$20,000 Buys a Kid 15 Minutes of Fame and Serious Bonding Time with Devo/Tool/Perfect Circle/NIN Dru
Remember when Pepsi promised to give a Harrier Jet to anyone who paid seven-million Pepsi Points back in the ’90s? And then someone did and they didn't and he sued? And got the freaking jet. (Or maybe he just got reimbursed for his pain and suffering with a lifetime supply of Obama's favorite carbonated beverage. I don't remember). Turns out Josh Freeze, studio drummer turned media savant, isn't a liar like those Pepsi bastards. He said it and he meant it.
Last month, he released a bizarre series of limited-edition VIP packages in support of his new album Since 1972, which was released this March through his website (Nobodaddy can fill you in on the wacky specifics of the offers). Well, someone took the $20,000 bid. A 19-year-old Floridian named Thomas Mrzyglocki. Sounds like they had a rollicking good time. Here's what Josh had to say about the whole thing in an email that was later posted on a NIN forum:
The guy from Florida that bought the $20,000 package and I have been joined at the hip since Sunday and I won't even go into all the stuff that we've done in the past 4 days but I've already gone above and beyond for him and we're continuing to have a blast. I'll start posting stuff soon on my website and on youtube but just to give you a quick idea... mini-golf with Maynard James Keenan, pizza at Mark Mothersbaugh's house, sensory deprivation tank sessions, a signed snare drum I used on a Nine Inch Nails tour, slumber party at the Queen Mary, going to gigs of mine with me, pulling items out of my closet, etc., etc.... He's a great kid and a friend for life. We're having him check out of his hotel and stay at our house tomorrow night. It's a LONG, LONG story that I'll write about later. You can laugh when I say this but it's true when I tell you that he came into my life for a reason other than just the $$. I actually feel bad about taking the $$ because at this point I'm not hanging out with him or pretending to be his friend for the cash. He got all of his stuff (and a bunch more that wasn't on the original menu) a while ago. He's a sweet 19-year-old kid who's had a really rough last couple years (like REALLY fucking rough.) Like... this money he spent to come out here is part of a inheritance he received (you can fill in the blanks there). I feel like his big brother and I'm trying to make this one of the best weeks of his life.
Although my heart-strings are breaking all over the place after reading that, a few things keeps nagging at me: I do not care about Tool, I'm not a fan of NIN, and just plain don't like Perfect Circle. Devo's pretty freaking cool, but I never cared about Josh Freeze until I read about this amazing offer he's got going. I know this is completely subjective, but still, gentle readers, let me be selfish. I want something for me. Something for us. These big budget "rock-gods"? Yawn. This is what I want to see:
- For $50: You get one Julian Koster tape loop.
- For $100: Go thrift-store shopping with the K Records artist of your choice, and they'll promise to knit you something.
- For $1,000: Choose Madlib's new pseudonym.
- For $5,000: Be Your Own Pet will reform and invite you to a private house party.
- For $10,000: Devendra Banhart, Akron/Family, and The Angels of Light will induct you into their commune and/or cult.
- For $15,000: Indulge in some psychedelics while Deerhunter provides you and your five closest friends with a personal concert and cooks you a southern-style breakfast with grits and sweet tea the next morning.
- For $20,000: Bill Callahan will write you a song, after which you'll head over to Will Oldham's house to drink PBR and play with a b.b. gun before being joined by the entire Drag City Catalog for a backyard BBQ and a series of songs around the campfire.
And this is just the start. Possibilities seem endless to me.
