Tuesday, December 30, 2008

SPY In The House of Love

I am a lover of magazines, having published small 'zines (Sign O' The Times, Slack) in the 90s. Once, I was a sort of 'magazine junkie'- with simultaneous running subscriptions to about 6-7 magazines which included Playboy, Spin, Details, Entertainment Weekly, Metropolis, etc. Now I lean more towards the design mags (Print, How, etc) but I have recently been re-introduced to Rolling Stone and have been enjoying it. Though the new smaller format isn't as cool as the larger size it used to be.

They say that print is dead, and maybe I am a dinosaur but I love a good magazine- big photos, hot news, informative reporting, satire, satire, satire-- plus you can't read your computer in the bathroom (well, I guess you could use your laptop....). I think graphic design is better on the printed page, than the internet.

The good folks at Good Magazine have compiled an awesome list of the 51 Best Magazines Ever which is compiled as the Smartest, Prettiest, Coolest, Funniest, Most Influential, Most Necessary, Most Important, Most Essential, etc. The list includes the classics: Esquire, Playboy, New Yorker, Life, Interview but also includes some of the cool mags such as Ray Gun, Eros and even Mad!

From the Good Magazine article:

"The essential strength of a magazine is its ability to amplify. An idea, or an image, or a story, set within the pages of a magazine and assembled by the right hands, can become the grist of breakfast chatter, dinner-party conversation, or elective body debate around the world."
Here is the list with full details on each,The 51 Best* Magazines Ever
*Smartest, Prettiest, Coolest, Funniest, Most Influential, Most Necessary, Most Important, Most Essential, etc. Words By Graydon Carter, GOOD magazine

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Kick Out The Jams

Happy Holidays to U!

I wanted to post the photos the girls and I took at The Broadway Market on Christmas Eve day. The market was dead and Santa Claus paid us a lot of mind-- we had his utmost attention. He told us that Mrs. Claus didn't want him to eat too many cookies this year and he seemed a bit large! I think he was sober....

So it was a great holiday in retrospective. The family came over and I got a lot a great gifts. The girls had a good time and got pretty much everything on their lists. J. bought me a lot of cool PUNK gifts including the the new Cobain book, the new pink Clash book (which seems awesome) and the soundtrack to the Strummer bio The Future is Unwritten. I also got a cool PUNK illustrated encyclopedia of sorts full of photos and more! Oi! You would think she was really gearing me up for the Strummer Tribute event I am DJing tomorrow night, eh?

Anyway, I hope to see you all tomorrow at the Mohawk Place-- Happy Holidays to you all, faithful readers. All three girls are sleeping and I am going to enjoy my scotch & water and delve into the pink Clash book a bit. Rock on in 2009.

Fruits and such....

Breads and more!

Waiting for sausage.

Platzec (Polish spellcheck help me..)


A bit of Crystal Beach memories.

Empty Deli.

Monday, December 22, 2008

State of Emergency

Randy Mantooth was the man!

The snow fell, stopped, and then fell again. I like the blizzardy Buffalo and yes, I own a 4-wheel drive vehicle. I was out with some friends Saturday night and the car got stuck trying to pull into a parking space on Allen St. The car was a light, economical hybrid... but no match for our unplowed streets ("turn the wheels straight!"). Our truck is a match for all bad weather and since my street has yet to be really plowed until Saturday night- I am glad for the 4-wheelin, I wouldn't be able to get anywhere. Besides the fact that my office is 30 feet or so from my house, I shouldn't really worry much.

We are suppose to have a few days of warmth up and around Xmas. By 'warmth' they are talking 40s. But considering it has been in the low teens the last few days, forties will seem like a heatwave.

This time between the holidays, I don't expect to get too much done on the work-front. Most of my time is for parties, family and last minute house cleaning and decorating. Oh yeah, and catching up on the classic Emergency- and old 70s favorite I just rediscovered on RTN. It is like a resuce show and a doctor show all rolled into one! This will take the place of my missing Hunter. Simple pleasures....

I am also trying to catch up on some new music that I haven't heard yet. I like to read the "Best of..." in a few sources (Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Spin) and weight the differences, listen online, maybe see a band video on YouTubeSocks, and then buy (post holiday). Things I might be interested in are: MGMT, Of Montreal..., The Knux, new Killers, new Kaiser Cheifs, Hercules and Love Affair...

Clash City Rockers

The Magnificent Seven! 7th Annual Tribute to Joe Strummer and The Clash! Friday, December 26th!

Ring! ring! its 7:00 a.m.!
Move yself to go again
Cold water in the face

Brings you back to this awful place.

-- The Clash

Come on out the day after Christmas for some post holiday cheer and rock!

