Monday, February 26, 2007
It's like waking up and getting a Christmas present when these You Tubes appear in my mailbox...this is a shortened version of Adrian Belew, Julie Slick, and Eric Slick performing Elephant Talk at the B.B. King show in New York City, August 8 (to read more about it, here's my blogpost from that event)
So I've had some kind of horrible stomach virus/flu the past two days which naturally I'm convinced is something fatal (but I am seeing the doctor tomorrow morning) so this will be an abbreviated post as I clutch the keyboard to keep the room from spinning.
Damn it, I have a lot to talk about but it appears I really am too sick to type. Crap.
Saturday, February 24, 2007
The Adrian Belew Power Trio featuring Eric and Julie Slick in Ohio last weekend...photo by Gary Slick
Oh man, if you could see me now, you'd see a weeping (though happy) mess.
Because here's a radio interview (February 20, 2007) with Adrian Belew following last weekend's show/recording of Side Four Live with my kids:
Friday, February 23, 2007
Eric Slick, warming up for the Adrian Belew Power Trio show last Saturday
(Photo taken by either Julie or Gary Slick...no one is home for me to ask but I found it in my iPhoto folder this morning so it's one of them. Good job, J or G!)
So tonight Eric heads to New Haven, Connecticut, where he will perform at Cafe Nine with the fabulous Doctor Dark, a Captain Beefheart cover band Eric has been a part of since October, 2005. Yes, I know. I believe that makes at least six bands in which Eric is currently involved - seven if you count what he's doing tomorrow night - a private house party jam with master shredder Brian Davis. Ha ha - I just listened to Brian's MySpace song and to say my son is all over the map musically is putting it mildly. Oh...have I mentioned he's also playing bongos on a side stage at Bonnaroo with a bunch of belly dancers? A lot more on that to follow, as well as some veddy interesting jazz gigs my son has lined up with someone quite well known.
Writing news. If you want to be totally blown away, you must read this story by my good pal, Myfanwy Collins. It's over at one of my favorite 'zines, Juked, and, well, let me make it even easier for you -- here's a direct link to Myf's brilliant flash, entitled Celestial.
Oh my god, that story is so good I'm still smiling an hour after I first read it.
And, I see other friends have been more than a little busy. Ellen Meister has a great interview up at Trashionista - haha - love the name -- and Ellen has also entered the dreaded world of MySpace where, unlike me who has been faltering around that place and has still not been able to master it, she's very, very clever and has created a very cool site and sob...I'm jealous. Nah, just kidding...this blog alone is already eating up enough of my social life and writing time like you would not believe but I figure it's saved me thousands of dollars in psychotherapy so it's been worth it. Just kidding again. Where else can I kvetch about Republicans, tout my brilliant friends' works, and most importantly, have total control/bragging rights/unofficial publicist duties for my kiddies?
Thursday, February 22, 2007
So a huge thanks to uber Belew/Slick fan Pete Franke who not only drove a gazillion miles from New Jersey to Newport, Kentucky to see the Adrian Belew Power Trio on Saturday night, he recorded this smoking version of Writing on the Wall and let me tell you, I've been suffering from some sort of horrible "When is winter going to be over because I've had enough of it" depression the last couple of days and this was just what I needed for a good cheering up.
And if that wasn't enough, another fan put up a You Tube of show closer Thela, with the camera focused solely on insane Eric Slick rocking out - albeit on his head and side a lot of the time, but just close your eyes and listen to the music and you won't get seasick...
Ah, what was that Frank Zappa said? Music is the best!
I also found a couple more cool reviews of last week's mini-tour -- this first one really killed me because it was written by Ric Hickey who opened for the trio at the Southgate House on Saturday night:
Once In A Belew Moon
(photo of Les Claypool and Ric Hickey, backstage at Bonnaroo 2006, courtesy of Ric Hickey)
"EDITOR’S NOTE: If you read CityBeat’s music section (and you’re the type of person who pays attention to bylines), you may recognize Ric Hickey, who contributes to our record review section. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know Ric from his fantastic dispatches from festivals like Bonnaroo and Tall Stacks. If you’re a local music fan, then you likely know Ric as an incredible guitarist/singer/songwriter.
Ric got a last-minute call to open for Adrian Belew when the guitar hero and Northern Kentucky native played the Southgate House last Saturday. Ric is a HUGE Belew fan, and the MySpace blog he wrote about the experience of playing the show gives some insight into what it’s like to be a musician opening for one of your heroes. Ric graciously agreed to let us reprint it here. But be sure to go to his MySpace page and check out his tunes (I’m really digging “TWIDDITT” — King Crimson fans take note). He’s playing a free show this Friday in the Southgate House lounge with Belew pal/bandmate (and local Pop/Rock hero) Chris Arduser. Ric’s story starts below:
Well, the Adrian Belew show was in-credible, as I fully expected. First and foremost I want to extend a mountainous dollop of gratitude to John Madden of Magus Productions and Chris Shadler at The Southgate House for inviting me to open the show.
The ballroom filled up almost immediately when the doors opened at 7 p.m. By the time I went on at 8 the place was packed. (These people all paid $30 apiece for their tickets; you don’t have stragglers wandering in at 10:45 when they’ve plunked down that kinda jack for the tickets.) My set was warmly received by a huge crowd of largely unfamiliar faces. Though I was happy to see some old friends there too.
