Monday, July 29, 2013

Pheaturing Phile Alum Jeff Cameron

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile on a Monday.  I have been learning more about this NSA spying scandal. What are the odds that the only person they weren't monitoring was Anthony Weiner? Two years ago when Weiner resigned, he said more embarrassing pictures may come out in the future. Do you know how he knew that? Because he went home after that and started texting them. That's how he knew.  The Vatican announced that the late Pope John Paul II will become a saint after they approve a miracle where he cured a woman of severe brain injury, which is pretty impressive. Not as impressive, though, as the miracle of Anthony Weiner still being married, but that's impressive. Weiner uses the name Carlos Danger when he's on the Internet or whatever he's doing. When Donald Trump heard about it, Trump demanded to see Carlos Danger's birth certificate.  In his speech earlier this week in Latin America, the Pope told the people to give up the false idols of success and money. That’s the same thing Disney told me. Just kidding, I love working for Disney.  President Obama gave a big speech on the economy. It was actually longer than his last State of the Union address... though it should be noted that he opened with 20 minutes of Anthony Weiner jokes.  Taco Bell announced that it will discontinue its line of kids' meals because of low sales. You know your food's bad when even little kids say, “I'm not putting that in my mouth.”  Speaking of kids, a new study found that kids have better relationships with their parents if they're friends with them on Facebook. That's good because if you're a kid who's friends with your parents on Facebook, chances are you're not really friends with anyone else.  Rocky is back. Again. Yeah, 67-year-old Sylvester Stallone is getting ready to star in a seventh Rocky movie. You can tell he’s getting up there because instead of running up those famous stairs, now Rocky just takes the elevator.  You know, I haven't mentioned Kim Jong-un lately. That boy gets a bad wrap, but there's something I like about him. I couldn't put my finger on it until I saw this picture...

You know what he's saying, right? "America uses these to control their drummers." I'm gonna get a lot of email saying how can I like that man? I was just kidding, people, I don't like him at all.  So, are you kids Beatles fans like me? I know Jeff Cameron is a Beatles fan so he'll appreciate this. A long lost Lennon album has just been found titled "Chew Of Us" and I have the cover right here for it.

Haha. That joke blended two of my favorite things... The Beatles and Star Wars.  Hey, did you see the new McDonald's add? This is 100% real. I'll show it to you and then discuss.

Why the hell is he holding the Big Mac box like that? Nobody holds the box like that. What's he gonna do, through it in the water? It doesn't make sense.  A lot of stuff to me doesn't make sense. I was at the store yesterday and I saw this...

I don't think I want a tasty ass cracker. Hey, that could be my new band name... Tasty Ass Crackers. LOL. It's summer, kids, and all through summer I have been showing you phascinating pools and I asked you to send me pictures of some you find phascinating. Here's the latest...

It's the same pool as yesterday but with more detail. The Infinity Pool is located in Singapore. It is located at on the 55th floor of the Marina Bay Sands resort. At three times the length of an Olympic pool and 650ft up, it is the largest outdoor pool in the world at that height. That's scary. Okay, are you ready for some sad news? Apparently I missed some important people I was told, and I have to mention a few deaths. Okay, I aim to please.

Mick Farren 
Sept 3, 1943 - July 27, 2013
Dying onstage is pretty anarchistic. Well played, Mr. Ferren.

Kidd Kraddick 
August 22, 1959 - July 27, 2013
The Kidds are alright? Not this one.

JJ Cale
Dec 5, 1938 - July 26, 2013
Cale is now plant food.

