Author Archives: Green Day Mind

About Green Day Mind

Writer, blogger, archivist, not a mom. Two cats. Goes to a lot of punk shows.

Mike Dirnt Sings Good Riddance with Billie Joe at American Idiot – Team Spider Video

Special thanks to Team Spider for sending in the video below!

Team Spider is a local punk bike activist group here in New York City. They are hardcore proponents of the right to free assembly, and are participants in the Critical Mass bike rides that take place here in the city and around the world. I believe that they are also part of Time’s Up, a local environmental direct action group here in New York, and participate in the heart of New York’s punk scene, C-Squat on Avenue C. I’ve been to C-Squat a few times lately, and have seen some excellent shows. While I stick out like a sore thumb, being that the venue is crusty punk, and I’m totally a middle-aged woman trying to hold onto youth, lol, everyone has always been super nice and friendly. I admire their stance, and frankly, courage, in regards to life. I couldn’t live the life, but I have to say thanks to such groups who keep it real, taking action against what they see as injustices in the world in regards to social issues.

Anyway, they got Front Row AA tickets to American Idiot recently. While they did not enjoy the show as much as a fan of it would like them to, they did take a great video of Mike Dirnt playing with Billie Joe Armstrong on 1/22/11 at the St. James Theater.

Special thanks to Team Spider for sending in the video!

 

In reading their review, looking at it as they do from the stance of street activism and the life of punks, they take exception to a lot in the show. In fact, they hate it! And it’s ok. Not everyone will love American Idiot, and surely, some folks won’t even like it. I remember the first time that I saw it in Berkeley, I had such conflicts with the production that I had to get drunk that first night in September 2009. Since then I’ve fallen in love with the production, but it’s taken me a long time to reconcile my not-so-in-love-with-Broadway feelings to my so-in-love-with-the-music feelings. Most of all, I go for the music, which has always been the star of the show to me, even beyond Billie Joe making his appearances as St. Jimmy. I’ve also been able to see how the performers have developed their characters, and to appreciate the hybrid opera/concert/musical experience.

Of course, I wish Team Spider had liked it, but looking at the show from a real-life view from the street, any production on Broadway is so far away from C-Squat on Avenue C, that I’m just glad that they went! I would take exception to one thing, though: I don’t think that Green Day did American Idiot on Broadway for the money, which is just another way to accuse them of selling out. I do think they did it for the love of creating. Of course, money doesn’t hurt, but for a production that has barely made its initial costs back (and I’m assuming that it has by now) hasn’t made its initial costs back at this point, implying that they possibly did it for money is pretty far from the truth. Though of course, royalties are always cool.

Enjoy the video!


“But I’m alive, I’m alive, I’m alive like suicide…” Original Goodnight New York Lyrics

BJA "Goodnight New York" Lyrics Owned by Mary Rosenblatt

Back in late September-October 2010 when Billie Joe Armstrong first performed in American Idiot for a week on Broadway, he ended his run on October 3. That night he penned a little song and sang it to New York City before the Good Riddance encore. No one knew then, not even him, that he was going to come back for two months in 2011 to star in the show as St. Jimmy. I went to a lot of the shows that week for fear of never seeing him perform again in the show. Hearing him sing this little song live was one of those bittersweet moments that you only get once or so in a lifetime. Sweet because it was a love song to my city of New York and the amazing experience of the theater, and bitter because all fleeting moments of pure happiness are like that in the end.

The song was called, Goodnight New York.

“I left my blood like bullets over broadway… the fire of the footlights at the St. James… with broken in legs and roses over New York… these goodnight songs of long lost love and war… But I’m alive, I’m alive, I’m alive like suicide… So goodnight, goodnight, New York.”

The tune possessed a strain of both joy and melancholy that cut right through my heart. Sometimes when I’m really down in New York (as has been the case a lot this winter, particularly since the holiday season started), I repeat in my mind the lyrical refrain, “But I’m alive… I’m alive… I’m alive like suicide… .” I grab onto it like a lifeline so that I hold on and hold out for yet another winter of being alive. Winter is my least favorite season and I get all kinds of down throughout it. The lyric has helped me to fiercely remember the actual joy of life and encourages me to grab onto every bit of it through the tough times, as well as the good ones, that I can.

The lyric itself is a bit of a puzzle and has an odd dichotomy. How can anyone be alive or find life through suicide? What is the nature of that state of being? Is it a metaphorical case of leaving one facet of your life behind and steadfastly screaming out in amazement at the very fact of being alive, or finding life through ending it? No, certainly not the latter example. He sang, “I’m alive, I’m alive, I’m alive” so emphatically that it cancels out all thoughts of a real suicide. “Alive” sounds like one of those screams of urgency to “rally out the demons of your soul,” not to give up, certainly. It’s a problematic lyric, much like a Japanese koan puzzle or a quote by the Iranian/Persian poet and mystic, Rumi. We all know how much Billie Joe hearts Rumi.

Back to that night in October: Mary Rosenblatt was sitting at the very front of the St. James in Row AA. Mary brought with her a single red rose to give to Billie Joe. After the encore, she gave him the single rose and he ended up giving her the lyrics.

I know Mary from here and there. I saw her and asked if I could take photos of the lyrics, one of which I put up on Plixi that night. Mary was so happy and shocked, and a little dazed at the same time! What a wealth of emotions and memories that one little sheet of torn-off legal paper can give to one person, let alone to people all over the world.

BJA Lyrics with American Idiot Pic - Photo by Mary Rosenblatt - Click to view

I’m an archivist, someone who takes care of the correspondence, photos, audio and video of people and institutions. I’ve held numerous kinds of documents in my hands, from the American Revolution and the Civil War, from famous activists, presidents, and performers. When I briefly held Billie Joe’s lyrics in my hands, the only thing I thought was how, in an instant, one piece of slightly torn paper with scribbles on it can go from the mundane to something that is worth framing and keeping safe for Mary’s lifetime and beyond. This one piece of paper, with scratched out words and chords, is one of those pieces of paper.

