Wednesday, June 30, 2010

04/07/06 WigJam (Dead Tribute) @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

There was some sort of special on these tickets so I bought a few extras, but even with free tickets, I couldn't get anyone to join me.

All alone, I proceeded to get a little too intoxicated.

I went around the corner to smoke with some new friends and brought a random Times Square hustler to the show with one of my unused extra tickets.

Later, that smae gentleman followed me home on a drunken mess of a train ride under the guise of providing a helping hand and may or may not have alleviated me of several dollars for his efforts.

A year or so later, I discovered that a couple roommates of mine had also been in attendance.

Monday, June 28, 2010

04/??/06 C Rayz Walz/Baba Israel and Yako @ Asterisk, Brooklyn, NY

C Rayz Walz is an underground rapper best known for his appearance on an episode of MTV's Made in which he was charged with transforming a nerdy white kid into a rapper.

Baba Israel and Yako are a rapper/bassist combo.

The venue was a DIY Brooklyn space that my good friend had painted for the event.

We were able to get in for free by saying we were part of the artist crew that had provided the graffiti for the event, which was half true anyways.

I saw the cute dready chick I had seen at Skatalites and Dropkick Murphys and finally worked up the courage to say hello. Was she following me? Probably not, because I never saw her again after that.

In the tiny, packed room where the music took place, I became infatuated with yet another dreaded hottie. Later, I reached out to her on Missed Connections, heard back from someone who may or may not have been the one, but couldn't successfully woo her via email.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

03/28/06 Rob Zombie/Lacuna Coil @ Nokia Theatre, New York, NY

Primarily focused on his film directing career these days it seems, Rob Zombie still finds the time to bring his brand of horror thrash metal to a live concert setting. But here he was in all his kitschy glory replete with giant monsters and other assorted cinematic touches rocking Nokia in proper Zombie fashion.

The opener, Lacuna Coil, was less memorable.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

03/17/06 Memphis Crawl/Lonesome Jack/etc @ Kenny's Castaways, New York, NY

I went to this show solo to support a friend's band whose name escapes me.

The fact that it was St. Patrick's Day didn't really register until i got there.

In New York City, which is surpassed only by Boston in terms of rowdy Irishness, this day is celebrated by drinking heavily from the morning onwards.

By the time I got out, all the amateurs had either gone home or passed out in the streets and only the veteran drinkers remained.

My friend's band featured a sexy lead singer, but that's all I remember. The next acts left a deeper impression.

Lonesome Jack was the type of Irish folk ensemble that makes you want to guzzle Guinness and dance a sprightly jig.

Memphis Crawl played the kind of southern swamp rock that can kill you in a plane crash and featured an cane-wielding Jim Morrison wannabe front man. He still managed to climb all over amps and chairs with his supposed bum leg.

On the way home, a bus replaced the 7 train and I drunkenly dialed all my Irish friends to conclude an unexpectedly raucous evening spent alone.

03/14/06 Skatalites/Rudie Crew @ SOB's, New York, NY

The Skatalites have gone through multiple lineup changes since their original incarnation in mid-1960s Jamaica and revival in the early 1980s, but they still remain wholly capable of skankin' up a dance floor.

Rudie Crew was much of the same.

I saw a cute skinny blonde dready chick there who I had also seen at the Murphys show.

The world vibe of the show was appropriate given the club's moniker, shorthand for Sounds of Brazil, and ethos as purveyor of global music. It was my first visit there.

03/01/06 Dropkick Murphys/Sick Of It All/Horrorpops @ Nokia Theatre, New York, NY

Back to faint recollections after a brief spell of relatively immediate reactions...

This was a strange venue for the Dropkicks, especially after being shut out of their packed to the gills American Legion show just several years prior.

It was nice to catch veteran hardcore punkers Sick Of It All as well.

02/25/06 & 03/04/06 (MySpace Blog Repost)

Sweet Jiminy Cricket! One more Saturday night and one more narrow escape from the long arm of the law. Actually I waited too long and now it's really two Saturday nights and two narrow escapes. But I'm still as free as a bird now. I honestly believe that if you're not close to being behind bars, you're not living life to the extreme and therefore not really living at all. Damn the Man. Save the empire. But enough pychobabble. Here's the stories:

