Wednesday, June 24, 2009

i've moved on.

i used to write here
and at the time it meant everything,
so it seemed to be the right thing to do to bring it back to life.

so this is my resurrected dream, of sorts, and hopefully i'll be writing here for a good long time.

Friday, June 5, 2009

on hiatus, semi-permanently.
be back at some point.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Day Two: Coachella: Part Two


I mentioned in an earlier Coachella post about the times during the festival when the music matched the desert surroundings, and the Calexico set was definitely one of those times. We were unsure of what we were going to see at this time slot, and if I'm not mistaken we had something else chosen, but somehow we wound up finding a place on the grass to stretch out and take in this band. Prior to this experience the most I'd known of Calexico is the things I'd heard off those friends I'd known who'd seen the co-tour they did with Iron and Wine, and a song that had landed itself on a mix given to me once, featuring Charlotte Gainsbourg (their cover of Bob Dylan's Just Like a Woman, for the film I'm Not There). This was a set that I did not feel driven to give my constant attention to, yet their music sunk into my skin like the rays of the late afternoon sun did. I experienced them casually, leaning back in the grass, and taking in the day around me. The one sight that still revolves in my memory bank was of this group of young people who were dancing, often dramatically, to the music together - and with each other. There was one girl in particular, strikingly beautiful, dressed in a sarong and bikini top, with a deep scar that snaked up her torso. What struck me the most about this girl is how she spun around, in complete abandon, not hiding this mark on her that some might label a flaw. It was amazing to watch, and hit me right there how much power music has, and how deeply I'm affected by being among music fans. Calexico has stayed around with me, too - like a postcard I sent home to myself - as I've found myself seeking more of their music, playing it over and again, and feeling transported back to the desert, and that day.

Thievery Corporation

The beauty and magic continued on to the main Coachella stage, as we made our way over to watch Thievery Corporation. Again, the music and the desert matched up perfectly, and as the night sky turned dark, and the bright array of lights turned on, I felt transported by the music. This was a set impossible not to dance to, to sway back and forth to, and to feel lifted by - even if you sat on the grass in wonderment. The only weak moment was when they asked Perry Farrell to join them on-stage to sing Revolution Solution. I know he was featured on the released version of this song, but his voice really detracted from the over-arching sound of the set to me. The rest though was brilliant, truly an unforgettable. Warning Shots and Exilio were my favourites, as was Lebanese Blonde. I am grateful that I did not miss the swirling magic of this set.


Oh how I wanted to like M.I.A., I really did. Both Jules and I have enjoyed her music for awhile. Now, I will preface this by saying that I am a fan of breaking down the fourth wall that exists between stage and audience, and I have often admired, and enjoyed, artists who bridge that gap and really interact with their fans (bands that do random gigs in fans flats, stage diving like Amanda Palmer did in her set, artists who go into the audience during a show as Joss Stone actually did), but this - the stage invasion that M.I.A. instigated, it felt different. From the start of her set she seemed determined to break all the rules just for the sake of breaking them, and to prove some point that she wasn't a sell out. She even went into a rendition of Amy Winehouse's Rehab (Amy Winehouse, who was supposed to play, and whose slot M.I.A. actually ended up with) with the re-written lyrics of "They tried to make me do the Oscars but I said no, no, no.") This just seemed like the wrong place to throw out all this anti-music corporation anger. I mean, did she not agree to do Coachella? Was it not a festival of music? It was not a brand campaign showcase, or any kind of heavily commercialized venue. To me, Coachella seemed to be full of music fans - not like some Los Angeles show which is filled with a percentage of industry people just being seen. Whatever her reasons, and she may very well have had them, it rubbed me the wrong way and made it hard for me to enjoy her music. I felt like I was a manipulated participant in an agenda that I did not necessarily buy into. I am all for the spirit of fight the man, but this just felt like a battle fought against an innocent village. We were all there for the music.

The Killers

Brandon Flowers is the epitome of a frontman. He is charismatic, theatrical, passionate, and impossible not to be moved by. I remember the very first time I heard The Killers it was the song Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine and my first thought was "Who stole John Taylor's bass guitar?" Duran Duran was my first band I ever fell in love with, and all the shows I went to were phenomenal to me. They would start and I would disappear into the music, the showmanship of Simon LeBon, the sounds of the keyboard, lead guitar and bass - all of it. The show would start, and I would scream-sing along, and before I knew it the show was over and I was screaming for an encore. This set felt that way. For an evening I was that 15 year old girl scream-singing along to a band that just stole me away. They even played Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine. Though my favourites were the emotive Sam's Town with Brandon on the piano, the sing-a-long All These Things That I've Done, and my personal favourite Killers' song, Read My Mind.

They were incredible.

Thank you, Mr. Flowers, for making me feel 15 again. And yes, my crush on you is still going strong.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Day Two: Coachella: Part One

Ida Maria

Second day in and the first set we saw was Ida Maria. I was not all that familiar with her music beyond the one song that had made its rounds via the music blogs that I follow, I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked. She was much more than that catchy tune, though that was a fun song to take in live (and the stickers that were getting passed around, with the retro Sex Pistols font, was quite fun). She reminded me a lot of a more pop-infused Bjork (think Debut, or perhaps a little less surreal Sugarcubes). Andi did mention that she reminded her of Nena, and I see that comparison, too; a matter of fact I think we mused on her doing a cover of 99 Luft Balloons while discussing her. She gave a high energy performance that was hard not to be caught up in, and I enjoyed the intro she gave to my personal favourite song of the set, Stella. My only real criticism would be that I would have preferred they turned up her vocals a bit more, and that there had been a bit more sound balance between the rest of the band, and her voice. I also really loved the song that she introduced as a "desert song", Keep Me Warm, especially the lyrics "Pour myself a cup of coffee full of sober nights, cos nicotine and coffee are my friends in this fight".

Bob Mould Band

Hüsker Dü was one of those bands that I'd heard of, but not heard, until I found myself working for years at various record stores. I'll admit, though, that I heard Bob Mould first in Sugar before I ever heard an album of the former, and I think my musical heart was always more moved by the latter (I loved Copper Blue so much). He gave an amazing performance, full of power pop energy that I had first loved in those first moments of hearing him. Hoover Dam was my favourite of the set, as I mentioned before a song coming from the album I loved the most from his various incarnations, and musical body of work. I also enjoyed one of his new songs, Life and Times, whose lyrics hit me hard - in a good way. I hadn't actually planned on checking out his band when I'd originally set-up my Coachella plan-to-see list, but I am glad I stumbled into the Gobi tent and gave a listen.

