Archive for August, 2007


August 30, 2007

…again a little video as illustration – you actually find quite a lot on youtube if you search for the cat empire. here an older song, the chariot:

insert – music is the language of the soul

August 30, 2007

after les negresses vertes i have to present another band which in concert is making the whole crowd smile… i’ve seen them live twice now – the first time they were really good, the second time (only a couple of months ago) they were mindblowing. it is a long time since i’ve seen a band being able to make the whole room jump and dance and sing and hoot – even old me was throwing the walking stick away…


i am talking of the cat empire. i do like their records, and after searching for quite a while i even found a live bootleg – but nothing compares to see them live. what an energy! what fun! they’re totally mad in the best sense of the word. mad about music. and the singer (well, there are two – the one who does not play the trumpet) and the dj have one of the sexiest hip action ever seen going on – shakira, move over! i’ve seen a lot of shows, really a lot, but this one was certainly one of the best, ever.

sooo – on september the 22nd their new record so many nights comes out, and even more important: they are on tour! at the moment back in their home country australia, and in november all over europe. so if you like music, go and see them. that’s it. just go and see them.

what can happen on a concert is best described with a little text from their website:

“where the hip-hop community dance to gypsy, the jazz purists jump to hip-hop, the latinos bop to reggae, the rastas shake to latin, the elderly sweat to funk, the youth swing to dancehall, and everyone wakes up a little happier.”

to give you an idea – really just an idea, yeah, here i repeat myself again: they’re best experienced live – here a bootleg recording of a concert in london. i have no additional information (though i have some ideas about the source) on this recording, and i’m not even sure that the tracks are in the right order. at least the sound quality is excellent. if anybody knows more about it: drop me a line.

foucault discussed, part II

August 28, 2007


more? yes, more! here the final part of foucaults lecture in berkeley in 1983 – the discussion part II.

hope you enjoyed it and that i was able at least to show you a door to the universe of foucault’s thoughts. thank you for listening.

foucault discussed, part I

August 27, 2007

and here we go with the first part of the discussion with students of foucault’s lecture of the culture of self.

additionally you get a rather funny pic of foucault as cowboy (errr…) with students in berkeley. and always when i see this pic i wonder if one of them is leo bersani?



August 26, 2007

…here as additional information les negresses vertes with the song voilà l’été from the album mlah:

insert – les negresses vertes

August 26, 2007


because it is summer (still), and because they have an akkordeon, and because they’re fun, and because they’re really cheeky, and because i just re-listened to their record and have to stay: yeah! olé! voilà l’été! at the time i found this record that good that i actually bought it around seven times to give it to friends – and i still do not regret that today.

some of you might know les negresses vertes through face à la mer – a track which (especially in form of the massive attack remix) has been featured on some big compilations. i’ve seen them live ages ago (just after mlah came out, i think) – and it was a moment where i considered marrying, just for the reason so i could book them as the wedding orchestra. the hips were swaying, there were screams of delight, everybody was grinning – and they created a festive atmosphere where you suddenly dance with strangers the night away… as a bonus you got that akkordeon player with his slicked back longish hair falling back in his face being very sensual – the first rows of the public, women and men alike, were just falling under his erotic spell…

funny enough he took over from the leadsinger for one song – l’homme de marais – which to this day i consider a beautiful gay lovesong (it works when you only hear the song (female and male forms sound the same) – unfortunately when you read the lyrics, the female forms are used. but i am convinced that this is just a mistake in the transcription).

if you want to see a (newer – to my regret with shorter hair) pic of him, you can go here (a very nice site of french photographer laurent orseau).


so – their first record, mlah, you find here (link killed). for more information i recommend you visit their website here.

enjoy and keep on moving these hips…

michel foucault – en français

August 26, 2007

bienvenue les amis francophones! comme j’ai pas mal du matériel sur / de michel foucault et comme il était français, après tout, c’est seulement juste de vous donner quelque chose à écouter de lui en français.

ici vous trouvez une introduction à michel foucault avec michel foucault qui s’apelle auto-portrait, originaire du radio canada de 1971 (via radio france culture).

et ici vous trouvez un petit bijou – aussi une émission radio avec le titre le corps utopique (de france culture, 21.12.1966). une écoute plutot poétique… recommandé!


l’ami qui ne va pas te sauver la vie

August 25, 2007


allright – n knows what’s coming, he downloaded the second part of the edmund white post.

for everybody else: we move on to michel foucault. uff – yep, a heavyweight.

you will find a plethora of information about him and his work on the net and elsewhere – i just want to give some hints (in case that you are interested) how you might approach his work. oh, and as a selling argument to the ones who do not know him: he was gay, fascinated by (and into?) kinky sex and took drugs. yeah, there was a time when professors were quite rock ‘n’ roll. oh yeah – and he was writing books. intelligent books. and professor of the history of systems of thought (at the collège de france, paris).

