Monday, January 31, 2005

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, January 30, 2005
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
Piece of Crap by Neil Young
My Life is Starting Over Again by Teenage Fanclub with Jad Fair
Inside Looking Out by Eric Burdon & The Animals
Mongoloid by Devo
Do the Romp by Entrance & Cat Power
Tortures by Kazik Staszewski
Attacked by Monsters by The Meat Puppets

New Wave Jacket by Polysics
In Door Fu Chiken by Fuzzy Control
Alligator Night by Thee Michelle Gun Elephant
Tribe by The Mad Capsule Markets
Soul Food by Understatements
Mama Brain by The Boredoms
Born to Be Wild by Petty Booka

Mark Lanegan Set
All songs by Mark Lanegan except where noted
Wedding Dress
I Nearly Lost You by The Screaming Trees
Waiting on a Train
Shooting Gallery
Song For the Dead by Queens of the Stone Age
Where Did You Sleep Last Night?
Number Nine by The Twilight Singers

Robot Parade by They Might Be Giants
There is Beauty by Richard Thompson
Less Than You Think by Wilco
Waiting on a Friend by The Rolling Stones
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 29, 2005

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, January 28, 2005
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Ram Bunk Shush by Cornell Hurd
Condi, Condi by Steve Earle
Milk and Pancakes by Fortytwenty
If You Don't, Somebody Else Will by The Ranch Girls & The Ragtime Wranglers
Cool Drink of Water by Vassar Clements
Pearly Lee by Billy Riley
No More War by Ronny Elliott
Sweet Virginia by The Rolling Stones

Uncle Frank by Drive-By Truckers
You're Humbuggin' Me by Ronnie Dawson
Living in the U.S.A. by Acie Cargill
Oh Christy by The Moaners
Favorite by Neko Case
Black Iron Bridge by Rex Hobart & The Misery Boys
Five Minutes of the Latest Blues by Justin Trevino with Mona McCall
Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out by Pine Top Smith

Yonder Mountain by Raising Cane
Cry by Lynn Anderson
What Would You Give in Exchange by Bill Monroe
Back in the Goodle Days by John Hartford
White Trash Wedding by The Dixie Chicks
Nashville Cats by Del McCoury Band
Teddy Bear's Picnic by Jerry Garcia & David Grisman
Down in the Willow Garden by The Osborne Brothers
Brain Damage by The Austin Lounge Lizards

Just the Other Side of Nowhere by Kris Kristofferson
I'll Sign My Heart Awayby Merle Haggard
When the Last Curtain Falls by George Jones
Each Night at Nine by Floyd Tilman with Willie Nelson
Hate to Be Lonely by ThaMuseMeant
Her by Richard Buckner
I Do Believe by The Highwaymen
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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


Friday, January 28, 2005

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: MUSIC FOR 4 A.M.

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 28, 2004


These CDs have been out for several months now. But I just recently laid my hands on the first one, while the second one took awhile to grow on me.

To paraphrase Orson Welles, I will review no album before its time.



*Bubblegum by Mark Lanegan. This ain’t your father’s “bubblegum” music. Lanegan doesn’t chirp, “yummy yummy yummy, I’ve got love in my tummy.” Not even once.

“When I’m bombed I stretch like bubblegum/And look too long straight at the morning sun,” Lanegan sings on a deceptively quiet, acoustic tune called “Bombed.” This duet with Wendy Rae Fowler is barely over a minute along.

It sounds like a funeral dirge. It sounds as if someone could get killed at any minute.

Like Lanegan‘s best solo work, Bubblegum is a testament of pain, druggy desire, and 4 a.m. lonely ache. It’s a blues-drenched, ghostly, dark-night-of-the-soul meditation that’s not ashamed to be pretty but not afraid to wake the neighbors with furious clatter when the spirit says “roar.”

Lanegan was the singer with long-defunct Washington state grunge warriors the Screaming Trees. He’s also served stints with Queens of the Stone Age and with Greg Dulli’s Twilight Singers. He also deserves at least a footnote in the history of rock ‘n’ roll for being the guy who introduced Kurt Cobain to Lead belly’s “Where Did You Sleep Last Night.”

The record is billed as being by “Mark Lanegan Band,” and indeed he’s got an impressive, revolving gaggle of sidemen on Bubblegum. P.J. Harvey sings with Lanegan on two songs, here. Dulli and QOTSA members appear on some cuts, as do Izzy and Duff from Guns n' Roses. And Texas-born psychedelic blues wizard Ian Moore and keyboardist Bukka Allen (Terry and Jo Harvey Allen’s son) lend their talents to one tune.

But Lanegan himself is the driving presence here on every single cut. The dark vision is all his. The constant that runs throughout is his voice, a gravelly, whiskey ravaged -- and probably worse-things-ravaged -- baritone that sounds like the moans of a hobo prophet halfway between a trance and a righteous rage.

Drug addiction, that grim subtext of so much classic Seattle music, is a theme in several tunes here. It’s obvious in songs like “Methamphetamine Blues,” a crunching workout with clanking industrial percussion and screaming guitar (by Alain Johannes). And Lanegan rocks even harder and the chemical desperation is even more frantic in the crazed “Can’t Come Down.”

But the drug life even more disturbing in the song called “Wedding Dress,” a somber, synth-driven tune where Lanegan croons, “Will you walk with me underground and forgive all my sicknesses and my sorrows?/Will you be shamed if shake like I’m dyin’/when I fall to my knees and I’m cryin’?” The tune ends with a line borrowed from “Jackson,” the comic Johnny Cash/June Carter (or Nancy Sinatra/Lee Hazelwood) song of marital strife. But here the words “We got married in a fever” take on ominous connotations.

Lanegan explores the dark side of the blues with “Like Little Willie John” He invokes the name of the tragic R&B pioneer, who died in a Washington state prison in 1968. Here, the ghost of Little Willie hovers over the singer’s troubling memories of losing a lover.

“All she ever knew was trouble/And for much I was to blame/But when I heard the news that night/I went down like a satellite/ And when my world stood still that night/I dropped like a satellite … Where’s Willie John?”

Lou Reed once pointed out that had he personally done all the things he sang about, he’d have been dead years before. I suspect this probably is true of Lanegan as well. But his voice is authoritative as his stories are compelling. And his music, whether soft and smoky or loud and dissonant, is irresistible.

*Dents and Shells by Richard Buckner. This is a guy who makes strange, but undeniably beautiful music. What can you say about a guy who did a whole album based on Edgar Lee Masters’ small-town gothic Spoon River Anthology? (not separate songs, mind you, but one 34-minute track!)

Buckner’s melodies are mournful, his delivery low-key, his lyrics introspective and often obscure. His voice is a slightly raspy drawl that often colors and embellishes the notes. His songs sometimes seem like snippets from a notebook, not quite finished, but refusing to stay put.

In many ways this album reminds me of the first Buckner CD I heard, the magnificent Devotion + Doubt. That mid-90s effort -- still my favorite Buckner album and a fan favorite in the then-blooming alternative country scene -- was produced by Lubbock Mafia chieftain Lloyd Maines and featured members of Calexico.