The quick and dirty down-low on my set-list: I opened with three instrumentals, then moved right into what you might call my singer/songwriter-type stuff. All of it seemed to go over pretty good. I couldn’t resist playing at least one Willie Nelson song. I wasn’t planning on playing “Fly Me To The Moon” (indeed, I haven’t played it out in a while), but it went over pretty well at a friend’s birthday soiree Friday night so I figured “what the hell” and ended my set with that.
Adrian’s set was SMOKIN’. I STRONGLY urge you to check out his Web site for more details on what he’s been up to lately and his plans for 2007. I will confess: initially I was dubious about his (new) very young rhythm section. BUT THEY ABSOLUTELY BLEW ME AWAY. 19-year-old Eric Slick on drums was so unbelievably good that I planted myself up on the balcony for the bird’s-eye view from which I could watch him give the drums a good thrashing. Eric’s 22-year-old sister Julie tore UP the bass, even on some really heavy, complicated Tony Levin basslines on King Crimson tunes like “Elephant Talk,” “Three Of A Perfect Pair” and — my favorite, the show closer — “Thela Hun Ginjeet”!!!
Eric flailed wildly away a la Terry Bozzio, and sister Julie — with a giant mop of long brown hair, (looking) super laidback casual in long sundress and bare feet — made some really complex bass parts look EASY. Couple buddies of mine, roughly the same age as me, said “This makes me feel old.” I said, “Fuck that, are you kidding? This makes me feel YOUNG!”
An unexpected highlight of the evening: meeting Eric and Julie’s dad, Gary. Proud papa, smiling ear to ear, snapping pictures throughout the show and introducing himself, shaking hands all around the club.
More highlights? You got it:
1. Getting my picture taken with Adrian after the show. I don’t think he saw/heard my set, and I was a little too geeked/drunk to even attempt to introduce myself as someone he should know. Asked for a picture. Said “Cheese” and “Thanks.” Skulked away, embarrassed! (Pic appearing on MySpace soon!)
2. Reunited with my old buddy Mark Wilkerson who drove up from Louisville to see the show. A dear old friend who I hadn’t seen for maybe 10 or 15 YEARS, Mark is the author of the recently published — and really fucking GREAT — Pete Townshend biography, Amazing Journey: The Life Of Pete Townshend. Much of it is available for reading online here — go check it out RIGHT NOW! It’s awesome!
3. Performing in front of long-time heroes Bob Nyswonger and Rob Fetters in the audience. Rob, in particular, is one of my all-time favorite guitarists, a HUGE influence on me. Running into these guys in a bar, for me, is like stumbling upon Jimi Hendrix or Charles Mingus just walking down the street. I stand in awe of them. Super-humble the both of them, I am proud to call them my friends. The Kings.
4. Countless people approached me after my set with nice things to say and I feel like I made a lotta new friends that night. Ran into quite a few people, in fact, that I hadn’t seen for a while and that also was extremely gratifying. Example: an acquaintance from way back, Jeremy, who I only run into like every few YEARS. Turns out he’s a videographer working for Adrian on this tour and (he) was kind enough to film my performance for me. UnbeLEEvable kindness such as this was extended to me time and time again Saturday night. Made me feel blessed. I am.
5. Adrian singing “Young Lions”! Totally unexpected, hadn’t heard this song in a long-ass time. They nailed it — no, set it ON FIRE — and it seemed particularly appropriate, perhaps even a direct reference to young Eric and Julie.
Thanks to everybody who came to the show, and also to those of you who could not afford the ticket or otherwise had plans but went out of your way to congratulate me on the sweet gig. Indeed. One of the sweetest ever."
Here's another sweet review:
"I saw the Adrian Belew Power Trio In Dayton on Friday and in Cincy (KY actually) on Saturday. I saw them in Springfield a while back (see earlier blog) and they are a fucking great band. Adrian is currently touring the U.S. with his latest band, The Adrian Belew Power Trio, which is rounded out by former Paul Green School of Rock students Eric Slick (19) on drums and Julie Slick (20) on bass. I think Eric is the single best drummer I've ever seen perform live, and the band together pulls off King Crimson songs that are at least as good as the original versions...I hesitate to say better, but man...this band is awesome.
Canal Street is a small club in Dayton. Adrian conked his head on a ceiling hanging speaker as he took the stage. Just a great show.
Drove to the Southgate House in a snow shower. Saw several flipped cars on the way down and began to think I was crazy, but got down there, parked at a meter, caught the show, walked across the street and got a room, then walked to the strip next door and got tore up since I no longer had to drive home.
I'll try to expand on this when I have more time,
Saw G Love at the LC last night. It was good but kinda a let down after the incredible musicianship I saw the 2 previous nights..."
Too funny - G Love is also from Philadelphia.
Anyway, that's it for now but you never know with me...as usual, I'm sitting on news but I'm learning not to blab too fast because of the dreaded jinx factor so...
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Warning: The above You Tube has already been yanked twice by Google for whatever reasons...so it may not be here by the time I post it.
It's been a while since I've gone on a rant against the right wing Republican assholes in this country, but when they start messing with my music...
My good pal, brilliant writer Maryanne Stahl, has an equally brilliant son-in-law, Bill Werde, who is Deputy Editor for Billboard Magazine. She's the one who turned me on to this.
