Tuesday, December 30, 2008

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR BLOG


Actually I'm a couple of days late.

Dec. 28 was the fifth anniversary of this here blog. Yes, I started this mess with this post

Please, in lieu of champagne, just donate to your favorite charity.

But seriously, as this blog goes into its sixth year, there's going to be a major change.
Richardson goes to the new blog
Beginning on Jan. 1, I'll be launching a blog dedicated to state politics -- and sometimes national politics when New Mexico is affected. Roundhouse Roundup: The Blog will be the new home of my weekly column by that name as well as other political observations, insights, wisecracks and links to my newspaper stories and other noteworthy sites. For the past several years I've done a Legislature blog. The new blog will be where I do that from now on.

You might already have noticed the altered title here on this site. This joint is going to remain the home of Terrell's Tuneup, the play lists for my KSFR radio shows, my podcasts, my monthly eMusic download reviews, my rants against the music industry, my love letters to former New Mexico Music Commissioner Tony Orlando, etc.
Tony stays here.
I haven't done any demographic studies of my readership or anything, but I'm pretty sure there's two major factions -- political junkies and music freaks. I know the two groups do intersect to some degree. For you folks, you can just open this blog in one tab and the political blog in another and toggle fiercely between the two.

I'll announce the link to the new blog on New Year's Day.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, December 29, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
America the Beautiful by The Dictators
All Dressed Up by The Yayhoos
Oowee Baby by The Cramps
Walking Down the Aisle by Ike Turner
Kewpie Doll by The Birthday Party
Alexander by The Fuzztones
Waddlin' Around by The King Khan & BBQ Show
Out of My Head by The Green Hornets

Glam Racket by The Fall
Grown So Ugly by Captain Beefheart
What's Under the Log by Bichos
Special Rider by Insect Trust
Life Stinks by Pere Ubu
New York City by The Fleshtones
And the Shimmering Light by Mudhoney
Thunderbird (Part 1) by Ravi Harris & The Prophets
Get Me to the World on Time by The Electric Prunes

WORLD BEATERS SET
Into the Go-Go Groove by Little Gerhard (Sweden)
Busco un Camino by Grupo 606 (Bolivia)
Easy as Can Be by The Stalemates (Papua New Guinea)
Voice From the Inner Soul by The Confusions (India)
Angelita by Mod East (Hong Kong)
Al Capone by The Salvajes (Spain)
He's a Man by The Savages (Bermuda)
Soldado by The Beatniks (Argentina)
This Bad Girl by The Golden Cups (Japan)
But Why I Can't by The Brightness (Greece)
More by Los Shakers (Uruguay)

Dancing Choose by TV on the Radio
Talking Main Event Magazine Blues by Mike Edison & The Rocket Train Delta Science Arkestra
It's No Secret by The Jefferson Airplane
If I Had Wings by T-Model Ford
This Is My Life by Firewater
Bob by Primus
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Friday, December 26, 2008

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, December 26, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Long Hauls & Close Calls by Hank Williams III
Camel Walk by Southern Culture on the Skids
My Name is Jorge by The Gourds
Alligator Man by Jimmy C. Newman
Pine Grove Blues by Mama Rosin
Sadie Green the Vamp of New Orleans by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
Albuquerque Rainbow by Chris Darrow
Drums from New Orleans by Gurf Morlix with Ruthie Foster
Funky Tonk by Moby Grape

Festival Acadiens Two Step by The Pine Leaf Boys
Diggy Liggy Lo by John Fogerty
One Foor in the Honky Tonk by The Starline Rhythm Boys
Hold Back the Tears by Miss Leslie
Dollar Bill the Cowboy by The Waco Brothers
Ridin' with the Blues by Ry Cooder
Play it Cool by Ray Campi
My Baby in the CIA by Asylum Street Spankers

The Ballad of Patch Eye and Meg by Joe West
It Took Four Beatles to Make One Elvis by Harry Hayward
The Ballad of Wayward by Ronny Elliot
Acres of Heartache by Johnny Dilks
Sittin' and Thinkin' by Ray Price
Sorrow on the Rocks by Porter Wagoner
Saturday Night Midnight Bop by Jerry J. Nixon
A Couple More Years by Jerry Lee Lewis with Willie Nelson
There's a New Moon Over My Shoulder by Gov. Jimmie Davis

There's Nothing to Eat in Tucumcari by Andy Mason
Don't Blame Me by Flat Duo Jets
Railroad Lady by Lefty Frizzell
Lonesome Hearted Blues by Cornell Hurd
Build Me a House by Kim & The Cabelleros
Down Through the Holler by Hundred Year Flood
Two Seconds by The Volebeats
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

LEGISLATURE PREVIEWS

The New Mexican published a couple of my preview stories of the upcoming session of the state Legislature.

My story on the American Civil Liberty Union's "Spying on Freedom" bill is HERE.

And my story on the looming battle over domestic partnerships is HERE

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: A FAMILY TRADITION

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 26, 2008


Hank Williams III, as he shows on his latest album, Damn Right Rebel Proud, has a punk-rock soul, though he’s got pure country blood. Apparently his grandfather was some kind of country singer back in the old days.

After years of playing in hardcore punk bands, young Hank’s first couple of stabs at country music — Risin’ Outlaw (1999) and Lovesick, Broke & Driftin’ (2002) — showed plenty of talent, plenty of dedication to traditional country-music values, and an uncanny vocal resemblance to Hank Sr. But while both albums are decent examples of good retro country — the kind of music that his friend and mentor Wayne “The Train” Hancock is so good at — they aren’t much more than that.

His artistic breakthrough didn’t come until a couple of years ago, with the release of Straight to Hell. With its dark imagery of backwoods violence, drinking, drugging, hell-raising, devil worshipping, and manic-depressive Southern-fried insanity, this two-disc album has a truly dangerous aura. All those themes have been well covered by previous artists, but somehow, Hank III presents them with demonic authority. The project culminates on the second disc with “Louisiana Stripes,” which consists of an acoustic murder ballad (“Louisiana Stripes” proper) followed by a 40-plus-minute aural collage featuring snatches of lo-fi, sometimes sonically distorted songs; ambient noises; a fragment of a religious sermon; creepy laughter; train whistles; wolf howls; and other frightening sound effects — kind of a hillbilly “Revolution 9.”

The album ensured that, unlike his father, Hank III would never be invited to share the stage with John McCain and Sarah Palin.

While there’s no 40-minute honky-tonk Hades tour on Damn Right Rebel Proud, the new album continues down the same basic path as Straight to Hell, with Hank III struggling with and frequently celebrating his demons — as the fiddles, banjo, and steel edge him on.

Unfortunately the album starts with a misfire. “The Grand Ole Opry (Ain’t So Grand)” basically deals with how the modern-day Nashville music establishment sucks the warts. It’s true, but it’s been said too many times before.

For me, the most interesting part of the tune is the refrain, in which he holds his dad, Hank Jr. (aka Bocephus), up as a rebel hero. “They were nervous about Waylon ’cause he had a crooked smile "For many many years they never wanted Bocephus ’cause he was too goddamn loud.”

Though Hank Jr. gets his praise in “Grand Ole Opry,” he doesn’t come off so well in a subsequent tune, “If You Can’t Help Your Own.” It’s a bluesy little number — one that Jr. might be partial to — that refers to rich relatives who never came around. If that’s a dig at dear old dad, who by all reports was absent during most of his son’s life, Hank III doesn’t dwell on it. In the last verse, the focus is on an uncaring government.

There’s a funny little ode to the late punk monster G.G. Allin here called “P.F.F.” (For the record, this isn’t the first country-rock tribute to Allin. The Drive-By Truckers did “The Night G.G. Allin Came to Town” years ago.) Hank’s song goes on for more than 10 minutes and comes in two parts — some good honky-stomp craziness for the first half or so and then an acoustic reprise with some sweet Dobro offering a counterpoint to the profane lyrics.

There’s tons of fun on the album. “Long Hauls & Calls” is a celebration of drunken craziness that could be used for the soundtrack of a chase scene in a Burt Reynolds hicksploitation comedy, as could “Six Pack of Beer.”

But Hank III doesn’t ignore the downside of nonstop hell-raising. The somber “Three Shades of Black,” with a melody that might remind you of “Ghost Riders in the Sky,” sounds like a song that Johnny Cash would have recorded on one of his latter-day albums. “Three shades of black is where I come from/Depression, misery and hellacious fun. ... We are a certain breed and we don’t like you/Some are junkies, some are freaks, and some are everyday ghouls.”

