Friday, August 25 2006

Episode 14: Tales from Late Last Night

Show Notes:
Recorded Wednesday, August 23 2006, (9:30 PM - 11:30 PM) at Big Al’s in Browstown MI
    “Mike, Schmoe, Greg, and Mickey discuss the new single, the Hoot bonus DVD, yet more from Caseville, and reviews of Coconut Telegraph. With Dan and Laury as the noisy and mutinous studio audience.

    I freely admit it: we talk too damn much.
    I fully expected this to be one of our shorter shows.  We had little to talk about—not much in the news and just an album review to discuss—yet we ended up with one of our longer shows.  Heaven help you if we ever decide to review Boats Beaches Bars & Ballads.
    Dan, mentioned in last week’s episode, showed up in a cameo; and Laury, who first appeared on Episode 11, also stuck around.  Together, they threatened to conduct their own simultaneous podcast, as can be heard in the audio file’s left channel.  And who can forget the horseshoe game in the right channel.
    Latest news on “Bama Breeze” is that the promo CD single is being sent out to radio stations and that the album whence it comes is changing titles every day.  (By the way, I knew there had to be a reason I had trouble saying “Bama Breeze” last week, and I think it stems from getting it confused with the Bahama Breeze restaurant in Livonia.)  According to Buffett News, the song was written by Chris Tompkins, Josh Kear, and Mark Irwin.  And in a Buffett World message board thread, you can download Josh Kear’s demo of the song as well as view the cover for Jimmy’s CD single.
    Link for Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame (not to be confused with the Songwriters Hall of Fame).
    It’s great to get more live Buffett on DVD, but I found watching the From the Big Apple to the Big Easy video very frustrating.  Not only does the director keep returning to the same six audience members, he has a knack for singling out the performer next to whomever is soloing.  (I was also disappointed the video is not 16x9.)
    Walmart hardly needs us to advertise for them, but here’s the link to their Hoot exclusive.  Mike’s quote about forgetting batteries was a direct shot at me, in reference to our recording of Episode 12 (though technically, I had batteries.  I simply wanted to go home for fresh batteries).  Another inside joke refers to when Mike and Joe were in deep discussion at some very noisy bar.  (I was not there so hopefully they can fill in the details.)  Mike brought up the subject of Pistons tickets and Joe, obviously mishearing him, looked suddenly shocked and offended if not a little hurt, and asked “Did you just call me a dick?”  Mike has since made sure this will be a long-running running gag.
    Re: Caseville.  Greg gave me a CDR of his photos, so I should be uploading them soon—barring all the ones where I look too fat.
    Sing along to our newly minted Album of the Week theme song.
    Want to see the album package we’re talking about?
    I swear Deborah McColl had a website, back when her first solo album came out in 2000; but at least here’s a link to the album.  [Could I have confused it with Claudia Cummings’s website?]  Update: Deborah McColl’s website is located at — where else? — Deborah
    “Stars Fell on Alabama”, music by Frank Perkins and lyrics by Marshall Parish, was written in 1934.   The title has been on the Alabama license plate since 2002.   Perkins also wrote the music for the 1964 Don Knotts movie The Incredible Mr Limpet.
    We thought it funny that the big dance club in Caseville was named Herschel’s…but it turns out all our jokes were based on a misreading of the sign!  Then again, even they get their name wrong (take a close look at the URL).
    The selection again did not make the final cut, but our next album review will be for Somewhere Over China.

      >  Download Episode 14

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Sunday, August 20 2006

Episode 13: With Our Weekend in Caseville Concluded

Show Notes:
Recorded Wednesday, August 16 2006, (9:30 PM - 11:00 PM) at Big Al’s in Browstown MI; and location recording from Caseville MI on Saturday, August 12. 
    “Mike, Mickey, Schmoe, and Greg discuss their pilgrimage to the Cheeseburger Festival, and Scott joins in to opine on Banana Wind. Special guest stars: Meredith and Laura.

    Note: I’m still trying to find time to edit the Caseville video.  The first interview was recorded Saturday afternoon outside the Official Cheeseburger Store (6912 Main Street, Caseville MI 4872).  The second interview was conducted Saturday night near the park amphitheater, with Air Margaritaville performing in the background.  The “thirty to forty, between sets” refers to a cheeseburger eating contest held during the Air Margaritaville intermission.
    In regards to the release date for Banana Wind: it was released on June 4 1996.  As with Barometer Soup, I got a chance to listen to it the night before it came out, at the now defunct Blockbuster Music on Michigan Ave in Dearborn.  I consulted my journal to back this up, and I am reminded that we’d seen these same songs performed in concert at Pine Knob the previous Thursday (May 30).

