Tuesday, November 30, 2004

HOAXES, PRANKS & WEIRDNESS

I just want to pass on a couple of sites I stumbled across this morning:

THE MUSEUM OF HOAXES CLICK HERE

BOING BOING
CLICK HERE

and one of my all-time classic faves:

LANDOVER BAPTIST CHURCH CLICK HERE

Hours of entertainment ...

Monday, November 29, 2004

NM ODs ON CAMPAIGN ADS

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 28, 2004


(Somehow this one missed the New Mexican's web site.)

So you think you saw significantly more campaign commercials on television this year than you saw during past election seasons?

You’re right.

According to a new study by a Washington, D.C.-based organization called the Alliance for Better Campaigns, politicians spent an estimated $28 million on campaign commercials in the Albuquerque/Santa Fe market this year.

That’s nearly four times the amount spent in 2000, the previous presidential-election year.

Furthermore, the Albuquerque/Santa Fe market, while ranked 47th in market-area population, ranked eighth in the nation for number of political commercials aired in the study. Meanwhile, only six television stations in the country aired more political ads than KOAT-TV, Albuquerque’s ABC affiliate.

“Television air time is the No. 1 cost center for candidates in competitive races,” said Meredith McGehee, president of the Alliance for Better Campaigns.

She made the point that the amount of political-ad revenue nationwide is “an enormous election-year windfall for broadcasters, who receive free licenses to operate on the publicly owned airwaves.”

New Mexico got so many political ads, because it was considered one of a handful of battleground states. Democrat Al Gore beat Republican George W. Bush here in 2000 by 366 votes. This year, the polls were close throughout the race. Bush eventually defeated Democrat John Kerry here by about 6,000 votes — less than 1 percent.
According to the study, which used figures compiled by a private firm called Campaign Media Analysis Group, New Mexico stations aired more than 38,000 political ads this year.

This includes ads for presidential candidates as well as state and local candidates, McGehee said in a telephone interview last week.

Besides the presidential race, candidates in Congressional District 1 — Republican incumbent Heather Wilson and unsuccessful Democratic challenger Richard Romero — both ran intensive television-ad campaigns.

In the previous presidential-election year, Albuquerque stations aired 18,871 political commercials at a cost of $7,169,600, according to the Alliance for Better Campaigns statistics.

Even though 2002 wasn’t a presidential year, politicos paid more than $10 million for more than 21,000 television commercials.

In a written statement announcing the release of the study, McGehee said the heavy volume of political advertising in presidential battleground states far outweighed the amount of news coverage of the election.

This adds weight to the argument made by critics of television news that people who get most of their news from television are more likely to be influenced by political commercials.

Citing statistics from the Lear Center Local News Archive, she said 30 minutes of local news in battleground states averaged almost six minutes of campaign advertising, but only three minutes of campaign news. Forty-five percent of all television campaign stories were about strategy or polls, while only 29 percent focused on campaign issues. Ad-watch stories, which check the truthfulness of political spots, made up less than 1 percent of campaign stories in the study’s sample, McGehee said.

New Mexico wasn’t one of the 11 television markets included in that study. However, in a 2002 study by the Lear Center, Albuquerque stations’ percentages of campaign stories were in line with those of other stations in the study.

The Alliance for Better Campaigns is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing the cost of campaigns and increasing the flow of issue-based political information before elections. The organization’s honorary co-chairmen are former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford and retired CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite.

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, November 28, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays (Mountain Time)
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Thanksgiving in Reno by Too Much Joy
Friends Like Mine by The Donnas
Mt. Everest by Royal Crescent Mob
The Town That Lost Its Groove Supply by The Minus 5
Repo Man by Iggy Pop
Down to the Well by The Pixies
Special Rate Sherry by Vinnie Santino
Sex With My Hat by The Firesign Theatre

Sentimental Marching Song by Sally Timms
Big Zombie by The Mekons
Wedding Dress by Johnny Dowd
Xracothep by The Fall
No, I'm Ironman by The Butthole Surfers
King Kong by Tom Waits
Devil Town by Daniel Johnston
If I Couldn't Say a Word by Lamar Nelson


Agua Boogy by Parliment
Quickie by George Clinton
Blasters by Bootsy's New Rubber Band
Let's Take It To the Stage by Funkadelic

Hyperballad by The Twilight Singers
I Need Love by NRBQ
Surf's Up by Brian Wilson
Boobytrappin' by David Holmes
God Walks Among Us Now by The Flaming Lips
The Kingdom of Heaven is Within You by Mother Earth
My Little Corner of the World by Yo La Tengo
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Sunday, November 28, 2004

THIS MAN NEEDS NO INTRODUCTION


And yet I've been asked to introduce Billy Joe Shaver next Saturday at the screening of the documentary The Portrait of Billy Joe at The Santa Fe Film Festival. The screening is scheduled for 2 p.m. Dec. 4 at the CCA.

I'll also be introducing the documentary Searching For The Wrong-Eyed Jesus for the film festival. This screening is 8:45 p.m. Thursday Dec. 2 at The Screen. (For my review. scroll down a couple of posts below.)

Saturday, November 27, 2004

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, November 26, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
You Asked Me To by Shaver
Blacklisted by Neko Case
Live Fast, Love Hard, Die Young by Faron Young
4,000 Rooms in Amarillo by Sid Hausman & Washtub Jerry
You Win Again by Mother Earth
You're the Reason Our Kids Are Ugly by Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn
Queen of Country by Nancy Apple
Delta Land by Susie Salley
Love Birds by Roy D. Mercer

Dying Breed by Lonesome Bob with Allison Moorer
Fire and Water by Buddy Miller
I Just Lost My Mind by Rex Hobart & His Misery Boys
Cold War by Gerraint Watkins
Out on the Highway by Eric Hisaw
Nashville Radio by Jon Langford
Red or Green by Lenny Roybal
Carve That Possum by Uncle Dave Macon

Searching For The Wrong-Eyed Jesus Set
Still Waters by Jim White
First There Was by Johnny Dowd
Phyllis Ruth by 16 Horsepower
When That Helicopter Comes by The Handsome Family
Graveyard by Trailer Bride
10 Miles to Go on a 9 Mile Road by Jim White

1952 Vincent Black Lightning by The Del McCoury Band
21st Century Garbage Man by Joe West
A Six Pack to Go by Hank Thompson
Dear Mother by Acie Cargill
I Don't Want to Get Adjusted by Iris DeMent
Thanksgiving by Loudon Wainwright III
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, November 26, 2004

SEARCHING FOR THE WRONG-EYED JESUS

A review of a film to be shown at The Santa Fe Film Festival
As Published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 26, 2004


Singer Jim White, the star of the documentary Searching For the Wrong-Eyed Jesus, observes that in the South the simplest most mundane conversation has the potential of becoming a major theological discourse on right and wrong, sin and redemption, God and the Devil.

And the blood.

Blood, as Rennie Sparks of The Handsome Family points out in the film, is a major motif, whether it's the Blood of the Lamb in religious sermons or the blood shed in the old murder ballads and tragic songs of life still being sung in the backwoods.

Indeed, all through this strange and captivating little film by Andrew Douglas, the glory of God and the temptations of Satan dance around each other. You feel this dance in the whiskey-soaked honky tonks, the backwoods Pentecostal churches, at the truckstops, the swamps, the coal mines and the barber shops. You hear it in the music, in the hellfire sermons, in the conversations, and, as novelist Harry Crews points out, in the stories Southerners tell, those essential stories that give people their identities and explain their place in the world.

Douglas, an Englishman, got the idea for the documentary when someone gave him a copy of White’s enigmatic 1997 debut CD The Mysterious Tale of How I Shouted Wrong-Eyed Jesus. He had to know where these songs came from. Douglas contacted White, who lives in rural Florida. The singer agreed to be the tour guide for a trip to the South, where, he explains in the movie, if you go five or 10 miles away from the interstate you can find life as it was 50 or 100 years ago.

Also enlisted for the journey were writer Crews, who talks about spitting birds and the proper way to cook a possum, as well as a bevy of musicians -- who, like White, represent the “gothic” side of the alternative country universe. These include The Handsome Family (who now live in Albuquerque), Johnny Dowd, David Eugene Edwards of 16 Horsepower, Trailer Bride’s Melissa Swingle. David Johansen (former New York Dolls, Buster Poindexter) sings a bluesy “Last Fair Deal” in a motel room. But the most impressive music here are the unknown pickers and singers Douglas and White meet along the way -- a gospel rockabilly group playing in a church, The Singing Hall Sisters, who harmonize on “Knoxville Girl” in a booth at a truckstop, elderly banjo man Lee Sexton, who sings “Little Maggie” and “Rye Whiskey” as if he wrote them himself.

