Hello, kids, and happy Father's Day to all dads out there. How are you? If it’s done right, Mother’s Day is just a rehearsal for Father’s Day. Do you get dad a tie, slippers, or what? I hope I get a Blu-ray for today. Father’s Day has got to be the No. 1 day of the whole year for selling barbecue aprons. I don't cook so I don't wanna apron, but there is this really cool Darth Vader apron I saw once.Father's Day is the day we congratulate dad by getting mom drunk on wine coolers and getting him a bottle of cologne he doesn't wear. A lot of sons struggle with what to get their dad's for Father's Day. The dads don't want anything, and if you do buy them something, it's with their money. The World Open Golf Championship teed off a few days ago in San Francisco. Tiger Woods is currently tied for second place. Someone who didn't have sex with everyone is in first. I don't know what his name is. Lance Armstrong may be in trouble again. An anti-doping agency accused him of using performance-enhancing drugs. Federal authorities got suspicious when they noticed an American was exercising. I think I said this yesterday, congratulations to the Los Angeles Kings for winning the Stanley Cup. I don't know much about hockey, but I do know there's a great tradition in hockey. Each player on the winning team gets the Stanley Cup for a night. It's similar to what happens in the NBA, but instead of a trophy, they get a Kardashian sister. The good thing about being knocked face down during a hockey game is that you're immediately putting ice on it. As I have been saying on the Phile as I like dragging things for awhile, it was recently announced that in the next James Bond movie, Skyfall, he will not be drinking his trademark martinis, but drinking Heinekens. Heineken is not the only product placement in Skyfall. Take a look at this screen shot.
Did you see the Justin Bieber concert on the "Today" show the other day? The audience were yelling someone odd things. A teamster was heard saying, "I know I'm just a teamster here to set up the lighting, but I'm feeling weird tinglings inside." And someone said, "First 9/11 and now this." I think that's uncalled for. You know, I am a big fan of comics, but there's something I didn't know... Jimmy Olsen is Superman's son. Look at this cover from an old comic book. This is real.
And now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is this week's...
Top Ten Things You Don't Want To Hear From Your Kids On Father's Day
10. "And you are?"
9. "Father? We always kind of assumed you were our mother."
8. "I'm supposed to give you a gift to thank you for ruining my life?!"
7. "Hey Dad, on your special day, how 'bout updating your will?"
6. "It's not just a nose hair trimmer, it's a nose and ear hair trimmer"
5. "All eight of us got you a subscription to US Weekly, so you can read about how you're cheating on Mom"
4. "It's a restaurant, Dad; they require a shirt"
3. "I know you don't play golf, but golfballs were easiest to shoplift"
2. "It's nice to go through the motions like this every year"
And the number one thing you don't want to hear from your kids on Father's Day...
1. "Here's a couple bucks. Get yourself a McDLT."
Okay, now for a special treat. There's a character that hasn't been on the Phile in a while who would love to come on and talk about Father's Day. So, please welcome back to the Phile, our good friend...
Ah for hippity hoppity sakes I love Fadder's Day. Jeez, when I was a kid I used go "happy father's day dad". Hey dad can I borrow $25 bucks? Heh hehe... and dats exactly what my kid's do 'cept they leave out the happy father's day, dad! I got one kid refuses to address me by name, he only says, "Hello, how are you?" He is so terrified of having my DNA to identify me as "dad" is a souless abyss into which he cannot brave. My favorite part is when we go to a restaurant with people we cannot stand, order tasteless food, and all sneak furtive glances at each other while we push a single misshapen pea into a glob of unknown gravy, after small talk, we push ourselves away from the table and say, "Oh My God that was good! Thank you so very, very much!" Then we scatter in the parking lot into seven different directions spewing pollution into the LA skyline as we disperse like humans in a rayon gas protected by our individual thoughts and shiny little cars. Los Angeles has three million stories and that is one of them. When I get home I cry, secretly behind the false wall in my secret room, where I keep the secret papers then the phone rings, I smile faintly and lift the receiver from the cradle... it's a telemarketer from India... huh. Some days are just too special to put into words, thats why I rely on Hallmark to do it for me. Now how about this, FAGGETABOUTIT.
Thanks, Pat. Man, I think he was drunk. LOL. What was he talking about? Gotta love him. Alright, now for the announcement of the 20th artist to be pheatured in the P.P.A.G. He is a legendary Marvel comic boom artist and this is one of his pieces of work.
This is so cool. Bob Budiansky is the artist and he will be on the Phile in a few weeks. I cannot wait.
Okay, today's guest is the singer who records under the name Son of Levi. He has a new album "Always" which is available now on iTunes. Please welcome to the Phile on this Father's Day, from Son of Levi... Chris Levy.
Me: Hello, Chris, welcome to the Phile. How are you?
Chris: Doing well, and thanks for including me, Jason.
Me: So, over the years I have interviewed many musicians who don't record under their name but under a band name, which I never really understood, but with you, there's a big reason behind it. Tell the readers why and how you decided to call yourself Son of Levi.
Chris: Well, after my father passed away a few years back, I really felt the need to distance myself from what was. He was my manager and was really involved with what I was doing, and as I began to reinvent myself, the music and the way I told my stories began to change with me. Son of Levi is a nod to what was as well as an acknowledgement that in order to stay healthy you have to move on from painful things and rebuild. It’s also apart of my heritage because my father was Jewish and the name Levi is definitely a part of our ancestry. The Levites were a sort of a musical clan in their day.
