Thursday, March 29, 2007

Modest Mouse, Hold Steady, new issues of Paste

Well I wasn't going to post the May (Summer Festival Preview Issue) cover of Paste for awhile but Stereogum did, so I guess the cat is out of the bag.

Issue 32 (May 2007) of Paste

This is the first national cover for The Hold Steady, who I previously dreamt about in a very Spinal Tap-inspired dream sequence. The cover turned out a little greener than we thought it would... maybe the Georgia pollen got to it...

And now on newsstands is Issue 30 (April 2007) featuring Modest Mouse, who debuted at #1 on Billboard! Incredible. Probably the best example of a band that has been able to go very mainstream and still maintain its indie-cred... maybe Death Cab, too... but the don't have Johnny Marr playing with them and that's beyond cool.

Check out the video for Modest Mouse's first single, "Dashboard"... it makes me laugh.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Loney, Dear

I'd been told about the Scandanavian outfit Loney, Dear (aka multi-instrumentalist Emil Svanangen) a few months ago but only recently took a good listen to the album. Now I can't stop playing it. Really. It's on repeat, playing over and over and over again... my other iTunes songs are getting jealous.

It's been a good year for Scandanavia so far -- Loney, Dear, Peter Bjorn & John, Sondre Lerche, Ane Brun, Tobias Froberg, Teitur... makes me proud that I'm 1/4 Scandavian (or 3/8... it's hard to say...)

Here are the lyrics to one of my favorite songs, plus a link to listen to it (courtesy of Sub Pop)

"I Am John" (listen here) by Loney, Dear (from Loney Noir)

Johnny and I, we got lost tonight, we got carried away.
It takes someone like me to lose track like that,
To be troubled down,
Got a heart full of plans but nowhere to run.
There were seventeen dogs out to track us down
And I got some bruises and I got a scar but now,
Never gonna let you down,
And I got it wrong like I knew I would, and I told you,
Never gonna let you down,
I must never let you down,
Never gonna let you—

And everything must start from here,
In a sunshine with ease with somewhere to go,
With no sticky feeling of going wrong,
No heartbeat asking where you're gonna go.
With the trouble you wear, you want to wear it down,
You want to make something new of this but
Never gonna make it (home), never gonna make it.
Someone I want now, somewhere I want to go, and I told you,
Never gonna let you down,
Never gonna let you down,
But I will always let you down.

I said Johnny and I, we got lost tonight,
But we doubled our chances,
We've got somewhere to go.
We've got devils chasing us to hunt us down,
And we know we can't go like this from now.
I've got a feeling of you, and we danced for so long,
I want your arms around me, said
Never gonna let you down,
Was never gonna let you—
Someone I want now,
Somewhere I want to go, and I told you,
Never gonna let you down,
Never gonna let you down,
But I will always let you down.

I've got a feeling of you and we danced for so long,
I want your arms around me like lovers do,
And I'm never gonna let you down, gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down, gon' let—
I've got a feeling of you and we danced for so long,
I want your arms around me like lovers do,
And I'm never gonna let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down.

Johnny and I, we got lost tonight, we got carried away.
It takes someone like me to lose track like that, to be troubled down,
Got a heart full of plans but nowhere to run.
And everything must start from here,
In a morning with ease with somewhere to go,
With no sticky feeling of going wrong,
With no heartbeats asking where you're gonna go.
I've got a feeling of you and we danced for so long,
I want your arms around me like lovers do,
And I'm never gonna let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down.

I've got a feeling of you and we danced for so long,
I want your arms around me like lovers do,
And I'm never gonna let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down,
Gon' let you down.

When Pollen Attacks!

On Monday morning I was feeling particularly anxious to start the week, so I hit the gym and went to work at 7:45am (that's a big feat for me).

I was the second person to arrive at the East Decatur Station complex and found the parking lot to be a strange shade of yellow-green. It resembled a clay tennis court. At first I thought the landlord had repaved the parking lot over the weekend and painted it that color. Then I realized it wasn't paint -- it was pollen.

I found a handy-dandy chart online that measures pollen count relative to health threats...

And today's pollen count in Atlanta? ... 3,208!!!

That's over 26 times greater than what is considered "Extremely High"! And that's nothing compared to Monday (5,499). No wonder Atlanta is the #1 asthma city in America.

I feel bad for Atlanta's spring brides... I hope you intended for your dress to be tinted yellow-green...

Monday, March 26, 2007

Little Miss SXSW: The Musical

Friends have been asking about SXSW, and I've been meaning to post about it. But I was tired for the entire week following the journey, so pardon the delay.

