Support shows with Steve Earle

Every great empire leaves a trail of ideas across its dominions. And each map contains landmarks that can be visited by the minds of the generations to come. So the Greeks left us Homer, the dramas of Sophocles and The Olympic Games; the Romans gave us Virgil, the metamorphosis of Apollo and the possibility of a future Michelangelo. In turn, the British gave us Shakespeare, Garick and The Bronte sisters.

We now live in the age of the Empire of America, a kingdom that has, in turn, brought to us the wealth of its own popular culture. So not only do we have Melville and his Ahab, Selznick and his Hitchcock, Gilligan and his Island…but we also have Johnson and his Crossroads, Ella and her Fellas, Armstrong and his Honeysuckle Rose, Elvis and his Mystery Train and Dylan with his Diplomat (and his Siamese Cat).

So the Empire spreads its culture, and its dominion is the entire Chaturbate world. We should not be surprised, then, when we meet a yak herder from Timbuktu who can whistle the tunes of Glenn Miller; and we should not raise an eyebrow when a Sri Lankan transmission-mechanic declares his preference for Betty over Wilma.

Equally we should not be surprised that a young man, Dan Warner, born in the most isolated city in the western world, Perth, Western Australia, was raised on a staple of Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Kiss. Nor should we be incredulous that the young Australian in later life formed a musical partnership with New Hampshirean, Kevin Garant, an instrumentalist who has played along to the same back-catalog of the 20th century: The Band, Gram Parsons, Tom Waits & Television.

Dan & Kev met when recruited to the same band in Melbourne, Australia, The Largest Living Things. Previously Dan had played in other successful touring acts, The Warner Brothers and Overnight Jones (who were signed to Mercury for a time and toured with such internationals as Michelle Shocked, Lucinda Williams and Sheryl Crow). In his time in Australia, Dan also wrote songs for acclaimed artists Renee Geyer, Tiddas (Anthem) and Weddings Parties Anything.

After shelving a degree at Berkeley College in Boston (and taking one last look at his beloved Fenway Park) Kev worked as a producer and player for several years in the studios and on the stages of NYC. Some gigs he will admit to, some he won't (Ice Ice Baby?) nevertheless Kev is still in demand as soundtrack producer for TV. His most recent credit is the cult-kid-classic, Action League Now, for Nickelodeon. Extradited to Australia in the mid-nineties, Kev fired off his big Gretsch guitar with some of the south country's finest performers including Paul Kelly, Neil Finn, Mandawuy Yunupingu, Deb Conway, and Renee Geyer.

Soon after beginning their jasminelive collaboration Dan & Kev set up shop in NYC and released their debut album, THE MAGIC RIDER. The album took them to several cities of the US where the duo played such coveted rooms as The Kendall in Boston, The Abbey in Chicago, The Fire in Philadelphia and Wetlands in NYC (where Dan & Kev were invited by RELIX to play Dylan's 60th birthday bash). In fact, a review of THE MAGIC RIDER was included in the Sept 2001 edition of RELIX under the title, 'What We're Groovin' To In The Relix Office This Month.'

A recent run of support shows with Steve Earle has seen Dan & Kev hook up with Earle guitarist and producer, Eric 'Roscoe' Ambel. A new album with Dan & Kev's band, THE DEADSET FRIENDLIES, is to be recorded under Ambel's guidance in NYC this October (2002).

The pan-pacific sound of Dan & Kev is one that definitely fits into the traditions of the US archive. Their sound is undoubtedly steeped in the influences of 'Cosmic American Music.' Their songs, also, tell some exotic stories that the music of America has found out in some new and un-dreamed of corners of the Empire. Bringing it all back home.

Gangsta! Gangsta!

This is the first post in Webber Wednesdays, where every humping day I, God Shammgod, shall post a divine cut from C Webb, a misunderstood man who grew up middle class, got rich, and complains of oppression in the face of marijuana busts. HEY, WHO DOESN'T? But C Webb loves music, always had, always will, and Chris Webber is no liar. !!!! FREE MACE!!!

