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

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

tuffin' up 2k9 tour diary part 3: East Coast in brief

but first....

check out some hottt spiked punch pics here. This was taken from a practice we did on Will's roof. Will is Dann's best friend from the semester he spent abroad in Italy, and is hereby bestowed Ultimate Spiked Punch Bro status.


Let me just say what we did in brief over the past week or whatever. We ate at a burger place called "Surf Burger" and i got my brother an overpriced T-shirt because it was incredibly awesome. We hung out in Tallahassee a couple days, and played The Engine Room which was the other half of "Castlemania" (same bar, basically, but Castlemania is the DIY lookin space with no A/C and cool overhead lights and The Engine Room is the cavernous more bar like room). There was a hardcore show that night and they wanted the other room so we switched, which honestly I wish we wouldn't have for our set. That one was our toughest to play, because the stage was far away from the people and there were lights in our eyes so we couldn't even see them. We played a very short set. The room was so dark I couldn't even find my ukulele even though Dann told me exactly where it was. We were gonna stay in Tallahassee for 2 days, so it was lucky we met some chicks, cause we were gonna go swimming the next day with them at some Sinkholes, but then unlucky when we got rained out. They came to meet us at this (pretty cool) coffee shop where we hung out for 2 days basically, but we went on a break to see Harry Potter, which we idiotically payed $9.50 for instead of saying we were going to a different movie for $4.00 and just going in to see Harry Potter, and it turned out the show was to be the last we saw of them. At the coffee shop later that night a giant tour victory did occur when I beat this Rasta man at Chess. Dann lost his match to this other Rastaman inside, but he says he had the guy the whole game and just blew it with a bad move towards the end. My game was sort of a boa constrictor type thing. The guy I was playing was definitely better than me (making victory all the more sweet) but I had the fortune of being white and kept him having to respond to my moves on a queen pawn game for basically the whole thing, working small advantages from the early game (a doubled pawn for him, controlling the middle for me) into eventually sealing the deal. Dann also downloaded a huge harddrive worth of music off our host and ultimate bro Stone.

Next we went to see The Dirty Projectors and Atlas Sound play at The Earl in Atlanta. They were both awesome and that club is amazing. Great sound. Atlas Sound covered "What Goes On" by The Velvet Underground successfully which I'm not sure I've ever seen done before. That guy can play guitar, he's got some good tricks. Dirty Projectors killed it, playing their whole new album and about 4 old ones in the middle.

Next was Athens GA. Our show there went great. We had to unload a bunch of gear to make room for Eddy, but we managed to do that. I wish we had some pictures, but we really decked out the space with confetti and beach balls and blow up fish and crabs etc. It was a great beach party. We've been suffering some attrition on the blow up animal front, but I hope they are spread around the country reminding people of the good night they had that one time when Spiked Punch came to town. There was a great potluck, and later that night a pretty solid jammm session.

Chapel Hill was next, we played Joebog a house where RXR played last year (then called Philbog). Things got a little crazy, with one dude in the audience constantly putting a plastic bag over other peoples heads. This night was pretty lost in revelry. Some dudes pet rat had died and there was a viking funeral for it in the backyard, as well as fire spinning. We closed the night by playing some wasted Dynasty Warriors 4, which should be hilarious to anyone familiar with the game.

Richmond VA was next. It was this girl Allison's 25th birthday. She plays in the band Hot Lava, and the show that night was us, some singer songwriters, and 3 members of Hot Lava at a coffee shop. First there was an awesome and quite hospitable pizza party consisting of Pabst and Papa John's, an ultimate combo where I come from. Her place was on Monument street, which meant there were a bunch of Monuments to Confederate hero's such as Stonewall Jackson, Robert E Lee, and also tennis player/humanitarian Arthur Ashe. You could tell how important the people were because the more important ones had less text. Arthur Ashe had like 3 paragraphs explaining who he was, Stonewall Jackson just said "Stonewall Jackson" and Robert E Lee simply said "Lee." That night got pretty rowdy as well, but in a pretty wholesome Pabst and Papa John's kinda way, as it turned out. The next day we went down to the river with our new friend Elizabeth. The river was fucking sick ass shit, you had to jump from rock to rock like Frogger to get out there, and then in the middle there was this really great current. We set up shop on the most badass rock of all, and downstream of it there was a pool where we could hang out with no current when we felt like it and it got pretty deep. Sick shit all around.