Idiot extraordinaire Bill O'Reilly had Mr. Werde on his radio program to discuss the Dixie Chicks sweep at the Grammys last week, framing the wins as the result of politics and sympathy rather than an acknowledgment of powerful and well-crafted art.
Werde defended the Chicks' sales of over 2 million records (so far) as an achievement while O'Reilly preferred to compare the number to their greatest success to date and note the greatly reduced numbers. Werde persisted in recognizing the achievment, made greater in the face of the withdrawn support of the whole country music industry.
When asked if he had watched the Grammys, O'Reilly said he had, a little, but couldn't take too much of it and segued onto another target, Ludacris, and objectionable language on his winning record. Werde asked him if he had listened to the music on which he was commenting, noting that this latest is a dramatic change in direction for Ludacris. O'Reilly admitted he didn't have a frame of reference to put that into, and Werde asked "Don't you think that's important, to have a frame of reference when you're judging cultural..." Naah, said O'Reilly, I can pull the lyrics and put the lyrics, like I did, on the radio so everyone can hear them, to which Werde replied "that doesn't sound like particularly responsible journalism..." and BAM - O'Reilly was off and running, calling him a snide SOB, and when Werde tried to respond again O'Reilly cut him off - "get him out of here" - and then spent another two minutes ranting about Werde's nerve and Ludacris' offensive language and the culture and and and...
He twisted the words spoken moments earlier, blaming Werde for demeaning O'Reilly's opinion (when he had only questioned the basis for it) and positioning Werde as the one who couldn't have a decent conversation, yet it was O'Reilly who cut him off and called him condescending and a son of a bitch.
Sooo...have a listen to the above posted You Tube and try and keep your breakfast down.
I'll be back this afternoon with hopefully nicer news.
Monday, February 19, 2007
Adrian, Gary, and Eric joking around pre-Dayton show. I have so many cool photos I can't decide which ones to post so the following are a mish-mash of both the Dayton and Newport shows with many more to follow - these are just a few of the ones I uploaded from Gary's camera...I haven't even gotten to my camera yet.
Proving that (1) Gary's new camera does indeed take awesome portraits and (2) daughter Julile is beyond gorgeous even if she did put me through hell last night (don't ask...normally I would blog about it but let's just say she made it to New York last night but not before tearing out my liver and spleen first with worry)
Yes, I know. I'm supposed to put the "finale" photos at the end of my post, not the beginning, but I am in a complete tizzy -- I just spent an hour making Eric an awesome vegetarian lunch and got a phone call that Julie wanted me to make her one, too, which Eric has to bring to NY with him now...she's lucky I'm even speaking to her let alone making her lunch! Heh. Have you noticed both of my kids have me waiting on them hand and foot? Oh well. They are so, so worth it.
Eric Slick and his amazing new Paiste cymbals...these are so outrageous you can't believe it.
The Master himself, Mr. Adrian Belew
And the most beautiful lunatic...I mean, bass player, in the universe, Ms. Julie Slick.
Just kidding, just kidding. Let's just say Julie had a difficult time getting from the airport in Newark to New York City last night and I was expected to perform miracles back here in Philadelphia in between worrying that she wasn't feeling well...anyway, it all worked out and I love that little lunatic more than life itself. What's a night's sleep, anyway. As I said, the bottom line is, she did get to New York City in time to record Jon Anderson of Yes and I'm still alive and sane enough to write about it.
Heart be still. It's true. Side Four Live was recorded Saturday night. Oh my god. My kids are on a CD with Adrian Belew. It's finally hitting me now. Well, somewhat -- I need to have it in my hand to be sure it's really happened. That, and the accompanying DVD which I understand is extremely cool - full of both concert footage and interviews. Arghhh...I want it now!
From a fan's journal...and let me add that with all of the below entries, I did not correct any of the authors' spelling errors, etc. so please don't blame me (heh)...I merely copied these as is:
"A couple weeks ago a friend of mine emailed everyone to say the Adrian Belew power trio would be playing in Dayton at the Canal Street Tavern. As my alma mater, Wright State University, is having a big alumi even this weekend including a Model UN reunion I decided to go. I haven't been to Dayton in months, and some of my best friends live there so a visit is always full of good food, conversation and music.
I've seen Belew before, back on the Lone Rhinoceros tour, and with King Crimson, so I knew it would be a great show. Belew is a very unique guitarist, capable of getting sounds out of the guitar no one ever dreamed of. He once explained how to do that to my friend Alex, and his explanation was clear and lucid. Could Alex go home and make them? No, even though his high school band played the Yes catalog and selections from the Mahavishnu Orchestra. It was simple, logical and from another planet. But when you get discovered by Frank Zappa and then David Bowie asks you to play with him, well, you have to have talent...
(Note from me: I had to edit here. Our fan did not know Adrian was previously in King Crimson and I just couldn't leave his post up as is...where he debates if Ade was good enough to try out for the band or something...though in all fairness, our fan says Yes. Heh. And thank you Gary for pointing this out to me..I kind of skimmed through it and didn't pick it up on the first read).
Okay, continuing on...
But his rhythmn section was very cool and new. The Slicks. Julie Slick just turned 21 and plays bass. Her brother Eric is 19 and their drummer. These kids have chops out the wazoo, beautiful timing and their playing is just so tasty. Great show.