Every adventure can't be a universe-rattling showdown with Ultimate Evil. It just can't. Epic-fatigue starts to set in. It's why the Avengers took a break to go get that shawarma. It's why Iron Man needed some extended me-time. So when a beloved character makes her or his sixth appearance on film, it's permissible... actually, it's necessary... to move the goalposts. Every movie about a super-powered character shouldn't be an origin story, shouldn't necessarily involve historical stakes. Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman), for example, is going to Japan.  Living off the grid in the Yukon, waking up enraged and freshly devastated by dreams of his long-lost Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), making friends with wild bears, cursing his immortality, Logan is the guy with the haunted expression, messy hair and "Duck Dynasty" beard. But not for long. A Japanese soldier named Yashida (Ken Yamamura) that he rescued at Nagasaki is dying and the old man summons the ageless Logan to his side.  But Yashida wants more than a formal goodbye. Now a billionaire businessman with the world's technology as his disposal, he craves Logan's immortality. A reasonable request, really; it's not like Logan wants it. But reject the offer, he must, even though the consequences involve him getting in too deep with Yashida's granddaughter Mariko (Tao Okamoto), psychic brawler/sidekick Yukio (Rila Fukushima) and an evil doctor in fetish-gear outfits (Svetlana Khodchenkova) who wants to steal Logan's snikkety-snikt all for herself.  It's not the end of the world. And how refreshing that is. Instead, it's ninjas and yakuza, a lot of pummeling action and a dozen cool details that deserve to be surprises. The story's origin is a comic book series from Chris Claremont, Frank Miller and Paul Smith and, while some details have changed (Logan doesn't speak Japanese here and at one point displays a touch of English-only xenophobia... um, dude, you're in their country) its mostly serious tone... at least until an occasionally goofy finale, means that rather than a noise-machine of product placement and hyperactive bloat, it's a straightforward action movie where the hero happens to be an X-Person. It arrives wrapped in a cocoon of Jackman's trademark extreme-abs whisper-snarl, the one that always turns into a yell-snarl, with virtually no winking at the camera. And while Wolverine may be a tormented creature, Jackman lives in the character's skin more comfortably than ever, his committed gravity shoring up some of the other flat or downright bad performances (see: evil doctor in fetish-gear outfits).  It's well understood that the X-Men saga can be read as a metaphor for the double-edged sword of living as "the other," but almost none of that subtext is embedded here. It's a sideways adventure mostly free of canon-deep details, extra meanings or puffed up monumentalism. Wouldn't it be nice if other superheroes could take a cue from its lead, put out smaller fires, chill a little in between grandiose tentpole dust-ups, stretch out a bit as characters? The audience won't mind; they could probably use a break themselves. From 1 to 10 The Wolverine gets a 9.

If you spot the Mind Phuck email me at

Today's guest has been the pheatured guest more than anyone. His fantastic brand new album "Wonderland Road" is now available on iTunes as well as his last album "Bargofaxis". Please welcome back to the Phile my good friend... Jeff Cameron!

Me: Hello, Jeff, welcome back to the Phile at long last. How are you?

Jeff: It's getting better all the time, better, better, better, getting so much better all the time.

Me: You were last on the Phile last year for the 6th Anniversary last year, and since then something terrible happened... you had a massive heart attack. What happened?

Jeff: I woke up from a sleep, with horrible chest pain, passed out several times, fell on the hardwood floor cracked my nose, the paramedics came, later I was told the heart attack was 16 times worse than average, they put a stent in my heart... prescribed some medicine. I certainly don't run up and down a flight of stairs anymore!

Me: So that the first heart attack you had?

Jeff: It was the first one I knew of. Later tests showed I may have had several smaller attacks I didn't recognize, not having medical insurance, was nearly deadly for me.

Me: Where were you when it happened and was there anybody home with you?

Jeff: I was in my bedroom, and then I staggered into the living room. I debated for an hour whether I should call 911 there was someone in the house who finally heard me struggling and actually called 911.

Me: So, how were you after all this?

Jeff: Well, I wanted to finish any unfinished business like the new albums, repair fences with friends I had fallen out with, tidy up in case I didn't have much time. I got a sense of urgency, but I tire easily.

Jeff: Since then you have been really busy recording more music. When you were here last for the anniversary entry you mentioned an album "Songs From Laurel Canyon". What happened to that album?

Jeff: We went back to the original album title "Wonderland Road", and released it on iTunes and Amazon.

Me: Where is Wonderland Road, is that a real place?

Jeff: Yes, it's a street in the Hollywood Hills in the Laurel Canyon area, which is what the songs are all about.

Me: Your last album was "Bargofaxis", which came out a few years ago, Jeff. Is this a sequel to "Bargo"?

