Donald Ayler Heads For The Great Gig In The Sky, Dead At 65

Respected free-jazz trumpeter Donald Ayler died October 24 of a heart attack. The 65-year old was the brother of alto/tenor saxophonist impresario Albert, the subject of the recent documentary My Name Is Albert Ayler, which opened in Athens, Austin, Cleveland, and Winnipeg this week and is slated for DVD release sometime next year. Don Ayler performed regularly with his wily older brother and appeared on such releases as Bells (Calibre), In Greenwich Village (Impulse!), and the essential Spirits Rejoice (ESP-Disk). Don was an essential cog of his brother's group from 1965-1968 and also performed in a group with John Coltrane in 1966.

Albert's mysterious death in 1970 forced Don out of the spotlight and he popped up occasionally for features and interviews but nothing substantial. A 1981 recording from a Florence gig with a septet does exist but has been out-of-print for several years. A couple of Don's compositions were included with Albert's die-hards-only 2004 Holy Ghost: Rare & Unissued Recordings 1962-1970 box set.

[Photo: Larry Fink/ICA]

My Bloody Valentine Confirm Three Live Shows

You savvy motherfuckers knew this was coming a mile away, didn't you? Well, start booking those flights because My Bloody Valentine have confirmed that they'll be playing three live gigs in the summer of next year. Presented by ATP Concerts, the shows will take place in London (June 20), Manchester (June 28), and Glasgow (July 2). Tickets go on-sale 9 AM tomorrow at venue box offices and here. How do we know all this? THE ONLINE FLYER WITH A SUPER OLD PICTURE OF MBV DOESN'T LIE.

The news comes hot off the announcement that there will be indeed new My Bloody Valentine material released in the future (TMT News). It's still somewhat unclear as to what and when and how many, but, according to an interview on's Soft Focus series, there is an album that's three-fourths finished of music from 1996, a "compilation of stuff" recorded a couple years after 1991's Loveless, and "a little bit of new stuff." A release could come out as early as this year.

Now, kids, it's been roughly 16 years since the release of Loveless. Some of you reading this are probably that old. Just something to keep under your hat on these judgment dates:

Now excuse me while I do my morning tug.

Comcast In Trouble for BitTorrent Blocking, Gets a Time-Out

Remember when we told you two months ago that Comcast is blatantly violating net neutrality? Someone else noticed, too! The Associated Press accused the cable provider of blocking certain BitTorrent uploads, which Comcast of course denied. This got the attention of several groups, among them net neutrality advocates from fancy colleges (Harvard, etc.) and Save the Internet. The advocates have requested an investigation by the FCC into Comcast's activities. Here's hoping they find something incriminating.

Of course, these investigations take time. In the meantime, the FCC has notified Comcast that, until the issue is resolved, it officially gets a time-out. "We feel that Comcast's actions are no-nos and that the only appropriate consequence is to have it sit in the corner without its friends. Verizon, Earthlink, and AOL will just have to wait to play," said FCC spokesman Bill Redgely (not a real FCC spokesman). "Comcast will also not be getting dessert tonight and can't play with its new trucks until it learns to behave."

Sounds like fair punishment to me, though the FCC should also consider revoking Comcast's gold stars on the class chart.

Pink Martini to Tour, Me to Play Six (or Fewer) Degrees of Bob Pacitti, Who Does Not Resemble Kevin Bacon in the Least But Does Enjoy My Dog Skip, Which Kevin Bacon Was In

Think of this story as your friendly dose of indie sugar, reader baby. That makes me Mary Poppins, and you one of those little British kids. That makes this story the medicine you need. That makes details about my dad your sugar.

Or, maybe, sweetheart, Portland-based Pink Martini could be Mary Poppins, and their music could be the medicine you need. Point is, in both sorely overwrought metaphors: you’re still one of the little British kids, and my dad is still the sugar. Accents ready? Sweet tooth polished? Good, baby, good.

Pink Martini is the Carrie-Bradshaw-girly-liquor-named brainchild of Harvard grad and concert pianist Thomas Lauderdale -- the 12-piece orchestra boasting cred ranging anywhere from a gig on Conan O’Brien, PBS, or with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, plus sold-out performances with the Boston Pops and a lesser-known appearance backing Al Green. Apparently, the band was formed to play at fundraisers for progressive causes. Which I suppose makes Al Green progressive by association.

Musical medicine, ladies and gents.

Additionally, please enjoy the following free associations linking my dad to the name Pink Martini:

1. My dad loves Cosmos. Cosmos are served exclusively to:
a. Rhinestone-assed adolescents drinking for the first time, with way prophetic flab creeping over their jeans. They drink Cosmos with other self-loathing fat girls and talk about hating boys and wanting mature men. They read a lot of teen pulp, like The Devil Wears Prada.

b. The divorced, leopard-printed, pseudo-empowered women they grow up to be. They like bars and ladies’ nights at over-30 clubs. Men. Telling themselves they haven’t gained weight and that they truly, madly, deeply value their female friendships. Not just lonely. They drink Cosmos with other self-loathing fat women and talk about hating men and wanting younger men. Additionally, they read/watch a lot of Nora Ephron.