This friday I will be DJ'ing before, between and after rock band sets during the 7th annual Clash tribute night at the Mohawk place. Join us as we pay tribute to the late, great Joe Strummer.

I love this gig because I get to play really loud punk rock, reggae and dub music... just like Joe would have liked! This is always one of my favorite gigs, especially for the fact that I LOVE spinning discs at the Mohawk Place. For you name droppers, I will be playing tunes by the likes of: The Selector, X-Ray Specs, Special AKA. Stiff Little Finger, Stooges, Mickey Dread, Desmond Dekker, the Exploited, Sex Pistols, Bad Manners, the Damned and more! I better start sifting through the CD collection and get prepared, sort of...

The bands (Rebel Waltz & more) consists of various Buffalo musical greats doing sets of Clash sounds which are usually great! Lotsa fun! Hope to see you there. Drink a Pabst! Musicians include John Lombardo, Chris Malachowski and Jimy Chambers to name a few. 

>> The proceeds benefit STRUMMERVILLE- The Joe Strummer Foundation For New Music

>> This is my 7th poster in a row for this event, click here to see them all.

What do we have for entertainment?
Cops kickin' gypsies on the pavement!
-- The Clash

Friday, December 19, 2008

It's Gonna Be a Beautiful Night

It is official: Today is the 1st SNOW DAY of the 2008-09 Snow Storm Season!

RoamBuffalo Top 6 Snow Day Movies:
In no special order.. best on a day when travel is advised against (or downright banned!) Best with a big pot of stew, a batch of xmas cookies, beer (maybe)... sure beats working. Well, but I am working... what are you gonna do...

Better Off Dead (1985)
Now that's a real shame when folks be throwin' away a perfectly good white boy like that.
- for more info

Groundhog Day (1993)
Ned... Ryerson. "Needlenose Ned"? "Ned the Head"? C'mon, buddy. Case Western High. I did the whistling belly-button trick at the high school talent show? Bing. Ned Ryerson, got the shingles real bad senior year, almost didn't graduate? Bing, again. Ned Ryerson, I dated your sister Mary Pat a couple of times until you told me not to anymore? Well?
- for more info

Niagara (1953)
Why don't you ever get a dress like that?
Listen. For a dress like that, you've got to start laying plans when you're about thirteen.

- for more info

Purple Rain (1984)
Nobody digs your music but yourself!
- for more info

Repo Man (1984)
Duke, let's go do some crimes.
Yeah. Let's go get sushi and not pay.

- for more info

Where the Buffalo Roam (1980)
You couldn't invent someone like Carl Lazlo. He was a... he was one of a kind. He was a mutant. A real heavyweight water buffalo type... who could chew his way through a concrete wall and spit out the other side covered with lime and chalk and look good in doing it.
- for more info

These are our favorites, tell us some of yours. Post 'em.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Panic! (on the Streets of London)

Three new things I learned about last weekend:

  1. Cotton Candy Ice Cream Cake (sounds like a Time song)
  2. You can still buy a cheap Christmas tree (mine $35, my brother in laws- $20 ! ! !)
  3. 'VamPirates' (the best of both worlds, vampires that are also pirates... on a ghost ship)
Attention Procrastinators, 'the lonely," and lovers of art!!
This Saturday, December 20th!
The Last Minute, Gift Getting, Best of the Best, Holiday Sale!
I told you once, now I'll tell you twice.
Get a chance to shop in the city, like the old days, in an old building, but for new things! Handmade things! Handcrafted things! Art! Ha!

Last minute gift buying panic marketplace (actual title)
at Western New York Book Arts Center
468 Washington St at Mohawk in Downtown Buffalo
December 20th, 11am - 4pm.

Free admission and open to the public
Artists, craftspeople, printers, & other handmade/self published/locally produced items. Perfect gifts for giving or hoarding. Plus see the current exhibition, the YouWorkForThem international poster art show that originally was featured at TypeCon in July.

We will be selling the WHERE TO ROAM tees, hoodies and scarves. Get these collector items while you can, while they last before we think of something else to do. You need this: click here, and this (click here) and this, I wear mine all the time now that it is cold, and one of these (click me) and maybe you like it like like like this, eh?

Stop by and say hello, I'll be looking for ya!
As featured on BuffaloRising (with a picture of one of out tees).

