Monday, February 18, 2013

the social scene at eric and amy's

The social scene at Eric's and Amy's house on Saturday (for their house concert) was interesting.

I'm not quite sure of the economics for Eric and Amy. Twenty dollars a ticket. There were probably about 40 seats. But I think most of the people there are friends and music industry contacts who don't have to buy a ticket. Certainly many of them are. Talking to people, it almost seems as if what they do is plan a pot-luck dinner party (did I mention, everyone brings some food or drink to share) for their frineds, add a conecrt to the evening's plans and then sell tickets. Maybe not. Maybe it's just what it appears -- a concert to which friends are comped. I'm not complaining either way. Whatever the case is, I'm paying to see a concert, and getting more than my money's worth. As I've said in other posts, the ability to chat with them before and after the show is great.

Anyway, I spent some time talking to a friend of theirs. Norma Coates is a musicologuist who studies music in society. The main questions she looks into have to do with gender roles in rock music. Why is rock music so dominated by men? My wife's answer, by the way, is "follow the money." If I get a chance, I'll do some searching for Professor Coates' research, and maybe talk about it. I've learned from past posts not to say that I will post about this or that. Too many times I have said that I would and haven't. A couple of times Norma mentioned that she bets that by going to a Wreckless Eric/Amy Rigby concert I am doing something hipper this weekend than anyone else I know. Now, I agree with her. But, of course, others who are not into either Eric or Amy may not view itthe same way. I see it as seeing a legend of the new wave/punk era (whom I happen to think makes great music). Others, of a different perspective, may see it as going to see a washed-up has-been reliving his glory days. Either way. I go because I expect that I'll have a good time. Eric and Amy have yet to dissapoint me.

I also spoke to Clay Harper, who is a friend of Eric's. He started a conversation with me by asking what's my favorite Wreckless Eric album. I though a second, and decided on Le Beat Group Electrique, which Eric did in the early '90s. That album sticks in my mind for two songs: "Sarah" and "It's a Sick Sick Sick Sick Sick Sick Sick Sick World." Surprisingly, Clay said that's also his favorite (while expressing surprise that I had named it). Turns out Clay was the special musical guest for the night. Introducing him, Eric explained that after LBGE came out, Clay loved its o much that he flew to France to meet Eric. Of course, he failed to forewarn Eric, who was out of town when Clay arrived. So Clay went home and then wrote to Eric asking what it would take to get him to come to Atlanta to produce an album.

The evening';s full circle moment was when it was mentioned that Clay had been in the Coolies, an alt rock band from Atlanta in the 1980s. I was never very into them, and know little about them. But I have an album of theirs, called Take That, You Bastards. What's noteworthy about the album is that it has a bunch of covers of Simon & Garfunkel songs. I always find it interesting when I learn of a connection between two musical realms that I didn't know were connected.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

planning with eric and amy

I went upstate yesterday to attend another Wreckless Eric and Amy Rigby house concert (i.e., concert at their house) yesterday.

Before going upstate I emailed them. I still have to record with them, pursuant to their Kickstarter campaign. It's been months, and I've put off contacting them about it. So I typed an email.

I felt I had to explain where I was coming from, since they had expressed surprise when I explained that I'm not a performer. I didn't realize when I learned of the campaign that the chance to record with them was aimed at performers who want recordings of themselves performing. As a longtime fan of Eric's and a songwriter, my thought was "Wow! I can have a recording of Wreckless Eric singing one of my songs. Ultimately I realized that it would be better to have them do a demo of a new song. I pushed hard to finish writing "Five Missing One," and made a rough demo of that with HP when we were on vacation. But meanwhile, on vacation I started writing another song,which I would rather not name yet. Let's just call it WASAM. I think WASAM is better suited to Eric's and Amy's style, since I hear it as a  Nashville type song. Also, it's a positive topic, which my wife prefers. Finally, of course, I have a decent rough demo of "Five Missing One' so I'm better off recording something else wuith them One irony is that the new song is something I hear being sung in a female voice, so it'll probably be Amy's lead vocal. The real catch, though, is that I don't have the dang song completely written. Since I'm doing this to sell my sogwriting, I need to have a complete song. Not that I would mind sharing a copyright with them, but I don't think that's what they're into.

Anyway, the email explained most of that. I showed it to my wife to make sure there was nothing that could offend. She read it, then said to talk to them instead of sending the email. So I wrote a new email in which I asked if I could chat with them after the show. So after the show I talked to Amy and explained pretty much exactly what was in that email. She said they woul;dn't mind working with me to tocuh up a song that's mostly complete. And sharing a copyright, if warranted, is OK.

So what I have to do is make a really rough demo. I have a portable recorder that I bought just for this purpose. I'll email that to them with a lyric sheet.