Amoeblog

Tired of the bombast, bling, boasting & the big productions?

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 19, 2007 10:24am | Post a Comment
WARNING:  This video will teach your children to curse like a sailor, so I sure hope you Moms and Dads are being responsible and spending time with your kids so you can help them make important decisions that will educate them now and have a massive impact on the rest of their lives. If you are a Gentle Reader as introduced to me by Katy St. Clair - or a Christian or a Mormon, please, look away. We'll talk again some other day.

Today is a quick homage to .... A Regular Everyday Normal Guy (Motherfucker)



You know who I think is great? The everyday, normal guy. (MF) -The Insomniac

MAGIC

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 18, 2007 01:56pm | Post a Comment
There have been very, very few times in my life that I have heard a new song on the radio--  commercial radio-- that makes me stop, pull over, and turn it up. And yes, I am forced to listen to commercial radio in my car because I dont have anything but a cassette player and an AM/FM band. I'm that ghetto. But anyway, the other evening I was driving home, and I happened upon the middle of song that blew my mind. I couldn't quite place the vocals, they were male, and the arrangement was decidedly un-KFOG, the channel it was on.

Now, I'm no musical encyclopedia, but I am good at guessing who's who on the radio, especially when its the same 12 songs that they play over, and over, and over. But this time, hmmm... No. I couldn't quite place it. The refrain was magical: "The girls in their summer clothes, in the cool of the evening sky; the girls in their summer clothes, pass me by." I'll get to the melody soon, but those lyrics really got me. I love songs that can be read two ways. For example, if you listen to Cat Stevens' "Wild World" closely, he's actually not sending off his love with, er, love. No, he is being extremely passive aggressive. "The girls in their summer clothes" could also be read two ways.


  First, he is enjoying watching pretty girls walk by. And second, he is enjoying watching pretty girls walk by who are completely ignoring him because he's a loser. I love it. I listened a bit closer. Could it be? Nah... but maybe. It sort of sounded like an overproduced... Bruce Springsteen? His single from his latest album underwhelmed me, to say the least, so it couldn't be him.

Plus he never has songs that sound like that; a Phil Spector take on Big Star, in my best estimation. No, this had to be some cool indie band that was getting all Americana. I kept listening. The song told a story about a guy who gets up, puts on his jacket and heads out the door. OK, totally Springsteen.

It is the season for giving they say ...

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 16, 2007 07:03pm | Post a Comment
I was asking around to my friends about how I haven't heard of any coat drives this year, when it's been darn cold here in Northern California. One of the sweetest and smartest gals I know sent me a link to the information here. There's some folks working on literacy and getting kids to read *better.

(*Sorry: Zoolander fan!)

They also happen to be doing a whole lot of good work down in Louisiana where people are still trying to rebuild their lives. The whole she-bang is called Lullalee Productions, and here is a quote from their mission statement:


"Lullalee Productions and Services (LPS) provides free books and "Magical Literacy Events/Car-Ni-Fairs" designed to enhance the lives and learning experiences of all children. LPS supports families, communities, facilities and local organizations serving children that are low-income or have special needs."



Now I know times are tough all over, but I can't stand the thought of a child being cold. So these folks are trying to get presents for all the kids this holiday season down in Terrebone Parish, and they are also collecting coats for kids. They are at 78% of their goal - maybe we can raise that percentage some with whoever out there reads this particular blog!
 

Are you sitting at home on a Saturday night?

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 15, 2007 06:39pm | Post a Comment

When I think of Dave Gleason & The Wasted Days Band playing live, it's like dancing to ass-kicking Country-Americana-Rock, the kind that wears out yer dance shoes in one song, spins you around & kicks your ass toward the bar. When you come back to the dance floor with a round of cold ones, your feet are already dancing before the next note is struck.


All Music Guide describes Dave Gleason as 'heavy, outlaw-influenced sound with its origin in classic Nashville counterculture.'  They sure talk prettier than I do!



If you aren't familiar with The Starry Plough in fine town of Berkeley, California, you are in for a treat. In fact, first let me say that this is a damn nice stretch of Shattuck Avenue close to Ashby. It's actually on the corner of Prince Street - and when I used to live half a block up from the Plough, I'd often wander down and grab my dinners and a fresh beer to see what live music I could bump into.

Dinner? Damn right, kitchen is open until 11pm, get your Burger, your Pizza (capitalized out of respect) or what have you and dance your blues away! Nicest beer selection and plenty of hot and cold liquids with no intoxicants at all for your designated driver home.

My real introduction to Gram Parsons ...

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 15, 2007 10:43am | Post a Comment
I came at Gram sideways, when my eyes saw the words ... Grievous Angel, Fallen Angel, Love Hurts  ... it was December, 2003 and I hadn't listened intently to any of Gram's music. I'd heard it over the years, but I'd never sat and played it in a dark room with my soul torn open, Gram playing on a little boombox while I sobbed like I could cry everyone's mortality away.

See, someone had just died. Here were all of her things, I'm trying to sort them out - and here was her Gram records. I had never known that Gram sang "Love Hurts,"  honest to God. I thought that was a Nazareth song. I know a lot about music, but sometimes I'm still that dumb kid who grew up in the 70's.

I spent about 3 weeks in that apartment listening to those albums over and over, and I thought ... this is what miracles are. That something so beautiful, angelic and sorrowful could whisper in the background of your life as your friends were all hip to it ... but sometimes the music waits until exactly when you need it. Then it runs you over like a Mack truck. The kind of Mack truck that heals you while you fall in love with it.

I had to put aside Gram for years, because the pain was too great. See, it was my best friend's Mom who had just died. I'd never been in a situation to have an aging parent, and I certainly had never been around to take an older woman to her (frustrating) doctor appointments, carry grocery bags upstairs and talk about how Nevada Barr is no Faulkner, but sometimes you can go the prettiest places in a 1.99 soft cover from Moe's Books in Berkeley, when you can't afford to get on a plane. Or when you're dying, and you probably know that deep in your bones. I'd never watched someone I respected so much ... just waste away. Disappear.

I wish we'd talked about her music too, because that woman had some damn good records. (You bet a whole lot of Emmylou was in in there was well.)  You never know someone it seems, until far too late. What would my life had been like if she'd hit play on "Love Hurts" back in the summer of 2003? Different, but in a way, I suppose this was better. I can't judge.

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