SuperDee's House

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!

Much love to you all in the blogosphere. Tonight I'll ring in the new year with The Slip in Billyburg which makes me uber happy. Then tomorrow off to Florida for some Jam Cruisin' - woo hoo! I don't expect to find my way to a computer for the week so have a good entry into two-double-o-seven, y'all!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

You had me at shalom.

This past Sunday night, "Christmas Eve" as the goyim like to say, I took a leap of faith and intentionally walked into a room full of jewish folk. JDub Records held a number of holiday parties around the country over the last couple of weeks - VodkaLatka and Jewltide parties. After working with them on email campaigns for the shows, I decided I had to go check out the one at Southpaw.

As soon as I walked in the door, I felt a stiffness in my chest. Sort of like that feeling that you'd have walking into a restaurant to meet a blind date set up by your Aunt Sophie. After hanging up my coat and walking gingerly over to the bar, I thankfully ran into two friends that I knew so I had some teammates now to ease each other's anxiety. Tequila helped, too. It was definitely time to get drunk.

My grandparents must have been doing cartwheels in their graves knowing that I was in Brooklyn at such a function. Long noses and curly hair, sarcasm and self-effacement, latkas and egg rolls, and a t-shirt that said "You had me at shalom"... It was all there. The house DJ (JDub's founder, Aaron Bisman aka DJ Annan) was spinning and mixing choice tunes between sets full of stuff from the 80's like Salt-n-Pepa's "Push It" sending everyone back to their Bar Mitzvah party days. Man, did we use to party. Coke and pepsi, anyone?

The first live act was this fella called SoCalled who said, "Thanks for coming everyone! My name is Matisyahu!" What a comedian! This accordion wielding freaker was actually rapping in Yiddish. He did a little magic trick for us too. He made everyone feel right at home by yelling at everyone to "shut up!" He was a lot of fun... a real mentsh. The headliner was Golem who's tagline is "Where Eastern Europe meets the Lower East Side." What ensued was a full-on klezmer frenzy that was pretty effin' awesome. Somehow they got most of the crowd to participate in a hora which I realized was the jewish version of a mosh pit. This meshugine on tamborine and vocals looked like he was on acid and was a wonderful spectacle. Oh yeah, and the violinist had on some hannukah panties. Yeah, things were a little nuts in there.

In conclusion, good times all around. Klezmer music really touches a nerve in my soul - makes me feel very connected to my history and ancestors. Call me a sap, I don't care. I got the chills when their guest clarinetist did his thing. And I made it out of there alive and I didn't have to play seven minutes in heaven with anyone. Whew!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

My Top Albums of 2006

We were asked to give our favorite three albums at JamBase. This was quite stressful as there were a good handful of albums this year that altered my being. So, I decided to get 'em all out here. In no particular order, here's 8 of my faves from this year:

The Dears - Gang of Losers
If it weren't for my friend Colin at Big Hassle, this album may not have necessarily reached my ears. This album became my personal soundtrack for about two weeks straight. The voice on that guy (Murray Lightburn) is just irresistable. My favorite track is "Ballad of Human Kindess" - great for strutting down the street. This also fills my quota for a band from the Montreal scene.

Rotary Downs - Chained To The Chariot
Yes, yes, I am friends with this band but all the more reason I keep raving. It's one thing if a friend of yours hands you their CD and you kinda like it and you have to tell them, "yeah, nice work." It's another thing entirely when you listen the first time, and then listen again to make sure you aren't dreaming. I love every song on this album. Here's what I had to say about it all.

My Morning Jacket - Okonokos
My current mantra is "My Morning Jacket is the best band on the planet." This double live album is a great example of that. I was there at the Fillmore during this DVD/CD filming and remember standing in the front row, mouth agape, considering jumping on stage and professing my undying love for Mr. James. The DVD is wonderful too.

The Raconteurs - Broken Boy Soldiers
From start to finish, this gem is a ROCKER. The kooky weirdo Jack White meshes well with the softer-sung Brendan Benson. I was lucky enough to see them perform these songs live and the powerful delivery of each of these numbers strengthens the album that much more. I love it! Tell 'em Jackie White sent ya!

Built to Spill - You In Reverse
Oh man, this was another one that became my soundtrack for a while. There are so many funny little side adventures that came out of this album but my favorite was starting to call my good, newly married friend "". Don't ask me why... we just did. Doug Martsch is such a songwriting genius, I just feel smarter after listening to this one.

The Slip - Eisenhower
Duh. Definitely the most meaningful album for the band, its followers, and newfound fans. Getting signed to Bar None and rockin' an opening slot for My Morning Jacket were just the visible turning points for The Slip. Take a closer look and you see a band that has come into their own. I'm so damn proud of them, I could cry.

Ray Lamontagne - Till The Sun Turns Black
Ah! The voice on this guy! Just makes me want to curl up in a blanket forever. This album is slightly more optimistic than his last album, Trouble, but only slightly. Heartwrenching lyrics delivered by a voice from the angels. This is the kind of stuff that gets under your skin and doesn't let go. Thankfully there is an artist like Ray that can express sadness so beautifully.

