Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Jefferson Airplane, Today

by Hector Diego

Happy New Year to all of you from the Station Agent and Hector Diego.

Smashing Pumpkins, Today

by Hector Diego

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Radiohead - Planet Telex

by Jay Allbritton
When the question of best band on the planet comes up, a lot of bands who are not that are usually mentioned. One of the bands consistently mentioned in that company that actually belongs there is Radiohead.

This is "Planet Telex" from a show in 1997.

Ben Kweller - Today

by Jay Allbritton
This is an acoustic rendition of the Smashing Pumpkins once ubiquitous 90s hit.

Rilo Kiley, Pull Me In Tighter

by Hector Diego

The Station Agent and I watched this about a hundred times while sitting in his living room discussing how Bush was going down, and others were going up.

Way down, and way up.

Beatles LP Countdown, I'll Follow The Sun

by Hector Diego

"I'll Follow The Sun" is the fifth track on the Beatles' fourth British album, Beatles For Sale. It is typical of McCartney in this period, a glib composer of melody. John and Paul were the Tin Pan Alley composers of the 1960's, and they were red hot.

Here's an early version from Liverpool. The guitar intro was probably considered a requirement. It doesn't fit. But they figured it all out, didn't they?

Monday, December 29, 2008

Why Music Sucks

by Jay Allbritton
Jon Pareles of The New York Times has an article posted about how creativity is eroded when commercial motives enter into a songwriter's equation. This, of course, has been the case for as long as musicians have gotten paid, but the new business model is more deeply corrosive of the art form than previous models.

Bjork - Army of Me

by Jay Allbritton
From Coachella 2007. This looks like it really kicked ass. I gotta get out to more of these festivals.

Cat Power, The Greatest

by Hector Diego

Very pretty melody.

Liz Phair, Explain It To Me

by Hector Diego

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Rilo Kiley - A Man/Me/Then Jim

by Jay Allbritton
If I'm discussing my favorite song of all time, this song is in the conversation. It's definitely the best song with a bad title. I'm pretty sure they're playing it at a record store in L.A.

Iranians Get Into Shoe Throwing Spirit Too

by Hector Diego

Polythene Pam says we should not ridicule George W. Bush. So, we are merely reporting this event.

Hindu Graphics

by Hector Diego
Hindu Graphics @

Hindu Graphics @

Here's some for the Western holiday season.
These graphics are free at this site.

Beatles LP Countdown, Rock And Roll Music

by Hector Diego

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Kina Grannis - Paper Bag

by Jay Allbritton
Here's one from Kina Grannis that I'm putting in the never ending KTWS Talent competition. It's a tremendous cover of Fiona Apple's "Paper Bag". Word on her website says her album will be out in the Spring.

Rollins Band - Almost Real

by Jay Allbritton
Actor, writer, commentator, publisher, TV host and spoken word artist Henry Rollins in my favorite of his many endeavors fronting the mighty Rollins Band.

Ditty Bops, Summer Rain

by Hector Diego

Friday, December 26, 2008

My Suggestion to MSNBC

by Jay Allbritton
Instead of playing 500 hours of Lock Up: Christmas Edition, could you please do what TV stations used to do back in the day and just admit you're out of material. Just run this until Rachel and Keith get back:

Speaking of Color Bars, here's Elliott Smith:

John Denver, Country Road

by Hector Diego

If West Virginia is not God's country, I'm an atheist.

Brothers In Arms, The Thin Red Line

by Hector Diego

It's Studio 99 doing Dire Straits.

The Long And Winding Road

by Hector Diego

Paul played the Olympia in Paris 44 years ago with the Beatles. Here he is in 2007.

The Long And Winding Road, Despectorized

by Hector Diego

This is the version, of course, from Let It Be Naked, approved by George Harrison before his passing. Paul always hated the efforts of Phil Spector on the original album, which ran counter to what Let It Be was supposed to be about, when its original name was Get Back.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Allison Crowe - Let It Be

by Jay Allbritton
Welcome to KTWS. Merry Christmas, everyone.

