Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Firefox Hot - Bush Not - Racist Wax Cylinders - Cheap Holiday Tricks etc

Firefox is Hot - Racist Wax Cylinders - Cheap Lohan Tricks & Other Random Revelations
Firefox 1.5 : Latest Volley in The Browser War:

Firefox 1.5 web browser is out ! Following more than 100 million downloads of the open source Mozilla Firefox 1.0, the latest version is available now as a free download ( look for links to free download on right column & bottom of this page).

According to the Mozilla team, Firefox 1.5 has been enhanced with a new "drag and drop" feature for tabbed browsing, an improved pop-up blocker, improved Live Bookmarks feature, and easier to adjust browser settings.

The browser moves ahead of Microsoft's security compromised IE browser & promises improved performance with a new generation rendering and layout engine that speeds navigation between previously viewed Web pages through caching and more accurate display of complex Web pages.

With Firefox 1.5 Mozilla developers continue their partnership with Google, and have also added new capabilities contributed by IBM, that make it easier for the mobility and sight-impaired to navigate the Web. The browser can now be used with technology that reads Web content aloud; allows users to navigate with keystrokes rather than mouseclicks; and reduces the tabbing required to navigate documents such as spreadsheets.


The early years of racist recordings:

The history of audio recordings basically begins with the New Jersey genius Thomas Edison whose early innovations made the technology available to consumers. Among his first finds for his new format of entertainment were two characters who had an instinctive knack for tapping into "popular culture" and in turn made history while vocalizing some of the era's basest insights.

wax cylinder:
Edison's wax cylinderARTHUR COLLINS & BYRON HARLAN were white ragtime minstrel's who started recording "coon" songs on Edison's wax cylinder's in the early years of recordings in the late 19th, and early 20th century.

Collins first went to Edison's West Orange NJ labs on request in May 1898 and eventually laid down hundreds of recordings including such now tasteless gems as
"Every Night I See That Nigger Standing Round", "I Don't Allow No Coons to Hurt My Feelings" and "All Coons Look Alike To Me". Collins was the baritone voice, and rather prolific as according to one account recorded
"from 1898 to 1912, no fewer than 227 solo two-minute cylinders, including both brownEdiphone wax and the louder and less fragile Gold Moulded type, introduced in 1902....the team Collins and Harlan recorded approximately 65 Blue Amberol duets."

The earliest Collins & Harlan recordings were sold on Thomas Edison's wax cylinders, but by 1912 the cylinders had mostly been supplanted by the 78 rpm discs that were first made in the 1890s by Emile Berliner who owned The National Gramophone Company. In addition to recording for Edison's National Phonograph Company, Collins also appeared on releases from labels like Columbia ( now Sony), National Gramophone, and his "plantation songs" were amongs the first recordings for the new Victor label (slogan : "His Master's Voice") many pressed at the Oakland CA Victor pressing plant.

Collins, an ex-sailor, was the son of a devout Quaker and preferred to be called "the King of Ragtime Singers", although trade publications of the day still called him a "coon singer".

Here's a few typical numbers & skits with his partner Harlan, featuring plenty of references to a sunny life down south in Alabama with lazy forgetful african americans shunning cotton picking, dancing on one wooden leg, sleeping & enjoying watermelons, hams & yams ...

Collins & Harlan - Alabama Coon Song

Collins & Harlan - Cotton Blossom Time

African American customs weren't the only thing that was funny to these recording stars, and here the "honest" American Indian "Chief Coca Cola" of Broadway is portrayed in a night of downtown caberet hopping with authentic war whoops...

Collins & Harlan - Honest Injun

Here they project a festive mood, and relay a little innuendo as to the pleasures of jiniteras in the early 20th century Cuban sex tourism industry, proving that this interest predates Castro's control and that the island has long lured male American tourists with images of cheap cigars, rum, and easy loving.

Collins & Harlan - Cubanola Glide

Not content to stereotype Latin American, Native American and Black culture, NJ's finest singing "comics" took the lead in audio exploitation of anti-Asian American sentiment as a subject as well. They happily sing with derision about finding "gambling politicians", "oriental misery" and mocked the "snaky" voices of residents.

Collins & Harlan - All Aboard For Chinatown

This style of music, and it's less than polite racial implications gradually fell out of favor, with the last known Collins & Harlan performance in December 1925 in Muncie, Indiana, "under the auspices of the Edison store." Edison stopped production of cylinders as the Great Depression came on. Collins died a fairly wealthy orange grove owner in Florida in 1933, whose recordings were mostly out of print, but as late as 1941 Montgomery Ward's kept a popular Collins recording in print in it's "rural" music catalog.

