Aimee Mann Channels Abbey Road

I recently watched the episode of the Henry Rollins show that had PT Anderson talking movies and Aimee Mann as the musical guest. That led me to break out my copy of Bachelor No. 2 and spin it. When I first got this album, and even before when I had MP3s of a few of the songs, I listened obsessively. I must have listened to “Ghost World” and “Calling it Quits” hundreds of times each. I never really noticed before how much the album reminds me of Abbey Road in some strange way. The way the lead guitar sounds, the feeling of the songs and all just put me in mind of it.

This might be because my subconscious mind is always trying to connect everything to Abbey Road at all times. Anytime I see one of those lists of the best albums of all time that has Sergeant Pepper up top, I always scoff and point out that it isn’t even the third best Beatles album. If history was different and they had released the single disc White Album without some of the weaker/weirder stuff, SP might not even be in the top half.

Scofield Rocked

Whew, busy weekend with no blogging or podcasting. The John Scofield show Saturday night was really fantastic. We got to the festival fairly late, walked around a little and got some coffees. We set up our camping chairs and got good seats for the African dance troupe. They were quite enjoyable, and an hour of just drums and dancing flew by quickly. After taking a break, I set up on the other side for Scofield and had a nice seat about 30 feet from the stage. I enjoyed his show even more than I was expecting to. I was a little familiar with his work as a sideman but completely ignorant of his solo work. My (slight) worry was that it would be too “smooth jazz-y” for my tastes. Within 3 minutes, that was no longer a worry. He played good ballsy jazz, not afraid to approach the blues or Hendrix-y guitar rock at times.

Overall, it was a great evening. Just a few things that would be better for the festival: for a thing billed as a “jazz and arts festival”, play jazz on the PA between sets. Using Steely Dan sends a mixed message at best. Also, why were there no Scofield CDs available at the merchandise table? I walked by after the set and would have picked some up, but they weren’t there. The festival should just pick up a few boxes of each in print CD, try to get a returnable deal with the record label, sell what you can and send the rest back. It’s nothing but upside that way – the festival makes more money, the headliners sell more records and gain more fans, the attendees get their horizons broadened.

Those are nits. Conway, SC did themselves proad putting on such a good show.

Jazz in Conway

Tomorrow will be the Rivertown Jazz and Arts Festival in downtown Conway SC. The headliner of this event will be John Scofield. I’m excited about having a guy of this stature playing for free about 12 blocks from my house. When I first heard about this, I had misremembered when Scofield played with Miles Davis as being in the period I most liked – the post-electric Bitches Brew/Live Evil/Agharta era. In fact, Scofield played with him in the period when Davis was doing Cyndi Lauper covers, but still. I’ll be there and am so proud of my little town for going big on this festival. I hope to post photos and/or video later.

Robert Rich at the Eyedrum

EGC friends Damon Young and Diana Obscura will be opening for Robert Rich at the Eyedrum in Atlanta this Sunday night. If you are in the area and want to experience some fine ambio-tribal-gotho-indo-arabic music of the highest order, check it out. Here is the press release:

Sunday, April 9, 2006

Changelings members Paul Mercer (violin) & Damon Young (tanpura)
will join Diana Obscura (cello, voice) and Carol Statella (viola)
in opening for ambient & tribal music pioneer Robert Rich at Eyedrum

290 MLK Jr. Drive, Suite 8, Atlanta, GA 404-522-0655
Music starts at 8:15pm, $9, All Ages

Please see here for more info:

Bonus link, WREK does a monthly show on Eyedrum which even has its own podcast RSS feed. The last two episodes have even had a little Rich and Obscura music in them.

Goodbye Buck Owens

In the first ever EGC guest blogging slot, I’m presenting a short item written by Nate “Siderunner” Van Allen. A few days ago he sent to the Siderunners mailing list this farewell piece to Buck Owens. I asked if I could republish it here. He agreed, gave it a little edit and here it is. Many thanks to Nate. If you’ve ever listened to his band, you can hear in their music the fact that they’ve spun Buckaroos discs so often that they hear them even when they are turned off.


