What We Did Last Night:

What We Did Last Night:

Seattle School presents:
The Popular Real Time Live Songwriting Competition, Drinking Game, and Aural Obstacle Course

Seattle, WA - IRON COMPOSER continues it's popular monthly run at the Crocodile on Friday Nov 26th, with a musical battle royale between Brent Amaker of Dorkweed and guitar god Ian Moore. The November IC show has an overwhelming number of insurance-nightmare scenarios for audience participation, and includes an election by the audience in an opportunity to vote for new members of the Songwriting Stadium staff. Positions up for elections include: The Chairman, The Interloper, The Cheerleader and The Cop.

Celebrity judges will be Q13 Fox Sportscaster Dan Devone; host of 107.7 FM The End's Morning Alternative DJ No Name; and playwright, director, & theater critic for The Stranger Bret Fetzer. Opening act is The Xenophiles, and post show entertainment provided by Batum Schrag. For the competition, one audience member, randomly chosen as the "secret ingredient," gushes about his or her current state of affairs (or nefarious past) in a five-minute interview. Each composer draws inspiration from the personal these life-details and incorporates those into an original song to be performed at the end of the bout.

Think it's that easy? This 45-minute competition is divided into five nine-minute segments. Each segment contains a "Mystery Chaos," performed by The Interloper (Korby Sears of Seattle School) which distracts the composers. As added molasses, each composer drinks a shot of liquor at the beginning of each round, consuming five shots in the course of 45 minutes. Each composer is equipped with "musical kitchens" contaning: one guitar, one piano, paper and pencil and one Sous Chef Line Musician. The Sous Chef conducts live rehearsals with the house band on stage, and composers can only communicate with the band via their Sous Chef. Now that's what we call confounding! Yahear?

Seattle School
Latitude:47.45N - Longitude:122.30W
Seattle School - it's comfortable."

This really sounded like fun, and boy, it was! The best case of "organized chaos" that I've seen in a long while. At first I was pulling for Ian Moore, but Brent Amaker's song, "Prostitution, Drugs and Burglary in Spokane" (really, ya had to be there) won the day. The show ended kind of early, so Laurie, Stu, Mecedes, Scott, Cindy and I wandered around Belltown looking for someplace to eat, finally winding up at the Wasabi Bistro.


Back To It.

Back To It

The weekend was utterly unremarkable. I messed around on Friday after work until about 3PM, laid down for a nap after making tentative plans with the Frito and work up 12 hours later. Damn.
Saturday was difficult at first, then got better with Heidi's arrival. She came over to see my band.
So we goofed off for awhile and got caught up, then went over to the practice space to load out.
The gig went well...although we played first, so a bunch of friends showed later and missed us. My coworkers, Molly, Renee and Rick were there and Dante came out, as did Stu, Scott, Cindy, Jerri, Rachel and Neil. I think we played well, despite of a rather bad, crackly PA. We have another gig in a couple of weeks, but it's on a weeknight...so all those people who said, "Man, let me know when you're playing on a weekend, I'll be there!" and didn't show up? Phooey on Yooey.
After our set, the second band came on...let's just say that most of my friends did not appreciate their style...so Neil, Stu, Rachel, Renee, Heidi, Scott and I moseyed across the street to Dante's for a drink and some Pomme Frites. I was good and buzzed after four pints of AJ Winter Ale (The bartender, to her credit, warned me to be careful) and Stu and I remembered how we used to come down to Dante's for Dollar Pitcher night back in the day. I met Tim (and Free) for the first time in that bar, on a night we got so sloshed, a bunch of us wound up standing in a circle on a dock on Green Lake, passing around a big jug of cheap red wine -- shivering in the cold and attempting to discuss politics, forgetting our points halfway.
Renee musta gotten into that spirit, Heidi and I had to take her home and I had to clean the puke out of Heidi's car door, but all's well that ends well.
On Sunday Heidi and I went to "our spot", Beth's Cafe for salt and grease (delivered via eggs and hash browns.) Afterwards, she headed back to Bremerton and I played Half-Life 2 for awhile, then helped Laura try to set up the stereo in the TV room. We had mac n cheese for dinner, then I was off to work.

It's hard to believe we're standing at the mouth of the X-mas season. Orphan's Thanksgiving is coming up and there's a rash of birthdays in December. Then the two barest months and it all begins again. Is it possible to maintain a sense of wonder in a (somewhat) orderly universe? I feel my world has gotten smaller these last couple of years...and it makes me unhappy. How does one balance that against getting older (perhaps slower) when one is not involved in "domestication" like so many of my friends?