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

There Was a Time

Great ideas, like pizza and bar-b-que wings, always arrive in the nick of time.
Cancer's Horrorscope June 1995

Well as the holiday comes barreling in like an Axl Rose cat howl (I promise, I'll get off the GnR kick...), I am trying a new approach from my usual 'holiday duck and cover'. I am actively trying to shop NOW instead of at the last minute. Not always successful (I bought myself 2 presents already...), I am really trying to embrace the season. Today's December Rain (Sorry, again...) has put a bit a damper of the brief snow dropping we received over the weekend. Yesterday it was 20 something degree-- as I type this, it is forty-freakin-seven degrees! Weird, for sure. But we got some of the holiday decorations up, some lights strung inside and the evergreen tree will be bringing the outdoors in in matter of days. The kids love the holiday, so it is tough to be my usual scroogey self.

So then, what better way to 'salebrate' the holidays? A Summer Slack! You know when it's snowy, ya get nostalgic for the Summer and visa-versa. So I give you:

Slack issue #16- The Summer Fun Issue (#2) June 1995
(published 06.09.95)

Like the mysterious photo below of the 3 great record stores that once graced Elmwood Avenue that are no longer around, this issue of Slack signaled a riff in the time space continuum. There was a 6-month gap between issue #15 and this one and the signal of the end drawing near was starting to be heard. There was going to be four more issues after this one, stretching out until March 1996, the following year.

But anyway... this issue has some good writing in it, strangely overwhelmed by ads, which was never a thing with the Slack. The advertising, in truth, barely paid the printing bills as I was spending my own cash at the copy store often. But the kids trudged on, drank beer and reveled in being different, eh? Square Pegs (thank you Waitresses), misfits, outcasts, weirdos, smokers, heavy drinkers, all of ya... well you get the picture.

The Summer issue includes a boxy photo essay of Elmwood Avenue, which looks in these photos, exactly like it does today with the Poster Art, the 24 Store, the Elmwood Lounge (mentioning Lance), and the Towne Restaurant. In fact, the only businesses referenced that have gone missing are the 3 records stores-- and it is a crying shame. RIP- Home of the Hits, the old NWR up by Utica and the Apollo Records, where I bought a lot of my hip-hop 12"s that I am still playing today. Paid in Full- Six Minutes of Madness, anyone....?

This issue includes the start of a new Slacker in Space (which we never got to see the end of 4 issues later), a Raisin Blowme story on Drive-Ins, a Tony B Grateful Dead Summer Vacation story and some Bitter Boy Summer in Buffalo Tips. The Cool Like Dat music section features a big story on the Scott Carpenter and The Real McCoys 2AM Tragedy record-- the band maybe at its high point?, the 1st Tricky LP, and a Scotty piece on local space-rockers Spawn.

Another interesting thing in this issue is ad for the Friendship Festival 4-day rock-n-roll show put on by ICONcerts featuring a stunning who's who in 1995 Canadian rock. And believe you me, there was a time, mmmm around 1995 I believe, when the Canucks up North supplied this fair Queen City which a good dose of musical talent. A time when CFNY gave us all we needed. I am not kidding. Days 3 and 4 of this 4-day rock fest included 26 mostly Canadian bands- a few that you might remember: Barenaked Ladies, Moxy Fruvus, The Waltons, the Wild Strawberries, Rheostatics, 54-40, The Watchmen, I Mother Earth, Pure, Odds, The Gandharvas, the Tea Party, hHead, Headstone and click on the ad (to the right -->) for a full page version to see for yourself. Meanwhile the US contributed day 2 with Ted Nugent and Bad Company. I should mock them, right? I have been listening to GnR for days, what is wrong with me?!?!

Download PDF here:
Slack Magazine n. 16, the Summer Issue (4.1 mg)

Don't forget these issues already up (3 more to go)!:
Slack Magazine n. 18, The Two-Year Anniversary! issue
Slack Magazine n. 15, The Local Music Issue
Slack Magazine n. 14, The Cartoon Issue
Slack Magazine n. 13, The Food & Beverage Issue
Slack Magazine n. 12, The One-Year Anniversary Issue
Slack Magazine n. 11, The True Crime Issue
Slack Magazine n. 10, Summer Fun Issue
Slack Magazine n. 9, The Dead Rock Stars Issue
Slack Magazine n. 8, The Beer Issue
Slack Magazine n. 7, Slack Goes to The Movies Issue
Slack Magazine n. 6, The Buffalo Issue
Slack Magazine n.5, The Slack TV Issue
Slack Magazine n. 4, SEX in the '90s Issue
Slack Magazine n. 3, The Politico Issue
Slack Magazine n. 2, The Travel Issue
Slack Magazine n. 1, The Debut Issue

Friday, December 5, 2008

Welcome to The Jungle

We don't stop playing because we grow old,
we grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw

Take that to the bank!
Axl Rose

I am having mixed feelings about the 'new' Guns and Roses LP (and yes, it is available in vinyl format). I mean, 1st of all, it isn't GnR- and hasn't been for some time. The band broke up in the nineties- well I should actually say, Axl fired everyone in the band and made them sign contracts so he could keep using the name. At least that is what Slash's bio tells us.

