One cool thing about doing The Idelic Hour are the small rituals that Jon from The Vinyl District and I have developed over the years. In truth Jon and I have never met in person but each week for the last six years, Jon has sorted and edited my rants. Props to you, Jon Meyers for always taking the time to have a look, take a listen, clear me up, and make me look smarter.
Speaking of smarter, the last few weeks The Idelic Hour has been on summer reruns (the ritual I was referring to at the top of the page). It seems funny when I think about it. “I’m on reruns.” Ha! Truth be told it’s a nice break from the constant search for new music and a ritual that makes the summer feel like summer and therefore healthy—although that could sound absurd.
Good for my soul / Heaven knows she’s good for my soul / Close to my soul / Heaven knows she’s close to my soul / I should have let her know / I should have let her know
Shadrach, meshack, abednego / Life can be confusing, any given day / And if you feel like losin’, get on out the way / This stuff will be amazing, here is all you do / How minutes turn to days in, doing what I do…
“Shadrach, meshack, abednego.” I have absolutely no idea what Sly Stone meant by those words. Growing up roaming through Central Park in the ’70s though I did know one thing—Sly Stone was the coolest and most stoned brotha in town. “Boom lacka lacka boom!” Cut to…
I was driving past the Zappa house the other day and I saw young Diva talking to a friend outside. It’s been a couple of months since we lost Gail Zappa. It was around Thanksgiving and with all that was going on I missed the opportunity to pay my respects.
Oh, my god I feel It in the air /Telephone wires above are sizzling like a snare /Honey, I’m on fire, I feel it everywhere /Nothing scares me anymore
I’d have to admit I’ve had a case of the “summertime blues” for much of this week. No good reason for it, but indeed I’ve felt antsy in the office—the fucking car is falling apart and the office AC is broken down. All around me it says it’s too hot to work! Even a magic rainbow couldn’t calm me down Tuesday evening, so I went into my steamy garage and pulled out a few crates and looked for records that had summertime blues in mind.
Before I knew it, I was carefree (or careless).
Pay this ramble no mind, here is this week’s Idelic Hour for the July 4th weekend—a weird holiday summer weekend, this 2015. Friday’s our day off? Most everyone is fucking off as well. You know this.
With A Mirror In My Hand / And My Eyes Burned In The Fire / Drunk On Self Deception / And Punished By Desire / Leaping Directly Into A Bright White Sea / I’ll Keep Myself Breathing / And I’ll Swallow The Sound / Of Freedom
Yesterday I announced to my wife that I had given up on life. She looked at me and quickly asked, “What does that mean?” I responded from the hip, “It means I’m taking the summer off.”
It’s a relief to have left Susan in charge of everything for a while. Although with that said, I did agree to drop off and pick up our kid—and go fishing of course.
In the meantime, this combination of heat, fog, smoke, and haze has gone to my brain and shortened my patience. I’m in full “June gloom.” Funny, any time of I hear the word “gloom” I’m transported to the ’80s and the desire to date a hot goth girls. Gloom would not be somewhat cool if it weren’t for those strange but sexy pale chicks and the uneasy feeling I’d get when asking myself the question, “How am I going to get this goth chick to go out with me?”
What a strange trip parenting is. Not that I’m a huge fan of Hallmark holidays, but Fathers Day? I’ll take it.
Why not—being a dad is likely the coolest and craziest thing I’ve ever done. Fatherhood sure ain’t easy, but there is rarely not a day when at least one of my kids leads me to moments of bliss or revelation, but don’t get me wrong—being a parent can often times be a frustrating pain in the ass.
And I dare say, my 2 are like wild flowers. It’s not at all easy growing indoors—so maybe on Sunday the 21-year-old will text me from her European travels and our little dude will be happy with what I make him for breakfast.
It makes a long time man feel bad / Yeah, it makes a feel so bad / Sometimes I hear you call my name / In the dead of the night, yeah
Yep, some days I feel like a “long time man.” Well, that’s because maybe I am, or soon to be. I’m not a prisoner, as referred to in the old prison song, but there’s a saying, “the road narrows.”