Joss Stone

There was a bit of a break between acts we had planned to see, and Jules and I wandered about a bit, finally deciding to find a nice spot on the grass and listen to Joss Stone. She gave an enjoyable performance, and has quite a voice. I especially enjoyed her nearly unrecognizable cover of The White Stripes' Fell In Love With A Girl (Boy). Though I personally prefer the original, this was a refreshing take on the song, and it was a nice showcase for her bluesy voice. She interracted with the audience in a playful way, and her enjoyment with the day, and performing was infectious, and we both found ourselves tapping our toes and smiling a lot (even in the heat of the late desert afternoon).

Paolo Nutini

This was one of Jules' can't miss picks, this and the next set (though the next one we were both determined not to miss). Unfortunately Paolo's set ran into the next one, so we only stayed for a few songs. What we did see was best described as charming and fun. I would like to see a full set with him someday, and both of us agreed to checking him out again if, or when, he comes to Los Angeles. The one thing that stuck out for me, as well as his charm and fun persona, was how his accent comes out so thick in his songs. I'd heard New Shoes on a mix Jules made for our drive to Coachella, and then heard it again this morning on the same mix, and realized that the album version is very produced, and that his accent is nearly erased on the recorded version. I prefer the live Paolo, thick Scottish accent, and all.

Amanda Palmer

Amanda Palmer's set was one of my most loved musical memories from Coachella. I loved her, and though I did like her before Coachella, I think seeing her live turned me into an all-out fan of hers. She has tremendous stage presence and charisma, has this way of connecting with the audience both with her expressions, her asides and stories between songs, and her unique and emotion-infused performance. She started the show by bringing out a line of volunteers who allowed their bodies to be painted up, including a letter affixed to each of their backs which spelled out her name as introduction. She stood up in all her corset and gartered glory and it was impossible to not pay attention. My favourites of the set were the moving Ampersand (that has found its way into my heart, and become one of those songs that I'll be calling one of my favourites for a long time to come), Coin Operated Boy, I Google You (a co-written gem that she wrote the music for, and Neil Gaiman wrote the lyrics to that anyone who spends anytime on the internet can relate to, even if you want to deny it), and the grand, crowd-surfing finale - a sing-a-long to Radiohead's Creep. Amanda Palmer had me on an emotional roller-coaster the entire set, crying one minute (especially to Ampersand), laughing the next, and applauding her tenacious, brave and beautiful spirit the next. This really was one of the highlights of Coachella, for me.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Day One: Coachella: Part Two

Leonard Cohen

Just thinking about the set, and seeing the man in person, I get tears in my eyes. There are moments in life where you realize, without a moment of doubt, that you are glad to be alive - and watching Mr. Cohen sing was one of those moments for me. I stood there watching, with my beautiful daughter beside me, one of my good friends standing close by, and a few other good friends spread through the crowd, and felt amazed, lucky, and healed. Though I wish he had played my all-time favourite song, he did sing Bird On A Wire and Everybody Knows, and of course, Hallelujah. When everyone in the crowd sang along to the chorus, with him, as the sun began to set in the desert, tears were streaming down my face. It was truly my most favourite moments of the entire festival, and one of those unforgettable moments in my life. Mr. Cohen himself was so humble, genuine, and truly a beautiful soul. I still do not have the proper words to describe seeing him play, nor the coherent thoughts to describe what the experience was like. I just know that, as my friend Dale has said about the experience, my heart felt healed.


We missed the first half, or so, of Morrissey's set because of Leonard Cohen, so I am not sure my assessment of this is all-together fair. That said, we did arrive at the very moment he was stating that the smell of burning flesh he was experiencing, how he hoped it was human. Then Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others started up, and he was visibly annoyed, and would go from singing loudly to mumbling the lyrics half-heartedly, as if he was grumbling, or struggling to remember the words. He seemed overall to be put upon being there, and perhaps he was. The highlight of the set for me was hearing him play How Soon Is Now, and I was also cheering him on when he took his shirt off, as I'd always heard he did back in the days of the Smiths, as I'm all for being proud of your body at any age. I wanted to like him, I wanted to enjoy the set, and I wanted to feel something more than let down by him. Maybe it was not fair, as well, for me to react to him right after Leonard Cohen, but it happened the way it did. He ended his set and I was disappointed in the experience, that is just how it felt for me.

Paul McCartney

I was born into a Beatles family. There is not a moment of my life where I do not remember knowing who the Beatles were, or having their music around in my life somehow. They were the first albums I remember memorizing the lyrics to. They were the music my Mom listened to that changed her expression, that lifted her up when she was down, and that brought her to tears sometimes, too. I learned what it looked like to love a band, and would remember it later when I fell for bands myself. I remember the stories my Mom told me about the music, and her memories she had attached to their songs. And, after awhile, I started building my own memories to their music.

Julia's Dad grew up in a Beatles family, too, and he loved them as much as I did, and as much as our families did. We had every album in that first tiny apartment we shared, and when I found out for sure I was having a daughter we both agreed that Julia (named after the song, and John Lennon's Mother), was perfect. Her father sang her Blackbird when she was a baby, and we both sang Hey Jude to her on long car rides. Standing next to her singing along to both songs, and so many others, was incredible.

He played for three hours. He was amazing and emotional, and seemed to give so much to all of us. He spoke about Linda (the day he was there playing was the 11th year anniversary of her passing). He spoke about John (and played a song I hadn't heard since I was much younger, from a Paul McCartney album that I would take for days on end from my Mom and sing along to). He spoke about George (and played Something on the ukelele). He came out for three encores, and I truly believe he would have stuck around and played further into the night if the venue would have allowed it. This was the closest I'll ever come to seeing The Beatles, and I'm grateful for the experience. It was an unforgettable night, and really the best way to end my very first day at Coachella.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Day One: Coachella: Part One

Before the memories become an even bigger music-induced blur then they already are, I thought I'd write up a small, per-artist review, if for nothing else but so that I have a place to revisit, and remember.

