Friday, September 11, 2009

Pheaturing Alexis Babini


Hello, welcome to the Peverett Phile, sponsored today by Excedrin and a z-pack. I am your host, suffering from a really bad headache and something the doctor told me I had today... A Cute Bronchitis. I don't see anything cute with this coughing. There’s a big brouhaha going on at the Venice Film Festival. The guests this year were Michael Moore and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez — the guy who called George Bush “el Diablo.” People were saying that the festival never should have invited that crazy America-hating lunatic... or Hugo Chavez. Neither one. Summer’s over. You can tell fall’s coming — the Baldwin brothers are storing extra food in their cheeks. When kids went back to school on Monday, they got a surprise: President Obama gave a speech just for them. As predicted, a lot of people are throwing a hissy fit over his speech. One Republican said Obama was using the speech to push his socialist agenda. Yeah... and I suppose telling kids not to do drugs is pushing his healthcare reform. Some Republicans were so mad they had Dick Cheney give a rebuttal — he showed kids the proper way to stuff a geek’s head into a locker. Whether you voted for Obama or not, his life is a shining example of the power of education — he was born in Kenya; he studied seven days a week learning how to forge Hawaiian birth certificates... Some parents actually kept their kids home from school so they wouldn’t see it. If I was a kid, being told I wasn’t allowed to see the speech would be the only reason to watch it in the first place. Why would they be worried about something kids normally wouldn’t be paying attention to anyway? Sadly, because of the current budget crisis, President Obama announced that kids’ allowances would be slashed by 50 percent this year. Ellen Degeneres has been named the new judge on “American Idol.” She’s now the second most powerful lesbian on the planet, the first, of course, being Kim Jong Il. Okay, for the last few weeks I have been showing you some crazy children's books Logan had in his collection. Years ago we never noticed, but going through them to get rid of them at a garage sale, we discovered there's some books out there that shouldn't be sold. For example, take a look at this "Sesame Street" book.

Thank God Logan didn't take this to heart and actually run away from home. Elmo would be in deep shit. Awhile ago I was showing you some odd inspirational posters I found. I am proud to say I found another, kids. Kinda makes me want to learn to ride a bike. Take a look.

Is that Dick Cheney on the bike? LOL.

Army Archerd: An Army of One. No, make that Zero.

With the blessing of Henry Kissinger and the CIA, general Augusto Pinochet stages a violent coup in Chile, overthrowing the government of Salvador Allende, the country's democratically-elected but nonetheless Marxist president.
Janet Parker, a medical photographer, is the final victim of smallpox. It is likely she contracted the disease at Birmingham University's medical lab, an accident while working on an unrelated project.
Upset over delays due to live coverage of a pro tennis match, television anchorman Dan Rather walks off the set of the CBS Evening News. When the sports program ends unexpectedly, Rather is nowhere to be found. The network feed goes dark for six whole minutes before Dan can be persuaded to return.
Actor Lorne Greene, star of television's "Bonanza" and "Battlestar Galactica", dies of pneumonia in Santa Monica, California. Greene, whose credits also include 1986's "Vasectomy: A Delicate Matter", was 504 in dog years.
Boxer Mike Tyson is arrested for raping Desiree Washington in an Indianapolis hotel room. After his conviction and three years spent behind bars, Tyson continues to maintain his innocence, telling one reporter: "I just hate her guts... I really wish I did now... now I really do want to rape her."
The single largest terrorist attack in history occurs when four commercial jetliners are hijacked, two of which slam into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York. Another plane is crashed into the Pentagon. 2,915 people are killed in the attacks, coordinated by Saudi terrorist Osama bin Laden. The civilized world is horrified; especially after seeing footage of Palestinians celebrating in the streets. For the first time in U.S. history, all flights are grounded throughout the country. All major government facilities are evacuated as well as many local facilities. The federal government uses this sneak attack as a pretext to crack down on civil liberties, in the form of the USA PATRIOT Act and similar efforts, which continue to this day.
Tommy Chong, half of the perpetually high comedy duo Cheech and Chong, is sentenced to nine months in federal prison. Chong was targeted and made an example of as the result of two U.S. investigations (Operation Pipe Dreams and Operation Headhunter) which sought to close down businesses selling bongs and other marijuana-related drug paraphernalia over the Internet.

Below is the Peverett Phile book of the month in the Phile. You can buy it on Please do, and help support the author Victor Langlois. Thanks.

Todays guest is a singer-songwriter from Boston, Mass who will be playing tonight at the 2009 Utica Music Festival in Utica, New York and on September 13th at the Ridgefield Playhouse with Boz Scaggs in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Please welcome to the Phile... Alexis Babini.

Me: Hello, Alexis, welcome to the Phile. So, tell me about "Gilmore Girls". What? You're not Alexis Bledel? LOL. Just joking. So, how are you?

Alexis: Hah. I’m not the chick from "Gilmore Girls". Despite that, I’m great. Thanks for asking :)

Me: Alexis, I have not heard of a guy called Alexis before. Did anyone or does anyone pick on you for having that name?