Definitely the most shocking song here is “Candidate for Suicide.”rhythm, but the lyrics tell the story of a “busted up and beaten down” soul for whom drugs have taken a heavy toll. Hank sings, “I’m a candidate for suicide/I was raped at 8 years old.”

That lurking death wish is also heard on the slow, dreamy “Stoned and Alone.” There he instructs a loved one, real or imagined, to “pick up the gun, dear, and put me to sleep.”
It’s hard to tell whether this album is a cry for help or a roar of defiance. Probably both. But it’s a noise worth hearing.

Also recommended:

* If the World Was Upside Down by Joe West. This one might be good to cleanse your musical palate after Hank Williams III’s tales of drugs and depression.
JOE WEST & HIS DARLING CLEMENTINE
It’s an album of children’s music — perhaps the world’s first children’s record made by a guy who spends part of his time on stage as a time-traveling transvestite.

I’ll be honest — I vastly prefer Joe’s albums for adults. Give me South Dakota Hairdo or Human Cannonball any day.

But, as always with West, the music is top-notch. He’s backeders of the Santa Fe All Stars (Susan Hyde Holmes on bass, Sharon Gilchrist on mandolin, and guitarist Ben Wright) as well as by members of Hundred Year Flood and other Frogville cronies.

And yes, there are songs those of us over 3 feet tall can enjoy. “My Grandma” is a Southwestern answer to Bill Withers’ “Grandma’s Hands.” “Robots of Rayleen” is weird enough to love. He sings a good version of Michelle Shocked’s “The Ballad of Patch Eye and Meg.” And the simple yet beautiful melody of “On the Banks of the Rio Grande” is downright irresistible.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

ROUNDHOUSE ROUNDUP: INDEPENDENTS UNITE

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 25, 2008


Here’s a little Christmas gift from a New York City-based organization for the rapidly growing group of voters in New Mexico who declined to affiliate with either the Democratic or Republican Party.

The Committee for a Unified Independent Party has launched a national petition asking President-elect Barack Obama to initiate federal legislation “to create open primaries for election to federal office in all 50 states that guarantees full access for independent voters.”

New Mexico, according to CUIP, is one of only 17 states in which independents — or “declined-to-states” as we’re known here — are barred from voting in state primaries.


Notice, I used the first person in the previous paragraph. As I’ve disclosed before, I’m a proud DTS. I probably ought to make clear also that I’m not affiliated with CUIP or any other political organization.

I’ve beat this drum before. The fact that the state primaries are paid for by all taxpayers, yet only Democrats and Republicans are allowed to participate seems a clear case of taxation without representation.
Not everyone likes independent voters
I’m talking about the primaries that occur in June every even-numbered year and not about the February presidential caucuses that the state Democratic Party has run — and paid for — in the previous two presidential elections. That’s the party’s event, and they’ve got the right to include or exclude anyone they want.

But if they wanted to be really cool ...

The Democrats, thanks mainly to the appeal of Obama to new and infrequent voters, were able to register loads of new voters in New Mexico (and elsewhere) this year.

But independents made some great gains, too. Registered DTS voters in New Mexico rose from 164,986 four years ago to 184,846 by Oct. 31, according to the Secretary of State’s Office.

And here in Santa Fe County, DTS overtook the GOP. As of Oct. 31, there are 16,891 declined-to-states, compared with 16,590 Republicans in the county. The Dems still have everyone beat by far, with 61,603 registered voters in Santa Fe County. Other parties such as Greens and Libertarians have a combined total of 2,620 registered voters in the county.

The petition to Obama implies the owes the independents, pointing out that 33 states allowed independents to participate in primaries and caucuses:

“Independent voters were proud to be a vital element of your winning coalition during the presidential campaign of 2008. Your appeal to Americans — that the country must move beyond partisanship and toward a more participatory and open political culture — resonated strongly with independent voters, who have been voicing these concerns for many years. Your invitation to all Americans to reshape our country’s future — without regard to political affiliation — was a refreshing change for independents and Americans of every political persuasion.”

For the record, Obama lost the closed New Mexico Caucus to Hillary Clinton by a tiny margin. Perhaps independent voters could have won the state for him had they been allowed to participate.

But I still like my taxation-without-representation argument better. That’s an argument I believe would hold up in court.

I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for Obama to get behind the legislation CUIP is calling for. And I really wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for the New Mexico Legislature, which remains firmly in the hands of the Democrats, to correct this injustice.

But it’s Christmas, so we can wish.

Still no feeding frenzy: In fact there’s been surprisingly little attention paid by the national media to the grand jury investigation of certain political contributions to Gov. Bill Richardson and how that might affect his confirmation as commerce secretary.

A grand jury in Albuquerque, meeting, as all grand juries do, behind closed doors, is hearing testimony about CDR, a Beverly Hills financial firm that won state contracts totaling almost $1.5 million. According to The Associated Press and other media organizations, the grand jury is looking at whether Richardson or his staff pressured the state Finance Authority to award the contracts to CDR.

But there have been a couple of major news organizations to run stories about the grand jury in recent days. The New York Times on Thursday did a story that laid down the basic facts, including the standard comment from the Governor’s Office — the administration is cooperating with the investigation — and denial of wrongdoing from CDR.

On Tuesday, NBC Nightly News ran a two-minute-plus report that also had the basic elements of the story. It included footage of Richardson bolting from last week’s news conference and comments from Melanie Sloan, head of the Washington, D.C.-based Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

“There’s only a few months between the donations and the award of the contract, which is generally what your campaign finance lawyers and ethics lawyers will tell you to avoid,” Sloan said. She was referring to a $75,000 CDR contribution to a Richardson political action committee, which was made only three weeks or so after CDR won the contracts.

Plugs: I’m off next week, so there will be no Roundhouse Roundup next Thursday. But if you need a fix of my political insights, be sure to listen to a 2008 year-in-review panel discussion on KUNM, 89.9 FM. It airs at 11 a.m. Sunday.

On Dec. 31, I’ll be talking about the year in politics with Diane Kinderwater on her show Issues and Answers on Channel 11. The show will air at 4:30 p.m. and will repeat several times during that next week.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, December 21, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Webcasting!
101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

THE STEVE TERRELL CHRISTMAS SPECIAL
With Guest Host Scott Gullet

Silent Night by Bad Religion
Santa Doesn't Cop Out on Dope by Sonic Youth
Santa Claus Is a Black Man by Akim & The Teddy Vann Production Company
Come on Santa by The Raveonettes
If It Doesn't Snow on Christmas by Joe Pesci
Cool Yule by Louis Armstrong
Christmas 1979 by Wild Billy Childish
Back Door Santa by Clarence Carter
We Three Kings by Mojo Nixon & The Toadlickers
Jingle Bell Rock by Lumbre del Sol

Champagne of Christmas by The Fleshtones
Jinglecide by The Rockin' Guys
6 Bullets for Christmas by Angry Johnny & The Killbillies
Christmas at K-Mart by Root Boy Slim & The Sex Change Band
Even Squeeky Fromme Loves Christmas by Rev. Glen Armstrong
Lonely Christmas Call by George Jones
Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy by Buck Owens
Hark the Herald Angels Sing by The Fall
Gloria by Elastica

Santa Claus Goes Straight to the Ghetto by Snoop Dogg
Santa Claus Boogie by Hasil Adkins
Santa Came on a Nuclear Missile by Heather Noel
Happy Birthday Jesus by Little Cindy
Merry Christmas Elvis by Michelle Cody
All I Want For Christmas is My Methadone by The Scabs
Merry Christmas From the Family by Robert Earle Keene
Santa Can't Stay by Dwight Yoakam

You're All I Want for Christmas by The Persuasions
Fairytale of New York by The Pogues
Christmas Lullaby by Shane McGowan & The Popes
Oh Holy Night by Brian Wilson
Can Man Christmas by Joe West
No Vacancy by Marlee MacLeod
Star of Wonder by The Roches
Old Toy Trains by Roger Miller

Friday, December 19, 2008

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, December 19, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell


101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
If We Make It Through December by Merle Haggard
We'll Burn Together by Robbie Fulks
The Check's in the Mail by Johnny Dilks
Me and My Friends by Hank Williams III
Qualudes Again by Bobby Bare
I'll Walk Out by Miss Leslie
Dream Vacation by The Gear Daddies
I'm Barely Hangin' On by Johnny Paycheck
May the Bird of Paradise by Little Jimmie Dickens
Man Overboard by Libby Bosworth & Toni Price
The Tail of the Night Before/Dinosaur Christmas by Wee Hairy Beasties

