Thursday, June 26, 2008

Odds and Sods for Thursday, June 26, 2008

Wow, I remember when I used to blog every day. Well, I try to do it when the Adrian Belew Power Trio or Project Object are on tour, but over the past few days, things have been quiet, I've been writing, and I know it's hard to believe, but most of the time my life is just as exciting as the rest of you. Ha ha - which means I sit around in my pajamas, paying bills, avoid housework, watch television with the sound off, and a personal highlight, wondering what the hell to have for dinner.

But some stuff has come up that's pretty damn fantastic so here is the official report.

Eric has been on tour this week with both Delicious and Crescent Moon doing double duty on the drums...on Tuesday night they opened for the Butthole Surfers in Asbury Park; tonight it's Delicious and Crescent Moon at one of my favorite venues, John and Peters in New Hope. Will the usual suspects show up, i.e., Mickey from Ween and/or Chris Harford? If they do, you can be sure the jamming will continue until 2:00 a.m. - it would probably go on all night if it wasn't against the law for J&P's to stay open beyond that time. I'm dying to go but Gary's been on this horrific work schedule for the past two weeks because they're short handed and has to be at the office by 7:00 a.m. which means a 5:00 a.m. wake-up. If we were go to to John and Peters, we might not get home until 3:00 a.m. because when those guys just can't leave. It's impossible. By the way, speaking of Chris Harford, Eric has a couple of gigs coming up with him this summer - more details later.

My pal Joe, consummate Ween fan and all around music lover, wrote to me about the Asbury Park show:

"Hi Robin,

Great show last night at Asbury Lanes. Really enjoyed Delicious -- I was standing there with Reverend B-ill from Sound of Urchin when they started playing... and a few minutes into it, B-ill looks over and asks, "wow, who are these guys?" I mean, who knew the players, just didn't know the band name...

I said, "They're Delicious... playing transmissions from outer space..." because the first song was really trippy and spacey, and had this cool effect whereby Andre would turn his guitar on and off repeatedly to create these crazy blips and bleeps...

They were impressive, and kept things interesting up there, you know... to my ears i even heard a bit of black sabbath riffage..."

Rock on, Joe (heh), and congratulations on the impending birth of your sure-to-be-beautiful daughter, Stella Star.

Here's a You Tube which surfaced showing Delicious in concert and below that, my personal Crescent Moon favorite, Hammer to the Skull...Eric does it all, doesn't he?

So yeah, if you're in the area, you really want to hit John and Peters tonight and woo hoo, both bands will also be playing this Sunday at the Festival Pier in Philadelphia.

In other news, for more photos of Matt and Julie's graduation party and my adorable nephew Garrett on guitar, thanks to the lovely Jen Foster, Jordan's significant other, and Jordan, as you know from my last post, is lead guitarist and vocalist for the absolutely amazing band, Cheers Elephant, and guess what, Cheers Elephant will also be playing at the Festival Pier on Sunday - I believe all of these bands will be on stage in the afternoon.

And for more absolutely fabulous photography, here's a film/photo montage of the Adrian Belew Power Trio at their recent stint at Skippers in Tampa, Florida.

Something I've been sitting on but can now report is yes, the trio will be heading to Russia the last week of August to play a couple of festivals. Heart be still - here's a newspaper article I found which gives a little bit of information...well, enough to cause me to foam at the mouth in happiness, anyway. (Oh, and while I'm thinking about it, some more ABPT European dates have been added as well - Eric just put them up on his My Space page.)

Kazan Open Air Festival

August 29-30 will see the unique festival Creation of the World gathering together world music stars in Kazan.

"The one-of-the-kind project is intended to unite people with the help of music of various genres and countries and make them leave religious and interethnic hostility behind.

The project’s author, producer Sergei Mirov and the festival president, musician Andrei Makarevich have chosen Kazan as the festival venue, since it is the city where in modern Russia there are various religions coexisting side by side and its Kremlin has an orthodox church and a mosque standing next to each other.

According to festival organizers on the City Day, August 30, a huge stage will be mounted on the main square of Kazan and the festival will be open by five priests: an Orthodox, a Catholic, a Muslim, a Judaist, and a Buddhist – all at once.

Russian stars, such as Zemfira, Boris Grebenshikov and Aquarium, Time Machine, Yuri Bashmet, and Huun-Huur-Tu will be performing alongside with Western musicians: Patti Smith, Keith Emerson, Fairport Convention, Future Sound of London, musicians from the King Crimson band, and Nina Nastasia, as well as ethnic music stars from Cameroon, Israel, Pakistan, Scotland and other countries.

In addition to that the festival will surprise audience with unusual duets and jams. Thus, Patti Smith will take the stage together with Zemfira, and in the performance of the famous Turkmen drummer Rishad Shafi there will sing solo almost all festival participants.

