Thursday, July 31, 2008

neil gaiman in the hizzle

mr. neil gaiman yesterday to came to stay for a short week's visit to work on the album/mystery/photo book with me (i felt like having him as a houseguest might result in some wonderful time-space continuum warp in the guest quarters....or i'll go down there and all of a sudden the room will be filled with multiple neil gaimans sitting at his writing desk, surrounded by strange flying animals, exotic fruits and old wooden keys that sing, in swahili).
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.


from comments:

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?

5:03 PM


my mum always referred to it as a "tushy"


sarah said...

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.
7:45 PM


that amazing violinist was named meredith yayanos.
she's increidble: 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

avril's new clothing line.

i am wicked disappointed.

this shirt, shown above, states:


i am confused. this shirt seems like it was designed for non-english
speaking tourists buying shirts off the street of midtown new york.

c'mon, avril.
what up with this shitake?

post war trade forever.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008


it's been an interesting summer stretch of life, lately.
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.

saturday night:
the parties here used to be epic - hundreds of guests
every floor of the house brimming with weirdness and color and light
and noise
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 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,
i'd win.
(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:
" 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
this doctor.

((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
infomercial....on YOUTUBE:

and the fact that this infomercial has 9,000 hits scares the shit out
of me.

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" least as of two
weeks ago.)
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
ain't right.
and if you want a sponge: (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: 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.

that's it.
i'm back to cleaning my apartment.

sponge love


Friday, July 11, 2008


so, i wrote this a long time ago, and, as you do, left it rotting on my desktop.
it's perfect timing though, a lot of what you see here became a rough draft for the tour we're taking on the road in the fall.
so get tickets, fuckers. the danger ensemble will be with me starting sept 27th in ireland. we're going to eff your head with art love.

i will gradually bombard y'all now with a mix of old and new bloggage until the time-space continuum is set RIGHT.
i'm planning a new blogging system that will SWALLOW YOUR HEAD starting in a week or so. so watch out mofos.

i am so busy.
working on the book with neil.
working on the new website.
working on a new theater project for next spring.
working on not feeling bad about ignoring my email.

it is awesome.

here we go............yo...............................

december tour 2007.


the first day of my trip to australia, tom took me to the zoo in ballarat.
this is where i saw the actually fucking kangaroos.

what do you WANT from me??

this is a python eating a rabbit, whole. we watched in fascination. it took about 3 minutes.
pythons would probably not eat you or me, so i think this does not count as a reason against australia defeating all other nations.

these things were just plain weird. but they defeated american lizard.

heading where everyone ultimately wants to head.

the last temptation of tom dickins.

he's a great songwriter with a voice of gold, btw:

that night i saw tom acting in a play. it was wonderful. he was wonderful.

it was sitting in a cafe in downtown ballarat that i first discovered that maybe australia wins above all.
it could have been been because my life at home was basically in total flux and chaos. i won't assume that.

can you wear this in boston in the dead of winter?
i don't think so.

obviously, if one spent enough time in australia, one WOULD run into him in a hungry jack's.
meanwhile, the arts center next to the spiegeltent was running a FREE exhibition of All Things Nick. points.
there was no bathroom in the tent, we had to pee in the arts center.
so every time i went to pee (and i was hydrating a ton, so i peed about 6 times an hour) i got to walk by these ginormous photos of His Nickness in all phases of his career.
there was a strict no-photo rule.

i love you.

the notes that also adorn the inside of my all-time favorite nick CD, "let love in":

i spent the entire trip with steven, peta, mark and kaite from the danger ensemble. the danger ensemble is an offshoot of Zen Zen Zo, the physical theater group some of you guys know from the roundhouse and our last aussie tour.
they created beautiful theatrical pieces to go along with the show.
they brought lyndon their violin-playing friend, who arranged a bunch of songs with me, and there was drew (who's not from austrailian, he's from liverpool, but he's still awesome. he took most of these pictures and took footage of the shows and tried sushi AND avocado for the first time. wtf)
we rehearsed for a few days in melbourne before starting the run at the spiegel, and we found krin (yes, krin! of krin and jonas! she's left Cirque Eloize and been hired by La Clique to perform tissue in the tent and we worked her into Half Jack, she's the bombitty).