Freight Train Boogie by The Maddox Brothers & Rose
Don't Miss That Train by Sister Wynona Carr
This Train by Sleepy LaBeef
Gotta Travel On by The Starline Rhythm Boys
That Truck by The Texas Rubies
Dying Breed by Kim & The Cabelleros
Hogtied Over You by Billy Bacon & The Forbidden Pigs with Candye Kane
Beer Can Christmas Tree by Jimmy Baldwin & Michael O'Neal
River of Crystal by Roy Acuff

I'll Have to Forget You by The Pineleaf Boys
Uncle Bud by Boozoo Chavis
Let's Talk About Drinking by The Balfa Brothers
Biker Boys by Rosie LeDet
Sugar Bee by Cleveland Croket
Fonky Bayou by Michael Doucet
Saturday Night Special by Lesa Cormier & The Sundown Playboys
Johny Can't Dance by Mama Rosin
Creole Stomp by Jimmy Breaux

Firewater Seeks Its Own Level by Butch Hancock
Summer Wages by David Bromberg
On the Banks of the Rio Grande by Joe West
Crooked Mile by Peter Case
Have Mercy by Steve Earle
That's the Way Love Goes by Lefty Frizzell
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

RIAA TURNS FOCUS TO SOMALIAN PIRATES



Not really. But they apparently will stop suing 11-year-old girls for illegally downloading "Happy Birthday to You."

See Wall Street Journal article HERE.

Yo ho Ho!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: IN PRAISE OF FUZZ

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 19, 2008


The Fuzztones is one of those groups that seems to have been around forever. Given my taste for basic, loud, snotty psychedelic/garage/trash/primitive rock, I’m surprised that I’ve never been exposed to their music before. And now that I finally have — with their new album Horny as Hell — I think that they may be on the cusp of a major transformation.

First, a little Fuzzy history.

The Fuzztones have been around, in various forms, since the ’80s. They claim they used the description “grunge” years before the Seattle sound. Like The Fleshtones and The Cramps, they started out in New York. But The Fuzztones have gone through a number of personnel shifts and have moved around. The group was in California for a few years but broke up in the early ’90s after a major label deal flopped. T

he Fuzztones re-emerged this century, this time in Europe. Fuzzmeister Rudi Protrudi and his latest incarnation of the band have been based out of Berlin in recent years.

The ’08 model of The Fuzztones includes a horn section and a female chorus. King Khan & The Shrines, also based in Germany, must be a major influence on this punchy garage/soul sound.

Most the songs are Protrudi originals, though they cover a Pretty Things tune (“Alexander,” which features a guest appearance by Pretty’s bassist Wally Waller) and a Billy Gibbons tune — “99th Floor,” which he used to play with his pre-ZZ Top band, Moving Sidewalks.

There are some fine tunes here. “Black Lightning Light” features a lengthy minor-key spook-house-organ instrumental odyssey. This is one of several songs that originally appeared on The Fuzztones’ 2004 “comeback” album, Salt for Zombies.

Protrudi goes back even further in the Fuzztones’ catalog. For instance, my favorite song is probably a new all-hornied-up version of the old Fuzztones song “Ward 81” — which first appeared on their early ’80s debut album Lysergic Emanations. It’s a horrifying little tale of a psychiatric hospital: “Administer the medicine to my heart /Behind barred windows/The walls are whisperin’/Gotta flip a switch, pull out the stitches.”

If I’d been a Fuzztones fan since the start, I’d probably complain about all this recycling and demand more new material. But since I’m not familiar with the originals, I’m not complaining. It just makes me want to go back and catch up.

There’s some good junior-high humor here, Beavis. Besides the album title, which obviously refers to the new horn section (though the sax-playing she-devils on the cover are pretty sexy), some of the songs have titles like “Highway 69” (also from Lysergic Emanations) and the uncomfortable sounding “Johnson in a Headlock” (which originally appeared on Salt for Zombies).

So if you’ve got a dirty mind and a rock ’n’ roll heart, Horny as Hell will put your soul in a headlock.

Also recommended:

* Wrestling Rock ’n’ Roll by Lightning Beat-Man & His No Talent. On the subject of headlocks ... Here’s a Swiss-born one-man band in a lucha libre mask with a cheap four-track tape recorder. This is a rei(with three bonus tracks) of the long, long out-of-print first album by Voodoo Rhythm Records founder Beat-Man — also known as Rev. Beat-Man and also known briefly as Jerry J. Nixon.

The Lightning Beat-Man character came about circa 1992, when the young Beat-Man saw some Mexican wrestling on a trip to Los Angeles and was inspired to combine elements of that with the trash-rock that was his first love. The motto of his act in those days was “I fight on stage against me and my guitar and beat the shit out of it and win every night.” As this recording shows, he did his damnedest to live up to that and usually succeeded.

“Don’t want to talk like Hasil, don’t want to rock like Gene,” he sings in the opening tune and title song, evoking his heroes Mr. Adkins and Mr. Vincent. “I just want to be myself — wrestling rock ’n’ roll, that’s me/My name is Beat-Man.”

Most of the songs feature Beat-Man pounding the you-know-what out of his guitar and shredding his vocal chords as he sings bare-bones basic rock. One of my favorites is “Wild Baby Wow.” There aren’t many more words than the ones found in the title, and a couple of times Beat does a bridge that consists mainly of incomprehensible stuttering gibberish.

Sometimes words just can’t describe a feeling.

Many of these tunes would later appear on LBM’s Voodoo Rhythm album Apartment Wrestling Rock ’n’ Roll, recorded with a merry band of miscreants called The Never Heard of Ems. The song “Wrestling Rock ’n’ Roll Girl,” for instance, became “Apartment Wrestling Rock ’n’ Roll Girl.” If you’re hip to apartment wrestling then you’re probably a perv — and should enjoy this music as much as I do.

BONUS

This review was published with the Christmas CD reviews in this week's Pasatiempo:

* Holidays Gone Crazy by Wee Hairy Beasties. Would you trust your children with members of The Mekons and their disreputable friends? Heck, I would. This holiday album is the second release from the Beasties, which specializes in children’s music. The group is made up of Mekons Jon Langford and Sally Timms, along with Bloodshot Records chums Kelly Hogan, Rick “Cookin’” Sherry, Tom Ray and Joel Patterson.

Warning Christmas purists: Despite the title and the funny reptile in a Santa hat on the cover, not all the songs here are holiday tunes — and some of the holiday songs are for other holidays. In fact, there’s just as many Halloween songs here.

But there are a couple of oughta-be Christmas classics here.

“The Night Before ...” is a spoken-word piece by Timms that joyfully mixes "A Visit from St. Nicholas" with Immanuel Velikovsky’s Worlds in Collision to create a weird dinosaur fable.

“Long long long ago, long before the world we know/a fiery comet struck the earth/ and filled the air with dust and dirt/ Blocking out the sunlight so/ that all was white with ice and snow.”
These naturally leads into “Dinosaur Christmas,” which ce lebrates “Santasaur,” “stegosaurus eggnog and “Jurassic bells.”

The Steve Terrell Christmas Special: It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Join me and my old pal Scott Gullet for two hours of yuletide cheer with my special friends, including Bobby “Boris” Pickett, Rev. Glenn Armstrong, Soupy Sales, Shane MacGowan, and oh so many more. The festivities start at 10 p.m. Sunday on KSFR-101.1 FM and streaming on the web at ksfr.org. (And don’t forget The Santa Fe Opry, country music as the good Lord intended it to sound. Same time, same station, Friday night.)

Speaking of Christmas Music: If you haven't heard my latest podcast, get to it! There's an hour’s worth of my favorite Christmas music. Take a listen to that and to my previous podcasts HERE. Listen at the Web site, download, subscribe — whatever makes you happy.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

ROUNDHOUSE ROUNDUP: THERE'S NO COMMENT LIKE "NO COMMENT"

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 18, 2008



You have to give him credit for originality.

Most politicians, when they know they’re going to get peppered with questions about something controversial — say, a grand jury investigation — have a well-rehearsed statement to the tune of, “You guys know I can’t talk about grand jury proceedings, which are secret. I don’t want to say anything that might be seen as impeding an investigation, though I’m confident that no wrongdoing was done by anyone in this administration.” It’s simple, easy, and even though it’s pretty lame, it gets the job done.

But that’s not the route that Gov. Bill Richardson took at a news conference this week. He was able to dodge questions about the grand jury looking into a possible pay-for-play regarding a Beverly Hills, Calif., financial firm that was awarded nearly $1.5 million in work for the state around the same time the firm was making huge contributions to Richardson’s political action committees.

