Monday, March 30, 2020

Cool, New Video From Actor/Rapper Riz Ahmed: "The Breakup (Shikwa)": Is he breaking up with a lover? Or is Britain breaking up with her immigrant children?



I first noticed Riz in HBO's 2016 The Night Of, where he was masterful in the lead role as South Asian in New York accused of a gruesome murder.

He's also a rapper and was in SwetShop Boys with Heems of Das Racist. Here's some videos I shot at their first official show.


Here's Cool, New Video: Riz Ahmed's "The Long Goodbye" Pictures Brutal Fascist Round-Up of British Muslims in Dystopian Near-Future.

And a discussion with Hasan Minhaj and Guz Khan:

Monday, March 23, 2020

Cool, New Song by Car Seat Headrest: "Martin" (Video); New Album "Making A Door Less Open" Out May 1st on Matador


Cool, New Song by Mark Lanegan: "Bleed All Over" (Audio)




Mark Lanegan is one of our favorite singer/songwriters. He once had a Lead Belly cover band with a young Kurt Cobain and has been making great music ever since.

"Bleed All Over" is the first single from his forthcoming album Straight Songs Of Sorrow, to be released May 8, 2020 on Heavenly Recordings. The album (feat Afghan Whigs' Fred Dulli and others) will be accompanied by a new book by Lanegan, a memoir titled Sing Backwards And Weep, which will be published April 28, 2020.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

ThisSmallPlanet Corona Playlist 1: Women Folk Who Rock

                                                     Katie Crutchfield performs as Waxahatchee. Photo: NME

ALBUMS

Waxahatchee Saint Cloud. Great New Album! from Katie Crutchfield (Waxahatchee).

Lana Del Rey NFR!: Norman Fucking Rockwell. An instant classic. Follow-up due this year.



Soccer Mommy Color Theory is a great follow-up from Soccer Mommy's Sophia Allison to last year's Her Greatest Hits

Anna Calvi Hunted (EP). Check out Courtney Barnett on "Don't Beat The Girl Out Of My Boy"

Frances Quinlan Likewise. Really good album, her first using her own name. She had recorded previously as Hop Along.




SINGLES

Billie Eilish "No Time To Die" - the new James Bond theme.

Phoebe Bridgers "Garden Song". Can't wait for her second album to come out. Really liked her 2017 debut Stranger In The Alps and her Better Oblivion Social Community Center  (2019) album with Conor Oberst.

Sharon Van Etten has two new singles: "Beaten Down" & "Starring At A Mountain" (from the soundtrack of Never Rarely Sometimes Always.) She also did a stunning version of her hit "Seventeen" with Norah Jones on the Stephen Colbert show:



ARCHIVAL

To round out the playlist, I included a (new to me) concert album of Billie Holliday: Live at Monterrey 1958, a generous selection of some of Aretha Franklin's greatest hits, a couple songs from Laura Nyro, Carole King, & Stevie Nicks, Phoebe Snow doing Memphis Minnie's "In My Girlish Days", and Nina Simone's "How It Feels To Be Free" (live at Montreux 1976).




LIVE: Carla Olson (Textones, Gene Clark, Mick Taylor)


ThisSmallPlanet Video: Carla Olson, John York & Friends Retrospective Turns Into A Celebration of The Byrds & Gene Clark at McCabe's


UPDATE: M.I.A. releases new song on Instagram:



