promo photo found online...I forgot to bring my camera.)
Richman Local 506 10/10/08
I'm still trying
get used to not buying advance tickets for every show I go to. In
Francisco, if the performer had
any acclaim at all, it would probably
sell out. Outside of some small local bands, I wouldn't even
going to a show
if I didn't already have tickets lined up. But out
here in NC, most of the time you can just show up, wait in line, and
the cover right then and there.
not an issue, but for this show I found myself a bit
worried...someone the stature of Jonathan
playing a small place
like the 506? Did I need an advance ticket? Is he as
popular out here
as he is in California?
Just to be safe, I got there early and stood
around like a jackass staring at an empty stage until he began
playing. I'm good
at staring blankly out into space waiting for
something to happen, I've been doing it my whole life.
was no opening act, a rarity at most shows but a trend the old
crotchety man inside of me wishes was more
popular. But there was a
drummer - Tommy Larkins, to be exact, probably best known as the
paniment to Jonathan in that spazz comedy “There's
Something About Mary”. It's my understanding that Tommy plays
Jonathan from time to time, but in all of the shows I've seen him
play it's just been the man and his guitar. Solo
Richman is plenty
fine, but the drums do add an extra layer of sound, some additional
definition and textures to songs
you're used to hearing a certain
way. But more importantly, all that drumming gives Jonathana lot of
extra time to sit
his guitar down, dance, play a little cow bell, and
generally enjoy himself in a grand fashion.
you haven't guessed by now, I enjoyed the hell out of this gig. I've
seen a lot of Jonathan over the years, and this
might have been my
favorite time. He may not have played all of my favorite songs (I
was really hoping for “Ice Cream
Man” and/or “Down In
Bermuda”), there may have been a bunch if old, asshole fans
screaming at the man like he was
a performing monkey, and it might
have been hot as shit because the air conditioning system was turned
off since they
play at such a low volume, but I had a smile on my
face the whole time. The man is a real treasure, a joy to watch
form, and more of the kids playing music today should look towards
him for inspiration on how to carry yourself on a
Completely Random Photos Cleaning
up some old files, and I came across these photos that never managed to
get posted. Click on them for
larger pics and all that.
The Stinky Pinks...these are
nearly two years old, from Budget Rock back in 2006 I think. This
might have been their
last show maybe? Either way, immensely entertaining band, as
those with bad wigs often are.
Tokyo Electron...These kids
opened up for (and backed as his band, I think) Jay Reatard at the
Hemlock maybe a
year, year-and-a-half ago. They were pretty good
rockabilly-tinged punk if I recall correctly, which is rare.
going to rock out with my cock out, and you're going to jam out with
your clam out. It's going to be magical."
Gang Starr - I'm
The Man. "Daily Operation" is one of the most perfect
hip-hop records ever created. The end.
Bonus: The Place Where We Dwell.
The New York Dolls - Great
Big Kiss. This song is one of my very favorite songs
of all time by any band ever.
Bonus: Don't Mess With Cupid.
Okkervil River - Unless
It's Kicks. The new Okkervil River record is kinda
disappointing. Not bad, just...meh.
Bonus: You Can't Hold The Hand Of A
Rock And Roll
Pelican - City
Of Echoes. I kinda forget about these guys from time
to time, and then when I listen to them I wonder
how I could ever forget about them. This repeats over and over in
Bonus: Lost In The Headlights.
Rick Danko - New
Mexico. From the first solo album of this former Band
member. Surprise, it sounds like the
Band, not that there is anything wrong with that.
The Black Keys - Strange
Times. The new Black Keys album is kinda disappointing
too, but much better than the
new Okkervil River record.
Bonus: Remember When (Side A).
Bonus: Remember When (Side B).
The Notwist - Boneless.
The new Notwist record is fuckin' awesome though, just like the last
one. Possibly better.
The Paper Chase - Who
Can Deny How Delicious It Tastes. I have a few friends who are nutso
over this band.
I'm not quite at that level of fandom but they do deserve to be better
known than they are.
Thousand and Eight***
The big news in our household is the new addition to the family - Burt
Reynolds the Beagle. He's a handful at
around a year old - full size but still full of puppy
rambunctiousness. Many more photos to come I'm sure.
with Crooked Fingers and Black Joe Lewis & the Honey Bears
10/03/08 The Soapbox
It being a
Friday night and all, it seemed perfectly reasonable to
drive over two hours to Wilmington for a rock concert.
