January 04, 2003

Look, Mom. I'm famous. In

Look, Mom. I'm famous.

In case anyone's interested, here's a little article-interview with yours truly in the SF Examiner.

Posted by Dr. Frank at 08:02 AM | TrackBack

January 03, 2003

Quaintness worth a second cup...

Quaintness worth a second cup...

Hey, there. I had to take a few days off. Holidays are a lot of work, aren't they?

I hope everyone had a good Christmas, New Year's, etc. No, really. I admit it might not be at the very top of my list of hopes (many of which don't bear mentioning as they do me little credit) but it's on there.

This is the first Christmas in six years that I haven't spent in England. There may no longer be many categories in which the English are the top dogs, but Christmas is one of them. What appears to have happened is that they decided to take all the energy they used to put into maintaining their empire and to devote it instead to putting on shows and presenting the most spectacular, the richest, the most elaborately quaint Christmas experience possible. It's like the KFC commercial says: they only do one thing, but they do it right. It works and I miss it. In comparison, you hardly even notice Christmas in America.

New Year's is another story. It's the one night of the year when the average American tries to drink as much as the average Briton does on an ordinary week night. (I gave it my best shot, but, as usual, I couldn't even come close to keeping up with my slender, young British wife. Drinking with an English chick is fun but perilous: it doesn't matter how long you can manage to soldier on-- you still run the risk of being called a "girl's blouse" when you finally have to admit defeat.)

Among those of us who comprise the ooze that, with any luck, occasionally bubbles up between the floorboards of show business, there are two theories on New Year's Eve. One, the optimistic one, is to look at it as an extra weekend, a sort of super Saturday night that happens to fall on a Tuesday, where you can make a killing by having a show in a major market. The pessimistic view is that there's way too much competition on that particular night and you might as well save your major market show for a weekend when nothing in particular is going on.

I guess Chuck Prophet is one of the optimists, because he and his fabulous band dared to play at the Ivy Room on New Years Eve. We were there watching along with a full room of others. That was where all the above-mentioned girl's blouse action went down. I hadn't seen Chuck play since he did all that touring in support of his big album this past year. It was an amazing show, one of the best I've ever seen. If he's not the world's greatest living guitar-player, it's only because Keith Richard is still alive. I'm not even kidding or exaggerating. He's certainly the best I've ever known or seen up close-- you should check him out if you get the chance.

I, on the other hand, am a pessimist's pessimist, on the New Year's Eve issue as on many other things. Accordingly, my dumb little band is playing tomorrow night at Slim's in San Francisco. The Hi-Fives are reuniting for the show, believe it or not. If I wasn't going to be there anyway, I'd probably go just to see that, because it might be the last chance. At least, I'm going to appreciate the hell out of it, just in case.

Blogging may continue to be light and spotty till the rock and roll exhausts itself.

Happy Competition-free Weekend after New Year's to everybody.

Posted by Dr. Frank at 11:56 AM | TrackBack