kept a watchful eye.

Things were downright Fellini-esque in the lobby. Amidst the geriatrics and the pretty boys was a mini red carpet on which two heavily made up “TV personalities” enthusiastically gushed to a single video camera. Now, living in Hollywood, I’m accustomed to red carpet springing up in places and thwarting me from a normal walk to get groceries, but these two – though in the middle of everything – seemed mostly oblivious to what was happening in the lobby. In their reality, they were covering the Golden Globes. I almost wanted to approach them and make sure they weren’t lost.

“Are you looking for your awards ceremony, little girl?”

I opted instead to knock back a double scotch and find my seat.

Once inside the theatre, things became clear. Projected on a screen over the stage, there were the two TV Personalities, now (thanks to the magic of blue screen technology) with a backdrop of outdoor, daytime, pre-awards show pageantry.

I watched them. The volume was low and there was buzz from the audience, so I couldn’t ever hear what they were actually saying, yet they managed to keep a constant, effervescent dialogue going between them. Considering the reality: they were just two people in the lobby of the Geffen Playhouse, surrounded by old folks and WeHo’s – this feat was equal parts impressive and unnerving. Ultimately though, I thought it was illuminating, and a smart insight into the “production” that goes into red-carpet production. It’s these announcer’s jobs, after all, to suspend their natural reactions and interpretations of events and instead, develop the spectacle an event must be in order to satisfy the public and the sponsors.

The New Lincoln Penny

Posted by Whitmore, February 12, 2008 09:37am | Post a Comment
In 2009 the cent, (most people refer to the one cent coin as a penny, but the U.S. Mint's official name is ‘cent’), will get a one-year, four-coin commemorative program marking the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth, and the 100th anniversary of the first minting of the Lincoln penny. The redesign was passed as part of the Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005, which also authorizes the production of collectible, numismatic versions of the cent coins containing the same copper content as the original pennies minted in 1909. The standard circulation penny issued will have a copper-plated zinc composition. The redesign of the reverse side, the former Lincoln Memorial 'tails' side, in 2009 will show four difference scenes from Abraham Lincoln's life: his birth and childhood in Kentucky, his formative years in Indiana, his professional life in Illinois, and finally his Presidency. Though not confirmed by the US Mint, there are likely to be at least 12 different versions of the 2009 Lincoln Cent: a circulation version of each of the four designs but with a "P" mint mark, a circulation version of all four designs but with the "D" mint mark, and of course the collector's version, likely proof sets, of all four designs. In 2010, the cent will be completely redesigned again, with a new permanent design being released into circulation, but still with Lincoln’s image. So start hording those old Lincoln Memorial cents, before you know it, they’ll be worth a fortune ... thousands of pennies will be worth tens of dollars!!!
 

out today 2/12...morrissey...michael jackson...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 11, 2008 10:38pm | Post a Comment
My love for Morrissey is as strong as ever. Morrissey fans are a very interesting and devoted bunch. Our devotion to Morrissey is strong and never ending. Ask any Morrissey fan and they will try and explain it. But it really is hard to understand unless you are yourself a devoted Morrissey fan. From the first moment I heard him for the first time I was a huge fan. One of my friends in high school made me a tape of Morrissey's first album. From that moment on I fell in love with the man and his music. Some of us may have lost a little interest in his music over the last decade. But we never lost interest in Morrissey. The love and excitement surrounding just the mention of his name was as strong as ever. However, the insterest in his albums was not the same. But Morrissey put out an amazing album a couple of years ago. "You Are the Quarry" came out in 2004. I think he probably surprised some people with this album. He had finally made an album as exciting as those early albums. I think that a lot of fans still loved him because of their memories of his early solo albums and those of The Smiths. Those albums created a lasting bond between album and fan. They sort of became our best friend and were always there for us. Morrissey was great to listen to by yourself in your room. But also to sing along to with your best friend driving around in your car. It was exciting to also have a new album to be excited about. The first single was "Irish Blood, English Heart." I think I listened to it just as much as "Everyday Is Like Sunday" and "Sing Your Life" from the first two albums. Instead of buying every British magazine with articles about Morrissey, I was searching the fansites and blogs and reading interviews online. Instead of staying up late to try and catch videos on MTV, I was watching his videos on YouTube. I was a bit older and the media had changed a bit. But Morrissey was in my life just as he was in 1988.

Great White Death

Posted by phil blankenship, February 11, 2008 06:04pm | Post a Comment
 





Video Gems

Amoeba Celebrates Mardi Gras!

Posted by Amoebite, February 11, 2008 04:50pm | Post a Comment

Mardi Gras Time Down at the Big Amoeba!
Amoeba Hollywood


Yes it’s the olde tyme holiday of Mardi Gras once again, a pagan carnivale of fun & frolic where you get all the good times out of your system before you gotta fast for Lent. They celebrate it all over the world but mostly in New Orleans, with their famous parades and parties, and every year Amoeba declares our kinship with that great city by celebrating it here in the store! This year Shrove Tuesday fell early in February, but despite the chilly weather we did it up right, with decorations, floats, masks, horns, beads, and the biggest, craziest parade this side of the Mississippi!

The decorations started creeping out a week before… soon everywhere you looked there was purple, gold and green streamers and the anticipation was getting hot! Many of our customers did ask, “is there some kind of holiday?” We tried to explain. But really there’s no way to explain… you just gotta be there.

The night before we had a little pre-party with our Vampire Weekend in-store… we had a mega-capacity crowd for this much-hyped young Brooklyn band, and everyone had a blast. Meanwhile the krewe was out in the loading dock working on the floats for the big parade…

Tuesday morning we broke out the beads and the costumes, and put some Mardi Gras mambo on the stereo. The parade was hours away but the mood was good. It was Super Tuesday in more ways than one… Democrats had much to celebrate and ample reason to vote in the morning’s California primary for either the first woman president or the first African-American president in our history, which was reason to celebrate in itself!

OBAMA vs. McCAIN (YES WE CAN vs JOHN HE IS MUSIC VIDEOS)

Posted by Billyjam, February 11, 2008 11:17am | Post a Comment

In direct humorous response to the Will I Am orchestrated Barack Obama New Hampshire speech inspired, celebrity heavy, music video titled "Yes We Can" that surfaced recently, a funny spoof music video response featuring John McCain titled "john. he. is" got posted earlier today on YouTube by Election08. Check it out above. And if, by chance, you never saw the original, by the Black Eyed Peas member that inspired it -- check it out  below.

¿Me Estás Oyendo, Inútil?

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 11, 2008 03:39am | Post a Comment
Dear Paquita La Del Barrio,

So last night you lost out on a Grammy to Pepe Aguilar. He is a son of privilege. Daddy is Antonio Aguilar and mom is Flor Silvestre. He was born in the states. You born in Vera Cruz. Your first husband cheated on you and all your songs reflect that pain of what good-for-nothing-men do to women. All of Mexico's daughters love you for your songs. You gave them empowerment in a macho society. You help create change. On top of that, Pepe never had a song as cool as Rata De Dos Patas:


Barack Obama & Super Tuesday In California

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 11, 2008 03:08am | Post a Comment
Obama’s biggest downfall in his campaign was that he underestimated Latinos. This cost him big time in California. There was so much he could have done to get our vote and he didn't.

For instance, He never really spoke out on immigration issues, which Hilary openly did. For example, Hillary came out in support of AB 540 (The Dream Act), which would allow illegal immigrants to attend college as long as they follow certain provisions. Hillary also started early, rounding up support from Latino heavyweights such as L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Councilwomen Gloria Molina, Dolores Huerta and the United Farm Workers. In fact, Villaraigosa pledged his support  for Hilary back in 2006. It also didn’t help Obama cause that many Latinos prospered during the Clinton years and are looking for a return to that prosperity.

