Friday, November 26, 2010

Pheaturing 'Slow' Layne Hendrickson From The Dirt Daubers

Hello, welcome back to the Phile. Happy Black Friday! Or as I like to call it here on the Phile... Black Phriday. And yes, I went out last night at 12:00 to go shopping. It's funny, Black Friday always falls on the same day of the week. So, did you guys have a good Thanksgiving? I am still full from all the turkey I ate. I was wondering, if people are so thankful on Thanksgiving, why do they go out and buy new things on Black Friday? Why do they call it Black Friday? Because everything is a steal. LOL. I apology, my friends, for that awful joke. Let's move on. Did you hear at Soarin' at Disney World (the most wonderful company to work for ever) they are adding TSA scanners? Over the past weekend, someone sent an envelope with some mysterious white powder. They were trying to test it, but Charlie Sheen snorted it before they could. Did you guys watch the 84th Macy's Day parade yesterday? You can tell the balloons are getting old. SpongeBob SquarePants is wearing his pants above his belly button. LOL. What a stupid thing to say. I couldn't think of an older balloon then Spongebob? The parade is 84 years old! Let me try is... you can tell the balloons are getting old. Betty Boops breasts are sagging. Popeye is wearing his pants above his belly button. Let's talk about something fun, like the bombing of South Korea. Experts say that North Korea’s Kim Jon Il may not be responsible for bombing South Korea, and it may have been his son. Kids grow up so fast. It’s a harsh indictment of our media as we lurch toward possible nuclear war on the Korean peninsula, we’re all talking about “Dancing With the Stars.” Isn’t it time journalists start asking the hard questions like “What does Kim Jong Il think of ‘Dancing With the Stars’?” Sarah Palin has managed to use her failed vice presidential run to put herself in a position of power and influence. Joe Biden won the race and he hasn’t been able to put himself in a position of power and influence. Speaking of Sarah Palin and "Dancing With the Stars", Sarah Palin must be glad that “Dancing With the Stars” is over. It was a major distraction. She was only able to release three books this month. Palin’s book “America by Heart” came out today, just in time for awkward holiday gift exchanges. Ratings for the second episode of Palin’s TV show have gone way down, falling 40 percent. So I guess she and President Obama do have something in common after all. Okay, let's talk about me for a minute. Most of you know from reading this blog or knowing me in person that for the past 22 years... actually, 22 years and nine months to be exact I have worked at Epcot in Walt Disney World. Well, this coming week is my last week there, I am going to transfer to the Magic Kingdom. I'll be doing basically the same job except for I would have more steady hours, they'll be less crowds, no strollers to push and it'll be more stress free. In other words, it'll be the complete opposite of what I have been used to. What am I getting myself in to? So, this afternoon we are all going to go out and see the new Disney movie, Tangled. It's about what my brain is going to do once I go to the Kingdom. Hey, shouldn't today be called Jew Friday because everything is so cheap? Okay. Okay. I am sorry. Sorry, Seth and Lucy. So, did you see the new Thanksgiving inspirational poster? I don't get it, so if you can figure it out, e-mail me at Check it out.

While I was shopping I found this funny inspirational poster. I am still laughing.

This is the 11th book to be pheatured in the P.P.B.C. and the author, Jonathan Bender will be a guest on the Phile in two weeks.

And now for...

Today's guest on Black Friday is not only a musician and a member of the band The Dirt Daubers, he is also a blacksmith. A blacksmith on Black Friday. Get it? Please welcome to the Phile... 'Slow' Layne Hendrickson.

Me: Hello, Layne, or can I call you Slow? How are you? Welcome to the Phile.

Slow: Hey, Jason! I’ll answer to most anything. “Slow” is great though.

Me: Where did that nickname Slow come from?

Slow: I used to be “Fast” Layne. Then I got old… now I’m “Slow” Layne… eventually I’ll be “Passing” Layne.

Me: Congrats, you are the first blacksmith and wash tub plucker I interviewed on the Phile. And probably the first....

Slow: You mean last? LOL!

Me: There's not a whole lot of wash tub pluckers out there, are they?

Slow: Thanks! I’m honored. There are more wash tubists then one would suspect actually… I prefer the term “Gut Bucketeer” though. LOL! These days the tubs get used more fore catching the bloody entrails of God’s little creatures than for the washing of bib-overalls.

Me: How long have you been a blacksmith, sir, and how does one get into that kinda business? Not like I want to or anything.

Slow: I’ve been smiting the black metal for about nine years now. A hobby that got out of control really.

Me: And when did you start to play the wash tub?

Slow: I built my tub about a year ago. JD and Jessica would come over to visit when they were off tour with Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers and we would pick Old Time Tunes out on the porch after supper. I just decided to build a tub so we could have some bass going and of course I had to build my own version that could be played like an upright in addition to just tilting the stick back and forth like a traditional wash tub bass.

