Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Dark Days

As you may have heard, Don Knotts died last Friday. I grew up on his movies, from The Ghost And Mr. Chicken to The Apple Dumpling Gang to The Private Eyes. I always felt a connection to the man, as we shared a birthday.

Completing the celebrity death trifecta, I'd also like to bid adieu to Dennis Weaver and Darren McGavin.

Please join me in a moment of silence for these under-appreciated actors.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Live in Milwaukee

Played Milwaukee's Bremen Cafe on Sunday, and it was excellent. Cool atmosphere, great people, very responsive and attentive (minimal chatter), great food...it has it all. If you're in the Milwaukee, check it out. I recorded my set (well, most of it), which was one 30-minute long improv, but I haven't listened to the tape yet. If it's any good, I might put some of it up on myspace. Cains & Abels and Partisan were excellent as per usual. I'll put up pictures of C&A and Partisan when I get them from my roadie/groupie/driver, to whom I am greatly indebted. All photos by Kim.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Kitty adventure

February. Cold snap. 19°. I'm walking to the train to go to work, when this cat comes skittering out from the courtyard of an apartment complex. It was clearly very, very scared. It started following me, and it was clearly very disoriented. I decided I couldn't just leave it on Lawrence, a busy street, so I picked it up and carried it home. Mystery kitty's heart was pounding and it looked around wildly. I left it in my front room while I called in to work and told my boss I couldn't come in today. I put some cat litter in a cardboard box and then went to get the cat some food. Now, Loki loves his food. Any time I pick up a bowl, he gets excited. Any time I open my cupboard, he gets excited. When I get down the bag of food, he goes nuts. When I pour the food into a bowl, he gets ecstatic. However, when I carry the bowl out of the room, he's confused, and follows me. The mystery kitty had set up shop on a pair of pants I've been meaning to donate to the Salvation Army for a couple years.

Now, a number of years ago, Loki met another kitty. He bit that cat on the ass to show it who was boss. He's all street. The mystery kitty came bounding out of my front room when I opened the door to feed him, and Loki had followed me. Not good. The two started making these ungodly noises at each other. I tried to grab mystery kitty and load it back into my front room, but it wasn't having any of it. Loki trusts me more, so I picked him up and shut him in my bathroom. I went back into my bedroom to try to grab mystery kitty. However, at some point during the melee I had set the bowl of food on my bed. Mystery kitty jumped up on my bed and started inhaling the food. It was still totally freaked out from its encounter with Loki, and when I tried to pick it up (which had previously been a pretty easy feat), it hissed at me and put its paw in the bowl of food like "You're NOT taking this from me, pinky!" I grabbed a pair of pajama pants and scooped up the cat and tossed it into the front room. I then picked up the food bowl and slid it into the room, and the cat started inhaling the food.

I went and checked on it a while later and it had left some food in the bowl. This indicated to me that the cat was not a stray--Loki was a stray and he'll eat every scrap of food I put in front of him. He must have gotten out somehow. So now I'm going to make some posters and hang 'em up. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


Continuing on in my tradition of amazing things falling into my lap, I've been offered the opportunity to play a show in Milwaukee this coming Sunday (February 19). Special thanks to Partisan and Cains & Abels who invited me to play and are all around awesome people. So yeah. It's at the Bremen Café, conveniently located at 901 E. Clarke St. in Milwaukee. Bring your friends, your parents, your ex-husbands...whatever. According to Charlie, "Michael Cothroll, comic artist and illustrator, will be showing his art in the back room and accepting donations." Excellent. Be there.

March Madness

Man oh man. I've started scanning the Reader again looking for decent upcoming shows, and there are more in March that I want to go to than there were in at least the last half of 2005. Mogwai and Growing. Billy Bragg. Death Vessel twice. Steve Wynn. The Minus 5. I can hardly stand it. I've been a Billy Bragg fan for about 15 years now and I've never gotten the opportunity to see him, so that's a no-brainer. The Minus 5, also a no-brainer. Steve Wynn and Mogwai I've seen before, but they're both great live. Death Vessel played here last month, but I ended up having to miss them. I'll probably wuss out on a couple of these, but regardless, it looks like some damn good music-goin' next month.

And I might play some, too. Stranger things have happened.

Monday, February 13, 2006

special hell

Sorry I haven't posted much lately, I've been really busy. Two brief barely music-related thoughts for today.

1) Check out Werner Herzog's excellent documentary The Great Ecstasy of Sculptor Steiner, about a carpenter-turned-champion ski jumper. Absolutely stunning photography, and a wonderful soundtrack from Popol Vuh.

2) Steve Albini once said "there's a special hell for people who bring babies on airplanes." I totally agree, and posit that there's also a special hell for people who stand on escalators.

more later.
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