2.25.06 ~ A night like any other. It was my friend's 21st birthday blowout bash. You know how those go. My two esteemed colleagues, Mike and Francky came down to Q-Boro to pregame prior to the scheduled festivities. I suppose in retrospect, we should've maybe not had the entire liter of Bacardi before we left. In fact, Mike even said as he took his last shot, "If I get arrested later, this is the shot that did it." Eerie premonition that turned out to be. Hindsight is 20/20, but that was some pretty good foresight if I do say so myself. In any case, we made our way to Manhattan, not bothering to grab change for buses or directions, but those are the pitfalls of inebriation. We almost made it out of the boro without an incident. Almost. Transferring from the 7 to the E of the F as it turned out, Mike drunkenly thought it'd be a great idea to slide down the railing...right in front of the beloved Boys in Blue. He saw them ther, he just didn't realize it was unlawful. Typical Manzor logic. Apparently Mikey didn't get the memo that you can't do anything in the subway system these days. Sheeeit!...Cats get tickets for having their bags up on the seats on empty trains. No lie.  Well one $100 summons and one missed E train later we were merrily on our way  to wherever it was we were going via the F. On a side point, never take trains anywhere with Francky. He's a big dude, but he's a whiny little girl when it comes to public transportation ("What we have to take another train?"). I'll call the waaaaaambulance. So we finally get down to the spot where there's supposedly a reservation. There's not so we head to the next spot where birthday girl Becky works. In the cab over there I am introduced to a very interesting device for dispensing yayo. And Francky mistakenly fondles my leg in the back seat ("That's my leg guy."). I think the place was called Maya. OK spot. Nothing special. I find it funny when an old acquaintance of mine tells me how much he hates all the Arabs there; it's an Indian lounge/bar. So I see a bunch of folks I haven't seen in a while, have a few more drinks. Nothing too exciting. But wait. There's more. I'm guessing this was around 3:30 or so. Honestly I was too wasted to know. We headed back to the apartment shared by Becky, Dani (Mike's sis), and a whole bunch of fun puppies. Everything's chilling right up until Josh (my roomie), in a moment of drunken silliness, pours some beer on Mike. Harmless, right? Harmless until one of the precocious little furballs slurped up some suds. Then all hell broke loose. Dani kicked us out while saying some pretty disturbing things to her brother. Josh says, "Shit Mike, that's your flesh and blood. How's she gonna say some shit like that?" Francky says, "Your sister's a bitch." True, but uncalled for. Mike says, "Don't call my sister a bitch." Francky says, "Relax!" Just kidding. Francky calls her a bitch again. Mike says, "If you call my sister a bitch again, I'm gonna punch you in the face." So he does and Mike punches him in the face and then shit really starts getting hectic. You've got Mike and Francky going at it. Everyone else is trying to separate them while at the same time getting the brawl outside. I get shoved down the stairs in an effort to get Dani back in her apartment (I later discover that this destroys my MP3 player, much to my dismay). At this point, predictably, the cops show up. I'm way across the street because I know how these situations end up, which is why I was trying to get Dani back inside. So the cops clear things up and Francky hides in the corner somewhere. Mike tries to get the cops to take Dani back to her apartment. They say "No!" Mike says "Yes!" And that's about the time he gets cuffed. Sometime later his sister gets cuffed too. A first for her if I'm not mistaken. As for Josh and I, we made it back home safely as is our style. The siblings, they spent the next day in Central Booking, an adventure in and of itself. No story I've heard about it does anything to restore my faith in the Judicial System and I'll leave it at that. They got out at around 10 p.m. which was a good thing because Mike had court Monday morning. Mike got the old stalwart charges Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrest, paid a $95 fine and that was that. I'm told Dani got 30 counts of Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrest. Hats off to her. Lesson learned? Probably not knowing these kids. R.I.P. MP3 Player. We hardly knew ye.