Thought Of The Day

Thoughts Of The Day

Y'know, there sure are a lot of stories about ODB's passing. I mean A LOT. Personally, I think the media outlets just like writing Ol' Dirty Bastard...

Louise came by the other day to chat and check out the house, making her my second guest and first official one. Renee came by when we were moving in, but we weren't set up yet. I gave Weez a tour and she got introduced to Laura and a good time was had by all.
Sometime between now and the weekend, the entertainment room will get set up. The rugs have finally arrived, now all we have to do is play some musical chairs with stuff in there and it should be nice!

Fey Ray is playing @ The Monkey Pub on Saturday night. Should be a lot of fun. We had a band meeting on Sunday before practice and I'm feeling a lot more optimistic about the (immediate) future of the band. We're still looking for a guitarist, but playing with James has been fun. It's cool to see how the music can stand up to these changes, starting as a trio, then adding Sean on guitar and backing vox, then swapping Sean out with James on keyboard. Personally, I think the ideal scenario is to keep James AND a second guitar. James can play several instruments and the idea of four-part harmonies makes me grin. I think think our next recording is going to be wilder and much more adventurous, which couldn't make me happier! Anyway, the Monkey Pub is a pretty cool place -- laid back, a good selection of beers and good fries! Stu and I played our first gig with Mr. Pope waaaayyy back in '92.

There has been some interesting fallout from the election. Most progressives I know seem to be quickly working through their grief and girding thier loins for battle. I think there are several positive outcomes for this, one is that we are finally recognizing who our base is. Second, several friends of mine are attending informal meetings to discuss what went wrong, etc. and how we might move on from here. Third, I think several people -- who simply weren't paying attention before are getting active. There's a lot more at stake than gays and terror and I believe the greatest threats to my life, liberty and pursuit of happiness come from right here.
For me, the question is not "What Happened?" it's "What are we gonna do about it?" Personally, I think the focus should be at the local level. If the cities are our strength, then we should start there and move outward.

Also - I started Half-Life 2 yesterday. OMFG!! it's awesome! The graphics are amazing, the gameplay engrossing...I have to tear myself away. If you like FPS or computer gaming in general, you simple have to have this one...


Back in the Saddle Again!

Back in the Saddle Again!

A few of you have called or written asking how the move went and how things are going. Here is my report:

The move was pretty smooth. I'd taken a load of stuff already boxed up over here a week before "M-day" and so I wound up only making two additional trips. Frito had taken me to Lowe's and we picked up some plastic bins with lids and they made wonderful, stackable containers. I found that over half my possession are (you ready for it?) books and CDs.
Things got a little hectic afterwards, I was pretty tired but couldn't rest yet. I'd only gotten everything IN the house not necessarily where it belongs...that has been a work in progress -- but progress has been steadily made.
Most of last week was devoted to hanging pictures, moving stuff around, doing laundry and sorting through stuff. We gave Dan a mini freezer and made a couple of dump runs.
Saturday was a exhausting. We got up early and headed south to Southcenter Mall, hit a bunch of bed and bath joints, both Pier 1 and Cost Plus and then Ikea and Costco...which I found depressing. I walked through the store while Laura was taking care of some bidness, looking at all the newlyweds and teenagers and middle aged and old folks, basically making a day out of shopping. Everyone looked well-fed and content and happy, glad to be out of the house and spending their hard-earned cast on...stuff. I'm not exactly an anti-capitalist, but I guess I'm not the type who gets excited about spending money (unless it's on beer or music). I bought a 1000 disc holder for my CD's and was somewhat dismayed to find that I might need another...I still have two boxes of discs down here in the basement.
Anyway, Laura and I have different styles, tastes and modus operandi, so there's been a bit of friction, mostly due to stress (and she's not feeling well) and after a day of running around we were really getting on each other's nerves. However, we talked about it and things are better now. We got the computer room set-up and over the next couple of days, the entertainment room will be set up.
Then we can have some folks over!




I'm loading the last of my crap from all over the house. Tomorrow I tackle my room.
I don't know how long it will be before I'm back online at home, so if you wanna get hold of me call my mobile. I have Sunday and Monday off so I'll check my email Tuesday night.