After the show, I sent Mary some special archival polyester sheets and an acid-free folder to keep the lyrics safe and free from damage until she could get the sheet properly framed, which she recently did. The framed lyric sheet is now somewhere on her wall, a wonderful piece of instant history. I can see it one day being exhibited in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Goodnight, New York Snapshot of Mary's Lyrics Taken by GDM After the Show

Goodnight, New York Snapshot of Mary's Lyrics Taken by GDM After the Show

Full video of “Good Night, New York,” sung by Billie Joe Armstrong on October 3, 2010, shown giving Mary the lyrics. Watch for the funny moment with him giving the guitar away, too. It had a transponder in it, and there was a slight hullabaloo when the person who got it wanted to keep the guitar, but the stage hands had to take the transponder out first. She did get the guitar (or one similar to it) at the end of the night.


“Griller”… eh? – Frustrators™ Reveal Name and Cover Art of New EP

Somebody turn Stanley over! He’s done!

Yesterday, 1/21, the Frustrators™ revealed the title of their new 7″ four-song EP! And not only did they reveal the title, but they revealed the awesome cover art as well! And not only that, but they revealed a completely mind-blowing lineup of fellow East Bay musicians who are hitting the road with them in February!

All of this stuff at once would usually point toward only one conclusion, but don’t worry, it’s probably not another sign of the Apocalypse!

Instead, it’s a nice sign that we’re all a few steps closer to actually hearing the new EP from Mike Dirnt, Jason Chandler, Art Tedeschi and Terry Linehan!! In fact, the EP will be released on CD, FEBRUARY 15th, on vinyl, FEBRUARY 18th, and other digital formats on FEBRUARY 22. WOOT! The vinyl will be released through Dr. Strange Records and the CD and digital formats through Adeline Records.

Griller? WTF?

I have to admit, I was a little stumped when I read about the EP title, unexpectedly announced by the California mini-tour MCs, Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits, early yesterday. I was like, Griller? Eh? That’s the album title? WTF?

The Frustrators™ Facebook page was having yet another crazy conversation, this one about potential titles, and no one was making guesses anywhere close to that (lots of ball jokes, though). Jimmy Zeus gave a cryptic clue: “Well our other two EPs have titles that make fun of overexposed top-40 monuments to over-production…” I had no idea what he was talking about until I remembered that their first and second recordings are named after albums by Bruce Springsteen and U2, namely, Born in the USA and Achtung Baby.

This all happened before I briefly saw the EP cover art later in the day, and couldn’t pay attention to it long enough to catch what was going on with the title. It had been a busy day and then I tried to win lotto tickets to American Idiot at night. I didn’t win the lotto and that’s ok, because it’s so frikking cold outside, I’m just glad I got home before the temperature hit the freezing mark.

When I finally got home and sat on my couch, I saw the awesome cover art that “make[s] fun of overexposed top-40 monuments to over-production…,” this particular top-40 monument being the late, great, and strange… Michael Jackson, or more specifically, his 1982 album, Thriller.

After eight long years of waiting, the Frustrators™ finally bring you brilliant, and dare I say, sexy (ooh, Stanley! your hot!), new cover art by the creators of those classic recordings, ACHTUNG JACKASS and Bored in the U.S.A. (which certainly aren’t monuments to over-production… or any production, actually… I kid, Denny!) Griller:

Ooh, that Stanley, he's a... Griller - EP Cover Art Courtesy of the Frustrators

Maybe it's just a thing about Vegetarianism and not Michael Jackson. But I doubt it.

Yes, it took me a teeny bit of time to realize what I was seeing and then I… cracked up with laughter… and some horror… or maybe I was just feeling a little thrilled!

Now, if the music is as good and irreverent as the artwork, I’d be way happy!

Stanley is one sexy chicken (or is he a cock?) on the album cover! However, I’m not sure if I should eat him or rescue him from the grill. Alas, unlike some members of the Frustrators™, I am not a vegetarian. Sigh.

After the jump, read more about the EP, the record release, and the hot-shit lineup packed with a week’s worth (2/18-2/27) of outstanding shows in Berkeley, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. And… SEE A PREVIEW OF OTHER NEW ARTWORK FROM THE FRUSTRATORS™ LEAD SINGER JASON CHANDLER FOR THE COVER OF BOBBY JOE EBOLA’S EP, MEAL DEAL WITH THE DEVIL COMING SOON!

Tour Lineup and Art Work After the Jump!

Continue reading


BREAKING NEWS – FRUSTRATORS TOUR DATES – FEBRUARY 2011

Frustrators' Manager, Jimmy Zeus

Straight from the horse’s mouth! Nice horsey!

Here are the tour dates for the Frustrators California Shows! Woot!!

:::::BREAKING NEWS FROM THE BUNKER:::::

HERE YA GO FOLKS, FRUSTRATORS SHOWS!!! (ALL SHOWS ALL AGES!)

BAY AREA
Friday, Feb. 18th @ 924 Gilman St. – Berkeley!
Saturday, Feb. 19th @ Bottom of the Hill – SF (Matinee Show)!
Sunday, Feb. 20th @ Rickshaw Stop – SF!

L.A. AREA
Friday, Feb. 25th @ venue to be announced!
Sunday, Feb. 27th @ The Troubadour – LA!

and maybe more to come… All these shows will feature our tour-mates MC Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits, other bands are still to be announced. So stay tuned to this Facebook page and our Twitter feed for late-breaking news as it develops. YEAH!!


Green Day Across the World – May 28, 2011

2nd Place "Green Day Across the World" Logo Contest by GD Jonny

On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day when I’m writing this announcement, I’d like to take a moment to say a word of thanks. Who would I like to thank, besides Dr. King? Well, I’d like to thank all of you who have stopped by Green Day Mind to read and say hello. I appreciate your visits and comments and I hope we all have a great 2011!

