Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
hello my lovelies.
i hope that wherever you are, near or far, happy or sad, that this little gift brings you a bit of cheer in the dark of night.
it's been a rough year for every single person i know.
when in doubt?
grab a camera, put on a dress, give yourself a black eye, and lip-sync.
(if you want to go straight to Vimeo to watch it in full HD, click HERE - if you insist on watching in slightly-less glory via YouTube, it's available HERE)
love, wine, family as you make it, cold compresses
(or whatever you can grab that's within reach)
with all my heart,
Monday, December 22, 2008
Friday, December 19, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
Thursday, December 04, 2008
chicago was the best. show. ever.
we're all staying at neil gaiman's house tonight. and we're cooking dinner together.
and we decided this would be a perfect night to try another webcast.
7 pm central time.
steven will be fielding the questions live, email them into ask [AT] amandapalmer [DOT] net
AFP, the danger ensemble & everybody else here, including the dog and the blind cat
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
i must harness the power of you internet types.
please do this one thing: vote online for the boston music awards, it's muy easy and there are just a few days left to get votes in. to spice things up, we're going to give prizes to one lucky voter (details HERE).
i give you link.
i'm very honored to be nominated in four categories.
voting is really easy, you just click and vote.
Act of The Year - National
Album of The Year - National
Female Vocalist of The Year - National
Best Song of The Year - National (Astronaut)
maybe if i win all four they'll send me a cheesecake.
Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Monday, December 01, 2008
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Check it out to see some of the new merch, read a re-cap of World/Inferno in Boston, and more, more, more!
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
now comes the hard part.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
my household all left around 11 to walk down the street together to our local polling station....
i've never seen anything like it - the line was around the block. hundreds of people came out.
when i voted in 2004 the line was about 10 minutes.
we waited over two and a half hours to vote - and we were SO FUCKING HAPPY to wait.
volunteers were passing out donuts. there were lots of wheelchairs and crutches. lots of people had their teeny kids with them.
i live in a predominantly black and senior citizen neighborhood in boston. lots of folks, all different.
rich south end folks, poor working class folks, wicked old folks.
when we were towards the front of the line, this 25-year old black kid came out of the voting booth and yelled
"My FIRST FRICKIN VOTE, ladies and gentlemen! OBAMA!" and everyone burst into applause.
snapshot from the line:
when i filled in that oval, tears came to my eyes.
i can't wait. i can't wait.
please, let this be the beginning of something new.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
a quick missive from backstage at our last show on the european tour (we're in tilburg, in the netherlands....)
the newest video, for "oasis", is now UP!
never again will you be able to see me get drunk, date-raped AND get an abortion ALL IN ONE VIDEO!
look out for special appearances by beth (my assistant), emily (my manager), michael (my boyfriend), becca (best known for her role in the "girls just wanna have fun video" as my drunk comrade-in-arms) and many others....truly a family effort.
special thanks, of course, to my main man michael pope, who did a brilliant job directing this one (as usual) and to brianna olson, who produced with class. big thanks also to jakob lodwick, who loaned us his loft in brooklyn to shoot this shiznit, the crew,
and all the extras.
dedicated, with love, to sarah palin.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Sunday, October 05, 2008
read it. loved it. haven't seen the musical. any good?
i'm holed up in the wonderful brighton home of the author and musician rohan kriwaczek, making teas and toasts, stealing his internet and trying to catch up on life.
a bunch of you asked about the band thing.
here goes, as honestly as possible.
there was a foibley chain of events that went down about a week ago when brian posted a comment - to a youtube clip - saying that the band was "over":
the video is kind of lame - it's obviously a journalist's attempt to get some traffic by posting something sensational, especially the way it's cut together and subtitled,
but since you're all off searching for it anyway because of my last post, here it be:
a bunch of people responded in a "WTF" manner, and brian and i both went over to the shadowbox and posted comments trying to explain what's going on.
the long and short of it....?
life in this band is not easy.
never has been; never will be.
there's never been an easy, crystal-clear channel of communication, it's always taken lots of work and translation, and heaps of understanding from both sides.
and it's one of the reasons that brian and i sort of drive each other nuts.
for better or worse, as you can tell from this blog, i am an over-communicator.
i like to talk feelings into the ground, chat until 5 am or later about something if it's a problem.
this is not brian's style. for those of you who have met brian in person, he's a totally sociable and insanely nice in person....just....an extremely warm-hearted guy.
but when conflicts arise, he and i have very different ways of dealing.
mine is (typical chick) to bang on the door and demand a conference and make-up session.
his is (typical dude) to unplug the phone until he's ready to talk. sometimes (as i learned last year, with bated fucking breath) this can take months.
this has made our relationship difficult at best, for years.
brian posted on the forum that we've decided to leave things "open-ended" and that's pretty much where we're at . . . we've been touring and making records for enough years and dealing with our own personal conflicts that we're BOTH happy to spend some time away from the band. very healthy. very normal.
on that note...i could tell you about the first time the dresden dolls broke up, back in 2001. before anyone on the internet cared.
tears were shed. discussions were discussed. things changed. we re-formed. nobody was around to notice.
i could tell you about the time when the dresden dolls almost broke up for the second time (in new york, 2003, after a show at tonic). or the third (boston, 2004, in the attic of my house). or the fourth (london, 2006, in the lobby of a hotel. i think it was 2006. somewhere around then. check the date of the avril lavigne karaoke. it was that week).
this band has gone through SO MUCH SHIT that we could fill a 22-volume novel called "the pain behind the punk cabaret" and make millions on the mini-series.
love, sex, betrayal, jealousy, violence, silence, all the juicy shit. honey, it would take a decade.
this is not the stuff i blog about. this is the stuff that stays between the four walls of the band. as it should.
we go through the pain we go through with each other, and always have, because WE LOVE WHAT WE DO.
the bullshit? mostly we've considered it WORTH IT. the same way that touring is worth it.
