March 31, 2006


My favorite thing about Sebring Florida, aside from my nana, Zola, is that they keep it simple: The nightclub is called "Nightclub" and the tattoo parlor is called "TATS".

I go home tomorrow. Tonight, I watch basketball with nana. Did I mention my nana has her cast wrapped in IU colors? That her bathroom in her assisted living apartment is decorated with Bobby Knight and IU championship posters from 1940-present? She is way pumped. Yesterday, she looked her medication nursing aid and chanted "I-U! I-U!", then paused and added, coyly "I'm from Indiana, you know?!"

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March 30, 2006


1. Have you called the old people of your life lately? Like today? Why not? What is yr abuelita, yr nana, yr grandpa, yr mom, etc up to? Find out. Being at a nursing home for like 16 hours a day the last two (or is it three?) days, I saw a lot of old people really lonely, watching much CNN with and without their dentures in. Memo: Call someone old asap.

2. When I am old and feeble and not having any more fun, if you, you, person reading this happen to be the person in charge of my old-life destiny--here is what I want: just take me to the deep deep woods, give me a big box of Krispy Kremes and let me be. Seriously.

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You know it is spring when JR starts talking about baseball. PS. Happy Belated Birthday Pal.

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I don't know if it was my outfit (insideout baby cardigan, "fuck your phallorcratic discourse" t-shirt, my under wear were sticking out of the top of my filthy white jeans) or the odd miracle that I am not between 86 or 55 and deep red tan nor wearing an outfit with anchor decals all over it, but when I asked the ladies outside of the bank where a bank with an ATM was, they puffed on their Virgina Slims and looked back at me silently, strangely, as if I had I asked them "Which one of you wants to eat my ass first?" ... they stuttered and pointed all around town, their most in depth direction being 'there is a big one over there, down there over cross the road".

I toddled around the downtown looking for the ATM, looking almost as nuts as I feel. Got up at 4 am to drive my sister 2 hours to the airport. The drive back was pretty sweet--there is nothing like driving through Celebration Florida with the top down on a rented Chrysler Sebring (to stay awake), listening to The Misfits, Fleetwood Mac and Mary J. very loud at 6:11 am. I realized something great though, on my zombie voyage: I have never driven to work before. Like to a job where I work for someone. Ever.

Correction to yesterday's post: My nana is 87, not 79. She got confused, because she though she was the same age as Eartha Kitt, who is 80. I forget--old is old to me. Despite my nana's creeping senility, she held forth for a good 45 minutes on the topic of deer meat and her many years running the meat counter at her grocery store. We begged her to stop--gagging and giggling--she just started weaving it together with the story of my parents 1975 wedding in her front yard. It was amazing, one sentence would be about the 20 yards of material in my moms dress, the next about how meat hangs on a hide once it is slaughtered. It was like she was reading a Godard screenplay aloud.

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March 29, 2006


Tiny lucky bloggersteezing most mini update as a man strums acoustic to two retiree couples and my mom and I here at Java Junction here in Sebring. What passes for culture here - PS. Central Florida is a fucking wasteland, FYI. Am helping my tiny lucky nana, age 79, move from hospice into assisted living tomorrow. Dispatch forthcoming on the state of elder care c. Saturday.

yrs most truly,

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March 26, 2006


Jean Smith, voice of Mecca Normal, is also an artist. You can browse and purchase paintings from her on her art website; lovely horse paintings currently going for $20 USD+shipping.

Tomorrow, pictures and story of last night, though I will let Lil' Ketchup reveal the better details via her Antisocial column this week, first, perhaps. It started easy enough, a going away "party" for half our girl-cabal as they move to NYC and it ended with a tan man in a sparkley purple cumberbund chasing us into an elevator and screaming at the top of his lungs that he would make sure we spent the night in jail. We didn't. It is hard to take a man with a highlighted, moussed-up wet-look crew cut seriously no matter what he threatens you with, but we screamed none the less when he pried the door open with his leg.
I do not know if I have ever laughed so much in one night.
It was a caper, for sure.

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March 24, 2006


Brazilian skinhead girlband, Stripped, performing Bikini Kill's "Rebel Girl". This video illustrates the universal truths of being a young girl in a band:
1.) Your first 11 bands will undoubtedly feature THAT GUY. In their case, it's the dude in Clockwork Orange outfit. He will be the worst part of your band but he knows chords and has taught them to you and you think you need him. You don't. Later on, you kick him out, and privately make fun of his bowler hat/gothcape/ugly mohawk.
1.5) In your first 11 bands, the skinniest/sluttiest/prettiest girl you know will be the singer, by default, never because she actually merits it. This is a rule of 10th grade girl bands.
2.) You will think you are a skinhead punk band, but really you sound like Suicide. You think you are thrash metal but you sound like Huggybear. You try for Oi, but you sound like the Au Pairs and end up being accidentally wrongmazing.

