Monday, November 30, 2009

Country Club Life / The Ramshorn

The tribal gathering depicted here is much like what I recall the scenery to be at my Father's 9 hole country club. Minus the mountains, the lavish home and pool and the one Gabor sister with the two-piece, crocheted catsuit.

Even though my Pop payed some sort of monthly dues to belong to the RCC, he was probably allowed some sort of group employee discount.
There was never a sense of privilege or entitlement. It was a swimming hole with 2 docks and a raft.
The restaurant and bar were no big deal really. It was just another place in town to eat, only you always saw the same people sitting in the same seats dressed in that same Sam Snead sorta way. There was nary a whiff a swanky about it.
What there was was: Golfball diving with the carp, swimming out to the raft and secretly lurking underneath in hopes of catching a carnal glimpse of some older, high school gal's nether regions, golf lessons with Earl Hanson, the club pro, Mother and Father's Day brunches, Der Klommpen Klub (or Key Club to those in the know) and parking at the nearby church and slinking across the fairways at night to skinny dip in the lake without alarming the groundskeeper.

Party Image From
Two Gals Image From

Collectively You Can Find these Images and Many More
From Poolside With Slim Aarons

Saturday, November 28, 2009

The Last Time

I'm working diligently, for the people, to make a concerted effort on my part, to minimize the use of another Stones' reference.

Like the Rolling Stones, who soaked up, recycled and returned to us their version of American R&B and Blues music, Japanese born and Hermosa Beach based designer, Yuki Matsuda, studied Americana with a vengeance.
While you're immediately drawn to the aesthetic details of Yuketen, it's the function and craftsmanship that are at the core. With each pair hand-tooled and sewn, only small production runs are manageable. In other words, if you're diggin these, best start your homework now.

Yuketen shoes and boots are just one of a few titles under the Yuki owned Meg Company. His love for the North American outdoors is obvious within his Monitaly and Chamula labels as well as his corduroy partnering with preeminent outerwear brand Canada Goose.

Photo From
Back Story From
And The Very Informative And Righteous

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Oddly enough, I'm struggling to find a connection between the puritans/pilgrims coming to America for relief of religious persecution and...well...say Keith Richards. I'm going out on a limb here but I'm guessing Keith might have aligned himself with native American tribesmen Samoset, who after the pilgrims first winter, greeted them with a warm welcome and seeds of corn to plant for the upcoming Fall harvest. Keith probably borrowed a bit aesthetically from their wardrobe, and that's okay.

Art work is an 1853 Book Engraving
Backstory from

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Oh Maggie

AAAWWW, is this the traditional Father/Daughter dance? I think not. Tis Margaret and Pierre, the bride and groom. You gotta think there may have been a few misguided implications at that ceremony. Anyhoo, on my way to the airport the shuttle made one last stop, and this is more than one unoffical, armchair historian can take, as we happen to be parked in front of the Harbour Castle Hotel. THE Harbour Castle Hotel. Did I mention the Harbour Castle Hotel?
Said Inn is where the Stones layed their heads whilst they performed and made ha-ha at Toronto's El Mocambo Club in '77. Keith's infamous drug bust happened there. And Margaret Trudeau's so-called hi-jinx with Ron Wood took place in those very hallways...and...other places, I suspect.
At 22 and 30 years his junior, Maggie married Pierre Trudeau in secrecy in 1971. Six years later on their 6th anniversary and coincidentally the same day the two decide to go their seperate ways, Margo is spotted at the Stones' ElMo show and invited the band back to her hotel. Oh no, not THE hotel? Oh yes, the Harbour Castle. Dang it, and I'm sitting here parked right in front of it. I should run in and see if there are pictures on the wall of Keith getting hauled away in cuffs or a shot of Ronnie and "whomever" hi-tailin it up a side stairwell. Maybe they have The Keef Suite, you know, all dark with a faint wiff of hashish and artfully strewn batik fabrics.
Enh...probably not.

These days Maggie is an advocate for mental health management as she has suffered from a bipolar disorder most of her adult life and also serves as honorary president of WaterCan, organized to help develop clean water supplies to the disadvantaged.