...I took Middlebelt to Michigan and headed to Blockbuster Music.  I needed to pre-order the Buffett disc today if I wanted to get in on that sticker deal.  So I sat at their “bar” and listened to the CD.  The copy they had was still in its plastic holder, so I asked if they had one open.  The guy took that one and unlocked it for me.  I listened to bits of each song.  I got more than halfway through before I lost track and had to skip around, losing my place.  Some of the songs were familiar from the concert.  These seemed to be the ones I like best.  I couldn’t help but feel slightly disappointed though.  I wasn’t sure if it was because I was rushed—because I wasn’t really in the mood, seeing as Mike wasn’t here to make an event out of it [like last year]—but a lot of the album did not grab me as Barometer Soup had done.  And I did not care for the overall acoustic sound.  The constant strumming got rather monotonous and the some of the songs sounded the same.  I noted how the sign behind the “bar” advertised a “collection of stickers” if I pre-ordered.  I also liked how the CD was only $12.99 and I would only have to put down five dollars.  I was willing to pay for it now, and I was also planning on buying Mike’s copy too.  That way I could either pick up both copies Tuesday or he could just swing in and pick his up without having to bother much.  I figured I owed it to him; not only was he going through hell [with his dad in the hospital], but he had also provided both the food and booze last Thursday.

    The following day, after giving blood at the Red Cross in Southgate, I returned to Blockbuster Music in Dearborn.

I went over to Blockbuster and picked up my two CDs.  The kid recognized me and went off to get my CDs from the back.  He rang me up but didn’t mention any stickers, so I brought the subject up.  He didn’t seem to know anything about it, but the second kid went to the back and came out with a long thin strip in clear plastic.  I thought the collection of stickers must be on some wide ribbon, but what he handed over was a simple, single bumper sticker.  It was white with “PARROTHEAD” in pink.  It was terribly lame, but it was apparently legit since it had MCA and Blockbuster logos on it.  The guy remembered to give me two.  [After work I swung by Mike’s house to leave the CD with his wife.]

    The “Oh? oh? oh?—ooooh!” reaction is from 1987, when Mike sneaked down to the stagefront for the encores.  I’ve got the audio but it really isn’t clear enough to include here.
    The “Aeolian chords” line is from a famous quote by William Mann, music critic of the London Times, where he described the “Aeolian cadence at the end of “Not a Second Time” (the chord progression which ends Mahler’s ‘Song of the Earth’)” when reviewing With the Beatles.  Is that Don’t Stop the Carnival song “Just an Old Truth Teller”?
    I coudn’t resist monkeying with Scott’s reviews, turning them into a kind of Poetry Corner-type segment.  The music in the background is Mozart’s Piano Concerto In D minor, K. 466: 1st Movement.
    Meredith and Laura manage to make a special appearance just before the end.  Laura used to be the cook at Big Al’s and, by remarkable coincidence, also had a porch crashed into.  The “Dan” mentioned, now in Nicaragua, is the same Dan heard at the very beginning of our Show 0.
    The selection did not make the final cut, again, but our next album review will be for Coconut Telegraph.
    My favorite show quote is a tie this week: “OK.  Jimmy flies.  We get it.” and “You’re Chicken Taco Guy!” 

      >  Download Episode 13

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Sunday, August 13 2006

Cheeseburger in Caseville 2006

    Our visit to the festival was a lot of fun.  We shot some video, took some photos, and recorded some audio…much of which I hope to upload to the site or include in our podcasts.  I’m slowly editing some Flash videos so check this space to see when I’m done.  Or you can head over to Caseville right now and make your own memories!  The festival lasts through Sunday, August 20.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 08/13 at 08:50 PM
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Thursday, August 10 2006

Episode 12: Top Ten Breezy Lizards

Show Notes:
Recorded Wednesday, August 9 2006, (9:00 PM - 11:00 PM) at Big Al’s in Browstown MI. 
    “We tried using an agenda this week and ended up with our longest show yet. Bullet points include a look at the Week in Audio, our Top Ten favorite songs, reviews of Off to See the Lizard, and assorted walk-ons.