That night we played The Black Cat in Washington DC which was probably the nicest place we play this tour. My cousin Ben set it up and it was great to see him and also my cousin Chava. They treated us real nice at The Black Cat, $10 food allowance and 3 pitchers of beer for the band. We played with Spoonboy, a solo guy who I thought was pretty good. We hung out with the fam that night, and the next day hit up the National Mall and Natural History Museum. DC freaks me out, it is so like 1984 big brother government type shit for me. That's what I was thinking about in forthcoming pictures. The Natural History Museum was cool though. Dinosaur skeletons!! Except they were all casts, I wanted to see the real thing, but i guess they cant do that, the fuckers. There was an awesome Rastafarian exhibit though, with an hour long video primer we sat through, and I liked all the early man stuff.

That night we went to Lancaster PA where we played an awesome attic show. There was some sweet hanging out, and my bathing suit was used like a stripper g-string for dollar bills. Everyone got pretty drunk I am pretty sure, and we had a conversation with this one dude about this magical bill he saw in Philly with The Flaming Lips, Cake, and Ween. Wish I coulda been there!

Philly was great. We played the Danger Danger Gallery, one of my favorite spots. That place is much improved, like Home Improvement style since last year. Now they have a badass backyard, greenroom, improved stage, and cool murals in the downstairs. We have a couple pictures to get posted later. We hung out after the show with this cool band called Everything Now! and had a bit of a pass the guitar / apple seshh in the green room that night. It ended in hugs. The bassist had a badass moustache and after singing a song at one point said "I write alot of songs about people doing their thing." It was cool. The main singer has a great gravelly voice as well.

Now that all brings us to NYC. We have been here a number of days at this point and are on a mix of tour and vacation. The first couple nights we stayed at Will's and have since then been at Tina's up by Columbia. I guess I'll write about NYC later, Dann's friend Jenny just got here and I think we are gonna do some stuff

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tuffin' up 2k9 tour diary 2: DIY Market Research

Hey I started this in Athens, and got bored writing it so i never finished, but here you go. I'll fill in some gaps real quick. There are a bunch of good pictures that will get posted later, but I dont have the camera around right now.

good morning, blogger maniacs! I am writing you from the depths of The Secret Squirrel, here in gorgeous, Georgeous Athens, Georgia. Georgia is a beautiful state in the summertime and I imagine otherwise, verdant and lush. As we switched highways outside Atlanta, we passed a number of large growths of very tall, narrow trees, covered entirely in dark green vines with thick leaves. The way the trees bent it formed these crazy liquidy shapes. It was beautiful and I wish we could have gotten off a snapshot. But to back up...

After spending the night in the mansion in New Orleans, our next stop was Pensacola. There may be other spots, but the place to play in Pensacola is Sluggo's. Sluggo's is has a classic anarchist feel and seems to have a stranglehold on Pensacola's vegan cafe/bar/venue market. I would attribute this in part to the delicious half pound burritos on their menu for 2 dollars (!), as well as a community feel, as Dann noticed the unclosed tabs sitting behind the bar as much as 2 weeks old. I guess its a safe bet that these regulars would be in at some point to close their tabs out. From conversations overhead, the Sluggo's dudes listen to everyone's band who sends them a myspace message asking for a gig, and they do not like dealing with booking agents. If you would like to play Sluggo's, its as easy as writing and finding a local band to play with you. Fortuitously, the date we needed was open, and we were able to finally confirm the show on only 2 weeks notice. Also, although I think the music was running off a computer behind the bar, they also had a very interesting jukebox, about equal parts punk, college rock, and jukebox standards, with like 3 John Coltrane records stuck in there. We got there rather early in the day and hung out reading, drawing colored pencil show fliers, and taking stupid pictures.

Finally the show arrived. There were just 2 bands on the bill, us and "You Win Instantly!". We played first so YWI's friends would have to stick around and we would actually get to play for some people (maybe like 9 people counting the band). The space was perfect for all our props, and we blew up about 4 beach balls and laid streamers across the floor. Pensacola was our first show without a stand in drummer, but the bar let us borrow some duct tape which we used to patch up Monkey's holes, so we were in reality a 3 piece once more. I think Monkey is getting a Jesus complex, becuse the holes were in his hands! Also we used the duct tape to write "SPIKED PUNCH" on our tremendous sized Texas flag which we began hanging up behind us at shows now that we were a solid 2 states out.

