Friday, September 14, 2007

I am so proud of these personages -- I am touching better than in long time

So there we have the Adrian Belew Power Trio doing sound check in Mexico...well, the trio plus their amazing sound engineer Biff Blumfumgagnge...and really, I guess I don't have to say much more, other than it makes my soul rise to see how this band interacts both on and off the fact, it makes me so incredibly happy I think I'll post another photo of Mr. Eric Slick:

Life is pretty crazy right now -- in fact, I'm typing this poolside from the Beverly Hills Hotel while I wait for a limo to pick me up for a meeting...

Heh. Just kidding.

Or am I?

Oh well, enough about me. Here's a really great review coming out of the Mexico mini-tour, but the translation from Spanish to English is pretty funny so hopefully someone who speaks Spanish out there will click on this link and translate it for me properly in the comments section...but for now, here's the botched translation from Babblefish:

""This it is the best applause than we have received not to touch", joked the artist Adrian Belew conquers with impetus the scene of the Metropólitan theater

"The Work of Music is Hacerte to Feel Better"; Mission Fulfilled in the Concert

By: Tania Molina Ramirez

Hardly he had appeared in the scene, when the public excited one already was standing, receiving to Adrian Belew with a great ovación.

"This it is the best applause than we have received not to touch", he joked, accompanied of its bear and his drummer; Julie and Eric Slick, respectivemente, in the scene of the Metropólitan theater, in the second night of the Contemporary cycle live, in his 5ª edition.

It began to everything what gave, with a power impetus that followed the concert throughout, with little moments of calm.

Energy of combined young blood with the long experience of the virtuous estadunidense guitarist, that has accompanied to great personalities of the rock, from Frank Zappa to Nine Inch Nails, happening through David Bowie and The Talking Heads, but that mainly it is known being the guitarist of the legendary King Crimson, from years 80.

In this occasion Trio, integrated by the Slick brothers came with its project Adrian Belew, of 20 (Eric) and 21 years (Julie), that "renergetizaron my music. They are the best young musicians than I have listened in my life. Its way to touch is so expert, but simultaneously it has a so high level of energy that really causes that my music sounds new... and, of step, something sticks me to me. I am touching better than in long time ", it said in interview with the Day a pair of days before the Mexican ground presentations (Guadalajara, city of Mexico and Monterrey).

"I am so proud of these personages", summarized. And note. During the concert it does not let pass opportunity to return to present/display them to the public. And, sure for Eric and Julie also it is a privilege, by the experience. These young people, who live in Filadelfia, were students of Paul Green School of Rock when Belew knew them. They have been a year touching together, in Japan, Europe and the United States.

During the relatively short concert (like one hour and quarter), the trio interpreted pieces of King Crimson and the own project of Belew, with a powerful sound (and to very high volume), per moments near heavy metal.

The not very nourished public one (it filled more of first half of the armchairs in front of to the scene) was compensated with the enthusiasm of the present following faithfuls. During several occasions they were put of foot.

It is the first time that the masterful guitarist, who produced a pair of discs of Caifanes and Santa Sabina, made a tour with his own project in Mexico.

Belew, that also has touched with Cyndi Lauper, Laurie Anderson, Crash Dummies Test and Paul Simon, counted what to his to seem, it distinguishes it of other guitarists: "I have a quite ample vocabulary, I can emulate sounds, my ideas fit in very different musical styles. I enjoy discovering and experimenting sounds and causing that the guitar makes things that assumes that it would not have to do (like animal sounds)".

Ever since he was young "had good ear. To the five years, it could emulate singers of the radius. Also it could imitate personages of the cartoons. For some reason, I can discern of what the sounds are done."

When it explores new sounds do mainly through new equipment: "Right now I am doing much looping". And yes, in the concert he was present. "It is a way to cause that it sounds as if there was more than three people. The new material that I am writing is based on much looping."

Adrian Belew concluded the interview saying: "the work of music not only is to entertain, but hacerte to feel better with the life. When I do not feel well, just I put something of music and in a ratito I am grooving and feeling to me better, so, perhaps, that is the intention of the world of music ".