As has been well reported by myself and others, at a news conference about a new solar energy production facility in Belen, Richardson took a few questions about the new project. Then he announced the news conference was over and made a beeline for the door.

I was on the wrong end of the big marble table in the Governor’s Cabinet Room, so I was hoping some of my colleagues would be able to block the governor’s retreat for a few seconds so I could reach him. But Richardson went through them like a knife through hot butter, not acknowledging the questions. He ignored questions about the investigation shouted at him and, according to reporters near him at the time, never made eye contact.

As a former crime reporter, I knew better than to expect any answers about the grand jury proceeding and what he might have said or didn’t say to investigators. The question I had for Richardson — who is President-elect Barack Obama’s nominee for secretary of commerce — was whether he had discussed the matter with Obama before, during or after the vetting process. I’m especially curious whether Obama has contacted him about the grand jury since the news broke in the national media.

We might have to wait until the Senate confirmation hearings to get those answers.

No, Richardson didn’t actually invoke the Fifth Amendment, but he clearly exercised his right to remain silent.

National reaction: You can’t really call it a media feeding frenzy at this point, but the national political chattering class has begun paying attention to Richardson’s grand jury.
Consider this item in MSNBC’s First Read blog on Tuesday. Under the headline “Did Obama’s vetters know this?” the blog asks, “Is Bill Richardson headed for a tougher-than-expected confirmation hearing?”

After stating the general facts of the case, First Read continues, “Does the (Illinois Gov. Rod) Blagojevich pay-to-play scandal give this news more scrutiny? The it’s-just-politics defense was probably enough to keep Senate vetters from digging too deep on this BB (Before Blagojevich). But what about now? Also, a retired Chinese-American businessman from San Francisco has started a group that resurrects the entire Wen Ho Lee controversy (by alleging Richardson denied Lee his due-process rights after terminating his employment). The group claims more than 9,000 signatures against Richardson’s appointment. Bottom line for those looking for the one Obama cabinet pick who will face confirmation trouble: You may want to move your chips off of Holder and on to Richardson.”

The right-wing National Review was even harsher, asking, “Could President-elect Obama soon have to look for a new commerce secretary?”

Concluded the National Review, “Maybe this FBI investigation will go nowhere. But in a post-Blagojevich environment, the Obama administration is probably going to be extra wary of associating with government officials under criminal investigation.”

Pull up your cyber socks: Albuquerque Mayor Marty Chávez’s office sent out this news release not once, but twice this week. It’s about a news conference where Chávez was “to Unveil His Public Safety Legislative Package Regarding Identify Theft, Cyber-Stocking, Auto Theft and Sexual Predators.”

I’m not sure what cyber stockings are. Maybe cyber stalkers will have to wear them.

State musicians at inauguration: The best party in the world Jan. 20 will be Obama’s inauguration in Washington, D.C. And some New Mexico musicians have been tapped to play there.

The Española Valley High School Mariachi Sol Del Valle has been invited to march in the inauguration. All participants in the parade are responsible for paying for their own lodging and transportation to and from the nation’s capital, so the mariachi band needs to raise some cash. Anyone interested in helping should contact Alfonso Trujillo, the band and mariachi teacher at Española Valley High School, 505-753-7357.

Playing at the American Indian Inaugural Ball at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Arlington, Va., on Jan. 20, will be Gary Farmer — actor, Santa Fe art gallery owner and blues harmonica demon — as well as Levi & The Plateros, a Native American Blues band from Tohajiilee, N.M.

I have a feeling there might be more announcements of New Mexico bands going to the D.C. shindig. Watch this space.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

VANISHING ACT

A lot of reporters were looking forward to asking Gov. Bill Richardson at a press conference this afternoon about the CDR/GRIP grand jury. One TV station reportedly was even running promos about that.

However, right after announcing a new solar facility in Belen and taking a few questions about that project, Richardson announced the conference was over and bolted out of the room, ignoring questions about the grand jury.

Ironically, the new solar project will be part of the Rancho Cielo project, right off a planned new interchange off I-25. That interchange prompted news stories a couple of years ago because the developers, RS Investments, now known as Coast Range Investments contributed $75,000 to Richardson's 2006 re-election campaign.

Richardson might think questions about this will go away if he just ignores the questions. But I don't think so.

Here's the official news release on the new solar production facility:

Governor Bill Richardson Announces Signet Solar to Build Production Facility in Belen Creating 600 Jobs

SANTA FE-Governor Bill Richardson today announced Signet Solar will build the company’s first North American solar panel production facility in Belen. The first phase of the plant will bring 200 high-wage jobs to the state and is scheduled to begin operations in 2010. Signet’s long-term plans call for expansion and the creation of a total of 600 jobs.

“As Governor, I’ve been dedicated to making New Mexico a national leader of renewable energy and the creation of green jobs,” Governor Bill Richardson said. “At a time of economic uncertainty, this project will create hundreds of jobs and reaffirm New Mexico as a clean energy state and major player in our nation’s effort build a new clean energy economy.”

The Signet facility will produce large area thin-film silicon photovoltaic modules for commercial rooftop and ground mounted solar power systems. The first phase of the plant will have an annual production capacity of 65MW — enough to power approximately 20,000 homes. Long-term plans call to increase production capacity to 300MW per year with a 600,000 square foot production facility.

“New Mexico was an obvious starting point for Signet Solar’s expansion into the growing US renewable energy market,” said Rajeeva Lahri, Signet Solar’s Co-Founder and CEO. “Under Governor Richardson’s leadership, New Mexico has demonstrated commitment to renewable energy through public-private partnerships, leveraging its skilled workforce and world class research institutions.”

The 75-acre facility is situated 30 minutes south of Albuquerque on Rancho Cielo, a Coast Range Investments property in Belen. Signet will be the first company to set up manufacturing in the 6,000 acre Rancho Cielo master planned industrial and residential community. Rancho Cielo plans to use Signet panels on a 700 acre solar farm designed to meet the majority of power requirements of the Rancho Cielo community.

“Partnering with Signet Solar, we are excited about bringing such high quality jobs to Belen and the possibility of creating a sustainable green city in New Mexico,” said Jim Foster, Managing Partner of Coast Range Investment.

Headquartered in Menlo Park, California, Signet is the first mover in large area silicon thin film silicon PV technology. Signet began shipping product to customers from its first plant near Dresden, Germany in October of this year. The company has already installed several commercial rooftop and ground mounted systems in the region. Signet’s large-area thin-film silicon PV technology will bring down the cost of solar power and can be used for solar farms, large commercial installations, building integrated photovoltaics and remote habitation.

THE GRIP GRAND JURY

The federal investigation into the Beverly Hills financial firm that won a $1.5 million contract with the state after contributing to political action committees associated with Gov. Bill Richardson is starting to get some national attention.
RICHARDSON SPEAKS IN CONCORD
Here's the Bloomberg story, which on Monday broke the news that a federal grands jury is hearing evidence. The Washington Post followed suit. Here's my own story, which admittedly doesn't break any new ground.

The conservative National Review blog comes out and asks the question, "Could President-elect Obama soon have to look for a new commerce secretary?"

My feeling, at this time is that Richardson will be confirmed, but the Republicans will make him sweat at the hearings. Between this and the Wen Ho Lee issue, Richardson might pine during the hearings for the good old days when his biggest worry was spatting with the state Senate.

Monday, December 15, 2008

DOMENICI'S PRESS OFFICE GOES DARK


Chris Gallegos, U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici's longtime (20 years-plus!) press guy just sent what's probably his last press release announcing his office is "going dark."

He attached a spoof press release that was sent to the Domenici staff four years ago.

From: Letourneau, Matthew (DOMENICI)
Sent: Friday, April 23, 2004 3:28 PM
Subject: NEWS: Domenici Press Office Goes Dark

NOT FOR PUBLICATION OR BROADCAST CONTACT: MATT LETOURNEAU

APRIL 23, 2004 (202) 224-7098

DOMENICI PRESS OFFICE GOES DARK

Press Staff Issues No Press Releases

WASHINGTON – For the first time in memory, the Press Office of U.S. Senator Pete Domenici did not issue a single press release today.

The successful experiment was considered by many to be impossible.

Chief of Staff Steve Bell had ordered the press office to cease and desist sending out releases in order to see what the impact on the Earth’s equilibrium would be.

Thus far, aside for emotional and physical problems affecting Press Secretary Chris Gallegos, no major changes in the Earth’s atmosphere have been reported.

However, Gallegos, a fifteen year veteran of Domenici’s staff, is showing signs of trauma. Today alone, he lost a substantial amount of blood, and was seen staring at pictures of Domenici as a child, as well as exhibiting signs of belligerent behavior, such as yelling “It ain’t a desert, its paradise!” at the television when a CNN report featuring FLETC-Artesia referred to the area as a desert.

“We’re worried about Chris,” said Deputy Press Secretary Matt Letourneau. “This is new for him. Instead of eating, Chris writes press releases. We’re just not sure where he will be getting his nourishment today.”

It is not known whether the Press Office will resume its policy of blanketing New Mexico with press releases Monday.
--30--

A GOOD WAY TO START OFF THE WEEK

If the little devil on my left shoulder made me play that Charles Manson song on Sound World last night, the little angel on my right should is making me post this.

(Actually, thanks to my old friend J.D. Haring, who used to play music around here under the name of Malix, for turning me on to this.)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, December 14, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Big Shoe Head by Buick MacKane
Madhouse by Barrence Whitfield & The Savages
We Are Rising by Mudhoney
Sylvia Plath by The Rockin' Guys
Black Gang Coffee by Mike Watt
Dirty Hands by The Black Lips
U.S. Blues by The Harshed Mellows

Drunk Guy on the Train by Deadbolt
Night Train by James Brown
Phantom Train by Charlie Pickett
Angel Baby by Roky Erikson
Sherlock Holmes by The Dirtbombs
Shiney Hiney/You're All I Want For Christmas by The Fleshtones
Sneaky Jesus by Chuck E. Weiss
There's a New Sound by Tony Burrello

Teenage Prostitute by Frank Zappa
The Warlord by Mike Edison & The Rocket Train Delta Science Arkestra
Coffee Train by David Thomas & The Wooden Birds
Mussolini vs. Stalin by Gogol Bordello
99th Floor by The Fuzztones
Wrestling Rock 'n' Roll Girl by Lightning Beat-Man
Jailbait by Andre Williams & Green Hornet
The Holy Spirit by Rev. Lonnie Farris
Jingle Bells by The Electric Prunes

Rake at the Gates of Hell by Shane MacGowan & The Popes
La Llorna by Beirut
Crying by TV on the Radio
Better Off Alone by The Black Angels
People Say I'm No Good by Charles Manson
My Beloved Movie Star by Stan Ridgway
Can't You See I'm Soulful by Eleni Mandell
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

HE MAY BE A LAME DUCK, BUT HE SURE CAN DUCK!



Here's a story about the incident CLICK HERE.

Friday, December 12, 2008

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, December 12, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
SPECIAL!!!
RAIL RUNNER TRAIN SONG TRIBUTE
Freight Train by Elizabeth Cotton
Rock Island Line by Devil in a Woodpile & Jane Baxter Miller
Take the "A" Train by Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys
Choo Choo Cha Boogie by Louis Jordan
Stop the Train by Mother Earth
Night Train to Memphis by Roy Acuff
Orange Blossom Special by Johnny Cash
Glendale Train by The New Riders of the Purple Sage
A Train Robbery by Levon Helm

Waiting for a Train by Jerry Lee Lewis
The Train Carrying Jimmie Rodgers Home by Iris DeMent
The Brakeman's Blues by Jimmie Rodgers
Love Train by The Yayhoos
I've Been to Georgia on a Fast Train by Billy Joe Shaver
Train Round the Bend by The Velvet Underground
Railroad Shuffle by Jerry J. Nixon
Lightning Express by The Everly Brothers
Lamy Train Ride by Tom Adler

New Delhi Freight Train by Terry Allen
The Train Song by The Flying Burrito Brothers
Railroad Bill by Dave Alvin
Train Kept a Rollin' by Johnny Burnett & The Rock 'n' Roll Trio
Morning Train by Precious Bryant
Hobo Love Song by Split Lip Rayfield
I'm a Hobo by Danny Reeves
Big Railroad Blues by Cannon's Jug Stompers

I Heard That Lonesome Whistle by Townes Van Zandt
Ramblin' Man by Hank Williams
Slow Train Comin' by Bob Dylan & The Grateful Dead
Last Train from Poor Valley by Norman Blake
Love in Vain by Robert Johnson
Train of Life by Roger Miller
Train Song by The Holmes Brothers
Down There by The Train by Tom Waits
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Thursday, December 11, 2008

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: CHRISTMAS CDs

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 12, 2008


Note: I didn't actually do a column this week, but I contributed these reviews to the Christmas music review section.

Little Steven’s Underground Garage Presents Christmas a Go Go by Various Artists (Wicked Cool Records) On the heels of Little Steven’s Halloween a Go Go compilation comes this pretty diverse Christmas collection featuring lots of good old guitar rock, a smattering of gritty soul, and even a couple of Golden Throats-style novelties.

Keith Richards does a decent job on Chuck Berry’s way-overcovered “Run Rudolph Run,” while The Chesterfield Kings sound acceptably like The Rolling Stones aping Chuck Berry on “Hey, Santa Claus.” (It’s actually a Chesterfields original.)

The Brian Setzer Orchestra breezes through “Santa Drives a Hot Rod” with their signature neo-swing treatment. And a reconstituted Electric Prunes fuzz up “Jingle Bells,” declaring Christmas “the most psychedelic time of the year” with “all those colored flashing lights. A guy flying around in the sky with animals. Elves. And then there’s those bells.”

Those of us who are into these sorts of guilty-pleasure treasures should love Joe Pesci’s “If It Doesn’t Snow on Christmas” (He’s funny. Like a clown.) and Soupy Sales’ “Santa Claus Is Surfin’ to Town.” (If you have to ask who Soupy Sales is, look him up on YouTube.) And there’s a goofy melding of “Silent Night” and “Norwegian Wood” by a group calling itself “The Fab Four.” If you like the Phil Spector “wall of sound,” there’s plenty of that, the best of which is Spector survivor Darlene Love’s “All Alone on Christmas.”

But the real delights of this album are a couple of Southern-fried Santa songs by soul shouters Rufus Thomas (“I’ll Be Your Santa, Baby”) and Clarence Carter (the double-entendre heavy “Back Door Santa”) as well as a Bob Seger rarity “Sock It to Me, Santa,” which sounds more like an ode to fellow Michigander Mitch Ryder than to Mr. Claus.


* Stocking Stuffer by The Fleshtones(Yep Roc Records) I can’t believe that just a few months after releasing one of my favorite albums of the year, Take a Good Look, The Fleshtones — that veteran garage rock (or as they call it, “super rock”) band from Queens, New York — are back with another album. This time it’s a Christmas album. There are 11 quickies here in a fast-moving shebang that lasts less than a half-hour.

The songs include “Christmas With Bazooka Joe” (bubble-gum music in the truest sense); “Champagne of Christmas”; “Six White Boomers,” a yuletide tribute to AC/DC (boomers, as an Aussie voice explains at the start of the song, are kangaroos); and, of course, “Super Rock Santa.” Chuck Berry’s “Run Rudolph Run” isn’t a very original choice as I mentioned in the Christmas a Go Go review. But The Fleshtones make the best of it.

I do dig the Joe Meek/Del Shannon “Runaway” organ in the opening number “Hurray for Santa Claus.” The last song, “In Midnight’s Silence,” is actually a religious song. True, the band sounds like Catholic schoolboys who have slowed it down under threats from a ruler-yielding nun. But Stocking Stuffer still sounds supercool.

LEAVE THE CAPITOL!

I had to split from my office at the state Capitol this afternoon about 3:30 p.m. or so due to an envelope containing white powder found at the governor's office about an hour before.

Read my Web bulletin at The New Mexican site HERE

The guy first who told me about the situation, KOB reporter Gadi Schwartz, later was quarantined and forced to be scrubbed and bleached. Gadi reported that he got to show in Bill Richardson's personal shower. Big Time!

Ironically on Wednesday — a day before the envelope arrived at the Roundhouse — I asked Richardson spokesman Gilbert Gallegos about the governor receiving a white powder in the mail. This was because a Rhode Island news Web site erroneously had reported Richardson among the governors to receive such a package. Gallegos said Wednesday the publication must have heard about a similar 2005 incident at our state capitol.

No word yet whether the powder is toxic or not.

ROUNDHOUSE ROUNDUP: DRUGS FROM FRANCE

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 11, 2008


Four years before Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was arrested for alleged corruption, he and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson were partners in a deal involving exports from France.

But it’s not as sinister as it sounds.

Blagojevich, according to a Nov. 5, 2004, report in this newspaper, had arranged to buy 300,000 flu vaccine shots from Aventis Pasteur’s manufacturing plant in France. Richardson arranged to piggyback on that deal and purchase 150,000 doses for New Mexico.

The two governors announced that plan at a teleconference. New Mexico reporters were invited to listen in at the Governor’s Office.

I missed that event. But I was one of only two reporters to attend a news conference about six months later in which Richardson welcomed Eliot Spitzer, then running for governor of New York. Spitzer was in town for a $500-a-ticket fundraiser at the home of his friend, art-gallery owner Gerald Peters. The main thing I remember about that event was Spitzer joking about the large marble table in Richardson’s Cabinet Room.

“Where does King Arthur sit?” quipped the later-to-be-disgraced Spitzer.

Spitzer resigned in March after The New York Times exposed his involvement with a prostitution service.

Blagojevich is still governor — as of Wednesday evening as I write this — despite his arrest on multiple charges of corruption, including a scheme to sell, to the highest bidder, the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

Obama on Wednesday called on Blagojevich to resign as governor. Previously he called upon Richardson to resign as governor of New Mexico — to become U.S. Commerce Department secretary.

In fairness to Richardson, who served two terms as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, he’s met with many governors, the overwhelming majority of which have not ended up in crazy scandals.

But we in New Mexico should be grateful to Blagojevich. Not just for the flu shots, but for whipping up an alleged corruption scheme that makes Robert Vigil and Manny Aragon seem like amateurs.

Looking out for No. 2: Most of the media speculation about who Lt. Gov. Diane Denish might choose for her replacement has centered around State Auditor Hector Balderas, state Rep. Lucky Varela, D-Santa Fe, and Lawrence Rael, executive director of the Mid-Region Council of Governments. That is, assuming Richardson is confirmed as commerce secretary and Denish moves on to the Governor’s Office.

But, according to one Roundhouse rumor, a dark horse might be high on Denish’s list for lieutenant governor: Veterans Affairs Secretary John Garcia.

Garcia, as keen observers might recall, is the one cabinet member who appeared with Denish at that Albuquerque news conference when the talk of Bill Richardson becoming commerce secretary first broke. Those hoping for Garcia’s appointment speculate Republicans in 2010 might nominate Heather Wilson for governor, who is likely to stress veterans’ issues. Garcia on the ticket could help blunt that, his fans say.

Garcia is a Vietnam vet who served from 1969 to 1970. He was deputy chief of staff for Gov. Bruce King and later secretary of the Economic Development Department. Prior to his time in state government, Garcia’s headed the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

Denish, who appointed a transition team Wednesday, consistently has said it’s too early to be talking about her choice for lieutenant governor.

Speaking of the Commerce appointment: A former Richardson press aide this week wrote a column for McClatchy Newspapers about the governor taking on the new position, predicting big things for both Richardson and the Department of Commerce.

The writer is Richard Parker, who worked for Richardson during his congressional years.

Despite his former employment by Richardson, Parker said in his piece that “I am no cheerleader for Richardson.” He says he endured “several years of contentious coverage of him for the Albuquerque Journal.”

But he does sound a little like a cheerleader here.

“Ambitious even for a politician, Richardson will likely seek to transform the job and position himself as the most public Cabinet figure in righting the domestic economic disaster and transforming international trade. In doing so, he will form ties here and abroad that may ultimately write his biography in political history as a senior statesman, if never a president. As a result, more people may be affected by the new secretary than any other Cabinet figure.”

Parker wrote, “Richardson is as much a realist as a careerist. It seems likely that he has arranged with the president-elect to lift the commerce post out of obscurity and into an ‘A’ position, effectively and even formally alongside state, defense, treasury and others. And that means activism. Further, when you consider the other economic appointments, none is as capable, or likely willing, to be a public point man as Richardson.

“As an ambitious politician he may be able to get to the vice presidency, say, but more likely emerge as an elder statesman, probably with a lot of cushy, corporate board seats, too.”

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

eMUSIC DECEMBER

* Horny As Hell by The Fuzztones. I'm a newcomer to this band, which, in various forms, has been around since the '80s. Though they started out in New York, Fuzztone frontman Rudi Protrudi and his latest incarnation of the band have been based out of Berlin in recent years.

The '08 model of Fuzztones includes a horn section (I don't think that's them pictured on the album cover) and a female chorus. I believe that King Khan & The Shrines is a major influence on this garage/soul sound.

Most the songs are Protrudi originals, though they cover a Pretty Things tune here ("Alexander," which features PT bassist Wally Waller) and a Billy Gibbons tune "99th Floor," which Billy the Beard used to play with his pre-ZZ Top band Moving Sidewalks. Probably my favorite song here is a new all-hornied-up version of an old Fuzztones song "Ward 81."

And just for the heck of it, I downloaded another Fuzztones tune, "I'm a Wolfman" from the Wicked Cool Records Halloween a-Go-Go album.


*Look Ma, No Head by The Cramps. It's been five long years since The Cramps released their last studio album (The Fiends of Dope Island), and as the Wolf Brand Chili used to say, "That's too long!"

Look Ma is a 1991 effort. In my Terrell's Tune-up review, I wrote that this album, "offers no new revelations, innovations or justification for its existence. But it still sounds great when you pop it in your tape deck going 85 mph on the Interstate."

I'll stand by that, even though I don't have a cassette player in my car any more.

As on any Cramps album, there's lotsa, lotsa trashabilly fun in here. Iggy Pop guests here on "Miniskirt Blues." Ry Cooder co-wrote "Hard-Workin' Man." There's references to cavemen, UFOs, Jayne Mansfield, Ernie Kovacks and songs like "Eyeball in My Martini," "Two Headed Sex Change" and "I Want to Get in Your Pants."

How can you not love 'em?

* Pleasure by The Ohio Players. old school funk at it;s funkiest. This is the Players' second album on Westbound, released in 1972.

Mainly these are jazzy instrumental tracks falling somewhere between Music of My Mind-era Stevie Wonder and Bitches Brew-era Miles Davis..

Their character "Granny" appears in a couple of spots (with a little barnyard humor in the tune "Rooster Poot."

And in case you forgot it was 1972, on "Introducing the Players" the band members are introduced by thier names, instruments and astrological signs.

* Stax Profiles by Rufus Thomas. He was as funny as he was funky. He was a veteran of vaudeville and a pioneering Memphis DJ. He did The Funky Chicken, The Funky Robot, and, though it's not on this otherwise excellent collection, "The Funky Penguin."

* Stocking Stuffer by The Fleshtones. A Super Rock Christmas album by The Fleshtones? That seems to be the situation. Titles include "Christmas with Bazooka Joe," "Champagne of Christmas," "Six White Bloomers," which sounds like a Yuletide tribute to AC/DC, and of course "Super Rock Santa." Chuck Berry's "Run Rudolph Run" isn't a very original choice. But I do dig the Joe Meek/Del Shannon "Runaway" organ in "Hurray for Santa Claus." (Consumer tip: "Champagne for Christmas," at least as of this writing, is available for free on the 2008 Redeye Holiday Sampler.)

Plus:
* Five Shane MacGowan & The Popes songs I didn't already have from a best-of compilation The Rare Oul' Stuff. These include some Irish standards like "Danny Boy" and "The Minstrel Boy," a lovely Christmas song called "Christmas Lullaby," a Pogue-ish rocker called "Rake at the Gates of Hell" and a cover of Neil Diamond's "Cracklin' Rosie." (I have that song on their Live at Montreaux 1995 DVD.)

Then I took a couple of tunes Shane sang with a band called Lancaster County Prison on their album released early this year, Every Goddamn Time. There's a banjo stomper called "Satan is Waiting" and a cover of "Long Black Veil." There's another couple of songs here with McGowan vocals, but I wasn't that impressed with the 30-second clips. Maybe someday curiosity will get the best of me and I'll download those also. Meanwhile, all these just make me thirsty for some new Shane.

*Some Christmas tunes, including "Call it Christmas" by The Supersuckers, which, along with the above mentioned Fleshtones song is free from the 2008 Redeye Holiday Sampler, "Santa's Gonna Shut 'em Down" by Untamed Youth, "Christmas 1979" and "A Poundland Christmas" by Billy Childish & The Musicians of The British Empire. Maybe next year I'll downlaod the whole Christmas 1979 album, from which these came.
ANDRE WILLIAMS
* The first five tracks from Holland Shuffle, a live album by Andre Williams with a band called Green Hornet, released in 2003 by Norton Records. This is an excellent companion to the old R&B shouter's Can You Deal With It, released earlier this year on Bloodshot. I'll download the rest of these next week when my account refreshes.