Beatles Seventh Christmas Record

by Hector Diego

The cover of the 1969 Beatles Christmas

I only heard one of these as a kid, on the radio, because I was not a member of the Beatles' fan club. I would have joined but either I didn't know how to join it, or I thought my money would have been better spent on their real records...I can't remember. There was no internet in those days and music had to be bought in a store. They didn't sell these in the stores...

Many people have not heard them, and I highly recommend them. The Beatles were great humorists, to say the least.

John wants his corn flakes blessed by the Hare Krishna mantra.

Rilo Kiley - Xmas Cake

by Jay Allbritton
I like this heavily produced, unreleased gem more every time I hear it. I find the melancholy tone and the lyrics about being poor and dealing with a student loan easy to identify with.  Of course, I'm having a nice holiday anyway. And like the song, I redound to optimism.

"The new year is right in front of you"

Rilo Kiley - Jenny, You're Barely Alive

by Jay Allbritton
Nice job of setting this macabre RK classic to Japanese anime.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Rivers Cuomo Breaks it Down For Decomposed

by Jay Allbritton
Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo performs for Stereogum's Decomposed.

"Don't Worry Baby"

"Can't Stop Partying"

"I Was Scared"

"Chicken Sandwich, Carl!"

by Jay Allbritton
The long lost comedy troupe The State, perpetrators of perhaps the greatest of all sketch comedy shows despite airing on the reprehensible MTV, will reunite for a performance at the San Francisco Sketchfest Jan. 24. Unfortunately I live in Baltimore, so no The State for me.

Kirsten Does Rise Up With Fists

by Hector Diego

Kirsten is the best Jenny Lewis cover singer I have discovered so far.

Whitney Mann And The Boys, Daddy

by Hector Diego

She's got raw talent. Good luck to her.

Aretha Franklin, Bring It On HomeTo Me

by Hector Diego

Jackson Five, Never Can Say Goodbye

by Hector Diego

That kid could really sing!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Bob Dylan, Blind Willie McTell

by Hector Diego

It's a rip off of "Saint James Infirmary", but it has its own place.

Alison Krauss, Tonight I'll Be Lonely Too

by Hector Diego

B.B. King, It's My Own Fault

by Hector Diego

Riley B. King in his youth

Beatles LP Countdown, Baby's In Black

by Hector Diego

"Baby's In Black" is the third track on the Beatles' fourth British album, Beatles For Sale. John and Paul are now writing many of their lyrics in the first person.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Gonzo Goes on Fox To Set Record Crooked

by Jay Allbritton
Former AG Gonzales did his first interview since leaving office recently with Fox News.

I think he looks a bit scared, and for very good reason. On Thursday, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chair Henry Waxman sent a memo claiming that when Gonzales was serving as White House Counsel in 2002, misled Congress by claiming the CIA approved these infamous 16 words, "The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa," which later ended up in Bush's 2003 State of the Union speech.

Gonzales is already under investigation for politicizing his office. Of course, the taxpayers will be paying for his legal defense.

Bush Admits YouTube Would Have Been A Problem

by Jay Allbritton
George Bush does a good job of accidentally putting his finger on the reason we're going from a dumbass like him to genius like Obama as our President in an interview with Real Clear Politics.
I am the very last President not to really have to worry about YouTube. The 'gotcha' moments in my campaign in the past were few and far between. [Now] you're liable to see yourself on the Internet, along with 20 million other people.

[President-elect Obama] brings an awareness to the Oval Office that, frankly, I didn't have.

He [President-elect Obama] grew up in a Blackberry world, [it's] a whole other culture in many ways, in terms of information technology.
Excuse me, but his gotcha moments were plentiful. Luckily for him, Crooks and Liars and YouTube weren't ubiquitous until 2005.

