Saturday, March 26, 2011

Daytrotter: Monahans

Hey Kids,
Check out Texas band Monahans throwing down a pretty decent Daytrotter session from this week. Experimental Americana that's right up there with the best of them.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Surprise in Chicago

David forgot to leave the key, so if I left the apartment, I couldn't come back until he was back from work. Thus, I didn't leave until well after noon and wasn't in a hurry to get anywhere, except there was a bit of a chill and I hadn't worn a jacket. I went into the first store that I thought I could pass as a legit patron to warm up, Reckless Records in Wicker Park. I casually browsed records, just in case I came across anything special. Amber called and I paced the aisles talking with her, not in a hurry to go back outside without knowing where I was going. I became aware that the store had begin to fill with an unexpectedly large amount of people for a Friday afternoon. I was still talking with Amber and slightly disoriented and wasn't able to process what was happening. Was there a band preforming or something? I was just about to put Amber on hold to ask someone when I saw a poster advertising an in-store appearance by Patton Oswalt, of "The King Of Queens" fame. I interrupted Amber and demanded what time it was. "Uh, like 2:30," she said. "Why?" Patton Oswalt is reading from his new book in an hour, I told her. No biggie. Of course, I'm telling this to someone who was at SXSW at the time and was being entertained out the wazoo, so it's not like accidentally seeing a comedian read was going to make her jealous, like I secretly hoped it would.

I ended up hanging out by the stage at the back of the store for an hour and change. Oswalt came out and read a couple of quick pieces about Dungeons & Dragons and then took some questions from the adoring audience. One of the most impressive qualities about this guy is that he comes off as very non-exclusive and encouraging. You don't have to know a lot about him to know that he is very supportive of other comedians and his close group of co-workers seems to be deep and wide, rather than just the three other people you saw in "The Comedians of Comedy". More than half of the audience questions came from aspiring comics, and Oswalt was very encouraging and honest with his answers. He told one kid not to worry about delivering jokes like his favorite comics (Oswalt, Louis C.K. etc.) but to just get up on stage. Don't worry about the material, what you look like, anything. Nothing you can do at this point is going to effect your career for good or bad. Just get out there and get experience. It was a refreshing answer. I wonder how many times he's given it.

There was one kid up front that was filming, but when Oswalt realized what he was doing, he told him to stop. He was cool about people taking pictures and I think that I got a couple of keepers that I might put up here later.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Victory Explosions by Derek Brown

This is a pretty rad performance from the awesome Derek Brown at Word Stock in 2008. This poem is about reveling in the small victories when nothing seems to be going right.

This morning I'm thinking about how we attempt to manipulate the sun and stars by changing our clocks. Really, we're just manipulating ourselves. And also, our clocks.

Key lines: "I was skinnier than a dead model." and, later, "It was worth it."

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Union Song

Hey Wisconsin,

Sorry that you're politicians don't care about the working class. I guess you'll think twice before electing a stranger again, won't you? Remember, they might have a bad rap from years of smearing and some unfortunate missteps in the past, but unions exist to protect the workers from being abused by management, even if the management is the government. Public workers' rights are being taken away in Wisconsin by a party that proclaims freedoms and liberties. This is just an example of conflicting ideologies that nobody wants to address and nobody is calling them out on it. My roommate, Jason, thinks you, the public workers, should have a general strike and raise some hell. Whatever happens, my hearts are with you, the Wisconsin workers. Union or not, this song is for you.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

If I Only Could

Hidden under all the layers of the 1980's, there is a fiercely beautiful song about love. This song kicks off Kate Bush's album "hounds of love". The album examines love as the typical beautiful thing that you're probably familiar with. Bush also articulates love as a terrible beast or monster that chases you through the night. I think that she brilliantly captures the dichotomy of the wonderful and horrible aspects of love. Love isn't a bad thing, but it has it's consequences. When you're really in love, you're no longer living for just yourself. When it comes for you, you had better be ready for it.

Key line: "you don't want to hurt me, but see how deep the bullet lies"

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Are You Still Mined?

"Love is my weakness and my weakness is strong."

This song is balls to the walls. Key line: "I'll fight like a son of a bitch for that which is mine". And...peel my jaw off the floor.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Lesson From The Boss

This song is a good example of the dichotomy between self-perception and self-awareness. Even when we think that we understand why we do the things we do, are we really aware of the consequences? How do we deal with misunderstanding or being misunderstood? What is intentionally kept hidden and what is unknowingly kept from others?

One line that hits me hard in this song is when he sings "...know just what I got in this good thing I've found." I'm not sure I know why though. There's a lot packed into every line of this song, but this line stands out to me.