And don't forget:

* The five tracks from Passover by The Black Angels that I didn't get last month. Like the first tracks I downloaded, these take listeners to a fuzz-laden aural psychedelic wonderland. If Marvel Comics ever makes a decent Dr. Strange movie, The Black Angels would provide a tremendous soundtrack.

Monday, December 08, 2008

RICHARDSON AT GEORGETOWN FUNDRAISER

Gov. Bill Richardson will be attending a Georgetown fundraiser to help retire his $150,000 presidential campaign debt, The Politico is reporting.

According to Politico, the fundraiser is being hosted by William A.K. Titleman and his wife, Maria. The couple have helped raise funds for Richardson’s campaign last year but also donated to Hillary Clinton's campaign. William Titleman also raised money for group that aired ads earlier this year in primary states harshly criticizing Barack Obama. Obama this month nominated Richardson as his Commerce secretary.

The invitation, according to The Politico lists several hosts, including Nelson Cunningham, Managing Partner of Kissinger McLarty Associates, where Richardson used to work; Andy Athy, a lobbyist for Viacom, DirecTV, U.S. Steel and Lehman Brothers, and Mike Stratton, a veteran political strategist who worked on Richardson's presidential campaign and is now works with the DCI Group, lobbyist firm.

The Politico reported that source close to Richardson said the event was planned "well-before" Richardson's appointment.

Richardson's remaining campaign debt, according to The Associated Press, is for the use of private jets belonging to The Branch law firm, state Highway Commissioner Johnny Cope and Congressman elect Harry Teague.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

TERRELL'S SOUND WORLD PLAYLIST

Sunday, December 7, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Gonzo by James Booker
I'm Not Like Everyone Else by The Rockin' Guys
Entertain by Sleater-Kinney
Last of the Small Time Playboys by The Dirty Pretty Things
Psycho Daiseys by The Hentchmen
It's Lame by Figures of Light
We Repel Each Other by The Reigning Sound
Girl Coge mi Cosar by Wau & Loa Arrrghs!!!
I Hear Sirens by The Dirtbombs

Weird and Twisted Nights by Hunter Thompson, Ralph Steadman & Mo Dean
Twisted by Paul Preston
Illuminated Cowboy by Roy & The Devil's Motorcycle
Killer Wolf by The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Hotdog (Watch Me Eat) by The Detroit Cobras
I Wanna Hot Dog for My Roll by Butterbeans & Susie
My Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama by Frank Zappa

Ozzie, High Times and Me by Mike Edison & The Rocket Train Delta Science Arkestra
New Rocket Train Boogie by Edison Rocket Train
I Love You by Lightning Beat Man
Break on Through by Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog
Blindness by The Fall
Jump the Shark by The SG Sound

Hurray for Santa Claus by The Fleshtones
In the Wilderness by Charlie Pickett
Wang Dang Doodle by P.J. Harvey
Days and Days by Concrete Blonde
Feels Like the End of the World by Firewater
Truly by Hundred Year Flood
Long Way Home by Tom Waits
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

CHRISTMAS PODCAST 2008


Merry Christmas, all you out in podland. Here's my fourth and latest podcast with lots of my favorite musical Christmas goodies new and old.

CLICK HERE to download the podcast. (To save it, right click on the link and select "Save Target As.")

CLICK HERE to subscribe to my podcasts (there will be more in the future) and HERE to subscribe on iTunes.

You can listen to it right here, below.




My cool BIG feed player is HERE.

Here's the play list:

Little Drummer Boy by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
Silent Night by Bad Religion
Santa Claus is Watching You by Ray Stevens
Eggnog by The Rockin' Guys

6 Bullets for Christmas by Angry Johnny & The Killbillies
Christmas with Bazooka Joe by The Fleshtones
Christmas at K-Mart by Root Boy Slim & The Sex Change Band
Christmas Boogie by Canned Heat & The Chipmunks
Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy by Buck Owens
Pumkinhead by Wilf Carter
Christmas in Jail by The Youngsters

Santa Claus by Thee Headcoatees
Christmas 1979 by Billy Childish & The Musicians of The British Empire
Christmas is Just Another Day by Johnny Dowd
On a Christmas Day by C.W. Stoneking
Kung Fu Christmas by Christoper Guest
Must Be Santa by Brave Combo

Blue Christmas by Stan Ridgway
Can Man Christmas by Joe West
Sawahdi by Terry Allen

Friday, December 05, 2008

THE SANTA FE OPRY PLAYLIST

Friday, December 5, 2008
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
Webcasting!
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell


101.1 FM
email me during the show! terrell@ksfr.org

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Leavin' Amarillo by Billy Joe Shaver
Southern Streamline by John Fogerty
Don't Ya Tell Henry by The Band
Tulsa Breakdown by Kim & The Caballeros
Your Greedy Heart by Hazel Dickens
Eat Steak by Rev. Horton Heat
Rated X by Neko Case
You and The Devil by The Electric Rag Band

Pardon Me, I've Got Someone to Kill by The Rockin' Guys
Suckin' a Big Bottle of Gin by Joe Ely
Feudin' and Fightin' by Marti Brom
I'm So Lonesome Without You by Hazeldine
Trucker From Tennessee by Link Davis
Seven Nights to Rock by Moon Mullican
Keep a Light in the Window by Cornell Hurd
Drunk Tank by The Starline Rhythm Boys
Crystal Chandeliers by Charlie Pride

Robots of Rayleen by Joe West
Belly Button Blues by Wee Hairy Beasties
Dancing With Bears by Bayou Seco
You Only Love Me For My Lunchbox by The Asylum Street Spankers
Shake It and Break It by Devil in the Woodpile
Grwoing Upside Down by The Ditty Bops
How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away by Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks
Brother Drop Dead Boogie by Pee Wee King

Seen You With No Makeup by Mike Neal
The Wolfman of Del Rio by Terry Allen
My Rifle, My Pony and Me by Dean Martin & Rick Nelson
New Mexico by Rebekah Pulley
You've Never Been This Far Before by Conway Twitty
My Dumb Heart by Johnny Dilks
My Death Comes a Callin' by ThaMuseMeant
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

DENISH-GARCIA?

Photo by Kate Nash
Here's a little Roundhouse rumor that might be worth reporting: I'm hearing that high on Diane Denish's list for a lieutenant governor is Veterans Affairs Secretary John Garcia.

Remember who appeared with Denish at that Albuquerque news conference last week right when the talk of Bill Richardson becoming Commerce secretary first broke? It was John Garcia. (Photo from that event by Kate Nash.)

Garcia supporters say that Republicans in 2010 might nominate Heather Wilson for governor, who is likely to stress veteran's issue. Garcia on the ticket could help blunt that.

Garcia is a Vietnam vet who served in the Central Highlands region in 1969 to 1970. He was deputy chief of staff for Gov. Bruce King and later was secretary of the Economic Development Department. Prior to his service in state government, Garcia was the executive director and CEO of the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

Denish said Thursday that it's premature to be talking about her choice for lieutenant governor.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

TERRELL'S TUNEUP: EDISON IS THE LIGHT

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 5, 2008


Mike Edison is a journalist after my own heart. Just look at his résumé. He’s been a writer, editor, and/or publisher for a rich array of publications — Screw magazine, High Times, and Wrestling’s Main Event. Dang, he’s done everything but cover the New Mexico Legislature.

And he’s a rock ’n’ roller. He collaborated with the notorious G.G. Allin. He led a fine punk/blues group called Edison Rocket Train, which, back in 2005, released a sizzling little record called Yes! Yes!! Yes!!!

A slightly mutated version of ERT, called Rocket Train Delta Science Arkestra, appears on Edison’s latest sonic adventure, I Have Fun Everywhere I Go. This is a hilarious companion piece to Edison’s autobiography, which was published earlier this year. (The book is subtitled Savage Tales of Pot, Porn, Punk Rock, Pro Wrestling, Talking Apes, Evil Bosses, Dirty Blues, American Heroes, and the Most Notorious Magazines in the World.)

The album is a spoken-word affair, with Edison reading from the book over hard-driving musical backdrops produced by blues exploder Jon Spencer — an Edison crony who produced and guested on Rocket Train recordings.)

The album starts off with Edison reciting, “Number one, pornography. Number two, punk rock. Number three, drugs. That’s not a résumé. That’s a crime scene.”

This first cut, “Pornography, Part I,” is a seven-minute tale of Edison’s years at the post-Al Goldstein Screw. (He describes Goldstein, the magazine’s founder and first publisher, as a “corpulent media whore and vociferous loudmouth, so filthy ... even other pornographers avoided him like a summons server.”) As a spacey guitar and weird science-fiction blips and bleeps rage behind him, Edison brags about his proudest achievement — the issue published during the 2004 Republican National Convention.