What strikes me about what Bush is basically admitting that if bloggers could have zoned in on his dumbass moments, which were every bit as frequent as McCain's and Palin's, in all their grainy YouTube greatness, he would have been toast.

Something like this, maybe:

Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Tom Petty, Roger McGuinn-My Back Pages

by Hector Diego

Wow. 1992.

Crimson flames tied through my ears
Rollin' high and mighty traps
Pounced with fire on flaming roads
Using ideas as my maps
"We'll meet on edges, soon," said I
Proud 'neath heated brow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Half-wracked prejudice leaped forth
"Rip down all hate," I screamed
Lies that life is black and white
Spoke from my skull. I dreamed
Romantic facts of musketeers
Foundationed deep, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Girls' faces formed the forward path
From phony jealousy
To memorizing politics
Of ancient history
Flung down by corpse evangelists
Unthought of, though, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

A self-ordained professor's tongue
Too serious to fool
Spouted out that liberty
Is just equality in school
"Equality," I spoke the word
As if a wedding vow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

In a soldier's stance, I aimed my hand
At the mongrel dogs who teach
Fearing not that I'd become my enemy
In the instant that I preach
My pathway led by confusion boats
Mutiny from stern to bow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Yes, my guard stood hard when abstract threats
Too noble to neglect
Deceived me into thinking
I had something to protect
Good and bad, I define these terms
Quite clear, no doubt, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Obama Makes His First Real Mistake In Appointing Vilsak Secretary Of Agriculture

by Hector Diego

Tom Vilsak works closely with Monsanto. So why is President Elect Barack Obama appointing this guy Secretary of Agriculture?


Letting that Warren preacher dude speak at the Inauguration is only symbolically unsettling. With the appointment of Vilsak, Obama has really crossed a line with the people that elected him, and hurts all Americans.


California Defeats Texas, Thank You

by Hector Diego

I have nothing against Texas, if we are talking about its geography and the city of Austin. But the general cowboy culture of Texas and its undue influence in Washington during the Bush Administration?

Gag me with a steam shovel.

It seems that Barack Obama and I share some political instincts when it comes to his appointments. “There’s a similarity to where Texas was and to California is now,” said GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who represents a Bakersfield-based district. “California has filled that void.”

Friends, I can tell you that even Republicans in California tend to be concerned with green issues and are more liberal than their counterparts in other states on a host of social issues. Texas, your days are numbered, thank you very much.

Read about it.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Black Crowes - Rainy Day Woman No. 12 & 35

by Jay Allbritton
Very rocking lively live rendition of the Dylan classic.

Dolphins Amazing Turnaround Continues

by Jay Allbritton
I gotta say, I'm proud of the Dolphins for the first time in many years. They may not make the playoffs, but with their victory today over the Chiefs they have made an incredible turnaround, from 1-15 to 10-5. Next week they will play the Jets, and if they win, they will win their division just one season after being the joke of the league.

Moody Blues, Never Comes The Day

by Hector Diego

Admit what you're feeling and see what's in front of you, it's never out of your sight. You know it's true.

We all know that it's true.

Never Comes The Day - The Moody Blues

Beatles LP Countdown, I'm A Loser

by Hector Diego

The critically acclaimed "I'm A Loser" was the second track on the Beatles fourth UK album, Beatles For Sale.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Saint Nick Good, Not Perfect

by Hector Diego

This traditional statue of St. Nick in
Demre, Turkey, was recently replaced
with an image of Santa Claus.

I had heard that Saint Nicholas was actually a Muslim Turk, but if this article is authoritative, he was A Turk although not a Muslim. Now please keep in mind that the term Turk may refer to a country known as Turkey or it may be an ethnic designation for a group of people ranging way across central Asia. I mean way.

