1. Thursday, March 17, 2005

    technical difficulties prevented me from 

    posting the deal below until today so let me assure you that i havent already gone out tonight.

    indeed my plans tonight are to meet up with ms melting dolls, princess mcintosh who is ripping up main street with people so big that it would not be prudent to name them until tomorrow when the shit has completely hit the fans.

    so lets recap what happened today before this blog turns into pumpkins and rodents.

    woke up this morning and got myself a beer. the futures uncertain and the end is always near. pardon me. woke up this morning and celebrated robert blake’s aquittal with a beverage and some second hand smoke from the ladies next door who were complaining that all these big flabby dudes were out there chickenhawking next to the pool or else they would happily enjoy some of this sunshine that capital city was finally getting.

    so we commiserated and at noon sk smith picked me up and we went down a very nice street full of cute little shops and restaurants and etc. went to a famous boot store and suddenly i wanted cowboy boots and cowboy shirts and yes, even a stetson. somehow we resisted and moseyed over to a taco bar.

    you always know youre in the right place if mc brown is there. half way through my fish taco who appeared but the mighty rapmaster and his lovely lady. we politely said hi bye and headed downtown to see tsar at the hard rock.

    heres the problem with the record industry: its full of industry people. here you have 1,200 bands playing over 4-5 days in a great town. everywhere you go there are bands rocking. the art gallery next to the taco place had lou barlow playing in the parkinglot. elvis costello cant get on stage until midnight. the donnas are forced to play at a bbq joint. the stones werent even invited.

    so here you have Tsar. the worlds best newly-signed band. and what does their new label do as a “showcase”? they lock anyone out who hasnt pre-arranged a way onto the guest list. yes there were free beers and margueritas and dudes with trays of cheese poppers and chicken bits but what about the passerbys? what about the kids?

    tsar took the stage and ripped through their set. halfway through whalen looked up and said, “ten? we have ten more songs to play? oh ten minutes? we have ten minutes to play? no. yes? no. yes? youre kidding right?” and then played 22 minutes of the fastest hardest rock that austin has heard in hours. and it was so good that it made one of the industry ladies shut her fucking mouth for nearly one full minute.

    then we walked down the street and every bar had a band and every car had a band and every curb had a band and every pole was advertising a band so sk took me to a swanky old timey hotel bar and a young guy was playing classy piano and we sat on a couch upolstered with cowhide and we sipped our st paddys drinks and we toasted to the fact that 15 years ago jeanine and i fell in love. and before we could finish our drinks a band had taken over the bar and were far too loud so we left.

    i must say that i didnt find them too loud and i didnt think the drinks were bad and every time i explained to my host why i was being so tolerant i reminded her that i went to uc isla vista where every drink tasted delicious even if it was kool aid and mouthwash and every band sounded great even if they were painfully out of tune. that years of bad drinks and bad music had all blurred into one swirly haze that all sounded and tasted the same: awesome. and when i die and go to heaven it will look and sound a whole lot like austin where every step you hear something nice, see something nice or smell something nice.

    in heaven of course you will be able to eat the tires right off the cars but thats pretty much the only thing that you cant do right now.

    sk is sharp as a tack and for some reason the men arent hitting on her, which is odd because there arent that many super hot chicks roaming the streets. in fact if you plan on coming to sxsw to get laid youre better off thinking of a plan b. anyway sk has a biting sense of humor and at some point she started cracking jokes involving jello shots so we found three cops asking a passed out visitor if he was ok and we asked them if they knew any nearby bars that served jello shots and they laughed and we laughed and the drunken man awoke for just long enough to laugh and then one of the cops said as a matter of fact this here bar right there serves jello shots so we went in and the waitress laughed at our order and said shed check to see if they had any

    and i yelled, “get some green ones” since its st paddys and all and she said she’d do what she could. and sure enough she returned with two jello shots and then two more appeared and two more and soon enough we were swapping bill cosby jokes and noshing on garlic fries. good times.

    and now we are getting ready to possibly see spoon play and sk has freshly showered and i havent freshly done jack shit except of course written to you, and tomorrow i will fly home in the early morn and arrive in LA in the afternoon and my lil texas spring break will be overwith and ive gotta say it was so much different and so much better than i had expected and i have to of course thank my host ms smith and her cat named monkey and all the southern hospitality that everyone has given me.

    i will come back to sxsw next year and the year after if all goes well because this is a magical town full of great bands and endless booze and good food and good people. it isnt true what they say about red states. not all of it. some parts of that red isnt so red and sometimes life isnt just one thing. sometimes its many things.

    i wanna make a tshirt that says

    texas aint all fucked y’all

    although the shirt that i will probably get will be the one that i see on the coolest people and it says

    keep austin weird.


    raymi + pics + mas pics + sk smith + chokey chicken + the statesmen