brian states in the interview that i hate touring...it's not really true.
i hate conflict.
touring, for a long time, bred conflict with brian.
and i hated that.
i'm very, very happy touring right now, even with a broken fucking foot in the coldest, ghetto-tastic venues in europe . . . because there's no conflict.
there is no doubt that the touring lifestyle is weird. but when we play shows, and hear people talking about how much they're moved by our music, it's worth any amount of impossible interpersonal bullshit, conflict and discomfort. it's WHY we did it, it's WHY i do it, it's why we didn't break up in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006 and why we are not breaking up in 2008.
so i repeat: the dresden dolls aren't broken up.
we're just taking a BADLY needed hiatus.
this is, to date, what the band has decided, and the wording we've agreed upon.
on the contrary, we are expanding the empire. it really pisses me off to see people feeling the needs to take sides as they comment pissily on boards and on youtube ("amanda's better off without brian!" "brian's better off without amanda!" "why is brian in this other band?" etc. etc.). what's good for the goose is good for the gander, ladies and gents, and if my solo record brings more attention to the dresden dolls (and hopefully it will) than fabulous. if brian's work with world/inferno does the same, awesome. we love our band. we want it to grow. everything feeds everything. and it all comes back.
while we work on other projects, get perspective and travel the world doing god knows what (i'm overdue for a ten-year retreat at an ashram in india, i also want to learn to surf, and write a book, and learn to play piano) we will continue to live in the ears, souls and minds of all who discover us anew, with your help. and more than likely, we will return to kick ass on the vast stages, speakers and other exciting platforms of the future. i am still praying for a mass teleporter, so we can do shows on the moon.
like i said in that interview: i love making music with brian viglione way too much to imagine that we won't do more.
in our own way, brian and i really, really love each other. our relationship has, i think, been one of my life's greatest teachers.
we've committed a huge part of our young lives to each other.
we speak music together perfectly. it's the rest that's hard.
but any relationship is like that.
right now we're pretty firmly entrenched in our projects (me in my solo record & tour, and brian in his new kick-ass band, world/inferno, who you should go see, because they're awesome and old friends of ours).
and if nothing else happens, i'll be super fucking bummed.
and if one of us dies, that'll suck too.
and if the world collapses, then ... nobody will be around to give a shit about one little punk cabaret band.
but, for now, let's be optimistic.
with as much strength as i can muster, i say to you:
long live the punk cabaret.
can i get an amen.
Saturday, October 04, 2008
often i'm out on the road at registration time, but this time, i'm in europe. so i can only heckle you via email.
many people don't realize that in most states if you're not registered to vote by Monday, you can't vote in the presidential election in november.
PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU'RE REGISTERED!!!!
then start asking everyone you know if they are registered to vote! before you say hello, ask, "hey, are you registered to vote here in (name of town)? 'cause the deadline is monday, and you have to be registered where you live." (Click here to find out what the deadline is in your state and click here to find out what the procedures are to sign up and vote. If you are a college student and want to find out where your vote counts most, click here.)
for the next couple of days, each of us has to do whatever we can to get people registered. especially people who have recently moved, or students who are at college (students can vote where they go to school). obama's two strongest bases -- young people and african americans -- are traditionally the two groups who have the lowest voter registration and the lowest voter turnout. for obama to win, this must change -- and it has to change today or tomorrow, not next week.
the more enlightened states allow you to register the day you vote.
but in most places the deadline to register is this Monday, October 6th at 5pm.
DO IT TO IT!!!!
(lifted in part from michel moore's mass mailing!)
Friday, October 03, 2008
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
i'm at home.
i signed a shit ton of CDs tonight.
geeta took pictures...
this is only about half of them.
2000 got driven to my house by some fantastically kind people after the more traditional mail delivery service failed us.
fuck the postal service! fuck UPS! long live random friends of friends driving from New York to Boston with 2000 CDs in their car.
the pre-order has been SLAMMIN. we're all sort of in shock. the response to the pre-order was so overwhelming that it shut down the
server of the host company. they were impressed.
according to them, we outdid ACDC.
take that, ACDC.
if you haven't pre-ordered, there's not much time left and the prices are going to go up come tuesday when the record's actually out.
do it: whokilledamandapalmer.com
on that note: the REAL website (whokilledamandapalmer.com is going to house all the album artwork and credits and suchlike) will be up later in the week.
i was hoping to have it done sooner but life is a fuckshow.
i had a minor nervous breakdown last night after going to see a chorus line with my mother.
it wasn't the musical that did it. i was just ready to pop.
this whole last week has just been packed with weirdness.
i went to new york to do a bunch of stuff and felt disoriented the whole time. good things did happen, random things.....
i got to hang out with regina in new york, which was really nice because we haven't connected much lately (read her latest blog....she talks about how i bitched at her for never posting any personal blogs, yay! i've infected her).
karma happens....a few days after i posted about tegan and sara on my site (i plugged their record, the con, it's OUTSTANDING), i wound up - totally coincidentally - being in a photoshoot for out magazine with them. i'd met sara before, but only in passing.
they're both amazing people. tegan took some photos of me for the neil gaiman book and the hair and make-up people tried to make us look like a bunch of 1950s degenerates....
note the switchblade comb i am threateningly holding.
my inner theater dork came in her pants when THIS dude walked into the photoshoot -
yes, virginia, you're correct. it's edward albee....incredible, groundbreaking playwright (author, most notably, of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf and Zoo Story). i very rarely get shaky and fan out. but i got shaky and fanned out. i gave him a copy of the record. maybe he'll listen to it. he was so kind in person.
in other recent news:
the impromptu soccer game in london was a smashing success.
about 60 people showed up all told. most people watched and drank beer. we who played didn't bother with actual positions....we just ran around trying to kill each other.
goalposts were made of shirts.
we started the day by splitting into teams:
the OTHER team:
the AFP was max's idea. they were out of Ms.
the local drunks LOVED us:
among those who were too cool to play....max, robyn, steven, olga, becca:
we were ultimately challenged by a group of ACTUAL soccer-playing londoners to a match.
these dudes were from trinidad and jamaica and it was about 12 of them against 45 of us. it was a fair game.
we won....4 to 2.
these two from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/crazysockpuppet/2805699430/in/set-72157606993985687/
this dog was awesome.....
then we all loved each other:
these three: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zquack/sets/72157606982202386
and a little youtube clip someone posted....
i'm going to post up some teaser photos from the past few weeks of video shooting soon....
two totally different experiences (leeds united in london, oasis in NYC).
