Archive for September, 2008

Now I’m In Bad Trouble

Posted in music, writing with tags , , , on September 29, 2008 by darcyarts

Continuum’s “33 1/3” books? Okay, I’d heard about them vaguely. I’ve run into references here and there while reading through Amazon reviews of other books. I may have even picked on up sometime in the book store and flipped through it dismissively. But last night something happened.  I think I turned a corner and now may be hooked.

Each book is an intensive look at a particular album, it’s times and process. Each is written by a different person, some are musicians, some are writers some aren’t. Some employ a bit of fiction, not to pull the wool over your eyes but as a function of their narrative, like John Niven’s “Music From Big Pink,” and some lean more toward an academic style. You never know what you’re going to get which makes choosing sort of a gamble but one that is comparable to the thrift-store thrill.

Since each is unique it will be impossible for me to reject the whole series based on any one book. I can always read opinion/reviews on Amazon and blogs but in the end it’s all subjective. The reader goes in with certain expectations, certain prejudices.

Here is a blog dedicated to the 33 1/3 series. Mojo has a message board about 33 1/3 books.

One reader review faulted the writer of the Led Zeppelin Four essay for delving too heavily into the mystical/occult but geez, that was the territory Mr. Page was exploring.

I’ll try to be open to each book and expect only that I learn something. Yes, I expect I will occasionally be annoyed, disappointed, confused even, but it still seems an exciting prospect to read this series.

I have ordered “Music From Big Pink”, “Trout Mask Replica” and “Exile on Main Street.” Once I begin to read them, which I hope to do in October, I’ll form my own opinions and let you know.

The real trouble is that there are at least a dozen that I could easily read — Love’s Forever Changes, Bowie’s Low, Velvet Underground with Nico, MC 5’s Kick Out the Jams, Pixies’ Doolittle, Beastie Boys’ Pauls Boutique, Dusty Springfield Dusty in Memphis, Elvis Costello’s Armed Forces, James Brown Live at the Apollo, Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Ladyland, P.J. Harvey’s Rid of Me and Jeff Buckley’s Grace.

There is one on Richard and Linda Thompson’s “Shoot Out the Lights!” They also have works from Celine Dion to Slayer! Belle and Sebastian, Joy Division, U2, Wire, A Tribe Called Quest, The Smiths, Minutemen and oh, yeah, Dylan.

There’s a wealth of tomes on some of your favorite albums. Led Zeppelin 4, Black Sabbath Master of Reality (written by John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats), Lucinda Williams, Patti Smith, Horses on and on and on. They are fairly affordable. Amazon sells most for just under $9. I almost bought David Bowie’s “Low” but it will have to wait until next time. I expect to be disappointed with the “Low” book because I know, regardless of how many words are dedicated to covering Eno’s role, there will not be enough Eno to suit me.

Now and in the fabulous future one never needs to wonder what reasonably priced gift to choose for me. I’ll be accepting cheap used copies of any and all 33 1/3 books. I’m no perfection-expecting elitist.

PopMatters and Pitch Fork both have quite a few reviews of various 33 1/3 books. There are at least 50 of them.

Here is the 33 1/3 wiki.

An accidental discovery for you bloggy Bob lovers: BobDylanEncyclopedia.

Sweet World

Posted in Art, dreams, etsy, socialization with tags , , , , on September 28, 2008 by darcyarts

Sunday morning here in America.

I woke early and turned on NPR. Listened to Liane Hanson do Weekend Edition. Not too exciting this morning.

In fact it was kind of depressing.

There was a story about an elderly woman nearly tricked into losing the home she had lived in for 20 years. The crooked real estate people nearly auctioned it off. They told her to hang on to the money she had raised instead of depositing it. Then they sold her home behind her back. Luckily she got a lawyer through AARP. Still, the best they could do is find her a reverse mortgage. that means she can stay in the house until she dies and then it belongs to someone else.

But here on Hamilton Street everything has been fine and fancy. The weather was beautiful this summer. Only the fires mucked things up. When the air cleared it was beautiful. The veggies are growing. The bugs are buggin’.

We’ve had homemade  pie, nachos with homegrown peppers, eggplant and rainbow carrots, big fat chickens in the pot and plenty of calls from the kids.

I still have a job and though it often appears that things are winding down there instead of transitioning to a new level I’m ready for the end.

I’ve checked into the rules about taking my retirement funds and looked at California’s laws on unemployment insurance for part-timers, you know, just in case, but I’m ready to roll with the punches and I feel good.

I bought an exercycle last week and rode it five miles first thing this morning. At least that’s what the display meter said. I think it’s a little off. It seemed to go so quickly.

I’m mailing off my grape starlight brooch to a gal in Georgia !

I’ve been making more of these and will post them soon on Etsy.

Check back for a preview in the next few days.

Another story on NPR this morning was about the increased economic hardship for Native Americans traveling to Pow Wows.It has become more difficult because of the increased cost of gas, lodging and the falling sales for crafters who sometimes sell at the gatherings.

