Tuesday March 12, 02
This year isn't going entirely to plan
Hmm, I managed to get another cold. Last year I had one all year, but this year it seems more like one a month.
And I went to the dentist this morning. A long, much-delayed trip.
Anyway, the nasty stuff is now out of the way.
I was reading all the exciting posts about the possibility of Morrissey touring. I'm sure I'll go if he plays New York, but I don't feel totally excited about it, to be honest. I have a funny history of Moz gigs. I'm just about too young to have seen the Smiths, and was 14 when he played the free Wolverhampton show (my mum would never have let me go). Then when he finally announced a tour in 1991, I was already committed to be on holiday. I was utterly gutted about this, but it turned out fine - he toured again in the autumn, and I got to see an incredible show at the Kilburn National in London on October 3rd. The show was really amazing, and the excitement in the air was almost tangible. I remember the crush at the front, and seeing friends pulled out over the front barrier. Then during 'The Loop', Moz threw out the tamborine. I got a hand to it, but I was one of about 20 people. I let go and went to get some air. I remember just sitting their dazed as he played 'asian rut' and a rockign 'that's entertainment'. It was really an incredible night.
I didn't see Moz again until the summer 1992 'Madstock' fiasco, when he played along with Madness, Ian Dury and Gallon Drunk at Finsbury Park in London. The whole day stank of rip-off (for example, you had to leave your leave all food outside the boundary of the park, and then pay for their slop inside), and there were so many people there of different persuasions (33,000, I believe) that the atmosphere was rather tense. Gallon Drunk's manic sound did not communicate very well over a PA in the park. When Moz came on, he looked out onto not adoring fans, but a bunch of big skinhead madness people. Even though I loved the just-relased 'Your arsenal', the show was a disaster.
The last time I saw him was in December 1992 (nearly 10 years ago - yikes!) at the Alexandra Palace. Again, the atmosphere was odd. I'm sure he picked up some far-right support at that point, whether he wanted to or not. The band was playing like a 'rock' band - five minutes of distortion at the end of songs, and so on. I came away disillusioned.
I did buy and enjoy Vauxhall and I, but I don't recall him touring with it. Maybe he did, and I missed it.
In NYC in 1997, I made a half-hearted attempt to see him in central park. I got there late, dressed in a suit. I sat on a bench and read a book. Someone took my picture.
Then in 2000, I turned up at the Beacon Theater on the night of the show. I had 2 friends with me. There was only one ticket left, so I didn't go. To be honest, it might have been a little weird for me anyway. Although I did buy 'maladjusted', I didn't think enough of it to keep it longer than 3 days before sending it to a friend in the UK who wanted to have the US version with the extra track.
So, the wheel has turned, and I'm actually quite interested in seeing him if he plays this year. People were posting 'dream setlists'. I'm going to try one, although it's hard, because the best songs are not necessarily the ones that come across best live.
Ok, here it is. I only put one Smiths song in, because - well, it would be weird without the rest of the band, right? It would be cool if he would play with a full orchestra one time.
Oh, and if anyone is in NYC, I recommend the Brit-pop night at Cinema Classics on 11th street between 1st and 2nd in the east village. Should be a fun night.
Wednesday February 20, 02
I'm now older than when I last wrote. I'm not bothered. In fact, I feel much better than I did a few years ago. For me, it was downhill after 18, and it took me a few years to feel like I was doing better. I've been revisiting a lot of music from the 'dark' years again recently though. Certain My Bloody Valentine tracks really are fantastic.
Two good friends of mine are getting married this Friday. They've picked 80 or so songs to play at their wedding, which I'm compiling for them. A few songs each by their favorite artists. The Smiths were among them. They chose 'There is a light' and 'Ask', and wanted to put 'There is a light' (with some other songs) on a special CD to give to each guest. I persuaded them to use 'Ask' instead. I love both songs, but they have other 'dark' stuff on there, and 'Ask' is joyful and brilliant (as well as being the first Smiths song I really got into when it was released).
Anyway, hope everyone is doing well.
Thursday February 14, 02
I'm listening to 'Vauxhall and I' today, for the first time in I don't know how long. An obvious thing to say, but what an incredibly brilliant album!
I also listened to another great album I'd almost forgotten this morning, Mercury Rev's 'Deserter's songs'.
Tuesday February 05, 02
Hello, friends... If anyone came to the Smiths live screening at Cinema Classics, I hope they had a good time. The picture wasn't great, but it was cool to see and hear it, and to see the documentary.
In other news, I found this amusing mp3. someone has taken a midi file of 'how soon is now', and overlaid a paraphrasing of the lyrics, derived from online dictionary examples. It's quite funny.