We Are Scientists

We arrrived and were waiting in line as We Are Scientists were already on-stage. I could hear 'After Hours' while my backpack was being checked, and had that anxious feeling of wanting to be inside already twisting around inside. We made our way over to the main stage and found a spot on the grass. We only were around for the last song and a half, but they seemed good. They are going on my list of "catch at a later date".

The Great Escape (live, Coachella 2009) ~ We Are Scientists

Airborne Toxic Event

We moved up flush with a barrier wall to watch the next band on the main stage, Airborne Toxic Event. This was one of the bands I was very excited to see, especially since I was too ill to make it to their show at the Glass House. They were fantastic. All of the members had tremendous stage presence, especially the violinist (Anna Bulbrook) and singer/guitarist (Mikel Jollett). They opened with my favourite track from their self-titled album, 'Wishing Well', which soared and far exceeded the sound I'd grown to love on their album. Their cover of 'Goodbye Horses' was phenomenal, and 'Gasoline' blew me away. 'Does This Mean You're Moving On?' pulsed with a rockabilly feel reminiscent of mod/ska events I went to in the mid-to-late eighties, and had the crowd bouncing in the sun. Jollett announced after the song that the song was "fun to perform, but fucked up when it happened". I will definitely not miss them the next time they play here in Los Angeles, which hopefully won't be too long a wait since they are Echo Park/Los Feliz locals.

Goodbye Horses (live, Coachella 2009) ~ Airborne Toxic Event

M. Ward

Prior to this past Friday my only exposure to M. Ward had been to his work with other artists. First, with the work he did on Bright Eyes' album 'Cassadaga', and tour for the same album. Then there was the album he made with Zooey Deschanel, under the name She & Him, that I'd enjoyed. But, when it came to his solo work I really had know experience with his sound, or songs. There were moments during this long weekend when the music and the desert met up and became something near perfect, and beautiful - this was one of those moments. As I sat there on the grass among friends and my lovely daughter, or when I mid-set laid back on the grass and took in the hazy afternoon sky, I felt something close to what I imagine floating feeling like. It seemed as if some of the anxiety and heartbreak I've had over the last few months started to lift off of me, and fly off somewhere in the ether. What a feeling.

Roll Over Beethoven (live, Coachella 2009) ~ M. Ward

Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band

For years I have held a special place in my heart for Conor Oberst, a feeling of adoration that began back when I first heard the song "Lua" on a now somewhat legendary Valentine's Day music mix that a dear friend of mine made. His work under the name/guise of Bright Eyes has been well-loved by me, especially the albums 'I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning' and 'Cassadaga'. That said, I was a bit hesitent in regards to expectations of what his live performance would be like as the last time I'd seen him, on a second night of his Los Angeles leg of the 'Cassadaga' tour he was in a foul mood, and took his disposition out on the audience (though, I have to admit he sounded amazing, even then). I had nothing to fret over this past Friday, though, as he was brilliant - and his new band (who he has been recently quoted as saying he "to Tepoztlan, Mexico to make a solo record – he accidentally formed a band.” - were incredible. My favourite of the set, the song 'Cape Canaveral', was breathtakingly beautiful, and impossible not to shed tears over. I would love to catch him live with this band again - soon - I hope.

Cape Canaveral (live, Coachella 2009) ~ Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band

...More to come from Day One soon...

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'm not gonna match you cause I'll lose my voice completely

Ampersand (video) ~ Amanda Palmer

"And I may be romantic,
and I may risk my life for it,
but I ain't gonna die for you,
you know I ain't no Juliet.
And I'm not gonna watch you wanna burn yourself out baby,
no I'm not gonna stop you,
cause I'm not the one that's crazy."

There is so much I want to write about my three days at the Coachella festival, but I need to sift through the memories, and the short notes I jotted down along the way. I need to re-visit some of the music, and the emotions that still cling on my skin, and on my insides. And some of the feelings I want to keep to myself because I feel so changed right now, and so healed, yet some of that feels so deeply personal that I fear bleeding all of it out in words - as I'm known to do - may take too much from it, and I really need the healing, I do.

This song, though, is playing over and over again in my memory. It is as if there is a loop unspooling, recoiling, rewinding itself up, and then playing again. I know that I stood there in that tent, close to the stage, watching her play this on the piano, and sing in what seemed like was her heart out. She seemed to be bleeding in the way that I do in words that I type, or scratch out in composition books, and I was following along with ever turn of phrase, with every lyric, and I stood there with tears running down my face, feeling so much.

I am tired of the hurting that comes from my own issues, my own pain, and my own broken hearted pieces. But, even more, I am tired of being hurt from other people's pain and broken hearted pieces. My instincts push me to try to heal the other, to understand, to rip myself open if it means they will find something soothing in anything I have to give, even when what they need, or what they have to say, slays me and slashes at me in ways that are near impossible to recover from. So, why do I do it? Why do I let my voice and wants and needs be lost to someone else's voice and wants and needs? Why do I chalk it all up to love, as if that makes all the pain okay?

I don't want to do it anymore. I don't want to lose myself completely. I don't want it anymore, not like this. I want to keep healing, and for my heart and words to matter.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Drink up with me now and forget all about the pressure of days

"Drink up, baby, look at the stars,
I'll kiss you again between the bars,
where I'm seeing you there,
with your hands in the air,
waiting to finally be caught.

Drink up one more time,
and I'll make you mine,
keep you apart deep in my heart,
separate from the rest,
where I like you the best,
and keep the things you forgot."

'Between the Bars (cover, live) ~ Metric

The kind that goes out and then sleeps for a week

You know darling: I can't stand to sleep alone: Lazy Afternoons Mix

Sleep Alone
~ Bat For Lashes
The City That Never Sleeps ~ Eurythmics
Hold Still ~ Grizzly Bear
Slowly (Oh So Slowly) ~ Conor Oberst
Day Old Blues ~ Kings Of Leon
Blue ~ Angie Hart
Sylvia Plath ~ Ryan Adams
Transatlanticism ~ Death Cab For Cutie
Never Far Away ~ The White Stripes
If You Want Me ~ Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova
Glycerine ~ Bush
Not Your Year ~ The Weepies
I Know ~ Fiona Apple?
Creep ~ Radiohead
Perfect Day ~ Lou Reed
Dream a Little Dream ~ Mama & The Papas
Will You Wait Here ~ Longview

Lazy Afternoons Mix ~ Zipped Up

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

And I've been here, silent all these years

A good friend of mine told me about this film, and the contents within a scene meant to be taken as comedy, on Friday last week, and it has bothered me deeply ever since.