Beck - The Information
If only for the opening lines "one, two, you know what to do," I love this album. It's just plain good Beck. Let's face it, the guy knows what he's doing in the studio. Now, if only he'd get rid of those damn puppets. I mean, wtf? It was funny for like 5 minutes... But besides that, great album, Beck. You do good work.

Honorable mentions go to: Umphrey's McGee for their "all growsed up" latest Safety In Numbers; Band of Horses for coming out of nowhere and making people go coo-coo with Everything All The Time; The Disco Biscuits for giving us live "Shimmy" and "Basis" with The Wind at Four to Fly; and Cat Power for being so hauntingly wonderful and weird with The Greatest.

Ok that should do it! Let's see what 2007 will bring!

2005 Transit Strike Memories

Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn was reminiscing about last year's transit strike. I shared with them my own story and they felt it worthy enough to post. Check it out.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rotary Downs are NOLA's Cover Boys

Rotary Downs is on the cover of this week's Gambit Weekly in New Orleans. As the waters subsided, an invigorated music scene has emerged. RD is on the front lines. Exciting times for this band as their album Chained to the Chariot continues to gain attention and love. Stay tuned for a January NYC weekend announcement!

From the article (by Alison Fensterstock):

On the surface, Rotary Downs seems like almost the opposite of a new band, having played in New Orleans consistently since 1999. In those seven years, though, vocalist/guitarist James Marler and pedal steel guitarist Chris Colombo have seen a host of supporting members come and go. For the most part, says Marler, they were supporting rather than active members while he and Colombo wrote songs and herded the band. But with their new rhythm section -- bassist Jason Rhein and drummer Zack Smith -- the band is coming together as a genuine unit like never before.

"I had a pretty soft landing," says Marler, who teaches English composition at University of New Orleans. "If there was ever a time not to own property, this was it." After the storm, the band reconvened to mix its 2006 release Chained To a Chariot in Lafayette.

Photo by Tracie Morris Schaefer
Rotary Downs guitarists James Marler, also a vocalist (center), and Chris Colombo (back right) have played together since 1999. After the storm, they assembled the current players in a band and released the psychedelic pop album Chained To a Chariot.

Chained To a Chariot shows that the new Rotary Downs is tighter, more organized and ready to rumble. The layered, psychedelic pop on the record is tighter, catchier and more fully realized musically than the band's previous releases -- one EP and one live recording. And Marler is excited about how the newest supporting cast members in the band have been working their way into leading roles. "Zack is very extroverted, and he has a lot of good connections," Marler says, noting that this is the most active period the band's had in its seven-year history. "We're going to New York in January to play Thursday-Friday-Saturday. There's been some interest from a management company, and a few small labels are checking out the record." Chained To a Chariot was also voted record of the week by the popular music Web site, and made it onto the CMJ college radio charts. The band plans to start recording an album of new material in the spring, material that for the first time has been written as a collaborative effort. "The new rhythm section is more involved in writing," Marler says. "It starts from the groove up now -- in the past, it always started from the guitars down.

"This almost is, really, a new band. And this next record we make will truly be a group effort. I'm grateful to have this assortment of people."

Marler feels optimistic about the way the music scene in the city has diversified since Katrina. "It seems like people are not as locked into their respective scenes as they were, because there's less music and also less people," he says. "Anyone who had their lives rocked by Katrina in one way or another -- you realize you should just appreciate things as they're happening. I've been listening to a much greater variety of music than ever."

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Synchronized Global Orgasm

So, this interesting tidbit came across my screen yesterday. This Friday, December 22, there will be a worldwide effort to change the earth's energy through...well...synchronized orgasm. The fine people of feel that this collaborative effort will "effect change in the energy field of the Earth through input of the largest possible surge of human energy."

Their concern is that the current levels of aggression on our planet are severely dangerous. I certainly can't argue with that. Specifically, "that there are two more US fleets heading for the Persian Gulf with anti- submarine equipment that can only be for use against Iran" and that "the time to change Earth's energy is NOW!" No time like the present.

There's some real science involved here. There have been studies (incredible) that found that "that human consciousness can be measured to have a global effect on matter and energy." The theory here is that orgasms are so intense, that combined with peaceful thoughts and performed by and infinite amount of people, the planet's energy can be altered. "The combination of high-energy orgasmic energy combined with mindful intention may have a much greater effect than previous mass meditations and prayers," says the website.

What are the rules? It's pretty simple and can be quite enjoyable! This Friday, December 22, "at the time of your choosing, in the place of your choosing and with as much privacy as you choose," you are being asked to touch yourself (or others) for world peace. Is that too much to ask?

Read on at

Friday, December 15, 2006

Hm... Could this be conspiracy in Albany?

In reference to our boy Trey's arrest last night in Albany. Ironically, I had to create a JamBase email today to promote his upcoming show at Albany's Palace Theatre on 12/29. Of course, I wondered if there would be any ramifications of the current happenings on that upcoming show. And then I remembered... Remember about a year ago there was spray-painted graffiti all over the doors of the Palace (with choice comments from disenchanted pholks such as "Here's your fucking helping friendly book")?