Fulfilled mission, judging by the faces of its followers leaving the Metropólitan Theater."

Pretty cool, huh.

Okay...I have to fly -- my fresh avocado/jack cheese omelet has arrived, along with fresh squeezed orange juice and champagne. I could get very used to this.

Oh, I'm kidding.

But seriously, I am going to be off-line for a while for vacation, etc. though I do hope to find an internet cafe/library and report back here from time to time over the next couple of weeks, and I will probably do one last long-winded blogpost tomorrow...unless I have something exciting to report later today/tonight.

You just never know.


Monday, September 10, 2007

The "Freaking A!" Post -- Another Bite of the Apple-- advance orders being taken for the trade paperback -- and "Adrian Belew: The Genius of Rock!"

September 11, 2007

ETA (or, edited to add har har): I put up a short clip of Adrian, Julie and Eric performing in front of 2,000 people in Mexico last night on my Publishers Marketplace Page - go check it out!

Will ship in 2-3 Weeks - Price Special for 1st Month Release (orig, $11)

Trade Paperpack

Yay! The trade paperback of Another Bite of the Apple is available for pre-order at a special promotional rate - for further details click here!

I'm very excited about this. And just think -- you can order and read it well before it appears on the big screen! (Or cable television ha ha -- whatever -- it's all good.)

For those of you who don't know, Another Bite of the Apple is the sequel to Three Days in New York City, and if you click the above "for further details click here" link, there's an excerpt.

And oh my god, should I be whooping it up that Media Predict has an announcement on the front page of their website regarding the selection of the five finalists in Simon Schuster Project Publish next week...and that my book is featured on said front page along with four others? Coincidence or are they just cruelly playing with my emotions? Ha!

"We’re one week away from the first cut in Project Publish. Right now, 50 contestants are competing to win a book deal with Touchstone Books of Simon & Schuster. By next Tuesday, there will be five..."

Arghh...I will be on vacation next Tuesday and without the internet unless I ride my bike ninety seven miles (slight exaggeration) to the only library on the island. Oh well. I can use the know there's no way I'm missing that announcement.

So the Adrian Belew Power Trio tour continues in Mexico - and this photo of said trio is off of Ade's newly revamped website. It's courtesy of Vance Cox, and I'll be posting more of Vance's fabulous photos in the future for sure - they are awesome.

Here's the poster for the Mexican shows - pretty cool, huh.

And the most wonderful interview appears in the September edition of The Village Idiot:

Adrian Belew: The Genius of Rock
By Kristine Sexton

"What drives you to keep pushing the sonic envelope?

My love of sounds. A new sound nearly always turns into a new piece of music which is what fuels everything I do. I'm not a natural at technology and much of it escapes me but I usually can find a way to make something interesting occur. After I have that "interesting sound" as a starting point I can begin to use the accumulated knowledge of my craft: writing and recording.

I had no idea that you co-wrote Genius of Love with the Tom Tom Club. How did that song come about?

Chris Franz and Tina Weymouth had a place in the Bahamas right next door to compass point studio (where I did my first record called Lone Rhino).

There are 2 speeds in the Bahamas: slow and stop. So we slowly built some songs in their apartment and then slowly went down to the studio, and slowly recorded them.

It was great fun and what a surprise for it to be such a hit!

What is your current guitar setup?

Two Johnson Millenium 150 amps, two line 6 Vetta II amps, one Korg ms-2000 keyboard, one Roland gr-30 guitar synth, a Keeley compressor, a Digitech whammy pedal, a Digitech Hendrix pedal, a Boomerang looper, one Eventide 8000, and a small monitor system to hear the loops and the keyboard. Phew...I'm tired just writing about it!

I play two Adrian Belew signature model parker fly guitars. One at a time.

How did the power trio come about?

Paul Green invited me to his School of Rock in Philadelphia and introduced me to his two favorite alumni Eric and Julie Slick. He said they were the best players his school ever had and I believe it. We played one song together and that was all it took.

