Monday, January 29, 2007


Sunday, January 1, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Blues From Down Here by TV on the Radio
Ancient Animals by Celebration
Tip My Canoe by Dengue Fever
Horoscopic. Amputation. Honey by Califone
Walkin' With Jesus (Sound of Confusion) by Spacemen 3

In This Home on Ice by Clap Your Hands and Say Yeah
The Burglars Are Coming by Solex
Hooded by The Casual Dots
Days and Nights in the Forest by Deerhoof
Like You Crazy by Mates of State
All ABout the Feeling by Moggs
Jitterbug by Angelo Badalamenti

Burn My Mind by The Monsters
Sun Dance Moon Dance by Bleach 03
Livin' Large by L7
23 Kings Crossing by Thinking Fellers Union Local 282
I'll Give You Space Cake by King Automatic
White People Thing by Lee Hazelwood
Groovy Times by The Clash
House by Babes in Toyland
Red Hot by Sam the Sham & The Pharoahs

Danelectro 3 by You La Tengo
Life is Like a Musical by Outkast
Drive My Car/The Word/What You're Doing by The Beatles
Cabinessence by Brian Wilson
A Black and White Rainbow by A Hawk and a Hacksaw
Killing Jar by French, Frith, Kaiser & Thompson
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 27, 2007


Friday, January 26, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Wolverton Mountain by Southern Culture on the Skids
Whatcva Gonna Do Now by Tommy Collins
Hobo's Prayer by Marty Stuart
I'm Gonna Take You Home (And Make You Like Me) by Robbie Fulks with Donna Fulks
Buck Hungry by Audrey Auld Mezera with Bill Chambers
Shoot Me to the Moon by Dan Reeder
You're the Reason by Nancy Apple
I Blunder On by Gurf Morlix
The Devil Ain't Lazy by Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys

June 1945 by Ed Pettersen
Planet Nixon by Ramsay Midwood
Low Rider/My Bucket's Got a Hole in It by Andy Fairweather Low
Get a Little Goner by Bill Kirchen
Shame on Me by John Egenes
On This Mountain Top by Johnny Paycheck
Why Don't You Ask Me by The Watzloves

She's in the Graveyard Now by Earl McDonald's Original Louisville Jug Band
Ella Speed by The Jim Kweskin Jug Band
Sweet Potato Blues by King David's Jug Band
I'll See You In My Dreams by Asylum Street Spankers
That's My Rabbit, My Dog Caught It by The Walter Family
Make My Cot Where the Cot Cot Cotton Grows by R. Crumb & His Cheap Suit Serenaders
Selling The Jelly by The Noah Lewis Jug Band
Patent Medicine by Dr. West's Medicine Show & Junk Band
Minglewood Blues by Cannon's Jug Stompers
Hoodoo Bash by Unholy Modal Rounders

Johnny Reb by Johnny Horton
If The South Woulda Won by Hank Williams Jr.
Take it Down by John Hiatt
I'll Go to Church Again With Momma by Buck Owens
Perfect Stranger by Eleni Mandell
In My Hour of Darkness by Gram Parsons with Emmylou Harris
Wings of a Dove by Tammy, Loretta & Dolly
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Friday, January 26, 2007


Here's the John Stewart segment I mentioned in yesterday's Roundhouse Roundup Watch it soon. It's supposed to expire on Feb. 6.

And here's a link to my story today about Richardson taking a stand on the Confederate flag -- one of those hot-button issues that is taken very seriously in South Carolina, home of an early primary.


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 26, 2007

Ed Pettersen is a singer-songwriter who is not well known in these parts — even among music geeks and cultists. But he ought to be. He’s a fine writer and a good singer, as he proves with grace and style on his just-released album The New Punk Blues of Ed Pettersen.

Pettersen is a native of Pennsylvania who has been living in Nashville in recent years. His original career goal was to be professional hockey player, a dream shattered by a terrible elbow injury. Luckily, the damage didn’t keep him from playing guitar. Although he is responsible for a slew of self-released CDs in the mid-to-late ’90s (under his own name and with bands like The High Line Riders and The Strangelys), in recent years he’s mainly been working behind the scenes as a producer. (Among the projects consuming much of his time is co-producing The Song of America, an upcoming, various-artists concept album that, according to Pettersen’s Web site, “will tell the history of our country, from 1620 through the present, through music.”)
Some of Pettersen’s well-respected studio pals show up to play on New Punk Blues. Motown bassist Bob Babbitt — you saw him on Standing in the Shadows of Motown — kicks off “Been There Before” with an ominous bass line suggesting “Papa Was a Rolling Stone.” Speaking of Motown, engineer Bob Olhsson twisted the knobs on this album. Steel guitar great Al Perkins plays on “Tabitha.” Muscle Shoals muscleman Reggie Young plays guitar on several songs. And did Will Ferrell really play cowbell on “Magic Glasses,” as the credits indicate?

It’s Pettersen’s songwriting that’s the main attraction here. “Tabitha” is a troubling true-crime song with a melody suggesting an old Civil War fiddle tune. Pettersen sings from the perspective of a little girl kidnapped from Nashville. In the first verse she’s “playing in the sun,” but later there’s the disturbing image of Tabitha “lying in the sun.”

Pettersen plays tribute to one of his buddies, Scott Kempner (The Dictators, The Del-Lords), on “Top Ten,” a cool tune that subtly nods to Kempner’s early-’60s rock sensibilities. (That's Top Ten himself backing Pettersen in above photo.)

Speaking of an early-’60s influence, “Magic Glasses” is an understated but soulful little number that reminds me of New Frontier-era pop/blues productions like Brook Benton’s “Walk on the Wild Side.” (I’m glad there isn’t much cowbell on it.)

My favorite song here is “June 1945.” Performed on acoustic guitar, this song was inspired a few years ago, when Pettersen received an e-mail from a stranger who said he thought his father was Pettersen’s grandfather. It seems that grandpappy Pettersen had a secret life and secret family that young Ed never knew about, until that e-mail. He always thought his father was an only child. The song is written from the grandfather’s point of view.

As for the song “$500 Car,” I am tempted to say it’s about half as good as The Bottle Rockets’ “Thousand Dollar Car.” But seriously, it’s a fine tune based on a cool slide-guitar riff.

Also Recommended:
*Popular Delusions & The Madness of Cows
by Ramsay Midwood. This is nothing but modern-day swamp rock, pure and simple.

You hear bits of organ, accordion, banjo, and even tuba on this album. Ace stringman Greg Leisz shows up to add some mandolin and lap steel. But it’s Randy Week’s tremolo guitar playing those snarling licks — along with Midwood’s deep, backwoods-cool, mush-mouthed vocals — that seal the deal on most of the songs. You’ll detect echoes of Creedence and Tony Joe White and J.J. Cale in Midwood’s music. And yet this album — produced by Don Heffington, who co-produced one of my favorite albums last year, Tony Gilkyson’s Goodbye Guitar — doesn’t sound like some retro museum piece.

Midwood, originally from Arlington, Va., and now living in Austin, is responsible for one of the finest unsung roots records a few years ago, Shoot Out at the O.K. Chinese Restaurant.

He sings of damaged heroes — the Vietnam vet who only wants to lift weights and praise the Lord in “Jesus is #1”; the “so far gone” subject of “Prozac”; and the “Withered Rose” who “goes down the boulevard trying hard to captured her long-gone rapture.”

There’s even a song called “Planet Nixon” that I probably should have played on my recent radio tribute to Tricky Dick. I can’t really tell what this song — a sweet acoustic song that suggests The Band and The Gourds — has to do with the 37th president. It seems to be a hobo fantasy, with an enigmatic refrain that goes “Planet Nixon spins on, shine on Confucius Sun, shine on.”

Most of the songs are original, but on Delusions, he has a couple of tasty covers. There’s the country-flavored gospel classic “When God Dips His Pen” that ends the album. And there’s “Rattlesnake” (a song that The Everly Brothers recorded as “Muskrat”), where the singer speaks with several members of the animal kingdom.

*Sweet Soulful Music by Andy Fairweather Low. Why should I write a review of this? A pretty accurate review can already be found right in the title. The music is indeed sweet and soulful, led by a high voice that sometimes almost cries. This is basic, stripped-down rock by a veteran picker. Like NRBQ, Low does roots with good pop instincts.

Also like the ’Q, Low has been around forever. He had a band in the ’60s called Amen Corner (I hadn’t heard of them either) and has done studio work with some giants — George Harrison and Eric Clapton among them. He was a background singer on The Who’s song “Who Are You.” This is his first solo record in more than a quarter century.