The dude was good, the records show, but not perfect. Slapping people in the face for wondering about the truth of a religious or philosophical pronouncement goes against dharma, what is right. Dharma is a Sanskrit word important to Indic religious traditions, but it has universal application--if something is right or not right morally and ethically, specific religious traditions generally recognize this regardless of specificity. The exception to this seems to be the defence of specific religious concepts, but this is a grave mistake in my opinion.

The violent defence of specific religious opinions has led to wars, torture, intolerance, and all kinds of high crimes and misdemeanors. What's wrong with debating instead of violence to promote or defend one's religious opinions?

I'm sorry that I had to discover Saint Nicholas to be an intolerant religious bigot. On the other hand, it is likely that the guy really had a very good heart and earned a mountain of good karma credits for himself.

"Nicholas, whose birthday is observed Dec. 6, was renowned both for his generosity and for his passionate, even violent defense of the young Christian church. He was said to have slapped the face of an Egyptian who questioned whether Jesus was equal to God. He also is said to have saved Myra from famine, three boys from being pickled in a barrel and several poor local women from lives of prostitution -- the last by secretly dropping bags of coins into their homes at night so that they could wed."

Friday, December 19, 2008

Shankar And Harrison, Asato Maa

by Hector Diego

More than one wise old Hindu man loved George Harrison as a son. To me, this means that George Harrison must have also been very wise.

asato ma sadgamaya
tamaso ma jyotirgamaya
mrtyorma amrtam gamaya

Lead me from the unreal to the real.
Lead me from darkness to light.
Lead me from death to immortality.

(Brhadaranyaka Upanishad — I.iii.28)

Moody Blues, Your Wildest Dreams

by Hector Diego

Oliver Shanti And Friends, Morning Joy

by Hector Diego

Jenny Lewis - The Charging Sky

by Jay Allbritton

In the desert underneath the charging sky it's just you and God...
But what if God's not there?
But his name is on your dollar bill
Which just became cab fare...

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Beatles LP Countdown, No Reply

by Hector Diego

"No Reply" is the first track on the Beatles' fourth British album, Beatles For Sale.

Old Brown Shoe

by SadButTrue
This one goes out to Muntadar al-Zaidi


Why this song at this time? Check HERE and HERE for clues.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Regina Spektor - Real Love (Bonnaroo 2007)

by Jay Allbritton
From Bonnaroo, 2007.

Grateful Dead, Scarlet Begonias

by Hector Diego

I Am The Walrus

by Hector Diego

The Iraqi Shoe Bomber

by Hector Diego

It goes without saying that this incident must qualify as a shoe-in for consideration when compiling a list for the most memorable news images of 2008.

No Drama Obama Time's Person Of The Year 2008

by Hector Diego

I would have been stunned if anyone else claimed Time's title. But why and how did President Elect Barack Obama come so far? This article in Time has a good explanation.

"Yes, Obama could talk—like nobody's business—but talk didn't win the election. According to the daily tracking polls, the tumblers clicked into place precisely at the moment the financial hurricane hit, when the wizards of Wall Street proved as incompetent as Oz and neither the President nor the leaders of Congress nor the Treasury boss nor Senator McCain could deliver a rescue package. When this group failure provoked a stock-market crash in early October, Americans asked, "Can't anybody here play this game?" Astounding as it would have seemed scant months before, their gaze fell on the one fixed point in the widening gyre: a guy named Barack Hussein Obama...By Nov. 4, the strongest party in the U.S. was no longer the Republican Party or the Democratic Party; it was the Obama Party."

The Yeatsian reference to the widening gyre is so apropos, and this is why die-hard conservatives, even though they admire Obama's pluck and industriousness, hate his image, and mock him as The Savior. Obama inspires folks to think that he might save them from the widening gyre, and no other candidate could do that. It was not the Democratic party that won the election for Barack Obama.

It was the Obama party.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Foo Fighters - Everlong (Acoustic)

by Jay Allbritton
Who would have thought that the drummer from this band would go on to be the singer and guitar player of this band?

