Tag Archives: punk rock

Letter: regarding eco-carpetbaggers, money-focused orgs, talk – action = zero, etc

Written as a letter to a friend, somehow thought good idea to put here so i don’t lose it. Not sure but hey… no one’s paying attention anyhow.

Might be scenic but still a dump

Hey [redacted],

I hear you on these hypocrites, bootlickers and carpet baggers who talk a big game but at the end of it, they spend all their “organizations energy on managing the organization” rather than actually doing stuff.

I learned a long time ago (somehow) in my punk rock youth that “talk minus action equals zero” and in that same youth, was idealistic enough to want to actively support a lot of different organizations in Utah and BC but every time I went to volunteer my (then healthy and strong) body for action (i.e. put me on those anti-whaling ships! send me out on desert missions! put me on a lookout tower!) the only answer was “you can help with fundraising… Why don’t you go door to door and ask for money?” Not impressed.

And, years later, I still see the same organizations spending all their money begging for money. E.g. After all my years of working to normalize cannabis, I see the suits and celebrities jumping into the mix and congratulating themselves and I wonder: where the fck were you on those rainy days at the capital decades ago? Where were you lobbying and writing letters and to policymakers and showing up at inane committee meetings? I hear you are running your mouth about stock prices and making cute branded labels for your factory growing weed blah blah blah.

As such, somehow I realize that despite my usual social and community-building nature, when it comes to getting shit done, I just do what I want to do on my own terms and float out into the world and don’t expect to see an impact for decades later. Been this way for my documentary films, punk rock fanzines, chap books of poetry and other arts and crafts… + Realized that I could be an artist who spends half of his time applying for grants and sending and submissions to be rejected (another quarter of my time complaining about the injustice of it all) or else I could just go hustle some day job for temporary times (goodness know i’ve had a few) and make art on my own terms and put it out there without any expectation of acceptance or money. Fuck Stats, Make Art.

Somehow I almost accidentally ended up this way as I teased with a flirting level of fame before vanishing again. Seldom seen indeed. I think of Henry David Thoreau self publishing 100 copies of Walden, dead at 37, no one remembers his contributions to pencil making or the impact that came hundred plus years later. That’s the kind of hero.

After being gone for Utah from sometime and ending up back there in recent years after my Mom died and hiding out, i saw all the precious places polluted by REI shopping yuppi3s and credit card wielding “ski bums” who think they’re making a difference by voting for “that other party”, left again as fast as I could and proclaimed my lifelong dream to never go back to Logan (the only town I’ve ever been busted for weed).

I even went to my favourite holy sacred hot spring up fifth water diamond fork on trails that I literally helped build and pools that I hauled up bags of cement to shore up the rocks to find it overflowing with BYU students, I stripped down to my naked self and took a nice shower in the waterfall and all my splendour and quickly cleared the area out for a nice leisurely soak. There’s a metaphor in there somewhere.

how to clear out an hot spring… (photo with Lomo sardine can spy camera)

All this is to say that I see you and hear you and admire you and you got a guy out here respecting your work and your life and understanding what you’re laying down about Lycra knuckleheads with their lawyers and mortgages.

Told a younger friend the other day who’s getting caught up in the rat race that all these asshole billionaires that end up in the news about not paying taxes or going to space, they’re all bunch of workaholics who never see their family, never just to get hang out in a barn with an illicit smoke and some used records, and hell my mother-in-law cooks as well as any restaurant and the best views are for free. And if you want to be all fancy, I built a house on a tropical island one time for $50K and another time for $70K, you can’t buy a carport most places for that. You can get your own campland near Gary’s outpost near Shasta for under 100… I’ll tell you about Paradise, the way John Prine sings about it. Move to the country, grow peaches… work little except for the real work.

That’s my riff/rant/spiel, yer pal, daveo

Riff: Joe Strummer, Silver & Gold

Joe Strummer running London Marathon in 1983 by Steve Rapport as seen in the kura barn studio
^ I spy with my bespectacled eye… {DOA, Billy Bragg, The matinee, Buffalo Tom, David Bowie, Shred Kelly, Ramones, Hunter S Thompson, Allen Ginsberg, The Spores…}

Joe Strummer (Mellor) died around this day 17 years ago, not too old but old enough to leave an exceptionally eclectic legacy of undeniable mightiness.

His silver form hangs proudly in a 150 year old grain barn in provincial Japan in a beloved photo by (Vancouver treasure) Bev Davies from the US festival (the last show with Joe and Mick) in 1983 & has recently made friends with another version of himself from the same year, running the London marathon captured by Steve Rapport (former UK, now Pacifica, California and just releasing a book full of Joe/The Clash photos #PreOrder).