3.4.06 ~ This was a great night that almost wasn't. I was supposed to hand out some prophylactics at a Paul Van Dyk show at the Roseland. He's one of those internationally renowned trance DJ's that's more at home on Ibiza than on the island of Manhattan. I'm not a huge fan, but hey it's free. I'm sure I missed out on some bass-thumping, booty-bumping trance addiction. But the person (I dunno if Kizzy Kay is a guy or a girl) I was supposed to do it with cancelled and I wasn't really in the mood to do it alone. If anyone was there, let me know what I missed. The real night began at Queen College, my primary place of education, of all places. The art building was the site of a gallery opening and what's a gallery opening without free booze? Not as much fun, that's for sure. Josh had a poster on display there so we headed down and loaded up on boxed wine, spiked punch and peach schnapps. Somehow I managed to shoot myself in the hand, point blank, with a staple gun. Ouchkabibble! This all took place kinda early for a Saturday night and we were wasted and out of there by 10. It is a lot of fun being drunk on campus, I must say. We wandered around aimlessly for a while, caught some illicit tags. I don't write or anything, but I definitely felt the allure pretty strongly that time. I put up NYPD. They don't get enough props. At this point we would've headed to our friend Esti's crib, but she was/is in mourning for a friend of hers in Israel who overdosed or something like that (just like Harold Hunter). So we were suffciently twisted and we were about to go home and watch a movie or something, but josh called his brother's friend and apparently there was a HUGE house party going on just a few blocks away. About face. There was a cover charge of $5 and they were checking ID's at the door, which was funny because I doubt the majority of the people there were even close to 21. I used Josh's ID because I left mine at home. All the beer we could drink until the kegs were empty. Unfortunately I didn't get to play Beer Pong. I did run into a whole bunch of people that I haven't seen in quite some time, so that was fun. I also ran into this really cute girl who used to sit in front of me in Film History class last semester. I always thought she was such a good girl and now I discover she's an alcoholic just like me. A pleasant revelation. Even some Monsey heads came out. Small world. At approximately 3 a.m. (again, too sloshed to know), the PoPo showed up. Honestly, I'm surprised they didn't come sooner. I wasn't doing anything even remotely wrong, but I didn't have ID on me and I wasn't sticking around to discuss the matter with my uniformed buddies. By the time Josh found me to get out of there, i was halfway out the window. We hopped the fence in the back yard and we were out. It was so much fun watchin all the party people scurrying in all directions like cockroaches when you turn the light on. Fun stuff. So once again, the Crew ended up safely at home base after a narrow escape from the Five-Oh.

Sunday was a pleasant mix of NBA games, gin & juice, OxyCodone and Oscar madness. A nice comedown.

A final note regarding my last unsuccessful run-in with the law. My Unlawful Possession of Marijuana case, stemming from the incident outside the Nokia Theatre, was officially dismissed on the first of this month. I'm on a streak. Let's hope it lasts.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

02/17/06 Umphrey's McGee @ Nokia Theater, New York, NY

02/17/06 Nokia Theatre, New York, NY
Set I: Bridgeless, Passing, Nothing Too Fancy> Bright Lights, Big City, Morning Song, 2x2> Nothing Too Fancy
Set II: Breathe> Got Your Milk (Right Here), The Triple Wide> Anchor Drops> 40's Theme, Much Obliged> Pipeline> Much Obliged> Breathe, Syncopated Strangers> Jimmy Stewart> Syncopated Strangers, Plunger
Encore: Divisions
That does it for the two-fisted tales of trials and tribulaations at the hands of the long arm of the law. In other news, I saw Umphrey's McGee (Chi-town's finest!), those favorite ImProg sons of the Midwest, for free at Nokia Theater (the site of my last run-in with the boys in blue, see the last blog). They don't check me there if I'm working so I brought in some Captain Morgan's. Me and the Captain made it happen. Great show highlighted by a dub version of Pink Floyd's "Breathe" and a tease of Mystikal's classic "Shake that Ass." As always, I highly recommend you check them out ASAP - I'm gonna have to go to court soon for the last time I went to Nokia. I'm not really too sure when though; the ticket is not at all clear. Leave it to the NYPD to confuse the shit out of you.

02/15/06 Phil Lesh & Friends @ Beacon Theater, New York, NY

02/15/06 Beacon Theater, New York, NY
Phil Lesh (bass, vocals), Joan Osborne (vocals), Larry Campbell (guitar+more)
Rob Barraco (keys), Barry Sless (guitar, pedal steel), Jeff Sipe (drums)
Set 1: Passenger > Doin' That Rag, Stagger Lee > Mr Charlie, The Hardest Part > The Weight, Cosmic Charlie
Set 2: Jam > Shakedown Street > New Speedway Boogie, Cats Under The Stars > Magnolia Mountain > Uncle John's Band > Morning Dew, Truckin' > Golden Road To Unlimited Devotion
E: I Am The Walrus
My first time at the lovely Beacon Theater, as well as my first time puffing with the old man. Here's what I had to say about it at the time.
Oh yeah and in regards to that blog about my dad and drugs, I finally smoked with my old man for the first time. I'm pretty sure I was talking with my friend Anna about this a few hours before it happened. I was lying on the couch minding my own business when my dad called and offered to treat me to the last night of (former/current Grateful Dead bassist) Phil Lesh & Friends at the Beacon Theater. I'd never been there and I can't ever say no to a free show so I hopped on a train and met my dad there. We got tickets at the door and had front row seats in the upper most section for the first few songs. As soon as the music started, joints were being passed left and right (gotta love hippies!). Although my dad told me he had a joint rolled (and that he smoked on the way down), I passed to him first (courtesey of the baby boomers to my left). It was, predictably, a little awkward (I tend to get paranoid and introspective when I'm high, not exactly the mindset you want to have around your parents), but it had to happen sooner or later. Better sooner than later, plus I got a free show out of the deal. As for the music itself, it was a delightful array of Grateful Dead classics (Shakedown Street, Truckin', Uncle John's Band, etc.) and classic rock stalwarts (The Band's "The Weight" and The Beatles' "I Am the Walrus) played with an astonishing level of musicianship by some of the best in the business. Joan "What If God Was One of Us?" Osbourne was on vocals. The Beacon Theatre, which I had heard of, did not disappoint. Perfect sound and sightlines from everywhere in the joint (pun intended), plus stunning art deco decor. I can't wait to be "Peakin' at the Beacon," by which I mean tripping face.