Searching For Wrong-eyed Jesus is an unforgettable glimpse into poor, white Southern culture. A key word here is “white.” You’ll see few African-American faces in the movie. And there’s no discussion of race. It seems like a huge omission, but the issue of race is such a huge can of worms it probably would take an entire other movie just to scratch the surface.

Urban viewers, especially those not acquainted with true Southern culture might tend to look down their snoots on the people encountered here, with all their talk of sin and blood and Jesus.

But despite the obvious poverty, ignorance, tragedy and superstition, the culture presented here is rich and complex. As White, who sometimes attends Pentecostal services, says, you’ve got to leave your mind at the door and go in with an open heart.

Tune into The Santa Fe Opry, 10 p.m. - midnight MST tonight on KSFR 90.7 FM, for a segment featuring musicians from this film. That segment starts right after the 11th Hour. And it's streaming live on the internet.

Searching For The Wrong-eyed Jesus will be shown 8:45 p.m. Thursday Dec. 2 and 8 p.m. Sunday Dec. 5 at The Screen at the College of Santa Fe. For Santa Fe Film Festival tickets call 505-989-1495.

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: IN THE WORLD OF TIMMS

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 26, 2004


Back in the mid ‘80s Sally Timms made a strange and wonderful contribution to punk rock.

Before Timms hooked up with The Mekons, most female punk vocals was virtually limited to the Wendy O. Williams growl, the Exene whine or the Joan Jett snarl.

Timms added a whole new dimension: Subversive beauty.

Her warm, honey-toned voice was -- and still is -- nothing short of heart-breaking. Not to mention jarring when the lyrics she sang were harsh and acidic.

In recent years, Timms' solo work, that that of fellow Mekon Jon Langford, mainly has been in the country-folk genre -- her 1999 album Cowboy Sally’s Twilight Laments For Lost Buckaroos being the best example.

But with her new work In the World of Him, a nine-song EP, Timms branches out produced by genius weirdo Johnny Dowd and his musical sidekick Justin Asher.

Dowd‘s musical backdrops range from crazed proto-techno soundscapes (the opening tune Langford‘s “Sentimental Marching Song”) to somber folk (Ryan Adams‘ “Fools We Are As Men,” on which Timms is backed by just an acoustic guitar and accordion.)

Except for the final song, “Little Tommy Tucker,” which she wrote herself, the songs of In the World of Him are written by men - Adams, Dowd, Langford, Mark and Kevin Coyne. Shey also revamps a couple of classic Mekons songs, “Corporal Chalkie” and one of her signature songs, “Bomb,” in the sputtering quacky Dowd style.

It’s almost an answer to those patronizing politically-correct “women in rock” thumb sucker essays that pop up every few years in music journalism. Timms is after the male perspective here. And, doggone it, there are some fine male songwriters out there.

The best songs on Him are Coyne’s “I’m Just a Man,” a slow, pretty melody -- perfect for Sally’s voice -- rising above a clunky percussion track and Eitzel’s “God’s Eternal Love,” one of the darkest tunes ever penned by this unrepentant purveyor of darkness. Timms captures the disturbing spirit of the song. Timms croons “and your death is only the key to the future/ and your children are just pigs/ they will roast …” over an acoustic guitar with what sounds like an electrical storm in the background.

But not all is darkness here. The funniest song on Him is Dowd’s “139 Hernalser Gurtel” which sounds like a war song written by Kurt Weil obsessed with pornography and tripping on acid.

“In the world of him/girly men waltz sweetly/across the borders of skin/latex icons line the shelves / like toy soldiers in a sex army,” Timms recites.

Finally, someone captures the male perspective.

Speaking of Johnny Dowd: I reviewed his latest album Cemetery Shoes late last April after it had been out on the Dutch label Munich Records, thinking it would come out on an American label fairly soon. Actually, it didn’t get released in this country until about a month ago on the tiny Bongo Beat label

And you can read my review on my blog, in the April archives.(CLICK HERE then scroll down just a little.)

Also recommended:

*Heaven & Hell
by The Mekons. Amazingly, even though The Mekons have been around in one form or another for more than a quarter century, nobody until now has compiled a “greatest hits” collection.

If you’ve read all the way through a review of a Sally Timms CD -- and indeed if you’ve read my music rants for any time -- chances are you don’t need an explanation of who The Mekons are.

But if you’re an average American and just a casual rock ’n’ roll fan, you’re probably part of the 99 percent of the unfortunate deprived and uninformed masses who have never known Mekon pleasure. So for you, here’s a quick history:

The Mekons started out in the late ‘70s in Leeds, England, originally becoming notorious for their 1978 song “Never Been To a Riot,” a send-up of The Clash’s “White Riot.”

By the mid ‘80s original members Jon Langford and Tom Greenhalgh led a reconfigured Mekons with a new sound that stole any sound not nailed to the floor -- country music, reggae, eventually acid house and other styles. They added a fiddler, Susie Honeyman, an accordion player, Rico Bell, and a singer named Sally. They sang socialist screeds, songs of drunkenness and depravity and ballads of doomed love. Critics loved them. Record companies screwed them. The public ignored them.

Heaven & Hell is a double-disc collection that just might be the perfect introduction for the uninitiated. It goes all the way back to their punk origins with songs like “Never Been To a Riot,” and “This Sporting Life,” their ill-fated but still glorious stab at commercial success “Memphis Egypt” and more recent gems like the fierce rocking “The Olde Trip to Jerusalem” and Timms’ gorgeous “Millionaire.”

And there’s four songs from out of print So Good It Hurts as well as selections from Eps, singles, etc.

Of course I’m still going to grumble about a couple of omissions. How dare they omit “Cast No Shadow” from Journey to the End of the Night or “The Flame That Killed John Wayne” or “The Ballad of Sally” ?

Of course these oversights will be initiative for the millions of new Mekons fans to seek out the original albums.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: RICHARDSON vs. WHO?

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 25, 2004


Now that the presidential election is history, one of the most burning political questions is who will challenge Democrat Bill Richardson for governor.

Actually, to be honest, “burning” is overstating it a little. In fact, the most common reaction I got from folks I asked this week was along the lines of, “Dang, we just got done with this election ...” Obviously most were dreaming of Thanksgiving turkeys instead of focusing a political race nearly two years away.

Richardson has stated many times that he plans to seek re-election.

Although the governor was embarrassed in not winning the state for Democrat John Kerry, that little black eye is likely to have long faded by the next election. He’s got a well-oiled political machine, the national networks still love to interview the guy, and if he truly is seeking national office in 2008 as most assume, Richardson is going to pour every fiber of his being to winning re-election.

So who will the Republicans put up against him?

The only name that a handful of prominent Republicans could come up with was John Sanchez, the former state legislator who ran against Richardson in 2002.

Contacted Wednesday, Sanchez was coy when asked if he was considering another race. “Are we on the record or off?” he said.

I wanted to stay on the record.

“Well, I’m just enjoying the re-election of President Bush, especially here in New Mexico” he said. “And we’re making plans to celebrate in Washington, D.C. in January.”

Sanchez was Southwestern regional chairman of the Bush-Cheney campaign. His territory included this state, Arizona, Colorado, Utah and Texas — all of which went to Bush. “It was tough, because New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado were all in play,” Sanchez said.

But is he running for governor?

“We’re grateful to still have a very supportive statewide organization,” Sanchez said. “We’ll continue to work to grow the party and to elect Republicans.”

But is he running for governor?

When pressed, all Sanchez would say was “No comment.”

But he said to keep in touch.

In 2002, Richardson whomped Sanchez 56 to 39 percent of the vote. Richardson, who had more than $8 million in campaign funds vastly outspent Sanchez, who had less than $3 million.

One question that will be batted around in the next 11 months from now is whether the national GOP will pour in money in the governor’s race to try to stop Richardson in his tracks or whether they will assume it’s a lost cause and put their campaign cash elsewhere.

A shot from the sheriff


One Republican I spoke with Wednesday was Darren White, Bernalillo County sheriff and former state Public Safety secretary.

A couple of folks I talked to this week thought that White might be logical GOP candidate. He’s young, he was a very visible spokesman in the Bush campaign, he has a good political base in Albuquerque and has some state government experience.

Plus, he served a stint as a television reporter, so he knows how to look good on t.v.

However, both the people who had mentioned White as a possible candidate were fellow journalists and what do we know?

White flatly denied any interest in the 2006 governor’s race.

Exact quote: “No, no, no.”

So who will the Republicans run for governor?