You have played with so many amazing people, who are you favorites to work with?

Eric and Julie Slick, and Robert Fripp.

What major differences have you seen in the music from when you first started until now?

Nearly all of it has changed but I've worked through the "jadedness"that comes with having seen it all turn inside out and returned to the joyous enthusiasm I had when I started as a teenager. The business does not dictate the creativity, quite the opposite. Right now record labels are crumbling, the internet is flourishing but there's no money in it, radio plays little or no part in my music's life, so what do you do? The one thing that has remained constant is live performance. You still have to pay to see me play. They can't steal that!

What is the strangest gig you've ever played?

They all feel strange to me. I'm not an entertainer, I'm a recording artist. So it takes a certain mindset to do what I do in front of an audience. The hardest part is letting yourself go so that something magical can happen. But I experience that "transcendence" more than ever now with the power trio.

What are you listening to nowadays?

The sound of my fingers clacking on the iMac.

Do you have any pre-show rituals?

The Power Trio has a put-one-hand-each in an imaginary volcano, make a bunch of bizarre noises, and work up enough steam to blow the top off-kind of thing. (It) seems to work."

Oh, I'll say it works! And ahem. Out of all of the musicians with whom Adrian has performed/produced, other than Robert Fripp, Julie and Eric are his favorites? I had the chills reading that. I still have them, in fact. It's hard for me to even type this right now - my eyes are filled with tears.

So I haven't had a chance to really talk with Julie and Eric since they arrived in Mexico, but I did instant message with them for a bit and learned the following:

Adrian is a celebrity there and is asked for autographs wherever he goes, even on the plane -- they are flying from city to city in Mexico for each of the three shows and are on a very tight schedule.

Julie and Eric had one of the best meals of their lives at a restaurant called Il Latino...for appetizers Julie had shrimp and salmon ceviche followed by crab with chipotle aioli over tortillas smeared with guacamole; Eric had pan seared lightly breaded brie with a long piece of toast with a tomato coulis; Julie's entree was dorado with a mild paprika sauce and a salad with fresh mango, papaya and cucumber; Eric's entree was huge, grilled portabella mushrooms with asparagus. For dessert, they had a vanilla ice cream ball with hot fudge almond coconut crunchies.

Ha ha - they have their priorities straight -- I get the food news first.

I spoke to them online before their first show and that's the last I've heard from them so I have no idea how the concerts went...I guess no internet connection where they are in Mexico City but I am hoping to hear from today in Monterrey. If not, they are due back home tomorrow evening and I'm sure I'll have much to report after that, along with some fun backstage and touristy photos - Julie told me they took some amazing shots so far.

So that's it for now I think, but since this is me we are dealing with, you never know.


Friday, September 07, 2007

Sweet Dreams Are Made of This...Who am I to Disagree?

Okay, yeah, that's a pic of me screaming which I know I've posted before but in light of certain circumstances, I thought it would be appropriate to post it again today, even though what I'm about to say is hardly anywhere near close to a done deal and I am certainly grounded and realistic enough to know that by this time next week, I could be right back at square one.

But let me tell you about what happened anyway because it is just far too cool to keep to myself, and in the event things don't pan out, as I laughingly wrote to a friend yesterday, "Oh well, at least I'll always have September 6, 2007."

To sum it up, yesterday I corresponded/spoke on the phone with (1) a mega literary agent; (2) an LA film producer; (3) an uber...and I mean uber...west coast film agent, who, when I found out that she was involved and went to her website, almost sent me to the emergency room...I wasn't sure if I was having a stroke or a major coronary when I saw the luminaries she represented and the deals she'd made.

My conversations with all three included optioning film/television rights for Three Days in New York City and Another Bite of the Apple, foreign rights for both, and my new book, Daddy Left Me Alone with God.

By the end of the afternoon, I was clutching the edge of my desk, alternating between whooping and feeling nauseous.