Alexis: I think you just did. No? It’s alright. I’m a tough guy. I can take it. Nobody tells Robin Williams he has a girls name anymore so maybe I just need to get a little more famous for people to lighten up.

Me: So, where are you from? Massachusetts I believe, am I right? What part?

Alexis: Originally, I’m from a town in Connecticut called Easton. I lived in Massachusetts for a while because I went to music school up in Boston and then stayed after to finish an album.

Me: Is it true you listened to a Paul McCartney concert from your apartment?

Alexis: Have you been reading my tweets on Twitter? My apartment in Boston is only a stone’s throw from Fenway Park, so when he was rocking out last week, all I had to do was open the windows, and then I was in the nosebleed section. I saw Paul live on his Back in the U.S. tour in Madison Square Garden and that was definitely the best show I’ve ever seen.

Me: Are you a Beatles fan?

Alexis: Of course. The Beatles, Wings, The Fireman, I’m a fan of all of it.

Me: I downloaded all your stuff from iTunes, Alexis. Your EP is very good, sir. When was it recorded, and when was it released?

Alexis: Why thank you. The EP "Breaking It In" was officially released last March. A good friend of mine named Ed Valauskas produced that album and he has a long list of impressive accomplishments that I’m proud to now be a part of. We began recording that in the summer of ‘08 and probably finished late fall of last year.

Me: You have a song called "Caroline". Is it about anyone in particular?

Alexis: Yes and no. I wrote that song about a specific experience with someone but there’s a bunch of other things in that song that didn’t happen in real life. She would have no idea it’s about her if she heard it, which I’m sure she has.

Me: And recently you released a single called "My Direction". Is that going to be released on an upcoming album?

Alexis: More than likely. Right now I’m working with one of my bandmates at his home studio, and we’re slowly piecing together demos and new arrangements. I said recently in another interview that fans can expect a new release this year but now it’s looking like we’re going to spend more time with it. Instead, I’m going to be releasing lots of new songs for free when people sign up for my mailing list. You can do that through my website:

Me: Do you write all your stuff yourself?

Alexis: Usually. I co-write occasionally with friends, but I have to admit I like to be in complete control. All of the songs on my album I wrote myself and the new single is 100% mine as well. For when I do cowrite, I’m lucky enough to I have a pretty big pool of songwriter friends to choose from.

Me: Alexis, do you have a band you perform with when you play or do you do a lot of solo shows?

Alexis: I do have a band but recently I have been playing more acoustic shows. If you asked me this question last year I would have told you all my shows I play with a band. It takes a lot more confidence to go it alone, and I think right now I’m more into the intimate setting. I have a feeling though I’ll be doing a few full band shows soon, so stay tuned.

Me: I am thinking you're a John Mayer fan for some reason. Is that true and who else do you like?

Alexis: I think John Mayer is the first thing people jump to when they see someone singing the guitar to pop music, and I’ve learned to respect that. He has some songs that I truly love. I’ve been listening to an excess of Elvis Costello lately and just bought the new Wilco which I plan on listening to an unhealthy amount.

Me: Have you ever met any of your influences or idols?

Alexis: Recently I played a show opening for Blues Traveler. That was pretty big for me… "Four" was a huge album for me when I was learning the guitar. John Popper is a super nice guy and he made a point to introduce himself to me before I took the stage.

Me: Tell the readers about Operation Swan Dive, Alexis. This is very cool.

Alexis: Operation Swan Dive is an event that I am performing that involves two really awesome things: skydiving and raising money for cancer. OSD raises money for a charity called Lyrics for Life, which was started by Sister Hazel front-man Ken Block. The concert is going to have Ken, myself, and another songwriter and good friend of mine named Andrew Hoover. It’s going to be an amazing time for everyone involved.

Me: How did you become involved with them?

Alexis: I met Andrew through my friends in the Benjy Davis Project while they were on tour together. I got involved with OSD through Krista from Skye Media Publicity, which does publicity for Lyrics for Life and Rock Ridge Music. When I was told about the event and asked to perform, I immediately said yes. The charity hits pretty close to home for me because I recently lost a grandmother to cancer.

Me: Alexis, so, what else do you have planned for this year?

Alexis: You can definitely expect more songwriting, more recording and more shows. I just signed a publishing deal to get some of my songs placed in TV and film so you may hear from me more in that way as well.

Me: You're opening for Boz Scaggs coming up, right? If you meet him tell him he should be on the Phile.

Alexis: Deal.

Me: Alexis, is there anything you want to say before you go? Go ahead and plug your website, man. Alexis Babini dot com. I’m also on Twitter too!

Me: Thanks for coming onto the Phile and I wish you luck. You're invited anytime back, Alexis.
Take care.

Alexis: You too.


Thanks to Alexis for a great interview and to Krysta for hooking it up. Also thanks to Wikipedia for the history stuff. The Phile will be back next Monday with singer Joy Ike and then next Friday the author of the Peverett Phile Book Club book... Victor Langlois. The Phile is now on Twitter at but I don't expect to many followers. So, until next week, spread the word, not the turd. Bye, love you, bye.

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