3 days til the records out, comrades.
this week i'll be doing in-stores in boston, portland (maine) and new york.
and i MIGHT be doing my dawn record giveaway. stay tuned, i'm trying to hook up a superfancy texting system to let people know the night before where i'll be hiding.
ps random dept:
voltaire has posted a parody of coin-operated boy called coin-operated goi up on his myspace.
it's hilarious: http://www.myspace.com/voltairenyc
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
please weigh in.
a version of his album recently leaked on the internet, including the track "brainwascht"
which, according to mr. folds, was lifted rawther directly from "backstabber".
you'll have to go listen for yourself: http://www.box.net/shared/q1fl8nftbk
(for those of you who want to hear the whole "leak", grab it here or here while supplies last* - please share amongst yourselves if these links dry up, though)
all in favor for suing ben folds, raise your hands!
think of the fucking PR! perfect timing! seriously.
and i'm in the UK. they live for that shit. i'll be in the tabloids at last.
after that, i'm bringing charges against pete doherty for fucking my wife.
and after that, paternity charges against beth ditto. yeah.
it's gonna be an excellent year!!!!!!!!!!!!!
in other news, ben folds also just released an amazing fucking video for the song you've all been asking about
("cologne"....the very one i've been opening the show with).
he had invited me to be part of the "piano orchestra" a few months ago but i couldn't make it....and i'm wicked kicking myself.
god dammit, i wish i'd been there. best. video. ever. the whole thing is filmed at ben's in nashville...
the same studio where i made the record....and slept, and wrote, and mixed, and did Noga every day.
in fact, if you look at the top of the stairs (where the naked guy with the tamborine is standing - yum) that's where my bed was :)
love from londontown
p.p.s. for those of you asking EXACTLY where we're going to be playing footsie tomorrow...sorry, "footie"....we'll be in the main triangle green of sheperd's bush.
take tube to central holland park and walk or take hammersmith to sheperd's bush. i assure you....you won't be able to miss us. we'll be the ones playing soccer, looking like idiots. BRING CAMERAS, by the way. if enough of us take video, we can pool it and make a movie about "being free".
google maps that shit
(* the real-deal ben folds album is due out september 30th and you can order it in all sorts of varieties, apparently...)
Monday, August 25, 2008
the london gig was off the hook. life is working.
i am holed up in a hotel for a week, trying to catch up on emails and life.
1. i am listening to new music this week and starving for content.
please post here any incredible albums that you think i might not know. i'm getting in shape for the "leeds" video and downloading single albums to listen to back-to-front while i work out.
hit me. any era, any genre.
2. i am kind of bored. yesterday, i bought a soccer ball, and some charity-shop sneakers, to cheer myself up.
3. i noticed on my walk home that there is a big field (albeit its sort of gross and ridden with drunks and junkies) near my hotel.
pick-up soccer/football game, anyone? let's fucking do it.
3 pm, shepards bush, this wednesday the 27th.
i am not kidding. we need at least 8 people to have a decent game. if we have too many people, we'll figure it out, we can rotate being athletes and hooligans, drinking beers on the sidelines and getting into brawls.
we'll play til about 5 or 6 and then HAVE TEA somewhere.
shepards bush is a total hole, but we'll find a place i'm sure.
please do wear appropriate footwear.
in other news....
the stencil mission is going well....people are posting up teasers on the shadowbox.
if you still want to enter, the deadline is far off and details about the mission are HERE.
here are some inspirations.....
(click any of the above images to be taken to the thread with full size images and lots more of inspirational stencil-y stuff)
here is another great one from my talk at mass art:
by dena bach
in related stencil-y-ness:
my friend olga sent me this incredible link....
a couple created an interactive choose-your-own-adventure stencil-romance project in the streets of San Fran:
i fucking love the world.
more soon. i am cleaning out my head.
love & rocket (comes with all meals here, on the side. kind of like lettuce, only not.),
p.s. the keyboard player for oasis walked by me at breakfast this morning. SIGN FROM JESUS??? i think so.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
and i am dizzy.
i did a mini-tour of the states (new york, chicago, toronto, LA and san fran) and then without going home I came over to europe and did four festival shows with brian,
now three more solo shows in germany and london. then i'm going to haul myself up to edinburgh just to be there. then i am coming back to london for the video shoot
for "leeds united". fancy fancy fast fast fast.
my life is shifting. touring solo is unfamiliar, but it's so so so good. i'm getting used to it.
playing solo and then playing with brian and going straight back to solo was certainly weird and educational.
the thing that i didn't anticipate or think too much about is how different my gauge is when i'm playing alone.
i had gotten so used to always factoring brian into everything it that breaking myself of the pattern is weird.
it's all me now, there's no drummer factor, at all. this has it's pros and cons. it's a little lonely but it's also not.
sometimes being onstage with brian, when we weren't connected, made it feel impossible to connect to the crowd.
when alone, the shows can become completely impulsive and random, and they have been.
but i feel a little like pavlov's dog waiting for the shock to kick in.
i'm sure it's similar to the feeling you have when you get divorced or break up with a long-term lover.
you're excited by the liberation but you also miss the routine, however complicated.
i've been feeling more grateful than usual.