Then there is the unfortunate reality that African-Americans and Latinos are socialized in this country to hate each other. We are taught this in the public school system, where neither of us are taught our true history. We are made into street soldiers to fight each other in our ever-increasing incarceration in prisons. We are taught to blame each other by politicians for the lack of jobs, lower wages and increasing cost of living. Truth is that some of us are so messed up that we find it easier to fight each other rather than to come together and fight the true source of our problems.

Obama knows this and has addressed this, quite elegantly, in fact. My thoughts that I have written are not much different from what he has said in interviews and in his speeches. Problem is that he didn't tell this to Latinos. People like my mother, who became a citizen back in 1994 yet still gets her information through the Spanish speaking media. Obama did very little with the Spanish speaking media until just before the election. He chose rather to court Hollywood insiders during his time in Los Angeles. The Chicago Tribune reported that the Obama campaign office in East L.A. was opened mere days before the election. Even with a huge rally at East L.A. College with Sen. Kennedy and Maria Elena Durazo as his co-chairperson for his campaign, Latino voters knew very little about Obama and as a result lost the Latino vote to Clinton by a 2-1 margin, the worst defeat of his campaign.

Maybe Move Black Guayaba Out of The Clearance Section?

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 11, 2008 12:34am | Post a Comment
Latin Jazz Album: "Funk Tango," Paquito D'Rivera Quintet.
This album is pedestrian at best.
Alternative: Cabijazz, Latin Giants Of Jazz, Colon 264

Latin Pop Album: "El Tren De Los Momentos," Alejandro Sanz.

El Tren De Aburridos is more like it. Jorge Drexler's 12 Segundos De Oscuridad would have been better, just for the title track alone.

Latin Rock or Alternative Album: "No Hay Espacio," Black:Guayaba.
Read the title above. Cafe Tacvba's Si No or Maneja Beto's Accidentes de Longitud y Latitud would have been better.

Latin Urban Album: "Residente O Visitante," Calle 13.

No argument here. I felt Calle 13 should have been in the general Album of the Year with Herbie, Kanye and Amy, even if it never had a ghost of a chance to win.

Tropical Latin Album: "La Llave De Mi Corazon," Juan Luis Guerra.
Some great songs on this album but not enough to say it's the best. El Gran Combo & Spanish Harlem Orquesta, who were also nominated, were just as good. My pick? Calambuco, Grupo Caribe, La Excelencia or Envidia All-Stars

Mexican/Mexican-American Album: "100 (Percent) Mexicano," Pepe Aguilar.
Paquita La De Barrio gets robbed again! Pepe becomes her new "rata de dos patas"

Tejano Album: "Before the Next Teardrop Falls," Little Joe & La Familia.

Little Joe can't sing anymore. Go for the old school real deal: Conjunto Bernal or the Beto Villa's Orchestra reissues

Norteno Album: "Detalles Y Emociones," Los Tigres Del Norte.

I love Los Tigres Del Norte but this wasn't their best. Los Razos, Raza Obrera or Los Rieleros Del Norte had better offerings last year. Still, no one can come close to writing the kind of songs that Los Tigres write.

Banda Album: "Te Va A Gustar," El Chapo.

I figured Valentin Elizalde would get the sympathy vote, but I guess he didn't. What? getting shot and killed doesn't guarantee a Grammy any longer?

Quad

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 10, 2008 02:45pm | Post a Comment
One of the most misunderstood formatting experiments in popular recorded music was Quad.

Of course most of us are familiar with the basic concept of four speakers set up to give the listener the feeling of depth on a recording.  The systems usually required a special receiver, needle, etc. Quad was a blanket term for a bunch of sound designs. CD-4 discreet, UD-4/UMX. Q4, Quad 8, SQ, QS, EV Stereo-4, Dynaquad, Matrix  H & the Hafler circuit were all fairly different takes on the basic concept.  Most had to do with some sort of stereo synthesis or conversion in the audio chain.  WQSR in Sarasota, Florida was the nations longest running Quad radio station, but other stations did dabble in it.  It appeared in 1970 and was on life support by 1975 with only classical titles being produced until 1980...

This is a two parter, today's gallery will be made up of Quad propaganda, the next one will be various releases and such...































































TONY SILVER, DIRECTOR OF GRAFFITI FILM STYLE WARS, PASSES

Posted by Billyjam, February 10, 2008 10:45am | Post a Comment

In the past week hip-hop lost one of its greatest historians when Tony Silver, the director of landmark 1983 graffiti hip-hop film Style Wars, died after losing to his ongoing battle with brain cancer. New York native Silver, who made the legendary documentary with producer Henry Chalfant, lived in LA and  is survived by his wife and two daughters and grandchild.

Beside Style Wars, Silver had a fat portfolio that included award-winning work in theatrical and TV trailers, main titles and special effects. As a documentary director his credits include such films as Anita Ellis For the Record, 30 Seconds At A Time (about company response to employees who are victims of domestic violence), and Arisman Facing the Audience (about illustrator Marshall Arisman). Additionally Silver lectured at universities around the US and served on panels at the NEA, the NEH, and at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. But it is for Style Wars that Tony Silver will always be best remembered.

The film, which just about any true die-hard graffiti artist can quote verbatim, remains not just a classic among hip-hop/graffiti fans but is also recognized by educators and critics the world over as the most important film to capture the original spirit and vitality of hip-hop's element of graffiti which emerged from from the gritty streets and subways of New York City and later (thanks in great part to this film) blossomed into global consciousness and appreciation. Style Wars, which originally aired on PBS, won the Grand Prize at the Sundance Film Festival upon its original release.

Bernie Boston 1934 – 2008

Posted by Whitmore, February 9, 2008 06:47pm | Post a Comment
A few weeks back on January 22nd, retired Los Angeles Times photojournalist Bernard "Bernie" Boston, and a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, died at his home in rural Virginia. Praised as one of the leading photojournalists of his generation, Boston is probably best remembered for his iconic 1960’s photograph of a young Vietnam War protester putting flowers in the barrels of soldiers' gun.

Boston was 74 years of age, he died from Amyloidosis, a rare blood disease that he's had since 2006. Born in Washington, D.C., Boston graduated from the Rochester Institute of Technology and served in the Army before starting his news photography career in Dayton, Ohio. Before joining the Times, he was the director of photography for The Washington Star newspaper until the paper folded in 1981. Boston retired from the Los Angeles Times in 1993 after years as the Times chief photographer in Washington.

His most famous image was photographed on October 22nd 1967, "Flower Power", which featured a Vietnam War protester in Washington inserting flowers into National Guardsmen's rifle barrels, was the runner-up for the Pulitzer Prize. He was also a Pulitzer Prize finalist for a 1987 photograph of Coretta Scott King unveiling a bust of her late husband, the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda.
Boston is survived by his wife of 37 years, Peggy Boston.

Amoeba SF Celebrates Mardi Gras 2008

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, February 9, 2008 04:13pm | Post a Comment
Every year the staff at Amoeba San Francisco looks forward to the Fat Tuesday Celebration, and this year something was added to the mix:  the parade would involve children from the Boys & Girls Club, from around the corner on Page Street, making it an honest-to-goodness community event. The idea of bringing kids in to augment the parade brought some added anticipation and excitement from the staff, as we'd hoped.

