Monday, December 31, 2018

Truth!


"You can just dim the lights so low, and then you're in the dark."--Brother Boy

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Apologies to Mr. J


Gratitude & Bad-itude 2018: Nanette

I'd never heard of Hannah Gadsby before seeing Nanette. It transcends "stand-up special" and for purposes of this post, I'll call it a performance piece. It is funny, gut-wrenching, impassioned, heart-breaking, and far too relatable for me.

Will Emmy show her as much love as they did Louis C.K. for any random season of his show? He did jack-off in front of women without their consent for decades and Gadsby probably hasn't even done that once.

Gratitude & Bad-itude 2018: "Free Churro"

Bojack Horseman has been an important show for me since I found it back in 2016, just before its third season aired. Well, not aired, but was made available on Netflix. 

The show came into my life at a time when depression was really settling into my head. It wasn't a cure for the depression, or even therapeutic in dealing with the depression, necessarily. Less like a life preserver; more like having a buddy to hang out with as you both drown.

Its depiction of depression hits home with me. I'm not the only one who relates to it.



The show's first 3 seasons play out in a large story arc. Its fourth season wisely didn't try to be bigger or darker. Its stories enriched the Bojack mythology and set the stage for a strikingly self-referential story arc that kicked off with season 5. But this isn't about that story arc, it's about an episode that took a timeout from that arc, and, in an audacious manner, let Bojack bury his mother while giving WIll Arnett a full 30 minutes of dialog. Arnett performs as Bojack's father in the cold open, and everything after the opening credits is 100% him as Bojack with no B-story. It is a fantastic performance that balances humor and pathos, eschewing histrionics and feeling all the more potent because of the restraint. It's the kind of work that ought to earn Arnett an Emmy nomination for Character Voice-Over Performance, and if there's any justice, would get some accolades for the episode's writer, Raphael Bob-Waksberg (who is also the show creator).



I know exactly what he means about Becker.

My mother indulged me and watched the episode, and says she enjoyed it. It is a little awkward that the episode I told her she had to see was about a mother's funeral (especially considering the vitriol toward her), and she asked me if she should read anything into that.

And I just shrugged which maybe she didn't see over the telephone.

2018 sure sucked.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Song of the Day: "White Eyes"

Somewhere, amid all the craziness of the Donald Trump presidency (that's a polite way to call something a total shit show), a new album by The Wombats was released and you didn't ever mention it to me.

I hope you're happy.

I am, as there's some pretty good stuff on it!



Song: "White Eyes"
Artist: The Wombats

Friday, December 28, 2018

Song of the Day: "Make Me A Song"

Eleanor Friedberger's Rebound ranks at #39 on Metacritic's Top 40 Albums of 2018 (where the universe is new releases in 2018 [not reissues] that received at least 7 reviews from their "approved" reviewers roster). If they didn't include the 7 review minimum, Friedberger would have dropped at least 10 spots.

Of course with all the subjectivity that goes into the Metacritic score, it's a wonder I'm even mentioning it as a thing. 'Tis the season for me to listen through curated lists of music to pick my own list of music (that's why I mentioned it).



Song: "Make Me A Song"
Artist: Eleanor Friedberger

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Song of the Day: "When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings"

This song, written by Gillian Welch and David Rawlinson, from The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, made the shortlist for the 2019 Oscar for Best Original Song.

And it's fucking great!

Netflix did pretty well with respect to this category and the shortlist: this song, yesterday's song from Quincy, the Dolly song last week, Thom Yorke's song from Suspiria. That's more than 25%. Take that, Sony Pictures Classic (or, you know, most studios).



Song: "When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings"
Artist: Tim Blake Nelson/Willie Watson

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Song of the Day: "Heavenly"

I ran across this song via This Is That Song which is David Lee's music blog. He has songs of the day and end of the year music lists, so you might understand why I'd spend a little time there.

I can't tell you much about British band Cosmic Strip, but I am picking up on an early Blondie vibe that Lee alludes to.



Song: "Heavenly"
Artist: Cosmic Strip

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Song of the Day: "Keep Reachin'"

Among the 15 songs that made the shortlist for the 2019 Oscar for Best Original Song is this one from Quincy, a documentary about producer/musician/humanitarian Quincy Jones. It's a bit interesting that it features Mark Ronson since, in theory, Ronson is the new generation of producer, stealing Jones's thunder.

But that's silly since Ronson is probably 2 generations after Jones's heyday. Also, maybe it's tacky to make the subject of your documentary produce an original song. I'm curious about writing credits (specifically whether or not Chaka has a credit) since this could easily end up among the 5 nominations.

Quincy is produced by his daughter, Rashida Jones. They are both cousins of mine (I'm sure).



Song: "Keep Reaching"
Artist: Chaka Khan/Mark Ronson/Quincy Jones

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Song of the Day: "I'll Fight"

If Diane Warren receives an Oscar nomination for "I'll Fight" from RBG, the acclaimed documentary about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, it will be her 10th.

If she doesn't, it won't (right?).

I posted a song by Jennifer Hudson for Musical Theater Therapy yesterday or the day before. She's growing on me.



Song: "I'll Fight"
Artist: Jennifer Hudson

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Song of the Day: "Not Today"

I don't remember the specifics anymore, but I do remember that the first time I heard Alessia Cara, I knew she had something special. "Here" put her at #9 for my favorite singles that year (whatever year it was, that was that year).

With "Not Today" she's got a bit of an Elle King vibe going (King also had a good debut that same year--her "Exes and Ohs" came in at #15 that same year, which was also that year).

What's my point? I forget. Maybe I just feel like I should type something when I do these.



Song: "Not Today"
Artist: Alessia Cara

Monday, December 17, 2018

Song of the Day: "Girl in the Movies"

I was a little surprised to see the 3 Golden Globe Original Song nominees that aren't the big song from A Star is Born or the big song from Black Panther: an awful Annie Lennox song, a well-intentioned but forgettable song by the dude from Sigur Ros (and someone else), and a song by Dolly Parton from a movie about falling in love with Dolly Parton!!!

The plot of Dumplin' is a bit confusing (read about it here), but it's on Netflix so shut up and watch it tonight. Dolly wrote 6 new songs for the movie and recorded another 6 (making 12 songs from Dolly in total, duh). Can it beat "Shallow"?



Song: "Girl in the Movies"
Artist: Dolly Parton

Notes on Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Can You Ever Forgive Me? is a downbeat movie that is matter-of-fact about its unlikeable characters. Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant, who are both very good in the movie, don't try for anything but portraying grim and very real people. And they succeed nicely.

The movie's best shots at Oscar nominations are Richard E. Grant for Best Supporting Actor (an award he's picked up from 5 critics associations, and nominated for by the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), Melissa McCarthy for Best Actress (an award she's won from 3 critics associations [plus 2 nebulous awards from film festivals], and nominated for by the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), and Best Adapted Screenplay (received from 2 critics associations, with a handful of nominations pending as well). 