Photo of The Trudeaus from
Maggie Back Story from and from
Ronnie by Ron Wood

Monday, November 23, 2009

House On The Hill

3 days of peace and music was Woodstock. 5 days of parkas and training was Toronto. I didn't get to see much of Toronto this trip save for the Royal York, which I saw a lot of and a 10 second, panoramic glance at Casa Loma as the charter bus whisked by. My quick research this morning revealed its birth in 1911, it's cost then at 3.5 mill with its completion in 1914.
Sir Henry Pellatt and Canadian architect E.J. Lennox drew the first brick for this House on the Hill.
In an insignificant yet somewhat related sidebar, the Stones have often been periodic attendees of Toronto. They've often set up camp there in rehearsals and preparation for their North American tour dates as well as at one time, recording a portion of their Love You Live LP at the El Mocambo club.
Now careening down a path of insignificance, in 2003, my wife and I shuffeled our way thru a packed, late July house of 450,000 boozed up and smelly Torontonians, towards the back of Downsview Park, for the Rolling Stones Sars Benefit Concert just in time to catch Rush and AC/DC.
Towards the end of the Stones' set, Keith invited Angus on stage for some rousing renditions of just what I don't recall. But I know it involved Chuck Berry and that little scoot/duckwalk thing Angus does.
We know all this to be true for we witnessed it on one of many jumbo-trons strategically placed through out the former military base as the curvature of the earth hindered our ability to see the stage.

Photo from
Info from

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Yorkie

After a few different configurations, the Royal York of Toronto opened its doors on June 11th, 1929 by his Excellency Viscount Willingdon, Governor General of Canada. At 28 floors, the tallest building in the British Empire, set back the Canadian Pacific Railway a cool $16 mill. Rooms were 2 bucks then and the dining room served grilled Lake Ontario trout for 85 cents and Filet Mignon for $1.75.
Canadian Pacific Hotels and Resorts became Fairmont Hotels and Resorts in 1999 and the Royal York became a part of one of the largest luxury hotel chains in North America right in there with the Savoy in London, Banff Springs Hotel in Alberta and the Fairmont San Francisco.
They say Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II likes to hang at the York when she's in town so you gotta know their draught beer, corned beef and kraut probably ain't too shabby.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Da Moose

This was the scene last Saturday night at the Fraternal Order of the Moose in Fremont. The irony is that these girls weren't screaming in anticipation of our next song, it being Steak Fry Night, they were reeling in hopes that the next hu-mungo meat and baked potato they saw the waitress toting from the big-ass grill out back had their name on it.
Jacques on his new/old White Falcon along with Davy Stanton from the Concussions had many a "fat guitar" in their arsenal. Mitchell Wood from Dutch Henry and I provided the rhythmic swagger that drove these women to the pinnacle until their dinner arrived.
By the end of the second set, the grill was cooling down, and so was the crowd.
We gave it our best, but sometimes an evening is measured by the weight in ones tummy. Stick a fork in it lads.
Thanks to all who enjoyed it...and to those who made it home and slid back in their respective recliners while we climbed back up for set 3 and played probably the best set any of us has ever played in our lives.

Photo by Stan Wayman for Life Magazine, 1964

Give It To Me

As a kid, I didn't know any more about blues artists than I did the dangers of a Pinto gas tank. I remember the Stones' album cover of Out Of Our Heads as much as I remember one brother continually picking up the tone-arm and dropping it back down on Satisfaction. But being an 8 year old, in all fairness, I did not pick up on who influenced the band.
Moving ahead a year or 2 into the seventies, thanks to my banjo picking other brother, I was pretty well steeped in the whole folky, singer/songwriter heyday. Until my buddy Jacques turned me onto Full House from The J Geils Band. From that time on, I remember a distinct line being drawn from mild, clumsy, over-the-shirt make out parties to Budweiser fueled, look at the white boy dance style hoe downs.
Dang, I'd never heard Chuck Berry licks come from a harp player before. Hell, who was Chuck Berry?
By this time, I was able to surmise that, while the Beatles and the Stones were from diverging planets, the Stones and the J Geils band were first cousins once removed. They just took different streets away from home. One went juke-joint-house party shuffle and the other went
drunkin' gospel swing.

Photo From

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Brothers Truman

This says it all doesn't it? The warmth, the fuzziness, the disdain. Don, pictured at right, his body language is telling, He's like "snap it already would ya?" Anyway, thought it was time I started scanning my own photos once in a while. Happy Friday the 13th everyone and remember, there is no such thing as bad luck, just periodic streaks of crappyness.

A guy is sitting on his sofa when he hears a knock at the door. He opens the door and sees a snail on the porch. He picks up the snail and throws it as far as he can. Three years later, there's a knock at the door. He opens it and sees the same snail. The snail says, "What the hell was that all about?"