With the store decked out in beads, and the traditional colors of purple, green and gold adorning the aisles, the staff was treated to superb and sublime Cajun food catered by Cajun Pacific, as a steady stream of music -- from New Orleans to Brazilian Carnaval --was provided by DJs in the afternoon. Costumes, headgear and decorations had already started to proliferate, and the festivity started to become infectious.

Just before five o'clock, the children arrived, bearing homemade signs and costumes, many of them relishing the opportunity to hide behind colorful masks and brandish noisemakers. They lined up on the ramp, eagerly waiting for the parade to begin. The staff started to gather at the info booth, next to the giant crawfish on the rolling cart, feeding off the energy of the spirited kids. With the invited guests, it really did feel like a celebration.


Finally, Big Ant, adorned with the crown and cape indicating his status as Parade King, led the restless crew down the aisles, once around the store and into the street, joined by other costumed employees and staff. Kathy held up a big MARDI GRAS sign to alert the onlookers, and for the first time the Amoeba Fat Tuesday parade greeted the public and crossed Haight Street. The young krewe snaked around the block to Page, passing the Boys And Girls Club and curved back towards the store.

Dancicals! A Concept Whose Time Has Arrived

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 9, 2008 10:57am | Post a Comment
Last year on Amoeba Hollywood's mezzanine there was a serious debate about possible new sections:

Sports movies, Christian movies, Tween movies, Women's Pictures, Edwardian Movies, Midwesterns, &c. Most were shot down as stupid, unattractive and inadvisable. One that didn't get the official OK and yet sprang up anyway was "Dancicals."



In musicals (dancicals' aging sibling), singing and musical performance are interwoven into the plot. In backstage musicals, Dick Powell might be telling an audience about a new song he's written, which soon evolves into some insane Busby Berkeley fever dream that would be impossible to stage except in outer space.

In other musicals, two sane, grown-ass men might seamlessly slip from dialog into snapping, then singing, dancing and jumping off walls, grabbing mannequins and other tomfoolery that leaves some viewers scratching their heads wandering, "What the heck was that?" The age old question of whether or not musical numbers are actually occurring within the diegesis can't really be answered. You just have to not think about it.

With the onslaught of rock 'n' roll, musicals slipped in popularity in the 1960s. Interestingly, with the death of rock 'n' roll musicals have grown more popular again, with modern examples like Velvet Goldmine, Hedwig & the Angry Inch, Moulin Rouge!, Chicago, Sweeney Todd, &c.

Ah Meng, 1960-2008

Posted by Whitmore, February 9, 2008 09:18am | Post a Comment
Ah Meng was a female Sumatran Orangutan and a favorite at the world famous Singapore Zoo. Ah Meng passed away on February 8th due to old age. She was about 48 years old and leaves behind two sons, Hsing Hsing and Satria, and two daughters, Medan and Sayang, as well as six grandchildren. She was known for her friendly nature, comfortability with humans and her animated facial expressions. Ah Meng had been featured in more than 30 travel films, and written about in some 300 articles, becoming the poster girl of the  Singapore Zoo. In 1992, the Singapore Tourism Board awarded Ah Meng a "Special Tourism Ambassador" honor in recognition of her contribution towards tourism in Singapore. Originally recovered in 1971 by a veterinarian from a local family who kept her as a pet, Ah Meng’s first owner had smuggled her illegally from Indonesia.  Her species, the Sumatran Orangutan, is a rarer breed of orangutan now critically endangered due to illegal logging and poaching. There are about only 7,500 Sumatran Orangutans left in the rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia.
Ah Meng was the first to host the Zoo's famous “Breakfast with an Orangutan” program, where luminaries such as Prince Philip of Britain and Michael Jackson were among the many foreign dignitaries and celebrities that visited her. By allowing close interaction with Ah Meng and other orangutans, the Singapore Zoo aimed to raise public awareness of the importance of preserving the orangutan's natural habitat as well as other environmental issues.

HAS THE SIMPSONS PASSED ITS EXPIRATION DATE?

Posted by Billyjam, February 8, 2008 10:00pm | Post a Comment
bart simpson
One advantage that an animated TV show has is that its stars need never age. Case in point is Matt Groening's creation The Simpsons, which debuted on Fox TV way back in December 1989 (although it appeared in a shorter and rougher form two years previously as a skit on the Tracey Ullman Show) and whose stars haven't aged a bit in the years that it has been on consistently since.

However the show has gone through many changes behind the scenes with various creative contributors, especially writers, coming and going -- prompting some critics to say that it is not the same Simpsons that it once was.

Personally I think it is still a great show, although I don't rush home to watch it the moment it first airs as I once did. But I still really enjoy it whenever I catch an episode (some more than others). And one episode that I got to watch recently was the Sadgasm episode, from the ongoing 19th season, in which Homer flashes back to the nineties -- a time when he creates grunge, or so the storyline goes.

I thought it was hilarious and loved it. (Check out the highlights of it in above video clip if you haven't already seen it.) But some naysayers were critical of it: saying things like "Hey, how come Bart wasn't born in this episode when he was already born when the series started the previous decade?" To whom I say: It's a cartoon, dummy! And it's called suspending your beliefs as the show takes poetic license.

Sulla Strada, Capitolo Sei

Posted by Whitmore, February 8, 2008 07:10pm | Post a Comment
FIRST: This Listing Ship tour of Italy entry is a little old, the problems of traveling without a laptop and not having enough time to write … the events outlined here were ultimately an insignificant blip on the radar map of my life, a night and a mood I should just forget and ignore, but what fun is that! And though it culminates with a walk though the pitch dark (literally and metaphorically) there is -as always- whenever I can invent one ... a happy ending.

BLOOM: In late 1991 Nirvana played their first gig in Italy at this club just outside of Milan. Club Bloom holds about 300 hundred people, but if I’ve done the math correctly, (though when I presented my equation to guitarist Lyman, a Math Professor, he seemed puzzled by my efforts – but I deduced that those with a doctorate in math are just constantly puzzled), … since I figure every fourth person I’ve met in Italy was at that Nirvana show, that means at least 12,125 people were packed into Bloom that night witnessing music history. There is the other possibility that just by dumb yankee luck I’ve actually met most of those 300 audience members and my math skills and equations are as erroneous as Moses supposes his toeses are roses.

CLICKS: Early in our set, probably around the 4th or 5th song I swear I heard a click, it was the sound like a door’s deadbolt unlocking. I thought, shit this isn’t good. It’s a sound I’ve heard before in my head, and only in my head. A place where my mind paces back and forth, at a place I sneak a peak, sometimes, other times I take a seat in the dark. Luckily so far, no one has caught me, locked me in, as there is always that possibility.

OFF: I looked around the stage, the club, the back wall and everything seem to be going well. The songs were jumping, the instruments were in tune, the monitors were kicking out plenty of sound, I could see the wine in my glass gently vibrating on the amp, the lighting was cool and moody, the crowd of about 150 or 200 people were pushing closer to the stage. Earlier in the evening we had yet another incredible meal on a tour of incredible meals; and though my mind was swimming like trout up stream to die, my belly felt fine, fat and warm …

30 Rock - One Small Step For Network TV

Posted by Miss Ess, February 8, 2008 02:46pm | Post a Comment
 30 Rock Season 1 is out on DVD at last!

30 rock tina fey rachel dratch alec baldwin tracey morgan

Ex-SNLer Tina Fey writes and produces the show. I never paid much attention to SNL, but when I did I alec baldwin tina fey tracey morgan 30 rockalways thought Tina was onto something. I feel like she knows what it is like to be a real life woman, and for this, I salute her. She knows what it's like to find women who care about highlighting their hair or finding that perfect nail shop completely alien. She knows what it is like to be the not-as-cute friend, the one who watches quietly while her more high maintenance pals score dates. She knows what it is like to finally get a date and then feel so awkward in that world that one can't imagine how anyone actually forms a real relationship.