I’d like to also take a second to thank those people throughout time immemorial (like Dr. King) who have contributed some positive hand to the rights of man, beast, and land. The world is a crazy place and we each have our own beliefs, but it’s nice when people can come together on at least one or two basic issues. Your issues will differ from mine, and that’s OK. My beliefs tend to center around the ideal that people deserve life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, free from genocide and war with the ability to take care of their families and community, have safe water, healthy natural resources, and sustainable energy. While that sounds all high-minded, let’s not forget the most basic right, the inalienable right to party (or celebrate, you take your pick)!

At the East River Resting at the Opening of the Newtown Creek -- Kayaking in New York City

While everyone won’t agree on everything, I hope we can concur on one thing: that a clean, robust and healthy planet is probably better than a filthy, dirty and rotten one. I think about the environment at lot, particularly about the waterways of the world and especially about the ones here in New York City.

New York is a City of Water, filled with massive and powerful rivers, tiny inlets, and an ocean just a subway ride away. If there’s one thing that is true, humans and animals alike cannot survive without clean water. While that’s true, we also need to use waterways for transport and industry. How we balance the two needs, human consumption and industry (as well as sanitation issues), makes all the difference between dead and healthy seas.

New York City’s waterways were a mess from industry and pollution, but they have come a long way toward health and less pollution over the last ten years. Once absent dolphins and seals have been spotted here and there in the East River in small numbers, a sure sign of potential health. Clean rivers prompts crazy people like me, as part of the Long Island City Community Boathouse, to take little boats out for kayaking good times. The kayaking is free at the LICCB and we encourage the community to jump back into the water. In recent years, I’ve kayaked around the island of Manhattan at night for ten straight hours, resting at small beaches and other free public kayaking clubs around the borough. I’ve seen beautiful shoreline in Staten Island, Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and the Bronx, as well as the harsh remnants of the Five Borough’s broken industrial docks and rotting timbers.

On the whole, it’s a beautiful sight. Except for a few nasty places here and there, like the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn or the Newton Creek. The latter small creek, located between the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, was and still is, an industrial wasteland. Back in the day, a massive oil spill combined with oil leakage from the companies that used to thrive along the riverline, has rested at the bottom of this creek for a long, long, time. After years of petitioning and review, the Newtown Creek is now a Superfund site and as such, the restoration of its health is a National priority. Here’s a story at Gothamist about the Creek, and includes a photo that I took while kayaking down the inlet a while ago. Here’s a full set of Newtown Creek photos that I took from 2007 on Smugmug.

Green Day Across the World Official T-Shirt by Ms_Gd_Lover Logo Contest Winner

We are lucky here in New York, but a lot of places aren’t so lucky. Pollution, poverty, lack of sanitation, et al, takes a toll on the water and the land, wherever you are. If you like a clean environment and are looking for a good cause, there’s a fan-based initiative that started at the Green Day Community over the last four months called “Green Day Across the World.” I am not quite sure who the idea started with, but it ended up being a collective effort ultimately organized through sheer tenacity and true grit into the “Green Day Across the World” environmental event. It’s a day to honor both Green Day and a green world. The event will take place on May 28, 2011 in a city and town near you.

Please note that this is a fan-based initiative and it’s going to take fans to pull it off, which means you! If you’d like to learn more about both the event and what you can do to host an event in your city, town or area, please visit the Green Day Across the World website or click the logo above. You can come up with your own environmental themes and issues. To get involved, you can send a message directly to dawnwilcox1@gmail.com and can also find them on Facebook and Twitter @GreenDayATWrld.

From what I understand, Billie Joe and Adrienne have both heard of this event and while I do not know if they have officially endorsed it, they are said to be enthusiastic about it. Find out more information from the website on prizes, t-shirts, action groups, and events. I believe that all money except for operating costs will go to the National Resource Defense Council. I’ll write more in the coming months about the event as details unfold!

I did not help to organize this event, so all questions should go the email above for more information.

Thanks to Dawn and everyone at the Green Day Community who worked so damed hard on this. You guys all rock. If you’re a member of the Green Day Community, here’s the thread at the GDC.

Green Day Across the World


Hot Flash from the Frustrators! – Exclusive Photo!

Frustrators in the Studio! OK, sorta kinda - Exclusive Photo Courtesy of Frustrators Monkey Manager, Jimmy Zeus (aka Jason Chandler)

The Frustrators’ Facebook page lit up last week with the hot cigar glow of the band’s monkey manager, Jimmy Zeus, heralding news that band members Terry Lineham and Art Tedeschi had outed fellow band members Jason Chandler and Mike Dirnt by announcing something awfully special… A NEW FRUSTRATORS 4-SONG EP coming soon! Yeah, I know you’ve heard that before, but apparently this time, it’s really going to happen!

Stanley the Chicken, Booking Agent, is Uber Excited (Fake Stanley Courtesy of Amy Hettrick)

Fervent followers of Mike Dirnt’s side project band whooped it up something fierce and spread the news far and wide that the Frustrators, rumored since early 2010 to be recording in the studio bunker, were at it in full force. And by full force, that means, well, actual new songs on both vinyl and CD! The EP’s title hasn’t been announced yet, but the vinyl will have different art work from the CD. Art Tedeschi has created a sculpture of Frustrators mascot booking agent, Stanley the Chicken, for the vinyl that will be different from the CD cover art version.

I tracked down Jason Chandler through Zeus, who forced him to stop working for just one damn moment to share the following with you all:

Here’s an exclusive photo fer ya! It’s us in the Static Room mixing with our engineer pal Denny Muller. He doesn’t actually wear overalls and a red handkerchief all the time, that’s just an old stereotype which has no place in the 21st century and I include myself in this.

The EP itself is coming along swimmingly, we’re scrambling on the final CD mastering and artwork right now which is fun really. And the vinyl stuff is already at the press. But manufacturing and printing take time. Hopefully all our new-found Facebook fans will still be around in a month or so, but attention is fickle and I assume that we’ll lose a good chunk of them to Angry Birds, etc.