The article above was shared by the same friend, and is very well written and thought provoking. It hit me on a very personal level, and made me realize that though there has been years that have passed, the hurt is still there, and the elements that were part of the society I was in back then still exist now, keeping silence a continuing after effect of rape.

I wrote this in another forum, but I wanted to share it here, as well - my response to the above link:

As a rape survivor, and someone who kept silent because of the situation and the societal opinions regarding date rape, or rape by someone you knew, and perhaps had been out with, and maybe considered having sex with, or had had sex with was not rape - even if you said no, even if you screamed no, even if you ran away the second you could, and even if it changed who you were for years - well, the idea of a joke being made of it just really disgusts me, but more than that, it just makes me deeply sad.

Sad too that I’m not the only one I know with a story. That more women in my life, or who have been in my life, have their own story then ones who do not. And that as a mother of three children, the thought that this is a message that is still in the mainstream, and considered entertainment, just makes me so sad.

This is definitely worth a read, and more than that, worthy of the discussions I hope this whole thing brings to light. We keep quiet so often about our stories of rape, or sexual abuse, because we don’t want to be labeled, pitied, singled out, or thought of as different because of it - but silence does not help anyone, not even ourselves.

Is it something so good

Yet there's still this appeal: Though love will tear us apart (again): Another Love Mix

Your Love ~ Pacha Massive
Lovecats (live, cover) ~ Tricky
I'm Gonna Love You Too ~ Blondie
Love Will Tear Us Apart ~ Swans
Thin Line Between Love & Hate ~ The Pretenders
Love Is Dead ~ Kerli
This Year's Love ~ David Gray
You Can't Hurry Love ~ Diana Ross & The Supremes
One Sweet Love ~ Sara Bareilles
Game of Love ~ Wayne Fontana & The Mindbenders
Crazy In Love (cover) ~ Snow Patrol
The One I Love (cover) ~ Rosie Thomas
I Love You (Je T'Aime Mon Non Plus) ~ Cat Power & Karen Elson
Someday You Will Be Loved ~ Death Cab For Cutie
My Love ~ The Bird & The Bee
No One's Gonna Love You ~ Band Of Horses
Forever Love ~ Anna Nalick
Prisoner of Our Love ~ The Airfields

Another Love Mix ~ Zipped Up

Monday, April 13, 2009

I'll never lose this pain, never dream of you again

'Untitled' ~ The Cure

"Hopelessly drift in the eyes of the ghost again,
down on my knees and my hands in the air again,
pushing my face in the memory of you again,
but I never know if it's real
never know how I wanted to feel.

Never quite said what I wanted to say to you,
never quite managed the words to explain to you,
never quite knew how to make them believable,
and now the time has gone,
another time undone."


Where a secret was concealed

slowly I am realizing that the love I wrapped around myself
was made up of caught in my throat chance decisions
and the wavering and wandering desires of every other whim
but my own

I slip and slide into these well-rehearesed chaste moments
that one would swear was fated and cast by the stroke of some star-crossed love
reigned in and provoked by a moonglow, or some other mysterious magic
meant for every ever after

but I know the paths and maps of all those in-betweens
the picture that each person secretly longs for yet rarely utters aloud
unwrap the right truths and all those locked up fantasies
come falling out to land right there
at my feet

I should have been a courtesan instead
with brightly coloured flowing dresses to hide within
and slashes criss-crossed on my pale white skin outlining where wings would be
in another life or on a different girl
anyone but me

lost among this shadow boxed inside-out lie of love
have you caught any glimpse of who I am at all
and is it fair to blame you that you cannot see something
that I made completely invisible
to you

inspired by The Calendar Hung Itself ~ Bright Eyes
The Calendar Hung Itself (live, video)

I just wanted you to love me, honey

"I knew I was never gonna talk to you tomorrow,
and oh, the birds how they sing.
If you were a bird could you sing me a song of sorrow?
‘Cause all I know from you is grief.

But, I never wanted to be your rolling train,
I never wanted to be your dancin’ shoes.

I just wanted you to love me."

'Touch, Love and Lose (live)" ~ Ryan Adams

Driving back home in the typical mass of Los Angeles traffic in a truck that is not mine I find myself feeling overwhelmed, over-wrought, and sick of just about everything - especially myself. This song came on and I turned the volume up, higher, higher, and higher.

Ryan and his blues, slipping out of the speakers, swirling around the cab of that truck, leaving me feeling understood, embraced, and a little saved.

Loving someone who is still in love with someone else, it is the stuff of so many tragedies, tear-jerker movies, adolescent paperback novels, and so many songs of broken hearts. Seems almost contrived to cry about such things, and yet we do.

Sometimes one mistakes soulful eyes and warm arms for love, and sometimes the other mistakes a kind smile and a shoulder to cry on for a temporary fix.

The sun is going down now, it turns the smog into some kind of breathtaking brilliance. Everything ugly looks beautiful in the right light, or played in the right key - even a broken hearted girl.

(song of the day)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Never give a girl a gun

there are still these blisters on the inside of each hand
notches left on my hip where the holster used to hang
you taught me to aim to the left and close one eye tight
to run like hell when the bullet broke the skin
to never look back and don't you ever cry, girl

but when I pulled the trigger and felt the recoil
bounce me back against the wall
you stared in disbelief with that mouth wide open gape
as if to say that you could not believe this trick would turn
you built a cold-hearted assasin up an out of a warm wishing fool
and I said to you never look away and don't you ever scream, boy

give my gun away when it's loaded

inspired by 9 Crimes ~ Damien Rice


"They don't love you,
like I love you."

'Maps (live)' ~ Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Yeah Yeah Yeahs' performance on SNL last night was phenomenal, and they played 'Maps', which does my heart in; but, I love it.

Oh my stars, how I love Karen O.

Will you lie with me and just forget the world?

