Jennifer O’Connor – 2007 Solo Dates

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(from The Wrong Way's Flikr page, photo used without permission)

Jennifer O'Connor's
3rd album proper, 'Over the Mountain, Across the Valley, and Back to the Stars' remains one of '06's finest, most criminally overlooked works.  Because Jennifer isn't the type to hold a grudge (not like some people), she'll be giving you yet another chance to catch the boat you're in danger of missing with her following shows in support of Kevin Devine.

January
24-Middletown, Connecticut @  Wesleyan University
25-Buffalo, NY @ Mowhawk Place
26-Pittsburgh, PA @ Club Cafe
27-Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop2
9-Toronto, ONT @ Lee's Palace
30-Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick
31-Grand Rapids, MI @ Intersection

February
1-Bloomington, IN @ WIUX Indiana University
2-Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen
3-Madison, WI @ The Annex
4-Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock Social Club
6-Ames, IA @ Iowa State University
7-Lawrence, KS @ Jackpot Music Hall
8-Columbia, MO @ Mojo's
9-St. Louis, MO @ Off Broadway
10-Urbana, IL @ Canopy Club
11-Nashville, TN @ 3rd & Lindsley
13-Atlanta, GA @ The Earl
14-Athens, GA @ 40 Watt
15-Chapel Hill, NC @ Local 506
16-Washington DC @ The Rock and Roll Hotel
17-New York, NY @ The Knitting Factory
21-Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian
22-Boston, MA @ Great Scott
23-Northampton, MA @ Pearl Street
24-Hamden, CT @ The Space

In addition, you can catch Jennifer, sans Mr. Devine, on the following dates :

December 29 – New World Brewery, Tampa, FL
January 5 – Maxwell's, Hoboken, NJ
January 10 – The Living Room, NYC, NY (with Anders Parker)

When Bloggin’ Happens To Hard Workin’ Folk

web sheriff mouse padWe think Eric Marathonpacks might have a problem.  Over the course of the past week, he's managed to write what, in the blogging world, might be considered a "tome" on 19 of his favorite 2006 albums (honors to Belle), as well as to crank out 4 (count 'em – FOUR) 70 minute mix mp3s.  In doing so, the only problem he might actually have is the post- year- end- bandwidth- blues as the Web Sheriff seems a little too pre-occupied sending out mouse pads rather than C&Ds this holiday season.   

Marathonpacks:  I Just Didn't Have 20

Marathonpacks:  Packin' It Into 70 Minutes (x) Four 

More Proof that New York Is Getting Soft

Our good friends at the New York Post are reporting this morning that Limelight, the once-infamous nightclub, will be resurrected as a mini-mall:

December 19, 2006 — The former Episcopal church that once housed the sacrilegious Limelight nightclub will be born again – as a retail mini-mall.

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Now known as the Avalon nightclub, the legendary 12,000-square-foot venue on Sixth Avenue at West 20th Street will shutter its doors in early 2007.

"The landlord has decided that he doesn't want to go forward with another nightclub," said broker Frank Terzulli, of Winnick Realty Group.

"He's going to cut it up for retail tenants and a restaurant with patio seating."

Terzulli added, "The area is becoming more upscale with high-priced condos and stores, and that will make it more difficult to get permits from the community board" for a nightclub…

Sources say international discount-clothing retailer H&M is the likely main tenant for the space, which features triple-height ceilings and mezzanine levels.

A representative for Winnick would not confirm any specific names, since no leases have yet been signed.

Limelight, founded in the deconsecrated church in 1983, hosted some of clubland's wildest parties in the '80s and early '90s under now-deported club king Peter Gatien (above).

In 1996, federal agents charged that Limelight was a "drug supermarket" and shut it down.

Gatien was acquitted of racketeering and drug charges but convicted of tax evasion. He spent time in jail and was eventually deported to his native Canada.