    One of my less inspired titles, but I was in a hurry to upload the show this morning and couldn’t come up with anything better.  Another sizable turnout with appearances from Mike, Mickey Schmoe, Scott, Greg, Kevin, Greg 2.0, and Meredith.
    I was requesting more structure to the shows (if only so we can up with some kind of formal closing rather than just letting the proceedings peter out like we usually do) so Schmoe typed up an agenda.  This might expain all the paper-shuffling.  Notice the different mic placement?  For the heck of it, since we clustered aroud the end of the table, I mic’d from side to side of the table rather than from end to end.  Schmoe’s “That was a big one.  That was a little one” makes me think of a Dr Seuss book.  The first “frog” (or Red Fish) is Kevin and the second frog (or Blue Fish) is Greg 2.0.  Scott alludes to an FSGL incident earlier in the day when Mike failed to yell “Fore!” and his golf ball hit 2.0’s foot.
    You can download the complete Miles Hampton interview here or here, depending on your allegiance.  The Steve Dahl interview is somewhat edited (I know I could’ve cut even more, but I liked what he had to say about License to Chill) and the performance of “Sweet Home Chicago” is heavily edited.  For the sake of time, I excised a line or two, a couple choruses, and the guitar and piano solos; but at least you get to hear all of Jimmy’s new lyrics.  The Mark Knopfler/Emmylou Harris album Jimmy mentions is presumably this one.  Learn more about Gomez here.  Keep track of Greg’s nicknames on the FSGL blog.  As you can tell, I misquoted the “Nothing But a Breeze” lyric…but, like I said, I only heard it the one time.
    Top Tens:

Mickey’s Top Ten:
      A Pirate Looks at 40
      One Particular Harbour
      African Friend
      Tin Cup Chalice
      Treat Her Like a Lady
      The Captain and the Kid
      The Weather is Here, Wish You Were Beautiful
      Chansons Pour Les Petits Enfants
      Brahma Fear

Honorable Mention:
      Nautical Wheelers
      Havana Daydreamin’
      Baby’s Gone Shopping
      Twelve Volt Man
      It’s My Job
      Last Man Standing
      Pacing the Cage
      The Night I Painted the Sky
      Lone Palm
      Love in the Library
      West Nashville Grand Ballroom Gown
      Peanut Butter Conspiracy
Mike’s Top Ten:
      1.  A Pirate Looks at Forty
      2.  Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season
      3.  Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes
      4.  Cowboy in the Jungle
      5.  Come Monday
      6.  The Wino and I Know
      7.  Defying Gravity
      8.  Livingston Saturday Night
      9.  Somewhere Over China
    10.  Island
Greg’s Top Ten
      Brown Eyed Girl
      Why Don’t We Get Drunk and Screw
      Cowboy in the Jungle
      Boat Drinks
      Take It Back
      Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season
      Last Mango in Paris
      Chansons Pour Les Petits Enfants
      One Particular Harbour
Joe’s Top Ten:
      Honey Do
      Meet Me in Memphis
      Sea of Heartbreak
      That was the Night I Painted the Sky
      African Friend
      Cowboy in the Jungle
      Trying to Reason With Hurricane Season
      In the Shelter

Honorable Mention:
      Son of a Son of a Sailor
      Why Don’t We Get Drunk
      Come Monday
      One Particular Harbour
      That’s What Living Is To Me
      Take Another Road
      Distantly in Love
      Nautical Wheelers
      A Pirate Looks at Forty
      Pascagoula Run
Scott’s Top Ten
      Banana Republics
      Happily Ever After (Now and Then)
      Semi-True Stories
      I Heard I Was in Town
      Far Side of the World
      Window on the World
      Cowboy in the Jungle
      School Boy Heart
      The Nighted I Painted the Sky

Honorable Mention:
      The Great Filling Station Holdup
      Death of an Unpopular Poet
      Ballad of Spider John
      Havana Daydreamin’
      African Friend
      Chanson Pour Les Petits Enfants
      Growing Older But Not Up
      Little Miss Magic
      When the Wild Life Betrays Me
      Love in Decline
      If The Phone Doesn’t Ring, It’s Me
      When The Coast is Clear

