Hullo and welcome and Happy New Year in the New Year!
I and mine ushered 2015 in with a bang (sitting on couch, reading). I hope the year's a lovely one for you and yours!
A big thank you to Kevin Renick of Zachary Mule for his very kind review of 'Falimy.' Any review that begins "a genuine weirdo" is worth a read, and this one's such a pleasure to read I would recommend it even if it wasn't about me me me me me.
An equally big thanks to Richard Lindsay of Kill Ugly Radio/Radio Lost and Found (KBOO) for including me and 'Falimy' in the august company of his KBOO Top 10 Albums of 2014 list. I'm always delighted to be played by Rich because his tastes are crazy--vast and interesting and unpredictable, and he's a master of programming--very inventive. I feel a little sheepishly like the least cool person in this particular room, but I'll take it!
Zaph Mann of Radio 23's In Memory of John Peel--a unique, strange and wonderful show/host for which I'm a fangrrl and just giddy when my music gets played--included a few of my 'Falimy' songs among the nominees for his fantastic Festive Fifty One, which just made me happy as can be. I didn't come even remotely close to winning (or placing), but felt like, without having to actually be around people, which is ideal, I was a part of something bigger and less redheaded than me.
I had a lovely Skype chat w/ Finland's Ripple Rock Radio and I'll get a link up for that soon. I may have complained about Portland (what a shocker). Also, That Mag ran an interview I did with them months ago, with Erinn Fortson. I managed to curb my Portland complaints somewhat, but you can find the bile. I was of course asked about our music scene and--being a hermit--acquitted myself pretty lamely, overall. Though I recall I got all excited about the fabulous Gwynneth Haynes and her band, Sophe Lux and the Mystic and how much I'm looking forward to her new album.
You know, gloomy, caustic introvert Portland used to match the likes of me, before it was stormed by hordes of starry-eyed, donut-eating selfie-takin'zealots in search of their tabula rasa. Portland: the Blank Slate. I think it should be our new city motto. Everyone comes here to remake themselves.
What I've learned in this whole weird evolution of Portland from "Where's that?" to "OMG OMG OMG I HAVE TO MOVE THERE NOW IT WILL CHANGE MY LIFE!!!!!" is that it sucks to be the place people come to reinvent themselves. Lots and lots and lots of people. One or two would be manageable. We may get a few good food carts or ice creameries out of the deal, but it's like living with francium, the most unstable element. Worse, a bunch of franciums swarm you, with only a sprinkling of stable, noble gases (good folk who don't invest the place with unicorn magic saving qualities).
Ideally, you want the noble gases to outnumber the franciums, providing a good stable base around which the crazy, volatile franciums can play ukuleles, shout and twirl at inappropriate times. Too many franciums and too few noble gases is a problem. And Portland of today is way francium-heavy. Franciums LOVE it here, and franciums beget franciums, which begets the giant clusterfuck Portland has become.
In the end, stable or unstable, being subsumed by a lot of over-eager self-styled pioneer elements is unnerving. In truth, it has changed my city so much, I don't recognize it. I used to be a nice person. Now, I'm so aggravated and depressed all the time, I'm horrid. But, now--what was I saying? ....
Re: my most recent album, Falimy: I'm still devoting some of this page to some thank yous for the time being, as I have a lot more to be thankful for than I ever thought I would with this album. I really thought everyone would hate it. So the response has been a nice surprise.
Popdose reviewed the album most kindly and they have my gratitude. I played Estate Sale on guitar (!) for their video series, Parlour to Parlour w/ Michael Fortes in 2009 (Michael played gourd). My first two albums were guitar based. Shocking!
A really big thank you to The Big Takeover, Wondering Sound, babysue.com, East Bay Express, Ghettoblaster, Innocent Words, Pittsburgh in Tune and Jersey Beat for saying such nice things about my "Falimy." Big thanks to Dave Cantrell, too, who wrote a lovely and enjoyable-to-read review of the album for Caught in the Carousel, which seems to have disappeared in 2014. A sad loss!
Big thanks too to those who've been very generous of ink for my work, steadily over the years, and much appreciated--Willamette Week, The Portland Mercury, Casey Jarman, Robert Ham, Jeff Rosenberg, A.L. Adams, Ryan White, and The Portland Tribune's Rob Cullivan (whose plug for the Falimy album release show at Miss. Studios made me laugh so hard--something about "go see her before she goes back inside") and of course to stalwarts KBOO/The Outside World's Daniel Flessas, Ola of Ola's Kool Kitchen, X-Ray-FM, Jeremy Petersen, OPB, David Christensen, Robert Richter/KMUZ and the oft-mentioned here John B. Jones, host of Hello Cruel World for playing my things and getting the word out, and for their friendship to my music in general. The aforementioned Zaph Mann and Richard Lindsay and Michael Fortes are owed equal heaps of thanks for their longstanding encouragement and help.
I owe an especially big debt of gratitude to Tom D'Antoni of Oregon Music News and KMHD for his continued and steady friendship over the years.
A great big special thanks to S.P. Clarke for the first review of Falimy on The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly/Buko Magazine. S.P. gave me my very first album review ever, ten years or so ago, and has kept it up w/ each subsequent album, much to my delight.
Without all this support, I don't know where I'd be. Intermixed are countless friends and strangers who have helped me immeasurably and probably never even knew it, just through buying my music, coming to shows, chiming in on my FB page or sending an email of encouragement. Thank you!
p.s...i know i forgot someone--please forgive me and trust me--i will remember!
p.s....'Falimy' and individual songs and, well, all my stuff! is available for purchase exclusively on Bandcamp. I ditched all other online outlets, including iTunes and Amazon. Stupid, you may say, but it made me feel better for some reason.
p.s.... My sister Katie made this beautiful video for my song "Sitka/Seward's Folly" (from 'Ormolu').
Cover Kitty: Olive Martini Paladeni! Follow her to the music! Photo by artist (and friend)
Tammy Paladeni, Olive's loving family.
p.s....some radio shows and podcasts i like:
Hello Cruel World on XRAY-FM with John B. Jones
The Outside World on KBOO with Daniel Flessas
Radio Lost and Found on KBOO with Rich Lindsay
Kill Ugly Radio with Rich Lindsay
In Memory of John Peel on Radio23 with Zaph Mann
Ola's Kool Kitchen on Radio23 with DJ Ola
I Like It Like That on KMHD with Tom D'Antoni
p.s...My friend Zakk made me a fan page on the FB: the
"Rachel Taylor Brown Fan Page for Musical Enlightenment." Please believe me that I didn't name it that.
p.s...That two of my songs were included in the Loud Family/Game Theory legend Scott Miller's book, "Music: What Happened?" is probably one of the things that makes me the most proud ever. Scott Miller died Monday, April 15, 2013. I will always be grateful to him, and to Sue Trowbridge for sharing my music with him.
p.s...if you need anything and it's not here please contact Howard Wuelfing, Howlin Wuelf Media. Thank you, Howard. Thank you, Wendy.
contact rachel . skyhand website design, seattle