Thursday, April 30, 2009

What's My Motivation?

Haven't been blogging much lately. Haven't had much desire to, really. It hasn't been lack of things to write about, just a lack of motivation. Too much writing and thinking at work, I believe. Whatevs. Here's a few random things:

The Johnny Tightlips show at Burt's was really quite good. It'd been more than a year since our last show, but I'd actually rank near the top of our performances. A bunch of insurance friends came out and we debuted a new tune, "All I Wanna Do." Surprisingly, it was one of the best songs in the set. We've been reworking it for months and we finally found an arrangement we all liked a couple days before the show.

The show got me really jazzed about the band again. I am happy about our new material and I really want to get serious about finally getting everything recorded. (I had a revelation about it during Priesthood Session. Yes, that's what God talks to me about.) However, nothing has happened yet.

On another music note, I did record a new song at work the other day. It's not so much a song as a 12 second soundtrack for an 8-bit video game that we've been creating to promote dental insurance. You can hear the track in all it's dopeness here.

So I guess that's it for now. I need to stop blogging and start writing music.

This, in turn, got me excited about my next musical project--a more electronic outing called Mixtape Mixtape. I haven't quite gotten around to working on this yet, either. My procrastination is depressing.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Hitchhiking to Sweden

On May 1, My #1 fav band of all-time, Millencolin, will be performing their #1 best album, Pennybridge Pioneers, in its entirety. The only drawback for a fellow like me is that it's in Sweden. Can anyone help me out with a plane ticket?

Here's the dealio:

"Satin has been the only club/bar with regular live shows in our hometown Örebro, Sweden for many years. This is where we've had pretty much all the official Millencolin Open parties and spent many other great party nights. Unfortunately the landlord have decided to not renew their contract so the first weekend of may will be the last of the Satin era.

We're celebrating the club by playing Pennybridge Pioneers from first to last song live as the last band on their stage! "

If memory serves me, I saw the band when they were touring this record in 2001. But not in its entirety. And, more importantly, this album has now fallen into the nostalgic-for-a-better-time-in-music category. Plus they recently did a "U.S." tour, but it only included New York and California. Hello, what about the rest of this country? So you can see why this is so important.

Buddy passes, anyone?

One Year Anniversary

So, we've officially had one year with this chubby kid. (Though everyone concurs that he weighs a million pounds, the doctor insists that he only weighs 22. The vast majority of that weight has to be in that ginormous mellon.) We like him pretty good.

We had the two-day birthday extravaganza over the weekend--Sunday night with the Pearsons, Monday with the Sutherlands. The pictures above are his second round of cake smashing. He felt fine about eating the cake, but what he really enjoyed was the squishing. Apparently, we've really been stifling his squishing talents.

Traci is lamenting how fast the time has gone and how he's no longer a little baby. I'm trying to determine if I think it has gone fast or slow. It already seems difficult to remember what it was like to only have one kid to chase around.

Traci and I both agree that Curtis has been much easier than Paige was, but I wonder how much of that comes from A) comparing him to a rambunctious three-year-old and B) being more used to parenthood. He does seem to have a more laid back demeanor, though.

He loves Paige and is constantly laughing at her. But he's also started sticking up for himself lately, by both throwing a fit when she steals his stuff and spending a lot of time stealing her stuff. He's also figured out how to turn off the TV, which drives Paige absolutely crazy.

Post 8:00 p.m. (Paige's bedtime) is Curtis's time to shine. He laughs and plays and shows off all his tricks--no lousy big sister to steal his spotlight.

His tricks, however, are still a bit limited. He's not walking yet--just pulling himself up on stuff and shuffling from thing to thing--which is frustrating for him and sometimes embarrassing for me. Last week a church a younger (and much lighter) girl was trying to play with Curtis. She walked right over to him and he lay on the floor on his back, rolling back and forth like a chubby, shell-side-up turtle.

"Curtis," I told him sternly. "We can't have little girls showing you up like this." He just smiled at me. He knows what he's doing.

Here's to year number two...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

David Bazan: Live @ Chelsea's House

David Bazan

House Show
Salt Lake City

In musical terms, “an intimate performance” usually means a show in a small club with a couple hundred people. I don’t know what you call it when you and 24 other people get to see an artist play an hour-long set in a friend’s living room. I guess if you’re a David Bazan fan, one word comes to mind—heaven.