grateful to ben folds, for making this fucking amazing record for reasons i am still trying to comprehend.
grateful to neil gaiman, for appearing magically and writing for me and being my friend.
grateful to emily white, my manager, for being back in my life and being so passionate about music and her work.
this is starting to sound like the acknowledgments of a book.
but i'm feeling it, fuck it.
grateful to beth hommel, my incredible assistant, for coming into my life right when i needed help badly and making EVERYTHING go.
where i would be without her right now, i'm not sure, but i'm pretty sure i'd be on Planet Fucked.
grateful to brian, for being in a band with me and teaching me more than he'll ever know.
grateful to psycho dave, for touring with me and getting me a band-aid last night.
grateful to the universe in general for setting shit up. i can't believe it worked.
i have been losing and breaking things.
i don't like travel for this reason.
i feel like i've gotten RELATIVELY more responsible as the years pass.
i don't lose things as easily as i used to. i used to lose keys and wallets with astounding frequency.
but when you are, for several weeks in a row, on a daily treadmill of taxis, hotel rooms, planes, trains, cluttered dressing rooms with no tables,
restaurants and friend's houses, with people milling around you and loud music playing, things get lost. they get broken.
i try to let things go.
i try not to get upset.
i try to see wasted money and lost irreplaceable clothing as ephemeral, and then i wonder if that only makes me more prone to losing things.
in LA, i lost my iPod. i bought a new one. but the record's leaked ANYWAY.
in hamburg last night, i lost my favorite jacket. but it's relatively warm today.
somewhere in california i lost my cap. i really liked it. but my head must not be covered for survival.
in Utrecht i cut my hand open on my ukulele case. but the cut wasn't too bad and i have a nice pretty bandage and my sister had some neosporin.
in chicago, i lent emilyn "cupcake punk" brodsky my socks. she offered to give them back at the end of the night, actually, but things had just gone too far. it wasn't worth
also in chicago, someone stepped on my mac. the screen became modern art. that someone was kate lane.
BUT.....they know me at the mac store, so a few days later the guys in new york HOOKED ME UP with a new screen. for free. life is wonderful that way. (thanks mac store!)
and kate lane felt really bad and so in exchange, she gave me her pony sweater that i had been coveting. and so i got my mac fixed AND i got the pony sweater. i was almost glad it happened.
am i terrible?
you stupid cunt.
why don't you keep your iPod in one fucking place and keep track of it when you lend it to people?
and why didn't you put your jacket away in your suitcase? you loved your jacket. now it's gone forever.
and why did you leave your fucking computer on the floor where someone could step on it?
you are an irresponsible child and i hate you.
will you ever mature and take care of your shit?
way to go, fuckface.
i know, i know, i know.
please forgive me.
tour is a bitch. life becomes random.
i am trying.
please love me,
i am somewhat terrified because i am about to embark on a fucking 3 month tour with TWELVE PEOPLE (zoe, jason, lyndon, my crew and the whole danger ensemble)
in venues the same size as the ones we've been playing. there's been almost no privacy and space and we're currently a touring party of TWO (me & psycho dave). .
it's going to be an interesting life. we might kill each other.
I wonder what i can do to never lose anything.
maybe i should just not HAVE anything.
but i sort of NEED things.
clothes keep me warm, my iPod carries my music, my computer keeps my life in place.
i am in a bind here. fuck.
random photos from tour....:
backstage feeling torn between solitude and ponies.
me & dad in LA, singing leonard cohen. it was awesome.
sadly i don't think anyone filmed it.
at the troubadour in the balcony:
(photo from http://flickr.com/photos/28155512@N05/)
with vermillion lies (who are AMAZING!!!! check them out: myspace.com/vermillionlies):
(photo from http://www.flickr.com/photos/21341545@N00/2752799978/)
the PONY SWEATER!!!!! (thanks kate):
(both by http://www.hatebasket.org/AP/)
(Photo by Denis Farr)
New York....(new york was sooooooooooooo goooooooooooooooooood)
(sign photos by http://flickr.com/photos/dollsneerpiece)
i did an introduction to the set by imitating bob dylan and lip-syncing ben folds....
awesome photo collage by bob lopez/almus.
there's a good live clip of it (from chicago) HERE
time to look at the cows.
Friday, August 01, 2008
exhausted, not ready for tour, fine.
in. love. with. life. and all it has to bring, good and bad.
in other news....
scaring children, again, amanda?
got to stop that.
neil gaiman posted this to his blog yesterday and got the following comment.
we tried to make up for it today and take some nice WHOLESOME photos on the set.
it's been an excellent week.
(well, it IS a bit of a crotch shot.....)
Hi Neil, is that lady wearing a slip? It looks nasty. What does Maddy (neil's 13 year old daughter, -ed.) think about that picture? My mom says it's in bad taste. LOL Patti
I think Maddy's been around film sets and photo sets enough to know that film and photo sets are fictional. That was Amanda's costume for the photo shoot on the roof that preceded the photos you saw. (Below you can see three out of six of today's costumes in pictures that, I hope, will be more reassuring and family friendly. Except possibly for the first, now I come to think of it.) Kyle is shooting a book of photographs called "Who Killed Amanda Palmer". Amanda is in all the pictures -- which are a lot like scenes from movies -- and I'm writing very short stories to accompany them. I'm trying to do the majority of them while I'm here, as my plate is scarily full right now, and it seemed easier and faster just to come out while many of the photos were being taken and see what was going on and write.
The photos yesterday, and the ones below, were all taken by Kyle between actual shots, because the man does not put down his camera.
cross-posted from kyle's blog (http://kylecassidy.livejournal.com/)
me & neil downstairs
neil, me & kyle...
note the re-appearance of the famous "fuck me when you're ready to text" shirt.
it will be available soon from post-war trade. yay.