Me: So, your dad's name was Levi Levy? Or is Levi a different way to spell Levy? I am confused.
Chris: Our family name was Levy, however if you look back in our ancestry you see that it was Levi, which means that they changed it at some point, probably because of the war and racial tensions in Eastern Europe where my family originates.
Me: Anyway, I know how you feel about losing your dad, Chris. I lost my dad from cancer as well as my mom from cancer in 2000. When did you lose your dad?
Chris: Sorry to hear about your parents. Yeah, I lost my Dad September 16, 2008.
Me: My dad was a musician. Your dad was also a musician, am I right?
Chris: Yes, we both became interested in music at similar points in our lives, which is really cool.
Me: Was he in a band, Chris?
Chris: No, my father was a solo act; when he was 17 he was signed to Apple Records to work with Sir George Martin right after the Beatles had garnered their fame. He was a big inspiration in my life.
Me: Wow, that's freaking cool. When you became a musician your dad was your manager, so that's cool he was a big part of your career. Did he give you a lot of advice?
Chris: My father always wanted to give me advice whether or not I wanted it. Although I didn’t always let on, I really did appreciate his input in my life, especially now that he is gone.
Me: What type of advice did he give you?
Chris: He had advice about life, about how it takes time and how you need to be patient, and also about pressing on even when you face adversity. Some of his most valuable advice had to do with songwriting. He was a masterful songwriter, and was really intent on seeing I became one as well.
Me: I don't have any musical talent, Chris, so you are very lucky. How long have you been a musician?
Chris: I would say that I have been one my whole life, but I didn’t come to terms with it until I was about twelve years old. It was summer of 2000, and two things kick-started my obsession with music, the electric guitar, and the Eagles.
Me: You play piano mostly, right? And you also play guitar?
Chris: Yes, I actually started writing on guitar and then taught myself how to play piano. Now I go between the two of them pretty regularly.
Me: When you first decided that you wanted to be a professional musician what did your parents think?
Chris: They were cool with it, they would have supported any career decision I made, but I am sure they were happy I was following in their footsteps.
Me: And did you ask your dad to manage you or did he volunteer?
Chris: I don’t remember having a conversation with him about it, I just remember knowing it was the right thing. I really looked up to him so it was a natural progression.
Me: Alright, let's talk about your music. I downloaded your latest album "Always" from iTunes and really enjoyed it. This is your second album, right?
Chris: Yes, my first album was released back in 2009.
Me: Were you thinking about your dad a lot when you were writing this album?
Chris: Yeah, I was definitely thinking about him; I thought about what he said, what he would have said and what he never got to say to me. I think that last one was the struggle that really affected me and brought about a lot of the music on the album.
Me: I also downloaded your first album "Never Fear". There's a song on it called "Abba". Is that your favorite band, Chris?
Chris: Jason, no, although they have catchy tunes. Actually Abba is Hebrew for father and was a song written from the perspective of my heritage on my father side.
Me: Both albums are similar sounding, but the lyrical content is different. What did your dad think of "Never Fear"?
Chris: Oh, he really loved it. We finished mixing back in the winter of 2007 so when he went into the hospital for cancer we brought in a CD player and he would constantly listen to the album. It really brought a smile to his face. I believe it was his closure on life, knowing that he had one last chance to be a part of something with me that would have a lasting impact on my life and others. Anyone who came to visit him in his room would hear the music playing and he would tell them about me and how proud he was…
Me: I have to ask, with a name like Son of Levi, do you ever get mistaken for a Christian act?
Chris: I’m sure I do.
Me: Chris, where are you from? I’m a California kid, born and raised. I was born in Hollywood and have lived in L.A. ever since.
Me: You have been compared to two America Idol's, Chris... David Archuleta and David Cook. Who came up with that and do you watch "American Idol"?
Chris: I actually don’t know where that started. I have been watching the past couple seasons. My dad used to watch it and he got super into it, I would tease him a little about it, Jason.
Me: My dad would of hated "American Idol", except when they played "Slow Ride" a few years ago. I, on the other hand, love it. Who would you compare yourself to and who do you listen to?
Chris: I’m probably somewhere in the vein of Coldplay, Muse, Keane, John Mayer. I listen to a lot of music, new and old. Classic and modern rock, classical, opera, and jazz; I’m game for it all.
Me: One of your songs from "Never Fear" was on the show "Smallville". That really must've helped the sales of the album, right?
Chris: Yeah, it definitely got us some exposure and was a great opportunity to get us started.
Me: Are most of your fans girls, Chris?
Chris: No, actually I would say it’s mixed. I think my music has a really broad appeal. It has something that you can’t quite put your finger on and I think that’s what draws people to it.
Me: Hey, Chris, thanks so much for being on the Phile. Go ahead and plug your website and please come back in the future. Take care, Chris. Have a good Father's Day.
Chris: Thank you, Jason, it was a pleasure talking with you. Please let your readers know that they can download “Frozen Door” for free on our Facebook page at facebook.com/sonoflevi.music. Our official website: sonoflevi.com. Thanks, Jason.
Well, that about does it for today's entry. Thanks to Jeff Cameron and of course, Chris Levy. The Phile will be back tomorrow with Alumni Lee Negin and then Summer on the Phile kicks off next Sunday with Bill Rozar from Witches In Bikinis and on Monday it's British blues legend Chris Youlden. So, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Happy Father's Day. I will leave you with a picture of my dad. Miss you, dad.