"Those three words,
are said too much,
and not enough."

'Chasing Cars (live)' ~ Snow Patrol

Waiting for the gift of sound & vision

From your lips she drew a hallelujah: So let go: A Masked & Covered Mix, Vol. 1

Last Goodbye (cover) ~ Natalie Merchant
Something (cover) ~ Jim Sturgess
Chasing Cars (cover) ~ Vitamin String Quartet
Let Go (cover) ~ Boys Like Girls
Teardrop (cover) ~ Newton Faulkner
He's a Rebel (cover) ~ My Morning Jacket
Jimmy (cover) ~ Of Montreal
Use Me (cover) ~ Pete Yorn & Kinky
Use Somebody (cover) ~ Bat For Lashes
Sound & Vision (cover) ~ Franz Ferdinand
Souvenir (cover) ~ Amiina
My Hero, Zero (cover) ~ The Lemonheads
Time to Pretend (cover) ~ Gareth Pearson
Bad Moon Rising (cover) ~ Rasputina
Sweet Child O' Mine (cover) ~ Taken By Trees
Mad World (cover) ~ Gary Jules
Romeo & Juliet (cover) ~ The Killers
Mr. Blue Sky (cover) ~ Lily Allen
Hallelujah (cover) ~ Rufus Wainwright

I hope its gonna make you notice someone like me

Natasha Khan/Bat For Lashes' cover of Kings of Leon's recent 'Use Somebody' is a work of stark beauty and vulnerability. I love the organ in the background, and the tambourine. It reminds me of the Doors albums I borrowed from my Mom growing up, and the way I found their songs to feel something close to holy, sensual and intimate.

Khan's version gifts the song a more timeless, stripped down feel - which also adds to the plea of loneliness that the lyrics provide. Where the original soars as a post-modern power ballad, Khan's cover brings it in closer, holds itself with arms wrapped around sadness, and raw emotion.

I love both versions.

Zipped Up

(song of the day, cover Sunday)

It's a dark secret you carry with you

They're gonna find us: At the dark end of the street: Meow Mix

Something for Cat ~ Henry Mancini
Black Cat ~ Ladytron
Cats in a Bag ~ The Luyas
Jump at the Cats ~ King Creosote
Dark Secret ~ Matthew Sweet
Couches in Alleys ~ Stryofoam, featuring Ben Gibbard
Three-Legged Cat ~ Red House Painters
Plea From a Cat Called Virtue ~ The Weakerthans
Freeze ~ Mikix The Cat
Dark End of the Street ~ Cat Power
Cat People (Putting Out Fires) ~ David Bowie
Cat Tail Legs ~ Megan Hamilton
Iceland ~ Bark Cat Bark
Big Cat ~ The Clean
Risenraeder ~ Kitty Hoff & Coralie Clement
Kitty Get Down ~ The Ropes
Switchblade Kitty (Ruckus Roboticus Remix) ~ The Lady Tigra
Rippin Kittin ~ Miss Kitten

Meow Mix ~ Zipped Up

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Somewhere deep inside you must know I miss you

"I was in your arms,
thinking I belonged there
I figured it made sense,
building me a fence.
Building me a home,
thinking I'd be strong there,
but I was a fool,
playing by the rules.

The gods may throw a dice,
their minds as cold as ice,
and someone way down here,
loses someone dear.
The winner takes it all,
the loser has to fall,
It's simple,
and it's plain,
why should I complain?"

'The Winner Takes It All (cover)' ~ Meryl Streep

Say what you want about this film, and the music within it, but there is something endearing about it, and hard not to adore, if even just a little. Meryl may not have the best voice, but she plays the role as Sophie's independent Mom so well, and in most of the film seems as if she is having the best time ever (especially after so many heavy dramatic roles played prior that she is so famous for).

And here, the vulnerability and sadness, so raw and real. To me this is the strongest song of the film, and had me actually realizing what this song was about in the first place. Abba, so much a staple of my growing up years (and those late teens/early twenties club days), I had forgotten the regret in this one, and the bittersweet resolve.

The first time I watched it was on a plane and it made me cry. Tonight it hit me a little harder - this scene, and the one between her and Sophie, her daughter. During that scene Jules turned to me, grabbing my hand, and asked if I would give her away if she ever got married.

Then in this scene, she asked if I was okay. I think she may be the only one who really knows how much I hurt over what happened, and what did not happen. And yes, it still hurts like hell, though I'll carry on and tell myself I am fine until I believe it, because that is what I do. I carry on. I survive. Always.

(song of the day)

Friday, April 10, 2009

You gave me more to live for, more than you'll ever know

"Kiss me,
please kiss me.
Kiss me out of desire,
not consolation."

'Last Goodbye (cover, live)' ~ Natalie Merchant

And help you to forget

"Ophelia was a tempest cyclone,
a goddamn hurricane.
Your common sense, your best defense,
they wasted, and in vain.

For Ophelia'd know your every woe,
and every pain you'd ever had.
She'd sympathize and dry your eyes,
help you to forget...

And, help you to forget."

'Ophelia' ~ Natalie Merchant

One of my favourite songs, videos, artists. Such a moving piece on the collective consciousness of women, and also on the split from reality/mental illness, and the stereotypes and roles, both chosen and directed, that women have taken through the centuries.

Ophelia is such a tragic soul, the one woman besides Juliet and Lady Macbeth, that stand out to me and linger in my memory from my Shakespearean studies. She is one of those characters that I am ever left wondering about, wanting to know more, wanting to explore her heart and mind. Ophelia, like the girls from 'Virgin Suicides', and Daisy in 'The Great Gatsby'. Mysteries that will never be fully solved, but that keep us riveted, wondering, and full of contemplation.

I always feel a bit like these Ophelia's, so many pieces that make-up the person I am, sometimes conflicting, sometimes in harmony, and ever-evolving.

(song of the day)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Its filling me up with new life

"The stars in the sky,
bring tears to my eyes;
they're lighting my way,

And, I haven't felt so alive,
in years."

'But Not Tonight' ~ Depeche Mode

This song reminds me of nights spent in, usually a Saturday because there were never any good places to go to on Saturdays. Perhaps we needed it as a recovery period, or maybe it just became a ritual that we relied on.