Of course while David Bowie and the Talking Heads have made a few hit records, King Crimson is a band for musicians. You don't get shrieking teeny boppers at a Belew concert. You get serious music lovers and serious musicians. I spent the concert chatting with Tim Dozier, former drummer and arranger for the seventies funk band Slave, who was just a huge Belew fan. He was totally jealous when I told him I'd seen Crimson and a nicer guy you couldn't imagine. Belew's pretty nice too. This wasn't a show where people put on airs and acted like stars, we were there for the music and they were happy to play it for us. And with a Newcastle costing a mere $3.50 life was good.
If you get a chance to see Belew, do go. You'll hear stuff no one else on earth could play. And you'll hear the Slicks, who have wonderful careers ahead of them."
From Progressive Ears:
"Took in the Adrian Belew Power Trio last night at Canal Street Tavern in Dayton Ohio..i was told to be ready to be blown away, and i was,but not by Belew [that was a given, i assumed]...his backing band, the Slicks, were incredible!! 19 year old brother,Eric, playing a very, very high energy percussion and his 21 year old sister Julie, just ripping a bass line underneath everything...i was thoroughly impressed with them...it's always great to see 'Ade', he has so much fun playing, and the crowd feeds off his energy...an extended version of 'Beat Box Guitar' was the highlight, with a mid-song improv jam...several Crimson songs ['Dinosaur', 'Elephant Talk', 'Frame by Frame', among others] where played flawlessly...if you get a chance, check this tour out, you won't be dissapointed!!!"
"Eric was the first drummer to graduate from the School of Rock in Philly. He also tours with Project Object. I've seen him twice and is a very approachable and funny guy."
"I saw them at the Zappanale last July, and was equally blown away. Got to hang a bit backstage too, and they're all very cool and easy going. Adrian is still one of the great guitarists of our time."
"True! It smoked! They were all totally friendly and approachable as well. Adrian banged his head very first thing on one of the low-hanging Bose PA cabs, which must've hurt like hell, but he joked about it all evening. He literally has a million sounds - some exquisite and ethereal, some very ugly; all great. What impresses me most about him is his independence, how he can pick a difficult part (even a beat ahead to allow it to reverse-track!) and sing a line that seems completely contrary to it. Similarly, when his gear occasionally misfired, he'd just smile and adjust, and make the glitch fit in. The kids are fantastic allright, Eric on drums in particular last night, just a ball of fire. Definitely, catch them if you can. This micro tour winds up tomorrow I think, but there will surely be more gigs since they love touring and playing together."
From yet another fan:
"...Saturday night, Feb. 17, my girlfriend and I went to see Adrian Belew (with Julie Slick on bass & Eric Slick on drums) at the Southgate House in Newport, KY. What a kick-ass show! We were close enough to shoot him with rubberbands (not that I would wanna do that) and there were only about 150 to 200 people in attendance which did not even half-fill the place. Maybe the bad winter road conditions have something to do with the small turnout, as it did snow all day. It was a live recording, and they rocked the joint anyhow. It was such a great experience to closely see Adrian's expressions as he plays, he just tears it up from the inside out..."
There's also a ton of reviews coming in from Adrian Belew's Yahoo Group which I'll probably post tomorrow along with more photos of the band in actual concert.
Anyway, both kids are with Jon Anderson in New York, I've got the house to myself, and I really, really, really need to write.
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Julie Slick and Adrian Belew during soundcheck
By the way, just so you get an idea of how high the railing was at the hotel where my insane daughter precariously balanced her beautiful self in the photos below...arghhhhhh. But yeah, the folks at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame were totally awesome and put the band up at this amazing hotel...it's so cool looking, isn't it?
Once safely inside their room, we see Eric, apparently upset that the place wasn't equipped with its own drumkit. He tried to practice on a pillow, and when that didn't work...
...he decided to break the bed.
In the meantime, Julie is watching him, and thinking to herself: Should I? Why yes, I should, but first...
...I will spin around in crazy circles...
...and then dive bomb face down.
Eric then decides to take his frustration out on an apple, which he appears to be tossing so that he can either catch it with his teeth or possibly engage Julie in a food fight. However, in mid flight he had to take a call...
...and it would seem that he is not anxious to eat that apple after all.
Gary is outside of the room, peeking in on them and talking to me on his cell phone. "You can't believe this, Rob. I'm watching Eric and I'm thinking Keith Moon...hahahaha...uh-oh, they have the camera and they're taking my picture...hang on..I want to stick my tongue out at them..."
Eric, realizing the error of his bad boy rock star ways, decides to do penance. Ha!
Hey, seeing my son all patriotic like that (snort) just reminded me of something. For your clicking enjoyment, and trust me, you can click on these all afternoon, let me leave you with the absolutely fabulous Dubya the Menace.
You can thank me...
Okay, my family came through. They not only took two cameras and their laptops, this time they remembered the cable so that they could send me photos as they happen. Now this first pic is pretty normal -- Julie Slick, Adrian Belew, and Eric Slick, wowing the crowd at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio
I love how Adrian smiles...think he enjoys this band? (I have it on good authority that he's having the best time of his life...whoa...when you think about the musicians with whom he's played, that is really kind of humbling)
And Eric is having a blast, too (because this is what he lives for...)
Press conference/autograph time -- can I tell you how surreal it is for me to see this?
But after the show, someone's wacky rock star side starts to come out...
And you can tell Julie is having some pretty strange thoughts...
