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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me - and Soon to Taylor Hicks

Now here's a birthday ditty... Order Now.

Oh yes, and I believe it's Taylor's Birthday October 7th - dates waver on website information channels between the 6th to the 8th so I'll lean with 7th. It's the Libra within - find that happy balance. Note the "grey" on the little aliens' shirtfronts.

Gotta go blow some candles.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Apolitical Blues and Thinking about George, Lowell George that is...

After starting my day with political ruminations and thoughts of politicians past, present, and future I found myself mentally staring with startling alacrity, yet horror at those individuals currently struggling for that highest office in the land. I sat and considered with an almost growing alarm how "Negligent Nagin" was reelected in N'Orleans after he so brazenly dropped the ball on his people whilst fox-like tried cunningly to shift blame to the Federal Government and his State Governor. Once again providing fuel to the tired cliche, the masses are asses". Thus thinking, I decided to let my Little Feat wander.
I'm leaning Apolitical lately:

This video depicts my late great darling, Lowell in one of his more, shall we say pharmacological exploratory times. Languorous days passed in a cloud of fuzzy psilocybinotic haze delivered periods of great music, good times and lost days hours.

On a lighter side of Little Feat; "Fat Man in the Bathtub". Yeah, how many times, Georgie, "draw me a line..."?:

Saturday, September 15, 2007

American Idol, Reality TV and What it Takes

The electric nature of Taylor Hicks' fierce and brilliant rise to the top on American Idol, season 5 can't be more defined than in this performance of "Taking It to the Streets":

this is the performance in which Taylor Hicks sold America, sealed the deal with the growing fanbase dubbing themselves the Soul Patrol.

This energetic, lightning caliber groove seen on the tube that night cemented in my mind that this man wanted to win this show. This is the performance that had me rallying to the phones for the fully allotted time, every week, multiple phones in motion, dialing like a fool - into a bloody reality show. Taylor Hicks sold me, caught me hook line and sinker and created a desire within me to help him achieve this goal. Obviously... it worked on many people. Taylor Hicks in this video embodies the type of drive and passion that absolutely captivates the reality music show genre audience. Contestants on these shows must create that furor, instill a belief into the viewers of their dream. I think, to date, Mr. Hicks owns the honor of being the most effective at accomplishing this goal.

Little Sanjaya from last season gave it a worthy shot. He managed to muster National attention when he cut loose and did "You Really Got Me". This was the week which would decide whether the kid would make the tour or just go home. Sanjaya's performances to that date had been rather subdued; although he was drawing a fanbase of tweenies, and comments about his Kelly LeBrock locks,he wasn't getting recognition for a lot else. Pulling off this performance got him the tour and even more National attention:

it also scored a prestigious "Saturday Night Live" parody (also provided Taylor Hicks) and created mini-celebrity, Little Crying Girl, Ashley Furl. This performance, definitely one of the highlights of American Idol season 6.

Sanjaya, unlike Hicks, did not go on to win the season, although perhaps he could have if he had given viewers more more of "You Really Got Me" as well as more of this type of performance:

instead of Jordin Sparks, Sanjaya would have been the one singing, "This is My Now".

Season 4 of American Idol had some memorable performances too, creating a mega-star in Carrie Underwood, although Bo Bice overshadowed her by most of his performances. In this brilliant, gorgeous delivery he made Idol "history" and established a benchmark ideal for other contestants to follow:

now whenever speculation turns to contestant strategy, question asked, "Should he/she pull a Bo Bice?". (Translation, should they sing accapella.)

To win the hearts and minds of the audience in these types of shows the contestants have got to pull that special moment, give that unique part of themselves that pull the television viewers into their dream, into their moment and compel them to be a part of it. It's as magic as magic can get on television, one of the secret ingredients that keep this type of program popular. It keeps me tuning in year after year, curious to see if another unique, visionary young talent will create headlines and make television history. I'm a bit jaded now regarding the judging and the manipulations in place that were becoming increasingly apparent, especially last season, but hey, it's showbiz. Season 7 of American Idol begins in a mere 3 and a half months.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Jimmy Rosenberg, Roma Jazz Guitarist

I'm late to the dance once more. Yesterday I was sent an e.mail containing information about a young, gorgeous young man named Jimmy Rosenberg. (Photo: Harry Klunder) He's a Roma (Gypsy) Jazz guitarist, whose Bio page on his record company's site says that he comes from a Sinti family in Asten, in the southern region of The Netherlands. This clip, filmed in 1989 off of John Jeremy's British television documentary Django's Legacy. Mr. Jeremy simply refers to the three boys as "The Gypsy Kids", but apparently later the lads renamed themselves "Sinti".
"The Gypsy Boys":

Jimmy Rosenberg exemplifies the beauty of Jazz guitar mirroring the legendary great Django Reinhardt. From what I have come to understand about Mr. Rosenberg, he's been through his share of experiences with the highs and lows in life.