Like Devotion, Dents and Shells features lots of fine steel guitar, especially on the songs “A Chance Counsel” and “Her” -- though the latter tune also is distinguished by a catchy one-finger piano.

Some song arrangements here border on the surreal. “Charmers” for instance is a tense minor-key funeral march in which most the instruments seem to melt into a low rumble behind Buckner’s vocals Butthole Surfer King Coffey’s over-caffeinated drums. This almost could be a Will Oldham/Palace song.

“As the Waves Will Always Roll” is a sad dirge that features what sounds like a roller rink organ and downright crazy drumming from Coffey.

Buckner’s music is pretty enough to appeal to singer/songwriter fans and odd enough to satisfy those looking for more experimental sounds.


Thursday, January 27, 2005

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: BOLOS A NO-NO?

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 27, 2004


A sergeant-at-arms stopped freshman Sen. Jack Ryan, R-Albuquerque, from entering the floor of the House on Monday to hear a speech by U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce, R-N.M., made before a joint session of the House and Senate.

At first, Ryan assumed he was being stopped because the sergeant-at-arms didn't recognize him. After all, there are several new faces among the legislators this year.

But that wasn't the problem. Ryan was in violation of a rule he knew nothing about.

He was wearing a bolo tie.

No, the House hasn't hired former Santa Fe Police Chief Don Grady - who made national headlines in 1995 when he forbid plain-clothes officers from wearing bolos.

The House Dress Code requires all males on the floor of the House to wear jackets and regular ties. No bolos, chief Sergeant-At-Arms Gilbert Lopez told me this week.

"The Senate allows bolos, but the House doesn't," Lopez said. "It's been that way since I've been here." Lopez said he's worked for the House for 15 years.

The rule is ironic considering that in 1987 the state Legislature named the bolo the "official state tie or neckwear of New Mexico" in a memorial that declared that those who wear bolos "shall be welcomed at all events or occasions when the wearing of a tie is considered if not mandatory, then at least appropriate."

Of course, a memorial has no force of law. Curiously, the "official state tie" is not listed in the same section of state law that lists the official state bird, state animal, state reptile, state cookie, etc.

Bolos, of course, are common on state officials. Gov. Bill Richardson has been known to occasionally sport a bolo.

Ryan, who was wearing a conventional tie Wednesday, said when he initially was stopped, the sergeant-at-arms tried to help him find a tie that would be allowed. "I finally borrowed one from a (bill) analyst," he said.

Soon after the incident, Ryan said he was approached by leaders of both parties in the Senate, who told him it was wrong for him to have been denied entrance to the House.

"It was a misunderstanding," Lopez said. "Senators who come in for joint sessions will be allowed to wear bolo ties."

However, if it's not a joint session, visiting senators going into the House will have to wear a regular tie, he said. "We've got some ties we can lend them."

(For the record: The scorpion tie pictured above is not the one Ryan was wearing.)

In the lobby: Former state Sen. Roman Maes might have lost the Democratic primary to freshman Sen. John Grubesic, D-Santa Fe, last year, but that didn't keep him away from the Roundhouse for long.

According to the Secretary of State's web site, Maes, former chairman of the Senate Corporations and Transportation Committee, is now a registered lobbyist for Microsoft, Valor Communications, St. Vincent Hospital and Santa Fe County.

Maes joins a long list of lawmakers who have joined the ranks of lobbyists. Other recently departed legislators seen around the Roundhouse lately are former Senate President pro-tem Richard Romero and former Rep. Joe Thompson.

The University of New Mexico announced that Democrat Romero and Republican Thompson would be lobbying for the school. But the Secretary of State's web site lists Romero's clients as Arena Management and Construction and Isleta Pueblo, while Thompson's only client listed is Jemez Pueblo.

Balls of Fire: Forty-five years ago this Sunday, a band of high school kids from Raton appeared on American Bandstand. This was The Fireballs, who would become even more famous in a few years when their song Sugar Shack hit No. 1 on the charts. It was the top-selling single of 1962.

The Fireballs are still around and includes two original members - guitarist George Tomsco and bassist Stan Lark. Rep. Hector Balderas, D-Wagon Mound, has introduced House Joint Memorial 19, which would declare Sunday "The Fireballs Day" in New Mexico.

"It's a pleasure to introduce this because they're from my district," Balderas said. Asked if he was a Fireballs fan, the 30ish lawmaker said, "They were in their prime before I was born."

Unfortunately there are no current plans to have The Fireballs play at the Legislature - though Tomsco last week was in the Rotunda, playing behind playwright/actor Charles Pike performing his play Elephant Murmurs, which concerns the "lost years" of Bill Richardson.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

SYNDICATION, GEORGIE ANGEL, ETC.


I've been working so much on my Legislature blog, (not to mention my more-than- fulltime job covering the Legislature for The New Mexican, you might think I've been letting this one go to Hell.

Well, that's not completely true. I the past couple of days, I've put this blog on the road to content syndication. So for those of you who use news aggregators or blog readers like Bloglines or Newsgator, have at it.

Plug: If you get a chance check out The Georgie Angel Blues Band at Fox's on St. Michael's Drive 9 p.m. Friday. I mainly wanted to plug the gig because I like George's graphic he e-mailed to me.

Monday, January 24, 2005

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, January 23, 2005
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
Bad Moon Rising by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Eve of Destruction by The Dickies
Steppin' Out by Paul Revere & The Raiders
Hard to Be Human by The Mekons
Don't Break Me Down by The Donnas
Burn in Hell by The Ponys
Can't Stand to See Your Face by Holly Golightly
Johnny Carson by The Beach Boys

Dead Lover's Twisted Heart by Daniel Johnston
Walking the Cow by T.V. on the Radio
Wrong Place, Right Time by The Fall
Home and Garden by Pere Ubu
Squeeze Me Macaroni by Mr. Bungle
Twenty Small Cigars by Frank Zappa
Willie Nelson (Take 2) by Miles Davis
Gentleman's Lament by Thinking Fellers Union Local 282

Night of the Thumpasorus Peoples by Parliament
Female Troubles by Bootsy's New Rubber Band
Pop That Thang by The Isley Brothers
Wifesitter by Swamp Dogg
Your Love is So Doggone Good by Isaac Hayes
The Real Story by David Holmes

Bottle of Wine by The Fireballs
The Mercy Seat by Kazik Staszewski
Who Are You by Tom Waits
Nuts in My Family Tree by Napoleon XIV
Dust 2 by Elvis Costello
Wedding Dress by Mark Lanegan Band
True Love by Tiny Tim & Miss Sue
My Little Corner of the World by Yo La Tengo
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 22, 2005

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, January 21, 2005
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Cowboy in Falmes by The Waco Brothers
Demonic Possession by Drive-By Truckers
Creek Cats by The Legendary Shack Shakers
Flannery Said by The Moaners
Walk to the End of the World by Ronny Elliott
The Rubber Room by Porter Wagoner
Moonshiner's Child by Tammy Faye Starlite

Deep as Your Pocket by Tres Chicas
Fist City by Loretta Lynn
Loretta by Neko Case
Rocky Top by Lynn Anderson
Someone to Give My Love To by Big Al Anderson
The Good Ain't Gone by Rex Hobart & His Misery Boys
Slide Off of Your Satin Sheets by Johnny Paycheck
11 Months and 29 Days by Dave Alvin
It Won't Be Long (and I'll Be Hating You) by Rex Hobart & His Misery Boys

Rock-a-Billy Fever by Wanda Jackson
Right or Wrong by Kelly Hogan
Hot Dog That Made Him Mad by Wanda Jackson
Rock Your Baby by Candye Kane
Fujiyama Mama by Trailer Bride
Lovesick Blues by Wanda Jackson
Hot Dog by Rosie Flores
This Train by Sleepy LaBeef

Tonight She Hits the Honky Tonks Again by Justin Trevino
Worried Man Blues by George Jones
Something Stupid by The Mavericks with Trisha Yearwood
Drinkin' Thing by Gary Stewart
The Snakes Crawl at Night by Charlie Pride
Between Lust and Watching TV by Cal Smith
Stoned to the Eyes by Miranda Brown
Like a Monkey in the Zoo by Vic Chesnutt
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 21, 2005

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: A TRIBUTE TO TRIBUTE ALBUMS

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 21, 2005


No matter how harshly critics dismiss tribute albums, the dang things keep proliferating. Someone out there must like ’em. And despite my own grumbling from time to time, in more than a few cases, I like ‘em too.

So here’s my idea: A tribute to tribute albums. Here a batch of “various artists” would do their interpretations of other various artists’ interpretations on a variety of tribute albums.

For example, Alejandro Escovedo could do his version of Elvis Costello’s version of “Ship of Fools” from Deadicated, the Grateful Dead tribute, while Tom Waits could do his take on Los Lobos’ version of “Midnight Shift” on Not Fade Away: Remembering Buddy Holly. Guided by Voices and Beck would have to fight over who covered the Bongwater rendition of “You Don’t Love Me Yet” from the Roky Erikson tribute Where the Pyramid Meets the Eye. The possibilities nearly are infinite …

Meanwhile here’s a bunch of recent tribute albums I’ve been enjoying.

The Late Great Daniel Johnston: Discovered Covered. This is a double-disc set featuring a various-artist tribute on the first disc and the original versions by Johnston on the second. This format actually is a great idea, particularly for an artist as obscure as Johnston. Some of the tunes on Disc Two, namely the ones that originally were released on self-recorded, lo-to-no-fi cassette tapes, are pretty hard to find.

For the uninitiated, Johnston, a Texas resident, is a cult hero of the indie rock world. He's got a history of mental problems, many of which are addressed on his painfully sincere songs of unrequited love, loneliness and rejection.

Many of the interpretations on Disk One emphasize the pretty melodies, which sometimes are obscured by tape hiss on Johnston's early works. This especially is true on "Go," a collaboration between Sparklehorse and The Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev's down-home take on "Blue Clouds" and "Dream Scream" by Death Cab For Cutie, which is more dreamy than screamy.

There are a couple of stripped-down primitive Johnston interpretations, like frog-voiced Calvin Johnson's "Sorry Entertainer," (just vocals and percussion) and "King Kong," which, as done by Tom Waits is a disturbing chant that sounds like an outtake from Waits' recent Real Gone.

But the true standout here is Vic Chesnutt's mournful "Like a Monkey in the Zoo." It already arguable was Johnston's saddest song, but Chesnutt makes it even sadder.

*Hard-Headed Woman" A Celebration of Wanda Jackson. The word "celebration" is right on the mark here. Just about every track on this record sounds like the various artists took to heart the command in Jackson's signature: "Let's Have a Party."

Jackson, for those deficient in rock history credits, was an important rockabilly pioneer. Starting out as a protégé of country star Hank Thompson, she was one 1950s country singer who had no trouble adapting to rock 'n' roll. She's well into her 60s now, but she's still touring.

Not surprisingly, this album is dominated by female singers. Rosie Flores, who helped revive Jackson's career last decade, sings a swingy "In the Middle of a Heartache," that has a lot of Patsy Cline in it. Meanwhile, the indomitable Neko Case rips it up on "Brown-Eyed Handsome Man," Candye Kane is as brassy on "Rock Your Baby" as Laura Cantrell is wide-eyed innocent on "Wasted."

Meanwhile, Jackson's country side is well-represented by Kelly Hogan's smoky "Right or Wrong," Ana Fermin's heartbreaking "The Box it Came In" and Jesse Sykes' sweet moan on "Weary Blues From Waiting."

But Jackson's music isn't just for women. Cornell Hurd's droll vocals on "This Gun Don't Care Who It Shoots," Robbie Fulks' earnest version of "Tears at the Grand Ol' Opry" and Wayne Hancock's rendition of the classic "Let's Have a Party" all are highlights.

But my favorite here is the most radical reworking of a Jackson song, Trailer Bride's surreal take on Jackson's first rockabilly hit "Fujiama Mama." There's heavy drums and monster-movie organ as Melissa Swingle tosses off the lyrics in a carefree way. When she sings "I'm a Fujiama Mama just about to blow my top," it sounds like you'd better get out of her way. It's contributions like this, which take familiar songs to new territory, that make tribute albums worth it.

*Touch My Heart: A Tribute to Johnny Paycheck. Robbie Fulks produced this tribute to the legendary hell-raiser Paycheck, so you know it's going to be tasteful. Fulks rounded up an impressive gaggle of various artists including stars of traditional country (George Jones, Gail Davies, Johnny Bush), alternative country (Neko Case, Mike Ireland, Jim Lauderdale) and beyond.

Mavis Staples does a take on the title song that completely blurs the lines between soul and country. Former NRBQ guitarist and part-time (Santa Fe resident) Big Al Anderson does much the same on "Someone to Give My Love To."

As usual, Hank Williams III sounds like the ghost of his granddaddy on "I'm the Only Hell My Daddy Ever Raised."

And baritone belter Dave Alvin is even more impressive than usual with his tough, bluesy "11 Months and 29 Days."

The saddest part of this record though is the fact that Buck Owens' voice, which has been ravaged by throat cancer, is unrecognizable on "Take This Job and Shove It," where he shares vocals with a rather strange line-up: Wilco's Jeff Tweedy, Bobby Bare and Radney Foster. It's a fun tune, it's just disturbing to hear Buck that way.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: REPUBLICANS FOR LUJAN

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 20, 2005


Nobody doubted that Democrat Ben Lujan would be officially re-elected as House Speaker when the Legislature convened this week. After all, the Ds outnumber the Rs 42-28 in the House.

What was surprising was that he received four votes from House Republicans, who on Tuesday chose him instead of House Republican Leader Ted Hobbs of Albuquerque.

The dissenting four were Reps. Jeanette Wallace of Los Alamos, Sandra Townsend of Aztec, Janice Arnold-Jones of Albuquerque and Dan Foley of Roswell.