Hopping the stage and singing “White Riot” for the encore in 1984 (yes yes I know ya purists “out of control” wasn’t the *real*… oh forget it… and no way I could’ve got to the show at the Kerrisdale Arena a few years before with The Special’s playing and you know I would’ve loved that but born in 1970 is great for many things)

Take what you can take

and stage diving in front of Joe will always remain near the top of my list of “noteworthy life accomplishments” – I was 13, took the bus in from the suburbs, and stuck my dorky glasses in my jeans pocket and headed into the pit, completely overcome and immersed by this massive sound *and* songs which “really said something”.

I “celebrate his whole catalog ;)” from the 101’s, to The Clash, to Earthquake Weather etc, to the Mescaleros, to filling in with the Pogues, to hanging out at campfires at Glastonbury. And hear his legacy living on through voices from Billy Bragg to Don Letts and so many others.

Route 19 revisited

West Way to the world

The future is unwritten

PS if you need even more The Clash goodness, dig up a BBC audio video collage style film made on the streets of London around 1979, it’s so weirdly awesome great. (I’d’ve pasted here but I can’t figure out new word press blog thingie blah blah blah)

Oh here it is: 

Oh yeah, dig this Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros – Live In Roseland Ballroom, New York / familair classics with the Mescas world beat flair

 

Ichiro: card #43 “Stanley Ramone” (Hey! Ho! Ikimasho) / 9.13

Ichiro: card #43 “Stanley Ramone” (Hey! Ho! Ikimasho) / 9.13

Ichiro: card #43 “Stanley Ramone” (Hey! Ho! Ikimasho) / 9.13

Note: Thanks to Cory DeMille and Trinity in LV for the onesie, and Sharif and Miriam in AMS for the percussion.

Original snap by marvelous mother Ryoko Olson

Bonus: Ramones – Blitzkrieg Bop (Official Music Video)

“What i learned making #daveo50” / excerpt from “The Breaker” podcast

I was recently a guest on (my occasional co-conspirator) Bob Mackin’s excellent PC/Pacific Rim/Cascadia news podcast called “The Breaker” talking about the postponed/cancelled Tokyo 2020 Olympics as well as riffing about personal archiving project, life lessons at 50, and birth of Ichiro Stanley Thorvald Olson. 

In this 6-ish min. trimmed excerpt, i offer a few audio annotations about what i learned about myself, life as we know it etc whilst curating #daveo50, i.e.: how we really are who we are at a young age (in my case anyway), the importance of being kind, fostering and nurturing long-term relationships, that hobbies are the real thing, and the Internet is for communication not just a business construct.

Bob and I both celebrated birthdays this week so that came into the conversation as well. This episode – theBreaker.news Podcast: Socially distant birthday fun – I appeared in also featured Burnaby city councillor and punk rock legend, DOA’s Joe “Shithead” Keithley and other guests and riffs in Bob’s unique style. 

Consider listening to the whole episode and subscribing to Bob’s great podcast plus show him support especially if you live/vote in British Columbia.

Also available as:DaveO Personal Archive Project on The Breaker on Soundcloud

Listen also: Oly-nomics and Goodtimes w/ Hammer Bob – Olympic Outsider #24

theBreaker.news Podcast: Japan Life, Cascadia flashbacks & Joe Keithley sings

+ Breaker Pod Dispatch +

Another curious cameo, this time with Bob “the hammer“ Mackin, renegade reporter covering politics around Vancouver/BC, as well as international affairs in the Pacific rim and the Olympics (when they are happening).

In the dispatch, I give some riffs about life in Japan, a few nuggets of wisdom about daveo50 (including the importance of DIY skills and kindness), wish Bob Mackin a happy 50th of his own (August 8th) plus share the show with punk rock politician champion Joe Keithley (DOA) and Burnaby mayor Mike Hurley who share some rock against racism.

What a glorious combination! Fire it up and hang out with us for a bit.

The Breaker News podcast at: TuneIn and/or Apple Podcasts.

Or: 

theBreaker.news Podcast: Socially distant birthday fun

For the week of Aug. 9, 2020.

Join theBreaker.news Podcast host Bob Mackin for a special birthdays edition.