We also started a twitter account (@Frustrators) so let the sexting begin! Actually I’m not quite sure how it works, but I figure if a celebutard can do it, so can I.

As for Stanley and his pals, you should try to get in touch with Stanley directly at his Facebook account. (He’s my friend so you could probably just sneak in a browse through my address book to find him. My face is an open book.) I don’t want to violate his privacy. [Note from GDM: oops, I linked to Stanley’s page… do chickens really have privacy?]

Not only should we expect the new EP to be mastered and out the door, but there’s also rumors of gig dates coming up, too! I smell a giant Frustratorhead meet-up in the near future as the Frustrators haven’t played a gig since the early dawning of the new Millennium. We’re all ready for a hot flash of frustration and if all goes well, Green Day Mind will see you there!


What’s Up with Green Day and “TOP 17 QUESTIONS THAT *AbbeyFox* WOULD ASK BILLIE JOE ARMSTRONG ON JAN 9TH THAT @PatrickHealyNYT WON’T”

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, you Green Day fans, you!

Green Day's Pink Bunny! - From GreenDay.com

I realize that I haven’t posted anything since December 5th when Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits came through NYC and surrounding areas. Unfortunately, the holiday season did me in mentally and physically from Thanksgiving to Christmas and I had to take a little break from writing. I’m happy to report, though, that I saw Bobby Joe Ebola’s Corbett and Dan as well as Honah Lee in Trenton and was able to catch all of Bobby Joe Ebola’s NYC and Brooklyn shows. They are the nicest guys ever and made it back to the East Bay safe and sound after the tour. Good Times and Good News! They are releasing more music mayhem in the coming year, I’ll keep you posted.

There’s not that much news-wise going on with Green Day at the moment since their tour ended, but Mike Dirnt and his wife Brittney did have a baby daughter in November by the name of Ryan Ruby. Congrats to them! I also heard that Billie Joe and Tre played a club somewhere in California, but I really didn’t pay that much attention to it. News leaked through a Chicago blog that Billie Joe was in town talking with producers about a Chicago-based run of American Idiot, but, it’s a blog and those are rumors, so take it with a grain of salt. I post off-the-beaten trail news items on my GreenDayMind Twitter, so go and follow me for Green Day and American Idiot items as well as news of other bands. Other than that, it’s been pretty quiet mostly, and you can read up on any other information about the band on their official site, GreenDay.com and of course, the GreenDayAuthority, as well.

Yes, it is Awesome as Fuck – Live CD/DVD, March 2011

Amazon.com put up a pre-sale announcement regarding Green Day’s upcoming live CD/DVD called “Awesome As Fuck,” or… AAF for short. As you may know, the title comes from signs made by fans that morphed from a “Thanks” to Green Day in Paris to letting Green Day know that they were “Awesome As Fuck” in Denver and a simple, “Welcome Home” in San Francisco. If you’d like to read more about the signs, you can read a post I wrote back in September that explains both the origin of the signs and the Awesome As Fuck phrase Punknews.com linked to it recently, and that kinda made my day! But don’t read the comments to the Punk News posting, because of course “punks” hate Green Day and take every opportunity to slag them off that they can take. They are arses.

Green Day’s Youtube Channel briefly posted a banner announcing the album, but it was quickly taken down. Fortunately, someone at the Green Day Community snagged it before it disappeared:

Awesome as Fuck Live CD/DVD Banner

It’s a great logo and amazing that Green Day’s Pink Bunny will possibly be the artwork for the album. There’s no official details on the nature of the recording yet, but word on the street is that the DVD portion of the set is from a show in Japan and that the live album CD will be from Green Day’s North American Amphitheater Tour from this summer, but nothing is confirmed yet. I repeat: Nothing is Confirmed Yet, so don’t ask me because I don’t know! All we really know is that the title of the live album will be Awesome As Fuck and that the release date as of now is March 15, 2011, so stay tuned until further notice!

Billie Joe on Broadway Returns for January/February Run and New York
Times
Interview with Michael Mayer and Patrick Healey

Billie Joe at St. Jimmy - Photo by Getty?

Billie Joe returns to Broadway in January and February, and Green Day Land is abuzz with excitement. Fortunately fans from around the world will be coming in for it, but unfortunately, those same fans have to be prepared for bad weather that may get them stuck coming in and out of New York City. In fact, as I write this, I’m stuck in Detroit (my hometown) after my flight back to New York was cancelled on Sunday due to a snow thunderstorm/blizzard that hit the East Coast and shut down travel from trains, planes and automobiles. If you’ve ever been stuck in Detroit, you know that I’m miserable, but, I’ll get out eventually. I hope. All I can say is be prepared for winter weather. I remember when I went to see Pinhead Gunpowder back in February when a winter storm caused major havoc and I had to scramble to get to Berkeley for the once-in-a-lifetime chance of seeing the mercurial Pinhead Gunpowder play a benefit show at 924 Gilman for their friend, Anandi. It was well-worth it, but nerve-wracking nonetheless. We are all going to pretend that the weather will be lovely from here on out and everyone coming in from the nether regions of the world to see Billie Joe on Broadway will encounter only good weather and good times. Prayers to the Lushie Gods are certainly in order for that one! Billie Joe will be back starting this weekend, January 1st, and though he will have two weeks off during the two months, there will be a total of fifty performances with him staring as St. Jimmy. The schedule for Billie Joe’s performances can be found at the American Idiot on Broadway site. Tony Vincent, who originated the role of St. Jimmy that Billie Joe will be doing, leaves the cast as of December 30, 2010. I was going to see Tony again in the show this week, but sadly, Snowpacalypse 2010 will now prevent that.