The movie is too austere for me to see it getting additional nominations (although, frankly, the costume design is great, the production design is nice, and the cinematography is good--but none of these things is sufficiently flashy to get attention come Oscar nomination time).

All 3 (Grant, McCarthy and Adapted Screenplay) are likely nominees, with Grant the most likely of the 3 to win.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Song of the Day: "King of Alabama"

That Brent Cobb's Providence Canyon is a really good album doesn't mean he's not a record label's attempt at having the next Chris Stapleton. Or does the success of one long-haired, blue collar, Nashville songwriter stepping up with a musical combination of country, rock, and bluegrass, naturally mean that Nashville record labels have always supported this exact kind of act for decades?

It's like Adele getting signed right after Amy Winehouse hit big, or Coldplay after Radiohead, or Tracy Bonham after Alanis Morrisette, or Counting Crows after the Dave Matthews Band, or, wait, what's my point? I forget.

This song is about Wayne Mills who probably shouldn't have been smoking there.



Song: "King of Alabama"
Artist: Brent Cobb

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Song of the Day: "Fulton County Jane Doe"

This week I learned that I've been spelled Brandi Carlile's name wrong for years now. I took my dad to see her open for Shawn Colvin a decade ago. Literally the summer of 2008, 10 years, 5 or 6 months... I'm not just some lame blogger who is only now learning of her.

I am a lame blogger who is only now learning to spell her last name.

Whatever. There's a real story behind the song (allegedly), according to this comment on the song's YouTube page:
For anyone curious this song is about a real woman who was found beaten but still alive on the side of an expressway on January 13, 1988. She died a few days later in the hospital and still remains to be unidentified (I'm pretty sure the writer meant she remains unidentified or that she remains to be identified, since it's probably not possibly to unidentify someone). This song is heartbreaking and this poor woman went to the grave with not so much as her name and a family wondering what happened to their child. Here's her DoeNetwork page. 
There is something about the story of this unidentified woman's death that reminded me of a wonderfully written, justifiably angry piece on a serial killer in Toronto and the relationship between Toronto's police and the GQ-BLT community there: "Death in the Village" by Anthony Oliveria. Devoid of context, "We have no superheroes. We are alone," is a grim quote.

Within the context of the article, it's worse. The article is an emotional gut punch and I highly recommend it.

If anything is keeping me going, it's knowing that Avengers End Game is coming. I hope to hold on until then.



Song: "Fulton County Jane Doe"
Artist: Brandi Carlile

Friday, December 14, 2018

Quote of the Day: the weakly standard edition

"TAKE THAT YOU NEVER TRUMPERS"--former game show host Chuck Woolery, on Twitter, giddy over the "death" of the Weekly Standard
I started reading the Weekly Standard's daily email recaps of the news because, after the fucking election, I needed to understand how much of a bubble I was living in, with my regular diet of The Daily Show, the Washington Post, and SNL's Weekend Update (fair and balanced, right?). This would force me to confront the real truth on things, like Hillary Clinton selling uranium to Russia in the completely unsupervised Uranium One deal immediately after she personally killed Americans in Benghazi and gave the order to the Super Friends to stand down when they totally could have saved everyone, no problem, and, more than anything, her emails.

Also, she killed Seth Rich, was running a child sex slave ring out of Comet Ping Pong, and was responsible for countless false flag operations.

Meanwhile, a great man, a billionaire, stepped up to fight for freedom and make America an un-laughing stock again. Okay, Jesus, I just can't at the moment. People watch this and think it rocks?!!!

Weekly Standard had the audacity to call Trump out on all his bullshit occasionally suggest that maybe the rhetoric about the fake news was a bit much. And for that, they have been killed.

Stay classy Chuck Woolery...
See ya.

Song of the Day: "Run James Run"

Today's song was an unreleased gem (until last year's Playback when it was, obviously, released) from Brian Wilson.

I'm torn between liking it for its own merits, liking it because it eschews theremin-heavy experimentation, and liking it because I'm rooting for Wilson.  One of those, for sure.



Song: "Run James Run"
Artist: Brian Wilson

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Song of the Day: "Wonderfully Made"

I don't recall how or when I first started getting promotional emails for Besides Daniel. If I clicked the links in the email, they must not have sent me to any place particularly memorable before. Today's email sent me to a lovely, lyrical piece, teeming with sentimentality and accentuated with lovely harmonies. 

Besides Besides Daniel, the song features Adam Sams (any relation to Sam Adams? probably not) who is from the semi-oxymoronically named North Augusta, South Carolina. 

So much word play tonight. I think it's past my bed time.


Song: "Wonderfully Made"
Artist: Besides Daniel/Adam Sams

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Song of the Day: "Focus"

H.E.R. stands for having everything revealed, which, until recently, is not something that Gabriella Wilson (the "her" of H.E.R.) seemed too keen on doing. She released her first music through a shroud of mystery, obscuring her appearance to let the music speak for itself. Her plan to stay enigmatic may be undermined a bit by the attention she's now getting from 5 Grammy nominations (Album of the Year, Best New Artist, and 3 in the R&B category, including Best R&B song for today's SOTD).

With 5 nominations, she's in a tie for the fifth largest number of nominations, along with Cardi B, Childish Gambino, Lady Gaga, Maren Morris, and 2 dudes I've never heard of. It's a notable year for female nominees (Brandi Carlile received 6 nominations where her previous body of work only received 1), but that might be because the general categories expanded the number of nominees from 5 to 8. The caliber of the women nominated (and I'm including Kacey Musgraves, Janelle Monáe, Margo Price, Dua Lupa, St. Vincent, and several others) is undermined by acts like Greta Van Fleet (not a female) and Post Malone pulling in large numbers of nominations as well.

You know what female artist didn't get a single Grammy nomination this year? Liza Minnelli... bet you saw that coming.



Song: "Focus"
Artist: H.E.R.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Song of the Day: "Look Out From Your Window"

My excitement at discovering The Innocence Mission are still releasing new music is diminished somewhat by what seems like an excess of uninspiring songs. Sun on the Square is their 10th studio album, with the band currently configured of 3 of its original 4 members; they lost their drummer to the culinary arts somewhere along the way. It's entirely possible a drummer is what's missing from this more recent music.

The band's Wikipedia entry refers to their more recent music as cinematic folk-pop, which might be a polite way of saying the music seems like incidental or background music. 

It would probably make good "hold" music. 

I've only listened to a few tracks, so hopefully, I'm missing something with a little urgency to it.



Song: "Look Out From Your Window"
Artist: The Innocence Mission

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Song of the Day: "Hands on You"

It's easy to trivialize Ashley Monroe, to write her off as a Miranda Lambert (her bandmate in Pistol Annies) wannabe. Maybe I'm trivializing what it means to want to be another Miranda Lambert (an earnest singer/songwriter making traditionalist country music in a bro country world?).

