Monday, July 02, 2007

July 1, 2007 to July 7 2007

Wherein words and links words and links

Let's start the week off with some new and old music. Newest to oldest.

  1. Cas Haley, of Woodbelly. Caught him on NBC's America's Got Talent, an American Idol-like show that allows people to embarrass themselves in multiple ways, not just by singing. I happened to catch a few minutes last week and was lucky enough to catch Cas Haley. Like the pompous British judge said, he sang a Sting song better than Sting himself.

    Cas Haley on youtube. I'll watch again hoping to catch his next performance. Or maybe just wait for someone to post it on youtube. I'd rather not watch the show.

  2. Johanna Kunin. I caught Johanna last March when she opened for Robyn Hitchcock and The Venus 3. Interesting sound "collages." She recorded different sounds--clapping, brushing the microphone, chanting--then with the elements playing on top of each other she'd sing on top of them. At first it seemed the audience was a bit put off, but by the end she'd won us over. Should have bought her CD that night, guess I'll have to buy one now. She has a few songs playing on her myspace page.

  3. Robyn Hitchcock, Robyn Sings. Somehow I missed this and just discovered it last week. This is a 2-disc live collection of Bob Dylan songs. If you like Bob Dylan's music, but not necessarily by him, you might like this. Fairly faithful covers with Robyn's unique twist making many of them even more emotional than the original. Available at both and iTunes. Speaking of Johanna, the first song on the collection is Visions of Johanna, and Hitchcock says "This is my favorite song, it's why I started writing songs."

  4. Nina Simone, Pastel Blues. The story behind this starts with Pierce Brosnan and Rene Russo. They star in the 1999 film, The Thomas Crowne Affair. A very pleasant and watchable movie. I always have to watch it when it comes on and one reason is the music. Finally looked up the soundtrack and other than a bunch of incidental music, there's this 10 minute long Nina Simone song, Sinnerman. The movie makes frequent uses of short cuts from this song with a memorable segment used in the climax. Rather than buy the album for one song or just buy the one song, I checked out Pastel Blues. Pretty much brilliant and our collection is sorely lacking in Nina Simone. I'll be listening to this all day...probably all week.


Blogger bill said...

More crazy people from The Food Whore:

Second - a man and his wife wanted to move to another spot because they felt a draft and were chilled. And in our attempts to relocate them, Mr. Man went from table to table to check the "air flow" and see where the best spot was. One such spot was a table being held for an 8-top, and he insisted they be able to sit there. When I explained to him that the table was reserved, he wanted me to go over to Table 6 and see if the people would trade, because that was his second choice.

Now he - I think he's on the City Council of Crazy Town. A close race put him in that seat, but I am guessing he won't have a problem winning the next election.

7/02/2007 12:53:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Steve Jobs:

I can't tell you how many emails I've received this weekend from people telling me how iPhone has transformed their lives. In just 48 hours this product has utterly changed the way we live. People are blown away by having a single device that combines phone, music and Web browsing. To all those who are writing in, please know that we're trying to get a personal response out to each and every one of you. Meanwhile just know that your letters mean so much to me. I really, really appreciate them.

Meanwhile there is one story I need to share with you. iPhone has already saved a life.

But the iMessiah isn't happy with the Wozniak:

First he went out telling everyone he invented the Mac. As if. Then he lifts my brand name and calls his book iWoz. Then he comes sniffing around looking for a free iPhone. Forget it, Captain Segway. Look. You did some nice work -- back in the seventies. To put it another way, the last time you did any real work, Styx was still selling out arenas. Bokay? Since then you've been coasting on my jet stream. Around here we're taking bets about how long it will be before Woz claims he invented the iPhone. I say less than a year.

7/02/2007 01:48:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

This writer is obviously insane:

I’m not sure which part of this method of arguing bothers me more: the automatic assumption that if one doesn’t like one particular great thing, they must like only awful things, or the insistence that people’s taste should be necessarily narrow. I understand the impulse to rank things, and I understand some people’s need to define themselves as much by what they dislike as what they like. But when people get didactic about it, it’s hard to take them seriously. Do they have no CDs in their collection that they find hard to explain to their friends? No dopey movies or TV shows that they like? No junk food they crave?