I'm sure there's more to be said, but it'll have to wait for the next time I get motivated to record it all (when it rains it pours, folks).

02/??/06 (MySpace Blog Repost)

So I've been keeping it relatively low-key the past few weeks due to lack of cash (Where's that fucking student loan check?). Anyways I've managed to stay pretty much away from the 5-0, but some of my friends haven't been so lucky. Here are their stories (names and faces withheld to protect the not-so-innocent):

Story #1: This fucking guy. Kid goes to his cousin's bat mitzva in a Dirty Jersey college town. Big blow out bash. Rich uncle and all that jazz. So he gets completely boofy blitzed Saturday afternoon while waiting around for the party. Forced to imbibe incredibly pricey whiskey by the very (cr)uncle throwing the party. Can't really say no there. He blacks out for most of the rest of the night, although I hear some tidbits involving another uncle's nipples. He starts a big ado at the hotel bar because they let him smoke cigarettes, but not cigars (this kid don't even smoke cigars and he quit cigs on New Year's). Wanders aimlessly around this serene college town afterhours. Somehow hobnobs with the with the local police who suggest he follow a crack whore when he tells them he's looking for some GAIRLS. Somehow wanders into a dorm party with a jam session going on. Here's where it gets interesting. He's back at the hotel and finds an open office. Nonchalantly (and in retrospect, 100% conspicuously) ganks about $3000 worth of computer equipment (laptop, external hard drive, IPOD, portable speakers). Next day (Super Bowl XL), he rolls through my crib with the ill begotten booty. Now I'm half jealous that he's got all this cool shit when I could seriously use a laptop myself and half concerned for the poor sap who lost all this shit. We're looking through the files and what not. There's a whole lot of legal mumbo jumbo type files. This is obviously a lawyer's computer (feeling a little better that in some way the judicial system has had a fork thrown in its works). There's some Phish on the external hard drive (feeling a little worse for this dude because I can sympathize with a hippie if not a lawyer). So my buddy leaves and, before he does, I tell him to watch out for that bitch. "What bitch?" says he. "Karma!" says I. Cut to the next morning. He gets a call from his father's friend (the same friend who wanted to smoke cigars in the bar and had to buy the whole bar drinks after my compadre flipped out). Turns out the hotel has security cameras (SUPRISE!) and they caught my friend on tape stealing all that shit and  then saw him on tape with his father's friend shortly thereafter. They put one and one together and called my friend's father's friend who had his information on file since he had a hotel room in his name (Joisey cops woik fast). So needless to say this dude is PISSED OFF! My friend gets on the phone with the Jersey Bacon and explains the whole situation. Tells them he's real sorry and he'll come down and return the stuff. Drives back down to Jersey and wastes the whole day getting arrested and interrogated and all that stuff. Gets charged with burglary or theft or both. Supposedly it'll be better because he confessed and brought it back ASAP, but I'll let you know about that. Court case is pending. Moral of the story: check for cameras and don't take lawyer's laptops. You live, you learn.

Story #2: My other friend does grafitti. There's actually another interesting story involving him getting nabbed for painting trains and me getting nabbed for trying to rescue him. All these arrests will be the death of me. Or if it doesn't kill me it makes me stronger. Some shit like that. That's a story for another day. Or the book. Anyways graf kids are invariably camera buffs too, out of necessity more than anything else. So this kid's out late one night, capturing Queens' seedy underbelly on digital camera for posterity. He's chilling in his car when these DT's (undercover detectives; I don't know why it's DT, maybe DeTective?) come up from behind him, lights flashing. Now he's doing nothing wrong so I guess he figures its an average traffic stop and even so he won't get a ticket. I'm pretty sure he was parked at the time. But shit ain't never easy. These trigger happy psychos come up on the car with their shotguns drawn all like "DON'T FUCKING MOVE!!!" and shit. I'm not sure exactly what I would've done in that situation, but my friend did the right thing and didn't move. They didn't even search his car or give him a ticket or anything. But I don't doubt that those bastards would've shot him with out giving the matter a second thought. That's why I don't like cops. I know they have their reasons and everything, but fuck them. To paraphrase Slick Rick, "It's a two way street, kid."