Patrick Healey, an Arts and Entertainment writer at the New York Times, will be interviewing Armstrong and Michael Mayer coming up on January 9th at the Times Building on 43rd and 8th Avenue. (Information on the sold-out event can be found here.) If you remember when Jordan Roth interviewed Armstrong and Mayer at the 92 Street Y back in September, the questions were pretty run-of-the-mill and, well, tame. Of course, at the American Idiot talkbacks, there were a lot of good questions as well as uninformative ones such as “Can I give you a hug, Billie Joe?” but I have a feeling that Healey just won’t be asking the questions that are really on the minds of fans, and with that in mind, the ever-funny Abbey Fox has written up a Twitter-based list of 17 questions that she would like to ask Billie Joe.

I don’t really want to see Billie Joe’s feet (though if the opportunity arose…), but she has composed some classic and funny rejoinders that will unfortunately, never be asked, but are on the minds of many Green Day fans – or, at least the Mind of Abbey. I asked her if I could reprint her questions below. Here’s the list, and let’s hope that Healey will get the message and ask at least one question. After all, Jordan Roth did use one of Abbey’s questions at the 92 Street Y. I hope you are reading this, Healey!

***** @GREENDAY SPAM ALERT WARNING*****

TOP 17 QUESTIONS THAT **@AbbeyFox** WOULD ASK @GREENDAY BILLIE JOE ARMSTRONG ON JAN 9TH THAT @PatrickHealyNYT WON’T

1) Can we see your feet? @greenday

2) Tom Fucking Kitt. Have you licked his face? @GreenDay

3) What can you tell us about AI the movie project. And no bullshit, you gonna play St. Jimmy or what? Cuz you should. @greenday

4) You said you felt like a goddamed Bway rookie & you fucking loved it. What might you look to next to feel like a rookie again? @greenday

5) Your Steve Jobs rant in South America. WTF? @greenday

6) In 2010 @GreenDay gave us the summer USA HO AS HELL TOUR. Any chance Reverend Strychnine Twitch launches a 2011 HOS IN HELL TOUR?

7) When are you going to create a line of mens and womens socks? Discuss. @greenday

8. What was the best gift you got or gave for Xmas? Worst? @greenday

9) Tell us about creating a distinctly different St. Jimmy than Tony Vincent’s. @greenday

10) Rodeo Queens: future plans? Or just drinky time fun? @greenday

11) Tell us about AWESOME AS FUCK and the live cd/dvd. Do you realize how much fans shit themselves when they saw the AAF title?

12) Of all your side projects, which one, if any, are you itching to get back to next? @greenday

13) As AI comes to a close how will you keep these amazingly talented people tangled in your @GreenDay web? Where does the show go next?

14) We’ve heard you have a lot of new shit written. Any connected theme thru it? Tell us about it. @greenday

15) What’s the status of getting a new @GreenDay man cave? Where do you go when Mrs. Armstrong tells you to get the fuck outta the house?

16) Whats the fucking deal with dropping twitter like a bad pit stagediver? @greenday

17) The audience heard you shrieking backstage before your St. Jimmy entrance. It got the audience pumped too. Tell us about that. @greenday

And with that, I’m going to go back to my Mom’s house in Detroit and be stuck some more until I can manage to make it to NYC. I hope you all had a lovely holiday and an excellent upcoming New Year’s Eve.

Best, Green Day Mind


NYC Bathroom Pass Tour with Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits

Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits - Dan Abbott (l.) and Corbett Redford III (r.)

West Coast sunshine, music and hilarity is coming to brighten our oncoming East Coast Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), as the days get colder and Winter lurks just around the corner. Brr. The East Bay‘s Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits are making their way to New York, New Jersey and surrounding areas! Woohoo! I mentioned back in October when Bobby Joe Ebola began spreading their Children MacNuggit wings again after a “Bush Administration-era hiatus,” that they were flying this way in December and well, it’s December and they are… uh… on their way!

Before arriving in New York and New Jersey, the Ebola duo of Corbett Redford III and Dan Abbott will kick off a mini-“Kill Yourself with Hugs” tour with Tartar Control for four California shows from 12/2-12/5/2010 and head straight to Minneapolis afterward on 12/6 for the start of the “Get a Bathroom Pass” tour with shows at two venues. From there, it’s a whirlwind, two-week tour through the Midwest and East Coast from Monday, December 6th to Monday, December 20th, including said Minneapolis, along with Duluth, MN, Appleton and Milwaukee, WI, Chicago, and Lansing, MI before hitting Philadelphia and Wilkes-Barre, PA, Trenton, Brooklyn, New York City, and finally, Boston. Whew! That schedule is exhausting just thinking of, but after a ten-year break from working as a duo, Abbott and Redford III are ready for road action, and being from California, they’ll have to stay constantly on the move around these parts just to stay warm.

"F" by Bobby Joe Ebola & the Children MacNuggits Review in Maximum RocknRoll - Click to read

I’ve been listening to their new album, F, and I highly recommend heading over to Silver Sprocket Records for a hard copy or Amazon for a digital download. If my recommendation doesn’t convince you, you can read a review of the album at the indie music blog, FensePost. The review includes two songs, “The Only Difference” and “Life is Excellent,” a song that makes me laugh and cry and shout out loud with its ranty yet bouncy chorus of “Life is excellent, the tap water tastes like excrement, the skies rain poison, but I’ve got to pay the rent.” Well, ain’t that the truth?

It’s a bit difficult to categorize their music, but the tags on their Bandcamp site (where you can hear two live recordings of the band) pretty much sum them up: anti-folk black metal alternative pop comedy rock Oakland. Uh, ok. Suffice it to say that you think their songs will be serious from the music, and then all of sudden they’re singing about polyamorous girlfriends (“Poly”) or friends and radiation poisoning (“The Crazy”) or bands that go on killing sprees (“Postcards from Inferno (I’ll See You in Hell)”). In other words, you never know in what direction their songs will take you, but it’s certain that you’ll laugh. Through the laughter of F there are serious underlying themes about migrant workers, consumerism, or environmental damage, among others, but they never hit you over the head with it. Or, hardly ever. I mean, with a song called “Sweet S**t of Christ,” you pretty much know what side of the religious coin they rest on. Their philosophy might be summed up in a Ghandi quote mentioned by Redford III in an interview at Uncle Critic: “If I had no sense of humor, I would have long ago committed suicide.” Yep. That about sums it up for me.

