this must be the place....goin strong , yeah baby!!!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

This woman is the first lady of france

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Monday, March 24, 2008

Let's Get This Party Started Right

SXSW Report Day One -

Awake and head to Peacock for the giant Gorilla vs. Bear showcase. Line is a mile long. Andrew and I wait it out just long enough to get our heads in the door for White Williams's first song, and then we decide to bounce to Backspin.

The showcase at the Peacock represents SXSW pretty well. Blog-curated event with a list of bands stretching across a few genres (White Williams, Ghosthustler, Holy Fuck!, Cool Kids), bands with a shit ton of hype and only a handful of actual releases. Although Peacock is one of my favorite places, the people who planned this event either:

1) Had no idea how big of a draw it would be.
2) Wanted to create a sense of exclusivity by using such a small venue.
3) Didn't really check out the venue before booking it.

This caused a mile about 100 meters long.

So after falling for this blog-trap of a day show, Andrew and I decided we'd fare better at Backspin Records. Hip-hop legend Percee P was supposed to perform followed by local DJ Bird Peterson and D.C. club producer Tittsworth. Browse browse browse, wait for Percee P to arive a half hour late...

Percee P arrived and stood at the front of Backspin Records addressing the crowd of about 12 people. He started to rattle off a list of emcees that he has worked with throughout the years. People he helped get started in the game, people who guided him, etc. He lists about half of hip-hop while simultaneously plugging his new record, produced by Madlib, a fact which he notes every two minutes for the duration of the hour or so he stands behind a pair of turntables.

Unfortunately, all he did was stand behind those turntables and trigger tracks on a portable CD player. They were the tracks from his latest album which he was trying to sell. He did not rap, but rather opted to nod his head to the album versions of his songs. It was pretty disappointing and I think everyone in the store was awkwardly surprised by this rapper's decision not to rap at all.

Tittsworth was scheduled to play next, but Bird Peterson did instead. He currently lives in Austin and his remixes have become pretty popular, selling well on Turntable Lab and generating a bunch of blog-jizz. I think they're pretty shitty. Not very creative, fun, or dance-floor motivating. So I didn't really stick around for his set.

Next I made my way to the KVRX show at Clementine. Rainbow Arabia I believe they were called, sounded great.

Then it was time to rest my foot. I got in the middle of a nasty little dispute between two cock-fighting trainers a few days earlier in Monterrey. The foot caused me to have to take a period of rest mid to late day every day of SXSW. Which probably saved me from sickness/exhaustion.

After the rest, I headed to the Presbyterian Church downtown to see Peter and the Wolf. This was one of the highlights of my week. The acoustics were revelatory and Red was joined by some special guests who happen to write for this here blog. It was a great show, the additional band members helped with song choral and auxillary percussion to give things a real Paul Simon-y vibe at points.

After this show I ate a vegetarian hot dog. Then I rode my bike to campus. Mid-way between downtown and campus I stopped at a gas station and drank a red Gatorade. It was delicious and drinking it while riding made me feel very powerful.

Once arriving at UT, I parked my bike and readied myself for an all-acoustic jamboree of sorts, organized by Todd P a dude from Brooklyn who apparently you should know about. Ethan helped him get a permit for the show so now he thinks he's a hot-shit promoter. It's cool, he probably won't read this far into the blog entry.

Harharhar okay, so the idea for this event was each band/musician plays two songs and then a new band/musician plays. No setting up time, just quick set after quick set. Things started out great, with a small band of 50 or 60 people seated and the musicians projecting their voices loudly.

Hot-shit promoter played two songs, one including a nice reference to an evening of partying a few weeks ago where I discovered a pair of scene kids fucking in the bushes behind the house. HSP also notes a subsequent trip to Whataburger in his song. The crowd eats it up.

As more people arrive, the crowd noise grows louded and in some backwards-ass response, the musicians stop projecting their voices well. The longer I was there the less I enjoyed the music and left around 2:30 or 3:00.

The midnight jamboree on campus represents a lot of what I love about SXSW. An independent promoter using his musician connections to set up an incredibly intimate show in a bizarre location. There was no corporate sponsorship, which meant no free booze/food/promo items. However, it also meant no lines, waiting, or crowd that was only viewing the event as a free chance to get fucked up. People came to the event because they wanted to hear music, plain and simple.

So that's Wednesday.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

nat baldwin myspace-blog shoutout to RR

just saw this...RR played host in one of 5 cities that gets the shoutout.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Current mood: touched

We just got back from an epic journey, and i'd like to thank all who were involved in making it possible. NYC represented at the highest level, Philly was out of control, Austin was on fire, Charlotte came outta nowhere, Grand Rapids brought the love, and Akron brought the blackout. I even bowled for the first time, while drinking bowling ball shaped budweisers, in indianapolis. Those were just some of the many highlights. We were also lucky to be one of the few vehicles to avoid going off the road during an iowa blizzard, but it still managed to delay us enough to miss our chicago show. Sorry about that, chicago, but we'll be back soon. i'd especially like to thank my teammates Will Glass, Alex Mead, Brett Deschenes, and Jeremy Leclair, for taking the time to go on the road with me. They sacrificed so much to make this happen, and really took the music to another level. i couldn't ask for a better group of musicians, or dudes. Stay tuned for more soon. THANK YOU EVERYBODY!

