Sunday, March 29, 2009

A Song Late & Lotsa Dollars Short

On "Breakfast With The Beatles" this weekend, host Chris Carter shared his experience about his first Paul McCartney concert, on the Wings 1976 tour. His experience was similar to mine, in that I also saw that same tour, it was also my first time (to date) and we both missed the first song.

My pal Keith & I had tickets for May 8 1976. I think I paid $5. My only other "Beatle" show was John & Yoko at the John Sinclair rally in Ann Arbor December 1971. He was in "busker" mode, with Abbey Hoffman, Jerry Rubin & street singer David Peel. It wasn't "rock", but it mixed music & politics just cool enough for me at that point in my life (that was $3).

So by 1976 my friends & I were becoming increasingly entrenched in the punk rock ethos: OK, we got music here, and that was almost incidental to whether or not we could get a drink, & of course we were done inconveniencing ourselves in a damn stadium like cattle. We acted like we didn't care. We were just "out" on a Saturday night.

So I never looked at the tickets, and assumed starting time was 7:30. We went out to do some preliminary "boozin'" and when we got to Olympia Stadium we found a great parking place right across the street. So we're walkin' across and I hear music coming from the building & it sure sounds like "Venus & Mars". Keith tells me to check the tickets & of course they say 7pm. I can still hear him say "nice one dummy" or something more akin to a boozed-up 22-year-old suburban punk (that's OK, he more than made up for this throughout the following years - like missing Jimmy Cliff due to pre-show boozin' again).

As nonplussed as we think we are about all this crap, we're both thinking "shit, we missed part of a Beatle performance". I can't remember if we knew how good our seats were before we walked inside - 15th row, main floor! AISLE! And no more than 10 feet from a coke machine (no booze served at concerts yet, but still it's liquid refreshments. I shoulda brought slippers). Anyway, we asked someone what we missed, and it turns out just the opening song, which runs into the one we came in on.

They were great - I guess. I can't remember any of it, really. Recently I saw a photo of Macca onstage with a Red Wings sticker on an old Epiphone guitar. Turns out a fan gave him that sticker on that date in 1976. And also, he wrote "Yesterday" on that guitar, & used it to sing the same on Sullivan.

Yeah, I was there, whatever. Can I get a Red Stripe & a double bourbon?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Re: Greta DeDay

Regret. Is that a deadly sin? No, I don't think so. Is it a sin at all? No, I don't think so, but maybe it's an affliction. Some people say they have no regrets. How can that possibly be? I have a lifetime full of regrets. I regret most everything. I regret that last sentence.

I think that those who say they regret nothing (yeah, you, Edith Piaf) are fooling themselves. Everyone makes bad decisions. Maybe they aren't classified as regrets if you learn from them.

Do you believe that some people commit questionable acts just to get caught & obtain help? Not me. Wait, I regret typing that. Catch me. Help me.

What about guilt? Is that the same as regret? Because I've always said that I'm full of guilt, and maybe I'm not, maybe it's regret. Maybe I'm full of regret. Yeah, just maybe.

I've always thought people who are on the sunny side of a negative comment have a very easy time defacing themselves. F'rinstance, if you say someone's butt-ugly, and Catherine Deneuve says "oh, me too, I'm so hideous, my nose is like a toucan's beak". I mean, that's easy to admit, because it's not really true. And she knows someone will say get real, you're absolutely stunning. If no one responds to her ridiculous statement, maybe she herself would get real and just pipe down, thinking to herself "yeah, it must be horrible to be butt-ugly, glad it's not me - or is it? Why isn't anyone pro-ing my con? Nah, they're just in tune to the real deal, & now they're thinking how shallow I am". Then she'd have regrets. But she'd still be fine as hell.

Here's something you can do in the self-help area: if you have regrets about something and ... never mind, I forgot.

Hey, here's something fun: what would be the best drag queen name?

Crystal DeCantor
Rita Menu
Bertha DeBlues
Anna Rexia
Diana Cancer
Ida Slapter
Dixie Normous
Harry Balls
Sharon Needles
Rachel Tension
Marcia Dimes
Helena Handbasket
Lois Carmen Denominator

Any I missed?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Blocked Again?

I have nothing to write about. Trust me, I've started many posts & deleted all their drafts. It's gotten to the point where my blatherings don't even interest me.

