Kernia / Adrianne Lenker

Adrianne Lenker is a friend of mine and she’s fucking brilliant.

Brilliant: Not a word I use for things like food I just ate or colors that match really well. I typically save it for geniuses, extraordinary ideas and songs like Kerina. Check her web stuff and videos and see for yourself.

Website- www.adrianne.com/
Music- www.adriannelenker.bandcamp.com/
Duo with Buck – www.buckandanne.bandcamp.com/

Phillip Phillips needs to STFU.

I’m sitting here at Strange Brew  writing a post about how bad iTunes rips musicians off so I’m a little uptight to say the least. Then this song just came on the overhead speakers. There is some terrible shit being played right now. WTF SB? You are the epicenter of great Austin music I’m disappointed. This channel is the total pop garbage I’d expect to be playing simultaneously in every single CVS and Walgreen’s at once .

I haven’t hated a song so bad since first hearing Mumford and Sons for the first time. They still owe me a car stereo as far as I’m concerned. My immediate reaction was to punch it until it stopped. This Raging Fire “song” gives me the anxious, angry feeling I get when subjected to New-Country music.

I know nothing about this Phillip Phillips guy except that he has an exceptionally cool name. I’ve never heard of him before (I Googled the “lyrics”) but he needs to Shut the Fuck Up. We don’t need any more one-dimensional substance-less songs about the vague feelings 13-16 year old get. Man just stop.

If you think this is a good song we can no longer be friends.

http://youtu.be/_zPV6hKKUV8

Show: Nathan For You

I was in between books recently; had a little trouble sinking my teeth into what I was reading so I would stream a little from Amazon Prime before bed.

I hardly ever just pick some random show and start watching. I’m so glad I did this time. I have never heard if Nathan for You and the thumbnail for the show was nothing to get excited about; a very white white dude dressed in a business suit.

This stuffy Nathan Fielder guy goes around to struggling business’, gets the proprietors to trust him and then he then makes outlandish suggestions on how to help them get more customers and make more revenue. I still can’t believe what some of these people fall for and more then that I can’t believe I’d never heard of this show before.

Stream it on Comedy Centralhttp://www.cc.com/shows/nathan-for-you

 

Stop Lights Need Paintball Machine Guns

Here’s a scenario:
You are parked in a line of cars at a stop light. The light turns green and the car in front of you doesn’t move. Horns honk, the sleeping driver catches on last second, busts through the remaining yellow light and you, and the line of cars you’re in, get to sit through the long-ass red light. Again.

Sound familiar? You know it does. Now that everyone has a cell phone this type of thing happens all the time.

Remedy?
Paint-Ball Machine-Guns attached to all stop-lights.
If the light goes green and you don’t go. Bam. Your car instantly looks like a layer cake that was just taken for a ride in a G-force chamber.
What if you drive a convertible? Well too fucking bad. Your face and head gets pelted and maybe you die from a paintball hitting your brain via your eye-socket. Tough shit. Pay attention.

I don’t know if paintball guns that work like machine guns even exist but they need to. For this idea. Here’s my expert photoshop rendering of what these new lights might like like.

paintballgunstoplight

 

Todd Snider Book

I Never Met  A story I didn't likeTodd Snider: I Never Met a Story I Didn’t Like (Mostly True Tall Tales)

I picked up his book completely randomly one day; opened to a random page and read a good ten pages without looking up. From here I turned to the front of the book and read to the end. Needless to say I liked it collection of various, often hilarious, stories. A lot.

He has a very smooth, interesting and easy-to-read style of writing and he really knows how to tell a story (he basically nailed the two things every writers needs to be considered a good writer). Each chapter is a different story and the chapters flow in a non-linear way; bouncing around the timeline of his career with seemingly no order. As the bio progresses the chapters begin to link arms and by the conclusion I was able to draw together a pretty good picture of this guy’s life has been like so far. Snider has had a pretty awesome run so far.

