Sunday, August 31, 2008

Joan Osborne, What If God Smoked Cannabis?

by Hector Diego

When you criminalize an herb created by God, you are trying to set yourself up as God.

Kingston Trio, Where Have All The Flowers Gone?

by Hector Diego

Notice how the song ends, for the cycle never does.

Grateful Dead, Uncle John's Band

by Hector Diego

I Still Can't Believe It

by Jay Allbritton
In her introductory speech, Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin blatantly reached out to the elusive PUMA by pretending to pay tribute to Hillary Clinton (the same Hillary Clinton that Palin recently called a whiner). "Hillary Clinton," she said, "may have left 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling, but the women of America aren't finished yet and we can shatter that glass ceiling once and for all!"

Sure thing.

Is this what Hillary and all the other trailblazing women in American history who have worked their asses off for all these years--to have some lightweight come out of nowhere and be selected based on nothing more than gender?

This woman thinks not.

Station nation, I did not support Hillary Clinton during the primaries, so, to tenderly embrace her now might seem convenient, but Senator Clinton's speech at the DNC changed everything. She united the party and brought Democrats back under one big tent. If that was the launch of her 2012 or 2016 campaign, then it started in a completely different spirit than her 2008 campaign ended. Once again, the Clinton legacy and the women's movement are firmly entrenched under our tent and the likes of Sarah Palin could not dry clean Hillary Clinton's pant suits.

For John McCain to select her has affirmed the obvious--he's not Presidential. A real President doesn't expose America this way. The specter of a President Palin sometime in the next four years is terrifying.
Watch the lengths McCain supporters will go to in order to make the argument that Palin could be President. Check out Steve Doocy of Fox and Friends in this deluge of Palin-mockery from Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Doocy actually tries to make a case for Palin's foreign policy credentials by pointing out that Alaska is next to Russia. I guess that from across the Bering Straight she can see into Putin's soul.

How would you feel knowing that Palin was going to face off with Putin in a global crisis? Even McCain's campaign knows that she needs training. When asked about Palin's foreign policy credentials, McCain adviser Charlie Black said, "She's going to learn national security at the foot of the master for the next four years, and most doctors think that he'll be around at least that long."

At the foot of the master. What do you think would happen if someone told Hillary Clinton that she would learn anything at the foot of anybody?

This move will hurt McCain in the debates. The measure of Presidential debates is not how candidates perform against each other. As we know from the Bush/Gore and the Bush/Kerry debates, the true measure of a Presidential debate in American politics is how candidates perform against the American people's expectations of them as defined by the media. Well, if John McCain is 'the master' of foreign policy, then he has to back that up in a debate, and he better be damn good to convince America that he's worth four years of worrying about President Palin.

A lot of people in this country are old enough to remember how anxious they felt when George H.W. Bush tossed his cookies in Japan and for a brief moment, everyone envisioned Burt Ward as their President. Don't think that feeling didn't contribute to making George H.W. Bush vulnerable to being defeated by a young, inexperienced guy who preached hope to the masses.

Tool - Hooker With a Penis

by Jay Allbritton
Maynard James Keenan from Tool sings about "selling out" in this song (lyrics). He sings, "All you know about me is what I've sold you, dumb fuck, I sold out long before you ever even heard my name, I sold my soul to make a record, dip shit, and then you bought one."

Clearly he's talking to the fans that go overboard and think they own a performer. While musicians clearly should respect their audience--and it's clear that Maynard does--the relationship between a musician and a fan is transactional. I get something I want--good music, hopefully--they get something they want--money and, perhaps, fame. There's nothing in our arrangement that says their next record has to suit my ever changing needs the same way their previous record does. When the band doesn't work for you, let it go. Find one that does. Hector and I can recommend a few hundred good ones for you if the band you were into starts singing different tunes.

Jenny Lewis Plays "Acid Tongue" for Ben Gibbard

by Jay Allbritton
Jenny Lewis's Postal Service bandmate Ben Gibbard stops by to listen to her new material.

