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Okay, I have been asked what you can do when you have already watched The Devil And Daniel Johnston thirty times, bought some of the artwork, listened to all the music, and even bought the action figure of the frog. How many ways can one express appreciation of this man’s work?
Of all the songs that lodge in my head, THE LETTER is one that I hope never escapes. Granted my attempts to sing it are miles from that of Mr. Chilton’s, but some how his mix of cool and sadness covers all my inabilities. His vocal swims through my ears blocking out my geese-like honking.
Please forgive the mass email, but I want to tell you all about a very interesting music project I’ve recently contributed to that I think you would enjoy, and your purchase of it goes to a very worthy cause.
Many of you are probably aware of some of the music of Mark Mulcahy, who is not only one of my favorite recording artists, but a dear friend as well. Over the last three decades he has made exquisite records with his pop/rock group Miracle Legion and Polaris, and in his eclectic career as a solo artist. Recently he has turned his enormous talents to unconventional opera as well, in collaboration with visual artist Ben Katchor.
Mark is the kind of friend we all dream about. I’ve driven around the country with him several times. His sense of humor is unparalleled —a mere lift of his eyebrow could make me cry with laughter. He’s worn my bathrobe without asking, sung songs to my little brother from the stage, always had little candies in his pocket, has a garage filled with bicycles he’s pulled from the trash to give to kids he sees who are bike-less. His songs have been a soundtrack to my adulthood.
Tragedy struck Mark last year when his wonderful wife Melissa died unexpectedly, leaving his life—and the lives of their twin 3 year olds—in a shambles. Those of us who new Melissa loved her deeply, and she was the perfect compliment to Mark’s unique way of moving through the world. Few times in my life have I met a couple more destined to be together. The fact that they would give birth to twins—on Valentines Day, no less—was literally like something out of one of Marks’ quirky yet always optimistic songs.
Thom Yorke of Radiohead, Michael Stipe, Frank Black from the Pixies, The National, Vic Chesnutt, Joseph Arthur, and Dinosaur, Jr are just a few of the acts that have contributed to a tribute album of Mark’s incredible catalog of songs, CIAO MY SHINING STAR. We have all come together out of love for Mark and admiration for his talent to create this CD to raise money for he and his children and to inspire people to delve into his songbook and seek out his records. While sales of this CD and downloadable tracks go to Mark, when you purchase this CD it is you who will be the true recipient of something wonderful.
I was lucky enough to produce and arrange the track for Michael Stipe, and it is something I am very proud of. I would appreciate it if you could find the time to buy the CD and support this wonderful artist. If times are a bit too tight financially to buy a CD, please at least try and download a few of the tracks off of iTunes.
Below are some links to read about both CIAO MY SHINING STAR and Mark’s other musical endeavors:
To order the CD from Amazon:
Thanks very much for your patience and support.
I am sure you have been losing sleep about the ubiquity of disinformation. Doesn’t it seem like more people will accept whatever they are told then ever before? Stanley Milgram pointed out the need for us to learn how to rebel 40 years ago, but now we fall into the goosestep more readily than ever before. What is that Orwell quote about the future being a skull being crushed by a boot?
Well, okay, maybe that’s an over statement, but I have always wanted to live in a museum. Maybe it comes from reading books as a child and letting them corrupt me. Maybe it’s because I can’t afford art. Maybe because I still have fond memories of my college dorm room where I glued table settings and furniture to the ceiling and built a cave to sleep in just in case it all came tumbling down.
I’ve been finding it harder and harder to keep up with my blogging. I have been resorting much more to the easy posting of Twitter and Facebook. But sometimes things require more than 140 characters to discuss.