The best adjective to describe SXSW is overwhelming. At times I was ready to collapse on 6th Street from exhaustion, and other times I was so freakin excited to be working in the music & media industries that I couldn't stop smiling.

This year was a lot of work for me and not as much concert-going as last year. On top of some great business meetings, Paste hosted/sponsored four events this year -- our annual day party at Maggie Mae's (with DiscRevolt, WXPN, and Three Thieves), our official showcase with SoundExchange, a day party with The Militia Group, and an evening house party at Synthetic Pictures creekside studios.

I was sad for everything to end because SXSW-prep stole a lot of my time and energy in Q1. Very proud of how everything turned out, though.

Among the bands I wish I'd seen but didn't: The Fratellis, The Blood Arm, MuteMath, Damien Dempsey, Andrew Bird

To tell you more about what I did see, I will now be creative and use a musical format... yes, that's right... I give you:


Day 1: All Over the Place

Scene 1: Hartsfield International Airport

"Wait For Me! (I Have Baggage!)”.............. Caren and Leila
“Breakfast Ends at 10am!”.................. Chili's Staff
"We'll Drink Instead"....................... Caren and Leila

Scene 2: Somewhere in the Middle of Texas

“Driving Thru a Satanic Car Wash"........... Jason and Jared
"This Storm Will Pass"..................... Caren and Leila
"Haven't You Seen a Brit Before?".................. Leila, Sketchy Gas Station Guy

Scene 3: Austin Convention Center

“I Miss Arrested Development”................ Caren, David Cross

Scene 4: Opal Divine's

"Where Is This Place? (Caren Is Confused)"........ Jared and Leila
"First Strangers, Now Friends".............. Caren, Andy's Friends in Austin

Scene 5: La Zona Rosa

“Whoo! Alright-Yeah...Uh Huh"............... The Rapture
"Let's Be Lame and Do Some Work"................. Caren and Jared


Day 2: Austin, TX

Scene 1: Magnolia Cafe

"Let's Start the Day"....................... Paste Business Team

Scene 2: GSD&M

"Once Upon a Time, I Applied Here"................... Caren, Media Planners

Scene 3: New West Records Party

“Nothing Like a Lone Star Beer"............. Ensemble
“Rickie Lee Jones Freak Out"................ Ensemble

Scene 4: Rhapsody Showcase at Mohawks

"To the Bat Phone!"......................... Robyn Hitchcock, Peter Buck
"Give Me Back My Bass"...................... Peter, Bjorn & John

Scene 5: KLRU Studios - Austin City Limits set

Musical Interlude........................... The Apples In Stereo

Scene 6: Ringers Bar

"Tar Heel Fans Unite"....................... Nate, Austin, Caren, Brian

Scene 7: Sixth Street

"Cellphone Died Again"...................... Caren
"It's a Long, Long Line to Our Show"............... MuteMath
"Who Knew I Was a Little Edgy?"............. Rocky Votalato
"On a Couch With a Smashing Pumpkin"........ Caren, James Iha
"When Ice Hits Your Head"................... Albert Hammond Jr.


Day 3: Austin, TX

Scene 1: Paste SXSW Party, Maggie Mae's

"Where Have All the Gift Bags Gone?"........ Paste Business Team
"Do the Boxed-Wine Box-Step!"................ Ensemble
"We Were Hardened by the War"......... Cold War Kids
"It's a Wonderful Life"....................... Caren

Scene 2: Eddie V's

"Drunk at Dinner"........................... Caren, Others? (Anyone?)
"Tomohawk (Steak) Chop!".................... Paste Editorial Team

Scene 3: Paste Showcase, Austin Convention Center

"Full of Surprises (Freestyle Interlude)"... Pigeon John, Gift of Gab
"I Roll Six Deep"........................... Jamie Kennedy
"Cookies and the Spree"..................... Ensemble, Polyphonic Spree


Day 4: Austin, TX

Scene 1: Paste Day at the Belmont

"Nice Day For Sunscreen"................... Ensemble
"Green On St Patrick's Day"................ Ensemble
"You Can Steal Our Van (But You Can't Steal the Rock)"......... Colour Revolt
"Death Be My Cellphone".................... Caren
"I'll Follow You To Every Party"........... Jamie Kennedy
"Drunk at Dinner (Reprise)"................ Paste Editorial Team