Story #3: Same dude as Story #2. He's wandering illegally on some freight train tracks doing his thing when fate smiles upon him (possibly in some divine retribution for Story #2). In any case, he stumbles upon a pair of standard issue official NYPD Smith & Wesson handcuffs. I'm sure there's a great untold story behind those. Use your imagination. I'm thinking some dude got cuffed and ran away and somehow picked them. Either that or some idiot pig lost 'em. Quite the find, in any case. No keys, though. I'm just waiting for the moment of drunken stupidity when one of us gets stuck in those bad boys. I'm pretty sure the lock clipper will cut through those. It'll make a good story if nothing else and you know that's my mojo.

01/26/06 MF Doom/Big Daddy Kane @ Nokia Theater, New York, NY

MySpace blog repost alert!
This is a short one, which bothers me because it's a great story and I'd like to give it due respect. But laziness comes into play.

We begin at the first ever hip hop show at the brand-spanking-new Nokia Theatre in Times Square. This place is super-corporate (there are cell phones and other electronics on display in the lobby), but it's immaculate: great acoustics, beautiful decor complete with color-changing lights in the hallways and, though it was pretty much packed to capacity, it never felt crowded.

As for the music, it was a who's who of hip hopper's hip hoppers headlined by the man in the mask himself, MF DOOM, although old-schooler Big Daddy Kane stole the show. Other scheduled acts included Little Brother, Pete Rock, Spec Boogie, Lord Sear. Unannounced guests were practically a show themselves: Jin (tha Chinese MC), Joe Scudda, Boot Camp Clik, Raheem and Melle Mel (original Furious Five members performing their classic "The Message"), and last but not least, for the encore, Talib Kweli (who had been up in the VIP lounge smoking blunts mere feet from me until that point). All in all an amazing show, compounded by the fact that I got a free pass with VIP access thanks to LifeBeat.

Unfortunately the story does not end there.

It all started when I was at the LifeBeat table and the hottest girl in attendance walked in. I'm talking jaw-droppingly gorgeous. And her pleated denim mini skirt showing off her beautiful legs did not hurt at all. I saw her with some guy that I assumed to be her boyfriend so I didn't pursue her (not that I would've anyways).

So I see this same girl up in VIP, sans boyfriend, looking dead sexy and kind of lonely. I start to think that maybe I should go talk to her, but I just exchanged glances until she finally walked away. At this point I'm pretty much kicking myself for being so shy.

Now the whole show I'd been rolling cigarettes and spliffs (weed/tobacco mix for you straight-edgers out there) and I had half of one of each of those in my Drum tobacco pouch.

Cut to outside the Nokia Theatre right after the show. I'm ready to go home pretty much, but I have this crazy idea in my head that I can somehow find this girl amidst the sea of humanity. Just my luck, she was right outside smoking a cigarette. I pulled what I assumed to be a half-smoked cigarette out of my pouch and walked over to ask for a light. Surprise, surprise! The lovely young lady who had intimidated me all night long was an enthralling conversationalist. Her name is Emily. She goes to F.I.T. and I'm pretty sure she said she lives right near me in Queens. If anyone knows this girl, send her my way.

The reason I don't have her number is because, after a minute of talking to her, I was surrounded by about ten of NYPD's finest (OXYMORON ALERT!!!). You guessed it. I was smoking a spliff in the busiest sector of the busiest city in the fucking world which thanks to Giuliani (Rudy G. for President 2008!), is swarming with those beloved boys in blue 24/7. Needless to say, especially if you know me, I was cuffed and taken into custody by some decidedly inept Keystoners.

Now if you do know me, you know that I am not one to show any type of courtesy to arresting officers, of which there have been more than a few. I'm sarcastic and indignant, normally anyways.

For some reason, I was uncharacteristically calm and civil to all 37 (I think) arresting officers plus the ones I met down at the Midtown South Precinct. And wouldn't you know it paid off?

I was thinking that I'd finally be headed to the legendary Central Booking (I later found out that they never send you there for an Unlawful Marijuana Possession, even though all the cops told me I was headed there), and I was sort of looking forward to it after an hour and change in a holding cell. But after no more than two hours I was released with a summons and several officers thanked me for my courtesy.

I would pause here to reflect on my previous experiences with the injustice system of this fine country, but that's practically a fucking novel there.