Ben Gibbard pays a visit - Jenny Lewis

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Sarah Vaughan, A Lover's Concerto

by Hector Diego

Bush, Search Party of Three!

by Jay Allbritton
YouTuber Vithusanj compiled his 10 favorite jokes from the late great comedian Mitch Hedberg. He did a fantastic job with it.

Righteous Brothers, Unchained Melody

by Hector Diego

Anyone familiar with the radio version could tell this is live.

That's incredible.

Paul McCartney, Hope Of Deliverance

by Hector Diego

Friday, August 29, 2008

Jenny Lewis, Somebody's Else's Clothes

by Hector Diego

Madonna, What It Feels Like For A Girl

by Hector Diego

What's up with the British accent? I thought she was a New Yorker?

Laura Branigan, Self Control

by Hector Diego

Looks like L.A. to me.

Lykke Li - Breaking It Up

by Jay Allbritton
Straight outta Sweden. I don't know this music, but this song grew on me a lot as I listened to it.

Beatles Revolution #6

by Hector Diego
It is simply not true, as the narrator says, that if their fans could not hear them in their concerts, "it didn't really matter."

Saving Private Ryan Revisited

by Hector Diego
Most of us can only know about war by watching a Hollywood film, but that's why people willingly sacrifice themselves in war, right? More's the pity when the sacrifice is unwilling, and for an unworthy cause. Even in WW II most brave soldiers did not start out that way, and shouldn't have been soldiers in the first place. So what to speak of Viet Nam, Iraq, and...let us pray NOT...Iran.

Sacrifice under arms should always be voluntary, but once things get going this often becomes a luxury of sorts. While we have the luxury of an opportunity to meditate upon the horrors of war, we should do so. This luxury is precious.

We should earn it.

Neil Young - Oh Lonesome Me

by Jay Allbritton
Here's Neil Young's country side in case any of you Southern men actually think you don't need him around.

This one's going out to Seamus O'Rourke. Have a good weekend, people.

Bruce Springsteen, Born In The USA

by Hector Diego

The Obama campaign has adopted Springsteen's anthem as it's signature song--so fitting.

That fool Ronald Reagan thought "Born In The USA" was a song of approval. What a jerk.

Born down in a dead man's town
The first kick I took was when I hit the ground
You end up like a dog that's been beat too much
'Til you spend half your life just covering up

I got in a little hometown jam
And so they put a rifle in my hands
Sent me off to Vietnam
To go and kill the yellow man

Come back home to the refinery
Hiring man says "Son if it was up to me"
I go down to see the V.A. man
He said "Son don't you understand"

I had a buddy at Khe Sahn
Fighting off the Viet Cong
They're still there, he's all gone
He had a little girl in Saigon
I got a picture of him in her arms

Down in the shadow of the penitentiary
Out by the gas fires of the refinery
I'm ten years down the road
Nowhere to run, ain't got nowhere to go

I'm a long gone Daddy in the U.S.A.
Born in the U.S.A.
I'm a cool rocking Daddy in the U.S.A.
Born in the U.S.A.

The Thin Red Line, God U Takem

by Hector Diego

Yes, He does. From the excellent film, The Thin Red Line.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

John Williams, Hymn To The Fallen

by Hector Diego

I'm sick and tired of hearing about John McCain's years as a POW. If he were President he would waste more lives for his vanity.

Somehow, after watching Barack Obama's nomination acceptance speech last night, I felt inspired to post William's "Hymn To The Fallen" from the film Saving Private Ryan.

I feel that Obama, although a politician like all the rest, "gets it." John McCain does not.

Semper Fi.

Beatles LP Countdown, It Won't Be Long

by Hector Diego

In continuing our countdown of every song on every Beatles album, "It Won't Be Long" is the first song on the second Beatles album, With The Beatles. Americans, don't be confused. Meet The Beatles was the boys' first album in America, released by Capitalist Records. They rearranged the order of the Beatles' music to suit their profit margin, and it didn't benefit the Beatles and caused Americans to buy more records--that is, get less music for the same price.

May Capitalist Records rot in hell. I'm using the British system.

David Bowie, Changes

by Hector Diego

And these children that you spit on
As they try to change their worlds
Are immune to your consultations
They're quite aware of what they're going through

They were playing some rather crappy music at the convention last night. "Changes" should be the Democratic Party's theme song. Doesn't it say it all?

