For your Saturday: Record Store Day

It’s easy to take great music forĀ  granted in a city like Austin. During South by Southwest (SXSW), the whole city was a stage. I saw Spoon and NOFX for free. Caught a few minutes of Matt and Kim and finished the weekend with a local favorite, Firekills, at The Tiniest Bar in Texas.

While Austinites strut around like they own the market on live music, independent music, and supporting hard working artists, it’s hardly something confined to these coordinates. Today, our local independent music stories need your help. Celebrate Record Store Day!

Back to the theme of spoiled Austinites, I can tell you one of my favorite ways to spend a Sunday afternoon is cruising the listening stations at Waterloo Records. My husband and I make our first stop at the new releases from local artists and then paw through the shelves looking for other interests on our radar screen. I am ready to throw a tantrum over Homespun after catching them on an Insomnia Radio podcast and have decided I want the original album from The Vue. That might be one of those things that’s more interesting to hunt for than it will be once it lands on the CD rack at home. For now, I’m enjoying the hunt.

It’s that hunt in and amongst well-loved used CDs, eclectic new and local music, and the opportunity to listen to stuff you would have never considered before that makes the local record store more of an excursion than a shopping trip.

Shopping is nearly suffocated in plastic. Exploring new music at the local music store is sure to bring you a brand new beat.

[Need an idea for new music? Follow the links and don’t forget this list from last week]

Another Debate

Geared up with ice cold beer, pizza, and half a dozen links open in the browser, I was ready for tonight’s debate. I have to admit I wanted a meltdown. Mostly because I want this to be over on Tuesday.

So far, the moments slipping by haven’t been any more remarkable than other debates. Oh, they have some different talking points. Let’s talk about elitism and sniper fire because those are the questions burning in our belly tonight. And no one lost their temper over any of it. What’s the point?

I’ll keep posting my thoughts but wanted to start by sharing a couple of interesting ways to watch the debate:

ABC is streaming the debate along with dial responses from undecided PA voters. I’ve found it interesting and can imagine it would turn any candidate into mental mush to watch their game like this. Clinton seems to get higher jumps quicker while Obama’s increases are more slow but sustained. Interesting.

You probably have to be some shade of insane to have two different audio tracks going as you watch the debate. I can’t get the televised debate to line up with ABC. I’ve never claimed to be particularly sane.

And, I’ve mentioned my addiction to Twitter. You can see what the Twitter masses are saying about the debate at Politweets. I might never come down off of this high.

Waiter (aka darling husband), another ice cold beer please! Crikey! He just declared that he loves Obama more than I do and showed me the coolest Obama desktop. Need to open another tab! Where’s my beer?

2nd Amendment quoted coming back from the commercial break. Gibson points to Virginia Tech anniversary to ask about gun control. HRC is the first to respond:

She will bring back the cops program. I wonder if that includes providing the funds. Austin police are tapped to the max. Already trying to cover a budget deficit.

Obama given the question in a constitutional context. Is the D.C. ban in line with the 2nd Amendment. He just threw the constitutional law professor a constitutional question. Go figure that Obama now sounds professorial! He says the Constitution does confer an individual right to bear arms. BUT that doesn’t mean it’s an unlimited right. Eyelids are getting heavy. Dial response is going flat. Wedge issues work so much better for the other side.

Now both candidates have admitted to not knowing the facts of the D.C. ban. HRC is making the case that the federal government shouldn’t be making this decision for states. George and Charlie keep trying to confront candidates with facts of previous statements and votes. Parsed words are scattered along the ground. Is anyone getting something out of this?

Wow…from this to affirmative action. Be still my heart.

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DonorsChoose Challenge

Pocket weighted down with extra money? Give some to the kids in the Blogger Challenge. Whether you donate through Sharp Skirts or on your own, help out teachers across the country who desperately need supplies. Then go heart the hell out of the link on SugarLoving.

Music in My Head Monday

I have an addiction and I want to share it.

My desk is littered with post-it notes and band names. I always have a running list of bands I want to check out. I’m a grown adult who spends hours on Myspace looking up bands to chart my course through the week’s live music. Doesn’t everyone make a shopping list for their next trip to the record store? I’ve decided to share the fruits of my mania with you, the sharp skirted public.

Together, we can make Mondays ROCK!

At worst, I’ll fill your eardrum with noise. At best, I’ll provoke you to share your latest pick and provide a vehicle for us all to stay better aligned with the music of the spheres.

Music in my head this Monday…

Joan Jett is my alter ego so I find it hard to resist anyone listed on her Blackheart label. The Dollyrots are awesome and in town this week. Their song “Brand New Key” is a fun new twist on a 60’s favorite….If only my mom had sung it like this!!!

Looking for a free music, I tripped across Firekills for a rooftop show last year. While I didn’t mind the low energy evening while I sipping a mojito (or two), we saw them at full power after they released their new album this March. This Austin band freakin’ rocks! They’re playing this week with a couple of Houston bands that’ll be new to me, Morningside Drive and Thee Armada. I enjoyed “Ravensway” on Thee Armada’s page when I looked them up.

To catch this harder hitting line up, we’ll miss a Houston ska band’s rock steady beats in town that same night… Ryan Scroggins and the Trenchtown Texans return to The Flamingo Cantina after opening for the Skatalites in March.

For a list with broader appeal, check out Rolling Stone’s “Can’t Miss Summer Tours” and count me in for the Beastie Boys! Consider September’s Austin City Limits festival a one stop shop to see several acts on this list…White Stripes, Bob Dylan, and the Decemberists will all be here. The While Stripes, The Killers, Queens of the Stone Age and Arctic Monkeys are at the top of my ACL list.

Don’t miss new releases this summer either. I hit the record store last week like I was fifteen years old to get the new album from Rancid’s Tim Armstrong. If I smile at all this week, it’ll be his first wave ska sound that made it possible.

Get Smart(er)

I have several items in my “To Blog” folder but they’ll just have to wait, as I’ve found a fabulous time waster for a Friday afternoon. It’s the best sort of time waster too because it purports to make you smarter.

Lumosity calls itself a Brain Fitness Program and says it’s “scientifically designed” blah blah blah. Take the IQ test to see how much sharpening you need (I need far more than I expected), then sign up for the beta while it’s still free.

Drinks are on me!

Literally. If anyone is wondering what to get me for Christmas, look no further than the Winerack.

clipped from
winerack1.jpgWe know about the Beer Belly, but what about the ladies that want to sneak beer into places where they shouldn’t using the contours of their bodies? Good news, girls: the Winerack is here.
Created by the Nobel laureates behind the Beer Belly, the Winerack is a bra that can hold whatever liquid you want. There’s even a bonus, as the manufacturers claim you can turn an A cup into a delicious, beer-filled D cup in no time.


Throwing some links at you

Because when you’ve been away as long as I have, it’s the most I can muster at the moment.

*This just in from the Pope Wears Funny Hat/Bear Shits in Woods Department: Women are viewed as sex objects. World expected to recoil in horror and immediately mend ways.

*Wonkette saves you the trouble of reading a long boring piece about politicians, summing up Why Everyone Will Lose in 2008. Dennis Kucinich finally, thankfully, revealed as the elf that he is.

*We’ve been meaning to tell you that the whole Y2K thing is kind of coming up again. This time it’s related to Daylight Saving Time and will only last for a couple of months but prepare to live on Kramer time for a while.