"Austin was on fire!" thats us baby!!!!!!! since it was our first time hosting a NB show you might even call us diaper dandies!!!

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Hillarious Red Rocket/ Rad Racket myspace message #2

in what i gather to be an ongoing series...

Mar 18, 2008 3:49 PM
Subject: Closing Ceremonies: RAD RACKET passes torch to Red Rocket-NY
Body: Greetings friends!

Some have questioned whether or not our class-action lawsuit/public brawl in Austin was in fact a true American experience, or an elaborate embellished hoax...and while, for our own sanity, we must not dwell on the antics of the past, all I can say is that those people definitely choose to employ logic and reason in their daily interactions.

In any case, we actually were approached not all that long ago by a teenage band in the Bronx called Red Rocket, who undoubtedly urged us to change our then-name of red rocket - the same that we shared we countless others spanning the globe from Australia to Ireland - because they were obviously hellbent on shattering the competition, and maximizing their future!

And while we've always defended our generic title roots, and immediately dismissed these youngsters as yet another bullshit RR hatin' on our non-bullshit ways... we couldn't help but admire that passion and youthful fire.

It reminded us of our own teenage happy days, when we were bullshit too, and we started this here band as a complete joke, and appropriately named ourselves as such:)

...So far be it from us to burst the bubble for them, or any other exuberant youths looking to giggle their way out of mediocrity! We've had all the laughs we need, and it really wasn't that funny either to tell the truth - it's kind of like giving your nephew the first season of MASH or something...

Nevertheless, we're not gonna go out of our way to change for anyone goddamnit. 2 vowels is all you get.

So many best wishes from all of us here at RAD RACKET to all the Red Rockets in he world, especially our passionate nubiles in the Bronx.

For the record, we are totally down for a participating in the idea of a conglomerate big band.. Maybe we could even set the record for the world's most mediocre supergroup, knocking off Audioslave!

See you in the prefuture, friends!

- xoxo, radracket

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Sunday, March 16, 2008

SXSW report # uno

I'm going to keep the gossip to a minimal actually, and just write about the bands, but first...the arrests!

This is a myspace bulletin from the rad dudes of Red Rocket (aka Rad Racket)

From: Danger Danger House

Date: Mar 16, 2008 6:40 PM
Subject: RAD RACKET settles out of court! DD may follow suit!
Body: So as the rest of the Danger Danger (shhh!) constituency receives word about our house band formerly known as Red Rocket (shhh!) having to legally change 2 letters to form RAD RACKET, and safely escape a Texas jail sentence... We all are considering following suit for fear of being sued by the Australian hair-band of 80's fame, Danger Danger

We're thinking of going with DOINGER DOINGER, so as to stay safely out of the lawsuit limelight, and also as reference to how said Australian band probabaly pronounces their own name.

These are just ideas right now, still up in the air...but what's definitely now finalized is RAD RACKET's coming into existence, and Red Rocket from philly being killed off by the class-action cavalry...

Apparently Myspace is the second-most official forum of public address, and the first of many small public service announcements RAD RACKET must make in order to comply with their settlement.

As a showing of loyal and unwavering support, we shall repost the bulletin:

Hey everyone!

the sxsw smorgesbord (sp?) was eye-poppingly hilarious and helluva good:) ...we engaged in some pivotal exchanges that left us arrested, temporarily incarcerated, threatened with a class-action law suit, then ultimately freed and reinvigorated

...It all started when some drunk dude on 5th and Red River started harassing us as we strutted back to the van, he rudely demanded a cel-phone and called us "dorks" .."Dorks!" ...f that.

So when I responded, all amped on free energy drink swag, he took my Roman came to get my back, I managed to intimidate the guy to return said spectacles.....but then he started f-ing with Roman, lol...eventually we were left no choice but to hurl full beercans at one another until the cops came.
Once arrested and brought downtown, they ran a check on us and alerted us to a class-action lawsuit that had been left pending and delinquent against us! Uh-oh, rotf lmao!

We thought that it had just gone away on its own, but apparently EVERY other band named Red Rocket in the world put together a class-action law suit against us concerning copyright infringement on the grounds that we were the only Red Rocket in the world that wasn't total bullshit, thus breaking the agreement established in 1988.

We were informed that we had failed to appear at 2 separate hearings last year, and are still in danger of facing fines up to $7,500!

This, coupled with disorderly public conduct misdemeanor, made for a very difficult situation in which each of us desperately wanted to figure out the fastest possible way to get out of there.
After several hours acting as our own collective lawyer, consulting unofficial legal advice from a certain friend at Stanford, we managed to arrange for an out-of-court settlement and a dismissal of said misdemeanor.

The top condition presented to ud was that we had to at the very least change 2 of the letters in our band name,"one for each hearing they ignored," as the plaintiffs' lawyer put it.

