Hello, and welcome to the Phile on a Saturday. How are you? Well, Syria is now saying they will agree to give up their chemical weapons if Miley Cyrus agrees to give up whatever it is she is doing. A new survey found Americans clicked on Miley Cyrus stories 12 times more often than stories about Syria and President Assad. Well, that makes sense. Wouldn't you rather watch a twerk than a jerk? John Kerry has given Syria one week to hand over its chemical weapons. And if they don’t... he'll give them another week. Last month 312,000 Americans stopped looking for work, causing the unemployment rate to fall to 7.3 percent. President Obama called it a step in the right direction and encouraged more Americans to stop looking for work. According to the new U.N. world happiness report, the United States is the 17th happiest country in the world. The report says the happiest country is Denmark, followed by Norway, Switzerland, Netherlands, and Sweden. Way to go, super white people, I guess. You'd be happy too if everyone you knew looked like Thor and Famke Janssen. According to the report, the least happy countries are all countries in Africa. It's hard to be happy when a good day is a day you don't get trampled by a hippopotamus. Apple unveiled not one, but two iPhones. Their high-end phone has a fingerprint scanner... because the NSA doesn't have enough of our personal information. They want fingerprints too. Last Tuesday was the primary for mayor of New York City. The city had to use old, lever voting machines from the 1960s because the electronic machines were too hard to program. It got weird when officials checked the results and said, “The winner is... Richard Nixon?” The newer voting machines weren't properly programed... or as Florida put it, "Never stopped us." Twitter announced that they are filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of stock to take advantage of the the new Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act for smaller business. Or, to make that more Twitter friendly: @Twitter FYI'ed that it's filing w/ SEC for an IPO because JOBS. #goingpublic. Are you guys Harry Potter fans? If so, this is for you... author J.K. Rowling has decided to return to the wizarding world she created in her immensely popular Harry Potter books and their underwhelming film adaptations. The new series, set several decades before the birth of Potter, will jump right over the publication of the books and get directly into the disappointing films. Thank goodness Rowling is doing a Harry Potter spin-off otherwise she'd have to stop showering in vintage Champagne 200 years from now. I thought this was funny... A woman ordered a birthday cake with her son's Russian name from the Dairy Queen website. Here's what she got.
It's true. Redditor jentroi just wanted to order an ice cream cake for her son's birthday. So she used Dairy Queen's online cake builder to request a cake with her boy's Russian name. Unfortunately, from what we can gather, the system didn't recognize the Cyrillic characters, and turned them all into question marks, resulting in this delicious mistake. I wonder whether the cake decorator thought someone was celebrating an as-yet-unnamed baby or just thought someone wanted to send a message of "Happy birthday to whoever you want to be this year." It seems the latest thing thing in the hip hop or rap world is performer's releasing their own cereal. Last entry I showed you an ad for a new Kayne West's cereal Kayne Chex. Well, there's a new one out and here's the ad...
Who is that? 50 Cent? Is that his name? I'm not sure. Jigga Jacks... hmmmm. I mentioned just now Apple's new iPhones. That's not the only thing they announced this week, kids.
I'd try some iWater. So, do you watch "Duck Dynasty"? I have never seen it, but I bet those guys are Foghat fans. Anyway, if you want to know what those guys look like without their beards, I have an exclusive here.
Wanna see another one?
That's so stupid. Okay, I have been showing you some sport teams with odd names in the last few entries and I have another here.
In Idaho, Orofino is the location of a state mental hospital. Their mascot? The Orofino maniacs. Very subtle, right? Actually, contrary to popular belief, the school's teams were not named for the mental hospital; the school was built before the hospital. The early Orofino players were dubbed "Maniacs" due to their frantic style of play. Crazy. Okay, let's see who went to the big square dance in the sky.
Jan 18, 1933 - Sept 12, 2013
Sounds good to me.