That same year, one of the club's flamboyant promoters, Michael Alig, pleaded guilty to manslaughter for killing Angel Melendez, a club regular and reputed drug dealer over a money dispute. He's still in jail.

Limelight reopened under new management but was shuttered again in 2002.

It came back to life in November of that year as the short-lived Estate. Avalon followed a few months later.

My only memory of the place is seeing Mogwai play there last year, but I'm sure other Mata-folks would be happy to share anything they might possibly remember (as long as the statute of limitations are up).

How Can I Tell You…

…that the customer is always wrong?

Unless you've been living under a diamond rock, you've probably seen the "buy a diamond,  your partner-will-forget-you-can't-get-it-up" spots featuring the immensely talented Chan Marshall covering Cat Stevens' "How Can I Tell You?"

For the past several weeks, our esteemed General Manager has been besieged with daily email from persons desperate to purchase some version of this recording.  Some of these pleas are perfectly reasonable. Others fall under the category of dangerously delusional, self-styled "experts" who somehow believe your 2nd or 3rd Favorite Independent Label has something against making money (or perhaps has a vested interest in making Cat Power fans unhappy). One by one, these persons are politely informed by Patrick that all that exists from this recording session is a 30 second snippet of the former Mr. Stevens' composition. Much as we'd love to oblige, we cannot possibly release a 30 second selection and pass it off as a bona fide commercial release.  Not without getting our heads handed to us by the same individuals who are writing to us, anyway.

And still, the messages continue to pour in. So with that in mind, I'm only going to say this one last time : "How Can I Tell You" is not available to purchase because Chan only recorded 30 seconds of music

I swear to god, the next person that interrupts Patrick's busy day asking about this commercial  is gonna rue the moment they ever turned on the TV set, because I am going to show up in their living room and deliver my own extra special rendition of "How Can I Tell You", followed by such classics as "The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald", "In The Year 2525", "Losing My Religion", "Needle Up My Cock" and of course, "MacArthur Park".

I'm not kidding around. Don't make me drop the Gordon Lightfoot bomb.

In the meantime, just to show you we're not all heartless fucks at Matador Records & Filmworks, Miwa has tipped us off to the following bit of footage from Cat Power (featuring the crazy skills of Judah Bauer and Jim White), live from the Transmusicales Festival, December 7.

[youtube]4HIEEMNzbIc[/youtube]

Ahmet Ertegun, RIP

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The late founder of Atlantic Records was eulogized today as a man who "exerted a sweeping influence on postwar US popular music," (The Times), "a marvellous man, very witty, a great raconteur," (Mick Jagger) and "a passionate connoisseur of music who was beloved by many of his artists and peers for his personal panache and his encyclopedic knowledge of music, especially jazz and rhythm and blues." (Geoff Bocher and Randy Lewis, LA Times).

Our good friend at Where Is The Hotel shall recall Ertegun as the man responsible for The Melvins' 'Houdini'.

Though I do not think this is technically correct, we stand in awe of Ertegun's cultural contributions just the same.

Abuse Your Delusion

File this under "no fucking way." From Billboard.com's Jonathan Cohen :

Axl Rose has taken to Guns N' Roses' official Web site to announce a "tentative" March 6 release date for the band's eternally delayed new album, "Chinese Democracy." In the posting, Rose also revealed he has split with longtime manager Merck Mercuriadis due to disagreements over the set up for the album release.

Rose lashed out at management for comments suggesting "Chinese Democracy" would "just appear" in record stores on a random Tuesday before the end of the year.

"It takes approximately eight weeks for an album to hit the shelves once it has been turned in to the record company," he said. "For whatever reasons, it appears that it may have been mistakenly inferred by management that this time period could be condensed to three weeks. With that being said, this is not a promise, a lie or a guarantee, but we do wish to announce a tentative release date of March 6. This is the first time we have done this publicly for this album."