Monday, March 9, 2020

Bob Dylan Summer 2020 Tour

Bob Dylan Summer 2020 Tour:
04-01 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-02 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-04 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-05 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-06 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-08 Osaka, Japan - Zepp Namba
04-09 Osaka, Japan - Zepp Namba
04-10 Osaka, Japan - Zepp Namba
04-14 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp Tokyo
04-15 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp Tokyo
04-17 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-19 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-20 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
04-21 Tokyo, Japan - Zepp DiverCity
06-04 Bend, OR - Les Schwab Amphitheatre
06-06 Ridgefield, WA - Sunlight Supply Amphitheater
06-07 Auburn, WA - White River Amphitheatre
06-09 Eugene, OR - Matthew Knight Arena
06-12 Stateline, NV - Harveys Outdoor Amphitheatre
06-13 Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre
06-14 Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre
06-17 San Diego, CA - Pechanga Arena
06-18 Los Angeles, CA - Hollywood Bowl
06-20 Las Vegas, NV - Mandalay Bay Events Center
06-21 Glendale, AZ - Gila River Arena
06-23 Albuquerque, NM - Tingley Arena
06-24 Amarillo, TX - Amarillo Civic Center
06-26 Irving, TX - The Pavilion @ Toyota Music Factory
06-27 Little Rock, AR - Simmons Bank Arena
06-28 Southaven, MS - BankPlus Amphitheatre @ Snowden Grove
06-30 Brandon, MS - Brandon Amphitheatre
07-02 Nashville, TN - Bridgestone Arena
07-03 Alpharetta, GA - Ameris Bank Amphitheatre
07-05 Virginia Beach, VA - Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheatre
07-07 Wilkes-Barre, PA - Mohegan Sun Arena
07-08 Forest Hills, NY - Forest Hills Stadium
07-09 Saratoga Springs, NY - Saratoga Performing Arts Center
07-11 Essex Junction, VT - Champlain Valley Exposition
07-12 Bethel Woods, NY - Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

Friday, March 6, 2020

Spring 2020: Books & Music: Cool, New Stuff To Read & Listen To

Cometbus Fred Neil Cream Stephen Malkmus Thundercat Right Away, Great Captain! Anna Calvi Steve Harley Greg Dulli Soccer Mommy Frances Quinlan Khruangbin 
Leon Bridges Bonnie "Prince" Billy The Strokes Billie Eilish The Howling Hex 
The Dream Syndicate Phoebe Bridgers Gorillaz Car Seat Headrest Kevin Morby

STUFF TO READ:



Cometbus #59 Aaron Cometbus has been publishing Cometbus since the early 1980s. I met him around 1986 at a punk show at the New Method Warehouse in Emeryville where he was selling the latest issue of his zine. I've tried to keep track of his excellent writing ever since, and was pleased to find a new issue is now available. You can get a copy by sending $5 and a SASE to Cometbus, PO Box 1318, Cooper Station, New York, NY. 10276... or look for it at cool bookstores and record stores that carry zines. 

This issue is called "post-mortem", which made me think of our dearly (recently) departed friend Murray Bowles... RIP... Really Incredible Photos! Here's a picture Murray took of Ron Findlay and Michael Donnelly from Test Subjects at New Method in 1986:





That's The Bag I'm In: The Life, Music and Mystery of Fred Neil by Peter Lee Neff. Fascinating story of Fred Neil (seen in the video below singing his classic "The Dolphins" with Joni Mitchell), best known for writing Midnight Cowboy's theme "Everybody's Talkin'", covered by Harry Nilsson, "The Dolphins", covered by Tim Buckley, and "The Other Side of This Life", covered by The Jefferson Airplane. He also wrote songs for Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison, played guitar on Bobby Darin's "Dream Lover", and influenced a whole generation of guitarists and singer/songwriters, such as John Sebastian and Stephen Stills. He's not as well known as he should be, and this book explains some of the reasons why: his drug problems and an utter disgust for the "star-maker machinery". He might not have that many fans these days, but the ones he has are extremely devoted and new fans continue to discover his work with every passing season, and will for some time to come.




                           STUFF TO LISTEN TO:

ALBUMS:

Cream - Goodbye Tour - Live 1968 (4 CD). Live shows from Oakland, L.A., San Diego, and London in 1968 on Cream's farewell tour.


Stephen Malkmus Traditional Techniques. Malkmus will reportedly be doing some Pavement reunion shows later this year. Meanwhile he's released this excellent indie folk album featuring acoustic instruments and a Middle Eastern lilt.