By the way, Billie Joe Armstrong has mentioned them as one of his favorite bands, and they “borrowed” one of Mike Dirnt’s cars for their recent “Freaky Baby” video while he was on tour. I believe that they eventually told him. I hope.

So do yourself a favor and fend off the SAD by catching them on the road when they come to a Midwest/East Coast town near you. I’ll be — at the least and hopefully all — in attendance at two of their shows when they hit New York, Don Pedro’s in Brooklyn, and The Cake Shop in Manhattan. I’m super excited by both shows, particularly the Don Pedro show as the Max Levine Ensemble, who I’ve heard a lot about but have never been able to catch (along with 50 Million, Weird Fantasy Band and Cheesequake) will be on the night’s bill with them. The Cake Shop show is sure to be fun, too, as it’s a Mike Cm Production show with local bands, Ergquist, House Boat, Mirrors and Wires, and the Tattletales. And remember, you get a free pizza with a purchase of a beer at Lulu’s in Brooklyn. Rumors are that they’ll be playing at ABC No Rio on the Lower East Side in Manhattan and maybe New Brunswick, NJ on Saturday, Dec. 18th, but as of now, there’s no confirmation.

Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits are looking for venue help with the Wilkes-Barre show, so if you can lend a hand in that surrounding area, give the band a shout-out on Facebook or their official contact page. For tour information and locations for the complete “Get a Bathroom Pass” tour, head on over to the Year-End Recap and Tour Page. See ya there!

New York City and Surrounding Areas – 12/15-12/19/2010

* Wed., Dec. 15th – TRENTON, NJ @ MILL HILL BASEMENT w/ CAPTIVE, DAY IN AND DAY OUT & ALL AGES — 300 S. Broad St./10PM

*Thurs., Dec 16th – BROOKYLN, NY @ LULU’S w/ THE PARKING LOTS, WEIRD FANTASY BAND AND MORE! — 113 Franklin St./9PM

*Fri. Dec. 17 – BROOKLYN, NY @ DON PEDRO’S w/ 50 MILLION, MAX LEVINE ENSEMBLE, WEIRD FANTASY BAND AND MORE! — 90 Manhattan Ave./8PM

*Sat. Dec. 18 – NEW YORK, NY @ TBA!

*Sun. Dec. 19 – NEW YORK, NY @ THE CAKE SHOP w/ ERGQUIST, HOUSE BOAT & THE TATTLETALES! — 151 Ludlow St./8PM

Here’s two videos of Bobby Joe Ebola, both from shows at Gilman, “Kool-Aid Man” from a 2007 show and a song from their current album, F, called “Sandwiches and Ammunition” from a April Fool’s Day performance in 2010.

Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits – “Kool-Aid Man” – 924 Gilman, 2007

Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits – “Sandwiches and Ammunition” from F – 924 Gilman, 2010


Mike Chickenman… Mike CM… Gets PEOPed by Fly

The infamous Mike Chickenman, now known as Mike Cm, was recently PEOPed by the graphic artist, Fly. You may remember Mike from Green Day’s show at Madison Square Garden back in July, he of the hardhat, the death metal rendition of “Longview” and a stagedive into oblivion. It was strangely awesome and a bit whack at the same time.

I’ve gotten to know Mike since that night at Madison Square Garden. I was very wary at first, but somehow this crazy, sweet kid won me over. He’s a legend around the punk and crusty scene in New York, known as an avid lover of music, a little loopy, and an up-and-coming music promoter.  When I met Mike late in 2009, he was in a bad place in regards to drugs and alcohol. Since January 2010 thereabouts, he’s been kicking his habit. It hasn’t been easy for him, but it’s never easy to kick a habit and stay true to yourself in a world where everyone wants you to conform… though every once in a while, you might have to confrom just a little, but hopefully not too much.

Mike was really excited (more than usual, which is saying a lot for Mike), about the possibility of having the graphic artist, zine writer and musician, Fly, do one of her PEOP sketches of him. Fly, (whose website can be found here) first published PEOPs: Portraits and Stories of People back in 2003. Her PEOP sketches combine drawings of her subject with conversational dialogue from her sketching session with them. The sketch and part of that conversation are then combined into a drawing. Kristy Eldredge summed up PEOPs in her review from 2004:

The people Fly features are artists, musicians, activists and seekers. A few are well known – Lydia Lunch, Art Spiegelman, John Zorn – but most are anonymous members of what used to be known as the underground. (In these days when the maw of media shines a spotlight on everything in its path, nothing seems underground.) In general they’re creative people who don’t want mainstream careers, draw inspiration from music and find meaning in collective action.

PEOPs #5, which includes portraits of Aaron Cometbus and Jello Biafra, can be purchased at Microcosm Publishing. Mike’s PEOP may be included in the next edition, here’s hoping! UPDATE: As Abbey noted in the comments, a PEOP is also featured monthly in Maximum RocknRoll, so here’s hoping it appears in one or the other.

Mike Cm - PEOP by Fly


What I Heard: Nov. 15th-Nov. 21st, 2010

This week was pretty light in activity, but time and money can force one to sit on the couch, which happens to be one of my all-time favorite activities. I got myself off the couch twice during this week, to head off to the movies once (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows) and then again to attend an event at the Museum of Modern Art, aka, MoMA (photography exhibit, The Raincoats and Kathleen Hanna DJing). I also stopped into my favorite hotel bar at the Warwick on 6th Avenue and 53th Street. It’s nice and dark inside. I’m usually by myself whenever I happen to stop in, which leads me to think that the staff may suspect that I’m a hotel call girl by some of the stares I get from them. But hey, that’s part of the excitement, I guess. I met an awesome Czech bartender and I will have to go back in for more crazy conversation about European politics and Lincoln Town Cars.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Ziegfeld Theater, NYC

Harry Potter Poster at the Ziegfeld Theater, NYC

I’m a nerd. What can I say? I have read all of the Harry Potter books and faithfully attend almost every movie close to its opening, usually at New York’s last movie palace, the Ziegfeld Theater. The Ziegfeld has a huge screen, comfortable seats, great sound, and bathroom stalls complete with toilet and sink inside the stall. The Ziegfeld is a place that evokes old-fashioned Hollywood and shows just one film at a time, not like the Mega-Plexes on 42nd Street, the AMC or the Regal E-Walk. I saw Lawrence of Arabia complete with musical overturn there, and if a movie that I want to see is playing, I will go out of my way to see it at the Ziegfeld. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows has been split into two movies, so I’m hoping that the next installment that releases on July 15th, 2011, will play at the Ziegfeld, too. Who needs IMAX when you have the Ziegfield?

