Helllloooo! Thank you for coming back! How are you? Thank you! So, what about that Super Bowl, huh? The last entry of the the Phile was back on February 2nd, five months ago. You didn't think the Phile would end with an interview with a couple of strippers, did you? A lot has happened since the Phile went on hiatus... The XXII Olympic Winter Games were held in Sochi, Russia, Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 airliner en route to Beijing disappeared over the Gulf of Thailand with 239 people on board. I still don't think they found that plane, the Oscars, Kelly Clarkson had her baby... a lot of stuff happened. Some of you are probably wondering what happened to me and the Phile. Well, I went off to make a movie. Check it out...
Haha. What a cool looking Avatar I make, right? So, on the Phile you might not know I usually start off with a monologue on the latest news and stuff. So let's do that. By the way, what do you think of the new look? Pretty nice, right? ABC has announced that it will be replacing the foul-mouthed vaccine-conspiracy theorist and former MTV host Jenny McCarthy with the loud-mouthed 9/11-conspiracy theorist and former VH1 host Rosie O'Donnell on "The View". When Rosie O'Donnell is your next best solution, you're fucked. In an op-ed for Breitbart.com, half-term Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin has demanded that U.S. Congress begin the process of removing President Obama from office. "It’s time to impeach; and on behalf of American workers and legal immigrants of all backgrounds, we should vehemently oppose any politician on the left or right who would hesitate in voting for articles of impeachment." Sarah Palin's call for Obama's impeachment is no idle threat. When she was Alaska Governor, she managed to impeach herself. Any Harry Potter fans out there? I'm not, but most of the world is. Anyway, I'm sure you heard best-selling fantasy author J.K. Rowling recently published a new story in which her iconic character Harry Potter is a thirty-something guy with a regular job who's still obsessed with wizard stuff. It's kind of the perfect story for Rowling's fan base. The new Harry Potter story is about Harry getting a Twitter account and never accomplishing anything of substance ever again. I think it's funny that Rowling just wrote her own Potter fan-fiction. According to a new study, Americans aren't ingesting any more calories than they were twenty years ago. Increased obesity rates instead can likely be blamed on the fact that most of us wouldn't exercise if our lives depended on it. Which it kind of does. America's love affair with overpriced, super-fancy novelty baked goods appears to have finally come to its inevitable end. The New York-based Crumbs Bake Shop... famous for its decadently okay-enough cupcakes announced yesterday that it would be shuttering all of its stores by the end of the day. Today, heartbroken consumers will simply have to indulge their sweet teeth by purchasing reasonably priced pastries pretty much anywhere else. Up next on "Shark Tank": More goddamn cupcakes! Yankees fan Andrew Robert Rector is suing ESPN for $10 million after the sports network filmed him sleeping during a Yankees-Red Sox game, thus opening up the opportunity for people to make fun of him on the Internet. I'm assuming that he will soon be suing his lawyer for helping him to sue ESPN, thus opening up the opportunity for people to continue making fun of him on the Internet. Alright, one of the coolest things that started happening this year is they started filming Star Wars Episode 7. Now if I was making a Star Wars movie it might look like this...
Yeah, I don't really get it either. I had a lot of time on my hands these last few months, and I let my mind wander. For example, if you look at the Chicago Bulls logo upside down it looks like an alien reading a bible at a pulpit. You don't believe me?
Do you see it? I know you do. I have a great entry for you today, with an interview with the guys from one of my favorite bands... Burning Jet Black. But phirst...