Well, I could tell you about the wonderful visit I had with my grandson this past weekend. What a little droolbox. I finally found a viable outlet for my excessive spending jones. I need nothing else; I'll just blow some cash on him.

This past weekend I also started watching reruns of Bachelor Father, with John Forsythe, Sammee Tong & Noreen Corcoran (older sister of Disney-ite Moochie Corcoran). A frequent character was a friend of Corcoran's character Kelly, Howard Meechim, played by Jimmy Boyd who coincidently died recently. He was also the kid who first saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus. So blame him if he messed up your childhood fantasy world. Plus, he married Yvonne Craig - Batgirl. That louse!

So I guess that's about it for now. Except watch this clip from Carson:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

"I'd Like To Hear Hamtramck Mama by The York Brothers..."

Man, I am so confused by all the stuff on Facebook. OK, like can I customize the page? I want people to always see a link to my blog page. I want people to see the badge (just learnt that one) for donating to WFMU. And I want a big red arrow that points to all the pictures of my grandson. Maybe being part of the Facebook Army means no customization.

My son-in-law will be by next weekend. Maybe he can show me some crap. He's part Tron.

I think I mentioned this last year, but it's that time again: WFMU in Jersey is doing its once-a-year fundraising. I'm not saying pledge (although better radio you'll never find: Mr Finewine, Michael Shelley, Fools Paradise, Dave The Spazz) but I am saying I have an entertainment note for you: Friday Mar 13 from 8pm-11pm on the Pseu Braun show once again Yo La Tengo will be live in the studio attempting to play immediate requests from pledgers. You call, you pledge, you suggest a tune, YLT play it! This is one great experience. I have a CD of one of their past efforts called Yo La Tengo Is Murdering The Classics. Extra-boss! Anyway, you should listen, but you gotta listen live, the YLT episodes are never archived, just go to WFMU's webpage

Once I widen my blog audience via my facebook page, and then once I con - I mean persuade them into checking out all the things I prescribe, I'll be on my way to - dare I say it? - world blog domination!

Great Googa Mooga Shooga Wooga!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sit On My Facebook

You have f#%king got to be f#%king kidding me.

(moron) wants to be added as one of your friends.

what is (loser) doing right now?

(pathetic moron loser) wrote on someone's wall.

you may know (f#%king pathetic moron loser).

you must be friends to see (oh, I don't even care)'s full profile.

OK, OK, I gave it a shot. I logged onto facebook, entered personal info, spent a ridiculous amount of time entering my favorite music (I like The Fall, OK? There's nothing else you need to know.) I started responding to pop-up shit about "friends" - some people I didn't talk to in person when I saw them. And they're sending me e-mail!!! I got so f#%king disoriented I started clicking on everything, not realizing I can turn down their requests.

There's a list of people I can add as friends. And when I "x" them out, another one pops up in their place!! And I don't even know who they are!!!!

Oh you would've laughed your ass off if you saw me get so frustrated. I'm here for your amusement.

I can't be connected to a whole shitload of people at any given time. I don't know how you do it. When do you people masturbate??

I'll be back on it tomorrow, I'm sure. Wonder what (ran out of ideas) is doing right now?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

You Can't Go Home Again Or Can You No Maybe Not Part. 6

First, to answer a burning question: I don't read the obits everyday. Spending most of my waking hours in front of a frikkin' computer I see a lot of stuff; too bad none of it helps me in my day-to-day life. The stuff I come across is usually put out there by obsessives which whom I share some pathetic commonality.

Now - all of a sudden I'm getting all these e-mails adding me as a friend / acknowledging my existence / sniggering at me in corners / tsk'ing ever so audibly regarding my recent enrollment to "Facebook".

I don't know what I'm supposed to do.

I only joined because my daughter said "if you ever want to see your grandson again, you better join because that's the only way you can obtain photos of him". So I did. And now she's dangling this carrot in front of me. Well guess what? They closed the expensive child store in my local niche-mall. So THERE.

I have no idea what facebook does. I have a feeling it's not like sleeveface, which is a shame.

I only joined this stupid world of blogging because of something similar; I can't even remember exactly what it was now, but it was something related to upcoming grandkid stuff. Now he's here & I have to join Upromise & Facebook.

What's next, Twitter?