It helps when
you got a good friend to visit and a free place to stay at his
Brian has been one of my major
partners-in-crime for going on 14 years
now, nearly half my life, and a visit with him is just as entertaining
as the live
We got over to
the club early, and much to our surprise there was a
line of folks waiting to get in...this rarely seems to
in NC, much less Wilmington. After some dicking around on the
foosball tables, we stag-
gered upstairs to see what the opening act,
Black Joe Lewis & the Honey Bears,
was all about. I generally
expect much out of unknown openers, having been let down so many,
many times in my life, but the rumor of a horn
section had me
intrigued. Turns out this band of austin, TX kids were quite good
throwback blues/soul with a lot of
pep and a nice three-piece horn
section round out the sound. The whole crowd seemed to be digging
understand- ably. You
never know what might happen, but I could see
these guys getting a little popularity if they manage to hook up with
the right crowd (touring with someone like the Black Keys, for
As much as I
love Okkervil River, I must be completely honest and say that Crooked
Fingers were the performer of
the night I was most excited about. Even though I haven't
listened to their records a ton lately, any time you get to see
Eric Bachmann perform live, you're going to have a good time. As per usual with
Crooked Fingers, the line-up of the
band was different from the last time I saw them (and that time was
different from the previous outing, and so on) - this
outing found them to be a quartet, with Bachmann's finger-picked guitar
backed up by drums, bass and violin.Despite
having a new record coming out the following week, they tended to play
a wide swath of older material - including two
of my favorites, "Crowned in Chrome" and "New Drink for the Old Drunk"
(would have been nice to hear "Carrboro
Woman" or "Juliette" or really every song off of the first record, but
no set list is perfect). Had they left it that, I would
have left a very satisfied customer. But no! Thrown into
the set, towards the end, no one expecting it...they busted
out the Archers of Loaf classic "Web in Front". Had my bowls not
been recently empty, there is no doubt I would have
literally shat myself...and I wasn't alone - everyone in the immediate
vicinity of me started freaking out like pre-teens
at a Jonas Brothers concert. I've heard this song played live by
Bachmann dozens and dozens of times, but the
power it holds over me never wanes.
Here is a crappy photo of Crooked Fingers performing, in case you don't
believe that I saw them.
After the Crooked Fingers performance, I felt myself to be a bit sapped
and not nearly as excited for Okkervil River
as I would have otherwise been. I left the front of the stage
area as the kids started packing in, cause I just didn't
have the energy to push around with a bunch of teenagers and their
illegally scammed beers sloshing all about.
But that's not to say they didn't put on a damn good show, cause they
did. Even though I was standing in the back
talking to my friends and dodging drunks, my ears were constantly being
tugged to the front of the room every time they
played one of my favorite tracks ("The Latest Toughs" being the
highlight as always). Lots of songs from the last
couple of records, and as always a few older hits ("Westfall",
"Okkervil River Song") during the encore. There are
few things I enjoy more than singing along with "Okkervil River Song",
the track they always end their live shows with.
The whole affair finally wound down at 1:30 in the morning, just enough
time to stagger down to the piza place and
load up slices of late night calories. It was a good night, a
tasty night, a musically rad night.
"I would like to
extend to you an invitation to the pants party."
Superdrag mini-mix, all demos
from their "4-Track Rock!!!" compilation. Goddamn I love this
band. 6/8 Better Now Than Never Cinderella Sucked Out The
Lung (Dinosaur Jr. cover)
M83 - Graveyard
Girl. A couple of tracks from the Frenchman's most
recent effort "Saturdays = Youth". Maybe not
as strong as the last album, which was a masterpiece, but damn good.
Bonus: Kim & Jessie.
Nada Surf - I
Like What You Say. Speaking of most recent efforts,
here are some Nada Surf options. They may
never top "The Weight Is A Gift", but these are some nice tracks.
Richard Hell - Blank
Generation. Classic. What more can be said?
Bonus: The Kid With The Replaceable
The Jayhawks - Blue.
From the classic album "Tomorrow the Green Grass", which doesn't have a
bad song on it.
Bonus: I'd Run Away.
The Upper Crust - Let
Them Eat Rock. Still one of the greatest live shows
I've ever seen. More bands need a
drummer who fans himself with a frilly fan between songs.
Bonus: Rabble Rouser.