Photo from Life Magazine but later dropped for some Norman Rockwell thing.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Whell Doggys

Yeah, you'll be gettin' stares in this sled baby, all the way to the petro station. Not known for sippin gas, its a bit like the peanut tank on a Sporty, you gotta slosh the tank around at every stoplight to make sure you make it to the next stoplight.
The '66 Ford Bronco was created to compete with the Jeep CJ5 and the International Scout. The initial 3-on-the-tree 6 banger soon gave way to the 289 V8. Ain't nothin pimped about this ride. It's all about utility. Wrench the top and doors off and the chicks and fellers will be a diggin you from here to Hermosa Beach. Then again, you might want to stick a little closer to home, being a '66 and all. And the whole gas thing of course.
At one time they were delivered with factory CB. "BREAKER-BREAKER... I SAID BREAKER-BREAKER ONE NINE, I GOT ME A SMOKY ON MY TAIL...OVER?"

Back Story from
Photo from

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ol' Boss Sure Can Cowboy

I'm not a HUGE Kevin Costner fan, but like in most people, there are glimpses of goodness.
Open Range is one of those glimpses. Even the added documentary disc on the making, location, costume and set details was dang cool.
The setting is a spacious, beautiful North American locale, Alberta, Canada actually and the cinematographer purposely uses the scenery as an equal part character in the film without detracting from it.
I like my buddy films and this is no different. You can't do much better than posting Robert Duvall (Bluebonnet"Boss"Spearman) in as the other half with Kevin Costner(Charley Waite) as a couple of tired and dusty free-range cattlemen looking toward the end of their careers. You can hear and feel the unspoken admiration, loyalty and trust between the two thats implied rather than flaunted. Which is cool to pick up on from anybody anywhere. It makes you feel lucky to be fortunate enough to have that with somebody.
It's two dudes against the town in a good way, but you're too caught up in the minute details to notice any cliche.
Michael Jeter, plays Persy, who runs the town's livery stable is the cherry on top of the whipped cream on top of the banana on top o' the ice cream.
I can't say enough about Robert Duvall, or Bobby, as I call him. He's a joy, I 'd watch him in pert near anything. As for Kevy Costner, he stepped up to the plate on this one.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Sixty Eight Guns

When I think of the Plimsouls, I think about A Million Miles Away. Then I think The Oldest Story In The World. Then I think about I'll Melt With You. THEN I'll think about Valley Girl. Pretty much in that order. But If I just hear I'll Melt With You without thinking about the Plimsouls, I'll still go right to Valley Girl. Never back up through Million Miles Away or Oldest Story.
Sometimes I just like to lie on my back at night and look up at the stars. Then I start to cough and turn on my side a little.

Photo from

Medallions Of Veal

Just because I had an aunt who lived outside San Diego and my folks, who at one time, lived in Riverside for a spell while my Pop was in the service, I fancied myself as an authority on the Southern California country rock scene, at least from an Eagles perspective. I mean my roots, if not somewhat displaced, lay claim to that, don't they? It also helped that Glenn Frey is from Royal Oak. That in itself invoked a special, if not fairy tale, kinship with this fellow Michigander. Bob Seger? Enh...not so much.
To be an authority, one must root around, rummage a little. In dissecting the Eagles, you'll eventually come across Poco. Dip into the Poco archives a bit and you'll find they were at managed by John Hartman, who in turn, happened to have a brother Phil. Phil was at the time a Cal-State Northridge grad who just happened to have a degree in Graphic Art and Design. John enlisted Phil to do album art for his clients: Poco, America and Crosby Stills and Nash. Very notable and iconic album art actually, if you recall.
Turns out, Phil had talent in spades. He went on to develope his comedic chops with Paul Reubens to create Peewee Herman, Captain Carl, co-writing Peewee's Big Adventure and then 8 seasons with SNL.
For me, Phil Hartman still lives on in the Sinatra Group, Clinton in McDonalds, Johnny O'connor and The Anal-Retentive Chef.