It’s obvious the nomination of Hobbs was symbolic, just like the nomination of Sen. Joe Carraro, R-Albuquerque for Senate president pro-tem. (Carraro lost to Democrat Ben Altamirano of Silver City Tuesday on a straight party vote.) Minority parties in both chambers do such things to show solidarity.

So why would four Republicans buck their leader?

Both Wallace said Townsend said they did it partly because Lujan was assured of victory.

“Ben is my neighbor,” Wallace said, referring to the fact that Lujan’s Santa Fe County district is next to hers. “I enjoy working together with my neighbors. Sometimes we put up (challengers) just to be antagonistic.” Republicans should save confrontations for more important issues, she said.

“It was nothing to do with Rep. Hobbs,” Townsend said.

But the two others who voted for Lujan said it was because of Hobbs.

“I vote for the one who could do the best job,” Arnold-Jones said. “I have no big political agenda. I have no desire to hurt Ted. But I have serious questions about his leadership style and the lack of communication.”

Foley, who made an unsuccessful bid for Republican whip several weeks ago, said, “The leadership team is trying to get me moved off my committees. It was hard for me to vote for someone who was trying to cut me off at the knees.”

Hobbs on Wednesday denied he had tried to get Foley removed from the Judiciary and Business and Industry Committees.

“When I submitted my recommendations to the speaker, I basically asked for 99 percent of what my members had asked for,” he said. The speaker of the House has the authority to appoint all House committee members.

When Lujan announced the appointments Wednesday, Foley was off both his old committees.

Hobbs said he doesn’t think the four votes against him indicates any serious divisions among House Republicans.

“I don’t think there are insurmountable problems,” he said. “I don’t twist arms and I never have questioned a member’s vote.”

What was the governor reading? Tuesday’s State of the State address represented a technological milestone of sorts. It’s the first time a governor used an electronic teleprompter to read his speech.

Richardson spokesman Billy Sparks said such machines frees up a speaker from having to look down on the podium to read a text. Instead, the speaker can look directly at the crowd — and directly into a television camera.

“Most major speeches these days are done with teleprompters,” Sparks said.
The machine itself belongs to the state Film Office, Sparks said. “The speech was a training event for them,” he said.

I blog, therefore I am: Don't forget, for the next two months, in addition to my regular legislative coverage, I’ll be keeping a web log concerning the festivities at the session. For anecdotes, observations and wisecracks concerning the Legislature, check it out.

Monday, January 17, 2005

FUNNIEST BUCK OWENS REVIEW I EVER READ

Here's just a taste:

"I pulled the sharpened keno pencil from my neck where I had attempted to puncture my jugular vein after witnessing Buck Motherfucking Owens doing a Shania Twain number and began writing out MY request ..."


CLICK HERE for the whole thing.


LEGISLATIVE BLOG

In addition to keeping this silly blog going, I'm going to be blogging for The New Mexican during this year's session of the state Legislature, which begins tomorrow.

To check out the paper's blog CLICK HERE. I'll also add a permanent link on the right-hand side.

I'm not exactly sure what it's going to look like every day. Like Blogdom in general at this point, I'll kind of make it up as I go along here.

My editors have stressed that my first duty is to produce copy for the paper, not the blog. So if the going gets tough, the blogging could get thin. We'll have to just see how it goes.

But don't worry, gentle blog readers. This blog you're reading now will continue to have my columns, my playlists and all the other fun stuff you find here.

But check back frequently for updates and observations, some of which might end up in the next day's paper, some of which might not. And feel free to use the comment feature at the bottom of each post. Talk back! (Same goes for this blog.)

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, January xx, 2005
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell Co-host Laurell Reynolds

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
New Big Prinz by The Fall
Dear John by Holly Golightly
Don't Worry About the Government by Talking Heads
Set Me Free/Till the End Of the Day by The Kinks
Seasons In the Sun by Too Much Joy
I Can't Control Myself by The Ramones
That's Not Really Funny by The Eels
South Street by The Orlons

Don't Worry Baby/Warmth of the Sun by The Beach Boys
Rio Grande by Brian Wilson
Don't Be Denied by Neil Young
Poor Murdered Woman by Shirley Collins & The Albion County Band
A Woman Left Lonely by Janis Joplin
Guess Who I Saw in Paris/97 Men in This Here Town Wuld Give a Half a Grand in Silver Just to Follow Me Down by Buffy Sainte Marie

Por Morfina y Cocaina Part 1 by Manuel C Valdez
Jefe De Jefes by Los Tigres Del Norte
El Rey De Pipa Roja by Los Montenos
A Pistol For Paddy Garcia by The Pogues
If You Got to Make a Fool of Somebody by James Ray
Aijo by Varttina
Bomb by Kazik Staszewski
Blue and Black by Mercury Rev

Tapdancin' Bats by NRBQ
Grim by The Ass Ponys
Make Me a Pallet on Your Floor by Sandy Denny
When Your Number Isn't Up by Mark Lannegan Band
Welcome to My World by Giant Sand
This One's From the Heart by Tom Waits & Crystal Gayle
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 15, 2005

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, January 14, 2005
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell


OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Let's Have a Party by Wanda Jackson
Tears at the Grand Old Opry by Robbie Fulks
Weary Blues From Waiting by Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Hereafter
Saturday Midnight Bop by Jerry J. Nixon
Hex by Neko Case
Wrong John by Jim Stringer
I Always Loved a Waltz by Kell Robertson

Wife Beater/Bulldozers and Dirt by Drive-By Truckers
Dancing With the Women at the Bar by Whiskeytown
Nothin' Wrong With Me by NRBQ
Bible Cyst by The Legendary Shack Shakers
Pussy Pussy Pussy by The Light Crust Doughboys
My Girl's Pussy by R. Crumb & The Cheap Suit Serenaders
La Marijuana by Trio Garnica-Ascencio

Mose Allison Played Here by Greg Brown
The Train Carrying Jimmie Rodgers Home by Iris DeMent
Jacob's Ladder by Greg Brown with Iris DeMent
Come On by Hundred Year Flood
Little Tease by Goshen
Elizabeth Cotton's Song by The Moaners
Take the Devil Out of Me by Tres Chicas

Cans, Copper & Car Batteries by Joe West
Same Old Tale the Crow Told Me by Johnny Horton
Sixteen Roses by Miranda Brown
Heartache to Hide by Rex Hobart & The Misery Boys
Wild Irish Rose by George Jones
Linda on My Mind by Conway Twitty
Trouble in Mind by Merle Haggard
Whiskey Willie by Michael Hurley
Pick Up the Tempo by Willie Nelson
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 14, 2005

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: THE BIRTH OF NARCOCORRIDO

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 14 2005


The music glorifies criminal behavior and loose morality. It’s a terrible influence on the youth of the nation. Something must be done to wipe it out.

Sound familiar?

Here in the U.S. Such things have been said about rap, Marilyn Manson, early rock ‘n’ roll, latter-day rock ‘n’ roll, the blues and, back a couple of centuries ago, “fiddle music.”