Oh man, thank God I wasn't there - I'd have been having a heart attack and trust me, wait until you see the next set of photos I'll put up in a separate post..
Now at this point, Eric still has his wits about him (and I can read his mind "Wtf is she doing?????), and Gary seems to be merely amused...but pretty soon Julie's insanity becomes contagious and wait until you see what they do once inside their hotel room...
Part II to follow along with reviews and some more tales from the road...
Friday, February 16, 2007
Why, it's the Adrian Belew Power Trio
So this is what I know so far:
(1) Last night's Adrian Belew Power Trio concert at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was amazing. I'm so jealous I missed it I can't even tell you. Gary called me and he's still on this unbelievable high from the show and after-meal with Adrian where they talked a lot about this band's future and some really exciting plans;
(2) In answer to the many emails I've received since posting about their existence -- and I am very grateful for that...thrilled, actually -- the autographed/doodled by the Adrian Belew Power Trio Beatbox CD will be available for sale on Ade's site in the near future;
(3) There is a very, very cool newspaper article today in the Cincinatti Post about the trio entitled Adrian Belew's New Trio is Long on Youth;
(4) You can catch the trio tonight at the Canal Street Tavern in Dayton, Ohio;
(5) Eric, as per your telephone request of this morning because you didn't have internet access, I ordered Shins tickets as soon as they went on sale at 10:00 a.m. today and you will be both happy and quite relieved to know that I have scored you two tickets so that you won’t have to sleep with another totally uninteresting Shins fan on Craigslist later;
(6) Julie, I emailed your physics professor at Drexel University and let him know you wouldn't be in class today because you PLAYED A GIG AT THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME LAST NIGHT WITH ADRIAN BELEW...
Oh. Sorry. Heh.
And just so you know, family, I miss you very much -- I'm eating my heart out that I can't be there but the dog, I'm sure, appreciates my loyalty -- and just so you know part two, I'm glued to the computer, writing my little heart out. And what a nice surprise I just got. A little elf wrote to tell me that Another Bite of the Apple is the #1 best seller here.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
There it is - my official new book cover, complete with blurbs, as it will appear in bookstores across the universe. Well, this is a high res photo so the colors are off...on my screen, the lipstick on the apple looks blue, etc., obviously it's going to be red, but that could just be my computer. Anyway...
But naturally, that's not the real cause of my excitement this week (though I might also add that I've been extremely lucky in the acceptance department lately with short stories coming out in many magazines over the next couple of months...hooray!)
Nope, the real reason I'm jumping for joy is:
The Adrian Belew Power Trio - featuring Julie Slick on bass and Eric Slick on drums, who are back out on tour!
Okay, so the family left for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, this morning...digging out of a foot of ice in Philadelphia to get the Jeep out and heading towards ten feet of snow in Ohio.
I am trying not to hyperventilate.
Poor Eric. His flight to Cleveland was cancelled yesterday due to all the bad weather and thus, so was his gig with Project Object. Luckily we already had the plan in place for his dad to drive Julie to Cleveland today for their gig with Adrian Belew but I know Eric was bumming bigtime over the cancellation of the P/O gig.
But hey hey, there's tonight's completely sold out show at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Friday in Dayton, and the big show/recording of Side 4 Live in Newport, KY (see post below for all details and links) to look forward to, and the weather forecast is good; in fact, they had better luck clearing ten feet of snow from Ohio than our lovely City of Philadelphia had clearing a couple inches. There is something very corrupt about our city government but I'd best leave that alone right now.
However, I'd be lying if I said my heart won't be in my mouth until I get the phone call that they've arrived safely. It's a seven hour drive to Cleveland assuming there's no traffic or ice...and soundcheck is at 5:00 p.m. tonight. They did leave at 7:00 a.m. so that's giving them ten hours...but still.
Ugh, I'm not happy unless I'm worrying. And let's not even discuss Julie flying out of O'Hare Airport in Chicago to get to New York on Sunday to record Jon Anderson's new CD...I can't even bring myself to look at the Chicago weather forecast.
But all that aside, to say I'm excited right now is putting it mildly.
And in case anyone reading this is planning on attending any of the Ohio shows, the trio will have a special treat. They are offering limited edition CDs of an eleven minute version of Beat Box Guitar Live with original artwork and autographs by all three members of the trio...they will even customize them for you. Sun Ra used to do this and now his doodled CDs are collectors' items.
I know if I were lucky enough to get one of these, though, I'd have to be reduced to eating cat food for dinner before I'd part with mine.
And how cool that all three members of the Adrian Belew Power Trio are fantastic artists...funny, I thought that being a painter was Julie's true calling in life. Her artwork is incredible and she studied at Moore College of Art in Philadelphia and University of the Arts even as a child. When she draws a portrait, it looks like a photograph jumping off the page. If the family didn't take my camera with them to Ohio, I'd be taking a photo right now of Julie's drawing of Gary and Eric when they were, ironically, stuck at Chicago's O'Hare Airport on the way home from the west coast gig with Adrian.
I noticed a couple mentions of the trio in two Ohio newspapers, namely, right here and right here.
Anyway...I'm going to spend the next five days in hermit mode, writing my little heart out, but of course I will be back with blogposts as I hear from the family as to each Power Trio performance and other amusing little anecdotes of which I'm sure there will be plenty knowing this gang -- though now I have to share my stories/audience with this Grand Master Blogger...and a very fine author in his own write.
