Feb 9, 2019

Night at The Palm Lounge

Met some friends at the Palm Lounge last night. For those of you who aren't familiar the Palm Lounge is the hotel bar for a local historic hotel called the Eureka Inn.  This hotel is in the middle of town and has been there for... well pretty much forever.  It's rumored to be haunted and was featured in a recent movie An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn.  It's weird as shit, you'll love it. This hotel definitely has a historic feel but for whatever reason a definite weird vibe too.  I'm not sure if it's because of the strange attempts at renovating over the years and the owners clearly cutting corners on things but it's a unique place to say the least.  There's a grand lobby, old elevator a cafe/restaurant that was closed for as long as we've lived here.  I've heard it's open now but no one I know has ever eaten there.  There's a proper grimy bar I've heard was called the Rathskeller downstairs that's also been closed for years. Rumored to reopen soon. Then there's the Palm Lounge.  This was the fancy get a cocktail in a nice suit and meet a girl to take back to your room spot.  It was where you'd see a jazz band play.  It was, well what it's called, not a bar but a lounge.  Since the Rathskeller closed the Palm has become another local dive bar spot. It's still decked out in it's late 60's - mid 80's decor complete with big leathery chairs and an upholstered ceiling.  It has a stage in the corner with a grand piano. Anyway,  It's usually the place to go where you don't want to see anyone else and just chill... because it's usually dead.  Except for on my birthday last year.

After a couple failed attempts at proper birthday plans we went there intentionally to basically bring a group and take over the place but there was some super strange burlesque costume show happening.  The place was packed. Some friends wanted a drink so we hung out for a minute and got to see part of the show. People were crowded around the center dance floor which was now a make-shift runway.  We couldn't go into the game room, which I'll tell you about in a minute, because it was the dressing room for the performers?... strippers?  I'm not sure.  The song Little Red Riding Hood by Sam The Sham &The Pharaohs starts playing and a full figured woman in a cartoon wolf costume comes out and starts doing an awkward striptease to this song... stripping ?  I dunno she was taking off a costume.. not sexy clothing... anyway inside of the costume she's wearing a topless red riding hood costume and holding an axe. Hacking her way out of the wolf costume while her big ol floppy titties were out and proud.  All the while the crowd of people who all seemed to know each other were cheering her on.  More power to em, this just wasn't my scene and it was my birthday and I just wanted to hang out with my friends.  We ended up taking our party back to our house. Whatever happy birthday to me.

We get there expecting a typical dead Friday night at the Palm and there's a bunch of old people and tall tables with white table cloths and a meat and cheese platter on a table in the back. The air was thick with the stench of old man cologne, aftershave and mom perfume.  The whole bar smelled like my 4th grade teacher.  The bartender said it was a Doctor's Meeting.  It seemed like one of those scenes in a movie about aliens that are secretly living among us where the aliens, who normally have no connection to each other would meet up, kick the staff out of the room, lock the doors and take off their human suits so they can relax,  be aliens and talk about the takeover of planet Earth for an hour or two.  Maybe I'm thinking of that movie The Witches... anyway it was kind of weird.  We get our drinks and head to the "game room" to play some pool.

This game room, located right off of the lounge has always fascinated me.  It used to be a grand restaurant called the Rib Room and seemed to be pretty hopping back in the day.  The Eureka Inn has really let itself go over the years and now the Rib Room is just a room accessible from the Palm Lounge bar. It has several large booths, the kind you'd eat a big steak, ribs and hella potatoes in. Last night all of the booths seats were removed. Just the bottom part you sit on exposing old wooden framing, carpeting from the 70's and 40 year old flotsam on the concrete subfloor.  Down the center of the room are 2 coin-operating pool tables and a air hockey table and a non functioning fireplace with a large hearth at the back of the room.   There's also a jukebox stocked with CDs that were clearly picked out in the early 00's.  This was the second time we had to plug it in ourselves to use it.

We play a game of pool and while Meg and Dave are playing a drunken and high energy game of air hockey Becky and I are chilling and this guy walks in with a pretty distinct look. Tall, hoodie, long black wavy hair in a ponytail, a dark colored beanie and a med-bushy beard. He puts some quarters in the pool table and while he's picking out his pool cue Becky and I hear another person come into the room behind us and we both kind of take note as he walks in.  It's a tall guy, long wavy black ponytail, hoodie, beard and a beanie.   We both kind of look at each other and text each other. I text "twinsies"  Becky texts "glitch in the matrix"  ... Like, dude that guy just walked in here twice.  We had a laugh and  hung out a while longer. Our friend Kayce joined us and then we decided to get dinner.

It was almost 9pm in Eureka so our options were limited. Ended up picking the famous Lost Coast Brewery which was open till 11 on Fridays ... we cruise over and it's dark.  Closed. We still haven't got an explanation on that one. We went home. Anyhoo.  Thanks for reading my pointless story. 

Feb 4, 2019

Vice; A Movie About Dick

I went to the movies again.  This time I saw the new comedy bio-pic Vice.  Interesting casting choices which lends more to it being a comedy .  It's a very serious subject matter but they do a good job of making it funny.  I mean, I kind of felt bad laughing at some of it because the subject matter really kick you in the nuts.  I felt the same way about Fahrenheit 11/9.  Funny, but serious and on-point as fuck. 

