Thought for the Day

As to salvation and all that… The greatest teachers, the true healers, I would say, have always insisted that they can only point the way. The Buddha went so far as to say: “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”

The great ones do not set up offices, charge fees, give lectures, or write books. Wisdom is silent, and the most effective propaganda for truth is the force of personal example. The great ones attract disciples, lesser figures whose mission it is to preach and teach. These are the gospelers who, unequal to the highest task, spend their lives converting others. The great ones are indifferent, in the profoundest sense. They don’t ask you to believe: they electrify you by their behavior. They are the awakeners. What you do with your life is only of concern to you, they seem to say. In short, their only purpose here on earth is to inspire. And what more can one ask of a human being than that?

– Henry Miller, Sexus

For the Love of the Damon

I know this video is uber-old news, but who cares! I was telling someone about it today and they HADN’T seen it, and the memory of it so delighted me that I had to look it up and watch it again. Then I figured I’d share it with YOU, too. It’s Sarah Silverman‘s “I’m F@cking Matt Damon” song. And it’s funny.

Now, I’ve never been particularly responsive to Sarah Silverman’s comedy, which I know is blasphemy to some folks. Oh well. This video, however, is really funny to me, mostly because of how hysterically awesome Matt Damon is in it. That guy has made some interesting career moves and come out as a friggin’ superstar. He kicked some major acting ass in The Departed and The Bourne Trilogy is just friggin’ awesome. That’s right. I love ’em all. Can’t wait for the “Untitled Jason Bourne Project” to come out in 2010. That’s almost as exiting as the coming of 2012!

The conversation that reminded me of the Sarah Silverman/Matt Damon video was regarding Alanis Morissette’s version of the “My Humps” song (which, incidentally, I finally heard the original version of recently, whilst driving in my car, and was utter horrified at how completely base and idiotic it was. Amazingly Fergie’s “London Bridge” was a MASSIVE development in poetics and content from this banal piece of mediocre asininity.) In the end, the Alanis video was determined to be “not that funny” by those conversing on the topic, as it didn’t really “go” anywhere after the initial “joke” was revealed. As a wise man once said, it “missed the rising action.” 🙂

i love my band

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I LOVE MY BAND!

i really, really do.

i love my band.

seriously.

love,
juli

I Make The Rain

I love hot tea. I’m not sure if it’s the agave nectar which I use to sweeten it, the warmth of the liquid, or the actual flavor of the teas that I make that pleases me so; whatever it is, it works a magic on me. I like the ritual of making tea. I like putting the loose leaves in my Japanese-style teapot and mixing weird combos to make a hot wet flavor experience. And I like the cups that I drink it from. I like the way they fit in my hands. I just like it all.

Some time ago, my teapot (the one I boil the water in, not the Japanese-style one) stopped whistling, so now when I boil the water for my tea, I have to stay generally alert as to the fact that there is water boiling on the stove, since the pot is not going to be so kind as to whistle and let me know. Alas, I am not always good at this.

More than I’d like to admit, I get distracted and totally forget that I’m boiling water. It has, on more than one occasion, come to pass that I will end up participating in the transformation of an entire pot of water into steam by neglecting the boiling water on the stove. This used to make me feel bad, as I thought I was wasting water, until I realized that perhaps I am playing a small part in the Hydrological Cycle, helping the big ‘ol water wheel of the world with it’s turning.

The way I see it, every time I offer up a pot of steam to the heavens, I’m helping to plump up the clouds, weigh down the sky, and bring the rain. And I like the rain, too. 🙂

And another thing…

On the bagged tea tip: I friggin’ love the teas (like Yogi Tea or Good Earth Tea) that give you some words of wisdom or a famous quote on the paper tag. I’m a sucker for lil’ nuggets like that, and I appreciate chunks of literature and/or anything I can take as a sign and/or signal from the universe wherever I can get it.

I like music, YES I DO!!!

I really like music. I especially like GOOD** music that makes me really HAPPY.

What is making me happy RIGHT NOW is:

Taken together, that is an awful lot to be happy about… and I am awful happy. AWFUL! HAPPY!