Down in Mexico for the past few decades, the musical culprit for the downfall of civilization is the narcocorrido, musical stories of drug smugglers popularized by such bands as Los Tigres del Norte, Los Tucanes de Tijuana, Grupo Exterminator and Los Aces.

Just like gangsta rap in this country, the people eat up the narcocorrido (it’s a major part of the Spanish-language record industry on both sides of the Mexican border), though politicians and other upright citizens denounce it and occasionally try to censor it.

(And, naturally, the anti-narcocorrido hysteria emboldens censorship aimed at politically embarrassing music. Just last year, Victor Valencia, the president of the Chihuahua, State Congress spoke up against Los Tigres del Norte’s corrido, “Las Mujeres de Juárez,” -- which wasn’t about drugs, but concerned the murders of scores of young female workers from the maquiladoras. The song, he said, would “contribute to creating an atmosphere of greater terror in our city,” and “discourage investment” in the region.)

Narcocorrido didn’t just spring from the head of some Mexican record producer. As shown in the recent Arhoolie CD The Roots of the Narcocorrido, compiled by James Nicolopulos ( a Spanish professor at the University of Texas), the style comes from a long musical tradition.
On this record, Nicolopulos includes songs going back to the 1880s and recordings going back to the 1920s.

In the case of hardcore gangsta rap music in the U.S., the musical form itself -- the repetitive pounding beats, the scratching, the sampling, the indecipherable slang and the frequent lack of melody -- adds to the fear factor in older censorship advocates.

But even narcocorrido recently has begun to add elements of hip hop and rock, the basic form of the music is very traditional -- polkas and waltzes played by bands employing accordions, guitars, sometimes brass.

And thought the narcocorrido didn’t arise until the 1970s, the lyrical content of such music is based on a type of song long known in Mexico, the corrido or ballad.

(Indeed outlaw ballads have been an essential part of traditional folk music in the English-speaking world as well. As for “glorifying criminals,” who do we love here in America: Jesse James or the dirty little coward who shot Mr. Howard” ? Stagolee or the whimpering Billy DeLyons?)

The first song on The Roots of the Narcocorrido is “”El Corrido de Heraclio Bernal,” a tune dating back to the 19th Century about a Robin Hood-like bandit from Sinoloa, who was betrayed for a reward of 10,000 pesos by one of his own men. This version of the ballad was recorded in 1953 by Dueto Adan & Eva in Mexico City with mariachi horns and violins.

If “Heraclio Bernal” is a typical “social outlaw” celebrated in song and legend, Mariano Resendez represented another type of outlaw hero to inspire Mexican corridos: the smuggler.

But the hero of the tune “Mariano Resendez” -- dating back to the 1890s, this version being recorded in 1948 by Timoteo Cantu & Jesus Maya -- didn’t smuggle contraband from Mexico into the U.S. He and other early smuggler corrido heroes smuggled stolen luxury items from the U.S. into their homeland.

When Prohibition hit the United States, Mexican smugglers reversed course, and started bringing illegal substances -- namely alcohol -- into this mighty land. The phenomenon is documented in songs like “Los Tequileros“ (which lambastes “despicable” Texas Rangers who shoot down brave tequila smugglers) “Corrido de Juan Garcia” (about a liquor smuggler killed in an ambush by the Border Patrol in 1931) and “Corrido de Mier” which mocked sleeping customs agents.

It’s also worth noting that smugglers aren’t the only ones to become the heroes in these songs. Sometimes lawmen get respect in corridos.

Such is the case of “The Ballad of Juan Menses,” a brave cop who was “cut down by the cowardly machine guns of the smugglers” in 1946. This song was recorded in the 1960s in Alice, Texas by Las Hermanas Guerro with Jimmy Morgan;s conjunto.

Then there’s Nieves Hernandez, the man who arrested Mariano Resendez. However Nicolopulos in his liner notes points out that the song “Mariano Resendez” (represented here in a 1960s recording by a band called Los Satelites) was probably commissioned by some of Hernandez’s ancestors to vindicate his memory. In some earlier Resendez ballads Hernandez is “responsible for or at least complicit in the extra judicial execution of the defenseless hero.” But in this song, Hernandez was “a man worthy of respect (who) wasn’t afraid of anything.”

This collection also includes some songs that reference narcotics, cocaine marijuana. Some are tragic and melodramatic like “La Cocaina,” by Pilar Arcos (1927) a string-laden song about a coke-addled senorita who ends up stabbing her unfaithful lover.

Some are comic like the surreal “La Marijuana,” (by Trio Garnica-Ascencio, 1929) which starts out with the image of a pot-smoking frog.

And some corridos are like scenes from Scarface, Traffic or Blow. Such is “Carga Blanca,” a 1949 song by Los Cuatesones concerning a drug-related shootout in San Antonio. (“Three dead and two wounded/were hauled off by the ambulance/but the roll of cash/disappeared completely from the scene.”)

This collection includes several “prisoner lament” type songs in which the captured smuggler regrets his life of crime. But there’s also Francisco Martinez, the hero of a 1949 song sung by Juan Gaytan y Felix Solis, a “good” and “determined smuggler” who says he “fought for my woman” and lived “without fear.”

Martinez is at the end of his life here. But he’s undoubtedly bound for an eternity where he’ll happily plunder the cosmos with Mariano Resendez and Heraclio Bernal. And perhaps it’s an outlaw paradise without borders, where he’ll join up with Jesse James and Stagolee.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: READING THE SIGNS AT THE CAPITOL

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 13, 2005


Officially, nobody knows who will be filling important committee posts in the state Senate. And a few committee chairmanships are up for grabs this year due to election upsets, retirements and leadership shifts.

Officially, committee chairmen in the Senate are recommended by the Committee on Committees and approved by the full Senate.

And officially, the Committee on Committees isn’t chosen until the Senate pro-tem is elected at the outset of the session.

But unofficially, if you want to know this week who the new committee chairmen are going to be, all you have to do is know how to read the signs.

I mean that literally. You just have to walk around the third floor of the Roundhouse and read the names on the signs on the doors.

Roman Maes, D-Santa Fe, who had been chairman of the Corporations and Transportation Committee, was defeated in his primary race by John Grubesic. Up at Maes’ old office, Room 300, a new sign says Sen. Shannon Robinson, D-Albuquerque, is the new chairman of that committee.

Sen. Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, who has been chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, was elected majority floor leader last year. He’s already moved into former Sen. Manny Aragon’s office down on the first floor. The new sign on the door of Room 319, Sanchez’s old office, says that Sen. Cisco McSorley, D-Albuquerque, is the new Judiciary chairman.

And finally there’s Sen. Ben Altamirano, D-Silver City, longtime chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. Late last year his fellow Democratic senators nominated Altamirano for Senate president pro-tem, to replace Richard Romero, who ran an unsuccessful race for Congress instead of seeking re-election.

Now officially (I was hoping to use that word again) Altamirano doesn’t have the pro-tem job yet. The full Senate elects that position, normally on the first day. Republican Sen. Joe Carraro of Albuquerque has said he’s running for the post. And at one point last year, Carraro was claiming he might peel off as many as six Democratic votes, more than enough to put him over.

