Friday, May 23, 2008

Reasons To Be Cheerful: week of 05/23/08

Greetings from Klamath Falls, Oregon!

I'm holed up in my hotel as I write this, happy to be off the road and out of a buffeting wind.
My seasonal hayfever has been acting up, too, so at the moment I'm all for road-tripping at a leisurely pace.

It's my time for travelling just lately, with many loopy journeys ahead. It gets confusing in description...

Having left Idaho a few weeks ago to return to my native SF bay area for some reconnaissance, the path now takes me off to Spokane, Washington, to celebrate a special friend's special milestone birthday. I should arrive there Friday or Saturday.

From Spokane, an interlude back in Boise will then take me off again to Seattle for a niece's graduation from the University of Washington, with hopefully some sidetrips to Portland, Oregon and
Vancouver, B.C. while I'm roosted in the neighborhood...

Thursday morning I hit the road from Redding, California, after checking out their truly impressive Sundial Bridge located at the Turtle Bay Exploration Park on the Sacramento River.

Completed in 2005, the footbridge is a successfully elegant blend of art and architecture, affording many interesting views of it's many swooping angles. - - And it's a functioning sundial, too, even if it only comes close to being accurate a few days a year...

As I made my way north on a truly gorgeous (if windy) day,
Mt. Shasta continued to loom into view at various points, its peak often obscured by clouds.

(click on image to ENLARGE) ▶

What else has been appearing along my path this week?
Let's see, now, as I recall...

1. 'Lost parrot tells veterinarian his address'.

The perfect tiny feelgood human interest story, and apparently it's even true.

2. Slated for release on DVD in September is
'Ken Russell at the BBC',
a 3-disc set showcasing some of the flamboyant British director's early television work, prior to his 1969 breakout with 'Women In Love'.

It sounds intriguing; 6 historical biopics presented in a unconventional style intended to shake up the staid normality of the genre as traditionally seen on the BBC up to that point.
Oliver Reed stars in two of of the films.

For details, follow the link above or click over to
Britmovie - the British Film Forum.

3. I received a friendly note with greetings from Mats in Norway, who has kindly shared some obscure music he's found - -

"On a flea market I stumbled upon a black, Dymo-labelled tape that said "Swedish women's songs", presumably from the '70s - - the golden age of hardcore feminism.

"I knew that listening to something like this nowadays could be pretty amusing.

"Being a Norwegian
(which is similar to Swedish)
I understand the lyrics, and they turned out to be very tragic, often with raw, explicit language.

"In example, one song's lyrics is simply:

'You can get knocked up, my mother said
but I only f*** when I 'm in love
you're in love once a week, my mother said'
(song # 1 on the mixtape)

"While another one goes like this:

'There once was a guy that would
have children right away
but he didn't have time to stay
so now I'm a single mother'
(song # 5 on the mixtape)

"And all of this is accompanied with sad, upbeat or just beautiful, flute-heavy melodies.
"So, even if you don't understand Swedish, the songs will be worth a listen :)"

- Follow link to the anonymous 'Swedish women's songs' mixtape.

My favorite track so far is #8, 'Karar og karar för hela slanten'...

Many thanks, Mats! An interesting mix, even if I don't understand the lyrics. (Or perhaps because)

An intriguing balance of plaintive & melancholy with raucous and raw.

It reminds me a bit of what the DELAY 68 label has tried to accomplish on their
'Folk Is Not A Four Letter Word' CD compilation and other projects.

Can anyone out there share any info on the details and origins of this collection of songs?
Drop a line, thanks!

4. The amazing one-man-band rockabilly madman Hasil Adkins rocketed out of this life back in 2005.

During his early days of home recording back in the 1950's - - before he'd decided that if you want a strange job done well you do it yourself - - he submitted many of his songs to some of the top country artists of the era.

Click over to WFMU's Beware of The Blog and view
The Hasil Adkins Rejection Letters.
Included are images of notes received from Johnny Cash,
Ernest Tubb, and Hank Snow.
Their loss was our gain.

(Via Bedazzled!)

For more Hasil around the web, see also:

- The official website, Hasil Adkins.Com

- Hasil Adkins bio page at All Music.Com

- Several of The Haze's tunes can be heard at the
Hasil Adkins MySpace page, including my all-time fave,
'No More Hot Dogs'.

At YouTube, an Adkins documentary:
'The Wild World of Hasil "Haze" Adkins', Part 1 of 3
'The Wild World of Hasil "Haze" Adkins', Part 2 of 3
'The Wild World of Hasil "Haze" Adkins', Part 3 of 3

1 comment:

K. R. Seward said...

I have to say these Swedish Feminist Songs are far closer to Sandy Denny/Fairport Convention than Sweet Honey in the Rock.

Thanks for sharing.

Freshly-stirred links