Tron & The Last Starfighter at the New Beverly Cinema

Posted by phil blankenship, September 30, 2007 07:53pm | Post a Comment

7165 West Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036

one block west of La Brea
(323) 938-4038

All Shows are Double Features - cash only:
General $7.00
Student w/card $6.00
Seniors & Kids $4.00

Sun: 3:35 & 7:30; Mon/Tue: 7:30

Sun: 5:30 & 9:25; Mon/Tue: 9:25

Tell your friends !

Shriek Of The Mutilated

Posted by phil blankenship, September 30, 2007 07:42pm | Post a Comment

Lightning Video LA9028


Posted by Billyjam, September 30, 2007 05:38pm | Post a Comment

Check out this moving speech recently made by San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. He is joined by his wife Rana at his side, and he explains why he changed his mind on the issue of signing the resolution in support of gay marriage. This brave civic leader and former Chief of Police, who is clearly emotional throughout this September 19th speech, says that in coming to his decision had to, "Reflect and search my soul for the right thing to take a stand on the behalf of equality and social justice..." And he notes the fact that some of his friends, colleagues, and family members are gay and lesbian -- citing his eldest daughter, Lisa, as well as some of his staff members. Already, critics of Sanders, who is Republican, have bashed him, saying that he only made the decision because of his daughter and that he doesn't deserve kudos for being brave or for having integrity. But I disagree. I say he is truly practicing "family values" and I commend this man 100% and just wish we had more civic leaders and politicians who would even admit that they had made a wrong decision. YouknowwhatI'masayin? 


Posted by Billyjam, September 30, 2007 10:31am | Post a Comment

Had he lived, musician Marc Bolan would have celebrated his 60th birthday today. The UK artist who fronted T-Rex (originally known as Tyrannosaurus Rex in their pre glam days) scoremarc boland a ton of hits including the brilliant "20th Century Boy" (see video above), collaborated with David Bowie (he played guitar with Bowie and also shared the same producer -- Tony Visconti), and was arguably responsible for glam rock (thanks to T-Rex's Visconti produced sound, coupled with his unique & smart fashion sensibility including an affinity for wearing boas & sporting glitter onstage -- long before any other artists did). Bolan tragically died in a car crash at age 29 on September 16th, 1977. He was just two weeks shy of his 30th birthday. Today in the UK several low-key events are planned by fans of the late great artist, and in New York a concert event has been scheduled to celebrate his 60th birthday anniversary and will be attended by Tony Visconti, Patti Smith, Robert Gordan, his son Rolan Bolan and others.

But even before I realized that today would have marked Bolan's 60th birthday, he had been on my mind a bit this past week. Every time I hear Devendra Banhart's voice I can't help but think of Marc Bolan who he is more than a little reminiscent of. And in the past week on the radio I've been hearing a lot of Devendra Banhart because his recommended new album Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon (XL Recordings) dropped. Pick it up at Amoeba Music and while you are there pick up a T-Rex release if you don't already own one or more. Meantime, for more background reading on Marc Bolan check out this website or his fan club website, or do a YouTube search for such videos as "Jeepster" or "Get it On (Bang a Gong)."

More Etch-A-Sketch

Posted by Whitmore, September 30, 2007 09:02am | Post a Comment

Here's another look at Etch-A-Sketch wiz-artist
George Vlosich III,
and one of my  favorite
drawings by him.

Packin' It In

Posted by phil blankenship, September 29, 2007 08:34pm | Post a Comment

Virgin Vision #70009


Posted by Whitmore, September 29, 2007 05:11pm | Post a Comment

This boggles my mind. The art of George Vlosich III is something astounding, something baffling; I don’t understand why he’s chosen this medium! The artist Paul Klee was once asked about how he draws. He said he simply takes a line for a walk. The line George Vlosich takes for a walk goes on one insanely long nutty jaunt. And when you consider that all it takes is a single inadvertent bump for his art to be toast …

Vlosich uses an Etch-A-Sketch, and yes, it’s the same exact rectangular, red plastic framed model toy many of us had as kids. Each Vlosich Etch-A-Sketch piece takes considerable pre-planning and will typically take between 40 to 60 hours of patience, focus and attention-to-detail to complete. Remember, to draw with an Etch-A-Sketch, there is one line and only one line all the time. There’s little room for error, you can’t erase a mistake.

Probably the best thing I ever drew on one of those things was some pathetically lopsided cat. Vlosich produces refined images and precise portraiture and has since he was a kid. He started drawing when he was about ten years old. By the age of 18 he was being commissioned by the Topps Trading Card Company to produce a series of Etch-A-Sketch drawings as special inserts for their 1998 Topps Baseball trading card collection. He continues working today, still using the Etch-A-Sketch and it’s 5 x 7 screen, but Vlosich has also expanded his art to include painting and illustration, and has set up a design company specializing in advertising and logo design, sports memorabilia and apparel. Plus, he has a line of greeting cards. So next year for Christmas … someone send me one. I’d be damned pleased!

September 28, 2007

Posted by phil blankenship, September 29, 2007 03:08pm | Post a Comment


Posted by Billyjam, September 29, 2007 12:00pm | Post a Comment

I love when artists or activists, or a combination of both, take creative strides to transform common everyday urban areas into something unexpected, something new and useful or entertaining, such as this time last year when fifteen related organizations across San Francisco, including REBAR, transformed parking spaces all over the city into mini-parks for one day (Sept 21, 2006) named "PARK(ing) DAY."

You may remember seeing this series of public space installations around San Francisco last year either in person or in the news. Either way, take a few minutes to check the video above for a first hand look at this citywide form of peaceful protest that delighted surprised San Franciscans. Important to note was that this powerful civic statement was done without breaking any laws. Apparently once you pay for your parking space in SF County you can do with it as you please. You gotta love it!


Posted by Billyjam, September 28, 2007 05:39am | Post a Comment

I know you have your new solo album, Wanderlust, which is just out and available at Amoeba, but can you tell me how long you have been in the hip-hop game and can you break down your overall hip-hop history for those who don't know about you?

CELSIUS: I have been freestyling since '89. Around that time, and before we had real production, we used to make tape splice beats and rap over them on a Karaoke machine. I would hand out some of those tapes. Made my first real tape/Psychokinetics song in 1995 ("Losta Glue" Strength in Numbers). Since then, two tapes, three vinyl releases, various compilations, two Psychokinetics CDs, and now my first solo CD. I grew up in Alameda and have lived all over the Bay since. East Lake in Oakland is my home now.

AMOEBLOG: How much, in your eyes, has hip-hop changed? And how exactly has it changed-- especially from your perspective as a Bay Area artist?

CELSIUS: I guess the biggest thing I notice is that it's become a business, and more of a pop sensation now -- a money maker rather than a pervasive voice of the streets. The heart and soul that was so evident when I fell in love with the music is now very much subversive. Also, now, with the advent of the internet and home studios, it's changed because everyone is an eff'in rapper! It used to be an accomplishment to have a CD. Now everyone does and they all think they're dope. I guess it's just way more saturated now. Also, dudes can never have done a live show and have tons of fans because of the internet. I think that in a lot of ways, the quality has gone down, even though there is still greatness out there. You just have to look harder these days.

Continue reading...

morrissey! morrissey! morrissey!

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 27, 2007 11:51pm | Post a Comment
I don't even really know how to describe the feeling one gets after seeing a Morrissey show. You really have to be there to really understand it. It is a weird mix of feelings. After liking and listening to someone for 20 years or so you start to feel like you almost know them better than you know yourself. Morrissey is one of those artists that gets deep into his fans hearts and minds and stays there forever. He is like your best friend that never lets you down and is always there to get you through the rougher bits of life. All you needed was a Morrissey or Smiths album and you would be OK. I have seen him play many times over the years. But never in anywhere as small as the Fillmore. The Fillmore is a rather large venue. But for the Morrissey sized crowd, it is sort of small. It was perfect.

We actually got to the show early hoping we could get some of those seats up in the balcony. There is really only room for about 16 people up in the side balcony. So we were counting on the 100 or so people in front of us rushing to the stage downstairs. I ran up the stairs only to find the 2 people in front of me grabbing the last 2 seats. But then I noticed 2 large security types sitting in one of the sections. I asked them if they were going to stay there and they told me they were just checking out the crowd and would be leaving in a couple minutes. There are some crazy fanatical Morrissey fans and I think they were just trying to figure out the crowd for the night. They were probably counting the flowers and gifts in the audience and trying to figure out who would be the ones to try and jump on stage. So we got our seats and were actually going to eat at the show. I usually hate those people that eat at shows but in order to get there so early we sort of had to. But the amazing thing was that the whole menu was all vegetarian! Amazing! We vegetarians often have to search menus for the one garden burger or salad. Or maybe we can get the nachos with no meat. But there were like 10 things on the menu and they were all vegetarian. I was trying to figure out if Morrissey had requested some of the items or not. I got some potato latkes and they were delicious. I was just so excited I had to take the menu home with me. We hurried to finish our food before the show started though. I really didn't want to be one of those people that eats during a show. Even if it was just the opener who we had already seen two times before this.

I have to admit that the crowd in Pasadena was better than the S.F. crowd. Maybe just more vocal. But everyone was for sure excited to see Morrissey. And he actually seemed excited to be there for us. I was hoping the band would be in their classy suits like they had been in Pasadena. I had heard that on monday they were just wearing tshirts. Its nice to have a band that not only sounds amazing but looks amazing. Morrissey really still sounds amazing. It was really great to hear some different songs. "Stretch Out and Wait" and "Death of a Disco Dancer." I think most Morrissey fans know that if they try and get on stage they will get thrown out. That is a big threat to a Morrissey fan who wants to see the whole show. Especially now since he is playing 2 hour shows. I have been at a couple 1/2 hour Morrissey shows. Only one person tried to get up there and they were thrown out right away. Morrissey graciously took most of the gifts people gave him including an Oscar Wilde doll. But this one fan kept waving this painting in the air and he wouldn't take it. I started to feel bad for them. He finally grabbed it towards the end of the show. It was some drawing that they had done of a Morrissey album. The video footage that he has been showing before the shows is amazing. I really wish I could somehow find it and watch it again. He has great footage of James Dean, The New York Dolls, Brigitte Bardot and a bunch of random performers. It is sort of like a little glimpse into the inner workings of his brain.

This is what he played on wednesday night...

Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before / Last Of The Famous International Playboys / All You Need is Me / I Like You / That's How People Grow Up / The Boy With The Thorn In His Side / Why Don't You Find Out For Yourself? / The Loop / Good Looking Man About Town / Stretch Out And Wait / Irish Blood, English Heart / Let Me Kiss You / Sister, I'm A Poet / Death Of A Disco Dancer / I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris / Billy Budd / I Just Want To See The Boy Happy / Life Is a Pigsty / How Soon Is Now? // First Of The Gang To Die / Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want

A couple of my coworkers had never seen Morrissey before. It was nice to see some first timers enjoying the show just as I had back when I was 17. The feeling is amazing. It is like all you would imagine it to be and even better. Like what I imagine seeing Elvis would be like for the first time. Or someone like Janis Joplin. He commands the whole crowd and creates this amazing energy. So many of my good friends are big Morrissey fans. All of us Morrissey fans were drawn together in high school. And it still happens. It is this common bond that just brings us all together. It is not just the love of Morrissey and his music. But some understanding of being different or feeling different. It makes me happy to have Morrissey back in my life. I had not seen him in about 10 years. But now I have seen him 3 times in the last couple years. It is important to know that he still makes me feel the same exact way I felt the first time I saw him. I have changed and grown up a lot since that first time I saw him. But my love for him and his love for his fans is still as strong as ever.

The Employee Interview Part XI: Audra

Posted by Miss Ess, September 27, 2007 01:48pm | Post a Comment
4 Months Employment

Hi Audra!  So you are new here-- let's get to it.  What was going on at your parents' house when you were a kid in Fresno?

Thanks---now everyone will know I'm from Fresno! Ha ha. My parents' house was and still is a treasure trove of antiques and general garbage. Under their influence, I became a collector at an early age -- mostly in order to fit in. When my parents took me "garage sailing," I'd always pick up old Mad Magazines from the 50's and 60's. I had a pretty huge collection. I'd mostly stay inside and try to laugh at the jokes about Eisenhower. 

Did your sister have any influence on your musical taste?

Absolutely! She's eight years older than me and very musical, so she was all about playing her records. My first 7 or 8 years, it was Beatles non-stop, and then it was Bauhaus and Nina Hagen. I stole all of her records when she moved out. I was about 13 then and I started playing Bauhaus' In a Flat Field endlessly. It was also right around then that I discovered my grandmother's old '78s of jazz and klezmer recordings. Some how punk, death-rock, Judaica, and the 20's and 30's all got smooshed together in my world view.
I love it.  That makes total sense.  What was the first concert you ever went to?

The first big concert I ever saw was The Ramones when they played the Wilson Theater in Fresno. My sister took me and my friend Dory. Frank Black opened for them by playing three or four songs and then storming off. I remember being a little embarrassed for being a Fresnan, but then The Ramones came out and played about 500 songs in 45 minutes and it was the happiest moment of my life, which had only been about 14 years up to then. We talked about it for weeks. I couldn't hear for days. A guy I didn't know proposed to me at that show.

When did you discover the whole world of cult cinema and people like Russ Meyer and Herschell Gordon Lewis?

While growing, up everyone always told me that my family was like the Addams Family and after a while I started to believe it. Looking back, I can see why a weird old house full of weird old things and weird old people (hi mom and dad) may have played that way for the Joe-Average High School Kids in Fresno. As a result, I collected a lot of eccentric friends who weren't afraid to come over to the house. One of those kids was a real weirdo named Jason Chavez, who now happens to be a fellow Amoebite! He brought over the H.G. Lewis gore classic Blood Feast and I was hooked. I started decorating my room with fake body parts and all that. I was most impressed with the fearless low-budgetness of it all. One spends their whole life trying to be perfect for everyone, and then you see something like that and think, "Aha! The alternative to perfection is breathtaking!"  I didn't get into Russ Meyer until just a few years ago. I was always afraid of the big breasts, but I've leaned to embrace that side of exploitation now. Those chicks rule the films, not the other way around.

I think I was definitely not into the boob factor either but once I saw Faster Pussycat... I suddenly understood what was going on.  So when did you start making films yourself?

The first film I ever acted in was The Breathing Show, which has since been distributed by Film Threat.  I auditioned for it as a diversion from grad school, but putting in 12 hour days on a film set ended up being an experience that I really wanted more of. I acted in a few other full-length indie features including one with Udo Kier, but I've never been interested in finding an agent and pursuing the whole Hollywood audition scene. I've always considered myself more of a writer than performer, which is why I've started making films with my creative partners. The first project started about two years ago, mixing burlesque with sketch comedy. Since then, I've collaborated on several music videos and comedy pieces. AND now I am working on a screenplay, of course.

Even though you are new to Amoeba, you have lived in San Francisco a long time.  What's your favorite local band?

I have. I've lived here for about nine years, and I've been attached to a number of local bands, but I'd have to say that my favorite band now is The Flakes, but some would say that I'm biased.

So tell me about the burlesque scene here in San Francisco:  Where are the good places to go to see a show and what's the scene like in general?  How did you get involved?

I don't think I can speak for the whole's complicated and splintered, just like any scene. But I can tell you how I ended up there. I was looking for a way to synthesize my writing and my acting, and in 2004 my opportunity knocked: I was given one night a week to do whatever I wanted at Eli's Mile High Club. It was the perfect laboratory to work out my performance experiments. I planned a night of vaudeville style variety acts, burlesque dancers, and music, and named it after one of Buster Keaton's most unfunny movies, Speak Easily (only I called my night SpeakEasily). I needed a master of ceremonies to tie the whole evening together, but there just wasn't anyone out there doing exactly what it was that I was looking I made her up myself and called her Odessa Lil, the Mistress of Ceremonies. And now that's what I do in up, tell some jokes in my's all very glamorous. Odessa Lil is the detritus of my muddled upbringing: all antiquated borscht-belt humor, nervous sexuality, female anger, and put downs. She carries a riding crop to keep the performers in order but she might use it to scold the audience if they don't laugh at the right parts. As far as I know, she is the world's only stand-up domme.

What is your favorite ride at Disneyland?

I haven't been in over 17 years, but at the time it was definitely Pirates of the Caribbean and that underwater-mermaid-submarine one. Do you know which one I'm talking about? I like any ride that threatens to drown you in the name of entertainment. Otherwise, my memories of Disneyland are unfairly dominated by the Teacups and how I threw up again and again on them.

Do you have a musical guilty pleasure?

Too many! The top of my list is going to have to be a tie between Allan Sherman and Mickey Katz. I've learned over the years that no one besides me really wants to hear "Borscht Riders in the Sky" at max volume.

What are you listening to these days?

A lot of Japanese GS (Group Sound) of the 60's. Oh, and Neil Hamburger! Great Moments At Di Presas's Pizza House and Great Phone Calls are both truly...great!

What's your favorite thing about working at Amoeba?

Coming from working at a "major financial institution" to Amoeba has sort of been like being let free from jail, so I'm going to have to run the risk of sounding cheesy here and say: everything! The fact that I work with creative and talented people, can go downstairs and access massive amounts of pop culture, and can facilitate events that bring people enjoyment...all those things just thrill me every day.

Rory Storm

Posted by Whitmore, September 27, 2007 11:53am | Post a Comment

Rory Storm and the Hurricanes will probably always be remembered as the band Ringo Starr left, jumping ship to join that other Liverpoolian band; The Beatles. Wise move on Mr. Starkey’s part! But at one time Rory Storm and the Hurricanes were one of the most popular bands in the region, once placing fourth in Mersey Beats (a weekly magazine documenting the Liverpool scene) poll of favorite bands. The Hurricane’s recorded output was small, three tracks on two compilations:  “This Is Mersey Beat Vol. 1 and Vol. 2,” and a couple of singles: Dr. Feelgood b/w I Can Tell on Oriole Records in 1963 and America b/w Since You Broke My Heart released in November of 1964 on Parlophone.

Oddly enough, America was produced by Brian Epstein, manager of The Beatles, in his one and only crack at playing record producer. By 1967 the Hurricanes were breaking up, due in part to an ever changing line-up and their decision not to go with the eternally shifting musical plat du jour. Storm later became a disc jockey, a peculiar occupational choice since he spoke with a stutter.

Unfortunately, Rory Storm’s other claim to fame is a dark and murky tale. It concerns the mysterious circumstances surrounding his death on September 28th 1972 and the speculation that he and his mother died in a suicide pact together.

After his father’s death, Rory Storm returned home suffering from a chest infection. Reportedly he had trouble sleeping and wound up combining alcohol with sleeping pills. The next morning he was found dead in the house along with his mother. However, autopsy reports show that Storm hadn’t taken enough sleeping pills to kill himself.

I found this article by the founder and editor of Mersey Beat, Bill Harry. (He also worked as a publicist for bands like Led Zeppelin and Suzi Quatro)  Harry interviewed Rory Storm’s brother-in-law, Shane Fenton who said:  "Rory became very ill. He had a chest condition, which meant he couldn't breathe properly. He found it difficult to sleep so he'd take his pills with a drop of scotch, which doped him completely. At the post-mortem it was established that he hadn't taken enough pills to kill himself ... It had been nothing more than a case of trying to get some kip, but because he was so weak, his body couldn't handle it. He died in the night and his mother found him. She must have felt that she'd lost everything. I think she took an overdose, but I'm convinced that Rory didn't. When you've known somebody long enough, you know whether they're going to do it or not. The whole thing was an accident."

Terror On Alcatraz

Posted by phil blankenship, September 26, 2007 08:41pm | Post a Comment

Trans World Entertainment #0618

Celebrity Sighting: Morrissey

Posted by Miss Ess, September 26, 2007 02:08pm | Post a Comment
One of the fun parts about working at Amoeba is the occasional celebrity sighting.  I thought I should tell y'all that yesterday around 6ish we had an extra special shopper in the store:  none other than Morrissey!  He's playing a bunch of shows at the Fillmore so it makes sense that he would pop into Amoeba for a tic with his manager in tow. 

There are certain musicians (like Robert Plant or PJ Harvey or Bjork) who have the uncanny ability to bring every last employee out of the woodwork and out on the floor.  Morrissey was one of these. It seemed like all of us employees emerged to take a gander at the Moz. 

Morrissey was wearing a plaid tweed cap.  He's a little shorter than I expected him to be, but that doesn't mean he was short!  He just always seems to be towering when I see him on TV.  He's still maybe just under 6 ft, but I always thought he was more like 6'4.   He was definitely spending time in the Celtic section!  And I wonder if it is revealing too much to say that he checked out his own section of the store too! 

From what other employees have been telling me, the Fillmore shows this week have been beyond stellar.  He's coming for you next, Los Angeles!  Check out his upcoming tour dates here.



Posted by Billyjam, September 26, 2007 08:27am | Post a Comment

This is the second half of the two-part series of photos taken in Oakland, CA (aka "the O"), shot over the past few months. Like the previous set, most of these are simply shots of random objects and things that grabbed my attention at the moment I snapped them. One of the reasons I love taking photos is that it offers me fresh new insights into everyday objects and things. Whenever I look back at a photograph of some scene or image, no matter how commonplace or how many countless times I might have walked by and noticed it with the naked eye, I always manage to view it in a whole fresh new light after capturing it on camera. And so, for me, taking pictures is not just a fun hobby but it also enables me to start looking at life's little things, and hence life itself, in a whole new light.

These photos were taken in and around downtown Oakland and near the lake (Merritt), including the above shot of the beautiful outdoor ceiling near the ticket booth of the Grand Lake Theater. Not only is the Grand Lake an absolutely beautiful structure both inside and out, complete with its own mighty Wurlitzer organ, but its politically aware owners regularly post some topical and relevant message on the marquee outside in letters large enough to see as you drive by on 580. Meanwhile, below, among the dozen more photos is another one of the Grand Lake's outside sign. Also in the pictures below is a shot of the sign above the nearby legendary Oakland greasy burger spot -- just down the block a bit from the Grand Lake Theater-- Kwik Way, which some longtime music fans might remember was also the name of a short-lived Bay Area mid-eighties punk band who jacked not just the name but also the logo of the take-out only eatery as the cover art for their sole album back in the day. 

