By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
At this rate, the only thing Epic Records hasn't released bearing Stevie Ray Vaughan's name on the spine is a double-disc collection of his entire funeral--with a limited edition third disc featuring the sound of the grave diggers pitching dirt atop his casket. After all, you would have thought that last year's four-CD box SRV (almost two-thirds of which was unreleased material) would have wiped the vault clean, but--surprise, surprise!--you'd be wrong. On October 23, Epic is releasing yet another SRV album, a two-disc set taken from his appearance at the Montreaux Jazz Festival on July 15, 1985. The show was one of Vaughan's first "big" gigs, and we're pretty sure it's where he was initially booed off the stage. You might know better, since the set has already been making the rounds for years as a bootleg. Also in the works is a disc culled from one of Vaughan's many visits to his personal hat maker. We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Vaughan always wanted to be Jimi Hendrix (the king of posthumous releases), and in death, he's finally found a way. Thanks for helping a young kid realize a dream, Epic Records...
If you've been hurting--hurting--for new material from Vanilla Ice, you might want to check out Are You Man Enough?,the new album by Betty Blowtorch, a band described by, um, itself as "four foul-mouthed, power-tool-crazy, rock-and-roll hussies who will fix your car then hump you on top of it." Nice. Among the 15 tunes on Are You Man Enough? is "Size Queen," which features the former Robbie Van Winkle rapping about his little Van Winkle, if you know what we mean. And you probably do, even though "Size Queen" is slightly subtler than other Betty Blowtorch songs like, say, "Shut Up and Fuck."
And if you want a little more Vanilla Ice, he's playing at Trees on June 22, with a band that now includes former Hellafied Funk Crew drummer Chris Antonopolous. (Another member of Hellafied is now backing Vanilla Ice as well, bassist...uh, something. Bob maybe?) Which makes sense, since last time we saw Van Winkle, it was outside of Trees after an Elliott Smith show, and Antonopolous was with him. As far as we know: Someone had apparently put bourbon into all of our Cokes that night, so everything is a bit blurry. Expect a new Vanilla Ice record before the year is done. Who thought that sentence still would be relevant in 2001? Put your hand back down. You didn't...
Best idea we've heard in a long time: A Saturday Night Live parody of Bands on the Run--focused on the boys of Flickerstick, because, well, they are the most entertaining--featuring Jimmy Fallon as Cory Kreig, Will Ferrell as walking hard-on Dominic Weir and Chris Kattan (under a floppy wig) as front man Brandin Lea. (P.S. Lea's father is named Bruce; Bruce and Brandin Lea--that's just strange.) Too bad the show is in reruns for the summer. This fine idea comes courtesy of Chomsky guitarist Glen Reynolds, who mentioned it during a break from reconfiguring every Depeche Mode song's lyrics until they were all about Chomsky drummer Matt Kellum. Guess you had to be there and slightly, um, impaired. Speaking of Depeche Mode, they're actually playing Smirnoff Music Centre on July 17, not June, as was previously mentioned in these pages. We're idiots...
The following is an e-mail we received from one Eric Ripley, who was quite upset after reading our June 7 Scene, Heard column about KRBV-FM's format change. Or something like that: It was tough to find the needle in Ripley's haystack of outrage. That said, before we go any further, we'd like to commend Ripley on his brave use of punctuation and capital letters and his willingness to take one for the team and join the Observer staff, just so the truth can finally be known. For your reading pleasure, we have not changed a single keystroke, so you can have the privilege of reading Ripley's work as it was meant to be read, in its pure, unadulterated form. Enjoy.
"As a Follow Radio DJ, I find this Article appalling," Ripley begins. "First the write tries to insult my listening pleasures, then throws the Pres. in there. Why? what possible parallel is there in music ad the Pres. Oh, reaching for an audience. I see. If you need better journalist's. I'm available. But before you contemplate my hiring you must remember. I don't write Filth." As everyone knows, Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh wrote Filth, but thanks for reminding us, Eric. Unfortunately, however, we're not hiring. We'll keep your résumé on file. Don't worry, buddy. At some point, we're sure the Observer will need another good "write."
In other news, no matter if KRBV-FM is calling itself HOT 100 or WILD 100, we'd only listen if one of Ripley's "Follow Radio DJs" put a gun to our heads. That wasn't a suggestion, by the way...
Hope these places have AC: The Cush plays Good Records on June 23, Gabby and Burette Douglas' last show before splitting for Vermont; The Hudson Falcons and The Staggers are at Bar of Soap on June 27; Mercova opens for Aspera at Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios on June 21, The Falcon Project and A Roman Scandal do the same for the Faint the next night, and South San Gabriel continues the theme, opening for The Anomoanon (featuring Ned Oldham, Will "Bonnie 'Prince' Billy" Oldham's brother) on June 24. Make a little time in your schedule.