I Hate Me, part 565,271

We were busy and short handed at work, a phone call about records came in. Older guy:
I saw an ad…you guys buy records…the big ones?
Yeah we buy the LP’s. Rock,blues,jazz,soul. No big band,no easy listening,no classical.
Ok…I got a lot about fifty..mainly rock
Great…just bring ‘em down and we’ll check them…
Donovan…
…yes…You don’t have to tell me all of them…if you know what you have and…
The Monkees..
YES…like said…if they’re mainly rock just bring…
Tom…Petty?
Yes…
Another Donovan..
Yes…all Donovan…if it’s even remotely rock just bring it down
Well I don’t want to load up my car with records if you don’t want them…Springsteen…
Yes
Queen
Yes
The Rolling Stones
…yes
Lynyrd Skynyrd
Yeah
Tom Petty…is this the same Tom Petty record?…Could I have two of them?
…I don’t…look, I have another customer here who needs help. Just bring all the records down to the store…if you need help getting them out of your car, we can send somebody out to help you.
…so you’re interested?
Yes
-click-
About fifteen minutes goes by and I get another call about records
David Bowie…
What?…who is this?
I just called about the records… how about David Bowie
…yes
The Who
….(sigh)….yes
All of them?
Yes, all of them…Look…We..Want..To..Buy..Your..Records
Oh…Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young
Yes…any variation of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young…solo albums…whatever you got.
Barry Manilow
…(sigh)…we don’t ever buy his stuff but…fuck it, I’ll buy it if its in with the rest of the stuff.
I have a few of them…
…I don’t care…just bring them down…bring them ALL down…
Hmmm…ok…let me think about it.
-click-

possible deal breaker

possible deal breaker

I Hate Me, part 523,991

(note:I think this happened in 81 or 82. I just finished Be Stiff:The Stiff Records Story by Richard Balls (surprisingly not a fake name) and it reminded me of this story)

When I was younger for some reason I was convinced that if you went to the offices of record companies and asked for free stuff you would get a ton of cool things. I have no idea what made me think that, I don’t know anybody that it ever happened to but I was convinced. So  I talked my brother and a friend into going up to New York, I sold it to them as a chance to go to McSorley’s Ale House which was an exotic destination for a bunch of knuckle draggers from Keansburg. Once we got up there and had a few rounds I was going to get some free stuff (nobody used the word “swag” then) from record companies, they owed me. We got into Manhattan drank a bit and then went to Swan Song Records, I was a big Led Zeppelin fan and I figured they’d have, posters, stickers, badges, maybe even a small replica of The Object (from the album Presence) just for the fans who cared enough to make the trip. We lasted about 5 seconds in the Swan Song offices. Three drunken oafs demanding free stuff was not what anybody there wanted to see and we were brusquely shown the door. The next and last stop was Stiff Records, whose office was much smaller but the result was the same. I did manage to steal the sign off of their door, so I had something to show for the day besides a hangover.
Stiff sign

McDonalds Failures: Part 234, The Shamrock McRib

In 1997 McDonalds attempted to combine two of their most popular limited time items, The Shamrock Shake and the McRib Sandwich. This hybrid combined the McRib pork-like sandwich with a special green “Shamrock Sauce” served on a dyed green roll. It was introduced at a small number of McDonalds restaurants in Iowa and reactions ranged from spontaneous vomiting to a full fledged riot before it was pulled two days into it’s trial run. Although not as disastrous as their foray into medicine (McDentist) it was a definite black eye for the company.
shamrock mcrib

Notes From Das Boot 229

Monday 3/2/15- Red Bank, New Jersey

ScumBASH was an odd festival even by Dutch standards (The Exploited, Rev. Horton Heat Sham 69, Monster Magnet and many unknown roots-a-billy bands). The crowd was a cross between Neo-rockabilly guys their Betty Page-ish counterparts, doughy middle aged guys in Mohawks, and artisan beard farmers. By the end of the festival after a long day of drinking everyone was staggering around and it looked like the cover of a Back From The Grave* compilation (minus the murder and mayhem). The best part of the day was checking out the old Van Nelle  factory where the festival was held. An amazing building from the late 1920’s and a great example of the International Style of architecture. The worst part was that there was no record sellers in the “Cutthroat Bay” of retailers. At most of these kind of festivals and especially if there’s any rockabilly or punk contingent there’s gonna be a couple of guys hawking records. Nope, there was an old-timey barber, a couple of guys doing tattoos, a nail place and a t-shirt guy who seemed to only sell shirts that had Johnny Cash on them or the word Psychobilly. 