Maybe a better comparison is with Chris Isaak's stylish and moody work. That could be an interesting combination.



Song: "Hands on You"
Artist: Ashley Monroe

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Song of the Day: "Agree"

This album is an odd one: the first collaboration between an American electronic band and a European "orchestral collective" that is a Trump protest album; but not an angry one, a moody-as-fuck one. This track is the most mainstream one on Music for the Long Emergency (I was going to suggest that it's "glass half empty" thinking that it will be a long emergency, but the shit show has gone on far too long as it is, and I see nothing stopping him from being re-elected in 2020 at this point). The A/V Club calls the album a soundtrack for uneasy times.

Uneasy? Try seriously fucked up bullshit.



Song: "Agree"
Artist: POLIÇA/s t a r g a z e

Friday, December 7, 2018

Song of the Day: "City Looks Pretty"

I have no idea how Courtney Barnett continues to charm me, but she does. I'm digging Tell Me How You Really Feel as I listen through the various "best of 2018" lists.



Song: "City Looks Pretty"
Artist: Courtney Barnett

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Song of the Day: "Future Me Hates Me"

I'm listening through some of the early "best of 2018" lists to help me figure out my own list (it's efficient, drafting off the lists of others). I always find a handful of things that I end up loving, and just as many releases whose acclaim I just don't get.

Kiwis The Beths are definitely the former. This is a delightful track!



Song: "Future Me Hates Me"
Artist: The Beths

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Song of the Day: "Tints"

Huzzah! The song wherein I start to appreciate Kendrick Lamar is upon us.

The live performance on SNL last weekend was solid. And I wouldn't have paid attention if it hadn't been Anderson .Paak. The new album Oxnard, sees him moving north along the California coast, following Venice and Malibu.



Song: "Tints"
Artist: Anderson .Paak/Kendrick Lamar

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Song of the Day: "Overland"

Damn this is beautiful. It's got a spare quality akin to the best of Gillian Welch, and sweet vocals that call to mind the Dixie Chicks. Admit it: that's a combination that doesn't suck.

I don't know anything about I'm With Her aside from this song ranks #44 on Paste's Top 50 Best Songs of 2018.

Apparently one of the singers is from Nickel Creek--that was a thing, right?



Song: "Overland"
Artist: I'm With Her

Monday, December 3, 2018

Song of the Day: "Back on the Chain Gang"

I was going to call the song "25-years old" and then, as I was going to type "30" I checked, and the single was released in October 1982: 37 years ago. It's been 25 years since The Pretenders covered "Everyday is Like Sunday" for the Boys on the Side soundtrack.

Boys on the Side: well-intentioned and not in need of a remake.

As for Moz's cover here: it could have been much worse.



Song: "Back on the Chain Gang"
Artist: Morrissey

Friday, November 30, 2018

Song of the Day: "The Man Who Has Everything"

Chance the Rapper's earnestness overcomes the somewhat laconic beat on this new track.

I will be hugely disappointed if it turns out this was all some act.



Song: "The Man Who Has Everything"
Artist: Chance the Rapper

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Quote of the Day (a few days ago): Demonstrate for Us Please Edition

"To clarify, the type of deterrent they used is OC pepper spray — it’s literally water, pepper, with a small amount of alcohol for evaporation purposes. It’s natural, you could actually put it on your nachos and eat it."--Ron Colburn, President of the Border Patrol Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation created to support the families of Border Patrol agents killed in the line of duty
Other things that are also natural: arsenic (it's in apple seeds); solanine (a poison found in potatoes, eggplants, and tomatoes); phytohaemagglutinin (no, for real, it's a toxin present in kidney beans); radon; chlorine. All perfectly natural.

I hope Colburn puts any of these (or even just the OC pepper spray) on his nachos and eats it to demonstrate just how much these powerfully evil yet also weak and sickly migrants don't have anything to complain about. 

Migrants seeking asylum: they're like gay weddings x gluten x kneeling during the national anthem.

Song of the Day: "Girl Goin' Nowhere"

The almost-title track to Ashley McBryde's Girl Going Nowhere album hits the right mood for the morning. It's got the spare sadness of a Gillian Welch song, but with something of an innocence to her voice.

McBryde's album is #48 on Paste's Top 50 albums of 2018, one spot above Blood Orange, who I'm certain will be on my top albums list when I finish it, like next April.



Song: "Girl Goin' Nowhere"
Artist: Ashley McBryde

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

R.I.P. Diane


I heard that a former co-worker/friend of 20+ years passed away earlier this month. I think I met her sometime in 1997, and I managed her a bit in 1998 and 1999. Managing her was easy enough; she was very good at her job: detail oriented and conscientious.

She was fiercely independent and a serious loner. The old storage room that became her office—no window/view, completely private with the door closed—would have disappointed most people. I would have enjoyed it, but I already had a small office (with a bad-ass view of Mt. Hood). She filled the shelves with rocks she'd collect during her various forays hiking and camping.

She was a rockhound, an avid camper (she taught me what a yurt is), and a fan of old cemeteries. She would make rubbings of tombstones while I would see movies on the weekends.

At one point, when planning a 2-week road/camping trip she planned through Utah and Colorado, the contrast in our respective philosophies came clear. I thought a reasonable price for a hotel room was $125 a night, while she thought $50 a night was a lot. Lately, I'd put a reasonable price closer to $85 a night, but the economy was better for me 20 years ago (pre-mortgage, post-car payment).

Our paths split when the company downsized and she used outplacement services that directed her toward getting a master's degree in library science. She was a quantitative thinker and described the library sciences calling as being a way for her to connect people with information. I've borrowed some of that phrasing to describe myself. Helping people make sense of their data is something I think I do well.

I managed to lure her back to the company for a while. There was a broader role that I thought she would fill nicely: designing research she could do; analyzing data she could do easily; and reporting on the findings, which would end up being the challenge. We worked very closely on a large segmentation project that started strangely (an unknown field partner was behaving super sketchy and folks on my team didn't want to act on that, thinking I was overreacting). It was rough, awkward, thankless when it happened, but I thought of the project recently and consider the end results to be one of the best examples of that kind of project that I've ever done.

But the client's everchanging demands for the report visuals drove me and Diane crazy. I left the office and went to a movie one day, just to try to maintain my sanity.

When Lee won the lottery and I told him I'd drive him to Salem, it had to be after 10:30 because I promised Diane I would meet her to teach her how to do something. I didn't want to leave her hanging (Lee also had a work thing he had to do, despite being an instant millionaire). She was the first person not living with me to hear the news. It changed how we talked about documenting our projects from "in the case so and so gets hit by a bus" to "in the case so and so wins the lottery." Glass half full... or glass totally full.

I helped her get the 2 biggest raises of her career. Back in 1999, I remarked that if she made less than a certain amount, she was being underpaid. She was critical to several projects at the time and after 2 hours she worked up the nerve to walk into the corner office and as for a $10,000 salary increase. The man in the corner office didn't flinch when he said "done" right away. She really was being underpaid (clearly).