The Collins & Harlan records chould be construed as cruel out right racist attacks, but they are interesting to judge through the lens of historical perspective. Maybe they should be considered as the potential Lenny Bruce, Denis Leary, David Allen Coe or Dave Chappelle's of their era. They were show people, who used shocked value, travelled and entertained audiences by poking bawdy fun at various ethnicities, cliche's and practices, whether their targets were stereoypically Black, or Irish, they were always outlandish.

Here, Harlan does a 1904 comedy sketch routine that pokes fun at two "Rubes" a.k.a unsophisticated country hicks...

Bryan Harlan & Frank Stanley - Two Rubes At The Vaudeville

here's some influential tracks in which these pioneers make possibly the first mentions of New Orleans Jazz on commercial recordings.

Collins & Harlan -
"That Funny Jas Band from Dixieland"

according to music historian Tim Gracyk this track for Victor from 1916 is a fairly important record, and he has a nice essay on it at his site...


Byron Harlan playing the female in minstrel show fashion. He asks a question that musicologists have tried to answer for years:

HARLAN: "Say, Henry, what is a jas band?"

COLLINS: "Why, a jas band am essentially different from the generalities of bands."

HARLAN: "In what particularity, Henry?"

COLLINS: "Oh, in many ways, Mandy. Now, for instance . . . " [A slide trombone roars]

HARLAN: "Lordy, lordy! Is that one of the ways?"

COLLINS: "Uh-huh. And another is . . . " [Clarinets play]

HARLAN: "Is there any more, Henry?"

COLLINS: "Oh yes, and it goes something like . . . " [Drum roll, bugle call, crashing of cymbals]

HARLAN: "Well, I must say, Henry, your explanation am lucidiously comprehensible!"

COLLINS: "And does you like the jas band, Mandy?"

HARLAN: "Ah sure do."

COLLINS: "Then we'll sing some more."

other related tracks worth noting:

Collins & Harlan - Everybody's Jazzin' It

Collins & Harlan - Abba Dabba Honeymoon

Collins & Harlan - Old Black Joe

Lightbulb sketchfootnotes :Thomas Edison did not perfect the lightbulb alone, but hired a self taught black inventor who was the son of runaway slaves named Lewis Latimer who was designing better lightbulb filaments than Edison out of bamboo.The young Lewis Latimer Latimer worked in NYC away from the main Menlo Park NJ lab. A self taught draughtsman, Latimer actually drew A.G Bell's telephone patent and was a key figure in Edison's patent defenses & supervised installation of street lighting in NY, Philly & London U.K. Over the years Latimer aided other black inventors, and his diaries occasionally complained of racism working for Edison Electric. Ironically, Edison unsucessfully sued and later tried to buy out telegraph patents owned by a black inventor named Granville T. Woods.

Incidentally, Edison's motion picture company and patents were challenged in the courts under Anti Trust legislation and his company was dissolved and he was fined 20 million for having an illegal monopoly in 1915.

WFMU has a program that's available online called Edison's Attic featuring rare old recordings from the Edison archives in West Orange New Jersey

---- Speaking of Science : Didja know Bush Hates Science ? ----

this web page lists a number of specific cases in which the Bush admin has ignored or distorted science that it didn't like. it only starts with the stupid aluminum tubes in iraq... it goes much further and for those who are truly ambitious, there is an in depth report available under the 'related links' sidebar on this page.

here's a topical / historical intelligently deigned song that I suspect Bush might have on his I-Pod

Vernon Dalhart & Texas Panhandlers - John T Scopes Trial


Smokey Hormel played with Beck's band for awhile, and now has a loungey act all his own with a former member from Cibo Matto.

Smokey & Miho - Blue Glasses

Nina Gordon is an LA based chanteuse who has been lurking on the edges of the music industry, and made a minor sensation earlier this year with her version of NWA's Straight Outta Compton

Nina Gordon - Straight Outta Compton

Nina Gordon - 18 & Life ( Skid Row cover live at Largo)


The teen queen w/ new boobs and mysteriously starved for our attention pays tribute to Cheap Trick. The strained vocal delivery is a bit lacking at times, although I doubt I could do it any better. From a recent appearance on MTV's TRL, let's let lil' Lindsay speak for herself.