Scene 2: Uchi Restaurant

"Sushi or Sashimi?"........................ Waiter, Business Colleagues

Scene 3: Dive Bar

"How Did We Get Here?"..................... Caren, Tim
"Fender Bender Blues"...................... Ensemble

Scene 4: Synthetic Pictures Studios, backyard creek

"I Wanna Be (Where Grey Goose Is Free)".... Ensemble
"Let's Get Loud"........................... The Ringers
"What Would Ringo Do?"..................... The Redwalls

Day 5: Austin, TX

Scene 1: Somewhere In the Middle of Texas

"Broke Down Buick, Broken Foot".............. Kate, Jared
"Whataburger, Whataday".................. Paste Editorial Team

Scene 2: Houston Airport

"Wait For Me! I Have Baggage (Reprise)".... Paste Ensemble


"Little Miss SXSW"......................... Ensemble


Friday, March 23, 2007

Billboard Top 100 of 1997


A few months ago Nate's friend (a pirate, yarrgh!) gave him a CD collection everyone was drooling over... Billboard Top 100 Hits from the past 40 (yes, 40) years.

I just found it on one of my coworker's iTunes libraries and have shamelessly been enjoying the popalicious jams... that's right, I am listening to MmmBop! in Paste HQ (my boss said -- and I quote -- "If you get that song stuck in my head, I will use one of our pins as a weapon"... luckily, he is kidding).

In case you wanna take a trip down Memory Lane, here is a playlist of tunes from 1997:

"I'll Be Missing You," Puff Daddy & Faith Evans
"MmmBop," Hanson
"Mo Money, Mo Problems," Notorious B.I.G. Featuring Mase & Puff Daddy
"I'll Be," Foxy Broan & Jay Z
"If It Makes You Happy," Sheryl Crow
"Everyday Is a Winding Road," Sheryl Crow
"Cold Rock a Party," MC Lyte
"Building a Mystery," Sarah McLachlan
"C U When U Get There," Coolio
"My Baby Daddy," B Rock & the Bizz
"Tubthumping," Chumbawamba
"Smile," 2Pac & Scarface
"Secret Garden," Bruce Springsteen
"Fly Like an Eagle," Seal
"Naked Eye," Luscious Jackson
"On & On," Erykah Badu
"I Shot the Sheriff," Warren G
"You Were Meant For Me," Jewel

Sigh... I remember one night in 1997 when all "4 Most Wanted" songs on 99.1 WHFS (R.I.P.) were "Tubthumping"... that's right, they played it 4 TIMES in a row! I can't decide which is worse to have stuck in your head -- "MmmBop" or "Tubthumping"?

ISO 99 People for Flashmob

I think it would be fantastic to run out of the alley by Brick Store Pub and terrify some Decatur folks... just saying...

[ Go here if you don't see the video, esp you Facebook readers checking the imported item... or just go to the original blog post]

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Favorite GChatter -- a solution?

Flaxy... Carlyn... other GChatting friends... I know that you are concerned by my recent assertions regarding favoritism in the chatting world... there can only be one true favorite, though.

So I propose a solution, brought to you by (who else) Google.

I propose a Google Fight.

That's right, take your fight straight to the source...

You may compete by:
1. First Name
2. Last Name
3. Nickname
4. Full Name (put it in quotes)

Good luck.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

How to Embarrass Yourself In Front of Your Favorite Band in Just Ten Steps!

1) Reluctantly agree to interview your favorite band at your event
2) Pimp your wine sponsor's product at your event
3) Drink your wine sponsor's product at your event
4) Get nervous about interviewing your favorite band
5) Repeat Steps 2 & 3
6) Rock out to your favorite band
7) Interview your favorite band
8) Piss off your favorite band
9) Achieve new level of embarrassment
10) Repeat Steps 2 & 3

Photograph by Jeff Fasano for Paste

Bless those Cold War Kids for sticking through an interview with me. When you are drinking moderately with other people who are drinking heavily, you feel alright... until you are alone in a quiet space with one of the year's biggest buzz bands.

Luckily we were able to pull some good content from the interview that will appear in a future issue of the magazine. So it wasn't a total loss. And the band kicked some serious butt on stage.

But lesson learned. And I was outdone by our editorial team on St Patricks Day (to which I say, "Haha!")... I wish I had pictures to show you their insanity. I'm sure they exist somewhere.

Carlyn, my [EDIT: former] favorite GChatter*, had some thoughts on how the interview could have gone if she were interviewing a band:

"Why do you kick so much ass? You are like the Shaft of bands. You are like a band of ninjas. If the teenage mutant ninja turtles formed a band, they'd be you. Which TMJT would you be? I could be your April [O'Neill]."