“Tiny Mix Tapes: Music Lives Here.” Our unofficial motto doesn’t lie; we don’t run entertainment fluff or blog pictures of Kevin Barnes’ dick too often. That’s why you haven’t seen us run stories about, or worse, post paparazzo pics of Bill Callahan walking hand-in-hand with any of his famous past paramours, be they Chan Marshall, Joanna Newsom, Janet Reno, or this Zwinky. However, while our focus is almost always centered on poorly written music-related wire items, we have decided to break our usual pattern and report, soft news-style, on a significant change in Callahan’s life. Turning abruptly away from his accountant-with-attitude look, Callahan has apparently become obsessed with hair, even going as far as experimenting with growing some, judging by the odd formations of sprouted follicles gathered on his head and face. First the reversion to his birth name, now a Wolverine-inspired grunge makeover? All media should be asking, “What on Earth could be next for Bill Callahan?”
The answer, of course, is “Who gives a shit?” Callahan’s relationship ebbs and flows are of no importance to us, and if he took to sporting high-heeled sneakers, rainbow suspenders, a fish tie, and monocle we wouldn’t even blink. On the other hand, if he announces new tourdates, we jump and scream and lose control of our bladders. Um, some of us do. Most of you will probably just experience an increased heart rate as you scroll your eyes downward to the dates below to see if any are within your “attendance zone.” Callahan will be touring in support of his latest album, the superb Sometimes I Wish We Were an Eagle (TMT Review and Interview) on Drag City, beginning in Asheville, NC on June 10 and ending in Austin, TX on July 5.
Me, I’d rather catch him in his natural habitat: the human mutant underground where he deftly plays his guitar with those crazy retractable claws
06.10.09 - Asheville, NC - Grey Eagle
06.12.09 - Washington, DC - Black Cat #
06.13.09 - New York, NY - Le Poisson Rouge #
06.14.09 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg
06.15.09 - Cambridge, MA - Brattle Theater
06.16.09 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s #
06.19.09 - Chicago, IL - Bottom Lounge
06.22.09 - Denver, CO - Oriental Theater
06.24.09 - Salt Lake City, UT - Urban Lounge $
06.26.09 - Kennewick, WA - The Red Room $
06.27.09 - Seattle, WA - Triple Door
06.28.09 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theater
06.30.09 - San Francisco, CA - Bimbo’s 365 Club $
07.01.09 - Los Angeles, CA - Troubadour
07.03.09 - Tucson, AZ - Plush
07.05.09 - Austin, TX - The Parish
* in-store tour
Mid-latitudinal West Coast residents too lazy to drive to George, Washington's Sasquatch festival or Indio, California's Coachella won't have to miss out on the action. This summer, Another Planet Entertainment, Superfly Productions, and Starr Hill Presents are joining forces with the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department to put on the second annual Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival. Over 50 bands will rock San Francisco's Golden Gate Park for the August 28-30 festival -- some of the big'uns include Os Mutantes, TV on the Radio, M.I.A., Deerhunter, Built to Spill, Modest Mouse, the National, and (no shit) hirsute Welsh singing legend Tom Jones. Oh yeah, Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews, and Incubus are playing, but like, you know, whatever.
Besides music, the festival will highlight the food of Northern California, which according to the press release will include everything from vegetarian tacos to raw oysters to homegrown wine. Sounds like just the kind of stuff to feed a bunch of sweaty rock fans on a hot August afternoon! Tickets go on sale August 19 via the festival's website.
Pearl Jam / Dave Matthews Band / Beastie Boys / Incubus / Black Eyed Peas / M.I.A / Jason Mraz / Ween / The Mars Volta / Thievery Corporation / Modest Mouse / Band of Horses / TV on the Radio / Dead Weather / Atmosphere / Tom Jones / Silversun Pickups / The National / Q-Tip / Brett Dennen / Built to Spill / Mastodon / Raphael Saadiq / Calexico / Os Mutantes / Midnite / JJ Grey & Mofro / Kinky / Deerhunter / Lila Downs / Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue / The Dodos / Bettye LaVette / Dengue Fever / Heartless Bastards / The Dirtbombs / Lenka / Akron /Family / John Vanderslice / Matt and Kim / Portugal. The Man / The Morning Benders / The Duke Spirit / Zee Avi / Blind Pilot / SambaDa / Ryan Bingham / West Indian Girl / Extra Golden
I really enjoy painfully referential headlines like that. Anyway, you may have heard M. Ward’s sweetened version of Buddy Holly’s “Rave On” or seen the accompanying animated video (which quite prominently features Zooey “I Can Write About Fabric and You’ll Love the Crap Out of It” Deschanel, which I find odd considering her backup singing isn't that noticeable or prominent) -- or maybe you've heard of Hold Time (TMT Review)? Hopefully you have. It's an album I would file under “Sweet Album Covers of the Year.”
M. Ward, on the other hand, would be filed under “People Whose Concerts are Over $20.” He's on tour now, with a firm date for XX Merge to be announced.
04.20.09 - Albuquerque, NM - Sunshine Theater
04.22.09 - Tulsa, OK - Cain’s Ballroom
04.23.09 - Omaha, NE - Slowdown
04.24.09 - Milwaukee, WIK - Pabst Theater
04.25.09 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue
04.26.09 - Chicago, IL - Vic Theatre
04.27.09 - Toronto, ON - The Phoenix Theatre
04.28.09 - Montreal, QC - Le National
05.18.09 - Visalia, CA - Fox Theatre
05.19.09 - Oakland, CA - Fox Theatre
05.22.09 - Eugene, OR - McDonald Theater
05.23.09 - George, WA - Sasquatch Music Festival
06.25.09 - Stockholm, Sweden - Debaser
06.28.09 - Nottingham, UK - Rescue Rooms
06.29.09 - Manchester, UK - Club Academy
06.30.09 - London, UK - Shepherds Bush Empire
07.03.09 - Werchter, Belgium - Rock Werchter Festival
07.04.09 - Utrecht, The Netherlands - Tivoli
07.23.09 - Salt Lake City, UT - Twilight Concert Series*
07.27.09 - Athens, GA - 40 Watt Club
07.28.09 - Nashville, TN - Cannery Ballroom
07.30.09 - Washington, DC - 930 Club
08.01.09 - New York, NY - Summerstage*
* Free to the public
Filesharers have yet another defendant for whom to rally. Boston University graduate student Joel Tenenbaum is one of the latest people faced with a filesharing lawsuit filed by the RIAA (oddly enough after the organization claimed it was ceasing its lawsuits). He's pursuing his case pro se, which basically means sans professional legal counsel -- his advising team essentially consists of a group of students under the guidance of Harvard professor Charles Nesson and the backing of a whole heaping of Internet awareness campaigning via Twitter, Facebook, and the group's own website, Joel Fights Back.
Tenenbaum was handed a bit of a setback in the online awareness area when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit sided with the RIAA and unanimously rejected U.S. District Judge Nancy Gertner's decision to allow the trial to be narrowcast on the internet. Presumably, the RIAA wants to keep such a trial under wraps, as it has previously received mostly negative coverage for its efforts to sue music fans, but what is little known is that the RIAA also seriously objects to the broadcasting of any of its lawsuits because of its lawyers' uncanny resemblance to the Skeksis in The Dark Crystal.
The First Circuit's decision has wider-ranging repercussions than just this trial -- had it decided the opposite, the panel would have given Massachusetts District Court Judges the discretion to webcast court proceedings. Tenenbaum and his supporters say they will continue to explore every legal option that is available for his defense.
Mario Speedwagon’s Under The Radar News Round Up: Deerhunter Readies EP, Wye Oak Hit The Road, The Juan MacLean Tour With The Field, Blur Schedules “Warm Up” Shows
Hey kids. I’m so excited it’s the weekend. It’s only the afternoon, but so far the highlights of my day have been seeing an extremely tiny puppy that was about the size of a Koosh Ball and finding out that Oprah has a Twitter. Here’s the news.
- Deerhunter are releasing a new five-song EP on May 18 (digital)/June 8 (CD/LP) called Rainwater Cassette Exchange via Kranky (4AD elsewhere). It was recorded with producer Nicolas Verhes (Microcastle). They also have some European tourdates listed on their MySpace.
- Wye Oak are hitting the road TODAY! Their tour kicks off in Chicago at the Hideout and ends mid-May in their home-hood of Bodymore, Murderland at the Metro Gallery. Check out more dates over at the Merge site. PS: It was Jenn from Wye Oak’s birthday yesterday. Happy belated birthday, girl!
- The Juan MacLean are hitting the road this sprin, in support of their new record The Future Will Come (TMT Review), out on DFA. The Field, who will be pimping their own new release, Yesterday & Today (out May 19 via ANTI-) will be joining them on tour as well. The tour kicks off mid-May in Cambridge at the Middle East Downstairs and ends mid-June in Montreal at Les Saints. For more dates and information, check out The Juan MacLean’s MySpace page.
- Blur has scheduled two “warm-up” shows this summer in advance of headlining slots at Glastonbury, Oxegen, and T in the Park. The first show will take place on June 13 at the East Anglian Railway Museum in Colchester, where they played their first show. All proceeds go to the museum charity. The second show will take place June 22 at Goldsmith’s College in London. The proceeds from that show will benefit the Teenage Cancer Trust. Way to give, guys.
National Lampoon Presents: Deerhoof’s Chinese Vacation! Will Greg Saunier Play Clark W. Griswold? Will Rob Fisk Star as Russ, Only to Be Replaced by John Dietrich Once Fisk Hits Puberty and Joins SNL? Decide For Yourself When Deerhoof Releases a Mad Lib Script and Lets You Create Your Own Movie!
Oh yeah, I should probably tell ya’ll some actual Deerhoof news. After all, what sort of contemptible beast would I be without my esteemed reputation for providing only the most informative, courteous music journalism possible?
When last we left Deerhoof (TMT News), they were seeking more audience participation for songs from last year’s Offend Maggie (TMT Review). (BTW, if you missed out on our own Keith Kawaii’s entry of "Fresh Born," you are missing the fuck out on some serious squiggle business.) Along with Deerhoof’s Web Twopointoh-erey, those snazzy bastards had a couple of April shows lined up in Finland, Russia, and California. But guess what-the-sack they all went up and done now: They added more dates, motherfucker.
After the group’s California jaunt, Deerhoof will return to the continent for a stretch through France and its Flemish neighbors as well as a performance in London’s Hyde Park with Blur. But before all that nonsense comes Deerhoof’s real adventure -- the Strawberry Festival in Tongzhou Canal Park in Beijing. Along with Kill Rock Stars labelmates Xiu Xiu and Panther, Deerhoof will rock the Great Wall off its foundation and finish the job the pre-Khan Mongols never could. With more than 60 bands slated to play and various art exhibitions throughout, the Strawberry Festival’s theme is “music + sustainable and eco-friendly living in China.” A lofty goal indeed, but if any band is up to the task of turning Red China green, it’s Deerhoof.
And I’m serious about that Chevy Chase/Milk Man/HJ thing.
04.18.09 - Williamstown, MA - Williams College
04.22.09 - Helsinki, Finland - Tavastia
04.24.09 - Moscow, Russia - Avant Fest
04.25.09 - St. Petersburg, Russia - Skif Festival
05.03.09 - Beijing, China - Strawberry Festival
05.05.09 - Oberlin, OH - Dionysus Club
05.07.09 - Chicago, IL - Bottom Lounge
05.12.09 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore *
05.13.09 - Santa Cruz, CA - Rio Theater *
05.14.09 - Los Angeles, CA - Mayan Theater *
05.16.09 - Pomona, CA - The Glasshouse *
05.17.09 - Santa Barbara, CA - Soho
05.29.09 - Duedingen, Switzerland - Kilbi Festival
05.30.09 - Nancy, France - L'Autre Canal
05.31.09 - Paris, France - Villette Sonique
06.01.09 - Bordeaux, France - BT59
06.02.09 - Montpellier, France - Rockstore
06.04.09 - St. Nazaire, France - Le VIP
06.05.09 - Orleans, France - L'Astrolabe
06.06.09 - Cherbourg, France - Terra Trema Festival
06.26.09 - Evreux, France - Le Rock dans Tous Ses Etats Festival
07.03.09 - London, UK - Hyde Park $
07.05.09 - Cergy, France - Furia Festival
07.17.09 - Dour, Belgium - Dour Festival
07.18.09 - Nijmegen, Netherlands - Valkhofaffaire
07.19.09 - Utrecht, Netherlands - Tivoli/Helling
Rhymesayers’ Soundset ’09 to Return for the First Time, Promises A Heavy Dose of Battle Raps, Atmosphere, And DOOM’s Return to Minnesota
Rhymesayers Entertainment is proud to announce to you, through me, the date, location, and lineup for Soundset ’09. The self-described “Official Mid-West Summer Kick-Off” is set to go down Sunday, May 24 with gates opening at 11 AM, featuring eight hours of b-boy battles, battle rapping, battle-axes, live DJs, a low-rider car show, skateboard demos, and plenty of awesome performances by a bevy of artists.
The festival, hosted by Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN, culminates with headlining sets by Atmosphere, Pharcyde (with the full original lineup), and DOOM, who hasn’t played a show in the Minneapolis area since Rhymesayers released his 2004 album MM...Food.
The show will also have sets by Roc-A-Fella signee Freeway, who will be performing with hotshot Seattle-based producer Jake One, Sage Francis with B. Dolan (who co-created Knowmore), Doomtree and Rhymesayers member P.O.S., a politically intense Immortal Technique, and Def Jux’s own El-P who will be performing with Mr. Dibbs and TMQ.
Besides the Main Stage performances, the festival also includes a Fifth Element stage, a DJ tent with a national b-boy/b-girl battle, horse racing, and tickets that are on sale now!
Here, take a look at the full lineup:
Atmosphere, The Pharcyde, MF Doom, Brother Ali, Freeway & Jake One, Sage Francis with B. Dolan, Immortal Technique, P.O.S, El P with Mr. Dibbs & TMQ, Eyedea & Abilities, Abstract Rude + Aceyalone & Myka 9 = Haiku D'Etat with DJ Drez, Prince Paul, Buck 65, Blueprint with DJ Rare Groove, DJ Numark, Heiruspecs, Cunninlynguists, Blue Scholars, Sims of Doomtree, One Be Lo, I Self Devine, Awol One, Mike Mictlan & Lazerbeak = Hand Over Fist of Doomtree, Toki Wright, Grieves, Unknown Prophets, Lil Buddy Mclain, Just.Live, Kristoff Krane, El Guante, Plain Ole Bill, BK One, King Otto, and DJ Nikoless.
Over five years ago, a small tracker in Sweden by the Piracy Bureau was born in what was the early beginnings of the BitTorrent era. Since then, The Pirate Bay slowly became the stuff of epics: While major trackers have been shut down and boarded up, TPB maintained some resilience that you couldn't help but be amused, maybe even proud of. They scored leaks of major films, albums, and video games like good PR coups. At times, when artists and movie studios such as Warner Brothers and ego balloon Billy Corgan beseeched them to stop uploads of their leaked movies and pirated albums, they simply posted the letters up and laughed at them. When the site was raided in 2006, protests spawned all throughout Sweden against the nature of the raids, and a political party representing the interests of these supporters (the Pirate Party) was born.
Now, after a trial jokingly referred to as "spectacular trial" or spectrial, (where several charges were dropped, wild accusations were made, and all-around melodrama and theatrics could be had by both sides), the four men who stood trial for the actions of TPB -- Peter Sunde, Fredrik Nejj, Gottfrid Svartholm, and Carl Lundström -- were all declared guilty of facilitating copyright infringement through TPB. According to the 107-page judgment, the four worked together as a team and "were aware that copyrighted material was being shared using The Pirate Bay and that they made it easy and assisted the infringements." Each face a fine of 7.5 million Swedish kronor ($905,000) to the plaintiffs(a consortium of MPAA and RIAA corporations) and a year in jail. Amusingly, the judges in the verdict also declared the usage of BitTorrent illegal in Sweden. I got a feeling that won't go down too well anywhere.
Of course, the four have declared that they will appeal. Sunde, a.k.a. brokep, one of the outspoken figures of the trial, held a press conference online in the aftermath of the verdict. Comparing it to a typical episode of Swedish children's program, Sunde sees that they will ultimately get the epic win and sees this only as a setback. He notes that he was "not surprised" at the verdict, only at the prospect of jail time. He immediately disputed the facts that they worked together as a team, as well as the fact that their actions were "organized crime," calling their site much more disorganized. He was particularly surprised at the fact that the judgment was leaked yesterday to the press, which is how they first got word of the conviction themselves. At one point, he referred to the court as a "dice court," where results tend to be unpredictable. As to whether he would pay the fine, he said that even if he had the money to pay (which he did not), he would rather "burn the money and blow away the dust" than pay a cent to the plantiffs. In regards to TPB's fate, Sunde had said prior to trial that the site itself was never on trial and will continue running.
There is something to be said about this whole verdict. Many artists we write for here at Tiny Mix Tapes, as well as other sites such as Pitchfork and Pop Matters and Stereogum, have much to thank for file-sharing sites such as The Pirate Bay. They may not give them the immediate revenue that some artists and labels crave, but it gives them something else that's more important: fans. Fans that will go to shows, fans that will pay for merch, fans that will support them in any way they can. I am personally acquainted with an artist (who shall remain unnamed), whose own success was through the inadvertent leaking of an album to file-sharing sites such as What.cd and TPB. He is now selling out shows across the country. There are no doubt others who have had similar success. This verdict says a lot about what is wrong with the music industry's mentality towards piracy: All they see now are falling profit margins and the bottom line, lost sales where there never were any to begin with. They don't see that most people aren't just sales numbers. Some are slowly figuring this out and are now learning to earn their revenue off ticket stubs and merch sakles amongst other things. Others are still worshipping this dying god, and will do everything in their power to save it, up to the point of manipulating the government to serve them (which we will be reporting on next week). At the end of the day, while they may be morally in the right, their argument for maintaining this pyrrhic campaign is tired, and people have begun to move on.
While the labels won today, nothing can be made of this just yet.
Boy, oh, boy! Kevin Shields is throwing a heckuva party, and he wants YOU to go! Okay, well, he’s not “throwing” the party, but he has picked out an awesome lineup of bands, and he still really, really wants to go.
Shields, who will curate this year’s ATP Nightmare Before Christmas, has already asked newly-christened critical darlings The Horrors to play, while the rest of the bill also promises shows by Sonic Youth, De La Soul, Sun Ra Arkestra, and, of course, My Bloody Valentine. Expect more announcements regarding Shields selections to follow.
Interested in going? So am I. So, make sure you clear your calendar for December 4–6, 2009, because that’s when this whole groovy shindig is going down.
Tickets too pricey? I know, right? Well, have no fear because ATP is willing to help you out. Certain allocations of discounted tickets will be sold starting 9 AM today until 9 AM on April 24. Another set of discount tickets will also be made available, starting at 9 AM on April 24 until May 1, although this second batch will be slightly less discounted. Head over here to get the whole spiel on the ticket discounts.
Oh, and by the way, Mr. Shields: Loveless is amazing. To this day, it still sounds like whales having sex. And that’s awesome!