it was mostly stevens fault but the Your Mum jokes just wouldn't stop. somedays we enacted a rule where you couldn't make a Your Mum joke until nightfall. it never worked.

your mum wouldn't stop last night.

granted, not everyone in australia is the danger ensemble, or a good violin player. but i did spend about five straight days in a boiling van with them and i STILL LOVED THEM.
that says a fucking lot.
we slept at renee's for the first ten days, like sardines all on one floor of one room. i'm sort of sorry i didn't' get a picture of that. it was like an ongoing slumber party.
big props to renee for putting us up and letting us monopolize her kitchen for 10 days.
your mum let me monopolize her kitchen last night.

we met the most wonderful folks along the way.
one day we saw a transvestite wearing only women's panties running at top speed down brunswick street and steven read in the news the next day that the man subsequently jumped off a bridge.
that wasn't good, actually.
i'll tell you what happened to him in the next blog

he died.

but there were much better things: we met the follow who put us up on a new floor in sydney.
they were sweet and kind, first-rate folks and they opened for us in sydney and fully Brought The Rock. we invited them to drive up to our last-minute show the next night at the winsome hotel.
in sydney we played to a sold-out house of 600. the next night in lismore we played to, i believe, 29 people, about half of whom were irritated locals who were simply trying to enjoy their drinks in peace.
the follow and i took the opportunity to play a drunken space-jam. you don't get to do that very often. hopefully the youtube footage has been taken down by now, because it's really embarrassing.

rehearsing with the Danger Ensemble in melbourne...........

lyndon&co, going through funeral and "astronaut"

running "strength through music"

cuddle puddle (clockwise spiral from top: steven, me, katie, mark, lyndon, peta)

okay, okay, the spiegeltent moves around.
but it's MOSTLY in australia. and the people who run it are australian. points
the tent is truly a magical place where magical things happen.
we were on every night after La Clique so we got to warm up to the sounds and antics of accordions and flying trapeze and captain frodo the amazing rubberman and the bathtub acrobat and and and
it was heaven.

backstage at the tent.....

steven, lyndon, mark

first night at spiegel.

lyndon in sydney.

the funeral procession.

mark and steven in mourning.

me & lyndon.

mark & me & some of steven during "coin-operated boy"

"the assistant"...
beautiful peta

beautiful katie

"strength through music".
(beautiful steven, peta, katie & lyndon...and yes, some of mark's're beautiful too mark).

the day after i got to australia, i read in the news that a 19-year-old kid from nebraska had opened fire in a shopping mall and killed a bunch of people.
the piece was never more appropriate, and we held a moment of reflection each night.

ella ella eh eh eh (peta, katie and mark)


impromptu singing with azaria from The Follow, and a vegan cupcake (before i eated it)

my case is closed.
i digressed, but my reasons are many.

one last picture.

saying sad but heartfelt goodbye to the tent.

goodbye tent.
goodbye australia.
goodbye danger ensemble and lyndon and drew.
goodbye "van of love".
goodbye pumped waters.
goodbye vegemite, you're the one bad thing about australia.
goodbye kangaroos.
goodbye weather.

we're psyched as shit.
please dress WARMLY yet WITH STYLE, you freaks!
hats! hats hats!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and ellas. ellas keep the cold out.

merry xmas, happy everything,
send cold-killing garlicky vibes my way

see you all soon, i love you.


Tuesday, July 08, 2008

life is obviously working


i am insanely behind in my blogging. this is now usual. i keep collecting piles and piles of thoughts and photos and never collecting into concrete enough form. bad habit.

in the past few weeks, i have played with a symphony orchestra for the first time, gone to several cities in europe to promote the record, taken many dead photos, finished up the artwork for my record, made 6 music videos with pope, and last but not least...........(this past weekend) curated a circus tent we called "the establishment" with all my best friends & favorite musicians at a huge hippie music festival in rural michigan. i was approached by dave matthews, who admired my make-
up job. go dave!

of all of the photos that i could post now, i think this picture that steven from the danger ensemble snapped - from the last day of the festival - speaks the loudest.

love live the punk cabaret, motherfuckers.


(from left to right)
amandacera, beth, michelle & katrina of Gravity Plays Favorites,
amanda fucking palmer & some random Man taking down our tent