Also, on a roll: JR's blog . He's been on a roll lately. Todays entry about the book store with the joke about beating off to Dave Von Ronk records, paired with the last entry where he was leaving candy on the benches of Wicker Park are really funny to my chucklehead.

Back to work! You and me both!

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I saw this man, maybe you know, Sam Beam? Sam Bean? Iron and Wine dude. He was at the table next to us, his beard was gargantuan. Like a cross between a pillow and those fake Halloween cobwebs that come in a bag that you use to decorate your porch. Except it was so red-orange, it was almost pink, like a big plume of hair-fire. Like his face was a NASA rocket and his facial hair was the combustion of $462,000 worth of rocket fuel. But the best part about him, really, was the woman with him. She was beautiful and thick and was wearing homemade clothes and a beret. She was so lovely and euro-confident, she might of just been wearing the Eiffel Tower on her gamine freckle face. She was so cool looking, it made me think I should really check out Iron and Wine again, double check to make sure I was not wrong about them being high-alert effete; her beret-style was that immaculate. That is kind of how I feel when I am out with Matt, because he dresses, especially in summer, like a man in an old movie, with fitted shirts and a old man hat and exudes quiet class and manners; he is my magic girl in a beret, and I, I am Sam Beam's cumulus ginger-beard with little bird legs, walking around haw-hawing at my good fortune of holding hands with a dapper man.

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March 23, 2006


I stayed up until dawn-am watching a documentary about a girl scout troop whose moms are all in prison, and woke up this morning to the upstairs problem. The Upstairs Problem started as our neighboor laying down some Hoover-like riffs for 2-4 hours at a time in the kitchen, then as he has gotten more pedals it's gotten worse. He's been playing the same song for the entire 4 months I have lived here. Matt calls it "grillin cheese". Today I was woken up by the dude really grillin the cheese: some octaver-phaser pedal sea-sickness that might be one of those Danelectro "sitar" effects, of course applied to the same-same-same-song, with muted picky solo included. But in the last few weeks, dude has augmented his playing with MAD GRUNGERY. I am not sure what he is listening to, but it's from 1991. It kind of sounds like Dumptruck or The Fluid of Vertigo. Fuck, if it was Vertigo, I would not even care. Today, I snapped, ripped off the covers and stomped into the other room and put on the worst song I could-- which was, of course, Glen Frey's "Smugglers Blues"--good and loud. I think he got the point.

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March 22, 2006


With trepidation built on sad-fear, and with eager resolve in equal measure, I am making my way slowly through two art-works who are on a same-same: The new Mecca Normal album that is a narrative about Jean Smith's internet dating history and Louise Gluck's new poetry book Averno. Both, I feel are about being an older woman, sure of herself and not very sure about the men around her. Or maybe sure about some pretty grim things about those men; beds being left cold, bitter truths you can hardly be upset over, being older and how that sometimes is. I like Jean's version a better than Louise's, as Louise's sounds like the swell of divorce hitting it's shore, Jean's is about being a poor artist and a single woman at 46. Louise's version says this is it. in a reserved, nuanced way and Jean's says THIS IS IT?!. Their "it's" being flipsided versions of "being alone". I am not sure which is more unsettling, but both do the job, and eviserate quickly. It's not a shock, but it feels more like a velvet curtain has been pulled back, in and the story is not magical, it is so plain, it is like I have never heard it; both feel like an anti-heroine, I do not want to identify with the complexity of what their alone means.

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Went to the museum for get-in-free day. It was hard to be there, a lot of loud people and kids and art school babes trying to show one another up by how much more each of them knew. Next time I bring earplugs. No matter where I walked, I wound up within 10 feet of three girls and a boy--art schoolers all. The prettiest of the girls had a switch in her walk, she moved like her ass was on a sling. She was trying to show off for the boy, alpha-up on those other girls. I was finally able to shake them during my camp out in the room left over from the Dan Flavin retrospective that just came down. It was really a special feeling, alone with a room of pink and gold light, making dumb life glow like an Italian fresco of baby Jesus on a basillica ceiling.


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March 21, 2006


Mary J Blige interview about her arms and her work out.

Posted by Jessica at 03:01 PM | TrackBack


(For the sixth grade graduation at my Montessori-learning school, we had to sing the Carly Simon song that was the theme to Working Girl. It was not as bad as 7th grade grad--we had to sing Mike and The Mechanics "Living Years")

Public Congratulations to my lady J Shep on her new job. You may have missed her Jane magazine-based hip hop music blog which makes me really excited for the debut of her MTV R&B blog. You will read the entire thing in one sitting and learn about what is great and redonkuliss in hop hop today. PS. I watched that Kelis video 3 times in a row; Tinted poodle as matching accessesory to one's diamond studded grill is something you think would only be good conceptually, but she pulls it off. You must love Kelis for everything she is and everything she isn't quite. Plus she wears Chuck Taylors with no socks in the summer, like the rest of us. I saw a picture. I imagine her and Nas going home from a summer night out sweating up her CT's and her taking them off and chasing him around the mansion with them. That's the kind of girl I imagine Kelis to be.