Moo-zine For Vegetarians

by Hector Diego

This world is hard on vegetarians. When you are not at home, it is difficult to find vegetarian places to eat. Moo-zine can help with that. And make a cow happy!

Check it out.

Rilo Kiley, The Good That Won't Come Out

by Hector Diego

Richie Havens Opens Woodstock 1969

by Hector Diego

Nirvana - Drain You

by Jay Allbritton
I like this live version a little bit more than the album version.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Beatles LP Countdown, I'll Be Back

by Hector Diego

"I'll Be Back" is one of Lennon's most beautiful melodies. I have no idea why it is not more popular. The song was released as the final track on the Beatles' third UK album, A Hard Day's Night.

Merry Christmas From John And Yoko

by Hector Diego

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Youngbloods, Get Together

by Hector Diego

Our first Christmas post for 2008. The Walrus Speaks wishes deep peace for you and your family.

Cooking With Jenny Lewis

by Hector Diego

Jenny Lewis is a solid vegetarian, and a somewhat less solid vegan.

Kimya Dawson - I Like Giants

by Jay Allbritton

Fleet Foxes - White Winter Hymnal

by Jay Allbritton
The number one song of the year according to the readers of Pitchfork, of which, I am not one. Still, very cool song.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Weezer - Pink Triangle

by Jay Allbritton
Back in 1997, Weezer works on the fabulous album, Pinkerton.

Jenny Lewis, Pelican Bay

by Hector Diego

She's vamping it all the way down the line here, and I'm not talking about improvisation. Hetero men beware.
Discover Simple, Private Sharing at

Robert Whitaker, New World In The Morning

by Hector Diego

Coldplay, God Put A Smile Upon Your Face

by Hector Diego

Eddie Izzard - Empires

by Jay Allbritton
As we are finding out very quickly, empires come and go.

Loop Quantum Cosmology Prefigured In Ancient Hindu Metaphysics

by Hector Diego

Mahavishnu emanates the universe when
He breathes
out, and withdraws them into
Himself when He breathes in.

Scientists from India have been a very important contingent in astronomical research in the modern period. Their culture, in antiquity, produced profound statements about the nature of the universe that really makes us wonder how they could have understood so much without modern science.

Abhay Ashtekar, Eberly Professor of Physics and the director of the Institute for Gravitational Physics and Geometry at Pennsylvania State University, has definite ideas about the nature of existence before the Big Bang. Loop quantum cosmology (LQC), which takes the creation, destruction, and recreation of the universe beyond the standard explanation that before the Big Bang there was nothing, blows the lid off such an unsatisfying explanation.

One of the reasons I rejected both science and religion as having the answers I was looking for when I was a youth is that science claimed the Big Bang was the ultimate and there was nothing more--this seemed absurd to me--and the Catholic Church didn't address such issues at all. So when I discovered that the ancient Hindus thought that cosmic existence was a result of God's breathing in and out, it made all the sense in the world to me. This is of course a metaphysical explanation and outside the province of modern science, but the similarity between this view and LQC theory is startling.

And now my respect for both religion and science has improved dramatically, as well as my hope that they may be reconciled.

Read the New Scientist article.

Dead Heart Bloom, Nothing Will Break Me Now

by Hector Diego

Friday, December 12, 2008

Tori Amos - Winter

by Jay Allbritton
Were about to get our third snow here in Baltimore. This kind of thing never happened in Florida. This is a picture from my neighborhood last year.

Biggest Full Moon Of Year Tonight

by Hector Diego

I'm totally into this. Check it out.

Peter, Paul, And Mary, Light One Candle

by Hector Diego

Don't let the light go out!

Jenny And The Watsons, The Big Guns

by Hector Diego

Bob Marley, Redemption Song

by Hector Diego

Neil Young, Like A Hurricane

by Hector Diego


Antique walrus print courtesy of FineRarePrints.Com