But I mean, come on. How can I compete with stories which contain mentions of Robert Fripp's willy?
Err...I guess you'll have to read my actual books for that, huh. (Insert evil, wicked grin here) Links to purchase on the right. Get 'em while they still have the old "collector" covers...in a few weeks they will be gone. Ha!
Sunday, February 11, 2007
My youngest son, Monty, frolicking during our last blizzard
So like for the first time in...ever...I am actually praying for no snow this week. The schedule around here is so crazy and awesome...but yikes, if we get a blizzard we're in big trouble.
Anyway, here's some of the cool stuff going on.
Right now Eric is on his way out the door.
"Where ya goin', Er?"
"I'm going to Rock School to hang out with Jon Anderson."
Jon's in town to do a bunch of shows. Eric first met Jon in 2005 when he played a gig with him at the LA Knitting Factory -- they did an amazing version of Heart of the Sunrise which they also recorded together on the Rock School Soundtrack.
Speaking of Jon Anderson...it gets crazier, but continuing on with this week...
5:00 tonight Eric heads for Wilmington, Delaware to rehearse with Project Object for their gig at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this coming Wednesday, February 14.
Yeah, he's flying to Cleveland on Wednesday, just when they're expecting the snow.
Okay, I'm just not going to allow myself to think about that.
The next day, Gary and Julie load their gear into our Jeep and take off for Cleveland where Julie and Eric will perform with Adrian Belew at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Thursday, February 15.
Friday, February 16, the Adrian Belew Power Trio performs at The Canal Street Tavern in Dayton, Ohio.
Saturday, February 17, the Adrian Belew Power Trio performs at The Southgate House in Newport, KY where they will record their new CD, Side 4 Live, in front of, you guessed it, a live audience.
Sunday morning Gary and Eric are going to load all of the gear back into the Jeep and take the eight hour drive back to Philadelphia. Julie, on the other hand, is getting on a plane for New York City, where Jon Anderson has requested that she record his two shows at B.B. Kings House of Blues on Sunday, February 18 and Monday, February 19. It appears that both of these shows are sell-outs but I'm not entirely sure.
So yeah, my daughter is going to go straight from recording her first CD as a performer with Adrian Belew to producing a Jon Anderson CD within two-three days of each other.
I know I've said it before, but in my next life, I really want to come back as my kids.
So now you know why it simply cannot snow this week. Everyone say magical chants, light candles, do whatever it is you do.
Friday, February 09, 2007
Okay, I give up. Well, at least for this morning. Beta Blogger is driving me crazy. It's taking me an hour to post and if this blurb works I'll faint; no one is able to comment -- you get a weird "error" thing if you try and I've done everything from contact Google (yeah, like that's getting me anywhere) to joining a stupid blogger forum board where I find out like most of the world is having problems so I guess they're either going to fix it or we're all going to switch over to MySpace but...bah! I hate MySpace, too, even though I do have a site because cool people keep inviting me to theirs and I've got some ultra cool friends on mine.
But just in case I am able to publish this post, here's a very fine You Tube of Ike Willis with Project Object (and Eric Slick on drums, of course)...just wish it was longer, damn it!
Okay. I do have other news but I'm afraid to type anything else because if this blogpost fails and I lose it, I'm blowing up my computer.
ETA: Whoa! It finally worked! And comments appear to be working, too! But I'm not pressing my luck any further...I'll be back this afternoon after I calm down.
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
So my post today was unreadable in all of those colors -- I've been forceably switched to Beta Blogger and I guess I need to read up on it...right now it feels weird but I'm going to enjoy those labels, I think, especially if I pick good ones that show up on Google searches. So I figured I'd repost in easy to read white.
Anyway, here's what will have the first official Robin Slick Beta Blogger label:
Adrian Belew Trio
$30 / $35 | 7PM doors, 8PM show | 18+ |
Come Be A Part Of The Live Recording for the upcoming Adrian Belew Trio's “Side 4” record!
In other news, I woke up to a most excellent review of Three Days in New York City and Another Bite of the Apple at Bella Magazine today - thank you so much, Karen Pruitt Fowler.
While I'm shouting out in glee, I know I mentioned it yesterday, but I'm going to be writing a regular column called "Psychotic Reaction" for N.L. Belardes' Noveltown Review and to get this magazine off the ground and available all across the universe, Nick, or N.L., needs support in the advertising department so please click on the ad sheet link when you visit the link I provided -- especially if you are a writer and want to promote your work because something tells me, with the heavy hitters involved in this project, that this is going to be HUGE and you're going to reach a large audience. Just which luminaries are featured in the first issue besides me? Brad Listi, for one (LA Times best selling author) and Susan Henderson of Lit Park fame and today, of Neil Gaiman Hair Day if you click on that link, and just so I can stop feeling like Cyrano De Bergerac, you should know that I set those two up on their first date har har...Sue knew that Neil had graciously emailed me a couple of times and asked me to forward a request for an interview to him. I was too embarrassed to tell her "Hey, we aren't that close" so I simply did what she asked -- I forwarded her email to me directly to Neil along with a little note "Hope you aren't into shooting the messenger" and now the two of them are best friends and I'm sitting here sulking.
Hahahahaha - so not true.