Today marks several occasions and “road signs,” a couple of which I will not write about. I have my superstitions. All I will say is one is a miraculous accomplishment and the other one is a bit touch and go. One thing I will mention with great joy, today in this canyon and much of LA—it’s the last day of school!
Runnin’ to-and-fro – hard workin’ at the mill. / Never fail in the mail – yeah, come a rotten bill! / Too much monkey business. Too much monkey business. / Too much monkey business for me to be involved in! / Salesman talkin’ to me – tryin’ to run me up a creek. / Says you can buy now, gone try – you can pay me next week, ahh!
Pay phone – something wrong – dime gone – will hold / I ought to sue the operator for spinning me a tale- ahh! / Too much monkey business. Too much monkey business. / Too much monkey business for me to be involved in!
This week’s Idelic Hour has Harambe in mind. The 450 lb. gorilla was gunned down in the Cincinnati zoo after a three-year old boy fell into his cage. What a fucking drag it must be to be a monkey in a cage. Harambe at seventeen was the gorilla equivalent of a 54 year old dude.
Imagine being trapped in a prison surrounded by humans who are more interested in the triggers of their AR-15s than watching their children. (Idelic fans remember The Who in Cincinnati.) I’m sure poor Harambe was thinking, “What is this child doing in the this gross puddle of water? Let me try to help him. But these clumsy old fucking prison hands?”
And he said / “Who are you to go against the word of my father? And / Who are you? the scum of the earth” / No we are just we are just we are just teens of style / Oh we are just we are just we are just teens of style
There were people getting drunk, there were people getting high / They were falling to pieces right before my eyes / And I said “mmhmm” a lot (mmhmm)
And there was one guy there who kept asking me how does it are you sure feel and I / Didn’t even you don’t want to know how to talk about begin to answer what you’re / Experiencing that question and I just said so I just said no I don’t want to talk about it
So there I was, just another shitbag civilian / Afraid of the cops when I was outside, afraid of my friends when I was inside / And I grew tired of the scene / And then my dad showed up
May 26th, this Friday of Memorial Day Weekend is indeed special, a day of joy and reflection. Well, it’s the anniversary of the day I asked my wife out. Seems odd we’d celebrate “the Friday” rather than the day the wedding bells rang but then again, how magical is a chance rendezvous that changes the course of people’s lives?
Sunshine, sunshine is that a cloud across your smile / Or did you dream again last night / It’s best you rest inside a while / As blue doesn’t seem to suit you right / Things ain’t what they used to be / I say pain and rain and misery / Illness in the family / And sunshine means a lot to me, I say sunshine
This Friday finds me in the “Sunshine State” visiting my dad Kenny who recently lost his sprawling New York City apartment only to be trapped by the heat and humidity in a condo surrounded by prescription pills and luggage.
It’s not bad or depressing here but it will take your Idelic host this hour of song to shake my blues. The truth is that I’ve never been a Miami kind of guy. I don’t sniff white powder, wear white shoes or shirts, and I don’t understand spanish soap operas.
On May 26, the legendary Miles Davis would have turned 90 years old. To commemorate his birthday, Columbia/ Legacy will release Everything’s BeautifulMay 27, smartly crafted collection of songs produced by Robert Glasper. The record blends a diverse group of master takes and outtakes from across Davis’ Columbia catalog with an impressive lineup of contemporary artists and musicians to create original interpretations.
“I didn’t want to do just a remix record,” Glasper noted when discussing the 11-song set. “My idea was to show how Miles inspired people to make new art.”
Realizing that “Miles didn’t have one audience,” Glasper recruited a legion of guest artists to add to the magic of the project including familiar collaborators like R&B musicians Erykah Badu, Ledisi, Bilal, and KING. They are joined by British soul singer-songwriter Laura Mvula, hip-hop producer Rashad Smith, Grammy-nominated Australian neo-soul quartet Hiatus Kaiyote, rapper/ singer Phonte, rapper/ producer Illa J, jazz guitarist John Scofield who was in Miles Davis’ band, and the legendary Stevie Wonder.
“I am living in the spirit of Miles when I am doing what I’m doing because I am documenting my time period. I’m documenting what’s around me. I’m documenting who I am now, where music is now,” notes Glasper.