Amoeblog

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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All Hail Led Zeppelin

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 9, 2007 04:00pm | Post a Comment

In England it is midnight, Monday, December 10, 2007.  In a matter of mere hours, Led Zeppelin will be reunited on stage to play a tribute show.  Playing at London's O2 Arena, it's a concert in aid of the Ahmet Ertegun Education Fund.  Mr. Ertegun, who passed away last year, was co-founder of Atlantic Records and chairman of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame & museum.  Led Zeppelin recorded with Atlantic Records until they released Physical Graffiti on their own Swan Song label in 1975. 

DO YOU UNDERSTAND?  LED ZEPPELIN!!  LIVE!!  TOMORROW!!  Maybe it'll be something like this:




In case you live under a rock and don't know, Led Zeppelin is made up of 4 guys:


from left to right:

John Bonham plays drums

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Richard Thompson

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 8, 2007 11:12pm | Post a Comment
Richard Thompson
Friday night, December 7th, 2007
Performing at the Montalvo Arts Center in the Carriage House

I know all of that is true not only because I looked it up on the net to verify my facts, but because I was there.

An intimate run of shows in this adorable town goes by the name Saratoga. Mind you, us Amoebas are in California, though I certainly would love to see Richard Thompson perform in an intimate venue in Saratoga, New York. I always loved that town. In Saratoga, California there are wineries and some really nice shops and no snow in December. (Unlike Saratoga, N.Y., though I haven't been to New York since this wacky global warming craze started, so for all I know it was colder in California last night.)

I grew up back East and I hate being cold about more than I hate anything except huge things like injustice, starving children and being stabbed. I do not mean to downplay how much I hate being cold, but luckily --although I have spent much of the last month freezing my damn ass off  --the intimate theater that Richard Thompson played in this week was only a chilly place. Not freezing, not really even officially cold.


Richard playing at Amoeba Hollywood

One December, I went to see Charles Brown perform at Kimball's East also here in California and it was freezing in that damn venue. I am well aware of the massive tangent I am on right now, and I don't give a damn. I'd had my face smashed open by a car dashboard when I was about 16, and that night at Charles Brown, it was so damn cold, my face ached so, and I watched the whole show holding the right side of my face because, frankly, it was sheer agony. Now Friday night, December 7th, 2007, in Saratoga California, I was not holding my face at all. I will admit to occasionally rubbing my legs and wearing a few layers, long johns and all. But it's been a cold December here in Northern California. This all popped into my head because I was at the Charles Brown show with the same person that said, "Hey, I have an extra ticket to see Richard Thompson, drive on down here."

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While Jake's Uke Gently Weeps

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 5, 2007 03:14pm | Post a Comment
Music, one of the best things about music, is that it touches everyone in it's own way. Like a prayer sent up to heaven, once you release a song, it belongs to the universe. This is truly a beautiful video:



As you may know, we are big supporters of the ukelele here at Amoeba, and most of us are crazy about Those Beatles. This video and his amazing prowess on the instrument sure brightened up my day.

If you want to see more of Jake Shimabukuro, or others on Uke, you can hop over here to this website and uke your holidays away: http://www.ukuleledisco.com/jake

DO ANYTHING FOR DETHKLOK

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, November 21, 2007 12:17pm | Post a Comment
Question:  Do you own a television?  How about a DVD player?

If you answered "yes" to both questions, you have no excuses.  At your earliest convenience (which is probably now if you're just fucking around and reading this), go get Metalocalypse Season One and WATCH IT!!  Seriously.  But finish reading this first.

Perhaps you've heard of a little thing called Adult Swim?  It's the late night cartoon extravaganza which airs on Cartoon Network.  Such shows as Robot Chicken, Moral Orel and Aqua Teen Hunger Force, oh, but to name a few, have quickly become some of my favorite cartoons ever.  Check out this clip from Season Two of Robot Chicken:


That's some funny shit there. 

But I am here today to tell you about Metalocalypse, the best fucking show on TV.  Premiering last year, Metalocalypse centers around the exploits of the biggest, most metalest band in the world, Dethklok


William Murderface plays bass.  "No one in the world is full of more hatred than him.  And he hates no one more than he hates himself."  Skwisgaar Skwigelf is from Sweden, and plays guitar.  He is the fasted Guitarist alive.  Nathan Explosion is the "brutal vocalist and lyrical visionary of DETHKLOK."  Pickles the Drummer "became the world's most celebrated drummer after fronting LA rock band "Snakes and Barrels."  Toki Wartooth also plays guitar, and he is the second fastest Guitarist alive.

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