Observations 2023-02-26

  • Nice morning recording improvised duo drums at ████’s apartment. Fish tank bubbling in background. Peavey console. Craigslist gear.
  • To find a form that accommodates the mess,” from Austin Kleon.
  • Lots of friends lately talking about struggling to find a manager or agent or publicist or label, recognizing that they would benefit from working with one.

Observations 2023-02-25

  • The dad picking up his daughter from school in a mini pickup truck (of a size you only ever see on airport tarmacs or in Europe/Asia).
  • Laurel Schwulst’s interview with Bill Wurtz on HTML Energy.
  • When all of my friends are on at once, a super cute website.
  • The Syncrowd kinetic sound installation.
  • I never realized, until I read this edition of The Whippet, that deoxygenated blood goes to the heart before it goes to the lungs, and then back again to the heart before it gets pushed out to the rest of the body. In the heart twice. Whoa.

Observations 2023-02-24

  • Playing with Henry True opening for Free Range at their album release show in Chicago. Singing “Burned” with them in their encore.

Observations 2023-02-23

  • Casey and Kerry’s Star Power karaoke night at Color Club.

Observations 2023-02-22

  • Patch bay solderin’.

Observations 2023-02-21

Observations 2023-02-20

  • Recording a ████ cover EP with ████.

Observations 2023-02-19

Observations 2023-02-18

  • Skywoman’s OOLA tool: “A simple, free, must-have financial tool for anyone looking to start, overhaul, fine-tune, or evaluate alternatives to a regenerative pastured egg operation. You tell OOLA key elements about your operation: how many hens, land costs, cost of your supplies, etc. OOLA tells you how much money you need to get started, what it’ll cost to produce your eggs down to the doze, and how long it’ll take to recover your investment.”

Observations 2023-02-17

  • The vibrant logo and colors of the Adjustoveyor conveyor belt machine outside of Miami International Airport.
  • The empty shell of an airline gate computer kiosk—its rough, fiberglass interior exposed.
  • Walking on solid ground with my sea legs, feeling like the ground is moving.
  • The history of Christian crusaders… against the metric system.

Observations 2023-02-16

  • The Tweedy band playing in the Stardust Theater aboard the Norwegian Pearl.

Observations 2023-02-15

  • The woman with a shirt that read “spiritual gangster.”
  • Sitting in for “I’ll Take You There” with the Black Opry’s Stax/Motown cover band.

Observations 2023-02-14

  • The slow-moving, nonthreatening landing party of musicians who jumped from a catamaran and swam to the shore of Tortola, of which the Tweedy band and I were a part.
  • The Tweedy band playing on the pool deck of the Norwegian Pearl.

Observations 2023-02-13

  • The steel rebar from an abandoned resort’s pier poking out of the water, corroded and seaweed-laden, looking like a coral creature.
  • The dog turd so sand-covered and sun-baked it looked like a shard of volcanic lava washed ashore.
  • The tourists filming themselves while driving down a steep road on four-wheelers.
  • The ruins of Fort Amsterdam, the 17th century bastion from which Dutch, Spanish, French, and British occupiers formerly defended the island (and its natural salt ponds).
  • Stereogum’s article about drumprints.

Observations 2023-02-12

  • Dad performing Wilco songs with Trampled By Turtles as “Trampled By Tweedy.”

Observations 2023-02-11

  • Performing with Courtney Marie Andrews (with Liam) aboard Norwegian Pearl.
  • Meeting new Canadian musician friends, with whom we felt an immediate close affinity.
  • Cathy administering light first aid to Mom’s foot on our stateroom dining table.

Observations 2023-02-10

  • Embarking on the Tweedy band’s second Cayamo cruise.

Observations 2023-02-09

  • Arriving in Miami for the Tweedy band’s second Cayamo cruise.
  • Writing about a cute balloon and party store in Chicago.

Observations 2023-02-08

  • The absolutely bonkers electromechanical navigation computer that Soyuz spacecraft used (until 2002?): the Globus.

Observations 2023-02-07

  • Rehearsing with the Henry True band.

Observations 2023-02-06

  • Canceling Casey’s and my duo set at the Empty Bottle because of covid :(

Observations 2023-02-05

  • Watching just enough of the Grammy telecast with Mom to see (and tear up at) Lizzo killing it and Mary J Blige killing it, and to tear up again at the story of Kendrick Lamar buying a wheelchair van for a fan.

Observations 2023-02-04

  • The bizarre hollow glass model of a human head that Mom bought at a thrift store.

Observations 2023-02-03

Observations 2023-02-02

  • Shelling and eating pistachios is a great alternative to phone scrolling.

Observations 2023-02-01

  • Bartees Strange: “Honesty is a crooked bone. It is something that you can write without, but you’re not writing unless you are using it. You can do a lot without being honest, but at a certain point, you have to be honest. Especially when you think about singing a song every night for years. You’re going to want to mean it. I know how to write music, I can write without being honest and it’s so easy to lean on that and just make a record that way. So, I think it’s an easy habit. It’s like not wanting to have a therapist. It’s easy to not want to have a therapist or to not want to improve. It’s easy to just live life and make excuses for how things are. You know, not everybody’s making changes, so why should you? There’s enough evidence to support that. But deep down, we all know we want to be better, and that’s the honesty I’m talking about with music. I write music to inspire people and to make people feel like they belong, and you can’t do that if you’re not being honest in the writing.”

Observations 2023-01-31

Observations 2023-01-30

  • Rehearsing with the Tweedy band for Cayamo cruise.
  • This video about the electric fish barrier in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, which helps prevent invasive carp from reaching the Great Lakes.
  • Having trouble sleeping, having watched too many bewildering videos of the new-prog band Polyphia.

Observations 2023-01-29

  • The sidewalk glistening with snow crystals.
  • A Tweedy Show episode!

Observations 2023-01-28

  • Fascinating footage of Phil Collins (and drummer Chester Thompson) from 1990.

View older posts in the archive