Thursday, July 31, 2008
kyle cassidy the wond'rous photographer has come up for some shooting, literal and figurative, as well. this is shaping up to be an excellent project.
i've been embroiled in a shitstorm of business-y manager-y and label-y activity, the phone is lighting up every 6 minutes and the emails are pouring in, decisions to be made, and things things things to be done done done.
i need to do a lot of things that i'm not doing.
but it's always this way.
i'm getting better at just doing what i want....
i'm taking walks in the public garden with neil, eating watermelon slush and talking about things that have nothing to do with real life.
this, i think, is better. it has to be. because it is. i get this now.
and i haven't been a COMPLETE hack: today i practiced some songs for the upcoming tour while neil sat in the room and quietly scribbled in a book while listening to me play.
i would finish a song or two and he would read me what he'd come up with. this is sort of heaven, to let someone hear me practice, which i find very hard to do, unless there's a reason, and there's almost never a reason, but today there was a reason. and that felt wonderful.
there's very few people with whom i have to spend almost no time to feel complete trust, and the dude won me over fairly instantly. he's one of the kindest people i've ever worked with.
i feel very, very, very lucky, a little too lucky....of all the things this fancy man could be doing with his time and energy, he's chosen to hang around my house and work on a totally obscure little art project.
we were chatting today about our years plans and neil's are: "well, after shooting this film of my novel for miramax i'll be on book tour of the UK and then in china researching a new novel, and then writing the new batman comic series, and then...." and i'm wondering: WHAT the FUCK are you doing here in this po-dunk new england city with this hack songwriter for chrissakes?
but i can answer my own question.
we're having a wonderful time.
there you go.
i'm also very happy he can see the house this way, in the bowels of the summer, all covered in thick green with all the windows knocked out and everybody puttering around being beer-y and laugh-y and art-y.
the winter here is desolate.
i think this book we are making together is going to be amazing.
in other news:
the new video is up and it's....awesome. "runs in the family". it was so late at night we filmed this shit that i was going for broke, because I knew we would only do a few takes and probably only use the footage for filler, or at least only one segment of a larger theme. but no: we ended up just using the amanda-freaks-out-in-the-attic-in-the-middle-of-the-night footage and goshdarnit i think it works pretty well. the songs sounds incredible. that's all ben folds you're hearing, this song was his baby. he played all the percussion and synth parts and arranged all the strings. genius.
at first, i thought this blog was a bit odd. but in the end i'm glad you posted it. i found it very educational. most of the time when this stuff happens to people they keep it to themselves. so thank you amanda. off topic, i got tickets to see you in L.A on Aug 4th. yay! i'm looking forward to the show.
-Posted by Emily on Jul 23, 2008 8:26 PM
if I don't ramble about vaginas, who will?
decidedly bookish said...
Ah, so that's why God made those absorbant little sea critters... I'm surprised he didn't make little tampon fish as well.
On the vagina subject, what were you encouraged to refer to your vagina as when you were a small child? My nan used to call it a "dilly," and I made up my own name: "widgy." Unfortunately this was also my nickname in the family. We've yet to come up with a good, all-purpose word. "Vagina" can sound a bit clinical. "Cunt" is hardly something you can say to the nurse. I hate "pussy," plus there's the whole cat bad-joke potential there. "Front bottom" is just wrong on so many levels, as is "flaps." "Minge" is hilarious. There are vague references, like your "bits" or "down there," but they just basically serve to avoid what doesn't need avoiding. "Vagina" is the favourite, I think, but I maintain that we need a new word which isn't also the scientific name. Any ideas?
my mum always referred to it as a "tushy"
Hey, Amanda. I don't know if you appreciate somewhat unrelated comments or critique. I trying hard not to be inappropriate contextually.
Since you posted a few new music videos for some of your newer material... I thought of this. It's been on my chest for a while...
I was at the Filmore in San Francisco. I heard Boston played with an accompanying violinist.
I was emotionally affected by your performance, first of all. The heart-rendering agony, hope and bitterness of a tenuous, long term relationship-- you breathed life into this.
Secondly, the violinist pushed this song over the edge for me and was absolutely essential. I have searched for a happenstance recording of this, Youtube, etc, but I may just have to let this go as part of the vital power and magic of the night.
Would you be interested in re-recording Boston with an accompaniment? I respect your creative decisions enormously and just wanted to propose this idea, (perhaps a bit contrived), but nevertheless, the question stands.
that amazing violinist was named meredith yayanos.
she's increidble: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meredith_Yayanos. we should indeed find a way to get that recording online. let me poke someone.
I have a question about the eyebrows, in case you don't mind my asking. Or rather, a few questions. If anybody could answer, please.
1. Do eyebrows grow back? (Might sound like a stupid question, but I've heard conflicting info about this from various people, none of which have probably ever gotten rid of their eyebrows. I know unibrow hairs grow back for sure, but I've never heard first hand info from someone who's shaved/plucked/whatever their actual eyebrows.)
i believe that the "eyebrows won't grow back" thing is a myth if you SHAVE. if you pluck, you're damaging the follicles and that would make sense.
but then again, bodies are weird. don't blame me if you do it and wind up with a bald face for life.
2. If they don't, what do you do when you don't feel like doing your Art-Drill that day? Do you just walk around eyebrow-less?
i often walk around eyebrowless if i'm not going out. i will often walk eyebrowless to the store to get coffee and toilet paper. i walk around eyebrowless when i'm in my tour bus at night.
the shit stays on GOOD, unless i sweat.
3. If they do, how long does it usually take to grow them back?
these questions are out of order. i shave them about every 3 or 4 days. the shaving takes under 5 seconds. the drawing takes under 10 seconds. it's very lom-maintenece.
4. Should they be shaven or plucked or something else I haven't thought of?
i wouldn't pluck unless you want that bald face.
5. What eyebrow-drawing-in art tool would you recommend? (Specific brands, if possible... please? I'm not really good at looking at a giant wall of products and guessing which one is best. Unfortunately.)
i SWEAR by the one i use, and i've tested them all, honey.
maybelline. black. waterproof. liquid eyeliner. accept no substitutes. perfect pen. won't smear. stays on all day. every drugstore in america got that shit.