Continue reading...

Split Infinity

Posted by phil blankenship, September 25, 2007 09:06pm | Post a Comment

Feature Films For Families

Sorcerer, Hatchback and Windsurf

Posted by Mike Battaglia, September 25, 2007 03:25pm | Post a Comment

Little did I know that the amazing 12" by Sorcerer that I had picked up earlier this year was by an artist living in my backyard! I had been initially attracted to "Surfing At Midnight" due to its fantastic Prins Thomas remix and the fact that it was on white-hot UK label Tirk (aka the folks behind the highly revered Nuphonic imprint), but I was further intrigued - who is/are Sorcerer? Well, it didn't take too long to find out.

Sorcerer's debut full-length White Magic was released in August and the SF Electronica section has been singing its praises ever since. The album is chock-full of sun-drenched beach vibes, slow tempos, wistful guitar melodies and gentle, rolling beats - basically everything I'm feeling in 2007. I finally met Daniel Judd - Mr. Sorcerer himself - recently, at Prins Thomas' SF debut earlier this month and got to tell him how great I thought his music was. He's a chill, friendly guy, not unlike his music unsurprisingly, and he introduced me to his partner Sam Grawe aka Hatchback, who recently released a fantastic 12" on SoCal boutique label Sentrall Records, and who Daniel collaborates with as Windsurf. Not long after we exchanged pleasantries, Thomas played a tune that was so great I *had* to find out what it was. Lo and behold - it was Windsurf's remix of "Us vs Them" by LCD Soundsystem, coming out soon on the Bunch of Stuff EP on DFA. Awestruck, I walked over to Sam and Daniel. "This is your tune?!", I gushed. They confirmed it, and it was then I knew I had a new favorite artist. I invited the duo to play a DJ set for Mandala, Amoeba SF's weekly DJ series, which they will be doing this Friday at 7pm. In the meantime, I asked them some questions via email; here are their responses:

MB: Okay, let's start at the beginning. Who are you guys and what have you done before Sorcerer/Hatchback/Windsurf? Are you studio heads or instrumentalists? What do you play?

Sam Grawe/Hatchback: I've been in bands and making computer music since I was in high school, but I never really knew anyone who put records out or how to put a record out, so I did it for myself mostly, first on tapes, and then to cd-r's. A few years ago, Dan, who played guitar and wrote songs for Call & Response (and was also in bands through-out high school and college), and I started jamming together on Saturday mornings and we liked the vibe of the tunes, which was different from the stuff we made on our own. Just stuff that was fun to listen to on BART or in the car. Eventually that evolved into a live show we did under the name Brown Rainbow with our bass-playing pal Adrian Meyer Dentzel (who subsequently moved back to Santa Barbara). We played our first gig on a sidewalk in Sacramento in 2004. In 2005 we played a bunch of shows around town, mostly with our friends Run_Return. Somewhere around that time, I think it was early 2006, the idea for Windsurf was born—not as in, we're going to rule the world—but it gave our Saturday jams a little more direction.

Dan plays guitars, keyboards, and MPC. I play keyboards and do the vocals. Usually a song starts with a beat or a loop or something one of us has cooked up on our own and we just jam until we hit something we like. We both have Logic and share the nerdy production responsibilities. 

MB: Are you both Bay Area natives? Your music has a particular sun-drenched vibe to it, is that a result of a California upbringing? 

SG: Dan grew up in Oakland and then later moved down to Santa Barbara. After college he made his way back up to the bay. I think you can hear the California in his tunes. I grew up in Washington DC and India, and traveled a lot when I was a kid. We used to go to vacation in Goa in the early 1980's... I never heard Goa Trance though. I think you can hear the fact that I listened to too much prog rock in high school in my tunes.

MB: How did the two of you meet, was it love at first sight?

SG: We keep it professional. There's also a no touching rule... we once reached to tweak the same knob at once and it was totally awkward.

We met through our friend Simone Rubi, the keyboardist in Call & Response. I think I first hung out with Dan the night they accepted a CMJ Award in Oakland. He played some Sorcerer tunes at the afterparty, I played him some Boards of Canada style thing I had been messing about with. I think we said we should meet up and jam sometime. 

MB: What influences you guys? Musically? Non-musically? What current ("new") music is working for you?


MB: Can you give me a chart with your top five songs of all time?

SG: Africa - Toto
Why I Came To California - Leon Ware
Give It Up For Love - Ned Doheny
Worry Beads - Haruomi Hosono
Half Forgotten Daydreams - John Cameron

MB: If you could collaborate with one artist, who would it be? Any special circumstances (like, say, live at the Acropolis)?

SG: We hope Ned Doheny will bust some vocals for us one day. No special circumstances, but it would probably only happen if we came to Malibu.

MB: Your sound seems to have found a foothold in this burgeoning Cosmic Disco/Balearic scene. Do you feel any affinity towards it, or do you think you're being mis-categorized? If so, what *is* the Windsurf ethos? 

SG: It's cool that people have actually found a way to categorize our music, but we certainly didn't set out to make Balearic or cosmic disco. 

The Windsurf ethos is to treat each song like its own universe with its own set of rules. For the next song you have to start over. That sort of defies categorization.

MB: Who would you say are your contemporaries, ie, artists you would say share a similar vibe to what you're doing? 

SG: There are the Europeans and then our Pacifica crew (as in the genre, not the city)...

over there you've got Lindstrøm & Prins Thomas, Studio, Aeroplane, Smith & Mudd, White Light Circus

over here you've got The Beat Broker, Rollmottle, Project Sandro, Mardu

MB: What's your view on technology in music? A means to an end, or The End?

SG: We wouldn't be making music if it weren't for the availability of quality home recording devices, so technology is amazing. but we also think its important to leave some humanity in the music... mistakes, live takes, analog bloops and bleeps, etc. Sometimes its cool just to use the computer like you would an 8-track, but other times its cool to dig into some crazy plug-in synth. All in all its just about making what sounds good.

MB: You've got records coming out on Prins Thomas' new label Internasjonal, and have had releases on influential labels like Tirk and Sentrall. How were those connections made?

SG: Dan and I have been posting our "track of the day" over on for a long time. Just sharing music with friends. That pretty much used to be our entire forum for releasing Hatchback and Sorcerer and eventually Windsurf into the world. People seemed to be into it (and we had no idea how many lurkers are on that site) and eventually they started contacting us, well Dan. Tirk asked Prins Thomas to do a Sorcerer remix while THISISNOTANEXIT asked Prins to do a Hatchback remix. Prins put together the dots and found out about Windsurf and asked if he could put out the EP and then finally a full-length.

MB: How come all these fancy-schmancy Scandinavian and European DJ's know all about you, yet most San Franciscans would be hard pressed to even recognize your names? 

SG: Isn't Train from San Francisco? There you go....

MB: Are you guys hippies?

SG: No. We have jobs.

MB: It seems there are a ton of rock/electronic fusion bands/acts around these days, but rarely does it mesh so well as with what you guys are doing. why is that?

SG: We've just been doing our thing for ourselves and just making music that sounds good to us. We listen to music all the time and we're pretty critical of it, not in a "that sucks" way, but in a way that when it comes to making a new track you push for something you haven't heard before. We also listen to a lot of things outside of one genre. I like Simon & Garfunkel, Dan likes MF Doom, and it all adds up to something unique. We're not listening to LCD Soundsystem or !!! and thinking, "ok, we need to get a chunky rhythm guitar and cowbell."

MB: So what's next? Any releases coming up from either of you guys? What should we be looking for in the shop, and when? 

SG: Sorcerer's "Surfing at Midnight" is on the new Milky Disco compilation on Lo Recordings. He's also got two 12" on Tirk in addition to the full length. Hatchback has a 3-track 12" EP on Sentrall, and "White Diamond" b/w Prins Thomas' mix is coming out next week from THISISNOTANEXIT records. Faze Action just remixed the follow up to that which is called "Jetlag," which is going to come out in February of 2008.

In Windsurf news the LCD Soundsystem remix we did is available from iTunes and is supposedly coming out on vinyl and maybe CD on October 22.

From Internasjonal, the Windsurf EP should be coming out on vinyl any minute now. And we're just putting the finishing touches on our full length record.

Thats about it for the moment, but we'd like to do more remixes.

MB: Any plans to take it live?

SG: Once we finish the record. Dan is trying to find a MIDI guitar.

MB: Well, thanks for your time!

Windsurf DJ live at Amoeba SF this Friday the 28th at 7pm, and it's FREE! Come down and check it out. Want to hear some sound samples? Many of the links above feature playable audio, just get to clicking!
Hatchback's "White Diamond" 12" with an amazing 18-minute Prins Thomas remix is available the week of October 1st and his killer "Carefree Highway" 12" on Sentrall is out now. Sorcerer's White Magic album is out and in stock now.

(In which Job is born again.)

Posted by Job O Brother, September 25, 2007 11:31am | Post a Comment

[Insert cuss word here.] I forgot to buy cone filters. Now, instead of waking up with a fresh cup of organic Sumatra, I’m waking up with a cold can of diet Coke. This is low. I really should just crawl back into bed and start over tomorrow. Of course, if I did that, I still wouldn’t have any cone filters.

But maybe some kind soul would read this blog and, as I hid beneath my comforter, re-enacting the third trimester of my mummy’s gestation process, they would come to my apartment and gift me some cone filters. Then I could safely slip out of the vaginal opening I’d have reconstructed using tin-foil, Ikea tumblers and cat fur, and greet the world as a newborn baby. That would be sweet. I’d wipe off the after-birth, put on a fresh pair of diapers, sip on a yummy mug of coffee and wait for my cord-stump to fall off.

"It's Rufus with an 'R' not Liza with a 'Z'...!"

I saw Rufus Wainwright at the Hollywood Bowl Sunday night. I went there with my gorgeous pal, Carrie. We walked there from my apartment, an act which our LA-native friends thought akin to The Donner Party.

“You’re walking from Sunset Boulevard to the Hollywood Bowl?!” Cameron gasped, “That’s uphill!”

“It’s not uphill,” I answered, “It’s up slant.”

As Carrie and I neared the famed half-shell, I started to worry that we were there on the wrong night, and had actually arrived for a Bear Convention. I’ve never seen so many burly men in designer jeans.

(For those of you who don’t know what a “bear” is, I’ll explain:

Bears (family Ursidae) are large mammals in the order Homocarnivora. Bears are classified as homocaniforms, or doglike homocarnivorans, with the otterpinnipeds being their closest living relatives. Although there are only eight living species of bear, they are widespread, appearing in a wide variety of habitats throughout the Northern Hemisphere and partially in the Southern Hemisphere.

Common characteristics of modern bears include a large body with stocky legs, a long snout, shaggy hair, paws with five nonretractile claws, devout love for Liza Minnelli, and a short tail. While the polar bear is mostly carnivorous and the giant panda feeds almost entirely on bamboo, the remaining six species are omnivorous, with largely varied diets including both plants and animals and cheap beer.

With the exceptions of courting individuals and twinks with their young, bears are typically solitary animals. They are sometimes diurnal, but are usually active during the night (nocturnal) or twilight (crepuscular). Bears are aided by an excellent sense of smell, and despite their heavy build and awkward gait, they can run quickly and be adept climbers and swimmers. Bears use shelters such as caves and burrows and bars in West Hollywood as their dens, which are occupied by most species during the winter for a long period of sleep similar to hibernation.

Bears have been hunted since prehistoric times for their meat and fur. To this day, they play a prominent role in the arts, mythology, and other cultural aspects of various human societies. In modern times, bears have been exploited through the encroachment of their habitats and the illegal trade of bears and bear parts, including the Asian bile bear market. The IUCN lists six bear species as vulnerable or endangered, and even "least concern" species such as the brown bear are at risk of extirpation in certain countries. The poaching and international trade of these most threatened populations is prohibited, but still ongoing, particularly by Republican conservatives.)

Now comes a confession: I’ve already written about the show itself, for The Advocate. You can read the article here. One thing The Advocate doesn’t have, however, are these rad pix of Carrie eating her dinner of Trader Joe’s low-fat spinach pizzas and Pinot Grigio…

Amoeba exclusive photos! You saw it here first!

I introduced Carrie to these pizzas and she took to them like a fish to water. They're delicious! Sadly, they are not (yet) available at Amoeba Music. As she was macking on them, a strange look came over her face. She looked down at the quarter-piece of crust still in her hand and picked at it with her finger.

"Oh..." she said, then scrapped off the remnants of a sheet of greasy wax paper, which separates each individual slice. "Wax paper. I didn't realize..."

She looked at me. There was a moment of concern.

"I've eaten almost an entire piece of wax paper," she said, then suddenly smiled.

See? You can eat these Trader Joe pizzas with the wax paper and still enjoy it. They're that good! (Although Carrie admitted they were even better after removing them.)

Also, I feel I should explain some of the comments left by well-wishers on my previous blog entry. They come from readers of a different article I wrote for The Advocate which has nothing to do with Glenn Close getting her groove on. Thanks to the wonders of link technology, however, they found themselves at the Amoeblog and the rest is history.

Now I’m going to blast some Suzi Quatro and give myself a sponge bath. Don’t look.


Posted by Billyjam, September 25, 2007 07:10am | Post a Comment

Since I (finally) got a new scanner, I am now able to go back into my Bay Area Hip-Hop Archives and start scanning and posting all of these wonderful slices of music history from the last 20+ years in Yay Area rap. Ranging from 1984 to 1996, these are some show fliers plus a ticket stub (above) which is from the first time I went to check out the Egyptian Lover and Uncle Jamm's Army * -- the LA turntable army (who were really hot at the time - especially the Egyptian Lover, whose single "Egypt Egypt"/"What is A DJ If He Can't Scratch" ruled at the time) -- when they came north to the Bay Area to do a show at the cavernous Richmond Auditorium. Rap shows, especially large scale ones, were still a relatively new phenomenon in the Bay Area in '84. It would still be a couple of years before the Fresh Fest (Whodini, Kuritis Blow, Fat Boys, etc) happened and rolled through Oakland (and that was a totally exciting new experience, to check out a large scale hip-hop festival with all of these major acts in the one place!). But in the few years before '84 I only remember going to the very, very occasional rap show, such as Grand Master Flash & Furious Five at the Berkeley Square, which was in '82 I believe, But I do clearly remember some very vocally disgruntled club goers at the long defunct University Ave venue complaining that they had forked over their money but there was no band -- just a DJ and bunch of rappers on mics (twas early days for sure).

Anyway Uncle Jamm's Army would return to the East Bay within a month that summer of '84 when they performed with Run DMC at the Oakland Convention Center (see flyer below and note its very basic layout -- this was in the pre-photoshop days). Also note the low ticket price of only $6.50 for each show.  The other Bay Area rap concert fliers below include one or two that actually never happened-- like the 1994 Music People / In-A-Minute showcase, scheduled during the annual music convention that always attracted a lot of hip-hop acts from all over the country, the Gavin Seminar in San Francisco. That show fell through at the last minute due to the club not being able to get insurance (a common problem with rap shows then and now).  And with some of these shows, the venue is long gone, such as the Omni ("the Bay Area's largest showcase nightclub" on Shattuck at 48th near Telegraph) in North Oakland where Young MC headlined in September 1989 with Bay Area artists Paris, APG Crew, Captial Tax, and Step G with MC Sirgeo all opening for him. Another time within about a year of that show, Too $hort headlined at the Omni -- doing his typical no-frills, straight up rap concert. (This was a time when another Oakland rapper, MC Hammer's stage shows were huge choreographed events -- Too $hort was the proud antitheses of that.)

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9/25 new releases...jose gonzalez...mum...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 24, 2007 11:05pm | Post a Comment
Out today is the beautiful new album from Jose Gonzalez. Mute reissued his first album "Veneer" about 2 years ago. So this is his second album. But his first real album for Mute. It is called "In Our Nature." I will admit that Jose Gonzalez is not for everybody. I was not even sure if he was for me for a long time. It took me a little while to give in to Mr. Gonzalez. Most of his popularity initially came from his brilliant little cover of "Heartbeats" by the Knife. It was used in a commercial that everybody seemed to watch on the internet.  I am not sure if the commercial sold more Sony Bravia LCD TVs. But it for sure sold thousands more copies of his debut album "Veneer." I think I actually heard his version of this song before I even heard The Knife. I would eventually become obsessed with their version as well which was on their album "Deep Cuts." Jose and The Knife share more than just this great song. They both come from the land of Sweden.

 Jose Gonzalez was born in Sweden but his parents are from Argentina. His music doesn't really sound like the mix of ABBA and Astor Piazzolla that you might expect from a Swedish Argentine. It has more of a minimal Nick Drake sound. Beautiful little minimal indie rock with just mostly guitar and vocals. He is sort of known for his covers and performs many of them live. His version of "Love Will Tear Us Apart" is almost as magical as the original. He also has a cover on the new album which he has already been playing live for the last couple of years. The song is "Teardrop" by Massive Attack. It took me a while to actually even recognize it. Which is very impressive since it happens to be one the most overplayed songs of all time. The Massive Attack version with vocals from the wonderful Elizabeth Fraser of the Cocteau Twins is fantastic. But I have heard that song so many times over the years that I had pretty much decided that I never needed to hear it again. And I also love Cocteau Twins more than anything. So it is a hard original to compete with. But his version is just as brilliant but completely different.  The whole album is  absolutely beautiful. It is simple and uncomplicated. Just a great album. Jose Gonzalez is actually one of those people that deserves any fame that he has acquired over the last couple of years. I just hope all those fans he got from that commercial don't forget about him. He has managed to create a second album that is just as good as the first. I am going to go listen to it again right now. And unlike that original Massive Attack song that he covers, I am not even close to being over Jose Gonzalez.

Also out today is the new album "Go Go Smear the Poison Ivy" by Mum. Mum come from the land of Iceland. The land that brought us Bjork and Sigur Ros. Mum is pronounced like "moom" and not just like the sort of mum that means mom. They remind me and probably remind you as well of Sigur Ros.  However, they are much more glitchy and cute than Sigur Ros. They have been a part of the IDM music scene for a while now and have had albums on Morr Music and Fat Cat. This is their fourth album. Just imagine a band like B. Fleischmann or Manual mixed with a more vocal band like Sigur Ros or Mew or even the Polyphonic Spree. A little bit dreampop and shoegaze mixed with some experimental intelligent dance music. It is a pretty fun album. Some of the songs are more instrumental and electronic. Reminding me of Aphex Twin every once in a while. But many of the songs actually use real instruments and feature vocals. Every once in a while it sounds like a little baby has got a hold of the controls and is putting his little baby voice into the songs. The vocals do remind me a bit of the child like vocals on albums from bands like The Cranes and Mew. Before this new album came "Summer Make Good" in 2004. They put out "Finally We Are No One" in 2002 and "Yesterday was Dramatic" in 2000. This new album could easily be a soundtrack to some weird experimental movie. The songs at times sound like weird songs from horror movies mixed with some weird children's folk album. The song "Guilty Rocks" is one of my favorites on the new album. It sort of reminds me of the opening song in Rosemary's Baby. Just not as haunting and scary. Maybe imagine what a fun horror movie would sound like. The album is great and interesting because it takes you on a sort of musical journey. It is at times ethereal and dreamy and at other times more playful. The album is a fun little adventure. But sort of like Jose Gonzalez it is not meant for everyone. But it is definitely meant for me.

also out today...

"Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon" by Devendra Banhart

"Just Like You" by Keyshia Cole

"Dethalbum" by Dethklok

"In the Marshes" by For Against

"Future Future Future Perfect" by Freezepop

"The Shepherd's Dog" by Iron & Wine

"Funk This" by Chaka Khan

"The Scene of the Crime" by Bettye Lavette

"Shocking Pinks" by the Shocking Pinks

"In Our Bedroom After the War" by Stars

"Two Gallants" by Two Gallants


Posted by phil blankenship, September 24, 2007 10:18pm | Post a Comment

RCA / Columbia Pictures Home Video 60644

Goodbye Quetzal - At Least For Now

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, September 24, 2007 01:14am | Post a Comment

This was in the L.A. Times on September 8th. Another severely underrated Los Angeles band is gone, at least for now… I was fortunate to catch their last show at Macarthur Park before they quit. It was a good little fix until their eventual return. If you haven’t bought a copy of their last album, Die Cowboy Die, you are missing out on an East L.A. classic and one of the best albums that came out in 2006.


Quetzal breaks for a busy sabbatical
By Agustin Gurza, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

Quetzal, the ground-breaking Chicano fusion band from East L.A., is on sabbatical. Bandleader Quetzal Flores and his wife, lead singer Martha González, left last week for a nine-month sojourn in Veracruz to study the work of women in son jarocho, the fabulous, Afro-folkloric music that has long inspired them. This is primarily Martha's mission. She received a Fulbright fellowship for the trip, which could yield a CD of original works by the women of the fandango scene. Afterward, she and Quetzal, with their toddler Sandino, are headed to Seattle, where she plans to enroll in the doctoral program for women's studies at the University of Washington.

Quetzal will be busy too. He plans to form an acoustic quartet with fellow guitarist Ramon Gutierrez-Hernandez of Son de Madera, one of Mexico's best new son jarocho groups. And he continues to produce for other bands, including the recently released CD by San Diego's B-Side Players and the upcoming album by L.A.'s Monte Carlo 76, with new vocalist Marisa Ronstadt.

"Sometimes when organizers or artists are in the trenches, you need a moment to reflect and reassess," said Quetzal, taking a break from packing at his Highland Park home. "But we're going to come back even harder."