If you spot the Mindphuck email me at email@example.com or tweet me at @thepeverettphile #PhileMindphuck. Alright, I want to talk serious for a few minutes if you don't mind. When the Phile first went on hiatus I couldn't wait to bring it back. In fact, I was depressed I wasn't able to do it. I promised a lot of people they would be interviewed on the Phile, and I couldn't uphold that promise. I received a number of emails, messages, and was told to my face how much they missed the Phile and it meant a lot to them. Then after a few months I thought, man, I have a lotta time on my hands now. I don't have to find people to interview, don't have to research, work out the questions, think of a monologue, look for pictures that could fuck your mind, and even think about the Phile. So, for a few months I thought I wasn't gonna bring the Phile back, Over time I received less emails, and figured people were forgetting all about it. After all, there's a million better blogs and websites out there then this one. Then I started to miss it these last few weeks, and started to get a lot of requests for interviews, and I thought why not bring the Phile back? So, here we are. I have no idea how long the Phile will be back for. A few more years hopefully, so please keep reading, and I'll keep on trying to make you laugh. This won't make you laugh... one of the last entries I did on the Phile on January 20th was with a young lady named Lauren McCullough. Here is a picture of her to remind you...
Well, on February 3rd Lauren passed away from her battle with cancer. Please go to her blogthenotdyinggirl.com and red her story. Stories and interviews like Lauren's make the Phile worthwhile I like to think. Man, this is a sucky segue, but one of the most popular features on the Phile is when I have a blurb on someone famous who died. Since the last entry on February 2nd about 30 or so famous people have died. Here are some of them...
Philip Seymour Hoffman
July 23rd, 1967 - February 2nd, 2014
April 23rd, 1928 - February 10th, 2014
Somewhat slightly less bright eyes.
September 8th, 1922 - February 12th, 2014
June 22nd, 1928 - February 13th, 2014
Good night John Boy. Good night Elizabeth. Good night Daddy. Daddy? Daddy?
Maria von Trapp
September 28th, 1914 - February 18th, 2014
The hills have finally shut up.
November 21st, 1944 - February 24th, 2014
NOW who are you gonna call?
March 23rd, 1964 - April 6th, 2014
(Insert Pine Joke Here)
October 26th, 1942 - April 30th, 2014
November 30th, 1918 - May 2nd, 2014
Sunsetted, and stripped.
July 8th, 1930 - May 18th, 2014
He sang "Have You Looked Into Your Heart?", "Deep in Your Heart", "I've Lost My Heart Again", "In the Back of My Heart" and "Don't Tell My Heart to Stop Loving You"... which all of corse work for a dude with heart failure. But somehow "Hello and Goodbye" just tickles my fancy a bit more. Go figure.
April 4th, 1928 - May 28th, 2014
I know why the boxed bird just lays there.
May 5th, 1926 - June 1st, 2014
Where the hell are we going to find 6 pallbearers?
April 27th, 1932 - June 15th, 2014
Here's a long distance dedication to Casey from Reaper G: "I've been waiting for you a long time. I can't wait to spend eternity with you. You're my everything."
March 4th, 1944 - June 27th, 2014
It's all over now.
April 25th, 1930 - July 1st, 2014
Downer and Outer.
January 25th, 1928 - July 7th, 2014
The 31st book to be pheatured on the Phile is...
The author Mark Baxter will be a guest on he Phile in a few weeks.
When I decided to do the Phile again I wanted to bring back one of my favorite bands I met since I started doing this blog. They have a new EP out called "Rascals" which is available on iTunes. Please welcome back to the Phile David Bloomfield, Wes Hall, Rob Hughes and David Sparrow... Burning Jet Black.
Me: Hey, guys, welcome back to the Phile. How have you been?
Wes: Awesome! I'm really into this minimal drumming approach I've taken lately. We've also been recording some ideas and for me, listening back is great for finding the sweet spot to some of the new stuff.
Rob: We're good, Jason. It's fucking radical to be back on your site again.
Me: I lost count on how many times you all have been on the Phile. Wes, I know this is your second time. How many times have you guys been here? Six or seven at least, right?
Wes: Yeah, my second time. I'm really thankful for that. I'm excited that there's people out there into our stuff.
Dave B: I'm hoping we're in competition right now for most times on the Phile. It's definitely been quite a few over the years.
Sparrow: Jan ’09, Apr ’11, Oct ’11, June ’12, July ’13. This makes six…unless I missed one.
Rob: Are you coming on to us?
Me: Maybe. Haha. I said this before and I'll say it again, Burning Jet Black or The Whiskey Saints, or whatever you are gonna call the band, you are one of my favorite bands I discovered since I started this blog. You guys are not planning on changing the band name again, are you?