This past weekend was my possibly last Hamtramck Blowout. How disappointing can it be when the best thing you see is The Polish Musllims? Gawd, it was hopeless. Although it may just be that I was in the wrong place at etc. First at Paychecks there was this band who came off as a poor copy of a Foals/Rapture/Joy Division tribute band. Except they sucked. I think they were called Red China, and everyone knows if you have a blue tablecloth, forget it. I even saw Troy Gregory from The Witches high-tail it out of there after a few minutes. So after that, it was on to Carbon which I've not been to before, and The Polish Musilms had all their fans there, and there are a lot of them because everyone goes to catholic church fund raising festivals. Honest to shit they were the best thing all night. And that includes The Detroit Cobras at K of C. You wanna talk about phoning it in? The most innovative thing about The Cobras was leader Rachel Nagy's stupid dye job that apparently required constant attention because she fiddled with the bangs throughout the entire set. And yeah, let's talk about that set. Now I know they're a covers band of a different stripe - like, they have to have never heard the song before to include it in their repertoire, as long as they found it on Motown or Fortune or Federal or some other R&B label. But after getting the chords correct there is nothing further they put into it. I was ready to make that long miserable trip back to the pad after 5 minutes. This was apparently what I was gearing up for all week. And I missed out on Pinkeye with John Sinclair (the band not the condition), because it just seemed to not quite fit (back to Paychecks for 15 minutes before The Cobras), and maybe that was my big mistake. I didn't even make the usual after hours scene at the Clock.

No, I'm not getting too old for the "new" kids. I find lots of great sounds coming out of today's music. But my thirst for a certain level of quality, or even irony, is in tact. What if Detroit's 2nd wind may now just be flatulence?

Speaking of which I did get some new underwear this weekend. So that was a plus.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Blowing Celestial

Purgatory just keeps getting funkier & funkier. The funkiest queue in the cosmos, I would guess...

Two of Ray Charles' accomplices, David "Fathead" Newman & Hank Crawford, have split this mortal coil. They were big names in Jazz in their own right, but they got their start with Brother Ray. That's Hank on the left, Fathead on the right in the photo above.

Fathead died Jan 20 at the age of 75 from pancreatic cancer. He started with Ray in 1954 on Baritone Sax. He played with Herbie Mann for 10 years, and his first solo lp was called "Ray Charles Presents". Guess he wanted to be sure people paid attention. 'Tweren't no thing - he was a giant in his field. He released 38 albums as session leader.

Nine days later, here comes Hank Crawford, who was Ray's musical director for a spell. They met while Hank was fronting a rock & roll combo called Little Hank & The Rhythm Kings. He started on Baritone, switched to Alto & was the musical director of Ray's orchestra till 1963, when he started releasing albums with his own septet for Atlantic. Hank had a stroke awhile back & never got right.

Last minute info: I just found out that another of Ray's cats, Baritone saxman Leroy "Hog" Cooper died five days before Fathead, Jan 15. He played a gig that night; at 3am he died from congestive heart failure. In a non-Ray-related note, Hog played on Lowell Fulson's massive hit "Reconsider Baby".

So, three baritones, all affiliated with Ray Charles ... getting the band back together, Ray?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Grooves In Orbit

Lyman Woodard has past. He was - still IS - one of the greatest jazz/funk/r&b/soul organists that put hands to Hammond, peds to pedals.

Back in the 70s he was a mainstay at Cobb's Corner on Wayne's campus, and he was always popping up at Baker's or numerous summer fests (that's him at the Comerica Taste Fest). He was bad.

I met his son last fall, and he told me how Lyman was always hanging out with John Sinclair, & how musicians were always very visible to him as a kid. I told him I owned one of his singles, "It's Your Thing" from 1969, and it was one of my prized possessions.

You need to check him out, and specifically that jam. Go here to Funky 16 Corners and listen.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

No Muffaletta Sandwich For Me

It's March & it's freezing here in Geektown aka Mo-wood, as Nat Morris used to say on The Scene. Not that it's unexpected, but we did have 60 degree days a week or so ago.

A partially planned trip to Nawlins for the Jazz & Heritage Festival is out. Everything is too damn expensive. Before I came to my senses about this kind of thing a northbound driving trip on Highway 1, a cruise and jaunts to Myrtle Beach, Savannah and New York were bandied about. I think the decision to stay home is best. For now.

Meanwhile, check out the best review of U2's latest right here (you won't be sorry):

I can't remember what else I was going to say, so see you soon.