This was the least amount of time I've ever spent in a holding cell out of the four times I can recall offhand. Every previous time I thought I could argue my way out of the situation (you never can) or at least make their lives a little less bearable by being a total prick (they like that because then they can reciprocate and that's why they became cops in the first place). I feel like a jack-ass for not realizing any of this shit earlier, because it seems so obvious to me now and I could've saved myself a lot of grief.

So niceness is as niceness does. As obvious as that sounds, it took me 23 years to apply it to piggies. And I still feel as though I beat the system in some way by not giving the cops the opportunity to be total dicks to some stoner kid, which I could tell they were all itching to do. And maybe, just maybe, they realized that at least one pothead is a decent, intelligible dude and not a common criminal.

Score one for the longhairs!!!

OK, that turned out to be a lot longer than I thought it would be, but I'm glad because that's been sitting in my brain for a minute.


"I guess those hip-hop guys are drawing a more diverse audience these days."
-unknown and borderline racist policeman after hearing what kind of event was going on at Nokia Theatre

"The traditional thing to do is a moment of silence, right?.....Fuck that! This is hip hop."
-Big Daddy Kane after rattling off an Oscaresque list of every celebrity (Richard Pryor, Luther Vandross, etc.) and hip hop cat (Big L, Jam Master Jay, etc.) who has died in the past 15 years or so and then calling for a "moment of noise"


A few minutes before I exited the Nokia Theatre, I ran into a cracked-out looking Dan Tamberelli (see blog entry #1) who did not remember me at all.

Melle Mel is one of the most diesel dudes I have ever seen, straight up. He could totally kick Fitty's bullet-riddled ass.

Until next time...
This still stands as the last time I ever got arrested after several unfortunate run-ins with the law from 2003-2005.

01/24/06 (MySpace Blog Repost)

So I woke up about four hours early this morning (1/24) and the first experience that required some semblance of cognizance was this:

"JOEY!" - my dad

"YEAH?" - me

~I walk into my dad's office~

"What's up" - me

"Do you have any experience with LSD or Ecstasy?" - my dad

~dialogue alternating thus forth~

"No, not really."

"Can you get any?

"I dunno. I guess. Why?"

"My friend wants to try it."

"I can try."

~I walk to the door~


"Uh....which one?"

"The L."

"Uh....which friend, if you don't mind me asking?"

"Uh....I'd rather not say."

"OK, see you later."

Now this is some sort of classic exchange that can be seen on any sitcom worth it's jump-the-shark moment. "Your friend" is always you, right? So is it my dad or his friend looking for the fix? Does this make me my father's de facto supplier? Are all the cool parents calling doses "L" now? How many licks does it take to get to the chocolatey center of a Tootsie Roll Pop? The world may never know.

That being said, this would mark the second such occasion that I have engaged in a drug related discourse with my dear old dad, a former(/current) narcotics (ab)user. The first would be approximately five years ago when my dad chastised me for not divulging my then-new marijuana habit, especially to a Deadhead/marijuana user

~I pause to look up the correct spelling of marijuana (I got it right!) in the 1996 Office Edition of the Webster's II New Riverside Dictionary. It's the first entry on page 420. Who puts these things together?~

such as himself, and then gave me a perfectly rolled doob that I smoked with my girlfiend at the time in a blissful pre-9/11 after hours schoolyard rendezvous.
Parents doing drugs is a funny thing. For the first 18 or so years of my life, I shied away from the temptation to try drugs based solely on my knowledge of my father's dalliance with the devil's candy. I guess drugs are sometimes a middle finger to the establishment (i.e. our parents) and when that gets taken out of the equation, they kind of lose some of their cache. Maybe that's just me.

Anyways I succumbed to peer pressure eventually, but it's still disconcerting talking to my folks about drugs, specifically my straight-as-a-razor's-edge mom, who is prone to turning her other cheek. It's also strange that my parents can co-exist given their radically different philosophies on mind-altering substances.

But anyways, it seems that a lot of my friends parents do or have done drugs of some kind. I'm not sure what that means for me or my friends or their parents for that matter, but it sure is fun to extrapolate on after some rum and cokes.


If you listen to one song today, I think it should be "Stomping Ground" by Bela Fleck and The Flecktones. Not that you will. Not that you're even swayed in the least bit by me telling you to listen to it. I wouldn't listen to anything you told me to. I can't even convey to you the importance of listening to this one song. I can tell you that Vic Wooten is one of the illest bassists you will ever hear and that the way he trades bass lines and his brother's drum hybrid creations for banjo licks by Bela and sax riffs by Jeff Coffin will stop you in your tracks. But honestly, what the fuck do you care? If I could accurately get that shit across, it would ruin the song anyways.

This blog entry is dedicated to the everloving memory of the purely fictional Ted Hossenfeffer. Apologies to Giovanni Ribisi.