Posted by Billyjam, September 24, 2007 01:13am | Post a Comment


Harley, a Black Labrador Retriever, is almost four years old. She is best pals with Lori, who works as a manager at the Berkeley Amoeba Music store.  The two start every day by going up to Lake Chabot for an invigorating morning walk/run. "My other dog Cody passed away and someone who worked at Amoeba put me in touch with someone whose dog had just had a litter. All seven of the litter were girls," recalled Lori. "Organic dairy farmers out in Cloverdale  -- so we went out there and saw her at 4 weeks and then at again at 7 weeks old when we picked her up." Lori notes that Harley has a good "dog friend" in a fellow AmoebaDog. "I share an office with Naomi and Harley and Liebchen (scroll down to see her profile) get along really well together," she smiled. 


Kahless (rhymes with Payless) is an Australian Cattle Dog and is the best friend of Paul Vasquez, who works in the world music section of Amoeba Music Hollywood. Recently Paul recalled that fateful day three years ago when he and Kahless first crossed paths. "It was one afternoon in April 2004; I was looking for a dog at the animal shelter in Pomona. I looked at plenty of animals, but none of them really caught my eye. On the way out, I saw a picture on a bulletin board of a dog with beautiful eyes and super crazy spots. I looked to my left, and there he was in his little cell. I went to him and knelt down to see his reaction. No barking, no weirdness, just eye contact and a wagging tail. All of a sudden he put one of his paws through the bars onto my knee. That was it. I chose him and he chose me. We've been best friends ever since."

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A Night Of Kinky Fun - Gil Cerezo @ Nativo!

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, September 24, 2007 12:08am | Post a Comment

Gil Cerezo, lead singer from the band Kinky, was the guest DJ at Nativo last Wednesday. After another great set from Mexican Dubweiser, Gil went on in front of a somewhat pensive crowd of Kinky fans and just tore it up. It was a straight-up Hollywood style party set, complete with mash-ups, classic party rock songs, Latin pop and techno-house blended with such ease. Soon people lost their inhibitions and filled the dance floor. I’m not a fan of 80’s music at all, but when Gil mixed the 80's Latin pop group Flans into Quiet Riot, he had me shaking my head in disgust yet still dancing. That’s a sign of great DJ -- someone who can get you up to dance to music you don't really like! Gil (pronounced Hill) had fun and plans do another set in the future at Nativo, so stay tuned! Nativo happens every Wednesday @ Zanzibar in Santa Monica, with resident DJs Sloe Poke, Mando Fever, Mexican Dubweiser and yours truly, Gomez Comes Alive!


Posted by phil blankenship, September 23, 2007 07:53pm | Post a Comment

Embassy Home Entertainment 4017


Posted by Billyjam, September 23, 2007 11:42am | Post a Comment
This short European television commercial with music by the Outthere Brothers (which, be forewarned, just may be offensive to some sensitive ears) was made to advertise a course in learning English as a second language.


Marcel Marceau

Posted by Whitmore, September 23, 2007 08:28am | Post a Comment

Diary of a Stewardess

Posted by Whitmore, September 22, 2007 10:55pm | Post a Comment

Only in the middle of Hollywood would you ever find a 7 inch record like this. Yeah it’s a theme song from a soundtrack, but not from your typical movie, this 45 pop record is from the soundtrack of a soft-core pornography hit called "Diary of a Stewardess." Imagine the treasures we could have unearthed if only Amoeba hadn’t opened its doors on Sunset Blvd, but instead, opened for business deep in the heart of the America’s well lit, scantily clad, steady-cam ready, zoom in, action, work-it-a-little-slower-honey, bedroom community known as the San Fernando Valley.

Released in 1972 and sung by Bob Grabeau, Diary of a Stewardess b/w Fasten Your Set Belts (released on Segue Records and based in Canoga Park!) is an actual artifact of the valley’s 1970’s pop-porn culture, a culture that resurfaced with the 1997 film “Boogie Nights.”  I bet many of our Dads saw “Stewardess” in a triple bill with “Deep Throat” and “Behind the Green Door.” Okay … maybe not your Dad …

The song Diary of a Stewardess was co-written by the legendary Buddy Feyne, celebrated for his swinging hep-cat lyrics and penning some of the biggest hits of the '30s and '40s, including Tuxedo Junction, Jersey Bounce and After Hours. During his career he wrote more than 400 songs collaborating with legends like Raymond Scott, Al Sherman, Avery Parrish, Louis Jordan, Erskine Hawkins, Lester Young, and even Milton Berle. Feyne’s compositions might even be considered essential to the hipsters of that era, actually any era, as a matter of fact: Bee Bop On the Range, After School Swing Session, Aristocrat of Harlem, Cream Cheese and Jelly, She Works In Men's Pajamas - the list goes on and on.  Feyne also wrote the original lyrics to something called Dolomite that a certain bon vivant named Rudy Ray Moore re-navigated into his own signature song.

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The Power of Ninjitsu

Posted by phil blankenship, September 22, 2007 07:41pm | Post a Comment

Imperial Entertainment Corp 1106

The Love Boat - Soon We'll Be Making Another Run

Posted by Miss Ess, September 22, 2007 02:35pm | Post a Comment
This might be exciting news for others beyond myself, my grandmother and Brad:

It's now being reported that The Love Boat will be released on DVD next year, possibly in the spring!! Now through the winter we'll have thoughts of those gorgeous warmer climes of the Love Boat's destinations to keep our brains toasty with anticipation! 

I have so many fond memories of watching The Love Boat!  It really is one of the greatest ideas for a TV show ever.  Only a genius like Aaron Spelling could essentially give us a floating and neatly packaged visual romance novel every week.  There's so much to see-- Skin! Beaches! Glitz! Glamour! Scandals and mishaps galore!  Gopher making a fool of himself!  Isaac giving "The Point" at the beginning of each episode!  It makes me happy just to think of it all, and to own an entire season and have it at arm's reach at any given moment, it's almost too much for me!  The concept works particularly well because there are your favorite crew characters who appear each week and then there's the constantly revolving cast of vacationers who can interact with the regular cast or have their own storylines....and then there's all that scenery!  And room for celebrity guest appearances!  Oh I love it so!

It's taken so long for this to arrive on DVD and I am not sure why-- I feel like whoever in charge is finally waking up to realize the public is hungry for the kind of grand escapism The Love Boat offers.  Maybe they had to get clearance from Charo and Carol Channing and Florence Henderson and all those other guest stars who made so many appearances on the program.  Who knows.  But thank god almighty, our day is almost here, fellow Love Boat fans!

Entertainment Weekly recently ran this fantastic and dishy article with the cast of Love Boat.  There's so much to learn about behind the scenes action--  The Turkish Cab Balloon Incident! Cynthia Lauren Tewes' (Julie) coke habit, hallucinations, and subsequent firing!  Bernie Kopell's  (Dr. Bricker) oozing sex appeal!  The truth at last. I think this article is a must read.

And here's the intro, just to further whet your appetite:

Looks like this was from a fashion oriented episode, with guest stars like Halston, Gloria Vanderbilt and others.  Who else would bring them to us but The Love Boat?  Poor Elke Sommer is looking rough though!  And Julie is looking cokehead skinny.......


Posted by Billyjam, September 22, 2007 09:30am | Post a Comment

I love Oakland, CA and I have always enjoyed taking random pictures around and about "the Town," as it is fondly known by locals. These photos, the first in a two-part series (shot over the past few months),  were all taken within about a mile radius of downtown Oakland. Thematically disconnected, they are merely various images that appealed to my personal sensibilities, such as the above shot in Chinatown Oakland one Sunday morning when it is a-bustle with folks grabbing dim sum from the numerous eateries dotted throughout the area (Well worth a visit if you've never been. Meanwhile, just down the street on Broadway, at Jack London Sq, is the farmer's market, although the Saturday-only farmers market over near Grand Lake Theater is a much more fun market, in my opinion). The above shot is about the only one of a person I took, as I gravitate more towards inanimate objects. Plus, I don't like to invade peoples' personal space. And if I ever do take pics of people, I always ask their permission first -- as with the gentleman above.

The shot below is by Lake Merritt, and while art-cars might be a common sight around the Bay Area, it is only when you travel outside to other states/places you realize that it is not quite so commonplace to see such intricately decorated vehicles. I have spent many hours just stopping to admire and study the countless art-cars I have seen around Oakland and Berkeley. They're amazing. I love the detail and the creative use of various found and recycled objects (including lots of toys) that people put into decorating these cars and I admire their makers for not wanting to adhere to the strict, bland uniformity of merely leaving their cars exactly as they rolled off the assembly line. These are truly unique vehicles. The picture below with the koala bear is the roof of this particular art car while the second last picture is of the hood of this same auto, which is just so creatively and lovingly decorated with keys, beads, and cocktail drink stirrers -- all cemented into a perfect form and design. 

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This Week At The New Beverly - Lynch, Kovacs, Van Sant !

Posted by phil blankenship, September 21, 2007 08:20pm | Post a Comment
All right Lynch fans, its time for 


Tonight, Friday the 21st and Tomorrow Saturday the 22nd at 7:30 both nights (with an 
additional double feature on Saturday at 2:30)

All the cool kids will be there!! :)

7165 Beverly Blvd
between la brea and fairfax

$7 general admission
$6 students (with ID)
$4 seniors

Cheap concessions and friendly employees!!

coming up this week at the new bev we have 

WHATS UP DOC & PAPER MOON on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday at 7:30, with an 
additional double feature on Sunday at 3:40

MALA NOCHE & MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO Wednesday-Saturday at 7:30 with an additional 
double feature on Saturday at 3:50


Posted by Billyjam, September 21, 2007 05:24am | Post a Comment
sex pistols
As recently reported by the BBC, the remaining members of the Sex Pistols (John "Johnny Rotten" Lydon, Steve Jones, and Paul Cook) will reunite for a concert in London, England on November 8th this year to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of their punk rock classic and modern music history-changing 1977 album Never Mind The Bollocks....Here's the Sex Pistols. This will not be the first time the band has reformed since its abrupt break up in January 1978 in San Francisco at the end of their one and only US tour, or since Sid Vicious died of a drug overdose in 1979.

Eleven years ago the Sex Pistols reformed for the 1996 Filthy Lucre Tour, which included dates in the States, Europe, Australia, Japan, and other countries. They also reformed and performed in 2002, which coincidentally was the year of the Queen's Golden Jubilee. The makers of "God Save The Queen" performed that year at the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre in London. And most recently, the Sex Pistols performed in 2003 when they did a brief 3-week tour of the US which they fondly titled the Piss Off Tour.

There are numerous books and chapters in books written about the Pistols. In terms of video footage, the best full-length piece is The Filth and the Fury, the Julien Temple 2000 documentary which you should find on DVD at Amoeba Music. It's really amazingly engaging and educational and well worth owning. Of the countless controversial interviews that the Sex Pistols, and in particular the brilliant John Lydon, have conducted, two are included below. These are the infamous British Thames TV interview with Bill Grundy back in Januray 1976 (that includes a very young Siouxse Sioux), and the more recent John Lydon interview from last year with Jimmy Kimmel in which he tells it like it is in reaction to being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Lydon and,the other two surviving members promptly turned the offer down, vocally dismissing it as an "obscene gesture." Check out both video clips. They're great!

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Jeff Stryker's Strike Back

Posted by phil blankenship, September 21, 2007 12:59am | Post a Comment

YES, this is the former gay porn star Jeff Stryker ! !
Stryker Productions

(In which Job zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Posted by Job O Brother, September 20, 2007 10:00pm | Post a Comment
I’m writing this blog in a race against time.

I just popped two Tylenol PM caplets a couple of minutes ago. I expect my ability to compose grammar will degrade rapidly… starting now.

The problem is that I have too much to tell you. I almost tripped over Lily Tomlin’s feet at the HBO after-party the night of the Emmy’s. (I’ve been told that these so-called “Emmy’s” are an award they give to people in the television business, but I wanna do some fact-checking on that before I present the data as true.) I also caught Glenn Close bopping her shoulders when the band began playing Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”.

Why do you Earthlings go so ga-ga over that song?!

Just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world.

The boyfriend snagged us a chauffeured Audi. This fuggin' car had red, lit-up buttons on everything. Like, even the buttons had mini-buttons on them. I was intimidated. I don't like to think the car I'm riding in is smarter than me.

At a certain point we ended up in Anna Paquin's limo and headed over to the TV Guide party, just in time to miss Kanye West. I sent Kanye a box of Violet Crumbles to make up for it. It's his favorite candy bar. For Thanksgiving last year, he assembled the entire meal - turkey, stuffing, yams, Waldorf salad - using ONLY Violet Crumbles. It was an innovative and delicious meal and everyone who attended enjoyed themselves until we suffered diabetic shock and passed out drooling stomach bile.

Okay, some of that last paragraph is untrue.

Melissa Logan’s birthday party was two nights ago. I was there after a few rounds at The Advocate’s 40th anniversary party. William Baldwin was there, and I wasn’t sure if his standing across the room and paying no attention to me whatsoever was his idea of a come-on, but what else could it have been? The poor man just can’t come to grips with the fact that I am happily committed to Corey.

Corey chatting with Perez Hilton at the party, as I try to find a cocktail that doesn't look like a parrot.

I’m already forgetting what I’ve written. The Tylenol is gaining on me.

And speaking of sleeping pills, I’ll be going to see Rufus Wainwright’s tribute to Judy Garland this Sunday at the Hollywood Bowl. If everything goes according to plan, by the end of the evening I will have goaded a gang of Judy/Liza drag queens into pummeling me. It’s an obscure fetish and I have to take advantage of every opportunity to make it happen which presents itself.

(I have another fantasy of women dressing like Virginia Woolf, stuffing me into their coat pocket, and drowning themselves in rivers. This is a very difficult fetish to enjoy and it’s almost impossible to find women who’ll do this for me. And yes, I have checked Craig’s List, but girls will draw you in, full of promises to be Woolf and I’ll drive across town only to discover that they’re actually Vita Sackville-Wests. Total mood killer.)

Which leads me to wonder what kind of oven-cleaner Sylvia Plath used?

Wait… what is this blog about again? Or is this a letter? Who are you?

I better post a distracting picture and escape before you catch on…

sinead o'connor

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 20, 2007 09:20pm | Post a Comment
I just went to go see the wonderful Sinead O'Connor this last Sunday at the fantastic Davies Symphony Hall. I absolutely love this venue. Not only is it a wonderful little venue with great architecture and sound but it is so close to my house. The only other time that I had been there was for the Margaret Cho show a couple of years ago. We had seats in the balcony this time, so it gave us a different perspective on the whole venue. It is nice seeing someone like Sinead in a venue where people usually see classical music and symphonies. The Margaret Cho show was great expect for the fact that we had a loud dude sitting behind us. He really felt a connection with Margaret and felt the need to yell out "true" after every single joke that she told. I can literally still hear the sound of his voice in my head.  Now it makes me laugh, but not so much at the time. Lucky for us, I don't think he was at this show. But we did have one of those dudes who likes to sing along sitting behind us. I am not sure if he wanted to show us how cool he was because he knew what the songs were before they even started. Or maybe he was just such a super fan that he could not hold in his excitement. There were many others that felt the need to clap during the first 30 seconds of most songs. It had Curt and I wondering why this always happens. I understand that they want to show the artist how much they love them. However, it seems that what they really want to do is show the rest of the fans what a bigger fan they are. These types especially like to clap for the more obscure songs as soon as they recognize them. I totally understand clapping after a song is over and I usually participate in this activity. But clapping and cheering at the beginning of the song just sort of ruins the beginning of the song. But then again, maybe people like Sinead would start crying and refuse to play the song if nobody clapped at the beginning. But I seriously doubt it.

I have seen Sinead a couple of time before this. But she really surprised me with this show. The first couple songs were from the first couple albums. I thought we would have to wait until the end of the set to maybe get one song like "The Emperor's New Clothes." She has had so much different material over the last decade that I figured she would focus on this stuff. Her new album "Theology" came out a couple of months ago. I already talked about it here if you want to check it out. She was joined on stage by a drummer, keyboardist, guitar player and cello player. The stage set up looked awesome from where we were. Sinead was of course bare foot and looked great. She seemed to have a great energy and was excited to play songs she had not played in many years. She even teased her manager at one point. She said something like "my manager said I should tell you I have a new album out." She knew most of us were there to see Sinead O'Connor and not to hear the new album. She seemed to be giving in to the crowd or maybe she just likes her old songs as much as we do.

Those Sinead O'Connor fans are a loyal bunch. They forgive and forget and love her no matter what. She was actually sort of funny in between songs. Which surprised me a bit. Unfortunately I could not really tell what she was saying most of the time. But what I could understand seemed funny and genuine. We got there just as the opening act was performing. Her name was Jesca Hoop. Sort of a Bat For Lashes/Joanna Newsom/My Brightest Diamond type. We saw her walking around after and got a closer look at her outfit. It was made out of magazine clippings and sort of looked like it was made from  paper mache or shellac. She was pretty good. But it is hard to compete with Sinead O'Connor. We left the show to go get a drink in the lobby after the opener finished. But we made the mistake of going downstairs since they only took cash upstairs. Which was probably for the best since the bartender upstairs had made me a gin and tonic that was 99% gin. But it was crazy downstairs and we took a quick vote to decide if we should run back in or just have our drinks. We decided to still wait in line and get our drinks. But everybody else somehow finished their drinks in 2 seconds and ran inside to see the show. It was basically just the four of us and some ushers. But we watched the first two songs from the video monitor outside in the lobby. But there was audio and everything so it was sort of nice. At least nobody was clapping unnecessarily out there.


Posted by Billyjam, September 20, 2007 05:36pm | Post a Comment
Another great band that I learned of thanks to Amoeba Music is the super- talented San Francisco group Deerhoof, who, in my opinion, defy categorization.  Deerhoof has just posted an entire album free for downloading on the Kill Rock Stars website. Now available by clicking on this link, the thirteen songs come with this suggestion from the band members: "I don't know how long we can keep these up here, I might recommend downloading now and asking questions later."  So in other words, Deerhoof fans-- get busy ye'all. Also on that same Deerhoof ChooChooChooChooBeepBeep page of the Kill Rock Stars website are some great photos, videos, and lots of recommended reading, including the band's firsthand experience opening for Radiohead (who are diehard fans of Deerhoof) on their tour and at the Berkeley Greek Theater show (see excerpt of video footage below). 

I've Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now): Or, How To Explain My Cat Power Obsession

Posted by Miss Ess, September 20, 2007 01:27pm | Post a Comment

I am admittedly a creature of habit, and I've gotta say I have been to 'most every Cat Power show in San Francisco over the last 10 years.  10 years!  I feel old.  I feel like I've seen Chan Marshall through a lot, and unlike most others, I never gave up on her.  The main thing that brought me back to see her time and time again was simple: her voice.

Despite her mini breakdowns, despite her half finishing songs, despite her spotting ghosts mid set at the Great American and her whispered apologies, despite that one time she had a broken finger and still tried to play a solo show, I have always shown up, cause I just don't think you can beat her smoky voice.  It's just unbeatable.

Last night at the Fillmore, it was in full effect, and this time she was fully fronting a rock band, cordless mic included.  While I was slightly disappointed she wasn't playing guitar or piano herself, I was delighted to see her smiling onstage, and often.  She seemed secure in her place at last.

The show was packed with soul covers; as always she twisted and shook the tunes until they became something almost unrecognizable and felt like her own.  I loved her sad version of "Tracks of My Tears", and I always have enjoyed hearing her sing "I've Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now)" -- that one will never die.  I love how she always references her Southern roots in her choices-- last night with Otis Redding.  She also sang"Dark Side of the Street" to fantastic, sultry effect.  Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" even was slipped in (She must be obsessed with that song, cause I've heard her do it before, over a year ago.) before she was off to Patsy Cline.  She even covered Joni Mitchell's "Blue", a personal favorite of mine.  Oh, and her version of "Satisfaction" was the opposite of anything I've heard her do: an almost dead on copy of the original-- she even sang the choruses of the song for the first time, despite the fact that she included the song on her album The Covers Record.

She also pleasingly revisited songs from the past that she hasn't really touched in many years.  She played  "Naked If I Want To" and "Metal Heart", both straightforwardly, not mucking them up as she often would if she even went there in the past.  Those songs are from my two most worn records of hers, the aforementioned Covers Record and Moon Pix.

And, as expected, she played some songs from her latest record The Greatest like "Where Is My Love", "The Greatest" and "Could We".  These songs got the greatest ovations from the crowd, which feels strange to me, but then again it was a sold out show at the Fillmore costing $32.50 a ticket!  What I mean is, it was a different crowd than it used to be.  They were probably relieved to hear something they knew after all those covers and rambling.  I like how with Chan you never know what you're gonna get-- she always brings something different and unexpected to her shows, and you're not always going to hear what you want to most.  Instead I always leave wowed by something new.

I've always enjoyed how, despite her gaining popularity, Chan has always remained so fully idiosyncratic.  She seems happy now.  She is still dressed in tomboy clothes, a Levi's shirt and jeans, even if now they are augmented with black Chanel fingerless gloves and Siouxsie Sioux style eye liner.

Big ups to Jim White, the drummer from Dirty Three who's toured with her off and on for a decade or more.  He has an austere, tasteful drumming style but also knows when it's time for rock n roll -- the perfect compliment to Chan and her soulful sad songs.  It was fun to see them together again.

At the after party, Chan chain smoked and happily attended to her friends, while her spotted French Bulldog Mona ran around looking for attention and a place to pee.

Here's Chan performing at the Chanel Spring 2007 Couture Show.  The second YouTube is Chan performing on Letterman in spring 2003.  I love "Maybe Not."