Hmmmm..... put THAT in your prescription bottle and ponder.

Another Successful Holiday Party

Buy booze and sushi, set up Guitar Hero II, let people write on your wall, and they will come... Another successful JamBase holiday party for the books. There was an unfamiliar (to me) fellow snapping away all night and he actually did a great job of capturing the evening. Here's some pics from last night's affair:

Click on the pic for the whole album.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Deep Thoughts from SF

Maybe it was too soon to come back here. Not too much has changed. It's like seeing an old lover again too soon after you broke up. All those old feelings come back. You look at your lover and see their beauty and wonder, "Did I make the right decision?" Then you get all dizzy and confused and do something silly like jump back in bed together and make everything all convoluted again.

But that's not really what's happening here, I suppose. Sure, it feels great to be back here. Things are comfortable and familiar and my friends here are so loving and wonderful. They miss me and I miss them. I've seen actual old lovers and it's really not that convoluted at all. Part of me feels like I've regained some sight or have returned to my native speaking country. I understand all the street signs, I know where I'm going, I know where things are. The six train lines all converge in the same six central downtown stops. Things are easy. This city fits me like a glove.

But I feel like I have already taken the other colored pill and have seen what life is like outside of the Matrix. NYC is very much the real world compared to this place. It's hard to come back into the bubble once it's burst.

I've been "crazy busy" with friends and work and such and I'll share some multimedia and specifics later... Just needed to get these thoughts outta my brain for now. La di da...

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Going Back to Cali...

I think it's funny that my friends in SF are saying things like, "When are you gonna be on the Best Coast?" and my friends in NYC are saying things like, "We are gonna miss you on the Right Coast!"

Off I go to reconnect with my peeps in SF for a couple of weeks. The chronicles will continue, no doubt, as there is much revelry ahead. Perspectives and zip codes may change but people stay the same and I'm interested to see how comfy SF will feel to me now.

Anyway, buy a calendar, will ya?

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

JamBase 2007 Calendar - It's All About the Kids!

Hey hey blogosphere... Well, all the hard work has seemingly paid off. Calendar is currently hitting the presses and we are ready to tell the world! Here's the official word:

JamBase is back with another rockin' calendar for this coming year. In keeping with the tradition of donating profits from the calendar to children's music organizations, our beneficiary this year is KID smART from New Orleans. It's all about the kids! Help support the rockers of tomorrow and get calendars for yourselves and your loved ones. Best wishes for a happy new year from all of us at JamBase!

Featured bands include:

• My Morning Jacket photography by Dave Vann
• Rose Hill Drive photography by Lisa Siciliano
• Grace Potter & The Nocturnals photography by Rob Grego
• Dirty Dozen Brass Band photography by Rod Snyder
• Drive-By Truckers photography by Adam Smith
• Steve Kimock photography by Susan J. Weiand
• Apollo Sunshine photography by Sydney Grahovec
• Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey photography by Greg Aiello
• New Orleans Second Line photography by Zack Smith
• Skerik's Syncopated Taint Septet photography by Bruce Tom
• The Benevento/Russo Duo photography by Michael Jurick
• The Flaming Lips photography by Jay Blakesberg

The mission of KID smART is to work with the arts to engage students in learning about themselves and the world in which they live. At KID smART we strive to teach positive life skills and increase student learning in all subjects through understanding and appreciation of the visual and performing arts. Working with professional arts educators, KID smART presents high quality, intensive arts education thorough Artist in the Classroom, After School and Community-based programs. Post Katrina, KID smART is working in 12 new schools in New Orleans and has created a teacher training program on arts integration. For more information about KID smART, please visit

Support tomorrow's rockers! Get your calendar today!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Look at him go

Last night's Umphrey's show was not exactly the best I've ever seen but they are so good at this point, it doesn't even really matter. Jake is really such a wonderful spectacle, isn't he? Let's watch him rock out the end of "Higgins":

Go Jaco Go!

I had to skip out on tonight's show because I was performing in my own show. "Super Week" is officially over and I am thankful to be in super chill mode now. The chronicles will be continued...

Friday, December 01, 2006

Worlds colliding in the best of ways

There's been a lot of contention over who my favorite band is this week. I mean, in what world does one person get to see four of their top ten bands in one week (Bisco, Slip, MMJ, Umph)? Throw in a side project or two with some favorite musicians (Marco B, Reed Mathis, Matt Chamberlain, Conspirator - I could have added Skerik to that list if I made it down to the Knit last night). I guess that world would be New York City... Last night I was handed off from my Slip/MMJ bliss into the open arms of my Umph loves. It was possibly the greatest post show hang I've ever had the pleasure of participating in after another KILLER show from The Slip and MMJ. So many wonderful friends and many drinks.

I'm definitely feeling those old familiar "on tour" effects (foggy rather groggy) but at least this part of the week has me sleeping in my own bed. I have to throw out a big thanks to my homies back at the home JamBase office for totally getting my back this week as I galavant around the musical world.

I'm tired, brain hurts a little... Let's look at some pictures from last night: