Saturday, April 28, 2007

The Rufus is Coming!!

To the Belly UP in my fair city...TONIGHT!!
My dear friend Laura is taking the train up from L.A. today.
We plan on waiting in line for a good two hours before the door opens to get front row spots.
Even my husband (my "Rufus bait" as I jokingly refer to him) is excited!
The club is pretty small, it has a 600 seat (er standing) capacity.
They will be selling his new cd Release the Stars tonight and he will be signing them after the show! However, rumor has it that he will only sign the cd booklet and no pictures are allowed...but that's where cell phones come in but no posing pics with Ru I guess.
Looks like Laura and I will have to stalk him again! We know the drill, right Laura?
We usually bump into him before his shows anyway. You know how easy it is to bump into an artist NEXT TO THEIR TOUR BUS!! Hee hee. Nah - he usually bops around before the show...and we just giggle like teenagers, trying not to faint (or stare).

I caught about half of his performance last night at the Coachella Fest...which is streaming live all weekend HERE. I was quite pleased to see that he is touring with a kick ass horn section!! Alright! I am sure most of you aren't familiar with his music, but he ended (before the encores) with "Beautiful Child" from Want One and it sounded FANTASTIC. I am beside myself and have goosebumps already thinking about hearing it live in a tiny club tonight.

If you haven't heard Rufus, then what are you waiting for? Check out this amazingly gifted singer-songwriter HERE!! and at: Rufus

From last night's show at Coachella...Who has nicer legs, Martha or Rufus???!!!!

Here is a recent article from Uncut:


In 1821, Thomas De Quincey compared opium addiction to being trapped in a “castle of indolence.” An opium eater, he wrote, “lies under the weight of incubus and nightmare…He would lay down his life if he might but get up and walk, but her is powerless as an infant, and cannot even attempt to rise.”

Forgive the pretension, it’s just that Rufus Wainwright drives you to these sort of lofty references. Release the Stars as Wainwright tells UNCUT on the next page, was recorded in a state of extreme purity, the lavish drug binges long behind him. It’s not so easy, though, to escape that castle of indolence.

For nearly a decade, now, Wainwright has proved himself to be one of the most gifted songwriters in America. His erudition, wit and general gayness have been so pronounced, we’re technically obliged to call him Wildean at every opportunity. He has a magical way of joining the dots between Cole Porter and Thom Yorke, between David Ackles and Jeff Buckley. He’s a serious artist though, on e with a keen sense of his own absurdity: the cover of 2005’s Want Two found Wainwright posing as a Pre-Raphaelite Ophelia, all dressed up and ready to drown.

Still, it is his voice, so extravagantly mournful, so luxuriously torpid, that suggests he must always remain The Jaded Bohemian, even without the drugs. Release the Stars his fifth and possibly best, album, should be the record where he escapes such stereotypes. But curiously, he sounds more opulently wasted than ever as if he’s realized that ennui, in the right hands, can be a creative attribute rather than a professional curse. “Going to a Town” might be the angriest lyric Wainwright has written an indictment of the country of his birth that hinges on the refrain, “I’m so tired of you America.” that “tired” is the key, though: rarely has a protest song been so dolorous. Like De Quincey, he’s start a revolution if he could only get off the chaise longue.

The effect is striking, not least because “Going to a Town” sounds something like Radiohead’s “High and Dry” rescored as a torch song. Release the Stars is full of lovely tunes, but it’s the imagination with which Wainwright tackles them that raises this album above his previous work. While Want One and Want Two were slightly marred by a glossy pop finish, Release the Stars has a wood-paneled classiness, and arrangements whose complexity augments the tunes rather than overwhelms them.

Neil Tennant is listed as Executive Producer, but it is Wainwright himself who actually produced these 12 songs, and who navigated his own path from studio to studio, picking up an ever-more bejeweled coterie of musicians along the way. If the vocal tone might often be one of somnambulence, the practicalities of making Release the Stars suggest a very clear head. The cast list includes regulars like sister Martha, mother Kate McGarrigle and Teddy Thompson, venerable actress Sian Phillips, Tennand ton synths, sundry orchestras plus, on lead guitar, Teddy’s father Richard Thompson.

Fortunately, Wainwright is adept at finding grace and space where others would be swamped. The opening “Do I Disappoint You” sees him present a withering defense of his own human frailties, while one orchestral battalion after another mount their attacks and Martha Wainwright (a much stronger singer than her brother, by the by) summons “CHAOS!” and “DESTRUCTION!” like a marauding Fury. The title track, meanwhile, has a brassy Broadway swagger – the result, presumably, of Wainwright immersing himself in that world for his Judy Garland tribute concerts (the song’s lyrical inspiration comes from Lorca Cohen, Leonard’s daughter, missing the New York show). Wainwright, though, is not a belter, and it’s his unsuitability to the top hat and high-kicking routine that makes this grand, flawed finale so compelling.

“Slideshow” is even better, a masterpiece of wry emotional dithering that begins, pointedly, “Do I love you because you treat me so indifferently? Or is it the medication?” Pursued by 14 musicians and the London Session Orchestra, he moves at a languid pace through a sequence of euphoric crescendos until, after four minutes, Richard Thompson cuts through the melodrama with a clean, needling solo and Wainwright is left in a lucid reverie, realizing, “Do I love you? Yes I do.”

It’s a rare moment of resolution on an album filled with romantic indecision, with dreams of travel and leave-taking, “Between My Legs” is sprightly and uncharacteristically rocking, describing a dysfunctional relationship that can only be consummated with an escape from the city. There are apocalyptic overtones, too, as Wainwright describes a frenzied mass evacuation, then employs Sian Phillips to incant his words like a spell over another ravishing climax.

If these set pieces initially gr5ab the attention, Release the Stars has other pleasure that reveal them selves more discreetly. “leaving for Paris” is an end-of-the-affair piano ballad which intimates that Wainwright’s may yet be solemn and minimal. There’s a baroque, Brel-like trinket called “Tulsa” that claims Brandon Flowers “tastes of potato chips in the morning.”

And finally, amid all the gilt, theratre, recherche poses and brilliant music, there’s a hint that, without the drugs, the castle of indolence might not always be a rewarding place to hang out. “I’m tired of writing elegies to boredom” he writes in “Sanssouci,” “I just want to be at Sanssouci tonight.” “Sans souci” translates as carefree and, of course, the promise of happiness – “the boys that made me lose the blues” – turns out to be an illusion. When Wainwright arrives at the club it is deserted, and terminally world-weary, he can only retreat to his melancholy boudoir. If he keeps making albums as good as this, we should wall him up in there forever.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Best Day of My Life

As many of you know, I am an elementary school substitute teacher. I have had the pleasure of subbing for my friend Chelice's second grade class 11 days this year. They are the sweetest, most loving kids I have ever taught. (Chelice was my daughter's 2nd grade teacher last year and we have become good friends since we moved back from Taiwan last summer).

Chelice recently gave the kids a benchmark test for writing, and the assignment was to describe the best day of your life. Here is what one little cutie wrote. (I changed his name in case his parents try to sue me!). I didn't correct his grammar or spelling.

The Best Day of My Life
By Sean, aged 8

My best day was on Tuesday Ms. Sue was our sub. We lernd about shapes. After that the class had free time. We had popcorn and punch. We did the congodanse. There was popcorn all over the plase. Then it was the end of school and we did not get any math. Then after that I went to Dash and playd doch ball and basket ball and my mom picked me up at Dash and we had pizza. At night sleped in my moms bed and her bed is warm and cozy. It was an adventure.

Ms. Sue DID pick up every piece of popcorn (with a little help from a few of the kids!). I let them throw the popcorn up in the air and catch it with their mouth! I guess we didn't get too much math done that day...hmmm.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Girls Just Wanna Have FUN!!

As promised, here are Charlotte in Lo doing their little road trip induced number! Molly (BallerinaGurl), Lo, Charlotte and JLee drove from Salt Lake City to Vegas last Saturday, and shared this little dance that they came up with along the way!
I think right after they danced Charlotte won $24 on the try it for yourself next time you're in Vegas!!

Photo Sharing - Upload Video - Video Sharing - Share Photos

It was such a fun night - I don't think I've ever been with such a crazy (but sweet) group of women...and they are all very interesting to boot!
I didn't lose my shirt (yeah I know that disappoints some of you ha ha ha) only $25 on the slots. Had a FAB early dinner - an excellent buffet - ate TONS of sushi. Then we all walked it off and shopped (window shopping mostly for me) until we dropped. I was really impressed with the Venitian. They have an indoor canal and gondalas...there were even men singing opera! I loved how they made the market square area feel like a sunny day in Venice. The "sky" felt so REAL. It was tastefully tacky.

Here we are in our sumptuous room at the Four Seasons. This is the rated "G" version..I am too shy to post the more revealing pic of Suesjoy. ;)

JLee wasn't feeling up to going out unfortunately...that's why she is missing from the pic.
Molly posted this pic on her blog, but I wanted to put it up here too because it's such a great shot!

Here is a view from the hotel window.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Spring is Here!

California Poppies

Just a GORGEOUS day here in San Diego. Tons of flowers are now in bloom - I especially love the bright orange and red California poppies. I always drive slow in my community and just gaze at the flowers and GREEN everywhere. I savor every drop of color- much to the chagrin of those stuck behind me. I don't care...they should slow down and enjoy the beauty too. What's their hurry?

I keep telling myself...get on yer bike, bring your camera, show the peeps what a heavenly area you live in! I will - I promise. It's so cool because it's "semi-rural, or semi-semi rural" now - kind of "cowboy country suburbia". I live in a valley, surrounded by mountains in the distance. We have pretty barns and horse trails near still strikes me as odd seeing people on horseback talking on their cell phones though. That's just WRONG. A friend of mine who grew up here used to go on horseback to the McDonald's drive -thru!

I don't watch tv, except to watch dvds really...I read the news on-line only, but my heart is grieving for those killed at Virginia Tech. Beyond horrifying. I hope lessons were learned. Lots of angry friends, colleagues, family and relatives...I pray they can SOMEDAY forgive and heal, a very tall order. I think because of yesterday's horror, I appreciate the beauty and love in my life more today.

Thanks to all who wished me well in VEGAS. I had a blast and am still recovering!(From lack of sleep before, during and AFTER my trip, not from drinking! I only had ONE glass of wine at a casino!). I don't want to post pics yet - I think I should send them to Molly and let her have a go at them, but I do have a really fun video that I'll put up on YouTube and I'll definately post that.
Molly's gal pals are some CRAZYCOOL chix! So much fun and very, very sweet too.

Take care everyone.
Lots of love,

Saturday, April 14, 2007

I Scare Myself!

So today in the shower... I caught myself singing a line from that fabulous 80s Hair Band, Loverboy...YUP you remember it, don't you?? "Everybody's Working for the Weekend."

What frightens me MOST(outside of singing such a DREADFUL song) is that ... I didn't work one second this week (OUTSIDE of the home).

I have hit a dry spell in the world of elementary substitute teaching land.

I guess I am GIDDY because I am having a GURL's NITE OUT this weekend with the one and only BallerinaGurl and company in... VEGAS baby!

I have been practicing BlackJack with my daughter and hubby.
Is that wrong??
(Anjoli, aged NINE, LOVES playing Black Jack!!).

Wish me luck...I need it!!

Oh and, in case you are the lyrics for that Loverboy tune:

Working For The Weekend - Loverboy

Everyone's watching, to see what you will do
Everyone's looking at you, oh
Everyone's wondering, will you come out tonight
Everyone's trying to get it right, get it right

Everybody's working for the weekend
Everybody wants a little romance
Everybody's goin' off the deep end
Everybody needs a second chance, oh
You want a piece of my heart
You better start from start
You wanna be in the show
Come on baby lets go

Everyone's looking to see if it was you
Everyone wants you to come through
Everyone's hoping it'll all work out
Everyone's waiting they're holding out

Everybody's working for the weekend
Everybody wants a little romance
Everybody's goin' off the deep end
Everybody needs a second chance, oh
You want a piece of my heart
You better start from start
You wanna be in the show
Come on baby lets go

(quick break)

You want a piece of my heart
You better start from start
You wanna be in the show
Come on baby lets go

You want a piece of my heart
You better start from start
You wanna be in the show
Come on baby lets go

Don't worry...I promise to BEHAVE! Everyone is telling me to BEHAVE. I don't get it...

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter!!

Here is a pic of my little container garden.(A few of the bloggers have seen this already). I am so proud of it! Yes, it's a miracle that Jesus rose from the dead, but the fact that my garden is still alive is pretty darn miraculous too!

My mom would be so proud...I am sure she is smiling down on it now...reminding me to water it regularly. She was a Master Gardener and worked at The Glebe House garden in Woodbury, Connecticut. This was the residence of the first Episcopal pastor in the United States. The Glebe House Garden was designed by a well known Victorian garden designer and artist named Gertrude Jekyll. Ms. Jekyll "had a profound influence on modern garden design and is widely considered the greatest gardener of the 20th century" (from the Glebe House website). My mom took meticulous care of the garden...growing hundreds of plants from seed. Mom even had an appearance in a British documentary on Gertrude Jekyll (along with Prince Charles!). Gertrude Jekyll's brother was a friend of Robert Louis Stevenson, who borrowed the family name for his famous novella.

Anjoli and I had fun decorating Easter Eggs tonight...

I hope all of you have a lovely Easter...Happy Spring!!
Lots of love,