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Current Topic: Music

'Weird Al' Yankovic's parents found dead
Topic: Music 4:36 pm EDT, Apr 12, 2004

My condolences go out to Weird Al..

FALLBROOK, Califorina (AP) -- -- The elderly parents of Grammy-winning recording artist "Weird Al" Yankovic were found dead in their home, apparently victims of carbon monoxide poisoning, officials said.

Nick and Mary Yankovic were found dead Friday in their suburban San Diego home by relatives who were worried because they had not seen the couple in a while, said sheriff's Sgt. Conrad Grayson.

Paramedics found Nick Yankovic, 86, in a chair in the front living room. His 81-year-old wife was on the bathroom floor.

'Weird Al' Yankovic's parents found dead

The Punklitical Pandscrape
Topic: Music 4:06 pm EST, Mar 22, 2004

] "Punks will tell me, `Punk and capitalism don't go
] together,' " Mr. Rizzuto said. "I don't understand where
] they're coming from. The biggest punk scenes are in
] capitalist countries like the U.S., Canada and Japan. I
] haven't heard of any new North Korean punk bands coming
] out. There's no scene in Iran."

] "Punk has been hijacked by an extreme left-wing element,"
] Mr. Rizzuto said. "It's blame America first. Everything is
] America's fault, and everything is Bush's fault." Mr. Rizzuto
] said his goal "is rallying conservative punks and getting
] people to vote."

Punk is not dead, its just been adopted as a bipartisan political platform.

] By their own admission, conservative punks constitute a
] small percentage of their particular subculture. Around
] 200 liberal and left-oriented punk bands have come
] together under the banner of Punkvoter, a coalition
] founded by Mike Burkett — a k a Fat Mike — of the band
] NOFX, with the stated goal of organizing punk fans to
] vote against President Bush in November. Mr. Burkett
] started Punkvoter with $100,000 of his own money and
] has recruited crossover bands like Green Day and the
] Foo Fighters to his cause.

] "Our goal is to anger the youth of America, and to show
] them how the Bush administration is bad for them,"
] Mr. Burkett said.

I was at CBGBs the other night. Typical inward facing industry scene crowd. All the bands I saw were talented, but nothing that really lit my fire. Planning and practice get good product, but its not where the cutting edge seems to lie. Where is the excitement these days? There does not appear to be any life in the marketplace. At every point I did my chill in the back of the room and judge crowd reaction thing, it seemed like a damn wake. As usual, my group was seemingly the only source of havoc. At this point in the in history, you'd think New York would have something serious to say, and an attitude with which to say it. Sometimes it seems that New York Rock and Fashion Rock are the same thing.

If you are a band, and the local industry is your only crowd, you are doomed. If the industry isn't doing something actively to get your stuff in the face of a much larger audience, you are doomed. I use "industry" in the most vague of ways. This likely goes for anywhere.

The Punklitical Pandscrape

The Music Never Stopped | Reason
Topic: Music 8:33 pm EST, Mar 15, 2004

In the first half of the 20th century, James Caesar Petrillo of the American Federation of Musicians saw that recorded music, and the broadcasting of that music on radio and jukeboxes, was a threat to his boys' jobs (and his).

Those powers are right to be disturbed. They tend to become entrenched in selling music in particular manners and styles and systems. New technologies inevitably shake all those things up.

There are probably fewer professional live musicians than there would be if we had never enjoyed radios, jukeboxes, transistorized stereos, or computerized file sharing. Yet with every change, people's access to better reproduced, more portable, more personalized music grows.

Music was a vital part of human culture long before anyone was able to mass reproduce and sell recordings of it. And music will survive any number of upheavals in the systems for selling recordings that developed in the last century.

The Music Never Stopped | Reason

Dave Blood, Rest in Peace
Topic: Music 6:38 pm EST, Mar 11, 2004

Yesterday was a very sad day for music in America. Today, I felt that sadness as I heard about the suicide of Dave Blood, the bassist for the Dead Milkmen. Yesterday, I was at a showcase (networking party) with a bunch of music industry folks in NYC. I'm glad I did not hear of this until now, otherwise it would not have been such a good night for me. This fully qualifies as a mood destroyer.

