Sunday, August 29, 2010

Purple Shirt of the Week: Elvis has entered the building

I'm a big fan of the show Austin City Limits. Even the artists I'm
not crazy about I'll watch, because there is something about the
intimate nature of the show, even though I'm watching a recording of
it, that just offers a little bit more insight into an artist. Here's
a classy rocker guy I saw wearing a classy purple chapeau.

It seems that some genres of rock just breed some artists more easily
that will grow old gracefully. After all, rock and roll, at it's
heart, celebrates youth and vitality. It is easy to make rock and
roll grandpa jokes about the Rolling Stones, because their songs, by
and large, are really only appropriate coming out of the mouths of
bands much younger than them. And come on, Charlie Watts starred on
HBO as the Cryptkeeper. (See what I mean?) Do you really want to SEE
the Beach Boys sing about Barbara Ann and fast cars? Though, to be
fair, it's probably now more like a group of men at the nursing home
reminiscing about their singing group and the girls back around the
Great War. Maybe this is why Robert Plant didn't reunite with Zep
long term. Is it more appropriate for a man his age to be singing
Black Dog or Living Loving Maid, or to be singing Killing the Blues
with Alison Krauss?

Love him or hate him, I don't think you'll ever get people pointing
fingers at someone like Leonard Cohen saying "hang it up". The man
just oozes class. He's 74 years old this year, and has done just as
many drugs and drank as many Red Needle tequilas as any other man
who's been on stage since the '60s. But the man can WEAR a suit. And
still tours heavier than bands a quarter his age. (Of course, one has
to when their business partner steals all of their money...)

Saw Elvis Costello a few years ago. While he did not wear this purple
hat (and I wish he had), he was still a spitfire on stage for an hour,
all by himself. But at no point did it seem questionable for a 55
year old man to do what he was doing.

So, while one can debate that growing old in the rock and roll world
can yield questions bordering on ageism, you can't deny that some are
taking the high road and removing themselves from the equation. Or
rather, didn't write themselves into a corner when they were younger.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Purple Shirt of the Week: the strength of Samson

Last week TtW played at a few Girl Scout camps. Enroute there and
back, we had a couple of meetings with the good folks at Samson
Technologies, who make a variety of music gear, some of which we
currently use. That's why we were there - one of my wireless units had
died a few shows before and we played the poor musician card and got
them to repair it for free. Which was good, because otherwise I was up
the creek.

We were going to visit them last time we were in Long Island, NY but

Our man Fritz was super nice to us and took care of us with no
problem. This was the entrance to their corporate headquarters. Can
you see why we want to work with them more??

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Purple Shirt of the Week: Hanging on the Telephone

So the last date of the Talking to Malls tour found us back at the same mall we started at, and due to our brakes snapping into pieces, it was not by choice (see the blog post on how we almost died). On the upside, we had done a signing at that mall at BestBuy Mobile (Sunrise Mall in Massapequa, NY) back in May; and afterwards they gave Nat a new phone (a Droid). Well, we were planning on stopping at BestBuy Mobile anyway that day so Laura could get a phone and Nat a charger, so since we had no where else we could go...

They gave me a new case for my iPhone for free, since mine shattered outside the Toads Place show a week or two before. Really nice guys over there. Tell Hector, Nicole or Ed that Talking to Walls sent ya.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Purple Shirt of the Week: Adventures of a Traveling Man

So between the band and the day job, I've been on the road now more
than ever. Which means I post less, but I get to see more.

So here are two Purple photos from the month of June. First off, my
friend Ann sent me a photo, after asking "Isn't it cool that the hotel
rooms are purple?" and I said "They are? mine's not!"

One can only assume they're updating the hotel and hadn't gotten to my
room yet. Because olive is not Purple. I called hotel management to
complain. Told them to pick up the pace, and yes, I would graciously
accept them moving me to the properly-colored room. And sure enough,
a bellhop showed up to my room, and took my luggage. But he must have
been confused, because he dumped it all on the curb...

A few weeks later, I was once again traveling and saw this tower in
downtown Denver. It's right in the center of town. Big Purple
clocktower, looking over the whole city. I knew I was home.