“I would argue that the only one trying to run as a Republican now is Bill Richardson,” White said. “Underscore the word ‘trying.’ ”

Rooster lovers

First there was Pamela Anderson. Then there was The Golden Girls, or at least Rue McClanahan.

And now a politically-oriented comic apparently has joined the list of celebrities trying to convince the state to outlaw cockfighting.

According to MSNBC gossip columnist Jeanette Walls, comedian Bill Maher, who created the television show Politically Incorrect, recently wrote to the governor, asking Richardson to support a ban cockfighting in that state.

Walls quoted Maher’s letter: “You want to see real bloodshed? Put Ralph Nader and Ann Coulter in a room together. Now that’s entertainment.”


Tuesday, November 23, 2004

HOUSE LEADERSHIP

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 23, 2004


Democrats in the state House of Representatives voted Monday to oust their majority floor leader in favor of a Grants lawyer whose father was speaker of the House in the 1970s.

Rep. Kenny Martinez, who was re-elected to a fourth House term this month, defeated Rep. Danice Picraux of Albuquerque, who had held the leadership position since 2001. Rep. John Heaton of Carlsbad also ran for the post.

Also on Monday, House Democrats picked Rep. Sheryl Williams Stapleton of Albuquerque for majority whip. She will become the first black lawmaker to get a leadership position in the state Legislature.

House Republicans also met in caucus Monday. They decided to keep their floor leader, Rep. Ted Hobbs of Albuquerque. Two House Republicans challenged Hobbs for the position.

Martinez is the son of the late former Speaker Walter Martinez, who was House speaker from 1971 through 1978. In 2000, Kenny Martinez considered running for speaker against Rep. Ben Luján of Nambé after former Speaker Raymond Sanchez of Albuquerque was defeated for re-election. However, he decided not to challenge Luján, who still holds that job.

No Democrat challenged Luján for the speaker’s post this year.

Martinez told reporters after the House Democrat caucus — which was not open to the public — to expect no great changes. “The House will continue to go as smoothly as before under the speaker,” he said.

Both Martinez and Luján described House Democrats as being united despite the battles for various leadership positions.

Picraux, who was the first female majority leader in the state House, said her defeat wasn’t a vote against her.

“People have been looking at Kenny to be a leader,” she told reporters. “This is the moment he chose. I don’t think they were throwing me out.”

Picraux in 2000 defeated former Rep. Max Coll of Santa Fe for the floor leadership in a close caucus vote.

Like Sen. Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, who was elected Senate majority floor leader this weekend, Martinez has been chairman of his chamber’s Judiciary Committee for several years.

Martinez took several political lumps earlier this year after he sponsored a wildly unpopular bill that would have required ignition interlocks on all vehicles in order to prevent drunken driving.

The measure — which would have cost drivers about $1,000 per vehicle — passed the House. But the bill — and Martinez — were widely denounced on talk radio and in letters to editors in newspapers across the state and became a campaign issue in some legislative races.

The majority floor leader runs the calendar, deciding what legislation gets heard when. It’s the No. 2 position under the speaker.

In other Democratic leadership races, Williams Stapleton, who recently was re-elected to a sixth term in the House, defeated three others for the post: Reps. Mimi Stewart and Miguel Garcia, both of Albuquerque, and Joe Campos of Santa Rosa.

She is one of two blacks in the Legislature, the other being Rep. Jane Powdrell-Culbert, R-Rio Rancho.

Whips are responsible for counting votes, trying to convince members to vote according to caucus positions and to make sure members show up for floor votes.

Although Heaton was defeated for majority leader, he was elected by acclamation to keep his current job as Democratic caucus leader.

On the Republican side, Hobbs, who has been minority leader since 1999, beat challengers Brian Moore of Clayton, as well as Larry Larrañaga of Albuquerque. Moore, who just got re-elected to a third term, had been campaigning for the job since April.

In the whip’s race, Rep. Terry Marquardt of Alamogordo beat Rep. Dan Foley of Roswell and Rep. Don Bratton of Hobbs.

Rep. Anna Crook of Clovis defeated Teresa Zanetti of Albuquerque.

On the Senate side, Democrats on Monday voted to keep Sen. Mary Jane Garcia of Doña Ana as whip. On Saturday, Garcia and Sen. Linda Lopez of Albuquerque were tied in a race that also included Sen. Bernadette Sanchez of Albuquerque. Garcia won in the second ballot.


Sunday, November 21, 2004

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, November 21, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
My Little Problem by The Replacements with Johnette Napolitano
Have You No Pride by The Donnas
Man by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Aba Cadaver by The Hives
Fell in Love With a Girl by The White Stripes
Rape Me by Nirvana
Living Life by The Eels
Hombre Secreto by The Plugz
Nimrod's Son by Frank Black & 2 Pale Boys
Insignificance by The Mekons
Hang Fire by The Rolling Stones

California Tuffy by The Geraldine Fibbers
Broken English by Marianne Faithful
Abattoir Blues by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
Green Eyed by The Fall
The World's a Mess, It's in My Kiss by X
I Want To Be Loved by You by Helen Kane

Black is the Color of my True Love's Hair by The Twilight Singers
My Curse by The Afghan Whigs with Marcy Mays
Tilted by Sugar
Evil by Interpol
Marquee Moon by Television

Nobody Laughs When They Leave by The Residents
Into the Sun by Stan Ridgway
Dead and Lovely by Tom Waits
All That's Left to Say Is Goodbye by NRBQ
The Days of Wine and Booze by The Minus 5
Blue Clouds by Mercury Rev
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

SANCHEZ NEW MAJORITY LEADER

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 21, 2004


State Senate Democrats on Saturday chose Sen. Michael Sanchez of Belen to be their majority floor leader.

Also during a party caucus in Albuquerque, the Democrat lawmakers endorsed Sen. Ben Altamirano of Silver City to be the new president pro tem of the Senate. While this gives Altamirano‘s chances a good boost, the president pro-tem is voted on by the full Senate -- not just Democrats -- in January.

The two top positions in the Senate opened up following the resignation of prior Majority Leader Manny Aragon and the decision of current president pro tem Richard Romero to not seek re-election.

Sanchez, a lawyer by profession, has been the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee for several years.

He is the brother of Raymond Sanchez, who was speaker of the House for 16 years until he was defeated for re-election in 2000.

In a secret ballot Michael Sanchez defeated several candidates vying for the job, which had belonged to Sen. Manny Aragon. Aragon resigned from the Senate this year after being named president of New Mexico Highlands University.

Sanchez said he's "excited that the caucus is together." He said he spoke with the two senators who ran for the majority leader post -- Phil Griego of San Jose and Carlos Cisneros of Taos -- and all agreed to work together.

"I'll be working with the governor and every legislator," Sanchez said. "I believe this is a new beginning in the Senate."

Contracted after the vote, Griego said he wasn’t upset.

“I’m still a senator,” he said. “I still have a voice and a responsibility to my constituents.”

Griego had campaigned aggressively for the position for several months. One of his selling points was what he called his “access to the Fourth floor” -- in other words his good working relationship with Gov. Bill Richardson.

Richardson has stayed officially neutral in the leadership contests. But some senators believe that Altamirano and Griego were Richardson’s preferred candidates for the posts.

Altamirano, who has been in the Senate since 1971, is the senator with the most seniority. He has served as chairman of the Senate Finance Committee for several years.

Republican Joe Carraro of Albuquerque also is running for the pro tem job. Democrats outnumber Republicans 24-18 in the Senate, though Carraro claims he can convince enough Democrats to vote for him to win.

Sanchez, however, said he believes Democrats will unite behind Altamirano. "I believe our caucus will name the next president pro tem, he said.

Two other Democrats were seeking the pro tem post, including Senators Tim Jennings of Roswell and Dede Feldman of Albuquerque.

The Democratic senators agreed not to disclose the vote count in any of the races a senator, who asked not to be identified said.

In another leadership race, two Democrats tied for the position of majority whip. These were Senators Linda Lopez of Albuquerque and Mary Jane Garcia of Dona Ana, who currently holds that position.

Senate Democrats will hold another caucus meeting Monday to vote again for whip. Sanchez said one possibility would be to have "co-whips."

Sen. Lidio Rainaldi of Gallup was elected caucus leader.

Senate Republicans are scheduled to meet today though neither Minority Floor Leader Stuart Ingle of Portales or Minority Whip Leonard Lee Rawson of Las Cruces are expected to have any challengers.