The Fair Square where the event will be taking place holds one hundred thousand people. Music lovers from Moscow, St. Petersburg and from overseas are already getting ready to go there."


You'll note that the article mentions "members of King Crimson". That would be KTU featuring Pat Mastelotto and Trey Gunn and Kimmo Pohjonen, UKZ, featuring Trey Gunn, Eddie Jobson, Aaron Lippert, Alex Machacek, and Marco Minnemann, as well as, yep, the Adrian Belew Power Trio. This same line-up is also resurfacing in Moscow a few days later, and I think, but am not sure, that Tony Levin is going to be there, too, because if you go to his website and click on "tours", he mysteriously is going to be in Russia on the same dates as well. And while you are visiting Tony's website, be sure to read his journal and click on the photos. Tony gives great blog!

Okay, so let me get this straight. The article also mentions "unusual duets and jams". Does this mean that the Adrian Belew Trio may jam with Keith Emerson? I'm having a freaking coronary. You have to realize why - let me fill you in on a little Slick history. Growing up, rock was pretty much forbidden in my house because my father was a jazz musician and basically blamed the Beatles for what he decided was "the death of jazz" *snort*, it couldn't possibly just have been his career in the toilet due to, erm...let's not go there. But I was bitten bigtime when I heard my first Beatle song. (Yeah, yeah, just like Bad Company's Shooting Star). Beyond the Beatles, though, my knowledge was limited to other British Invasion bands like the Kinks and Stones. When Gary and I first started hanging out in high school, he was my music professor, and in an effort to try and get my old man to listen to something outside the box, he brought over albums (yes, albums...I'm old, remember?) by people like John Mayall, Savoy Brown, King Crimson, and Emerson, Lake and Palmer. How could my father deny that even though they played rock/blues, they were still incredible musicians?

He did...but I'll leave all that for my psychiatrist (ha)...but man, I fell in love with ELP, and I know all the critics and hipsters trash them - well, my opinion of that is they are fucking ridiculous and know nothing about music and if someone starts that spiel with me, I walk away.

The night before Julie was born and my contractions were coming like twenty minutes apart - too soon to go to the hospital but impossible for me to get any sleep - Gary played ELP's Take a Pebble for me and I can't hear that song without bursting into tears remembering Julie's birth...sadly...I'm also that way about Cat Stevens' Morning Has Broken as that was the song playing in the delivery room just as Julie was born and they placed her on my stomach. It was like a scene out of a movie.

So like, imagine how I'm feeling about the possibility of my kids sharing a stage with Emerson. When we were first married, Gary and I would have ELP marathon nights, where we'd listen to every one of their albums in a row. If you would see me right now you'd giggle - I have total goosebumps and I just wiped away a tear.

Damn hormones.

Okay, time to talk about my always-interesting-if-nothing-else writing career.

As I indicated in an earlier post, I went to New York City twice last week to co-star in a documentary. The first day I did a one on one interview and I freaking can't believe it, the minute they hooked me up to that mic and put the camera on me, I didn't shut up. But did I stay on topic? Of course not. I talked about Julie and Eric and Adrian and my own agenda, i.e., my unfortunate experience with agents (one quit the business, one disappeared, and the other wanted me to make my characters twenty-five years old even though I write about baby boomers and that's basically my platform although naturally one day after we parted ways, I started a new book with a twenty-one year old protagonist)...anyway, I cringed the whole way home on the train remembering what I said on camera and thinking I'd really screwed up, but when I went back on Friday and we did a shoot featuring the whole group of us, I think I rectified the situation and besides, that is why directors use the "edit" feature. I had never met any of the nine/ten people also being filmed and it was interesting - even though we were quite diverse in appearance we ended up having a lot in common and by the time the shoot was over and we headed to this really incredible Spanish restaurant, El Quijote for dinner, we all lamented the fact that there were no cameras filming there as we really clicked and great conversation flowed throughout the meal - we were there over two hours and probably could have stayed longer if we didn't have other obligations...and in my case, if I didn't consume more than my usual two glasses of wine, knowing that I had a two hour train ride home.

Anyway, the hope is that this documentary will air on a cable channel such as Bravo when completed and really, I think it will. Both the premise and characters are pretty unique.

Also, I mentioned that I have a new publisher for Bitten to the Core and my editor contacted me this week -- I can tell just from our emails that we're really going to hit it off and that's a huge load of worry off my shoulders. That and the fact that she told me she was laughing out loud and spitting out her coffee while reading the first chapter, which, if you ask me, is a very good sign.


Finally, because I can, and because I am sitting here freaking out that I just found it on You Tube, I leave you with Emerson, Lake and Palmer performing Take a Pebble, and Oh. My. God....look how young they are. I'm gonna cry.

Okay, I am crying. But in a good way.