In other words, what I like best about Tina Fey and her writing is that she isn't afraid to just be herself. Isn't that refreshing? What kind of world would we have if more people felt comfortable and confident enough to just be themselves? But in the meantime, let's just say, the ratings for this tina fey 30 rock jane krakowskishow have not been good. Ah, America.

30 Rock
takes place on the set of a variety show that Liz Lemon (Fey) and her old blonde friend Jenna (Jane Krakowski) created. Liz is the head writer of the show and Jenna stars on it ... Until one day a new boss who is used to running the corporate headquarters of General Electric, Jack (Alec Baldwin), bursts their bubble and hires unstable movie star Tracey Jordan (Tracey Morgan) to headline the show.

Dirty Dancing...Kid Congo & Howie Pyro...one nite only

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 8, 2008 02:15pm | Post a Comment
Catch Dirty Dancing @ the New Bev Sat Nite and then Dance Dirty and catch something Sun Nite @ Part Time Punks (the Echo) w/ Kid & Howie!!!

Paranoia, They Destroy Ya: Death Sentence vs. The Brave One, or Jodie Foster's Continuing Relevance to the Presidency

Posted by Charles Reece, February 8, 2008 12:50pm | Post a Comment
Given Hillary Clinton’s history of backing neo-liberal economic policies and war-making by the United States and its allies, her advocacy of women’s rights overseas within what is widely seen outside this country as an imperialist context could actually set back indigenous feminist movements in the same a way that the Bush administration’s “democracy-promotion” agenda has been a serious setback to popular struggles for freedom and democracy.  -- Stephen Zunes, Sexism, the Women’s Vote and Hillary Clinton’s Foreign Policy
These promises of morality, protection, and recognition of harm are false promises. The criminal justice apparatus is about order and its reproduction, and about maintaining the existing hierarchy of status and privilege, and only incidentally about crime or morality or the safety of individual citizens and their communities. It operates most effectively at
the level of the symbolic, by naming individual offenders as morally defective, and using them as scapegoats, and only incidentally as a useful tool for community security, although at times it is the only and the most appropriate social institution available. -- Diane L. Martin, Retributivism Revisited: A Reconsideration of Feminist Criminal Law Reform Strategies

At a time when Spider-Man still had some aesthetic worth, being drawn by the great Steve Ditko, New York was on its way to becoming a dangerous city, giving the super-powered vigilante something to do, presumedly on a daily basis.  However, looking at the crime stats for NYC in 1965, one finds that only 3% of its inhabitants experienced any sort of crime for that year.  With a population of 18 million, it's no wonder that there was rarely a cop around as the Vulture was flying off with his ill-gotten loot.  Now, if you're one lone webslinger, even with the aid of your trusty spider-sense, it ain't very likely that you'll be fortunate enough to come across a crime as it's occurring even on a monthly basis, much less a daily one.  Thus, we have one of the central absurd conceits of the vigilante sub-genre (with radiated powers or merely a stock of ammo): always being in the right place at the right time.

Juno: Ghost World + Little Miss Sunshine x Wes Anderson divided by Welcome To the Dollhouse

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 8, 2008 10:14am | Post a Comment
Oh my blog, so, I like totally watched Juno the other night, Lite Brite, and now I totally can’t stop, you know, parlaying this guey. “Por k, Macy Gray?” you query. Welp, homeslice, it’s B-cuz I have had mine eyes opened when to the real deal Holyfield about how to rap like the post-tweens of today, OKizzle? Now normally I avoid quirk ‘n’ smirk like a bubble boy does a peanut butter factory; especially when it's strained, smug, masturbatory, self-worshipping and as heavy handed as Fisto holding a purse full of lead weights. Homie don’t play that, Krazy Kat. And from the trailers alone I was scared merdeless. A familiarly precocious kid has it all figured out like a pint-size Paul Haggis on shrooms. But then she finds out, in a major league curve ball, she’s still got more growin’ up to do, Mr. Magoo.

Cue an annoying Kimya Dawson (Moldy Peaches) song where she busts out with her urban-outfitted, practiced and studied amateurism. OK, we know it’s Indie Anna Jones when we’re confronted, finalmente gente, with the smiling visages of big Hollywood actors, since Indie film is like, totally like “alternative” was when that term went from meaning anything not on commercial radio from Husker Du to Husker Don't to specifically proto-Creed band whose singers yarl and show off their abs-of-steel whilst a creepy, masked, old geezer lurches around in a red and green-lit video that’s played in heavy rotation on empMTyV. Indie is now actually slightly more formulaic than Bollywood, nay, Nollywood.


”Lieben meine Affe-monkey!”

The story is about a 16-year-old Canuck who gets pregnant by her Canuck friend and then finds a couple to adopt her baby after a Canuck at the abortion clinic tells her in thickly-accented Canadian, “All babies want to be born.” Their Canada talk is never explained, I’m guessing because the actors had to devote most of their ability to contorting their brains around the graceless and over-written dialog. It kind of gives it a Degrassi High on Growth-Hormones feel -- only 1000 times more annoying. Only Juno’s dad seems passably Minnesotan. It’s also obviously filmed nowhere near Minnesota but that sort of authenticity rides Miss Daisy-style to the chauffeur/plot that's too busy stroking its "beef sword" (to borrow another barf-inducing Juno-ism) to deal with such obvious details.

I can't stop thinking about the Oscars...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 7, 2008 10:33pm | Post a Comment

While I have been unpacking my boxes and organizing my life again, I have also been spending my time thinking about the Oscars. I was all ready to wake up at 5 am to watch Kathy Bates announce the nominees. But I was seriously so busy unpacking boxes and hanging up pictures that I completely forgot about them. I didn't really remember until my very good pal from the Haight street store called me to remind me. In case you missed them, here they are... It is a bit weird that the year I decide to move back to Hollywood is the year of the writers strike. I am of course on the side of the writers still. But it is getting a bit harder to still be on their side after all this time. I know it is selfish. But I am still growing my beard out for them at least. I have not shaved it yet.  I just really want to watch the Oscars. But I also feel really bad for the nominees. They already missed out on the trashier version of the Oscars that is the golden globes. It was really embarrassing to just have a press conference. They of course picked the most annoying people in entertainment news to host the conference. I almost cried while watching them but was too busy laughing at the hosts trying to make jokes while discussing films that they had obviously not even seen. I saw Viggo Mortensen walk into Amoeba a couple days ago as I was leaving the store. I really wanted to congratulate him on his Oscar nomination. I also wanted to apologize to him for not picking him in my nomination predictions for best actor. I at least listed his name as an alternate. He really can't be that mad at me. I also wanted to know if he was sad that he might have to watch the Oscars as a press conference from his couch instead of actually being at a real show. I do have some faith that they will work it all out. They can't really do this to me on my first year back in Hollywood. And in case you were wondering, I am almost caught up on watching all the Oscar nominated films. I think of it as homework every year. My goal is to always see the 5 best picture nominations before they are announced. I had planned on seeing Michael Clayton and Juno before then. But I am going to use that moving excuse again. I was just too busy packing up my life to go see every movie.

THE BLACK LIPS PLAY FOR FREE IN BERKELEY

Posted by Billyjam, February 7, 2008 09:13pm | Post a Comment
black lips
Self-described "flower-punk" rockers the Black Lips, whose live shows are a thing of legend, are doing an instore concert at the Berkeley Amoeba Music Friday Feb 8th, at 6:30PM.