(I wish I was April O'Neill...)

* Sorry, Carlyn... you didn't know Joey McIntyre was in NKOTB?!?! Flaxy takes top billing here...

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Great Idea, the Bad Idea: The Universe Evens Itself Out

This is a three-party blog post which I typed throughout the day... enjoy.

The Great Idea came to be after all.

Saw The Shins… loved The Shins… did not love the 7am flight to NY… nor the 6pm flight back to Atlanta… nor the large man seated next to me who snored and couldn’t keep his hands to himself…

It’s 9:29am and I’m back at the airport. This will be my fourth flight and third airport in 36 hours. The Great Idea now seems like the Bad Idea.

I believe that what goes around comes around. So I figured that by doing my coworker Jason a favor (dropping him at North Terminal, though Leila and I were at South Terminal) I would earn some good karma. Wrong. Screw you, Karma… you and your empty promises.... I missed my flight to Houston. Did you know you have to check bags 45 minutes, not 30 minutes, before a flight? Leila and I both thought it was 30 minutes – her mom worked for Delta, for heavens sake… she should know.

Now, I am not a public crier… but I allowed myself a little breakdown today as the unhelpful man at the Delta kiosk smiled at my situation. Even crying couldn’t get my bag onto the flight. I cried while walking through the security line, too. Not for theatrics, but because I was genuinely upset. People looked at me with empathy, probably thinking I had just said goodbye to the love of my life. But truth be told, I just didn’t want to take off my shoes to go through another security line.


It’s 2:22pm in Texas. I am in a car with Jason, Jared and Leila, driving from Houston airport to downtown Austin. Leila and I made it out of Atlanta just fine, only because we had hard drinks at Chili’s... at 10:05am... because they stopped serving breakfast at 10am and who wants a quesidilla at 10am without a margarita to compliment it?

We are now in the midst of what Jason would like to call “a satanic car wash.” There is so much rain against our windshield that we can’t see where the road stops and the shoulder starts. Thunder is cracking above our heads. The only sites we have seen so far are: an oil ranch, a Diesel factory, Chappell Hill Grille, and Rowdy’s Icehouse and Grill (Leila would go in and ask, “Who’s Rowdy??"... the crowd would say, "We're rowdy!!"). Deep in the heart of Texas, alright.

(PS – my colleagues Joe and Palmer also missed their flights because Delta wouldn’t let them check bags 30 minutes before departure… it’s a conspiracy, I tell you.)


It's 1:36am. Why am I awake??? I'm not sure... maybe the adrenaline?... or new time zone?... regardless, it's time to put this relatively awful day behind me. Not to say it didn't have its strong points. I did get to see The Rapture again, and it was a cool cool show. Also got dinner with Palmer No. 2 and Andy's friends from Sewanee/Nashville. And my mom and dad were lovely and had "Congratulations!" wine and cheese delivered to our hotel room. (Thanks, Mom and Dad!)

But as a lesson for the day, I will say this: not all Great Ideas are Smart Ideas, but at least the Bad Ideas give us good stories to tell.

More from Austin, TX, tomorrow, including Peter Bjorn & John, GSD&M, Waterloo Records, and Shiner Bock... mmm, Shiner Bock...


Friday, March 09, 2007

Little Miss SXSW

On Wednesday, we at Paste (Josh, Tim, Reid, Jason, Steve, Austin, Kate, Jared, Nate, Leila and I) head off for SXSW in Austin, TX... well, for Houston, where we will be renting a van and driving to the conference. Reid has volunteered to be soccer mom for the week and will run carpool around town.

Snaps to Jason for this wonderful poster, in preparation for our trip (click to expand):

But someone is noticably missing... so I must add:

The Great Idea: Never Say Never

As you may recall, I had The Great Idea to see two concerts from The Shins in 24 hours (in two different cities that I don't live in)... but both shows were sold out.

Well, I'm happy to report that I will be at the DC show on Monday (I owe a big thank you to Sub Pop) during my 6 hour trip to the District. I will then take an early morning flight to my conference in NYC, wave goodbye to the Big Apple, and head off to Austin for SXSW. But being able to sing-a-long to "Australia" in DAR Constitution Hall, where my high school graduation ceremony was held, will be well worth the travels...

Never say never. Dreams do come true.

And speaking of The Shins, we will be having WINE & CHEESE HOUR today courtesy of The Shins, who were nice enough to send wine in thanks for Paste's support. Jason was right... indie rockers are thoughtful.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Me, Shaq and The Bunnies?