Lindsay Lohan - I Want You To Want Me

X-Mess Section :
The daughter of West Coast Latin music legend Pete Escovedo, and sister of former L.A punk / respected Americana bluesman Alejandro Escovedo, here's lil' sis and former Prince sidekick Sheila E...

Sheila E - Santa Baby
( from Playboy's Latin Jazz Xmas)
From tonight's tv special "Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer", an animated broadcast that's been popular for well over 40 years...

Burl Ives - Holly Jolly Christmas

firefox is hot racist wax cylinders

psst .... looking for this ?

Radio Piece on The Ferris State U -" Jim Crow Museum" -

here listen to my latest posted tuneage

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Washington X Mess

Ahhh, the holidays are coming, a chance to reflect on what is good in the world. Things like our national commitment to human rights as exemplified by Porter Goss, the U.S CIA Director who this week called torture "debriefings" with "good results".

Meanwhile Germany requested Condoleeza stop by and discuss the use of bases in Germany to transport torture subjects... The U.S State Dept. calls it a chance to "highlight the enduring importance of transatlantic relations" , and " to continue the excellent cooperation we have had in a variety of different areas with Germany", added a spokesman. Astute political observers say otherwise, and that discussions may become complex, if not tense.

Heck , even Andy Rooney has stopped worrying about inane things and is exposing the military industrial complex. Dwight D. Eisenhower of course was on this story almost 50 years ago, but we'll give cranky ol' Andy credit for finally running out of trite topics and overturning that huge rock. The guys got nerve even if he is half senile, and half as relevant as he used to be...

Sadly, it took me two months to find out about Andy's outburst. He probably woulda generated headlines a decade or two ago, but thanx to a million other channels, the web, video games etc and the fact no one I know under 60 really watches 60 Minutes regularly anymore, it went practically unnoticed. So, in the interest of historical value here's a transcript form a recent segment from a show that at one time, set agendas & kinda mattered every week...

Andy Rooney Transcription from Oct 2 2005:

I'm not really clear about how much a billion dollars is. But the United States, our United States, is spending five billion, six hundred million dollars a month ($5,600,000,000.00) fighting this war in Iraq that we never should have gotten into. We still have 139,000 soldiers in Iraq today. Almost 2,000 Americans have died there. For what?

Now, we have the hurricanes to pay for. One way that our government pays for a lot of things is by borrowing from countries like China. Another way the government is planning on paying for the war and the hurricane damage is by cutting spending for things like medicare perscriptions, highway construction, farm payments, Amtrak, national public radio, loans to graduate students. Do these sound like things you'd like to cut back on to pay for Iraq?

I'll tell you where we ought to start saving, on our bloated military establishment. We're paying for weapons we'll never use. No other country spends the kind of money we spend on our military. Last year, Japan spent $42 billion dollars, Italy spent $28 billion dollars, Russia spent only $19 billion. The United States spent $455 billion. We have 8,000 tanks, for example. One Abrams tank costs 150 times as much as a Ford stationwagon. We have more than 10,000 nuclear weapons. Enough to destroy all of mankind. We're spending $200 million dollars a year on bullets alone. That's a lot of target practice.

We have 1,155,000 enlisted men and women, and 225,000 officers. One officer to tell every five enlisted soldiers what to do. We have 40,000 Colen and 870 generals.

We had a great commander in WWII, Dwight Eisenhower. He became President, and on leaving the White House in 1961 he said this:

"We must guard against the aquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disasterous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist."

Well, Ike was right. That's just what's happened.

Video - Andy Rooney On Military Industrial Complex
(6 MB .mov)

Audio - Andy Rooney On The Military Industrial Complex Taking Over The U.S.
( 4 MB .mp3)

Quicktime video & MP3 excerpt links provided by

anyhow, speaking of non news stories about general conspiracies that no one cares about:

This summer when I got the new Black Eyed Peas CD, I was driving around digging most of the tracks on the disc until I hit "My Humps". It's so bad, I almost ran off the road, and for some reason it's so weak, it sorta makes me feel old & prude and basically humorless...

These are easily some of the worst sexually stereotypical & materialist lyrics I've ever heard, and if it was an unknown act maybe desperate for attention ala say Kelis w/ Milkshake it might even be understandable. But they are already hugely successful and don't know the meaning of irony or innuendo. The track basically just fills the minds of their impressionable youth fan base with some base pitiful dreck. Indeed it makes me wonder about those rumors that the Peas are crack smokers...

Bypassing Madonna & Gwen Stefani's lame material diva fixations, here's the new gal on the block Fergie (who recently signed a solo deal.. I can't hardly wait). In this verse she details her numerous material gains extracted from her sexually frustrated male suitors...

