Category Archives: Guest + Greetings Pods

quick audio hits for other podcasters to say “hello”, offer solidarity and share my stories with new audiences

The Smugglers ‘at Japan’ pod-idio book (+ audio cameo, train mayhem & storytime foreshadowing)

Gist: My occasional co-conspirator, CBC dude and fellow mixed-media storymaker Grant Lawrence is reading his stellar book “Dirty Windshields – the best and worst of the Smuggler’s Tour Diaries” as a rock n roll enhanced *pod-idio book* (which is a dude who spends a lot of time stuck in bed, is a format i totally dig).

Grant and I at a CBC open house, *yeeeeears ago”

I spread the word about recent segment which chronicles their misadventures in Japan in the chapter called “Sushi and Squats” or is it called “Lost in Japan” or “Bishy Bishy”…? I’m so confused

Ears On!
Listen via Grant’s “Super Feed”: Dirty Windshields – Ch 34 – Diode City &/or Apple Pod

In the subsequent episode,

“More tales from highways & alleys of Japan ~ mayhem and good times with @GrantLawrence & @ItsTheSmugglers / still getting lost but because of a lousy tour manager driver but fun with Supersnazz makes up for it / plus a special hello for “ole pal Dave Olson, from Vancouver, living in Japan”

https://twitter.com/uncleweed/status/1703288235567571019
Dig even more goodness: Dirty Windshields – Ch 35 – Bishy Bishy! (Apple pod)

and no, i am not the Canadian Dave who got lost in the previous story

And about all the Japan oddities:

It’s so hilarious!

The whole slipper routine is still a constant source of confusion for newcomers to Japan. And even folks have been around a while, will accidentally wear the toilet slippers out into the “other room” or heaven forbid wear any kind of slippers into tatami room. #shock!

{Important to note that if your feet are bigger than I like size 5, you can really only jam two or three toes into the slippers and you waddle around like a penguin.}

And the mistaken word for that ‘bowel conundrum’ does have a pleasant rhyming repetitive feel but it’s definitely a different word.

Aside: Now that Japan’s borders opened up for several months, (they were hard closed) for several years, a barrage of “legacy” western artists are back on the tour circuit from Bob Dylan to Sting to Jackson Browne to Howard Jones (yup)… All finding great receptive audiences despite almost no promotion that I ever see.

And like you talked about in the Tokyo show when the audiences are singing along to every word, there ain’t no fans like Japanese fans which is why so many bands record their live albums here.

Also noticed Wilco are coming but only playing two shows… I’m no promoter but it seems like the cost of the logistics of flying across the vast Pacific to play only two shows in a country with three times the population of Canada and a highly efficient transportation networks and super eager audiences and loads of venues is a bit wrongheaded but what do I know… I’m just a guy who folds laundry and writes postcards in a minor provincial capital that no one’s heard of (but has a great jazz, reggae, etc. music scene).

PS thanks for the kind name check in the last episode. Makes my virtual friends in Japan think I’m somehow relevant ????

Long and stumbling Road:

The book spends lots of time in Vancouver of course but also another one of my “hometowns” of Olympia Washington (especially for the international Pop underground event in 1991) as well as European tours (which reminds me of my time tagging along with the Bad Yodelers in Germany).

As such, pals on both sides of the Pacific (and maybe some across Indian and Atlantic oceans) will dug it big time. Hooray!

Bonus Riff from Uno Port:

I wrote about reading this Dirty Windshields book, and some of the memories associated with his adventures, with Nardwuar, Beez and others, while on a trip to Uno Port en route to Naoshima art island (which has a dossier of its own coming, also eventually).

Coffee and dirty windshields, appropriately about to catch a ferry

Also: there is apparently a DIY documentary called “The Smugglers at Japan” floating around on VHS… trying to get my mitts on a copy – which might require buying a VHS deck at (splendidly named used goods store chain) Hard Off, but I need to get one anyway… (I’ve got projects, you know)

Usual digression, this time from a train:

Grant and I both rolled on the now-semi-legendary “Tracks on Tracks” trip – am indie rock Festival Express of sorts on Via Rail from Vancouver to Toronto with “whistle-stop shows (which like the original Festival Express, all went “horribly wrong but just right” somehow.).

Not the Rosie part but the Matinee part and of course there’s Grant but there’s also me tucked in there

During the trip in a late night dining car sign-a-long, my pals from The Matinée pulled out “Rosie” – probably the closest The Smugglers ever had to a hit I’m not sure – and encouraged Grant to sing… When he said, “but I don’t remember the words” they even had a lyric sheet ready for him.

My “story board” from the tracks on track train trip

There is always a reunion tour: the events on the train possibly subsequently kind of sparked a resurgence of the band in part and anyway Grant who was on a roll with his stories from desolation sound book and another one about his life in hockey, then rocked out this great dirty windshield and then did ‘reunion shows’.

“Lonely end of the rink” on a bookshelf made from an old canoe on a tiny island near Bali Indonesia

First at a Lookout Records (tip: read Larry Livermore’s “how to ruin a record label” book) event in Berkeley, another at Amigos in Saskatoon (coincidentally where I was born), and an event – which doubled as a book release party iirc – at the Commodore Ballroom with Chixdiggit and The Muffs (might’ve been their very last show, RIP, Kim).

I was there, groggy from just arriving from Nepal or Sri Lanka, or Istanbul or something. Anyway, click the things above and dig the stories and the garage rock and “colorful” to say the least characters met along the way.

Coming, Eventually:

So funny figuring out how we were constantly crossing paths around the world but slightly different years… I was in Japan in the early 90s but by the time you were there on tour, I was in Guam then Olympia (where I became the Internet provider guy for K records, Kill Rockstars, Subpop, Ladyfest, yo-yo a go go, Sunnyside music fest, Capitol theater, Tropicana > Metropolis, east side club, and well… Every other music going on

We crisscrossed CBGB’s (which was past its prime and I spent most of my time at Wetlands with emerging “jam bands” in 1989), later in Europe where I was a “roadie” (freeloader who didn’t do anything) for the Bad Yodelers on a similar circuit as you all – plus seeing Gwar and staying at punk rock squats extolling stories of DOA, No Means No, SNFU who were all legends in Germany.

When you were in Olympia for the international Pop underground, i split two weeks before (after getting sent to attend evergreen college which turns out got put on hold for a decade or so) & had split for Jerry Garcia and Grateful Dead show in California – but earlier that same year I was watching Beat Happening in Salt Lake City (as well as Nirvana opening for Dinosaur Jr at a converted church) – maybe was that the same run of shows you promoted the Nirvana show with Screaming Trees etc.?

Even back in the 80s in Vancouver, ‘you can cross one river/inlet but crossing two is quite literally ‘a transit bridge too far” – so I was also sneaking in to Commodore and Town Pump (never could get into the Buddha) but reveling in the all ages shows at the York theater / so many!… but getting up to the SeyLynn hall for shows was a literal transit impossibility from Whalley (though I saw Fugazi around that same time you were promoting them but in Washington DC – on a meandering road trip in yup, a VW bus, which took me from Harvard to Sun studios and all points in between).

Anyway, I made a long rambling video that kind of talks about these weird connections pulling out all kinds of artifacts, handbills, records, ephemera in a freeform stream of consciousness riff and maybe I’ll eventually edit it and put it out into the world cause the connections are kinda hilarious.

We were however, in the same gymnasium at those Mudhoney shows at UBC but strangely I have no recollection of the Smugglers (definitely my fault, not yours I was probably in the parking lot having a safety break).

This is just a long way of saying “I’m really enjoying the podcast, (especially as I am laid out with that “popular public health conundrum plague”) and seems like lots of my pals in Japan are getting a good kick out of it too”.

Rock on etc

Me, elsewhere
Addendum:

Lit-ish Artifacts: from Writers Read Their early Sht pod w/ J. Emde

biographical notes (very important items to note)

In November 2022 I was very pleased to be a very lousy guest on the very gracious Jason Emde’s podcast (broadcast in Gifu rock city) in which writers share their “early, unripe… etc. etc.” work along with Jason’s curious questions, amusing banter and general graciousness.

Note: i riffed about Jason’s most excellent book in a Beat Sushi video dispatch “Curiously Punctuated” and we enjoy a prolific mostly-postcard-but-sometimes-passport correspondence.

very un-reliable account of King Tut’s life. this is not science (yet i won the ribbon)

We spoke for something like four hours which is a world record for me of late, yes I was a little spun out and it’s not my finest moment *but* gave me an opportunity to dig deep into the archive to find things from my legit early days. Of course about an hour makes it into the finished program but my goodness, is it a lot of action in an hour. Leaping wildly from topic to form, location to era, anecdote to musing. A bit rant-y sure so hold on to yer cap.

In this case I pulled items from: fourth grade King Tut mimeographed hand out from my (award winning :-)) science fair project at Prince Charles Elementary; newspaper editorials and chapbooks at the Orem (UT) high school; early stories at Utah Valley community college; and, the beginning of the *disgruntled with the literary establishment years* at University of Utah years.

(one of several fusillades fired in the Orem High School newspaper (under different surname), this one about student teachers from BYU

Yes there are many digressions, rapid speaking, a few shots fired, salvos really, a bit of sweetness and a bit of tenderness as I figured out who I thought I might be when I was already completely myself.

Find it all at:

Writers Read Their Early Sh*t S2/E5 – Dave Olson (aka Uncle Weed): priorities & bad decisions

my “notes to self” for assembling the materials

Blurb:

Jason welcomes under-qualified window-washer Dave Olson & his fantastic beard & beautiful hands for a natter about punching or hugging Dostoevsky, see-through loincloths, meeting REM, borrowing mustard from Allen Ginsberg, dodgy Greyhound stations, working out the writing life math, and how cheerleaders are people too.

There’s ropey Egyptian history, a savage polemic, the details of hippy teacher Mr Boris’s new motorized home, a few bits & Brother Bobs of Dave’s early poetry & prose, & Jason getting his Tutankhamun timeline wrong by only 3700 years. An unnerving—if not terrifying—time is guaranteed for all.

Check out Dave’s creative life archive at https://daveostory.com—much to enjoy there. Music by the outrageous DJ Max in Tokyo.

Join the early sh*t chat at https://www.facebook.com/WRTESpodcast & on Instagram @writersreadtheirearlyshit. You can also send an email to WritersReadTheirEarlyShit (at sign) gmail.com. Many thanks, wherever & whoever & however you are, for listening. 

“Early Sht” writer riffs with J. Emde, MFA on WRTES pod

Have i encouraged you to listen to be recap my glory days from 1979-1989ish in “Writers Read Their Early Sh*t S2/E5 – Dave Olson (aka Uncle Weed): priorities & bad decisions“? Would very much enjoy your ears for a session.

Blurb:

Jason welcomes under-qualified window-washer Dave Olson & his fantastic beard & beautiful hands for a natter about punching or hugging Dostoevsky, see-through loincloths, meeting REM, borrowing mustard from Allen Ginsberg, dodgy Greyhound stations, working out the writing life math, and how cheerleaders are people too. There's ropey Egyptian history, a savage polemic, the details of hippy teacher Mr Boris's new motorized home, a few bits & Brother Bobs of Dave's early poetry & prose, & Jason getting his King Tut timeline wrong by only 3700 years. An unnerving—if not terrifying—time is guaranteed for all. Music by the outrageous DJ Max in Tokyo. Many thanks, wherever & whoever & however you are, for listening.
https://wrtes.buzzsprout.com/1773639/10812191-s2-e5-dave-olson-aka-uncle-weed-priorities-bad-decisions

Art below by Bob Olson featuring Mr. Borys’s bus (possibly fictional) from Harold Bishop Elementary in the heady 1970s.

PS more about Jason Emde at this Beat Sushi video

PPS more should be said about this wonderful conversation and yes, I have scans of more of the artifacts {and about Jason & my correspondence} so pardon brevity, I’m in a fog

(Another) Promo for Max Freakout’s Psychonautica show from Uncle Weed and The Dopefiend

Continuing on with promos for Max Freakout’s Psychonautica podcast on the Dopefiend.co.uk podcast conglomerate, here’s one with Uncle Weed and the Dopefiend pushing the goods to the people recorded at the Dope Den in South East London in June 2007.

Of course you are subscribed to his show (along with the rest of Dopefiend.co.uk‘s offering) but for my own benefit (and Max’s), here’s the clip.

Uncleweed and Doepfiend Promo for Max Freakout’s Psychonautica (.mp3, :14, >500K)

Promo for Max Freakout’s Psychonautica on Dopefiend.co.uk

Joints in Camden Town

My endless quest continues with me tidying up my massive stash of audio files before they ferment into too-heady a’ brew. This leads me today to a promo file for Max Freakout – a wise and adventurous chap living in Camden, the counter-culture conscience of London. From his flat – and environs around – earnest Max dispenses his knowledge of headtrips and philosophy alike for the eager multitudes tripping out to the Psychonautica podcast (with help from KMO in Arkansas) on the Dopefiend.co.uk podcast conglomerate.

Uncleweed Promo for Ma

You should just subscribe to his show (along with the rest on Dopefiend.co.uk) but for my own benefit, the clip is here.

Message about Japan to the Scarborough Dude – Dick n’ Janes podcast

Message to the Scarborough Dude (.mp3, 6:25, 6.1MB)

If you don’t listen the Scarborough Dude’s podcast dicksnjanes [A rambling kinda talk about life and all that comes with it, held together with an unusual variety of great music…] you are missing out. He is a (decidedly) middle-aged rambler who lets his true emotions all hang out in loquacious hour long shows chronicling his innermost thoughts as we toils in business, travels far and wide, deals with co-workers, kids and colleagues and life in Canada. His political observations are astute and his social meanderings insightful. Not hard-hitting and full of ‘explosions’ but more like a hour being a sympathetic bartender to a patron with his heart on sleeve.

Anyhow, recently the Dude went to Japan on business and recorded well … just about everything. Listening to his rambles brought back a heap of memories so i fired him up while waiting for the Seabus a couple of weeks ago. He’s back from the far west now and a friend is filling in his shows (he’s always threatening to quit podcasting for whatever reason) but be sure tune in for a unfiltered view of middle-aged angst and joy from a classic Canadian.

My message offer flashbacks while wandering around Vancouver, waiting for the Seabus (toking a bowl) and listening to the Dude’s poignant discourse – topics include my experience as a enokitake farmer in Tottori-ken, New Year’s Eve eating mekon oranges around fire barrels and drinking under cherry trees and buckwheat hull pillows.

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