So, after a cathartic and exhilarating ordeal, the box of chocalates that is life has led us to bring to you an official disbanding of Red Rocket from west philadelphia, and an official debut show tonight in Hot Springs, AK of RAD RACKET!

Links to all the other Red Rockets will be provided later, so our supporters may solemnly condemn their childish actions!

See you all back in Philly, RAD RACKET friends! Thanks for the years of deviant support!


P.s. - Nintendo, please be kind to us!

Please feel free to send your love to RAD RACKET as they settle back and adjust after a turbulent affair. No matter what the vowels are, RAD RACKET and DOINGER DOINGER love you!

Take care, god speed.

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Skyler = Malibu from American Gladiator

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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

SXSW Day Show Thursday

Lots of good bands. A few crossovers from the Rancho shows (Fiction, Reverse X Rays) and some other great Austin acts as well as a few out of towners. Come say hello.

o t i s



The Shakem Ups


Reverse X Rays

Mittens on Strings (Chicago)

Hearts of Darknesses (NYC)

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Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Van Cliburn plays Hungarian Rhapsody no. 12

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Adventures in Youtube: George Gershwin

Ive got music:

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Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Hoppin on the Beat-a-dead-horse Bandwagon

OK, im sorry, but Brittney Spears just got dumped by this guy

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Sunday, March 2, 2008

Secret Belaire Show // TOTAL EXISTENTIAL FREAKOUT // Tour Announcement

Sometimes going ahead and grabbing a 12 pack of High Life at 12:45 when you are already mostly wasted is a good idea. I'll let history be the judge of whether or not it was last night, but actually I won't, cause fuck it!

Last night was the first Belaire show since I am guessing the CD release show with Yellow Fever. It was held at Josh Duke's old house, which I believe is the currently the house of the new drummer for Belaire, whose name I don't know yet. The scene was a veritable who's who--which is to say basically everyone in every band in Austin was there. Mad props to Justin Cox from the Austinist for his late night supply of beer (dude stashed 36 brews in the car!!! whoa! and they were all cold!!) Never let it be said that that guy doesn't know how to party, cause that would just be false. I was in a great mood, which I explained in conversation form to about 7 different groups of people, mainly on account of 1) the sandals I was wearing (first time this year) and 2) the fact that I can as of recently bike almost anywhere without being worn out at the end of my journey. Yeah, I totally explained that to like 7 groups of people.

The band sounded great. Not to toot the horn of my friend Christine (Christa's replacement who totally and eerily looks like her), but girls got some mad rock star powers/sassiness. You just like to see that. It was totally fun and the band was tight like "whaa? aint this yalls first time playing together?" Reverse X-Rays have played like 15 shows, and we are still not 1/3rd as tight as those guys.

so onto later in my evening....I biked up with Shane and Tim (aka Timmy Baltimore, aka Geronimo Dynamite aka Julio "The Killer" Vasquez) to Trillopolis (aka 46th and Duval...this is from 3rd and Atayak...luckily it was FUCKING 68 DEGREES OUTSIDE! AUSTIN TEXAS IN THE SPRING TIME BABY!!) and Tim proceeded to totally freak me out. I was sort of jawing with Shane and him on the bike up about basically trying to figure out what it means to try and be an artist and going for the gold, and Tim (dudes got an art degree) really broke it way down on so many levels so hard that I got this tight knot in my stomach and eventually had to tell him to stop. This was like an hour later. He described what I was experiencing as existential dread and apparently I'm supposed to embrace it and be fearless. Workin' on it! It was related to so many things like:

How am i supposed to figure out what to do next? (I forget Tim's answer)
Should I try and predict how my future self will think and match my current actions with those future thoughts? (Tim's answer: "its like when you look out the back of a boat and see a wake. The wake is only behind the boat, but its not pushing the boat." or something like that.)
Is it pointless to want an audience, and does a person need a reason to want an audience, or is it pure vanity? (Tim had an answer, but i forgot that one, too)
Did Basquiat really know what he was doing in regards to understanding and applying abstract expressionism at the tender age of 20, and how the fuck did he figure that out? Also, if he was elevated to his historical status randomly, doesn't that to some extent negate his artwork? (I think we ended up at an impasse on this one, or the conversation changed or something)
Do you think I should change my album title? (for the forthcoming Ethan Master of the Hawaiian Ukulele record. The working title is "So Real". Tim said I should change it, that it was over obvious, reactionary, and a cheap laugh, but I think I am going to keep it, despite the fact that we came up with a couple decent alternate titles)

So that was my TOTAL EXISTENTIAL FREAKOUT. It was hardcore. The other thing I thought I would mention is Reverse X-Rays are going to try and go on tour this summer! The tour is going to end up being between 4 and 5 weeks and when we get back from the road we are going to be total fucking beasts. At least that is the plan. I want to write out all the cities we were like "yeah! lets go there! and then on day 32 well cut back down to New Orleans, and then..." but I have it on a different computer. Anyways, I'm sure booking this tour is going to end up being somewhat of a group effort (if you're in a touring band and reading this, expect at some point a myspace message asking if you have any leads on venues/bands to play with).

so yeah, thats it for now, but pretty epic shit is going down.

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