Posted by Jessica at 11:32 AM | TrackBack


Do not sweat it. Today is the first day of SPRING™. I know you are kind of sweating it, perhaps even intensely. Winter and wintertime problems, sometimes, can feel like being trapped at the Double Door on a Friday night and it's packed to the rafters with dudes in white hats and brown leather coats who really love "live music" and Bumpus will not stop playing jammy sets of rubbery yuppie keg-funk and they will not stop and you are in a prison of their fretless white hell and you have no idea how you will be free of this Michelob Light powered undeath. Sometimes, that is how winter is. FACT. So, I'm just letting you know, the between set intermission is here to give you hope to hope upon and it is called Spring.

Posted by Jessica at 02:17 AM | TrackBack

March 20, 2006


How did I forget about Jahcoozi ? Julianne and I saw them at WMF in Berlin like three summers ago and they were less electro and more weird but def. great. They have a new album out on Kitty-Yo, which I have not got yet, BUT the Modeselektor rmx of "Black Barbie" is a thing I like. Modeselektor is making the kind of records that deliver on Kid606's failed promise, you know? Also, this girl Sasha, her look above is dazzling and so singularly pulled off by her. Imagine if you or I tried to wear her look to the club or the store: Giant college team hoodie, micro-sized hot pants, tall white socks, helmet with mousketeer ears--people would think you got dressed in a k-hole.

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March 19, 2006


I enjoyed reading this. Ol' Jane Dark, as ever, on France's riot, class war and people getting it wrong.

Like hegemony, Jane is here, there and everywhere next month, on a reading tour. I highly recommend you go.

4/05 @ 7:30, Danny's Bar, Chicago
4/06 @ 7:00, Prairie Lights, Iowa City
4/09 @ 2:00, Ruskin Art Club, Los Angeles
4/12 @ 6:30, Bowery Poetry Club, New York
4/13 @ 7:00, Lamont Library, Cambridge
4/18 @ 7:00, 3201 Hart Hall, UC Davis
4/20 @ 7:30, Open Books, Seattle
4/23 @ 7:30, Spare Room, Portland

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March 18, 2006


"More Candy Less War" is a sentiment we can all get behind. These kids were about seven or eight, and they were fixed to their grandparents with a rope.

The polices were positioned every eight feet for the length of the route, and there were riot cops in thier positions with baton and shin-guards, Cook County Sherrifs, ones that looked like park rangers. All the side streets were lined with command station busses and cruisers bumper to bumper.

I went by myself. The batteries in my camera died after five pictures, but they would have all looked like this, though I regret not getting a picture of when we turned on to Michigan Ave, and people were watching from the hotels and the fancy stores; the young shoppers pressed against the glass of J.Crew watching the parade next to the mannequins looked trapped. I walked next to all kinds of people, but naturally, my favorites were some teenage girls that hopped into the march after their stop at Wet Seal. They were drinking Starbucks and talking on their cell phones and naturally, they were incredible. "If I was George Bush, I would totally be crying right now. If I was president, I could not deal with all these people hating me, I'd be freaking," said one. I wish our president was a 17 year old girl. America would be soooo amazing. I sped up and clapped my mittens to get warm, and fortunately, I ran into Al and Nora, who were kicking their "Snowsuits for Peace" look they said. I suddenly appeared next to them when the group they were in began chanting "THIS IS WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE!"--they thought that was real funny. Nora had her one pocket filled with rolling cigarette tobacco and the other pocket filled with lemonhead candy, like Antione from 400 Blows in grown up girl form. During the parade stopping for a traffic as we turned onto Wacker, we go to stand for maybe five minutes right there on the bridge above the river and see downtown, leisurely and quiet. Quiet despite the yelling. Traffic was redirected all-elsewhere and it was special, we had downtown to ourselves. It was like being on a date with a few thousand people. Going up Wacker, the chants had died off a bit, it was silent except for whistles and drum in the distance and then someone yelled "Who let the dogs out?!" real loud and serious and everyone cracked up. When we got to 'the end' Daley Plaza, the rear was headed up, and all the music and fun was on the tail end. The punk flag corps (why did I ignore that email?! Criminy!) was running sloppy drills and twirling in red white and blue outfits, followed by an ad hoc marching band and drum corps that included a guy with a silvertone guitar being run through a hockey-helmet mounted bullhorn. Behind them was the all reggae soundsystem mounted on a bike-cart, followed by the Ethical Humanist Society. "They're Kantians!" said Nora, excited. Nora is getting her PHD in philosophy, those are her people. We pledged to each other to join them, their banner was very nice looking. "For next time."