I’m not even talking “guilty pleasures” here, per se. Depending upon the crowd you run with, you can get slagged for liking art-films as much as for liking blockbusters. But aren’t most people reasonable enough—that is, if they’re not trying to score points in an on-line argument—to admit that sometimes they’re into each?

7/02/2007 02:18:00 PM  
Blogger XWL said...

Why do people take leave of their senses when in a restaurant?

Also like the fake Steve Jobs, unless the fake is a fake and Steve Jobs set up this obviously fake blogger account to vent his actual thoughts, that'd be something the Steve would do.

As somebody who praised Rio extensively, I can relate to your most recent post.

And all I'm going to say about this week in Ken Trivia is that I nailed 1-4, have to check a map on 5 to see if my guess is right, and my wild guess on 6 would have been the right one, had I not cheated and looked it up. Maybe I should start emailing my responses again.

As far as the 7 question, it's disappointingly easy to figure out with a little wikiwork.

Either that or it's satisfyingly unobscure, can't decide which.

7/03/2007 03:27:00 AM  
Blogger XWL said...

After consulting a map, blew it on #5, but should have figured it out.

I expect controversy, though, as some might argue that Armenia and Azerbaijan also qualify.

Depends if you consider the Urals the dividing line between Europe and Asia, some maps group the countries between the Caspian and the Black Sea as Asian, others count them as European.

The division between Europe and Asia is clearly the most arbitrary of all the continental designations.

The wiki punts on the question, by saying Azerbaijan lies in "Eurasia".

7/03/2007 03:40:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

Tuesday Trivia LIII marks the one-year anniversary of our little weekly quiz.

I'll need to use less of the actual questions as part of my answers. Too many people showed up last week googling for #7's hollow answer.

1. Ragtime
2. ??? I'll probably kick myself for not knowing this. I looked it up and I'm still not sure what the exact answer is.
3. Lost
4. Rolaids
5. Latvia and Lithuania?
6. Three or six. Seems like there was a difference between WWI and WWII? I'm going with six. Ha, both were wrong. Guess I need to dig out my Aces of Aces and start practicing.
7. Don't know, but I found my fun fact for the day: Herzog uses chickens in many of his films, which he says frighten him with their extreme stupidity.

7/03/2007 09:33:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

What did you have for 5? I'll try to work on #7 later this week.

7/03/2007 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

For a couple of days now, I've been sitting on a post about certain attitudes and opinions I read in a bunch of Knocked Up reviews. Even for the soquoted format of unfocused rough draft, it's unfocused and rough. Can't decide if it's a matter of editing and tightening or if I should tear it up and approach it from another angle. An angle that is escaping me. I think the last paragraph reflects where I'm at with this thing:

I've been mulling this over for a month and I got nothing. Other than we people are a sanctimonious, self-righteous bunch. I'm astounded that humans ever developed the ability to laugh because most evidence points to us being a bunch of humorless pricks.

I swear it doesn't start out that dark. Maybe I should start there and try to lighten it up as I go along.

7/03/2007 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

iPhone keyboard backlash?

This is why zi prsctice 10 mi ntues a day typing with my thumbs. I want to be fully prepred for ghe dsy zai buy my izPhi=one.

*thism message was thumb-typed.

7/03/2007 10:34:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

Michael Ruhlman on making your own butter:

Making your own butter is a fun kitchen parlor trick. It’s a cool sensory experience, if you like touching food, to feel the water squeezing out of it as you kneed it. And it’s important in its helping us to understand our food better (the main reason I’m glad Patterson wrote about it). But is the fact that we can churn our own butter valuable?

Plenty of good links to follow. I'll have to try it with grocery store cream and then see what kind of cream I can get from a local dairy. One thing I want to do more of with The Daughter is make more food stuffs from scratch--making ice cream the other day she learned about tempering eggs in hot liquids. Things like mayonnaise and ketchup, foods she like but that we always buy. Even cheese can be made in a home kitchen. I think it's good to have a basic understanding of what is in the food we eat and it's fun to realize how easy (or hard) some of it is to make. Also, without making a big deal of the edumacation, cooking is a great introduction to chemistry and physics.

7/03/2007 10:50:00 AM  
Blogger XWL said...