House Democrats and Republicans will both caucus on Monday, Both Majority Leader Danice Picraux, D-Albuquerque and Minority Floor Leader Ted Hobbs, R-Albuquerque, have challengers.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, November 19, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting:
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell
Co-host Laurell Reynolds


OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Lower 48 by The Gourds
Daddy's Cup by Drive-By Truckers
Believe It's True by Goshen
(Interview with filmmaker Lexie Shabel, Grant Hayunga of Goshen and Bill Palmer of Hundred Year Floor, concerning Lexie's new movie VFWbya.)
Come On by Hundred Year Flood
El Presidente by Goshen
Love and Lust by Hundred Year Flood
Mike the Can Man by Joe West
Matty Groves by ThaMuseMeant
I Am A Lonesome Fugitive by Roy Buchanan
Soul of a Man by Mother Earth

I Don't Like That Mirror by Rex Hobart and the Misery Boys
I've Got That Old Time Religion In My Heart by Iris Dement
One Piece at a Time by Michelle Shocked
Sometimes When I Get To Thinking by Buffy Saint Marie
You're the Reason God Made Oklahoma by David Frizzel & Shelly West
Agony Train by The Legendary Shack Shakers
I Sure Miss You by Gene Vincent
Truck Drivin Son Of A Gun by Dave Dudley
Lost To A Geisha Girl by Skeeter Davis

Loretta by Neko Case
Women's Prison by Loretta Lynn
I Still Miss Someone by Dolly Parton
I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry by Hank Williams
Someday by Blaze Foley
A Couple More Years by Willie Nelson
The Wurlitzer Prize by Waylon Jennings
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list


Friday, November 19, 2004

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: IT'S TWILIGHT TIME

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 19, 2004


She Loves You, the new album by The Twilight Singers is Greg Dulli’s latest joy ride -- in the Blue Velvet meaning of that phrase -- into the dark side of love and desire.

With roaring guitars and his own scratchy Romeo-is-bleeding voice -- aided on several tunes here by the magic baritone growl of his former roomie and ex-Screaming Tree Mark Lanegan -- Dulli belts out songs of betrayal, anger and resignation.

This is a covers album. Dulli’s familiar with the concept. With his old band, The Afghan Whigs, he released an EP of soul covers called Uptown Avondale, which, with versions of “Come See About Me,” “Band of Gold,” “True Love Travels Down a Gravel Road,” etc., showed common if not obvious threads between Dulli’s Cincinnati grunge and sweet soul music.

But this album is more ambitious, with Dulli covering a wider range of sources: Coltrane to Fleetwood Mac; Marvin Gaye to Bjork; Gershwin to Hope Sandoval. (But no, The fab moptops’ famous yeah-yeah-yeah song won’t be found here.)

Amazingly Dulli makes each of these songs his own. She Loves You comes off like a scrapbook of a bruised relationship.

Dulli sounds like a lovelorn prowler as he earnestly sings the lyrics of Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love,” just barely rising above the din of guitars, piano and Jon Skibic’s screaming lap steel.

He sounds as if he’s been up all night as he rages through Lindsay Buckingham’s “What Makes You Think You’re the One.” Over a guitar riff (heavy on the digital delay) and ominous piano chords, Dulli’s voice sounds somewhat, well, dulled, especially compared with Buckingham’s piercing vocals on the original Fleetwood version. But Dulli’s is the voice of a man obsessed. While Buckingham’s original was a snide putdown, Dulli’s is the song of a battered boxer about to throw his last desperate punch.

Not many rock ’n’ rollers have attempted Billie Holiday’s bizarre and horrifying protest song “Strange Fruit.” But Dulli, enraged with the news of a 21st Century lynching in Georgia and inspired by The Beatles’ “I Want You (She’s So Heavy),” pulls it off with authority.

It’s much better than the puzzling version of Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme,” another tune that most rockers wouldn’t attempt. Jazz purists are bound to hate this track, though if you don’t listen to it as a Coltrane song, it’s a sweet, dreamy and addictive track.

Dulli’s duet with Lanegan on Skip James’ “Hard Time Killing Floor” (fans of O Brother Where Art Thou? should remember this tune being sung by Chris Thomas King) captures the eerie side of the blues. This is done with just a dobro and acoustic guitar accompaniment.

When Dulli and Lanegan sing, “You say you got money/You better be sho’/These hard times will kill you/They’ll drag you down slow,” they sound like they know what they’re talking about.

Perhaps the most emotionally satisfying song here is the Twilight stormy version of “Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair.” It’s an old folk song. It starts out slow with Dulli strumming a guitar. But soon bass, drums and an almost Latin sounding piano come in. By the end of the first verse you hear an electric guitar rumbling. And by the second verse, Dulli is howling. And when he bellows, “I love the ground on which she stands,” he sounds like someone who knows the feeling isn’t mutual, but is helpless to feel otherwise.

This would have been the perfect ending for the album. However, a short but intense version of “Summertime” follows. It’s neither as cool and graceful as Sam Cooke’s version or as crazed and powerful as Janis Joplin’s, but it fits in with the rest of She Loves You.

This isn’t Dulli’s best effort. It’s not in the same league as The Whigs’ Gentlemen or 1965, or even The Twilight Singer’s Blackberry Belle. But there’s not a weak song on She Loves You.

Also Noted:

*Antics
by Interpool. I’m a newcomer to this New York band. It’s hard to read a review of their work without stumbling over comparisons to Joy Division and even The Smiths. And it’s true they’ve got a lot of the dark energy of the former and some of the guitar chops of the later.

But I also hear a little bit of the Afghan Whigs/Twilight Singers here -- the surly guitars, that Lurch Addams organ that starts off “Next Exit,” the album’s first song. (Stretch it out a little bit and add a power drill and you’ve got the intro to the Whigs’ Black Love.)

Interpol singer Paul Banks doesn’t sound like rough ‘n’ raspy Greg Dulli. Banks sounds more like singers from British ‘80s bands like The Psychedelic Furs or Depeche Mode.

No doubt they make some interesting music. (My favorite spot on the album is the song “Take You on a Cruise” when it slows down and the bass part sounds like Brian Wilson’s on Pet Sounds.) But in the end, there’s not many memorable tracks on this album.

Remember the VFW: Goshen’s Grant Hayunga and Bill Palmer of Hundred Year Flood will perform live on The Santa Fe Opry, 10 p.m tonight on KSFR, 90.7 FM. (Hear it live, streaming on the web. CLICK HERE.)

Both bands are part of an upcoming documentary called VFWbya, which tells the story of the short-lived music scene at the VFW hall on Montezuma Street. The film, by Lexie Shabel, will debut at the Santa Fe Film Festival , 8:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe, 1615 B Paseo de Peralta. Immediately following the screening Goshen and Hundred Year Flood will play at The Paramount. Cost is $6, though if you show your stub from the screening you get a dollar off.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: LEGISLATIVE LEADERSHIP BATTLES

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 18, 2004


There's so many legislators running for some leadership position, it's hard to keep track without a printed program.

Case in point: When I dialed a wrong number Wednesday trying to call a senator who had been considering a run for Senate president Pro-tem (Sen. Pete Campos, D-Las Vegas) I got hold of another lawmaker who's running for House majority whip (Rep. Joe Campos, Santa Rosa).

Thanks to the departures of former Senate President pro-tem Richard Romero and former Senate Majority Floor Leader Manny Aragon, there will be new leadership in the state Senate.

And over on the House side, Democratic Floor Leader Danice Picraux and her Republican counterpart Ted Hobbs (both of Albuquerque) are still around, but both are being challenged by members of their own caucuses.

Here's a run-down on who's running for what:

Senate President pro-tem: This post, currently held by Romero, who lost his Congressional race against U.S. Rep. Heather Wilson this month, has attracted several candidates.

Some observers think Sen. Ben Altamirano, D-Silver City has the best shot. Altamirano, who has been in the Senate since 1971, has the most seniority of all state senators. For the past few year's he's been chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. Some say he's the favorite of Gov. Bill Richardson.

Sen. Tim Jennings, D-Roswell, describes his bid as a longshot. He was majority floor leader for several years until late 2001 when he was overthrown in a coup by Aragon (who earlier that year had been ousted from the pro-tem job by Romero). Jennings is fourth in seniority in the Senate.

Sen. Linda Lopez, D-Albuquerque has said she is running for the pro-tem position, as is Sen. Dede Feldman, D-Albuquerque.

And though he is a Republican, and would need some Democrats for him to win, Sen. Joe Carraro of Albuquerque is in the running. He said Wednesday he thinks he can pull off as many as seven Democrats.

Because the president pro-tem is elected by the full Senate on the first day of the session - and not the individual party caucuses - the idea of a coalition is a possibility. It happened in 2001 when Romero joined with a handful of renegade Democrats and all 18 Senate Republicans to defeat Aragon.

Some have speculated that Jennings, a conservative Democrat, could pull off a similar trick this time.

