And I Feel Fine: Recollection of 2020 and Beyond 1.1

I was musing with fellow Joup associates Chester Whelks and Kitty in Manchester UK about six weeks ago wondering about the streets of Withington about 2 miles south of city center. They told me about the burrow and its charm and pitfalls. We ate and drank at a couple of different pubs. We talked about life…and music…and art…and hopes…and aspirations. We also discussed about how I’ve lost the will to write. I told them of how it seemed there were so many people writing on the internet now, recording podcasts or producing video content that it was just overkill and disheartening. Then they, as good mates do, advised me. Kitty offered that I should just start writing and not worry what comes out. Just do it as an exercise and continue to see what happens; you could find a very strong passion again.
Chester also advised me in the form of a quote from Nick Cave which is quite long so I’ll break it down into 3 parts.

‘The Wandering Jew and You’ David Berman Interview. June 16th, 2011.

image001  I once had this dream in which I was the Broomfield/Theroux figure in a Documentary of the aforementioned title, accompanying David Berman as he walked into intimidating wilderness, a terrain which while barren, still – as he made pains to point out to me,“…has the odd barn casting a shadow the color of dried-up blood”.

A squashed can of compressed veal. A soggy copy of Playboy, singed around the centerfold’s midriff.

Why would anyone want to set fire to the image of a naked cowgirl?” I asked rhetorically.

Chasing him through parking lots,

Into parallels,

The Joup Friday Album: Broken Social Scene – ‘You Forgot it in People’

Broken Social Scene's You Forgot it in People

Broken Social Scene’s You Forgot it in People

Nature is reclaiming my elderly neighbour’s house. Really rubbing his nose in it. Recently I’ve been walking around all my former haunts, and this album has been accompanying me. Of course, there’s nothing like the olfactory and auditory to fast-track you to your memory banks, but this is nostalgia illegitimately invoked since this is an album as new to me as the year. Ordinarily I try to unearth an album to share with you that I’ve lived with for a long time, but strangely, this is an album that takes me to the era it was made without me having heard it before.

The Joup Friday Album: Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers – “Into the Great Wide Open”

Tom PettyOur family was middle class, blue collar, Polish and suburban. If you look at the average income of all the Chicago suburbs, Palos Hills falls literally right in the middle. Whatever “middle class” is these days, but in 1991 there was still a middle class and my brother and I grew up in it. As such we generally took one family trip a year, that is if my parents could afford it and get off of work. In the summer of 1991 we traveled west for not one but two weeks! I think my father’s rationalizing was we hadn’t taken a trip the previous year, and odds on after I graduated high school would not take another one as the four of us. This was “the last big family adventure!”
In late July we pilled into our tan Chevrolet four-door Suburban (the SUV before SUVs) and headed west on I-80. I will hand it to my parents, it was an epic trip and more then likely spawned my travel bug for years to come. We made stops at Pike’s Peak, the Grand Canyon, four corners, Las Vegas, The Great Salt Lake, Yellowstone National Park and The Devil’s tower. I’m sure there were a few kitch stops as well knowing my mother.
Appropriately enough, I read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy during that two weeks. I had a black Sony Walkman and I loved that machine. I played so much music through that contraption in the four years between sophomore year in high school and freshman year at the university. On this trip it was REM’s Out of Time, Sting’s The Soul Cages and of course Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers Into the Great Wide Open…today’s Friday album.

Joup Friday Album: Washed Out “Life of Leisure”

Washed Out - Life of Leisure The first time I heard “Feel it All Around” was watching Portlandia last summer. If you’ve seen or know the show, the tune acts as the opening theme song. And upon hearing it I had to know who, what, where and how. What I came up with initially was a group (which I would later find out was just Ernest Greene) called Washed Out. I put it on the back burner for some reason until recently and then it just hit me like a wonderful hazy memory…and that Portlandia show is terrific as well. Fred Armisen cracks me up, but that is another topic for another day.

The Joup Friday Album: Ween ‘Quebec’

61OwGj1G-SLIt’s gonna be a long Friday night. Well, not so long as eventful and..what’s the word? ‘divergent” will suffice, I think. Ween are a difficult band to preach to the unbeliever, they’re that guy you’ve known since High School who is not only no-holds-barred hilarious, but his filterless and inappropriate comedic instincts (while seemingly oblivious to societal norms and the due diligence and restraint the rest of us instinctively employ) are derived from a place of rich cultural, intellectual and emotional intelligence. While he’s an anomalous, aberrant champion in this ridiculous existence 99% of the time, this is regularly lost on the general populace. There’ll inevitably be an occasion when you invite him to a house party and he’s already dispensed with the sixpack he threaded through his belt on the walk there, and he hot-knifes all the resin of one of the guests who couldn’t skin it up on his own, before being suddenly inspired to display his acumen for Bruce Lee’s Jeet Kune Do, but No Can Do; he attempts to execute the 7 foot, lightbulb-obliterating scissor-kick but misses spectacularly, the momentum of his upswung leg sending him collapsing onto the sofa behind him full of previously giggling girls , whereupon he’s instinctively repelled into a nearby Yucca plant before receiving a bony toed barefoot kick to the cheekbone by the middle class guy who looks – with his blond surfer curtains – like an understudy for that LBJ Ex President out of ‘Point Break’ (’91). You’re permitted to stay, but he of course has to go, so you naturally pledge inebriated allegiance to the exile and wander off together urinating into the cooling evening breeze onto the nocturnal golf course to climb trees and scream at the stars and divulge your innermost torments.

The Joup Friday Album: The Fall ‘Imperial Wax Solvent’

The Fall: Imperial Wax Solvent

The Fall: Imperial Wax Solvent

Apologies for being late, I spent three hours attempting to write a review last night but got no further than this:

Its getting very late on a Friday night in Blighty and I’ve been sat cross legged up in my attic randomising a digital list of music for 90 minutes or so, trying to think of a fitting description of that brown firework that goes off in your nose when you collapse on your coccyx and hoping desperately for inspiration to visit until an inflated bladder necessitates a descent. My autistic daughter is politely asking to go swimming in her sleep as some repetitive House-music-piano oscillates interminably through the wall from next door, forced into an arranged marriage with the vague leakage of some clarinet and crooning from the front room downstairs.

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