Archive for the ‘Music that doesn’t suck’ Category

This dump ain’t closed on Thanksgiving

November 26, 2015
Shut up, kid.

Shut up, kid.

But even if yours is, you can still get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant.

Privateering we did go

September 17, 2015
There. A photo of an actual bike, from the actual show. Happy now?

There. A photo of an actual bike, from the actual show. Happy now?

LAS VEGAS, Nevada (MDM) — Some people watched CrossVegas. Others tuned in to “Mister Trump’s Neighborhood” (“Won’t you be my neighbor? No, of course you won’t, we wouldn’t let you, because you’re a loser! And anyway, I’m building a great big beautiful wall!”)

Me, I enjoyed a Mark Knopfler concert.

interbike-bugThe Adventure Cycling Association’s King of All Media, Mike Deme, proposed the idea some months back and handled all the arrangements, so last night off we went to the Colosseum at Caesar’s Palace.

Good show. The man still has it at 66, and the band was tight, although the sound was poor; the bottom was over the top, smothering the lesser stringed instruments (cittern, ukelele, mandolin); overpowering whistles, flutes and even the uilleann pipes; and at times nearly obscuring Knopfler’s voice entirely.

The two-hour show unearthed a couple of what Knopfler called “historical relics,” including “Sultans of Swing,” the first song of his most of us ever heard. But there was plenty of newer stuff, too, from “Privateering” and his latest album, “Tracker.”

There was another show, of course, involving bicycles. I paid it little mind, day one always being heavy on the how-y’doing, what’s-up, still-working-for-eejits-o-yes* side of the ledger.

But Mike, Adventure Cyclist boss-fella Alex Strickland and I managed to fall by Pearl Izumi; Bollé (which is now doing helmets); Nutcase (which is doing some cool scooter helmets); Brompton (slick build-to-order Brit folders); and Jamis (check out their nicely spec’d and affordable Renegade series).

More of the same today, including a chat with Novara manager Cyndi Mundhenk of REI and a big skull session with the Adventure Cyclist staff and contributors over dinner this evening. I’ll try to post something from the show floor today. **

Next: Not all those who wander are lost. Just me.

* No eejits were harmed in the making of this post, especially those eejits who are paying the tab.

** Notice how well that worked out? Yeah, me too.

Say it ain’t so, Joe

December 23, 2014
Out near El Malpais National Monument on a shoot for the Adventure Cycling Association.

Out near El Malpais National Monument, “working” as a model during a photo shoot for the Adventure Cycling Association.

I was somewhere near Grants, New Mexico, riding a touring bike for fun and profit, when the word came that Joe Cocker had passed on.

It’s a wonder Joe made it to 70, given the way he lived his early years. John Belushi, who mocked him so well, didn’t last half as long.

And man: “A Little Help From My Friends.” “She Came In Through the Bathroom Window.” Dude out-Beatled the Beatles, is what. “The Letter.” “Delta Lady.” Hoo-lawd, he left it all out there on the stage.

“You Are So Beautiful.” “You Can Leave Your Hat On.” And “Feelin’ Alright.”

“I’m not feeling too good myself,” Joe sang, and he wasn’t kidding. But he had too much to do before he died, and thank whatever gods there are that we got to watch, and listen.

As Pat noted in comments, give our best to Frank, Joe.

He is risen

December 21, 2014

phi-zappa-krappaWell, maybe not quite yet.

Happy birthday, Frank. Let’s play him out with “Happy Together,” from the Fillmore in 1971, and his Last Imaginary Guitar Solo. That’s all from here for Zappadan 2014.

The Posole Variations

December 20, 2014
The Posole Variations. This one uses chicken thighs, red and yellow bell peppers, tomatillos and other good things. No hot rats were harmed in the making of this stew.

The Posole Variations. This one uses chicken thighs, red and yellow bell peppers, tomatillos and other good things. No hot rats were harmed in the making of this stew.

