I was going to write a long post about one of my favorite songs “L’Via L’Viaquez” by The Mars Volta (it’s off the Frances the Mute album, which my then fetal archnemesis-that-doesn’t-know-I-exist Pitchfork gave only a 2 out of 10 [this is really criminal, PF]).
I don’t have a vast knowledge of The Mars Volta catalog and was doing some digging. They have been on my mind lately because of Juan Alderete’s TBI and the beautiful Cedric Bixler-Zavala’s run in with Scientologists. I revisited the song after needing a taste of something different, and when that guitar hits, it makes the hairs on my arms and neck stand up.
I’ve posted the short version with awkward mid-aughts video above, but the entire version can be found here.
My post came to a screeching halt when I found out, for the first time in the 14 years I have been listening to this song, that John Frusciante performed the guitar solo in the song. I find myself constantly circling John Frusciante’s solo work. It’s annoying because at some point years ago, I heard he was a huge asshole (though as I write this now, I cannot remember why). I went out of my way to avoid his works, but I am kind of an asshole magnet anyway. Here we are now.
On the same day I had a taste for “L’via”, I heard a John Frusciante song I had never heard before that gave my heart a little tug.
Maybe he’s an asshole (this is not confirmed), but I appreciate the tenderness of this song.
Anyway, there will be a Pt. 2 (or retroactive Pt. 1) to this post dedicated solely to The Mars Volta and parent/sibling bands and members. Stay tuned.
The nice thing about writing as a hobby is that the strangers you inevitably connect with online have similar interests. So when a writer follows you and vice versa, it’s a bit of a cosmic head nod.
When William posted a Fiona Apple song over on A Thousand Mistakes, I felt inspired to share one of my favorite Fiona Apple songs, “Never Is a Promise”.
It’s an incredible song about finding self-worth and courage underneath an element of control and self-absorption. It’s even more incredible she wrote this when she was only 16 or 17. And there is a whole album (Tidal) ready to break your heart.
You’ll never see the courage I know,
Its colors’ richness won’t appear within your view,
I’ll never glow – the way that you glow,
Your presence dominates the judgments made on you.
Inspiration from the unexpected.
I am blessed with a plethora of astrologically inclined friends, and in case you don’t have those, I’ve got news for you: Mercury is in retrograde (so I hear).
Do I really believe in astrology? I’m going to go with a blanket “No, but it’s good to keep an agnostic mind about a few innocent things [i.e. the existence of a higher power/being, aliens, and other phenomena we cannot really answer with 100% certainty].” Just as menstrual cycles sync up with the moon and the moon controls tides, I am open to a the magic of outer space and the moon.
So maybe I don’t have both feet in astrology, but I’ll be damned because if there were ever a time Mercury was showing me was in retrograde, it’s doing a great job.
During these times, I remember living in the dorms at UNO during the hot summer of 2008 with my friend Annie. We had to get up super early for work one day, and, at the time, we were both pretty miserable in general. I was standing in my room when I heard her very sadly and slowly sing this line from Lil’ Troy’s “Wanna Be A Baller”:
But there’s got to be a better way!
A better way, better way, yeah
Between the early morning loopiness and general exhaustion with our situation, I began laughing hysterically. How random and how true! And how wonderful that Annie and I were together in this time. We both trudged off to work, miserable but together, singing the line, like a lost version of two of the seven dwarves.
This line has stuck with me throughout the years when the going gets tough. The intonation of words in the song makes it difficult to tell if the line is one of hopeful desperation, persistence, or maybe even both. That is how I feel today: a little bit of it all and riding out the planetary shift today. Tomorrow. The next day. Forever
Alone on Valentine’s Day? Think again. The Divinyls and Chrissy Amphlett want you to love yourself.
Welcome to the special, sexy edition of Bitchfork.blog ❤ ❤ ❤
In the year 1990, George H.W. Bush was President of the U.S., coming off the heels of eight years of the Reagan administration. The U.S. was nine years deep in the “Party of Family Values”, and it needed a release.
The wonderful Chrissy Amphlett minces no words in the Divinyls hit song “I Touch Myself“, a 1990 song that pulls back the curtain around the mystique of women and masturbation.
It’s a damn good song that celebrates a damn good pastime. Additionally, it inspired a very memorable movie moment, several incredible covers, and, most importantly, confidence in women throughout the world.
Continue reading “I Touch Myself: An Homage to Gettin’ Off”
An impromptu celebration of The Allman Brothers Band’s 50th anniversary in Macon
Recently, I had the opportunity to visit some of my family in Macon, Georgia. My great aunt turned 90, and I got to see my grandma who is spry as ever at 91. Both sides of my family have a storied history in Georgia (ca. 1700s). So I have quite a few opportunities like these to visit. Side note- I’m glad I didn’t grow up in Georgia because I’m pretty sure that I’m related to a large portion of the state which would have made dating a nightmare.
On my way into Macon from Atlanta, I saw a billboard for The Allman Brothers Museum at The Big House. The Allman Brothers, per my mother’s oral history, are both a rich staple of Macon and, at one time, a “black eye on Macon”.
My mom grew up around the area, and she was able to go watch them practice at the time. She also mentioned that they played in a festival somewhere down there that was akin to Woodstock. However, Mom also mentioned that a lot of people didn’t care for The Allman Brothers at the time because “they were hippies.” At one point, my mom turned to her own mom (my Grandmama), who was listening in on the conversation, and said “Ya’ll wouldn’t have cared for them.”
Maybe Grandmama wouldn’t have cared for them, but many people definitely care for The Allman Brothers Band. Rolling Stone ranked them 52nd on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time in 2004.
Luckily, my mom grew up right down the road from the Allman HQ, and she passed on her love of them to my siblings and I. And even luckier, many of my school friends had a great appreciation for the Allmans. So, the Allmans are very much a family affair for me.
I decided to take a little pilgrimage to pay tribute to the storied Southern Rock/Jam Band Gods during my day in Macon.
Continue reading “Southbound to The Big House: The Allman Brothers Band”