    I’m compelled to point out how Scott had issues regarding cover versions in our lists, yet includes “Banana Republics” (Steve Goodman) and “Window on the World” (John Hiatt).  Pwned, I say, sir.  Pwned!
    There’s a curious discrepancy on the Off to See the Lizard release date.  Some websites say June 19 1989 while others say June 26 1989.  Even more curious, both these dates are Mondays, whereas I thought albums are commonly released on Tuesdays.  I had to dig out my journal (way back to the old analog, typewriter days) to settle things.  Along the way I found out Jimmy was on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson June 19 and Carson held up the LP and announced the new album was out “today”.  A check of all the local record stores the following morning turned up nothing.  (My journal also reminds me my job did not have “flexible hours” at this time.  I was in fact still freelancing that summer.)  My records eventually show I got the CD on Tuesday, June 27 1989, at the Tel-Goddard Harmony House:

    The new Buffett disc was first up in the new releases section [in the racks].  They didn’t have any on the wall or even in Buffett’s section.  [...]  It was marked down to $14.99 but the guy gave me an additional 25% off ’cause of their Summer Sale.  I paid $11.24 for it, plus 45 cents tax; total $11.69.
    [...] I was pleased to see Hud’s car in his driveway.  I hadn’t seen it when I’d left so I took the chance he wasn’t sleeping or anything and pulled up behind his car.  He opened the front door, saw me, put up one finger, closed the door, and, bless him, shuffled his dog Bo downstairs.  [Bo was huge and had bit me once.]  I went back to the car to get the disc and we looked it over in the driveway.  Joe’s sisters stopped by too.  Joe had just called Hud up, asking about the disc, and his sisters were now off to Fairlane Mall to pick it up for Joe.  I showed the disc to them too.  It started to sprinkle so Bill and I went indoors.  He put the disc on and couldn’t resist calling up Mike.  We ragged on Mike, letting him know we were listening to the album and listening to it first while he couldn’t get to it till after work.  I stood nearby, rubbing it in more by reading little tidbits from the CD booklet.  It was then I noticed Buffett mentioned Michigan.  We called around songs one and two.

    The occasional snippets of Off to See the Lizard are from Scott’s MacBook.  The CMT show whose title escaped me is Nashville Now; and it wasn’t CMT, it was TNN.  “ICE” is the “International CD Exchange” newsletter.  It wasn’t St Kitt’s, it was Nevis (scroll to bottom of page).  Isabella did not throw a shotglass at the ship’s clock, it was a champagne glass (Tales First Edition, page 152).  Evidently I didn’t hear Greg say Jay Oliver wrote “Mermaid in the Night” or else I could’ve told him it was Mac McAnally.  And apparently I’m a hypocrite because “I Wish Lunch Could Last Forever” has fake harmonica too.
    And even with a printed agenda, our show endings are just as awkward.

      >  Download Episode 12

Whose Top Ten Best Matches Yours?

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 08/10 at 11:23 PM
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Thursday, August 3 2006

Episode 11: Patio Bash

Show Notes:
Recorded Wednesday, August 2 2006, (9:30 PM - 11:30 PM) behind Big Al’s in Browstown MI. 
    “Our biggest turnout yet: Don, Laury, Greg, Greg 2.0, Mike, Mickey, Schmoe, and even Scott, discussing the new DVD and a classic album.