I make a lot of posole, and over the years have settled on one simple version and one slightly more elaborate (from The Santa Fe School of Cooking Cookbook).

But the other day I was searching the Innertubes for a chicken version I made once and stumbled across an entirely new recipe that looked good.

So I gave it a whirl and whaddaya know? I have a third favorite.

Thus today’s Zappadan 2014 musical selection, “The Gumbo Variations,” from “Hot Rats.”

I don’t need your sweet devotion

December 19, 2014

The prez gave the press his dirty love and Charles P. Pierce practically swooned:

“Yeah, I wish he’d had more days like this since he was inaugurated. I have my own disappointments in the guy, and always have had them, from the first time I ever heard him speak. (And I wish he hadn’t had that Hallmark moment at the end about how we’re all great people here, because we’re pretty plainly not, since 53 percent of us think torture was OK.) But that’s his gig. It’s what got him elected in the first place. But this was Shakespeare the way it was meant to be done, and the next year is going to be a lot of great fun, I’m thinking. Lame duck, my bollocks.”

We’re ticking along nicely toward Solstice and Zero Day, which marks the end of Zappadan 2014.

A nation mourns

December 18, 2014

Superpatriot Stephen Colbert set aside his Chrome Plated Megaphone of Destiny today, writing finis to “The Colbert Report,” and it seems fitting that we play him out with FZ’s version of “God Bless America.”

We haven’t watched the finale yet. No cable, so we’re always a day late (and a dollar short, which explains why we don’t have cable). So, Nation — no spoilers, please. I’m hoping for a steel-cage death match pitting Colbert and Jon Stewart against Kim Jong-un and Darth Cheney.

Kim sheesh

December 17, 2014

Sony eats shit so you don’t have to watch it. Not on Christmas Day, anyway; it seems likely, however, that you will be able to watch “The Interview” via video on demand*, giving Sony Pictures Entertainment a chance to recoup some of its lost millions and Kim Jong-un the option of blowing up your teevee instead of your local cineplex.

Thus, today’s musical selection — “Now You See It – Now You Don’t,” from “Tinseltown Rebellion.”

I recommend that you enjoy it with a glass of fine rum and a Cuban cigar. If you watch “The Interview,” however, I suggest smoking a shitload of weed. It’s supposed to be what makes Seth Rogen smart.

* See comments. It appears that “The Interview” may follow the Sony Walkman TPS-L2 into the dustbin of history.

Play that harmonica, son

December 16, 2014

Well, what the hell else was I supposed to play from the FZ catalog after reading about methane on Mars, f’chrissakes?

Gonna be a dental floss tycoon

December 15, 2014

This is an interesting story, and also a disturbing one, in part because of the questions it fails to ask (or answer) and the assertions it makes without supporting evidence.

Writes Claire Cane Miller: “In addition to making some jobs obsolete, new technologies have also long complemented people’s skills and enabled them to be more productive. … More productive workers, in turn, earn more money and produce goods and services that improve lives.”

Since when? Who among us has not been compelled to become more productive, not simply because technology made it possible, but because management insisted that there be fewer of us to produce? How many of us got fat raises to go along with the new chores? I don’t know about you, but I’m still waiting for mine.

Google co-founder Larry Page proposes a four-day workweek, “so as technology displaces jobs, more people can find employment.” Larry obviously doesn’t get out much, because there are plenty of people working short weeks already, some of them at more than one job, and from what I read there are still fewer jobs than there are people who need them.

“We’re going to enter a world in which there’s more wealth and less need to work,” brays MIT economist Erik Brynjolfsson. Maybe at MIT, Erik old scout. But how about where you are, Dear Readers? Who’s going to get this additional wealth, and where’s that work we’re supposedly going to need less of? My mortgage lender would like some details regarding this New World Order, if you don’t mind. Or even if you do.

I mean, we can’t all move to Montana to be dental-floss tycoons. You priced zircon-encrusted tweezers lately? It’s day 12 of Zappadan 2014.





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