"I drive these brothers crazy/I do it on the daily/They treat me really nicely/They buy me all these ice-ys/Dolce & Gabbana/Fendi and then Donna/Karan, they be sharin'/All their money got me wearin'/Fly gear but I ain't askin'/They say they love my ass 'n/Seven Jeans, True Religion's/I say no, but they keep givin'/So I keep on takin'/And no I ain't taken/We can keep on datin'/ I keep on demonstrating."

It feature's a crib from a cult group called "Sexual Harassment" from a 1982 club track "I Need A Freak" and gets beyond clever into a dumber than dumb, bling bling & body objectifying mood. If I had kids, this would certainly be the type of infantile song I'd be hesitant to have them cranking on their lil' boom boxes or nano-pods...

How about rapper Taboo who shuns spending money on his ho, by adding such insights as

Lets spend time not money/I mix your milk wit my cocoa puff/Milky, milky cocoa/Mix your milk with my cocoa puff, milky, milky right.

But what could ya expect from the group that brought us "Let's Get Retarded in Here"...later changed to "started" for commercial reasons at behest of the NBA for use as a pre-game theme.

The track is so embarrassingly trite, I couldn't even put it into rotation at RubyDolls, the exotique boutique in North Beach where I program the tunes...

Ironically, the tune is a big hit across the country, and of course on stage with the "gentlemen's club" dancing girls who frequent the stripper clothing store where we refused to play it...

In interest of good humor, fairness and hopes that it's been "improved", here are some remixes.

Black Eyed Peas - My Humps ( DJ Redz Remix )

I'm sure Lil' Jon will bring some legitimacy to the proceedings...

Black Eyed Peas - My Humps ( Lil Jon Remix )


as long as we're discussing bling bling, howz about the song that is all about fake bling bling teeth...

Nelly - Grillz


This years, possibly decades darlings of the whiter than white college rock hipster elite...move over Wilco, here's some rare Death Cab For Cutie tracks

Death Cab For Cutie - Crooked Teeth ( live MTVu )

Death Cab For Cutie - I Will Follow You Into The Dark ( live on kexp )


retro corner

Love JonesHe had a 40 year career from the early 50's recording blues for the Bihari Bros. to his death in 1996, here is a founding father of funk, who played with folks like Larry Williams & even Frank Zappa. Lately has been sampled by Jay-Z, Mary J. Blige, and Redman. This track is from his now re-released 1980 album "Love Jones"

Johnny Guitar Watson - Love Jones

holiday bonus tracks :


Loretta Lynn - Silver Bells

Haggard, Merle - Christmas Present CD

Merle Haggard - If We Make It Through Christmas

Swingin' Christmas (Rhino) Music CD

Louis Prima - What Will Santa Claus Say When He Finds Everyone Swinging ?

South Park - Christmas in South Park

South Park - Lonely Jew On Christmas
Capitol Steps

Capitol Steps - All I Want For Christmas ( Is A Tax Increase)

Monday, November 28, 2005

Random Revelations

Kinda melancholic day here.... and i ain't moving much w/ sky gray, and my foot in a cast...


just found out that LINK WRAY is dead , apparently gone since Nov 5th in Copenhagenat age 76... hey I know it sucks, and even more...I'm weeks late ...but damn... you can scroll down and hear some tracks from the late, great WrayMan...

Anyhow, I have compiled a random playlist that has no theme, much like my life today... or if there is a theme, i don't know it yet... go figger...

Was having troubles w/ my printer... not just the Canon & his dead Epson & Hewlett Packard buddies in the corner...but my affordable color printing solutions provider...

anyhow... magically I got someone on the 800 number and with the handy three day turnaround... viola ... I assume the missing biz cards are on there holiday way...


*Hey ! As of January 1st, Sirius Radio will also no longer air any FOX News programming. Please let Sirius know how you feel about this change.*

Let us give thanks at


he was the duke of distortion, with his 1958 instrumental 'Rumble' being his best known hit... along the way he influenced a generation of rockers including Neil Young, Little Steven, David Bowie & Pete Townshend who once wrote: "He is the king; if it hadn't been for Link Wray and 'Rumble,' I would have never picked up a guitar,'" in a liner note on one of Wray's albums.

Link Wray - Deuces Wild

His rebel image & sound became a precursor to the later metal & punk scenes, and

Playing with his bros. he established himself as a western swing musician in North Carolina and played in southern towns like Fredericksburg & Roanoke Va. and poked a pencil into his tweeters to create a unique sound. He had hits with not only Rumble, but Rawhide as well .