    Can you guys make out what Greg 2.0 is saying?  The bar was noisy and he was sitting far from the mic, but if you listen closely you can make out “You know, during my travels, I, I, you know, listening to Sirius radio, looking—looking for something to listen to, I could find the Jimmy Buffett channel.
    “...What the fuck?
    “[To Nate] Sorry little Joe.  I’ll watch my language.
    “But uh…I never listened to it, but I saw it.  And I immediately thought about you goofy bastards.  And I’m driving down the middle of Missouri, laughing my ass off.  ‘I bet these goofy bastards are sitting there listening to this crap right now.’”
    Is it true there were more people on mic than subscribe to the show?  We even had an audience, as Don and Nate (Schmoe’s son) listened off-mic.  Well, actually, Nate slept through the whoe recording—which makes him pretty much your typical North Coast Cast subscriber.  And apparently we’re going for the record on most gay jokes per minute (gjpm); but how else could we celebrate the return of the prodigal Scott?!  He came back in time to discuss the new live DVD.  And the “PC” Schmoe refers to (which really was our only light source outside) is actually Scott’s brand new 15” MacBook.  So much for Apple’s “Mac vs PC” marketing campaign.  By the way, speaking of gjpm, I think I should’ve said “minced” instead of “flounced” during the show.
    Thanks to listener Ed (who’s also present on our our Frappr map) I got word that Best Buy was selling Live at Wrigley Field ahead of its release date.  The Best Buy near where I work did not have it, but this was hardly a surprise since they never seem to have anything—despite always having fully stocked shelves.  I managed to snag the disc Friday morning at the Southgate Best Buy, and was able to revel in it all weekend long.  I even got to watch it on a 50” plasma screen, pleasantly surprised to find out the concert is 16x9 anamorphic.  (Why do I have the feeling Jimmy must have bought a widescreen TV or two recently?)  The daylight video reveals some compression problems, but the nighttime stuff looks great.  And I have to admit, at the risk of sounding Scott-ish, that watching women thrust their upper frontals at the camera is actually kind of scary on a 50” screen.
    The benefit of being in charge of the show notes is even if I don’t speak up dring the show, I get to have the last word here.  Despite liking the DVD, especially the unobtrusive and non-flashy editing, I have a problem with the concert itself.  I really wish Jimmy would let go of Heather Perry and the on-stage choreography.  I’m not denying Ms Perry looks great, but she is more of a distraction from the music and doesn’t add to the show.  (Actually whenever she appears I keep thinking someone from the crowd got up on stage.)  I really hate all this theatrical staging, with the props and skits and fire eaters and limbo contests.  It reeks too much of those lame Carnival Cruise Line shows.  When I go to a Buffett show (those rare years he deigns to visit us) I go fo the great songs, story telling, and banter—not lion tamers, costume changes, and trapeze artistes.
    Those were my DVD notes.  Here are my Son of a Son of a Sailor notes.  1) When I was younger I cynically figured Jimmy made this the single just so it would sound like he was going to say “son of a bitch” on the radio.  It was a long while later before I got to read the lyrics and see what a great song this really is.
    2) I got my Eskatrol definition from the COB, FAQ.
    3) as with the title track, I cynically figured “The Last Line” was a veiled reference to cocaine.  Reading the lyrics it looks like Keith Sykes might have been extremely depressed.  Were there fearful outcries of retirement when Jimmy sang “Time has come to not make a sound” the way some people are now bewailing his writing a song called “Party at the End of the World”?
    4) I like to think that I single-handedly got Jimmy to perform “Livingston Saturday Night” live.  I couldn’t understand why year after year this song never made the setlist;  it seemed like this would be such an exciting, energizing addition to a show.  Whenever I wrote to the Margaritaville Store in Key West I would include this demand.  And after four years of letters, Jimmy finally played it!  I got to hear it three times at his three night stand at Pine Knob, and I would smile proudly knowing this was all because of me.  Sadly, this was way back in 1993 and he’s hardly played it since.
    5) it’s easy to enjoy a song about cheeseburgers…but then they had to ruin it by having a dancing cow on stage in 2001.  Was that Heather Perry in there?  6) like I said in the show, I love the orchestration but the song is too slow for me.  7) I thought it was “cull the world’s rum”, Scott thought it was “crawl the world’s run”, Mike thought is was “Calderwood’s Rum”, says “Caldwood’s Rum”; but Google seems to suggest it’s “Callwood’s Rum”  (cf. here and here—no matter how many e-mails Schmoe sends me!).  And the other lyric debate obviously refers to the sleeves of Dwight Schrute.  (Long ago I thought it might have something to do with “cheroot”.)
    8) Wikipedia has some juicy quotes from Florida Citrus Commission spokeswoman Anita Bryant and her stand against Dade County’s 1977 anti-descrimination ordinance.  I was going to include some here, but I almost feel we’ve done more than enough gay-bashing this week.  After all, this show was supposed to be our submission reel for the 17th Annual GLAAD Media Awards.  And I was wrong in saying Son of a Son of a Sailor came out that same year; it was released a year later.
    And, 9) like I said, Jimmy needs to write more story-songs like this one, and he really needs to perform this one.
    Want to read along with Schmoe?  Download a PDF of the ABC Records memo.
    P.S.: it didn’t make the final cut, but next week’s assignment is our top ten Buffett songs and our thoughts on Off to the See the Lizard.  Feel free to share your own with us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

      >  Download Episode 11

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