Introduction to the world outside his Gypsy lifestyle began while he was still in primary school; his guitar playing even at the age of 10, pegged him as a potential Django successor. At 15 he signed with Sony Classics in New York, a million dollar contract. Sadly, his father was imprisoned following killing his son-in-law, and Jimmy went into a downward spiral culminating with drug addition and squandering away his monies as well as halting his relationships with his family. Drugs, again playing a downfall in the life of a talent unmatched in his genre. Latest press data indicates that Jimmy is working on kicking the habit, and working at picking up the pieces.
The Paradiso concert
Jimmy Rosenberg in a more current video:

This concert footage shot this past May:

To purchase or get a listing of Jimmy's complete discography click HERE. Page still under some construction, as of September 3rd, 2007 but has CD information and reviews. You can also visit Amazon:

If you haven't already, click the link to this post to hear "Margherita". Massive talent. Real music.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Remembering September 11th

This website has photographs and commentary by a New Yorker who witnessed the event. Take his journey and remember.

Twin Tower pics.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Real Estate, Sanjaya

I'm getting this repeated "Sanjaya's family's house for sale" messages over the google lines, finally decided to check out one. Previously I've been simply deleting them, frankly I don't give a rat's ass about the kid and family selling their house in Washington state. It's just not news, but I finally had to look. Checking the article, apparently the boy's family's soon to be former house was built in 1963 with four bedrooms, two bathrooms and a bonus room with a recording studio; market price $360,000. Reasonable according to the realtor, Dennis Fletcher. I thought, reasonable? It looks rather nondescript, nothing to catch your eye about it.(picture below)

I decided to google the area and other houses on the market and Mr. Fletcher sounds spot on with his price. This particular house (photo below) is listed at $365,000 boasting of a 4 bedroom, 1 full bath, and 1 3/4 bath on .31 acres (lot size) and a total of 1940 square feet.

Apparently it is a seller's market in Federal Way. In Dallas, properties like these would be lucky to sell for less than half that asking price. Of course, Sanjaya's house comes with a studio in the basement.

Made me take pause to wonder what "this" house nestled in a sheltered cul de sac within a quiet area, stone's toss from a golf course and walking park would bring with those property values. Considering it's a 4 bdrm, 2 and 3/4 bath, 2600 square foot mission house.. with pool? Photo taken last year, December 1st.

In the article that surfaced today, the realtor says Sanjaya has some 'deals' working in Hollywood, but he won't elaborate. Until the Idols come off of tour, I don't think they are at liberty to discuss anything in the works for afterwards. Considering this season's tour ticket sales are lagging behind previous years, I'd think any publicity would be good publicity.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Idol Blues; Checking in with a True Music Genius

How about some 'jive' with your java, laying out the "Cosmic Debris"

I almost had my camera equipment confiscated at his concert in Dallas, Texas. I believe the year was 1982. Seeing Frank live was an absolute dream of a lifetime for me, adrenalin pumping I had left my seat and went right up the center aisle, to the front of the stage, Fujica firing. Security detail came over, and I had to accompany them to the side of the stage. In my best adaptation of a Swedish accent, I pretended to speak little English. (My Mother's side is Swedish, I spent many an hour sitting with relatives so faking a passable accent wasn't a stretch.) Some guy came over to me and the security guard, I figured I was going to be taken out of the building, but instead wound up perched on a side level to the stage. I spent over an hour within 30 to 40 feet of Frank Zappa, almost orgasmic experience. No Crew Slut experience for me, nor did I get to do anything to have a Zappa song written in my name but I had one hell of a seat. I'll see later about transferring those photos to digital format for this blog.

"Whipping Post" (tie me up baby)

One of the most intelligent people to have walked the planet.

Under the "Crossfire":

Words, the mighty weapon. I miss this man.

Taylor Hicks, Paul Pena and a Cup of Joe

Taylor Hicks, as a google alert can deliver some good reads, exposure to good tunes, and this morning Taylor delivered a real gem. I opened up Music Maven's blog, what a great way to enjoy my first cup of coffee.