The second time was when I lured her back, another big step up in her salary.

I made her some tapes for her road trip/camping trip. I don't remember everything, but I know she liked Garbage (the first 2 albums), and she loved Syd Straw (Surprise and War and Peace). I think Freedy Johnston was in the mix, and his shows here and in Salem this weekend are strangely serendipitous.

When she splurged and get Netflix she came to me asking for recommendations because the options were overwhelming. I told her to just watch Arrested Development seasons 1 through 3 (it was before season 4 happened). She thanked me for a great recommendation and not providing a massive list.

Normally I would react to losing a friend by regretting how little communication we'd had recently, or wondering if I had anything I didn't say to her. Strangely, I feel good about our limited communication: it's the amount we wanted, occasional and meaningful when it happened, but nothing forced. I know I connected her with aspects of pop culture that she treasured, and she taught me about life off the grid. We respected each other's contributions, and I would still pick her for my "kickball team" (where a kickball team was really a group of coworkers I'd want to work with)... if she were still available.

I don't know the details but understand that she ended her life. I don't begrudge her that and hope her family is at peace with her choice. I'm reminded of a Stephen Foster song that Syd Straw covered on Surprise:
Let us pause in life’s pleasures and count its many tears
While we all sup sorrow with the poor:
There’s a song that will linger forever in our ears;
Oh! Hard Times, come again no more.


Rest in peace my friend.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Song of the Day: "Ever Again"

Robyn's Honey album earned glowing reviews (on par with her 2010 release Body Talk). I didn't find much to endear me to Body Talk, but at least the new album has a track that embodies the best of Cyndi Lauper, Work Drugs, and Carly Rae Jepson.

That it's the last track on the album may or may not be meaningful.



Song: "Ever Again"
Artist: Robyn

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Song of the Day: "TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME"

A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relations is The 1975's follow-up to I Like It When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It, the 2016 album that charmed the fuck out of me. Apparently, this, the third release for the band, was supposed to complete a trilogy, but there's a fourth album queued up for release early next year (it was recorded during the same sessions).

This track is unabashed pop music, and you know how I like that.



Song: "TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME"
Artist: The 1975

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Song of the Day: "GTFO"

Yesterday when I mentioned Mariah's Caution album being ever-so-slightly ahead of Blood Orange in their respective Metacrtic scores. I had no idea that Dev Hynes (the "Blood Orange" of Blood Orange) was a collaborator on Caution. Of course, I didn't even know Caution existed, so it makes sense that I wouldn't know particulars about it as well.

Since today is Thanksgiving, I will just say that I am Thankful that songs like this, and Dua Lupa's "IDGAF" are out there, ruining the lives of the employees of Andrews-McMeel Publishing.

Oh, yeah, it ain't over.



Song: "GTFO"
Artist: Mariah Carey

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Song of the Day: "Saint"

With Blood Orange's Negro Swan, Dev Hynes (who is, essentially, the band) makes it clear that he's every bit the singer/songwriter/producer/arranger/musician/artist that Sufjan Stevens, Justin Vernon, Beyoncé, or Jim James. The album's Metacritic score of 84 is solid, putting it somewhere between Mariah Carey's Caution and Ry Cooder's The Prodigal Son.

Apparently, Mariah has a solid album out... who knew?



Song: "Saint"
Artist: Blood Orange

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Gig Life

First, when you encounter the term "gig life" please read it in this voice.

Second, I was going to put a stylized version of "gig life" (did you read that in the aforementioned voice?) at the top of the post, based on the novel Push by Sapphire the typical tattoo for "thug life" but I feel like the Olde English font version is played out. I'm not a fan of the cursive version that seems to be second most pervasive. The bottom one is in a typeface called Top Secret.
And to prove that I gave this some diligence, here are some versions that I rejected.

Now if you're thinking "after all that, why didn't you put something at the top of this post," well, welcome to my world.

I confuse myself a lot.

What's my point?

Oh, right. Lately, I've been dabbling in a new gig to keep the drug money coming in: collecting scooters from around the city to charge overnight and release them early the next morning. There were at least 3 different companies involved in a pilot test with the city of Portland to determine whether or not to allow scooters to stay permanently.

I'd heard about how easy it was: an app tells you where the scooter is, just scan it, put it in your car, take it home, plug it in, then take it back out and place it at a designated spot, and earn $5 and up for each scooter. It would be a piece of cake.

A piece of really shitty cake.

Which, after I received 3 charging cords, became shitty cake AND a side of shitty ice cream, which is to say that I received a message that when I charge a scooter, I really should clean up the scooter too. When I had the first 2 scooters charging in my kitchen this didn't seem unreasonable because they were both pretty clean. Later I would become annoyed by both the condition of the scooters I was picking up, and the late in the deal nature of the request.

But it would seem like a small imposition when I was notified that while charging (and cleaning) the scooters, I should also be conducting a 7-point safety inspection on them. The inspection uses 2 different sized Allen wrenches (or hex keys), and at least one other tool that I've already forgotten. They also expected cleaning and charging, and the pay per charge did not increase.

I generally limited my pickup and release to the nearby University Park area. A couple of times I had to take scooters to the east side of I-5. Releases are supposed to happen between 4 a.m. and 7 a.m. If you don't release before 7 a.m. you risk not being paid 100% of the stated amount (recently used scooters that the company had good GPS information on and that held 35% or more of their charge were $5, but the amount went as high as $20 for a scooter that had been offline a while, and was possibly at the bottom of the river).

On my way home one afternoon I found a $5 scooter out on the sidewalk with 100% charge. It was a few blocks off a main road, and it was not in a designated pickup area for someone renting the scooter. I put it in the car and drove it to a release spot. I cleaned it (well, I claimed to have cleaned it) and, since it was at 100%, I released it at 3 in the afternoon (which, you will agree, is before 7 a.m.).

I was paid $0.

Not because the scooter wasn't clean. Not because the scooter wasn't safety checked. Not because the scooter wasn't released before 7 a.m. Not because the scooter wasn't charged to 100%.

I was paid nothing because I only had the scooter for 15 minutes and I couldn't have charged it much during that time. It's like returning a rental car full but having them ding you because, well, I don't know. This analogy isn't holding up well since I'm on the other side of the rental.

The moral of the story: fuck Bird scooters.

Oh, I didn't mention the awkwardness of wandering around residences late at night looking for scooters, often leaning against a house or in a carport, and how being white probably helped me from getting shot or having the police called on me. Nor did I mention how difficult it was to release the scooters because, while I would be at a designated spot, the app would tell me it couldn't be released until I was within 30 feet. Even when I was right fucking there. In the cold predawn morning, just trying to get my $5 per scooter (I had several that were $16, to be honest).

Which brings me to this season of South Park. I began season 22 of South Park, and season 13 of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia now that you mention it, really disliking the show.

