Brooklyn’s Eat Records will host former Fleetwood Mac guitarist/songwriter and chart-topping solo artist Bob Welch tomorrow afternoon (Nov. 1st) as he reads from his recently-published autobiography Blood on the Wicker: Bob Welch on Bob Welch. He will also perform covers of the rerecordings of “Sentimental Lady” and “Ebony Eyes.” Things will kick off promptly at noon.
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That’s right!!! Fueled by their enigmatic and totally unpredictable nature, Bodymore’s own Wham City collective will crash Enid’s (do you really need directions??) tomorrow night (Nov. 1st) for a celebration of F. Murray Abraham’s birthday. What?!?! Memphis Meateater let Wham City daddy Dan Deacon explain the event:
“The guy was the talking leaf in those Fruit of the Loom commercials I remember my older brother talking about!! I mean, he won a Grammy for Rock Me, Amadeus!! We have some special things planned, or should I say, ‘not planned!!!’” I’m going to wear a XXXXXL Smokey the Bear T-Shirt over Spongebob Squarepants pajama bottoms and a baseball cap that says ‘Is that a 3″ B&W Sony Watchman on your shelf, or are you just happy to see me?’ Molly from Ponytail is going to put up all of these hilarious Glamour Shots she had made last week….she’s an outfit made out of Commodore 64 parts and Gentle Giant album covers!! Beach House is going to cover Batdorf and Rodney’s ‘Life is You’ album and Club Lyfestile are going to host an actual aerobics class while that movie ‘Gymkata’ plays on a screen behind them. This is going to be unbelievable!!
Though a tad befuddled when our free passes failed to materialize, Jeff and I nonetheless woke at the crack of dawn Saturday morning and made our way to Cooper Union. We have no problem financially supporting what must be the preeminent assault on innocuity [yes, that is a word…or ‘mediocrity’ but I use that word way too much]. Luckily, we ran into J.T. Leroy scalping passes and scored a pair for eight bux.
It should come as no surprise that we were primarily interested in the “Mirth Will Save The Earth: Contemporary Comedy” discussion. Moderated by David Cross, the speakers were Zach Galifianakis (“Comedians of Comedy”) and Maria Bamford (“Comedians of Comedy”). I can’t think of a collective better suited to represent every nook and cranny of contemporary comedy. I heard rumors of Blackbook’s fear that the breadth of the panel might be too much for the Inspiration Today! audience, that they were going to keep the title/subject (“Mirth Will Save The Earth: Contemporary Comedy”) but cancel this lineup in favor of Eugene Mirman interviewing himself (via iMovie) about the wonders of clever wordplay.
Maybe that would have been a good idea. We left the presentation confused and exhausted. After eating our pre-packed lunches in the stairwell, we made it back in time for the DJ Spooky-moderated “Illbient Celebrates 13 Years At The Forefront Of Experimental Music” discussion. DJ Olive had to cancel at the last moment, and his seat was filled by a stack of tattered, mid-90’s back issues of Wire. Instead of dialogue, Acoustyk aka Manny Oqeundo aka MegMan (one-time member of the Byzar collective) William Parker, Matthew Shipp, and David S. Ware silently engaged in a knitting circle which eventually produced a bootleg BodyGlove wetsuit for remaining participant, Vernon Reid (it was his birthday).
On Sunday, the two of us returned to catch the discussion between filmmaker Harmony Korine and skater/poetry-slammer, Mark Gonzales. We left out of boredom when Korine announced that he would next remake the 2002 Jennifer Lopez vehicle Maid in Manhattan and cast the film exclusively with terminally-ill, petting zoo ticket takers, adulterous shortwave radio enthusiasts, and members of various musical acts…Fuck, I’m Dead, Hafler Trio, Defecation, Supersilent, Panzerchrist, Growing, Beherit, and Sunburned Hand of the Man.
A note from Earles And Jensen:
Due to a horrendous workload, we (Earles and Jensen) had to farm out an entry to Jeffrey’s mom, who generally cares more about word jumbles, grocery lists/clipping coupons, and the current price of hanging ferns than the comedy landscape, but the help was greatly needed.
Hello internetters, Barbara Jensen here…Jeffrey’s mom. I’d like to thank my loving son for using his connections to get me my very first attempt at “blogging.” He said some people would actually read it! Plus, the ladies around the office keep asking me about my recent trip to visit Jeffrey, so I’ll just direct them here! Ok, let’s do this…
You have no idea how excited I was. I’m used to the comedy of Jerry Seinfeld, Bill Cosby, Bob Newhart, and that younger guy, Brian Regan. Quite frankly, I was getting a little bored with it all, and harbored a slight interest in these newer comedians that I always hear Jeffrey namedropping. So, I hit the bricks on my own last Wednesday night and attended something called “Sound of Young America” at a tavern named “The Knitting Room” or whatever. Hey contemporary comedy people! Give your venues names that an old lady can remember!