Music Maven, with her foray into Paul Pena opened a whole avenue of exploration for me to venture down because I then had to go roam Youtube to check some concert footage. I stumbled onto a page with some Steve Miller, one clip featured a concert with James Harmon, which lead me to watch this: (camera work a little wild at times)

Good morning everyone. Have a smooth day.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Local man, James McMurtry

Jerry Garcia, you would have loved this man.

Man, I'm trying in earnest to get my FAVORITE Mcmurtry tune out, "Choctaw Bingo". Can't get... it... to work. damn. (look him up on-line)

Groove on.

Strap them kids in
Give 'em a little bit of vodka in a cherry coke
We're going to Oklahoma to the family reunion for the first time in years
It's up at uncle Slayton's cause he's getting on in years
You know he no longer travels but he's still pretty spry
He's not much on talking and he's just too mean to die
And they'll be comin' down from Kansas
and from west Arkansas
It'll be one great big old party like you never saw

Uncle Slayton's got his Texan pride
Back in the thickets with his Asian bride
He's got a Airstream trailer and a Holstein cow
He still makes whiskey 'cause he still knows how
He plats that Choctaw bingo every Friday night
You know he had to leave Texas but he won't say why
He owns a quarter section up by Lake Eufala
Caught a great big ol' blue cat on a driftin' jug line
Sells his hardwood timber to the shipping mill
Cooks that crystal meth because the shine don't sell
He cooks that crystal meth because the shine don't sell
You know he likes his money he don't mind the smell

My cousin Roscoe Slayton's oldest boy from his second marriage up in Illinois
He was raised in East St. Louis by his momma's people
Where they do things different
Thought he'd just come on down
He was going to Dallas Texas in a semi truck called from that big McDonald's
You know the one they built up on that great big ol' bridge
Across the Will Rogers Turnpike
Took the Big Cabin exit stopped and bought a couple of cartons of cigarettes
At that Indian Smoke Shop with the big neon smoke rings
In the Cherokee Nation hit Muskogee late that night
Somebody ran a stoplight at the Shawnee Bypass
Roscoe tried to miss 'em but he didn't quite

Bob and Mae come up from little town
Way down by lake Texoma where he coaches football
They were two A champions now for two years running
But he says they won't be this year no they won't be this year
And he stopped off in Tushka at that "Pop's Knife and Gun" place
Bought a SKS rifle and a couple a full cases of that steel core ammo
With the berdan primers from some East bloc nation that no longer needs 'em
And a Desert Eagle that's one great big ol' pistol
I mean .50 caliber made by badass Hebrews
And some surplus tracers for that old BAR of Slayton's
Soon as it gets dark we're gonna have us a time
We're gonna have us a time

Ruth Ann and Lynn come down from Baxter Springs
That's one hell raisin' town way up in Southeastern Kansas
Got a biker bar next to the lingerie store
That's got them Rolling Stones lips up there where everyone can see 'em
And they burn all night you know they burn all night you know they burn all night

Ruth Ann and Lynn they wear them cut off britches and those skinny little halters
And they're second cousins to me
Man I don't care I want to get between 'em
With a great big ol' hard on like a old bois d' arc fence post
You could hang a pipe rail gait from
Do some twisted sisters 'til the cows come home
And we'd be havin' us a time

Uncle Slayton's got his Texan pride
Back in the thickets with his Asian bride
He's cut that corner pasture into acre lots`
He sells 'em owner financed
Strictly to them that's got no kind of credit 'Cause he knows they're slackers
When they miss that payment
Then he takes it back
He plays that Choctaw Bingo every Friday night
Drinks that Johnny Walker at that Club 69
We're gonna strap them kids in give 'em a little bit o' Benadryl
And a cherry coke we're goin' to Oklahoma Gonna have us a time

It's Teen Spirit - Magni Allowed

I got another reminder tonight that in a few short weeks my Gorgeous releases his tunes to the US - OCTOBER 2nd - fangirly squee!!!!

I, at one point, had decided to HATE any band who tried to ever think about doing Kurt Kobain.

I mean Nirvana, you think you can do Nirvana? It's a ridiculous phallas fallacy to even think any band today can give Nirvana just due.
Until Gorgeous.

No words, pure cream.

Taylor Hicks Sits and Picks for a Spell (somehow that doesn't sound right)

Taylor Hicks should do more acoustic tunes like this - the man shines.
I was fortunate to find this on Strawgirl's vimeo site:

Taylor Encore at the Pageant-St Louis from Strawgirl and Vimeo.
Yeah, Taylor just sit there.