He turned the big 5-0 on Aug. 8 and shares some socially distant and virtual birthday cheer with Vancouver Island political commentator Laila Yuile (who shares the same birthdate) and Dave Olson, the former Hootsuite vice-president now living in Japan (and celebrating his milestone on Aug. 16). Also, hear what was going on in B.C.’s capital 50 years ago this weekend.

Plus an interview with Burnaby Coun. Joe Keithley, who recorded a new version of one of his legendary DOA songs, “You Won’t Stand Alone,” with Mayor Mike Hurley. The anthem rocks against hate and racism.

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and commentaries on British Columbia Day.

Riff: The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA (2000-200x)

The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA / tab board (still mostly not paid despite super cheap for best beer)

Around 2000 in Olympia Washington, my colleagues and I sold a renegade pioneering Internet service provider (OlyWa.net) to an (evidently) evil national corporation (ATG) who quickly imploded allowing me the sensation of losing *big paper money* before i hit 30 – ugh .Anyhow, I managed to put a down-payment on a house – which had a semi-finished basement (and was also stumbling distance to downtown bars) which is the reason for this riff.

The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA / Dave inspecting the proceedings

The aforementioned basement was rapidly converted into “the Hockey Lounge” a speakeasy/smoke easy/crash space for touring rock ‘n’ roll bands as well as a resource library for Hemp Lobby activities.

As the name applied, this was about watching hockey games as, in Washington state at the time, the sport was not popular and bars were filled with cigarette smoke an early season baseball games instead of pungent herb and Stanley Cup playoffs. The Hockey Lounge rectified these conundrums.

So, with a couple of first generation time-shifting devices, two satellite dishes and a cable feed and other electronics cobble together by brother Dan – who also procured couch, bar, fridge etc. from various auctions – and extensive hockey and punk rock artifacts decorations, a conversion of the fridge into a 2 tap keg-e-rator, the eventual addition of a toilet, wiring the house with ethernet connected to redundant broadband connections (note this was early 2000s) this became the scene of much frivolity.

The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA / the noted 2 tap-handle keg-er-ator with room for a 3rd on storage (with freezer for glasses)

There were rules:

  • Wash your glass (everyone had their designated glass which was store in the freezer compartment) 
  • Pay your tab (note beer was always top-end craft from a brewery in exchange for making a website, we were on the regular route for a beer delivery and well let’s just say people drink more than they paid for.
  • No cell phones, camera etc. / no talking about other shit besides hockey and music

and these rules were not followed very well unfortunately.

Occasionally we would host various contest/pools during the playoffs or Olympics in which everyone would enter with a high-quality six pack (they were sent away and shunned if the quality was not sufficient) and winner would take most, second place slightly more than they pitched in, and third place their ante back.

Several times noted touring rock bands crashed out but most memorable was my hometown heroes DOA, who i sang BTO’s “takin’ care of business” onstage (at 4th Ave Tav) while wearing a Canucks jersey.  The band – including now-Burnaby city councillor Joey “Shithead” Keithley, now deceased hard drinking storyteller Randy Rampage and the road manager (who was so happy about the high-speed Internet) and roadie who, years later, i met his brother coincidentally in Granada, Spain – all watched Canucks playoffs time-shifted and told tales into the night, signed my Hardcore 81 album, tidied up after themselves. 

The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA / wall of grand decorations

Of course, many travelling friends crashed out and enjoyed the space including Maddog Mike of Pacifica who destroyed so much Grand Crü beer and was still up early for his business meeting in Portland, Dane came by too (who i think took these photos), we had a “hippie on the couch” from CT or CO for a long time, others who came by at all hours expecting the place to be open like it was there own clubhouse, some disrespect, some sloppiness, some heat started to outweigh the frivolity. A lot of dishes to wash, but also a lot of fun backyard bocce games.

Of course there was the infamous High Times photo shoot in which many regional growers and vendors came by with copious amounts of wares in hopes of being featured in the magazine. Many were, i was rewarded with a massive mess to clean up and a photo/write up in the article which well… caused some community angst and notoriety (possibly covered elsewhere in this archive).

Epilogue: As it goes, economic situations changed with the *great collapse*, I couldn’t find work in any form, and then domestic situations changed with people moving in, people moving out, various tenants and domestic intrigue, then renters, a sewage flood and then a renovation and what not. [I had tried to finish some college, start a new business and relationship and hard to do all of that i suppose.]

