Canada has better beer

Why didn’t anyone ever tell me this?

I’m in Toronto for a few days, visiting my friend Jacob and going to literary parties because he’s got some poetry published and it’s the holiday season. Of course the minute I leave there’s a bunch of shows I’m missing.

Martin Bisi has a show this Friday (7th) at 9PM at Littlefield in Park Slope/Gowanus Brooklyn. I am bummed! I met him once when I was a bartender at Planet Thai like a million years ago, and he’s a truly great producer. Altiverb just made a software plug-in so you can sound like you recorded at his studio. I have two thoughts about this: (1) what a great idea; (2) one day I’d sure like someone to make a software plug-in for my studio. I wonder, though, if any software can ever reproduce these crafted techniques.

Emulate this

Emulate this

Also, Gay Panic is playing Thursday at Public Assembly, according to Lior. He and I are going to work on some stuff soon, too, and I’m really excited about that.


Such great (free) music: the Fred Perry Artist Lounge Sessions at Stratosphere

So I’m a big fan of Insound, because they always give away music in the form of digital mix tapes. I like this because (1) I just finished grad school so have been on a Dickensian budget for the last few years; (2) broke or not, I think it’s the smartest move anyone in the music business can make. Last week they came out with this awesome compilation of music called the Fred Perry Artist Lounge Sessions, recorded in a day at Stratosphere Sound. I keep listening to it over and over. I’m so impressed with the engineer Geoff Sanoff who recorded eight different bands in one day. And not just different bands– different sounding bands with a variation of instruments, vocal styles, even genres. So not easy!

Foxygen, especially, sounds great– so great I’m gonna go see them at Webster Hall in December. You know, it’s always fun to be super into the opening band, and then see that the main player is someone you’ve been meaning to see, too– in this case, Of Montreal. Jagjaguwar has great taste in music.

God, this is the linkiest post I ever wrote. Whatever, I love this compilation.

No Merge Records, No!

It’s not that I don’t understand. As musicians, we’re living in the dystopian future. I got this. Trying to sell music, any type of music right now, is so close to impossible that it’s almost a joke.

However, I just don’t think a record made of ice is the way to go here. Yes, record made of ice. If you win their contest, Merge records will send you a kit so that you can make a record of a song from the Shout Out Louds in your freezer. Make it out of OJ and you can have a tasty snack.

Here are the reasons why I think this is Not Great.

(1) It sounds like crap. Even the one featured on their how-to video sounds like crap.

(2) It’s gonna make a mess on my turntable. Don’t tell me it’s not.

(3) I don’t think I can actually make the mold work well enough in my freezer to make a playable record. As someone who cooks, I can tell you that freezer molds are not super easy to do. You ever try to make a floaty witch’s hand in your Halloween punch? The fingers will break off.

It all seems like something out of the Onion to me. Personally, I’d rather try to print QR codes on rolling papers. Don’t steal that.

But what the hell do I know? I’m making cassettes over here.

BMI MusicWorld: Still not Helping

Welcome to the Second Installment of Sadly Obvious Career Advice from BMI MusicWorld. This time, it’s Four Ways to Avoid Music Submission Mistakes. Not Five and not Three. Got your flashcards ready? Let’s go.

(1) Don’t send an unsolicited email with an MP3 attached to somebody with a music job.

Or anyone. Ever. Whoever is still doing this needs more help than the BMI newsletter can give them.

(2) Avoid writing long emails with your submission.

What? Don’t blather on in a professional email? How will I ever get noticed if I don’t tell my life story when I submit my ten songs via MP3 attachment?

How Can I Write a Song when I have No Head?

(3) Don’t send more songs than the opportunity requires.

Listen, dude, they don’t like me cuz they don’t know me. And Ima fix that. Right now. My ten MP3s demand your love!

(4) Don’t forget to follow up.

Sigh. I just assume some of the cut pieces of advice were (1) make sure you spell the email correctly and (2) hold down the shift key when you hit 2 to make that fancy “a” symbol.

I guess the moral of the story here is that Songwriters are Special. A Special group of people whose little brains only light up in the songwriting sections. Like Gizmo.

Pop quiz: Cymbal or Chardonnay?

The new Musician’s Friend catalog is here– hooray. It must be Tuesday. I have  a little money put aside for a new cymbal, so I paged over to the drum section. Oh my god, those descriptions are funny! So I decided to make a pop quiz. Can you tell if they’re talking about a cymbal or is it actually the description of a delicious mid-range Chardonnay?

1. Unique, with dry … overtones

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

2. Crisp and lively with … a dry finish

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

3. Natural and bright and … incredibly pure and intense

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

4. Natural and bright, with great overtones …

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

5. Silvery, breathy, and transparent … slightly complex and dense

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

6. With silvery tones, [it] leaps out and competes for attention … bright and light

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

7. Earthy, with a strong attack

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

8. Strong attack … elegant finish

A. Cymbal

B. Chardonnay

How did you do?

A SuperMeow of One. Also, Some Weird Sin.

When you’re a SuperMeow of One, so to speak, it’s hard to get anything done. Also, this day job thing? Inconvenient. Damned inconvenient.

The Imaginary Friends CS Release is scheduled for the first two weeks of December, as soon as we nail down a release party date. Everything is mixed. It just needs to be mastered and the artwork needs to be finished, and we’ll be done. Of course, there’s the matter of the next video…

In the meantime, there was such a terrific art show across the street last week. It was called Some Weird Sin and was put together by good buddies of mine Clare Stack and Adam DePalma. Aren’t they gorgeous?

Too sexy
Photographer Luke Nilsson

Here’s jah and ruel wrestling.

The Mask gives him power.
Photographer Luke Nilsson

Here’s a clip of Imaginary Friends playing at the show.

To post or to do? That is the question.

I’m in the middle of a major exciting project, and it means I don’t have time to post much. 

Here’s some work I engineered and mixed over the summer, but never wrote about. Why? See title above. Please go check these guys out–they’re awesome and I love them.

I’m building my twitter! I’m gonna be one of those jokers that has 20,000 following to get half or less of that followers. Is it worth it? I don’t know, but I feel like people in the real world will take me more seriously if they see those numbers in the fake– er, online one, so there you go. In other words, follow me on twitter.

Watch this Imaginary Friends video. I did it all myself. Except for the music, of course, the most important part. I filmed it using a go pro and the camera on a iPod. Edited with Final Cut Pro X, the devil’s version. It’s all part of the Imaginary Friends album launch coming on November 23. Oh my god I feel a little nervous about this. There’s so much work to do still, but it’s gonna sound so good.

Finally, I put this on my twitter for a minute, but then took it off, but now I’m making a link at the bottom of this page where nobody will see it. I’m real conflicted about this NY times story about my neighborhood, featuring a backyard bbq on my porch. It’s not a negative story, it’s just kind of inaccurate and has a weird NY Times filter on it, as usual. The sun rises in the east, fire is hot, and the NY Times gets it wrong.  On the other hand, no publicity is bad publicity, I guess. With that said, I will link.