As an irony

from Buzzfeed’s fascinating profile of Ryan Adams:

“And I slept. I slept like I never had. I totally crashed in this beautiful way. I let go of all the false ideas of my late twenties and early thirties, this construct of who I was and how I thought I should be. That struggle was over.”

That sounds great!  How about this?:

In 1994 he formed Whiskeytown. As Adams would famously declare in the group’s musical manifesto “Faithless Street”: “I started this damn country band, ‘cause punk rock was too hard to sing.” Today Adams says the foundational conceit behind the band was a pose — something his more strident critics accused him of at the time. “There’s this wrong idea about me being identified with things that are Southern or country,” he notes. “I do not fucking like country music and I don’t own any of it. I watched Hee-Haw as a kid with my grandmother, I only like country music as an irony. I liked it when I would get drunk.”

As an irony.  Or this:

In the studio Adams plied [Jenny] Lewis with psychological tricks: He told her to write her own Oasis-style anthem, forced her to listen to Creed incessantly before laying down vocals. “I had been stuck in the mud for so long, I needed a person who could push me ahead. The casual, low-stakes environment for me was crucial.”

Now here is a lady.

Kate McGarrigle.

Her ex-father-in-law was Loudon Wainwright, Jr.:

Wainwright joined the staff of Life magazine and worked in a variety of positions over the years, including covering the Mercury astronauts. He and John Glenn listened to the inauguration speech of John F. Kennedy while riding in Glenn’s car in 1961.

John and Mrs. Glenn:

(from Lily Koppel’s extremely rad blog for her book for her (presumably) rad book The Astronaut Wives Club:

Buying that immediately.  Check out the postcard she has up there now.

Loudon’s son and Kate’s ex of course is Loudon III:

The old Australian Crawl.

Happy Bastille Day!

In his later years [Jean-Pierre] Houël published two illustrated treatises on elephants. Drawings of other animals suggest he was preparing to publish further zoological works; however, his death at the age of seventy-eight cut short his plans.

Wild Heart

Man.  Shoutout to MCW for putting me on to this, I’d never seen it.  She must be 33 here?

Compare to the person on the cover of the album:

“I’m telling you, a piano player and a girl — get it.”

Nicks toured for Rock a Little in 1986. The tour ended on October 10, 1986.

The tour marked a turning point in Nicks’ life. The January before the tour was to begin, a plastic surgeon warned her of severe health problems if she did not stop using cocaine. “I said, ‘What do you think about my nose?’,” she recalled on The Chris Isaak Hour in 2009. “And he said, ‘Well, I think the next time you do a hit of cocaine, you could drop dead.” At the end of the Australian tour, Nicks checked herself into the Betty Ford Center for 30 days to overcome her cocaine addiction. Recalling the strong influence of Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix on her music and life, she told a UK interviewer, “I saw how they went down, and a part of me wanted to go down with them…but then another part of me thought, I would be very sad if some 25-year-old lady rock and roll singer ten years from now said, ‘I wish Stevie Nicks would have thought about it a little more.’ That’s kind of what stopped me and made me really look at the world through clear eyes.”


Nicks has started a charity foundation entitled “Stevie Nicks’ Band of Soldiers” which is used for the benefit of wounded military personnel.

In late 2004, Nicks began visiting Army and Navy medical centers in Washington, D. C. While visiting wounded service men and women, Nicks became determined to find an object she could leave with each soldier that would raise their spirits, motivate, and give them something to look forward to each day. She eventually decided to purchase hundreds ofiPod Nanos, load them with music, artists, and playlists which she would hand select, and autograph them:

“I call it a soldiers’ iPod. It has all the crazy stuff that I listen to, and my collections I’ve been making since the ’70s for going on the road, when I’m sick…Or the couple of times in my life that I have really been down, music is what always dances me out of bed. ” – Stevie Nicks. The Arizona Republic

Nick Drake

Gee whiz the story of Nick Drake (1947-1974) is sad.