A confession: This being leftfield comedy, I expected to feel 100% alienated by both the performance and the audience, but to my relief, I related to or at least understood some of what was going on around me. It was comforting to see that I had a lot in common with most of the patrons, and some of the performers that were milling about before and after the show. The middle-management, just-let-yourself-go, throw-on-whatever’s-clean fashion sense and grooming policy that I adopted at age fifty seems to be coming back in style, along with all forms of “mandals” (hey, it’s getting hot outside). But these kids don’t stop there…they add an edgy element to the look, one almost identical to the look preferred by the guys I always see smoking in front of Theatreworks, the hotspot for interpretive dance and dramatic stage productions that’s right across the street from my office. As for the entertainment tonight, I understood but can’t really remember most of the jokes. At least nothing seemed to really go over my head!! All in all…a great time!!
To celebrate her new solo album of accordion improvisations on Ecstatic Peace, Judy Tenuta will be joined onstage by Rhys Chatham, Thurston Moore, Moby, and Sunn o))). With this release, titled Impaled Lesbetarian Inquisition, Tenuta uses only vocals, the venerable accordion, and a table of effects to give the listener a brutal tour through her tortured mind. To satisfy older fans, the track “Blood Carpet” features a screamed (but verbatim) re-telling of her Women of the Night (HBO, 1988) set.
GREG TRAVIS REEMERGES AFTER 19-YEAR HIATUS TO PRACTICE FOUR-HOUR COMEDY CENTRAL PRESENTS… SPECIAL AT RIFIFI, WHICH HAS AGREED TO ACTUALLY CLOSE AFTER THIS EVENTBy Memphis Meateater on Friday, October 31st, 2008
Following this hot performance 19 years ago, audiences have been clamoring for more of Greg Travis’ “David Sleaze” routine. Seems it’s struck a chord with the 80’s revivalist movement. Such is the impact that his distinctive “Fuck Yoooooooooou!!” can be heard every five seconds in certain Williamsburg haunts, and Travis has agreed to bring Sleaze to the Rififi stage to exclaim “Fuck Yooooooooooou!!!!!” to forces that seem to be putting the club in a continuous state of operational flux.
MORE FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS NEWS. THE JOYFULLY FISH-OUT-OF-WATER DUO FINALLY FIND A LIKEMINDED FASHION/AESTHETIC SOULMATE!!By Memphis Meateater on Friday, October 31st, 2008
In very rare instances, a fashion statement or creative angle is so far ahead of the curve that the creators are rendered lone wolves, forging on in a vacuum of alienation, waiting for the rest of the world to catch up. Our beloved Brett and Jermaine have been searching far and wide for, well, someone, anyone…that understands. What’s got everyone confused? Flight of the Conchords’ unique amalgamation of 80’s mainstream fashion (with a duel focus on “New Wave Backing Musician and General Fitness”) has put everyone in WTF?!? mode. Until now. Seymour Shoemaker, a 99-year-old former toymaker and current resident of the Okkervil River Retirement Home, recently sent (via paper, pen, envelope, and stamp) the band expressing an understanding and support of their fashion risks. To connect with the outside world, Seymour watches sporadic cable television (w/close captioning) and reads discarded issues (mostly from 1997) of AARP and Today’s Birdwatcher. When his great granddaughter accidentally left the April/May issue of Bust in his room, he was driven to write the following letter:
After my dearest Chloe left her Bust Magazine in my room, I was moved to write this letter of support. Don’t worry; it will only be a matter of time before lesser tastemakers comprehend the prescient nature of your clothing choices. If the fashion world knows what’s good for it, the tennis instructor/fitness fanatic/MTV’s-first-day-on-the-air look will one day be the talk of the town. Keep those chins up; there are others that share your vision! Right now, I may be the only one, but don’t give up. On a different note, I have been able to view several episodes of your show on HBO w/ close captioning. I seem to have noticed some female troubles written into your show’s agenda. I gather the playful little subplot works well with each character’s awkward, oblivious demeanor, but in reality, it makes little sense. I suspect this to be a have-your-cake-and-eat-it-to stunt, as you boys are clearly, if I may be frank, complete and total pussy magnets. If either of you were to walk down Bedford Avenue, the unbelievably hot tail would have to be beaten off with an axe handle. One or the other, sirs!