Jennings downplayed such a scenario in an interview Wednesday.

"I'm a loyal Democrat," he said. "You look at my history and I never joined with any coalition in the past."

But he didn't completely shut the door. "It's a non-partisan post," he said. "Of course I would welcome any Republican support."

Asked whether he'd support whatever candidate is endorsed by the Senate Democratic caucus, which meets in Albuquerque Saturday, Jennings said, "It depends on who the candidate is."

Senate Majority Floor Leader: Could Phil Griego be the next Manny Aragon? Griego's fellow senators say the Democrat from San Jose is running the most aggressive campaign of any of the contenders.

But there are other contenders. Sen. Michael Sanchez, D-Belen and Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Taos also reportedly are running for the job that opened up when Aragon accepted the job of president of New Mexico Highlands University.

Neither Sanchez nor Cisneros could be reached for comment Wednesday.

Griego recently sent letters to fellow Democratic senators saying that he's the most qualified partly because of a close relationship with House Speaker Ben Lujan and his "access to the Fourth Floor."

"Of the three people running, I have the best working relationship with the governor," Griego said this week.

Lujan on Wednesday confirmed he does have a good relationship with Griego. "But I think I could work well with whoever they elect," he said.

Richardson said recently he won't get involved in the leadership contests. Some have expressed skepticism about that.

House Majority Floor Leader: Rep. Danice Picraux, D-Albuquerque, has held this position since 2001. But now she has at least one and perhaps two challengers.

Rep. John Heaton, D-Carlsbad, confirmed Wednesday that he's running. And Lujan said that Rep. Ken Martinez, D-Grants, also will try to unseat Picraux. (Martinez couldn't be reached for comment.)

Lujan said he's staying neutral in this and other House leadership contests.

"Danice has done a good job," he said. "She's totally dedicated."

But Lujan said he could work with whoever the House Democrats choose when they caucus on Monday.

House Minority Floor Leader: The Republicans also could change leaders. Rep. Ted Hobbs of Albuquerque said he thinks he has enough votes to stay on as leader.

But Rep. Brian Moore, R-Clayton, who has been campaigning for the job since April, also expressed confidence that he has enough support.

Meanwhile, Rep. Larry Larranaga of Albuquerque confirmed on Wednesday that he's considering a stab for Hobbs' post. But he said he hasn't quite decided.

House Republicans meet in caucus on Monday.

Senate GOP: Senate Democrats and both parties in the House also have contested races for their respective whips.

The only caucus that apparently doesn't have any leadership battles ahead is the Senate Republicans. Senate Republican Leader Stuart Ingle of Portales said Wednesday, "I think we're safe. But there might be a few provisional ballots lying around somewhere."

He'll know for sure on Sunday, when the Senate Republicans meet.


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

AIR AMERICA COMES TO SANTA FE

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 16, 2004


Conservative Republicans might control the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court, but the right-wing dominance of a local talk-radio station is about to end as the unabashedly liberal Air America network readies to start broadcasting at KTRC 1260 AM in Santa Fe.


“Santa Fe is a natural for us,” said Jon Sinton, president of Air America, in a telephone interview Monday. “We’re very excited.”

Air America, which broadcasts on more than 40 stations and two satellite networks, features shows hosted by left-of-center entertainers such as comedians Al Franken and Janeane Garofalo, Chuck D and Steve Earle as well as liberal commentators such as Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Mike Malloy and Randi Rhodes.

The network was supposed to begin airing on KTRC on Monday, but technical difficulties with satellite equipment delayed the debut until today or Wednesday, Sinton said.

KTRC, which is owned by the AGM radio group, for years broadcast left-leaning programs from the I.E. America Network, which was affiliated with the United Auto Workers union.

However, I.E. America shut down early this year. KTRC kept one of the old I.E. America shows, The Thom Hartmann Radio Program, but added ultra-conservative talk shows such as Worldnet Daily Radio Active.

Last spring, a Texas radio company announced that it would bring Air America to Santa Fe. However, those plans fell through. “I don’t know what happened to those guys,” Sinton said.

More recently Air America picked up an Albuquerque station, KABQ 1350 AM. Reception of that station in Santa Fe is not good, however.

KTRC’s deal with Air America has been in the works for several months, Sinton said. One AGM employee said, “It took awhile to convince (AGM) that this was not the right market for conservative talk.”

In Santa Fe County, Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-to-1. Democrat John Kerry got more than 70 percent of the vote against President Bush earlier this month. The last Republican presidential candidate to carry this county was Richard Nixon in 1972.

“We’re on in liberal communities like Ann Arbor, Mich.; Madison, Wis.; and Portland, Ore.,” Sinton said. “But our most stimulating debut was in San Diego, which is a very conservative city.”

According to the Web site for the San Diego Union-Tribune, Arbitron ratings in September showed that KLSD AM, which broadcasts Air America, was the No. 1 station with listeners between the ages of 25 and 54.

Despite the new left turn of KTRC, Al Franken and company will have to share the station with a prominent conservative talk-show host for a few weeks.

Because of contractual obligations, Michael Reagan, the son of the late former President Ronald Reagan, will continue to broadcast his show week nights on KTRC.

Monday, November 15, 2004

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, November 14, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Sample and Hold by Neil Young
Computer Age by Sonic Youth
Had a Dad by Jane's Addiction
Mad Mock Goth by The Fall
Days and Days by Concrete Blonde
When I Was Young by Eric Burdon & The Animals

Masters of War by Eddie Vedder & Mike McCready
Empire of the Senseless by The Mekons
I'm So Afraid by Fleetwood Mac
Velouria by Frank Black & 2 Pale Boys

Too Tough to Die by The Twilight Singers
Flip Your Wig by Husker Du
Evil by Interpol
Ain't No Sunshine/Lonely Avenue by Isaac Hayes
Do the Primal Thing by NRBQ

Stop the Train by Mother Earth
Step Into the Light by Mavis Staples
I'm in Love by Nathaniel Mayer
Coon on the Moon by Howlin' Wolf
Only the Lonely by The Motels
Film of the Movie by The Minus 5
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, November 13, 2004

MASTERS OF SUPPRESSION

As Pogo used to say, "1984 came early this year."

Check out this story about a recent high school talent show in Boulder, Colo., where the Secret Service was called in because a band called The Coalition of the Willing performed a version of Bob Dylan's "Masters of War."

Gonna be a weird ride, folks.

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, November 12, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting:
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell
This show is dedicated to Dave Klug. Hang in, Dave!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
All American Girl by Angry Johnny & The Killbillies
I'm Just a Honky by The Ex-Husbands
TTT Gas by The Gourds
Then I'll Be Moving On by Mother Earth
Agony Wagon by The Legendary Shack Shakers
O Babe, It Ain't No Lie by Bingo
Billy's First Ex Wife by Ronny Elliott
Darktown Strutters Ball by (unknown home recording)

La La Land by Goshen
Love and Lust by Hundred Year Flood
The Fame of Lofty Deeds by Jon Langford
Must You Throw Dirt in My Face by Elvis Costello
Just Like Geronimo by Marlee MacLeod
Never Gonna Change by Drive By Truckers
Hand to Mouth by The Flying Burritto Brothers
Cans, Copper & Car Batteries by Joe West

The Old Gospel Ship by Iris Dement
Gospel Train by The Wright Brothers
Christian Automobile by The Dixie Hummingbirds
The Tigers Have Spoken by Neko Case
I've Got a Tiger By The Tail by Buck Owens
Tiger in Your Tank by Muddy Waters
Tiger Man by Elvis Presley
The Preacher and the Bear by Sid Hausman & Washboard Jerry
Bears in Them Woods by Nancy Apple

Got the Bull by The Horns by Johnny Horton
Blessed With Happiness by Geraint Watkins
We're Gonna Live in the Trees by Robyn Hitchcock
Is That You by Buddy Miller
Country Bumpkin by Cal Smith
It's a Big Old Goofy World by John Prine
Together Again by Ray Charles
My Reasons Why by Blaze Foley
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list


Friday, November 12, 2004

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: OUT OF THEIR GOURDS

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 12, 2004


On their sixth or seventh album Blood of the Ram, The Gourds stretch out. You hear a wider array of influences -- ‘60s garage-band, ’70s soul, a touch of Irish folk.

This is hardly the first time this Austin band has painted with colors beyond their basic American roots pallet. After all, they first became notorious a few years when they did a version of Snoop Doggy Dogg’s “Gin and Juice” in their trademark Cajun-touched, south-Texas country sound with that unique hopped-up but clunky style.