Can you hear this, John McVain and the Republicannots? For McVain, the 1960's never happened. That's why he and his ABBA should be placed in the dustbin of history.

Dancing Queen, indeed.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

John Kerry, Bill Clinton Deliver at DNC

by Jay Allbritton
The third night of the convention is now wrapped. The highlight of the evening was clearly Bill Clinton's speech. Heavy on substance, but not lacking style, the speech was a notch below Hillary's rhetorically and oratorically, but it was perhaps the most useful speech of the convention. It was, perhaps, the greatest letter of recommendation of all time.

Joe Biden followed with a pretty good speech. He went after McCain, and filled his role well. Biden got a bit too emo at the beginning, and he was running a little hot by the time it came to kicking John McCain around and it sucked some of the sharpness out the speech.

Between Biden and Clinton was the hidden gem of the convention. John Kerry's speech. The networks dropped their floor coverage when Kerry went on, and at least MSNBC was forced to pick it back up because Kerry was on fire.

Obama's curtain call was a clumsy bit of stunt conventioneering. I think it may have been worth it, so he could look Hillary and Bill Clinton in the eye before a national audience and thank them and allude to the greatness of the Clinton campaign and administration. For the cause of party unity, it was well worth it. However, it would have been way rad if he rode in on a motorcycle.

Rilo Kiley, A Better Son/Daughter

by Hector Diego

Life goes on...

Pixies, Gouge Away

by Hector Diego

Eddie Vedder And Corin Tucker, Hard Sun

by Hector Diego

This is melodic, so it gets a A+ from Hector Diego.

Jimi Hendrix, Voodoo Child

by Hector Diego

Neil Young, Heart Of Gold

by Hector Diego

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Radiohead - Tell Me Why

by Jay Allbritton
Stereogum has the story of how this sweet Neil Young cover came about.

Faulty Casting--Cher to Play Catwoman?

by Jay Allbritton
The idea that Christopher Nolan would turn over the fate of his exquisite Batman trilogy to the stunt casting of Cher as Catwoman is ludicrous. Not that Cher is a bad actress, but Catwoman?

The perfect Catwoman would have been Maggie Gyllenhaal, but she's already been cast in this trilogy. Plenty of other young actresses spring to mind--Lauren Ambrose, Christina Ricci, Natalie Portman... Are we talking about the same comics here?

John Lennon, Woman

by Hector Diego

Kimya Dawson - Underground

by Jay Allbritton
Thanks to the YouTuber who put together this delightful montage of Kimya-ness.

Paul McCartney On Piano, Heart Of The Country

by Hector Diego

Tin Pan Alley. If you understand this term, you know what the Beatles' composing was all about.

John and Paul, as Tin Pan Alley composers, were remarkably similar. There is no appreciable difference in their respective body of work in terms of melody. Where they differ is in lyrics, mood, and of course, vocals. Like the Tin Pan Alley composers of the earlier part of the 20th century, John and Paul composed much of their work on piano, not guitar.

Lyrically, John was interested in the extraordinary, and many prefer his work for that reason. Paul was more interested in the ordinary, as such a song as "Heart Of The Country" amply reveals. The synergy between these two great composers and their moods was their magic.

Listen carefully to this piano demo of "Heart Of The Country" and compare it to "Take Me Out To The Ballpark", "Over The Rainbow", "How Much Is That Doggie In The Window", etc. If one of these is not technically Tin Pan Alley, come on and humor me--you know what I mean. It is so-called "popular" music emphasizing melody. None of them took a year to compose.

I love John's Beatles songs, I probably favor them slightly over Paul's Beatles' songs, but that is only an academic distinction of fine hair splitting. And I must reiterate here what I have said in previous posts.

We need Paul's ordinary consciousness. In today's trying times, who wouldn't want to get away to the heart of the country, and smell the grass growing?

The Lion In Winter

by Hector Diego

Ted Anthony wrote a great little piece on Senator Ted Kennedy's appearance at the DNC National Convention last night, and the Kennedy mystique. The comparison of Senator Ted Kennedy to The Lion In Winter drew a tear from my eye, I must admit. I do disagree with one thing Anthony wrote, though. The Kennedy mystique, like the Beatles' mystique, is not a flame that needs to be tended-it tends itself.