The Okkervil River Retirement Home
A Tribute to the Innovators! Beck, Har Mar Superstar, Ian Sevonious, Greg Dulli w/Twilight Singers (+ reunited Afghan Whigs) perform Flight of the Conchords covers Monday night at Town Hall.By Memphis Meateater on Friday, October 31st, 2008
“The Conchord boys were breaking ground with the hyper-ironic, taste-making white guy Quiet Storm/R&B angle back in 2007. We didn’t get around to it until 1995. Then Beck came along in ’99 with ‘Debra,’” says A. Whigs/Twilight Singers/Gutter Twins main man Dulli, “I know Har Mar is a huge fan and basically owes his career to the Kiwi comedy duo. All of us just want to give credit where it is due.” David Cross and Bob Odenkirk were invited to reprise their “‘Ewww Girl Ewww’ by Three Times One Minus One” skit from 1996, but no word as of this writing….we’re keeping our fingers crossed for a surprise appearance.
If there’s one thing that my friends won’t shut up about, it’s Bob Zany’s recent string of music video cameos. Seems each time I find a new underground favorite, they find Zany or Zany finds them. I don’t care about logistics; I just want it to happen forever. It’s funny stuff – I spit my Yagerbomb across the room each time he popped up as a different character in that Deerhunter video – but I prefer seeing the man up close and in person. Don’t expect him to come out as the fat-suited, effeminate but asexual creep-a-thon that he played in the Ponytail video, this is Zany as Zany, giving a verbal middle finger to the Bush administration, slicing and dicing mainstream rock bands, making fun of fat corporate culture, and if we keep our fingers crossed, his untouchable Facebook routine.
Since that dark day in March of 2003, only one comic on the face of the planet has had the proverbial balls (sorry, Margaret!! you know what I mean!) to speak out against the War in Iraq, and her inclusion in this lineup is what we meant up there by “very special.” Currently banned from performing in 43 states (not NY, we’re not a bunch of close-minded hillbillies, duh!), Margaret’s notorious, eye-opening bits are packed with incendiary political and social observations that run the full spectrum of things you might infrequently think, but would never say out loud.
That’s why we have Margaret Smith. From women’s rights to abortion issues to The War to racism to the hypocritical right wing bozos and everything in between, Smith’s has been known to lob comedy Molotov cocktails like the idea that the War was started to protect the oil interests of the Bush administration, that the news media (ESPECIALLY FOX NEWS) might actually be rigged to deliver misinformation to the public, and the decision to name a street after Ronald Reagan and not Noam Chomsky. A note: If an audience appears to be agreeing with (and occasionally laughing at, but these are no laughing matters) the routine, Smith has been known to dip into material from her legendary CD, Someone Disconnect The Battery Of The War Bulldozer Before It Drives Into My Vagina. The album is extremely rare, as no label expressed interest (they expressed FEAR!) in releasing it and Margaret’s limited efforts of self-distribution were thwarted when stores refused to stock what will perhaps one day be regarded as a trailblazing masterpiece. Fuck President Bush!! (sorry….just got a little worked up!)
Brett Butler has little use for our politically correct times. Having raised eyebrows with a evenings comprised entirely of racial epithets, names of bodily functions/fluids, the names of socially alienating diseases repeated ad infinitum, and crushing celebrity insults with little structure, her nervy routine has developed into one devoid of actual jokes or extraneous dialogue that doesn’t fit into the aforementioned categories. Her new book, 1,000 Uses For The Word “Dego” was just published by Feral House and is available at your favorite book or clothing store’s Books-For-People-That-Don’t-Read kiosk.
Taylor Negron’s nonsensical quips usually hang in the air for a few seconds before the audience catches up. Once they respond with riotous laughter, it proves what we expected all along: We comedy enthusiasts don’t settle for comedians that simply craft and labor over jokes before unleashing them to the public. Nope, these audiences like to be beaten over the head with quirkiness.
……and what would the night be without the ‘Rock’ portion? The absence of Rock and BTW has added some booking heft to its return, and we were able to nab some great acts that happened to be touring through NYC at the time. Try to stay seated after reading this lineup: The Black Lips, Daisy Chainsaw, Ponytail, The Iowa Beef Experience, Violent Bullshit, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Mexican Eighty-To-An-Apartment (hey, it’s cool, this dance-y post-punk unit is fronted by two Latino cousins) and Bathtub Shitter will perform in between the comedy sets.