Highlights here are the irresistible “Hymn 4 My Soul”; the poetically titled “Bible Black Starless Sky,” which almost sounds like a Gene Autry cowboy song; and “The Low Rider,” where he does his part for the secret ukulele revival, which is poised to sweep the nation.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 25, 2007

Driving down Cerrillos Road and watching gasoline prices fall in recent weeks — I’ve seen it as low as $2.05 a gallon — reminded me of one of my favorite state-government conspiracy theories.

The Legislature comes to town every year at this time, pump prices drop and some Santa Feans inevitably connect the dots.

Some even call newspapers and suggest we launch investigations into the obvious connection.

I’m not sure why gas station owners in Santa Fe would lower their prices for a legislative session.

Could they be trying to fool legislators into thinking that prices are actually low in Santa Fe so the Legislature won’t try to impose price controls?

If so, they’d better worry about all those legislators who come to Santa Fe throughout the year for interim committee meetings and other business. Not to mention the lawmakers who live here.

Could the station owners be trying to do a big favor for lawmakers by keeping prices low for them, thus winning influence?

If so, there’s surely a more direct, efficient and far less costly method to win friends among legislators. It’s called “campaign contributions.”

As with most conspiracy theories, I’m skeptical.

And yet, once again, the session starts and gasoline prices fall.

I talked Wednesday with Ruben Baca, lobbyist and executive of the New Mexico Petroleum Marketers Association.

Now granted, if there was a conspiracy, Baca would be in on it and thus deny any connection between Santa Fe pump prices and the legislative session.

But what he said makes sense.

He explained that it’s not the arrival of the Legislature that causes prices to slide, it’s the arrival of winter.

“Usually this time of year the price is down everywhere,” Baca said. “Consumption is down, so prices get more competitive. And right now the price of oil is the cheapest it’s been in over a year.”

Said Baca: “If they had the Legislature in June, people would be complaining that prices were higher because of the Legislature. If it was up to me, we’d give it away. We’d have a lot less problems.”

Dueling conference committees: Once again there’s an effort in the Roundhouse to breach the last bastion of secrecy in the Legislature.

Actually there are several efforts. Rep. Joe Cervantes, D-Las Cruces, Sen. Dede Feldman, D-Albuquerque, and Sen. Joe Carraro, R-Albuquerque, all have introduced bills to open conference committees to the public.

Conference committees are small groups of lawmakers from each chamber appointed to hammer out the final language in bills after the Senate and House pass differing versions of the same legislation. It’s the only kind of committee that the Legislature routinely allows to meet behind closed doors, exempt from the open-meetings requirements it decreed for other government decision-making bodies in New Mexico.

But House Republican Whip Dan Foley of Roswell said Wednesday there needs to be a new approach to the issue.

“Every year we do the same thing,” he said. “The House passes a bill to open conference committees, it goes there and it dies. So that lets us say, ‘Let’s blame the Senate.’ ”

And so on Wednesday he introduced House Resolution 2, which indeed has a new approach.
It reads “Members of the House shall not participate in a meeting of a conference committee that is closed to the public.”

This, he said, would force the Senate to go along. Without House members present, there couldn’t be a conference committee.

The entire House Republican Caucus backs the resolution, Foley said. However, he said, no Democrats have signed on. That doesn’t bode well for the measure, which needs a two-thirds majority to become reality.

One nonpartisan source who likes Foley’s resolution is Bob Johnson, executive director of New Mexico Foundation for Open Government. He has fought since 1994 to open conference committees. “It’s a good tactic,” said Johnson, who backs the other bills as well. “It’s creative and a good tool.”

Secret identity: Comedian Jon Stewart on Tuesday night’s Daily Show had some fun with Gov. Bill Richardson’s presidential announcement. The program showed rapid-fire clips of Richardson’s interview with George Stephanopoulos in which our governor touts his attributes: “I’m a westerner” ... “I’m a governor” ... “I’ve cut taxes” ... “I’ve rescued hostages.”

Cut to Stewart: “Oh my God! Bill Richardson is Batman!” Then the comic recites lyrics from the old Frank Sinatra song, “That’s Life”: “I’ve been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn and a king.”

Sing it Roberto: It’s true that Lt. Gov. Diane Denish was part of a group of women who sang the old Dixie Cups hit “Chapel of Love” at a dinner in Boston during the 2004 Democratic National Convention. But we haven’t had a real singing lieutenant governor since Roberto Mondragón.

Mondragón, currently a liaison for the State Engineer’s Office, will be the first guest at a new “Cultural Dinner Series” next week at El Farol, the Canyon Road restaurant and bar. (Owner David Salazar says “the disappearing aspects of our local culture” is something frequently discussed informally in the bar area.)

Mondragón has been an author, a radio personality and a recording artist. (The first time I ever interviewed him, about 27 years ago, he gave me one of his albums.) That’s him singing “De Colores” at the end of The Milagro Beanfield War movie.

While Mondragón is advertised as speaker for the Feb. 1 dinner, a flier shows him strumming his guitar.

The cost is $60. For reservations call El Farol at 983-9912.

Monday, January 22, 2007


Sunday, January 21, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Child of the Falling Star by Stephen W. Terrell (Happy Birthday, Molly!)
Click Your Fingers Applauding the Play by Roky Erikson & the Aliens
Medication by The Mistaken
Bubba's Truck by Key
Crackpot baby by L7
I Kiss You Dead by The Monsters
Ladybird (Green Grass) by The Fall
Johnny Are You Queer? by Josie Cotton

Let the Devil In by TV on the Radio
Dyin' to Live by Outkast
Intro to Hollywood/Lynbrooke by The Moggs
Legs by P.J. Harvey
Books of Moses by Tom Waits
I Walk My Murderous Intentions Home by King Automatic
Paper by Kiliminjaro Yak Attack

Elephant Gun by Beirut
In the River by A Hawk & A Hacksaw
Onajon by Jadoo
Un Dia by Lumbre del Sol
Never Change by Sol Fire
Within You Without You/Tomorrow Never Knows by The Beatles

Come Softly To Me by NRBQ
Freedom For the Stalionby Elvis Costello & Allan Toussaint
Darling by Jono Manson
Ugly Sunday by Mark Lanegan
Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth by Primitive Radio Gods
Summer by Scott Cadenasso
It's All in the Game by Tommy Edwards
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Sunday, January 21, 2007


I just posted this over at my Legislature Blog:

Despite all the coyness displayed by Team Richardson on Friday, the Associated Press was correct. Richardson did officially announce he’s running for president.

Actually, one little birdie, to quote the late Ernie Mills, told meRichrdson announced to a small group of well-heeled
supporters at a fundraiser Friday night.

Looks like his key staff will be familiar New Mexico faces:
Dave Contarino, Amanda Cooper and spokesman Pahl Shipley.

He’s got a Web site.


Here's my allotted 90 downloads from eMusic this month:

Out to Hunch by Hasil Adkins. I actually downloaded this while writing my review of Best of Haze a couple of weeks ago. If there was ever any dout that Adkins wasn't flying in from his own planet since his earliest career, this should put a stop to that.

The Evil One (Plus One) (Bonus Disc)
by Roky Erikson. I didn't notice when The Evil One appeared in its latest reissue form a few years ago that it included a bonus disc. Here you'll find live versions of the songs, as done on a San Francisco radio program The Modern Human Show in the late '70s, plus interview segments.


We Didn't See You On Sunday by P.W. Long. Compared with P.W.'s live show, which I saw at South by Southwest last year (and where I took this groovy photo), this one's pretty sedate -- and some are actually kinda purdy. Mostly acoustic tunes. Still enjoyable, though.

Darkness at Noon by A Hawk and a Hacksaw plus other stray H&H tracks from Leaf Label compilations . Here's another album I downloaded while writing a review of another album by the artist. I like the recent one, The Way the Wind Blows, better.

Sonic Grammar by Ornette Coleman . It's just plain comforting that giants like Coleman still walk aong us. This album, recorded live in Germany in 2005 -- with a quartet that includes two basses plus Coleman's son Denardo on drums -- is an understated jewel.

Boys and Girls in America by The Hold Steady . I might have been the only critic in criticdom not to list this in my Top 10 of 2006. I dunno ... I found it very listenable, but I think Marah does the early Springsteen thing better. (Probably a good thing my comment feature is broken at this writing.)

Funky Donkey Vols. 1 & 2 by Luther Thomas. This album, recorded in a St. Louis church in 1973, is a fun little mix of free jazz and Blaxploitation funk, especially the 20-minute title track. (There's only three songs on the whole album. I'm not sure what the "volumes" thing is all about.) Saxman Thomas leads the band known as Human Arts Ensemble. Lester Bowie plays trumpet.

