Caffine rocks

•July 31, 2007 • 2 Comments

Last Friday, I got to see Gondwanaland, Ship to Shore, and Choose Your Battle at Seven Stages and Java Lords in Little Five Points. I asked Matt Grenia and Angelica of Gondwanaland if I could get an interview with the band sometime. Look forward to getting juicy with Gondwanaland and a recap of the show coming up soon.


In the studio with Chris Unck

•July 31, 2007 • Leave a Comment

“I grew my hair out and never went back.”

I got to spend some time shooting the shit in the studio with underground musician, producer, and wild-man Chris Unck. Chris’s musical cohort, Mike, and couple members from Program the Dead, Nico and Dave, also happened to be there and decided to join in. When I arrived, Chris was at the sound board, mixing a new track for Program the Dead. He was surrounded by beer bottles, bongs, smoke, cigarette butts, and equipment. Later, he revels in how this is the way a real rock n’ roll recording studio should look. This is where it happens.
I met Chris, randomly, over a year ago. I was hanging out with my friend Marc and ended up meeting with Chris in the Varsity parking lot. Chris had an old Wurlitzer in the back of his car that some guy found in a dumpster and sold to him for fifty bucks. We head over to a closed-down, red brick mechanic’s garage that was to become the short lived “585” venue down on North Avenue to set up the Wurlitzer. On the way there, Marc played some of Chris’s solo work for me in the car. His sound was unlike anything I’ve ever heard, rooted in 1960’s revolutionary rock revival all blended up with the grunge of the nineties.
Back in May, I went to see Chris play at Olde Smith’s Bar with his Black Roses. His first album, Country Roads and Love, had just been released. Marc gave me a copy of it and I’ve been listening to it ever since. I thought it might be good to call him up and see if I could get an interview in.
Just to give you a little background on Chris, I asked him to talk about his musical history up to this point. He says that it all started when he heard Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell” as a kid. From seeing Idol as his first iconic rockstar, he later got a toy guitar and rocked out on his couch. Then, he heard The Beatles’ “White Album” and it’s uniqueness and creativity, he says, was like nothing he’d heard on the radio. Chris played trumpet in the marching band, but it wasn’t until his sister introduced him to revolutionary rock like Nirvana, The Sex Pistols and Led Zeppelin that he felt liberated. After that, he says, “I grew out my hair and I never went back. I picked up a guitar and started playing with no instructions.” From there, Chris and his little brother formed their first band called “Dead Pig Ashtray”, which played in backyards and pool parties for six years, only to break up right when they got signed. Chris then started a psychedelic band called “Stereofiction”, “which”, he says “was a band based off of the feelings you feel when you’re completely insane.” Stereofiction put out a couple albums, then he moved on to a garage rock grunge band called “Sold Out” that eventually broke up in June 2005. Afterwards, he decided to go on a solo career path, though he started learning producing skills as soon as his first band. Chris’s most recent project is producing Program the Dead’s latest album. He feels honored to be trusted with total creative control over PtD’s production.

I asked Chris, “how did you get to where you are today?”

Chris: “By listening. By listening and reading and paying attention and not opening my fucking mouth. A lot of hands on. When you really devote yourself to something, you’ve got to give it your all. We starved and we did everything we could to learn anything we could at a time when we could afford it, which is when you’re young. You should cram your brain full of shit when you’re really, really young cuz that skill, it keeps you from being someone else’s bitch.”

Nico chimed in and asked Chris if he had any producers that inspired him or he envied, for any reason. Chris explained that his inspiration comes from a “melting point” where he can hear greats like Brendan O’Brien, Steve Albini, and George Martin in the arrangements he produces. He say that it sounds egotistical to liken himself to such big names, but it’s what he hears in the bands that they produced that he loves, not what they have done.

I asked Chris if he had any advice for the world and young artists. He says “Whatever you do, do it well… You got to learn it. You got to learn everything about it.”

“Like a wet hotdog slappin’ against a piece of paper”

•July 23, 2007 • 1 Comment

Watch out, NPR’s Storycorps! I’ve got an interview with Chris Unck tonight. He’s the dude that I wrote about a few posts down. This should be fun. Unck is a crazy, whiskey swillin’, bad-ass, muthafucker and a goof-ball to boot. This kid could kick Butch Walker’s ass. So, I’m bringing Maker’s Mark and my voice recorder over to Chris’s studio to chat as he mixes Butch’s new DVD.

This brings me to today’s situation: If you could any musician’s ass, who would it be and why?

It would have to be Avril LaVigne, straight up. That little poseur bitch has hit the charts too many times with her face still intact. I’d like to get the mosh pit from Norma Jean at Warped Tour to help me take her out.

Viva la Lucha!

•July 19, 2007 • Leave a Comment

You have just been granted the powers of a Super Luchador. You now have the abilies a bad-ass, high flyin’ masked wrestler. Who is your inner Lucha? What’s your name? Are you friend or foe? How sweet is your mask?