Shows.

Whatever.

But the animation in "The Scoots" episode of South Park had a rich Grinch quality to it (which is to say it paid homage to the Grinch and was very rich/high def [but rich seems more apt]). And since Mr. Garrison is rounding up scooters to get them out of the town, this seems sufficiently on topic for me to include some images.

This is not realistic. They are heavy-ish and awkward to carry
and always bang your fucking shins. Always.


South Park redeemed itself with the 2-part "Time to Get Cereal" and "Nobody Got Cereal?" episodes. IASIP partially redeemed a weak season with Mac's interpretive dance in "Mac Finds His Pride."

I'm glad they waited for Mac to be exceedingly ripped before he came out as gay since fat gay men are, cough, totally unrealistic.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Song of the Day: "Wintertime"

When Taylor Swift won the Grammy for Album of the Year for 1989, she triumphantly celebrated herself as the first woman to win a Grammy for Album of the Year twice. And she was, if you don't count Norah Jones, who won for Come Away With Me in 2003, and who shared a Grammy with Herbie Hancock, Joni Mitchell, John Legend, Leonard Cohen, Luciana Souza, Tina Turner, and Corinne Bailey Rae for River: The Joni Letters in 2008. She won her second 2 years before Taylor won her first.

Romper pointed out Norah's wins, and also noted that Lauryn Hill won Grammys for AOTY for The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and for Santanna's Supernatural; and Allison Krauss won twice: Raising Sand, and O Brother, Where Art Thou? Hill was a producer* on Supernatural and has an AOTY Grammy for Supernatural, just like the other 12 producers, the 23 engineers, and the ~9 members of Santana.

Taylor's PR flack attempted to clarify that she was the first solo female performer to win 2, but if you look at the credits for Fearless, Colbie Caillat received an AOTY Grammy as a featured performer. So it shouldn't count for the same pedantic reason Norah's second shouldn't count.

Luckily for Taylor, Adele stepped up the very next year to do the precise thing her PR person tried to clarify Taylor into doing: 2 Album of the Year Grammys with only one female as the performer. All she had to do was beat Lemonade in one of those "why do we fucking care about the Grammys moments."

OMG what is my point?!!!! I forget. Here's a new collaboration between Norah Jones and Jeff Tweedy (who produces and plays on the track).

* Fun fact: Lauryn Hill is one of only 5 females nominated for Producer of the Year, Non-Classical in the 42 years it's been awarded; it took 15 years before the first female nominee (in 1990 Janet Jackson shared a nomination with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis), and the other 4 all happened in the 90s (Mariah Carey shared a nomination with Walter Afanasieff in 1992; Paula Cole became the first female nominated alone in 1998; and 1999 was crazy, with both Sheryl Crow and Lauryn Hill nominated individually).



Song: "Wintertime"
Artist: Norah Jones

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Song of the Day: "Didn't I"

Rod Stewart: first, he's still alive--he does 4 shows a week at Caser's Palace in Las Vegas (a high energy show, he runs through the audience and kicks soccer balls). Second, he's making new music (his "not great" country album was out in 2015 [he made my Top 50 singles for the album's best track], his 30th studio album (Blood Red Roses) was released in September, with most of the songs co-written by Stewart, and he's started work on his next album which he expects to release sometime in early 2020.

Hell, he's even got another kid on the way with his new wife, a 23 year-old model/actress from France. Just kidding, although who knows with him, his 8 kids range in age from 7 years to 55 years, and he's been married to the current wife for 11 years (that's a long time for Stewart, and also she's 47 years old, so, you know... reaching her sell by date).

I don't know who Bridget Cady is (she's one of his backup singers). If she's young enough maybe she can be his next baby mama. 



Song: "Didn't I"
Artist: Rod Stewart/Bridget Cady

Friday, November 16, 2018

Song of the Day: "Do You Need Power?"

It's nice hearing something new from Bon Iver that doesn't sound like a bunch of other Bon Iver songs. It's from the forthcoming Creed 2 soundtrack, but he performed it months ago at Bonaroo, so I'm not sure if he wrote it for the soundtrack or it's just being included.

It only really matters to me in the context of whether or not it'll be eligible for an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song (which, frankly, doesn't require the song to be written for the movie, in truth).

Anyway, hope the next album isn't 11 more songs just like this one.





Song: "Do You Need Power?"
Artist: Bon Iver

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Song of the Day: "Come Smile With Me"

Every now and then I get an email about new music that turns out to be great. But like more than great: revelatory.

Except that's probably a bit much. It's not like they invented "dream gaze" (or "shoe pop") music; they're just making fine music in that style.

Cheers to that.

The band is Sleepspent, from El Paso (in times past I might have seemed surprised by that, but pfff, any style of music can come from anywhere, there are no borders on sound). The email I got discussed how the band, via leader Austin North, deals with mental illness from a place of personal experience. I haven't listened to it closely enough to appreciate that, but I will. Crazy respects crazy (or depressed respects depressed). 



Song: "Come Smile With Me"
Artist: Sleepspent

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Song of the Day: "Locked & Loaded"

The question isn't "am I shallow enough to post a song based on the looks of one or more of the performers (or someone in the music video)" because we all know the answer to that is "duh."

No, the question is do I find one or more members of The Brevet attractive enough to motivate me to post this as a song of the day.

Or do I like the song?

Bwahahaha.




Song: "Locked & Loaded"
Artist: The Brevet

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Song of the Day: "The Big Unknown"

Sade are back ("are" because Sade is the band's name, and Sade Adu is the singer's name) with a second song that could garner an Oscar nomination (previously there was an original song they contributed to A Wrinkle in Time). This new song is from the upcoming Widows, starring Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, and Cynthia Erivo [Viola and Cynthia each lack 1 award for full EGOT--an Oscar here for Cynthia would finish her quest]).

While the song is downbeat, it is said to accompany a dramatic scene near the finale (it's similar in tone to "Skyfall" and "Writing's On The Wall"). If it does earn a nomination, it still has original songs from A Star is Born to beat, which may be tough.

Still, nice track, good to hear them again.



Song: "The Big Unknown"
Artist: Sade

Monday, November 12, 2018

Song of the Day: "Elastic Days"

When worlds collide, it's been said, they go boom.

Boom.

Dina Martina meets J Mascis in the video for "Elastic Days," the title track to J's forthcoming solo album.

It's awesome and all, but really Dina needs a much larger canvas for her personality.

Maybe J can lip sync to one of her songs next!!!! 



Song: "Elastic Days"
Artist: J Mascis

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Song of the Day: "This Train Don’t Stop There Anymore"

When I started writing about a song for today, it was going to be the title track from Rosanne Cash's She Remembers Everything, her new album. The song features vocals from Sam Phillips--one of a handful of guest performers on the 10-song collection (Colin Meloy, Elvis Costello and Kris Kristofferson are the others).