I had one track left over. I downloaded the song "Mr. Grieves" from Young Liars by T.V. on the Radio. I'm a brand new convert to this band, having just gotten hold of Return To Cookie Mountain. I intend to download more of them next month.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


Friday, January 19, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Catch Me a Possum by The Watzloves
Sinkhole by Drive-By Truckers
Going Nowhere by Jason & The Scorchers
Boxcar Ruth E. by Ramsay Midwood
Speed the Night Behind by Chipper Thompson
Trotsky's Blues by Joe West
Keep Looking For Tumbleweeds, Danny by NRBQ
Dollar Bill the Cowboy by The Waco Brothers

Take Me to the Water by Sally Spring
That Nightmare is Me by Mose McCormack
Rocks Into Sand by Bill Kirchen
Miller, Jack and Maddog by Wayne Hancock
Rolling Stone by Neko Case
Chicken Man by Boris & The Saltlicks
Please Don't Tell Me How the Story Ends by Joan Osbourn

Small Ya'll by George Jones
Weakness in a Man by Waylon Jennings
Lion in Winter by Hoyt Axton with Linda Rondstadt
If You Love Me (You'll Sleep on the Wet Spot) by Asylum Street Spankers
Jimmy Parker by Ed Pettersen
Aimie by Pure Prairie League
Land of the Shalako by Sid Hausman
Miss Molly by Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys
Jimbo Jambo Land by Shorty Godwin

All the Beauty Taken From You in This Life Remains Forever by Chris Whitley & The Bastard Club
Room 100 by Ronny Elliott
Still Playin' by Peter Case
I've Just Destroyed The World by Willie Nelson with Emmylou Harris
I See a Darkness by Bonny Prince Billy
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 19, 2007


Check my Legislature Blog


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 19, 2007

Call it “deathbed rock.”

Warren Zevon is the master of it, having crafted his farewell album, The Wind, as he was dying of cancer. The album was released shortly before he died in late 2003. It starts with the lines, “Sometimes I feel like my shadow’s casting me/Some days the sun don’t shine” (in the song “Dirty Life & Times”), and ends with a tear-jerker called “Keep Me in Your Heart,” in which he sings, “Shadows are falling, and I’m running out of breath ...”

Then there was Joey Ramone, who recorded Don’t Worry About Me as he was dying of cancer in 2001. Most of the album doesn’t really deal with his impending departure. But the song “I Got Knocked Down (But I’ll Get Up)” expresses a resolve to recover (“Sitting in a hospital bed/I, I want life/I want my life”), and his cover of “What a Wonderful World” — for my money the finest cover of that corny chestnut in the history of the world — can only be seen as a glorious, life-affirming goodbye letter to those of us who loved him.

Neil Young reportedly was thinking in that direction, writing most of his songs for Prairie Wind (2005) as he was undergoing treatment for a brain aneurysm. Fortunately, however, Young did us all a favor and didn’t die.

Bob Dylan had already beaten the Reaper when he recorded the melancholic Time Out of Mind (1997). But many of the songs there are melancholic meditations on mortality, so it could be considered an honorary deathbed rock album.

Lee Hazlewood — the crusty-voiced cowpoke who wrote most of Nancy Sinatra’s ’60s hits and costarred on several Lee-and-Nancy classics — late last year released Cake or Death, advertised as his last album because he’s dying of kidney cancer.

And now comes Chris Whitley, whose last album, Reiter In, apparently was meant as a defiant middle finger in the face of smiling Sgt. Death. Whitley, a Texas guitar slinger who died of cancer in November 2005, didn’t give up the ghost until after making one final recording with a group of friends he dubbed The Bastard Club.

Whitley basically was a “cult artist” who had several influential friends — among them, Daniel Lanois and Malcolm Burn — and won lots of critical praise during his 15-year recording career, though, as is the case with most of the people I listen to these days, he never achieved much commercial success.

I never was a true devotee of the Whitley cult. A friend gave me a couple of his ’90s albums a few years ago (his Burn-produced debut Living With the Law and the dark, acoustical, and superior Dirt Floor), which I enjoy, though neither really twisted my head off.

But the new one does twist my head off. And it’s not because of any sentimentality over Whitley’s death. It’s just a strong album, indeed a tough album, that’s more about his life than his leaving.

By the very first song, you know Reiter In isn’t going to be any maudlin affair. With grungy, rumbling guitars and a proud thud-thud-thud of the drums, Chris and his Bastards roar though a spirited take on the Stooges’ classic “I Wanna Be Your Dog.” (This song also has been covered by Whitley’s fellow Texas roots rocker Alejandro Escovedo. Escovedo does a baroque version, with violin and cello, that he usually introduces with an obscene story about Iggy Pop and Béla Bartók in a cheap motel room. But Whitley’s “Dog” has more metallic bite.)

From Iggy, Whitley goes straight to Willie — Dixon, that is — with “Bring It on Home,” a rough-edged, swaggering electric blues. Whitley seems on top of his game here. His vocals are raspy, but he sings with the confidence of a voodoo priest.

Though many have sung the praises of Whitley’s blues-guitar talents, “Bring It on Home,” “I Go Evil” (“Come on, man! It’s cornball but cool,” Whitley proclaims at the end of this one), and the seven-minute “All Beauty Taken From You in This Life Remains Forever” aren’t hotshot Stevie Ray-wannabe, ax-man workouts. They sound more like Mudhoney reincarnated as a blues band.

“All Beauty” (whose title would look great on a tombstone) is groove infested and mainly acoustic with a call-and-response harmonica, tasty fiddle flourishes, and mysterioso Angelo Badalamenti-like vibes.

Reiter In features several covers from surprising sources. Whitley does an intense, slow-burning, and — yes — bluesy take on an old Flaming Lips song called “Mountain Side.” And he does a bouncy, snarling-guitars version of “Are Friends Electric?” written by New Wave “Cars” salesman Gary Numan.

Though the strongest tunes here are electric, there are examples of Whitley’s acoustic side. The sadly beautiful instrumental “Inn,” featuring interplay between guitar and violin, sounds as if Whitley spent some time in the motel room with Bartók.

And there’s the lo-fi country waltz “Cut the Cards,” written around a poem by Pierre Reverdy. It’s one of the few places on the album where Whitley deals with his impending fate. “Death could happen/What I hold within my arms could slip away,” he recites.

And, in a more vague and symbolic manner, there’s the title song in which Whitley’s longtime companion, Susann Buerger, reads an unknown poem in both German and English. “As the one who sits on the horse, the rider is the ghost that leaves the body,” she says as the band plays a slow, menacing instrumental behind her.

In short, this is deathbed rock at its finest. Whitley’s ghost can ride in pride.

Thursday, January 18, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 18, 2007

A local antiwar activist says New Mexico’s two U.S. senators have different standards when it comes to listening to points of view contrary to their own.

Pat Getz, a 20-year Santa Fe resident who has worked as a therapist and real estate agent, was part of a group of about 60 people opposed to U.S. military actions in Iraq who visited local offices of Sens. Pete Domenici and Jeff Bingaman last week. Their goal was to express concern about President Bush’s plan to send 21,000 more troops to Iraq.

At the office of Bingaman — a Democrat who opposes the president’s approach regarding Iraq — Getz said they were allowed to come in and, in groups of five to seven, talk with a Bingaman assistant who “listened to each of our statements and took notes.”

However, later that day at the Santa Fe office of Domenici — a Republican who has been more supportive of the president’s policies — the antiwar group got a different reaction.

At the federal building where Domenici’s office is located, they were met by several police officers and security guards, Getz said. They were told by Maggie Murray, Domenici’s office manager, that only one person from the group would be permitted to come into the office.

The group chose Ken Mayers, president of the local chapter of Veterans for Peace.

“He went to the office flanked by two burly federal guards,” Getz said.

Noting the ages of the antiwar group, she said, “Most of us there were in our 50s or 60s, some in their 70s.”

Getz said she began to wonder if the different reactions to her group had anything to do with political views.

So she telephoned Domenici’s office, “using my best Texas accent,” and claimed to be part of a group that supports the escalation of troop levels. “Maggie asked when we could come and said we could bring five people,” Getz said.

“I hate lying, and I don’t want to have people think I do this all the time,” Getz said. “I’m a senior citizen and not out there to create a problem for anyone.”

Out of fairness, she said, she also called Bingaman’s office, claiming to be with a pro-war group. Bingaman’s office also agreed to meet with the group, Getz said.

However, Murray at Domenici’s office denied Wednesday that the senator’s staff has a double standard about meeting with pro-war and antiwar groups. “That’s just not true,” she said.

She said she agreed to meet with as many as five supposed pro-war people “because she called in advance.”

The visit by the antiwar group, Murray said, wasn’t arranged in advance.