Posted by Billyjam, September 20, 2007 06:34am | Post a Comment

A couple of days ago I read this story in the paper about a Bosnian couple who are going through divorce proceedings as a direct result of each getting caught cheating on each other --but, here's the twist-- with each other.  It's a scenario that seems almost identical to that portrayed in Rupert Holmes' sappy but engaging 1979 number one pop hit single "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)," in which a guy, bored with his relationship, answers a newspaper personals ad to find that he has a lot in common with this blind date (pina coladas, walks in the rain, and a dislike of yoga and health food, etc.). He finally meets up with this mystery woman only to discover it was in fact his own "old lady" that he thought he had little in common with. This unusual and unlikely situation brings the two formerly drifting lovers back together again and they all live happily ever after. But not so in the recent real life scenario with the couple in Bosnia. The disgruntled pair (Adnan Klaric, 32 and his wife Sana, 27) went online in search of new love. There, under the pseudonyms "Sweetie" and "Prince of Joy" each met some seemingly new soul in whom they could confide and find solace, complaining about how awful their marriages had become. Finally they felt they'd found someone who understands. They each thought they'd found their soulmate. So they arranged to meet up in person. And when they did: Shocker! Each accused the other of being unfaithful and they started divorce proceedings pronto.
                                               If you like Piña Coladas
                                               And getting caught in the rain
                                               If you're not into yoga
                                               If you have half a brain
                                               If you'd like making love at midnight
                                               In the dunes on the Cape
                                               Then I'm the love that you've looked for
                                               Write to me and escape.

So anyway, this whole story was just so reminiscent of the Rupert Holmes hit (except for the outcome) that I had to go back and track down "Escape," as it was originally simply known, on video. On YouTube there are close torupert holmes partners in crime a hundred videos that pop up when you put in a search of "Rupert Holmes Escape The Pina Colada Song)," including the Sims Movie 2 version above and a great many more "visual interpretations," and numerous lip-syncing takes, like the playful one posted by the young courtneySpace and her friend (scoll all the way down). One mime version of the song was done as a college class project for a final test. And of course, there are also numerous cover versions of the thematically timeless song. Interestingly Rupert Holmes himself doesn't have a visual version. He never made a video for the song. It was in the pre MTV/VH1 days, but there is one for the lesser hit "Him" taken from the same 1979 album Partners In Crime (the video clip is from Top Of The Pops, I believe). 

Continue reading...


Posted by Billyjam, September 19, 2007 06:32am | Post a Comment
steve jobs
A couple of weeks ago in San Francisco at the big Apple computer "special event" titled The Beat Goes On -- to unveil all the new Apple iPod models -- the innovative company's mainman Steve Jobs gave Cali emcee P.E.A.C.E. of Freestyle Fellowship a major plug by featuring the artist on the giant screen at the Moscone Center during his September 5th keynote speech. As an example of a video-podcast, he played a short G4 segment featuring the Freestyle Fellowship emcee off a new Nano model.

Meantime, a couple of days ago I visited the Apple Store in Manhattan and even though it was near 11PM (the box-shaped Fifth Avenue store is open 24 hours), the place was packed to the rafters with salivating consumers in a long line desperate to part with their money in exchange for some shiny new iProduct. "This is nothing compared to earlier today," noted one iEmployee while eyeballing the line of about 40 customers all patiently queuing up for an average of twenty minutes to buy iPhones and iPods and other stuff.  


Continue reading...

the 9/18 new releases...gravenhurst...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 18, 2007 10:46pm | Post a Comment
I have been wanting to talk about this new album from Gravenhurst for over a month now. It seems like it has taken forever for this album to come out. The album is brilliant and I have been obsessed with it ever since I first heard it. I really liked their last album "Fires in Distant Buildings" from 2005. But this new one is so much better. It is called "Western Lands" and it comes out today. I don't even know where to begin. I just want everyone to go out and buy it and love it. Gravenhurst comes from that great country that I love so much. They are from Bristol, England and have been putting out albums since 2001. But it seems they have been a bit secretive about it. I didn't really hear about them until 2005 when they released an album on Warp Records. The album is really easy to get addicted to. So I would just like to warn you to be ready for that.

Gravenhurst are great because they are one of those bands that sort of combines lots of different genres and styles into one brilliant style that is all their own. It is like they have taken bits and pieces of all my favorite bands and put them into one brilliant album. They are very dreamy and ethereal but also very accessible. They really combine a lot of shoegaze style music with a more folky musical style. Imagine Elliott Smith combined with My Bloody Valentine. Nick Drake with Joy Division. Flying Saucer Attack with Piano Magic. Pale Saints with Pentangle. It really is something magical. They released "Trust" as the first single from the new album. But I am not really sure why. The second single will be "Hollow Men," which is so much better. It reminds me of some song from My Bloody Valentine's album "Isn't Anything." It really is that good. It is virtually impossible for anybody to not like this song. It is very catchy. But not in any normal pop song kind of way. It's also a nice little video.

The band is led by singer and guitarist Nick Talbot. He is joined by Dave Collingwood on drums, Robin Allender on bass, synths and back up vocals, and Alex Wilkins on guitar. Gravenhurst has recently played some shows with both Animal Collective and Explosions in the Sky. They are on a tour of England and Europe for the next couple months. No dates yet in San Francisco. But they have to come see us at some point. They are one of those bands that I absolutely need to see live.

Also out today...

"Love Is Simple" by Akron/Family

"Bitchin'" by The Donnas

"Once Upon A Time In the West" by Hard-Fi

"Death Is This Communion" by High On Fire

"Trees Outside the Academy" by Thurston Moore

"Asleep at Heaven's Gate" by Rogue Wave


Posted by Billyjam, September 18, 2007 10:44pm | Post a Comment

This is the third and final part in the Yokohama, Japan graffiti series.These photos were taken recently by Amoeba Music and graffiti/hip-hop fan ACCO.



Chrissy Plain & Simple

Posted by Eric Brightwell, September 18, 2007 10:40pm | Post a Comment

The other night I went (blessed with the company of the amazing Ngoc em and her cousin, Bao -- and my co-worker Hiland) to see the filming of the pilot for a Chris Elliott vehicle called Chrissy Plain & Simple. I like the name and concept. Just pure, unadulterated Chris Elliot, without any bells and whistles and jangles and bangles and be-bops and re-rops and flee-flops... or something to that effect. If you're a fan, you know how he just stupidly starts rambling to that effect.

On the downside-- it's sketch comedy with pre-filmed satirical segments that we had to watch a couple of times and force some laughter for the second time around. At one point I looked up at a monitor and the entire frame was filled with my chin and some teeth laughing at nothing but the instructions of the episode's director, Bobcat Goldthwait.

The show takes place on a stage cluttered with Chris Elliot cut-outs of Chris in different poses, always wearing socks regardless of the character being portrayed and, I have to say, his stupid expressions forced me to smile over and over before filming whilst Jimmy Kimmel cracked jokes-- and talked about the fact that he, I and some other guys were all coincidentally wearing maroon shirts.

The show started with an introduction and the first skit was a parody of My Super Sweet 16, which gave Chris a chance to do his annoying, entitled brat shtick, which is one of my favorites but, of the MTVs, I only have MTV Trés, which seems to be mostly videos and not reality programming so some of it might've gone over my head.

The second skit was a parody of Deadliest Catch. Do I need cable? I don't think so. This time Chris and crew fished for eels in a la s behest, to love himself resulting in him having an affair with himself and subsequently shooting himself in jealousy that I found extremely funny.

So, there's pretty much no chance that the show's getting picked up, which is a shame, but I really would rather see Chris in a sitcom than sketch comedy anyway and I'm glad I saw a vastly under-appreciated comedic genius perform live.

Although one of my favorite characters of his is the Canadian hitchhiker on Letterman who foretold bad things happening before passing on; I've never been able to find any of those clips so I leave you with other highlights.


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search for the holy grail, episode three

Posted by Whitmore, September 18, 2007 09:28am | Post a Comment

In 1965 when rest of the world was doing the Frug, the Swim or the Monkey ... the Pony, the Watusi, the Jerk or even the Clam to James Brown’s Papas Got a Brand New Bag, discothèques in Scotland and Northern England were dancing till the wee hours of the morn to a great single on Hi Records from Tommy Jay called Tender Love b/w Tomorrow.

Now Tender Love isn’t exactly your endearingly romantic piece that such a title might suggest. The song is a bit dark, but with a hypnotically grooving riff. Tender Love is the name of a girl the singer has fallen for, and she has “eyes that seem to shine like gold.” Needless to say, romance isn’t going to work out here, and if you’ve been around the block at least once, you know at least one character by songs end is going to be dead. Now that’s a track I can sink my teeth into, or at least, after a few pints, dance to till the sun comes up … and I`ll be on top, you`ll be right down there, looking up … Anyway, is this the Holy Grail of Northern Soul? It has my vote!

Streets Of Vengeance

Posted by phil blankenship, September 17, 2007 11:37pm | Post a Comment

Atlas Entertainment Corporation 5039


Posted by Eric Brightwell, September 17, 2007 11:43am | Post a Comment
I had a dream in which the modern world was invaded by a formerly secretive race of small, very pale people with curly red hair. They set up shanty towns in abandoned lots and parking lots and started little weed gardens amidst the cracks in the asphalt. With the encroachment of development, they felt the need to go public. I thought to myself, "These people must've inspired the belief in Leprechauns." These folk were not the mischievous, gold-hording, dog-rustling, cobblers we've heard about. They were poor farmers struggling to survive and they were generally quiet as the breeze blew through their ginger hair...


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Encore! More pix from the Hall & Oates concert as realized by Amoeba Music employees.

Posted by Job O Brother, September 17, 2007 10:09am | Post a Comment

The Soldier

Posted by phil blankenship, September 16, 2007 09:27pm | Post a Comment

Embassy Home Entertainment 2001

search for the holy grail, episode two

Posted by Whitmore, September 16, 2007 05:37pm | Post a Comment

From the 'A-list' of rare British psych singles, on Immediate Records: Black Sheep R.I.P. b/w Sad by the Australian Playboys, featuring Normie Rowe, one of the biggest stars in 1960’s Australia and a perennially figure on the music scene down under.

The 'A' side is a trippy version of the classic nursery rhyme and is pretty good on its own, but it’s the flip side here that is the nugget. Sad is drenched in a wall of sound, distorted and jagged guitars shiver through the unpredictable tempo changes as the lead vocals of Normie Rowe seem coated by the oddly disembodied harmonies, it’s a helluva piece of psychedelic pop. Unfortunately this Australian Playboys single didn’t sell well, something that was strangely typical of many of Immediate Records great releases back then. Today though, for freakbeat and psychedelic record collectors, it is a highly desirable piece and goes for a very pretty penny! Is this the Holy Grail of British freakbeat collectors? Well, maybe one of the Holy Grails.

everything you always wanted to know about HEART...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 16, 2007 04:00pm | Post a Comment
I remember when I was like 13 some friends of mine rented "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex (But Were Afraid to Ask)" by Woody Allen. They were really disappointed and told me not to bother watching it. I think they thought it was really gonna be all the things they always wanted to know and I am sure they were not familiar with the humor of Woody Allen. I sort of think music and its history is sort of like sex. Everyone pretends to know everything about it and nobody ever wants to ask questions about it. So they remain in the dark about certain bands or styles of music simply because they are afraid to askabout it. I have always been the opposite of this. I love asking people about music and I don't pretend to know about things I do not know about it. I feel like Heart is also one of those bands that most people secretly like. Or maybe I just love them so much that I assume everyone likes them at least a little bit. The great Ann Wilson (who is the lead singer of Heart) has just released a solo album this week. This is her first solo album! It is called "Hope & Glory." It is all covers and features a lot of guests on the album. Nancy Wilson, Wynonna Judd, Alison Krauss, Rufus Wainwright, Elton John, K.D. Lang, & Gretchen Wilson all appear on the album. She covers songs by Pink Floyd, The Animals, Led Zeppelin, Creedence, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, and John Lennon. It is for sure worth a listen. I am not really saying you won't ever want to take it out of your CD player and you probably will not even want to put it on your IPOD. But the girl deserves your love and respect. This lady has been at it for a long time now and has had a quite a musical career. So I thought I would break down all the Ann Wilson and Heart albums for you. Just in case you were afraid to ask...

Dreamboat Annie (1976)
Ann and Nancy Wilson grew up in a military family and eventually ended up in Seattle. They joined up with the all male group "Army" which later changed its name to White Heart and then just Heart. They were sort of like the Fleetwood Mac of Seattle. The original band was made up of Steve Fossen and Roger and Mike Fisher and Ann and Nancy Wilson. Ann was dating Mike and Nancy was dating Roger. They moved to Vancouver and recorded what become their amazing debut "Dreamboat Annie." The album was released on Mushroom Records and included "Crazy on You" and "Magic Man." Female Fronted rock bands like Heart did not exist in the 70's. At least bands that sounded like Led Zeppelin


Posted by Billyjam, September 16, 2007 12:46pm | Post a Comment

JAYDEE "Plastic Dreams"

Ever since last Sunday at the 14th Annual Clubhouse Jamboree when I heard DJ Spinna spin this classic early nineties house track (which, like most longtime electronic music fans, I own and have somewhere in my collection), the damn song has been stuck in my head non-stop. So consequently, I felt compelled to dig it up and play it on WFMU two days ago. And when I did I got a ton of  calls, emails, and comments from other music fans who shared my love for this everlasting funk-driven house classic from fifteen years ago. Odds are if you went to any clubs or raves or parties in Cali in the early nineites you too also know and love this song. It was released in 1992 on R&S Records, with the video (below) dropping a year later when Epic picked it up. The song was recorded by JayDee (no not J Dilla), the Dutch DJ/producer Robyn "JayDee" Albers, who consequently remixed/re-released it (including in 2004 --see 12" cover above), although the very original mix was just so perfect that it couldn't be topped (in my opinion). Look for it at Amoeba Music in various formats and on various releases. I own it on a 4-CD compilation from few years ago called Funky House No.1 -- one of many it can be found on.
And if you remember hearing this track at some club/party, please take a moment to share your memory in the COMMENTS box below. Thanks! 


Posted by Billyjam, September 16, 2007 10:36am | Post a Comment

This is Part II in a three part series of graffiti found around the streets of Yokohma Japan, all captured on camera recently by Amoeba Music fan ACCO, who is a diehard hip-hop fan. Note the many stylistic differences between Japanese and American graffiti -- both subtle and distinct -- including the common recurring influence of Anime (Japanese animation) in many of these Tokyo pieces.

White Ghost

Posted by phil blankenship, September 15, 2007 09:19pm | Post a Comment

Trans World Entertainment 0675

search for the holy grail: episode one

Posted by Whitmore, September 15, 2007 12:07pm | Post a Comment

In 1967 Tintern Abbey released their only single on Deram, Beeside b/w Vacuum Cleaner. It has since become one of the most sought after 45’s for British psychedelia collectors. But unlike many of these obscure collectable singles, this one is actually great: cool mellotron, a slightly distorted vocal track, a touch of melancholy, a vaguely off kilter arrangement … what else could you want!

There was suppose to be a follow-up single and album but nothing else was ever released and the band disbanded in 1968. The Holy Grail of British psych? … well, one of the Holy Grail’s of British psych!

Kanye Plugs Amoeba, Murakami on Kimmel Show....

Posted by Amoebite, September 15, 2007 11:32am | Post a Comment
We certainly don't mind little plugs like this. Check him out at the 1:55 mark.

This clip also educated me to the fact that Takashi Murakami created the artwork for Kanye's new release. If  you're a fan (and / or collector 8) of Murakami, make sure to catch his show at the MOCA.  Word has it that  Kanye is the guest of honor at the ultra VIP night.....  Looks like I'll miss that and have to make the "public" opening. Works for me....


Posted by Billyjam, September 15, 2007 09:33am | Post a Comment

Singer, pianist and songwriter Bobby Byrd, who is credited with discovering James Brown in the 1950's and consequently was one of the Godfather of Soul's main collaborators for twenty years, died September 12th of lung cancer at his home in Georgia. He was 73 years of age.

Byrd, who many may know from shouting that famous refrain "Get on Up" on the James Brown hit "Get Up (I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine," also co-wrote that song. He is additionally credited with co-writing several other James Brown hits that included "Talkin Loud and Sayin' Nothin," "Get Up, Get into It and Get Involved," and "Licking Stick." And at James Brown's funeral late last year he sang "Sex Machine" and "I Know You Got Soul." In fact, it was an ugly dispute over the the authorship credits of this latter song (1971 hit single) that led to the parting of ways between the two artists.

How Byrd originally met Brown in the early 1950's is a pretty interesting story in and of itself. Reportedly Byrd's religious and ever-charitable family helped secure Brown's early release from a juvenile detention facility in Georgia. This was after Byrd, as part of an outside visiting baseball team, met Brown behind the detention walls. The two young men first bonded over baseball and then later music. After Juvenile Hall Bobby Byrd's family providied a home for the young James Brown. While there James joined Bobby's gospel group, the Gospel Starlighters, which soon after became more of a secular/RnB group and  called themselves the Famous Flames. By this stage Brown's superior talents were obvious and he became the group leader and later a huge star. However Bobby Byrd stuck with him as part of that group and later the JBs for a total of twenty years, including such performances as the famous Live at the Apollo recording.

(In which Amoeba goes on a field trip to see Hall & Oates.)

Posted by Job O Brother, September 14, 2007 11:01pm | Post a Comment

Resistance is futile - John Oates & Daryl Hall

Normally, when I get off work at Amoeba Music on Friday evenings, I rush home, remove most clothing, scold my cat for not accomplishing anything while I was gone, fix myself a salad and watch some DVD (right now it’s the original “Twilight Zone”, season 3) before attending to any writing projects I have, after which I cuddle up with my iPod and listen to David Sedaris until I either fall asleep, or the Grays abduct me for a night of cavity-probing and “Small Wonder” re-runs (they love that show).

"May I please have some Oreos and a cool glass of your DNA sample?"

However, last Friday night I was abducted in a different way.

Logan had called me earlier and asked me what I was “doing” that night and I, like a fool, said I had no plans. (My boyfriend was in Canada at the Toronto Film Festival.)

“Well,” she said, sounding particularly devious, “You’re coming with me and Karen and some other Amoebites to see Hall & Oates at the Hollywood Bowl.”

She paused then, and I think she was waiting for me to squeal with delight. Instead, I quietly waited for a punchline to what was obviously a whimsical joke. When no punchline came and I realized she was telling the truth, I started to choke.

“Are you okay?” she asked.

“I think you gave me throat cancer,” I answered.

What had started as a moment of fantasy between a few co-workers had organically morphed into a large-scale field trip to the Hollywood Bowl. Karen had managed to secure a bevy of tickets and transportation. (I think she has mafia ties.)

Logan explained that she and Karen wanted me to go along and blog the event.

Why couldn’t my first assignment as an in-the-field Amoeblogger be something a little less dangerous? Like, testing SCUD missiles in Pakistan, or opening a gay bar in Tehran?

Logan was disappointed in my bad attitude. For those of you who don’t know her, she has these big, blue eyes that go all Justine Batemany on you when she’s sad and it’s more than a guy can take. So I buckled.

Which meant that, instead of spilling wayward arugula onto my knit-boxers as Rod Serling smugly narrated surreal half-hour segments, I departed work and turned left onto Cahuenga Boulevard where I saw a classic, yellow schoolbus, parked. Outside it, my boss Karen waited with open arms, like Saint Peter welcoming me to the Pearly Gates.

(Anyone who works for Karen knows she is an enthusiastic and skilled hugger. Whenever she greets you at the beginning of your shift, you’d swear it was your surprise birthday party.)

The Cahuenga Side.

Welcome to your future.

We waited at the bus as employees and their dates eventually made their way on board. Kara and I pondered the new, high-gloss, metal siding on the base of the CNN skyscraper, wondering if its new “Studio 54” make-over served a purpose other than looking like it was trying to get laid.

In the distance, the Sun set. It all sounds rather poetic, only Karen was, at this point, anxious to go. She had started her metaphorical engines an hour earlier and was in danger now of flooding.

Logan was the final animal to board our ark. What took her so long? She was doing her job, apparently. Her priorities are totally whack.

Welcome to the jungle.

A few employees watched from the sidewalk as the schoolbus of cheering Amoebites pulled out into traffic. It was kind of like leaving port on a cruise ship. A really tiny cruise ship that smelled like Hello Kitty erasers and pee.

Anyone who’s driven to a show at the Hollywood Bowl knows that it’s something akin to salmon spawning. Our driver, Nick, deftly managed the ebb and flow of cut-throat drivers which flanked our long, yellow craft, as we inched toward our destination.

En route, being at the front of the bus where all the good kids sat (i.e., old people) I only heard about the following two events:

1.) We drove past a gaggle of men all dressed as “Oates”, replete with matching mustaches and mullets. Thank God I only heard about this, because, had I actually set sight on such a thing, I would have surely perished.

2.) One of our employees mooned on-lookers from the bus window. Rumor informed me it was Jackie, but I don’t know this for certain. Even so, I’m just a blogger, not a news journalist, so let’s decide it was Jackie and write her many letters accordingly.

In the course of the evening, I would be consistently wrong about how Karen’s mind works. It was educational for me. For example:

Logan had been charged with photo-documenting the event (many of the pix you’re seeing here were taken by her). As we neared the Bowl, Logan suddenly wondered if cameras were allowed inside. We panicked, and Karen, brow furrowed, began to look around for (I thought) someone who might know whether or not cameras were permitted, so we could be certain to behave accordingly.

“That’s a good question,” she muttered. Her eyes settled on Paul Jones’ baggy pants. “Who can we hide that [camera] with?”

It’s not the only time that evening when her sense of responsibility proved more mutinous than maternal.

Whether or not she’s following the rules, she’s certainly always following her heart. Our intimidated bus driver must have been pleasantly surprised when Karen offered him a ticket and invited him to join us for the concert, which he did.

Once our group left the bus, it was every man for himself. Like retarded homing pigeons, we checked and re-checked our tickets, trying to find our seats. I imagine it’s what first-time customers go through upon entering Amoeba.

The group had splintered, but we eventually made it our corner of the Bowl. Some came laden with concessions. Karen had brought the only survival gear I needed: bottles of wine. Logan and I selected a bottle of Californian cab-sav (“Ooo, March – that was a very good month for wine!”) and were happy that the person who was carrying the cups hadn’t made it to us yet, because it gave us an excuse to drink straight from the bottle.

My one-man jug band.