But the minute I heard her duet with Emmylou Harris from one of the 2 Elton John/Bernie Taupin tribute albums from earlier this year, I decided to change horses midstream. "This Train Don't Stop There Anymore" is from Elton's 2001 Songs From the West Coast: an album I did not know of until just now (critics hailed it as a return to his early piano-centric albums). This version is on Restoration, the tribute album focused on country* and Americana covers of John/Taupin songs (Revival has pop, rock, and R&B-styled covers).

While I don't know that Cash's husband John Leventhal produced the song, it does have hallmarks of his best work (all of which is showcased on Shawn Colvin's A Few Small Repairs). Plus I think he's worked on everything she's done since they married.

Sadly Miley Cyrus's cover of "The Bitch is Back" is not worth writing about.

* The album adheres to the current operational definition of country music: no black performers and no rapping. Otherwise it's whatever sound the performer wants to call country.



Song: "This Train Don't Stop There Anymore"
Artist: Rosanne Cash/Emmylou Harris

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Seems Like Old Times

It seems like just yesterday--when it was, in fact, 8-1/2 years ago--that the world celebrated the first Everybody Draw Mohammed Day. It commemorates the decapitation of Theo Van Gogh for heresy (and to commemorate other things too)--it's not one of those made up Hallmark holidays, like Mother's Day, Boss's Day, or Christmas.

Fast forward to today (or last week) when I discovered the whimsical fun that is Jesus & Mo, a series of satirical comic strips about 2 fictional characters with super powers.  Good times.

You know how I know no one reads my blog? Because no one ever says anything about posts like this.

Song of the Day: "Screwed"

You fucked the world up now, we'll fuck it all back down

I'm giving Janelle Monáe's Dirty Computer another listen. This track features Zoe Kravitz. I'm not sure what it is Zoe actually does. Sing?



Song: "Screwed"
Artist: Janelle Monáe/Zoe Kravitz

Friday, November 9, 2018

Song of the Day: "The Dogs Only Listen To Him"

Pitchfork is a huge help with music this week. I hadn't heard of Varsity until reading the post about today's song. They play like a cross between Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti and Camera Obscura which, if you know me, is something I would find appealing.

Which is probably why the song is here (although not always).

The real question is whether or not I will splurge $7 for a download of the album (I was hoping it was $5 or less).

Note: The band's name is sometimes stylized as VARSITY. I am not doing that because they are inconsistent with it, and if they aren't consistent with their brand identity, fuck it.



Song: "The Dogs Only Listen To Him"
Artist: Varsity

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Song of the Day: "Thank You, Next"

This is a week for "I don't need a man" empowerment songs (although, in all fairness, this is a week for "I don't need another person" empowerment songs). It's a great song and I hope I don't have to think about Pete Davidson's penis any more than I already have (Pete's penis isn't mentioned explicitly in the song, but it's a thing that was part of the gossip about their engagement and also I really don't care).

My only complaint is that amount of autotune or similar post production they've done with her voice. She's incredibly talented, but it's hard to discern that here.



Song: "Thank You, Next"
Artist: Ariana Grande

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Song of the Day: "Got My Name Changed Back"

Pistol Annies—a super group composed on Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe, and Angaleena Presley—are said to be both the female answer to Bro Country and the second coming of the Dixie Chicks. I don't think they're vapid enough to be anything with respect to Bro Country, but the Dixie Chicks analogy might work.

I have a lot of esteem for Ashley Monroe, and I like Miranda Lambert a bit, I guess. All I know about Presley is that she doesn't spell her first name correctly.

I fell in love with this paragraph from the Pitchfork review of their new album, Interstate Gospel by Mike Powell:
Listening to Interstate Gospel, I felt a reservoir of sympathy for my mother. Thrice married and thrice divorced, survivor of domestic abuse, holder of a dozen careers, well-educated but as foolish as any of us, nobody has taught me more about the transformational power of loss. And still, I have watched her laugh and watched her be happy; watched her, hours after signing the papers on her second divorce, standing at the blender with a margarita in hand telling my kid brother to tell his teachers she couldn’t help him with his homework because, in her words, “Mom got drunk.” (He did; the school called.) Stubborn, funny, occasionally regretful, and proudly proud, she soldiers on.
Here's to getting your name changed back when it's time to do that.



Song: "Got My Name Changed Back"
Artist: Pistol Annies

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Song of the Day: "Party for One"

First, we should take a moment to acknowledge that Carly Rae Jepsen is building a fantastic catalog of unabashedly dopey pop songs that I love (and also are awesome, objectively awesome).



Second, the dude from the "Call Me Maybe" video says he was uncomfortable being asked to play gay in the video. “I’m not going to kiss a guy, especially for $500.” No one's asking...

I'm guessing the offer of $500 is from a while ago. He's aged a bit since 2011 (in all fairness, we all have... fucking Trump). Oh, wait, he's a shirtless rapper now.

Anyway, kids, drugs are bad mmmkay. Don't do drugs.



Song: "Party for One"
Artist: Carly Rae Jepsen

Monday, November 5, 2018

Song of the Day: "Lost in Rasa"

It's not super surprising to find out musicians from 30 years ago are releasing something new. Hell, Culture Club and Ian Brown are 2 of my more recent songs of the day. So finding Dr. Robert (of Blow Monkeys fame, not the other, nor the other other) on my radar wasn't out of the ordinary.

What I wasn't prepared for was how exquisite this new track would be (see that Culture Club and that Ian Brown to understand why my expectations are low). It's unclear to me whether Monks Road Social is a band or just a Tuesday Night Music Club-type gathering of musicians. It's a top notch group of musicians including half of The Style Council, and folks from Ocean Colour Scene, Dexys Midnight Runners, Oasis, Madonna's band, Richard Ashcroft's post-Verve band, and more. 

And the result is sophisticated cocktail pop the likes of which we haven't heard since the last Sade.

Or Swing Out Sister.



Song: "Lost in Rasa"
Artist: Monks Road Social/Dr. Robert

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Song of the Day: "Don't Be A Lawyer"

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is approaching its series finale, so I'm glad they gave Burl Moseley this showcase. I might never have known how awesome he is.

This song milks every ounce of fun out of the New Jack Swing vibe, and I'm down with that.



Song: "Don't Be A Lawyer"
Artist: Burl Moseley

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Song of the Day: "Let Somebody Love You"

Going by the name "Boy George & Culture Club" was probably inevitable for George, but I'd rather they be "Culture Club with Helen Terry." That's a band I'd (pretend I would) pay to see.


Oh, and, side note, Boy George is not a very good Buddhist.



Song: "Let Somebody Love You"
Artist: Boy George & Culture Club

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Song of the Day: "Hands Dirty"

Female musical acts on the line-up
for a music fest, shared by Lily Allen
It's not specifically related to this song, but it crossed my path in the random flow of info as this infographic. Both were #MeToo items in the "news for ladies" section of the Washington Post (The Lily).