So it makes weird sense when you hear echoes of Al Green on “Escalade,” or when you think of Pigpen-era Grateful Dead when you hear the organ on “Triple T Gas” or you wonder whether you’ve stumbled upon a long-lost aborted Rolling Stones collaboration with some unknown hillbilly singer on the hilariously crude “Turd in My Pocket.”

Indeed there are wicked references to The Gourds’ musical forbearers here.

“Spanky,” apparently inspired by shoplifting tykes in the fishing section of a discount store, is a countrified version of The Ramones’ “Beat on the Brat”; “Illegal Oyster” contains a Bizzaro World nod to Gershwin’s “Summertime,” in the lines “Well, your daddy’s broke/And your mother’s homely”; and the title song, sung in a pseudo Waylon Jennings register, can trace its roots to Sam the Sam & The Pharaohs’ “Wooly Bully.” (“He had great longhorns, harder than a pony keg/2 comin’ out of his head, one between his legs.”)

But the main reason Blood of Ram is such a kick is because it sounds like The Gourds.

You’re not always sure just what Kev Russell or Jimmy Smith, the main Gourd vocalists are singing about. Their lyrics are a jumble of picaresque tales, mystery oracles and half-formed dirty jokes.

“Wafer of bread, my last poker chip/Curse to you Chairman Mao crackin’ the whip,” Smith sings on “Triple T Gas.”

“31 days my fingers feel like rain/This jail was built on cracklins and cocaine,” is how Russell starts his surreal I-Fought-the-Law fantasy called “Cracklins.”

But with the irresistible musical backdrops, colored by Claude Bernard on accordion and Max Johnston (formerly of Uncle Tupelo and Wilco) on fiddle and banjo, it all makes sense.

Blood of Ram is full of what are bound to become Gourd standards. They’ve been together 10 years now and they just keep getting better.

Also Recommended:
*Dial W For Watkins by Geraint Watkins.
Here’s another rootsy musical eccentric conjuring simple but irresistible aural magic.

Watkins, a 50ish picker from Wales, is mainly known as a sideman. He’s done studio work with Van Morrison, Paul McCartney and Tom Jones (!) and has toured with Nick Lowe (who plays bass and sings background on some cuts) Surprisingly this is his first American solo disc.

There are some tunes that are bound to twist your head off.

The album starts out with a slow, churchy minute-long tune called “Two Rocks,” which features Watkins crooning over soft organ chords. Then suddenly it turns into a Delta stomp called “Turn That Chicken Down” featuring a saxophone and harmonica over a National guitar. Watkins sings like he’s channeling T-Model Ford with a repeated refrain, “turn that chicken down, turn it down …” There’s a techno bridge. It ends with some trombone blurts.

The first tune that really sold me on this album was Watkins’ cover of the Brian Wilson/Van Dyke Parks classic “Heroes and Villains.” It’s done jump blues style, complete with scat singing, as if Louis Prima took a stab at Smile.

While “Chicken” and “Heroes,” as well as the cowboy swing of “Go West” are impressive novelties, it’s actually Watkins’ original soul ballads that give this album its staying power.

He’s got a lot in common with Lowe in his ability to nail smoky love songs like “I Will” and bitter heartache tunes “Bring Me the Head of My So-Called Lover.”

Watkins might also remind listeners of white soul songster Dan Penn on songs like the sad, soulful “Only a Rose” in which Watkins sings over a tremolo guitar, and “The Whole Night Through,” an upbeat, pretty, country-flavored declaration of devotion.

This is timeless music. Watkins might be a late bloomer at the age of 53, especially in a business still dominated by youth-culture. But I’m just glad he bloomed at all.

*Oval Room by Blaze Foley. Lucinda Williams eulogized him in her song “Drunken Angel” as Townes Van Zandt did in “Blaze’s Blues.” Merle Haggard immortalized him in his heart-wrenching cover of “If I Could Only Fly.”

But surprisingly, Austin singer-songwriter/character Blaze Foley -- who was shot and killed in a drunken argument in 1989 -- is next to impossible to find on CD. Live at the Austin Outhouse is out there somewhere. And now there’s this album, consisting mainly of Outhouse outtakes, produced by Gurf Morlix and John Casner.

There are several political tunes here, including the title song, which, written in 1988, proves that despite what you saw on t.v. this summer, not everyone loved Ronald Reagan.

Then there’s WW III, which is disturbingly timeless with lyrics like “I’ve been thinking, Uncle Sam, it’s time we went to war … If you don't hurry, sure enough/all these kids'll be grown up/be too old to die for you, so get 'em if you're going to."

Then there’s “Springtime in Uganda,” a diatribe against dictator Idi Amin that shows a shocking cultural insensitivity toward fundamentalist Islam and cannibalism.

But Blaze is at his best with his heartbreak songs. “My Reasons Why,” “Cold, Cold World” and -- especially -- “Someday” (with back-up here by the Texana Dames) are just waiting to be covered by George Jones or Haggard, who allegedly has made noises about doing an album of Foley songs.

Hear music from these CDs on The Santa Fe Opry, 10 p.m. to midnight Friday on KSFR, 90.7 FM and streaming on the web at www.ksfr.org.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

STEALING THE ELECTION

I'm on vacation this week, so no political column. (I wrote this week's Terrell's Tune-up early, so look for that tomorrow.)

However for political junkies like me, there's never a real vacation from politics.

Since the election, probably 14 friends have e-mailed me links to Greg Palast's article that John Kerry actually won the election in Ohio and (gulp!) New Mexico, due to ballot spoilage and Republican dirty tricks.

The one part of Palast's article that struck me was his analysis of New Mexico's Chaves County, with his quaint image of "brown people" who "drive across the desert" to vote." Palast finds it surprising that Kerry lost to Bush by a big margin in Chaves County despite a large Hispanic population. Gee, does that mean that conservative Chaves County Republicans like state Sen. Rod Adair and Rep. Dan Foley have won by voter fraud too? Rise up Roswell liberals, wherever you are!

(And Palast apparently doesn't know -- or believe -- that Bush got about 40 percent of the Hispanic vote in this state. Some of those "brown people" apparently drove across the desert to vote Republican.)

I've talked to so many Santa Fe folk who refuse to believe that a majority -- albiet a very slight majority -- of people in this state and the country would actually favor George W. Bush. As one friend, who believes the election was stolen by GOP voting machines, told me, "I just can't believe that so many people are so stupid."

Here's my personal nutball election conspiracy theory: All the lefty whining about the "stolen" election is being fed and orchestrated by none other than Karl Rove. It's his evil plan to forment mistrust and distrust of the election process itself, so in the future they'll just stay at home.

But seriously, for a good sober look at some of the election conspiracy theories, check out this story at Salon.com . (If you're not a subscriber, you'll have to get a "day pass" which involves looking at an advertisement. It won't kill you.)

Of course there are those who will only argue that the liberal Salon.com is now part of the right-wing election-stealing conspiracy. (Excuse me, I have to catch a plane to spray some chemtrails on innocent citizens.)

I'm not saying that the country doesn't need to take a good look and serious study of the very real problems in the election -- the long lines, the whole provisional ballot mess. There are many improvements that must be made.

But waddling in conspiracy theories is a self-defeating waste of time.

(There's a comment button on this blog. Flame on.)



Monday, November 08, 2004

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, November 7, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting:
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell

Co-host Laurell Reynolds

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Bad Moon Rising by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Mozambique by Bob Dylan with Emmylou Harris
Dummy by NRBQ
Hotel Senator by Minus 5
Remember A Day by Pink Floyd
Hate Is The New Love by The Mekons
Now We Have The Bomb by Sally Timms
Wasted Union Blues by It's A Beautiful Day
Working Class Hero by John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band

Don't Go Into That Barn by Tom Waits
Hard Time Killin' Floor by The Twilight Singers
Hellbound 17 1/2 by Primus
One Sunny Day by Fleetwood Mac
Who Makes The Nazis by The Fall
Oklahoma by Bone Pilgrim
Chimes Of Freedom by The Byrds

NICK CAVE SET
All Songs by Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds
(See review of Abattoir Blues and The Lyre of Orpheus a couple of posts below)
The Lyre of Orpheus
Do You Love Me?
Pappa Won't Leave You Henry
The Weeping Song
Hiding All the Way

Babe, I'm on Fire
The Curse of Milhaven
O Children
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, November 06, 2004

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, November 5, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting:
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Bad Times (Are Comin' Round Again) by The Waco Brothers
Oval Room by Blaze Foley
Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms by Flatt & Scruggs
There's a Higher Power by Buddy Miller
Cracklins by The Gourds
Burn, Burn, Burn by Ronny Elliott
Living in the U.S.A by Acie Cargill

