Monday, November 29, 2004

Larry Brown died last Wednesday.

I didn't hear about it until today when, after listening to the Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman) interview on "Fresh Air," Terry Gross came on to introduce an interview she did with Mr. Brown somewhere around 1990. He was an incredibly good reader of his own work. I saw him read from "Billy Ray's Farm" with Alejandro Escovedo providing a musical underscore. It was in New York and everybody, including me, had to strain to understand him through his thick, twisted accent.



Friday, November 26, 2004

basketball

in lebanon living blogging televised basketball.

on one channel: u. of kentucky vs. georgia state.

on the other,

detroit vs. miami

or,

TAYSHAUN vs. SHAQ, a classic SEC matchup.

On the UK Channel: sparks to rondo alleyoop. rupp goes
f-ing crazy. announcer says something like, "kentucky fans
are some of the smartest fans in basketball." really?

on the other, tayshaun drives on shaq! shaq destroys him.

kentucky half-time score: 23 38, advantage kentucky.

Monday, November 22, 2004

Cooler than Freddie Jackson sippin a milkshake in a snowstorm

The Detroit News reports that there was exactly one playa who took leave of neither the bench nor his mind in the midst of the Pacers/Pistons brawl Friday night.



That's a picture of his left-handed, double overtime, game-winning dunk against Charlotte in the Pistons' first post-brawl game.

Tayshaun Prince, the future of the NBA.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Brilliant Corners

When it comes to the "Master Musicians Of," there is the father and there is the son.

Quick brand new Bob Dylan interview by a man named Austin Scaggs. Next on Austin's radar: raiding thrift stores for that perfect "Canadian Club" belt buckle.

This picture will send you to hell.

This year's UK Basketball team seems especially hunky and dory. But you can be sure that come 4pm tomorrow we're going to give Coppin State what for!

And finally, lets understand once and for all how ODB's Grammy Speech was not the crazed demolition of ceremony everyone wants to go on about. Rather, it is one of the sanest, most peaceful things I've ever heard:

"Please calm down," he said. "I went and bought me an outfit today that cost me a lot of money, because I figured that Wu-Tang was gonna win. I don't know how you all see it, but when it comes to the children, Wu-Tang is for the children. We teach the children. Puffy is good, but Wu-Tang is the best. I want you all to know that this is O.D.B., and I love you all, peace."

Friday, November 12, 2004

"Jim Asleep on the Couch: The Somnospective" -Final Fantasy



Wherein Jim stretches for every inch and crosses the finish line first:

Thursday, November 11, 2004

"Jim Asleep on the Couth: The Somnospective" -

The Third Hand



Here, Jim cups his tan t'ien and breathes deeply, creating a natural resevoir of his own life forces. There is no I, there is no dream and there is no reception - no perfect reception, at least.

But there is someone watching.

Starkey vies for PLO Chair-





Jim points it out between naps. I execute.



Wednesday, November 10, 2004

"Jim Asleep on the Couch: The Somnospective," -the second head layer;



Wherein Jim continues to dream through his "Debt to his Father." Once finished, it's a perfect time to recombine the now endless stream of newsprint in his head into something more seaworthy.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Jim Asleep on the Couch: The Somnospective, Part Uh

Late night, the TV's light goes red and brown and I capture. awake. now sleep.

Cheerful compliance

This weekend I made some incredible choices at the WFMU Record Fair. It's intimidating upon entrance. There's probably 120 of the top record dealers in the country and a city full of every strata of obscuralia collector that makes just enough money to blow on whatever their vinyl kink may be. It's very tough to know where to begin if you don't come in with an agenda. I milled around for a while barely flipping through the bins just looking for an opening at a table. Then I realized that most of these people just butt their way in.

I found the dealer I liked from the other time I attended two years ago. He's a light-skinned Brazilian hipster with a big willowy afro. I got, in no particular order:



This came out in 1967 and the vinyl is perfect. Baden Powell is an early bossa nova guitar god and this is quite possibly the finest album I now own. "Vontade" is Portuguese and has two interesting definitions. One is "capability of conscious choice and decision and intention." The other is a rather insouciant little number: "Cheerful compliance."

