Archive for February, 2008


Quasi @ Noise Pop

I don’t get out to see bands as often as I’d like but I definitely make a point of trying to see Portland based Quasi whenever they make the trip South to the Bay Area. I’m always left with the feeling that I’ve been hanging out with friends after one of their shows. No rock star attitude, just excellent music performed by genuine people. Janet Weiss (current Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks and former Sleater-Kinney beat-keeper) and Sam Coomes (who used to be in one of my favorite local bands The Donner Party as well as doing Heatmiser with Elliot Smith) have been making a very distinctive brand of pessimistic power pop for over fifteen years now. They inject a healthy dose of atonality into the indie rock formula that keeps things interesting and Sam’s catchy crooning is a perfect foil for lyrics brimming with irony and cynicism. Ms. Weiss is one the best drummers around and I’m crushing on the heft added by Jicks bass player Joanna Bolme (who is apparently a full fledged member now). Last night’s show at the Rickshaw Stop was not the smoothest show they’ve done in these parts but Sam forgetting the words to a tune or two or starting a different song than the one his band mates were charging into is part of their charm.

To give you an idea of what their live show’s all about here are a couple of tracks from the bonus live cd that came with 2003′s Hot Shit, called Live Shit (natch) :

It’s Raining
Under a Cloud

A big reason to go see more bands: the “self-released sold only at shows” CD. Taking advantage of obsessive completists like myself is a time honored tradition and Janet was up to the task, selling me a copy of Quasi Self Boot 93-95 that features sundry outtakes and singles like this nifty Prince cover:

Take Me With You

I was very impressed by the opening set (and first show ever) by peoplepeole, a new side project from Tyson Vogel (Two Gallants) featuring
Andrew Kerwin (Trainwreck Riders), Antonio Roman-Alcala (Dear Nora) and Jesse Sabin. Great noisy guitar indie rock that sounds like this: Rock Ins.

Janet Weiss will be back with Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks for a free show at Amoeba Records this Wednesday.


Mashup Monday

Finally got around to sinking my teeth into Bootie’s annual collection of the best mashups of the year. Sounds like it was a slow year for the genre compared to the previous two but there are some fine grooves here. Bootie’s regular throwdown at the DNA Lounge was recently upped to twice a month so you can rest assured these folks know what they’re doing. You get Amy Winehouse facing off with Britney Spears, Jackson 5 going against Guns N’ Roses, Wild Cherry crashing into Frankie Goes To Hollywood plus 17 more.

Two personal favorites:

Tequila Lip Gloss (Lil Mama vs. The Champs)DJ Paul V

Standing In The Way Of Connection (Gossip vs. Elastica)A plus D

Get the whole 75 minute continuous mix as a zip file here or download individual tracks plus some bonus cuts here. You can find links to the best of ’05 & ’06 compilations there as well. And don’t forget to grab the artwork here.


The Station nightclub fire 5 years later

Five years ago today fire raged through The Station nightclub in West Warwick, R.I., leaving a hundred dead and over two hundred injured. The inferno began when pyrotechnics lit by Great White’s tour manager, Daniel Biechele, ignited highly flammable soundproofing foam surrounding the nightclub’s tiny stage. The survivors and the families of those that didn’t make it out are still waiting for their lawsuit against the nightclub’s owners and dozens of other defendants, including the band and local fire marshals, to wend its way through federal court. Many remain bitter that the only people held criminally responsible were club owners Jeffrey and Michael Derderian, and Biechele, who is due to be paroled next month after serving less than half of his four-year prison sentence for pleading guilty to illegally setting off the pyrotechnics just two years ago.

On top of the physical and emotional hardships that come with burn injuries victims like Linda Fisher (above) continue to deal with mounting medical bills made even more difficult by the inability to return to normal work. A non-profit organization called The Station Family Fund was started to help survivors and the families of victims. You can donate via paypal here.

A benefit concert organized by Dee Snider is scheduled for Monday night in Providence, RI . More info here.


Can anyone loan me 3 million bucks?