Mother Earth by Mother Earth
Let's Make Believe We're Sweethearts by The Light Crust Doughboys
Sister Kate by The Ditty Bops
I Love Onions by Susan Christie
Don't Fence Me In by Sid Hausman & Washtub Jerry
The Tigers Have Spoken by Neko Case
Reprimand by Joe West
Tonya's Twirls by Loudon Wainwright III

Sugar Sugar (In My Life) by John Fogerty
When You Sleep by Tres Chicas
Tell Me True by Grey DeLisle
I've Got $5 and It's Saturday Night by George Jones & Gene Pitney
Jones on the Jukebox by Johnny Bush with Tommy Alverson
I Love You by C.C. Adcock
Don't You Want Me by Moonshine Willie
Goddamn Lonely Love by Drive By Truckers
Moon River by The Bubbadinos

F the CC by Steve Earle
Dark Hollow by Bill Monroe
Follow You Home by Kasey Chambers
Charmers by Richard Buckner
A Kiss on the Lips by Julie Miller
Be My Love by Geraint Watkins
Wings of a Dove by Lucinda Williams & Nanci Griffiths
Feel Like Going Home by Charlie Rich
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, November 05, 2004

TERRELL'S TUNE-UP: THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ST. NICK

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 5, 2004


Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds
' new double-disc set Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus is an exhilarating double blast of joy, rage, dour Aussie blues, back-alley philosophy, dark-end-of-the-street religious revelation, death-row humor, profound profanity - and even a touch of sweet sentimentality.

In other words, it's everything that those of us who love Nick Cave love about Nick Cave.

This set is the strongest music Cave has released in nearly a decade. Between 1992 and 1996, Cave released, right in a row, the three greatest albums of his career, Henry's Dream, Let Love In and Murder Ballads. (There was an excellent concert album, Live Seeds, in there too.)

Since that time, his albums have all been worthy. But, beginning with The Boatman's Call, Cave's efforts were lower key, gentler, though no less dark meditations, lacking the fire and ferocity of those earlier works.

We should have known though that something amazing was afoot after Cave's last album, 2003's Nocturama, an otherwise sedate work that was carried by the concluding track, a crazy, obsessive, hard-punching 15-minute odyssey of lust and depravation called "Babe, I'm On Fire."
This new effort proves he was right.

Abattoir Blues and The Lyre of Orpheus are separate albums, even though they're sold together. (Don't whine. The set costs about as much as a single CD.)

In general, Abattoir is louder and more raucous, while Lyre, at least in form, is softer and mellower -- though that rule was made to be broken by the frantic Lyre tune "Supernaturally."

I probably ought to insert here the boilerplate rockcrit admonition against double albums -- how with some judicious editing, two good albums could have been boiled down to one great one. Well, maybe that's true here, but the fact is, each track is worth listening. I'm happy that every song is on here.

Of the two albums, I prefer Abattoir, mainly because it recalls Cave's harder rocking days.

It kicks off with "Get Ready For Love", a hard-charging gospel tune. "Get Ready for love!" Cave bellows as the London Community Gospel Choir answers, "Praise Him!" Organist James Johnston (a new Seed) makes his instrument scream with ecstasy, while Mick Harvey's guitar plays hopped-up Yardbirds riffs. Meanwhile Cave shouts about God's face burning in your retinas.

The full promise of Cave's newfound rock 'n' roll fervor, however isn't realized until the tough, crunching "Hiding All Away." It's the story of a man hiding from his lover - we're never told exactly why - with each verse a tale of abuse and frustration for the hapless searcher, the victim of a series of dirty jokes. But in the last verse, the song shifts as Cave sings "And we all know a war is coming/ Coming from above/" The Bad Seeds turn it up to 11 as Cave and the choir repeat "There is a war coming! There is a war coming!"

One of the most touching songs here is "Let the Bells Ring," Cave's tribute to the late Johnny Cash, (who recorded Cave's electric chair horror "The Mercy Seat.")

Unlike some Cash tributes, The Bad Seeds don't try to imitate JC's trademark chunka-chunka sound. Instead it's a stately eulogy that Bono would have given his left testicle to have written.

"Your passing is not what we mourn/But the world you left behind," Cave sings. "Those of us not fit to tie the laces on your shoes / Must remain behind to testify through an elementary blues."

The Lyre of Orpheus, while quieter than the other album, has some destined-to-be-classic Cave songs. The title song featuring a sinister mandolin by Warren Ellis, sounds like Cannon's Jug Stompers fronted by a grim Australian singing obscene versions fo Greek myths.

But Cave shows his tender side in "Breathless," a light - especially for Nick Cave! - tune, which with its flute and acoustic guitar recalls The Incredible String Band.

My favorite tune on Lyre has to be "Babe You Turn Me On." With acoustic musical background that sounds like a long, lost outtake from Astral Weeks (except something here -- is that Conway Savage's piano? -- sounds like steel drums), Cave moans lustily to a lover. And you have to admire a songwriter who can use the words "nightingale" and "panties" in the same verse.

Some songs on Lyre -- slow, piano-driven ballads like "Easy Money" and "O Children" -- show that Cave hasn't completely turned his back on the more contemplative style he showed in late '90s works like The Boatman's Call and No More Shall We Part. In fact these songs will remind fans of Cave's more hard-edged work exactly what was admirable about those softer albums.

"O Children," especially is powerful. It's built on the old gospel train metaphor, but this it's hard to tell whether this train is bound for glory or doom.

The beat of this 7-minute dirge starts out kind of plodding, the intensity starts to build as the choir starts singing "O children, lift up your voice, lift up your voice/Children/Rejoice, rejoice."

But this only seems seems to provoke Cave, whose gloomy verses ("Poor old Jim's as white as a ghost/he's found the answer that was lost/We're weeping now, weeping because/There ain't nothing we can do to protect you") contradicts the call for joy. Cave moans in resignation, the ecstatic glory of "Get Ready For Love" turned sour, as the choir signs, "Hey little train wait for me/I once was blind but now I see/Have you a seat left for me ."

Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus proves that Cave still is in prime. He's a dirty-minded disciple, an oracle of the slaughterhouse, a poet, a preacher, a prophet -- and a damned powerful rocker as he pushes 50.

Nick on the radio: Terrell's Sound World will present an hour of Nick Cave music, including many from these albums Sunday night on KSFR, 90.7 FM (and streaming live on www.ksfr.org). The show starts 10 p.m. Sunday, the Cave segment will begin right after 11 p.m.



Thursday, November 04, 2004

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: NEW VICTIM CLASS -- SF GOP

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 3, 2004


The atmosphere at Fox’s Upstairs Bar & Grill was festive Tuesday night as local Republican activists toasted President Bush’s New Mexico lead and impending national victory.

Celebrating with them was a local Democrat, City Councilor David Pfeffer, whose decision to back Bush angered many of his fellow party members and constituents.

Pfeffer was sitting by himself drinking a beer and watching the results come in on Fox News.

“You know what I have in common with these folks here?” Pfeffer asked a reporter.

The fact that you support the same candidate?

“Not just that,” Pfeffer said. “They and I share the same feeling of oppression.”

Funny, the reveling Republicans didn’t seem all that oppressed as they downed their beers and ate tacos and posole at the St. Michael’s Drive nightspot. In fact, they seemed pretty happy that their party was about to cement its hold on all three branches of the federal government.

But the “oppression” of Republicans in Santa Fe, a town with a 3-to-1 Democratic registration edge — has been a constant drumbeat of the local GOP for several months. Local Bush supporters have complained loudly about the destruction of Bush-Cheney campaign signs and told anecdotes about vehicles with Bush stickers getting “keyed.”

(For the record, I’ve heard similar tales from local Democrats. Santa Fe police, meanwhile, say there was no noticeable upswing in political vandalism this year.)

Pfeffer continued.

“It’s that monolithic liberal mind-think you find in Santa Fe,” he said. “It’s not just a one-party system here, but lots of people in Santa Fe think it should be.”

Pfeffer compared his decision to go public with his endorsement of Bush with “coming out of the closet.”

“There was such a negative reaction,” he said. “You know, I’m not stupid. I do read. I have a right to express my own opinion without getting sneered at.”

Pfeffer, who this week purchased a full-page ad endorsing Bush in this newspaper, said the ad got two types of responses from local Dems.

“There were those who were upset and reacted with name-calling and in-your-face hostility,” he said.

But then, he said, there were those who were grateful for him taking such a stand. These Democrats, he said, reacted “with a humility in their voice.”

Pfeffer, who spoke at a Bush rally in Albuquerque this summer, said he gave his two V.I.P. tickets to two women he described as “open-minded Democrats.”