On other tracks, Edison describes his work at other magazines. In “Talking Main Event Magazine Blues” he tells about getting involved with the World Wrestling Federation during the mid-’80s heyday of Hulk Hogan. Punctuated by distorted drums and bass, Edison explains that wrestling was even looked down upon by fans of roller derby and women-in-prison movies. But, he says, “Those of us in on the joke were having a blast.”

Though he describes promoter Vince McMahon as a “visionary on par with Columbus,” Edison naturally hates the Hulkster, who was known for “wrapping himself in red, white, and blue and proselytizing to his army of teeny-bopper fans to stay in school and stay away from drugs. Frankly, he just wasn’t my kind of people.”

Then there’s a 10-minute-plus epic called “Ozzy, High Times, and Me.” (“The next person who suggests putting Bob Marley on the cover is gonna be looking for a new job!” Edison bellows at a staff meeting, as related in the opening lines of the song.) Here he tells the story of the time he put Ozzy Osbourne on the cover of the celebrated dope rag. Sometime during the photo shoot, $1,600 worth of premium illegal and dangerous marijuana went missing. So Edison leaked the story to the New York Post, which resulted in one of the biggest-selling issues in the magazine’s history, although leaking to the paper caused Edison problems with the stoners and “corporate hippies” on the staff.

One track is actually touching. That’s “G.G. Allin Died Last Night,” Edison’s tribute to his pal, whose concerts frequently turned into brutal, violent, obscene, and unhygienic spectacles. Over the sounds of a fuzz bass and wailing harmonica, Edison intones, “Beyond the bluster and beyond the broken glass, G.G. adhered to a cogent philosophy of rock ’n’ roll. Rock ’n’ roll as creator, rock ’n’ roll as destroyer.”

Edison talks about a barbecue that was the last time he ever saw his friend. Allin offered to put Edison on the guest list for his show the next night. But Edison declined. “We’re having a nice time. It was really good to see you. Why would I want to ruin that vibe by going to one of your gigs?”

With so much stale pabulum passing for rock ’n’ roll in these troubling times, this CD is a vital reminder of the importance of danger and sleazy fun.

Also recommended:

* Gonzo: Music From the Film. Speaking of savage tales, there used to be this other writer ...

This recording consists of music and spoken-word snippets from the documentary The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, which played at The Screen in Santa Fe last summer.

Some of the tunes — Brewer & Shipley’s “One Toke Over the Line,” “Combination of the Two” by Big Brother & The Holding Company, and The Youngbloods’ hippie anthem “Get Together” — also appear on the soundtrack album for the movie version of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

So the real fun on this compilation comes from the obscurities. There’s a great little jazz piece called “Gonzo,” featuring New Orleans organist James Booker. David Schwartz’s theme, “Gonzo’s Honest Run,” first sounds like a slow swamp rocker but explodes into a surf-guitar stomper. Jo Stafford’s “Haunted Heart” is inspired schlock.

But the strangest and most glorious of all is “Weird and Twisted Nights.” The track is credited to Thompson; his sidekick, cartoonist Ralph Steadman; and Mo Dean, wife of Watergate tattletale John Dean. This collaboration took place in 1979, during the shooting of the Thompson-inspired Bill Murray movie Where the Buffalo Roam. It’s a bouncy little pop tune with a Zappa-like meandering melody and lyrics like “Mangled bodies tell no tales and tell no lies.” I’m not sure who actually recorded this (the credits say it’s produced by Hal Willner); it’s lo-fi but sounds like there were professional musicians involved, especially the Clarence Clemons-like sax solo.

ON TO WASHINGTON

RICHARDSON IN CONCORD, NH I've been too busy to blog much about the Richardson nomination to the Commerce Department.

Here's a story from today's paper about Richardson's previous confirmation hearings in the U.S. Senate .

And here's the story from the previous day, in which he appeared at a "news conference" at Wood Gormley Elementary shortly before the story leaked that the official announcement would be on Wednesday.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

ROUNDHOUSE ROUNDUP: LEGISLATIVE SESSION SHAPING UP TO BE A DOOZIE

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 4, 2008


It’s more than a month away, but this week, the first shots were fired in what is bound to be an interesting session of the state Legislature.


I’m referring of course to the pending leadership struggle in the state Senate. Democrats decided to dump incumbent Senate President Pro-tem Tim Jennings, D-Roswell, in favor of state Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Questa. Jennings riled many of his fellow Democrats by recording a campaign call for Republican Whip Leonard Lee Rawson of Las Cruces, who lost in the general election despite Jennings’ help.

But Jennings says he’ll press on and try to keep his seat by soliciting help from Republican senators — apparently unconcerned about the irony of giving the dwindling number of Republicans in the Senate such a big say following the big Democratic wins in the state in last month’s election.

Leadership battles are always fun to cover. But wait, there’s more!

In addition to the pro-tem showdown, there’s the coming changes in the executive branch. With Gov. Bill Richardson going off to the Commerce Department, many wonder whether Lt. Gov. Diane Denish, who has presided over the Senate for the past six sessions, will have better luck in getting along with the Senate, which often ran afoul of Richardson.

One of my lobbyist friends this week was pondering the physical difficulty of Denish moving into the governor’s office during the middle of the session.

Nobody knows who Denish will appoint to replace her as lieutenant governor. She wouldn’t say Wednesday who that will be. And nobody knows who among Richardson’s staff will stay or go.

Another element of fun will be all the new faces in the Legislature. Democrats knocked off three Republican incumbents in the Senate and three in the House. Four Democratic lawmakers and one Republican were handed their walking papers by feisty challengers in the primary. Plus there were seven — four House members and three senators — who didn’t seek re-election, which resulted in more new faces.

One House member, Santa Fe Democrat Peter Wirth, gave up his seat so he could move over to the Senate (to replace retiring Sen. John Grubesic), newcomer Brian Egolf, also a Democrat, will replace Wirth in the House.

Some predict that a younger, more liberal, more Democratic Legislature will be more open to passing progressive social legislation such as a domestic-partnership law and abolition of the death penalty. I predicted in this column after the primary because of changes in the Senate that the Legislature might finally open conference committee meetings to the public.

Then again, with all the bad press that public campaign financing got with the Jerome Block Jr.’s state Public Regulation Commission campaign, there might be a serious bid to abolish public financing.

But topping off all the fun factors is the fact there’s no money. Because of the budget shortfalls, there’s not a whole lot of pork. In fact, we’ll be lucky to get SizzleLean.

Maybe that doesn’t really sound like fun. But it’ll lead to some interesting fights.

The age of aquarium: If you think there’s something fishy about Richardson’s appointment as secretary of commerce by president-elect Barack Obama, The Chicago Tribune’s political blog, The Swamp, spelled it out Tuesday.

Noting Richardson really wanted to be secretary of state, Frank James wrote: “Commerce doesn’t have the prestige of State. But it has very nice perks. The Commerce Secretary has one of the better physical offices in the Executive Branch, a huge space with a working fireplace and a large fish tank maintained by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, a Commerce agency.”

James also says, “Commerce secretaries still travel the world, helping to drum up business for U.S. companies. So Richardson will still get to travel the world on behalf of U.S. taxpayers.”

Close shave: One of the lighter moments of Obama’s announcement of the Richardson nomination Wednesday was when a Fox News reporter asked what had happened to the governor’s beard.

Although the question was asked of Richardson, Obama responded: “I think it was a mistake for him to get rid of it. I thought that whole Western, rugged look was really working for him. For some reason, maybe because it was scratchy when he kissed his wife, he was forced to get rid of it. But we’re deeply disappointed with the loss of the beard.”

Richardson began sporting a beard after he dropped his presidential campaign in January. It was his way of “decompressing,” he said at the time. Journalists around the country had fun with it. Richardson’s appearance was compared to that of Rod Steiger as Dr. Zhivago, Wolfman Jack, a Klingon from Star Trek and Justin Timberlake. (Richardson told me that the latter was his favorite.)

The governor in late March said he’d probably shave it “in the next two months.” But the beard stayed until the day before the election. Interviewed Nov. 4, Richardson insisted the shave had nothing to do with Washington job hunting. “I just got tired of maintaining it,” he said. “I’d decided to do this a long time ago.”

THIS BLOG's ON VACATION

And so am I.  Therefore Wacky Wednesday and Throwback Thursday won't be appearing here this week or next. I have a Terrell...