The reviews are in, 1/2 good, 1/2 bad. Rolling Stone gave it 4 stars, Pitchfork Media trashed it. I have listened to most of it online and am mixed myself. I mean the title track rocks, but there seems to be a lot of ballads on it which kinda suck. The record took 14 years to make and rumour has it, some 12 million dollars- for crying out loud! How many records have been worked on that long- it should be a rock and roll masterpiece.

And then there is the almost 50 year old Axl. I should relate to him as an old guy who likes to rock myself. But there is something disturbing about the new larger Axl, the corn row hair he has been sporting for the past few years, and the fact that he pretty much dresses the same he did in 1990- open shirt/vest, scarves, mirror sunglasses. Well, I guess I kinda do too-without the mirror sunglasses, but maybe a more sophisticated version of myself in 1990. And if you see the video for Chinese Democracy (which is really some other older GnR footage played along to the music).. well it is rockin', yet really off-putting a bit.

or Bubmlefoot? Does it make a difference?

Well I avoided a trip to Best Buy last night, where I might have tricked myself into buying the record. I am not sure I want to give Axl my money. I didn't buy it, and I feel relieved this morning. Instead I listed to CFNY's Thursday Thirty ( number 12 was Chinese Democracy, by the way...) following another Sabres loss and enjoyed the new Killers, Franz Ferdinand and Kings of Leon (now they seem like a band that can rock). So no GnR hangover, thank goodness. Maybe I should just stick to the Appetite 4 Destruction and live in the past... a gentler time when the band shunned electronics, rocked hard, before axl was known as a complete ass, when Steve, Slash and Duff were still in the band.

I like the new logo, though.... I should just enjoy the time when GnR was really GnR.

EPILOGUE: I bought the record (12.07.08) and I like it. I think you have to be an old guy to really like this stuff. I have read posts and posts on this LP. I have read the hate and the love, the 'it's not G-n-R' and the 'axl is the man' cries from the fans and the enemies... whatever, I like to rock with this shit really loud! So FU!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


Holiday Shopping for cool people, artists and the Groovy folks!

We have been invited to sell our wares and take part in....
the Western New York Book Arts Center's
Last minute Gift Buying Panic Marketplace
at WNYBAC on Saturday December 20th, 2008.

The event will be free and open to the public and takes place downtown in the new headquarters of the Western New York Book Arts Center started by Rich and Carima from P22. It is an awesome place located on 468 Washington St at Mohawk in Downtown Buffalo. It is the Slotkin Building and is on the next block over from the Mohawk Place.

 Can't miss it.

The SALE will run from 11am - 4pm on Dec 20th, and will include artists, craftspeople, printers & other handmade/self published/locally produced items which are perfect gifts for giving or hoarding.

While you are there you will be able to see the current exhibition, the YouWorkForThem international poster art show that originally was featured at TypeCon in July. Besides the Where to Roam Tees, Hoodies and Scarves, other vendors include: Crowbiz, P22 type foundry, French Press, Sunnyoutside (I love that business name) and many others. For more details, vist the WNYBAC website and/or blog.

Come on down to check out the new space, see the posters and buy some cool stuff. I'll remind you as we get closer to the date!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Show 'Em What You Got

Post-Pre Holiday

The last month of the year is upon us. My what a quick one. The year had some highlights and lot of lowlights. Thanksgiving is behind us as we counted out blessings and move forward into the mad rush of 4 weeks until the Xmas holiday.

December is notoriously a slow month for business as not too many decisions get made during the month of December. Though a lot of folks are planning next year's marketing attack so that can keep us busy at OtherWisz headquarters. Time to get working on that company holiday card and make big plans of 2009. Yes, I said 2009! Man, I remember when it was turning 1999 (I DJ'ed that night and guess what song I played as the clock struck...?)

Time Travelin'

I was looking for something in the attic last week and I found an old camera bag. I dug into the front pocket and found a pack of Camels with 2 smokes in there. The pack had a pricer tag of $1.85 on it... that was a long time ago when cigs only cost a buck eighty-five. I have quit smoking since- probably 12-14 years ago. I can't remember any more.

My friend Kevin was reminiscing on his blog about quitting smoking and drinking some ten years ago. I read this on the same day I made the ancient smokes discovery. I seems like yesterday I quit and it seems like a million years ago at the same time. As you get older time seems to speed up. When I was a kid the days seem to drag on as I sat in school- 3 o'clock was hours and hours away! Now the year is up with barely a blip on the radar screen.

Smoke 'em if you got 'em.