Now I’m home again and everything is a little more right in the world. Back to work tomorrow.

Voeding Kracht, the mechanical overlord of ScumBASH.

*if you don’t have any of the Back From The Grave compilations, buy them all and buy them now.  



Notes from Das Boot 228

Saturday 2/28/15, Dresden Germany en route to Rotterdam Holland

Don’t know if I’ll get a chance to post during the day. ScumBASH is run by the same people who ran Speedfest and the Internet at Speedfest was akin to somebody scrawling the word Wi-Fi on a piece of paper and handing it you:    

Here’s your internet wi-fi.       

 But it’s just a piece of paper with the words Internet and wi-fi written on it.     

 Well we didn’t say it was good wi-fi.   

 Can I get online with it.   

  No

Last club show today. An aging scenester, hanging around with the local crew. He looked like in the old days he would have been in the East German version of Television (No Television). Pointing out everything that’s wrong with how I’m setting up my projectors.   

Staring, long cigarette drag…exhale… “ah…projectors…yes, you are too far back…perhaps…they might work…hmmm….maybe not…”        

  I just gave him a long dead eyed stare and he left.

Dressing room has a heavy, headache inducing mold smell, the kind I identify with old, shitty, water damaged record collections we get in at work  “some of them records are stuck together but the vinyls are good”

Towards the end of the tour there’s a game called sour milk roulette. We have a collection of milk that we get on our rider every day. Sometimes they outstay their welcome and if you grab the wrong milk for coffee or cereal, gahhhhhhh!  By the time you realize the milk has turned its already been put away and its a hassle to walk the three steps back to the fridge and throw it out, and so it stays. A quick fix is to see what language the carton is in. Christ, we haven’t been in England in two weeks, avoid that milk…but don’t throw it out. 



Who knows when, just be ready!!!

Notes from Das Boot 227

Friday 2/27/15, Dresden Germany

Second to last day of the tour. With ScumBASH/FEST/CON/etc. tomorrow which at best is gonna be a mess (christ, it’s called ScumBASH. A rare case of truth in advertising), today is the best day to start packing. Trying to get the toothpaste back in the tube with some extra toothpaste (in the form of records and books). The final pack is always frustrating, never enough room and questions about why I brought certain things in the first place. Did I really need to bring my entire collection of tiny hats in their tiny hat boxes? Probably not, while they brought me great comfort and joy while on the road, they did take up a lot of room. However I did make a little extra money when I set up Tim’s Phantastigal Tiny Hat Museum at the merch counter (5€, cash only). Some say it was a bigger draw than the actual concert, families would come from miles around and buy concert tickets just for the chance to see the “best curated tiny hat collection on any continent”* but I don’t want to stop here. Eventually I want to have a tiny hat revue with small birds waltzing around a stage wearing the tiny hats. The next step in world tiny hat domination will be even tinier hats for insects. Imagine a wood louse in a tiny fitted homburg…

I need some sleep or strong coffee

Show today in Dresden at an old slaughterhouse, most venues in Germany are at old slaughterhouses.

*NY Times, 2/10/14 from the article Tiny Hats, Why Now?



One of the highlights of my tiny hat collection

Notes from Das Boot 226

Thursday 2/26/15, Hanover Germany

Was informed that the festival in Rotterdam is ScumBASH and not ScumFEST which is another festival. I didn’t realize how many scum based music festivals there were in Europe: ScumPARTY, ScumSTOCK, ScumCON, and ScumBRUNCH. Sorry for the confusion.

Had another problem with the lighting guys name. Flo told me his name twice and I proceeded to call him Val for a couple of hours, realized my mistake and then called him Lon. Lon? Who the fuck is called Lon? (don’t tell me, I don’t care). I gave up and just called him “Thanks, Man” for the rest of the day.

Internet was terrible at the Schlachthoff Club today, Worse than InterNOT, it was Shitternet. Unable to download the de-colorized version of Gone With the Wind, maybe tomorrow.

BONUS STORY: maybe this is too obscure or maybe it’s just too dumb- opening band Bombus does a drum solo every night. I’ve never seen the drum solo but I hear it every night. Bob and I hypothesized that all the guys in the band participated in the drum solo, like a relay race but with drums. And when somebody would compliment the drummer on his skills, some body else from the band would quip, “He’s not even the best drummer in Bombus” referencing the Beatles story that ended “he’s (Ringo) not even the best drummer in the Beatles”



the Chinese Pep Boys from a Mao exhibit in Bremen 

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