Thundercat It Is What It Is. Is it jazz? Funk? Soul? I'm not sure. It's not the kind of music I listen to much. But I like it.

Right Away, Great Captain! I Am Not Me (Live in Brooklyn). Andy Hull from Manchester Orchestra and Bad Books shines on these songs.

Anna Calvi Hunted (EP). I especially liked "Don't Beat The Girl Out of My Guy" feat Courtney Barnett

Steve Harley Uncovered. The Cockney Rebel frontman (they were my first rock concert ever, opening for The Kinks) offers an album of covers feat "I've Just Seen A Face" and "When I Paint My Masterpiece". Well-worth checking out.


Greg Dulli Random Desire. Afghan Whigs frontman goes solo on this great new album. Can't wait to hear his take on Dylan's "Girl From The North Country" with pal Mark Lanegan for a Record Store Day exclusive 7".


Soccer Mommy Color Theory. She's one of our best new stars and she beats the sophomore slump with this new album.


Frances Quinlan Likewise. Hadn't heard her before. Liked this collection very much.


Khruangbin & Leon Bridges Texas Sun (EP). Laid back grooves.




SINGLES:

Bonnie "Prince" Billy "New Memory Box" (Jay Dawg 
mix). Very different from Billy's usual sound and very different from the original version on the new (great) album I Made A Place.

The Strokes 
"Bad Decisions" & "At The Door". If the first two singles  are any indication, the new Strokes album The New Abnormal is going to be really good; a return to form.

Billie Eilish  "No Time To Die" is the perfect song for the Coronavirus Era... would also make a great James Bond theme...


The Howling Hex "Lies". Hard rocker that rocks.

The Dream Syndicate "The Regulator". An amazing 20-minute jam feat The Long Ryders' Stephen McCarthy on electric sitar. Stephen was a special guest recently of Carla Olson & John York at McCabe's in Santa Monica, where they performed wonderful versions of several Byrds & Gene Clark classics. You can see the videos from the show here: ThisSmallPlanet Video: Carla Olson, John York & Friends Retrospective Turns Into A Celebration of The Byrds & Gene Clark at McCabe's

Phoebe Bridgers "Garden Song", Cool, new song. No sophomore slump for this one either...

Gorillaz "Momentary Bliss" & "Desole" the first two singles feature cool, World music sounds and guest vocalists. Album should be good.

Car Seat Headrest "Can't Cool Me Down". Cool, new song.

Kevin Morby "Gift Horse". Talented singer/songwriter's latest.

Monday, March 2, 2020

Wendy's, Fearing Boycott, Lies Online About Owner Peltz's Pro-Trump Ties


Nelson Peltz, Owner of Wendy's




Farmworkers with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, students, and faith and community leaders held a five-day fast in front of hedge fund billionaire Nelson Peltz's offices to demand that Wendy's join the Fair Food Program and help end sexual violence in the fields. Peltz is Wendy's board chairman and largest shareholder.

Wendy's board chairman and larger shareholder hosted a giantic fundraiser for Trump recently, which led activists online to call to #BoycottWendys since they support Trump.

We refuse to spend money in a place that donates to Trump.

Other activists had already called for a boycott against Wendy's policies.

Wendy's responded to me directly online on Twitter and lied about their support for Trump:



The response occurred in real time from an official Wendy's account. They lied when they said this was "fake news" spread by a competitor. They told me to "do you research". I did and found out that the owner of Wendy's, Nelson Peltz, had just hosted an enormous fundraiser for Trump. He's given for years to right-wing causes. 

I used to like Wendy's, but I will never go there again.

Please join me in Boycotting Wendy's.

#BoycottWendys

For More Information:



Sunday, March 1, 2020

Stephen Malkmus Touring in Support of New Solo Album



New Stephen Malkmus album Traditional Techniques out on Matador on March 6, 2020; tour starts March 31.