The opening act was The Spinners. They shuffled out onto the stage in matching, yellow-and-glitter suits that would be the envy of every middle-aged woman in Florida, circa 1989.

They began singing the National Anthem, and when I automatically stood to join in, Logan and Amoeba manager, Alyssa, got all embarrassed – like I was making some kind of spectacle of myself. When the rest of the audience also stood, I had the last laugh.

“Stand up and sing, you Commie finks!” I snickered.

Some Amoebites even knew the words, though I think most would have proved better versed in a round of “Don’t Stop Believin’”.

The Spinners. Right round, baby, right round.

The Spinners proved to be a sweet but confusing act. Didn’t most of the members die? Who were these young bucks singing the key parts, anyhow?

Their dance moves proved tame in the extreme, and one couldn’t help but wonder if their break-dancing had been tailored to keep them from break-hipping. Even so, anyone who knew and appreciated the history of the surviving members were jubilant. Some Amoebites audibly sighed and swooned when a new song began, and there was some ecstatic arm-waving going on.

The Spinners were temporarily upstaged by a lone man who crept into the Amoeba area for a… nap?

A nap. Everywhere around us there’s screaming and dancing and general Dionysian behavior, and this dude plopped next to cashier Jessie and proceeded to nod-off!

My theory was that he was the husband of some Hall & Oates fan; as his wife got tipsy on Zima and Trader Joe’s chocolate-dipped cotton swabs, reveling in the soundtrack to her glory days in college, he escaped her slurring, lip-glossed laughter in search of some peace.

Instead, as soon as he was asleep, he was surrounded by tittering Amoeba employees who proceeded to pose for photographs next to him, like he was a costumed character at Disneyland.

“Look, Mommy! It’s the Sleepy Husband of Hollywood Bowl!"

Between these antics and the half-bottle of wine I’d sucked down, I was laughing so hard that my spleen began cracking. And it was only the opening act.

During intermission, Logan and I braved the concession stand. I was still reeling with unpleasant high school flashbacks from the bus-ride over, and waiting in line for a tray of over-cooked food sent me into a mild anxiety attack. Faced with paying something like $699.00 for a lackluster Caesar salad, I panicked and ordered two hot dogs.

Now, normally I don’t eat pork because it’s not Kosher and my Rabbi would not approve. He’s already annoyed with me for not being Jewish. But hot dogs were the only item on the menu that I could afford without taking-out a small loan from Washington Mutual, so I went for it.

Once I was faced with the… “food”, I was temporarily confused. Was I really supposed to eat this? Like, with my mouth?

Logan laughed hysterically as I grabbed three handfuls of mayonnaise packets. (In my experience, few things are so distasteful that enough mayo can’t transform it into a culinary delight.)

Logan eats the hot dog... I eat the Logan... it's a circle of life.

Back in our seats, we began force-feeding ourselves. I donated my second hot dog to Alyssa, who’s blood-sugar had dropped so low she was starting to confuse the ushers with picnic baskets. I was afraid she might try and open one of them.

Look! Up in the sky! ...It's Daryl Hall!

Hall & Oates opened with “Maneater” and there was much rejoicing. Oates had shaven off his trademark mustache, and I think it was a while before anyone knew who he was.

I have to be honest. I’ve never been a fan of Hall & Oates, but I am a HUGE FAN of people rocking out and having a swell time, so I was well entertained. One thing I can never make peace with, however, is a 1980’s pop-song, sax solo.

I hate the sax solo. When it finally fell out of fashion, along with Reaganomics, I heaved a hearty sigh of relief. I don’t know why it bothers me as much as it does; it strikes me as some intentionally bland bridge between catchy pop coasts, and I always think a song could be improved by cutting it out. Imagine my horror when Kenny G did exactly the opposite.

I mention the sax solo because, more so than Oates, a purple-clad sax player dominated the evening’s concert. It was he, and not the headlining duo, who walked out into the audience to enthusiastic spectators; like some pied piper, collecting throngs of coked-out forty-somethings and leading them to a land of saxophone nirvana.

Note the purple-clad sax player looming above me. 'Nuff said.

I would have barfed, but I had drunk a lot of wine, and I needed those calories.

We laughed, we cried, we shouted and doubled-over as Hall & Oates played their hits and, every once in a while, snuck in a song they weren’t sick of.

When they played their closing song, we kept clapping – everyone smug in their assumption that they would eventually give us an encore in the form of “Private Eyes”. It never occurred to us that…

Lights up.

Huh? No encore? What…?

Show’s over.

The natives began to grumble. Admiration gave way to ire as the hundreds of people unified in a feeling that they had been short-changed by not hearing “Private Eyes”. As for me, it was one less opportunity to endure a sax solo, so I was cool.

I barely remember the walk back to the bus. I was, by this point, drunk, as were the people in charge of leading us back. There were moments of desperation as our one large group began to lose each other in increasingly small cliques, and I had flashbacks of “Sophie’s Choice”.

I was one of the first groups to make it back to the bus, along with Karen and Logan and Nick, the bus driver, which was no small relief.

Karen offered our bus driver some wine before thinking better of it.

Finally, everyone except Paul Jones was accounted for. Those of us who know Paul felt assured that he was not only okay, but had probably swindled his way into some celebrity’s limo and was smoking reefers in a Jacuzzi overlooking the Hills. But some kind-hearted (if naïve) co-workers felt we should wait and make sure Paul was safe.

When he was finally reached on a cell phone, he was already long gone from the Bowl. I hope the limo ride was smooth, Paul.

The ride back to Amoeba was as loud as the concert. The back of the bus regaled us with a confused sing-a-long of songs so random, it would cause an iPod shuffle to freeze.

When we pulled up next to our beloved store, there were some cops parked there, and Karen urgently began to quiet everyone down. After all, we don’t want the police investigating us. Once she got the bus silenced, she announced:

“Now let’s hear it for our bus driver, Nick!”

Everyone cheered, and once again I realized I was wrong about what Karen had been thinking.

Everyone poured out of the bus and began hugging. Drunk on wine and good times, I plodded home.

My cat hadn’t folded a single piece of laundry.


Posted by phil blankenship, September 14, 2007 09:08pm | Post a Comment

HBO Video 90599


Posted by Billyjam, September 14, 2007 11:52am | Post a Comment

Have you noticed how many cool in-stores Amoeba has been having lately? Well add tonight (Friday September 14th) to that list with the wonderful Kinski playing for free at 6PM at Amoeba Music San Francisco in support of their recently released SubPop album Down Below It's Chaos. For more information on tonight's show and the new album (which was recorded in their hometown of Seattle, WA) click here. And if you miss the free show you can always catch them later tonight at San Francisco club Bottom of the Hill with Unnatural Helpers opening for them. This show will probably sell out so get to the club early and/or better still, try and make it to the Haight Street Amoeba at 6PM. (For pics from the SF instore, click here.)

meg white Unfortunately the scheduled White Stripes NorCal show at the Greek Theater in Berkeley on Sept 21st has been canceled, along with several other Stripes tour dates, including San Diego and Inglewood, because drummer Meg White is reportedly suffering from acute anxiety and consequently unable to travel. "We hate to let people down and are very sorry," Meg is quoted in a statement on the White Stripes website. Ticket holders should return tix to place of purchase...

Argento's Deep Red at the New Beverly Saturday @ Midnight !

Posted by phil blankenship, September 14, 2007 09:42am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music & Phil Blankenship proudly (!!) present:

The Italian Giallo Classic!

Saturday September 15

Dario Argento's Deep Red
aka Profondo Rosso

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

Hispanic Heritage Month

Posted by Eric Brightwell, September 14, 2007 09:31am | Post a Comment
Hispanic Heritage Month began in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week. We never learned about it in my schools, which prided themselves on being among the most progressive in the country. Every year we celebrated Black History Month, which began, amazingly, in 1926 as Negro History Week back when the Ku Klux Klan enjoyed its peak membership of 4 to 5 million people (or a whopping 15% of the nation's eligible men). Anyway, we students always raised the same questions: Is it in February because it's the shortest month? Where's Asian or Latino History Month? Where's White History Month? I don't recall my teachers having the answers except that we learned plenty of white history year-round and Black History Month was a time to recognize the contributions of a people to American culture who'd been systematically ignored.

So, this year I found out about Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, which began in 1978 and which I had NEVER heard mentioned. Some Asians I knew had, including, of course, noted justice-minded free-thinker Ngoc-Thu Thi Nguyen. She said it was marked by more documentaries about Japanese Internment Camps being shown on PBS. At the same time, I found out about Hispanic Heritage Month, which I mentioned started in 1968, and which I'd also never heard about. 

When I first moved to Los Angeles, I thought (educated mostly by Los Angeles' films and TV and music videos) that it was going to be 25% plastic people living in palatial homes, 25% blonde, leather-skinned weddos rollerblading down the Venice Boardwalk, 25% Crips and 25% Bloods. I don't know any of those people except O.G. Crip Greg "Batman" Davis, who's one of the patron saints of Amoeba's Black Cinema section. But that's pretty much what we were fed. And I thought, given its famous palm trees, it would be steamy and sub-tropical like my former home in Florida.

I got to Chino (which I wrongly figured was pretty close to the ocean) and drove to an El Pollo Loco in Chino Hills because I'd seen an ad in Spanish for it with a chihuahua that said a lot more than "Yo quiero Taco Bell," which piqued my interest. My friends in Chino and Pomona, whom I'd met in Iowa, showed me around. I flipped the radio stations and heard bandas, Vietnamese talk, ranchera (on the a.m.), Korean music, norteñas and freestyle. The people I saw everywhere didn't look like the people I'd been led to believe I'd see. And it was dry and cold at night. I still get annoyed when (invariably white) people characterize Los Angeles as a soulless botox world of corporate chains and cultureless (and invariably white) people. It's almost as though if you're not black or white, then you're invisible. The truth is that Los Angeles is probably the most ethnically (and culturally) diverse spot on the planet and possibly the universe. 46.5% of the population is Hispanic and/or Latino. Los Angeles was founded by the Spanish and then became part of Mexico with its independence. Following the rebellion of illegal American immigrants in Mexican Texas and its subsequent secession, they tried the same thing in Mexican California. Maybe that's why some people are afraid of immigrants from the south. Maybe we/they have this cultural memory about when white people moved illegally to the area, refused to assimilate or even learn the language and then revolted with guns because the creator of the Universe always had this plan for white people to settle on the Pacific which he communicated to Andrew Jackson in a vision, I suppose.

For those that will invariably question certain characters being included or not included:

It's an American holiday so all the figures are citizens of the US; hence, no Santo, Pedro Infante, Chalino, Tin Tan, &c. The display's in our movie department, hence, not every comedian, athlete or Hispanic celebrity you know of is there. Sorry, no Christina Aguilera. Finally, yes, they're all either Hispanic or Latino (in some cases both), despite their stage names or your (mis)conceptions about what makes someone Hispanic, which explains the inclusion of:

Sammy Davis Jr = Puerto Riceño
Cameron Diaz = Cubana
Raquel Welch (née Jo Tejada) = Boliviana
Madeleine Stowe = Costa Ricaña
Rita Hayworth (née Marguerita Cansino) = Española
And Jackie Lopez, famous Amoebite. Perhaps she hasn't been in any films, but there she is below Maria from Sesame Street and between Selma Hayek and Sofia Vergara, who is a fine actress -- I don't care what you say... 


Follow me at


Posted by Billyjam, September 14, 2007 06:30am | Post a Comment

How'd you end up working at Amoeba Music Hollywood and what exactly is your job there?

TIM LATHAM: I brought my resume in for a good few months (at least five times) and they told me to keep bringing it in and to bug the shit out of them. I've worked there for about 3 months and I work in the new rock section.

AMOEBLOG: What makes working at Amoeba unique compared to other jobs you've had?

TIM LATHAM: Working at Amoeba Music is unique for a bunch of reasons: [one] being no uniforms. We just wear red stickers to tell us apart from the customers. And Amoeba Music is very chill and laid back and like a HUGE family.

AMOEBLOG: When not working at Amoeba, what other things do you do?

TIM LATHAM: When not working at Amoeba I come to Ameoba and look through soul 45s and CDs to make mix CDs. I also do marketing and promotions for DJs and labels...I work for (help) redbird( Mr Timothy Husom) and work with artists and groups such as Ladytron and the Divics.
AMOEBLOG: What are the top three Items at Amoeba Music in your department this past week that people are seeking out?


1)  Spoon Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga - recent sixth album from Austin band

Interpol Our Love to Admire (Capitol)

3) Yeah Yeah Yeahs
AMOEBLOG: How would you describe the LA music scene to people who know nothing about LA?       

San Francisco Is Still Doomed (Still)

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 13, 2007 04:47pm | Post a Comment
San Francisco’s legendary early punk band Crime is back and Amoeba is hosting the unveiling of their new LP (vinyl only folks!) Exalted Masters with an in-store performance and signing on Friday, September 21st at 7:00pm. But wait, there’s more! Frontman Johnny Strike will also be signing and his new book A Loud Humming Sound Came From Above, published by Rudos and Rubes.

Crime was formed in 1976 by Johnny Strike, Frankie Fix, Ron "The Ripper" Greco (ex-Chosen Few/Flamin' Groovies), and Ricky James. They ripped post-hippie San Francisco a metaphorical new one when they released their first (and many say Punk’s first) single “Hot Wire My Heart / Baby You're So Repulsive.” There was no mistaking these guys for mere rockers; they mixed a rebellious and sexually-charged image (they were most often seen flaunting their vampiric, just-outta-rehab good looks in tight leather, regulation police uniforms, or old-time gangster duds) with their unique blend of intellectual and furious lo-fi rock and roll. Crime found local refuge at the now legendary Mabuhay Gardens, but became nationally notorious after playing a gig at San Quentin Penitentiary in full police uniforms (of course).

In 1977 Hank Rank joined the ranks, but left in 1979. The band split in 1982 when Strike quit Crime to focus on writing. Frankie Fix attempted a Crime reunion in the early 90’s, but Strike elected not join in. In 1996 Frankie Fix passed away.

September 12, 2007

Posted by phil blankenship, September 13, 2007 03:17pm | Post a Comment


Posted by Billyjam, September 13, 2007 07:00am | Post a Comment
Amoebite Heather, who has appeared on past Amoeba Music Compilation releases and who currently performs (armed with ukulele, soulful voice, and winning aura) under the moniker Uni and her Ukulele, is always quite the productive artist. Here is her latest news update, which, along with video clips and concert & tour news, includes some good solid life-advice care of her Aunt Tootie...all brought to you by the letter U!          

Before I get down to the real nitty gritty about Uke Festivals, Glamtrak Tours, photo shoots, and Club Unicornbread's show this Friday, I wanted to share a personal story with U. When I moved to L.A. my Aunt Tootie gave me a picture with a girl sitting by a brook. She has long blonde hair and is wearing a gunisack dress. The girl in the picture is blowing bubbles into the wind that at some point become butterflies. On the back of this picture my aunt wrote me a letter. What she said still sticks in my mind to this day. She wrote, "Take time to blow Bubbles."                      

As Mariel a la Mode and I were taking promotion pictures for our Glamtrak Tour (photos by
Lenny Gonzalez) I just so happened to have a bottle of bubbles in my suitcase. As I was blowing them into the wind, (camera goes click click) images [popped in my head] of my Hollywood Amoeba Music Instore performance when Uncle Kenny blew bubbles on me, while Brently's daughter Micha danced around me while I played. I also remembered all the rad kids in Merced who had like 20 bottles worth, were blowi
ng them on me while they sang along to my song "See Your Face Again."

The Employee Interview Part X: Leah

Posted by Miss Ess, September 12, 2007 05:57pm | Post a Comment
Miss Leah
Cashier Manager
3 Years Employment

ME: Hi Leah.  So, what music was playing around your house when you were a kid and before you had a choice?

L.B.: The Beatles.

Which albums?

I don't remember any specific one, just kind of all of them.

Do you remember a song or artist in particular that you really attached to and that became an obsession when you were a kid?

There wasn't really any particular artist but there are songs I always remember hearing and I associate with be a kid, two specifically:  One was a Supertramp song and one was "Baker Street" by Gerry Rafferty.

Wow, I have no idea what that is.

You probably would if you heard it.

Do you remember the first show you ever went to?

The first show I went to was REM when I was in 8th grade, the first like bigger show.  It was in Worcester, Mass.  I can't remember who they played with-- I think it was the Indigo Girls!

I just interviewed Sabrina, who is also from Boston, and I asked her about the scene.  What is your take on the scene and what are/were your favorite bands from there?

Well, when I was in high school a lot of my friends were in local hardcore bands and that scene at the time (like the early 90s) was totally fun.  It was a good time in Boston.  Lots of good times, good energy and at the time we thought it was good music.  Lots of kids were straight edge then and they weren't like preachy about it.  A lot of the bands I liked when I was in high school broke up cause they were local bands and they went to college and got into different things.  I would go to tons of shows and they weren't all hardcore shows, like I saw lots of "alternative" rock shows at the Orpheum.  It's kind of like the Warfield but more decrepit.  They closed it down for a while, so when Sabrina started going it was a totally different generation of shows there.  I saw the Sugarcubes and Sonic Youth there and stuff like that.

Yeah, Sabrina's younger so she was taking about ska. 

The ska scene I wasn't a big fan of but I saw the Toasters once when I was a freshman in college at the Middle Eastern.

What is your favorite local band here in San Fran?

I'd say Citay is always a good one.  I remember when Andrew (Julie in the band's boyfriend) and I were their biggest fans and had been to the most Citay shows.  This was before they became "known".

What's your favorite venue here?

Great American Music Hall
.  I like how cozy Cafe Du Nord is and it's close to my house, and I like Bimbo's because it always sounds great and it's a great space.

Bimbo's has the best bathroom.

Actually I really like the bathroom at the Make Out Room even though I don't like it there that much.  It's painted peach and it has black trim and they have old Valentine candy boxes above the bar.

What is the last show you went to?

Last week I went to see Dame Satan at Cafe Du Nord.

Did Last of the Blacksmiths play too?

They didn't but Bert [Last of the Blacksmith's drummer] played drums with them and he was kind of improvising, but it sounded really good.

What's the best show you have ever been to?

Mission of Burma at the Fillmore.  It was their first show when they went on tour again after 20 something years of not playing.  It wasn't the best of all the times I have seen them since then but it was the best cause it was just great to see them, and since they are one of my favorite bands I was psyched.  Another show I've seen that stood out was Joe Strummer, which I wouldn't even have seen-- my boyfriend at the time had tickets and wanted to go.  I went not expecting much and it was one of the best shows ever. 

I know that feeling.  You know, for some odd reason I always thought I would marry Joe Strummer.  When he died I was totally shocked and sad we never the chance to get it together!

I always wanted to marry Lou Barlow even though he's happily married now.

I always used to say he had the best hair in indie rock.  It seems so effortless and that is so key to his whole look.

I think that right now J Mascis has the best hair cause it's so shiny and healthy and long and pretty.

I agree, it's fantastic.  I love that he wore the shoes he designed for Nike to his own instore here at Amoeba.  He probably wears them all the time, and he should! Anyway, back to Lou-- what is your favorite Sebadoh/Sebadoh- related song and why?

Well Bakesale is my favorite album for sure.  I have to think of song titles.

Mine is "Rebound" on that little ep [also entitled Rebound].  At least that's the one that first came to mind.

Most of my favorite Sebadoh songs are actually not by Lou Barlow, although "Not Too Amused" is one of my favorites.

What is your musical guilty pleasure?

I love to listen to the 10 At 10 on KFOG and Love Songs After Dark on KOIT.

That is a guilty pleasure!  I love it.

I used to schedule my dentist appointments at 10am so I could listen to the 10 At 10!

I hear it in my car on the radio on the way to work a lot, today included.  I always come in partway through so I have to figure out what year it is.  I like it when it's the late 60s or early 90s.

You know on Saturdays they do a 10 At 10 marathon of all the week's shows. 

I don't like the announcer, not Dave Morey, the other guy.  I'm over it.  Yet I still endure it almost every day!

One more guilty pleasure:  The last Kelly Clarkson album I love.  A lot.

You and [coworker] Janell!  Wow, you are brave.  What have you been listening to lately besides Kelly Clarkson?

I've been listening to Do Make Say Think a lot.  My boyfriend is super into reggae -- dub.

Dump him!  Just kidding.  I hate that my very own  boyfriend also likes reggae.  Sorry, it's horrifies me more than pretty much anything. 

I like a lot of it.

Let's just change the subject then:  What's your favorite Japanese rock band and why?

Even though everyone else probably says it, I'd probably say the Boredoms.  Just because.  And even though they are not Japanese, their singer is Japanese and I love Blonde Redhead. I was listening to La Mia Vita Violenta this morning, which I haven't heard in a while.

What's your best find at Amoeba?

Joseph Heller reading Catch 22 on vinyl.

Did you listen to the whole thing ever?

No.  But I still love it cause it's one of my favorite books.

I feel like this is an important question to start asking people, and since we've already talked some about them, I need to know:  Who is your favorite Beatle and why? In life I feel like if you don't like the Beatles you are suspect!

I always liked George because he wasn't Paul and he wasn't John.  My mom had a poster of them hanging in our downstairs bathroom growing up and I always thought he was the cutest on that poster.

What year is the poster from?  What do they look like?

Like from 1965 or something.  They still have the mop tops. 

Is there a record or band you'd like to mention that is a personal favorite that you wish more people listened to?

Psychic Paramount -- they're not very popular but they rule.  I saw them at the Hemlock and it was the loudest thing I have ever heard and it was so great.  Also Turing Machine are great and they are not very popular either for some reason.  They're instrumental and guitar-y.

You just got back from a big trip-- what are people listening to in Russia? 

When I was in Moscow I watched a lot of Russian MTV and there's a bunch of random Russian pop singers that were pretty corny that they like but they seem to be really into bands like Fall Out Boy an Gym Class Heroes and stuff like that.


There were lots of ads for ring tones with Russian songs.  My favorite one was the Gummy Bear song-- "Gummy Gummy Gummy Bear....." It was so stupid.