Take care and wish me luck!





BTW- Fey Ray is playing @ Nectar in Fremont (AKA The Center of the Universe), it's a benefit for the Compass Center:
"The Compass Center serves homeless and low-income men and women over 18 years of age, a vulnerable and underserved population in Seattle and King County. It is a culturally and ethnically diverse population, consisting of individuals with varying strengths and needs.
Many come to the Compass Center having multiple issues including domestic abuse, mental illness, drug/alcohol dependence, poor employment histories, undeveloped employment skills, child custody or other legal issues, and poor or incomplete rental histories. Some of the clients who access the emergency services are non-sheltered; sleep on the streets, in parks, under bridges, and have no other available meals or hygiene facilities.
Most individuals have no income or very low incomes; those served by our case management and shelter program have incomes below $7500/year. Client data indicates that 40% of the men served by the Compass Center are Veterans.
Blending compassion and caring with effective programs and unique services The people and programs at each of The Compass Center's locations promote dignity, self esteem, and respect for self and others. One-on-one case management identifies the issues that led to street life and helps each person set his or her own goals."
Sitting in with us (on keyboards and backing vocals) tomorrow night is our good friend and ally, James Drage (SIL2K, The Guest Stars, sub_sonic) and I am especially psyched to share a stage with SUSHIROBO!
So come on down, bring a pal, check out a relatively new club and rock out with us! It's for a great cause!!
9 p.m.
$10 donation.

We got played on KEXP today! Whoo Hoo! There's also a interview at NadaMucho!

I Hope They Move All The Chip Foundries First

I Hope They Move All The Chip Foundries First

"Secretary of State Colin Powell astonished observers in both East Asia and the United States last week with extraordinarily candid comments on the Taiwan issue. His statements moved U.S. policy closer than ever before to Beijing's position that Taiwan must reunify with the mainland -- an especially surprising step coming from a conservative Republican administration."



Whotta crazy week. Aside from putting on Troll A Go Go and packing to move, we see the same bad actors, crooks, bigots and enemies of democracy, freedom and (just about) anyone who doesn't make over 100K a year voted back into office.
Apparently, my fellow Americans are more scared of gays and terrorists than they are of losing their jobs, being uninsured, more war, deeper deficits or not having Social Security. Y'all want a strong leader? Someone who stands by his convictions despite (or in spite of) the facts? Well, I guess that's nothing new, after all - it's what the Japanese, Germans and Italians wanted from their leaders in '30's.
See what it got them...
There's an old term that military guys use: BOHICA. It stands for Bend Over Here It Comes Again! Nonetheless, I ain't bitter. As I said before, I think Kerry would've faced some pretty rabid opposition with the GOP in control of Congress, not to mention all the freeper types dogging him daily. Even if we were lucky, it would take a couple of years to get anything done and it would be bitter and partisan all the way.
I was surprised he conceeded so early, but maybe he thought (like I would):
"Fuck it, I'm rich. And I speak French. I can leave this bitch if I have to. They got windsurfing in Bali, right?"
Jezuz, I'm gonna be 41 before that asshole is out of office...that really bums me out. But what bums me out more is that in better, smarter hands, this wouldn't have even been a contest. With all that bad news (and trust me, there's more to come) out of Iraq and the fact that Dubya barely hung on during the debates AND the previous bullshit pulled over the last couple of years, you'd think anyone with a brain could see that this guy should be in charge of anything. And to the 11 or so percent of Dems who voted for Bush? Two words: Fuck You.
But I digress.
Now I wonder about three things:

1.) How Iraq and Afghanistan will play out. Since GWB broke it, he's not gonna have to watch someone else fix it. The international community will probably deal, but grudgingly - and could blame them?
2.) Now that he doesn't even have to pretend he's a moderate, how is that going to screw me?
3.) Who could oppose the GOP in 2006 and 2008.
4.) The Supreme Court...3 of them could be retiring soon and what that could mean.

I sure this feeling of waiting for the other shoe to drop will fade into background noise at some point. A fellas gotta earn a living, take care of bidness and get laid no matter who's in charge. I got a long weekend ahead of me and after I get into my new place, I'm going to get wasted, free my mind so my ass can follow and see what else I can get into. After that, I'm gonna keep on keepin' on the best way I know how.

Johnny Lydon (before he became a total git) once sang "Anger is an energy." I plan to put that energy to good use, fa'reals.