We had three movies that we rented everytime. After awhile the woman who owned the tiny video store started joking that we should just keep them. 'Modern Girls' was one of the three, and this song was a big part of the film.

It also reminded me of driving around Hollywood in the middle of the night, my too-small car filled with people, music and voices entertwining. The nights back there seemed endless.

A girl and her blues

(written January 5, 2007)

the blows are unexpected
they sneak in through a left open window
or bleed out from the contents of a song
leaving behind purple rising bruises
in places marked easy-to-hide
because this is the kind of pain meant to be kept solitary

like ghost ships full of forgotten treasure
that only i can see
after a five shot night of whiskey
or a twist tryst with someone who calls you
by every name but your own

as if my face casting shadows on your bedsheets
needs to be blurred out or painted over
made into some unrecognizable fantasy
that just cements all those grade school slurs
and the party invitations that missed my post box
every year

i grow so weary of these re-writes and character studies
ever the muse just thrown into a new set and form
by a different artist's hand

after awhile someone else's lines turn into my own
and i lock the bathroom door behind me afterwards
watch black streaks of borrowed eyeliner slide down my skin
as i feel nothing but the cold tiles under my feet
ever searching the mirror reflection
to find who i am anymore

it is then the marks become visible
gashes that spell out every weakness and lie
and i think to myself
that there are not enough tears in one girl's lifetime
to make this ever okay

maybe you should have just forged my passport
and made me into someone from your ink stained stories
at least then i could read ahead and know how it was all
supposed to end

To be lost in a forest

On all those hooded sweatshirt walks: We were a stroke of luck: A Wandering Mix, Part One

~ Stars
Fake Palindromes ~ Andrew Bird
Gold Mine Gutted ~ Bright Eyes
Someday You Will Be Loved ~ Death Cab For Cutie
Grazed Knees ~ Snow Patrol
This Modern Love (acoustic) ~ Bloc Party
A Forest ~ The Cure
Upward Over the Mountain ~ Iron & Wine
Something To Believe In ~ Aqualung
Still Fighting It ~ Ben Folds
We Might As Well Be Strangers ~ Keane
Sense ~ Pete Yorn
Violet Hill ~ Coldplay
Walking With a Ghost ~ Tegan & Sara
I'm On Fire ~ Bruce Springsteen
Appalachian Springs ~ The Verve
The Great Beyond ~ Aimee Mann
This Is Your Life ~ The Killers
Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying ~ Belle & Sebastian

Wandering Mix, 1 ~ Zipped Up

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

This is love

I've very rarely been this vulnerable with anyone, but it has happened, and it means everything to be able to trust someone to see you this exposed. It is beautiful, and yes, it is love; not matter what your definition of love is - friend, lover, parent, child - moments like this are love.

I'm glad I've had one or two of those moments in this life.

It will pass away like a slow parade

"and Laura's asleep in my bed,
as I'm leaving she wakes up and says,
'I dreamed you were carried away on the crest of a wave
baby don't go away, come here'"

'Land Locked Blues (live)' ~ Bright Eyes

Some things are better left unsaid

"This is the book I never read,
these are the words I never said,
this is the path I'll never tread,
these are the dreams I'll dream instead.
This is the joy that's seldom spread,
these are the tears...
the tears we shed.
This is the fear,
this is the dread,
these are the contents of my head."

'Why' ~ Annie Lennox

This is such an amazing performance.
I think I have no words to express, it just leaves me shaking.

I am not sure I ever felt the power and emotion in this song until hearing this.


I have a picture pinned to my wall

"You say I'm a dreamer,
we're two of a kind,
with both of us searching for some perfect world,
we know we'll never find.

So perhaps I should leave here,
yeah yeah and go far away,
but you know that there's nowhere that I'd rather be,
than with you here today."

'Hold Me Now' ~ Thompson Twins

I have so many memories attached to this song, which is most probably a testament to my age, and the era that I was an adolescent. It reminds me of high school dances, John Hughes films, and sleepovers with my friends. I'm pretty sure I did some kind of make-shift karaoke (you know, two girls with a tape recorder singing/'recording" in the bathroom) to this song.

Something about the song though, and the lyrics, still matter to me today. They transcend some of the over-wrought nostalgia that floods through my skin when I hear it. Though honestly, most of the feeling is from the point of view of a sixteen year old girl with band posters tacked up on her walls.

(song of the day)

Kiss off into the air

Now I know the perfect kiss: Is the kiss of death: A Kissable Mix

He Hit Me (And It Felt Like A Kiss) ~ The Crystals
Kiss Off ~ Violent Femmes
Give Him a Great Big Kiss ~ The Shangri-Las
The Just Kiss Her (The Shoes Remix) ~ Candy Clash
Kiss Of Death (Remix) ~ New Order
Kiss Me (Dances With White Girls Remix) ~ Franz Ferdinand
Kiss Me Slowly ~ Airiel
Kiss Me At The Gate ~ The New Monarch
Kiss And Make Up ~ Saint Etienne
Kiss Me Again ~ Jessica Lea Mayfield
A Kiss Before I Go (live) ~ Ryan Adams & The Cardinals
The Last Kiss ~ Aidan Moffat & The Best-Ofs
Kiss My Name (live) ~ Antony & The Johnsons
French Kiss ~ Brave Belt
Still I Long For Your Kiss ~ Duane Jarvis
Blew A Kiss ~ The Glasses
The Kiss ~ Judee Sill
Kiss That Girl ~ Pop Will Eat Itself
He Hit Me (And It Felt Like A Kiss) (cover) ~ Grizzly Bear

Kissable Mix ~ Zipped Up

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

See your sunrise

"Did she make you cry,
make you break down,
Shatter your illusions of love?

Is it over now?
Do you know how to pick up the pieces and go home?"

'Gold-dust Woman' ~ Hole

I so needed this song today, played loudly and screamed to. I am really in a truly awful mood.

But music prevails, always.

I love the original, too - but today Courtney is doing it for me.

Oh, hold on to me

"Please can we go away
Get out of here
Somehow today.
For a place that I've heard on the radio
Never sleeps.

I'll get a job in a bar,
You could be a waitress and serve cheap cigars
To fat mustachio men in suits, you'll look cute.

Fuck what they say
Fuck it if they talk
It really dont matter.
We're going to New York."