Things have slowed down just a bit on Etsy but it’s still a community rich in appreciation, ideas and skill.

I saw the cutest print today. I wanted to buy it right away but I spent $ yesterday on books — Victor Bockris’ updated tome on Keith Richards and Dr. Brian Weiss’ book on soul mates.

MissBrigette is a native Santa Barbaran who attended Cal Arts and now lives in LA.

Isn’t this great? All her other stuff is cool, too. You should check her out on Etsy.

She has a unique style and I like her color palette.

Among my favorite items from other sellers is a really sweet crocheted baby hat. This knittinmama definately has an unfair advantage.

Look at that face!

Here is an Etsy seller AnnieDesign from Ireland.

These are such sweet things and they are hand made by real live people. If we have to choose very carefully from now on where to spend our few extra bucks, as if you hadn’t thought of this before, lets support each other, hand to hand, like back in the day.

Carved Blocks

Posted in Art, music with tags , , on September 27, 2008 by darcyarts

I did a carved block of Lou Reed Thursday. I really love doing this work.

This is the final print proof. I didn’t do much alteration except for shaving a bit off the neck shadow section.

The hardest part is to take my time and make sure I’ve got ink everywhere it should be when I make the print. I must remember to throughly press out every inch of the surface of the paper. I do not have a brayer. I used a ruler on Lou.

I’m really pleased with how the lips and eyes turned out.

They are much better than the eyes in the block I did a couple of days before.

Here is my busty woman with a sweet ‘fro. All my ‘fro women are made in the image of the sublime Pam Greer.

She looks a little bit crazy or startled.

I’ve had those days.

I think, doing Lou, I learned something about how to cut the eyes.

 I took a little trip yesterday to the local computer store and found confirmation of what I had suspected. I only need one of the cords plugged into my big printer to make it work.

I’m using the regular USB plug without the fire wire plug and it operates just fine. I’m back in business.

Yesterday was a very productive day. Moon freshly in Virgo, I did a bit of grocery shopping, replaced the old thumb lock on the back door. It required a bit of creative sawing, spacer placement and the always thrilling use of my electric drill. I got to wind a lot of screws in and out. Fun. Don’t hold it against me because I’m easily amused. I’ve always been this way.

I got right down to making a pie when I got home with the groceries. I had seen a picture of a beautiful, fresh, mixed fruit pie the other day. Simple and well put together. You could see the pieces of fruit laying in the golden crust. I wanted to try it.

I cut the fruit and let it cook a little. I worked on the lock and Frank and I took turns stirring the compote. I’d do so following momentary lock-fixing set backs. 

Here is the result of my latest experiment.

It’s made of Gala apples and sweet dried cherries. I cooked them a bit with brown sugar, a little butter, some water and carmel, then into the crust to bake for half an hour.

When I finished securing the new lock I had a warm piece with a cup of freshly brewed Italian roast coffee.

After the pie and coffee, enjoyed in my own little kitchen cafe, I tackled the printer problem. What a thrill to get it hooked up and to find that it could print just as well hooked up to Windows 2000 as it did hooked up to Windows XP.

I giddily printed two pictures of Keith Richards onto iron-on transfer paper and made two new T-shirts. For a time I was unable to wear T-shirts with images on them. It felt corny.

Of course if I can choose the image that’s a different story.

 

I wear them for my own pleasure, and being olderly, I no longer care what others think about my attire.

That’s why the weird wear what they wear. It’s about pleasing and amusing oneself.

This is young Keith with a beautiful guitar. While I was watching the interviews on youtube, those I posted earlier in the week I was reminded what a sexy bitch Keith is. It’s that look in his eyes that gets me and probably the Virgo and Scorpio that gives depth to his Saggitarian Sun.

Do the Strand

Posted in film with tags , , on September 25, 2008 by darcyarts

When I have lived in cities, real cities with abundant cultural outlets,  one of my favorite things was to go to the revival house and see a great old movie.

When I lived in San Francisco in 1978 we would go down to Market Street to see movies at the Strand. They had a full schedule of double bills. Every old Hollywood classic, too cool to be lost in it’s own time.

The monthly calendars were great. I’d browse through the pairs of flicks and pick my favorites. I’d plan to see the things I’d some how missed as a child. I’d spent hours and hours in my youth watching local LA TV stations which perhaps because of their proximity to “Hollywood” had access to tons of classic films. It was my early cultural education.  I later studied the history of film at college. I probably would have never gone to college if I hadn’t had that glimpse of another world in early Hollywood cinema.

I loved Jimmy Cagney, and Gary Cooper, Bette Davis and Joan Leslie.

“Angels with Dirty Faces” slayed me. I loved Bobby Jordan.

I saw many the musicals from the 30’s — I grew to appreciate Fred Astaire for his fluid grace.

I loved the couture, the full flowing dresses that sparkled and shimmered and lit up that black and white film. You could almost feel the rich textures of the materials used for gowns and suits and smart little skirt and blouse sets.