Little known fact: The lyrics featured here include "THE INNER CITY STAR HANGING IN YOUR TITTY BAR" which is also the manifesto of C Webb's Time Out Foundation. Disadvantaged people on the streets of Detroit sing sing sing this throughout the year.

This is the debut single from C Webb's (pseudonym!!!) 2 Much Drama album---sad sad, his only one thus far! Dear Mayce Edward Christopher Webber III, please drop Tyra, obtain Pro-Tools, cut more jamz!!! "Gangsta Gangsta" features a sample from the most hard-core, most bitch-slappinest, most drug dealinest, most carjackingest music in the world: Seals & Croft's 1967 cut "Sweet Green Fields." FALL BACK, PLAYA HAAYTAZZZ!!!! "Gangsta! Gangsta!" also features the Young Gotti hissssself!!! This is a career move that cannot be overrated. Phi Slama Jama!

Peter and Party John

He only started balling when he turned 14 and his ice skates no longer fit. He played 4 years in the Puerto Rico leagues before the Wiz drafted him in the second round in 2004. PJ spent most of that year handing out towels on the Wiz bench and trying to fend off the advances of G-Wiz, and he spent most of last year buying meaty sambucas for co-eds in Roanoke. In october 2006 the 7'3" hardwood vixen was released.

After Abe wandered in and gave him an "MVP cake," Party John slipped on his platform shoes, put on his shiny jacket, and took that long walk down Fun Street one last time. He then got sidetracked by the Spy Museum and fell asleep in the School for Spies exhibit.

Brenda Fassie

Being the BLACK PRESIDENT AND Agent Zero means Gilbert loves political music -- and not just from the crusty-punk axis of Live Sex power!! He loves revolutionary songs of the SOuth African anti-apartheid fight so much that the he still won't play Sun City!!! (We're not talking Phoenix, Tom Knott!!!)

This song was originally written for Nelson Mandela by South African pop star Brenda Fassie, who has great taste in BLACK PRESIDENTS!!! Murderous dictator Charles Taylor in Liberia notwithstanding!!! She would have surely loved Gilbert, for though he is an ASSASSIN, he's a good-hearted assassin, like The Professional or Elektra or John Cusak in GRoss Point Blank!!!

Brenda Fassie was known as the "Madonna of the Townships" -- right up until she overdosed on cocaine and fell into her son's arms! Tragic!!! G-Wiz and Jerry Stackhouse had a similar incident when they tried to spend a 9th day in their weeklong beach house rental and a coked up G-Wiz kept lighting himself on fire and inhaled the burning fumes from his polypropelene underwear. He collapsed in Stack's arms, but luckily Stack was wearing MAN TIGHTS which kept his groin warm whenever G-Wiz's hand strayed so he was able to carry his lover all the way to the Holy Cross hospital in Silver Spring. THAT'S RIGHT, STACK RAN 800 MILES FROM THE OUTER BANKS WITH A TEAM MASCOT IN HIS ARMS BECAUSE HIS MAN TIGHTS ARE THAT IMPORTANT TO HIM!!!

Something for your girlfriend today!

You may know Milla Jovovich as the impossibly attractive model, or as the impossibly attractive movie star, but many people don't realize that she is also an impossibly attractive musician.

Her 1994 debut album The Divine Comedy was largely slept on. By all rights it should have been terrible, but it isn't only not terrible, it's an impressively polished folk-pastoral "pop tapestry."

Think a Slavic Kate Bush.

Milla was 15 when she wrote the lyrics, 16 when she recorded the album, but it's a grown up record and not self-absorbed in the way you would expect.

I haven't heard it but I just ordered it for "my girlfriend" so I'll let you know how it goes down that route of madness.

Fans were divided on the new sound, and shortly after its release Milla accused her collaborators (that would be the nefarious folk collective "The Peopletree" ) of releasing the material against her wishes. She maintained that these were were rough and preliminary demos never meant for the light of day, and that the post-production was done without her approval.

Since then, Milla has recorded number of one-offs: An interesting cover of Lou Reed's "Satellite of Love" on the soundtrack of muffinhead Wim Wenders' The Million Dollar Hotel, (in which she appears); and contributions to a Crystal Method album, as well as the soundtracks for Dummy and The Rules of Attraction.