Re: #2, once you realize the answer it will be like a punch to the . . . (I blame watching old boxing movies for knowing the term off the top of my head, that and an anatomy class in high school, plus used to play tackle football without pads, and sometimes cradled the football on my stomach in a manner that when hit forced the ball in exactly the wrong spot, the whole feeling like you can't breathe for 3-4 minutes isn't much fun).

Re: #5, Some reason I imagined little Lichtenstein was closer to Luxemborg than it is. Should have known low countries and high countries don't border each other.

Re: #7, think uxorially for the answer. Then the answer will be a snap(shot). (Paul McCartney is the one that suggested the right answer to me the most, but I also knew about Georgia O'Keefe's husband, and Arthur Miller's third wife).

As far as homemade stuff, making your own tofu is a pretty cool process, as well (main problem is that once you're done, what you have is tofu, but still an interesting process).

7/03/2007 01:05:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Your clue was like a kodak moment of insightfulness.

Except for #2. Apparently, I need someone to very slowly type out the answer.

7/03/2007 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Jack Sparks is back!

The Top 100 Country Songs of All Time - 2007, the first ten

It's so hard to write anymore that I have to do it in spurts. Yeah, I know there's a new Wilco album out. I also know that your college roommate's cousin took you to your first String Cheese Incident show at Red Rocks and got you high then did you a favor in the front seat of your hybrid, thus making the music that night the most incredible you'd ever heard. June means lists. Reading lists, listening lists, viewing lists; you need to know what to skim, sample, and lose interest in as your Ritalin wears off so that you can impress everyone with your worldliness over Blue Moons with orange wedges at the "dive" bar where no one is under 28. I don't want to disappoint you, although I probably will, so, whatever. This is my 15th Annual post of the 100 Greatest Country Songs of All Time, starting with the first ten, in the hopes that it will inspire me to finish and post the next ninety. If it doesn't, oh well. As you read this list, keep in mind my central belief that everything coming out of Nashville in the past 30 years is the product of a process designed to deliver a type of music to radio programmers so that they can then deliver a narrow demographic to advertisers and solidify their revenues. It's their P1 demographic, and they guard it jealously. Which is really a shame, because there are few cities full of musical talent like Nashville, Tennessee. The problem is that those with the talent are in the background, playing instruments and providing vocals to peacocks and peahens, who flash into the spotlight, make obscene amounts of money, and then spend the next few decades of their lives getting rehab and going through plastic surgery until they're almost unrecognizable. The whole thing is absolutely fucked, and it's the fault of men like Mick Anselmo and Gregg Swedberg. I offer this list simply as a counterpoint to this runaway train of ignorance and falsehood.

7/03/2007 03:15:00 PM  
Blogger XWL said...

It's hard to see, but the . . . above is a link to the wikipage on celiac plexus which gives its alternate name of solar plexus, which is where people sometimes get punched in.

7/03/2007 03:37:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...


I called that jackass CEO, got his receptionist, and she asked me what I was calling about. I told her the iPhone, and she told me I had to dial a different number, 800 something or other. I'm like, lady, I'm f-----g Steve Jobs, and she says, "Sir, I don't care who you're f-----g, you can't just call up and get our CEO." Unreal.

Geez, the guy even has a book

7/03/2007 03:42:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Happy 4th of July.

John Doe is on tour! Currently in california and hits Atlanta, August 5.

7/04/2007 02:51:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

I'm in the google top 10 for the search Evan almighty christian.

7/04/2007 03:30:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Ruin an Enemy Picnic:

If you have neighbors, or God forbid relatives, who are Democrats and/or atheists (it can be hard to tell the difference) that are having a BBQ or picnic today this is your chance to show them your Patriotism. Wait until they are good and drunk, don’t worry, they will be, and then march right into the middle of their “celebration” and start reading from the Bible as loud as you can. While you are spreading God’s word to the heathens, have a fellow Patriot simultaneously read from the Declaration of Independence. The Liberals hate the Bible and anything constitutional so this will upset them to no end.

7/04/2007 03:34:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Ralph Bakshi and Scatman Crothers

7/04/2007 10:36:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

The French Laundry and Per Se butter-maker joins the conversation:

Unfortunately, you can't culture cream from the store that has been ultra-pasteurized--there is no bacteria left for grow anything once you introduce the culture.

