Song of the Week, 9/17/2017

Posted in Song of the week on September 18th, 2017 by bill

During their all-too-brief heyday — roughly 1997 to 2001 — the Beta Band made some of the best music of their era. This is my favorite song of theirs; it’s epic, droll, silly, and moving all at once. Enjoy.

Overheard in the Cafe Today

Posted in Whatever Else on September 11th, 2017 by bill

And this is probably not what the person said, but this is what I heard:

“There’s a form of happiness that’s free, but it’s really crappy.”

Song of the Week, 9/9/2017

Posted in Song of the week on September 9th, 2017 by bill

Today, a great song from David Byrne’s unjustly overlooked 1987 album Feelings.

Song of the Week, 8/27/2017

Posted in Song of the week on August 28th, 2017 by bill

So here was my eclipse experience: Come the morning, Arcata was totally socked in with fog, as per usual. So I had decided I would just watch the whole thing online.

Then, about 9:30 — with the start of the show about 45 minutes away — my stepdaughter came in saying that according to her dad, the fog cleared if you went out past Blue Lake. So we jumped into the car, and in my haste I whacked the corner of the car door into my head, causing blood to stream down my forehead as we drove east on 299 in search of clear sky.

We did eventually find some, clear enough anyway that we could make out the moon biting into the sun. We watched through tiny, dark panes of glass as the sun grew dim — the eclipse never achieved totality here, getting to I believe 86% — then brighter again. Then we jumped back into the car to beat the crowd home — about 90% of Humboldt County was lined up along 299 with their eyes to the sky.

I still have the mark on my forehead.

Song of the Week, 8/20/2017

Posted in Song of the week on August 20th, 2017 by bill

Correction: The coat hanger should be upside-down.

Song of the Week, 8/13/2017

Posted in Song of the week on August 13th, 2017 by bill

Between 1988 and 1994 Charles Thompson — working under the noms du rock Black Francis and Frank Black — recorded six amazing albums, four with the Pixies and two as a solo artist. Of these, Teenager of the Year was the last and in some ways the best. It’s awfully hard to pick a favorite among them but Teenager, if nothing else, is the longest, comprising 22 songs and 63 minutes.

Those 63 minutes are crammed full of delicious, noisy, poppy goodness, and again it’s hard to pick a favorite among the 22 songs. But this week I’ve been digging this one, an exuberant exhortation to get out and enjoy the wonders of nature:

Song of the Week, 7/23/2017

Posted in Song of the week on July 23rd, 2017 by bill

So when I went to Minneapolis a couple weeks ago my friend Bob happened to be playing a Can compilation called The Singles in his car, and since then I’ve been on a bit of a Can binge. This is one of my favorites: eccentric in that special Can way but also shamelessly catchy.

Song of the Week, 7/16/2017

Posted in Song of the week on July 17th, 2017 by bill

This weekend featured a family trip down to the Bay Area, where we took in a performance by Mr. Beck Hansen and band at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley. I can’t help having slightly mixed feelings about Beck because of the whole Scientology thing, but man, he’s made a lot of good music. And he put on a hell of a show, so why quibble?

This recent single was one of the highlights:

Song of the Week, 7/9/2017

Posted in Song of the week on July 9th, 2017 by bill

I always thought this was a Pat Benatar song.

Song of the Week, 7/2/2017

Posted in Bread and circuses, Song of the week on July 2nd, 2017 by bill

For today’s complete multimedia experience, I recommend listening to this:

While reading this:

Screen Shot 2017-07-02 at 4.27.21 PM

Enjoy.