Monday, September 03, 2007

"Festival Express"

Flipping the channels on the TV this afternoon my Darling Man found this program called the "Festival Express". What a find. It's a documentary on the lines of "The Last Waltz" only via railroad. Partaking in the festivities on this train ride were the likes of The Grateful Dead, The Band, The Flying Burrito Brothers (been a long time since I've thought of them)... and Janis Joplin. Waxing nostalgic we wondered, where did we put those ZigZags?

I was too young in 1970 to enjoy the whole concept and the music, but I became an avid fan later on. Here are a few of our favorite selections found on Youtube from the film:
"Cry Baby"

"Tell Momma"

Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel:

Of course we had to go on-line and immediately buy the movie (we already have "The Last Waltz").

Taylor Hicks at the House of Blues, Dallas, Texas: Videos

Taylor Hicks performing "Heart and Soul" videos from HOB Dallas, Texas.

The "Right Place":

These videos, taken by georgeegrunt. Kudos on the good quality; there is little shake, good sound and definition. Thanks for generously sharing that Taylor Hicks love and support. (I'm leery of taking my camera to any indoor concerts after having security at one show confiscate my equipment, I never got it back. An expensive lesson learned.)

Taylor put on a good show, he was in good voice, was his dancing, energetic self. Damn fine band with the man. I was surprised at his guitar playing, he's incorporating it more and more in the shows and you can tell he's been working that instrument.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Amy Winehouse Hard at Work to Follow Janis and Jimi

I've just recently found the sound of Amy Winehouse. (I've been busy.) She originally came to my attention by the recent media blitz concerning her rampant love of excesses of almost every kind of negative you can find; alcohol, drugs, blood and brawls. Theories abound via psychologists and psychiatrists regarding why we do what we do, I'm not going to wear out my fingers expounding on those ideas or delving into the junk sciences.

This link takes you to all the latest gossip, just out about a half hour ago, Mother Civil speaks out about her son and his wife:
Winehouse and hubby vacation in the Islands, their version of Rehab. Certainly not everyone gifted creatively is doomed to become one of the junkie monkeys but it is noted that those possessing brilliance in the creative endeavors often seem to be lacking in a certain undefinable chemical balance within their brains to keep them on the even keel. Having my own experiences regarding certain avenues within this topic I feel a certain affinity with Winehouse.

I like this tune:

This is Amy live, an acoustic version of "Valerie".

She's unique, talented although she rather looks like a young Bob Dylan in drag. I hope that fresh Island air agrees with her, puts perspective in her and her spouse's lives. Maybe it's just a vitamin D deficiency.

Amy, go to Rehab. Take Blake.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Get in the Zone, the Taylor f. Hicks Zone!

Taylor Hicks fans, put down that glass of Kool Aid, I've found a new Taylor Hicks discussion website to visit that has put me in mind of the early days of the great Gray Charles site. I felt reinvigorated reading the subjects and commentary posted on this blazingly direct and honest site. It put me in mind of how Gray Charles' site was in the beginning, an intelligently done place to visit, sans the Kool Aid. Yes,put that glass down!

Man, reading this new site reminded me of good days past, in the early days of A.I.5, and the GrayHaired Dude, a.k.a. GHD. As a reminder to those of us who were around then, this was GHD's logo: GHD carried a rocking jukebox that later bought out by one of the Taylor Hicks' fan forums. Anyone who might not remember GrayHaired Dude, perhaps the handle, 'wiseguy' may ring a bell.

This new site bravely dares to question topics such does Taylor Hicks truly still possess any real songwriting abilities? Is the man really still happy about the Soul Patrol? Modern Whomp - What is that?

One fun topic began with: "This is something that has weighed on my mind for a while now. I’ve hesitated to mention it for fear of a drive-by Soul Patrol shooting."

Man, I had to laugh when I read that thinking of the many times I have inadvertently pissed off Taylor Hicks fans by simply stating an honest opinion. I've been pretty much shunned for writing much less than this blog-writer brings up, I gotta say, I am loving this person.

Regarding this new, seemingly true blue honest site, tfhzone.com, I'm seeing some names I once enjoyed reading on Gray Charles. Good topics, decent comments and conversations. One of my favorite comments, "Let’s just hope he doesn’t have to don a sequined jumpsuit and cape to get people to notice him in the future." That's absolute gold. Read more at tfhzone.com.

Homepage: tfhzone.com. Check them out if you haven't. If you do, let them know what you think, they can take it. Man, I'm glad I found them. Put the Kool Aide down now folks. Time to be real and get your true groove back.