In my mind, there is no flavor benefit to making your own butter from store bought, ultra-pasteurized cream.

However, I must agree that there may be a benefit to the feeling of making your own food, and knowing how a product you regularly eat is made. It may also cause one to say, "Shit, how some I made this in my kitchen and it doesn't taste any different than Land O' Lakes...." thus propelling one to search out a good local source of unpasteurized Jersey cream from a nearby dairy that grazes its cows and VOILA--your butter WILL taste different, believe me. Seek and ye shall find.

7/05/2007 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

big friggin' whoop:

Your IQ score is 130.

According to Lewis Terman, originator of the concept of the intelligence quotient, your score classifies you as exhibiting very superior intelligence. You will probably win the lottery now.

7/05/2007 02:41:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

No swim lessons for The Child today. The pool is closed, and no, it wasn't a candy bar.

7/05/2007 02:49:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Air Quality Index Map for the United States.

7/05/2007 04:09:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

The story behind The Ohio Express:

mpliment to the five young kids from Mansfield.

But here's the reality: Those songs and others to come weren't recorded by The Ohio Express. Their name simply was put on the singles' labels and jacket covers. It was all a hoax.

When Kastran lip-synced those two songs on American Bandstand, he was lip-syncing to the voice of Joey Levine, a 17-year-old kid who came from a musical family and lived in New York City. Levine was a studio singer and writer.

Kastran and The Ohio Express never performed with Levine. He never toured with the group or recorded a song with them.


"I remember we heard 'Yummy, Yummy, Yummy' over the phone and we said, 'Great, when are we going to record it?' They said, 'It's all done. It's going to come out next week,' " Kastran remembers. "They more or less promised us that we would get to do everything else after that."


While the touring might have been tiring, the young kids from Mansfield had their share of fun on the road. Corwin remembers touring with The Who.

"We did a tour with them in 1968 -- that was a fun thing," he recalls. "Those guys were a wild bunch. We started up in Montreal at the baseball stadium. They had 20,000 people in that thing. They had a riser off the ball field of about 20 feet. I remember we opened up and started playing and all these things were bouncing off the head of my drums. I looked around, and Keith Moon was behind me with a bag of sunflower seeds.

"Those guys were drinkers. We were at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal and had a big dinner and those guys got really loaded and they started with their drinking glasses, busting them up and throwing shit around. We (The Ohio Express) were all stoned and humbled. We don't get that way, so we separated. We got to the room and there's a knock on the door and there's this roadie from The Who. He says, 'You got any grass? All those guys do is drink.' I said, 'Come on in.' "

They opened for Johnny Rivers, smoked pot with Neil Diamond, hung out with Blood, Sweat & Tears, partied once at Jimi Hendrix's house and even knew Tiny Tim ("When we first met him, he played 'My Sweet Ohio Home' on his ukulele," Corwin remembers). Each member of the group was getting paid $1,000 a week for touring, with the rest of the money being put in an escrow account. It was money the group would never see.

"They were retaining half of every gig we played," Corwin says. "All that money was never accounted for. I would say to Jeff (Katz), 'How about that escrow account? What's it looking like?' and he would say, 'Don't worry about it.' "

While Corwin is convinced the group is still owned money from their touring days, Kastran isn't so sure.

"Probably, but I don't know," Kastran says. "None of us knew what the contract said, if it said 'We're going to screw these guys' or not. I know they claim it all went toward traveling expenses."

7/06/2007 07:30:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

Mr. Ostrowski had used a day off from his job at a hookah bar to stand in line.

I think that will make a fine opening line for my next novel, Baron Rastok And His Search For Unicorns and Commonsense Or Why Baroness Rastok Shagged the Gardener, The Dolphin Wore Bifocals, And The Man In The Moon Finally Smiled.

7/06/2007 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger bill said...

Althouse provides more proof for the Venn diagram

7/06/2007 12:55:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Still funny: Speak American you pretentious queen-sniffing twit.

7/06/2007 03:45:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Sony VAIO customer service

7/06/2007 04:24:00 PM  
Blogger bill said...

Sometimes all the good stuff is in the asides:

as an aside, one has to appreciate the kookiness of the war-time US government reinforcing American values and ideals through a socialist arts program appropriating the vocabulary of communist art

7/07/2007 09:02:00 AM  

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