01/14/06 Licorice @ Blue Note, New York, NY

Another MySpace blog repost.
After a short, but sweet reefer break in the nearby Sheraton, my good pal Andy and I headed downtown. After a couple of aborted attempts at a good game of Beer Pong and a nacho platter fit for a king at Senor Swanky's we headed to the hallowed jazz tourist trap Blue Note for a Late Night Groove Series event featuring local jamsters Licorice.

On a total side note, for all you music lovers out there, Blue Note Late Night Groove Series (BNLNGS) is where it's at. While not featuring the veteran jazz scenesters of the earlier shows, BNLNGS does feature up-and-comers for a fraction of the price. Recent performers include Adam Deitch, Brian Haas, Marco Benevento, Joe Russo, Cheme Gastulum, DJ Logic and more. Only thing that sucks is the over-priced drinks and lack of dancing room. I did meet Jounce bassist Dan Tamberelli (aka Little Pete from The Adventures of Pete & Pete, a childhood television favorite of mine) there one time. But I digress.

I was pretty exhausted at this point due to a night of debauchery, but I did catch a front row seat. Licorice is a typical jamband which, like sex and pizza, is pretty good even when it's mediocre. They did not disappoint. I downloaded every mp3 off their website the next day and I am a converted fan. They remind me of Phish more than any band out there, especially the piano fills. Whatever. Check 'em out.

Also at Blue Note, a girl next to me accidentally set her hair on fire while leaning in for a picture and some West Point cadets recognized my camo jacket that I stole from their hallowed military academy a few years back. Luckily, they were cool about it.

To cap off the night, Mother Nature provided some white stuff. There are few sights more breathtaking than Manhattan on a snowy winter night. It helps if you just smoked some of those Sheraton bathroom bingers.

And then back to Queens for a recharge before heading back to the dreaded Rocknam early Sunday afteroon, once agin without music.

So here I find myself transmitting thoughts into the infinite expanses of the Internet, I can't help but regret not having gone snowboarding this season. There's still time but it's looking grim.

Until next time, MySpace compadres. I'm off to get twisted, KNAWMEAN!
I might as well post the rest of these MySpace blog posts, even if they aren't all music related.

01/14/06 Chick Corea Trio @ Hilton, New York, NY

This is a repost from my short-lived MySpace blog. Remember MySpace?
So here it is...the first entry in a blog that most likely will never be read. I guess every now and then I get into some crazy situation that I feel needs to be documented in one way or another and this seems to be the most effortless way. This particular entry is in regards to the events of last Saturday night. Here goes:

Working over in Rockland County (aka Rocknam) over winter break was OK for the first couple of weeks: hanging out with old friends, hitting up new bars, winning lots of money at Texas Hold 'Em, etc. Life was sweet. But after everyone went back to school, the boredom came crashing down on me like a hurricane on heathens. Apologies to Pat Robertson. So I was thrilled to be headed back to the boros, albeit for only a couple of days. Friday night was spent mostly on public transportation with no music or literature. By the time I finally arrived back in Cop Killa Queens, I was in no shape for any entertainment other than the good ol' couch and TV. I am the Sofa King. And the Knicks won. 

After about 12 hours of sleep and an early afternoon of hardcore cleaning, I was ready to experience everything the City That Never Sleeps had to offer. But so much time and so little to do. Wait. Strike that. Reverse it. Apologies to Gene Wilder.

There was a bunch of open bars. There was some great live music. There was Andy at the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE) conference or whatever at the Hilton. Reliably unreliable Manzor was coming out to NYC. The lovely Allie from NYE would be out and about at MSG. The night was young and the potential was great (perjoratively, of course).

So what was to be?

At approximately 6pm, I left my humble abode and began the arduous trek into Money Makin' Manhattatan, Captain Morgan and a liter of cola in hand. The destination: the glamorous Hilton Hotel, packed to the gills with jazz cats and assorted worldly wise foreigners.

The Bridge Bar was the site of a tight jam session featuring veterans and rookies of the jazz scene. Suffice it to say they ripped that bar up. Best part was the renegade cocktails I made. I told the bartender I needed two glasses of ice for the sax player to suck on: "Y'know. To sustain the long notes." Silly bartender! Glasses of ice are for rum and cokes. They got the job done.

Next up was the main event of the IAJE, namely Chick Corea and his ridiculously talented trio. But this was no impromptu hotel bar throwdown. This was the main event of a $100 per day conference. So some plotting and scheming was in order. "I left my pass up in my room. I know I was supposed to have it all week; it's been a long week. Ok. Thanks." So simple.