= Shaqaren

From time to time, I receive random party invitations in the name of business networking and media coverage. This isn't surprising. What is surprising is the types of parties I'm getting invited to -- and I'm not talking SPAM invitations...

Among the most random and noteworthy:







Will Smith, Keyshia Cole, Macy Gray, Black Eyed Peas, and Alfonso Ribeira will join guest of honor Shaquille O'Neal at the official "Shaq Day" Party at Mix Lounge


C3 and Playboy Present: Rock the Rabbit

Featuring Ghostland Observatory, Kele Okereke (of Bloc Party), Illinois, Monsters are Waiting, Stars Align

Thursday March 15th, 11pm
East 2nd Street, Austin, TX

*This invite is non-transferable and admits one
*Must be 21 to attend


Oh, if only these people knew me and just how uncool I am. Those of you who do know me should try to picture me at either of these parties... you are probably laughing. I am, too.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Need new stuff on your iPod? Let me help.

I love music like it's my job (wait a minute... it is!) ... I love introducing people to new music... and I love that a few of my friends have now listed "getting music recommendations from cK" as an "Interest" on Facebook (thanks for the vote of confidence, Jenn and Courtney).

And if you're like any of a number of people I know who own iPods but can't fill them up, I have an idea for you:

Let me fill your iPod for you.

Here's how I can help....

1) Tell me how many songs you want on your iPod, your favorite type of music, your favorite TV shows, and 5-10 musicians you already like.
2) I'll create a customized playlist for you (based on your answers to the questions above) through iTunes and/or eMusic.
3) You can access the playlist and sample the songs.
4) If you like the songs, you can buy them and upload them to your iPod or portable music player.
OR, 4b) You can lend me your iPod and I'll upload them for you (if you're too busy or too lazy to do it yourself).

Now I am a businesswoman, so I would request some small compensation... but lucky for you, I work at a start-up company and am not accustomed to an extravagant lifestyle, so I come pretty cheap... as in, the cost of a non-fat, no-whipped, extra-chocolate Orange Mocha Frappuccino...

Inquire within and I'll hook you up with some fresh tunes

Sunday, March 04, 2007

New York, New York

Still recovering from a whirlwind trip to the Big Apple (got a bad cold up there, unfortunately). I love Manhattan and would live there if I could afford the kind of lifestyle I have in Atlanta. The energy is envigorating! Even when you're walking down the street by yourself, you're surrounded by people -- nice people (NY gets a bad rep). For example, the Kinkos on 5th did a job for me at 60% off the regular cost just because they wanted me to come back again.

Gotta make the most of every trip to the city, especially since I don't get a lot of face time with NY business colleagues and partners. The guys and I met with some ad agencies, publicity firms, record labels, and managers. I even saw Matt Pinfield (in passing), who made me want to pursue a job in the music industry and who no one else seemed to recognize but me.

The real purpose for the trip to NY was the "Paste Presents" concert at the Knitting Factory. Joseph Arthur & the Lonely Astronauts opened with new material from their upcoming album, including "Cocaine Feet" and "Diamond Ring."

As I previously posted, Joseph Arthur is also a painter and I'm always fascinated by his work. Lonely Astronauts guitarist Jen Turner has a "Joseph Arthur original" tattoo. For the past year I've thought about getting a tattoo on my foot -- the outline of a blackbird, inspired by my favorite Beatles song. Jen said I should've asked Joe to draw it for me... how cool would that be? It would hurt like hell to get a tattoo on the top of my foot, but it would be cool...

Kaki King, one of Rolling Stone's "new guitar god(esse)s," showed up to play between sets... she was freakin amazing! And as the only woman on the Rolling Stone list, I guess that makes her the queen of the guitar world!

Son Volt headlined with a long set, including new songs from their March release. I was a bit intimidated by Jay Farrar cause he is a cool dude and influential musician. "The Picture," with backing brass, is my fav of the new songs.

We were hoping Norah Jones would show up for the show, but she said she could only do it if her schedule permitted... guess there was a conflict. Turns out Brandi Carlile was uptown, though, so she and the Twins showed up to play an impromptu set. Tracks included "The Story," from her sophomore effort, and covers of "Creep" and "Hallelujah." I have video but the audio is awful... I'll try to fix it and post. Read more about Brandi in the April issue of Paste.

And stay tuned for live tracks and interviews from the show on the Paste Culture Club podcast.

Variety coverage of the concert
Cool picture from the crowd
Shore Fire's blog and party pics