  • as with any scientific work you read: you will have to work to understand – but be not too impressed. theory is worth nothing if it does not work with and for you, too. or said differently: of course there are rules and conventions you have to be aware of and follow while reading theory – but you are giving sense to the text.
  • a good access to theory – besides introductory books, which are sometimes great, sometimes crap – are interviews, articles, and the like – it is like the backdoor to the world of a big thinker. not as grand as to start with an important work, but easier.
  • for me foucault works also as literature (like a lot of good theory). dive into the text – in the best case it will unfold itself. maybe later, maybe much later.
  • one problem with foucault is that people think his texts will explain them the world – they won’t. foucault will not save your life, as others already remarked.
  • as deleuze pointed out it’s actually quite easy: they were both working on how to live a non-fascistic life (don’t forget the historic context). so foucault’s work is always about the search for ways to think differently.

and maybe out of this comes a different way of thinking, a different way of relating to other people. a different way to live – a conscious life: the art of living. then theory is worth it.

so how about listening to the man himself? via the digital archive of the university of berkeley comes a lecture michel foucault held on april 12, 1983, and which fits perfectly into this blog: the culture of self. here you have the first part (introduction / lecture). the discussion (part 2 & 3) will soon follow…

and it’s actually fun!

request – kimmo pohjonen

August 25, 2007


akkordeon. like you never heard before. a wunderkind from finland, kimmo pohjonen already played perfectly and in front of an enchated audience at a very young age the stuff akkordeon players are supposed to play – luckily he grew up. got even better – and expands the limits of what you can do with this instrument, litteraly stretching it to its limits. the background on the request ist that he is on tour in the u.s., europe, and even goes for one concert to macao. for dates and more information you can visit his website. and yes, he is on myspace as well.


to give you an idea here (link expired) his recording kalmuk, together with the tapiola sinfonietta with abdissa assefa and samuli kosminen.


August 24, 2007

“Hello sunbathinglizard
NOTHING compares to the feeling of having a larger penIs”

amendment to marc almond: soft cell live

August 24, 2007


allright – i know i am meandering themewise in this blog – but believe me, there is a red thread to this blog. yes, there is! believe me! it’s obvious, right?

but now we take a step back to the marc almond posts. i have been digging deep in my archive, looking for something i did not find, of course. but a lot of other interesting stuff came up: entre autres also a bootleg of soft cell live in london in 1983. if i remember correctly, i actually got that through mailorder. yeah, these were the days…

the quality is not really great – but i think it’s allright. live soft cell sounded in a good way edgier and there is a nice version of the art of falling apart on it. for the rest: the machines are happily stomping and clattering away, the synths stab, and marc almond is singing – and someone is playing sax, adding some interesting flavour. as it was the case with these bootlegs on tape, they usually filled all of the 90 minutes, so you even get treated to a excerpt of some interview with marc almond. unfortunately the interviewer does not want to know who mister almond did at the time. another chance missed…

so these are the details:

soft cell live at the hammersmith palais, 08-03-1983, two mp3 files (side a / side b), taperip@192

side a: forever the same, another day, insecure me, numbers, soul inside, torch, loving you – hating me, *interview*

side b: bedsitter, barriers, youth, baby doll, martin, the art of falling apart, purple haze, frustration, memorabilia

get it here.

insert: piano music in the continuous mode

August 22, 2007


swirling, beautiful piano music. like water running over stones, the strains coming together, parting again. fresh and clear, engaging the listener with its easyness in its flow. maximalist minimalist? i don’t care – it is music, which makes, when you come home in the evening after a day that took its toll and you had to deal with a somehow surprisingly small-minded world (yes, and you have been taken by surprise, again), just by listening to it, a good day.