He played rugby for the C1 House team and was appointed a House Captain in his last two terms. School friends recall Drake at this time as having been confident and “quietly authoritative”, while often aloof in his manner. His father Rodney remembered, “In one of his reports [the headmaster] said that none of us seemed to know him very well. All the way through with Nick. People didn’t know him very much.”

Good song though.

You Don’t Know What It’s Like


photo 1

Some good stuff in this Rolling Stone I picked up.

photo 4




How about this, from an interview with Carlos Santana?

photo 2

I bet!

From another article, about the history of concert festivals:

photo 5


This article was sad:photo 1


photo 2

They wrote this one for Otis Redding, who died before he could record it.



Here’s a piece of advice for anyone who lives in Los Angeles: never, ever drive to Las Vegas.  Somewhere around Barstow you will realize the wisdom in this. If Fate demands you appear in Las Vegas, you gotta fly. If the marginal savings are important to you, you shouldn’t be going to Las Vegas.

(I guess maybe drive if you’re smuggling a trunkload of illegal drugs.)


When it comes to airplanes I am Team Window Seat.  You stare out at the weird American landscape for an hour?  It’s better than the best ride at Disneyland.  The best ride at California Adventure just simulates being in an airplane over California.

But of course you need a good album to listen to.

The other day I put out requests for good music on Twitter and got many wonderful and thoughtful responses.

A band that kept coming up is War On Drugs.

Had only kind of heard of these dudes.  But my memory was jogged.  I realized I went to high school with the singer of this band.  If I remember right he was a very good, decent, and funny dude.  I can’t remember if he was on the cross-country team or not; I think so?  Regardless this would be a good album to listen to on a November ride to the New England Class C Championships.

Another suggestion I got pretty into is “What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?” by The Vaccines:

One of the most passionate responses came in from New York’s Tom Ceraulo, and I turn it over to him:

Okay so Old ’97s MOST MESSED UP (my favorite album by a band I’ve been a fan of forever, going to see them tonight and I’m particularly excited to hear the new stuff), Joe Henry’s INVISIBLE HOUR (consistently terrific songwriting & spare, lived-in arrangements that let the songs breathe), and Sturgill Simpson’s METAMODERN SOUNDS IN COUNTRY MUSIC (an amazing dose of bona fide outlaw country with some genuinely exciting twists – produced by Dave Cobb, who produced Jason Isbell’s stunning SOUTHEASTERN from last year) are great, as I mentioned. Some others:
The War on Drugs – LOST IN THE DREAM (might be the best album of the year, I can’t stop listening to it)
Hamilton Leithauser – BLACK HOURS (the former frontman of the Walkmen)
Bob Mould – BEAUTY & RUIN (another loud rock album from Bob with the super talented and ever-entertaining Jon Wurster on drums)
Sharon Van Etten – ARE WE THERE (heart/gut-wrenching beauty from a Brooklyn singer-songwriter who keeps getting better)
Willie Watson – FOLK SINGER VOL. 1 (did you see the Showtime documentary on the Inside Llewyn Davis concert?  He’s the guy who did Midnight Special – produced by Dave Rawlings)
Joseph Arthur – LOU (quiet and tasteful collection of Lou Reed covers)
Lykke Li – I NEVER LEARN (a beautiful breakup record, epic in sound if not length)
Damon Albarn – EVERYDAY ROBOTS (I think people would prefer if he put out a Blur record but I quite like this)
Rosanne Cash – THE RIVER AND THE THREAD (beautiful new Rosanne songs, beautiful production by John Leventhal)
I could go on (The Hold Steady, Woods, Lake Street Dive…) but I won’t because I have to run to the show.  Oh, and if you like jazz I might have some more to give you.  Most people hate jazz though.  Or think they do.
Thanks Tom!  Incidentally Tom is quite the soft touch in terms of Twitter favoriting (54 thousand!), a testament to his generous spirit.


 (photo of Barstow from

Timeless Art?

If you haven’t watched this in awhile, I think you will find it’s still good:


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