The Hockey Lounge, OlyWA / brother Dan behind the bar

In amongst much of this transition, aforementioned brother Dan became their “sole proprietor” of hockey lounge as it became his apartment. As things descended into malaise,  various pieces and parts were sold off for cash to pay the mortgage, eventually the house sold, and I headed north and continued hockey culture with the Canucks Outsider podcast, then Dan later heading north as well to attend UBC engineering school. The Hockey Lounge still lives in the way/spirit at his current abode. 

There is scant photographic evidence of this era though the legends live on throughout the streets of Olympia (or so I tell myself) plus at Olympic Plaza in SLC, and oh yeah if you’re reading this pay your fcking tab – this means you!

Hockey Lounge 4:20 24/7 / commemorative brick at Olympic Plaza in Salt Lake City (2002)

#daveo50 ~ 1985 / 50 years > days > photos

#daveo50 ~ 1985 (Orem High School, UT) / note alias used shortly after moving to Utah with Mom

Project: Upon turning 50 years old on August 16, 2020, Dave Olson (me, hello) is posting a photo (or maybe photos) a day / per year – starting with 1970 with intent of chronicling existence through various primary evidence sourced from studio portraits, class photos, ID / passport photos, or occasionally other “casual/group/random” shots when the above don’t exist in my archive (note: not “artificial intelligence,” really me, pulled from shoeboxes, journals, wallets and whatnot – diligently scanned and dated via glasses and haircuts, lightly annotated).

Continue reading #daveo50 ~ 1985 / 50 years > days > photos

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill)

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / cover Joey Ramone at The Commodore

The 2nd of a couple of VOM fanzines i did with Kamel / he was the ringleader, i was the “associate editor”.

This #2 had with Joey Ramone at the Commodore on the cover (bev. davies photo) and i was  “upgraded” from contributor to associate editor from vol. 1 #bigtime

Vol. 2 was printed at my Mom’s real estate office on Scott rd. and ended up costing way too much to reproduce despite stealing paper from a nearby elementary school.

Along with Ramones at The Commodore, included reviews of Dead Kennedys at York Theatre, Hot Spot Dancers interview, The Dull and a big ad from Toxic Shock records which was the best part of the making the fanzine (records!) So much good music and lively scenes.

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / masthead and Hot Spit Dancers

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / Ramones interview

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / reviews Dead Kennedys (plus others), SNFU (plus others), and The Dull interview

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / The Dull interview plus records reviews from Bill of Rights, Big Country, Stretchmarks, Motorhead, Massacre Guys, Fang, Black Flag… (solid lineup!)

Folio: VOM Fanzine #2 / Surrey, BC, 1985 (ed. Kamel Gill) / back cover with Toxic Shock ad and request for compilation

More about these incidents in VOM #1 riff including comments from Dan Walters and Kai Erichson from those days/times when Kamel’s name surfaced in another conversation (about band AOT which followed shortly after the fanzine (FB).

Note: (repeated elsewhere…) Kamel was a force of nature, a complete reckless maniac but just got things done and while i didn’t get “credit” so much, I learned a lot about hustling productions and rolling yer own media & used knowledge to get into loads of shows and help out bands.

See also:front row, surrounded by pals, lost in music” for more about this era of life and these characters

Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed. Kamel Gill)

Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (Kamel Gill) / cover

One of a couple of VOM fanzines i did with Kamel / he was the ringleader, i was the ummm assistant.

This #1 includes (among interviews with bands Bill of Rights, Unknown Fibres, Shanghai Dog) a fake concert review of the “Ultimate Trendies” which was Kamel, me, Brad and Frank Baker doing a Sex Pistols air band at my church gymnasium (we didn’t win) + real reviews of actual great shows at York Theatre. #2 had with Joey Ramone at the Commodore on the cover.

Kamel was a force of nature, a complete reckless maniac but just got things done and while i didn’t get “credit” so much, I learned a lot about hustling productions and rolling yer own media & used knowledge to get into loads of shows and help out bands. 

Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) ‘ table of contents etc.

When Kamel’s name surfaced in another conversation (about band AOT which followed shortly after the fanzine) Dan Walters (punk scene erstwhile archivist and historian) who made Terminally Stupid fanzine, and Kai Erichson who also rolled in that circle and i riffed some memories of making these publications.

Me: Remember working on VOM fanzine in his basement bedroom while his dead grandmother laid “in state” upstairs and all the relatives came to visit. Also, riding buses to the York Theatre with him & Brad Rees many times.