'New York' (live) ~ Stephen Fretwell

Say you don't want it

"How may fates turn around in the overtime?
Ballerinas that have fins that you'll never find.
You thought that you were the bomb, yeah?
Well ,so did I."

'Spark (live)' ~ Tori Amos

Fate colours outside of the lines and normally I am all for that kind of disregard, but today it all just hurts. It matters, the people around you, and the lives touched. I am so fucking tired of doubting the person I am.

(song of the day)

Down by the sea

Lost my soul there: Down by the sea: An Ocean Mix

Pacific Coast Highway ~ Courtney Love
The Diamond Sea (cover) ~ Yeah Yeah Yeahs
An Olive Grove Facing the Sea ~ Snow Patrol
California ~ Phantom Planet
From Brighton Beach to Santa Monica ~ The Clientele
Too Many Fish in the Sea ~ The Marvelettes
The Sea ~ Morcheeba
Ocean ~ Dar Williams
Gleaming Endless Ocean ~ Scarlet Youth
Edge of the Ocean ~ Ivy
Sea ~ Low
Deep Sea ~ Kurt Vile
Deep Blue Sea (live) ~ Grizzly Bear
The Girl & the Sea ~ The Presets
In the Aeroplane Over the Sea ~ Neutral Milk Hotel
Led to the Sea ~ Jenny Owen Youngs
Roller Coaster by the Sea ~ Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers
The Minnow & the Trout ~ A Fine Frenzy

An Ocean Mix ~ Zipped Up

But my mind has fucked me over more times than any man could ever know

"So we stayed up late one night to try and get our problems right,
but I couldn't get into his head just what was going through my mind,
and I think he knew where I was going,
he put Ryan Adams on;
I think he thinks it makes me weak,
it only ever makes me strong."

'New Romantic' ~ Laura Marling

I wish there were easy answers and simple solutions. That definitions, and re-definitions, came in some pretty brown paper package, delivered to my front door, with a map on what we do now. Or that music really had the answers, and not just the comfort of knowing that we all share a collective consciousness of confusion.

If I had the answers I know I would share them with you. But I don't. I just have this haze of sadness, and confusion, still.

Monday, April 6, 2009


"I’d rather lose myself in passion than lose my passion."

Jacques Mayol


At the end of this month some significant things will change. I will no longer have a job, which I know I am not alone in, as so many people are part of the financial crisis' layoffs. I find myself surrounded by awkwardness, and lost faces, who are bracing themselves for the coming day. Perhaps I should be sad. I've been here for two years, and I have friends here that I care deeply for. But, I can't help it, some part of me is incredibly excited.

There is the fear though. That ever nagging self-doubt and anxiety that makes me feel that I will ultimately fail at everything I truly want. I suppose this is part and parcel to why for years I've shut off the "want" button inside of me. If I gave voice to things I wanted, needed, desired then I was making them known, recognized, and real - and then what would I do when one by one I was let down, disappointed, or fucked up the things I wanted so desperately? Was it not safer to stay silent, to go numb, and to cling to past hurts as if they would protect me from the future.

I held on tight to a heartbreak that happened years before as my defining moment, and the inevitable outcome of loving someone. It was too vivid, those memories of lying on the floor in a heap, shaking, crying, feeling like I wanted to die. The inevitable loss, the parting words, the clumsy attempt to stay friends. And, I'm sure if you asked him today, he'd still call me a friend, even though we haven't spoken in years. It was too difficult, too tangled, and too painful for the both of us. I remember as if it were yesterday. Why would I risk giving my heart away like that, only to end up at that kind of ending? Better to build a wall, to be the one who left first, cared less, was able to exit unscathed.

And dreams of what I wanted to be, of what I saw when I sat alone and thought about where I should be, and who I should be? I'd held the desire to write and teach for so long that they became part of my interior make-up. They were the things I longed for, but would never have. Because what if I tried and couldn't teach a thing? What if I stood in fear and anxiety at the front of a classroom, struck mute? And what if no one gave a shit about the words I wrote? What if they were dismissed in stacks and stacks of well-meaning "thanks, but you are not what we're looking for" letters of rejection? What would I have to call mine if those unrequited dreams were smashed?

But, I did fall in love again.
I am still writing.
And I do still want to teach.

The love may not have worked out completely in the way I hoped it to.
The writing may never go where I want it to.
And I may return to school and get lost along the way, and never stand before a classroom.


My heart still knows how to love, and I still love, even hopelessly.
My writing has touched a few people, and it has helped me find myself.
My children learn quite a lot from me, even in my mistakes.

So, maybe this layoff is a tap on my shoulder, or a kick in the ass. Perhaps now is the time to try some of these wants out, or learn to let them go. I don't know. I may fail miserably. I may never be enough. But, I think I am quite excited to have the chance to try.

That's not me

"In a little while,
I'll be gone.
The moments already passed,
yeah, it's gone.
And I'm not here,
this isn't happening.
I'm not here.
I'm not here."

'How to Disappear Completely (live)' ~ Radiohead

Late last night in the midst of those sleepless hours, when sadness and insomnia were clasping hands tightly, and turning me completely inside out. I think, for an brief moment in time, in the haze of exhaustion, I felt transparent. Perhaps it was a wish, of sorts, to disappear completely - if only for a day or so - and not face the hurt I was feeling.

This song reminds me of that.

Also, this particular version just takes my breath out of me, and brings tears to my eyes. Radiohead is one of those bands that I never fully embraced to the levels that most of my musically obsessed, and self-defined indie friends, ever did. I loved the Bends album, and never quite loved anything after. I know some of this was all the hype, and the never ending shout-outs the band received, silencing many of the bands I utterly adored.

That said, sometimes distance makes the heart grow fonder, and I've come around to some of the undeniable incredible songs. This is one of them.