You Win Instantly! turned out to be fucking awesome. Tonight they were in an experimental pop 3 piece arrangement. One guy brought in his desktop (!) and was running Ableton off it, while the other 2 had a variety of synths and smaller toys and percussion working. It was improvised. The first half of the set we sort of sat down, but at some point Dann started shaking a tambourine and then the room (the 6 of us) really came to life into an interactive bizarro conceptual beach party. Beach balls were flying, tambourines shaking, the music was great and the whole thing felt very natural. Afterwards we ended up going back to one of the audience members house for a jam session where there were as many people as at the show. Things got really intense, with some posivibe rapping going on. The next day we hit the beautiful Pensacola beach.

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Monday, July 27, 2009


Carlos Kleiber rehearsing Johann Strauss II's Die Fledermaus

Herbert von Karajan teaching:

Sergiu Celibidache rehearsing Beethoven's 9th:

Sergiu Celibidache rehearsing/performing Mozart's Requiem (this is also interesting in how slooooooooooow the tempo):

Wilhelm Furtwangler rehearsing Brahm's 4th:

Claudio Abbado's first rehearsal with the Berliner Philharmoniker (Mahler's 1st symphony, movement III - he would only be at the helm for a few years before succombing to cancer treatments). Notice Frere Jacques in a minor... :

Bernstein rehearsal Shostakovich's 5th (particularly wonderful):

I love you all

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

al paso de cumbia!!!

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Winging It - Day 3: New Orleans

It's blog-hour here in New Orleans, so I won't delay giving you the straight story.

Ethan and I are currently sitting at a coffee shop in New Orleans, a little ways from Bourbon Street. Our brother-in-arms Eddie had to drop out of the first leg of tour at the last minute, so we're rolling in style as a compact two-piece reggae roadshow.

In addition to losing Eddie, the unofficial fourth member of the touring line-up has dropped out as well. Monkey, our three-foot tall inflatable monkey, has a hole somewhere in one of his seams. We intend to patch him up in Tallahassee. This task is considered a higher priority than finding replacement strings for the electric guitar.

But in the face of adversity, Spiked Punch does not hide our face. New Orleans brought the party last night. The Allways Lounge, our host, was a quaint one-room bar with a burlesque theatre-vibe. Drawn red velvet curtains hid the entirety of our tour-supplies. Which for the record is a ton of shit. How we're gonna fit Eddie in this car is a mystery to me but I digress. Here's the nights highlight reel-

We opened up the show by littering the bar, The Allways Lounge, with leis and inflatable beach volleyballs. The drummer from local blues band Toast Beards sat in and we powered through a relatively tight set considering this was only our second show without Eddie. Ethan hopped on the house piano for "The Part I Like".

I DJed a bit in between bands, playing some soul, funk, and of course reggae. There were cheers for the reggae music which made us feel right at home (praise Jah). Someone started playing "Shimmy Shimmy Ya" on a piano at one point and I cued up the acapella and everyone sang along. Never underestimate the power of canonized hip-hop.

Our gracious host Lauren aka Never Ever played a great set of acoustic folk songs and invited us to stay at her parents' mansion. Toast Beards played a roaring set of rock n' roll and blues. People were generally going nuts on the dance floor, but Ethan and I were the only people to take advantage of the stripper pole located adjacent to the stage. This was my first experience "on the pole" and let me tell you, it is a ton of fun. The pole rotates with you as you spin, so with a little bit of a running start you can make four or five rotations round that pole easily.

We accidentally invited the whole bar to go swimming at our host Lauren's house. From now on we've gotta remember that not everyone's pool is like Alex's pool where everyone is welcome. Turns out Lauren's house was an old-fashioned New Orleans mansion. We met her father, a legendary New Orleans DJ from the 70's, then quickly made our way to the pool. We had a great swim, then hit the sack listening to Sergent Pepper on Lauren's record player.

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Tuffin Up 2k9 tour diary 1

Shit yall, me and Sauceypoo are on the road, reporting from Cafe Envie just a couple blocks off Bourbon street in wonderful, culturally significant New Orleans, Louisiana. We play Pensacola tonight, but are waiting out a few hours here while we wait for Mr. Quintron and Miss Pussycat's bar to open (a man on the street said that would happen between 2 and 4 today. We fortuitously stumbled upon it on our way into the French Quarter, I think we would have missed the place had it not been for missing a turn, but its actually just right of I-10. The outside was full of cool shit and we took the opportunity to snap some photos, including a faux preside-ation at the tiki bar.

