Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Urequited Bewilderment

"Explain it Away", from The 365 Project, got airplay on Don Campau's mighty No Pigeonholes radio show on KKUP 91.5 fm in San Cupertino, CA over the weekend. You can listen to the podcast HERE.

As Don reveals in the program, I compiled 20 songs from The 365 Project at his request to be released on his Lonely Whistle Records label. Should be ready to ship by next week and you can contact Don through the Lonely Whistle Records website if you'd like a copy. The songjournal finally rests.

Don's huge presence on the indie scene - through his own music, the radio show and a vast, international network of close music connections - is beyond staggering. I hosted a podcast interview with Don where he discussed and shared some of his long history of independent music making. You can check it out and listen HERE.

Cheers to Don Campau!!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Trout Mask Zen

Captain Beefheart's 10 Commandments of Guitar Playing

(From the Captain Beefheart Radar Station)

1. Listen to the birds.

That's where all the music comes from. Birds know everything about how it should sound and where that sound should come from. And watch hummingbirds. They fly really fast, but a lot of times they aren't going anywhere.

2. Your guitar is not really a guitar Your guitar is a divining rod.

Use it to find spirits in the other world and bring them over. A guitar is also a fishing rod. If you're good, you'll land a big one.

3. Practice in front of a bush

Wait until the moon is out, then go outside, eat a multi-grained bread and play your guitar to a bush. If the bush dosen't shake, eat another piece of bread.

4. Walk with the devil

Old Delta blues players referred to guitar amplifiers as the "devil box." And they were right. You have to be an equal opportunity employerin terms of who you're brining over from the other side. Electricity attracts devils and demons. Other instruments attract other spirits. An acoustic guitar attracts Casper. A mandolin attracts Wendy. But an electric guitar attracts Beelzebub.

5. If you're guilty of thinking, you're out

If your brain is part of the process, you're missing it. You should play like a drowning man, struggling to reach shore. If you can trap that feeling, then you have something that is fur bearing.

6. Never point your guitar at anyone

Your instrument has more clout than lightning. Just hit a big chord then run outside to hear it. But make sure you are not standing in an open field.

7. Always carry a church key

That's your key-man clause. Like One String Sam. He's one. He was a Detroit street musician who played in the fifties on a homemade instrument. His song "I Need a Hundered Dollars" is warm pie. Another key to the church is Hubert Sumlin, Howlin' Wolf's guitar player. He just stands there like the Statue of Liberty-making you want to look up her dress the whole time to see how he's doing it.

8. Don't wipe the sweat off your instrument

You need that stink on there. Then you have to get that stink onto your music.

9. Keep your guitar in a dark place

When you're not playin your guitar, cover it and keep it in a dark place. If you don't play your guitar for more than a day, be sure you put a saucer of water in with it.

10. You gotta have a hood for your engine

Keep that hat on. A hat is a pressure cooker. If you have a roof on your house, the hot air can't escape. Even a lima bean has to have a piece of wet paper around it to make it grow.