Very few political families have this mystique. Have you ever heard of anyone discussing the Bush mystique? We should ask ourselves why, if we shall ever have any clue about our national ambitions.

If our ambitions are only about money, then we must look to to the Republicans for an abiding image. But in my opinion, drab politicians like Harry S. Truman have more charm than phony "communicators" like Ronald Reagan, who had only a actor's way with words, not mystique.

It is really the message that makes for the mystique, although the Kennedys-like a certain Presidential candidate I am thinking of-just happen to have something extra. "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country" rings as true now as it did in January, 1961. On the other hand, Reagan's bit about not exploiting his opponent's youth and inexperience is not the stuff of mystique; rather it is a gag line from a B actor appealing to the basest of instincts in the American psyche--which also explains the difference in popularity between Britney Spears and Elliot Smith.

The popularity of the Kennedys-even if it was based on a ton of hype-speaks to the best in us, and so deserves its place in American history. The popularity of Reagan-even if he was sincere in his beliefs-speaks to the selfish impulses, and is a shameful reflection on our national consciousness.

Just something to think about when we cast our votes in November.

Michelle Obama at the DNC

by Jay Allbritton
Michelle Obama gave a great speech at the DNC last night. She set the bar very high for the other heavyweights still to come.

Here it is courtesy of TPM:

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fear Not Geeks, Biden is Not Coming For You

by Jay Allbritton
A very deceptive article about Joe Biden's attitude toward the internet became a hit all over the web. Like most stuff on CNet it's misleading, fear mongering nonsense from the right. Barack Obama is the man running for President and when it comes to the internet, Obama is second to none.

His speech on tech concerns last November at Google's Mountain View, CA, headquarters was one of the early indicators that Obama was the candidate we need:

If that doesn't convince you, check out this article about the telecom lobbyists working for McCain. What kind of plans for the internet do you think they have? McCain's tech plan rules out legislation protecting net neutrality.

Joe Biden is not on the Democratic ticket for his tech savvy; he's there to help deal with al-Qaida and to make sure that we don't wind up in a war with Russia that, you know, ends the world. Obama and his geek squad will handle the Internets, please, my nerd brothers and sisters, do not let this issue concern you.

Elliot Smith, Alameda

by Hector Diego

Rilo Kiley Acoustic, Science vs. Romance

by Hector Diego

Crash sites keep me up at night...

Beatles LP Countdown, Twist And Shout

by Hector Diego

"Twist And Shout" is the last track on the Beatles' first album, Please Please Me. My friend Leo from school days says Lennon has the "assertive" voice in the Beatles, and I believe he is correct. Lennon's lead vocal here is a fine example of assertiveness.

ABC News Talks to Joe Biden

by Jay Allbritton
Charlie Gibson talked to Joe Biden recently about how he over came the loss of his wife and young daughter when he was a newly-elected 29 year old Senator.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


by Hector Diego

Here is more Janmastami music, produced by George Harrison. These are two stanzas from a compact Hindu scripture, the Brahma Samhita. Here is a translation of the entire song.

Get this widget | Track details | eSnips Social DNA

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Jaya Radha Madhava

by Hector Diego

He steals butter and yogurt from the houses of the milkmaids of Vraja, and shares it with His brother Balarama and the monkeys that seem to own the place. When He is caught in the act, He makes fantastic claims about his innocence. The Lord says, "This butter and yogurt are useless, even the monkeys don't want it."

When Mother Yashoda sees her darling boy with tears in His eyes, afraid of chastisement, her heart melts, her breasts overflow, and she takes the Lord upon her lap and feeds Him with the milk of love.

Yashoda says that if she goes to heaven but doesn't find Krishna there, then she is in hell. But if she goes to hell and there serves Krishna, then she is in heaven.

Isn't heaven a place where everyone desires nothing for themselves, but everything for others? Then everyone has all their desires fulfilled.

"Greater love no man has than this-that he lay down his life for his friends."

Do you have a better idea?