Nov 27, 1920 - Sept 8, 2013
If you wanna "Go see Cal" now, you'd better bring a shovel.
If you spot the Mindphuck email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alright, it's time to talk football with my good friend Jeff. Last weekend the games didn't happen yet, so that's why he wasn't here. Lrt's see how well we did with our picks with...
Me: Hey, Jeff, welcome back.
Jeff: It's always good to be back on the Phile.
Me: I have to start with something I totally forgot to mention last time you were here... do you think Tim Tebow's NFL career is over?
Jeff: Yes, I do think Tebow's NFL career is over. He just doesn't have what it takes to be a good quarterback. His mechanics are wrong. He is a little bit slow and quite frankly rubs people the wrong way sometimes.
Me: Why did the Patriots drop him?
Jeff: He just didn't fit in New England.
Me: Alright, so, what did you think of week 1? I think Payton Manning is a beast!
Jeff: I wonder how much of that was Payton Manning and how much was Baltimore's defense struggling without Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. He definitely had an amazing game and it's a great way to start off the season.
Me: True. Any other major NFL news?
Jeff: Biggest news is the Eagles offense, especially in the first half. They ran 51 plays which is amazing. They looked really sharp, especially in the first half. Yes, they slowed down considerable in the second but still had enough to win the game against a very game Redskin team.
Me: Very good. So how did we do with our picks?
Jeff: After one week of play, Lori went 2-0 with an Eagles win. I went 1-1 with a Steeler lose and you went 0-2 with a Giants lose. So the standings are Lori has 7 points, I have 3 points and you have zero points. But it's a long season and you never know!
Me: Lori starts off with seven points?! What?! Damn. Congrats on your three, and I cannot believe I didn't get anything. Alright, week 2 picks... I say Patriots are gonna best the Jets by twelve and Falcons will beat the Rams by seven. What do you and Lori pick? I hope I get something right this week.
Jeff: I am going with Colts by a touchdown over Miami and San Francisco over Seattle by three. Lori is also going with the Patriots, but by three points. She is also picking the Texans to beat the Titans by a point.
Me: Okay, Jeff, I'll see you back here next week for week 3.
Jeff: See you next week!!!
The Truth Team? Couldn't they get a clearer logo? Anyway, someone from the Truth Team wanted to come on the Phile and talk about something that's going to happen on October 1st. So, please welcome to the Phile, Health Care Campaign Manager for Organizing for Action... Erin Hannigan.
Me: Hello, Erin, welcome to the Phile. So, what's happening?
Erin: Check this out... On October 1st, in just 16 days, more than 30 million uninsured Americans will be able to sign up for affordable health insurance in the marketplace, many for the very first time.
Me: This is to do with Obamacare, am I right?
Erin: Yes, one of the lesser-known facts about Obamacare is that under the law, millions of Americans will be eligible for financial assistance, or tax credits.
Me: But this is something that might get derailed as well...
Erin: Unfortunately, yes, this is also one of the newest targets for our opponents in Congress who are trying to derail the law.
Me: And I'm sure they have plenty of myths to spread here. What is the Truth Team gonna do about it?
Erin: We Truth Teamers have an opportunity to make sure our friends and family know the truth about what Obamacare financial assistance is and what it means.
Me: Don't you have something to show how the tax credits work, Erin?
Erin: Yeah. Check out this cool calculator from the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation... kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/ and then share it on Facebook or Twitter.
Me: Is this the only way Obamacare is helping provide security to the middle class?
Erin: This is one way.
Me: And what do you think your opponents are doing?
Erin: Our opponents are out there blowing hot air about the impact of Obamacare... some are even trying to stop the law entirely.
Me: Anything recently they did?
Erin: Just this week, we saw two separate attempts in Congress to block crucial parts of how Obamacare provides better benefits and lower costs to millions. But we've got the facts on our side... and we've got to spread the word.
Me: Okay, keep this short as I don't want to bore my readers, but tell us how the financial assistance works.
Erin: Okay. Individuals earning up to $45,000 per year or families of four earning up to $94,000 per year will be eligible to receive it.
Me: What about people who buy their own health insurance?
Erin: Nearly half of all people who currently buy their own health insurance will be eligible for financial assistance next year... and, on average, are expected to save about $2,700 a year.
Me: This is pretty big, Erin...
Erin: This is huge... for the country, for the middle class, and for folks out there who have been looking forward to the day that they can finally get affordable health care.
Me: And you want me to tell them something?
Erin: We need to be the ones out there telling folks that day is coming soon... and the tax credits will probably help someone you know, or your Phile readers.
Me: Thank you, Erin, come back again soon.
Erin: Thank you, Jason.
It's 10:55, 83°F and Kelly said, "“I’m going to want to have a baby.” Aggggghhhhh!!!!!!!!!!
Damn it! I don't want to think about her having sex let alone having a baby. Sheesh. Okay, I need to focus. The 34th artist to be pheatured in the Phile's Art Gallery is DJ Clulow and this is one of his pieces...
DJ will be a guest on the Phile tomorrow.
Today's pheatured guest is is an American singer/songwriter whose last two albums "Wreck Your Wheels" and "Thorn in My Heart" are wonderful, and available on iTunes. She will be appearing next at The Rutledge in Nashville on September 20th. Please welcome to the Phile, the talented... Kim Richey.
Me: Hello, Kim, welcome to the Peverett Phile. How are you?
Kim: Hello, Jason. All's well. Thanks.
Me: I have to tell you, I am a big fan and it's a pleasure to have you here. I purchased your new album "Thorn in My Heart" and the one prior "Wreck Your Wheels" from iTunes and loved them. They're very country-sounding, Kim, which is what you do best. Did it take you awhile to make it?
Kim: Thank you very much. I'm glad you like the records. To start with, we cleared the furniture out of my living room and set up there for a couple days choosing and arranging songs before we went in the studio to record. Once we were in the studio, I think we spent about a week on the basic tracks. The four of us recorded most of the record all together sitting around in a circle in the little studio room. The studio was so small that we had to park Neilson's Honda outside the studio door, put the amp inside and use it as an isolation booth. After that we had some of our friends... Matthew Ryan, Dan Mitchell, Carmella Ramsey, Jeremy Liester, and Eamon Mcloughlin come in and add vocals, piano, and other assorted instruments.
Me: I love the title track and video to "Wreck Your Wheels", which we'll talk about in a minute. Explain what the phrase 'wreck your wheels' means. Was that song written to anybody in particular?
Kim: Mando Saenz came up with the title and then we tried to figure out what it meant to us. He is one of my favorite people to write with. He is a singer/songwriter and has made a great record called "Bucket". To me, "Wreck Your Wheels" means to slow someone or something down or completely derail it. I like that the singer in this song realizes what they are doing and is trying to talk about it and make amends.
Me: I was gonna ask you what the phrase 'thorn in my heart' means but I kinda know. Kim, where are you from?
Kim: Ohio... born in Zanesville and raised in Kettering
Me: Do you still live there?
Kim: No. I left Ohio after graduating from Ohio University with a degree in environmental education. I still have friends and family there though.
Me: Kim, you did a lot of shows in England, which is where I am originally from. Do you have a large fan base there?
Kim: I really like playing shows in the U.K. The audiences are great. people seem to know more about my music than I do.
Me: You didn't make a video for any of your songs for "Thorn in My Heart", but I think the video for "Wreck Your Wheels" is brilliant. Did you know all those people in it, Kim?
Kim: Thanks very much. I love it. I know a few of people in the video but, mostly they are people that signed up to be in the video after I posted a notice on Facebook and on the website. At show's, people who were in the video come up and tell me what word they were. It's great.
Me: Whose concept was it, it's simple but cool. You don't appear in it much though, don't you like making videos?