6. Is there any other advice that should be given to a (hopefully)-soon-to-be budding member of the Eyebrow-Arting-Out community?
I think i've always had a very naive dream to stay absolutely silent for a day, to completely observe people around me and to just keep my mouth shut. I've tried it and managed to stay quiet for maybe... 20 minutes.
i don't see what eyebrows and silence have to do with each other, but i'm sure i could if i tried.
i would recommend trying something new. i've always thought that eyebrows are a bizarre thing. you don't pay much attention to them, usually, but they shape your expression, which shapes how people respond to you.
maybe try gluing objects. lots of 60s models did that, with feathers and whatnot. looks interesting. start a cult. why not?
I'm glad you are doing well. Good luck with your silence, have you invested in a dry erase board for communication?
ah, my silence being long over, i can only thank you for the support in retrospect. but it rocked. i recommend it.
Do you have a mailing list where you send out your blogs? When I'm sailing about the seven seas, I am incredibly bored. And you write alot. And I enjoy every word. And I can't access Myspace while I'm out there. Or hey, if you'd like to hear about the o-so-exciting life of a sailor, I answer pretty much any email I'm lucky enough to get.... Please, repond quickly for I ship out again soon.
As we say in the Navy, fair winds and following seas.
i'm working on getting a more newslettery or emailable thing going for my blog. stay tuned.
that's it lovelies
be art to each other
Thursday, July 24, 2008
this shirt, shown above, states:
"ROCK N ROLL
(ROCK N ROLL)"
i am confused. this shirt seems like it was designed for non-english
speaking tourists buying shirts off the street of midtown new york.
what up with this shitake?
post war trade forever.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
little, yellow, different, better.
it's been a dirty sort of summer, busy.
yesterday was a post-party-at-the-house-day and i took a full day off.
it RAINED like in the bible and got black at 3 o'clock in the daytime.
i leaned out the window for a while. my favorite weather, all hot and
dark and windy and stormy.
i feel more alive than usual. i fear getting back on the road will
kill that. we're getting ready.
the parties here used to be epic - hundreds of guests
every floor of the house brimming with weirdness and color and light
the garden all lit up and tramply.
i used to run the show like a madwoman, then i stopped.
this time mali was running the show and blasting around dealing with
the guests, the drinks, the PA, the performers, the list at the door,
the performing herself, slamming that piano and being a rock star
within her own outdoor homegrown nightclub
- i miss and don't miss that feeling, i feel it on tour all the time
and never want to feel it at home anymore.
the guests are all old acquaintances but i never want to chat, because
chatting is exhausting, only talking is good, and it's hard to talk at
a party. i spent most of the party in my apartment and down the street
getting food. i have become party-phobic, unless i'm a stranger.
(i did bust out the ukulele, but i gave it to michael to play. the
neighborhood kids were all peeking at our party from across the
street, about a dozen of them.
they are probably scared shitless of our house. they're all black and
hispanic and we're all hippie honkies. one mom was with them and i
invited them, all of them, to come into the garden. they all freaked
out, as if i were inviting them into the land of OZ, and told me that
they call our house and garden "the jungle". i am glad we're part of
people's childhoods. we played rihanna's "umbrella", for ukulele and
voice, and they all clapped and sang along. steven grabbed the garden
hose and sprayed everyone at the end. we jammed. i took the uke,
michael took the drums that had been set up from the last band, the
kids screamed and ran around = heaven.)
the night i met brian, it was halloween, a rager. we were talking,
four of us, on the stairs outside my apartment. brian was quiet, there
was me, i was loud, there was a bass player named plamen and there was
scott roi, the guitarist. plamen and scott were both drunk (especially
scott) and i must have been, too, and deluded, because i thought i had
finally found the members of what would be my band. they had all just
seen me play and were excited to all get together and jam. brian hung
back and observed. he left his number. so did plamen. so did scott. i
called them all. i kept that piece of brown bag paper, with all their
numbers, for a long time.
scott roi and i got together a few days later at pan9 and ended up
just drinking, i think.
i visited plamen in his apartment the next week. he had taken my demo
recording of half jack and turned it into a dance remix with no vocals.
i never called him back.
brian and i got together a week later and became a band.
scott roi, i just found out, died three days ago. after pan9 burned
down in boston, he moved to the west coast. apparently he'd been out
of rehab for a week, had been stone cold sober and gone swimming, took
a dive from a trellis and broke his neck. pope says: "maybe god goes:
well done on the rehab stint. your work here is done. now when you
come around the next time you won't have to deal with all this extra
every time i lie still for a photograph somewhere filthy and wet, and
i've been doing a lot of that lately, i wonder if i'll get a disease.
mike penta used to say, taking his hyper-active very-gesticulative
stance: "amanda palmer? amanda palmer. ok. wait, ok. amanda palmer is.
a. DIRTY. girl."
and he didn't mean foulmouthed. he meant dirty, like, unwashed.
unkempt. brian commented recently that i should shower more.
am i dirty or just busy?
i feel like i'm just busy.
i know when i'm busy, i get dirty, i lose things, i lose track, things
get really fucked up.
case in point:
there were these few days around the boston pops when everything went
to hell in a goddamn handbasket.
i did a week of preparation up to the pops, had a day off to pack,
then had to fly to europe for a week of press.
i didn't face the reckoning until i came home form europe a week
later, but i could re-trace the mind-losing.
i didn't pay attention to anything but what was right in front of my
face, and i was even missing that. i lost a lot of details.
in the space of just a 24 hours i managed to:
-leave my bicycle unlocked outside the house, resulting in it getting
stolen, third one gone this year
-lose most of my clothes from the pops, which took me two weeks to
fully recover upon returning
-get two parking tickets
-totally forget to take my menstrual sponge out
these things had varying degrees of impact on my life.
the bike was a tough & guilty one, since it was a loving hand-me-down
from my parents, who took pity on me after my last one was stolen.