And my strong advice is, if at all possible, get yer ass over to the Telegraph Ave. store for this great opportunity to see this amazing Atlanta, GA band up close and personal. They will be delivering (for free) their familiar yet totally unique sound -- a raw, supercharged blend of retro garage rock, punk, blues, country, and more.

Their live shows have become a thing of legend because of their raw energy onstage and their crazy, unpredictable rock'n'roll behavior, which to date has included such things as band members kissing, getting naked, vomiting, and urinating -- to name but a few of their bad boy antics, and all of which have rightfully earned the Black Lips' live shows such an overhanging reputation that some fans just show up to witness whatever wildness might unfold.

But considering they will be performing in a store, maybe they will tone it down. But then, maybe not. They don't even know. But what is sure is that the music will be kick ass. So just show up at Amoeba Berkeley at 6:30PM (earlier to get a good spot).

For more info and specific details of their Berkeley show, click here. Meantime, check the three live Black Lips concert clips below -- all from the past year -- including at a house party in Austin during the SXSW (poor audio but great energy), in Tijuana, Mexico, and at an instore for another record store (Criminal Records in ATL) this time last year.

February 6, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, February 7, 2008 07:05pm | Post a Comment

They Call Me The Mercenary #6

Posted by phil blankenship, February 7, 2008 10:32am | Post a Comment
 


Gene Clark - A Tragedy In Two Parts: Part Two - Mr Tambourine Man

Posted by Miss Ess, February 6, 2008 08:52pm | Post a Comment
Gene Clark is sort of a tragic figure. He is also one of the most complex, idiosyncratic rock stars I havegene clark the byrds ever read about -- I just finished Mr. Tambourine Man by John Einerson. Due to mental illness, addiction and over abundant sycophants, he died too soon and without ever realizing and enjoying his true potential.

Things started out triumphantly enough in the early 60s, with Gene being plucked from complete obscurity in Kansas by the New Christy Minstrels to be in their group. He toured with them for a few months before his fear of flying, among other things, forced him to quit the band. He kept Los Angeles as his home base and soon met Roger McGuinn and David Crosby and they began creating music together. Soon, The Byrds were the biggest American band in the middle of the 60s and they were creating the kind of songs that will be remembered forever.

Clark's time in The Byrds was truly the stuff that dreams are made of. He was a star literally overnight, able to buy a Ferrari and live on the edge. He became used to the amount of attention being a super star and the toast of the nation brought him.
gene clark the byrds
Gene was the main songwriter in The Byrds at that time, with songs like "My Love Don't Care About Time" and "Feel A Whole Lot Better," which meant that he was earning the most money. The others in the band jealously undermined him, especially David Crosby, who convinced an insecure Gene that he was such a poor guitar player that he shouldn't play on stage anymore. Crosby told Gene he should sing and shake the tambourine instead. Of course, Crosby took over Gene's Gretsch on stage. The many power plays within the group eventually led to Gene quitting the band.

Dirty Dancing at the New Beverly - Saturday at Midnight ! !

Posted by phil blankenship, February 6, 2008 05:40pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music and Phil Blankenship are proud to present some of our film favorites at Los Angeles’ last full-time revival movie theater. See movies the way they're meant to be seen - on the big screen and with an audience!


Saturday Feb. 9

Get Ready For The
Time Of Your Life!

Dirty Dancing

New Beverly Cinema
7165 W Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 938-4038
Midnight, $7


Upcoming:
Feb 23 Commando
Mar 1 Harley Davidson And The Marlboro Man
Mar 8 Streets Of Fire
Mar 15 Can't Hardly Wait (10th Anniversary!)
Mar 29 The Funhouse

Add us as a friend on myspace !
http://www.myspace.com/newbeverlymidnights

They Call Me The Mercenary #5

Posted by phil blankenship, February 6, 2008 05:32pm | Post a Comment
 



GIVE THAT DANCE A NAME

Posted by Billyjam, February 6, 2008 05:05pm | Post a Comment

After a friend of mine had recently shown me a hilariously entertaining online video clip of someone dancing with wild abandon at an outdoor party, I later tried to locate it myself on YouTube but without any luck. However, in my research, under the title search "dance like no one is watching," I stumbled upon a flood of other video clips: five of which I have included here. If you have a moment to watch them (they're all pretty short -- 30 seconds or so) and want to name that dance which each dancer might be doing, please contribute in the COMMENTS box below. Thanks!

DANCER NUMBER 1 ABOVE

DANCER NUMBER 2 ABOVE:

DANCER NUMBER 3 ABOVE:

DANCER NUMBER 4 ABOVE:

DANCER NUMBER 5 ABOVE:

New Zealand Day or, Happy Waitangi Day

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 6, 2008 03:04pm | Post a Comment
Happy New Zealand Day!

 
                                The Haast's Eagle, the largest bird of prey (until extinction) attacking a flightless moa (also extinct)

The islands that make up what today is known as New Zealand were, for centuries, uninhabited by people. Due to isolation, the islands hosted many distinct creatures and were dominated by large birds. There were no land mammals, only bats and the marine variety on the coast.

 
                          a Maori warrior                                                               a group of Moriori

Austronesians came from Polynesia sometime between 800 and 1300 A.D, making New Zealand one of the last major land masses to be settled by people. These people organized into groups called hapu. Over time, they came to refer to themselves collectively as Māori. They called the North Island Te Ika a Māui (the fish of Māui) and the South Island Te Wai Pounamu (the waters of jade) or Te Waka a Māui (the canoe of Māui). Around 1500, a group split off and migrated to Rekohu and developed a culture known as Moriori. These people embraced Pacifism which served them poorly when they were massacred and cannibalized by the Maori in the 1830s. The remaining Moriori, who'd adapted to the harsh climate of Rekohu, died out completely in the early 20th century.

   
                                    Able Tasman                                                                               James Cook

February 5, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, February 5, 2008 07:13pm | Post a Comment

TALIB KWELI AMONG HIP-HOPPERS FOR BARACK

Posted by Billyjam, February 5, 2008 03:09pm | Post a Comment

One thing that sure sets this upcoming presidential election apart from all previous ones in my memory is the unprecedented amount of active input and interest from hip-hop artists and fans alike -- most of whom seem to be endorsing Obama -- with a smaller percentage in support of Hillary. And all seem to share a strong distaste for anything related to Bush's regime and most things Republican.

Of all the mailings (printed, audio, video) I have received in recent weeks from hip-hop artists or organizations, the following email, received today (Super Tuesday) from NY emcee Talib Kweli (see video above of his Amoeba Hollywood instore last August), is the most convincing and articulately presented. Hence I thought I would reprint it here. Note that this is not an endorsement of Barack Obama by this Amoeblogger or by Amoeba Music.

This is what Kweli wrote:
 
"It is the last year of the Bush administration and thank God. I usually rail against being described as simply "political rapper," and I haven't voted since Bill Clinton first ran for President. I was following the tradition that Black Americans have had of voting for democrats since we got the right in 1964 (temporarily). Then, Clinton, as presidents go, seemed better than Bush Sr., but I did not like his policies in Sudan or the constant bombing of Iraq. I also did not like the way our government dragged us thru the Lewinsky scandal. I felt betrayed by the system, and I stopped voting, no longer accepting of the lesser of two evils.

