Laura and the Buttons

Quite an evening. I arrive at Laura’s “dirty thirty” party at Kim’s house and all our gear is set up in the living room (it looked like rain). There is much shoving of friends in front of kareoke mics. After an hour or so of watching, when the Hollies’ “Busstop” comes on Amy and I are ready and we procede to rock it. The audience recognizes showmanship and bathes us in appreciation. Andrew shows up a little later and we duck out to pick up tickets for the Beat Buttons.

Our friend Mario plays drums and keyboards (yes, simultaneously) for the BB and this is his last show in Gainesville for probably a long time. He and his wife Tricia are moving to Philadephia; more good friends skip town.

We head back to Laura’s party and arrive just in time to see a great show by Laura and a couple friends. Funny songs with local charm and really great three part harmony, quite impressive. When our turn comes, Laura, Hazel and I cram into the “stage” and I grab an amp for seating. We play one of Laura’s new songs and then Jackie takes Hazel’s place bringing in lap steel and everything goes swimmingly for our last three songs. Hazel and Rob McGregor play some great songs and Andrew and I head back to CG.

I’ve seen Alex and Mario play on this stage dozens of times, but this night is something to see. The Beat Buttons play every one of their songs and I’m enjoying the hell out it, fist-pumping, yelling lyrics. Although they never play covers, they end with New Order’s “Age of Consent” and I go home a very happy man.

(I didn’t get this posted until 7/14.)

Stay Awhile

I’ve lived and rented in Gainesville eleven years now. For so long my big
goal was to leave, go to San Francisco, to Atlanta, to some music hub somewhere, but the past year, ups and downs and all, has made me rethink my position.

Continue reading  

More Adventures in Consumerism

There should be at least one great Annette Funicello compilation. "Strummin’ Song" (WM clip on MSN) , "Holiday in Hawaii" and "This Time It’s Love" are absolutely essential and the comps available are woefully inadequate. I’m finally getting around to buying Eddie Izzard’s classic stand-up show Dress to Kill to force on friends. Who knew I’d need yet another Patsy Cline comp? Three obviously did not cut it, but, really, this does somehow have ten songs I’ve never heard so it was pretty hopeless to resist. Oh, did I mention the ABBA Gold videos on stunning DVD? No more scanning through "I Have a Dream" to get to "Waterloo"—Sometimes it’s the little things that keep life worth living.

No Thanks! (this is good)

Rhino put together a 4 CD, 100-song definitive overview of 70’s punk rock called No Thanks!: The 70s Punk Rebellion. Pitchfork gave it a 10 and from the looks of it it probably deserves it. While a lot of us have heard most of the songs, it’s gonna be a blast to put together that fifth CD ourselves. Picking gems from the Pebbles series and other random punk comps, fun stuff you’ve stumbled upon on SoulSeek, stuff that came too soon or a little too late to make the cut. The Pitchfork review will give you a few ideas (Misfits). Come to think of it, several years back my friend Dan snagged one of his dad’s incoming Time-Life Music cassettes Sounds of the Seventies: Punk and New Wave that turned out to be a pretty good intro to all the stuff you miss growing up on a diet of mostly hip-hop, stuff from skate videos and the Cure.

Meanwhile, I’m still a big softie for love songs.

Beulah in FL

Your eyes don’t deceive you, Beulah plays Florida in May. I’ll probably go to Jacksonville at least and word is St. Augustine is booked as well, we’ll see. I guess this means I’m going to have to get around to giving Yoko a bit more time. I miss the crazy production of the first two, and, yes, I think the songs were better as well, but maybe Yoko will grow on me. She did on John Lennon, and they quickly ended up naked on an album cover.

And speaking of desicions, I really enjoyed a recent New Yorker article about modern man’s enemy: choices. Hopefully before the next French Horns show I will have chosen a more beautiful and trustworthy guitar amp, like this Music Man. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I need to hide under a rock for a few days.


I love this photo from the Washington Post story on a concept that I can’t believe wasn’t stolen from an ’80s breakdancing movie: the Rap-a-Gram: "Carolyn? I’m gonna deliver a Rap-A-Gram for you," … "According to Mr. R’s rap, their date: ‘Was real, wit’ no pretending / Y’all met about a week and a half ago at Happy Endings / Then after that, a night he won’t forget / When y’all went to his house and watched The Bachelorette.’ "

News on the Low-Power FM Front

According to this AP story, the FCC has released a report (6-page .pdf) to congress stating that low-power FM stations "do not pose a significant risk of causing interference to existing full-service FM stations" and is urging Congress to lift limitations on the number of neighborhood broadcast licenses. Keep an eye out for the fine Future of Music Coalition to say something intelligent about this soon. Continue reading  

Can’t be sure of what I want anymore…

Yes! A new Sunday’s fan page with videos (including two of "Can’t Be Sure"!) and an entire 1997 concert (yes, they still played all the great early stuff). Somewhat relatedly, a super nice person on the Innocence Mission mailing list sent me two CDs full of live recordings and assorted stuff. I’m not really a fan of their work before "Glow" (when they apparently discovered the Sundays!), but everything after, especially "Birds of Our Neighborhood", is lovely stuff with some of my favorite lyrics.

I’ve been pretty quiet here lately, just playing basketball as often as I can, starting work on the French Horns recordings and planning a new website to publish my web design articles (I suppose similar to A List Apart, but less magazine-article-like) so I can get them off of and make its focus more on music and writing.

Speaking of the French Horns, we have a show March 12th (Friday) at Common Grounds with Tracy Shedd and Nervous System. Hopefully, we’ll have an album in a month or two. Josh is right, this shouldn’t take forever and it won’t. (Stay on me about it)


take the train that leads from me again
that leaves me here to wait on your return
and write to you is all I care to do
and all my love is all I care to send

engineer on the nine, carry safely, on time
my baby home to me

treasure maps that help to lead you back
and compasses that only point you home
see the world, but don’t forget the girl
who needs you more than you could ever know

engineer on the nine, carry safely, on time
my baby home to me