Space. The Final Frontier. A Music Video Tribute.

Us earthlings have a fascination with space. Artists, writers, film makers and musicians continually turn to space for inspiration. Lately, I’ve been on a kick of watching music videos with great music and space travel. Here is a selection for your listening and viewing enjoyment.

I had to include this as it so fits in with the theme of this entry.  “I’ll Sleep When I Die” by Daniel Perez:

“Four Three” by All India Radio:

“Solar Apex” by Chateau Marmont:

“Pump Up the Volume” by M|A|R|R|S:

 

***This blog is also dedicated to NASA’s last Shuttle launch today.

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Rest in Peace Leon Botha.

Rest in Peace Leon Botha aka DJ Solarize.  Artist, DJ, and amazing individual with a unique perspective.  Until his death this past weekend, Leon was the oldest living person with progeria (rapidly aging disease.)

Many will recognize him from Die Antwoord’s videos:

DJ Solarize scratching it up!

Leon Botha’s Flickr Page:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarize-liquidswords/

Wiki’s Entry on Leon Botha:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leon_Botha

My tumblr post on Leon Botha:  http://photoetrist.tumblr.com/post/6258452406/rip-leon-botha-you-were-a-unique-individual-with

The Last Day at Metro Diner – Gaston Avenue

Yesterday morning, I finished my first and only breakfast at Metro Diner on Gaston Avenue. I had been to this location on several occasions for dinner options and easily fell in love with its charm.  It’s a little slice of a time past where you are greeted with friendly hellos and your waitress (I know some prefer server) will fondly call you sugar or honey.  The food, though it may not have been the leanest, was good, old-fashioned American diner fare with some southern, home-style favorites.  For this type of food and this certain atmosphere, you could never go wrong.  Many types of people poured out to visit the little diner for the very last time.  I even ended up sitting in the booth in front of the founder, James Adams, and the current owner, Wayne Adams.  The jukebox was playing some of its last tunes and Channel 8 WFAA’s Shon Gables and team were there interviewing patrons and founder, James Adams.  The place was alight with life, fondness, and a bittersweet feeling for some. I couldn’t help but think I might be part of a certain generation that will be the last to remember, “how things used to be.”  These are not even things from my lifetime, but they were left over remnants of a time gone.  More and more historical landmarks are being torn down around Dallas and other parts of Texas. They are irreplaceable keys to the past that you could use to step back through time’s door and see how life was in yesteryears. Although, I was only a patron for several months, I can say I’m going to miss this little joint. I’m sad to think about the old-timers, the students, the hipstsers, the late-night-shifters, the drunkards,  the I-don’t-know-whatsters, neighborhood residents, artists, performers, lonely-hearters, weirdos, and I’m just stopping by crowd not having a place to feed them at all hours of the day.  This was one of the few spots, at least in this part of Dallas, to serve food 24 hours.  Metro Diner was sold to Baylor Hospital so they could expand their facilities.  I know the hospital employees, patients, and families will also miss this place.  It truly was a Dallas landmark. I wish the Metro Diner Staff the best of luck in their new endeavors.

If you get to take my picture, I get to take yours. 😉

Shon Gables of Channel 8 WFAA.

The Woody – Classic Metro Diner Breakfast.

Metro Diner’s Oak Cliff location will remain open. – Farewell Bulletin Board in back of diner.

So farewell, Metro Diner, you were a joy to know even if for me it was only a short time. This song, which is one of the last songs I heard here, was an appropriate fit.

Links to articles about Metro Diner:
One Last Cup of Coffee at the Metro – by Robert Wilonsky with photos by Dylan Hollingsworth
Landmark Dallas diner closes after 43 years – by Shon Gables
Metro Diner Closes After 43 Years – by Amber Fisher with video

Link to a cute video that features Metro Diner and several other Dallas Landmark made as a tribute to the Dallas International Film Festival.

Thoughts on SXSW.