I knew the two party system was designed to fail us. I knew that politicians must lie for a living, because it would be impossible to make good on their promises. I knew about the lobbyists and the PAC. I did not make it my issue, but if someone asked me, I would explain why I didn't vote. Most of the time people barack obamatalked to me like I lost my mind, but every once in a while someone understood. I knew that our ancestors fought and died for the right to vote, but I didn't feel like voting for the lesser of two evils in a broken system was the proper way to honor them. It was pageantry, and I wasn't with it. I wasn't with Vote or Die, because I knew that voting itself, with no real knowledge of who is paying these candidates to run million dollar a day campaigns, is far from a revolutionary act.

Primaries

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 5, 2008 12:05pm | Post a Comment
Nice primary color scheme on this inner sleeve series for Decca...






S-s-s-s-s-soundtrack of sh-sh-sh-shame

Posted by Job O Brother, February 5, 2008 11:55am | Post a Comment
I thought it would be difficult to find songs I was ashamed to love. Fact is, it’s much more challenging to keep my attention span with this series, so, I’m going to wrap this “soundtrack of shame” up with a grand finale. Cringe with compassion.

LITTLE RIVER BAND “Reminiscing”

Little River Band had a gift for recording songs that would one day become a staple of grocery stores’ piped-in music. It might surprise you to know they had 13 American, Top 40 hits, despite the fact that their “sound” is akin to a waiting room lobby in a retirement home.

This song got a lot of radio play in Hawaii when I was growing up there – learning how to body surf and not learning my times-tables – so I associate it with childhood and a dark, iced tea that you could always buy at Kailua Beach.

This video is a perfect example of what “boring” means. I mean, even the lead singer brought a book to read during the bridges! I was surprised to see a 30-something-year-old Cousin Oliver as part of the band.



MARY COSTA “Once Upon a Dream”


I think animated Disney films are pretty swell, provided they were actually produced by Walt Disney himself (the last of which was “The Jungle Book”). Something happened in the 1970’s when the Don Bluth posse was still working at Disney – something gross feeling. I’m not saying Bluth is a bad man, but (with the exception of “The Secret of NIMH”) every movie he worked on, post-Walt, makes me crazy. And not crazy in a rad, Spuds Mackenzie way. Crazy in a “Christina, bring me the axe!” sort of way.

out today 2/5...magnetic fields...lightspeed champion...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 4, 2008 11:41pm | Post a Comment
Hello again to my blog. I have really missed you! Hopefully I have not lost all my faithful blog readers and friends. I am now officially back.  Seriously, I have missed you. But I have been a bit busy moving my life all around again and moving back to Los Angeles...again. I did this same move about 5 years ago. From San Francisco to Los Angeles. I think I might just like moving. I know for a fact that I do really enjoy packing and unpacking my stuff. And I have actually thought about being a professional packer or unpacker. I know most people really hate it. I do hate the driving of the U-Haul and the moving boxes part of moving. But I do sort of love everything else. I did get really lucky in finding a new apartment and I already had the job part taken care of. So the hard parts were out of the way. But I got my internet hooked up just the other day and I am now back and ready for the blogs. There has been a ton of music and DVDs that I have wanted to talk about already. After a very slow and boring end of the year in releases, there are finally exciting things coming out again. So anybody who says that there is no good music this year, is just not looking hard enough. I think all my favorite bands got together and decided to all release new albums in January and February. At least they spread them out a bit. The Magnetic Fields put out another fantastic album on January 15th called "Distortion." Cat Power put out another album of covers called "Jukebox" on January 22nd. I really do love those covers and this is yet another beautiful album from the beautiful Chan Marshall. The next week was a new album by Xiu Xiu called "Women as Lovers." I think I fall more in love with Xiu Xiu every year. This album grew on me really quickly and I have been listening to it over and over every single day.

They Call Me The Mercenary #4

Posted by phil blankenship, February 4, 2008 10:39am | Post a Comment
 



LAPTOP ORCHESTRAS PUSHING THE DIGITAL MUSIC ENVELOPE

Posted by Billyjam, February 4, 2008 09:12am | Post a Comment

Ever since laptops became ubiquitous on the club & concert scene as a live music source for artists, especially DJs, in recent years the question continually arises: are they actually creating live music up there on stage or merely checking their e-mails as a pre-programmed music mix plays?

In some cases the "artist" may be just checking his/her emails or updating their Facebook account, but most real artists are utilizing their laptops' numerous programs in creative musical ways.

And in increasingly common cases there are multiple laptop musicians in action at the same time. The Bay Area quartet Cat Five (featured on Independent Sounds: Amoeba Music Compilation Vol III), formed by Balanceman and Darkat almost a decade ago, is an example of a laptop group. With their preference being Apple computers, all four construct freeform live compositions.

And taking it to the next level is the Worldscape Laptop Orchestra (pictured left) -- a fifty person laptop musician collective who put on an orchestrated, fully rehearsed all laptop  performance a couple of months ago at Britain's University of York, led by composer Dr Ambrose Field who acted as the performance's conductor (just like in a traditional full orchestra). The group's goal, he said, is to help pave the way in music for "larger all-digital ensembles."

The Worldscape Laptop Orchestra's 50 performers each worked exclusively with Apple laptops (their sponsor) as their instrument with custom software that was produced to enable wireless communication with each computer sharing audio and control data. The full range of software functionality used in the performance included video detection where hand movements of performers were decoded by the MacBooks.

Victor Gastelum Weighs In On Morrissey

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 4, 2008 02:10am | Post a Comment

I wrote about Victor Gastelum several months back when I first starting writing for Amoeba.com. Victor’s iconic art has been used by Calexico, Culture Clash, Greg Ginn, just to name a few. Victor is currently showing in a group show called ALEX STEINWEISS: CREATOR OF THE ALBUM COVER at the Robert Berman Gallery in Santa Monica. Victor is one to show his appreciation for any artist that inspires him. I got him to share his thoughts on Morrissey, his Mexican following and Morrissey's supposed anti-immigrant remakes he made last November.


What makes you a fan of  Morrissey? How did you become one?

I started liking the Smith's right when they were breaking up.  I was starting to make my own art and I found Morrissey’s lyrics inspiring. Not that I wanted to draw what he was describing but that he was telling his own stories.  You got the feeling that he was talking about what he knew.  He along with other artists that I admire made me look at myself, and draw from what I knew about, what I had to offer.  The music was the first attraction to the band though.  I like pop music, especially with clever lyrics and hooks.  The band was tight and at the time there didn’t seem to be anything like them.


Why do you feel that Mexicanos identify with him?


For me I think it might have to do with his outsider, nerdy loser
image.  He made being square and dorky really cool.  He is into all these obscure English pop artists, television shows, and movies that he would make references to. I think it made you place a little more value to the things you liked that most people didn’t know about or thought were lame.  Also the Manchester bands seem to have this thing where they are all homeboys.  Not so much pride or shame, but just an acknowledgement of where they are from.  He put a lot reference to where he was from, places and buildings.  I like seeing that, (for instance) like when an artist is from San Pedro or Long Beach and they throw that influence into their work.

February 3, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, February 4, 2008 01:23am | Post a Comment

Vampire Weekend, Live Show at Amoeba SF

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, February 3, 2008 08:25pm | Post a Comment
reviewed by Katy St. Clair

It's not often that a band whose first album was only a day old can pack Amoeba to the gills for their in-store, but Vampire Weekend did it.


The store looked like the Fillmore, with a sea of faces all looking towards the four-piece band from New York. "It's a privilege to be here," said the singer, Ezra Koenig, somewhat shyly. The band was wearing the look of most young new "buzz bands" who haven't quite accepted the fact that they have made it yet—a naïve sweetness combined with an out and out thrilled exuberance.