Both, he said, said they had no idea that Bush could get such a positive reception in New Mexico.

Of course both campaigns here were pretty good at making sure that the overwhelming number of people who got into their rallies would give their respective candidates an enthusiastic reaction.

Many local liberals were already angry with Pfeffer over his role in the last city election.

He admitted to proofreading a newspaper ad for a pro-development group called Santa Fe Grass Roots that was highly critical of three councilors seeking re-election. Some of those councilors characterized the full-page advertisement, which ran in this paper, as an “attack ad,” saying it contained inaccuracies concerning their council records.

The Bush endorsement only added to their displeasure with Pfeffer. Although municipal elections are, in theory at least, non-partisan, some say the endorsement cast serious doubts on Pfeffer’s re-election. His seat is up for re-election in 2006.

Will Pfeffer seek re-election? Will he formally abandon the party he says has abandoned him and join the party that has embraced him?

“That’s not on my front burner now,” he said. Pointing to the red and blue map on the television screen — which was getting redder every few minutes — he said, “Right now this is my main concern.”

***

For my story on the latest numbers from New Mexico, CLICK HERE

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

WHO WAS THAT NADER GUY?

A shorter version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 3, 2004


So what happened to Ralph Nader in New Mexico?

Democrats state predicted doom and gloom if Nader, who ran this year as an independent, would be able to split the progressive vote. They fought tooth and nail in court — but ultimately unsuccessfully — to deny him a place on the ballot.

Apparently some Republicans here felt the same way. Sen. Rod Adair, R-Roswell, distributed ballot petitions for the Nader candidacy. GOP lawyer Pat Rogers volunteered his services to represent Nader free of charge in his court battles.

(Both Adair and Rogers insisted their only interest was providing a wide choice to New Mexico voters.)

Four years ago, when Democrat Al Gore edged out George W. Bush in the state by a mere 366 votes, Nader, who ran then as the Green Party candidate got more than 21,000 votes or four percent of the total.

However, by 1 a.m. Wednesday with more than 90 percent of the vote counted unofficial results showed Nader drawing only one percent of the vote. Nationwide he wasn't doing significantly better.

Nader’s New Mexico coordinator Carol Miller, interviewed Tuesday before the polls closed, said she thinks Nader was the victim of a “four-year dirty-trick campaign” by Democrats and a “blackout” by state news organizations.

“It’s one of the saddest moments in American history,” Miller said. “Taking Ralph Nader, a true national leader who has done so many good things, and tell so many lies about him.”

As far as media coverage goes, Miller said, “Nader was never treated like an equal candidate.”

Miller said the real agenda of Nader foes was “to get rid of anyone who stands up to the corporations.”

However a spokesman for the state Democratic Party said that Nader’s “Diminishing support reflects the fact that his campaign in New Mexico was nothing but a Republican phenomenon.”

Matt Farrauto noted that some Green Party leaders joined the Kerry campaign. These include David Bacon, the 2002 Green Party gubernatorial candidate, who changed party registration to Democrat; and Abe Gutmann, a past Green candidate for U.S. Senate who became a leader of a national group called Greens for Kerry.

NM: LEANING BUSH, BUT TOO CLOSE TO CALL

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
Nov. 3, 2004


Once again, the battleground state of New Mexico was too close to call in the presidential race by the end of election night on Tuesday, and both sides remained optimistic.

Shortly after midnight Wednesday, unofficial figures from The Associated Press, with 94 percent of precincts reporting, showed President Bush leading U.S. Sen. John Kerry 52 percent to 47 percent in the race for New Mexico’s five electoral votes.

However, Gov. Bill Richardson noted that many strong Democratic precincts in Northern New Mexico and the Navajo Nation had yet to be counted.

“I think he’ll pull it out,” Richardson said of Kerry late Tuesday. But speaking to reporters at the secretary of state’s office, he predicted a very narrow win for the Democratic candidate.

“I think he’ll win by about 1 percent,” Richardson said. “I’ve said that all along.”
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the state Bush campaign predicted a victory for the president in New Mexico.

“We’re up by 20,000 votes,” Danny Diaz said in a telephone interview. “We’ve run the strongest Republican campaign this state has ever seen.”

Diaz was interviewed shortly after national news networks had called Ohio and Alaska for Bush, pushing the incumbent president’s electoral college count to 269, one electoral vote shy of victory.

“This state could deliver it to Bush,” Diaz said. “We’re trying to beat Nevada to the punch.”

Santa Fe County apparently chose Kerry by a wide margin. With 86 of 87 precincts reported, Kerry was winning this county by better than a 2-to-1 margin.

However, the Bush campaign chairman in Santa Fe County, Bob Parmelee, said he was very optimistic about Bush winning statewide. “The Democrats are digging themselves into a hole by moving further to the left,” he said. “I hope they keep digging.”

Despite losing the county, local Republicans, who watched election results on televisions at Fox’s Upstairs Bar & Grill on St. Michael’s Drive, seemed to be far more upbeat than Democrats who attended election parties at the Eldorado Hotel and The Paramount, a downtown nightclub.

The crowd at Fox’s cheered loudly every time good returns for Bush were announced on television.

One local Democrat activist, who asked not to be identified, said Tuesday he was frustrated by friction between the national Kerry campaign operating here and local Democrats.

“The Kerry campaign played by the playbook instead of by New Mexico rules,” said the man, who described himself as a “disgruntled foot soldier” in the Kerry campaign. “The Bush campaign was better at playing by New Mexico rules.”

“The Kerry campaign wasted people by putting poll watchers in Northern New Mexico,” he said. “They should have had those people in places like Clovis.”

Richardson and Secretary of State Rebecca Vigil-Giron said that despite fears of problems at the polls, the election ran relatively smoothly in the state.

“There were no cases of harassment or intimidation,” Richardson said.
Vigil-Giron predicted the final turnout figure would be a record 75 percent of registered voters.

Denise Lamb, director of the state Elections Bureau, said election officials in Cibola County couldn’t locate provisional ballots for some time. Vigil-Giron said voters in Albuquerque’s Paradise Hills were still lined up to vote an hour after the official closing time.

Matt Brix, director of New Mexico’s Common Cause, said there were only sporadic reports of election problems in the state.

Some polling places in Albuquerque had three-hour waits, he said. In Las Cruces some polling places ran out of provisional ballots, Brix said.

Ever the state booster, Richardson told reporters that “the real winner tonight is New Mexico. We got an unprecedented amount of attention.”

The governor noted that in the past, New Mexico “was just a small state that was ignored in the presidential sweepstakes.”

This election was different, however.

Richardson was responsible for part of the national attention. He helped persuade the national Democrats to hold the first televised debate among the Democratic presidential contenders in New Mexico in September 2003.

He convinced the state Legislature to allow parties to have a presidential caucus in February. This attracted visits by most of the Democratic candidates.

Richardson also was chairman of the Democratic National Convention in Boston in July.
But what attracted the most attention was the fact that New Mexico is such an evenly divided state politically. In 2000, Al Gore beat Bush by a mere 366 votes.

Both Bush and Kerry, their running mates, family members and numerous surrogates made visits to the state this year. Bush appeared in Albuquerque as recently as Monday night, while former President Bill Clinton and Kerry’s wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, led weekend rallies in Santa Fe and Albuquerque.

Monday, November 01, 2004

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, Oct. 31, 2004
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Halloween Hootenanny by Zacherle
Bloodleting by Concrete Blonde
Monster Rock by Screaming Lord Sutch
Don't Shake Me Lucifer by Roky Erickson
Big Black Witchcraft Rock by The Cramps
The Munsters Theme by Los Straitjackets
Frankenstein Conquers the World by Daniel Johnston & Jad Fair
Night Visit by Stan Ridgway & Pietra Wexstun

I Drink Blood by Rocket From the Crypt
Halloween by Sonic Youth
I Put a Spell On You by Screamin' Jay Hawkins
House of 1,000 Corpses by Rob Zombie
I Scare Myself by Dan Hicks & The Hot Licks
Ghostyhead by Ricki Lee Jones
Halloween Spooks by Lambert, Hendricks & Ross

Give Me Some Truth by John Lennon
There Is No Time by Lou Reed
Fortunate Son by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Country at War by X
Rich Man's War by Steve Earle
Faraway by Sleater-Kinney
Shepherds of the Nation by The Kinks
Civil Disobedience by Camper Van Beethoven

Papa's Got a Brand New Baghdad by The Capitol Steps
American Question by Jason Ringenberg
Misguided Missiles by NRBQ
Something Broken in the Promised Land by Wayne Kramer
The Bush Boys by The Mammals
Rockin' in the Free World by Neil Young
People Have the Power by Patti Smith


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