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Start yr night off right: Tonight (3/18), 7 pm sharp, the anti-war protest kicks off from Walton and State, down the Mag Mile. More details on rallys and feeder marches, etc .


Peter Margasak, my fellow critic at the Reader and the #1 dude who is known all around the Chi-Boog as "Dr. and Mrs. World Music Knowledge Bowl", just got back from Brazil, and is posting mp3s of hot finds on his bloggenpfeffer of Brazilian bands yr friends are still months away from discovering. He is DJing same-same Sunday night at Rodan. Rodan: go for the Norweigan wood interior, stay for the wasabi fries.


New obsession: Francoiz Breut . She's a french singer, she's done records with Yann Tiersen and Joey Burns from Calexico. Quiet but forceful; Mp3s and video here. She is also an illustrator. Here is a picture of her, looking effortlessly cool, in a plauid shirt and a high pony tail.

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March 17, 2006


JR yelled my name down the street to me last night, I missed him in the window of the book store where he works, flipping me off. We cemented it: library day today. Trying to decide whethere to renew or return Jesus and Buddha as Brothers , which has yet to be cracked. I check out, usually, five books, and mostly finish one; the other books are like wishes, pennies in a fountain. I want to check out all the Algren, go deep on my new love for stories of my hood circa 1940, but I have to read Master and Margarita by the 2nd for book club.

I have nothing but time right now, but I need different stim than books. Winter is stumbling it's way out, giving a day a week of freak warm weather, and that's almost worse than if it didn't happen at all. Spring, acting like such a tease. I only get cabin fever towards the end, because outside is almost doable: you can go outside for more than 11 minutes now, if you bundle up and walk very fast. I resent my mittens and nothing I have to do indoors is exciting enough. I putter around the house, on a track of half finished tasks, in between deadlines, having my most meaningful conversations with Wyatt, but he is only five months old and his main concerns are me smoothing his tigerstripes and little balls with bells inside and when am I going to throw one his way. He just stares at me with blank eyes.

I feel like nothing really matters until it's at least 47 degrees.

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March 16, 2006


I was just minding my own business, reading K Sanneh riff about My Chemical Romance in the paper and BOOM!I'm in the NY effing Times. Emo is sexist! It's official! "Influential"--whoa! Freaking! OUT!

Posted by Jessica at 04:02 PM | TrackBack


Remember last week when pictures of the dude from Fallout Boy's penis made the rounds on the internet? Supposedly leaked by his best friend, Chris, who was angry about his Fallout BFF hitting on his girlfriend, though Chris may or may not be, according to his blog, a gay hairdresser to emo-stars, and is just taking the fall for his BFF, who may or may not have emailed the pictures to a girl who posted them on her livejournal. What is for sure, for sure all the way, is that Chris is recording a spoken word CD of himself reading his 30 favorite entries from his livejournal blog . Incredible. It feels like a sign of the emo-apocolypse, no?

Posted by Jessica at 10:37 AM | TrackBack

March 15, 2006


According to statcounter, I have six daily readers in Austin. Lucky you, all that SXSW. I am sitting this year out though missing SXSW means missing some things I truly love: free promotional CD samplers handed to me by beggy assertive strangers who are offended if you do not take it, product managers achieving cross platform synergy with an intern from the radio department after 41 shared drinks and some under the table finger-banging, people vomitting churros into the gutters of 6th Street... I could go on, but I won't.

Instead, I will suggest you see three things:
DJ Feadz, at the Tigebeat 6 show. (Friday Morning - doors at 2:30 am - 5 dollars @ Karma Lounge - 119 West 8th Street) Feadz is a french DJ who records for BPitch Control, his 12" Fast Forward is the number one thing that people ask me "WHAT IS THIS?!" when I play it. Julianne and I saw him in Berlin a few years ago and he played this shit that sounded like Miami Bass if Miami was actually a factory town in Germany, he's just the best and he is never ever in the US.

Are you like that guy in the 10CC song who sings "I don't like reggae/ I love it"? Then you are just like my friend Cali (who is already enjoying TX, obvs), and maybe you should be friends (having things in common is an easy way to foster friendship). He's DJing the I Heart Comix showcase (3/16 Beauty Bar all day and night). He is covered in a human-skin wallpaper of totally questionable tattoos, but otherwise has impeccable tastes. I have only ever seen him DJ in his living room and when he does that he just plays reggae, so my recommendation is based on that. Funnily enough, and Thirdly, my boyfriend (no, it's true! we worked it out!), Matt, is in a band called Ambulette, who are also playing that SAME SHOW at Beauty Bar. At 3pm. After Lady Soveriegn but before 56 LA-based goth disco bands and Peaches bikini waxing demo.