We were seeing them at a choice time, a day after their first record was released, and on the same evening that they would be appearing on the David Letterman Show.

There are a lot of labels put on this band (another thing they are going to have to get used to). One is that they are "preppy," which is probably due to the fact that they all met at an Ivy League school, but, judging from the footwear of Koenig, who was wearing Docksiders, it could also be due to their personal style.


 They also get pegged with an African-Indie rock association, due to the intentional fact that their guitar is tuned to a key used in a lot of African music, something that Paul Simon and David Byrne have both used to great effect. (The music is actually nod to Congolese soukous music.) The band consider themselves "Upper West Side Soweto."


The band first launched into "Mansard Roof," the first track from their album. The song is jumpy and alive, and If there was one word that came to mind, well two words, really, they would be "tippie-toe."
The singer stood on his while he sang and played, bob-bobbing up and down, but lightly as if he didn't want to break the eggshells underneath. It took awhile for the crowd to loosen up, and even Koenig
noted that only one person was jumping up and down in the audience. Guess they aren't use to SF's famously stoic audiences.

His inquiry seemed to grease some wheels, however, and eventually the audience was verifiably raucous, singing and dancing along.

They Call Me The Mercenary #3

Posted by phil blankenship, February 3, 2008 01:39pm | Post a Comment
 


Movie Myths 101-Vampires

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 3, 2008 12:49pm | Post a Comment


Whilst descriptions of vampires historically have varied widely, certain traits now accepted as universal were created by the film industry. Where did vampires originate? Well, nearly every culture has its own undead creatures which feed off of the life essence of the living, but ancient Persian pottery shards specifically depict creatures drinking blood from the living in what may be the earliest representations of vampires. In the 1100s English historians and chroniclers Walter Map and William of Newburgh recorded accounts of various undead fauna. By the 1700s, an era often known as the Age of Enlightenment, fear of vampires reached its apex following a spate of vampire attacks in East Prussia in 1721 and the Hapsburg Monarchy from 1725 to 1734. Government positions were created for vampire hunters to once-and-for-all rid man of this unholy scourge.

Even Enlightenment writer Voltaire wrote about the vampire plague in his Philosophical Dictionary, "These vampires were corpses, who went out of their graves at night to suck the blood of the living, either at their throats or stomachs, after which they returned to their cemeteries. The persons so sucked waned, grew pale, and fell into consumption; while the sucking corpses grew fat, got rosy, and enjoyed an excellent appetite. It was in Poland, Hungary, Silesia, Moravia, Austria, and Lorraine, that the dead made this good cheer."

There were a couple of famous vampire cases. I, unfortunately, couldn't find any good pictures for this bit.

In Serbia Peter Plogojowitz died at the age of 62. According to reports he returned after his death asking his son for food. When the son refused, he was found dead the following day. His wife claimed that he came to her after death and asked for his shoes. Plogojowitz was, reportedly, identified by nine victims who died shortly thereafter.

When The Screaming Stops

Posted by phil blankenship, February 3, 2008 12:06pm | Post a Comment
 







Avid Home Entertainment 51213

NON FOOTBALL FANS UNITE! SUPER BOWL SUNDAY ALTERNATIVES

Posted by Billyjam, February 3, 2008 06:20am | Post a Comment
i am legend will smith
If, like me, you are in the minority today (Sunday Feb 3) when it comes to the cultural obsession with all things Super Bowl and you have no plans to watch today's big game in Arizona between the Giants and the Patriots, then you already know from previous Super Bowl Sundays that this one day of the year can provide a rare opportunity to have the rest of the world to yourself (almost) when you can visit near-empty stores, museums, cinemas, galleries, bowling alleys, theme parks, zoos, city & regional parks etc. etc. With nearly no one else around it's almost like being WIll Smith in I Am Legend.

And considering that Super Bowl Sunday is not just the time of the actual game itself but basically the whole damn day for most folks, with the pre pre-game TV broadcasts beginning as early as 9AM, and the post game wrap up lasting well into the evening -- that means the rest of us (the minority) have the whole long day to ourselves to roam that outside near-deserted world. I would normally recommend heading out to parks and outside events today but with the weather forecast for heavy or widespread rain in both the Bay and LA areas today I suggest sticking with indoor activities -- many geared for all ages -- unless the weather clears up.

This is the perfect time for shopping, and at the top of the list of stores to visit I recommend any of the three Amoeba Musics (Berkeley, San Francisco, Hollywood), where you will be able to crate dig with ease for CDs, vinyl, DVDs, posters etc. And before you head to Amoeba, I recommend spending a little time surfing this great website to get an idea of some of things to look out for at each store. And today is also a good time to head to other stores that you may have always wanted to go to but didn't want to deal with crowds. You should also find parking with ease for once at most places today.

Museums and galleries, often busiest on weekends, are refreshingly emptier today. So if you have never been to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, you should go, as it offers one of the world's most extensive and valuable collections of natural and cultural history. And for those who don't wish to (physically) visit this fine museum that is located near USC, they also offer an excellent online tour. Admission is $9 for adults, $6.50 for teens, only $2 for ages 5 to 12, and free for under 5. 

Viva Hate?

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 3, 2008 02:33am | Post a Comment
Many of my fellow Mexicano/Chicano peers that have much respect and hold Morrissey in high regard. One of them is L.A. Weekly’s Ask A Mexican writer Gustavo Arrellano. In his excellent article written back in 2002 by about Morrissey and his Mexican following, Arrellano asked then doctorate candidate Colin Snowsel why he thought why Morrissey and Mexicanos were so closely connected.

“Morrissey was, in short, providing to lower- and middle-class Mexican-Americans the same dual utopian message that he had once provided a decade earlier to predominately Anglo fans in the United Kingdom," he writes. And what did he offer Anglos? "Escape from the injustices of a social order that confines them to the margin, but escape also from the limited identity options entrenched in peripheral, working- and middle-class culture."

It was disheartening in reading that at the end of last year. Morrissey was in the news for his comments made about immigration to NME magazine. In the article it suggests that one of the reasons that he no longer lives in England is due to immigration.

“ With the issue of immigration, it’s very difficult because, although I don’t have anything against people from other countries, the higher the influx into England the more the British identity disappears.”

Seems quite odd for someone who resides in Los Angeles, one of the most diverse cities in the world and with a large following of Non-Anglos to say something like that.  Morrissey supporters are quick to mention that he is a life long liberal and defender and lover of people all over the world. In his rebuttal to the NME, Morrissey states that, “Racism is beyond common sense and I believe it has no place in our society.”

Eli Roth Curated Festival, The New Beverly Cinema, LA

Posted by phil blankenship, February 2, 2008 11:35am | Post a Comment
http://www.newbevcinema.com


THE GREATS OF ROTH COMES TO THE NEW BEVERLY CINEMA

February 17 – March 1st, 2008

The New Beverly Cinema is extremely proud to present THE GREATS OF ROTH, a two week film festival programmed by Eli Roth, director of the hit films Cabin Fever and the Hostel series.

The festival is comprised of several of Roth’s favorite films, many of which are difficult to find cult classics rarely shown on the big screen. Roth will introduce select screenings, schedule permitting. The double features have been selected with tremendous care, and will give audiences members a chance to watch these films as they were meant to be seen – on the big screen, with an enthusiastic audience.

Admission to all of the screenings is $7 for adults, $6 for students with ID and $4 for children and seniors. All evening screenings begin at 7:30, with a matinee double feature on weekends. No advance tickets will be sold. The box office opens 15 minutes before the first show.