But like I said, this is a very tough business and I am only too aware that this is a tiny baby step...though for once I am not paranoid about how I handled things...I spoke in coherent sentences, do not recall saying anything that would cause me to cringe for days afterward (though naturally that might change...I'm liable to remember something any second which will send me flying upstairs under the covers in the fetal position for the next five years)...and well, thanks to all of the wonderful people at Backspace Writers Forum, especially Karen Dionne, Tish Cohen, Lauren Baratz Logsted (to whom I would probably owe my first born child if she wasn't already 21 years old), and my incredible pals from Zoetrope Studios, Steve Augarde, who just wrapped up his brilliant "Various" trilogy and the lovely, wise, and ultra-talented Ellen Meister, whose paperback edition of Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA is now in Target stores as one of their Emerging Authors BREAKOUT selections. Yikes...I forgot Susan Henderson at LitPark, the person responsible for introducing to me to most of these writers via her extraordinary website.

Oh god, look at me thanking people like I've won the Academy Award. Have I mentioned what a dork I am? But it's true...the above list of writers are just incredible friends/people and I wanted to give them a shout out because they are also incredible authors and I cannot encourage you enough to buy/read their amazing books. And they all helped with/talked me through the events of yesterday -- let's just say that without them, I probably would be a complete basket case by now.

Alrighty then, that's enough about me. As I was told yesterday, "these things take time and it's in your best interest to be patient, Robin." So...err...stay tuned.

In other news, the Adrian Belew Power Trio are currently getting ready to board a plane for Mexico, where they will perform September 8, 9, and 10 as follows:

September 8 Guadalajara, MEX Teatro Diana
September 9 Mexico City, MEX Teatro Metropolitan
September 10 Monterrey, MEX Teatro De La Ciudad

And how freaking cool is this - if my life wasn't exciting enough yesterday, imagine my delight when I visited Adrian's website and saw this:


For those of you who have the Line-6 GuitarPort there is currently a piece on Adrian on GuitarPort which allows you to play along with live versions of "Writing On The Wall" and "Three Of A Perfect Pair". You can chose to play along with The Power Trio or to silence Adrian's guitar parts and play them yourself along with the amazing Slicks. How cool is that?!"

For more information, click here.

That is just fantastic. And I'm guessing that "Writing on the Wall" and "Three of a Perfect Pair" are off of the soon to be released Side Four Live CD...and ho ho ho, I finally have some idea of the release date but it isn't up to me to announce it...keep watching this space though, because as soon as Adrian puts it up on his website (which I am afraid I do stalk obsessively compulsively), it will be posted here seconds later. Just know that you will all have it in plenty of time for Christmas!

Okay, that's more than I should have said. Let me rephrase it to read "In a perfect world, you will all have it in plenty of time for Christmas!"

So that's my news for now...I need to seriously finish making a decision on the final selections for the 39 and Holding Anthology I'm editing for Phaze, and yeah, yeah, I need to do some more google research so that when uber agents throw out terms like "three month options", "foreign rights" and other suchlike phrases I know what the hell they are talking about...


Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Julie Slick, Ladies and Gentlemen...

Today's photographs are part of an incredible collection on Flickr taken by Hepyaddakat in Atlanta, Georgia, August 22, 2007

A great post by Jewellworks:

"September 3, 2007 - Monday

adrian belew / julie slick

a quickie:

last friday, aug, 24th, i was working in Tampa. a weekend job, which is very unusual. got off earlier than expected and called Jerry.

"hey man, whatcha doin?"

"going to see adrian belew. ...arnt you?"


i was a little pissed, because i didnt know anything about it. ive known adrian personally for about 11 years now... off and on mind you, but ive been to his house... and here i didnt know any thing about the show! so i get there, jerrys on the guest list, im not, so i buy a ticket and go in.

i talk to martha at the merch table, and give her a hard time about not having "dust" for sale, then adrian starts.

i saw the show last year, and it was killer. but now its a year older, a year tighter, and a year BETTER! there was ALOT of improvising going on durring certain songs. Beat Box Guitar went on for over 15 mins! i stood right in front of julie slick, the 21 year old bass player.