Kim: I came up with the idea but, Amy and Andrew did all the work... organizing, editing and the photography of my part. It started as a way for me basically to appear as little as possible in the video and then turned into something amazing. It made me cry the first time I saw it. I was so moved that all those people would take the time to participate and the pictures were fantastic! Really great.
Me: Kim, congrats on being nominated for a Grammy, not once by twice. Did you get to go to the Grammy's?
Kim: I never did get to go. The year I was nominated for country song of the year I was home on voice rest. Three weeks I had to go without talking because I had injured my vocal chords while touring. My timing was bad.
Me: Did you watch the Grammy's this year?
Kim: I didn't get to watch them. I think I was in Stockholm. I caught some of the highlight on Twitter though.
Me: When you were nominated the first time, I bet you made a lot of phone calls to tell family and friends. Did you have the same excitement the second time?
Kim: It was unbelievable to me both times.
Me: Kim, some people probably don't know, apart from being a recording artist on your own, you also write songs that other people record such as Trisha Yearwood and James Morrison. That must be a huge honor for other people to like your songs so much they wanna record them. Do you get asked a lot to write songs for other people to record?
Kim: It is a massive honor to have someone record a song you have written. Think of all the songs there are in the world to chose from. I've never been asked to write a song for someone. What usually happens is people hear the song on one of my records and then record it or in some cases I write the song with the artist for their record... like James Morrison.
Me: Do you ever write a song that is supposed to go to someone else and then decide to keep it for yourself because you like it so much?
Kim: Once it happened the other way around. I was keeping a song for myself and then decided to let Trisha Yearwood to record it instead. That song was "Believe Me Baby I Lied".
Me: You sang back-up on Ryan Adams debut album, which I have, but didn't realize. Did Ryan approach you? How was he to work with?
Kim: At the time, Ryan and I had the same manager and we had just returned from playing some shows together on the West Coast. At South By Southwest the same year the album was made, I sang harmony on a bunch of new songs that Ryan had written and been performing on the tour. He is one of my most favorite singers and I love that album. I'm very happy to be on it.
Me: Is there anybody you haven't worked with that you would love to?
Kim: There are lots of people I'd love to work with. One of the most beautiful singers I can think of is David Hidalgo of Los Lobos. I would love to sing with him sometime. He is brilliant.
Me: You sang on William Shatner's album which was produced by Ben Folds. What an honor. I interviewed another artist years ago who was on the album, Webb Wilder. Are you aware of Webb's work?
Kim: Yes! Webb is a good pal.
Me: Anyway, how did you get involved with the Shatner project? I can't imagine you being a "Star Trek" fan. Did you get to meet him?
Kim: What do you mean you can't imagine me as a "Star Trek' fan? I loved "Star Trek". Sadly, I have never met William Shatner. I'd like to though. I'm also a fan of Denny Crane from "Boston Legal". A friend of mine who played bass with Ben asked me to be a member of the Hillbilly Choir. That's how I got to be involved. It was great fun and Ben Folds was fantastic to work with. I'm also a fan of his.
Me: Also, did you perform at Live Earth? I think I remember you being there. How was that experience, Kim?
Kim: You know, I didn't perform at Live Earth. I'm not sure how that rumor got started.
Me: I'm an idiot then. Kim, thanks so much for being on the Phile, I am a big fan and love your music, especially your latest album. Go ahead and plug your website if you want.
Kim: Thanks for having me, Jason. Okay, here is my website plug: kimrichey.com.
Me: Please come back to the Phile one day, when your next project comes out. Take care, and thank you again, Kim.
Kim: You're very welcome. Bye.
That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to Jeff Trelewicz, Erin Hannigan and of course Kim Richey. The Phile will be back tomorrow with artist DJ Clulow, then on Monday it's singer Deirdre Broderick. Next Saturday it's Steve "Lips" Kudlow from the heavy metal band Anvil. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!