Needless to say, Chick Corea's trio killed it jazzwise. Equally impressive was the youth percussion ensemble that preceded the headliner. You have not lived until you have witnessed the George of the Jungle theme pounded out by tens of elementary schoolers on about a hundred vibraphones and other assorted percussive instruments. I, my friends, have lived.
The night then continued upstairs at the nearby Sheraton and in the Village...

01/01/06 The New Deal @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

Somehow, I ended up going to this show solo, on New Year's Eve (or Day, technically) of all eves.

My suburban friends stayed in the suburbs and my city friends went to a rooftop party in the Bronx. I almost joined them, but I couldn't muster the motivation. I almost stayed in and did nothing as a silent protest against the incessant imperative to party.

But I ultimately decided that, if nothing else, it was best to start the year off right by sticking to my original plans.

At approximately 10pm, I hopped on the train to the heart of the beast - Times Square.

It was a bit surreal sitting in a bar just a couple blocks from the so-called biggest party in the world.

There were about 30 people there and there was free champagne at midnight. I left shortly thereafter to score tickets to the sold out show.

Since they were still clearing the area, and I didn't have a ticket, the police wouldn't let me cross through at 42nd st, where the club is located. So I had to go a few blocks downtown and wrap around.

I was able to buy a ticket pretty easily out front from a group of Jersey heads thanks to one of their friends forgetting to pace herself. For lack of a better option, I decided to hang out with their crew for a bit and hit it off with one of the girls.

A guy behind us on line told us that the greatest writer ever was Tom Robbins, who I had not heard of at that point, but is now one of my faves as well.

The rest of the night was a delightful drunken bar. I remember dancing with my new lady friend and many other lovely people to sweaty breakbeats that only The New Deal can properly deliver.

At one point, I think I got into a verbal altercation with a bartender for reasons I cannot recall.

It was one of my most memorable New Year's and the fact that I had to go at it alone and nearly sat the night out just made it that much more of a triumph.

At some point, I guess I headed home.

Here's a classy shot of me decompressing the next day:

??/??/05 Adam Deitch Project @ Blue Note, New York, NY

For this show, I managed to drag some friends along, who were blown away by the virtuosity exhibited by Mr. Deitch and company.

??/??/05 Project Logic @ Blue Note, New York, NY

This was another show that I almost skipped due to lack of accompaniment, but I decided to roll out solo and I'm glad I did.

DJ Logic is the favored DJ in the jazz jam scene, having manned the wheels of steel with groups ranging from Medeski Martin & Wood to Ratdog.

This show featured his own full band project.

I managed to snag a ride home with some friends of friends.

12/01/05 Yngwie Malmsteen @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

My friend and avid guitar geek hit me up with a free ticket to see the Swedish neo-classical metal shredmaster.

The man can tear up a fretboard, but lacks emotion. It was certainly a spectacle to behold though.

11/25/05 The Meters @ Nokia Theater, New York, NY

The Meters are one of the funkiest bands in the history of music straight out of New Orleans. So when they reunited their original members, I knew I had to go check them out.

This was my first of many times at the brand new Nokia Theatre in the heart of Times Square. It is something of a shrine to the cell phones, but it is sleek and hi-tech and shiny and a wonderful place to see live music once you get past the inherently corporate nature of it all. The sound and sight lines are great, and there are stadium seats in the back for when you need to take a breather.

The show was a predictably funking good time.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

11/19/05 Adam Deitch Project vs. Roc Raida @ Happy Valley, New York, NY

This was an issue release for art fag magazine Beautiful Decay.

The club was one of those momentous spots that enjoyed a brief time in the spotlight before fading into obscurity. It featured an elevated VIP lounge and cage dancers.

The bands and DJs performed atop a pyramid structure.

One of the city's finest young drummers (from my hometown) sparred with one of the top turntablists in the game for a great night of jazzy hip hop beats.

There was freeflowing Steel Reserve.

On my way to catch the 7 train home, I came across a line wrapped around the block of the Times Square Virgin Records. Tickets for System of a Down's MTV2 2 Dollar Bill show were going on sale to a select few at 10am, so I decided to get on line.

The first few hours were fun. The diehard SOAD fans passed bottles and joints and all was well.

Then the late hour and the cold weather began to take its toll. Rumors persisted that anyone past a certain point would not get a ticket. Still we waited.

I took a brief nap at a corner deli and returned to the line shortly after the sun rose and returned the collective mood to a more pleasant level.

We watched a cab run over a pigeon and then took delight in pedestrians inadvertently stepping in its remains.

Finally, the doors opened and all hell broke loose in a mad dash for the registers.

Sadly, I walked away ticketless.