What is your favorite thing about working here at Amoeba?

The people-- it's fun to be around people you like all the time listening to music-- the simple things.

I agree.  Thank you for your time.

Quarterback Princess

Posted by phil blankenship, September 12, 2007 05:38pm | Post a Comment

Playhouse Video 3969

50 CENT beaten by KANYE 'Dollar Bill' WEST

Posted by Billyjam, September 12, 2007 12:10pm | Post a Comment

With estimated CD sales of two to one (two Kayne to every one Fitty) at Amoeba Music Hollywood and most other music outlets across the country, yesterday it seems that Fitty literally is 50 Cent to every Kayne "dollar bill" West, in terms of sales of the long-feuding artists' highly anticipated and publicized new full-length releases. As San Francisco Amoebite and AMOEBLOGGER Brad Schelden outlined in his "Coming Out Today 9/11" AMOEBLOG yesterday, the latest round in the ongoing battle between Kayne West and 50 Cent (aka Fitty) would manifest itself at cash registers this week upon the release of each high-profile rapper's new album: Kayne West's Graduation and 50 Cent's Curtis.kanye west graduation

And according to Tuesday's retail sales figures from each of the three Amoeba Music outlets plus online sales figures released by iTunes and, it is clear that West's new release greatly outsold Fitty's. "In terms of sales here yesterday, it was pretty much two to one in Kayne's favor," said Amoeba Music Hollywood hip-hop department's John Liu, adding that, "There was definitely a buzz about the two new releases, no doubt generated by all the recent media attention." Meanwhile at Amoeba Music San Francisco, according to the Haight Street store's hip-hop buyer Luis, the ratio of sales yesterday was even greater in Kayne's favor. It was four to one, indicating that maybe Fitty should perhaps consider changing his name to 25 Cent or Quarta' for short.

woke up in an odd state of mind

Posted by Whitmore, September 12, 2007 08:50am | Post a Comment

I woke up in an odd mood and while I was grinding   coffee this morning, for some unknown reason, I  started thinking about the legendary folk musician
Woody Guthrie and that sign he often painted on his

“This Machine Kills Fascists”

And no, I don’t mean my  Italian espresso maker …

In this frame of mind, I don’t even dare open the paper … not today.

Woody once wrote, "I took a bath this morning in six war speeches, and a sprinkle of peace.”  

Yeah, I know that mood.

I’m thinking, what could throw me even deeper into this funk?  Maybe the right song and I can revel in this shithole state of mind for a while; I do have the morning  to myself!

So I went digging though a few boxes of 45’s  for this minor keyed, slow funky version of  “This Land Is  Your Land” by Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings originally released in 2006 as a 7-inch single with a red, white, and blue label (and a flip side of  What If We All Stopped Paying Taxes?). It’s a masterpiece, if not the modern definitive version of Woody Guthrie’s classic paean to the America he saw in his travels in the 1930’s. Guthrie originally wrote this song in 1940 in response to Irving Berlin's "God Bless America," which Guthrie considered unrealistic, self-satisfied and smug.

Sharon Jones’ version of This Land should be the one sung in grammar schools, especially since she includes the seldom sung verses about private property and government relief. She’s brought back the anger, the defiance and rebelliousness that had been lost; trashing the soft-pedaled, whitewashed, yankee-doodle dandy edition we’ve heard for decades.

Anyway, This Land starts with a long low dark note, slowly building around the horn section into a dirge sounding not unlike a New Orleans funeral procession, but then, just like that, kicks into a slow struttin’ funk groove. Sharon Jones sings as if she’s trying to remind us of something, something we were promised a long time ago but something we’ve completely forgotten. There’s a sort of a disbelief in her voice when she has to insist and point out to us once more that “this land was meant for you and me.” She’s not trying to wake us up; she’s reminding us not to fall asleep again.

The Heartbreak Kid - Another Upcoming Remake

Posted by phil blankenship, September 11, 2007 11:41pm | Post a Comment


Posted by Billyjam, September 11, 2007 07:39pm | Post a Comment

If by chance you are not familiar with the practice of watermarking advance/promo CDs, it's something that record labels undertake in an effort to discourage digital bootlegging/file-sharing of their releases in advance of street dates. Check out this really interesting and well-written story about the controversy caused over a leaked watermarked CD -- namely, the new Beirut album The Flying Club Cup on New Jersey based label Ba Da Bing! Records (whose roster includes Dead C). Eloquently penned by music writer Erik Davis, who contributes to Blender and Arthur, among other publications, it perfectly explains the whole practice and the issues it raises. It also describes the hot water that the writer recently found himself in with Ben Goldberg of Ba Da Bing Records. Titled "My Data Crime: The Ticking Time Bomb of the Watermarked Advance CD" and posted a few days ago, Erick Davis' article can be read on the Techgnosis website.

Further Tales of the City

Posted by Miss Ess, September 11, 2007 02:25pm | Post a Comment
I'm so disappointed.  I've just finished watching Further Tales of the City and it was only one disc's worth of a show.  They have it packaged in two jewel cases, so I just assumed I had a whole 'nother disc waiting for my viewing pleasure this evening.  Imagine my heartbreak upon discovering the second disc is devoted to "Special Features" only.  What a letdown!  Not to start with the negative, though, I mean the reason I am so sad is--

I really grew attached to this series as it unfolded.  The characters were real to me, the way they become in any film/series when each person really pops off the screen and into one's brain.   I don't want to ruin any of the plot details for anyone so I can't really say much, but I will say I had nightmares last night about Mouse and Jon and what might become of them-- that's how kooky I am about this show.  I thought I was gonna get to see more of their story today but NO, that was it.  Guess I am gonna have to go get those Tales of the City books now to get my fix.

Further Tales of the City is the final installment of the Tales of the City series. I would say it's the most racy, and it's also one looooooong episode as opposed to the format of the others, which each had a bunch of hour or so long episodes.  As my boyfriend and I continued watching and watching, kinda waiting for it to end and at the same time on the edge of our couch as the stories unfolded, 3+ hours passed -- we couldn't believe it had been on that long at the end.

This installment is truly bizarre!  It's funny how the characters in the series are in so many ways so true to life, but author Armistead Maupin places them in the most insanely unbelievable situations.  One of Further Tales' most prominent storylines involves that well known cult leader, Jim Jones, who the show imagines has really not died in Guyana-- actually, he's living in a shed in Golden Gate Park, unmoved by the police!  Of course he gets himself entangled with the Tales characters, to far fetched but entertaining results.  Another storyline has Mouse off to Los Angeles to party at the home of a famous but closeted Hollywood leading man...well, maybe that one is a little more plausible!

I can't recommend this whole series enough!  I feel like the entire thing was created with so much love and so much empathy for everyone grappling their way through life.  I like this quote by Armistead about being a writer who also happens to be gay:

"One of the things that I saw as different about what I was doing was that I was allowing a little air into the situation by actually placing gay people in the context of the world at large. Most gay fiction that I was reading when I was coming out in the early 70s made me claustrophobic because it only dealt with the life of the gay bar and everybody in it was gay -- often gay and male and there weren't even any lesbians in the picture. That didn't make me feel the way I wanted to feel about life and it didn't correspond with the life that I was living in San Francisco which was wonderfully mixed up in terms of the people that came and went in my life and that was part of the enormous exhilaration of it. It felt revolutionary."

Tales of the City feels real and is so absorbing because the people inhabiting the series feel like  people we know and love.  It actually does feel revolutionary because it feels true!  Well, maybe not the whole Jim Jones thing, but whatever.


Posted by Billyjam, September 11, 2007 10:45am | Post a Comment

These photos, all recently shot in Yokohama, Japan, were taken by Amoeba Music fan ACCO, who is a major fan of all four elements of hip-hop, especially graf and turntablism. In Japan the native word for graffiti is "rakugaki," although this term tends to symbolize the more traditional (pre hip-hop) meaning for graffiti. Many consider the early nineties as the real beginning of Japanese graffiti in the hip-hop related form and, interestingly, graffiti was the last element of hip-hop to catch on in Japan. Hence, compared to the US, graf in Japan is still a relatively young art form. But nonetheless, it is a recognized one by both the underground and established art worlds, something confirmed two years ago when a major contemporary Japanese art museum took the unprecedented step of dedicating an entire exhibit to showcasing graffiti writers, titled the "X-COLOR Graffiti in Japan." The exhibit was held at the Art Tower Mito, under curator Kenji Kubota, who invited Japanese graf artists from all over the country to do something unheard of before in Japanese musuem galleries: to freely tag up the museum's walls and create pieces throughout the city as way to help the average Japanese citizen to appreciate the street art form more. These pictures, the first in a three part series, were all taken in Yokohama recently.

new releases coming out 9/11...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 10, 2007 11:05pm | Post a Comment


          "Graduation" by Kanye West                                                                            "Curtis" by 50 Cent

9/11 is sort of a ridiculous street date. There is so much coming out today. I really didn't even know where to start. This week will be the battle between two giants of hip hop, Kanye West and 50 Cent. I have not heard either album yet but I am really betting on Kanye coming ahead of 50. I love the artwork for his new album and the song "Stronger" is fantastic. I was a bit confused about Kanye collaborating with Daft Punk, but it works out so perfectly. I was also sort of sick of 50 Cent after "In Da Club." I would be fine with never having to hear him or that song again. But I know a lot of people still love him. So I am a bit biased in my pick for Kanye. But he was awesome at the VMA's if not a bit over dramatic. He has claimed he will never have anything to do with the VMA's again after not winning again. I don't think he really needs to worry. He was all over the show and I don't think the fact that he didn't win a VMA is going to effect the sales of his album one bit.

Animal Collective is finally unleashing their new album for us today. "Strawberry Jam" seems to be their eighth album. They have been putting out albums since 2000 and I have been hearing about them for about just as long. But I didn't really ever give them the time they deserved. I always sort of thought it would take a big investment of time to devout the kind of time they needed. I couldn't just pick up their album and immediately get into it. They seemed to be one of those bands that you needed to ease yourself into. Or maybe I needed to see them live first before I could fully understand them. So I finally made the effort to listen to them in 2005 when "Feels" came out, theirsecond album for Fat Cat. I don't know if I would have been really ready for them back in 2000. I still sort of feel like I am not always ready for these guys. But I was actually excited for this new album to come out. I wanted to see what else they could do. Animal Collective is made up of Panda Bear, Avey Tare, Deakin, and Geologist. It is really hard not to hear the Beach Boys when I listen to these guys. It is a really messed up and weird version of them. I never really liked the Beach Boys. I just can't get the vision of them performing "Kokomo" with John Stamos (Uncle Jesse from Full House) whenever I think of the Beach Boys. But a band like Animal Collective sort of makes me appreciate Brian Wilson a little bit more.

Strawberry Jam does not sound drastically different from Feels. Same sort of little cute mixed up harmonies with lots of different music styles going on in the background. His vocals are not really that different than some of the more popular bands right now like The Shins, Bright Eyes, or Arcade Fire. This band is nothing really like them. But imagine a vocalist for one of those bands playing with a band like Primus who is heavily influenced by the Beach Boys. That description sort of sounds horrible. But they really make it all sound good. The songs are actually kind of addictive and catchy. I didn't really expect this from them. The artwork is also sort of fantastic. The opening song on the new album "Peacebone" is brilliant. It sounds like the music is some arcade game being played backwards while someone is possibly getting whipped in the background. But it still is totally addictive and catchy. "Chores" could really easily be off of some Beach Boys album. Animal Collective is seriously making me have to go check out some Beach Boys albums now. I have resisted Beach Boys much longer than Animal Collective. But I am going to risk it. I can always go back to listening to the new Animal Collective if I don't like what I find in the world of the Beach Boys. Animal Collective seems a bit more safe and friendly for some reason. But things could change. Bob Saget might just end up playing drums in the next Animal Collective video. Stranger things have happened.

Also out today is the new album from the Shout Out Louds. They come from the land of Sweden. They had an album called "Howl Howl Gaff Gaff" come out in 2005. But it is really all about this new album "OUR ILL WILLS" which comes out today. I really am in love with this album. They are sort of all the bands I love mixed up all together. The music could easily be Belle & Sebastian or Arcade Fire mixed up with the songwriting of Bright Eyes. I didn't realize how catchy it was until I listened to it a couple of times. It now has me hooked and I can't stop listening to it. The album has been out since April as an import. They are a bit intertwined with Peter, Bjorn, & John. One of their members directed the video for "Young Folks." Another member sang live on the song during Coachella. And one of the members of Peter, Bjorn, & John produced the Shout Out Louds album.

This band could have easily been the kind of band I was obsessed with years ago. But it makes me happy every time there is some new band that can make me feel that same way. There is nothing really like that feeling when you first start listening to a new album. You sort of like it and know you are going to like it even more the next time you listen to it. But then after you keep listening to it, you end up liking it more than you even thought you could. It just makes me happy. And it is nice to have those albums around you every once in a while.

also out today...

"Good Bad Not Evil" by The Black Lips

"Hideout" by Film School

"Proof of Youth" by The Go! Team

"Help Wanted Nights" by The Good Life

"Happiness LTD" by Hot Hot Heat

"Isle Of" by Jenny Hoyston

"Kurt Cobain About A Son" Soundtrack

"Gone" by Mono

"Autumn of the Seraphs" by Pinback

"Attack Decay Sustain Release" by Simian Mobile Disco

"Hope & Glory" by Ann Wilson

Pulp - The pre-Britpop days

Posted by Eric Brightwell, September 10, 2007 04:15pm | Post a Comment
I was wondering whilst trying to fall asleep the other night why I haven't ever looked up any Pulp videos on Youtube before. Then I remembered that I had a dvd called Hits, so what else could there be? A few seconds later, a vacuum tube in my mind sparked to life and I recalled (to myself) that Jarvis is at best pretty ambivalent about the early years, so I was excited to find a few early videos.


Pulp was formed in 1978 by 15-year-old Jarvis Cocker, a student at a Sheffield City Secondary School.
In 1980 they, amazingly, recorded a Peel Session. I only just found out that it's available on CD, so I haven't heard it, but it's supposedly pretty in-line with Sheffield's reigning synth-rock sound of the time.

In 1982 the still virginal Jarvis recorded It.

The record reflected a change in direction toward a folky, jangly sound with wide-eyed lyrics about love and being shy all sung rather off-key but kind of managing to sound like early Leonard Cohen.

The following year saw the single "My Lighthouse."


And, at the encouragement of someone at the label to record more commercial stuff in the style of Wham!, they followed it with the rare, and not half-bad Everybody's Problem.


Two years later, frustrated by unfulfilled dreams of success, Jarvis grew rather gloomy and Pulp entered their "arty" phase.


          Little Girl With Blue Eyes                         Dogs Are Everywhere (1986)            They Suffocate at Night (1987)


"This was a leap into semi-professionalism. It was made by someone who claimed to have done the lighting on Chariots Of Fire, which impressed us a great deal at the time. In typical Fire fashion, we could only afford one roll of film, so he had to keep winding the film backwards and forwards for different bits of the song. I constructed the set in an abandoned warehouse across the road from the factory I was living in at the time. I converted an inspection pit into a kind of sunken bedroom, then filled about 200 freezer bags full of coloured liquid for another bit elsewhere. For some reason there was a horse skeleton in the building so that ended up in the film too." -Jarvis Cocker

They released the single "Master of the Universe" and the album Freaks in 1987 to resounding commercial and critical disinterest.


Jarvis dissolved the band and moved to London to study film.


Two years later a new line-up formed.


In 1989, clearly steeped in Acid House and sounding a bit like World of Twist they recorded Separations, which their label promptly released a mere three years later. 

Pulp opening for World of Twist at their homecoming concert in 1991

In the meantime, they made videos for "My Legendary Girlfriend" and "Countdown."

and three singles:


NME named "My Legendary Girlfriend" their single of the week and Pulp, having ended their relationship with Fire Records, continued with Pulp Into: The Gift Recordings.


Their next record, 1994's His 'n' Hers, hit #9 in the UK Charts and the All Music Guide gave 4 1/2 stars to what they erroneously described as "Pulp's debut" when, in fact, they'd by then already released four albums and two compilations of non-album material.

A short time later, this German-based website devoted to Pulp (the only one in existence back then in those early days of the internet becoming popular) ceased to exist, its owner disgusted with Pulp's new,  commercial turn.


Follow me at


Posted by Billyjam, September 10, 2007 06:48am | Post a Comment

You've gotta love New York City in the summer months (it's still summer, even if kids are back at school) when there is just so much great live music always happening outdoors in the city's many parks and open public spaces. And the best part is that it's usually free and always fun-- like last weekend when Battles put on an incredible show at South Street Seaport in lower Manhattan, or this weekend on Sunday (Sept. 9th) when legendary New York club DJ Danny Krivit spun dance music for skaters and regular dancers alike in Central Park near 72nd in front of the bandshell, just as he did last year.

Also on Sunday afternoon, at the exact same time, across the river in Brookyn's Prospect Park at the expansive park's Music Pagoda was the ever popular and hella fun 14th Annual Clubhouse Jamboree -- the big, free house music (and food) party thrown by generous New York house music lover and all around cool guy Lil Ray. Lil Ray not only goes to the trouble and expense of getting permits, hauling in a large sound system, and lining up all the DJs for the long afternoon, but he also feeds near all of the thousand or so revelers that converge in the middle of the Brooklyn Park to dance their asses off to throbbing club house music every year on the second weekend of each September for the past fourteen years.

At about 6:45PM, right after DJ Spinna (pictured top left) -- the last DJ of the day -- had just finished his energetic set, and immediately after Lil Ray (pictured left) had thanked the vocally grateful gathering for supporting house music and for showing up to his annual party, I talked with the man for a moment. First I asked him why he has been throwing this big free party, at his expense, since 1994. "To show love for house music," he answered with a wide smile. "When I started the Clubhouse Jamboree it was a different time. There was no Internet to hear the music. [Back] then there really was little or no house music to be heard outside the clubs. And I wanted to take the music outside...into the park, and here in Brooklyn," he said. He added that his goal from that first party was to represent a variety of sounds within house music. "I always wanted to give different DJs from different clubs a chance to do their thing." So just how many people did he think he fed (the event was fully catered with full dinner plates of fish, rice, and vegetables, etc) of the approximate thousand strong that showed up on Sunday? "Well I brought 700 forks," he laughed. "And all the food is gone." So were the drinks, which included water and Cokes (which were care of Coca Cola, but everything else was at the expense of this generous New Yorker). Besides Spinna, the DJs for the afternoon included Ian Rock, DJ Wil Milton (Gravity), Brian Coxx (Soulgasm), and the young DJ sibling duo The Martinez Brothers.


Posted by Brad Schelden, September 9, 2007 11:45pm | Post a Comment

Tonight was the broadcast of the MTV video music awards. I grew up loving MTV and I loved watching the music videos of my favorite new bands. I was introduced to a lot of new music by seeing their videos for the first time on MTV. I didn't even have cable for years, but I would watch MTV whenever I got a chance at a friends house or my grandparent's house. I even watched that first little reality show called "The Real World" when if first aired. Back when it was one of the only non music video related shows. The times they have changed on MTV. This is the schedule for MTV tomorrow.

6am -9:30am (videos...for real...some videos on in the early morning when nobody is watching)
9:30-1:00pm (my super sweet 16...reality show)
1:00-3:30pm (2 1/2 hours of bad rich kid o.c. style reality shows such as the hills, etc.)
3:30-4:30pm (total request live...partial videos with lame commentary and crowd shots)
4:30-6:00pm (another 1 1/2 hours of bad reality shows about rich o.c. kids and some stupid game show)
6:00-8:00pm (the real world...this show is now beyond ridiculous)
8:00-1:00am (5 more hours of reality shows about rich spoiled white kids with relationship problems and a show about a 17 year old pro skater with some issues)
1:00-2:00am (celebrity rap superstar....reality show)
2:00-4:00am (parental control...reality show in which the parents choose who their kids go on dates with)
4:00-9:00am (music videos and total request the only place to watch videos is in the early morning)

So in one 24 hour period on MTV there are only 6 1/2 hours devoted to anything that is remotely related to music videos. Of the remaining 17 1/2 hours, only one show has anything remotely to do with music or music videos. The other shows really have no place on a show calling itself "Music Television." This is seriously a typical day for MTV. The only difference this year is that in order to try and get better ratings for the live airing of the awards show, they decided to not repeat the show over and over again the next day. I can think of countless shows they could have on MTV that would actually fit into a station supposedly devoted to music videos. They should obviously play more videos. Even Justin Timberlake realized this. He made a little shout out against MTV when he won his awards tonight, begging them to play more videos and less reality shows. There are so many interesting people in the music business. They could have hours and hours of interesting documentaries on so many different musicians. There are also so many amazing videos that they could still show. They could have hour long shows devoted to old 80s and 90s videos or have shows that showed artists earlier videos. They could have great themed video hours. Indie (alternative) videos, metal videos, hip hop videos, r & b videos, electronica vidoes. They did have shows like this before. Alternative Nation, Yo! MTV raps, and Headbangers Ball were on every single day. 120 minutes was on every Sunday and always showed some amazing videos that did not usually get shown on MTV. They did have a game show called remote control, and a couple cartoons like beavis & buthead, daria and aeon flux. But even Beavis & Buthead showed music videos. And these shows never took over the programming. There was always more than just a couple hours of videos. I know that MTV now has MTV2 and some other shows on the higher up cable packages. But the original MTV should still have music as their focus. If they really feel that people need reality shows or fake reality shows, they could at least try and make them about music.