David Bazan (the artist formerly known as Pedro the Lion) is down to the last three days of a six week house performance tour. A few months back, Bazan posted an open call to would-be show hosts on his website. The requirements were simple: have a house that would fit 30-50 people, live on a street with ample parking and neighbors that won’t call the cops, and have a chair for David to sit on while he plays his guitar.

A delightful Salt Lake City girl named Chelsea answered the call. Tonight her downtown loft became the best venue in town, filled with adoring fans sitting cross-legged on her floor. Bazan arrived at the house around 7:30 with his guitar in hand. He spent a half hour enjoying a few beers and mingling with the house guests and then took the
stage—er, the corner of the room—around 8:00.

Surrounded by seated adorers, Bazan strummed softly and bellowed mightily. He played a handful of songs from his back catalog, but saved the majority of the set list for material from his forthcoming album, “Curse Your Branches.” The record looks to be Bazan’s most introspective to date, revolving around his break with his Evangelical Christian upbringing.

In usual Bazan fashion, he paused after every few songs to allow time for questions. The group was quick to respond. Queries ranged from usual concert fare—favorite records, bands and such—to his thoughts on God and his religious family. Bazan thoughtfully responded to each inquiry and, at times, seemed so engaged in the conversation that the songs almost became an afterthought. And that was just fine.

The evening was about more than just the songs. The setting was perfect, the artist engaging, and the music gorgeous. This is how live music should be.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Red Vines and Dope Rhymes

Yesterday there was a pack of Twizzlers sitting on the counter. Of course Paige sniffed them out. "Can I have some of that?"

"Some of what?" I say.

"Some ticklish."


She points to the licorice. "Yeah, some ticklish."


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Family Home Evening After Party

If you missed last night's Johnny Tightlips show, this is pretty much how it looked and sounded.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Third Day

I would have to guess that Jesus is pretty happy that his resurrection day is celebrated, in part, by dressing your kids up in new church clothes and taking pictures in the front yard.

The Chomper

I was changing my shirt when Traci saw my bare chest and said, "Uggh, what is that?"

[I considered ending the post here, and leaving that as your last mental image.]


"That giant bruise."

"That's from your little vampire baby."

It is a regular occurrence that, when I sit on the floor, Curtis will crawl over to me immediately, grabs me and bites me. On this particular occasion, he bit me so hard that I had to grab his cheeks and pry his jaws open to get him to release.

"Curtis!" I shouted. "No! No! No!"

He looked at me, tears bubbled up in his eyes and then started streaming down his cheeks.

"Oh, it's okay, buddy. Don't be sad."

And I thought I was the victim here.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Watch Out! Punks in the Cracker Aisle

Some good tunes on the way into work in the morning can make all the difference in the world. I can't get enough of the new Left Alone album. It is exactly how gutter punk is supposed to sound. If you have liked Rancid for any moment in your life, you'll love this one.

Left Alone

Monday, April 06, 2009

The Stuff That Makes a Father Proud

The last few days, Paige has been banging away at her little acoustic guitar. It all started when she was watching an episode of the Doodlebops called "The Mystery Riff." When she saw Busdriver Bob play that solo, she turned to me and said, very seriously, "Dad, where's my guitar?"

Since then she's been smacking the strings as hard as she can and singing little songs about stuff she's been doing or things she's been looking at. "We' Grandma Sutherlanddddd's" or "There's the the bought me." 

While that's certainly endearing enough, what really gets me is that before she starts any song she says, in pure punk rock fashion, "1, 2, 1-2-3-4." I love it.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Nacho Curtis

Somehow Curtis has managed to stick around for a year--despite trying his best to swallow any object he can get hands and chewing on every electrical cord he can find. Where has the time gone?

He's still not walking, just quickly crawling behind his big sister so he can terrorize her wherever she goes. He does, however, hoist himself up on everything that can support his, well, ample frame. (My favorite is when he I'm sitting on the ground and he grabs my, well, less than ample hair and pulls himself up.)

Today's he added a new move. He pulls himself up and then, for a split second, let's go--no hands! Because he's a tricky dude, he doesn't just let go, he puts his chubby arms way up in the sky like he's riding a roller coaster. And then...the crash. If it's me that he's pulled himself on, the result is a magnificent body slam. This causes him hysterical laughter. Our little luchador.