Me: I am sure some Phile readers have no idea what a wash tub plucker is, unless they saw the Country Bears Jamboree at Disney World. So, can you explain what it is, and how do you play?

Slow: If you don’t happen to have a $6000 carved German upright bass lying around, just take the old 17 gallon washtub off the well-house wall, turn it upside down… poke a hole in it and thread some weed eater line through and tie it to a broom handle or a tobaccer stick… set the stick end on the lip of the tub and get to thumpin’! You vary the pitch by tightening or loosening the string tension by moving the stick back and forth.

Me: Is it an easy instrument to learn?

Slow: Seconds to learn, a lifetime to master. I play fiddle, upright bass, fretless banjo, slide guitar… All these helped me to get accurate intonation when I started playing gut bucket. I sorta know where notes live on a string. It ain’t an easy thing to play well. It’s all by ear because there is no frame of reference whatsoever. No frets… not even a stable open note on the string due to the wobble of the neck. If I can’t hear myself well in a bar, I’m boned. In that situation, I just play by vibration by pressing the headstock up against my skull.

Me: Is it even an instrument?

Slow: Most definitely. I patterned my neck after an upright so I liken my tub to playing an upright bass with one string and a broken neck.

Me: You're based in Benton, Kentucky, right? Where is that in location to Louisville?

Slow: Out in the sticks west of Benton…nearest the little community of Oak Level... hence the Oak Level Forge. (shameless self promotion). We’re about three hours west of Louisville.

Me: I have to ask you about your band The Dirt Daubers. Who came up with that name and what does it mean? It's a nasty bug.

Slow: I came up with name by watching a little dirt dauber busing himself building his little mud nest in my blacksmith shop. He worked his little stinger off all day, while I worked off mine. All three of us are hard working artists in addition to our music, so the name just seemed to fit. JD and Jess both liked the name so that was it.

Me: Who is in the band with you?
Col. J.D. Wilkes is our front man... he’s also the front man for Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers. He plays harmonica and claw hammer banjer like a man wit de Debil in ‘im!.. and his lovely child bride/cousin Jessica Wilkes, a.k.a. “Baby Biscuits” plays hypersonic mandolin, tenor banjer and tenor guitar. We all caterwaul and howl periodically.

Me: I actually tried to find The Dirt Daubers on iTunes but had no luck. Are you guys planning on releasing music soon?

Slow: Hmmm.? We are indeed on iTunes. Might try again. Our self titled CD is also available on Amazon and at several other major outlets. You can also hear us on MySpace and YouTube.

Me: I stand or sit corrected, Slow. I found it and just downloaded the album. Okay, Slow, is there anything you want to tell the readers of the Phile. Tell your bandmates I said hello, and if any of them wants to be on it, let me know. Pluck on.

Slow: Keep an eye on our schedule at and and come out and see us! We’ll have a hoot… Thanks Jason!

Well, that does it for another entry of the Phile. Thanks to Slow for a great interview and also to you the readers. The Phile will be back next week with legendary drummer who has played with Quiet Riot, Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult and many more... Mr. Bobby Rondinelli. Then the Phile moves to a Tuesday because of my training schedule and I will have author Jonathan Bender. So, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. And I am sorry if I offended anyone.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Pheaturing Leah West

Hello, and welcome to the latest entry of the Phile. This is my last post... with me being 41 years old. Next Tuesday I turn 42, and by then I might know the meaning of life. Here is other the big news that's happening in my life right now: after working at Epcot for the last 22 years and ten months I am transferring to the Magic Kingdom. I wanted a work environment that was more relaxed, with less kids and more steady hours. Did you see that President Obama has written a children's book? You can tell President Obama wrote his children’s book a few years ago. It lists 13 great Americans and they include Bernie Madoff, Tiger Woods, and Charlie Sheen. All of the royalties from Obama’s book sales will go to an organization that really needs the money: the Obama re-election company. Children’s books have to have a moral at the end, like “Green Eggs and Ham.” The moral was that you can eat spoiled meat. Rep. John Boehner is the new speaker of the House. Turn-ons include tax cuts and spray tans. Sarah Palin’s new reality show had very high ratings. It’s basically “Ice Road Soccer Mom.” There was a funny moment on Palin’s show when the Palins approached a brown bear and asked to see its papers.
TSA agents can now feel the inside of passengers’ thighs. I get more action going through airline security than I did all through high school. There’s a royal wedding in Britain, but in America, a man in Kentucky was forced to eat his own beard. Britain hasn’t been this excited about the prospect for a new queen since Ricky Martin. Prince William and Kate Middleton will be married at the ancient gothic church, St. Paul’s Cathedral, where every royal wedding has been held for the last 100 years. Either that or they’ll get married in Cabo. If you’re British, you may as well enjoy the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. You’re paying for it. Do you watch "Dancing With the Stars"? I don't, and there's an old man somewhere who won't anymore either. A senior citizen was arrested after shooting his TV when Bristol Palin wasn’t kicked off of “Dancing With the Stars.” Come on, John McCain, it’s been two years. Get over it. You would think a guy with a shotgun tucked between his couch cushions would be a Palin supporter. Los Angeles County has banned plastic bags. You know what this means. Randy Quaid has to find new shoes. Tiger Woods joined Twitter. That’s right, Tiger tweeted out that he has “finally decided to try out Twitter.” Tiger wanted to say more, but he had to give half of his 140 characters to Elin Nordegren. There is a God: Warner Brothers announced that it wants to remake The Wizard of Oz. This version is going to be totally updated for 2011. For instance, each of the flying monkeys has to be patted down and go through a body scanner before they can take off. AAA is predicting that 42 million people will travel this year for Thanksgiving. Not only that — 30 million of them won’t be talking to each other by the time they reach their destination. Everybody in the world, except us Peverett's, are gonna go see the new Harry Potter film today. There's supposed to be one more, but they decided to make an extra one. and here on the Phile, I have the poster for it. So, Harry Potter fans, prepare to wet your pants.

And did you see the new Harry Potter inspirational poster? Check it out if you haven't.

And now for the...

This is the 11th book to be pheatured in the P.P.B.C.:

It's available on Amazon, at your local book shop and in a LEGO store somewhere. The author, Jonathan Bender will be a guest on the Phile later in December.

Okay, today's guest is a beautiful and very talented singer from Kelowna, British Columbia, who has a her debut album out called "Beyond Words". She'll be playing tonight at Coast Capri Hotel in Kelowna, BC, Canada. so, screw the Harry Potter movie and go jump on a plane. I would go but "The Good Guys" are on tonight. Anyway, please welcome to the Phile... Leah West.

Me: Bonjour, Leah, welcome to the Phile. So, how are you?

Leah: Bonjour Jason! I'm doing really well, thanks for asking. And you? or... et vous?

Me: I am doing okay, thanks. Okay, first I have to say I purchased your album "Beyond Words" off from iTunes and really liked it. It's your first album, right?

Leah: Wow, for the interview, I would have gladly sent you a free copy. But I assure you every bit does help go towards the next album, so thank you for purchasing my album on itunes! Yes, it's my first official album. I've done demos, but this is the first full length album and I'm so happy with it.

Me: How long did it take you to record it? It came out last year I think, am I right?

Leah: Yes, it's called "Beyond Words" and it was released July 2009. Marty and I usually finish about a song a day, and a few days to mix and master. That being said, the album took a few years because of money and the writing process and then choosing the right songs for the debut album.

Me: You sing beautifully in English, but that's not your first language. Your first language is French, right? I am English so don't hold that against me.

Leah: I definitely won't hold it against you because my first language was also English. In fact, French is my third language. Spanish is my second. I grew up in the US, and both parents spoke English. My father's mother was of French decent, but I never knew her. I'm mostly Irish with a little French, Czech and Hungarian in my ethnic background. And thanks for saying that I sing beautifully.

Me: So, you're not French? Sorry. Where abouts were you born?

Leah: I'm American second generation. My mother's parents were both born in Ireland. I was born in New Jersey. I've lived all over including New York City; Los Angeles; Costa Rica; Boulder, Colorado; Lake Tahoe; Big Sky, Montana; and finally settled in Canada in 2005 after visiting for a few years and fell in love with a place called Kelowna in British Columbia.

Me: One of my number one favorite bands is from Canada... The Barenaked Ladies. Are you a fan of them? Who do you listen to?

Leah: I love those guys, such great tunes. Oh my list of favourites goes on and on. I listen to everything from pop, rock, folk, dance, country, classical, jazz, blues, new age. I love it all. Good music is good music no matter the genre.

Me: Did I hear right that you grew up in New York? Did you live in the city? What was that like?

Leah: I grew up just outside New York City in a town called Upper Montclair, New Jersey. I loved it. It's such a melting pot of cultures and such a diverse group of people from all types of backgrounds. I loved being so close to the city where it's just a high saturation of the arts.

Me: Congrats on finishing in the top 3 of 3 categories of the 2009 BCIMA Awards. What were the 3 catergories and what is the BCIMA Awards?

Leah: Oh, I have to try and remember... I think the categories were Folk Song of the Year, Pop Song of the Year and People's Choice. I'm pretty sure that's right. BCIMA are to recognize all the artists and industry people in British Columbia outside of the Vancouver area. BC is a huge province, about the size of California, Oregon and Washington all put together. Lots of incredible talent right here in the valley I live in including Andrew Allen, who just got signed to Epic; Ryan Donn, a good friend who has had much radio success; and Daniel Powter who wrote the mega-famous hit "Bad Day" to name a few.

Me: There was a huge controversy about your song "Spring" being ripped off for Eurovision. Can you tell the story, Leah? And a lot of my readers are American and probably don't know what Eurovision is. It's the competition that gave us ABBA!