Anyone with an interest in guitar playing will likely never forget listening to Baden Powell the first time.



"Cry Of Love," Hendrix's last album, completed and released in 1971, some months after his death. It's as if he had just got all hopped up after listening to Royal Trux "Sweet Sixteen" and "Highway 61 Revisited." Since some of these tracks were demos, the fidelity varies on a few songs and as a result you just get incredible Jimi Hendrix songs with tight guitar playing and none of the heavy Electric Ladyland production voodoo. The lyrics and singing are in particular probably the strongest he ever laid down.

The cover is haunting and postmortem but the back cover of my copy takes the cake with the concentric circles of wear radiating perfectly out of the sun. This is one of the greatest tributes to the beauty of vinyl that I've seen. Somebody take a picture.



Next, Buddy Miles' "A Message to the People"



Think about what kind of man it takes to put this on the cover of your album. Then think about the fact that on it, he covers "Midnight Rider" by the Allman Brothers. 1972. Truer funk soul brother than Fatboy Slim could ever be, drummer for Hendrix's Band Of Gypsies and foul mouthed bandleader who freaked out my parents when I took them to see him at Buddy Guy's Legends Blues Club on the south side of Chicago in 1992 when he screamed upon sitting down at his drum throne, "We gon get you out yo seat and ROCK YOU MOTHAFUCKAHS!"



This is sick 2nd-wave new-wave ska from the ashes of The English Beat. As you can tell by the white guy on the cover, this can get a little fey but the sentiment is true and if you don't believe in sentiment then you will never like a Fellini movie and then where will you be? Everybody likes those movies! Dubious credite (?): produced by David Byrne.



From the Native Tongues collective, Jungle Brothers are like A Tribe Called Quest but slightly stripped back towards an Eric B. and Rakim minimalist taunt. But they can be warm Brooklyn lovermen too and it makes their socially-activist intent all the more worthwhile. Released on 20 September 1989, it was a very good year for tucked-away gold.

That is all for now. Cheers to that Brazilian record dealer with his dandelion head and cool t-shirts. You got my money. And stay tuned to run down the week with the upcoming 4-day series: "Jim Asleep on the Couch: The Somnospective"

Monday, November 08, 2004

Wishing, just wishing...

This is what it's going to look like when Harlan plays The Dame in Lexington, Ky this December:

Cry For Love '89

"You thought you stuck it to us East Coast poodle-walkers, but you really just fucked yr neighbor."

This is an email that Sasha Frere-Jones received from "a lawyer friend from Maine," as posted on his website.

"Sadly, we, as white, straight, East Coast property-owning, child-having, non-abortion-needing, well-insured, 401K-owning, dividend-receiving, high-income-earning, past draft age people will probably have a pretty good four years in all material ways. Bush's base, the people who elected him (some of my poorer and pro bono clients), particularly the ones in the south, west and mountain states, will be having their retirement squandered and mortgaged, their budgets broken by uninsured medical expenses, their jobs outsourced and exported, their kids' educations compromised, more of their budget spent on gas, oil, electricity, their kids drafted or forced by economics into an ever more dangerous military while ours get deferments or spend time overseas, their parents losing their homes, their home values declining, their water and air poisoned. So let them eat their values amidst the chimera of a "war leader" who cannot shoot straight. Meanwhile, we'll get richer relative to them and next summer we'll be sitting on the deck of some waterfront restaurant sipping cocktails talking about the next Michael Moore movie. Our European friends will offer us tea and sympathy. The Republicans will have enough rope to hang themselves. The Tom Delay revelations are the tip of a massive corruption iceberg like the cancer on the Nixon presidency. I see this like 1972. I love the country too much to hope for disaster, but their could be a seismic shift in the midterms when people wake up with a huge Bush hangover. By then a Howard Dean-esque or Jennifer Granholm-esque candidate will be looking pretty good across the country."

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Huge Turnout



I ran the New York City Marathong today (not!). It was totally easy. All these people train for years and make a big emotional deal out of it. I didn't even go to bed last night. Training is ridiculous. You can either run a marathon or you can't so you just show up, do the job and wipe your nose when you're done. I love running.