now i know people in this forum appreciate good music and good musicians. julie and her younger brother eric, make up adrians band. an incredible rhythm section boys and girls!! eric plays a tiny 5 piece yamaha set, and julie plays fender P through an SVT pro head and cab. shes also the most unassuming bass playing SHREDDER youve ever seen!!! i couldnt take my eyes off her the whole night. she blew me away! she looks like a regular girl. not some "rock chick" or anything... -just a girl with little girl hands and fingers... youd never guess shes got chops from hell, and can rip your frikking head off!!

there are many long moments in adrians set that get really crazy. seriously atonal and dissonant, with insane polyrhythmic chaos going on... and julie keeps it all together. while shredding. she holds it down, moves it around, moves it forward, up and down, left and right... Give the bass player some!! julie slick ladies and gentelmen!!

after the show we were talking, and i told her what i thoughbt about her, and she was genuinly bashful about it. i dont think shes used to getting complimants. the show IS, afterall, an adrian belew show, and most people want to talk to him, and everything... i wanted to talk to her and give her the props she deserves. i made her blush.

the whole show really was fantastic. i had just seen the Zappa Plays Zappa show in cleveland about a month ago, and i didnt think anything could top that. the adrian show definately ranks right up there. im still diggin on it like mad. no one can play like adrian. he has too many gizmos and custom made thingamaigs... and thats what makes him unique. but i gotta tell you, bass players are pretty much naked. its either there or not. julie slicks got it. keep an eye and an ear out for her and her brother eric. theyre only 20 and 21 years old! theyve been on tour with adrian for over 2 years allready! THAT ought to tell you everything right there!

anyway... Julie Slick ladies and gentelmen. remember that name friends

Ha ha - the writer in me was dying to go in and edit that post, correcting all the, um, creative spelling and words used without apostrophes, etc. but then I decided it's kind of cool as is and who am I to change it. But oh god, it's hard...I really need to work on my various OCD defects...

Here's an email I got this morning from "The Mighty Boognish, a celebrity of sorts and wise man of the great Ween Forum Board...this following Eric's appearance with Dave Dreiwitz at Asbury Lanes on Friday night, August 31 (and to catch what that was like, I did put up a You Tube in the post below this one)

"Hi Robin,

How ya been? Thought I might see you last Friday night @ Asbury Lanes.

That was the first time I'd ever seen Eric play, and now I'm jonesin' to see him play again...with anyone, anywhere... it doesn't matter, HE ROCKS, PERIOD! Wish I could make it to Mexico...

Also, again, I have to tell you what a genuinely nice guy he is... totally friendly and he's also got a killer sense of humor. After the gig Friday night, we're all outside the venue shooting the shit at like 3 AM, and he's waiting for Dave Dreiwitz... so he gets out of Dave's car and he sees all of us out there and he's like "Hello ween forumers! Hi forumers! Woohoo forumers." I don't know why, it just struck me funny.

Rock on,



Thanks, Joe! Waking up to that email totally made my day.

Okay, that's it for now. I made a promise to myself to stay off line until I am finished the final selections for the "39 and Holding" Anthology I'm editing and that deadline is today...but if you visit my Publishers Marketplace Page you will see what else I'm up to this week...argh..not to quote Tom Petty or anything, but holy cow, he is so right. "The waiting is the hardest part"...


Sunday, September 02, 2007

Laboring Today...

Awesome photos of Julie Slick and Adrian Belew taken at Smith's Bar in Atlanta, GA on August 22, 2007 courtesy of Vance Cox - and click on that link for the whole slideshow...

Man, this is one Labor Day weekend where I really am laboring...doing the writing thing non-stop...well, reading submissions for an anthology I'm editing and working on/pondering something else which the jinx factor prevents me from mentioning until next week...

In the meantime, I wanted to take a quick break for a blogpost and do what I do best at times like vicariously through my brilliant offspring.

Let's start with this. So do you think this blogger was doing his best to hide from me? (okay, I mean me and google blogsearch). Ha! Don't you know that I will find you no matter what you call Ade? Atrium Blurew indeed...