VxOxMx vol 1 “masthead” – I “upgraded” from contributor to associate editor by volume two #bigtime

VxOxMx vol 2 was printed at my Mom’s real estate office on scott rd. Featuring Joey Ramone photo by Bev Davies

Dan Walters: Ha! My drawing on there…and the letraset I swiped from school. Shit, haven’t seen these in 34 years. Cheers

Me: Also Dan Walters Glad I could surprise and amuse you with those VOM artifacts after all the goodness you share out to the Internet. My time in the “scene” was obviously aborted with the move to Utah so your documentation helps me fill in the gaps that I missed out on.

PS worth noting that ending up in Utah with my punk concert experiences in Vancouver and a fake ID, made it a lot of fun. Saw & played in lots of bands, got backstage, “media” access blah blah blah

Kai Erichsen: I remember you Dave. And the photocopy fiasco at your mom’s work lol! Fuck we were all so broke but we made shit happen. Fun!

Dave Olson: Kai Erichsen i heard about that from her for yeeeeaaaarrsss – ha!

Kai Erichsen: Kamal stole the paper too… boxes of it.

Dan Walters: Kai- we broke into my old elementary school and ditched boxes of paper in the bushes, went back and got them after dark, lol.

Dave Olson: Kai Erichsen yeah we’d roll into Cedar Hills elementary school and just take it. i remember some “adult” trying to stop us one time and we just kept going – hanging with you and Kamel made me feel a lot tougher and taller!

Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / Bill of Rights interview
Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / Unknown Fibres and more fanzines
Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / Unknown Fibres
Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / Shanghai Dog
Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / Shanghai Dog + Live DOA and York Theatre
Folio: VOM Fanzine #1 / Surrey, BC, 1984 (ed.Kamel Gill) / fake review of “Ultimate Trendies” and real review of “DOA, Hot Spit Dancers and Chainsaw Running”

See also:front row, surrounded by pals, lost in music” for more about this era of life and these characters

Books: Assorted Japanese legends + punk rock history (Fall 2019)

Books are my pals, even since a kid  – and sometimes books (by circumstance or convenience) are stashed at mysterious locales around the world.

Sometimes, i snap pics of the cache for future reference, sometimes they go to little /free libraries, sometimes into my “Liberated Literature” program. 

Regardless, sometimes, the bookcases and/or contents are captured for memory of spending time with friends in a still-life of sorts. As such, this dossier of evidence.

Here are a few covers which happened to get snapped, as such, sharing for the amusement and edification of anyone who happens by and include: Soseki Natsume, Lafcadio Hearn, Tanazaki and a punk rock oral history.  

Not comprehensive by any means but sometimes raise their hand and say “i wanna spread some fcking joy” as they arrived by post.

Note this Lafcadio Hearn book was before he came to Japan (and changed name to Koizumi Yakumo) and was working/writing/rambling around New Orleans and later Caribbean islands.

Artifact: “Sticker Walls” etc (various dives), vol. 1

location: somewhere in Austin, Texas (i think)

Here and there i see “sticker walls” in various bars, toilet rooms of bars, taverns, dives of all sorts, or sometimes coffee shops – maybe – but mostly bars and toiletrooms of bars. So i take photos sometimes, especially since a pal in Squamish mentioned his affinity towards same and another pal from Whalley sometimes shares photos of crappy bar toilets and ask “where’s the sh!tter?” 

So anyhow, here are some photos with minor annotations if recalled – no accuracy intended or implied. There are others, we’ll start with these and call the assortment which appears, Vol. 1 of a possible series. Also, these make the best and worst computer screen “wallpapers” too. Tip: Give a try. 

probably somewhere in Austin, Texas again (really no idea)
hmmm, really not sure… dang mirror is no use though…

Continue reading Artifact: “Sticker Walls” etc (various dives), vol. 1

Annotations re: The Clash’s London Calling turning 40

snap of The Clash shared via Margereta Holmdahl, credit unknown

A few sundry/spontaneous  remarks about London Calling, The Clash’s remarkable album, turning 40 as well as a few miscellaneous  annotations about The Clash’s canon:

London Calling had the element of surprise as the world (or the record company) had no idea that this eclectic mix of americana, ska, rockabilly, mushy songs, political songs, fun songs, songs recorded in 1 take, a rock drummer playing like Ginger Baker without the prog and the almost alien guitar playing of Mick Jones. No one knew what to expect and it exploded as a secret, delivered mere hours before the EOY deadline.

The double LP was packed in one sleeve (to save label and fans money) and Train in Vain was Mick’s last minute addition (that’s why the mix sounds so different too) with Topper, no Joe or Paul on that track.

Continue reading Annotations re: The Clash’s London Calling turning 40