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Guess who is still looking for a room-mate? C'est moi. March. Mid-March also possible and doable. For your rent dollars ($500), you get a bedroom and half the home office/craft room. Place is big and so so lovely. Porch, kittens, laundry, closets! You can sit on the porch and watch droves of old old old Russian people walk to the grocery at slow paces. Please do not make me fish for strangers on Craigslist. Last time, last time I was forced to turn to strangers, I wound up living, for 5 whole months with a 3 degrees of separation dude who was a chronic griller of chicken--every night the Foreman grill got fired up. He also lifted weights in the living room and kept an erotic novel on the back of the toilet. The chicken thing was over the top, though the last two issues would not have been so bad if he had been female.

Posted by Jessica at 01:36 AM | TrackBack

March 13, 2006


I was folding and saw that my favorite button up had a personal name tag sewn over the clothing label tag. I always wonder who owned my clothes before, but this time, I asked Google. Based on where I thrifted it, I now know exactly who owned it ; catholic Isabelle, now up in heaven, thanks for giving up yr pink stripey shirt.

Posted by Jessica at 09:28 PM | TrackBack


New York Friends: I am in town this week starting Weds. Be in touch if you like.

Posted by Jessica at 07:12 PM | TrackBack



Meet Dead Chipmunk.
Dead Chipmunk, 3, is a buyer for our Evanston store, and is of Golden-mantled Groud-Squirrel descent, and originally hails from a nearby oak tree. When not suffering from rigormortus under a pillow, she previously enjoyed running up and down trees in the forest.

Posted by Jessica at 02:39 PM | TrackBack


We were standing on the porch, JR and I, making slow conversation as it started pouring. I pointed out the tree across the street which has many many little arched branches. It is my favorite. I cannot wait to see it with leaves. It the affilication of the aged and those in cold climes: discussing the weather, speaking speculatively and hopefully. Spring is coming, I mentioned three times in two hours. You get so saddled by winter, you can easily forget it's not terminal.

Early eve was poking around town with my baby sis, her long blonde pony hair a curly tangle from the humdity. When she was away, our emails were home gossip and abroad check-ins, conversations about what Senegal and Barcelona and Hong Kong meant to her we knew would be saved for face to face. I have not seen her since her 24 hour layover home between Hong Kong and Minneapolis and then, mostly, she was gifts and jet lag, slideshowing pictures of the Great Wall, the streets of Macau, and great grins flashes for the camera in the bar with new friends.

I feel about my sister how I think parents feel for their kids. Less sister, more parental, everything she does is magic, to me she is the best at everything she has ever done, I am ga-ga over her every achievement; her grades, her ideas, her jewelry, her soft way of being so tough. She is eight years younger than me, perhaps it is age difference. Perhaps everyone feels this way about little sisters, concerned and wowed in equal measure. She is smart and brave and determined, and living a life I wished I had dreamt up. My biggest dreams at 21 were making rent every month and being thanked on liner notes. She said tonight that "the hardest part of living in Barcelona was that it wasn't Hong Kong." She told me about confronting the American racism instilled in her, American whiteness is natural with that privilege right, and breaking down in Dakkar. She says she's moving back to Asia, as soon as she gets her journalism degree. This is hard to accept, because even as we were sitting at dinner and she was telling me about this wild everything that she has seen and lived in the last year--in my mind she is still nine and obsessed with her babyhamster--and Korea is too far for her to be from me.

Posted by Jessica at 12:44 AM | TrackBack

March 11, 2006


A quick link, for your pleasure. Miles has launched his rap "persona", Lil' Coldplay and needs your help getting famous and rich. I know some of you readers, you have means beyond my limited means, for helping people take it to the next level . If ever there was an idea so good-bad that it needed next leveling, it might be this one.

Posted by Jessica at 05:03 PM | TrackBack

March 10, 2006


Matt just reminded me: Remember when Victory launched on off shoot world label? I wonder how releases like Hot Caribbean Hits fared, in their pre-street team era?

Quoth one Tony Brummel, on the label's inception:"The Caribbean is relatively close to the United States yet most Americans are totally unaware of its existence and importance. There are so many cultures and musical styles to be explored and exposed. Plus, the music and the story behind it are spectacular. It's exciting and a privilege to be able to document history, tradition and ethic diversity. Graphically, we are going to make the releases on Victory World look spectacular. Many of the releases in this genre lack a certain flair and excitement- we are going to fix that. We want to provide as much takeaway as possible and hopefully, temporarily transport the listener to another part of the world. This is music that has the potential to appeal to everyone from children to senior citizens. It's refreshing to work with a musical style that has the potential to bring so many different people together."

Quick exercise in making yr brain vex into collapse: Close your eyes and imagine how Victory might try and market, say, Soca to senior citizens and children, ones who are unaware of the Caribbean?