"Atrium Blurew"

"We come in peace!" claimed the alien rock star descending from the loft at Cat's Cradle last Tuesday night. So began the Adrian Belew Power Trio's set. Yes, that photo you see may or may not be Adrian Belew, or his alien clone--some say the aliens cannot be photographed, hence the blurriness of the image, having nothing to do with the photographer's lameness whatsoever.

I grew up with Adrian, with the '81-'84 King Crimson in particular hitting me in my adolescent musical sensibilities, though really, pretty much everyone AB has worked with is on my favorites list. He played on "Remain in Light"--it doesn't get better than that! .. and Bowie, Zappa, and so on. His autobiographical video on his website gives a pretty amazing overview of his guitar hero life so far. So it can't be said that I am much of an objective listener.

The question is: what is happening now with the power trio (currently AB + brother/sister team Eric and Julie Slick)? I imagine the Slick's will appear prominently on the forthcoming release of "Side Four", though they do not appear in the credits of "Side Three" (2006), which features bass and drum support from Les (Primus) Claypool and Danny (Tool) Carey. I will say one thing: Adrian and the Slick's are touring like mad and kickin out the jams.

They began the evening with the funkiest song in the Adrian repertoire, "Writing on the Wall" (from the album "Side One"), and played a lot of newer material, some older Belew solo stuff, and of course, a few arrangements from the 80's KC. It was great to relive "Frame By Frame" and some of the 80's era masterpieces, though I did kind of want to jump on stage and fill in on the Fripp guitar lines--as if! Toward the end it was time to let go for some crazy guitar synth improv. The aliens would be proud!

I really enjoyed chatting with Martha Belew before the show, as she shared the insights into the mayhem that is the business these days. The sense I get is that musicians everywhere, even the "big guys", are really struggling during this great transition, where the industry is in decline and we are transitioning to new, download-based distribution economy. Well friends, the revolution is here! All we've got to do is make it happen.

"I can't wait to see what happens next." - AB

"Indeed." - D"

From the Parker Guitar Forum Board:

"Great show, as one might expect. Eric and Julie Slick (drums and bass respectively), were fantastic. Very energetic and chops aplenty. They seemed very happy to be there, but weren't at all overwhelmed by the experience. Adrian seemed in a more experimental mood than in shows past, and his playing was astonishing. Lots of what I'll assume was fairly improvisational, even a couple of "piano" solos (via synth)...

...So anyway, great show!!!

Pics to follow..."

Here's those pics he was talking about along with the following comment:

"It's been a week since I saw them, and I'm still numb. It was seriously the BEST show I've ever seen.

Everything that you've heard about Adrian being a likeable, down to earth guy is true. I hung out for close to an hour after the show. He was talking to me like we're old friends. I got everything that I wanted autographed (Side 3 that I bought there, a King Crimson button from '82, and my Ibanez Strat!) He played brilliantly, as did his AMAZING band."

Cool, huh. Hey, here's proof that Eric will use whatever is around to warm-up pre-sound check:

Speaking of Eric, this fall's Project Object tour has shaped up nicely, and here's the official poster with dates..though the October 24, 2007 slot is now definitely confirmed for the Poison Room in Cincinnati, Ohio...and I believe one of the open dates that say TBA just might end up being Pittsburgh...stay tuned.

Dot and Simon:

Dot and Eric:

Okay, I wish I could take a "snapshot" of this entire page, but you have to click here and read Dr. Dot's diary of Zappanale, which not only includes several photos of my son, but also shows Dot in Philly last week, after she gave...gasp...Simon from Idol a massage. Oh, I kid you not - the same hands which massaged my son touched Simon. Eric! Wash your back immediately!

Ha ha - just kidding. But Dot is so cool it's ridiculous.

Finally, while I am on the subject of cool, here is one hell of a You Tube featuring Dave Dreiwitz and Eric Slick at their Crescent Moon gig on August 16, 2007 at The Court Tavern in New Brunswick, New Jersey. I really enjoyed this - lots of fun and high energy and impossible to believe it's just drums and bass.