November 6, 2009

come down on the street and dance with me

Some feel-good Friday music, anyone? Speaking recently of cool things at Fingerprints reminded me of the time this summer when this clip made me smile — “El Scorcho” recorded live in Long Beach, CA on 11/25/08, a crowd singalong of an exceedingly fabulous variety:

(Take 1 is here)

From the DVD/CD Not Alone: Rivers Cuomo and Friends, a snappily-attired Weezer frontman lets the superfans be the band and the backing chorus (everybody now!). From the Fingerprints website:

From a post on his website, Rivers invited super fans from across the country to dress sharp and join him in a makeshift band where they would get to pick the set list. That set list ended up being a mix of Weezer classics as well as obscure fan favorites. The 150 lucky friends had never met or practiced together, but without fear came to rock out their favorite songs with their favorite guy.

Some songs are just truly meant to be sung with 150 people you don’t know, and a collection of BYOI (bring your own instruments).

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April 15, 2008

you gots to pay the piper

It’s a beautifully sunny 75 degree day here; perfect for fun and frolicking, a cruel masking of the fact that it is actually Tax Day for Americans. As I lick the envelope to the $255 check that I owe to the State of Colorado (which I nearly forgot about), I wince.

This tune makes it sting a little bit less. Not much.

Mr. Taxman (demo) – Weezer

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November 15, 2007

Don’t bother to pack your bags, or your map

Weezer‘s “Blue Album” has found its way this week from the center console of my car (where I keep a wide assortment of discs forever orphaned from their cases, if they ever had cases) and via random fumble while keeping my eyes on the road, into my CD player. I am pleased to report that this album will forever sound good to my ears. Lately “Holiday” has been on repeat (and may, actually, be a perfect song), but the whole album is a blissfully fuzz-laden slice of 1994 to me.

The Weezer camp has some new projects coming up that are on my radar.

Frontman Rivers Cuomo will be releasing Alone: The Home Recordings of Rivers Cuomo on December 18 via Geffen. On their website, Rivers reports, “This is a CD of my favorite home demos from ’92 to ’07 featuring a lot of never heard before songs, a few covers, a few songs from my unfinished rock musical ‘Songs From The Black Hole’ and my original demo for ‘Buddy Holly’“.

I am very excited about the Rivers solo stuff. Dude is a prolific songwriter, you can’t even keep track of what all he’s written and performed and leaked over the years, unless you have vault-like memory. This’ll give you an idea. All I know is that some of the demos and unreleased stuff that I’ve heard are as good as anything that Weezer actually released, so we should be in for a treat next month.

Then in April, Weezer’s sixth studio album will be coming out, currently untitled and also very hush hush about the content. We know it’s finished, and it’s being mixed, but other than that, we can only conjecture in hushed tones what might lie therein.

To stoke the possibly-dormant fires of your Weezer fever, here’s a handful of demos & miscellany that I’ve unearthed from my iTunes for today’s playlist.

You Gave Your Love To Me Softly (Angus soundtrack)
Lover In The Snow (demo)
Worry Rock (Green Day cover)
The Sister Song
Come To My Pod (Songs From The Black Hole)
Let’s Sew Our Pants Together (Kitchen Tape)
Thief, You’ve Taken All That Was Me (Kitchen Tape)
My Evaline (b-sides)
Mykel and Carli (b-sides)
Jamie (DGC Rarities, Vol. 1)

I also just noticed that Weezer bassist Scott Shriner guest-starred with The Scrantones at, um, The Office Convention. I don’t know about attending any convention for a TV show (as much as I love said TV show) but I’d totally join the Scrantones on a world tour. That is, if Scrantonicity II didn’t want me.

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June 13, 2007

The one where Heather sings

The new Contrast Podcast is up with my contribution to their very cool and intricate Song Chain feature. I also, somewhat lamentably to my ears this morning, sing.

My thinking was such:
Song chain = Aretha Franklin’s Chain of Fools (a characterization my fellow contributors may eschew) = me having an urge to bust out “chain chain chaaaain . . .” while I was recording my intro. So that’s what happened. For posterity:

Contrast Podcast #63: Song Chain 3

Make sure you listen through the Rodeo Clowns tune by G. Love to hear this really funny cast-off line by contributor Tim from The Daily Growl, as he tried to pick a follow-up song: “I know nothing about G. Love and . . . I really don’t like clowns.” I always enjoy hearing the variety of contributors, their song choices and reasons — and their accents. This creative topic is especially fun, resulting in a podcast that’s stuffed with songs I dig.

Since I’ve previously posted the song that I contributed, I want to share this unreleased Weezer song that I had to connect in to.
Love it, lov-er:

Lover In The Snow – Weezer

And the intro+song following mine is pretty funny too — although if we’re gonna talk about females being deadlier than the male (don’t believe it!) then I am going to hear this tune echoing in my head:

Female of the Species – Space

May 26, 2006

American girls get a bad rap

Now here’s an excellent little gem of pop goodness that you may not have heard, discussing the relative merits of everyone’s favorite (and seemingly oft-misunderstood) topic: American girls. And no, it has nothing to do with Farah Fawcett, other than that this picture represented the concept quite nicely to a generation of pubescent boys.

This song “American Girls” was written by Rivers Cuomo (Weezer) during his solo show era (97-98), it was eventually recorded for the Meet the Deedles soundtrack, of all things, under the band moniker “Homie”.

The Homie supergroup line-up included:
*Rivers Cuomo (Weezer) — vocals, acoustic guitar, piano, lyrics, and melody
*Yuval Gabay (Soul Coughing) — drum loops
*Matt Sharp (Weezer) — co-producer and background vocals
*Sebastian Steinburg (Soul Coughing) — upright bass
*Pat Wilson (Weezer) — miscellaneous, drum playing (what got looped)
*Greg Brown (Cake) — electric guitar (lead and solos)
*Brian Bell (Weezer), Justin Fisher, Adam Orth (both ex-Shufflepuck) and Todd Sullivan (Weezer’s A&R guy from Geffen ) — backing vocals

This song has an supremely chill drumbeat (especially after it really kicks in at about 1:03) and some nice harmonica flourishes with playful electric guitar riffs. It ponders the question, “Why are all American girls so rough?” (which we’re not) with golden lines like, “Darlin, I’m afraid to close my eyes when we’re going to bed, afraid you’ll crack the phone down over my head….” I’ve never heard it on the radio except for one cosmically odd time just a few weeks after I was introduced to it, in the middle of the afternoon, in a little pub. Like when you are whistling a song and then it comes on the radio, and it makes you smile.

American Girls – Homie

Apparently, Homie has recorded other material, which has only been performed live. Rivers has said that he may release this material some day – maybe as an extra disk in a Weezer discography. If it sounds anything like this tune, that’d be okay with me.

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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