9.28.2006

US ROMANTICS ARE LIVING IN RISKY TIMES


(the Miss Rockaway slumbers in the fog)

So I'm back. Sort of. The Mississippi has finally let me go and I have returned to dry land. I'm not quite NYC bound yet, as my room is occupied, but I will be making a quick appearance at the Miss Rockaway Armada's speaking engagement at P.S.1 on Saturday. It should be interesting, as a lot of members of the Armada should be present. We'll also be showing photos from the trip. Come say hi.

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THE MISS ROCKAWAY ARMADA
TRAVELOGUE AND SLIDE SHOW

Saturday, September 30, 3:00 pm
P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center
22-25 Jackson Avenue at 46th Avenue
Long Island City, NY 11101

(Long Island City, NY – September 19, 2006) P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center is proud to present a slide show and discussion of the Miss Rockaway Armada, an artist-organized journey down the Mississippi River on a flotilla of hand-fabricated rafts.

Initiated by Greater New York 2005 artist SWOON, the Armada is a group of approximately 25 performers and artists from all over the country, including members of the Toyshop Collective, Visual Resistance, The Amateurs, The Floating Neutrinos, The Infernal Noise Brigade, The Madagascar Institute, and The Rude Mechanical Orchestra. In July, the group converged in Minneapolis to construct rafts and have since been journeying down the Mississippi, stopping in towns along the way to host musical performances, vaudeville variety-theater, and workshops focusing on arts and environmental issues.

For their presentation at P.S.1, Armada members will share photo-documentation and explain the project's influences and goals; the details of construction, engineering, and day to day life on the boat; and the unexpected encounters along the way.

*This event is free with museum admission.*
Program schedules are subject to change. For updated information, please check our website at www.ps1.org or call 718.784.2084.

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MP3:

I'm sure most of you have caught the new TV On The Radio album that came out a while ago. Well it's just as good as one would hope. I really appreciate a band that is interesting, innovative, and offers staying power. I also like the idea of a mountain made out of cookies. Win win.

• TV On The Radio - Blues From Down Here

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9.17.2006

IT'S NOT FOR LACK OF TRYING,
IT'S FOR LACK OF SUCCESS



So in the random nature that things seem to go, I ended up jumping ship for a bit to run to Reno for a job. Reno was everything I had hoped for, totally weird, lightly ghetto, uncharacteristic of any other place I'd been (except maybe for Hastings St. in Vancouver), and with outlying areas that made me envision a Mad Max western movie. Now I'm working my way back to the boat and hoping the culture shock I felt submerging myself back in everyday America won't make returning to the Armada fold difficult. I've been hanging out in Chicago for a couple days enjoying the great hospitality of some old friends. It has definitely helped me feel better about this mildly rough and unexpected transition. Ah, but the Mississippi awaits. . .

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MP3:

Apologies for that last track I posted (a little too scribbly for my tastes). Guess I get what I deserve when I put something up I've never heard before. Here's a track I have heard and like very much. Seems a good choice as Fall is starting to warm up to transform the landscape into what my childhood fantasies have always looked like.

• Akron/Family - Before And Again

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9.09.2006

NOTHING BETTER THAN DRUNKEN CARPENTRY



Damn it's been a while. I don't even know where to begin. We're in Dubuque, Iowa now, right near the Illinois border. It's really nice. We're parked smack dab next to a giant river boat casino, a silent sighing behemoth with strangely unexciting neon lights. The crew has thinned out a bit more, and things seem to be getting slightly more under control, even if the engines are still teasing us with their amazing propensity to break down. There's been a lot of camping, a lot of good food, a lot of meeting awesome characters as we go (a farmer, a pirate, a drunk ninja, and a mythical generous Texan to name a few). And there's been a lot of naked time, of course. It's starting to get cold at night, so there's always a rush looking for long underwear at every thrift store we come across (no luck yet). We've also been hunting for showers pretty hard as well. When Staph is running around the boat, cleanliness takes on a whole new level of importance. The bicycle raft is more or less up and running, and our Black Label Bike Club-donated tall bike is fully functional, it even has a brake. Let's see, what else have we been up to. . .

- hanging out on freight trains
- sand dune slip-n-slide action
- mad floor-clearing dance parties in gay clubs that were not amused
- very successful busking efforts
- mooning barges in their own spotlight
- midnight diner sing-a-longs
- exploring abandoned buildings
- having a second-story slam-dance fest to Slayer at mile marker 666
- getting tours of Organic Valley farms
- meeting lots of nice cops, which TOTALLY messes with your head
- fog so thick I could photograph it in front of my face with a flash
- moves toward converting to grease instead of biodiesel. But just when we get ready, the engines throw another tantrum and postpone it again. The last finicky-engine episode had us limping along for two days using our skiff boat as a second engine.

Also I just updated the photo gallery from the trip, it's here. And people are trying to keep the blog on missrockaway.org up to date, so that's always worth a look too.

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MP3:

So posting music from the river obviously lends itself to some difficulty, when you are without laptop or ipod. So I am putting this up not actually having heard it, but rather having heard that it's supposed to be good. Hopefully I'm right. I guess this is the first instance where I'm actually looking forward to getting home to listen to my own podcast. Ha.

• Hella - Biblical Violence

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