For some reason I always watch this awards show. It is fun to see what all the music stars are wearing and there are usually at least a couple performances worth watching. The show tried to be different again this year by moving to Las Vegas with the show happening in different fancy hotel rooms all at the same time. There was a Kanye West room and a Fall Out Boy room. What everybody could not stop talking about was the opening number by Britney Spears. This should have been her big comeback. Her new album, whenever it comes out, may still do OK. But this performance was boring and sort of uninspired. Britney seemed bored herself and didn't seem to really even try and pretend that she was really singing.  Chris Brown and Rhianna had an amazing performance. That little Chris Brown is a great little performer. Alicia Keys was awesome like she always is. And the closing number with Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, Nelly Furtado, and Keri Hilson was fantastic. The sets and the dancers and the lasers were all awesome. It was also great to see Dr. Dre have a surprise appearance.  One of the most depressing things about the show was the commercials for all the horrible new MTV reality shows that are premiering soon. A fake show about a britney spears type and a reality dating show about some model famous for being on the cover of Maxim magazine. This is what we have to look forward to. 

Here are the winners of the video awards for videos that only get played about 1/4 of the day on MTV...

Video of the Year...Rihanna "Umbrella"

Monster Single of the Year...Rihanna "Umbrella"

Male Artist of the Year...Justin Timberlake

Quadruple Threat of the Year...Justin Timberlake

Best Choreography...Justin Timberlake "My Love"

Best Direction...Justin Timberlake "What Goes Around..."

Best New Artist...Gym Class Heroes

Best Group Winner...Fall Out Boy

Female Artist of the Year...Fergie

Best Collaboration...Beyonce f/ Shakira "Beautiful Liar"

Best Editing...Gnarls Barkley "Smiley Faces"

and just in case you were is what happened 20 years ago in 1987...

video of the year
Peter Gabriel "Sledgehammer"
Genesis "Land of Confusion"
Paul Simon "The Boy in the Bubble"
U2 "With or Without You"
Steve Winwood "Higher Love"

best male video
David Bowie "Day-In Day-Out"
Peter Gabriel "Sledgehammer"
Robert Palmer "I Didn't Mean to Turn You On"
Paul Simon "You Can Call Me Al"
Steve Winwood "Higher Love"

best female video
Kate Bush "The Big Sky"
Janet Jackson "Nasty"
Cyndi Lauper "True Colors"
Madonna "Open Your Heart"
Madonna "Papa Don't Preach"

best group video
The Bangles "Walk Like and Egyptian"
Crowded House "Don't Dream It's Over"
Eurythmics "Missionary Man"
Talking Heads "Wild Wild Life"
U2 "With or Without You"

Hollywood Cop

Posted by phil blankenship, September 9, 2007 11:32pm | Post a Comment

Celebrity Video 4001

Alex the Parrot

Posted by Whitmore, September 9, 2007 09:51pm | Post a Comment

  The Alex Foundation has announced that the
  world famous African Grey Parrot, Alex, died 
  on September 7, 2007. The cause of death is
  unknown but an announcement is expected
  later this week, though it has been suggested
  that Alex might have died from Aspergillosis, a
  fungal infection of the lungs he has battled in
  the past.

  Alex was purchased by Dr. Irene Pepperberg
  at a Chicago pet store in 1977. He has been
  the featured parrot for more than 30 years of
  research into the intelligence of African Grey
  Parrots, most recently at the Department of
  Psychology at Brandeis University in
  Waltham, MA. The name Alex is actually an
  acronym, A.L.EX., standing for Avian Learning

Alex’s intelligence was said to be quite amazing. He had a vocabulary of more than a 100 words, but what was exceptional about him was that he appeared to understand what he actually said. For example, when Alex was shown an object and was asked about its shape, color, or material, he could label it correctly. According to a New York Times article in 1999 he could “identify 50 different objects and cognize quantities up to 6; that he could distinguish 7 colors and 5 shapes, and understand the concepts of ‘bigger’, ‘smaller’, ‘same’, and ‘different’,’ and that he was learning ‘over’ and ‘under’.” Pretty amazing if you ask me, I know some people who can’t “cognize” that well themselves…

I use to have a cockatiel, Mordecai, named after the turn of the century ballplayer Mordecai “Three Finger” Brown … and let me tell you that bird was also pretty damn smart … at least I thought so until he flew out the door into the big bad city oblivion of east Hollywood … oh Mordecai, I hope your still out there buzzing around, livin’ large or at least as large as a little yellow cockatiel can live!

September 8, 2007

Posted by phil blankenship, September 9, 2007 12:55am | Post a Comment


Posted by Billyjam, September 8, 2007 12:26pm | Post a Comment
I almost forgot about this funny YouTube clip originally posted about nine months back, before I had started AMOEBLOGGING and which now seems even funnier. It's only about two minutes in length and worth watching:


Posted by Billyjam, September 8, 2007 12:06pm | Post a Comment

If you are in the Bay Area right now (noon, Saturday, September 8th), there is still time to head out to enjoy most of today's big free event in San Francisco, the Michael Franti overseen 9th Annual 911 Power to the Peaceful Festival, celebrating music and arts and taking place at Speedway Meadow til 5PM-ish today today in Golden Gate Park. Scheduled to have started earlier this morning (9AM), the big festival, which is expected to draw up to 70,000 people, will include free music (including Michael Franti and his band Spearhead and the Indigo Girls on the main stage and DJ Spooky along with other spinmasters in the DJ tent), as well as an open-air art gallery, a healing arts tent, kids zone, bike coalition, eco village,   environmental and political organizations disseminating information, and vendors selling food and drink.

Performers for the rest of the day include Quannum label hip-hoppers Lifesavas (who are scheduled to perform until 1:20PM), DJ Spooky at 2PM spinning for an hour, followed by Bassnectar in the DJ tent, the Indigo Girls on the main stage at approx 3PM followedmichael franti by Franti and Spearhead. 

Started in 1998, the free, outdoor 911 Power to the Peaceful Festival has been steadily growing. That first year, which took place in a neighborhood park, drew an estimated 6,000 people but has grown to draw in excess of 60,000 people to Golden Gate Park's Speedway Meadow. Past performers and spokespersons have included KRS-One, Digital Underground, Woody Harrelson, Angela Davis, Blackalicious, The Coup, Saul WIlliams,  Alice Walker, and Talib Kweli.


Posted by phil blankenship, September 8, 2007 12:47am | Post a Comment

P Entertainment

Come One, Come All! Retrospective in Fabulosity Tonight @ The De Young

Posted by Miss Ess, September 7, 2007 12:00pm | Post a Comment

My 80s Nostalgia Peaks: Mrs. Garrett's Got Somethin' to Sing About!

Posted by Miss Ess, September 7, 2007 11:48am | Post a Comment
I truly never thought it would happen, but I actually and officially MISS the 80s.... and this is the best thing ever:

Although I was sheltered compared to most 80s kids, I still was a latch key kid.  Remember back when TV characters really did feel like part of your family? That Punky Brewster sure is full of spunk!

God I feel old.


Posted by Billyjam, September 7, 2007 09:28am | Post a Comment
Rap & Rock Stars More likely to die Prematurely

You ever notice how everytime you open a paper or read this  AMOEBLOG that it seems that yet another famous celebrity you
grew up listening to has passed on? And how it seems like the
ratio of rockers or rappers compared to regular folk
dropping off the face of the earth is much greater? Well, it
doesn't just appear that way. It is that way. According to a
newly published British based study, according to Reuters,
rap and rock music stars -- "already notorious for their
so-called 'crash and burn' lifestyles really are more likely
than other [regular everyday] people to die before reaching old age."

All of this is proven by the study of more than a thousand mainly British and
American jimi hendrixartists, spanning the time from Elvis Presley's era up until two years ago (the years 1956 to 2005) in which the
study found these musician stars were "two to three times more
likely to suffer a premature death than the general population."
The study's results showed that between
1956 and two years ago there
were a hundred deaths among the
1,064 musicians examined by researchers
at the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool
John Moores University.

rob zombie's halloween

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 6, 2007 06:45pm | Post a Comment
I have been obsessed with Halloween and the Halloween movies for as long as I can remember. This holiday and the original 1978 film will forever be intertwined together in my memory. John Carpenter is absolutely without a doubt a genius. He created the most successful independent film of all time with his original Halloween. This movies remains brilliant to this day and still manages to be scary. It really reinvented the horror movie and sort of set up the rules for the horror movies of the 80's. The second Halloween film was almost as good but the following sequels became worse as time went on. I saw every one and quickly realized the franchise was getting ridiculous with the last couple films. I remained loyal but it was really time for the series to be reinvented. They needed to go back and start all over again. But before the original even started. Similar things have been happening with other film franchises lately. Both the Batman and Superman movies had become ridiculous. Really only the first couple of both were good. Both Batman and Superman were reinvented in the last couple years. It worked amazingly well with the Batman franchise and "Batman Begins." The film gave a completely new look to the series with a great new storyline. It kept what was good about the story and just built on that. This did not work so well for "Superman Returns." I am still waiting for the deluxe version of the entire Halloween series to be released on DVD like they did with Nightmare On Elm Street and Friday the 13th. There is a box available as an import but nothing yet domestically.

Many horror films have also been remade in the last couple years. It seems to never work. These original films, The Omen, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Wax Museum, etc., hold such importance in our eyes as horror movie fans. We grew up with these films and have every detail about them memorized. It is a hard task for a director to go into such sacred ground and try and update and reinterpret these original films. Horror movies have never been the same lately. Never as good. Never as scary as they once were. So when I heard that Halloween was getting remade this year, I was very excited but also very worried. I thought Rob Zombie was the perfect director to try and reinterpret this brilliant original film. But I was also worried for him and the response he would get from those crazy dedicated horror fans. The movie opened over labor day weekend as the most successful movie for that weekend ever. But of course many fans are really upset that Rob Zombie has ruined their Halloween. But I wonder how many of these people have actually seen the movie. I saw it on Monday and I was more than impressed. And it was scarier than anything I have seen in the theater in a long while.

I think a lot of people went into the movie knowing already that they wanted to hate it. It is easy to focus on what the movie got wrong if that is what you are looking for. But I went into the movie excited and wanting to like it. But I also was well aware that I might come out of the movie a bit disappointed. But I really loved it. I am already planning to see it a couple more times. It seems that Rob Zombie had John Carpenter's blessing. John just wanted him to make his own take on the story. To reinterpret it and not just simply to try and copy it. Zombie takes the story back much farther into Michael Myers childhood. Almost half the movie shares with us his tortured family and school life. It is even more scary that I had that exact same costume as a kid. It becomes frightening when you realize that thousands of kids grow up with a very similar childhood. Michael Myers is not some fantastical super being. He is just sort of a normal kid. The movie is more of a classic serial killer coming of age story than just another teen slasher film. I thought he captured a brilliant little portrayal of 70s suburbia life. The horrible life of Michael Myers growing up. And then later, the sort of ideal life of Michael Myers grown up sister Laurie Strode and her high school friends in the same town. Zombie used similar locations so the film had the same sort of feel as the original.

The second half of the film started off where the original film started. It only became a little less scary because we already knew what was going to happen. I have seen the film far too many times but I still find it scary in parts. Zombie managed to actually still make this new version scary and frightening. The shots of the young Michael Myers, played brilliantly by Daeg Faerch, wearing the too large adult mask are horribly frightening.  He also changes up some of the end sequences so we don't know exactly what is going to happen even if we think we do. The adult Michael Myers is a giant. He towers over his guards in the asylum. It makes sense how he could overpower them simply because of how large he his. The  whole feel of the film was perfect. It started off slow and really developed most of the characters.

Rob Zombie obviously loves his horror movies. The movie is worth seeing alone for the amazing cast he puts together. For the larger more important roles he used virtually unknown actors. But for the supporting cast and even smaller roles he cast some amazing stars from the horrors movies and b movies  that we all grew up on. Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange, Cat People) stars as Dr. Loomis. It is hard to match the brilliance of Donald Pleasence. But Malcolm does a great job playing the doctor and sheds light on the relationship of Michael and Loomis. Brad Dourif (Child's Play, Body Parts) plays the Sheriff. Ken Foree (Dawn of the Dead) is amazing as trucker Big Joe Grizzley. Tyler Mane (X-Men) plays the adult Michael Myers. Leslie Easterbrook (Police Academy 1-7) is one of the cops who Michael escapes from. Udo Kier (Andy Warhol's Frankenstein, My Own Private Idaho) plays the head of operations at the sanitarium and Clint Howard (star of every Ron Howard film) plays Michael's doctor. Richard Lynch (Bad Dreams) plays the school Principal. Even though he only has one line and is in the film for less than a minute, he still managed to freak me out. Danielle Harris (Halloween 4 and 5, Roseanne) plays Annie Brackett. It was a nice little touch for Halloween fans to see Danielle Harris, who played the niece of Michael Myers in the fourth and fifth Halloween, now playing one of Laurie Strode's friends. Dee Wallace (Cujo, Howling, E.T., The Hills Have Eyes, Critters, Popcorn) plays Laurie Strode's Mom. She is perfect and brilliant as always.  Sybil Danning (Chained Heat, Reform School Girls, Amazon Women on the Moon, & Howling II) plays Nurse Wynn. Micky Dolenz (The Monkees) plays the gun shop owner. AdrienneBarbeau (The Fog, Swamp Thing, Escape from New York) and Courtney Gains(Children of the Corn) are also supposedly in the film but I couldn't find them. Maybe there scenes were cut.  Zombie also used much of his cast from House of 1000 Corpses and Devil's Rejects. His wife, Sheri Moon Zombie, is excellent as Michael Myers troubled striper mom. Sid Haig plays the cemetery employee. William Forsythe is also cast perfectly as Michael Myers dad. Bill Mosely, Lew Temple and Danny Trejo all play security guards. The whole sanitarium is basically run by the cast of Devil's Rejects.

Zombie did not ruin a classic. He paid tribute to it by reinterpreting it and making another great classic horror film. After leaving the film I was seriously proud of Mr. Zombie. The original Halloween remains one of my favorite films of all times and it would have been easy for me to be disappointed. But I really loved all the character development of the young Michael Myers. I thought the whole cast was fantastic. Those with the smallest roles took their part seriously and really made an impact on the feel of the film. It almost makes me want to see a Halloween 2 with this whole new cast. Unfortunately most of them died in this film. I will be seeing this film a couple more times before the actual date of Halloween comes around. And I really hope the film continues to do as well as it did this first weekend. You should go see it.

Luis Alberto Spinetta - Argentine Astronaut

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, September 6, 2007 10:43am | Post a Comment
Every Argentino I’ve ever met has always goes on and on how their country has the best everything. The best beef, the best looking women, the best soccer team and the best music ever created, blah, blah, blah. All I can say about Argentineans is that they talk too much and sound funny when they do! Kidding aside, (It's a rite of passage for the rest of Latin America to make fun of Argentina) Argentina has provided some great music for the rest of the world. One of my favorites is someone who I’ve heard about for years but haven’t discovered until a few years ago.

Luis Alberto Spinetta is a legend in his native Argentina and well respected by rockeros all over Latin America. He is hard to describe. A lazy comparison would be somewhere between Paul McCartney (Wings Era), Frank Zappa (as a musician, not as a satirist) and Andy Partridge from XTC. His lyrics are poetic and one can tell he is someone who is well read. You might not know what he is singing about unless you have read as much as Spinetta has. His career started in the late 60’s with a band called Almendra, who along with Los Gatos and Manal, were the pioneers of the Argentine rock movement. Almendra had a garage-psychedelic sound with some 60’s pop influences. They release three albums before they disbanded. Spinetta then started another group called Pescado Rabioso (Rabid Fish), which had a heavier sound, and lyrics that were influenced by writers such as Artaud, Arthur Rimbaud, Carlos Castaneda and Carl Jung. With his next group, Invisible. (Pronounced en-ve-see-blay) Spinetta developed a progressive rock style yet he wrote some of his best ballads, full of space and sparse notes.

After three albums with Invisible, Spinetta went solo. He dabbled in Jazz Fusion (Spinetta Jade) and made one album in English called, “Only Love Can Sustain” which flopped because it didn’t appeal to the Anglo market nor did it appeal to his fans, who saw it as a sell-out. After that, he continued to make music in Argentina and continued to be an artist to be reckoned with. His son, Dante Spinetta, was in a very popular band in the 90’s called Illya Kuryaki & Los Valderamos, who were legends in their own right.

He still continues to release music to this day, playing with many musicians half his age. Much like Caetano Veloso’s last album, Ce, Spinetta modern day sound is like an alt-rock group that could have come out Silver Lake via Buenos Aires. Many Latin American icons owe their careers to Spinetta. Gustavo Cerati made a career in mimicking Spinetta voice and even scored a hit with Pescado Rabiosos' classic, Bajan

I was fishing around and found this footage of Luis Alberto Spinetta. It looks like it might be from the eighties. He performs his classic, “El Anillo De Capitan Beto” (The Ring Of Captain Beto) from Invisible’s album El Jardín De Los Presentes. Watch how nuts the audience gets when he launches this song, even the suits sitting in the front let loose. In the beginning he says that this is the story of an infamous Argentine Astronaut, and he sounds funny when he says it.


Posted by Billyjam, September 6, 2007 09:53am | Post a Comment
golden gate bridge
I found it surprising that, despite the $5 toll each car is charged to cross its span from Marin into San Francisco, that the Golden Gate Bridge is  still financially strapped and is currently facing a projected deficit of a whopping $80 million. But even  more surprising to me was the news, following an August 24th meeting,  that the operators of this national landmark (one of the top five attractions in the United States) are seriously considering getting corporate sponsorship to cover the historic bridge's overwhelming bills.   What this means is that like SBC Park or Pacific Bell Park or AT&T Park (or whatever name it happens to go by)  that likely soon the Bay's most famous attraction may be renamed something like the Verizon Span, or the  Google Gate Bridge, or perhaps something like "the Golden Gate Bridge brought to you by Pepsi."   Now according to the overseers of the bridge, who will meet again this month to make the final decision on the matter, they are assuring all concerned that they will not do anything "tacky"  like the aforementioned renaming in their handling of this proposed "corporate partnership."  But frankly  I have my doubts and I worry that this type of proposed sponsorship may set an unhealthy precedent with US national monuments and landmarks, and that soon Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and even the White House will be up for corporate partnership. (If you have any funny or ironic ideas of what sponsors might be matched with what national landmarks please add them in the COMMENTS box below. And if you wish to voice your concerns about the proposal for the GG Bridge email [email protected]).

Los Lobos Live At The Santa Monica Pier 8/30

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, September 6, 2007 09:32am | Post a Comment

Amoeba Records sponsored the Concerts On The Pier in Santa Monica that happened every Thursday during the months of July & August. Included in the series were Patti Smith, Plena Libre, Arrested Development and Junior Murvin, just to name a few. The series ended last Thursday with East L.A. heroes Los Lobos. Many of us that work at Amoeba volunteered to work at the Amoeba Booth that was to the left of the stage. We sold CD’s and T-Shirts and gave away discount coupons and various Amoeba swag. It was a great way to get away from the heat of Hollywood and work outdoors in the cool ocean breeze. Plus, there was the music! Los Lobos is one of my favorite bands, dating back to 1983 when I first heard "…And a Time to Dance." That night Los Lobos played many of my favorites, including "La Pistola y la Corazon," "Saint Behind The Glass," "Mas Y Mas," "Cumbia de la Raza," "Don’t Worry, Baby" and a volley of cover tunes such as "Cinnamon Girl," "Let’s Go," "Volver, Volver" and of course, "La Bamba."

The influence Los Lobos had on me when I was a kid was phenomenal. Back then to hear a band play Mexican music and rock on the same album was foreign to me. The Latin Rock artists at the time sounded more like bands from England then from their own country and it was understandable. When Rock music was still rebellious in America, it was even more so everywhere else. Most bands that sounded like their Anglo counter parts did it because they were tired of their parent’s culture being forced on them. Why would they want to play Mariachi, Corridos or Baladas? That was their parents' music. In the eighties, to sound like The Police was rebellious and for the young Latin Rock bands it was their own culture. With Los Lobos, both rock music and Mexican music was their culture. It was the first time I realized you could like both and not feel embarrassed by the other.
Side note: Los Lobos went to #1 on the Billboard charts with their version of “La Bamba.” Can you name two other Chicano artists to score #1 hit singles?

Los Lobos have released many great records over the years. Kiko is the Chicano Pet Sounds for sure. La Pistola y la Corazon was an introduction to Son Jarocho music for many of us. Will The Wolf Survive?, Colossalhead & This Time were all solid albums. But it was The Latin Playboys side project that really did it for me. Both Latin Playboys albums consisted of home recordings made by Los Lobos members Louie Perez and David Hidalgo, who further manipulated it with musician/producers Tchad Blake and Mitchell Froom in a real studio. It is a mixture of Captain Beefheart Blues, Traditional Mexican music, and field recordings that created a soundtrack to East L.A. life. The Latin Playboys records are by far the most experimental releases by the Los Lobos crew and a classic in their own right. Just like “…And a Time to Dance” was influential to me as a kid, so were The Latin Playboys albums. They showed me that you could be experimental and still hold on to your culture. With Kiko & The Latin Playboys releases, The Lobos camp took career risks, especially after scoring a #1 hit single, creating art over commercial success. After the show as Los Lobos signed autographs at the Amoeba booth, I remembered I had that Latin Playboys CD in my car. I ran to my car and to get the cover. I had David & Louie sign the booklet. I think I may have to frame it now.

Overall it was a great night for me, and to top it off, the Amoeba crew got to ride on the roller coaster that’s on the pier for free. I have to say it’s the least scary rollercoaster I’ve ever been on, but it was much appreciated after working at the booth all night.

Ok, Here is the answer to the trivia: Freddy Fender (Baldemar Huerta) in 1975 with “Until The Next Teardrop Falls” and Linda Ronstadt with “You’re No Good,” also in 1975. Just bubbling under were Ritchie Valens’ “Donna,” which went to #2, Selena's “I Could Fall In Love” and Tierra’s “Together,” which both went to #12.

Blue Monkey

Posted by phil blankenship, September 6, 2007 12:37am | Post a Comment

RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video 60874

The Dirt Bike Kid

Posted by phil blankenship, September 5, 2007 07:37pm | Post a Comment

Charter Entertainment 90108

Siegfried & Roy: The Magic Box

Posted by Miss Ess, September 5, 2007 05:50pm | Post a Comment
Thanks to a recommendation by our Brad, I had a truly bizarre experience the other night. 