Posted by Jessica at 02:49 PM | TrackBack


Matt just reminded me: Remember when Victory launched on off shoot world label? I wonder how releases like Hot Caribbean Hits fared, in their pre-street team era?

Quoth one Tony Brummel, on the label's inception:"The Caribbean is relatively close to the United States yet most Americans are totally unaware of its existence and importance. There are so many cultures and musical styles to be explored and exposed. Plus, the music and the story behind it are spectacular. It's exciting and a privilege to be able to document history, tradition and ethic diversity. Graphically, we are going to make the releases on Victory World look spectacular. Many of the releases in this genre lack a certain flair and excitement- we are going to fix that. We want to provide as much takeaway as possible and hopefully, temporarily transport the listener to another part of the world. This is music that has the potential to appeal to everyone from children to senior citizens. It's refreshing to work with a musical style that has the potential to bring so many different people together."

Quick exercise in making yr brain vex into collapse: Close your eyes and imagine how Victory might try and market, say, Soca to senior citizens and children, ones who are unaware of the Caribbean?

Posted by Jessica at 02:48 PM | TrackBack


Holy snap. Teeter Sperber (google her, she is real), is, for some effing reason, in South Beach for a month and has started a photo blog, appropriately titled Spring Break Hellscape, which is all beer bongs, butts and white people baking in the sun like a flambe and unlevened mocking c/o Teeter and her dutch pal Danielle.

Meanwhile, a good omen for all of us, for the weekend: I found my Soul II Soul's Keep on Movin under a chair in my office. Seeing Jazzy B--It's like seeing a hawk.

Thirdly, and this is the last time I will tell you. Tomorrow, 1 pm, Harold Washington library, downtown, me and Monica Kendrick and Deena Weinstein (she wrote that heavy metal sociology book) and Amy from venus. Panelising. Another reason to come on down: you can meet my sister, who has long golden hair like a palamino mane. She's the best. I have not seen her since she moved back from Barcelona, almost a year since I seen her, which makes me want to put my face through the wall like a toggle bolt I am so excited. She is only 21 and already a full fledged genius woman. She is writing her thesis on blogs. Please befriend her, I am trying to get her to move back to Chicago instead of back to Hong Kong, entirely for my own selfish purposes.

Fourthly, I never stopped loving Richard Butler , and am glad to see him on the comeback path. His new album is not fantastic (it all sounds like "Angels Don't Cry",) but I will co-sign on any recording that is a vehicle for his voice. Summer is coming, which means it's almost time for Talk Talk Talk in heavy rotation. It's a summer only album, not sure if you knew that. Federally Mandated.

Fifthly, this weekend's This American Life is about Gitmo and habeaus corpus and New American Justice of the Bush age. Essential listening.

Posted by Jessica at 12:08 PM | TrackBack

March 09, 2006


Chicagoans, with and interest in R&B:turn on channel 11 at 1:35 am.

Also, it should post shortly, but this weeks reader has a long review about how I went from loving Common to not loving him, in the span of 2 hours in a balcony box at House of Blues, which features the phrases "my blog" and "feminist boner" in the first sentence, which, blv it or not, was actually my editors doing.

Also, in section one, a play by play of a shopping cart race I attended, the Chiditerod = the most suprise fun I have had all winter. Props to unmentioned Team Double Dare, who kept me going all day long by giving me mini-boxes of Dots to power me through my ride. Riding along with the Biking Vikings, Double Dare and Runaway Bride teams was hard work, and unlike them I was not smoking, chugging Sparks and Guiness, and running with a shopping cart in tow. I wish the photog had gotten a picture of the Double Dare's musher, "Marc Summers". They were spectacular and fast.

Every day of 4th grade, my friend and I would watch Double Dare and then have long discussions on the phone about what we would do if we won, what prizes we wanted most. I always wanted the battery powered child-sized car. I thought if I had one of those, I could really be free, and just take off, run away from my divorcing parents, cruising towards the horizon of my new life, via the sidewalks of St. Paul at 6 mph. I watched that show every day, and dreamed of my future, as a childrens game show winner, victorious, doused in condiments, driving away in a tiny convertable.

Posted by Jessica at 07:15 PM | TrackBack


I keep forgetting to mention: I need a roommate. You can email for more details, but rent is $500, the place is big, really lovely and old fancy, has a porch, laundry, is safe, you get the best bedroom in the house and a shared office/craft room and access to a kitten. Ukr. Village. Don't make me have to ask strangers on Craigslist. Available now.

In hotter news, Britt has posted new Sextrology . I am a virgo and frightened by the prospects.

Posted by Jessica at 11:43 AM | TrackBack


Finally a night free, and I pretend-plan like I am really going to crack the whip, I am really getting shit done now, taxes, cleaning, crafts, penning way genius tomes by the half dozen. But I know, when it comes down to it, as ever, I will wind up just sorting assorted piles, watching a samurai movie and putting pictures of my grandma on my myspace page, reading the obits in the Times. Which is exactly what happened.