Bully for bolos: Back in 1987, the state Legislature named the bolo tie 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.”

However, the lonesome bolo is not listed in the same section of state law that lists the official state bird, state animal, state reptile, state butterfly, state question, state cookie, etc.

That could change if lawmakers approve Senate Bill 19, introduced Wednesday by Sen. Steve Komadina, R-Corrales.

However, it’s not clear whether the passage of the bill would mean that senators could legally wear bolos on the floor of the House. Two years ago, when trying to get into a joint session, a bolo-sporting Sen. Jack Ryan, R-Albuquerque, was stopped by sergeants at arms, who informed him he was violating House rules and would have to change into a cloth tie.

It’s not a session until ... I know the state constitution provides that the legislative session starts on the third Tuesday in January.

But those who have weathered a few sessions know there are other factors that determine when a session is really under way.

So in that spirit, it’s not really a session until ...

* The governor threatens to veto the budget bill.

* House members complain the Senate isn’t passing House bills or vice versa.

* Sen. John Pinto sings “The Potato Song.”

* A committee meeting goes past midnight.

* You need a “Guest of the Speaker” badge to go anywhere on the Capitol’s first floor.

* A lawmaker dramatically asks during a floor debate, “What kind of message are we sending to the children?”

* The governor threatens to call a special session.

* Sen. Joe Carraro sings “That’s Amore.”

* The governor threatens to run for president. (This session only.)

Some of you surely have others. E-mail them to me, and I’ll publish the best in a future column.

UPDATE: Here's the answer to my bolo question from the Associated Press:
The House has changed its rules for joint sessions only, and
Ryan wore a bolo to Gov. Bill Richardson’s opening address on

Monday, January 15, 2007


Originally uploaded by fist city.
My daughter and a friend went to Denny's in Albuquerque on Christmas Eve. (Yes, that's weird, but it's like something like I would have done at her age, so blame the genes.)

There they met this homeless guy named Scott, who showed them his sketchbook. He seemed like a nice guy, she said.

Today she recognized the guy from a t.v. news story. Turns out he's wanted in New York on murder charges. He's accused of beating his 82-year-old grandmother to death.

Oh the people you'll meet ...

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Sunday, January 14, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
The Curse of Milhaven by Nick Cave
Jack Pepsi by TAD
Puke + Cry by Dinsosaur Jr.
Hypno Sex Ray by The Cramps
Two-headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer) by Roky Erikson & The Aliens
Cubby Bear by The Moggs
Man in the Box by Alice in Chains

Chill Out Tent by The Hold Steady
Kentucky Slop Song by NRBQ
Do You Believe in Rapture? by Sonic Youth
Shady Lane by Pavement
English Civil War (Johnny Comes Marching Home) by The Clash
Greatest Show on Earth by Outkast with Macy Gray
Sometimes I Wish I Had a Gun by Mink Stole

Mooney by The Kilimanjaro Yak Attack
I Go Evil by Chris Whitley & The Bastard Club
Puttin' on the Dog by Tom Waits
Two Dogs and a Bone by Los Lobos
River City by The Dwarves
Thunder on the Mountain by Bob Dylan
Goodbye Sweet Pops by Archie Schepp
All I Can Do Is Cry by Ike & Tina Turner

Keep on Pushing by The Impressions
Why? (The King of Love is Dead) by Nina Simone
Letter From a Birmingham Jail by Ronny Elliott
A Change is Gonna Come by Sam Cooke
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis


Yippie! I've been upgraded to the snazzy new Blogger system.

What does that mean to you? The major advantage I see is that I now have categories. I've already set up my "big five" categories -- my two weekly columns, my two radio shows, plus my monthly eMusic downloads. I've just gone back a couple of months (more on the eMusic, since there's only a few). But all new posts in the areas will have categories, and you can access them via the permanent links on the right side of the page.

The biggest drawback I've found is that I can't get my Haloscan comments to work. I'll work on that. In the meantime, if you have a comment, just e-mail me.

In other blog news, I'll again be doing a separate Legislature blog for The New Mexican this year. You can find it HERE. (On the maiden post you can find the links to all the Legislature stories I have in today's New Mexican.)

As has been the case the past couple of years, my personal blog here -- normally a strange hodgepodge of music and state politics -- will focus mainly on music, though it still be the home of Roundhouse Roundup, my weekly political column. (Catch that cool category link!)

And I'll still post an occasional link to funny political items like this one in this morning's Washington Post.:
But the big campaign news is all the media attention that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) got after he was photographed shirtless. The Zeitgeist sincerely hopes that New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson doesn't read that last sentence.

(OK, someone in my glass house shouldn't call the kettle "black." In fairness to the gov, if he keeps losing weight like he's done in recent weeks, he won't have to worry about stuff like this.)

Saturday, January 13, 2007


My story about New Mexico leading the nation in private prisons ran today in The New Mexican. CLICK HERE

Anyway, We're Number One! I wonder if the governor will brag about this fact when he runs for president.

One reader points out that I goofed up on my alphabet soup. "MGC" should be MTC. (That's the company that used to run the Santa Fe jail.)

I also neglected to post the link to my story about Paige McKenzie, the Republican activist who was severely beaten with a tire iron by an unknown attacker. You can find that HERE.

It was great seeing Paige on Thursday and it truly is amazing how she's recovered.


Friday, January 12, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Ghosts of Hallelujah by The Gourds
I Told You So by Ramsay Midwood
Devil in the Blue Dress by Bill Kirchen
How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away by Dan Hicks & The Hot Licks
The Shakin' Fears by P.W. Long
Love-A-Rama by Southern Culture on the Skids
Cat Scratch Fever by Hayseed Dixie
Animal Hoedown by Harry Hayward

Mean Man Blues by 1/4 Mile Combo
Wanted Man by Johnny Cash
Hama Hama Hula by Jon Rauhouse
Singer of Sad Songs by Waylon Jennings
Life of a Fool by Paul Burch
American History by Cary Swinney
Palestine, Texas by T-Bone Burnett
The Caves of Burgundy by Boris & The Saltlicks

Rainbows and Ridges by Blaze Foley
Wild Man by Hasil Adkins
A Song for Blaze by Elliot Rogers
She Said by The Cramps
Down Here Where I Am by Blaze Foley
No More Hotdogs by Hasil Adkins
Someday by Blaze Foley
Me and Jesus by Hasil Adkins
Springtime in Uganda by Townes Van Zandt

All Beauty Taken From You In This Life Remains Forever by Chris Whitley & The Bastard Club
Unbroken Love by Andy Fairweather Low
Magic Glasses by Ed Pettersen
Silverlake Babies by Eleni Mandell
If I Could Only Fly by Merle Haggard
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 12, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 12, 2007

Late last year, two albums were released featuring never-released or long-out-of print recordings from late, great, American wild man originals — Hasil Adkins and Blaze Foley.

Besides the fact that they both played guitar and they’re both dead — Foley was shot to death in 1989, while Adkins died in 2005 just shy of his 68th birthday — one might conclude that Blaze and Haze don’t have much in common. But both men’s music generally was overlooked by the mainstream. And both artists inspired worshipful cults. In my view, the worship is well-deserved, and these new albums should be seen as sacraments.

*Best of the Haze by Hasil Adkins. The crashing strum of an out-of-tune guitar with a menacing backwoods voice declaring, “Well I’m gonna tell you what happened” is the foreboding start of this record. It’s as if you’ve found yourself in a nightmare in which you’re trapped in a hillbilly’s still house on the wrong side of the cosmic tracks — where the guy talking has one hand on the neck of a battered guitar and the other hand on a shotgun.

How can you describe Hasil Adkins? I don’t think I can top All Music Guide, which called him a “frantic one-man band who bashed out ultra-crude rock & roll tunes about sex, chicken, and decapitation into a wheezing reel-to-reel tape machine in a West Virginia shack.”

Probably the best known of those groups who went on the Adkins diet is The Cramps, whose trademark “psychobilly” sound sprang from the Haze.

He started out in the 1950s, recording his bizarro-world one-man rockabilly for tiny regional labels. It was those early 45s that inspired The Cramps and others and eventually led to Adkins recording long-players in the ’80s and ’90s on the Norton label (plus an album on Fat Possum Records and a live recording from the Chicago-based Bughouse label).

Unfortunately, despite the title of this album, you won’t find those scratchy-but-sublime old recordings here. What Best of The Haze offers is a bunch of tracks from early-’90s sessions for a never-released album on the now-defunct IRS label (once the home of R.E.M., Concrete Blonde, and Wall of Voodoo, among others).

