Towse: views from the hill

October 19, 2012

In which I go to a concert at the Bill Graham Memorial Civic Auditorium

Filed under: life,music,San Francisco — Towse @ 4:02 pm

I missed a special event down the peninsula that my pal Karin was involved with last night because we were at the Bill Graham Memorial Civic Auditorium for a joint (heh heh. The SMOKE in the building!) concert with Mark Knopfler (who was excellent) and Bob Dylan (who was sounding very much like Dr. John).

Back during the first Live Aid (1985), our daughter Anne came in from watching part of the concert and said, “But who was the funny-looking guy who can’t sing?” We were able to guess correctly without much trying.

Dylan’s voice is raspier. His range is abbreviated. He’s changed his music to reflect those factors. I could, every once in a while, recognize a lyric and realize he was, f’rex, singing “Highway 61″ or “Like A Rolling Stone.” But when you’re straining to hear lyrics and it takes you a good twenty seconds to recognize he’s singing “Blowin’ In The Wind” =despite= the fact you’re hanging around at the back of the venue for the predictable encore and you are willing to lay bets that the predictable encore will be “Blowin’ In The Wind” being as it’s an election year … well, that says something.

He sounded so much like Dr. John it’s as though he’s been taking pointers. But he’s in fine shape. Looked good. Was obviously having a good time. Fine fettle. Good musicians backing him.

And there’s nothing wrong with sounding like Dr. John.

But I’d seen Dr. John at The Independent a few days after my birthday in August and hadn’t been expecting him or a Dylan who sounded like him last night.

We bumped into the illustrious William T. Quick et compagnon whilst waiting for Muni to deliver us home. They, too, had been at the concert albeit in upper crust seats rather than standing with the plebes on the general admission floor. Animated dissection of the concert followed and continued on Muni for two stops, where we disembarked and caught a surface-street bus to the bottom of the hill.

Up the hill and down again and home, with memories.

July 10, 2009

I’ve never had a problem with drugs, only with policemen.

Filed under: books,music,people,quotation — Towse @ 1:12 am

Keith Richards.

Jessica Pallington West has a book out, What Would Keith Richards Do? Daily Affirmations From a Rock and Roll Survivor, from whence the title gem came.

Amazon info but no free reads inside the book. Alas.

July 9, 2009

When United Declines Your Claim

Filed under: music,travel,video,web2.0 — Towse @ 11:20 pm

… there’s still something you can do. …

Dave Carroll [Sons of Maxwell] – United Breaks Guitars

Update: Update

July 2, 2009

Billy Faier – The Five String Banjo

Filed under: music — Towse @ 12:01 am

To those who purchased my CDs, my heartfelt thanks… I have decided to make my music available to everyone.

Billy Faier – The Five String Banjo

[via a tweet from @jessamyn, who adds BANJO!]

April 17, 2009

Susan Boyle – Britain’s Got Talent … a one hit wonder?

Filed under: music,video — Towse @ 7:04 pm

Susan Boyle aced Britain’s Got Talent and the link to the video of her performance is flashing around the Web. The YouTube video was even mentioned in Jon Carroll’s column this morning.

But can she really sing or was her rendition of I DREAMED A DREAM from Les Miserables a fluke?


(Thanks, Annie Chernow!)

Update: ?? I guess! Guy Kawasaki Twitters about an analysis of Susan Boyle’s viral video.

Holey moley!

January 17, 2009

What you can find on the Web. Knopfler. Clapton. EmmyLou.

Filed under: music,video — Towse @ 8:02 am

I don’t want to hear a love song. I got on this airplane just to fly.

Is there any wonder I love the Web? Muy muchas gracias, Tim Berners-Lee.

December 26, 2008

RIP, Miss Eartha.

Filed under: music,people — Tags: — Towse @ 4:35 am

YouTube – Eartha Kitt – C'est Si Bon (Live Kaskad 1962)

RIP, Miss Eartha. You gave a ton of pleasure to a zillion folks. Here’s hoping you wind up with the folks you would want to spend the rest of eternity with.

November 5, 2008

There’s never been anything false about hope.

Filed under: election2008,music,video — Towse @ 5:16 pm

I watched this whenever I felt like it was all an impossible quest.

Thank you,

October 28, 2008


Filed under: music,video,web2.0 — Towse @ 1:59 am

MTV MUSIC – I Want My MTV, a very clean, very simple, good looking site full of music videos and only music videos. Lots of older, classic stuff, too, like one of our favorites, Dire Straits’ “Money For Nothing.”

The site looks good and, in our limited testing, works great. And like Hulu, MTV also (smartly) lets you embed their videos on your blog, MySpace or Facebook profile, Tumblr, etc. (see below). It also has the requisite “social” functions like comments, rating up/down, etc.

[via Huffington Post]

August 22, 2008

My American Prayer and musical stops along the way

Filed under: music,politics,web2.0 — Towse @ 7:11 pm

My American Prayer is a Web site to promote the pro-Obama Dave-Stewart-and-Seth-Dalton-directed video (with a cast of thousands, including Joan Baez, Whoopi Goldberg, and Barry Manilow) called My American Prayer.

Wandering away from there I found there’s also the new “Yes We Can” video (a musical video with no connection to’s classic) out from Maria Muldaur and Bonnie Raitt. Recorded at Studio D Recording in Sausalito.

Count down to November.

Joan Baez, Whoopi Goldberg, and Barry Manilow?!?!! Yipes!

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