Thursday, February 17, 2011


sounding very much like a bored waitress at the local woolworth's lunch counter on palafox in pensacola, ms mayfield delivers a dark & deep album filled w/shame & anger & the occasional glimpse of some kind of solace, which is about all the redemption she's willing to offer. i hear flannery o'connor here; the pre-lupus flannery who went to new york pursuing the idealized literary life, breaking hearts & having hers broken by boys of callow youth. flannery's early work had pain & shame & anger in it too. it was only when the disease drove her back to the "christ haunted" south that she was able to see a way out of quotidian suffering. of course, her way out wasn't easy & ms mayfield seems to pretty much agree.

i think of bob mould's line, "i always find the broken ones, what does that say about me." this album rises out of the debris of a damaged life & insists on finding beauty & redemption whereever it can.

tell me jessica lea mayfield

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


he played a big part in popularizing surfing along the gulf. there were others like brad english, glenn curle, bezar turner, ken roose. back then, the "real" surfers were the ones who surfed in the winter. the lousy wetsuits, the lack of surf leashes, the cold cold winters thinned the surf crowd to maybe several dozen. i remember brad english(my idol)beating yancy in the first actual surf contest on p'beach. it was sponsored by coca-cola, mainly due to george pryor(his father was president of the local bottling plant in p'cola). yancy had the sense to make a decent living off surfing(before the big bucks arrived)&, after his re-birth as a christian, the lack of bad habits to continue on into the new millenium.

he died doing the thing he loved for so many years. trust me, most of us won't be so lucky.

Friday, February 11, 2011


"Of course political power is meant to protect social life, even to the extent of challenging and altering its inherited arrangements. But that’s the point. Power is in place to enable societized human beings to work out their own goals for themselves, goals over which power as such is powerless: the endless ends of meaning (les fins sans fin du sens), of meanings, of forms, of intensities of desire. The power drive outstrips or surpasses power, while at the same time seeking power for its own sake. The surpassing of power is the very principle of democracy—but as its truth and grandeur (indeed its majesty), not as its annihilation."


Thursday, February 10, 2011


i remember running into pat rosenthal at machine gun kelly's when we were just out of high school. he was w/a well-dressed clubby group. the ladies were attractive so i thought, "what the hell?" & joined them on the periphery. i couldn't really tell what was wrong w/the picture until i realized they were all affecting british accents. "if everyone is doing it," pat explained later, " it's not weird."

years later, dona introduced me to one of her ex-boyfriends who was in a band. onstage, he sang w/a british accent. why's he doing that, i wondered out loud to her. "that's the way the music sounds on the records," was her answer.

i hadn't cared for this band, despite all the hype. the songwriter couldn't seem to decide if he wanted to be a bad poet or a decent songwriter(& yes, there is a big difference). they were all very young & very very serious. he affected a british accent when he sang, even though he hailed from oregon(by way of montana).

thankfully, they've abandoned most of the affectation. the lyrics still snag on a few overly poetic words & phrases but, for the most part, this is straight ahead alt americana done well. they are not breaking new ground(hello, mr buck)but i defy you not to like this. i just don't think you can.

for one album anyway, they've hit the nail on the head.
the decemberists the king is dead

Monday, February 7, 2011


during all my years of surfing i think i paddled out for one night surf session. philip & todd were probably involved. i can guarantee that the surf was no more than a few feet in height. for me, it was less a concern for actually seeing what needed to be seen & more a real fear of sharks who feel that the night time is the right time for feeding.

what this guy is doing is beyond my capacity to really understand, though i can somewhat imagine the exhilarated feelings coursing through every fiber of his being. this is truly a monumental visual thrill.