He’s older in these recordings but hardly mellower. There are some re-recordings of classic Haze “hits” (including the opening cut “She Said” and “This Ain’t No Rock ’n’ Roll Show”), a couple of cover songs (Hank’s “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and Elvis’ “Teddy Bear”), a Christmas tune (“Santa Claus Boogie”), and even a gospel tune (“Me & Jesus”).

But the best is “Wild Man” — another re-recorded old song that shows Adkins as the ultimate dirty old man. The song basically consists of Haze frantically strumming his guitar, apparently tuned to the key of H, and singing — sometimes almost screaming — “verses” that repeat the phrase “you call me a wild man” and stopping every so often to speak lines like: “Now you wouldn’t take your clothes off would ya? [pause] Well, if you did, it would be all right!”

*Cold, Cold World by Blaze Foley and The Beaver Valley Boys. While it’s not hard to see why an acquired taste like Hasil Adkins never made a splash in the mainstream, Blaze Foley should have been a star.

Only thing is, Blaze lived as crazy as Haze sang. He was essentially homeless, sleeping under pool tables at bars. He patched up old shoes with duct tape.

But this hard-drinking, even harder-living Texan (born Michael David Fuller) wrote what can only be called some mighty songs. His best known surely is “If I Could Only Fly,” the stunning title track of Merle Haggard’s best album of this century. Hag, who also recorded that song with Willie Nelson about 20 years ago, reportedly has contemplated releasing a whole album of Blaze songs.

Haggard’s not alone. John Prine sang Foley’s “Clay Pigeons” on his last album. Both Lucinda Williams and Townes Van Zandt wrote songs about Foley (“Drunken Angel” and “Blaze’s Blues,” respectively). And there have been several little-noticed Blaze tribute albums, featuring performances mainly by the singer’s Austin pals, released in recent years.

Cold, Cold World is graced by Gurf Morlix, a fine artist in his own right who plays guitar and bass and sings backup here. The songs were recorded in 1979 and 1980 — at a time when some thought Foley might reach some level of mainstream success.

The album has some pretty country songs like the title song and the mournful “Picture Cards” (which has similarities to “If I Could Only Fly”), some breezy, bluesy stuff like “No Goodwill Stores in Waikiki” and “Slow Boat to China,” and even some topical numbers like “Election Day” (later recorded by Lyle Lovett) and “Officer Norris” (a protest against a cop).
Foley’s wry humor is all over the album, especially on songs like “Christian Lady Talkin’ on a Bus,” “Big Cheeseburgers and Good French Fries,” and “New Wave Blues” which starts out, “There goes that tongue again, back in my ear again.”

The man should have been a star.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Originally uploaded by Robotclaw666.

I didn't realize there were so many Gourds fans in Santa Fe, but it was a great turnout last night at the Santa Fe Brewing Company and the band delivered.

It took a couple of numbers for them to warm up, but then a Cajun-flavored tune kicked them into an overdrive that rarely faltered.

It also was great to see Boris & The Saltlicks, who opened the show/

The Brewing Company is hoping to bring The Gourds back for an outdoor show if this winter ever stops.

See more photos on my FLICKR SITE.


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 11, 2007

A writer known as “the lean gray wolf” of investigative journalism says the New Mexico press seemed forgiving toward Gov. Bill Richardson after the recent hundred-year snowstorm left travelers stranded on highways crossing the state.

Dan K. Thomasson, a former editor of the Scripps Howard News Service, said in his syndicated column this week that the state administration’s response to the snowstorm could detract from Richardson’s prospects as a presidential candidate.

Thomasson isn’t just any run-of-the-mill ink-stained crank. He broke the story of President Kennedy’s affair with a Mafia moll and was literally thrown out of the Chappaquiddick police station for demanding to see the accident report on the drowning death of Mary Jo Kopechne.
Described by The Albuquerque Tribune, a Scripps Howard paper, as a frequent visitor to the state, Thomasson apparently was in Santa Fe around New Year’s.

“In this land of enchantment where the deer and the antelope still play and the politically corrupt Santa Fe Ring once held sway, the old timers are betting that the next entrant in the Democratic sweepstakes will be Bill Richardson, the former congressman, Energy secretary and now governor,” Thomasson wrote.

“Before getting too excited about that prospect, consider that Richardson’s administrative expertise got severely tested by the politician’s nightmare — a snowstorm that discombobulated the state and its capital for days longer than it should have, leaving New Mexicans grumbling from Gallup to the Colorado line,” Thomasson wrote.

He noted the only downtown Santa Fe streets cleared by Jan. 1 were the ones near the hotels hosting Richardson’s inaugural ball. Of course those streets are the city’s responsibility, not the state’s. And it probably was a wise idea to clear an area where thousands of people — that is, thousands of potential lawsuits — were about to converge.

Even given the rarity of such a storm here, the Indiana native said it doesn’t look good for our governor if the snow response is any indication of the way he’d respond to more serious emergencies. But, referring to the nation’s first presidential primary, he wrote, “If the warming trend continues in the East, perhaps he won’t have to embarrass himself by mentioning how he handled what is normally an every day New Hampshire occurrence.”

Rats ’n’ weasels: With cockfighting in serious jeopardy in the coming legislative session (Richardson finally came out against this family activity, which is legal in only New Mexico and Louisiana), fans of the fighting birds might have to consider other entertainment.

Author Nick Tosches in King of the Jews, his 2005 biography of gangster Arnold Rothstein, wrote about a Water Street (that’s New York, not Santa Fe) gaming establishment run by a saloon owner named Christopher “Kit” Burns in the 1860s.

“Sportsman’s Hall offered four sporting events: rat killing by a weasel, rat killing by a dog, rat killing by a man, and dog fighting,” Tosches wrote.

“Sportsmen complained that rat killing by a weasel was too slow, as the weasel, who was a natural-born rat killer, devoted too much time to the chase. Rat killing by a dog was a better spectacle, and it made for better gambling. ... As for rat killing by a man, Burns often found it difficult to find a man willing to get into the pit, chase down a big fat river rat, seize it, and take off its wild vicious head with a chomp of a jaw. Some men would do anything for a bottle. But such men were not always adept in the pit. ... Long-moneyed bettors cheered whenever the rat took a piece of hand, lips, cheek or nose.”

Dog fighting has been illegal in this state for years. However, I don’t believe there’s anything on the books concerning rat fighting.

Cockfighting proponents say if their opponents succeed, next thing you know, animal-rights activists will go after rodeo, hunting and fishing.

But don’t worry. I understand they’re having a hard time lining up sponsors for that anti-fishing bill.

Friends of the Earth: Santa Fe lawmakers — all of them Democrats — made good grades on The Conservation Voters of New Mexico’s scorecard for the past two legislative sessions.

In the House, state Rep. Peter Wirth scored a perfect 100 percent, based on his votes on various measures. Close behind were House Speaker Ben Luján and Rep. Luciano “Lucky” Varela, who both got cumulative grades of 92 percent. Rep. Jim Trujillo came in last for Santa Fe with a 70 percent rating.

On the Senate side, John Grubesic scored a 95 percent rating while Nancy Rodriguez got 83 percent.

Emerging women: Players in both major political parties in New Mexico often grumble privately that it’s hard to recruit qualified candidates for state office. However, a group of Democratic women has been recruiting and training women for just that purpose.

EmergeNew Mexico, an organization co-chaired by Lt. Gov. Diane Denish and former Attorney General Patricia Madrid, just completed a seven-month program designed to train Democratic women in how to plan, fund, organize and win political campaigns. Twenty-three women who successfully completed the program will take part in a graduation ceremony at the Roundhouse Rotunda on Saturday.

Some of these might be returning to the Capitol. According to a press release, EmergeNew Mexico is a part of a national group that claims 60 percent of its graduates go on to win elections.

Meanwhile, some believe that Emerge leaders Denish and Madrid, who ran against each other for lieutenant governor back in 1994, might emerge as rivals again for governor in 2010.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


THE GOURDS 3-15-06 One of my favorite bands, The Gourds from Austin, Texas, will be playing the Santa Fe Brewing Company tonight.

Also on the bill is New Mexico's own Boris & The Saltlicks.

And if you get there at 6 p.m. you can catch a screening of Lexie Shabel's We Like to Drink, We Like to Play Rock 'n' Roll.

It costs $10 in advance (not sure if those are still available) or $15 at the door.


Here's a link to my profile of Lt. Gov. Diane Denish and her desire to run for governor in 2010. CLICK HERE

I also wrote a sidebar about the history of lieutenant govs running for governor or higher office.

Speaking of which, I just got off the phone with former Lt. Gov. Walter Bradley, who agreed there's great difficulty with a sitting light guv running for governor.

"Whatever baggage the governor has, that's going to be your baggage too, no matter what his accomplishments were," Bradley said.