But apparently Altamirano isn’t worried.

His old office, Room 325, has a sign that says Sen. Joe Fidel, D-Grants, is now chairman of the Finance Committee and that Sen. John Arthur Smith, D-Deming, is vice chairman. (Fidel has been the committee’s vice chair.)

If you can trust the signs on the door, other current committee heads are safe.

Sen. Cynthia Nava, D-Las Cruces, will keep her position of chairwoman of the Senate Education Committee, Sen. Dede Feldman, D-Albuquerque, will remain chairwoman of the Public Affairs Committee, Sen. Linda Lopez, D-Albuquerque, will still be chairwoman of the Senate Rules Committee, Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Taos, will stay chairman of the Conservation Committee, and Sen. John Pinto, D-Tohatchi, will still be chairman of the Indian and Cultural Affairs Committee.

Of course, as the surprise coup against former Senate President pro-tem Manny Aragon in 2001 showed, some things could change once the Legislature actually gets going.

Meanwhile, back at the House of Representatives ... : The House isn’t quite as obvious as the Senate in tipping its hand on committee chairmanships.

However, over at Room 304, office of the chairman of the House Appropriations and Finance Committee, Santa Fe’s Rep. Luciano “Lucky” Varela’s name is where retired chairman Max Coll’s used to be. There’s no sign identifying Varela as chairman, but his name is above that of Deputy Chairman Henry “Kiki” Saavedra, D-Albuquerque.

And there’s no name on the door of Room 308, the office of the House Judiciary Chairman. Rep. Kenny Martinez, D-Grants, abandoned that post to become majority floor leader. Rumors persist that Rep, Joe Cervantes, D-Las Cruces, is in line for the Judiciary chairmanship.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

NOTHING NEW UNDER SUN

I thought the fake reviews of the Family Circus book was so funny, I posted about it below.

But now I've learned the phenomenon has been around for years. Here's a 1999 article about it in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

And here's a 2002 online interview with Bil Keane in The Washington Post. He's good a good sense of humor about the whole Amazon thing.

I also learned that other Family Circus books have whacky customer reviews in Amazon.

Still pretty funny though ...

I'M A TEAM PLAYER NOW

For the last several months I've resisted putting my radio show play lists on the KSFR web site. There were several reasons. For one thing, I post them on this blog. But most importantly I resisted because initially we were told that we had to include a UPC code number or catalog number, which apparently was for the benefit of the Recording Industry Association of America. And if we didn't include these numbers, the entry would be blank. This was bad news especially for those of us who ocasionally use home-burned CDs or (shudder) bootlegs.

So I refused to go to all the extra trouble of typing in a bunch of numbers for the RIAA's benefit. But checking out other KSFR play lists, I noticed others didn't have that info -- and no entries appeared to be missing.

So I created lists for last week's Santa Fe Opry and Terrell's Sound World.

I'll try it for awhile. But I'll keep posting my lists on this blog too.

HOPE, FAITH & CHARITY

I just became aware of a new organization called H.O.P.E. that has a program to bring relief to a sadly forgotten class of victims. Tsunami survivors? Nope? Iraqi children wounded in the crossfire of war? Naw ... Mudslide victims in California? Nope, they've got to look for "HOPE" elsewhere.


No, H.O.P.E. (Horrified Observers of Pedestrian Entertainment)is "an association of entertainment and media professionals, students, journalists, and citizens that are fed up with the face of popular culture and mainstream entertainment" who are dedicated to bringing "quality to the world of entertainment while working outside of the traditional network, record label, and studio structure." They're not a right-wing "Let's Beat on the Dixie Chicks" bunch who believe Sean Penn and Barbra Streisand are the gravest threats to democracy. H.O.P.E. is taking on the more serious issues of annoying celebs and talentless pop singers who suck regardless of their political views.

And H.O.P.E. is putting their money where their proverbial mouth is. They don't just make fun of Paris Hilton and Britney whatzername. They've actually set up a CD exchange for disgusted ex-Ashlee Simpson fans. That's right, you can send them your old Ashlee CDs and get some good music -- Elvis Costello, The Ramones, X, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, Aretha Franklin, Mr. Bungle and Ray Charles are among those named -- in exchange.

I wonder if tsunami victims can send in Ashlee Simpson CDs in exchange for, say, sanitary drinking water ...

Sunday, January 09, 2005

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, January 9, 2005
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
Nixon Tribute
One Tin Soldier by The Dick Nixons
Ohio by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Nixon's Dead Ass by Russell Means
Watergate Blues by Tom T. Hall

Oops! I Did It Again by Richard Thompson
She's 19 Years Old by Muddy Waters
Oh Sweet Mary by Big Brother & The Holding Company

Mack the Knife by Kazik Staszewski
Nothing Is Impossible (from Zakhmee soundtrack)
Theme From Burnt Weenie Sandwich by The Mothers of Invention
Is She Weird by Frank Black & Two Pale Boys
Contraflow by The Fall
Things We Like to Do by NRBQ

Elvis Tribute
(All songs by Elvis Presley except where noted)
Listening to Elvis by Ed Pettersen & The High Line Riders
King of the Whole Wide World
Reconsider Baby
Trying to Get to You
True Love Travels Down a Gravel Road
The Pelvis (Medley: Hound Dog, Jailhouse Rock, Suspicious Minds) by The Ditch Bank Okies
Follow That Dream
Elvis Is Everywhere by Mojo Nixon
(There'll Be) Peace in the Valley (For Me)

Running From the Baron by The Winking Tikis
Yen on a Carrousel by David Holmes
The Darker Days of Me and Him by P.J. Harvey
Dream Scream by Death Cab for Cutie
Like Little Willie John by Mark Lannegan
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 08, 2005

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, January 6, 2005
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Now Webcasting
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Paradise by Lynn Anderson
Diggy Diggy Lo by Doug Kershaw
It's Not Easy Being Green by Rex Hobart & The Misery Boys

Rex Hobart Live Set
Don't Make Me Break Your Heart
Gotta Get Back to Forgetting You
I Just Lost My Mind
Let's Leave Me
You've Got Some Cheating To Do
Motel Time Again
Forever Always Ends

It Won't Be Long (And I'll Be Hating You) by Rex Hobart & The Misery Boys
I Drink Too Much by Cornell Hurd
Texas Honky Tonk by Justin Trevino
Mike the Can Man by Joe West
Pecos River by The Bubbadinos

Bonanza by NRBQ
Ringo by Lorne Greene
Dan Blocker by Gurf Morlix
There Oughta Be a Law Against Sunny California by Terry Allen
It's Only Make Believe by Kelly Hogan & John Wesley Harding
Train From Kansas City by Neko Case
Rich Man's War by Steve Earle
It Came From the South by Big Al Anderson
God Has Lodged a Tenant in My Uterus by Tammy Faye Starlite

Terrier by The Moaners
You Win Again by Mother Earth
Walk You Home by Marlee MacLeod
Wide River to Cross by Buddy Miller
Black Haired Boy by Grey DeLisle with Murray Hammond
God Walks These Dark Hills by Iris DeMent
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 07, 2005

PUNDIT PAYOLA


My former colleague Greg Toppo -- who worked at The New Mexican in the 1990s and now writes for USA Today -- has a fascinating scoop today concerning right-wing pundit Armstrong Williams (pictured here) getting a $240,000 contract from the U.S. Department of Education to promote No Child Left Behind.