THAT one was a loving hand-me-down form my sister after the one BEFORE
that got stolen....my whole family might has well just save up a pool
of money to have my legs amputated and buy me a nice electric scooter
that i cannot possibly lose...though i'm sure i'd find a way. i'd
probably absent-mindedly roll off and and away from it while thinking
about something else and have to rely on the kindness of some stranger
to carry my confused torso to safety after i'd been lying in the
middle of a busy street for some time, musing about car tires,
acoustics and weather.
the sponge thing: not so good.
this same thing happened to me when i was a teenager. one of my wise
feminine elders had tipped me off to the two-tampon trick when your
flow is heavy and you're bleeding on your sheets every night.
great trick, but when i forgot to extract tampon number two, things
got ugly. i think a week went by. my vagina discharged a foul-smelling
complaint and i troddled my 14-year self down to the gynecologist, who
poked around and said: "hm.....amanda, did you know this was in here?"
i must have given her a guilty, somewhat bashful stare as she dangled
the evidence before my face. the tampon looked like a small, brown,
rotting little mouse.
i was slightly grossed out but barely phased, probably walked home via
candy castle to buy myself a celebratory root beer or watermelon slush
for a dollar, and had forgotten about the whole thing by the time i
got home a half hour later, happy and whole again. but this i do
remember: i told my mother in the upstairs hallway of the house...."i
went to the gynecologist, mom, and i had left a tampon in for like a
week. she took it out. all good!" she looked at me in horror and then
she held me in the tightest embrace i think she'd ever held me in. she
said "my baby" a few times and it was then that i realized my
situation might have been fatal. that moment brought me closer to her,
because i realized, in a concrete way, that she really loved me and
would be stricken with grief if i died.
i've always considered myself immune to fatal disaster, while yet
being so prone to the smaller ones....sort of inured to the simple
rules of the universe (stand under falling piano = probably will get
crushed.......wait really? MAYBE. but MAYBE FUCKING NOT!!!!!
haaaaaaaa. see? special.)
so where my mind was when i left the menstrual sponge in? i don't know.
packing for europe, probably. being in love and having sex, which
pushed the sponge farther from sight and mind.
sponge-o-mercial: ladies, the menstrual sponge is great. i have
recommended it many times in the past.
it's ecologically friendly and easy to use. but it HAS NO STRING. just
warning you. it's easier to forget about.
anyway, i started feeling odd when i was in london. i got headachy and
i awoke with my vagina complainy one morning, my last day in europe.
i thought: this is familiar. oh, good god. did i leave the sponge in?
so i investigated, there in the k west hotel.
there is something very sort of unsexy and almost heartbreaking about
sitting on a fancy little leather cube seat in the k west hotel (where
the hippest of the business travelers and rock stars stay and party -
they have a sign in the fancy bathroom saying please don't flush
EARPLUGS....i'm sure pete doherty and kate moss have had sex in that
room at least once) all alone and trying to see if i had maybe left
something in my vagina the week before.
i would really not be surprised if half the female readers of this
blog (over the age of 25, at least) have had to do this. this also
happens with condoms. they slip, they jam, they hide and they must be
fished out in a very clinical and usually desperate struggle. chances
are if you've lost a condom up there, getting the condom out is NOT
the only thing that's fucking troubling you.
love can be ugly.
my vagina is long. that is, literally. if women could boast in inches,
(but for some weird reason, we don't do that? i wish i could've pulled
that fact out in the locker room or slumber party...."dude. no way,
i'm like, 7 inches. check this out. hand me that curling iron/stick of
incense/scale ruler/zucchini, i'll prove it")
this is NOT from overuse, you cunts. i was born with it. every
gynecologist has commented from day one. it's not unhealthy and it's
not irregular. it's just free to be the way it be.
anyway, there i was in the fancy k west hotel, fishing around with my
fingers for some possible feminine archives. but i didn't find
anything. so i let myself off the hook and chalked up my complainy
vagina to jetlag and stress.
max came to the hotel to visit and i tortured him all day, after i'd
shared my complainy vagina story (sans details, he's a delicate
creature), by saying VAGINA VAGINA VAGINA every few hours and making
him shake his thin delicate hands in horror near his ears saying STOP
STOP STOP AAAGHGHGGH. but i think he sort of liked it. max played me a
wonderful song of the accordion. he's been accepted into an art
university in england. we miss him here. he'll be at the london show,
no doubt. if you see him, say VAGINA.
me & max in the k west. we traded:
he agreed to be photographed with
no mustache if i did no eyebrows.
self-portait the night before:
i flew home on an afternoon flight from london and i lay there in bed,
wondering if i was maybe dying.
i resolved to do the adult thing, get up, and go to the emergency room.
i reasoned: if i waited until morning and went to my regular doctor,
and it ended up i WAS dying, i'd feel damn foolish. and to clarify
things, i checked my bathroom and there was no sponge to be found.
this means there was only one other place it could be, and that place
was my vagina.
so at around two or three in the morning, i troddled my 32-year old
self down to the emergency room, which is only a few blocks away,
which is nice, and michael came with me, and we walked by a car parked
outside the emergency room doors with all the window-glass shot in and
shattered, and cops all around. when i got in to see the doctor, they
told me that a lot of kids have been getting shot lately and driving
themselves to the hospital. most of them are 15, 16. she looked sad.