Everyone has at least one band that has broken up, which they hold hopes of having a future reunion. If you had asked me a year or so ago what my big two were, I would have listed The Pixies and The Dead Milkmen. In regard to the Pixies, it appears I will get my wish. I can't help but wonder if some karmatic penalty just got handed out.

On my recent drive across the country, as I entered the tri-state area, I decided to take a path that passed directly between Philadelphia and Trenton. The entire time, I was blasting The Dead Milkmen. It was my ode to Philly, youth, a general celebration of sarcasm, and one of many reflection points on a very long journey. It felt so fitting at the time.

Suicide seems to be the great plague of the creative world. It hurts every time I hear we have lost another person who has touched my life. While I never met Dave, or any of the other Milkmen for that matter, I consider them among some of my best friends. Music is that powerful.

My condolences go out to Dave’s family and friends, the other Milkmen. I hope they can find peace and acceptance in the face of this tragedy, in a way Dave was unable to find in himself. All your fans are mourning with you. This evening, my friends and I will certainly raise a few glasses in your direction.

Everyone else out there, do something to help one of your local tortured artists. If you consider yourself a tortured artist, please remember: Introspection holds the potential to be fatal, don’t go to far with it.

Dave Blood, Rest in Peace

The 10 worst Album Covers. Ever.
Topic: Music 11:09 pm EST, Feb 24, 2004

You can't hang with Devastatin' Dave. You are a turntable slave. Suckah.

The 10 worst Album Covers. Ever.

What Am I to You?
Topic: Music 5:55 am EST, Feb 23, 2004

The New York Times on Norah Jones's recent sales success.

Their business seems to be structured against steady, long-term success. The psychology of the recording industry, like that of book publishing, is now so dependent on blockbuster sales that the idea of profitability based on modest sales across a diverse catalog has nearly vanished. The business depends on the hundred-year flood, not a steady rain.

What Am I to You?

Boyskout video
Topic: Music 2:10 pm EST, Feb 12, 2004

Boyskout, hot pixie girls that rock.

This was a SF band, recently relocated to NYC.

Boyskout video - Share Your Music with the World
Topic: Music 4:48 pm EST, Feb 11, 2004

] MacBand is an online directory of songs and loops made by
] artists using Apple Computer's GarageBand software.

[ All of them are offerred under Creative Commons licences... an interesting implication for the Remix Culture meme the community seems so fond of... neat idea. -k] - Share Your Music with the World

The Dead Milkmen: 18 years ago
Topic: Music 2:57 am EST, Feb  5, 2004

] I was 23-24 years old when I wrote these diaries. I
] certainly wasn't planning on publishing them when I wrote
] them; so reading them now either makes me laugh, cry or
] cringe. I will not make any claims to being a gifted
] writer or diarist, but the aim here is to give the reader
] some sense of what it was like to tour across the USA in
] a van with a punk rock band in the mid to late 1980's.
] Some say this was the heyday of independent rock music
] and the college radio scene. I would bet we worked harder
] and played many more shows than many of today's
] 'alternative' rock bands will play in their short-lived
] careers.

Dean Clean has put up a Moveable Type blog, and is posting commented entries from his journal covering the Milkmen's first tour. Other members of the band are also adding comments. You can follow the band on their tour, 18 years lagged.

Also, they have a number of music videos available for download from their main website.

The Dead Milkmen are required listening. Don't trust anyone who says they do not like The Dead Milkmen.

The Dead Milkmen: 18 years ago

Sunshine Flipside Last Show
Topic: Music 1:40 pm EST, Jan 16, 2004

Here it is, as promised, the video of the last Flipside gig.

I have the feeling that the site is slammed. I was unable to download it for awhile.

(Could someone please recommend a reliable public tracker? I can generate a torrent..)

Sunshine Flipside Last Show

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