I watched Siegfried & Roy: The Magic Box, an Imax movie that was even shown in 3-D in theaters!  The DVD had the option to watch in 3-D, but alas, I had no glasses.

The movie is a documentary style piece, with small boys/teenagers in Lederhosen acting the parts of younger Siegfried and Roy growing up in war-torn Germany.  Apparently Siegfried and Roy's dads were both in the German Army in World War II....

While both men came back from the war totally changed and broken, Siegfried's dad is portrayed as only being able to stare endlessly into the fire.  After a visit to a magic shop where a witchy woman tempts and toys with Siegfried over her special Magic Box, Siegfried is fully bitten by the magic bug and starts performing his tricks in an attempt to get his father to see the "wonder" in the world again. 

Roy spent his time obsessed with his childhood dog, who saved him from drowning in a swamp Lassie-style, when she runs off to get a farmworker who pulls Roy to safety.  Apparently this is how Roy developed his "bond" with animals.

The sets of the film are empty and airbrushed and probably are more interesting/exciting in the Imax format, or even the 3-D format I suppose.  My poor mid-sized TV didn't stand a chance and delivering the full "magic" of the film.

Did I mention the film is narrated by Sir Anthony Hopkins?  As if to try to add a touch of class to an inarguably cheesy as all hell movie, he recites The Tyger by William Blake as images of a glittering tiger face dissolve on the screen.  Have I mentioned how ridiculously over the top the movie is?  Yeah, I know, it's Siegfried and Roy, so I was expecting it and all, but JESUS. 

Their show is all smoke machines and spectacle-- giant codpieces, sweeping capes and 6 packed shirtless male assistants, ballet-like grand gestures and swinging over the crowd on wires.  I guess, in a word, it's VEGAS.  I've never been to Las Vegas, but this was everything I'd expect from a place so built on fakery.  In fact, Roy is constantly talking about how nature is where he feels truly at home and about the natural connections between humans and nature, but everything around him, from the set of the stage to their Disneyland-like palatial gardens and home, right to his and Siegfried's obviously surgically altered faces, is so FAKE.  The epitome of FAKE.  I mean, magic itself is based on fakery, and yeah it's fun to wonder "How'd they do that?"  But I just wonder who they really think they are fooling. 

They remind me, more than anything else, of Michael Jackson.  Siegfried and Roy are totally focused on "wonder" and "dreams" and "fantasies".  They seem so intent on creating a world around themselves where one never has to grow up and face the hardships of life.  Growing up gay in a very recently post Nazi Germany would do that to you I guess.  I guess by creating the act they want us to have a break from reality for a while.  But all I could think about was the animals and if they were having a good time too.

Seems like for Siegfried and Roy, the animals are loved like a painting or an object of beauty.  They have to look perfect.  They have to behave perfectly.  They must be exotic and evoke wonder.  They say of the animals, "It is they who choose to be in harmony with us".....well, Roy got bitten by one of his tigers in 2003 and that's when the magic ended.  (The film is from 1999.)

It's just funny how they want to be kids forever, free and full of wonder, laughing in the field with their white tigers and lions, specially bred and perfected, but they never want to let the animals have that same kind of freedom, which they deserve.  I guess when you have made your whole life into an entertainment act (let's face it, they are "on" 24/7), you assume that wild animals would be ok with that lifestyle too?  I guess they think we need to experience the "wonder" of Roy sitting on a tiger sitting on a spinning disco ball it just jumped out of?  What kind of life is this for an animal? It seems humiliating for all parties involved to me.  But then, I suppose I am not the best one to appreciate the spectacle of Vegas, never having taken the time to go there.

I have to say, during most of this movie my jaw hung open with the plain old odd-ness of the whole thing.  It's just weird.  Siegfried and Roy are two of the most bizarre human beings I have ever taken up an hour watching and contemplating.  They must spend so much "Mirror Time"-- that's one of my favorite phrases/concepts from America's Next Top Model, referring to time spent perfecting one's poses.  Really, they epitomize Mirror Time, with their faux delight at each completed trick, their scarily awkward high fives and stiffly coiffed hair.  Each moment of the entire show is choreographed in a most unnatural way. 

All I can say is, wow<

(In which Job completely bullies you around without any regard to your personal feelings.)

Posted by Job O Brother, September 5, 2007 04:27pm | Post a Comment

This guy.

Don’t get me wrong – I think you’re doing a fine job being alive. I mean, you wake up, you drink things and sometimes put food in your mouth and somehow, without even thinking too much about it – manage to digest it and turn it into energy to sustain yourself and… Well, jeepers – it’s all just impressive, really impressive, how you manage to do all the things you do.

So I hope you don’t take it the wrong way if I tell you there’s something you could do to maybe improve things. My idea is this:

Try listening to Bobby Birdman. That’s all. Everything else you’re doing is great.

And if you find you like it, listen to even more Bobby Birdman.

Just a thought…


Posted by Billyjam, September 5, 2007 12:00pm | Post a Comment

Like a lot of longtime, old school fans of the genre, I am pretty much disgusted with what passes as "hip-hop" these days. You know, that boringly predictable, cliched crap that is dumbed-down, bling & sexist heavy lyrical fodder delivered over a carefully researched radio & club ready beat. Fortunately though, there still are many good producers and emcees making new music today. It's just that you have to dig for them. And while most are underground or indie artists, just because an artist is some underground indie hip-hop loving emcee doesn't always guarantee that he or she will shine. Below are several of the recent or about to drop releases that, as a DJ, I have been really feeling and playing. All should be available at Amoeba Music. Just ask if you can't find them.

Madlib Beatkonducta Vol. 3-4: India (Stones Throw)
Like 2006's Beatkonducta Vol 1-2 CD release, this collection was also originally released on vinyl only -- now offering many a chance to catch up on the brilliance that is the production of Madlib. For this collection he effortlessly melds Bollywood soundtracks (mostly instrumental, but about 15% with vocals and spoken word soundbites mixed in, usually at beginning) with hip-hop beats -- generally looped into hypnotic patterns. The 34 tracks are mostly short (2 minutes orz-trip less) in length.

Z-Trip All-Pro Soundtrack (Decon)

Like its series predecessor -- Dan The Automator presents 2K7 on Decon for 2K Sports, which was also a DJ produced collection featuring guest emcees and turntablists -- this is another video game soundtrack. And it rocks, thanks to Z-Trip's perfect choice of collaborators (mostly West Coast), including Chali 2na, Aceyalone, Quannum's Lateef and Gift of Gab, Hiero's Pep Love and Casual, plus LA turntablist duo Backyard Bangers. Also includes a track from longtime collaborator of Z-Trip's DJ Faust (of Faust & Shortee fame), plus Z-Trip's inspired turntable remix of Rush's "Tom Sawyer."

Jack Kerouac

Posted by Whitmore, September 5, 2007 09:08am | Post a Comment

Blood Sisters

Posted by phil blankenship, September 4, 2007 02:53pm | Post a Comment

Sony Video 7166

Jerry “The Phantom” Lott

Posted by Whitmore, September 4, 2007 11:56am | Post a Comment

A decade before the mayhem and lurid madness of the Legendary Stardust Cowboy’s “Paralyzed” there was Jerry Lott, a.k.a. “The Phantom,” recording his own blithering two minute psychotic-billy breakdown. Born near Mobile, Alabama in 1938, Lott played country music as a young teenager until he heard Elvis Presley and rockabilly in 1956. Something obviously went ping!

During the summer of 1958 in Mobile, Lott recorded Whisper Your Love. As he told Derek Glenister in a 1980 interview: "Somebody said, 'what you gonna put on the flip-side' - I hadn't even thought about it. Someone suggested I wrote something like Elvis 'cause he was just a little on the wane and everybody was beginning to turn against rock 'n' roll. They said, 'See if you spark rock 'n' roll a little bit' ... so that's when I put all the fire and fury I could utter into it. I was satisfied with the first take, but everybody said, 'Let's try it one more time.' I didn't yell on the first take, but I yelled on the second, and blew one of the controls off the wall. I'm telling ya," Lott continued, "It was wild. The drummer lost one of his sticks, the piano player screamed and knocked his stool over, the guitar player's glasses were hanging sideways over his eyes."

Love Me was that song, written by Jerry Lott in 10 minutes. Almost 50 years later that track is still startling, especially to the uninitiated. If the screams don’t stagger you at the beginning, perhaps The Phantom’s post-coital exhaustion at track’s end will. Yeah, most great Rockabilly records from the late fifties had more then their share of fire and dementia, but this track is insane … certifiably, wickedly, aberrantly insane! It’s beautiful!

Lott left Mobile for Los Angeles to shop his master tape around, on an impulse he followed Pat Boone to church one Sunday morning  and convinced him to give the tape a listen. It was Boone's idea to rename Lott  "The Phantom”, even agreeing to issue the record on his own label, Cooga Mooga. Eventually Lott signed a contract with Boone's management but the single of Love Me b/w Whisper Your Love was released on the label Boone recorded for - Dot  Records in 1960 (DOT 16056).

(In which Job returns from [kind of a] vacation.)

Posted by Job O Brother, September 4, 2007 11:31am | Post a Comment

Honey! I’m home…!


Whew! It is crazy hot here in Hollywood. How have you survived? I’m this close to envying the Donner Party.

[Sets luggage down.]

Where have I been? Didn’t you see the Post-It note I left on our autographed portrait of Gunnar de Frumerie?


What do you mean you were struck blind by the Lord Our God while traveling the Road to Damascus? Are you crazy?

Yes, I know Labor Day traffic on I-5 is maddening, but I hardly think a detour through Syria was good idea. And anyhow, I wrote the note in Braille, so that’s no excuse for not reading it.

[Takes off shoes and unbuttons shirt.]

Anyway, I don’t want to fight.

I’ve been in Santa Barbara over the weekend. I was at a wedding for some of Corey’s friends. It was hot there, too, but at least we were on the coast, so it was beautiful.

Oh, a funny thing happened that continues a strange theme in my recent blogs. One of the humans attending the wedding was Octavia Spencer – a total sparkplug, very quick with the one-liners – and, as she was introduced to my small group, she lowered her sunglasses at me and said:

“Whoa! You have some pretty eyes! Hoo!”

Which makes two times this week that an obscure female comedian has commented on my optical globes. I know, right? What exactly are my pheromones excreting? Too funny.

[Washes face.]


[Screams and flails madly, knocking over bottles of various vanity needs.]

What the hell? I can’t see! I can’t see!

[Runs cold water over eyes; pants.]

Why… was there… salsa… in my acne face wash bottle?

What do you mean you ran out of Tupperware? Doesn’t salsa come in its own jar?

Oh, you made it from scratch?

Why didn’t you just…

Oh, don’t. Don’t cry. Of course I appreciate that you made me fresh salsa. I just wish you would’ve, y’know, not stored it in my beauty-care products.

Forgive me. I didn’t mean to yell. It was the jalapenos burning my pupils talking.

I love you.


Do we have any chips?

Okay, so… Seeing Ms. Spencer reminded me that I’ve been meaning to tell you about my new favorite TV show, “The Minor Accomplishments of Jackie Woodman”.

It’s written by and stars Laura Kightlinger, who is most rad. She’s been a writer for Saturday Night Live (and guest-appeared on it, too) amongst other notable screen credits, plus has the dubious distinction of having dated the stupefying Jack Black.

Her show is one of two original programs produced by the IFC cable channel.

[Fixes a slightly dirty Grey Goose martini with two olives.]

Let me tell you… It is THE ANSWER to those of us who love “Absolutely Fabulous”. Anyone who loves AbFab is almost certain to take to it; there are many parallels, except that, instead of two British women who drink and snort their way through the messy world of high fashion, we have two American women who drink and snort their way through the Hollywood film industry.

It is fresh. It is funny. You never know what’s going to happen next, except you know you will laugh as it happens. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

It’s low budget, but they work that to their advantage. It’s grittiness is not only appropriate to the world they’ve created, but adds to its appeal.

If you’re like me, it will leave you wishing you could hang out with Jackie Woodman as she blithely makes her way through every bad choice and self-destructive whim with the wit and poise of a central-European countess.

[Sheds exoskeleton and lays a few eggs; sets empty martini glass in sink.]

Anyway, I insist you check it out. I haven’t been this excited about a TV show since “Deadwood”.

[Sighs sadly.]

Deadwood… Come back to me…

[Slithers into a hole in the wainscoting and listens to iPod before falling asleep to the dulcet tones of Annette Hanshaw.]


Posted by Billyjam, September 4, 2007 10:10am | Post a Comment
Like most people, I will never forget this time two years ago, in the days/week after Hurricane Katrina first struck New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. I was literally glued to the TV's non-stop news, streaming images of the devastation and tales of the horrific conditions. I was transfixed by the shocking images and I was dismayed by news reports of the ridiculously delayed help getting to those who needed it so desperately -- mostly the region's poor inhabitants. And yesterday, as I watched the 3-DVD set of Spike Lee's HBO documentary When The Levees Broke, I was reminded of all the horrors of Katrina.

Since September 2005 the national media's focus on New Orleans may have faded considerably, but the needs of its inhabitants have not. Luckily there are still a great many individuals and organizations  actively involved in helping in the long recovery process that has quite a ways to go still. As you probably already know, Amoeba Music is one of the many organizations doing its bit in the effort to help the victims of Katrina, through its Amoeba auctions to benefit Katrina victims. katrina Meanwhile, one of the many individuals involved in helping the recovery process is my former KALX Cultural Affairs Dept. buddy Rohit Gupta, who is one of those wonderful, quietly humble and giving individuals who is always down to help out those in need. Rohit lives and works in Los Angeles but has been making frequent visits down to New Orleans to volunteer in the slow post-Katrina recovery process. I invited Rohit to write a report on what it is really like right now in New Orleans for this AMOEBLOG. Here is Rohit's story:

coming out 9/4...night on earth...stranger than paradise...prison break...the office...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 4, 2007 09:29am | Post a Comment
It seems like everybody wants to have an album out this year on 9/11. It's such a big week next week, with new albums from Kanye West, The Black Lips, Film School, Ani Difranco, The Shout Out Louds, Pinback, Animal Collective, Hot Hot Heat, The Go Team, and a bunch more. Unfortunately it is only 9/4 and with the recent holiday of labor day the music releases are pretty non existent today. But there are some exciting DVD releases coming out this week. It is hard to believe that two of the classic films of Jim Jarmusch have never been on DVD. Both Night on Earth and Stranger Than Paradise are seeing their first release on DVD domestically this week. They will released through the fantastic people of Criterion. These awesome Criterion Collection editions are not just your normal DVD packaging. These are director approved editions and they look fantastic. Both these films have been long time favorites of mine and it is nice to finally see them out on DVD. I am sure a whole new generation of people have yet to see these movies. They were the kind of movies that you could find at any indie video store of the past. But I am sure over the years the old VHS copies have been stolen or broken down by now. I first saw Stranger than Paradise for a college course and then quickly went out and rented any of the other films of Jim Jarmusch that I could find. Night on Earth was easily one of my favorites.

Stranger Than Paradise came out in 1984. Jim had made one of the parts of the film a couple of years before that and had made only one other film before that. That first film, "Permanent Vacation" is included with this new edition of Stranger Than Paradise. It sort of became this famous little cult indie film. One of the first indie films that sort of made it into popular culture. After Down by Law in 1986 and Mystery Train in 1989, came the great film that is Night on Earth in 1991. This was way before Taxicab Confessions. Night on Earth was basically five different stories in one film. "Five Taxis, Five Cities, One Night." The setup of the film was brilliant. While most of my cab rides have not been this exciting. It is really interesting to see these little stories of what could happen in various cab rides throughout the World. Winona Ryder and Gena Rowlands star in the Hollywood cab ride. Gena is always fantastic and amazing to watch on the screen. Please go watch "Gloria" or "Woman Under the Influence" if you don't know what I mean. It is fun to see her here interacting as a casting agent with a young and tough cab driving Winona. I may not smoke anymore but it still is great to see these two smoking away as they have a conversation in the cab. Gena wants to cast Winona in a film but Winona has to turn her down. She seems to already have her life plan all worked out. One of other great interactions is between Giancarlo Esposito, Rosie Perez and Armin Mueller-Stahl in the New York Taxi ride. Rosie Perez is sort of like Sandra Bernhard. You either absolutely love her or you can't stand her. I am for sure on the love side. But whatever you think of her, she is perfect in this part. The dialoge is just brilliant and hilarious. The three other cab rides take place in Rome, Paris, & Helsinki.  Roberto Benigni is hilarious in the Rome cab ride. He makes a very detailed sexual confession to a priest. 

Everybody has been in a taxi at some point in their life. Living in San Francisco without a car for 10 years, I have had my share of late night cab rides. There are some very interesting cab drivers in this city and it is always fun to hear their stories. I am also a big fan of HBO's show Taxicab Confessions. The fact that they ask you for your permission after they film you, always makes me hope that some day I will be in a Taxicab confession. Although many of my taxicab confessions would involve me sleeping in the back of the car. I do really love to sleep while being a passenger in a car. But every once in a while I will have a little conversation with the driver. Taxicab Confessions has been on for more than 10 years now. It first aired in 1995. It will go into its 12th season this coming January. The show usually films in New York but has occasionally switched to Las Vegas.  This show is really great. It really captures people as they really are in the sort of natural setting of a Taxi. The participants are usually drunk which allows them to open up more. They have only released some episodes from the 2005 season so far on DVD. But hopefully more for of the older stuff will come out soon. Maybe it is too difficult tracking down all the people that were shown on the show. But you can still catch it every once in a while on HBO or Bravo as well. I have my favorite taxicab drivers. Most of them are really good at getting their passengers to open up. But it really seems like all they have to do is listen.

The DVD release of Night On Earth includes the newly restored high definition digital transfer of the film. Itincludes audio commentary by the director of photography and sound mixer. It also includes a Q & A with Jarmusch and a 1992 television interview with him. It includes a new and improved subtitle translation which is important since only two of the segments are in English. The DVD also includes a nice big booklet with essays about the film. Stranger Than Paradise is a 2 DVD special edition. It includes his first film "Permanent Vacation" and a behind the scenes super-8 film by Jim Jarmusch. It also includes a German television special on the film. The DVD includes some trailers and photos as well as a booklet with notes and essays on the film.

It is getting very close to the new season of television. There have already been a bunch of great shows this summer on cable already. Weeds, Flight of the Conchords and Big Love have all been fantastic. Mad Men on AMC has also been amazing. But with the return of the big shows on primetime regular TV, come the release of last seasons box sets. Just in case you need to catch up.
Out this week for TV on DVD is...

The Office Season 3

Prison Break Season 2

Desperate Housewives Season 3

30 Rock Season 1

Nip/Tuck Season 4

Beyond Dream's Door

Posted by phil blankenship, September 2, 2007 08:46pm | Post a Comment

VidAmerica 7166

49 square inches of something again

Posted by Whitmore, September 2, 2007 12:15pm | Post a Comment

“This is in no sense a  stunt record. Let the record speak for itself.”

Says that right here on the back. Of course the record starts with the sound of a train, moving from left speaker to right.

“In spite of the high
degree of perfection
reached hitherto in the art of commercial disc recording, especially
since the advent of the long-playing record, the  monaural or one-channel system has certain limitations. The listener is deprived of any real sense of perspective in the sound.”

But wait, there is something astonishingly beautiful and perfect about some monaural mixes: and that beauty is called “clarity.”  To my weary, tinnitus-filled ears, the mono mix of the Zombies’ Odessey and Oracle is perfection, even in headphones. There’s separation. The piano, the organ, the harpsichord, the guitars, drums, the vocals, the reverb … it’s all there sounding just about what you would like these things to sound like, without the sugar-coated, frosty-haze of full frequency stereophonic sound creeping into your left and right ears, ping-ponging one at a time!  Another great psyche classic, Pink Floyd’s The Piper at the Gates of Dawn also benefits from a mono mix,  as it was originally released in mono. There is something distracting about the gamesmanship of  “The Piper” stereo mix. That’s right … the gamesmanship.

Coincidentally, (then again, like I’ve written here before,
there are no coincidences …) according to the Pink Floyd
official website, the 40th anniversary edition will be
released on September 4th, 2007, as both a two CD set
and a three CD box set and with both the stereo and mono
versions. Unfortunately The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
has been “newly re-mastered.”

Blood Tracks

Posted by phil blankenship, September 2, 2007 12:30am | Post a Comment

Vista Home Video VVA 0010

After Midnight

Posted by phil blankenship, September 1, 2007 08:31pm | Post a Comment

CBS Fox Video 4771


Posted by Billyjam, September 1, 2007 06:39pm | Post a Comment
paul vasquez
AMOEBLOG: How'd you end up working at Amoeba and what exactly is your job there?

I started working at Amoeba in March of 2006, a year and a half ago. I was fed up with the record store I used to work for, so I spoke to a friend of a friend, and the rest is history. I work in the World Music section, helping our customers and maintaining the section.

What makes working at Amoeba unique compared to previous jobs?

Working at Amoeba has been a huge thrill for me. I've never had a job that I look forward to every day. I know that as soon as I walk in the building, I'm among, scratch that: among family. I feel like the employees are respected and valued for their contributions to the store. The owners and managers have created a mellow and open environment where we feel that we are taken care of. Being an Amoeba employee has changed my life in so many positive ways; it's hard to imagine not having the support structure the store and its employees provm.i.a.ide.

AMOEBLOG: What are the Top Three Items at Amoeba this week that people are seeking out?

- Kala, Buika - A Spanish singer recently profiled on NPR, and The Fania Reissue Series - The classic Salsa label finally gets a proper

AMOEBLOG: Best places to eat nearby Amoeba Music Hollywood?

For a quick bite, I think Sharky's (Hollywood & Cahuenga) can't be beat. Super vegetarian friendly. But when I have time for a mellow sit-down experience, I dig Magnolia (Sunset & Vine). They have a mac & cheese that will bring tears to your eyes.