Monday January 28, 02
Listening to a live version of Slowdive's 'Morningrise' as I write this. I'm actually feeling quite good. My band played a show on Saturday night, and it went well, much better than expected. Smiths, a while back you were asking me what kind of place I would recommend to find Smiths music and slightly unhip young people. Alas, I'm only a DJ to the extent that I have the privelege of playing my favorite records in bars every now and again. I have very little inside knowledge, although I've enjoyed the 'Sadie' shows, and I believe the people in that group have another night called 'pomp'. I've never been, but it sounds interesting. Other than that, I think we're pretty much screwed. Having said that, this valentine's day all-Smiths bash sounds like fun. Did you come to either Morrissey karaoke night at cinema classics?
Monday January 07, 02
A fine new year
Well friends, I hope everyone is doing well. I've felt strangely productive and positive so far this year, in spite of submitting to a nasty cold on the day I returned from my holidays in England.
This Thursday I'll be DJing at Bar d'O in NYC's West Village, so come along if you're in the area. I won't be playing any Smiths, but it will be fun anyway, I promise.
Jacques, I'm a huge New Order fan as well. Do you like St. Etienne by any chance? I never liked them much when they were first out, but I recently got into them, partly because of their big New Order/Pet Shop Boys influence. It's funny how easy it can be to ignore bands who you would actually like. I'd never really heard the band Orange Juice, but on the basis of a few of the tracks I've heard recently, the Wedding Present, who I used to love, totally copied their sound. In fact, the guitar work in Orange Juice is slightly Smiths-like as well. Anyway, enough rambling.
Tuesday December 11, 01
Luna Lounge Wednesday Night
Well, I'm playing a show with The Isolators tomorrow night, 12th December, at Luna Lounge here in NYC. We haven't rehearsed quite as much as we would have liked, but I think it will be fun. I'm planning to have an enormous quiff. It should be fun.
I've been listening to quite a bit of Smiths recently. But I realized the other week at the Moz karaoke night that I hardly listen to Morrissey's solo stuff any more. It's not that I like it. In fact, I'm a pretty huge fan of everything up to and including 'Vauxhall'. I actually just don't have the CDs with me - with the exception of 'Your arsenal', they're thousands of miles away in my parents' garage. Ah well...
Monday October 15, 01
On Friday night I had possibly my first ever dream involving Morrissey, so I thought I'd share it. Unlike most of my recent dreams, which have been weird has hell, this one could actually be pieced together from different things which have happened in my life recently. Obviously, since it was a dream, a lot of the details and names were jumbled up.
I was going to see a Morrissey concert in a large venue with some friends. There were red velvet seats, and I was right at the front. Moz came on stage and started the show, but it seemed strangely lacklustre, and the venue still seemed to be more than half empty. What's more, he didn't exactly look like Moz. In fact, he only resembled him when he pulled certain expressions. The rest of the time he was just some big guy hanging out. Behind him was a huge screen which had a magnified view of the stage on it.
After a while, he disappeared from the stage, and the message came out that there was something wrong with his computer. At this point, the stage was empty, but the screen behind him showed Moz and an older woman messing around with a computer. After a while he seemed to become distracted from what he was doing, and began Instant Messaging some people. He was saying the kind of average, throwaway things which people often say on Instant Messager, liberally sprinkled with inane Smileys etc. I remember thinking how strange it was that he was doing that, and that now everyone in the audience would know what his IM name was (incidentally, it was 'eiei' in my dream - what the hell is that!).
I don't remember exactly what happened next; I think everyone just drifted out of the venue in disappointment... I have a faint memory of Moz coming back on stage and saying some menacing things about people in his past.
Anyway, I just thought I'd share this strange little journey into my subconscious.
Friday October 12, 01
ok, people are getting worried about opening mail and taking the subway. Things have definitely changed around here.
I'm doing ok though. My brother has been in town this past week, so I've been more sociable than usual.
I failed to get tickets for the upcoming Spiritualized show, alas, but the Bjork show at Radio City Music Hall was quite an experience. The full orchestral accompaniment was very cool, and she sang many of her best songs. It's a great venue. The people who work there are fascists though - they confiscated cameras and people had to queue for hours to get them back....
Everyone I know is pretty scared. I actually feel better than I did in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, although my dreams are still freaky as hell...
Thursday September 27, 01
I am tired, I am weary
I could sleep for a thousand years. I haven't had a good night's sleep in so long that I'm having difficulty standing up these days. This isn't very handy in view of the amount of work I have to do. I think I'm reasonably 'over' the trauma, yet my body seems to feel otherwise...
Still, I have the voice of Julie London to soothe me. RIP Julie, wherever you are...