Friday, February 27, 2009

Carolyn Kellogg

Carolyn Kellogg, who is also known at times as Pinky, has a killer sense of style (you should see her apartment), organizes a swell literary doo (the last one was at the HMS Bounty for the LADWP), has a proufound knowledge of LA History and all things noir (I swear she can quote Dashiell Hammet). Also, her hair is bright red.

Hello, awesome!

We first met on the telephone when she was interviewing me when she was a music journalist and I was moving through the world in the capacity of my former life as an indie rocker. (the band was Cecil Seaskull /Nerdy Girl. Music available on iTunes/emusic)

I knew we were kindred right then because our interview lasted two hours! When Carolyn moved back from NYC to the great LA and we became fast friends in real life and have been ever since. We've both moved from mostly music into more literary careers, but you can still find us out at the occasional punk / rock show together.

She currently handles blog duties at the great LA Times Jacket Copy Lit Blog as well as doing book reviews for them. She's also working on her first novel.

Behold Carolyn Kellogg's annotated top ten essential punk songs!

Congratulations on the paperback release! Chalk that one up in the win column.Thanks for asking! Here's my very personal list. Like Douglas Wolk, I'm including YouTube

10. Space Oddity - David Bowie

Raised on a diet of crappy soft rock radio, my high school years were
a period of musical terror and discovery. Had Bowie recorded decades
earlier? Yes. Was his individuality -- musically, personally -- a
revelation? Yes and yes.

9. Working for the Clampdown - The Clash

When I first heard The Clash, I thought they were dissonant, abrasive
and scary. But I couldn't stop singing them at my horrid job in the
cafeteria's dishroom.

8. True Men Don't Kill Coyotes - the Red Hot Chili Peppers

As a was wee high school sophomore, I camped out in the local record
store to watch MTV; it was the only place in town with cable. I saw
this video once, and thought the band was not just unlistenable, but
insane. And I never forgot it.

7. Dirty Water - the Standells

Every band that came to my New Hampshire school played "Dirty Water."
I didn't know it was by the Standells, or that their 60s amateur
sixties garage rock was a punk progenitor. I just knew I got real
sweaty when I danced to it.

6. Rock Lobster - the B52s

Before the B52s became a neutered pop radio novelty act, they were a
bizarro ensemble from a small town in Georgia. They didn't know what
rules they were breaking when they wrote the overly-long,
strangely-trilling, kooky-break-in-the-middle Rock Lobster. And I
danced like mad to it too.

5. Oh Bondage Up Yours - X-Ray Spex

I moved to LA for college and became a semi-regular at a dingy noodle
shop called the Atomic Cafe in Little Tokyo. The owner's daughter had
stuck punk posters up over the stains in the ceiling and stocked the
jukebox with punk 45s. This one was, it was said, impossibly rare. I
played it every time.

4. Garbageman - The Cramps

My freshman year I had this thing with this guy, and over the summer
he sent me tapes. I listened to them again and again, and because they
were tapes I couldn't skip over songs that sounded harsh and
abrasive.And soon the Cramps sounded exactly perfect.

3. Freddie's Dead - Fishbone

By my sophomore year of college (aka my first year as a dropout) I was
going to shows, and I saw a lot of Fishbone. Manic madness, a brass
section, hard metalish guitar and funk and (less fortuitously) ska,
Fishbone pioneered a genre too schizophrenic for anyone to follow.

2. Los Angeles - X

I also saw a lot of X, the least-google-able band name ever. I saw
them play their last show ever before they called it quits, then I saw
their first reunion show. Like their on-again-off-again bandness, X's
sound was always splitting apart, male and female vocals gorgeously
discordant, with rockabilly roots like the Cramps and the wildness of
that X-Ray Spex single.

1. Thelonious Monster

Try, in this video is not my favorite Thelonious Monster song; Union
Street or Walk on Water might be, but neither is on YouTube. This was
the problem with Thelonious Monster -- known for having a wall of
sound (and too many guitarists to count), the energy and chaos of
their live shows was never adequately recorded. People would tell you
that it was singer Bob Forrest's drug-enhanced unpredictability that
kept the band back, but with better, maybe more insane sound
engineers, they would have had much more of a shot. At least this
video, with its poor audio transfer, captures some of the band's mad

Monday, February 23, 2009

Libba Bray

What can I say about Libba Bray? That she's awesome? check. That she's brilliant? check. That she's a great writer? check. You know her from her amazing Gemma Doyle series. (love!) But she also has an awesome book that includes string theory and a garden gnome coming out called Going Bovine. And she has an amazing story in the Geektastic anthology I co-edited with Holly Black. She's a playwright. She's got the heart and humor of a BBC television series. She know how to do the timewarp. And she speaks the language of punk fluently.

Behold her list!