(song of the day)

And when I see you, I really see you upside down

She can't see through the mirror: So she hides on the other side: A Reflective Mix

Mirror ~ Apples In Stereo
Alice ~ Pogo
Future Reflections ~ MGMT
Mirror Error (Afghan Raiders Remix) ~ The Faint
Rear View Mirror ~ Rapper Big Pooh
Mirror Ball ~ Crayon Fields
A Lack of Color ~ Death Cab For Cutie

Me & My Mirror ~ Vitaminsforyou
You Just Disappear ~ Alcian Blue
Window (Mirror) Shadow ~ Adrian Orange & Her Band
One ~ U2
A Scale, a Mirror & Those Indifferent Clocks (live) ~ Bright Eyes
Mirror in the Bathroom ~ English Beat
Walk Into the Mirror ~ Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks
Strange & Beautiful ~ Aqualung
Black Mirror ~ Arcade Fire
Putting the Damage On ~ Tori Amos
How to Disappear Completely (BBC Remix) ~ Radiohead

A Reflective Mix ~ Zipped Up

If I only could

"So much hate for the ones we love?
Tell me, we both matter, don't we?
You, (If I only could, be running up that hill).
You and me (If I only could, be running up that hill).
You and me, won't be unhappy.

And if I only could,
make a deal with God,
and get him to swap our places,
be running up that road,
be running up that hill,
be running up that building.
If I only could

Come on, baby, come on, come on, darling,
let me steal this moment from you now.
Come on angel, come on, come on, darling,
let's exchange the experience."

'Running Up That Hill' ~ Placebo


Back when I was in college, the first go around, I took a three semester course on American literature in which I had the best teacher/professor I had ever had/have ever had. We spent a great deal of time on the short story, and I remember she was the first one to introduce Raymond Carver, for one, to me.

She was the reason I decided, without a doubt, that I wanted to teach. She was also one of the six people who inspired me to write, to believe in my writing, and to read until my eyes couldn't stay open.

This article reminds me of her, and of a love I have for short stories. And, it is also another tap on the shoulder that the decisions I'm making for the next turn of page in my life is the right one. I'm scared as hell, and thrilled to the bone, but I'm starting to know that I am on to something here.

Life's too short to not follow your bliss, and try for your dreams.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Paperback letdown

Another page is ripped away from a book I clung to for far too long
a fairytale story of a girl who had neverending quests to fulfill
a string of dragons to slay for everyone who crossed her path
and still the demands of being a princess beckoning
to be fair, true, and vulnerable to love's twisting illusions
with blood still dripping from her trying-to-hide hands

But how can one be both savior and damsel in distress?
daisy-chains braided into my hair as a child were not the uniform of a lifetime
even though I think I clung to the significance of those wispy, wild flowers
enough to paint them into my skin around a name not truly my own
perhaps they were my attempts to re-write the plot twists
or at least give this girl a different ending

It is obvious you never knew me
not for a second
even though I cracked open my ribs
and let my heart fall through
exposing every secret, every flaw, every god-damn part of who I am
or was

I never wanted you to rescue me
the only one who can save me
is me

Cut out all the ropes and let me fall

"I told you to be patient
I told you to be fine
I told you to be balanced
I told you to be kind
Now all your love is wasted?
Then who the hell was I?"

'Skinny Love' ~ Bon Iver

And we'll pretend that it meant something so much more

"All I see are dark grey clouds, in the distance moving closer with every hour. So when you ask 'is something wrong?', I think 'you're damn right there is but we can't talk about it now. No, we can't talk about it now."

Tiny Vessels ~ Ben Gibbard

This is the moment

Harder now that its over: But now you're free: A Regret Filled Mix

Like a Friend ~ Pulp
Tiny Vessels ~ Death Cab For Cutie
All the Way Down ~ Glen Hansard
The Scientist (cover, live) ~ Aimee Mann
Nothingman ~ Pearl Jam
Regret ~ New Order
So. Central Rain ~ R.E.M.
Warning Sign ~ Coldplay
Warwick Avenue ~ Duffy
Flightless Bird, American Mouth ~ Iron & Wine
Last Day of Our Love ~ Bird & The Bee
Harder Now ItalicThat It's Over ~ Ryan Adams
Rootless Tree ~ Damien Rice
Last Goodbye ~ Jeff Buckley
Flying High ~ Jem
Trouble (cover) ~ Elliott Smith
Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) ~ The Beatles
Stay (Far Away, So Close) ~ U2

(above links are videos, mix is below)

The moment that could have changed everything

"It was an accident.
I wasn't looking for it, I wasn't on the make.
It was a perfect storm.
She said one thing, I said another,
next thing I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life in that conversation."

Letter to Karen, Californication

I posted this pre the big blog delete. It made me cry then, it makes me cry harder tonight.

One of the most beautiful television moments, to me, ever.

Tell me your secrets and ask me your questions

"Nobody said it was easy,
it’s such a shame for us to part.
Nobody said it was easy,
no one ever said it would be this hard.

Oh take me back to the start."

'The Scientist' ~ Coldplay

This has always been my favourite song of theirs, followed closely by Fix You and Warning Sign.

Tonight I’m regretting something I never thought I’d regret ever. I’d give a lot to go back to the start and not changed things, not said things, not done things. In the end I would have rather kept the friendship over anything else.

I’m sorry I hurt you,
but I’m also sorry you hurt me.
That we hurt each other.

I'm just really sorry, full of regret, feel terribly stupid, and angry. I wish I could take it all back.

I miss my friend.

Saturday, April 4, 2009


"It's all right for a woman to be, above all, human. I am a woman first of all."

~ Anais Nin

I saw myself in you

Love is the best

Give me a reason to love you: Because love is all we need: An I love you mix

All You Need Is Love (cover) ~ Jim Sturgess & Dana Fuchs
Can't Help Falling In Love (live, cover) ~ Ingrid Michaelson
First Love ~ Emmy The Great
Glory Box ~ Portishead
Gonna Make You Love Me ~ Ryan Adams
I Found Love ~ The Free Design
Is This Love ~ Bob Marley & The Wailers
It Must Be Love ~ Madness
Let My Love Open the Door (cover) ~ M. Ward
Love & Happiness ~ Al Green
Love My Way (cover) ~ Cruel Black Dove
Love Song (cover) ~ Death Cab For Cutie
New Love Grows On Trees ~ Peter Doherty
Real Love (cover) ~ Regina Spektor
Tainted Love ~ Soft Cell
Slave to Love ~ Bryan Ferry
Trying My Best to Love You ~ Jenny Lewis
When a Man Loves a Woman ~ Percy Sledge
I Love You ~ Sarah McLachlan

I Love You Mix ~ Zipped Up