I wanted to note to all of you music fans the passing of a legend this week: Buck Owens. In the sixties Buck was the king of the country world recording a shitload of number one hits including “Act Naturally”, later covered by the Beatles. Buck Owens and the Buckaroos were the first country band ever to play Carnegie Hall and that recording remains one of my favorite live recording of all time for its grace, humor and staggering musicianship. In a time where bands try to sound worse and worse the sheer effortlessness of the music on that record stands in stark contrast, a testament to their immense talent, particularly guitar player Don Rich. Originally a fiddle player when he met Buck, Don switched to guitar for the band and ended up revolutionizing country guitar not to mention rock and roll guitar to this day, even if modern players don’t know it.

If it wasn’t enough to be so talented on guitar, Rich also had a voice that ranged from a deep baritone, heard on such songs as “Streets of Laredo”, to the high harmonies that accompanied Buck, that were unbelievably tight in their phrasing and pitch and also made smart use of intervals to produce a heightened emotional effect. There are similar harmonic intervals to what people use in modern recordings but are not skilled enough to pull off and need to use expensive harmonizing machines to do it. All of this came together to form what they call Bakersfield Country sound heard all over real county music today, most notably with Dwight Yoakam and BR-549 among others, not fuckwads such as Toby Keith and the like.

Don and Buck were so close as musicians and partners that when Don Rich was killed in a motorcycle accident Buck Owens quit music. He did this at a time not when he was in decline but on top. He simply quit. Owens later resurfaced on Hee-Haw but to me it was like watching this once great man being reduced to a comedy act. You’ll find his good sense of humor in his Carnegie Hall concert, which some of you might see as a little hokey and pandering, but that’s how they did it back then. It’s important to hear it the times intended.

I always think it’s important when looking at music to see who is going to be relevant in 20-30-40 years. Buck is and will always be, not just in country but also in music you hear everyday.

No Walls CD

Here’s some information for those of you who loved the No Walls song I played back in the episode with William “Kip” DuVall. A few people asked about how they could get the CD, and William pointed me towards the guy who put it out. He’s the owner of the Full Moon Records shop, and he also ran the record label. I called him today, and he told me that he’ll mail order them to anyone on the following deal:

For one CD it is $15 postpaid. For greater than one, he’ll sell them for $10/per CD postpaid. This is for the USA, of course. If you are outside of the USA then I think you’ll need to negotiate on the postage. There is no website for the record store and the label portion is out of business, so in order to get this send your check or money order to:

Full Moon Records
Attn: No Walls CD
1653 McLendon
Atlanta, GA 30307

I’ve owned this CD since it was brand new, and I think it is fantabulous. I highly recommend it if you liked those songs at all. In fact, I’ll play some No Walls on the next show just to prove that to you.

DuVall on the Interview

William DuVall of Comes With The Fall had nice things to say about his interview on the podcast. It really was great to talk to him as well. I went in thinking we’d talk for about 10 or 15 minutes, but he seemed to not be getting fed up so we kept on going. I can remember running into him at the Point or the White Dot in Atlanta and just striking up a conversation with him, so he’s always been an easy dude to talk to.

I strongly strongly urge everyone to check out the music CWTF has at their website above. When their new album “Beyond the Last Light” comes out, I’m going to buy one of every disc they have. Dig it, daddy-o.

Brian Harvey of House of Freaks Slain

Horrible news – Brian Harvey of the band House of Freaks along with his whole family were murdered last weekend. It is a terrible and grisly story – they were all bound with their throats cut and their house set on fire.

I saw House of Freaks several times and own some of their records. They were a great band and the White Stripes swiped big chunks of their schtick from them. Harvey and his family will be missed.

Siderunners in the Twin Cities

For those readers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul region, the Siderunners will be in your town tomorrow night, Friday December 30. If you like what you hear on this show, go check them out and tell them I sent you. Here are some details.