Hey Cec Balls,

Wow. This was tough. How do you define punk? Is it the snarl of Johnny Rotten or the in-your-face politics of Henry Rollins? Is it the art-house punk of Television or the verging-on-goth of early The Damned? Do I leave off Suicidal Tendencies, The Minutemen, Husker Du, and Wire? Very, very tough. But I did my best to choose songs I absolutely love, even if it means foregoing some others I also love.

So. In celebration of the most excellent BEIGE, here is my list of eleven fave punk songs. (Because this goes up to eleven.)

Everything the Clash ever recorded ☺
Anarchy in the U.K.
I Wanna Be Your Dog/Iggy Pop
Los Angeles/X
Sheena Is a Punk Rocker/The Ramones
Blank Generation/Richard Hell
Horses/Patti Smith
Neat, Neat, Neat/The Damned (My favorite Damned song is “In Dulce Decorum” but that’s really from their goth phase, not punk)
California Uber Alles/Dead Kennedys
A tie: Why Can’t I Touch It? What Do I Get?/Buzzcocks (Although “Oh Shit” runs a close third)
See No Evil/Television

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Abby Denson

Behold Miss Abby Denson's song and film list!

I met Abby Denson at a comic book convention. Cause she does comics. Like Dolltopia and Tough Love. Also, she just did a Spider Man, (Spider M'am) and she rocks. I mean, really rocks. With a band. More than one band. But also, she does the great food round up of delicious NYC sweets called The City Sweet Tooth. I always want to taste everything she thinks is good. Basically she's a modern renaissance girl. And I love that in a lady! If Abby and I lived in the same city, we would surely go out and cause delicious trouble together, with guitars and chocoloate and our mighty pens.

Abby not only sent me songs. She sent me punk movies you should see, too. Fill up your ipods and Queue up your netflix lists!

Abby's Essential Punk Song List!

Anything by The Ramones

X Offender - Blondie

I Can’t Do Anything - X-Ray Spex

Cherry Bomb - Runaways

Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell – The Stooges

Jet Boy, Jet Girl – The Damned

Love Comes in Spurts – Richard Hell & The Voidoids

Where Eagles Dare – The Misfits

Sonic Reducer – The Dead Boys

Rock n’ Roll Cleopatra – Jayne County

Bonus! Abby's Essential Movie List for Punks!

Times Square

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains

Liquid Sky

Rocky Horror Picture Show

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls


Breaking Glass

The Decline of Western Civilization


Rock and Rule

Rock and Roll High School

Friday, February 13, 2009

Greg Miller

Greg Miller, is like a guru to me. He, along with his partner in crime Beth Lapides, run the amazing Uncabaret Lab. They do magic with people on stage who are telling their stories, getting to the CORE and workshopping their fabulous stand up/ one person shows/ crazy diatribes.

And they do it in a totally punk way. Because it is UNcabaret. And we all know that anything UN, or ANTI , or NOT is alternative and because that expands the mind and makes you think. Thinking is tres punk.

You should probably totally take their workshop.

Here is Greg Millers totally punk everything list.

Because sometimes we have to remember that there is more to being punk than just music. There's punk comedians. And artists. And movies. And authors. And spirits. And revolutionaries. And you know everything else.

More than ten. Trying to get away from base 10 anyway - Greg

Tom Paine
Andy Dick
Kenneth Anger
Sex Pistols
Mae West
Lenny Bruce
Tristan Tzara
Van Gogh
Emma Goldman
Ken Kesey
Abbie Hoffman
Kathleen Hanna
Iggy Pop

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Stephanie Kuehnert

Stephanie Kuehnert is a punk rock chick. She hung out with Riot Grrls, wrote a bunch of zines, she works at a legendary club in Chicago and she wrote a kick ass book called I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone. She has a great blog where she has a great thing that she does called Women Who Rock Wednesday's.

Behold, Stephanie's Essential Punk list!

thank you for asking me for my punk essentials list! It was hard to come up with one and some of what I consider punk may not be punk, but whatever. I tried to do 13 cause that is my lucky number, but ended up having to do 17, I hope that is okay :) - Stephanie

1. Story of My Life by Social Distortion
2. Death or Glory by the Clash
3. Radio by Rancid
4. Pretty On The Inside by Hole
5. Negative Creep by Nirvana
6. Second Skin by The Gits
7. I Am A Revenant by The Distillers
8. Bastards of Young by The Replacements
9. Gimme Danger by Iggy and The Stooges
10. Son Of A Bitch by Civet
11. Oh Bondage Up Yours! by X Ray Spex
12. Unity by Operation Ivy
13. Black Masks and Gasoline by Rise Against
14. Pints of Guinness Make You Strong by Against Me!
15. Rebel Girl by Bikini Kill
16. Radio by Alkaline Trio
17. Apparently I'm a PC Fascist by Propagandhi