The first time I attended SXSW was in 2000.  Until this year, I had not been since 2004. The festival has grown into an insanely large event that takes over Austin, TX and can be described as utter chaos. Granted, I arrived on Friday of the last weekend, but it was nearly impossible to get anywhere.  After a 4 hour drive, I was forced off the road into downtown by an emergency vehicle as no other drivers would scoot over to let me give it room.  I was trapped in detour after detour and at a crawling pace with the thousands of cars, pedestrians, and cyclists about.  At one point a bike squeezed in between me and a bus and the guy nearly busted his head on the side view mirror of the bus.  The horror that went through my head of him falling in front of  my car and me running over him.  Ugh!  I missed several shows and connections with friends as I was trapped for another 2 and half hours driving around the city.   This event used to be about smaller acts and discovering new music. Not so much anymore. In fact, the city is considering limiting the number of free shows for the festival as they believe it is attracting undesirables. Link: SXSW considers limiting free events-Accident and violence lead to change I’m not sure that is the solution, but some sort of action/better planning should be taken. If there weren’t free shows, I would never have ended up being delighted by a free show after I decided to park it at Spider House.  I am pleased to share my discoveries here.

The show was started off by Harrys Gym. An amazing Norwegian band that convinced me I was in the right spot that day.

Here is a clip I captured of Harrys Gym performing their song “Old Man”. Please excuse the not so great quality and I wish I had captured more video.

Link to the official video of “Old Man.”

Wow! “That’s going to be a tough act to follow,” I thought, but A Place to Bury Strangers did not disappoint. I unfortunately ran out of space on my camera and didn’t get any video and only caught some Droid snap shots for the rest of the following bands. Nonetheless, I will share them here as well as some videos of A Place to Bury Strangers, Sweet Jane (from Ireland) and Bell Gardens.


Sweet Jane – “Blackeyes”

Alas, that was the end of my Spider House experience and I was on to other locations to catch up with old friends. There were many I missed this time around, but I will definitely be back in Austin. Maybe not during SXSW though. ha-ha-ha. We’ll see…

On The Shoulders of Giants Part II: Amazing Female Vocalists/Musicians

I was so sad to find out that Trish Keenan of Broadcast passed away 11 days ago.  Her voice was so amazing and unique. Her lyrics were not your typical love fare.  She truly was mesmerizing.  I felt a void in my musical heart.  I kept thinking to myself, there has to be something new. This can’t be it.  Please let there be new music to inspire me.  The musical world answered my cries for help in the form of First Aid Kit.  Trish Keenan will never be replaced, but I was very happy to discover Johanna and Klara Söderberg. These two sisters are absolutely amazing!  They site Fleet Foxes, another awesome band,  as a major influence.  Klara and Johanna describe themselves as making Focal Music (Folk and Vocal).  That, they certainly are!  They produce lovely ballads that are so full of emotion. Although, I don’t know of them siting Broadcast as an influence and the fact that they stay more towards the folk side of music, I can’t help but find a similarity. Such passionate vocals with deep lyrics and a tendency towards dream pop.

Music Lives On, Music Inspires Us, Music Connects Us!

Thank you Trish Keenan and Broadcast for musically enriching my life. Trish’s work will keep living on and inspiring.

Their Fleet Foxes Cover that got these two young ladies noticed!

Check out this interview with live performance mixed in.  Johanna and Klara are talented and wise beyond their years. First Aid Kit – 10.22.2010 at Rockwood Music Hall

On the Shoulders of Giants Part I: Lovable Rodents

Caplin Rous’s passing had me looking through some old photos of my little Roborovski Hamster, Thumbelina.  I found some old video of her that I hadn’t seen in a while.  Caplin has had quite a few appearances in videos both directly and in ones done by fans.  His energy inspired me to do this video edit honoring my little love’s memory. Caplin was a giant rodent and Thumbelina was as the story goes, only the size of a thumb.   Despite and because of their sizes they were both amazing creatures with lots of  joy to share. Even though I’m quite the amateur at this, I still had a lot of fun with it and can still feel Caplin’s and Thumbelina’s happy energy.

 

 

Tiny Thumbelina and her adorable face.

 

 

Caplin Rous stands on his hind legs for a popsicle. Photo from Caplin's Flickr Page.

*** I always found him eating popsicles to be very cute!