Daily Archives: October 22, 2002

Wood rosin market

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Considering that I haven’t publicized this thing hardly at all, just to a few friends, a surprising number of people have stumbled upon it. I’ve never been quick enough to even spot my own blog in the “recent updates” on Blogger, but apparently others have, because I do get referrals from it. But my favorite so far is that this blog got googled for the terms “wood rosin market.” And amazingly enough, I actually did use the words “wood rosin” in a post (“glycerol ester of wood rosin,” in fact). So now I’m going to pump up the chances of getting it again. For all I know, people do searches on the wood rosin market every day. There could be futures trading on this that I don’t even know about, perhaps at the Piscataway Board of Trade. Great, now I’m going to show up if somebody searches for Piscataway!
Listen, if I could piscataway . . .
Never mind, it’s the vaudeville in my blood.

Books

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Doing better on the book front. Carl Hiaasen’s “Basket Case”: really good. I never expect much of popular writers, and less of popular Florida writers. And I don’t usually read novels about rock ‘n’ roll, which this is, a little, but Jen Sincero’s book “Don’t Sleep with Your Drummer” changed my mind because it was such a hoot. But this was good. Never over the top, delightfully sure of itself, a little bit wacky and yet full of truth. And very sweet. Whipped right through it. And now I’m into Jennifer Belle’s “High Maintenance,” which will be good if the narrator realizes she deserves better than the guy who has attached himself to her. It’s a little flighty but not overly so, New York but not obnoxiously so, and it’s hard not to like the girl telling the story.

Linda Ronstadt

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When you really listen, especially to the albums, it probably should have been clear that her heart wasn’t in those songs. And even now, though I’m glad she helped to spread the word about Warren Zevon, you’ve gotta wonder what she was doing singing “Poor Poor Pitiful Me” or “Mohammed’s Radio.” But her voice was so incredible, and what she could do with the songs that she got into was so good, that you could forgive the production values (no drum shall go unmuffled!) and the lack of heart in some of the album tracks. She was HUGE in the ’70s. Hard to remember that now, even though she went on to reinvent herself a couple of times and still has a presence. She did a disastrous album of new wavey stuff that had my favorite cover of “Lies” (The Knickerbockers). Then she did the standards, 3 albums worth I believe, which was fun but who really listens to standards? They belong in movie soundtracks, they need pictures in front of them to make them interesting. I reawoke to her voice a couple of years ago on a drive to Boston, listening to “Prairie Home Companion,” and she was singing (Kate McGarrigle’s?) “Talk to Me of Mendocino,” one of her early covers now done with a tenderness and wisdom that she couldn’t have mustered in her twenties. It was lovely. And now Rhino has put out a greatest hits CD, not a thorough survey by any means, and presented in a frustratingly random order (I’d have preferred chronological), but good enough for $14. My albums are very well worn and won’t burn very nicely (I had to take 3 copies of “Back in the USA” back to the store because of a manufacturing defect, they just kept skipping and skipping), so this is a nice supplement. Not sure if remastering would reveal something that was buried in the murky laidback Southern Cal sound of the ’70s (the remastered Ramones discs are INCREDIBLE), but maybe someday somebody will try.