Doritos for Ladies, stupid; news for Millennial girls (The Lily), on fleek!!!

And that's how we end up with a mediocre song of the day.



Song: "Hands Dirty"
Artist: Delta Rae

Friday, October 26, 2018

Song of the Day: "First World Problems"

I was happy that I recognized Ian Brown's name as dude from Stone Roses. Well, I suspected that's who he was and it is. It's who he was, and to a lesser extent, who he is.

But while time has been kind to my view of Ride and Slowdive, it's done nothing for my relative indifference toward Stone Roses/Brown. This sounds like a b-side from The Farm or Happy Mondays.

Hell, it wishes it was a b-side from Happy Mondays.

See, indifference.



Song: "First World Problems"
Artist: Ian Brown

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Come In, The Bubble's Nice

Everything I need to know about the conservative bubble I learned from reading "What I Learned About Young People While Trying To Buy A Car" by Dennis Pragger published in National Review (and at his website, apparently).

First, it's in a section called "PC Culture" which, aside from a period in the mid-late and late-late aughts (when Microsoft embraced the "I'm a PC" side of the "I'm a mac/I'm a PC" ads for Apple), has never stood for anything good. PC Culture = political correctness (or possibly politically correct) culture. It means you can't use marginalizing epithets about groups of people, which is what is destroying America.

Also "culture" is just gay.

I grant that Pragger avoided the seemingly de rigueur easy digs at Starbucks or Kim Kardashian I usually find at Nattie Rev, but I think the latter might have to do with the halo effect of recent esteem for her husband now that Kanye's a loud and proud advocate for Trump, the unchallenged leader of the, cough,  conservative movement. Kim should enjoy the detente while it lasts, since I doubt 2 mercurial personalities will stay in-sync for too long.

What: Pragger's experience shopping for a new SUV to lease
Where: 5 car dealerships in an upper-middle class suburb of Los Angeles
Why: Pragger was patronizing local dealerships because he wants them "to stay in business"

Summary: this ain't no Prius we're shopping for; we're in a "good schools" kind of place so it's not like some minorities were to blame for the experience (just Millennials); and despite what we've said for decades about free market competition and letting the best company win, we're all about protecting our neighborhood's/country's businesses.

Did I mention Millennials? They're just the fucking worst! In every instance, an affable young salesperson
"In every instance, the salesperson was sweet, unenthusiastic, and largely ignorant of the car in which I was interested. 
All of them answered most of my questions — such as 'Is this SUV available in all-wheel-drive?' — with some version of 'I’ll look it up.'"
Bullshit.

Pragger goes to town on the low key salespeople who helped him: not knowledgeable, no passion, hell they don't even have hobbies, so they certainly wouldn't have aspirations. These people don't even know whether or not a vehicle comes in AWD!!! Except I'm willing to bet $100 that the salespeople weren't all Millennials; that they didn't all answer most questions with "I'll look it up" (unless they were asked a lot of questions of an esoteric nature or minutiae, like the date a vehicle finished production so a star sign could be discerned, or the storage volume in cubic centimeters of all the cup holders in the vehicle).

I don't have proof that this is bullshit, but it smells like bullshit and I am reminded that, time and again, conservatives are happy to fabricate anecdotes to suit their point of view. Sure, this is basically true for everybody, but I'm playing partisan hack here, so let's move on.

But the real target of the, um, fable, is Millennial males. These males — probably soy boys, every last one — have been coddled so much that they basically expect a trophy for showing up and they're going to want free health care and free tuition which is socialism and tyranny.

That Pragger works the phrase "toxic masculinity" into a screed that is only focused on Millennial males is probably tacit toxic masculinity in action. Men are expected to have ambition, drive, a need to be successful. Girls are expected to have... babies, I guess. They aren't really discussed.

But the best aspect of all of this is the continued lack of self-awareness that hangs participation trophies on the generation that received them, and NOT on the generation that decided to award them all the fucking time. Millennials didn't come into this world expecting participation trophies and avocado toast (which was, surprisingly, not even mentioned), the got participation trophies from parents who felt guilty about not spending time with their kids. It's weird that a Baby Boomer wouldn't even think to look at Boomer narcissism: normally they love talking about themselves.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Song of the Day: "Carried Away"


Don't act as if you weren't just wondering what Trouty Mouth was up to. Now you know, he's dropped his first name and released a song that would have been song of the summer if anyone had heard it.

But they didn't.

And here we are.



Song: "Carried Away"
Artist: Overstreet

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Song of the Day: "Come Smile With Me"

That feeling when you realize that you might actually love dreampop.



Song: "Come Smile With Me"
Artist: Sleepspent

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Song of the Day: "Woman"

You know what's weird? That Cat Power is releasing her tenth studio album and this is only the second time I've featured her music on my blog (and both times were collaborations with other musicians)?

No, that shit's pretty much normal.

It's that when I was reading her Wikipedia entry, about how Chan Marshall adopted the moniker Cat Power, I ran across the name--the very distinctive name--of one of my first friends in Georgia. He's an actor and musician.

As an actor, he's best known for a miniseries that has not yet been aired. That's weird too.



Song: "Woman"
Artist: Cat Power/Lana Del Ray

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Song of the Day: "Give A Little"

I learned of Maggie Rogers because she's going to be the musical guest on next week's SNL.

I like her.



Song: "Give A Little"
Artist; Maggie Rogers

Monday, October 15, 2018

Song of the Day: "Think I'm Still in Love With You"

If I've heard of, or heard Joyce Manor before today, I don't recall it. If you'd mentioned the name to me outside the context of the album review that prompted me to look them up, I would have assumed that was someone in the HR department at my last job.

Or the job before that.

Instead it's an indie band from Torrance, California. Fun fact: Torrance is about 35 miles from West Covina (CXG's final season begins tonight).

Joyce is often described as punk, but that can't be right. They sound pretty much on par with Foo Fighters (which I say with considerable respect).

Also this is from their fifth album. Where have I been this decade?



Song: "Think I'm Still in Love With You"
Artist: Joyce Manor

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Song of the Day: "Rings"

When I downloaded the new Pinegrove album, I was so taken by it that I made a point to recommend it to a couple of friends who I thought would dig the sound.

But I didn't think to post anything here. I must have seen something shiny.

Stupid shiny objects.

Skylight is a really good album. Check it out.



Song: "Rings"
Artist: Pinegrove

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Song of the Day: "Distracting Me"

Alex Lilly + someone's legs
Someone wrote that this song is "light but not slight." That's actually a great description for this art rock/chamber rock/post something (everything's post something) track.

In times past I might have likened her sound to St. Vincent and meant that derisively. Today I will do that with considerable respect. St. Vincent kicked ass live, and Lilly has real talent (she's currently touring as part of Beck's band, and has worked with The Bird and the Bee, along with acts I've never heard of [which doesn't mean there not any good and/or popular]).

Her solo debut 2% Milk comes out early next year. But since you're special, you can listen to the first single now.