The Siderunners
Mark Stary & The Whiskey Roses
Burning Bridges

Lee’s Liquor Lounge
101 Glenwood
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Cold Turkey

When I was 13, I found out that John Lennon had been shot. It was the official beginning of my teen angst, and a big chunk of it has never gone away. I just realized with alarm that I’m only two years younger now than he was when he got killed.

You left me, I never left you. I needed you, you never needed me, so I just got to tell you … Goodbye.

Goodbye Closet Deadhead

I just started listening to Closet Deadhead after meeting Sam Whitmore at PME. Now because of some sort of anality from the Dead organization which led to the fracas, Sam is shutting down the podcast. Goddamnit! I have to say that I have never been huge into the Dead but now I’m beginning to lose a lot of respect for the current caretakers of their legacy. What Would Jerry Do? I hate to think it would be this.

40 years of freely allowing people to trade their music which led to them becoming the most lucrative band in history and they pick now to tighten their asses? Give me a break.

X hits the Spot

Listening to this week’s Personality Crisis (via the RSS feed of course), Jon Kincaid played a long long set of music from X. Dang, I love this band and I love that show. He played a bunch of their songs, and yet didn’t hit my favorite – “The Phone is Off the Hook (but You’re Not)”.

I think that Punk: Attitude documentary I watched on IFC was pretty shameful in spending 40 minutes on London punk, 40 minutes on New York punk, and like 2 and half on California punk. At least half of the bands I really care about from the scene are Cali bands – X, Dead Kennedys, Circle Jerks, Black Flag, (really old) Suicidal Tendencies, etc. I know the director was actually a player in the NY punk scene and has loyalties that way, but jeez.


Apropos of nothing, I sure do love the 70’s band Sparks. I heard the new promo for Jon Kincaid’s Personality Crisis on WREK and his background music is Sparks’ “Angst in my Pants”. I first got turned on to them in the soundtrack to the film Valley Girl where “Eaten by the Monster of Love” is the accompaniment to a moment of deep moral choice (about getting laid, of course.) This mood might just inspire me to dig out the turntable to fire up the old albums. If anyone out there can hook me up with the Mael Brothers, I’d be all over doing a Skype interview with them. “And this song will fade out, I predict …”

Boycott Sony

This doesn’t affect me, because I have been on a de facto boycott of RIAA labels for years now and I don’t use a Windows machine in any significant way but now Sony Music has really crossed the line. By installing rootkits on your PC when you insert their music CDs that then corrupt your PC if you try to remove it, they have really and truly screwed the pooch. As I understand it from reading online, their rootkit that is there to ensure you aren’t playing their music without permission does not identify itself as such. If, like any good listener of recent episodes of Security Now, you try to remove this as the malware that it is, it will screw up your machine. You have no way of knowing ahead of time this will happen (unless you are reading blog posts about it), and no redress after the fact. Also, any savvy author of rootkit malware that currently can be removed will probably be buying a copy of the Van Zant Brothers CD and decompiling their rootkit to figure out that technique, increasing the state of the art of rootkit authors everywhere. Thanks Sony.

The line has been crossed. People of conscience should cease today buying Sony Music products of all kinds. Sony obviously doesn’t care about you if they are willing to put your PCs, all your personal or business data at risk in order to prevent you from playing an MP3. Who needs them? Give them what they want, don’t ever play their pirated MP3s but also don’t ever buy their CDs either. There are one million songs out there released free and clear by artists who want your attention and are not going to destroy your computer for listening to them.

As of today, if you buy Sony Music products you are supporting criminal activity.

Addenda: If you look at the original post where this came to light, one of the commentors notes that in the long run, Sony has made it more reasonable for you to download illegal MP3s of their music than buy it, because you don’t put yourself at risk that way. The most basic rule of all business and life for that matter is “incent the behavior you want to happen.” When you screw people for paying you money, you screw yourself in the long run.