Leah: I actually never heard of Eurovision myself despite the fact that it dwarfs our little "American Idol". Eurovision is a contest involving almost all of the European countries and it's similar is format to "American Idol" or "America's Got Talent". Yes, it gave us ABBA and Celine Dion! Producers in Slovakia used my song "Spring", the same exact arrangements, same melodies, same production from beginning to end and pretended that they wrote the song, put Slovakian lyrics to it and had a beautiful singer enter the song into Eurovision. Somehow, by the weirdest coincidence ever, one of my fans recognized the song and told me about it. I hold legal copyright. I cannot imagine why these apparently reputable producers would risk their career to do such a thing. Just ridiculous really. They hardly changed a note in the whole song. Even teenage girls in Slovakia were writing me saying they recognized it was the same song. It's such a bizarre story that it made headlines around the world! Despite my panic and much wasted energy when this all began, I've also had a lot of press and fan support over the matter, so it has been a strange blessing in some ways.

Me: Don't feel too dad had a song stolen from a hotel room. Everything worked out in the end, right?

Leah: I've heard the hotel room story before. People will be people. Some are good and some, well, not so much. So far, I had have no issues with them contesting anything. I've had legal copyright for a few years now. I'm very diligent about that, always have been. Once the song is either written or freshly recorded, I send everything to the US Copyright office. I can't believe I actually had to prove one of my own songs, but I was lucky that I've had my Virgo personality taking care of details like that to save me arse this time around. The singer has admitted that she knew nothing and that the producer who claimed to have written acted very strange right before the contest. She apologized to me for the mess and was actually quite gracious about the whole thing and I'm taking that as they are admitting guilt to stealing my song based on all of that. I've heard nothing since and I have some really great fans in Slovakia now watching out for any activity on their part.

Me: You worked with Marty Rifkin who also worked with Springsteen, Jewel, Tom Petty and the woman who introduced me to you... Carrie Wade. How did you first get to work with Marty? Did he have any good Springsteen stories he shared with you? Or Jewel stories?

Leah: Marty was referred to me by a singer-songwriter friend who worked with Marty. Marty is simply an amazing person as well as a phenomenal producer. I'm sure Marty has lots of stories about Springsteen, Jewel, Tom Petty and others, but he's the kind of guy that respects the privacy of others and therefore doesn't talk about them much. He's discreet and totally professional and you have to respect him for that, because you know that he will offer you the same respect and privacy in return.

Me: And is that how you met Carrie?

Leah: Yep!

Me: Singer/songwriter Jeff Cameron introduced me to Peter Kearns who introduced me to Carrie Wade. You gotta keep the six degrees going, Leah. Who can you recommend that I interview?

Leah: Hmmm... I'll get back to you. Many, many amazing talents I know for sure! I'll hook you up with someone good though!

Me: Leah, you are a Jill of all trades. I cannot believe you are also a ballet dancer, an actress and a visual artist. What do you like doing best out of all the things you do?

Leah: You know I think life is life a moving ocean. I love it all. I've had my phases. Sometimes you never know what the tide will bring in. I kind of move around a lot but have been mostly into music and photography the past few years more than acting, dancing and painting.

Me: Have you acted in movies and tv? And can you explain what a visual artist is? I never understood it.

Leah: I've had small roles with many wonderful talents including Tom Cruise, Annette Bening, Gary Shandling, Kate Hudson and more. No super big roles, but I made a living off acting for a few years while living in Los Angeles. As far what a visual artist is, well, it's quite simple really. There are dance artists that dance; music artists that make music; and visual artists usually paint, sculpt, do graphic design or creative photography. Anything that is creative in a visual way. I love taking pictures and messing with the colours, contrasts, et cetera, and I also have done quite a number of oils on canvas, metal sculptures, pottery and more. Just love art and expressing myself. It's a great outlet for me, my thoughts and emotions.

Me: Leah, thanks so much for taking part with this interview and being on the Phile. You are working on your next album right now, right? Does it have a title?

Leah: YES! so excited for the next album. It's going to be called "Parachute" which is the title track. It's an album about letting go and blossoming. I'm hoping to release it by summer 2011. We'll see. And thank you for having me on this interview Jason, it's been fun.

Me: Can you come back when your new album is out?

Leah: You betcha! I'd be honoured.

Me: Thanks so much again. Go ahead and plug your website, Leah. I wish you lots of luck, and tell Carrie I said hello.

Leah: I will tell Carrie hello AND thank her for referring me to you! My web site is and I'm also easily searchable on Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, Twitter, and Reverbnation. Thank you Jason and wishing you continued success. Until we meet again xoxo.

Well, that about does it for another entry of the Phile. Thanks to Leah for a wonderful interview and to Carrie Wade for hooking it up. The Phile will be back next Phriday on Black Friday (or Black Phriday) with musician slash blacksmith Layne Hendrickson. A blacksmith for Black Friday. Until then, have a Happy Thanksgiving, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye love you bye.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Pheaturing Inara George From The Bird & The Bee

Happy Veterans Day and hello, welcome to another entry of the Phile, and the last for a Thursday for awhile. More on that later. So, how are you? I am so excited they are playing Christmas music at Disney and the decorations or slowly going up. But for 22 years I thought the 60 foot Christmas tree at Epcot was real... then this year I discover it in five pieces backstage. I was shattered. Speaking of Disney, the greatest company to work for ever, this week every Cast Member (employee to you) was given a free copy of Toy Story 3 on blu-ray. That makes two things I received from them this week that makes me cry... my paycheck and the movie. Police in San Diego have uncovered a huge smuggling tunnel under the border with Mexico containing 25 tons of marijuana — and a couple of very stoned Chilean miners. So, did any of you readers run in the New York City Marathon? Sometimes they run episodes of a TV show and they call it a “marathon.” That’s like calling a bowl of ice cream a “lap.” The New York City Marathon is very prestigious. In front of the Plaza Hotel, runners have to hurdle over furniture thrown out by Charlie Sheen. Former president George W. Bush released his new memoir. By the way, “memoir” is just a fancy word for “a bunch of stuff that happened to me.” Bush’s memoir is 512 pages. To be fair, 200 of those pages are just games and puzzles. In the middle of the book is an Iraq maze which is pretty much impossible to get out of. President Obama is touring Asia making trade deals. He signed a $10 billion pact with India, brokered a deal to make India part of the Security Council, and got a $15 late fee removed from his Visa card. So, last Saturday Logan had his 11th birthday party at a place called Rebounderz which is an indoor trampoline arena. It was fun for five minutes before I cracked my back, fell, winded myself and seriously hurt my back. But I tried it, and for proof here is a picture of me on the trampoline.

It's fun if you are twenty years younger than me. Check it out on the web at I mentioned today is Veterans Day, right? I Well, I was so happy when I saw a Veterans Day inspirational poster. Take a look.

, now for sad news...

Dino de Laurentiis
August 8, 1919 - November 11, 2010
He made Manhunter, Hannibal, and Red Dragon but decided to pass on Silence of the Lambs. Good move there, Dino.
Jill Clayburgh
April 30, 1944 - November 5, 2010
Sparky Anderson
February 22, 1934 - November 4, 2010
Funny that they used to call him "Old Sparky". Well, kinda funny.

Megamind (Will Ferrell), the famously evil alien supervillain, has devoted his life to defeating the dashing Metro Man (Brad Pitt). But when his latest plot to destroy Metro Man actually works and Metro City falls undefended into his foul clutches, Megamind finds himself feeling rather lost. Incomplete and purposeless, adrift without a yin to his yang, he hatches a plot to create a replacement superhero and thus a new reason for being… until his new enemy starts wreaking havoc instead of heroism, forcing Megamind to question everything as he sets out to save the city with the help of a local lady newscaster (Tina Fey). So, a smart send-up of the Superman myth and the age-old precept of good vs. evil, Megamind is a refreshingly solid animated tale that soars on vibrant visuals, energetic vocal performances and clever writing. Its savvy comic flair and subversion of familiar genre stuff also make this one of the better superhero films, animated or otherwise, to be released in recent years. So three cheers for Megamind for saving us from the dumbed-down, dopey, or straight-up boring animated children’s films we’ve seen march in and out of theaters this year! From 1 to 10, it gets a 10 and yes, I will be buying this movie!

And now for the announcement of the 11th book in the Peverett Phile Book Club. Here it is!

There are 62 LEGO bricks for every person in the world, and at age 30, Jonathan Bender realized that he didn't have a single one of them. While reconsidering his childhood dream of becoming a master model builder for The LEGO Group, he discovers the men and women who are skewing the averages with collections of hundreds of thousands of LEGO bricks. What is it about the ubiquitous, brightly colored toys that makes them so hard for everyone to put down?
In search of answers and adventure, Jonathan Bender sets out to explore the quirky world of adult fans of LEGO (AFOLs) while becoming a builder himself. As he participates in challenges at fan conventions, searches for the largest private collection in the United States, and visits LEGO headquarters (where he was allowed into the top secret set vault), he finds his LEGO journey twinned with a second creative endeavor—to have a child. His two worlds intertwine as he awaits the outcome: Will he win a build competition or bring a new fan of LEGO into the world? Like every really good love story, this one has surprises—and a happy ending. Explores the world of adult fans of LEGO, from rediscovering the childhood joys of building with LEGO to evaluating LEGO's place in culture and art. Takes an inside look at LEGO conventions, community taboos, and build challenges and goes behind-the-scenes at LEGO headquarters and LEGOLAND. Tells a warm and personal story about the attempt to build with LEGO and build a family. Whether you're an avid LEGO freak or a onetime fan who now shares LEGO bricks with your children, this book will appeal to the inner builder in you and reignite a love for all things LEGO. The book is available at Amazon or in your local book store. And as always, the author will be a guest on the Phile soon.

Today's guest is a Los Angeles, California-based singer-songwriter, one half of The Bird and the Bee, a member of the band Merrick, with Bryony Atkinson, and a member of the trio The Living Sisters, with Eleni Mandell and Becky Stark. Her 2006 solo album All Rise was a KCRW hit. The Bird and the Bee's new album came out earlier this year called Interpreting the Masters, Vol. 1: A Tribute to Daryl Hall & John Oates. Please welcome to the Phile, the very talented and busy... Inara George.

Me: Hello, Inara, how are you? Welcome to the Phile, my dear. This is the biggest honor ever.
First of, my dad and yours knew each other. My dad was Lonesome Dave Peverett of Foghat. Tell the readers who your dad was.

Inara: My dad was Lowell George and was in the band Little Feat. He sang and played slide guitar.

Me: You were just a child when your dad passed away. Do you remember much about him?

Inara: Little flashes here and there... but not a whole lot.

Me: Where are you from, Inara, and where do you live now?

Inara: L.A. and I still live in L.A.

Me: You just did an album with Van Dyke Parks, the producer who worked with such bands as the Beach Boys. How was that collaboration?

Inara: It was really wonderful... He's an amazing musician and an amazing person.

Me: Van Dyke was friends of your dad as well. You must of known him all your life, right.

Inara: Indeed.

Me: Your solo album is called "The Invitation". How is that album different then the B&TB albums?

Inara: The album is all orchestrated... so it's really different. If The Bird and the Bee is 60's pop, that album may be 30's pop.

Me: Inara, I am a big fan of the Bird and the Bee. Where did you and the other half Greg Kurstin meet?

Inara: We met while making my solo record. He played piano and keyboard.

Me: Do you like collaborating with somebody else or doing your own solo stuff?

Inara: I've found that collaborating is a lot more fun for me. But I think doing my solo stuff is still really important for me to keep doing.

Me: Are you on tour right now? Will you be coming down to Florida anytime soon?

Inara: No plans for Florida yet... but hopefully sometime soon. We are not touring a ton...

Me: Okay, I have to ask you about your husband... director Jake Kasdan who directed some of my favorite movies. Have you ever acted in any of his films? What is your favorite film he made? Mine is Walk Hard, which has one of the best soundtracks ever.

Inara: I love "Walk Hard"... that's a great one. I wasn't in that film, but I sang on a few of the songs. But I would have to say my favorite is The TV Set. If you haven't seen it I recommend it.

Me: So, do you think Jake would be interested in doing a Peverett Phile interview?

Inara: Maybe... I would have to ask him.

Me: One of my favorite albums of the last year is Ray Guns Are Not Just the Future. Who came up with that title and what does it mean?

Inara: Thank you. The name comes from one of the songs, Ray Gun. And that song was inspired by a segment on "60 Minutes' about how the us military has invented a ray gun.

Me: Tell me about the song "Fucking Boyfriend". Nothing like a hot chick singing a song with the word fuck in the title. Did you write that song? Is it a true story about anyone in particular?

Inara: Greg and I wrote the song. And thank you. And no one in particular... it's just sort of a culmination of different romantic experiences.

Me: What is your new project, Inara?

Inara: A Hall & Oates cover record.

Me: If you could duet with anybody, who would it be? You and Duffy would make a good duet together.

Inara: Sure, that sounds nice. But I would love to sing with Prince... if he'll have me.

Me: Inara, thanks again for doing this interview. Tell your husband and Greg I said hello, and if they are interested in being interviewed let me know. I hope this was fun, and I would love to interview you again one day. Go ahead and plug your website and say whatever you like to your fans and my fans who will read this.

Inara: Thank you for having me... And if you want to know more about the band you can go to or about me Thank you!!

"Nothing like a hot chick singing a song with the word fuck in the title." Man, I am an IDIOT! I say some stupid things sometimes. My wife would say, "Sometimes?!" Thanks to Inara for the interview. I hope she wasn't bored. And I hope she'll come back soon. Well, that about does it. Like I said before, this is the last entry to be posted on a Thursday for awhile. Starting next week the Phile will be posted back on Fridays, or as I like to call it here on the Phile... Phriday. Next week's guest will be a beautiful singer named Leah West who has a new album called "Beyond Words" which is available to download from iTunes. Spread the word, not the turd, don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Pheaturing Patricia Cox

Hello, welcome to the Phile, how are you? Congratulations to China. They now have the world’s fastest computer. Just imagine what they could do if their people were allowed on the Internet. America still leads the way in the important areas. Paper goods giant Kimberly-Clark will soon start selling tubeless toilet paper. The new Brazilian president is planning to visit the United States soon. A word of advice: Skip Arizona. They premiered Justin Bieber’s new music video before a baseball game. If there’s anything that says “America’s national pastime,” it’s a Canadian teenage mop-head. Although many of her Republican colleagues were elected to the House, Christine O’Donnell ended up underneath it, with her feet curled up. The Democrats lost the House. Big deal, a lot of Americans lost their houses. Why shouldn’t they? Did you watch the World Series? After the Giants won the World Series, they had a riot in San Francisco, overturning Priuses and lighting clean-burning bonfires. Charlie Sheen filed for divorce from his wife. I guess he finally had enough of her shenanigans. Martin Sheen, the father of Charlie Sheen, is reportedly having a family intervention in Ireland. I’m sorry? They’re sending an alcoholic to Ireland? That’s like sending Lindsay Lohan to Bogota, Colombia. Well, tomorrow my son is gonna be 11 years old, and as he is growing up we are getting rid of some of his baby stuff. I looked through his books and couldn't believe he had this Dr. Seuss one.

And it was eleven years ago when I found my first inspirational poster. Check it out.

And now, from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is this week's...

Top Ten Signs You're At A Bad Halloween Party
10. You have to bring your own boos.
9. You burned your face bobbing for French Fries.
8. Everyone came as Bob Dole.
7. Clown is wearing sensible shoes.
6. Jack O'Lantern looks an awful lot like Ted Williams.
5. The guy delivering pizza wins scariest costume.
4. Instead of candy corn, bowls of creamed corn.
3. The wolfman is just some guy with a 5 o'clock shadow.
2. Invite arrives via text message from Brett Favre.
And the number one sign you are at a bad Halloween party...
1. 2,041 feet below ground level and lasts 69 days.

Maurice Lucas
February 8, 1952 - October 31, 2010
They called him "The Greatest Portland Trailblazer of all time", which is kinda like being called "The greatest taco chef of all time".

Today's guest is the author of the 10th book to be pheatured in the Peverett Phile Book Club. "Ramblings" is a collection of short stories, most of which were originally written for competition in The Amazing Instant Novelist on many years ago. Please welcome to the Phile... Patricia Cox.

Me: Hello, Patricia, welcome to the Phile. And congrats, your book is the 10th book to be pheatured in the Peverett Phile Book Club. How are you?

Patricia: Thank you, Jason. I’m just phine – a little amazed that I’m being interviewed as an author, but I am liking the idea.

Me: You live in Arizona, right? You are not originally from there though, right? What made you move out West?

Patricia: I'm originally from Rhode Island, but my heart was always out west. Hey, I love sunshine, hot weather, tequila and siestas - where else should I be? I grew up watching westerns on television, reading novels of the west, and wishing for a horse! As soon as my son was grown up, I decided it was time to make my move. I had investigated Colorado and New Mexico, but in 1988 I went to Arizona for a vacation, and an hour away from the airport I announced, “This is my home.” Two years later I was back. My first home here was on a horse ranch, and outside my living room window the view was cactus and mountains and a beautiful rocky butte that turned a luminous rose color at sunset. Heaven.

Me: You have been writing for a long time, Patricia, am I right? But "Ramblings" is your first published book, right?

Patricia: I have been writing pretty much all my life, from a diary as a child to beginning a novel in the 7th grade. I’ve had a few personal essays published and worked for a short time for a weekly newspaper here in Cave Creek, writing mostly feature stories. Since I am in public affairs with the federal government, I spend my days writing speeches, PowerPoint presentations, brochures, newsletters, and press releases. For a few years, I had a side business interviewing people and writing their life stories for them. It was called "I Remember When, Personal Biography Service. I eventually wrote five "autobiographies" that way. So you could say they were my first published books. But “Ramblings” is the first book I’ve published that I’ve put out there for public consumption and with my own name on it. It’s a little scary!

Me: Are you working on any other books? Or a novel?

Patricia: I am working on several novels. I still have that first one I started 20 years ago and plan to someday finish. I put it aside when I realized I didn't know what I was doing, and started learning how to write fiction. Since then, I’ve just about finished one titled “Chasm Creek” that I’ve been working on for 15 years. I’m going through it right now for a final polish, and then hope to get an agent. It’s set in the 1880’s Arizona Territory (of course). During breaks from working on “Chasm Creek,” I’ve worked on other ideas. I’ve completed a first draft of a novel, also 1880, set in Prescott, Arizona Territory. And I’ve started one that is based on the pioneer life of Sarah Ashurst, who was the mother of one of the first Senators from Arizona I wish I could write all the time, but I also have to pay the mortgage so I have that full-time job.

Me: By the way, Peverett Ramblings was one of the names the Phile was going to be called. Explain to the Phile readers what your book is about.

Patricia: "Ramblings" is a good title for stuff that has no rhyme or reason, right? What else could I call it, when it really is just me, rambling. It's a little book (98 pages) of short stories, some of them super-short (a page and a half). When I was first learning how to write fiction, I got into the Writers' Club on AOL. They had a contest called The Amazing Instant Novelist. Each week, they announced a topic and then you could submit your short stories, either 250 words or 1,000 words. I found it to be a wonderful exercise in self-editing and being succinct. Who would think you could tell a complete story in 250 words? But you can! So "Ramblings" is mostly a compilation of some of those entries, plus a few other things thrown in.

Me: It's cool how you stated to write those stories for an AOL competition. I was going to take part to, but never did. You won a few times, right?

Patricia: Surprisingly, yes, I did win a few times. The 250-word stories that are in "Ramblings" were all winners, and I think that's what gave me the confidence to actually let people read them! It was encouraging, and I've spent 20 years now learning how to write fiction: critique groups, workshops, classes, writers' conferences, and writing and writing and writing. When I looked at those stories again recently, they still seemed pretty good.

Me: Where do you get the ideas for your stories?

Patricia: Well, some of the stories in "Ramblings" were suggested by the AIN contest, but others come into my head different ways. Sometimes I hear a piece of a conversation, or I see people behaving a certain way, or I read a headline in the newspaper, and there's a story there. The best thing is when it just falls into your head. I know that sounds crazy, and I think it only happens when people are actively writing, so they are receptive and they've been thinking about the writing. For instance, a new last chapter for "Chasm Creek" literally just fell into my head one day as I was driving up to Prescott. I got to my friend's house and had to run inside and beg for a pen and paper so I could get it down! And most of the plot for the novel set in 1880s Prescott, AZ came the same way. I guess I should go on long drives more often...

Me: You must really like writing fiction, Patricia.

Patricia: It's like a drug. You start out feeling like a god: you create these people, you create their world, you put them in it and then you decide what happens to them. What power! But after a while, you find out you're not in charge at all, and they start telling you what will happen. The carefully crafted plot goes out the window, two characters morph into one, someone dies who wasn't supposed to. It's out of control! I used to hear authors talk about that and think they were nuts. I guess it is nuts, but now I know what it feels like. And it's really, really hard.

Me: Do you have any authors that you are fans of, or influenced by?

Patricia: You could say I was most influenced by James Michener, only because I read an article about him many years ago in which he explained that it took him a minimum of three years to write a novel: one year to draft it, another year researching, another year polishing. Up until then, I thought authors sat down to write and out came something like "Hawaii," a finished product! Seeing that it wasn't magic, that hard work could do it, made me think I might be able to. My favorite book for a long time was "Gone With the Wind," but now I have too many favorites, too many authors that I'm a fan of. But I will say that Larry McMurtry is a god. Oh, but so is Charles Frasier ("Cold Mountain"), oh and so is Cormac McCarthy and so is... !!!

Me: I am guessing you are a fan of Douglas Addams, am I right?

Patricia: Ha ha ha! Why do you say that? (Where's my towel, I'm outta here...) I would like to write that kind of humor. Humor is the hardest thing! It's easier to make people cry than laugh. I admire anybody who can write something that makes me laugh. I'm a great fan of Mr. Beeblebrox - I like his attitude. He IS the most important person in the Universe! And wasn't Sam Rockwell just perfect in the movie?

Me: I have to ask you about the cover of the book, a horses backside. Where did that picture come from and what made you choose that as a cover.

Patricia: Oh dear. Okay, I designed that cover myself from a picture I took in Monument Valley, a Navajo Tribal park on the Arizona/Utah line. I wanted to use the horse, but he was grazing, and that didn't look "rambly" to me, so I cut off his head and thought it would look like he was "rambling" off the cover. Since then several people have asked why I put a horse's ass on my book cover.

Me: Patricia, tell the Phile readers where they can check out the book and purchase it.

Patricia: I'd be happy to, thanks! It's available via, you can go there and click on "bookstore" and then search for "Patricia Cox" and it will come right up. Or just go here:

Me: So, when is your next book coming out?

Patricia: If I decide to self-publish again, "Chasm Creek" should be ready before the end of the year. My plan (my hope, my prayer...), though, is to find an agent and go with a traditional publisher. In the meantime, though, I'll probably put it on blurb so my friends and relatives won't have to wait that long. There are a lot of people who have listened to me talk about this for years and years, and they would probably like to see some results.

Me: Patricia, thanks for being on the Phile. I wish you lots of luck and when your novel comes out, you are welcomed back to the Phile. Take care.

Patricia: No, thank YOU, Jason! I'll look forward to coming back! You take care, too.

Well, that about does it for another entry. Thanks to Patricia for a great interview and for letting her book be pheatured in the PPBC and Terry Scholle for hooking the interview up. Next week I will have the announcement of the 11th book to be pheatured. And next week's guest is Inara George from The Bird And The Bee. Thanks for reading, spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.