From earning the respect songwriting hero’s like Jerry Jeff Walker, Kris Kristofferson, and John Prine at a young age to traveling the world many times over he’s had a damn good run.
I’m just not gonna go into any of his exploits; he tells it better then I could possibly summarize. I will mention that Kent Finlay, the owner of the Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos Texas played a huge part in Snider’s career. This part was all a surprise.  I’ve talked to Kent a few times at his Wednesday night open mic and he’s had very encouraging words for me about my music. He’s a Texas legend with a huge history; he’s also a great guy and it was awesome to see him get some much deserved recognition. (Read more here about Kent and Cheatham Street here)

Before reading this book I only knew a couple things about Todd Snider. One: that he was a music performer of some sort and two: that he wrote a talking-blues song called Talking Seattle Grunge Rock Blues and that it was funny. Now I know a bunch of things about him and it makes me want to listen to his music; which I will. Someday. In the meantime I hope he writes another book.

His website: http://www.toddsnider.net/
Link to get Book: http://www.amazon.com/Todd-Snider/e/B00EVJM7EI

Neil Young: Waging Heavy Peace

I was excited to read this and in the end I’m glad I did but it was sort of a chore.

neilyoungbookNow please don’t take offense Neil, if you’re reading this, but it reads a lot like the journal of a 15 year old (as I’m sure much of my blog does). The prose and style is sort of cool because it gives you some insight into the thought process of this occasionally brilliant musician. The read itself is very disjointed and fragmented in parts, making it a  bit hard to follow and often unclear whether he had an editor cleaning up after him.

At times he digs a little too far into his day-to-day whatevers. He tended to hyper-focus on some of life’s trivialities, delving into minute details and dragging it all on and out for too long. For instance there’s pages where he just goes on and on about how cool his dog is and other sections about some of his friends that most readers probably have zero interest in. I suppose it’s all great stuff for helping us to understand that Mr. Young is just a mortal but it’s not the fodder we want. Those of us who excitedly who picked that book up were looking forward to a wealth of stories about how his songs were made, crazy escapades from the road and what it’s like behind the scenes with greats like Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan. Well at least that’s what I was looking for and that’s what you can usually expect from most any bio for a musician or band.

Don’t get me wrong there are definitely some amazing yawns.  My favorite, being an obsessive songwriter myself, is about the day he was sick with the flu or something and wrote Cinnamon Girl, Down By The River and Cowgirls in the Sand. What!? That’s unfucking real! Pardon my “fuck” word but seriously…  that’s maybe the best writing streak in the history of everything, ever.

youngyoungMy guess is that it doesn’t really matter whether you deem his ramblings good or bad and it probably never will. Neil Young has always done what Neil Young wants to do and this book is no exception. We would not have the immense and varied catalog of music he has left in his wake if he wasn’t such a stubborn bastard. He is also an honest and caring bastard who stays completely true to his artistic vision and to those he loves and respects. He’s a good guy and deserves a little forgiveness for publishing a good chunk of mental free-associations.

The book is 512 pages; a pretty hefty read. Had someone chopped it up and kept only the more interesting stuff it would easily have weighed in under 300 pages.  That being said if he decides to put out another book (and I kinda hope he does ) I’d happily read it; boring ramblings and all. *((see below for follow-up))

Waging Heavy Peace; Neil Young talked a lot but didn’t say too much.  There’s still a lot of mystery left for me; I guess I have somewhat of a tolerance for listening to genius’ talk about nothing.

Here’s another good read on the man. The Rolling Stone Files. It’s basically complied articles and interviews from over the years.

FOLLOW UP** – So shortly after writing this I came upon news that he has in fact released another book A Memoir; Life and Cars – Cool.

Clickhole-

haha-

Clickhole: by the comedic genius’s at The Onion.
My new favorite site.
Mocking stupid “lists” websites that seem to be everywhere.

A few that had me LOLing. (lol….. eh… i hate that acronym)

18 Insane (But True!) Sex Facts

Can You Tell Which Of These People Lost A Lot Of Weight And Which Ones Just Bought Big Pants?

5 Child Stars Who Grew Up To Be Acclaimed Novelist Salman Rushdie

You’re welcome.

A Satisfied Mind / Jeff Buckley

When Jeff Buckley covered a song it was like a doctor giving someone a heart transplant.  The difference is that usually  the patient was better off after the surgery. I guess the most obvious obvious example is Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.

Here’s an amazing version of Jeff Buckley playing Satisfied Mind, a song I was surprised to learn isn’t included in the public domain as a traditional (wiki article link). This video is from an open-mic shortly before he blew up into the almost mythical figure  he soon became.

Here’s the first version I heard from Sketches for My Sweetheart the Drunk, an album of personal demos and rough recordings released after his untimely death in 1998.

http://www.jeffbuckley.com/