Summary: James Burke’s “Connections,” Beach Boys stripped down, the Baguette Quartette, books (aka my new job)
As my life once again resembles something I enjoy, it occurs to me that I have things to say which are longer than 140 characters.
Welcome back to my regurgitation of the alphabet into not-so-pithy observations about culture, art, music, film, the creative process, and connections.
Or make that “Connections,” the brilliant BBC series by James Burke that I have discovered (via Warren Ellis‘s Sept 8th entry). Episode 1 is on Google video, and I must warn you, it will leave you hooked. Embed wayyyy at the bottom of this blog entry, in the hopes that you’ll read my blather before being entranced by his genius for an hour.
Like All Songs Considered’s Robin Hilton (see entry Sept 3rd after all Bob’s Beatles Boxed Set photos), one of my major “failings” as a music fan is that I’ve never been able to get into the Beach Boys. Also like him, these mp3s of a rehearsal from 1967 are the first Boys recordings I’ve enjoyed thoroughly on first listen (thanks Aquarium Drunkard!). They’re only up for a limited time, so go listen/download while you can! A warning: the track Heroes/Villains is skipworthy, as Mike Love is being an asshole on the main mike the whole time.
In my poverty-stricken state, my new musical intake has been limited to podcasts, unboxing old cds that never made it into iTunes, borrowing cds from friends, and the kindness of the internet (see above). The other day, however, a miraculous thing occurred – I actually purchased a CD! I had wandered into Half-Price in Berkeley to kill some time, and ended up looking at their budget cds. I came across something which hit the sweet spot of appealing to my current whimsy while being obscure enough to convince me I couldn’t find it – ahem – in the aether. It turns out that the band has some mp3s of this album on their website, but I don’t regret buying “Rendez-Vous” at all. “The Baguette Quartette is a San Francisco Bay Area group that plays music that was heard in Paris between 1920 and 1940 on street corners, in cafes, and in popular dance halls.”
I’ll sign off with a few personal notes. After seven frustrating months of fUnemployment, I have gotten something of a dream job at The Book Shop in Hayward, CA. It’s under new ownership, and I’m bringing in more bookstore experience than some of the other people involved, and that seems understood and appreciated. It’s exciting to be both part of tradition (50 years) and on the ground floor of a new thing at the same time.
And…I hope you read books. You can catch up on your FaceBook or Twitter later – your friends’ descriptions of lunch will be waiting for you. Pick up a book. I seriously worry about this, but I have hope that the kids are reading.
If you’re a friend of mine and in NYC, know that I’ve been missing you and thinking about you – come visit soon!
If you’re in the SF Bay Area, I <3 you too, and I’m looking for a room in the East Bay for $425 or less – email me if you know anything.
and now, without further ado, the first episode of James Burke’s “Connections”