Read all about it here

FAMILY CIRCUS



This book is getting rave reviews from customers.

(You better read it fast before Amazon wises up ...)

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: FRANK BLACK'S PIXIES TRIBUTE

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 7, 2004


When Charles Thompson -- aka Black Francis, aka Frank Black -- left The Pixies back in the early ‘90s, it seemed that he never looked back. He’s remained prolific, releasing a seemingly unending stream of crazy rocking records, in recent years fronting his new band The Catholics. His solo/Catholics output is more than twice that of The Pixies, who released only four full albums and one EP in their brief but influential run.

(In case there are those who somehow missed out on The Pixies -- and unfortunately that applies to far too many people -- this quartet, which also included bassist Kim Deal, guitarist Joey Santiago and drummer David Lovering, was perhaps the greatest indie band of the late 1980s. They were crazier than the Replacements, lighter-hearted than Husker Du and took themselves far less seriously than R.E.M. The Pixies served as inspiration to Nirvana and countless other groups back in those strange days when "alternative rock" truly was an alternative to the mainstream. And I don‘t care what anyone says, The Pixies‘ last album Trump le Monde, was better than Nirvana’s Nevermind, released the same year. And Trump isn’t even The Pixie’s best record. )

The Frank Black albums, for the most part have been full of fun, crazy energy, several good laffs per CD, and occasionally a memorable melody. But always there was the caveat -- this is good, but nothing here matches "Monkey Gone to Heaven" or "Wave of Mutilation" or "Caribou" -- or other masterpieces from the Pixie repertoire.

But last year, for reasons I’m not sure, Black began looking back. He apparently began to come to terms with his Pixiehood.

First there was a Pixies’ 2004 reunion tour -- the first time the four have played together since the breakup. Except for a limited edition live disc from a Minnesota concert, no record came out of the reunion -- though rumors of a pending studio record of new material persist.

In addition to the reunion tour, Black last year released a weird but delightful double CD called Frank Black Francis.

One disc is a collection of demos, recorded by Black and his guitar the day before The Pixies went into the studio to record tunes that eventually would be used on their first EP Come on Pilgrim.

It’s a low-fi affair -- recorded on a Walkman! Although the tunes here definitely would benefit from the full band treatment, Black sings with such wild abandon and raw enthusiasm, it sounds as if he knew he was on the verge of something amazing.

Indeed he plays like he’s about to explode. It’s fast and furious, with about half the songs clocking in under two minutes while only one tops the three-minute mark. Black shrieks and wails, just like he later would become famous for doing as Black Francis. At one point during "Caribou" he makes a note to himself: "There’s supposed to be screaming," he says, then proceeds to do just that.

While Disc One is an essential historic object for Pixies, Disc Two is the more interesting and potentially controversial among Pixies purists. Here Black teams up with Two Pale Boys, Andy Diagram and Keith Moline, a couple of electro-nerds who also have created weird and wonderful soundscapes with Pere Ubu’s David Thomas.

Black and the Pale Boys take 13 Pixies classics and turn them inside out.

Don’t get me wrong. As a long-time Pixies partisan, I prefer the original guitar-based versions of every one of these songs. But the Pale Boys versions are extremely interesting experiments. I love the droning fiddle sound on "Into the White," the regal horns and twangy guitar on "Nimrod’s Son," the lonely Arctic winds on "Carribou," the stuttering trumpet and spooky space sounds on "Is She Weird" and the electronic sounds on "Wave of Mutilation" suggesting seagulls and crashing ocean waves underscores the beauty of the original melody.

The only cut that’s hard to listen to here is the near-15-minute version of "Planet of Sound." It easily could have been cut by two thirds.

I hope all this leads to a proper Pixies reunion album. And I hope Frank Black or Black Francis or whoever he is carries on.

(I just realized that my first Tune-up of last year also featured a review of a Frank Black album. You can find that HERE)

Also Recommended:
*The Real New Fall LP (formerly Country on the Click) by The Fall. Little did I know back in 1981 when I interviewed The Fall’s Mark E. Smith in Evangelos right before a Fall concert across the street at a place called The Gold Bar (formerly El Paseo theater, now the site of Banana Republic) that this band would still be around cranking out records in the 21st Century.

But they are. The personnel has changed, but Smith is still the main Fall guy.

The title of this album is a clever jab at the seemingly endless recycling of old Fall material that inflates and clog’s the group’s discography. But don’t worry. It’s new. It’s real.

And like The Fall’s best work, this new album is full of songs built around raunchy guitar riffs, some subtle synth action and Smith’s incomprehensible vocals. "Singing" isn’t an accurate verb. Smith doesn’t sing as much as rant like some over-excited wino pontificating madness on some grimy street corner.

How could anyone not love someone spitting out lyrics like "I hate the countryside so much/I hate the country folks so much," as Smith does on "Cowtraflow" ?

Rex on the Opry: Bloodshot recording artist Rex Hobart, leader of The Misery Boys, who moved to Santa Fe last year, will appear live to sing his saddest country songs on The Santa Fe Opry, 10 p.m. Friday on KSFR 90.7 FM.


Hobart will be playing solo Tuesday night at the Cowgirl Hall of Fame, 319 S. Guadalupe St, Santa Fe, and Jan. 21 at Santa Fe Brewing Company. 18 SR 14 E. Frontage Road. By the way, Rex is playing solo here because The Misery Boys don’t live in Santa Fe. That’s why they’re so miserable.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

BACK TO THE '70s



No, these aren't stunt doubles for Welcome Back Kotter. This picture is from the March 27, 1976 wedding of my old pal Steve Severtson. He's the geek in the Navy uniform on the far right.

I'm playing Napoleon on the left. I was best man. Still a pretty good man.

The guys in the middle are John Ramirez and Bruce Bolinger.

Severtson found this old shot just recently when he was playing around with his new scanner/printer. It's probably a good argument for tighter federal regulations on the sale and possession of scanners.

Unfortunately the camera didn't pick up the brilliance and intensity of my green suit that day. But Bruce's jacket sure looks snazzy, doesn't it?

By the way, Steve and his wife Deb are still married. They live in Virginia and have two grown sons.

Time fries ...



ROUNDHOUSE ROUND-UP: THE NEW MEXICO MUSIC COMMISSION

As published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 5, 2005


They're whistling a new tune in the governor's office these days. And it's a tune that might be appreciated by fans of ranchero, rock 'n' roll, country-western, opera, pow-wow, hip-hop or blues.

Gov. Bill Richardson will ask the Legislature to pass a bill establishing a New Mexico Music Commission, "to protect, promote and archive music in New Mexico," said Billy Sparks, Richardson's deputy chief of staff.