Dave B: Burning Jet Black seems to have suited us well so far. The last name change was a pretty tough transition, so not looking to do it again.
Sparrow: No more name changes. And, on behalf of all us, we really appreciate how much you like us and that you keep having us back to the Phile!
Wes: I agree, very happy to return to the Phile. Keeping the name, it's gotta stick you know.
Me: Since you changed the name to Burning Jet Black two years ago, have you guys regretted it? Did it ever cause any confusion?
Dave B: I think the hardest part was convincing fans of The Whiskey Saints that we're essentially the same band progressing as we would had we not changed the name. We received a few disappointed comments from people wanting The Whiskey Saints back; the idea that we abandoned the musical ideals of the saints for something else just isn't true. We were always developing new sounds as the saints, pulling in new influences and reflecting on old ones, and that "24 Hours" record definitely shares some similarities with the Burning Jet Black songs we've released so far. We've definitely won over a lot of new people with the BJB records, so I still feel like it was the right decision.
Sparrow: I remember one of the big issues being Facebook’s policy of not being able to change your page name. We had a considerable amount of followers, or fans, or likes… whatever it was, but we had to start over convincing people to follow the “new” band as Facebook’s popularity/usage started dwindling (as it’s still doing). There’s something to be said for a dot com.
Wes: I came into this after the transition so I guess I had it easy, ha ha. Sparrow is right, I feel a dot com equals power and control over our band that can be lost in social media. Gotta find the balance between the two and get them to work for us as a whole.
Me: I have thought about changing the Phile's name, but I guess I'll keep it til whenever I end this thing. Anyway, apart from being in a band, some of you do your own solo stuff, am I right? Have any of you thought about releasing a solo album?
Sparrow: I have a solo thing going on called Flight Lessons. It’s kind of poppy acoustic songs… or bedroom rock really. I’m not the savviest at recording, despite having owned ProTools for about 3 years now, so the recordings are pretty lo-fi. Flight Lessons is basically an outlet for stuff that doesn’t really fit into the BJB repertoire. I’ve only played 2 or 3 “official” shows. I roped in some of my friends from other local bands to sing and/or play with me. I also sing/write/play for an act called Hill William. It’s some old friends of mine and we perform very infrequently, but actually just did some proper recording just recently.
Wes: I've been jamming with friends just to stay fresh. No drum solo stuff though, maybe Flight Lessons will need a special guest one day.
Me: BJB is based in Los Angeles, and you guys all live out there. Do you ever get to travel and play out of California?
Sparrow: It’s been far too long since we’ve gotten out of CA to play. Our last out of town gig was San Diego at The Casbah. I’d love to get out on the road for a bit, but it’s tough.
Dave B: We've really been enjoying the 80 degree beach days here, but yeah, playing live on the road and meeting new people has always been a great experience for us. I'd be willing to freeze my ass off somewhere for any opportunity to play music.
Me: You've been a band for 8 years now, guys. What has been the highlight so far and what has been your favorite show you have played?
Dave B: I've really enjoyed all the shows we've had the opportunity to join at The Casbah in San Diego. Rosemary, the SD promoter we've worked with, always books us with really talented acts, it's pretty flattering. Opening up for Everest down there was definitely a great experience, too.
Sparrow: I definitely agree about The Casbah being one of our highlights.
Wes: Casbah all the way! Wicked fun down there.
Me: I was looking at the publicity photo and I couldn't figure out where you guys are... you look like you're in some sort of lift or elevator. Where was this, and that's an odd place to have a photoshoot done.
Dave B: This was actually our first attempt at a self-portrait shoot, where Rob utilized a remote to operate the camera with no actual photographer. The location is a freight elevator at Downtown Rehearsal in LA. We just dug the gritty look and dim lighting, so it happened.
Me: And Sparrow, your t-shirt says "Glass Tables". Is that another band?