Interview with Rusty Young from
Back Story and Photos from and

Friday, November 6, 2009

Knicked and Knackered

Milwaukee, long known for its brew city spats and dust-ups played host to the New Barbarians on one of only 18 stateside shows...period. Led by Ron Wood, this not so rag-tag troupe of co-minglers included fellow compadres Keith Richards and Bobby Keys, former Faces ivory tickler Ian MacLagan, voonderkine bassist Stanley Clarke and on drums, Zigaboo Modeliste of the Meters.
Assembled for purposes of promoting Wood's LP, Gimme Some Neck and as a form of community service as a result of Keith's 1978 Toronto drug bust.
It seems the Cream City melee was over Keith pulling a George Jones style no-show. But the date was made up for a year later by the New New Barbarians featuring Andy Newmark, Reggie McBride, Mackenzie Phillips and Johnny Lee Schell

Back Story from
Photo from

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

I Feel Good

Framing faces since 1915, Moscot doesn't need to improve on history. Embellish maybe, but never re-write. Their black and thick collabro with Common Projects would stir the likes of Stuart Sutcliffe and Ray Charles.

Photo of Moscot / Common Projects collab from
Photo of Stuart Sutcliffe from

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Fever In The Funkhouse

I don't know if I would have made much more of James Jamerson than I did if it were not for Marshall Crenshaw's loving ode to him in Rolling Stone.
What a difference 4 hours of cornfields make. I mean, Motown, what a rich and proud history and I didn't know squat. 26 years later and I STILL don't know squat. But its funny, both ha-ha and peculiar, how much more I read these days. With computer as appendage, I'm a frikkin sponge. Drives my wife nuts.
I just read how much McCartney was influenced by Jamerson and Motown. And since devouring the" new" Rubber Soul, the unison bass and guitar groove on Drive My Car and his melody runs on The Word and You Won't See me, is definitly a channeling of the Funk Brothers.
But to get a better grasp, drop that needle down, sit back and Inhale: Whats Going On, Dancing In The Street, I Can't Help Myself, You Keep Me Hangin On, My Girl, I Heard It Through The Grapevine, For Once In My Life, My Cherie Amour and Signed Seeled Delivered for just a taste.
James Jamerson's life was cut short with complications from pneumonia so he can no longer fight for the right to his contributions.
Lets not forget.

Photo of James Jamerson from
Discography from

Monday, November 2, 2009

Mama Popped A Fender

Like it or not, Carol Kaye is a big part of your life. Kind of Orwellian with a groove.
Already logging plenty of recording time on guitar for the likes of Sam Cooke in the early 60s when a no-show bass player for a Capital Records studio date left an empty chair.
Brian Wilson called her "the best damn bass player in the world." As he should. She played on;
Good Vibrations, Help Me Rhonda, Sloop John B, I Get Around, Wouldn't It Be Nice, California Girls, God Only Knows, the Pet Sounds LP, Heroes and Villains, Caroline No and Surf's Up among others.
In addition to the Wilson Family Hit Parade, Carol Kaye has thumped her way into your soul via (and this is just a partial list): Something Stupid, These Boots Are Made For Walkin, Joe Cocker's Feelin' Alright, The Way We Were, Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You, Indian Reservation, Hold Me Thrill Me, In The Heat Of The Night, America The Beautiful, Natural Man, Suspicious Minds, Little GTO, Go Little Honda, Candy Man, Theme from Shaft, Games People Play, Happy Together, Wichita Lineman, Galveston, Rhinestone Cowboy, Ain't No Mountain Enough, Ain't Nothin But The Real Thing, Don't Pull Your Love Out On Me Baby, It Must Be Him, Tiny Bubbles, Theme from Batman, I'm A Believer, Last Train to Clarksville, Homeward Bound, Scarborough Fair, Honey, River Deep Mountain High, This Diamond Ring, Just My Style, Bill Cosby TV Theme, Red Roses For A Blue Lady, Light My Fire, In Crowd, Love Child, Baby Love, Stop In The Name Of Love, Back In My Arms Again, You Can't Hurry Love, I Can't Help Myself, Get Ready, I Second That Emotion, DooRonRon, Midnight Confessions, 16 Tons, Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves, Rhythm of The Rain and How Can You Mend A Broken Heart.
TV THEMES: Mission Impossible, Mannix, MASH, Ironside, Kojak, Hawaii 5-0, Room 222, Streets Of San Francisco, Brady Bunch, Cannon, McCloud, Hogan's Heroes, Addam's Family, FBI, It Takes A Thief, Peyton Place, Alice, Wonder Woman, Love Boat, Get Smart, Green Acres, Wild Wild West, Lost In Space, Lucy, ER, The West Wing and King Of The Hill.

Top Photo of Carol Kaye from
Back Story and Partial Discography from
Bottom Photo From