The New Beverly Cinema is located at 7165 Beverly Blvd. in Los Angeles, a block west of La Brea. For more information on the New Beverly, visit our website, newbevcinema.com, or you can go to myspace.com/newbeverlycinema. You may email the theater at newbeverlyforever@yahoo.com with any questions. The New Beverly Cinema is thrilled to have one of todays most talented filmmakers program this exclusive festival.

Eli’s first film, Cabin Fever, was one of the most successful independent films of 2003, winning him the Filmmaker’s Showcase Award at the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films USA. He was also awarded best film, best director and best screenplay for his 2005 release, Hostel, from the Austin Fantastic Fest. Roth’s third feature, Hostel 2, was released in 2007.

The festival line up is as follows:

They Call Me The Mercenary #2

Posted by phil blankenship, February 2, 2008 10:56am | Post a Comment
 



SO MUCH FOR CLEAN LIVING. MAN O.D.'s ON WATER

Posted by Billyjam, February 2, 2008 05:00am | Post a Comment
As reported recently by Britain's Daily Mail newspaper, a 35 year old English man overdosed, not on drugs or from alcohol poisoning -- but from drinking too much water. For real! According to British authorities, Shaun McNamara  "drank himself to death ... after he downed glass after glass of water."

Medical experts found absolutely no trace of any narcotics in his system, nor did they suspect suicide or foul play of any kind. However, according to the mother of the deceased, her son had been depressed and overdosed on drugs back in 2005 and apparently since then had been trying to live an extremely healthy lifestyle that consisted of drinking unusually large amounts of water.

And while it sounds weird that someone could actually die from drinking water, stories of such a thing do surface from time to time. There was a case in Europe some years back where someone took too much of the drug ecstasy, and in an attempt to counter the illegal drug's dehydrating effects, drank way too much water and then died of water intoxication. Medical experts said that it was not the drug but the water in the person's system that killed them.

Another case you may remember was in California just a year ago, last January, when Sacramento  woman Jennifer Strange died in relation to a "Hold Your Wee for a Wii" contest by a local radio station KDND. The unfortunate 28 year old mother of three, in a bid to win a Nintento Wii video game system, drank an excessive amount of water (two gallons) in a short period of time and then tried to hold it for as long as possible without going to the bathroom. It killed her. According to the Sacramento Coroner's Office she died of "water intoxication."

sulla strada, capitolo cinque

Posted by Whitmore, February 2, 2008 03:26am | Post a Comment
In Milan, Milano ... we'll be here for over a week staying in a friends apartment as we have several shows in the surrounding area, including a big show at a club called Bloom (famous for being the first club Nirvana ever played in Italy). Anyway, this apartment will have to be our home away from home for a while, and it's big enough, I think, for the nine of us on tour ... And over here, alongside the piano, where this strip of carpet is, well this part of the floor is my very own ...

But I can't sleep. It can't be jetlag, I've been here a little too long. I'm not tense or stressed, nor depressed, nor starving - far from starving - and I really do like sleeping on the floor - I do it all the time at home in LA - but I just can't seem to sleep ...

On a night I don't sleep I don't think anyone understands 'undisturbed' less than I do, its suppose to mean untroubled by interference or disturbance, I wouldn't know ... of course if there is someone else out here walking with me, they are more silent, invisible ... I should be concerned, but I'm actually undisturbed by such a threat. Hey, there it is, definition!  If there is someone else out here on the streets of Milano at 4am, and if they too are halfcracked from sleeplessness ...  I suspect he too doesn't understands 'undisturbed' (well, the chances are he'll speak Italian anyway!) and except for the fact that we most likely couldn't understand each other, this other insomniac and I could probably talk till dawn about what undisturbed means and doesn't mean to us.

Actually I'm lying, and I'm laying in bed in our temporary home in Milan, I can't leave, I couldn't get back in through the security doors ... the other 4am night walker out there, and you know who you are, is just going to have to remain invisible without me.

Records make the world go round

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 2, 2008 12:25am | Post a Comment


sulla strada, capitolo quattro

Posted by Whitmore, February 1, 2008 02:52pm | Post a Comment
For once we actually arrived at our appointed destination early. This doesn't happen everyday. Actually this has never happened before. I doubt it will ever happen again.

Savona is a beautiful blue-tinged seaside resort town, and a town I'll always remember as the one where we given a police escort to leave. The main drag runs only a few feet from the beach and the quietly breaking Mediterranean waves, the road only pulls away from the shore near the marina where the dry docks are filled with impressive looking yachts sitting on blocks; either waiting for repairs, remodeling or a party. Savona oozes cash, you can smell the euros floating around, wafting from the wallets of elderly tourists dressed in three piece suits and full length mink coats as they wander the cafes, shops, boardwalks and beaches. Above the downtown corridor in the hills you can see the brightly painted stone and brick houses with their masterfully landscaped gardens and patios, and whose inhabitants I presume also dine in these restaurants, shop in these shops - dressed in their finely tailored Italian suits and floor length minks.

Since we were uncharacteristically early, we checked into our hotel, the club Rain Dogs provided for us. We dropped off all our crap, I took a quick shower. Afterward, I tried to dial in something on television. I unexpectedly became transfixed by Italian MTV and a show called Star Wars, tonights episode: Duran Duran vs Depeche Mode. Unfortunately, soundcheck beckoned so I wasn't able to stick around and see who came out on top. I can only imagine it ended in a contractually obligated draw.

Rain Dogs is said to be the nicest club in the area. It's roomy with a nice size stage and with a real piano. The upstairs green room also doubles on occasion as a small screening room, and the walls are decorated in vintage 60's rock posters from the classic shows of the Family Dog and Avalon Ballroom. The owner, I discovered later, is a huge fan of the Grateful Dead. I can safely say he is the first Italian Deadhead I've ever met.

The Jitters

Posted by phil blankenship, February 1, 2008 10:43am | Post a Comment
 







Prism Entertainment 4954

Black History Month & Black Cinema

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 1, 2008 09:29am | Post a Comment
 

1915

Birth of a Nation was released. It was the most profitable American film of all time until Disney's Snow White & the Seven Dwarves (1937). In this critical darling, director D.W. Griffith dramatically depicts a mid-19th century south plagued by mulattos and abolitionists who scheme to keep the white man down and raise up the black man in what is, to its intended audience, an obviously grotesque perversion of natural order. In government sessions, the reconstruction-empowered black politicians (played buffoonishly by white actors) take off their shoes and feast on fried chicken. Luckily, the chivalric Ku Klux Klan rides to the rescue.

This version of history was angrily disputed (famously by
W.E.B. Du Bois, among others) but remained pretty much the accepted version of history until well after World War II. The NAACP, founded just five years earlier, organized nationwide protests. There were riots in Philadelphia and Boston. Cities in Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Pennsylvania refused to show the film. In Indiana, a white man murdered a black stranger and blamed it on having seen Birth of a Nation. However, the film received a special screening at the White House, where president Woodrow Wilson supposedly remarked, "It [the film] is like writing history with lightning. And my only regret is that it is all so terribly true." The quote was later argued to be from someone else but the film was still marketed as "Federally-endorsed."

The Best Video Ever

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 1, 2008 12:42am | Post a Comment
This has to rank as one of my favorite videos ever. Snoop is just crazy! I like how the video begins and ends like it was recorded off a VCR. It reminds me off watching a late night video show and waiting for my favorite video to come on, then pressing the record and play. Everyone in the 80's/early 90's had that one VHS tape full of your favorite videos. The song's pretty out there as well. It's Snoop meets Prince/The Time/Vanity 6 meets T-Pain meets Daft Punk. BTW, Snoop's album drops March 11th.