Sparrow: Yeah. A band I was fortunate enough to see just once. I host a night of music in Santa Monica the first Monday of every month and the booker had passed me their info. They played and they were awesome. Johnny Costello, their front man, moved to New York City not too long after we met, so I’m not sure if they’re active anymore. I hope so, I should really get in touch with him.
Me: Speaking of t-shirts, did you ever get in XXL BJB t-shirts? Haha.
Dave B: We're in the process of designing some new t-shirts; I will definitely remember you first when we're ready to order some. With BJB, the music happens effortlessly, everything else is an uphill battle sometimes.
Me: Alright, let's talk about the new EP "Rascals" I am glad is finally out. Who came up with the name and why is it called "Rascals"?
Wes: I remember discussing the name and it just made sense to me.
Rob: We had originally planned on it being a close follow up to "The Modern Egotist" and had considered calling it "The Modern Hedonist" with a similar album cover but with a faceless lady with no face and ideally super buxom. Anyway, by the time we recorded all the tracks, it was much later than expected and so we decided that we needed a different name. For some reason, around that time I started calling people rascals. I don't know why. Most people don't get called rascals anymore.
Me: Who did that drawing off the dog? I like the red and how it stands out. It's your brightest cover yet.
Wes: I have to say Rob's handy art skills and imagination brought it all together.
Rob: Yeah those are my "skills!" Ha! We were having a hard time settling on a cover idea and couldn't find anyone with real art skills to do it on our budget (read "Free"). We were running out of time and so I drank some bourbon and got out my trusty water color set. Fucking magical. Also, it's a fox, not a dog. A Magical Fox.
Me: The EP is great, and you already have one single from it you talked about the last time you were here. That was "The Brutal Beyond". Are you gonna have another single?
Dave B: "President" seems to have gotten a lot of attention so far, and we've tossed around some music videos ideas. On occasion the "single" comes down to an awesome video concept, and we pick the song that works best with it.
Me: You always make cool videos, so do you have another one planned?
Sparrow: I was tossing around a concept with Bloomfield the other day. Hopefully we’ll crank something out soon.
Rob: So so secret!
Me: I have to ask you about the song "President". Is that a song about the current President?
Dave B: I didn't really intend for it to be a political song, although Sparrow likes to interpret it that way. I've always said it's about disappointment, or not living up to the high expectations of others. Being President is sort of a symbol of the greatest amount of success someone can achieve, something that's basically unattainable for almost all of us.
Me: Are any of you guys political?
Dave B: I enjoy following politics but definitely feel like it's becoming a circus act lately. If I wasn't incredibly cynical I'd probably get really pissed off anytime I watched the news, instead it makes for an occasional good laugh. I'd definitely like to see everyone have health insurance in this country at some point, so I think some things are headed in the right direction, as flawed as the system is right now.
Sparrow: When I was listening to NPR regularly it got me kind of interested again in politics, but that sort of settled into being angry about how wrong everything is. So, sort of? I’m more of a conspiracy theorist than anything else, but that’s a conversation for another time. I guess since I have the opportunity to share it with an audience… I just watched the film America: From Freedom to Fascism by Aaron Russo. It’s a pretty eye-opening film, although you have to take it all with a grain of salt. I’m constantly researching the truth.
Wes: Heard that Sparrow! I'm with ya on that.
Me: Sparrow, I always thought you had an amazing voice... very unique. How old were you when you first started singing?
Sparrow: Thanks! I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember. I grew up singing in church then ended up in chorus in high school despite thinking it was super lame (…it ended up being okay). In hindsight, both of these taught me how to perform in front of big audiences. It’s always come pretty naturally and I love to do it.
Me: How old were any of you when you all started to play your various instruments?
Dave B: I started on guitar at around 13 and immediately joined a band with some friends. It forced me to become a competent player quickly.
Sparrow: Wow, this will be like a rundown of failures. Ha. I took piano lessons when I was about 7, but quit shortly after. Then it was clarinet, bass clarinet, saxophone, and back to piano. I quit all of these in pretty rapid succession. My grandfather (who plays guitar, banjo, and bass) got me a guitar for Christmas when I was around 11. It sat in its box until I was about 12 and I started teaching myself chords from Guitar World magazine and OLGA. Remember the Online Guitar Archive? That resource was priceless for teaching me songs and chords.