There’s really nothing that I want to say about the movie. The visuals were great and though there is a long swath of the movie that moves slowly as our three heroes go into hiding to find the horcruxes and unnoticed by Voldemort at the same time, I didn’t mind so much. The three main actors, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint, have grown up on our movie screens and turned into fine young actors who I hope will develop their craft throughout their lifetime. They have certainly learned from a slew of the best British actors out there who have appeared in the Harry Potter movies. Life for a child actor can be difficult to continue in performance as they grow up and I wish them all the best on whatever journeys they make in the profession.

Daniel Radcliffe is well on his way to a long-term career on the stage. In 2008, I saw Radcliffe on Broadway in a limited-run production of Equus. The story centers around a disturbed young man who blinds several horses during a fit of religious and sexual rage and repression. The entire play is a psychological drama between the boy (Alan Strang) and his therapist (Dr. Dysart), with the therapist trying to get Strang to unload on why he blinded the horses and Dysart trying to get a grip on his own life, too. I’ve never been fond of the play. It’s too “angsty” for me with a lot of 1970s psycho-drama thrown in, but it’s a great acting vehicle for actors who are in control of their craft and was an excellent way for Radcliffe to stretch his acting wings away from Harry Potter. The production was controversial because the Alan Strang character played by Radcliffe has to appear nude onstage for one scene. A seventeen year-old naked Harry Potter sent a lot of hearts aflutter, but really, if you’ve ever seen a production of Equus, you know that there isn’t too much to see anyway. Plus, it’s not that stimulating sexually… Strang is naked while talking about how he stabbed out the eyes of horses, after all. Woot. Sexy. Not.

Radcliffe will be coming back to Broadway in February 2011 in one of the smartest and slyest musicals of them all, How To Succeed in Business (Without Even Trying). The musical, based on the book of the same name by Shepherd Mead, was first published in 1952 with the subtitle of The Dastard’s Guide to Fame and Fortune. Mead worked in the advertising firm of Benton & Bowles (one of the ad agencies based on the teevee show Mad Men), and when he retired, he wrote the satirical manual after climbing from a job in the mailroom to a vice-presidency. After several attempts to turn the book into a play, Frank Loesser (Guys and Dolls) and Abe Burrows successfully created the musical, eventually winning a Pulitzer Prize for their efforts.

The story centers around J. Pierrepont Finch, a window washer who hears passages from the book, “How To Succeed in Business…” telling him to do all sorts of things to move on up the corporate ladder. His boss, J.B. Biggley, played by the funny and seasoned John Larroquette (surprisingly making his Broadway début in the show) cluelessly lets Finch take over a contest for the the World Wide Wicket Company and hilarity ensues. The cast is rounded out by Finch’s love interest, Rosemary Pilkington (Rose Hemingway), a secretary at the company, the boss’s squeeze, Hedy LaRue (Tammy Blanchard), the boss’s nephew working his way up from the mailroom, Bud Frump (Christopher J. Hanke), and lastly by Rosemary’s friend and fellow secretary, Smitty. Smitty will be played by Mary Faber, who now appears as Heather in the Broadway production of American Idiot. Faber is the second lead/featured actor in American Idiot to go on to other Broadway productions, the first being Joshua Henry, who played the Favorite Son in American Idiot in Berkeley and Broadway and now stars in the Scottsboro Boys at the Lyceum Theater. Everyone will miss Faber in American Idiot, but wishes her the best in her new role. Faber’s last show in American Idiot will take place on December 12, 2011.

The original choreography of How to Succeed in Business… was created by the Broadway legend, Bob Fosse, though he’s not credited as the primary choreographer of the original show. Fosse also did the movie version that came out in 1967. Though Fosse is dead, I do hope that they keep some key elements of his original choreography, which is Broadway all the way. And speaking of that 1967 movie version… if this Broadway production is a hit, I can completely see it being turned into a movie starring Radcliffe. After all, every great movie gets a remake for good or bad, and it’s probably time that this one did, too. Especially if the production and Radcliffe are successful on Broadway.

How to Succeed in Business (Without Really Trying) previews at the Al Hirschfeld Theater on February 27th, 2011 and opens on March 27th, 2011. Here’s a synopsis of the plot at TheatreHistory.com.

The Raincoats and Pictures by Women Exhibit – MoMA

MoMA Exhibit - Pictures by Women

I am not in the habit of attending events at MoMA. It’s not my favorite museum in the world, it’s too small, overly crowded and has line management from hell. What it has going for it, of course, is the quality and depth of its modern art and photography collection — if you like that sort of stuff — which I happen to like. I decided at the last-minute to attend this event as my friend David told me about it and he knows that I like to see old punk bands from back in the day perform, most of whom I’ve never heard of. In this case, it was a female “post punk” band called The Raincoats. The night included a very comprehensive and thought-provoking exhibit of photographs by women, appropriately titled, “Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography.” The exhibit continues until April 4th, 2011 and includes photographers such as Diane Arbus, Berenice Abbot, Adrian Piper, and Alex Prager. One of my favorites were a series of photographs from Francis Benjamin Johnson (1864-1952), one of the earliest female photographers and photojournalists. The photographs displayed from Johnson were a series commissioned by the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute, an African-American school around the turn of the century that eventually became Hampton College in Virginia. The photographs depict young African-Americans doing all sorts of college and school-related activities and it’s refreshing to see images of blacks from the time period as they do their classroom exercises and physical workouts. You can view some of Johnson’s portraiture and architectural photographs at the Library of Congress.

