Friday, July 30, 2010

Storm the F%$@ing Kastle

This DiamondSnake band is horrible.

And it has Moby in it.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A New Career

In a break from my normal snark, I'm writing a little more personally today. When I was contracted with Asurion, I went through a very rigorous interview process for a position that I ultimately did not get. I was also told I was not able to mention their name in any of my blog entries. I complied. After my contract ended, I picked up some extra hours at A Village of Flowers. Those of you who know me know that of all of the jobs that I have had, this is by far my favorite one that I've had. Hell, I'd do it for nothin'. The fact that I get paid to drive around a van, make people's days, and work with the best group of people that I have ever had the privilege and pleasure of working with. And if you've never worked a Valentine's Day or Mother's Day weekend at a florist then you just haven't lived. And I mean that. More intense than tax season at Harpeth, even. That being said...

Over the past two months, since my contract ended, I have been looking for a career position. Now my job at Harpeth would have certainly have been a career job (hell, it allowed me to buy a new car). After working there, I bounced for a bit and was even offered a position as a financial planner and explored it until I realized how much don't like sales. During this time, I delivered for the flower shop: filling in when they needed me; cleaning up weddings until all hours of the morning on the weekends; being an absolutely horrid arranger/designer; they've let me worked when I wanted to. Why they have kept me on for this past year, I don't really know, seeing as that I know about 9 different kinds of flowers out of the 2,387,986 that there are in existence.

Yesterday, I had a final interview with a company called NovaCopy. [If anyone from NovaCopy happens to come across this blog, I simply mention the name of the company to let my friends and family know the name of the company] it's not the first interview that I've had since I've been really looking and I honestly didn't expect it to be my last. After nearly two months of the interview process through various companies, I was starting to get frustrated -- as one would expect. I was told that I could expect a phone call by the end of the week regarding next steps. An hour and a half later, they called offered me the Human Resources position that I applied and interviewed for.

I accepted it today.

If anyone at AVOF happens to come across this, I just want to let you know that I have enjoyed working at the flower shop more than I can express. Talented people, sure. Better people, even more so. There is no way I can express what the people at the shop mean to me. All of you. And I just want to let you know that I would still like to work there on the weekends. You guys have kept me sane and I owe you all. I haven't been at a loss for words when it comes to people in about two years and that's where I kind of am now.

New Zealand. The dream is alive.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Pedal boards: Life in the awesome

If I were any sort of normal person, I would be asleep right now. However, since we all know that I’m really not, I am sitting in my room watching Super Troopers for the second time tonight. Actually, that’s a half-truth. I am sitting in my room unsuccessfully trying to steal internet access from my neighbors who think that setting up a Comcast account was (or is, rather) an excellent idea. As a result of their recent foray into the world of hell Comcast, using their internet signal is increasingly difficult as I can’t seem to get around the Comcast firewall login page thingy. I’m very good with these sorts of technical terms.

So, in my frustration to read about which In N Out Burger is the closest to LAX as I will be in that area in a mere two months and change and everyone keeps telling me “Oh, you have to go to In N Out Burger!” since I’ve never been… I decided to check out twitter [Follow me: @peanutisawesome] one last time for the evening on my iPhone (translation: I’m better than you because I have an awesome phone) before falling asleep with my television on for the seventh night out of the last eight. Birthday night doesn’t count. I don’t remember it. Someone told me today that I poked myself in the eyeball inadvertently with a straw on multiple attempts to drink water. Either I had a really good time or I’ve turned into Superman. Hell, it might even be both. Anyway… back to twitter.

My friend Nick [Follow him: @nickbaumhardt] has successfully parlayed his ability to play and record music into a career. He’s played with such bands as The Class of 98 and Thousand Foot Krutch… Currently, he’s recording and producing and playing for some lady that until recent Googling (you call it “stalking”, I call it “researching”), I had never heard of. Suffice it to say, the dude can play. Also, most of you who know me know that I may be the very worst guitar player in Nashville to trick people into thinking that I can actually play guitar. Seriously, if you just learn how to throw your guitar, stand on a bass drum from time to time, and get into the occasional scuffle before a show, people in this town will respect your on-stage abilities, as non-existent as they may be. As a couple of added bonuses, they will also come to respect your ability to use the hyphen and apparently chicks will dig you more… or so I’m told about the last part.

