Latest Performance

I'm a small-town poet in both written word and performance. I'm more influenced by rock and roll but I am also a lit-chick full of curiosity. My influences are far and wide and I can find writing inspiration in anything, from important matters to pure whimsy.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Sorry I Forgot About Things

Steve's finally working on a layout. I kept telling him simple because I knew he'd return to square one a million times, and he did. At least the layout's almost ready and should be up soon!

I've been getting a better feel for writing stories thanks to the fiction writing class I'm taking. Inspiration for stories is coming to me quicker. I remember back at the start of the semester I'd have such a difficult time trying to find idea since I'm so used to more abstract forms of expression. Maybe I'll start submitting short stories this summer too.

The last open mic was off to a rough start, but when showtime came things were pulled off beautifully. The sign up sheet filled up almost instantly, and we had two write-ins who were promised performances that night. Some people had to be turned away from the main performance. Musicians were invited to play in the after-show jam session if they wanted to play for the sake of playing. I ended up writing a couple new pieces in between sets that I'll probably showcase in April's open mic.

That Voyant Chai Cream Liqueur I tried was super tasty! I was sipping it on the rocks all evening. Unfortunately Steve didn't film my last set of performances, he was too caught up in the moment. His set went well as well, probably the best set he's had there so far.

On a more serious end, I've been feeling the personal changes I've undergone these past couple years. I know I have been changing a lot since I've started reading, and it's great, I've come a long way from who I used to be. I'm very happy about that, but it comes with its own growing pains. In a way all the things I took as influences for so many years have become discarded. The core of who I am is changing and it's been difficult. I've been in a funk these past few days because of it. I know I'll be fine, it hasn't changed my goals of how I'm going about achieving them.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Another open mic tonight. Should be a good one, the weather's beautiful today. I think this will be the first open mic this season that has nice weather. All other times it's been rainy, slushy, or really friggin cold.

It looks like I will be covering Horse Latitudes tonight. Steve's been working on an audio track. I'll be bringing along some Voyant Chai Cream Liquor for the evening. I love chai, so this should be really delicious!

Got a copy of the new Gorillaz album Plastic Beach I forgot how much I love Gorillaz, the whole concept to me is fantastic. When taken as a fantasy it's weird, wild and wacky. When taken as an art project there's so many influential artists who contribute.

School, well the interesting part is story writing class. The focus this unit is on setting and I got a good idea. Yesterday I came across a website that claims that a lot of pop stars and whatnot are really Illuminati puppets who underwent mind-control experiments and are recruiting the youth of America to do so as well. I think it's daft, but the idea of writing a story about it and having it take place in the mind of an experiment subject who is promised superstardom in return is something new for me. I'll see how it turns out.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Another Day Another Term Paper

Finished up an American History Through Literature paper on Alice Walker's The Color Purple. I focused on racism in the South during the Depression, the Civil Rights movement and black music culture. Specifically early Blues and juke joints.
Now it's on to a paper on the historical aspects of Ethan Canin's America America on the Ted Kennedy Chappaquiddick scandal, the end of the Vietnam War and urban sprawl. The novel was enjoyable, I liked reading it. I found it very intriguing how the political scandal in the novel was slowly unpeeled. I could enjoy it when I was reading it, but when it came to finding time I ended up distracted.

Currently I am reading Barbara Kingslover's Animal Dreams I'm having a hard time taking time away from it. I got through the first hundred pages in a day and the only thing keeping me from reading further is the rest of my homework. I really like the main character Codi, her out-of-place feelings are relatable to me in a way. I'm more comfortable in my differences, and I find embracing them gives you place, but I can understand the difficulties when you feel you've never fit in.

Listening to The Brightness by Anais Mitchell. I remember when I wrote the article about her upcoming show a few months back. I really enjoyed her interview responses and wish I could have included everything in my article. I got pages of information on her folk opera Hadestown and how it came to be. I should get the album soon.
Tonight I'm going to be seeing The Honey Dewdrops. The reviews I've heard on their music make the emotional pallet sound intriguing. I know, the little glam poet has been enjoying folk music. I enjoy work that has thought put into it, in any way.