From Stephen Malkmus on Instagram:



                                                          "Shadowbanned"




"Xian Man"




ThisSmallPlanet.com Videos of Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks:

                 "Harness Your Hopes", "Stairway", "Beginning To See The Light"



"Mr. Soul"


"Stereo"


"Real Emotional Trash"


"Summer Babe" (with Spiral Stairs)


Thursday, February 27, 2020

Cool, New Song from Pavement's Stephen Malkmus: "Shadowbanned" (Video); New Indie Folk Solo Album Out Next Week...



From the new indie folk solo album Traditional Techniques by Stephen Malkmus, out March 6, 2020. 

Stream this track and pre-order now at: https://stephenmalkmus.ffm.to/traditionaltechniques

Malkmus' original band Pavement is rumored to have a reunion tour in the works.

That would be great! It was so much fun last time!

ThisSmallPlanet Videos of Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks:

1. Harness Your Hopes/Stairway to Heaven/Beginning to See The Light
2. Mr. Soul
3. Stereo
4. Summer Babe (w/Spiral Stairs)



CDC Official Paul Horner Says Risk of Coronavirus Contamination from Made in China MAGA Hats Is "Probably Minimal"



(Atlanta) CDC official Paul Horner said today that the risk of Corona Virus contamination from MAGA merchandise that was made in China in the affected region was "probably minimal".

"Just to be safe", he added, many Trump fans were reluctantly throwing away or burning their potentially tainted MAGA hats and other pro-Trump merchandise to avoid possible contamination.


(Warning! May contain parodic and/or satiric materials! May not be available in your area!)

Saturday, February 22, 2020

ThisSmallPlanet Video: Carla Olson, John York & Friends Retrospective Turns Into A Celebration of The Byrds & Gene Clark at McCabe's

The evening was billed as "Carla Olson & Friends", but since John York was one of the friends, it quickly turned into a celebration of The Byrds and especially the band's co-founder, Gene Clark.

The crowd loved it.

Of course, The Byrds were in many ways the ultimate L.A. band, certainly in the "Riot on Sunset Strip" era, and it was interesting to contemplate how many of the seniors in the crowd at McCabe's last night had seen the original Byrds feat. Gene Clark, Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, Chris Hillman, and Michael Clarke on The Strip back in the day.

Carla Olson and many of her Texas/L.A. country rock compatriots in the 1980s befriended Gene Clark, who lived many of his later years in L.A. and died here in 1991.

Carla recorded a classic album with Gene in 1987, So Rebellious A Lover, which some consider the first "Americana" album.

John York, besides playing in The Byrds, also worked extensively with Gene Clark. (He was the "Y" in CRY, feat. Gene Clark, the late Pat Robinson, and John York. A fellow named Nicky Hopkins contributed keyboards.)

Stephen McCarthy of The Long Ryders added excellent vocals, guitar, and pedal steel.

Carla, John, Rob Waller, and Johnny Indovina impressed us all with their voices and spirits. 

Paul Marshall (bass, backing vocals) and Ben Lecourt (drums) added their magic as well to a magical night.

ThisSmallPlanet Video: Carla Olson, John York, Stephen McCarthy, Rob Waller, and Johnny Indovina live at McCabe's, Santa Monica, California, February 21, 2020.

1. She Don't Care About Time
2. Del Gato (Intro)
3. Del Gato
4. Gypsy Rider (feat. Rob Waller)
5. I'll Feel A Whole Lot Better
6. Mr. Tambourine Man
7. Eight Miles High
8. Turn! Turn! Turn!



It was so nice to hear The Byrds especially with these folks, especially now.

The sentiments expressed by the songs, as delivered by these talented artists, are sentiments that are sorely missed today. 

There has been so much fear, hate, and despair. 

Perhaps these songs can resonate and make people remember what it was like to trust, love, and hope. 

May it be so...


Friday, January 31, 2020