i am talking about the music of lubomyr melnyk. and additionaly to pointing out that beautiful music to you, with this post i can also point you in the direction of one of the finest music blogs around. a blog which constantly presents music for the open-eared of very high quality: for me not everything on the cookshop is to my taste (which is not the point), but everything is carefully selected and worth at least one listen (that’s the point!). and the amount of amazing music i found there is incredible.

so you better head over to the cookshop for the following reasons:

1. for having a listen to lubomyr melnyk‘s beautiful album kmh (piano music in the coninuous mode) – the direct link is here (and you get some additional information on the artist, too), and

2. to have a look at the great selection of music this blog has to offer – so here you have the general link to the cookshop.

more lives, more desire

August 21, 2007

as promised here (link expired) part two. today we have an excerpt from the chapter my europe.

for more edmund white you can visit his homepage.

additionally you can also hear the man (interviewed by don swaim – several interviews from 1983 to 1991) here (realaudio).

should you prefer the interviews in mp3, go here.


lives of desire – edmund white

August 21, 2007

i do not know where i got the book from – but i was young and gay and hungry for the world outthere. one window to the world is music for me – another window is books. and the book states of desire – travels in gay america was one of the first books to open a window to a gay world – an interesting world, a varied world, a world of exciting options (well, some less exciting).


the book states of desire is a non-fiction work by the writer edmund white – certainly known as co-author of the joy of gay sex, but also known for his fiction and – yes, the attentive reader already knows what’s coming – his biography of jean genet.

so states of desire has in one way satisfied my hunger for description of gay lives when i was in the need for that – but even better, it has incited my curiousity to go out into the world and see for myself.

later on i bought some of his novels, which i have to say weren’t my cup of tea – i do not even remember why i didn’t like them at the time – i guess some time i will have to reread them and see if i am now mature enough to enjoy them.

but white’s name tended to pop up – but for me rather in the context of fighting for gay rights. and for me he is still a reference regarding gay rights – but even in a broader sense of what gay live could include. he is for me still able to show (now also through his work – see below) different approaches to what it could mean to live gay.

i came back relatively late to his literary work – actually only when the farewell symphony came out. under pressure from friends i did read it – and (i have to admit to my surprise) i really liked it. i then also got me the beautiful room is empty – and also liked it…

so since then i have been watching his publications closer. for me edmund white works actually best when he writes about lives – be it as biography or as auto-biography. and having a live as he does, he can certainly tell us some stories!

additionally he gave in 2006 an interview to butt-magazine which was a lot of fun to read – and i loved the picture with the toe… very nice! and it has been a very frank interview – and again he showed possibilities of living…

i have been thinking about this for a while, and to me it seems that there are some personalities, well, rather their work that gets better and better with the ageing of the artist: it seems that they outgrow the need for acceptance of a certain crowd, or that they already have (and recognize for themselves) a status (and an income?) which allows them to now really focus on what they want to say and can’t be bothered too much about a certain social acceptance. somehow i had that feeling reading the latest books of lecarré and ballard, as well as with the work of some musicians (actually marc almond might be in that category now, too). and to me it seems that also edmund white opened up in his work – less, hm… pretentious might be too harsh a word – but he seems to me less trying and a lot more intimate, detailed, to the point. paradoxically that makes his writing better – and for me more touching, relevant.

so what you get now is an excerpt of one of his later works: my lives. my lives is an auto-biography – not in chronological order, but grouped by theme (my shrinks, my father, my mother, my blonds, my genet, etc…). it is a nice way to organize a book, because then you can also read it in the order you want to. so somehow you can take the idea of the shuffle ipod over into print.


i was thinking how to give you a better idea about a book other then just to say: hey, it’s a good book, go and read it! so i came up with the idea that you might enjoy to have some passages read to you. i convinced P to read two excerpts out of this book (he has a cute accent, anyway – and he is generally quite cute – although he prefers the term handsome or just plain hot). just a word of warning: it is in no way a professional reading and very DIY – but i think it still gives you an idea.

the first excerpt is from the chapter my hustlers and you get it here.

the second one is for tomorrow….

oh what a perfect day

August 19, 2007


a little something to start the week with and because he played with marc almond together in marc and the mambas.

oh what a perfect day to think about myself, my feet are firmly screwed to the floor. what is there to fear from such a regular world!!

The The – Perfect 12″ (Perfect (9′ Version)/The Nature Of Virtue Version II), vinylrip@192, get it here.

you find the official the the-website here.