Last night we played with 2 great acts, one being Lauren who set up the show and played as Never Ever. She is moving to Santa Fe to do movie stuff and regrettably does not have any recordings, but we are gonna try and get her to Austin at some point, it was really great. She has a gorgeous voice. The other was a blues cover band called Toastbeards who (in part because the singer was tall and bald, but mostly because they rocked) reminded me of Those Peabodys. Their drummer Chase sat in for our set and it made a world of difference. Hope to get them to Austin too, it was super fun, everyone danced. Hey sorry to Austin hipsters, but you are not the hippest of the hip, you gotta loosen up and just have a good time, these New Orleans folks got you beat so bad!! Jeff sat in on drums in Bryan, which also was super fun. The show there was a poetry slam and Spiked Punch were designated "celebrity judges". I went ahead full throttle maximum participation and read "youve got to have some adventure in your life" as a poem. The MC was by far the best slam poet there.

Lauren (Never Ever):

Our car is completely stuffed full of shit, which would be the status quo and not a problem, except once we hit Richmond VA we are gonna have to fit a 3rd band member in the car. We have so many props. Our 15 dollar inflatable monkey already has a tiny hole in him somewhere that we need to find and tape up. We had bought a bunch of leis and figured out the thing to do it to spread them around whatever venue we are at and let people pick them up and put them on at their own volition and then pick up whatever remains at the end of the night. The beach balls, which we had intended to screenprint and sell, which will never happen, also turned out to be a good buy. Last night there were times where 4 were flying in the air at the same time. It was nuts. I broke a guitar string at the Austin show and neglected to bring an extra set at all, so the last couple shows have been on acoustic guitar. That will stop at some point, but who knows when honestly. Maybe Quintron's got some strings we could have...

more later...!!!

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Archibald Adams Remix

My friend Jeremy Roye asked me to remix one of his songs. I tried to keep it pretty close to the original, accentuating the parts I liked. You can find his music here under the moniker Archibald Adams. He's having a CD release party at Scoot Inn on July 31st.

Ringolevio (Dan Gentile Remix)


In other news, Spiked Punch leaves for tour in a few hours. I'll be back August 3rd. I'll say what's up to the rest of America for you.

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Friday, July 10, 2009

eyeplug sievert noggin at moose, june 2009

EYEPLUG SIEVERT NOGGIN from EYEPLUG / tall reed on Vimeo.

mltng yr fckn mind son

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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Stevie's Tribue to Michael Jackson

I watched the whole 3 hour memorial. Serious chills when Stevie broke into They Won't Go When I Go. I've included the lyrics, they're pretty appropriate for the occasion.

No more lying friends
Wanting tragic ends
Though they do pretend
They won't go when I go
All those bleeding hearts
With sorrows to impart
Were right here from the start
And they won't go when I go
And I'll go where I've longed
To go so long
Away from tears
Gone from painful cries
Away from saddened eyes
Along with him I'll bide
Because they won't go when I go
Big men feeling small
Weak ones standing tall
I will watch them fall
They won't go when I go
And I'll go where I've longed
To go so long
Away from tears
Unclean minds mislead the pure
The innocent will leave for sure
For them there is a resting place
People sinning just for fun
They will never see the sun
For they can never show their faces
There ain't no room for the hopeless sinner
Who will take more than he will give
He ain't hardly gonna give
The greed of man will be
Far away from me
And my soul will be free
They won't go when I go
Since my soul conceived
All that I believe
The kingdom I will see
'Cause they won't go when I go
When I go
Where I'll go
No one can keep me
From my destiny.

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Another reason to hate the government of California

the city of Los Angeles is asking for donations from its citizens to pay for all the cops around the MJ memorial service. Cost was estimated at $2-4 million dollars. There were 11,000 ticketed people in attendance, another 10,000 outside, and THREE THOUSAND COPS. A cop for every 7 people. Wow that was necessary. Let this saga fucking die....

On a lighter note, Prince Rama is playing at Beerland tonight, like in 3 and a half hours. See you there!

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Thursday, July 2, 2009

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