If you're the type of person who is interested in seeing a comedy about Dick Cheney then this movie is probably preaching to the choir. You know most of this story already because you're an astute scholar for facts and recent history.  You're someone who knows all about how Dick and Rumsfeld had a boner for Iraq since George Sr. and when 9-11 happened that's all they wanted to do.  You've read up on how they found flimsy intel that connected Iraq to Bin Laden and forced Powell to tell the U.N.about it and how they fooled most of congress to go along with invading Iraq. But you knew this.  There's some other insight into Cheney's past I didn't know before and other tidbits about his rise to power in D.C.  But you're already interested in seeing this so I'll not spoil it too much. 

I also recently saw On The Basis Of Sex which if you didnt know it was about a Supreme Court Justice let me save you from accidentally watching it with a tube of lotion and a box of tissues.  Yea it's not a porno you sicko.   It's about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg's fight for women's rights and equality and her life & career leading up to her getting on the Supreme Court.   But there was one part in Vice (spoilery)  that relates to Ginsberg.  At one point a young Lynn Cheney lectures her dead-beat go-nowhere drunk of a husband about how he has to get his shit together because she can't.   If this country wasn't so discriminating against women back then Lynn, who was well educated, intelligent and very driven, could just go and be a successful woman without Dick.   She could have just ditched him and let him fade away into a drunken haze.  But she needed him to be successful because that's how shit was back then.  Because of that he went to D.C. and we got the Dick fucking Cheney we all know.

Anyway,  you'll see it eventually because you like to laugh at comedians making fun of asshole right-wing politicians that are ruining the country.  But if you are not someone who's cared about politics and stuff but like all those funny famous actors, you should see this because you'll learn some shit while you laugh and maybe you'll care and pay attention more around election time. 


Jan 29, 2019

Electronic Musicians Don't Actually Perform Live - Fight Me


I'm probably going to piss a lot of people off here but help me understand.  What the fuck is up with live electronic music?



I enjoy a lot of electronic music but I just don't understand electronic music that is being performed live.  I mean, you made this music out of samples of other music and sounds by turning knobs and pressing buttons on your computer, so it's basically just you and your laptop playing shit through big speakers?  How is this  "live performance" any different from someone playing it on their ipod through a PA system?  

Some of these “artists” are self described as DJ’s.  I guess that’s fine but what do DJ's do? Traditionally they play records other people made so people can dance to them.  Some have better taste and can read a crowd to play what they might be into more.  I get that. But at no point did a DJ ever think they were a musician… or do they now?  This is where I get confused/irritated.  At what point does a DJ become someone who makes music and at what point does that music that is mostly pre-recorded sounds become something that can be performed live?  They don't sing or play instruments, typically.  What do they do, physically/musically at a live concert that requires a human to be there doing it?  I mean what if I made an album in my bedroom with drum machines and guitar apps and said come see my band perform live and it was just me and an iPad plugged into a PA system?  That would not go over well.  That's what electronic music performed live seems like to me. 

killin' it
The only thing I can honestly think of that they physically do in a live setting is adjust the knobs to boost intensity on certain parts, control the lights and start and stop different sounds or repeat certain parts that the crowd is into and stuff like that.  But mostly that to me is not much more than a DJ picking/blending songs in a booth at the roller rink.   A lot of that I’m sure takes skill and dexterity but are you performing actual music live?  

Help me out here.  Other than you getting off on being sweaty, high, geeking out to loud thumping dance music and being able to brag, and name-drop on Instagram, what do you get from seeing this kind of thing live that you can’t get from just someone playing their CD? 

Bjork for example. Her music is very electronic and she still did a MTV Unplugged that blew me away.  100% acoustic instruments. Traditional and very non traditional instruments playing the electronic stuff from her record.  I’m not sure if she has a live band at shows usually but this was incredibly artistic to me. 

Anyway, fuck me I don’t get it I guess.  You're all fucking stupid and I hate you. 
#fuddydutty
#oldperson
#Iplayrealinstruments 
#checkoutmyband
#getoffmylawn

Jan 26, 2019

My Band Did a Thing! 🎵

So this punk rock band I've been in for like 6 years, Dead Drift finally got off our butts and recorded some stuff.  We didn't want to spend any money so we used free recording software and started out by setting up our 3 crappy microphones to record my drums in Benji's attic where we used to practice.  Plugged the guitars into a computer and hit record.  Used the "good mic" for vocals and tracked and mixed it all using Garageband and mastered it with Audacity on a laptop.  It's not ideal but definitely a step up from the cover of Best Friend's Girl we did when we used the microphone that is built into the laptop.  I remember standing around the computer yelling into it to record vocals.  We've come a long way.  Still tho, we don't really know how to do a recording so we just kind of went for it and learned as we went along.  After about a year of back and forth, waiting and fucking around we finally got it all done.  It might just be because I've listened to it 1000 times in the last month trying to get the levels right but I think it turned out pretty fucking okay.  I doodled cartoon versions of us and slapped a logo on it for an album cover and put it on Bandcamp yesterday.  Our worldwide debut.  Give it a listen! 



We decided to sell it for "set your own price" so you can be a cheap bastard if you want but you also have the option to kick down a little to support us so we can like make shirts or buy a new microphone or something.  If you download the album as a whole album there's a secret bonus surprise!

Let me know what you think!