** It is in fact BECAUSE the music makes me HAPPY that it is indeed GOOD…
according to the general philosophy of ethics, morals, and WTF is goodness anyhow.

Mr T’s Bowl

For the past few months, The Evangenitals have been making a steady habit of playing at Mr T’s Bowl in Highland Park and the consistency is working a number on my heart strings. I really do love that joint. Mr T’s Bowl is where the Evangenitals first stepped on the stage (at Arlo’s Open Mic night) and sung our first tender tunes in public. It’s where we got our first “big break” (booked to headline at El Cid by promoter Michael Anderson), and it’s where we’ve met, made, and converted some of the most dedicated Evangenitals friends and fans imaginable.

In the olden days, all of the Evangenitals (there were only 3 of us at that time) used to live in Highland Park, IN THE SAME APARTMENT BUILDING, which made band practice a breeze & Mr T’s Bowl was just a few blocks up the street. Almost every night of the week, you could find one or more of the Evangenitals at the Bowl, either playing the open mic, on the night’s lineup, or supporting our friend’s bands like The Natural Disasters, Fascinoma, Unpoppable, Killsonic, Cousin Junebug, Eagle and Talon, Cat Hair Ensemble, Artichoke, Ukefink, Hidden… it was a real family affair.

Then manifest destiny kicked in and we started venturing West, exploring new neighborhoods and venues all over Los Angeles, from the Derby in Los Feliz to the Knitting Factory where we opened for Trainwreck. We were regulars at Highland Grounds for a bit before it closed down, and even made it all the way to the ocean to play at O’Brien’s Pub in Santa Monica. Everywhere we have played has it’s charms, though none of ’em have the same home-baked feeling of Mr T’s Bowl.

Well, some months ago, the booker of the bowl, Gus, decided that the Evangenitals had drifted away from our ‘ol home base for far too long and it was time to get back to our roots. We, roots-loving folks that we are, were in total agreement and made a commitment to play the first Wednesday of every month. It has been good, and I hope we keep on going into ’09 with it.

If you don’t know the joint, not only is Mr T’s Bowl an infamous and important staple in the Los Angeles music scene (“Beck used to play there!” is one of the more popular pieces of evidence toward it’s cool/less factor)… the sound man, Arlo, is one of the best in the business, and plays some of the greatest in-between-acts tunes imaginable. For example, after we closed out our set last night with a rousing version of Gasoline (I even did a cartwheel into the audience, it was THAT rousing!) he turned on John Coltrane‘s version of “My Favorite Things”.

Hells yells! 🙂

So, as the year begins to come to a close, it seems that I’m having a kind of nostalgia that goes both backward and forward, simultaneously. I’m loving where the band has been, all the adventures we’ve had (like the epic Road to Oprah tour with The 1 Second Film!) and I’m REALLY excited about the FUTURE!

I adore the current incarnation of the Evangenitals, the ways in which we are growing, evolving, changing, the new music we are making, the revisioning of old songs, the addition of new instrumentation and players, and especially the LOVE that keeps bubbling up, flowing through me, and spouting out like a big ‘ol fountain of joy. I dig it. And it seems I’m not the ONLY one that is digging it… word on the street is that we are pretty cool.

What’s your word?

Evangenitals – Gasoline 11/25/08

All my lovin,
Juli

An Evangenital in Spaceland

*** THIS JUST IN ***

Evangenitals drummer David Hurlin is going to be drumming with EZRA REICH (http://ping.fm/f4xDC) TONIGHT (Tuesday Dec 2nd) at 11pm.

Since I can’t be there (I’m in San Diego recording Johnny Cash/June Carter tunes with Cash’d Out) I’m hoping YOU can go and see this rare spectacle. 🙂

Ezra Reich’s music is (in my opinion) like John Maus arm-wrestling David Lynch in a Technicolor water ballet. Yes, you can quote me on that.

Regardless of how you felt about the 80’s, you will be sure to appreciate how friggin’ TIGHT this act is. I’m talking ORCHESTRATED. With STRINGS, man.

So go do it, dig it, and support our dear David Hurlin on his fantastic voyage. 🙂

Much love,
Juli Crockett & the Evangenitals