she told me she was glad she grabbed my case because dudes don't
understand. i told her how much i appreciated the fact that she was
about to go hunting in my vagina for a sponge and she said:
"girl...you would't BELIEVE the shit i see in here every night. this
is NOTHING." apparently she has a constant influx of fretting female
patients, delicate anatomies overflowing with tampons, condoms,
sponges, diaphragms, GOD KNOWS WHAT ELSE but if you're wondering where
that odd sock or spare fountain pen has wandered off to...check your
girlfriend. you never know what you may find up there, according to
((ahh, my whole house & film crew is downstairs on the stoop. we
wrapped our last video today. they're all drinking. i'm trying not
too. they're singing along to regina spektor. a few minutes ago it was
queen. i love my house.))
so this kindly gal whipped out the speculum and said, yes indeed, she
could spy a foreign object back in there, and she tried to yank it out
with a pair of tweezers, but the sponge just kept tearing.
i told her that this was common for the sponge - they are organic
matter, plant matter (or are sponges animal matter? aren't they alive
at some point?) and do tend to break down after a while. (note for you
ladies, i swap the sponge out after it shows even the slightest signs
of wear. one does not want unwanted sea life hanging out in there. i
know this sounds hypocritical at this point, but i'm JUST SAYING. ok.)
so, after the inevitable comment about my well-endowed womanhood, she
tries a pair of forceps, and those don't do the trick either. at this
point i must look nervous, because she says: "oh don't you worry,
we're gonna get this sucker out. but i might have to leave you here
while I go get a longer pair of forceps. do you want to hang out with
the speculum in or do you want me to take it out?"
at this point i'd like to mention that giving birth must be an
extremely protracted version of this with a lot more gore and pain but
slightly less embarrassment.
i don't know if i'd be excited to go through that. if i ever do, i
promise you a blow-by-blow. anyway.
i told her she could just leave the speculum in and i'd hang, yo. fo
shizzle. the emergency room was an all-purpose one, and there was -
quite mystifyingly - a TV mounted to the wall, pointed right at my
vulnerable little body. i wondered why it was there. did they often
leave people there, bleeding and oozing after knife and gun fights to
bear their fates while watching Gilligan's Island re-runs? how crass.
the television was looping a long infomercial about a magically modern
steam-powered hair-straightener called - i kid you not - the
MAXIGLIDE. it's weird when someone leaves you in a cold bright room
in the middle of the night with an infomercial for a hair straightener
called the MAXIGLIDE pointed at your open vagina. frustrated young
performance artists could go to second-rate art school for years and
not come up with anything half this good for their senior installation
a very short trip to the internet to find a picture for y'all of the
MAXIGLIDE just told me that YOU TOO can watch this fucking
and the fact that this infomercial has 9,000 hits scares the shit out
WHO WATCHES INFOMERCIALS ON THEIR COMPUTER?
i am scared to know.
the comments might tell you.
you "hear" how about trying it and then complaining cuz people who are
complaining are complaining cuz the are doing something wrong. I got
mine two years ago and my hair are better than ever.
me and my mom have superrr curly hair and when it dries it gets curly
puffy and frizzy. this thing SAVED my life when i was in 6th grade!!!
it works sooo great:)
Do they pay the model more to keep smiling? :D
ok so wow im like so confused...ive seen like 50 people saying it
works great, 50 saying its ok, and 50 saying its complete trash. whats
true??? my hair is only a little bit wavy, but REALLY REALLY frizz. im
talking more frizz than hair. if u dont recommend this one, can
someone tell me another one that works???
SO true. I bought this maxiglide, and let me tell you: I was saving up
FOREVER to get it! You have NO IDEA how hard I worked to get this.
When I finally did, I was SOO upset because it smelled REALLY BAD, it
stunk up my house and my hair, and ripped out lots of hair too. I'd
like to smack that Max guy for ripping me off :(
I ordered my one and a half inch MaxiGlide (the MP package) last week
and I'm waiting for mine.
This is a great styling tool.
I can't wait to get my new one. I'm giving my "old" one to my niece
but I'mma tell her to take care of it like I have.
(this last comment posted from "StillAVirgin"....at least as of two
i can only assume that these 74 comments mean that women are now using
youtube as a discussion forum much like the hen and bridge parties of
i'd like to point out that this greasy "max" character in the video
seems like a total clown, the barbie models make me sadder than ever
(i kept wondering - weren't we all buying HOME PERM kits in the
eighties? the poor women back then with straight hair were all
manically rushing to the drugstore in droves to buy Ogilve Home Perm,
shamed to death of their limp, straight locks - WTF?)... but if you
really want to feel a TRULY surreal feeling while watching this
infomercial, put that shit on dull screen, strip down from the waist
down and point your vagina at your computer. guaranteed: it will make
you feel WEIRD.
she finally came back with the long forceps, yanked the thing out
(this time, it did not resemble a dead rodent, it looked exactly like
it looked when i put it in. i love the sponge. i almost saved it for
my collector friend steven but she threw it away before i had a chance
to ask. he was mildly disappointed. he has an entire mason jar of
toenail clippings from all his ex-girlfriends) and i walked home,
happy and whole again.
who killed amanda palmer INDEED. it was the SPONNNNNNNNNNGE.
a word, ladies: don't forget when something's up there. that shit
and if you want a sponge: www.jadeandpearl.com (click on feminine
in less gruesome news.
the videos are done being filmed and they are KILLER.
killer. killer. "runs in the family" is getting released next week, on
tuesday if things go according to plan.
astronaut and ampersand have been getting rave comments and i'm really
really very proud.
pope and i made these videos with a laughably small budget, we filed
at my house, my old high school and my folks house, we used for props
and costumes what we had lying around - and they came out fucking
the intro, which has an excerpt from "another year" (the last song on
the record), is up too.
part 1 (intro):
part 2 (astronaut):
part 3 (ampersand):
there are 8 parts total.
we're going to be screening them in boston this weekend, the whole
shebang (25th and 26th...and almost sold out: www.brattlefilm.org) and
we're thinking of maybe screening the whole series in new york in
august, somewhere small like joe's pub with someone bad-ass playing MC. it'll
be like a little fuck the back row reunion.
i'm back to cleaning my apartment.