This guy is the most avid record collector on the planet!? Well if his stockpile is really worth a cool 50 mill than I suppose he’s got me beat. Paul Mawhinney of Pittsburgh, PA is selling “The World’s Greatest Music Collection” on eBay right now. 3 Million Records, 300,000 CDs, over 6 million song sitles. You only have two more days to place a bid so gedonit folks. If he would promise to ship the climate controlled warehouse with it I’d be sorely tempted…
UPDATE: sold for $3,002,150.00


"What was that song you just played?"

Did my regular gig at KALX last night. Sadly it was Queen Bee‘s last show in the timeslot before mine. I’m really bummed I won’t be following her anymore. On the bright side it was nice to see Maceo Parker getting the best listener response of the evening (on his birthday no less). Also had a couple of dedications for Valentine’s Day. The most interesting had to be the Public Image track that closed out the show. I can’t decide if that was about general relationship dysfunction or just love post punk style…

Anyway, here’s the playlist:

Hero Worship – The B-52′s
Stop! You’re Hurting Me – Magic Sam
No Way Out – Clarence Reid
Money Won’t Save You – Boscoe
You Can Leave Your Hat On – Merl Saunders
Me Myself And I – Billie Holiday
Strange Fruit – Billie Holiday
Young Man Blues – The Who
Outtasite! – Chesterfield Kings
Ruby Room – Foxboro Hot Tubs
Cavalettas – Mars Volta
Hallelujah I Love Her So – Maceo Parker
The Broad Majestic Shannon – The Pogues
Is It Really Love At All – Eric Anderson
Valentine’s Day – Steve Earle
Wild Horses – Iron & Wine/Calexico
Back For Good – The Concretes
Safety Bricks – Feist w/ Kevin Drew

***Music Picked By My Kids (regular segment)***
Tear My Stillhouse Down – Gillian Welch And David Rawlings
Over Your Shoulder – Dinosaur Jr.
Y Control – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Alligator – The Grateful Dead

Omaha – Moby Grape
Reject, Reject – Pants Yell
Old Home Movies – The Botticellis
Introduction – Ryan Ferguson
Homeland Blues – American Relay
Hold Me In Your Arms – The Black Keys
Lights Out for Darker Skies – British Sea Power
Annalisa – Public Image Limited


Honeycut’s Future Funk

Honeycut has been funking up the CD player in our house with great frequency ever since their debut The Day I Turned to Glass came out on Bay Area indie hip hop label Quannum Projects (and made my Best of 2006 list). With Bart Davenport (Loved Ones, the Kinetics, Persephones Bees) on vocals, RV Salters (Femi Kuti, Lifesavas, Lateef &The Chief, DJ Mehdi, Lyrics Born, Blackalicious) playing keys and Tony Sevener tapping a souped-up drum machine they create a truly unique sound from an blend of styles as diverse as soul, funk, techno, jazz, pop, ambient, bossa nova and rock. When my nine year old wants to hear it more than Green Day you know they’re killin’ it.

I’ve been getting a little too video happy lately but this short little documentary now playing at Current TV is such a good introduction to one of my favorite local bands I had to spread the word.

Two of my favorite tracks from The Day I Turned to Glass:

Crowded Avenue
Exodus Honey

Honeycut are tearing up the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco on Friday, March 7 with Sugar & Gold (another fantastic local band) and Her Grace The Duchess.

For more songs and tour dates check out their myspace page.

Catch me on KALX in Berkeley

I host the Cuppa Joe show on KALX in Berkeley every other Wednesday from 6 to 9 PM. You can tune at 90.7 or online by clicking HERE ------------------------------------------- NEXT SHOW: October 28 FUNDRAISER SHOW!! ------------------------------------------- Check out past playlists HERE
Got something I HAVE TO HEAR? Wanna send me free stuff? Email me at


Quick note about the tunes

The mp3s on this blog are to give folks a little taste. Imagine they're those little pouches on the bag your Sunday paper comes in. You know, the one's with a packet containing just enough toothpaste to brush your teeth once or twice. They are left up for a limited time. If you find something you like support the artists by dragging your friends to their shows and/or buying their CDs/records/schwag. If you are the artist (or their label/representative) and don't want an mp3 on here, please email me ( and I'll remove it posthaste.
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