Paul in the Holy Land

by Jay Allbritton
Paul McCartney is set to play a show in Israel 40 years after the Beatles were banned from performing in that country on the grounds that they might corrupt the youth. Hmm. Might have been the type of corrupting this region needed.

Today Is Janmastami

by Hector Diego

Baby Krishna with his mother, Yashoda

The story of Krishna is older than the story of Jesus, so the similarities should be understood in proper order. There are also many differences. Krishna was "born" to his parents as prisoners in a palace, not a manger. He then "grew up" in overflowing opulence. He did not turn his back on enjoyment as Jesus did, because as God the Father, Krishna is the Supreme Enjoyer-and Jesus is His devotee. Being God is just one of the things Krishna does, and not the most important one, either. But being the Supreme Enjoyer is very important to Him and to us because our happiness is part of His enjoyment.

Perhaps the most important similarity between Krishna and Jesus is their message, which is essentially the same. Although Jesus could not deliver much knowledge considering the low cultural situation of most of the population in which he was born-such as details pertaining to karma, reincarnation, yoga, an innocent vegetarian diet, and other topics that were standard in Vedic India-both he and Lord Krishna taught that "love is the answer."

"And you know that for sure," sang John Lennon in "Mind Games". Yes, I think we all do know that, but we tend to forget it. So love to all from The Walrus Speaks on Janmastami!

And the Son of God, Jesus Christ, sends his love too.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Donovan, Atlantis

by Hector Diego

Michael Cassidy, Changing The Face Of The Earth

by Hector Diego

"The dark winter age has begun." Without reverence, awe can be mighty uncomfortable. And it is on its way.

Awe, that is. The dark winter age is already here.

Madonna, Shanti/Ashtangi

by Hector Diego

Madonna's Sanskrit is not great, but I have heard worse. Try it.

Enigma, The Eyes Of Truth

by Hector Diego

Wallflowers, One Headlight

by Hector Diego

Jakob Dylan of the Wallflowers

Joy Division, Love Will Tear Us Apart

by Hector Diego

Friday, August 22, 2008

Counting John McCain's Houses With the Count

by Jay Allbritton
Everybody has a different tally when they try to count up the McCains' houses. But this guy is the expert. He's got a Ph.D. in counting from the streets!

Feist helps out too in this web ad.

While we're counting, here's the candidates net worth: McCain $36.4 Million, Obama $799,000.

Acid Tongue, Track By Track

by Jay Allbritton
More Jenny Lewis buzz, this time in the form of a track by track preview of Acid Tongue from Music Snobbery.

Jenny Lewis, You Are What You Love

by Hector Diego

Peter And Gordon, World Without Love

by Hector Diego

Beatles people will recall that "World Without Love" was written by Paul McCartney and given to his almost-brother-in-law Peter Asher, just for the hell of it.

Sounds like Paul's work, doesn't it?

Beatles LP Countdown, Thank You Girl

by Hector Diego

Alright, so the lyrics don't mean very much...unless you are in love.

These are classic Beatles' harmonies.

Housegate--Who Is The Real Elitist?

by Hector Diego

This is just one of John McCain's nine houses.

Senator McCain has persistently accused Senator Obama of being an out of touch elitist. Can someone tell me why being intelligent and up to date is elitist, but obstinately refusing to have very much to do with the Internet and having so many houses you can't remember them all is not out of touch, and elitist?

What in hell is meant by elitist? I have said it before and I'll say it again. If Americans elect John McCain they will have gotten the President they deserve...


Death By Marijuana Overdose

by Hector Diego

People claim that marijuana is harmless, but do they really know what they are talking about?

Rilo Kiley, Plane Crash In C

by Hector Diego

McCain: Why Not A Bush Clone?

by Hector Diego

Probably what worries Americans the most about McCain-or should worry them, if they have half a brain (unless they are rich)-is his economic agenda. More tax cuts for rich people, the eternal Republican agenda. What Is McCain's record when it comes to agreeing with Bush?

From Yahoo News, August 22, 2008:

On legislation on which the president had a clear position, McCain voted with Bush 90 percent of the time from the day Bush took office in 2001 to when Congress left for its August 2008 recess, according to a study by Congressional Quarterly. For 2007, he voted with the president 95 percent of the time.