Point (um...) being, my dad orders them at restaurants, almost exclusively. He went from straight up Belvedere with olives to Cosmos. He has not gone back. Interestingly enough, he always makes a polite point prior to publicly ordering this drink of choice to ask for a “White Cosmo,” an apparent more masculine option. No waiter has ever, in my presence, come back with this “White Cosmo.”

Yes, I’m talking Cosmos and the name involves a Martini. But typical Cosmos are pinkish. So are pink martinis. Connection. Free association is no cake-walk, reader. Sheesh.
2. My dad sleeps in the PM. These are the initials of Pink Martini.
3. ...
4. Got nothing...
5. ...My mom is a woman.
6. Women are associated to pink.
7. My dad is married to her.
8. ...
9. I just flew home for the weekend and my mom made me French toast, no questions asked

10. ..

11. Tourdates my dad will most likely not attend:

How One Combines Blood, Tofurkey, and Jens Lekman Into A Single Article About an Expanded Tour

When I woke up this morning, I had a belly-grumbling, head-pounding hangover. I was in someone else's bed with two other people, cold and uncomfortable, struggling to stake our claim over segments of the rock-hard mattress. Upon lifting my head, the unfortunate nature of the previous night was revealed: my hair stuck to the pillow, encrusted with blood from an apparent drunken mishap. What's more, the weather at that moment was hellish -- violently windy and misting heavily. All I wanted was to just sit down and recuperate with a cup of coffee (but the caffeine would've probably just exacerbated my nausea). I was then, and remain now, completely miserable.

A despicable point in my existence, sure, but I just need to remind myself that it's the holiday season. A time when we must, even in our lowest states, take pause to reflect on our lives and count our manifold blessings that we've needlessly neglected in favor of our pitiful and oddly satisfying self-loathing and deprecation. Yes, this is a time when we must re-evaluate all that we are grateful, nay thankful for.

That said, I'm thankful for... well, let's see. At this point, I'm thankful to have woken up in a bed rather than the gutter. I'm thankful for the existence of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, which I've eaten without increasing my nausea. But most of all -- and this is the newsworthy bit of my rambling literary sojourn -- I'm thankful that Jens Lekman is extending his 2007 tour.

And what are you thankful for? The following dates, perhaps?

* Josh Rouse

@ Sarah Jaffe

It’s a good thing that Tim Kasher has his whiskey sours to keep him company during The Good Life’s upcoming European trek, because it gets awful cold there in the winter. Kasher and Co. are touring in support of Help Wanted Nights, their fourth album out now on Saddle Creek Records.

Because I’m such a loyal Good Life fan, and a sober Kasher is a boring Kasher, I’ve helped Tim out by highlighting popular, local watering holes and drinks he should try at several different tour stops.

Cheers, Tim! The winter is a bitch:
11.15.07 – Utrecht, NL – Ekko >>Local Beers: Ouwe Daen, Jonge Daen en Linteloo Gold
11.16.07 – Hamburg, DE – Knust
11.17.07 – Malmö, SE – Debaser >>Local Bar: Slagthuset, a former slaughterhouse turned bar
11.18.07 – Berlin, DE – Tacheles
11.19.07 – Giessen, DE – MuK
11.20.07 – Leipzig, DE – Nato >>Local Beer: Gose, very obscure, made with corriander and salt
11.21.07 – Vienna, AT – WUK >>Local Wine: Grüner Veltliner
11.22.07 – Munich, DE – Hansa >>Local Beer Garden: Hofbräuhaus
11.23.07 – Geislingen, DE – Rätschenmühle
11.24.07 – Sursee, CH – Kulturwerk 118
11.25.07 – Winterthur, CH – Kraftfeld
11.26.07 – Frankfurt, DE – Brotfabrik >>Local Drink: Ebbelwoi (apple wine)
11.27.07 – Brussels, BE – Botanique >>Local Drink: Half-en-half (white wine and champagne)
11.28.07 – Amsterdam, NL – Paradiso >>Something tells me alcohol won’t be the only thing on The Good Life’s agenda.
11.29.07 – Paris, FR – Divan du Monde
11.30.07 – Brighton, UK – Pressure Point
12.01.07 – Liverpool, UK – Korova >>Local Beer: Cask conditioned ale
12.02.07 – Dublin, IE – Crawdaddy >>Over 600 pubs = Tim’s paradise
12.03.07 – Belfast, UK – Auntie Annies
12.04.07 – London, UK – Borderline
12.05.07 – Nottingham, UK – Social
12.06.07 – Cambridge, UK – Graduate >>Over 110 pubs

Special thanks to Wikitravel for being my tour guide.


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