Amoeblog

Photographic Memory, Part 2

Posted by Job O Brother, September 14, 2009 12:01pm | Post a Comment
This is another installment of music and/or movies that I’m reminded of when looking at old photos of myself, my family and my friends. It was brought to you by the letter E and the number 8. And through a generous donation from the Karen Silkwood Driving Academy. And from Viewers Like You.


"I hate you."

Here’s a picture of the dude that’s writing the sentence you’re reading right now. It was taken while he was in Kindergarten. The expression on the boy’s face sets the tone for the rest of his scholastic experience.

I don’t know what happened to make me look so surly in a photograph. It could’ve been as simple as the photographer telling me to “Smile!” which is an order I have never responded to well. I mean, if someone wants me to smile, they should be creative about it. Try saying something like:

“I’ve bought you 8 pints of ice cream and a spoon!” or

“I managed to destroy every last recording of the song ‘Entry Of The Gladiators!'” or

“I am John Gavin, and I’m going to kiss you.”

Something that would make me smile for reals. Don’t just bark orders at me! Especially to portray an emotion. That’s too personal. I AM NOT A LABRADOR RETRIEVER, PEOPLE!

Sorry for yelling. But I’m really not a Labrador Retriever, people. So stop throwing dirty tennis balls my way. Just because I always bring them back doesn’t mean I’m enjoying myself, you know. My tail lies.

By Kindergarten age, I was devoted to three albums: Simple Dreams by Linda Ronstadt


Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band by… oh, what were they called? Shoot – the name slips my mind, but they were a good band. And finally, Chipmunk Rock by The Chipmunks.


An argument could be made that all the variety I now enjoy in the world of music can be traced back to these three LP’s. That argument would be wrong, but you could make it.


This is a picture I took of Noah Georgeson in front of the now defunct South Yuba Café, then located on Broad Street in downtown Nevada City, California. Working inside the Café was his then-girlfriend who was hooking us up with free ice cream and pasties. (My adolescence would not have been possible without the girls of South Yuba Café feeding me free pasties, actually. Without them, I would have had to get a job, which would have dramatically changed the course of my entire life.)

Noah and I had been in the same freshmen P.E. class at Nevada Union High School, which may account for both of us sharing similar post-traumatic stress disorders. We were also in the same punk band for a while – a lovable little outfit called Inner Frog, which would also include Hunter Burgan on drums, amongst others.

I didn’t, and don’t, know how to play any instruments, so I was what we called “lead Betty Cooper,” that is, I played tambourine and sang back-up vocals. Usually in cut-off jeans and a vintage nurse’s outfit. Conflicts arose after the band’s lead singer (who we’ll call The Virginia Beach Open) started making wild allegations and accused the rest of us of claiming she was making wild allegations.


Noah continued developing lots of music – more than I could name by the time I finish writing this sentence. Of note, he was a member of now disbanded band The Pleased, along with then-girlfriend Joanna Newsom, whose debut album he would produce. Since then, he has also become a regular contributor to the work of Devendra Banhart.


But an album that deserves greater awareness is his solo effort Find Shelter, released in 2006. It’s a dreamy album of dark folk hypnosis. Noah’s vocals are rich, deep and commanding. Don’t be content with his impressive résumé of behind-the-scenesness – check out his album, do.


Finally, here’s a picture of Carmella. I don’t have any musical memories attached to this image, but I did snap this photo in the restroom of the South Yuba Café, so it’s not without relevance. Without taste, yes, but not relevance.

More walks down memory lane to come. Stay tuned!

...Actually, don’t stay tuned. I don’t want you to waste days just sitting at your computer waiting for my next blog. As much as I appreciate your devotion, it’s important to me that you prioritize your own well-being and that of those who depend on you. So let’s just say “check in later” and leave it at that.

THE BEATLES: ROCK BAND FURTHER BROADENS FAB FOUR'S FANBASE

Posted by Billyjam, September 2, 2009 11:00am | Post a Comment
Trailer for The Beatles: Rock Band (2009)

Everyone loves The Beatles and if there is still someone unmoved by the Fab Four, he or she soon will be once they get their hands on The Beatles: Rock Band video game, which is being released exactly a week from today on the easy to remember date of 9/9/09. That date also happens to be the same day that the much anticipated remastered Beatles catalog on CD The Beatles Rock Bandarrives in Amoeba Music. Not only will gamers of all ages take to this game, especially those who are already fans of Rock Band or Guitar Hero, but most likely people who have never played a video game in their lives will start now with The Beatles: Rock Band.

The game comes complete with 45 instantly recognizable Beatles songs, including "Get Back," "Day Tripper," "I Want To Hold Your Hand," and "Back in the USSR." The game's scenes and settings include playing in the Cavern Club and at Shea Stadium! This game will convert young kids to the music of the Beatles and older Beatles fans to the world of gaming; overall, even further broadening the fanbase of the Fab Four. 

St. Louis Union

Posted by Eric Brightwell, July 10, 2008 09:24pm | Post a Comment
St. Louis Union were a Manchester six piece fronted by impeccably-coifed singer, Tony Cassidy. Shortly after forming they won a Melody Maker beat contest in 1965 which scored them a deal with Decca. They were billed as "THE Group on the Northern Soul Scene." Their sound was centered around Alex Kirby's tenor saxophone and Keith Millar's electric guitar backed by some serious organ by Dave Tomlinson, John Nichols on bass and Dave Webb on the skins.

Their live set was built around "Turn On Your Lovelight," "Woke Up This Morning," "Every Day I Have the Blues" and "Get On the Right Track Baby."

Their name seems to be a reference to the St. Louis Union Station, a train station famous, like many things in St. Louis, as having been the biggest and busiest thing in its field way back when. Its archways are designed so that one can whisper into them and someone else can hear you clearly on the other end, a design feature with no apparent practical applications, save simple amusements in a simpler time. It was largely built of limestone taken from Indiana, probably just to remind the Hoosiers who's boss, as the state of Missouri is entirely made of limestone and they're the nation's leader in lime production.


Truman having a laugh at St. Louis Union Station

In the 1970s, the station was bought by Amtrak. They ended operations soon afterward and relocated their operations to a building the unhealthily train-obsessed refer to as Amshack. Now it's a mall where tourists watch the guys at the Fudge Factory put on a show and the Footlocker has a basketball hoop with the backboard autographed by the D.O.C.

While ridership of trains out of the station began to decline in the 1960s, 1966 was the Mancunian band's biggest year. Their debut single was a cover of the Beatles' "Girl," which reached #11 on the charts. A band known as the Truth also released a cover at the same time and didn't score a hit. Such was the world of British pop in mid-60s bands releasing covers of their peers. The b-side was a cover of Otis Redding's "Respect." They went on to open for him when he played in Manchester.


Their second single was a recording of slept-on genius Mancunian Graham Gouldman's "Behind the Door." The b-side was "English Tea."


They appeared in the Spencer Davis-centered Ghost Goes Gear alongside Dave Berry (singer of "The Crying Game"), The Three Bells and Acker Bilk (as the object of Modernists' disdained Traditionalist Jazz). It's not a great film, but as a relic it's fascinating and provides us with the only visual evidence of  St. Lous Union's impeccably forward fashion, timeless hair and considerable stage presence.

"East Side Story" backed by "Think About Me" failed to make the top 40 and it proved to be their final recording.

They split the following year, in 1967. Webb still plays drums, in a heavy metal band, T F L. Nichols went on to become a respected fashion photographer. Tomlinson, as Dave Formula, played with Magazine, Ludus, Visage and other bands. Millar went on to play synthesizer with many major artists and co-wrote Divine's "Think You're a Man." He died of a brain hemmorage in 2005 at just 58 years old. Cassidy, the swaggering singer, died that same year, just 57 years old.

Become a fan of Eric's Blog on Facebook!

While Jake's Uke Gently Weeps

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



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

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

PAUL LOVED AMOEBA AND AMOEBA LOVED THE BEATLE BACK

Posted by Billyjam, June 28, 2007 09:35pm | Post a Comment
mccartney
No doubt you're already aware that Paul McCartney played a surprise free show at Amoeba Music Hollywood on Wednesday, June 27th.

Check out on this website how Paul McCartney Rocked Amoeba Hollywood in a great review by Marcus Kagler that also includes pics from outside the store as fans lined up to see Sir Paul. And also check out AMOEBLOGGER Miss Ess' (All The News That's Fit to Sing) review (with great pics) nearby here on the AMOEBLOG.

The ex-Beatle's instore got tons of media coverage, including from the Los Angeles Times and Access Hollywood. In fact, some media outlets reported that McCartney's Amoeba appearance upstaged Paris Hilton's appearance at the CNN building, where she was Larry King's exclusive guest, literally right across the street on Hollywood's Sunset Blvd. In addition to all of the TV coverage there have also already been several first-hand video postings on YouTube -- as of Saturday a search under "McCartney Amoeba" netted 21 video links, many of which are not the best audio-video quality, but regardless capture the vibe and excitement of the day-- makes you wish you were there if you were not one of the lucky ones to make it. There are other Paul McCartney Amoeba Hollywood clips found on YouTube, including one with Ringo Starr (yes, he was in the house but didn't perform) in the parking lot and one of Paul on the Amoeba instore stage saying "thank you....Amoeba --  a great shop or wot?" Note that the must-watch video below of Paul @ Amoeba is good professional quality, as it is courtesy of McCartney's YouTube Channel.

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