Axl, if things don't work out with Guns'n'Roses, you've got a future in the beverage distribution industry independent label product management.

A Quick Note About Someone You Might Care About

Chances are, some portion of the persons reading this message are friends or fans of J. Robbins. Perhaps from his days playing with Goverment Issue, Jawbox, Burning Airlines and (most recently) Channels, or maybe you know him from his production work for Jets To Brazil, Pilot To Gunnar or Jawbreaker, amongst others. 

Anyhow, to cut a long story short, J. and his partner Janet Morgan have an 11 month old son, Callum, who's been diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy.  Medical expenses are likely to be stratospheric, and as such, J and Janet's colleagues at DeSoto Records are accepting donations on their behalf.  DeSoto's got more details.

 

McGee’s War On Q

While certain US fake independent rawwwk execs waste their time with perfectly legitimate gratuitious swipes at Paste Magazine, Alan McGee's got much bigger fish to fry, as evidenced by the following entry to the Guardian Unlimited Arts Blog.

Q magazine is out of date, a true retirement home for music writers that never made it. It's the absolute lap dog of the major record companies – a music magazine for accountants and estate agents. Q is corporate. Gormless. Gutless. Always six months behind everything and full of lists, lists, lists. Well here's how others see Q magazine: a Q top 20 I'm sure they would be proud of.

1. Chris Martin and Robbie Williams
2. Anybody in U2
3. Annie Lennox
4. Anybody in Radiohead – or failing that, Coldplay again
5. Anybody in Keane
6. Anybody in a band who went to Oxford or Cambridge when any of us lot did
7. Pink Floyd (post-Syd era only)
8. Midge Ure
9. James Blunt
10. Damien Rice
11. Corinne Bailey Rae
12. Tasmin Archer
13. Dire Straits
14. The Police (both the Met and the mob Sting was in)
15. Every copycat Coldplay band we've shoved for EMI in recent years
16. INXS
17. Simple Minds
18. An Emotional Fish (the comeback)
19. Spice Girls
20. Dave Stewart

Fucking-a.  I was all set to drop the (Emotional) Fish-meet-Barrel comment, but McGee deserves some special prize for pulling Midge Ure's name out of a hat. There's a grumpy reply below Alan's screed, "You seemed to have missed Oasis off the list, they seem to have a place on the cover regardless of what they've done in a strict rotation policy along with U2, Coldplay and Radiohead," but c'mon, give the man credit where due.   Shitting on Midge Ure in late 2006 is beyond awesome.

Girls Aloud get political

Girls Aloud interview for The New Statesman 

link via Popjustice 

My beloved Girls Aloud get their Noam Chomsky on:

Nadine: "You know that basically Labour is the working class and the Conservatives are the really, kind of, upper class, and then everything else is . . . I have no idea."

Foolhardy Nadine later has an awesome rant about footballer's wives, momentarily forgetting that her bandmate Cheryl is one. 

Their Greatest Hits album, out now, is disappointingly low on Billy Bragg covers.  

Matador Movie Club: Take 2

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(struggling with the chords to "I Could See The Dude", but he'll get there eventually)

After the inaugural meeting of the Matador Movie Club to see Mission Of Burma's 'This Is Not A Photograph' a couple of months ago, we reconvened to check out our beloved Britt Daniel's contributions to the soundtrack of 'Stranger Than Fiction'. The Spoon mainman was working with Brian Reitzell on the score, who also worked on Sofia Coppola's 'Virgin Suicides' and 'Lost In Translation' with Air and Kevin Shields. That man is so hip and trendy, even knowing who he is makes you feel like you're Piers Martin. Aside from instrumental snippets of 'My Mathematical Mind' and 'I Turn My Camera On', the new Britt pieces are unobtrusive in the same way as Kevin Shields' were in 'Lost In Translation', and just as lovely. It should be noted that a flattering comparison to the quality of Kevin Shields' music is just about the highest praise I can offer. 