I have important plans. Tons of them. Recipes to try, books to write, cat outfits and human outfits to make, letters to the aged, Xavier Cugat albums from the thrift to be listened to, library books fast approaching their due barely cracked, weeks of the New Yorker spread on the floor like puppy training paper, birthday mail, two paintings, things that belong in Canada and not on my desk, final two shows of Season two of 24, infinite amounts of important googling to be done, dishes, lists, fond rememberances, stretches, petting times with Wyatt and Monkee, revolutionary slogans to be stitched into sweaters.
It's all still undone.
All of it.
Tonight they remained just plans.

Posted by Jessica at 01:11 AM | TrackBack

March 08, 2006


Soundscan confesses what we knew all along:

Ne-Yo first week sales 300,000+... Hawthorne Heights 131,000.


Ne-Yo debuted at #1 on Billboard's Hot 100.
Tony Victory is rueing the day R&B was ever born.


Dude from Hawthorne Heights cries in anguish, blames 10th graders on street team for not canvassing Coconuts and Sam Goody hard enough, makes this gross face to punish them.

Posted by Jessica at 02:31 PM | TrackBack

March 06, 2006


I should just have JR's blog within this blog, I post and link of it so much.JR weighs in on Victory, broaching cool, broaching deep uncool and also, delivers the unofficial liner notes for the new Smoking Popes album. "Pussy was like a rumor to the 22 yr old OGFP in 1996. We were working at the record store, wearing an old and very smelly pair of Simple skate shoes, and had no control over our wardrobe. We would check out girls on the CTA in the morning and we probably looked at them so needily and longingly that we are lucky we didn't get pepper-sprayed on the Division platform at least once a week."
This, perhaps, the truest manifesto writ, of any boy who ever clerked at a record store.

PS>Eli Caterer from the Popes works at our neighboorhood Starbucks. Peace.

Posted by Jessica at 05:53 PM | TrackBack


The Public Library of Chicago is offering programs most everyday for kid girls and ladies, they are focusing on women in performing arts, but there are a bunch of movies and workshops etc/ on starting a band and historic bits and lady firefighters. Meanwhile! Deena Weinstein, Amy from Venus, Monica Kendrick and myself are all on a panel sesh later this week, 3/11 at Harold Washington branch, 1 pm, video room.
We will be discussing or debating.
Panel fever: CATCH IT!

Posted by Jessica at 04:23 PM | TrackBack


So, the press release about how we should support Hawthorne Heights and not Ne-Yo was not a ploy. They are actually urging their street teams to pro-actively interfere with anyone buying Ne-Yo records, as we learn from Victory's memo to their street teams, below, which was issued via myspace and email March 2nd. When Ne-Yo comes to Chicago, he should make his promotional Escalade fight Victory's promotional Escalade.

Happy Hawthorne Heights day everyone - street date has finally arrived!

It all comes down to the next six days and maximizing our sales at as
many stores as possible. We are neck-and-neck with this Ne-yo
character on Universal and we need everyone out there tilting the tide
in our favor. Our projected numbers for first week sales are about
even so we really need to make every unit count if we want to win.

We do this first by selling more Hawthorne Heights, hitting as many
stores as possible, making sure Hawthorne Heights stock is in the
front and very visible in every store we visit. Get inside, do what
you need to do, and move on to the next store. Move Hawthorne Heights
into as many key positions as you can. Remember there are two covers
so not only put them together, put them in different places. HH should
have spots in all the new release racks toward the front of the store
but we can always increase our presence by dropping a few in another

If you don't see our product on display at the front of the store,
particularly later in the week, then go to the bin and move what you
can. There are a lot of stores that are not as on top of this as they
should be, especially something as hot as Hawthorne Heights, so we
need to give these people all the help they can get.

Also look for HH in the areas where stores keep overstock. Sometimes
this is below the bins or on the top of the rack. If you find any CDs,
particularly under the bins, try to move those out first to the other
areas of the store.

On the off chance you find a store that doesn't have any copies of the
new Hawthorne, find a clerk and ask him why they don't have it. If
it's sold out, find out when they have more coming in. If it's showing
as in stock, let him know that you can't find it so he knows to order

Here is a list of the best chain stores to go to:

Best Buy


Wal Mart




Circuit City

Sam's Club

K Mart

Sam Goody

Virgin Borders


Barnes & Noble

Fred Meyer



As for Ne-yo, the name of the game is to decrease the chances of a
sale here. If you were to pick up handful of Ne-yo CDs, as if you
were about to buy them, but then changed your mind and didn't bother
to put them back in the same place, that would work. Even though this
record will be heavily stocked and you might not be able to move all
the stock, just relocating a handful creates issues: Even though the
store will appear to be out of stock, the computer will see it as in
stock and not re-order the title once it sells down and then Ne-Yo
will lose a few sales later in the week

This is most important in stores were we are competing with Ne-yo,
which is in the big chains that sell pop and urban product. The stores
listed above are in the order you should hit them up.