Me llamo La Pinoche del Fuego. I come from the center of the earth to wreak havok on those who oppose me. I was born in a volcano. My mask has flames on it and so does the crotch of my spandex armour. My arch enemy is la Senorita Vagisila. Only she has defeated the heat of my flying kick takedown.

Top Five Blogs (that I could think of right now)

•July 17, 2007 • 1 Comment

This week, my blog class was assigned to post our five favorite blogs. I don’t usually read many non-personal blogs, but I’ve been meaning to.

First up is Copy Ranter is an awesome blog written by a seasoned copywriter from New York City. I like his commentary on current advertizing. He makes fun of current advertizing and, usually, it’s witty. I just like copywriters who have a sense of humor about their business and aren’t afraid to point out cliches.

A discontinued blog that I used to read was This one was all about transgender activist Morty Diamond and his year that he wore nothing but pink clothes. It was an experiment and all about gender politics and his performance art.

Here’s a pretty good craft blog: I like crafting, so I could probably get into this one. Thrift Horror is all about weird stuff that people have found at thrift stores.

The last one I could think of is silly. It’s It’s all about making fun of celebraties.

New direction!

•July 11, 2007 • 1 Comment

I’m taking a blogging class with Alissa Walker at Portfolio Center this quarter. Since this is so, I think my blog needs to change direction and to be more entertaining.

So, I’m changing this blog to be an interactive, fun experience. Every post, I will ask a crazy question and answer it. You can answer them, too. Just comment with your answer. You can be as crazy and out there as you want with your answers. Make it entertaining. Your answer doesn’t even have to be possible or even true. Sound fun? Let’s get asking.

Question #1
If you had to kill a mountain lion, how would you kill it and to what song would you kill it to?

If I had to kill a mountain lion, I’d eat it head first. Just swallow it whole! My theme song would be “Here I Am, Rock You Like a Hurricane” by Scorpions.
My friend Nate said that he would strap bombs to baby pandas and throw them off a helicopter at the mountain lion. This has been my favorite answer, so far. Can you think of a better way?

It was Pride!

•June 26, 2007 • Leave a Comment

It’s time to dump all the shit that happened this past week into my blog.

And what a week it was! The first part of it was spent with Mac and Jaime. They have a new place not too far away from the old one. It’s not Apartment 69 anymore, but it’s a really nice house. They can’t wait to get settled in. (House warming party!)

On Friday, I met up with Heather at Pride. We were there for only a couple hours before we went to pick up Ben and all three of us went to see the Zebrahead show at Center Stage. Zebrahead rocked my face off. Not many people came, probably because The Casualties were playing at the Masquerade that same night, but it was a good show. The pit was alright, too. There was also this band called Stereosonic that played and they were really good. They had a song about how much Ashley Simpson sucks. I’ll support that!
After the show, we were so beat that we couldn’t make it back to Pride. So we came back to my place and had a Monty Python marathon.

The next day, Ben and I went to derby practice. We’re both getting better and trying to make it to practice every week. We went yesterday, too. I passed the time trial! Twenty laps in five minutes. Now, if I can only get pivoting down. Ayanna and Ish’s baby shower was after practice. It was great to see them. Ayanna looks like she’s about to pop.
Saturday night was my drag number with Jae at My Sister’s Room. We did great! I was topless, at one point, with pasties shaped like boy scout crosses. It was wrong. And it was great seeing all my friends who showed up or performed. Ben even came to support me.

On Sunday, I sweated on YP’s Pride parade float as Mr. YP 2007. Being on the float was fun, but waiting in the heat for the parade to start was where most of my time at Pride was spent.

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Yet again, I was so exhausted after it was over that I just went home and recovered before I went to the all-star ARG bout. They played against the Rocky Mountain Fight Club girls and it was brutal! There were more penalties than points in that bout. I even got to go to the after party with Sam and not have to worry about getting home to work on projects. I didn’t even have to worry about dropping my dad’s car off because he gave me the best birthday present ever: his car. I’m still in shock. That’s my favorite car I’ve ever driven. It’s a 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid and I take care of that thing like it’s the Holy Grail. It’s my baby and will last me forever. I even learned how to drive in that car.

Yesterday was tough. Chris Benoi, Ben’s wrestling trainer and friend, died. They say that he committed suicide and murdered his wife and son. In Peachtree City, no less! He sounded like a really nice guy who wouldn’t do anything like that. It’s very strange. Ben was really shaken up.

Other than that stuff, my birthday is this Sunday! Come out to SkinTwo at WetBar on Saturday night to celebrate with me. I’ll be there at midnight.

Also, I’m trying to get rid of my couch. It’s too big for my apartment, but really comfy and in good condition. Anybody want a couch?

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