Open mic is coming up, and I'm getting ready. Unsure on whether or not I can perform Horse Latitudes. Steve still hasn't done the audio track I want yet. If he can pull that together in time I'll do it. He's promising to work on my blog layout again this evening. I just need to find one or two more pieces to perform as well and I'll be ready.

Now I must sign off, I'm hearing too much from the fuzzy peanut gallery.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Latest Performance and Preparation for the Next

Finally have video of my latest show, it's the full set. Steve was working the camera from his station by the piano, he has it set so you can watch him manipulate the music while I'm reading.

I have to link it since he posted it on his Facebook

I got more audience feedback this past Friday while I was at BluSeed for an art opening. It was great, and a lot of people found the irony of the poem itself to be funny. I was a little insecure after my last performance, but it's all good.

And now I'm working on my latest piece. It's inspired by the article I posted the other day. Once again, a stage presentation, no music for it, but I'll be planning out a "costume" to go with the poem. I am also thinking of still covering Horse Latitudes mainly to collaborate with Steve. I told him the sound pallet I want, and he can take that and do whatever.
Back to the new poem I've been writing, I am taking the feeling of being lied to and deceived. I became a fan of visual kei because I believed in the artistic integrity of many of the performers. It's heartbreaking to learn that even the integrity of the artists is some lie contrived by greedy businessmen. And it's so hard to find the few exceptions because culturally it's all about that professionalism, so to tell the difference between a genuine band with real sentiments and a contrived band is difficult.
Image wise I'm trying to figure out how to do a bastardized visual. I do have some clothes by popular VK labels, but I don't want to ruin the actual clothes themselves. I have to mock it through accessories, hair, and makeup. Show that this has been a part of my life and it's left a significant impact on me, but at the same time I've been so disillusioned lately I want to display that as well.

I devote attention to all my writings, but I always seem to get that one showcase piece where I can put on a show with it.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Music Rambling

I'm a poet, but I love music. I am influenced by rock stars just as much as I am by other poets, if not more at times. Over the years I've been a fan of a style of Japanes rock called visual-kei. Most Westerners who've heard it seem to see it as weeaboo music. Much of it is highly-stylized and has image as much as it has music.

Last night I found an article one of my fellow visual kei fans found and shared from Tokyo Damage Report. Now I know and am cool with these bands being all about image and illusion, the fantasy on the surface is cool with me. What bugs me is learning how that illusion goes deeper than stage costumes and makeup. Reading the article is very shocking, and you think Western artists get financially screwed by label executives. At least Western artists can make money off merchandise sales and aren't forced to psychologically manipulate their fan base.

The level of seediness and manipulation is more seen in international pop outfits. Last year The Guardian ran an article on the dark underbelly of Japanese boy bands, which sounds like the same story we hear when 90s American boy bands are filing lawsuits against that Pearlman dude who manipulated and molested several of his acts.

I guess in a way I feel hurt as a fan. All that sentimentality bands have for their fans is just part of the illusion as they've become nothing more than trained Circus poodles. At the same time I feel sorry for a lot of these bands since they're being used. You really have to read the article to understand that this particular genre has executives who pretty much run their own music mafia. There's one artist in particular I can think of where I really think his fame actually kept him from any harm or blacklisting.

Onto a different subject, all of this inspired me to write a killer poem! I've developed an odd liking to ruining the things that make me feel sentimental. But when those things are gone, they're gone. I've realized in my online snooping that I'm one of those poets who goes beyond verbal aesthetics and goes for the grit. I could write about moonlight on roses, summer thunderstorms and morning dew, but I also want to write about hearts betrayed, the jaded pain of being on the bottom rung, the things that twist people.