In his case, Bradley noted, it was Gov. Gary Johnson's call for drug law reform that hurt him in the Republican primary -- even though Bradley didn't back Johnson on this issue.

He also said it's tough to run from that position because after eight years voters often are looking for a change, and the lieutenant governor usually is seen as part of the old administration.

Here's my side bar:

A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 10, 2007

Lt. Gov. Diane Denish not only wants to be New Mexico’s first female governor, she wants to be the first lieutenant governor to be elected governor.

Although several have tried, no lieutenant governor in the state’s history has succeeded in winning a governor’s race in this state.

In 2002, Walter Bradley, who served in the No. 2 post for eight years under Gov. Gary Johnson, lost the Republican primary to state Rep. John Sanchez.

In 1994, incumbent Democratic Gov. Bruce King was challenged in a bitter primary race by his lieutenant governor, Casey Luna. King won the primary but lost to Johnson in the general election.

Roberto Mondragon, who had served two previous terms under King, ran unsuccessfully for governor that year on the Green Party ticket.

Back in 1978, Lt. Gov. Bob Ferguson, who served under Gov. Jerry Apodaca, ran for governor but lost to King in the primary.

The only lieutenant governors to assume the governor’s chair were Tom Bolack — who took the office after Gov. Ed Mechem stepped down to take a vacant U.S. Senate seat — and the state’s first lieutenant governor, Washington Lindsey, who assumed power after the state’s first governor, Ezequiel C de Baca, died.

The most successful lieutenant governor in terms of achieving higher office was Joseph Montoya, who was elected to four two-year lieutenant governor terms in the 1940s and 1950s. Montoya later was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and to the U.S. Senate.

Mack Easley, who served under Gov. Jack Campbell in the early 1960s, went on to win a state Senate seat and later was appointed, then elected to the state Supreme Court.

Mike Runnels, who served under Gov. Toney Anaya in the 1980s, was elected district attorney of Cibola, Sandoval and Valencia counties in the 1990s. But he lost two bids for the District 2 congressional seat once held by his father, Harold Runnels.


Gov. Bill Richardson's office just sent this press release announcing he's negotiated a cease-fire in Darfur.

But, a word of caution from Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler, who noted that President Al bashir "rebuffed " Richardson's call for United Nations troops in Sudan.

Richardson’s other main objective was to get a cease-fire, and he
claimed accomplishment by issuing a joint press statement with al-Bashir that said both sides in the fight agree to a 60-day cessation of hostilities while they work toward lasting peace. However, many issues were outstanding, including whether al-Bashir would uphold his verbal agreement with Richardson when he has a history of breaking commitments.There is broad skepticism around the world about al-Bashir’s commitment to peace after years of support for local militia attacks on innocent civilians in Darfur. More than 200,000 people have been killed and 2.5 million forced to flee their homes in violence that President Bush has labeled genocide.

Here's the raw release:

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson Gets Commitment for 60-Day Cease-Fire in Darfur Region of Sudan

KHARTOUM, SUDAN – New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson today announced that he has secured a commitment from Sudanese President Omer Hassan Al Bashir to agree to a 60-day cessation of hostilities in the Darfur region to allow for a new political process under the Darfur Peace Agreement and the auspices of the African Union and the United Nations. Governor Richardson also spoke this week with rebel leaders who said they would agree to a cease-fire. If all parties follow through with the cease-fire, the A.U. and the U.N. will convene a Peace Summit on March 15 under the framework of the peace agreement.

Governor Richardson also secured the following commitments from President Al Bashir:

· Agreed not to have the National military aircraft painted in white markings normally reserved for international organizations.

· Agreed that government forces would attempt to improve security conditions in all areas of Darfur with special emphasis on El Geneina, and would provide protection to food and other humanitarian convoys.

· Agreed to expedite procedures for entry visas for all humanitarian aid workers as well as goods. He also agreed to terminate the requirement of exit visas for humanitarian aid workers.

· Agreed to allow and facilitate travel by journalists from all over the world to Darfur.

· Governor Richardson and President Al Bashir reiterated that gender-based violence and such crimes must be condemned and prosecuted regardless of which party or organization was responsible. President Bashir said he would welcome a significant contribution of female members to the AU/UN hybrid operations. In addition the Justice Minister offered analyze and extend existing efforts to support Sudanese women against all gender-based violence.

Joint Press Statement on the conclusion of the visit by Governor Bill Richardson to the Sudan

7th – 10th January 2006

H.E Bill Richardson Governor of New Mexico accompanied by a delegation sponsored by and including members of the Save Darfur Coalition, the leading United States-based Darfur peace advocacy organization, conducted a visit to Sudan to discuss ways to secure peace in the Darfur region of Sudan and the protection of all civilians and other non-combatants. The Governor and the delegation visited EI Fasher and Nayala in Darfur, for meetings with internally displaced persons in Darfur, rebel groups that are signatories to the (DPA) as well as those which are not as of yet, international agencies, the United Nations, and humanitarian aid as well as the Wali of North Darfur and the Deputy Wali of Southern Darfur States and held meetings in Khartoum with H.E President Omer Hassan Al Bashir,Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Mr. Ali Ahmed Karti and a number of high ranking Sudanese officials.

Both sides agreed that ending the conflict in Darfur is Sudan's and the international community’s highest priority. Peace, they agreed, can only come through a political settlement that is joined in by and addresses the needs of all parties, on the basis of the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) of 5 May 2006 reiterating their support for preserving Sudan's territorial integrity and the importance of respect for Sudan's sovereignty.

Both sides agreed that there was a compelling need for a comprehensive cease-fire to launch a political process based on the DPA that would lead to a durable end to the conflict as soon as possible. Both agreed to a 60-day cessation of hostilities by all parties within the framework of the DPA, accompanied by a start in African Union/United Nations diplomatic efforts, within the framework of the DPA, to begin narrowing the gaps between the non-signatories, including government approval of a field commanders' conference attended by the African Union and United Nations. This would be followed at the appropriate moment by an African Union/United Nations – sponsored peace summit, again in the framework of the DPA, no later than 15 March 2007. Simultaneously, both agreed that the UN needed to expedite as quickly as possible the provision of UN personnel agreed in Addis Ababa and further specified in Abuja in November 2006. President Bashir re-affirmed his commitment to continue to facilitate the deployment of UN personnel and equipment consistent with his agreement with the Secretary General of the UN on Phases II and III, including the eventual conclusions of the Tripartite Committee as stipulated in the DPA.

The two sides noted that Governor Richardson had secured a commitment from commanders of the Justice and Equality Movement and of the Non-Signatory Front to participate in a process including a 60-day cease fire agreement within the framework of the DPA. Governor Richardson and Save Darfur Coalition expressed their grave concern to all parties with whom they met about continuing and increasing attacks on civilians and other non-combatants.

They reiterated that gender-based violence and such crimes must be condemned and prosecuted regardless of which party or organization was responsible, noting that Governor Richardson and the Save Darfur Coalition emphasized the need in all their meetings for implementing mechanisms to ensure that "zero tolerance" policies towards gender-based violence be applied in practice, quickly and robustly. Governor Richardson noted with appreciation President Bashir's commitment to welcome a significant contribution of female members to the AU/UN hybrid operations. Both sides expressed their grave concern at allegations of gender ­based violence by United Nations personnel in South Sudan.

Governor Richardson and the delegation also met with the Under-Secretary of Justice, the Rapporteur of the Advisory Council for Human Rights and Dr. Attigatt who presented a briefing on Sudanese Government efforts to institutionalize protections for women. The Governor and the delegation accepted the offer to work with the Ministry to analyze and extend existing efforts to support Sudanese women against all gender-based violence.

President Bashir and Governor Richardson also agreed that more light needs to be shed on the full situation in Darfur. President Bashir agreed to allow and facilitate travel by journalists from all over the world to Darfur.

The two sides underscored the need to disarm all armed groups, including the Janjaweed, pursuant to the provision of the DPA, and further agreed not to have the National military aircraft painted in white markings normally reserved for international organizations.

President Bashir agreed that government forces would attempt to improve security conditions in all areas of Darfur with special emphasis on El Geneina, and would provide protection to food and other humanitarian convoys. They also agreed that humanitarian aid agencies have greatly assisted the Government and people of Sudan by providing much needed emergency and development aid in Darfur and other parts of Sudan. President Bashir agreed to expedite procedures for entry visas for all humanitarian aid workers as well as goods. He also agreed to terminate the requirement of exit visas for humanitarian aid workers. President Bashir noted with satisfaction the strong statements by the Save Darfur Coalition to rebel commanders condemning attacks by their members on humanitarian aid operations and agreed to initiate an ongoing dialogue with the Save Darfur Coalition aimed at ending the violence in Darfur and on achieving a political solution to the crises.