As for the film itself, the Matador Movie Club give 'Stranger Than Fiction' a cautious thumbs-up. Mike and Lucy had problems with the film's ending, and we were all a bit perplexed at how Maggie Gyllenhaal would ever find Will Ferrell attractive (but, having said that, who is good enough for Maggie Gyllenhaal? She's awesome). The Kaufman-esque plot of a man discovering that he is actually a character in a book that is being written that will end with his tragic death isn't really exploited for all the brain-warping potential that idea has; in fact certain ideas that are central to the plot at some points (the narration, the fact that Crick cannot control his own fate) are bandonned at others. But maybe we're being too critical of what is actually a very much above-average comedy – it does have Maggie Gyllenhaal in it, after all, and it's nice to see Emma Thompson in a dramatic role again. Dustin Hoffman was…Dustin Hoffman, and Buster from Arrested Development was in it as well, proving conclusively to me that no matter what role he takes from now on, he will always be Buster from Arrested Development (I mean that affectionately). Marc Foster's direction seems shaky, to be honest, there's no massive tonal shifts or anything, but there are certain points where the film forgets that it's a comedy – but maybe that's meta and intentional. But despite our misgivings, 'Stranger Than Fiction' is a sweet little film that you'd have to try very hard to dislike. With a wicked soundtrack, natch.

The Matador Movie Club's third outing will actually be an office screening of R Kelly's opus magnus 'Trapped In The Closet'. My critical faculties generally leave me around the point in part one where R Kelly sings 'I quickly tried to put on viiiiibrraaaaaatttte'. Slays me every time.

Jennifer O’Connor, Live Tonight, And As Free As The Air You Breathe

(photograph by Jeremiah Garcia, used without permission)

Apologies for the last minute nature of this message, but I've been engrossed in reading about the deep, dark dangers of SOY. (link courtesy Craig Stewart).  NYC readers are advised that JENNIFER O'CONNOR is performing tonight at Happy Ending (302 Broome Street, between Forsyth and Eldridge) as part of that lovely establishment's Music and Reading Series.  Also appearing are Chris Leo and Marcellus Hall.  Doors open at 7pm and the readings/performances begin at 8pm.  I'd love to be there, but I've got several dozen boxes of soy products I have to bring to the dump. 

Yo La Tengo – New US Dates In ’07




(olde poster art from Little Friends Of Printmaking)

More details to follow (ie. after we've pulled 'em off another website)


1/25 – Louisville, KY at the Bomhard Theater
2/2 – Jacksonville, FL  at the Florida Theater
2/3 – Atlanta, GA  at the Variety Playhouse
2/5 – Chapel Hill, NC at Cat's Cradle
2/6 – Chapel Hill, NC  at Cat's Cradle
2/8 – Charlottesville, VA at the Starr Hill Music Hall
2/10 – Philadelphia, PA at the Trocadero

Possibly Not The Furby Of The 2006 Holiday Season

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From the Idea Records site :

Idea have commissioned sculptor Ian Kay of York’s Irregular Miniatures to bring to life what is hoped will be a whole range of xtc collectors figures in metal. Each set will show the band from a period in their history commencing with the ‘White Music’ era. You’ll get Andy, Colin, Terry and Barry in a live setting with relevant instruments (e.g. Barry comes with his Krumar Organ and Lawrence Piano), dressed in their monochrome best, all figures (55mm high) and equipment are cast in white metal and are hand painted, held securely in foam and clad in a pictorial card sleeve which will be signed by Andy and Colin.

Andy says 'these figures are going to be charming, I know, I’ve seen them. So hurry and order yours today'.

N.B – THE WHITE MUSIC FIGURES ARE A STRICT LIMIED EDITION OF 200 SETS ONLY.

Somehow, Todd McFarlane missed the boat on XTC.  Stylish as the above set surely must be, Mr. Kay will have to try pretty hard to beat this