Then there was the head gear. All the men wore hats and many of the ladies.

William Powell was no dancer but he was so smooth and could instill a sense of calm.

 

The women’s shoes were perfection with those cute chubby heels. And where do you think we came up with platforms?

 

 

 

Spike heels are ridiculous. You may call them sexy. They just seem silly to me.

 It was at The Strand that I first “The Gang’s All Here.”

Busby Berkeley and Carmen Miranda. This must be the dance number that first ellicited the phrase “over the top.”

It make’s great use of fruit as a decorative item. Do not stop watching this video until after the 5:00 point.

You know that banana picking chicks dressed just like that. Don’t you love the big yellow bows?

The audience at the Strand was quite hip and these old films, the musicals, the great Hollywood Diva fare like “Mildred Pierce” and “All About Eve” had such great subtexts, wink wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean?

Once There Was, Mr. Richards

Posted in Art, music, socialization with tags , , on September 23, 2008 by darcyarts

Up this morning to add video to the Gram Parsons post. Check the post below this one fro a real heart-melting vision.

I love seeing Gram with the Burritos. What a sweet child and one that I couldn’t stand to see destroy himself in front of my eyes, but some boys do, no matter how much you love them.

We’ve all got painful lessons to learn and this is the place to play it out in the flesh.

Here’s another tasty and incorrigible one deep in the midst. It’s from back in the day:

Addendum:

Here is Keith singing from the heart at a Gram Parsons Tribute not long ago:

Keith is Keith. He’s the ultimate “fool killer” say the wise.

Here is an Amazon excerpt from Victor Bockris’ Keith book.

Hot Burrito number 1

Posted in dreams, music with tags , , on September 22, 2008 by darcyarts

This is the 35th anniversary of the sad and lonely death of Gram Parsons.

Check out the LA WEEKLY for the tribute show that went down in Joshua Tree.

Trailer for Fallen Angel:

Morning Dew

Posted in esoterica, nature, socialization with tags , , , , on September 21, 2008 by darcyarts

Another photo session in the container garden this morning revealed amazing things.

This is a young Japanese eggplant. The purple sheath  has little fuzzy stars all over it.

It’s kind of reminiscent of chicken skin with little the remnant of feather roots embedded in the pores.

Up close it looks like a prickly cactus.

There are micro stars in many things.

The ‘regular’ eggplant that I had thought was not producing is just taking it’s time. I did my vegetable shopping late, probably June, and I hopewe dont’ get an early winter though it feels like we might.

Here is the first eggplant produced by the late bloomer. I though blossoms became vegetables. I guess that is not always the case.

Isn’t this just beautiful. I can see why fairies may have entered the minds of early gardeners.

I was thinking the other day, and this may strike some as a wild thought, that it is probable that back in time, when we were closer to nature, some of us were capable of intuiting information about the nature of a plant. I guess I mean we could intuit what the plant could do for us medicinally.

Yes, people have died from eating things that are poisonous but I believe there is a subtle communication between the spirits of all types of entities. Most of us have just lost the power to engage in that dialogue.


An Early Girl tomato just waiting to be plucked.

That word makes me think of Shakespeare. He was naughty and probably a Taurus.

If there is some force guiding the minds of men and women do we turn our collective attention toward things that we will need for our future?

Here is the first cucumber. It’s getting bigger. There will be others on this same vine.

A Japanese eggplant hanging outside it’s container environment.

We will be eating alot of eggplant soon. They are pretty tasty. I cooked the first two in August.

I have two in the house and these can go anytime. They don’t get very big.

Purple and green are a good combo. The cinnamon basil acutally tastes more like licorice basil. We have a freaking giant load of basil.

I need to get on some pesto.

Tarragon with it’s nice yellow blossoms sits next to the squash that is also a very late bloomer.

Haven’t seen a veggie bud yet.

I love the green on the Chili leaves. It’s wonderful. These chilis, at least when I’ve picked them — at a bright orange stage — are delicious and so attractive on nachos.

They are mild and have an interesting tang.

Stay tuned for these babies when the orange up.

I can make a unique transition form vegetable to art project.

I began making these “starlight” brooches months ago and had lots of fun doing so.

Here is my first with orange “fairy” lights and yellow split peas. I added the thin curled wire which comes in lovely shades

As a sort of tendril. This is the brown wire.

It is used in beading and I get mine at the Beadman on Athens.

I’m planning on making a new batch of brooches and may put some in the Shasta Arts Council Holiday sale.

Then I can make lovely tags for them too.

Here is my

collection of wire, so far. they come in various gauges.

See that curled piece that looks like a giant pencil shaving? It’s a metal shaving I found near the railroad tracks.

I used to walk there at a time when the only art materials I could afford were thinks I found. I loved the rusty color.

Unfortunately, I picked up much more than I could use and most of it was heavy. I eventually learned to take only the small pieces.