Wes: I've been playing since my early teens, from what family members tell me even earlier. There are pictures of me as a little kid with drumsticks playing on a coffee can. Self taught mostly but studied some jazz piano and mallet instruments after high school.
Rob: The first time I played bass in a band was out of necessity in 8th grade because I really wanted to play in a band with my friends, but didn't know how to play anything but a saxophone. Stone Temple Pilots covers don't sound as cool with a sax.
Me: So, what are your plans for the rest of 2014, guys? Have you started on writing new music lately?
Rob: Yeah, we'll be cranking out a lot of new stuff soon. We're also are just wrapping up an Emmy Lou Harris cover for a compilation. Don't worry, we made it dirty.
Dave B: We have a lot of new material, so much that we were a bit hesitant to release an EP. You'll hear a new song or two from us in the near future.
Sparrow: I feel like we have at least 10 or 15 new songs that aren’t recorded. Rob has been honing his engineering/producing skills so you should be hearing lots of new tunes pretty soon.
Me: Alright, last time you were here I told you about my music project Strawberry Blondes Forever and since then we have our album out called "How Do You Know My Name?" I was thinking... if you guys ever wanna do a cover song of any of SBF's songs... haha. Do you guys ever think about doing covers?
Dave B: We're always on the hunt for good covers. We occasionally do a few now, Low's "Murderer", Iggy Pop's "Funtime", Kings of Leon's "Four Kicks" and a few others.
Me: If I was gonna put together a Foghat tribute album what song would you like to do, you guys? Just wondering...
Sparrow: Well, I think I said it in another interview (and I know it seems like a cop out) but I would choose “Slow Ride” although I don’t know if I could do it justice. It’s funny you mention a tribute album though. Our friend Warren (of LA’s Wires in the Walls) is putting together a tribute album to Emmylou Harris featuring local L.A. bands and their interpretations of her popular songs, and as Rob mentioned above, we just cranked one out.
Dave B: I starting trying to throw out the riff to "Easy Money" at rehearsal the other day... aggressive tune, I hear some BJB potential there. "Slow Ride" is a classic though.
Me: Okay, like last year, I am asking my guests random questions thanks to Tabletopics. Ready? What has been the most spiritual experience of your lives?
Dave B: Don't want to get too mushy here, but it's either falling in love or playing a great show with this band. Both seem unreal when they happen, and you have that autopilot sort of experience where your logical, rational mind takes a break and your heart guides you along. It's complete freedom from any self-centered bullshit banging around in your skull. That interconnectedness with other human beings is divine.
Sparrow: I’m still looking for it. I keep seeing stuff about this place called Mt. Hua Shan in China. There’s this mindblowingly scary part of the hike up this mountain where you’re walking on a couple of 2X4's supported by metal spikes driven into the mountain. There are wires to hold onto, but there are also thousands of feet of nothing below you. I would love to go there. I’m afraid of heights and it seems like a way to conquer that in a big way.
Wes: I have a few. But I have to say, when I was about 18 I crashed my car and totaled it. I should've been really hurt but somehow I literally walked away from it, not a scratch on me. It was all meant to be so I could rock out with these guys!
Rob: I'm not very spiritual, hiking around National Parks is a pretty breathtaking thing. I've been to Yosemite 4 or 5 times and every single time I get to the Valley floor and El Cap rises straight up I just am awestruck. At night in the full moon? Forget about it.
Me: Thanks guys for coming back on the Phile. Please come back soon. Go ahead and mention your website and everything, and keep rocking.
Wes: Thanks again, Jason!
Dave B: Thanks again for having us, Jason, always happy to visit the Phile.
Sparrow: Thanks, Jason! Look for news and tunes here: burningjetblack.com.
That about does it for this new entry and the return of the Phile. Thanks to Jeff Cameron and the guys from Burning Jet Black. The Phile will be back tomorrow with signer and comedian Killy Mockstar Dwyer. So, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.
Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker.