Tag Archives: music

rock, grass and jazz and most any tunage home-grown

Subpop HQ: photo, sticker, poster wall collage / Seattle, 2010

Who can you name? Mark Arm, front and centre + Dean H, thanks eh / Subpop, 2010

Yeah i know the pics aren’t great but just to document my trip to Subpop HQ, Seattle (of course)… in March 2010 – I was in the city for a conference, gig, start-up internet-y meeting or some thing, I remember eating some Hawaiian/Japanese hybrid at an izakaya and a few other activities but importantly, visiting Subpop.

The photo strip booth was broken now but so many notable humans capture in instant b&w goodness

Note: This was the third company I had SubPop (OlyWa, Zhonka, Hootsuite) as a customer and received a warm familiar welcome and buncha questions about social marketing for bands/labels strategy. Felt useful.

all the sticker! i cover doors and suitcase and laptops with stickers and enjoy a satisfying collage / Subpop, 2010

Carrying on anyway,… i had visited the old HQ years ago (with Banghi and scored a Sebadoh “Zippo” and other treats) but this time got the full tour, especially loved the walls various photo strip booth and instant-photo collages – So many faces from bands I know and appreciate over decades, I’ll present it in a style that’s right out of my playbook.

Plus various walls of silk screen posters (silkscreening done on site), walls of stickers (yeah my style!), bunch of other neat stuff like original invoice for the Nirvana 7″, original loser ads, the framed “Wood Records” for bands it sold fewer than a gold record, some of the gold/platinum records are displayed in the toilet, and, at-the-time-just-recently framed and hung properly B&W Charles Peterson (who rocks the instagram like whoa) classic photos.

Posters, handbills, promo sheets – much of which done right on premises, love the DIY goodness / Subpop, 2010

I left with a box of CDs, bunch of posters and other ephemera, most importantly it Mudhoney double signed by fcking legend Mark Arm of Mudhoney who works as a shipping warehouse wrangler (and to whom I asked a stupid question about his other band Monkeywrench) PS thanks Dean.

More posters including Iron and Wine and Flight of the Conchords, not who you first think of right? / Subpop, 2010
Mudhoney (my fave) + shade of The Constantines, Sleater-Kinney, couple more i dig / Subpop, 2010

Digression: Remember back when Subpop was a column in the fine alt/news-weekly “The Rocket” (thanks Marty) and Olympia/ Evergreen was sort of where Poneman/Pavitt started it up, and most of the bands first came through, a lot more to say about this but you probably know already… (see also: Go With the Flow).

PS yeah or nay on the part 2?

Once the photo strip booth konked out, they switched it up to Polaroid and markers, dig it / Subpop, 2010

Concerts: assorted, annotated, alphabetized

 ticket stub diary a gift from Mikala, Backstage Rider (its in the archive somewhere, i assume)

Notes (yes i overthink things):

  • resisted urge to list how many times (or at least “once, a few, several, loads), and places, approx years and what not
  • also have satchels full of tickets stubs one of these days will surface (update: added a few handy ones)
  • considered making multiple list vaguely by genre and this is exercise in futility
  • filed alphabetized by first name (decided after consideration about how to file artist+band, i.e.: “Jerry Garcia Band” or “Booker T and MGs” – just too confusing otherwise
  • so many more especially when considering festivals like SxSW, Rifflandia and WOMAD in which saw untold dozens of bands
  • of course hundreds more bands in bars and un-ticketed shows
  • and the 6 band bills in early 80s Vancouver punk rock (some are listed)
  • and sneaking into shows at Park West in Utah
  • added the bands from the Tracks on Tracks trip
  • this is just “something” not everything, tried to stick to ticketed show and just what came up in a single brainstorm… that is until i add more :)

Allman Brothers Band, AOT, Afghan Whigs, Arctic Monkeys, America, Adaline, Acoustica

Buffalo Tom, Bachman Turner Overdrive, Billy Bragg, Bob Dylan, Bear Mountain, Black Uhuru, The Black Angels, Booker T and the MGs, Black Francis, Blues Traveller, Broken Social Scene, Barenaked Ladies, Built to Spill, Belle Game, Black Flag, Blue Rodeo, Bad Yodellers, Burton Cummings, The (English) Beat, Bill of Rights, Bela Fleck and Flecktones, Bosephus King, Beat Happening, Bad Brains, Ben Harper, Big Mountain, Beck, Boom Booms, Barney Bentall

The Clash, The Cramps, Camper Van Beethoven, Chainsaw Running, Carolyn Mark, Chief, Colin James, Current Swell, Chixdigit, Cage The Elephant

David Bowie, Dead Kennedys, David Byrne, Dinosaur Jr. DOA, Death Sentence, Dave Matthews Band, David Grisman, The Dead, Dan Mangan, Donkey Show, Doobie Brothers, David Lindley, Debbie Harry, The Darts (US), Drive by Truckers, Daisy Chain, Dehli to Dublin, Don’t Mean Maybe, Dharma Bums (NYC), Dharma Bums (Portland), Dirty Birds, Devo, Deadmau5, Death, Dustin Bentall

Elvis Costello, Edie Brickell and New Bohemians, Ed Hall, Eek a Mouse

fIREHOSE, Flaming Lips, Flat Duo Jets, 54-40, Frank Black and Catholics, Furthur, Fred Penner, Frequency db, Fugazi, Fishbone (plus Angelo solo poetry reading) 

Grateful Dead, Guadalcanal Diary, Green Day , Grape of Wrath, Guess Who, Gwar, Goo Goo Dolls, Geoff Berner, The Golden Dawn, Galactic, Gordon Lightfoot, Gov’t Mule, Garbage, Galactic, GD/BC

Hot Spit Dancers, Hanson Brothers, House of Commons, Hey Ocean, Hot Tuna, Hot Hot Heat, Henry Rollins (spoken)

I, Braineater, Irie Heights, ICU/IQU, Indigo Girls

Jerry Garcia Band, J.F.A., Jesus and Mary Chain, Jack Johnson, Jimmy Buffett, Jackson Browne, Jeremy Fisher, Jeremy Wilson, Jim Byrnes, Jill Barber

Kiss, Kool and the Gang, Kathryn Calder

Link Wray, Los Campesinos, Levon Helm, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lava Hay, Los Lobos, Little Feat, Loverboy, Liam Finn, Lenny Kravitz

Mudhoney, Mike Watt (with Secondmen, Pair of Pliers,  Missingmen etc), The Melvins (including with Leif Garrett), The Matinee, Mae Maes, Macklemore, Michael Shrieve (workshop), moe., Misfits, Mother Mother, Mojo Nixon, Matt Mays, Matthew Sweet, The Muffs, Michael Hedges, Metric

Nirvana, Neil Young (various bands), No Means No (including with Jello Biafra), New Pornographers, Neville Brothers, NRBQ, Numbskulz

Oingo Boingo, Oka, Oysterhead

Pixies, Pursuit of Happiness,  Peter Gabriel, Pearl Jam, Phil and Phriends, The Police, Phish, Portage and Main, Petty Booka, Posies, Pointer Sisters

Queensryche

Replacement, R.E.M., Ramones, Robyn Hitchcock, Robert Hunter, Rusted Root, Ry Cooder, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rita Marley/I-threes, Reggie Watts, Rich Hope, Richard Thompson

Soul Asylum, Sonic Youth, Social Distortion, Steel Pulse, The Stills, Sebadoh, Santana, Steve Miller Band, Sidney York, Shred Kelly, Swim Herschel Swim, Spot, Sarah McLachlan, String Cheese Incident, Suicidal Tendencies, Slack Tide Currents, Skid Row, Said the Whale, The Smithereens, Shad, The Samples, The Spores, Spin Doctors, Silversun Pickups, Sarah Harmer, Susan Tedeschi, Stu Allen

Tragically Hip, Third World, Throwing Muses, Tom Tom Club, Tegan and Sara, Te’vaka, Topless GayLove Techno Party, Trees, TSOL, Ted Nugent (yes really), Trey Anastasio Band (soundcheck set), Taj Mahal, Tokyo Police Club, Tankhog

U {nothing, yet}

Vampire Weekend, Violent Femmes, Van Morrison

Wilco (with and w/o Billy Bragg), Wall of Voodoo, The Who, Widespread Panic, The Wailers, Weezer

X

Young Fresh Fellows, Yellowman

Zolas, Ziggy Marley

Diary: Opera Day with Kimono and Seijinshiki + Piano Recital

Heading to opera today / Ryoko is purple kimono with silver obi & orange sandals. Stunnnning. Also complicated (it ain’t just “putting on a robe” – its a whole process choosing the right one for the occasion and then whoa putting it all on is an art (which is kinda the point).

Anyhow, furthermore, today is national holiday to celebrate and welcome crop of 20 years olds to adulthood with all sorts of dress-up ceremonies & events. [Read about Seijinshiki}

Should be real colourful in the city / we’re riding bus, i’m having a warm bevvie.

Note: to be clear, this wasn’t a full opera production but rather a variety of songs by a troupe (is that the right word?) or a company of singers doing various ensembles, bits, songs, snippets from opera. I have the program and would share notes but hey… it’d just be a tease right.

Let’s meet some of the singers:

Here’s Ryoko and I with Matsumoto-sensei who was singer & MC – sharp and graceful gent

Continue reading Diary: Opera Day with Kimono and Seijinshiki + Piano Recital

Diary: New Year’s Holiday “Kojo Piano Club” Friends Music Party

Ren-san, Dave and Hamazaki-san at Kojo Piano Club party
having laffs with my pals Ren-san – Left (master of Piano Bar) who played some John Cage-ish piano composition, and Hama-san who served as MC and due to his recent birthday, received a groovy hat gift from Ryoko and me

Note: In the day’s between / around New Year’s – there are plenty of activities… today’s activities include hanged up the New Year’s decoration, drinking all the coffee to try to wake up & thwart headache, then going to an afternoon friends party/talent show where we will be singing a duet with Ryoko on piano.

Our selection is a modified (taking out the sort of dodgy creepy lyrics) version of “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered” with an arrangement vaguely based on this lovely scene in TV programme “The Crown” season 1. 

Do not expect video documentation of our performance though we diligently practiced and made a special vocal arrangement with some trade offs and whatnot. 

However, I will present some insta-photos as evidence and to provide a bit of flavour of the 5th annual Kojo Piano Club (there was even a theme song) party / event in which all the friends (many of whom, perform or learn together) perform music in various ensembles, plus usual eating, drinking and frivolity. 

Continue reading Diary: New Year’s Holiday “Kojo Piano Club” Friends Music Party

Mae Maes – Ryoko’s band at Mukunomi Fureai Matsuri

Konnichi-Mae! To complete the trifecta of tunes from Saturday’s Matsuri comes my favourite!

Ryoko’s band Mae Maes played at a community outdoor festival (you can see video some of the other performers elsewhere in this archive) and several of the usual supporters were out on a sunny and surprisingly hot day, including the effervescent Tadanori Suzumura-san – “the Shacho” (boss) is a singer himself and a huge supporter of local music. 

Here we are hanging out: 

Continue reading Mae Maes – Ryoko’s band at Mukunomi Fureai Matsuri

Boocuss (ska punk from Okayama, Japan) at a community festival

Saw a great band Saturday, Nov. 23rd at Mukunomi Fureai Matsuri (where Ryoko’s Mae Maes also performed) called Boocuss , a ska-punk funtime band.

Looking forward to seeing them again in a more suited venue (this was an outdoor community festival which was cool but ya know, not ideal for their style).

Anyhow, here’s a little variety pack video.

Trio: Sax, Drums and Singing at a Japanese Festival

 

An interesting trio with jamming alto sax, quirky on-in-one drum kit, and trad vocals as seen at Mukunomi Fureai Matsuri (festival) on Okayama, Japan, Nov. 23, 2019.

Taiko drums at a Setouchi (Japan) Community Festival

A small friendly group of taiko drummers have a good time at a community arts and culture festival in Setouchi, Okayama, Japan.

Taiko Drumming Sisters Fronting Jazz Band in Kurashiki (Japan)

Duo sister Taiko drummers fronting jazz band (with drum kit, keys, alto sax) playing outdoors at Kurashiki (Japan) Jazz Street event in historic Bikan district.

Rainy Mystery Alley / spoken-word song video

Analog loops, guitars, feedback and poetry about impossible alleys, 8 seat bars, villages with book shops, woolen scarves, Fado, Enka, Kathmandu mud, and umbrellas thwarting tactility.

Video features snaps of Thorvald and Thurston in a Provo basement, 2018 making the song as well as artifacts in the environs.

Assorted Vinyl Treats: The Jam, Oingo Boingo, The Specials and “All Quiet…” compilation

Rollin on with albums from the archive, I present these treats for your amusement:

The Jam, Snap!- 2 LP This seminal trio at their finest – well it’s a collection of their finest. Sounds so fresh and explosive even now. Great gatefold deco and liner note copy-writing. Explodes out of speakers and especially love the ambient tube sounds of “Down in Tube Station at Midnight”.

Oingo Boingo, Only A Lad 10 inch, 4 song EP

No other band sounds anything like Oingo Boingo — started as something like a 15 piece, whittled down to more like six, with marimbas and percussive elements along with electronics to make a completely new and extremely danceable heady brew (for you youngsters, this was Danny Elfman of every Tim Burton soundtrack fame)’s band. Also the 10inch 4 song EP is the best music format ever created.

Danny Elfman and me, SLC UT, circa 1985

The Specials, The Specials From the opening track “message to you Rudy”, the drum sound is massive and hollow and upfront, the guitars are crisp and restrained, and the stories are all songs (or vice versa) — while they lost their drummer this year, this band is touring, played the Warfield in San Francisco just recently. As an aside, I was fortunate to share a speaking gig with the guitarist Lynval Goulding at SxSw.

Lynval Goulding (guitar, The Specials) and me in Austin, TX 2012(?)

Life in the European Theater, Compilation Opens with The Clash’s London Calling and just rocks on from there with aforementioned the Jam & the Specials, plus XTC, Au Pairs, Echo and the Bunnymen, Madness, The Beat, The Undertones (all of the above of UK bands of course), with The Doors’ almost forgotten Peace Frog as (somewhat inexplicably) the only American entry. This was released in 1981 so the first sample of a lot new sounds for this West Coast kid.

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For the record, in Sept 2016, picked up a couple of crates of vinyl which I left in a friends dad’s basement in Salt Lake City when I left Grateful Dead tour in 1991 and ended up in Europe, Japan, Micronesia, Cascadia and many departures between. Collecting them now, feels like 20-year-old self wrote a letter for me to receive just when I needed it most. #MusicHeals

Rainy Mystery Alley (spoken-word song) – video

Analog loops, guitars, feedback and poetry about impossible alleys, 8 seat bars, villages with book shops, woolen scarves, Fado, Kathmandu mud, and umbrellas thwarting tactility.

Made by “Thorvald and Thurston” in a Provo basement, 2018