Link Wray - Rumble

Part Cherokee Indian, Link laid low as the Beatles took over & retreated to playing sets a small bar in Maryland throughout the hard rock and psychedelic era. He eventually resurfaced through Quentin Tarantion soundtracks & I recall a few years back he was still touring, and playing around with guys from the local SF band Dieselhed...

Link Wray - Switchblade

----------------------- other stuff -----------------

a UK group circa 1965 cover John Sebastian's hip NYC village based group the Lovin' Spoonful

The Pack - Do You Believe In Magic ?

new electro trash heroes from NYC ,

Group Sounds - Uncontrollable Urge ( Devo Cover )

The Original Debut AlbumThe Stylistics were a hit early 70's soul group produced in that Philly style by Thom Bell & Linda Creed, here's their hit that Prince later used in the late 90's to rejuvenate his lagging career

Stylistics - Betcha By Golly Wow

Here's the purple one and an original track with lots of old school influence from his latest effort

Prince - Musicology

Going back ten years ago or more, a studio opened up in a garage on Divisidero in SF and recorded lots of good records in a short period of time. Now that I think back, it was sorta like the grunge version of Sun Studios or something... Melvins, Sister Double Happiness, Witnesses, Helios Creed, Clutch, Autopsy, Consolidated, Neurosis etc...

I dropped by from time to time when friends of mine were recording in the sparse to tiered white walled room... to watch a litle knob twiddling, drink the coffee or stand outside for smoke breaks with the likes of Jawbreaker during the making of Bivuoac, along with pals from bands like Bomb or Mike from Steelpole Bathtub. Billy Anderson recorded a lot of stuff, as did Jonathon Burnside.

Later on Fat Mike from NOFX bought the studio and brought in in-house producer Ryan Greene to work with bands like Tilt, No Use For A Name, NOFX, Lagwagon and dozens of other faceless pop punk acts etc. Greene later moved the studio of Divisidero to Bernal Heights, and now has since relocated to Arizona where he has recently started Crush Recording ( contact Greene at

The main producer of record I recall during SF's late 80's early 90's Razor's Edge era there was Jonathan Burnside, who recorded porn soundtracks during the slow hours, and has since moved to Australia. Here's an .mp3 interview from earlier this year in which I discovered he'd also been behind the Sleepy Jackson record from last year or so...

Jonathan Burnside - Interview w/ Australian Radio

discussing his studio work with Nirvana, The Melvins, Sleepy Jackson, Dwarves, Fu Manchu, etc. Daniel is pictured below in the foreground with Danny Pearson & Gary Floyd.

Die Gary Floyd Band

Australian faux country rawkers get the 1983 style remix treatment from BassClef

the sleepy jackson Sleepy Jackson - Good Dancers (remix)

The Melvins w/ Mike Zeigler - Smells Like Teen Spirit

A power trio influence on the Melvins, from Tejas, where they do it big... these 3 guys did it bigger than most, here's a mid 70's classic

ZZ Top Tube Snake Boogie

Here's one that has some U.K tekno-fiends remixing a respected reggae band for gawd knows what evil purposes...
Thievery Corporation vs Black Uhuru - Boof n Baff n Biff

here's a track that sprung forth from that DJ behind the Gray Album , juries still out...u tell me...

Dangermouse & Jemini - What U Sittin On w/ Cee-Lo & Alkaholiks

I caught this upcoming hit hip-hopper on a late night tv show the other day, and he wasn't all that innovative, or even related to Carlos, but I'll pass this hit east coast tune onto you to decide

Juelz Santana - There It Go (Whistle Song)

Here's a syrupy pop track one from Carlos Santana from his hit Shaman album


Carlos Santana w/ Michele Branch - Game of Love

since we've got Michelle going on the vocals. how about some other chick voices to fill out the set...

No Doubt the dancefloor gets busy when that L.A.M.B lady gets remixed

Gwen Stefani - Luxurious (remix)

Double Diva Duty as Mariah Carey who seems to be worried that you'll forget about us

Mariah Carey - Don't Forget About Us

Scottish frontman Jim Kerr was just one of Chrissie Hynde's many beau's, perhaps that's why he's worried about making the list

Simple Minds - Don't You Forget About Me

bonus excerpt = Grandmaster Clash -

Grandmaster Clash - Guns of The Message


Cheney's Poll Numbers Make Bush Look Good