The Elected - British Columbia

by Jay Allbritton

She says she's going back home
Hasn't seen her friends in a while
Plus British Columbia's real nice this time of year
And when she gets there she says that she'll phone
May take a day or so
It always takes longer than you think it will to settle in
And she says, "So if I leave on that plane, remember me by our good days.
And you don't have to but I'm going to wait."

Dresden Dolls - Good Day

by Jay Allbritton
Not so bad today. Not great, but pretty good.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Kula Shaker, Tattva

by Hector Diego

is a Sanskrit philosophical term that means that God is simultaneously one and different from His/Her/Their (there really is no "It"--that's simply a delusion) creation. In other words, we are God, but of course, we most certainly are not.

We are God in quality (in our pure, constitutional state) but not in quantity.

Thank God.

The Ponys, Poser Psychotic

by Hector Diego

Stones, Beggar's Banquet Part Four

by Hector Diego

Rilo Kiley, Paint's Peeling

by Hector Diego

This one is dedicated to University of Florida researcher, Amy Brown.

Bob Dylan, Highway 51 Blues

by Hector Diego

Oceans' Dead Zones Growing

by Jay Allbritton
The ocean is broken (h/t Stacy Sedai):
One of the major dead zones is in the Gulf of Mexico. It is 8,000 square miles, nearly the size of New Jersey, according to the marine consortium's annual measurement completed in July.

"There's no oxygen in the water for shrimp, crabs, fish to live," said Nancy Rabalais, executive director of the consortium.

Fish and shrimp "can sense that and they start to move out of the area. Otherwise they would die. The animals that still remain in the sediments have to keep breathing. There is not enough oxygen, and eventually they will die off," Rabalais said.

More on the sad state of our oceans from David Bunnell, Kevin Zelnio and Jeremy Jacquot.

Faulty Casting in Hicks Biopic

by Jay Allbritton
Hopefully I'm wrong about this, but why on Earth would Russell Crowe, who is nearly 50, want to play the great comic Bill Hicks, who died at the age of 32?

Russell Crowe is a truly talented actor, but this is not the right role for him. I hope I'm proven wrong.

None of Hicks' comedy is safe for work, including this bit:

Rumble, Young Man, Rumble

by Jay Allbritton
The Obama as Ali in the Rumble in the Jungle using the rope-a-dope strategy is very reassuring. Let's hope there's something to it, because a withering two month barrage of knock out blows against a punched-out McCain would be very satisfying.

He may have started today with this:

And by the way, he approved that message in person here:

Believe it or not, he went kinda soft on the old man. He didn't mention that the McCains' little problem paying their taxes. Yet.

Rep. Tubbs Jones Dies

by Jay Allbritton
Ohio Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones died today from a brain hemorrhage, she was 58.

Here's one of her visits to The Colbert Report.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Beatles LP Countdown, A Taste Of Honey

by Hector Diego

The Beatles in 1962.

The Beatles' producer George Martin, somehow, understood that perfect diction or pronunciation of lyrics was superfluous to what the Beatles were all about. If the total effect was good, it was put onto vinyl. This philosophy of music recording became a standard, and thank God for that.

"A Taste Of Honey" appeared on the Beatles' first album, Please Please Me.

Slowdive, Some Velvet Morning

by Hector Diego

Rachel Goswell of Slowdive

I am very fond of "Some Velvet Morning", and I have posted several versions of it on The Walrus Speaks. I believe you can't beat the classic original by Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra from 1968. The lyrics are quite suggestive.

"Some velvet morning when I'm straight, I'm gonna open up your gate."


Leroi Moore, 1961-2008

by Jay Allbritton
Sax player Leroi Moore of the Dave Matthews Band has died as a result of complications to injuries he sustained in an ATV accident in June.

Godspeed, Leroi Moore.

Here's "Ants Marching"

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Pilgrims Of The Heart

by Hector Diego

A beautiful yoga video by Catherine Ghosh.

Om Tat Sat.

The Moody Blues, The Voice

by Hector Diego


Antique walrus print courtesy of FineRarePrints.Com