"Music is a longtime New Mexico tradition," he said. "Hopefully a music commission would provide New Mexico musicians opportunities for performing and recording."

"It would be under the Department of Cultural Affairs," Sparks said. The commission would be fashioned after similar music agencies in Texas and Louisiana, he said.

Sparks himself earned a living as a guitar picker and songwriter in Austin, Texas in the early '80s. "The state Music Office has really helped there," he said, noting that Austin is now known as the Live Music Capitol of the World.

Other state governments are picking up on the idea of having music offices. They're in Hawaii and Tennessee, (where it's part of the state Film, Entertainment and Music Commission). The cities of Austin, Memphis and San Francisco also have similar agencies to promote the music biz.

Sparks noted that the film industry is spending $164 million a year shooting movies in New Mexico. "And every film has music," he said.

"There's a new Grammy Award category, Native American music, which has been won by New Mexico musicians," he said. "There's the mariachi festival in Las Cruces. But there's no central place for information about all these activities."

Sparks said the commission would provide a clearing house for information regarding New Mexico singers and bands, as well as musical businesses such as recording studios and record companies.

"It's like the Film Office directory," he said. "It would be a directory of where the studios are and who's doing what."

The Texas Music Office's website has a talent register of more than 6,000 musical acts, as well as directories for live music venues, radio stations (broken down by musical styles), record stores, record distributors, musical instrument businesses, music publishers and distributors, CD manufacturers, college music programs, entertainment lawyers, and even music journalists.

The governor will ask lawmakers for $100,000 to get the music commission going, Sparks said. A full-time director would be hired.

Casey at the bat: Casey Monahan, a former music writer for the Austin American-Statesman, probably knows more about state music agencies than anyone else. He's been the director of the Texas Music Office since it started in 1990, working for Governors William Clements, Ann Richards, George W. Bush and current Gov. Rick Perry.

Asked in a phone interview Wednesday for his advise to New Mexico in starting a music commission, Monahan said, "I'd advise them to interview as many music-related business owners, bands, and music educators as possible and ask them what the state government could do to make their lives easier.

"You have to develop an agenda based on the needs of the industry after these interviews are conducted," he said.

And what should a New Mexico Music Commission avoid?

"The main thing is to avoid creating expectations that can't be met," Monahan said.

(Note to area musicians: I think that means the state isn't going to guarantee you gigs.)

"The Texas Music Office operates kind of like a chamber of commerce within the governor's office to promote the music business," he said. "It's important that you don't compete. We don't do big events or release our own records. We represent all the music business in Texas."

(That doesn't mean Monahan can't work on records as a private citizen. He was the producer on one of my personal favorite albums of the '90s, All That May Do My Rhyme by psychedelic Texas wildman Roky Erikson.)

Commissioner Randy Travis?: Well, maybe. Sparks said if the Legislature passes the proposed bill, some of New Mexico's best known musicians could be asked to become commissioners. But he stressed that nobody has been approached for the job.

It would be hard to beat the Louisiana Music Commission for star power though. The chairman of that board is Ellis L. Marsalis Jr., father of famed jazzmen Wynton and Branford Marsalis. Other members include Jean Knight, singer of the '70s soul hit "Mr. Big Stuff" and bluesman Ernest "Tabby" Thomas.


Wednesday, January 05, 2005

NIFTY NEW FEATURES ON THIS BLOG

I was fooling around with the innards of this here blog and discovered some cool little items for your enjoyment.

At the top of the page there's a search feature for finding stuff on this blog. If you're looking for something I've written about Manny Aragon or Prussian Blue or Tammy Faye Starlite or Bill Richardson or The Winking Tikis or whatever, search for it there. Unfortunately it won't take you directly to the correct post, just the archived page where the post you're looking for is stored.

Also you might notice the little envelope with the arrow at the bottom of each post right by the comments link. That's in case you want to e-mail the post to a friend or loved one. It sends the direct link to the post and allows you to write a message. Feel free to e-mail my stuff all over the place.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

DOS BLONDIES

.
Check out the New York Cool interview with the lovely Miss Tammy Faye Starlite.

CLICK HERE

Looks like Debbie Harry showed up to Tammy's recent gig at Joe's Pub. Could they be collaborating on an obscene Christian version of "Heart of Glass"?

Celebs are starting to flock to Miss Starlite. When I was at Joe's Pub for Tammy's show during the Republican Convention last September, Steve Earle showed up.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, January 2, 2005
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
Musicology by Prince
Stealin' All Day by C.C. Adcock
I Zimba by Talking Heads
What Makes You Think You're the One by Twilight Singers
I Found Out by Nathaniel Mayer
Hello It's Me by The Isley Brothers
Turn That Chicken Down by Gerraint Watkins

Methamphetamine Blues by Mark Lanegan Band
Shake It by Tom Waits
Picking Up After You by Tom Waits & Crystal Gayle
Patriot's Heart by American Music Club
Shame by P.J. Harvey
Living With the Animals by Mother Earth

$165 Million + Interest (Into) the Roundup by David Holmes
Reprimand by Joe West
Blood of the Ram by The Gourds
Do the Primal Thing/What You Mean to Me by NRBQ
The Fame of Lofty Deeds/Nashville Radio by Jon Langford

Monsters of the Id by Stan Ridgway
Portland, Oregon/Trouble on the Line by Loretta Lynn
Cabin Essence/Wonderful by Brian Wilson
Get Ready For Love by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
Daddy's Cup by The Drive-By Truckers

Saturday, January 01, 2005

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

It's already 2005. This stupid decade is nearly half cooked.

My true love and I rung in the new year last night at the wonderful old Mine Shaft Taven where unfortunately we arrived too late for Goshen's set, but got to see Hundred Year Flood.. This was my first time to see them live, and I was impressed. My favorite song they did was an anti-war tune called "Don't Go" -- which according to singer Felicia Ford, was written as a plea to someone considering enlisting to fight in Iraq. Good, melodic, folk-stained rock, and that Felicia is one powerful vocalist.

Joe West was there, with the infamous Mike the Can Man. Although Joe didn't play any of his own songs, he helped Felicia sing "Auld Lang Syne."

I can't believe it's been so many years since I've been to the Mine Shaft. It's a rowdy, funky good-time place that brought back memories of historic New Mexico honky tonks like The Line Camp, The Golden Inn and the Thunderbird in Placitas. Owners Cliff Kitzrow and Ede Salkeld announced that this would be their last New Year's Eve at the Mine Shaft. The place has been for sale for months and Kitzrow said a deal is on the table. He said the prospective new owners would keep the rock 'n' roll spirit alive in The Mine Shaft. I hope he's right.

By the way, while Googling around for info on The Mine Shaft, I came upon this interesting page that sugests they don't call Madrid a ghost town for nuthin': CLICK HERE

Happy New Year to all!!!!!

TERRELL'S TUNE-UP: Wolves, Angels and BBQ

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican   May 26, 2017 “Anger is an energy,” John Lydon, a.k.a. Johnny Rotten, inf...