You're welcome.



Song: "Distracting Me"
Artist: Alex Lilly

Friday, October 12, 2018

Song of the Day: "Get Out"

Apparently CHVRCHES released their third album this year. I guess I was distracted by something shiny.

Sounds like the album is solid. (Oh, like you didn't already know that...)



Song: "Get Out"
Artist: CHVRCHES

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Song of the Day: "Spinning"

The March Divide are from San Antonio, and came to my attention via some promoter that treats this blog like it's something worth sending promotional emails to.

And today, we're appreciative of that fact.

This track is totally catchy!



Song: "Spinning"
Artist: The March Divide

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Song of the Day: "Out of the Way"

Among this year\s Mercury Prize shortlist was Nadine Shah.

That is all.



Song: "Out of the Way"
Artist: Nadine Shah

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Song of the Day: "Trigger Bang"

My opinions on Lily Allen are probably not among the few fucks she might be giving these days (which is fair--I'm not super concerned with her opinions on me), but, much like Hillary Clinton, I really want her to be better. Better at what she does, better at what she represents.



Song: "Trigger Bang"
Artist: Lily Allen

Monday, October 8, 2018

Song of the Day: "What a Time to be Alive"

I came late to the Superchunk party, but I'm glad I got there.

I don't know if they're the best lens for the current fuck show, but they're certainly a good lens.



Song: "What a Time to be Alive"
Artist: Superchunk

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Song of the Day: "Desperate Man"

I'm posting this as I listen to this for the first time. I'll click "publish" before the song is over, so all bitchy commentary will be saved for end of the year stuff.



Song: "Desperate Man"
Artist: Eric Church

Friday, September 28, 2018

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Alan Ruck... in a role that will surprise you

Alan Ruck / Brett Kavanaugh
Coming this fall to, I don't know, let's say Starz, THE WORLD'S GREATEST GIRLS' BASKETBALL COACH AND CARPOOL DRIVING DAD: The Brett Kavanaugh Story.

He has daughters.

He coaches their basketball team.

He drives carpool.

He couldn't be guilty...

Song of the Day: "Holy Arp"

New music from The Crystal Method, where The Crystal Method is now a solo project (I guess they're down to just one Dust brother--not to be confused with The Dust Brothers).

And not to be confused with these DJ brothers.

By the way, Baskets is a pretty morose show--I'm loving it now.



Song: "Holy Arp"
Artist: The Chemical Brothers

Monday, September 24, 2018

Song of the Day: "Let Me Live"

It will seem like a complete non sequitur, but it's not, when I say that Macklemore is really, like, the worst. All you need to do is click this and listen to his collaboration with Rudimental from earlier this year. Commence eye rolls.

Macklemore: he makes 2014 music (which that 2018 song sounds like) bad.



Song: "Let Me Live"
Artist: Rudimental/Major Lazer/Anne-Marie/Mr Eazi

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Song of the Day: "I Love It"

Sometimes Kanye West impresses the hell out of me.

This is not one of those times.

Or this is too deep for me to get.



Song: "I Love It"
Artist: Kanye West/Lil Pump/Adele Givens

Friday, September 21, 2018

Song of the Day: "Gainesville"

We're coming up on the anniversary of Tom Petty's untimely death. Still not cool, 2017.

This is from a trove of unreleased music slated to come out in a big box set just in time for Christmas.



Song: "Gainesville"
Artist: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Song of the Day: "Heaven"

Charly Bliss ended up in my top 10 albums of 2017 with Guppy.  Whether the same girl power/power pop will hit the same end-of-year esteem remains to be seen.

It is a nice change from Drake.



Song: "Heaven"
Artist: Charly Bliss

Monday, September 17, 2018

Song of the Day: "Nothing's Ever Wrong"

I have long had a bit of a crush on Jay Mohr, probably  when I caught his arms when he was on SNL as a rocker in a sleeveless flannel shirt during one of the cold opens. So it was something of a pleasant surprise to learn that Mohr goes the full Monty in the video for Logan Lynn's "Nothing's Ever Wrong."

Best comment on what might would surely be called  a "courageous" appearance: now I know what it's like to have sex with Mr. Incredible.

I'd totally hit that.

And I know he'd totally hit this back, because what straight man wouldn't have sex with a dumpy middle-aged dude who gets winded easily? Damn right.



Song: "Nothing's Ever Wrong"
Artist: Logan Lynn

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Song of the Day: "Here I Am"

I have no idea what's up with this new duet. Presumably it's from a soundtrack and it has the hallmarks of one of those songs that gets the 4th or 5th Oscar nomination slots; the songs that no one will remember (see also: that song from Beethoven, that song from Yes, Giorgio, others). The songs that make you think "oh, hey, it's the chick from Scandal, she's an Oscar nominee now" or "Melissa Manchester, there's a name that takes me back" or "I am too young to know who Kim Carnes is."

If you know more about the soundtrack, tell me about it in the comments.



Song: "Here I Am"
Artist: Dolly Parton/Sia

A Regular Reminder


Saturday, September 15, 2018

Song of the Day: "God is a Woman"

Man of God gropes singer of "God is a Woman"
Ariana Grande has an excess of talent and charm. This is good, as it will potentially mitigate a lack of self-awareness, or even the basic common sense not to wear hot pants to a funeral.

Don't wear hot pants to a funeral, unless the deceased has made it known that hot pants are acceptable.

With one simple exception: if the deceased was a colossal asshole then wear whatever the fuck you want.

Regardless of what Grande wore to the funeral, she did not give anyone permission to grope the fuck out of her.

And girl, get you a gay BFF over 40 to help you dress for the next funeral. Unless it's Trump's, then wear whatever the fuck you want. I know what I'm wearing...




Song: "God is a Woman"
Artist: Ariana Grande

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Song of the Day: "Come Back Barack"

The 2018 Emmy for Outstanding Music & Lyrics was awarded this past weekend during the 2 night "schmemmy" presentation; the award was one of 7 for Saturday Night Live in its 43rd season.

One of 7 so far (the show has 3 of the 8 contenders for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, and 2 of the 7 for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series). Kenan Thompson is among the 7 men, his first nomination for acting, and he's among the 4 winners for "Come Back Barack," the very 90s R&B homage lamenting the loss of literacy from the oval office.

To learn more about the award winning song, read a book.



Song: "Come Back Barack"
Artist: Chance the Rapper/Kenan Thompson/Will Stephen/Eli Brueggemann

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Song of the Day: "Feels Like Summer"

The boys of summer
As summer starts to fade: the position of the sun in the sky is noticeably different these days, it's already dark at 8:30 p.m., the days are still sunny but the high temperatures are waning. In about a week Portland's 2 months of sunny, crisp autumn weather will begin (it's the best!).

All of that feeling is captured beautifully in the video for this song, the third fucking awesome single from Childish Gambino this year. 



Song: "Feels Like Summer"
Artist: Childish Gambino