Friday, March 26, 2010

City Zoning Exists for a Reason!

A weird business lady is trying to build a hotel RIGHT in the MIDDLE of my NEIGHBORHOOD, what the FUCK.

And they have these GROSS BEFORE-AND-AFTERS on their GROSS WEBSITE.

 But Washington State's DNR wants them to cut the proposed project in half. Thank God.

But seriously. Somebody, Save Our Neighborhood!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Bicycling Under the Influence: NOT A Crime in Washington

It's time to clear the air. Everyone hears it - you're leaving a party on a bike, and someone's gotta set their drink down and be all like, "You know you can still get a DUI on a bike, right?" Then usually some sort of goofy-ass, disguising-my-gloating-as-a-passing-joke kind of grin.

But as a long-time friend to bicyclists and bicycle transportation, I take these words as a challenge. Not a slap-someone's-face-with-a-white-glove kind of challenge. More a remembering-to-look-it-up-when-you-get-home kind of challenge.

Well, BAM! Take that! And THAT!

BiUI (not to be confused with BUI, which stands for boating under the influence, and IS a crime) is not punishable by Washington State law. The crux of the matter is whether the vehicle being operated is motorized or not. If your bicycle is not motorized, you will not get arrested.

However, the law does give police the right to take an intoxicated cyclist into custody for safety reasons. If you're zig-zagging across three lanes of traffic, running down someone's grandma, or if you thought you were riding a bike and it was really your neighbors protesting German Shepherd, an officer may transport you him/herself to your destination, take you home, or release you to a sober friend.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Colorful New Website Tracks Seattle Shows

Bad Kids Dance Good is a recently-launched database for Seattle music events. The website is young, so now is the time to sign up and claim that username you always wanted - you know, the one that Hotmail suggested you added meaningless digits to the end of.

Careful, it's got American Apparel ads and neon.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Rock is Duane Johnson. The Rock is awesome.

The Rock played a cover of a Sam Cooke song on The Tonight Show last night, with a guitar he allegedly received from Willie Nelson. The song was "You Sway Me," and T.R.'s rendition of it was particularly not-moving, so I decided to make this post into a fleeting tribute to The OLD Rock.

Old Rock! Old Rock! Old Rock!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Starfucker Tour Dates Released

I'm actually not sure what to call this band right now, because the transition to their new name, PYRAMIDDD, seems to have halted. Or, at least, the title of their Myspace has changed from STARFUCKER//PYRAMIDDD back to just STARFUCKER.

They announced the winning name last October, about five weeks after announcing the re-naming contest to their fans - having a name like Starfucker is okay if you're on the Weeds soundtrack, or commercials for Target and IBM, but it sucks if you're trying to book national tours with other big-name bands. Sellouts? I kinda don't think so.

Starfucker founder Josh Hodges, in an interview with Portland's Local Cut:

"I’ve been poor my entire life. I’ve done every shitty job that you can imagine. I’ve been a security guard, I’ve parked cars, I’ve waited tables, I’ve bussed tables, I’ve sold coffee, I’ve painted houses. I’ve done seriously everything that sucks that you can do. So this isn’t work, it’s not fucking work, and it pays me. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do."

And in an interview with Cary Clarke of the Portland Mercury,

"We're changing our name because it just doesn't make sense anymore. We never thought Starfucker would make it as far as it has, and never had any expectations of success. At this point we need to be able to either put more into the music, or just stop doing it so we can get 9-5 jobs to pay our rent. Right now we're in this bardo where we don't quite make a living off music but we put so much energy into it that we can't put any time in a real job either. We just need to get serious about one or the other. The name has been a problem for us in a lot of ways. We've missed out on opening slots with bands we really like, and we hope to tour Europe soon where there is already a Starfucker. Someone booked us once thinking we were the European Starfucker. The list goes on and on..."

"Band names are usually stupid in the beginning, bus as you grown with a band and its music, the name grows with it too, so it doesn't matter how stupid it is as long as the music can carry it. In our case however, the name is holding us back, which should never be the way it is. Having to put a name on your music or art is necessary, but shouldn't be the focal point. The music or art should speak for itself."

This sounds like something I can support getting behind. This isn't a story about some mega record label and its evil emissaries poisoning the authenticity of a once-sincere group of pop-sensation puppets. Instead, at least for now, it's a group of musicians who want the freedom to do what they like (and are really good at), full time, without having to sell coffee on the side, or paint houses, or bus tables.

And the reason I'm digging this all up months after the name change is because if (IF!) the band ends up transitioning back to their original title, I'd hate to see them get shit for it. They are really nice guys. Trust me.

Oh, and here are the tour dates.

May 10 2010 8:00P
neumos // ALL AGES seattle, Washington
May 12 2010 6:30P
mississippi studios // early ALL AGES portland, Oregon
May 12 2010 9:30P
mississippi studios 21+ portland, Oregon
May 14 2010 8:00P
rickshaw stop // ALL AGES san francisco, California
May 15 2010 8:00P
homestead bowling // ALL AGES san jose, California
May 17 2010 8:00P
echo ALL AGES / FREE los angeles, California
May 18 2010 9:00P
beauty bar / 21+ las vegas, Nevada
May 20 2010 6:30P
kilby court // early ALL AGES salt lake city, Utah
May 20 2010 9:30P
urban lounge 21+ salt lake city, Utah
May 21 2010 8:00P
neurolux 21+ boise, Idaho

And some videos.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Mark Linkous Shoots Himself in the Chest, Dies

After becoming visibly upset over a text message conversation at a friend's house in Nashville, TN over the weekend, he retreated upstairs for some time before leaving the house through the backdoor, sitting down in the alley behind the house, taking aim at his heart with his own rifle, and pulling the trigger. Police responded to the 911 call at 1:20pm and Mark Linkous was pronounced dead at the scene.

His work with DangerMouse director David Lynch in the multimedia project Dark Night of the Soul is still scheduled for release.

"... Mark wrote and played some beautiful music, and we're lucky to have it."
-Colin Greenwood, bassist for Radiohead

"We are thankful for his time with us and will hold him forever in our hearts. May his journey be peaceful, happy and free. There's a heaven and there's a star for you." -Statement released from Linkous's family by Linkous's manager Shelby Meade

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Great Waves Wins 2010 SoundOff! Final

Don't get me wrong. They played a tight set.

But better than Seacats, with their super-endearing and kick-ass kid-rock?

And the impressively skilled guitar-drums duo, Candysound?


Friday, March 5, 2010

2010 SoundOff! Finals March 6th

Here's the line-up:

"...drum and guitar duo that, true to their name, play crunchy and sweet melodic pop." -The Stranger

"A well-oiled machine." - The Seattle Times

Great Waves
"In five songs, Great Waves entertain, enchant, and exalt...Blue Blood is a beautiful homage to bluegrass, country and folk traditions, topped off with bracing vocals. It's a promising start." - QRO Magazine, on Great Waves's latest release

Hooves and Beak
"an impressive one-woman show starring Whitney Flinn and her harp; she has a coy but funny stage presence and a sound comparable to Joanna Newsom." - The Stranger

"Wild-card band Seacats definitely have a shot at winning the finals—their bright, bouncy pop songs ("We Don't Sleep" is especially Rentals-esque) will get lodged in your head for days." - The Stranger

This is going to be a great show. I won't say who I'm rooting for not out of fairness, but because I honestly don't even know.

More helpful links:

SoundOff! Official Website

Seattle Times Article

Words from Gene Stout

The Stranger Article

Monday, March 1, 2010

All-Ages Movement Project Totally Gets $50,000

Everyone! This is amazing! If you don't believe me, see for yourself!

This is the kind of momentous occasion that makes me proud to be a human just because I'm in the same SPECIES as the people who brought this organization about. Wow. Seriously.

Congratulations, All-Ages Movement Project!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Big Kitty

Seriously fun band. Catchy, simplistic, twangin', wailin, fiddlin', duo from Chattanooga. I suggest the song "Backward Knees," though it's kind of a hundred times better at a show where you've got a bunch of teenagers doh-see-dohin', foot-stompin', and yeehawin' all over the place. Here's a video I found on their YouTube channel of a show they played at a church in Santa Cruz two weeks ago.

Have an awesome tour, Big Kitty!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Port Townshend

Playing a show at The Boiler Room tonight in Port Townsend, WA with the band Big Kitty.

Did you know that when Port Townsend was founded by George Vancouver in 1792, it was originally called "Port Townshend?" And when it was officially settled in 1851, it was nicknamed the "City of Dreams", because of the early speculation that it would become the largest city on the west coast? The people of Port Townsend's dreams were dashed however, when Tacoma became the western terminus of the North Pacific Railroad in the 1870s. Population declined, and PT was left at the kid's table, with less economic resources and growth than the expanding cities on the south and east Puget Sound.


It's 2010 in Port Townsend, post-1920s production of a stinky paper mill outside of town, and post-1970 and '80s retiree renaissance. The population is at least 8,334. People come here every summer for a huge jazz festival.

And the all-ages space here kicks ass.

The Boiler Room is run by a bunch of youth volunteers who live in Port Townsend. It's super organized, full of art supplies and resources for young artists, and it has a really nice bathroom. You can tell right when you walk in that this place is for serious, because there's always a bunch of kids here. They hang out, practice piano, arrange huge collages on the wall, and/or hang snowflakes from the ceiling.

It's kids DOing stuff! So come to Port Townsend and discover The Boiler Room. And don't go to the stinky part of town.


If you're reading this before February 28th, don't forget to vote for All-Ages Movement Project to receive a $50,000 grant!!

All-Ages Movement Project, or AMP (catchy, right?), provides valuable learning material and networking opportunities for venues and organizers across the country. It's so marvelous and inspiring, I can scarcely do it justice in my own words. So here's what you can do:
  • First, VOTE!
  • Join the AMP Facebook group.
  • Tell all your friends to join by inviting them to join the group.
  • Go to a show! Start a band! Volunteer to make some posters! Support your local all-ages music venue or art space however you can!