I also have some amazing Eric Slick news to report: Watch this space, because Eric, who already has that endorsement for Paiste Cymbals, picked up a MAJOR DRUM ENDORSEMENT YESTERDAY!!!!! And I cannot wait to spill the details on this one because it's pretty spectacular and since it will be on this company's website in a week or two, I will wait until then for the official announcement.
Finally, some sobering news which makes everything else kind of trivial, really. As you know, I'm a big rock music fan and one of my favorite websites is DGM Live. There's an update on drummer Ian Wallace via a diary being kept by Ian and his significant other, Margie.
My heart hurts for them -- I've been through it (I lost my Mom at a young age many years ago...I've already outlived her, in fact)...and well, it's a life altering experience. You realize afterwards that caring about petty bullshit or hanging out with people who do is pretty much the world's biggest waste of time.
But err...while I was over at DGM, I had a peek at what's being discussed over at their forum where I smiled when I read this:
Posted by MudShark22 on February 06, 2007
"Since the forum is abuzz with questions concerning the original double trio and all the recent K3 talk; why not "re-invent the wheel" and add the Slick Siblings for Billy B. and Trey ? Not as nostalgia, but as a way forward."
Well, that's very kind/cool of you, MudShark, and you never know...
But for now, oh my god, I don't see how it can get any better than The Adrian Belew Power Trio. Can't wait until next week! Rock and Roll Hall of Fame! Side 4 Live! YEAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
"Eric Slick stares into the distance for the cover of Playgirl"
(Photo of Blue Eric by Dan Nitz)
(Eric, you can't be mad at me for this -- I lifted the photo and quote off your own MySpace page har har)
So today I realized that my son is now an official Paiste Cymbals endorser (even though I announced it here a few weeks ago). I know this is true because the Paiste website says so. If you click on Eric's name on the Paiste page I linked, it takes you to aforesaid Eric's MySpace page, which is only temporary because www.ericslick.com is being designed/constructed as we speak. But if you click on "S" on the Paiste artist page and look for "Slick", well, how cool is this! I especially like "See Eric in Action".
Speaking of "seeing Eric in action", I notice that now that Google's bought You Tube, you can google a person's name, hit "video", and all of the You Tubes for that person are lined up nice and neatly. If you want to check out a varied collection of Eric's assorted performances with various bands/luminaries throughout the years, click here.
Actually, I notice that's an incomplete listing, most likely because Eric's name isn't tagged so Google didn't pick it up, so for more Eric, you can visit You Tube right here and to catch some Julie and Eric with Mr. Belew, click here.
I've felt bleh over the past couple of days so I haven't been up to blogging but here's what I did manage to do:
Wrote a column on blogging, which I should have titled "Blogging: Art Form or Mental Masturbation" but I didn't think of that until after I subbed it...anyway, it's for NL Belardes new print mag, Novel Town - the debut issue of which features work by Susan Henderson, N. Frank Daniels, Brad Listi, Conrad Romo, Rich Ferguson, and Cindy Wathen. You can find appropriate links at Novel Town Review.
I also wrote two short stories - both of which I sent to print mags who thank God take online submissions -- only of course after hitting the "send" button, I'm expecting instant gratification and would like my acceptances/rejections immediately without having to check my email every five seconds.
Oh wait. I do that anyway.
So today I'm out of bed, back in the real world -- I've got a bunch of unpleasant mundane things to do/places to go in Philadelphia weather which is registering a wind chill factor of six below zero -- none of which I'm looking forward to.
But hey hey, that's life, huh.
Saturday, February 03, 2007
Oh, I'm screaming alright...because yeah, Robin Slick and Neil Gaiman's Fragile Things are featured at Lit Park today
Okay, yeah, I'm excited.
But first things first, and when I say that, you know I have to be talking about my kiddies. Jo, my wonderful webmistress, has made me a permanent banner for the purchase of Beat Box Guitar which will appear indefinitely at the top of this blog, and if you click on it, it will take you directly to the 123 Music Store so you can download it and hear how incredible Adrian, Julie, and Eric sound live...a total tease for the new CD to come, which, as you all know if you read this blog on even a semi-regular basis, will be recorded live on February 17, 2007 (scroll down to my prior posts for all of the details).
Secondly, my pal Lloyd was kind enough to also feature me over at his amazing website, Your Drum, and I thank him very kindly for that...he's got an awesome site for us hipster Baby Boomers and, well, note to self: Link Lloyd more often - don't just keep him to yourself! He always finds incredibly cool things to post...in fact, he reviewed an Indian Restaurant in New York City the other day which has me so excited I'll probably go to NY with my daughter in the next few weeks just to try it out.
And, finally, going with the drum theme (my son Eric the drummer, Lloyd's website named Your Drum...get it?), let's have a major drum roll please: Susan Henderson has annointed me emcee of Neil Gaiman week over at her fabulous website where I have reviewed Neil's latest and greatest collection of short stories...and well, without further ado, here's the link to Lit Park and my review of Neil Gaiman's Fragile Things!
Okay. It's only 7:30 a.m., I just woke up to all this great stuff, and I'm only on my first cup of coffee. This is way too much excitement for me so early in the morning.
Friday, February 02, 2007
So here is the new book cover for Another Bite of the Apple, coming to a bookstore near you sooner rather than later and I'm totally psyched...I even have the blurbs which will be on the back cover but I'll keep the authors' names a secret just in case I shouldn't be doing this:
""...I really enjoyed this story with its fast pace, its convoluted twists and turns, and the first person point of view. You’ll get to know Elizabeth and her idiosyncrasies and see just how entangled things become before they finally work themselves out."
