Thursday, April 01, 2010

Steve's Spring Cleaning!

Happy April Fool's!

I've spent Q1 of '10 working exclusively on Quatchi Watch, but now it's time to return to my regularly (un)scheduled blogging. Here's a bunch of stuff that's gone down so far this year...

In January, Eliza and I made a pre-Olympic Vancouver visit, where we checked out the fantastic UBC Museum of Anthropology. In the nearby garage, we parked on "Squirrel" (above)...

Later in January, we had our first-ever curling experience at Seattle's Granite Curling Club, where "kindly feelings" raged...

Around that time I made this Homer Simpson latch hook rug for my pal Jay. I strayed from the pattern a bit, customizing him with extra-big pupils, as in the episode where Homer licks toads...

On the Bigfoot front, check out my pal Darren Garnick's exclusive Bigfoot interview, and then check out this amazing Bigfoot autopsy video...

Sad St. Patty's Day news outta New Orleans: Alex Chilton died of an apparent heart attack at age 59 -- read all about him on Pitchfork. I don't really play music, but if I did, Paul Westerberg would be my number-one influence. By the same token, Westerberg calls Chilton his "mentor" in this touching New York Times remembrance. Below, Westerberg backs up Chilton in 1987...

Westerberg fronted the Replacements, whose "Alex Chilton" remains my all-time favorite song from my all-time favorite album. When I first heard the tune (also in '87), I knew nothing about Big Star (no Wikipedia then) but it did lead me to Chilton's Live in London LP, which I continue to dig. In 1992 I saw him play a solo show -- fronting a three-piece, opening for an acoustic Robyn Hitchcock -- at the Belly Up Tavern in suburban San Diego. The two songs I clearly remember are "What's Your Sign Girl" and "Little GTO," which he introduced as "the best song Brian Wilson never wrote."

Then in 2000 I attended the reunited Big Star show at Seattle's annual Bumbershoot festival. Great to hear those Posies-enhanced classics live, along with the odd cover of "Duke of Earl." Eliza was at that show too, years before we met. She and Alex shared a mutual friend, who arranged for them to meet while in Alex was in town, just so that he'd have someone to hang out with. Eliza is a big fan of Elliott Smith, who also happened to be playing at Bumbershoot, and like the other festival performers, he also happened to be staying at the Sheraton. Eliza pointed Elliott out to Alex in the hotel lobby, and she later introduced Alex to Elliott's music, playing him one of Smith's tapes in her car. Later on, Alex and Elliott met up in the Sheraton's smoking area, and later still, Elliott covered Big Star's "Thirteen." Today Eliza told me, "So weird that both are dead now."

Also, Alex gave Eliza a Best of Bobby Womack cassette, which he picked up at a truck stop. He said he bought it for the song "I'm Looking for a Love" -- we still have that tape in our car. After we heard he died, Eliza recalled that Alex told her that if he taught a kid to play an instrument, he'd have the kid play piano instead of guitar, 'cause piano's more logical.

Chilton had so many great songs, many of which still raise goosebumps: "What's Going Ahn," "Daisy Glaze," "You Get What You Deserve," "Big Black Car," "Kangaroo," "Nightime," "Take Care," "Hey Little Child"... Here's a 1967 clip of 16-year-old Alex with the Box Tops, singing his first/only hit, "The Letter."

Alex Chilton, we hardly knew ye.

Finally, Snooki...

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1 Comments:

At 2:01 PM, April 02, 2010 , Blogger William said...

That Snooki sure is hottt!

 

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