The two sides agreed to apprise African Union Special Envoy Salim Ahmed Salim and United Nations Special Envoy Jan Eliasson of these developments, so that the African Union and United Nations will facilitate the commanders meeting and launch the political discussion and to maintain regular communication assessing progress on these important initiatives to identify areas of difficulty on which further engagement may be necessary to ensure rapid progress and durable outcomes.

Both sides agreed that an improvement of relations is in the mutual interest of both countries.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


The New Jersey Legislature is considering a bill to remove the word "idiot" from the state constitution. Like New Mexico's, the Jersey constitution prohibits "idiots and insane persons" from voting.

From the CNN story:

(State Senate President Richard) Codey wants to eliminate a section that says "no idiot or insane person should enjoy the right of suffrage" and substitute with a reference to "a person who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting."

Codey, a Democrat who was previously acting governor of New Jersey, said in a statement the term "idiot" is "outdated, vague, offensive to many and may be subject to misinterpretation."

New Mexico's legislature passed a similiar measure a few years back, but when it went to voters in 2002, we rejected it.

Here's what I wrote in Roundhouse Roundup on Nov. 7, 2002:

Bad news for idiots: New Mexico voters balked Tuesday at the proposed constitutional amendment that, among other things, would have removed language from the state constitution that excludes “idiots” and “insane persons” from voting.

No idiots at the polls. This might explain low voter turnout. After all, New Mexico was recently ranked the stupidest state in the union.

Here’s a modest proposal: In addition to idiots, let’s have a constitutional amendment to expand that prohibition to include morons, imbeciles, nitwits, numbskulls, nincompoops and knuckleheads.

Of course, nothing would stop all of the above from seeking elected office.

Monday, January 08, 2007


Former Albuquerque City Councilor is starting a new political talk show, Insight New Mexico, on AM 1350, Albuquerque's Progressive Talk station.

The show will debut 3 p.m. Saturday.

Barbara's got more info HERE.

Plus, the show has its own blog


Sunday, January 7, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays MDT
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Centre for Holy Wars by The New Pornographers
Deadly Eye by The Dwarves
Stumpy's March by Kilimanjaro Yak Attack
It's a Cold Night For Alligators by Roky Erikson & The Aliens
In the Cold, Cold Night by The White Stripes
Detective Instinct by The Fall
Weak Brain, Narrow Mind by Willie Dixon

I Got Ants in My Pants Part 1 by James Brown
Lick It Before You Stick It by Denise LaSalle
Droppin' Out by Paul Butterfield Blues Band
Yesterday Morning by Hazmat Modine
Siki Siki Baba by Kocani Orkestar
Winta by Rachid Taha
Dead Presidents by Little Walter

Buckle Down With Nixon by Oscar Brand
Nixon's Dead Ass by Russell Means
President Nixon, Don't Ration My Gas by Diana Gardiner
Nixon in 96 by Doodoo Wah
Watergate Blues by Tom T. Hall
Bad Moon Rising by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Campaigner by Neil Young
Blue Lake by Robert Mirabal
One Tin Soldier by The Dick Nixons

TTT Gas by The Gourds
Cut the Cards by Chris Whitley & The Bastard Club
Beyond the Horizon by Bob Dylan
Within You, Without You/Tomorrow Never Knows by The Beatles
Long Way Home by Tom Waits
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, January 06, 2007


Friday, January 5, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
The Holygram's Song (Back From the Shadows Again) by The Firesign Theatre
Ringmaster by Ramsay Midwood
The Way of the Fallen by Ray Wylie Hubbard
For the Sake of the Children by Dave Lan
Happy Anniversary by The Bottle Rockets
Wishful Thinkin' by Marty Stuart
Truck Drivin' Cat With Nine Wives by Jim Nesbitt
New Wave Blues by Blaze Foley
Winter Song by Loudon Wainwright III

Pill Bug Blues/Ants on the Melon by The Gourds
Sally, Wally, Hoody by Hasil Adkins
Jack of Diamonds by P.W. Long
Wednesday by Drive-By Truckers
Dan Blocker by Gurf Morlix
Hammer of the Honky Tonk Gods by Bill Kirchen
Girl on the Billboard by Del Reeves

Strange Conversation by Ted Hawkins
I Heard That Lonesome Whistle Blow by Townes Van Zandt
I've Been Down That Road Before by Hank Williams
Lovesick Blues by Emmett Miller
Bye Bye Policeman by Jim Jackson
It Ain't Gonna Rain No Mo' by Gid Tanner & His Skillet Lickers
See God's Ark a Moving by Moving Hall Star Singers
Mama Keep Your Yes Ma'am Clean by Walter Cole
Kiss Me Cindy by J.E. Mainer's Mountaineers

Bible Black Starless Sky by Andy Fairweather Low
June 1945 by Ed Pettersen
The Cowboy and the Lady by John Egenes
Tesla's Hotel Room by The Handsome Family
Til I Get it Right by Solomon Burke
Rosalie by Bob Neuwirth
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

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

Friday, January 05, 2007


The first annual Idolator Jackin' Pop Critics Poll is in -- and (if anyone recalls the old Shake 'n' Bake commercials) I helped!


I don't think anything I voted for cracked the Top 20, but what the heck.


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 5, 2007

Oh no! Not another newspaper story about Borat. That’s so 2006.

Well, it’s probably true that Sacha Baron Cohen’s hilarious movie about the clueless “reporter” from the great nation of Kazakhstan got more than its share of media hype.

But one aspect of the movie that didn’t get as much attention as it deserved was the music. It’s not often I leave a movie theater thinking, “I’ve got to get my hands on the soundtrack CD!” O Brother, Where Art Thou? was one case where this happened. And now there’s the Borat movie, which has a lovely companion CD called Stereophonic Musical Listenings That Have Been Origin in Moving Film Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.

The soundtrack is peppered with short dialogue segments and other bits from the movie.

There’s even the infamous Borat honky-tonk singalong “In My Country There Is Problem (Throw the Jew Down the Well),” which was not in the movie but has become a YouTube hit. (I believe this little performance doesn’t prove that the people in that saloon, or Americans in general, are anti-Semites as much as it proves that if you get Americans drunk enough, and keep the melody simple enough, we’ll sing along with anything.)

But the Borat shtick here is the least interesting part of this album. It’s the music itself. Before any serious, scholarly ethnomusicologist types get themselves in a tizzy, the first thing you have to know about this soundtrack is that just like the character of Borat, there’s little, if any, Kazakhstan in it. Oh, well. We Americans don’t know much about geography.

Instead, the bulk of the music on the CD is from Eastern Europe. It’s a good sampling of Gypsy music, Balkan brass bands, and a smattering of Eastern-bloc Euro-cheese. As Borat might say, “It don’t mean a thing unless it’s got that ‘Bing bang, bing bang bing.’”

The CD features a couple of brass bands I’d already checked out on Calabash Music: Macedonia’s Kocani Orkestar (pictured below right) and Fanfare Ciocarlia, a Gypsy group from eastern Romania that does a splendid (and nearly unrecognizable) cover of Steppenwolf’s “Born to Be Wild.” (Listening to the CD the first time in my car, I didn’t realize what this song was until the chorus.)

When watching the movie, I perked up when Kocani’s joyful, infectious song “Siki, Siki Baba” played. I recognized it from the concert by the band Beirut at the College of Santa Fe a few weeks before.

There are a couple of fun remix experiments. Mahala Rai Banda’s brassy “Mahalageasca” gets a jacked-up “Bucovina Dub” treatment by German DJ Shantel and “Eu Vin Acasa Cu Drag” — which longtime Borat fans know as the bingy-bangy theme to his segment on Da Ali G Show — gets a hip-hoppy version by Stefan de la Barbulesti. And some of the guiltiest pleasures are the synthy faux-Balkan sleaze from O.M.F.O. (Our Man From Odessa), who provides a couple of tasty if tacky tunes on the album.

The Borat soundtrack also features the great Macedonian singer — and Nobel Peace Prize nominee — Esma Redzepova. She’s reportedly planning to sue the film producers for using her “Chaje Shukarije,” which begins the soundtrack CD with a rousing shout. Take a number, Esma. The Borat litigation line is getting long.

And seriously, a lawsuit would be extremely shortsighted. This soundtrack provides excellent exposure for the wonderful music from the region — even if that region isn’t where it’s supposed to be.

So you want Kazakh music ...

*The Best of Urker: 10 Years Anniversary. No, this isn’t music by that weird little kid with the big glasses who had a sitcom back in the early ’90s. This is one of Kazakhstan’s most popular bands. If this is the best the country has to offer, I can see why the Borat crew decided to go with the Balkan stuff instead.