The main thing is to keep the pressure up all week. First day sales
are important but keeping our sales going and having a strong weekend
are equally important to grabbing the ..1 slot that belongs to us.

Please be sure to email me this week and let me know which stores you
have gone to and worked your magic at.

Thanks everyone,


Posted by Jessica at 12:24 PM | TrackBack

March 05, 2006


Fucking Christ this is funny. Whew. Man.

Posted by Jessica at 10:11 PM | TrackBack


I was just standing in the kitchen realizing I am living my vision of the fantasy adulthood I dreamed when in was a child, sort of like what I thought my moms life was like when I was five: It's Sunday afternoon, I'm listening to Fleetwood Mac, Joni and The Band, puttering around the kitchen, sweating my Monday morning deadlines, talking to the cats, cooking and waiting for my favorite friends to come over for book club, my heart bursting from love and fortitude and to be sure: It's pretty fucking great and I am not shy about that.

Posted by Jessica at 12:40 PM | TrackBack


You probably missed this--I certianly did. Victory Records issues vaguely racist press release about Hawthorne Heights and why you should support them and not Ne-yo, successful R&B artist. Theories involving the Victory fleet of promotional h3 hummers forthcoming. Someone should assign me a story where I get to roll in the Hathorne Heights hummer, so I can attempt to hijack it and drive it into the lake as retalliation. I love that Ne-Yo cameo on the new Ghostface, I know what side of this war I am on.

Posted by Jessica at 11:58 AM | TrackBack

March 04, 2006


From JR's blog update re: some shit act that open for Wolf Eyes: "If you laid all the boners in the Bottle that night end on end, you'd have a monorail to Neptune. "

Home early to the empty house, after the Stop Smiling party, which was just an excuse to go out and go out dressed up like I meant it. Saw freinds. Ate mini quiches. Pranced in heels. Had my picture taken. Cab ride home was twice as interesting; the talk about Lebanon was worth $10.65 + tip.

The good thing about Matt's furniture being gone is that now I know where all the cat toys were.

The bright side. That is where we are looking.

Posted by Jessica at 12:14 AM | TrackBack

March 02, 2006


This week's Reader, I go long about the new videos of The Gossip and Pink.
Read it here .

Posted by Jessica at 11:18 PM | TrackBack


I switched up my volunteer steez and now I am tutoring. Kids. On subjects I failed for years, but alas, they let me help. I failed math from fourth grade on, except for one year when someone let me cheat off them. None the less, I managed to help a child reduce some fractions today, then had my ass handed to me in black jack by some 5th graders. I put together a penguin puzzle with two girls who self identified as "Mixican". I have never done a puzzle before. Not sure why. Maybe because I am not a child or a retiree. I was never into stuff like that when I was in 5th grade. In 5th grade I was into smoking cigarettes and reading US News & World Report.

Posted by Jessica at 06:25 PM | TrackBack


The aniticipation of the result is always worse than the actual result. I have had three weeks to be ready for the morning where I wake up and his books are gone and there are spaces where his furniture was. Instead, it's just all jokes and more jokes and petting each others hair assuredly. Yesterday, we went to run errands and I made a "most excruciating mix" for the car -- choice cuts were "I'm not in love" by 10 CC, "Do You Love Me now?" by The Breeders, "You Broke My Heart" by Lavender Diamond, and of course "If I was Your Girlfreind" and of course Tom Petty's "Even the Losers (Get Lucky Sometimes)" to rub it in--I nearly peed my smock I was cackling so hard.

And so it stands... the most amicable break up in recorded history begins it's ending.

Posted by Jessica at 02:25 PM | TrackBack

March 01, 2006


You know what I did today?

I talked on the phone to Mary J Blige.

Mary is the only celebrity I ever fantasize about being friends with, other than maybe Kim Gordon.

So, Mary called and we talked for 11 minutes, and I asked her what I wanted to know and then we talked about God some. She was funny and real and had good answers.
And I was like "ak ak ak ak ak" like a cartoon donkey.

When she was about to hang up she said "Goodbye Jessica" (like she meant it) and I said "Goodbye Mary" really careful and nervous back to her. I had to be careful not to start screaming "I LOVE YOU MARY! AK AK! AK AK AK!". After, I walked around the house pretending I was on the phone still, showing off for Matt, going "Oh, I love you, too, Mary, thanks for calling. Talk to you soon. Bye-ee!"

I will put up the link when it runs.


Posted by Jessica at 03:21 AM | TrackBack