Icelandic Film Fest and Music in San Francisco

Last night my wife and I attended the First Annual Icelandic Film Festival sponsored by McSweeney’s press and BÊkur Books to help raise funds for 826 Valencia, a non-profit organization started by the writer Dave Eggers (who also runs McSweeney’s) and others to help inner-city kids learn to write.  I’ve worked with this organization many…

A Year Ago: Elliot Smith

This week marks a year since the tragic bard Elliot Smith took his own life.  I guess we’ll never know what tormented him, but perhaps his lyrics are a testament to his unhappy existence.   His beautiful sense of melody via vocals, piano and guitar still brings chills to my spine. Memory Lane Between the Bars…

Jason Lowenstein

I always liked the second half of Sebadoh better, that is, Jason Lowenstein.  I’ve got nothing against Lou Barlow who I admire as a song writer, but he’s a bit too moody for me (sorry gurlz).  I saw Sebadoh in concert some years ago and Lou was not afraid to stop a tune midway because…

AstroJet

I just finished watching the new Grandaddy video and it put me in such a good mood that it reminded me of a tune that put a smile on my face recently, Beautiful Life by AstroJet.  The band features the singer from Fountains of Wayne and a host of other talented NYC musicians.  Here’s a…

Oh no, William Shatner sings again!

One of the bloggers had a link to Shatner doing the Beatle’s “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”.  I’d never felt such a rush when listening to a cover before. . . . “The one-time James T. Kirk of “Star Trek” fame has released an 11-song collection this month, a follow-up to his 1968 spoken-word…

Jon Stewart bitchslaps CNN’s ‘Crossfire’ show

I don’t make it a habit to read MTV news, but my RSS reader keeps me up to date on interesting headlines and this one caught my eye: “In what could well be the strangest and most refreshing media moment of the election season, “The Daily Show” host Jon Stewart turned up on a live…

The Bonniwell Music Machine

Regarded as a founding pioneer of ìgarage rockî in 1966, and often called ìthe godfather of punk,î legendary songwriter Sean Bonniwell and The Bonniwell Music Machine is performing in Europe for the first time ever this November, in a series of limited engagements of ìThe Turn On Europe Tour.î The Bonniwell Music Machine Dates: 12…

Hot Snakes

I just had to re-post this one for those friends of mine who can’t get enough of that San Diego sound. . . “If per chance Drive Like Jehu changed your life at one point but you let yourself slip back into a rut, a coma, and you’ve been living under a rock (mortgage, marriage,…

tHe bLAck RideR

Last night I went to the final weekend performance of The Black Rider at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco.  I paid $35 bucks for balcony seats that were made at a time when people must have been five foot two (it was a tight squeeze).  The show was a treat, not spectacular, but…

Tom Waits on Fresh Air

The interview is from 2002, but it’s still a treat to hear the gargling genius talk about his influences (does Terry Gross know what she’s talking about?). Tom Waits on Fresh Air Other Tunes: Tom Waits : Jesus Gonna Be Here (live) Tom Waits : Falling Down (live) Tom Waits : Sea of Love (amazing,…

A fist-full of Punk to get the weekend started

Here in San Francisco we don’t celebrate Columbus Day.  Instead we celebrate Indigenous People’s Day.  I think that’s pretty punk.  Therefore, I convey to you a celebratory selection of Punk Rock! “They… brought us parrots and balls of cotton and spears and many other things, which they exchanged for the glass beads and hawks’ bells….