Nick also writes a blog that he updates on a relatively regular basis that gets a good amount of web traffic. He doesn’t have to rely on funny stories of adventures gone wrong to get people to go to his site because he’s actually making a go of it in the real world and offers advice and insight on the musical world, whereas I just write about how Justin Beiber sucks and how Kelly Clarkson comes into A Village of Flowers on a relatively regular basis these days. We think she’s stalking real-life Googling one of the designers. Wait a second… Strikethrough? Link to a website? Recalling two earlier jokes from the same blog entry? Hot damn! That’s talent! But back to it…

In Nick’s latest blog entry, he writes at length about pedal boards. You know those little metal and plastic boxes that guitar players kick with their feet (What the hell else are they gonna kick it with? Their ass?) that change the sound of their guitar… Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about. It’s a good read. But, since he called me out personally in his entry (it’s near the end, trust me) asking for a response, I figured I better do it. And since I’m still wide awake and watching the “Car RamRod” scene was funny the first time and much less so the second, I figured I better own up to it.

In my years of pissing people off (let’s face it, it’s kind of a hobby of mine), when I built my first and only pedal board some four and a half years ago, I decided to have a little fun with it. Sure, I have rubber feet on it, and handles, and carpet… but I bet I’m the only person in Nashville that can play with Matchbox cars next to his tuning pedal while navigating a cityscape. You know, for the life of me, I can’t figure out why I don’t have a record deal.

I don’t know what Nick will have to say about the psychology of my pedal board but it will probably be met with some sort shocked look and then an, “Oh, man!” I get that a lot here in Nashville.

I have however managed to make my guitars sound like the end of the world. I just turn everything up really loudly and play. If anyone wants that on an upcoming record, let me know. I’ve got the time… as long as it doesn’t interfere with what has become an apparent obsession with Super Troopers.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Worlds Apart

I went to an all-ages, all-locals show at Rocketown a few days ago. It's the first all-ages, all-locals show that I've been to in close to three years. The first show with a bunch of local scene bands that I've been to in a long time. And why? Well for two reasons:
#1.) Two of my roommates (I'll let you guess which two) are in the band Worker, they are awesome dudes, and I wanted to see them play.
#2.) I don't really care about the scene.

Recently, I read a blog from a local here in Nashville about how the hardcore scene was dead (or at the least, dying). Immediately, upon finishing reading it, I realized how little I cared. Maybe it's age, maybe it's the fact that music styles change as quickly as the seasons (especially in Nashville), maybe it's because there will always be an underground music scene. Whatever the reason is, I've scene seen enough scenes, played enough shows, sold enough merch, and been bounced around enough vans to know that they're pretty much all the same. Nashville, Williamsburg, Austin, Portland, Louisville. Hell, when people ask me if I know "so-and-so from Atlanta... hardcore dude, plugs in his ears, tattoos, hangs out with the whateverbandfromAtlantaishotatthemoment all the time" I usually say "no". Because I don't. And because it doesn't matter if I do or not. And all this coming from someone who used to go to most every show at the Local during my more formative years [side note: how The Swellers and Chiodos became huge out of that place, I will never know, as the only thing I seem to recall about those bands is walking outside and giving my ears a rest when they played because they were so awful].

The point is that I'm getting too old to care about shows. I go to the shows that I want to go to and see the bands that I want to see. And any 18 year old that thinks he has earned the right to tell me or you or anyone else that they have to support the scene needs a quick kick to the crotch.

Listen to the music that you want to listen to. Make the music that you want to make. Who cares if it's popular? Who cares if you're playing to 400 kids or to a bartender and your girlfriends? Who cares if you're into the latest Haste the Day (they're still around, right?) record or not?

I think, though, that the dudes in ... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead put it best (caution: Song is NSFW):

I'm stepping off my soapbox for now on this one.