Alex Prager - Pictures by Women at MoMA

The works of female photographic icons, Diane Arbus and Berenice Abbott were excellent, but it was the large-print photographs of Alex Prager that really caught my attention. Prager’s work has a deep sense of pathos surrounding beautiful women in potentially charged situations, all with a retro-throwback 1950s style. Prager works from Los Angeles, and her photographs have a California flavor to them with their depiction of the endless sunshine that pervades California, with a sense that something is not quite right in the perfection and beauty. Prager’s women are glammed up and find themselves in all sorts of compromising situations, but there is always a sense that they are in control, even if they have completely lost control within the context of the photograph. Visit Prager’s site for more information on her work, and here’s a list of articles about her work at the site.

The Raincoats, along with DJ Kathleen Hanna, appeared as part of MoMA’s Pop Rally events that feature “collaborations with artists and musical acts, performances, film screenings, receptions, and special viewings of exhibitions at moderate prices.” You may know Hanna as the female voice on Green Day’s American Idiot song, “Nobody Likes You,” but she’s better known as a founding member of Bikini Kill and Le Tigre, and is both a legend and controversial figure in the world of feminist punk Riot Girrl culture. I didn’t hear most of her DJing because I spent so much time in the bar at the Warwick Hotel that I didn’t get back to MoMA until the line was crazy and it took almost 25 minutes just to get my ticket and wristband and get inside. I went upstairs to look at the photography, and by the time I finished, the Raincoats were playing and the crowd was thick in MoMA’s atrium. So thick, in fact, that it was difficult to move… not that anyone was moving to the Raincoats, but that’s probably because their music isn’t really danceable or moveable. I was really hoping that a moshpit would break out and some serious art would get damaged, but alas, that was only in head.

The Raincoats hail from the United Kingdom and have been around since the late 1970s. The two founding members of the band, Ana da Silva and Gina Birch met at art school and formed a band in 1977 with members of The Slits and other female bands of the time. Their music certainly has an art school feel to it with its dissonant vocals, violin, and eclectic lyrics and music presentation. Kurt Cobain was really into The Raincoats, and wrote that their lyrics made him happy, which was probably a tall order to fulfill.

The Raincoats – “Fairytale in the Supermarket” – MoMA, Nov. 20, 2001 – pristeen t

As to the performance, if I knew their music from back in the day and felt the way that Cobain did about their lyrics, I may have enjoyed myself more, but as it was, I probably should have stayed at the Warwick Bar. I could overlook the rusty nature of the band and their several false starts and the washed-out sound in the space, but the entire evening was a bit too much on the art school and feminist polemical side of the musical equation for me. I sometimes break out in hives at events that take place in museums and I’m not that comfortable in them for the most part, particularly at MoMA. I couldn’t hear most of those lyrics that made Cobain happy, though one from a new song could plainly be heard, “When you ask me if I’m a feminist, I say, why the hell would I not be?” Uh, OK. Toward the end of the show, Hanna came onstage and they sang an Ari Up (of the Slits, who recently died at the age of 48), song together and ended the set with The Raincoats’ most well-known song, “Fairytale in the Supermarket.”

The Raincoats with Kathleen Hanna sing Ari Up’s “Vindictive” at MoMA – jennpelly

Whatever my feelings on the band or the show are, The Raincoats are loved in feminist post-punk music circles, and if you’d like to check out some of their work, they have music on sale at their site and here’s their MySpace page with a few tunes on it as well. Here’s Kathleen Hanna’s take on the band and their music. Here’s some other reviews of the show and scene: Crawdaddy; Pelly Twins Blog; Artforum.

What We Didn’t Hear: Jesse Malin featuring Green Day – Nowhere….

I said last week that I’d briefly mention this, so here goes. Sometime this year Jesse Malin and Green Day got drunk together and wrote/recorded a song called “Depression Times” with Malin on vocals and featuring Green Day on instruments and back-up vocals. The song was going to play on Rich Russo’s Sunday night show on RXP101.9, but at the last minute, Russo said he had “equipment issues” and the song didn’t materialize. A week went by and no song and a third week later, RXP DJ Matt Pinfield announced on his Facebook that the song would début on RXP’s morning show and again, it was pulled at the last possible moment. This leaves me wondering if the song actually exists or if it’s just a figment of someone’s imagination. I have no idea what is happening, but someone has pulled the song three times and since Russo’s original tweet about playing the song was posted on Green Day’s official site, it’s probably not Green Day. I know that the music industry is a bit unpredictable, that’s a given, but after three failed attempts to get the song heard just once, few people on the Green Day Community forum believe that it exists in the first place and some are beginning to not care. I guess we’ll all just have to wait and see and be pleasantly surprised (I hope) in the end, when it does materialize.

For a little background on how “Depression Times” came about as well as Malin’s friendship with Green Day, here’s two snippets of interviews with Jesse Malin:

Über Röck Magazine, Jesse Malin, Exclusive Interview

When you toured with Green Day did you ever think they’d go on to be such a world wide phenomenon? Do you still keep in touch with Billy Joe? I always believed that they were a very powerful band and Billie is a real and talented writer. Who knew a punk rock opera would connect so well. I remember when Mike Dirnt told me about it one night while I was DJing at Niagara and I thought he was out of his mind. Now they’re gonna be on Broadway. I talk to Billie Joe regularly. He’s a good friend. I recently recorded a song with the three Green Day guys called ‘Depression Times’. Maybe it’ll come out some time soon. We might name the band Drunk In New York.

Distorted Magazine – Three Cords and an Attitude: Jesse Malin

Jesse Malin - Three Chords and an Attitude - Distorted Magazine