"...Ms. Slick knows her way around words. She uses them in a way that I love to see! Thumbs up for you, Ms. Slick! Now, about my reading experience, ask me if I laughed? Yes, I did (in the public bus! Imagine that!). If my attention was solely absorbed by my reading? Oh yes! If I want more? Oh yes!"
"...Ms. Slick has created a commendable character in Elizabeth and there is no mystery to be solved and no over the top action in Another Bite of the Apple. It is just a simple life story of two people coming together and finding the answers to their life through each others eyes. Told in first person, this story shows that even though the road to personal growth is hard, all one needs is love and determination to make the journey worthwhile. If you are a mom struggling with motherhood, check out Another Bite of the Apple!"
So am I happy about this right now? Oh yeah!
Guess what else I'm happy about?
Click the banner to purchase...
The Adrian Belew Trio get a mention over at Progressive World, which basically has the same info I've been posting here on a daily basis -- all about the Side 4 Live CD which will be recorded during the trio's upcoming shows -- well, specifically at the show on February 17 at The Southgate House, a haunted mansion in Newport, KY, and the possible impending K3 tour. Nice to see this news getting picked up by different 'zines.
The cool factor in recording a live CD with Adrian Belew in a haunted mansion goes totally off the chart in my humble opinion. Eric Slick and Julie Slick are incredibly lucky, but then again, they are also incredibly talented so they deserve all of this great stuff coming their way. But I repeat: The cool factor here really rocks.
Found another blurb about my amazing son right here...authored by percussionist Bruce Baldwin:
" I tried recording the sound of turning the crank on a flour sifter as well, but it didn't work out well. I recorded the drum part when I was feeling especially inspired to play drums the day after going to see Adrian Belew here in Phoenix. I know that doesn't seem to make sense, but I was thinking of this insistent mid-tempo jam he has called "Madness." Belew's current drummer is this amazing kid named Eric Slick. I knew full well that the drum recording wouldn't turn into anything like that..."
Yeah, but Bruce, I had a listen to your music and it's pretty interesting and obviously Belew influenced so good on you!
Anyway, back to writing. I am sooo close to finally being happy with Daddy Left Me Alone with God. I can taste victory...okay, it's the glass of wine I had with lunch...but no, really, what I truly feel is relief that I worked my way through some troubling chapters and forced myself to cut out some things I liked because deep down I knew they slowed down the story and took the reader right out of it.
I recently did an interview for writer pal N.L. Belardes and he's got the "coming soon notice" up if you click on that link.
And tomorrow over at Lit Park I've dubbed myself the emcee for Sue's huge upcoming interview with Neil Gaiman - as an introduction she asked me to do a review for his latest book, Fragile Things, but said "Don't make it a typical review - see if you can make it short and funny."
Ha! Short and funny is what I do best and the mirror confirms it every day as well.
So speaking of "back to writing", that's what I'm going to do now. But before I go...
Because he asked nicely, this is for Neil Gaiman:
Thursday, February 01, 2007
How awesome is that photo? Thank you, Daryl.
So bleh, I'm under the weather but felt the need to come downstairs and post something anyway because I can only stay in bed for so long without getting nuts.
Here's another review of Beat Box Guitar, and this one is from drummer Neil Bettencourt:
"Adrian, Julie and Eric Slick. What a combo!! If you didn't get to see the tour, then this is a great way to get a glimpse into the quality and intensity of what they did. Eric and Julie show their mastery on this track, as does Adrian with great tones, great grooves, and imagination that goes so far!! This is fabulous stuff that any Adrian fan just has to have!! Good recording quality, and just a solid performance all around. Thumbs up!!!!"
You, too, can own a copy of Beat Box Guitar by clicking right here:
Also, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame finally has the Zappa week info up on their website, but it's moot because I JUST FOUND OUT BOTH SHOWS ARE COMPLETELY SOLD OUT!!!
14 PROJECT/OBJECT with Ike Willis Performing The Music of Frank Zappa
PROJECT/OBJECT formed in the early 1990s as an offshoot of the annual Frank Zappa birthday celebration that took place in guitarist Andre Cholmondeley's basement in New Jersey. As the event grew in size and popularity, PROJECT/OBJECT decided to take their show on the road, performing Zappa's music in more cities and in larger venues, with a growing set list from every era of Zappa's 30-year recording career. The band strives to stay true to Zappa's vision of constantly challenging musicians and their audiences. This event is free with a reservation. Please email email@example.com to RSVP. If you do not have access to email, please call 216.515.8426.
15 An evening with Adrian Belew
Highly regarded for his work with artists and bands including Frank Zappa, David Bowie, Talking Heads, Nine Inch Nails and Paul Simon, Adrian Belew is considered the guitar player’s guitarist. He is a five-time winner of Guitar Player’s best guitar player award, has been inducted into the Guitar Player’s Hall of Fame, has been honored by ASCAP and was nominated for a Grammy award. This event is free with a reservation. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP. If you do not have access to email, please call 216.515.8426.
Oh, one more thing before I crawl off back under the covers. I have finally impressed my son today in a big way because Relix Magazine, which is where all the cool kids hang out, made my blog a permanent link on their website right here.
How freaking cool am I?