There are a few tracks here that are more than listenable. But most of it is earnestly overproduced pop that sounds like a bad Central Asian version of ABBA. The western world must have dumped all its toxic ’80s synths in this poor Third World Nation.

Surprisingly, one of the better tracks here is a patriotic number called “Moy Kazakhstan.” It’s got a cool electric-guitar riff and loud rhythm track. I don’t know what the words mean, but it would sound great in a set with Borat’s fake Kazakh national anthem.

You can listen for yourself HERE.

*Lon Gisland
by Beirut and The Way the Wind Blows by A Hawk and a Hacksaw. Here’s a couple of good examples of domestic versions of the Balkan sound. And both of these bands have ties to this Enchanted Land.

Beirut is led by former Santa Fe kid Zach Condon. H&H is based in Albuquerque. Lon Gisland, a five-song EP, is the follow-up to Gulag Orkestar, Beirut’s astonishing debut last year. There’s even a new version of “Scenic World” from Gulag. Like the previous effort, the EP is full of trumpets, accordions, old country melodies and Condon’s melancholic vocals. “Elephant Gun,” with its ukulele intro, is my favorite track here, but the best title is “My Family’s Role in the World Revolution.”
H&H, which opened for Beirut in Santa Fe last year, is full of sweet Roma and klezmer soul. The group consists of Jeremy Barnes (formerly of Neutral Milk Hotel) on percussion (including a jingle-bells hat) and accordion and Heather Trost on violin.

They are fortified on this record by horns and other instruments on some songs (played by members of Fanfare Ciocarlia). All are irresistible. My favorites are “Fernando’s Giampari,” which sounds like the best circus band you’ve ever heard, and “God Bless the Ottoman Empire,” which begins with an oud solo followed by menacing drums and what sounds like a clarinet or alto sax.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


Here's from the latest press release from our globe-trotting gov.:

SANTA FE, NM – Governor Bill Richardson on Saturday will travel to
Khartoum, Sudan to meet with Sudanese officials to urge the country to fully accept the deployment of a hybrid United Nations peacekeeping force in the war-torn Darfur region. The Governor is making the trip at the request of the Save Darfur Coalition, which sent a letter to Governor Richardson urging him to make the trip. The Coalition believes Governor Richardson’s extensive diplomatic
skills and experience dealing with the Sudanese can help convince them to follow-through on their preliminary acceptance of a joint United Nations-African Union peacekeeping force, consistent with the UN mandate. The Governor will also push for a possible cease-fire in the Darfur region.

“This is a crisis of incredible proportions- millions of lives in the Darfur region are at risk from war, disease, and malnutrition. The people of the region are desperately looking for help from the international community, especially the United States,” said (Richardson). “The US has an opportunity to use leadership and diplomacy to help, and if I can play even a small part in that effort I am ready to do it. This is a bi-partisan, humanitarian effort by both Democrats and Republicans to help find a resolution to this ongoing tragedy.”

While in Sudan, Governor Richardson will also travel to the Darfur
region to make a personal assessment and will meet with humanitarian groups.

Governor Richardson has coordinated his trip with Andrew Natsios,
Special Envoy to Sudan for the US Department of State. The Save Darfur Coalition is paying for the trip.

In September of 2006 Governor Richardson traveled to Sudan and secured the release of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and New Mexico native Paul Salopek and two colleagues on humanitarian grounds. Salopek and two Chadian citizens, Suleiman Abakar Moussa, Salopeks’s interpreter, and his driver, Abdulraham Anu had entered Sudan without visas and were arrested and charged with espionage, passing information illegally, and writing “false news”.

The Governor has a long-term relationship with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir dating back to 1996. In December of that year then-Congressman Richardson successfully negotiated the release of another New Mexican, Albuquerque pilot John Early, and two Red Cross workers. The three had been held hostage for 38 days by Sudanese rebels. In that situation, President al-Bashir supported Congressman Richardson’s efforts.


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
January 4, 2007

New Mexico isn’t the only state that’s dealing with ethics reform.

In New York, new Gov. Eliot Spitzer announced in his inaugural address this week that he’s taking action to clean up his state’s executive branch by signing an executive order mandating new rules.

But while New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson is backing a strong ethics and campaign finance package in the next legislative session, don’t expect him to follow Spitzer’s example of imposing ethics rules by executive order, a spokesman said Wednesday.

Among Spitzer’s new rules for New York: State workers are not allowed to accept gifts of more than nominal value; former state employees are barred from lobbying their former agency for two years; state workers cannot donate money to the campaigns of the governor or lieutenant governor or to affiliated political action committees; directors of state agencies and other high-ranking state officials must resign their posts before running for state or federal public office; state officials are forbidden from appearing in advertisements paid for by state entities.

That last one reportedly was a frequent practice of Spitzer’s predecessor, George Pataki, who some say is running for president.

Appearing in “public service” announcementsalso is popular among New Mexico politicians as well. Richardson, Land Commissioner Pat Lyons, former Attorney General Patricia Madrid and former Secretary of State Rebecca Vigil-Giron have all spent public money to get their faces on TV via “educational” spots.

At least one of those is rumored to be running for president.

Matt Brix, executive director of New Mexico Common Cause, a good-government advocacy group, likes what Spitzer did.

“It’s not incredible radical,” Brix said Wednesday. “Basically what he’s saying is, ‘I’m applying these rules to myself voluntarily and asking the (New York) legislature to codify these reforms into law for everyone.”

Brix said he’d like to see Richardson follow suit.

“Any step the governor would want to take, I’d welcome that immediately. The stronger he’s willing to come out on the issue, the more excited we are.”

The word from Camelot: Richardson and Spitzer are friends. Spitzer was in Santa Fe for a fundraiser at the Gerald Peters Gallery back in 2005 and stopped by Richardson’s office. “Wow! Look at this table. Where does King Arthur sit?” he said when he saw the huge marble monstrosity in Richardson’s Cabinet Room.

But that friendship doesn’t mean he’s going to follow Spitzer’s example and go the executive order route.

“Gov. Richardson is committed to enacting a comprehensive ethics reform package during the upcoming legislative session,” spokesman Jon Goldstein said in an e-mail Wednesday. “This includes the establishment of an independent ethics commission, limitations on gifts and campaign contributions and public financing for judicial candidates — all of which will require legislation to enact.

“In order to have the most impact, this reform must be comprehensively implemented across state government,” Goldstein said. “The governor, therefore, believes that a legislative solution is the best approach to this issue at this time.”

And seriously, can anyone imagine Richardson voluntarily pulling the plug on his “You drink, you drive, you lose” commercials?

Pulling the rip cord?: While almost everyone else seems to think Richardson’s entry into the presidential sweepstakes is inevitable, political commentator Chuck Todd of The National Journal in his column Wednesday said some believe he’ll be the next candidate to drop out.

Still, Todd ranked Richardson as the fifth most likely candidate to get the Democratic nomination.

Richardson, according to Todd, is behind U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, U.S. Sen. Barak Obama of Illinois, former U.S. Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina and former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack.


Here’s Todd’s entry on Richardson:
“Among some Democratic strategists who are not yet committed to a
candidate, there’s chatter that the next candidate to follow Warner’s and Bayh’s stares into the ’08 abyss and pull the ripcord is New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. At the end of the day, these folks claim, he’s a pragmatist. His résumé is gold, but the novelty factor (he’d be the first Hispanic) is getting eclipsed by Clinton and Obama. He does seem intent on giving this a try. Let’s see what the money reports show in the spring.”

Todd also says because of the front-loading of the ’08 primary/caucus schedule, “we should know who the two major-party nominees are by Feb. 5, 2008.” That happens to be the date of presidential caucuses in New Mexico and other Western states.

A New Year’s gift to reporters: Talk about a honeymoon with the press. New Attorney General Gary King surely won “Right ons!” in newsrooms across the state Tuesday when the first news release out of his office was an announcement about a workshop for local government employees and public board members on the Open Meetings Act and the Inspection of Public Records Act.

It was a nice symbolic move on King’s part — and let’s hope it will be well-attended and its lessons taken to heart by the gatekeepers of public information.

The only thing that would have been better would have been making it mandatory for all state and local officials involved in record keeping.

The workshop is scheduled 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday at the State Personnel Building, Leo Griego Auditorium, 2600 Cerrillos Road in Santa Fe. Staff lawyers from the AG’s Civil Division and representatives of the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government will conduct the workshop.


Sunday, July 21, 2024 KSFR, Santa Fe, NM, 101.1 FM  Webcasting! 10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time Host: Steve Terrel...