Jeff: No, this one isn't, it's the prequel to "Bargo", sort of, though not exactly. "Wonderland Road" is my observations as a young man living and growing up in the Laurel Canyon area during the aftermath of the sixties, and the residual hippie vibe that still endures in that neighborhood to this day!

Me: A lot of your songs are about characters, kinda like The Beatles did. They are one of your biggest influences, right?

Jeff: Yes, Beatles rule, I'd say this is the most Beatley or Kinks album I've ever done by far, it was designed that way, although you can hear a little Doors vibe, and different other, sixties vibes.

Me: There's a song called "John Hammond". Who is John Hammond, I think he's a real person, am I right?

Jeff: The real John Hammond was an old time A&R man who supposedly discovered Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, lots of people, but who eventually faded into obscurity remembered only by historians, it was sort of about him, and about how I mirrored him as a reclusive guy in his high backed chair.

Me: You definitely like 60s pop, which is cool. Who was the first band you got into?

Jeff: Three Dog Night and Steppenwolf, because they recorded up the street from where we lived, and also The Beatles because I had heard "Sgt Pepper" and seen Help and Hard Days Night on TV when I was very young, embryonic in fact, in fact not yet born according to my press agent.

Me: "Bargofaxis" had some great players, and Phile Alumni, on the album... Mike Finnigan, Peter Kearns. Who plays on this album with you?

Jeff: "Wonderland Road" is me, Gary Cambra who has worked on all the albums, he plays guitars and keyboards, cowrote two songs with me, he is the producer. Bob Birch, Elton John's bass player, who sadly just committed suicide. Peter Kearns returns and plays keys on the last song, Perry Drieman the percussionist from the LA Philharmonic played drums.

Me: How was Bob Birch to work with? It's sad he took his own life.

Jeff: Yeah, exactly. I liked Bob, a lot, what I find is the better they are, Bob, Mike Finnigan, the more nice, unassuming they are. So sad.

Me: If you could have anybody on the album, who would it be?

Jeff: Oh wow, McCartney, Ringo, Jason Falkner, Dave Davies, people like that, especially for this particular album. Although I have recorded with some of my heroes so thats nice.

Me: When did you start to write songs for this album, Jeff? Was it right before your heart attack?

Jeff: No, it was around 1990 just after "Out Of The Blue" came out, and I was writing about stuff I remembered from 1968-80 in Laurel Canyon. We started tracking the album, and then shelved it for 20 years and I came back and finished it with Gary just last year. All the overdubs are new, but the bass, drums, my vocals were all cut in about 1992. "Love Experience" was a last minute addition, because "Good Karma Stew" originally a "Wonderland Road" song was pirated, and re-recorded for "Bargofaxis". "Lonely Girl" was an outtake Gary fixed up at the last minute, it gave us a chance to get Dave Sutton and Paul Mirkovich on the album from the original Jeff Group along with me and Gary, and Steve Klong the original drummer who died of cancer a few years ago. Lot of death in rock n roll, its a hard road. I believe Jackie De Shannon said, "Only the strong survive".

Me: So, is this the last album you'll be releasing, Jeff, or do you have other projects up your sleeve? 

Jeff: Yeah, there is one more new album being mixed right now, that will probably be my last.

Me: What is that album gonna be like?

Jeff: That one is utterly unlike "Wonderland", a bit more like "Out Of The Blue" or "Perfect World" I'd reckon.

Me: I have to ask you about the album cover, it's very British, and Monty Python looking. Did you come up with it? I love it.

Jeff: No, Gary did. I came up with several very cool album covers, but in the end we felt Gary's art guy, had the most appropriate cover, we could release a coffee table book with all the unused artwork for "Wonderland"!

Me: You play guitar, right, Jeff? Is that your main instrument?

Jeff: Yeah, I do. I write most of my tunes on guitar, although when I was young I started on bass. I think I played bass on "Dickens Street" for example.

Me: How old were you when you started to play?

Jeff: Way too old, about eleven or twelve.

Me: Do you remember what the first song you learned was?

Jeff: No. but I remember some of the ones we played when we were around thirteen or fourteen... "Suffragete City" by Bowie, "Sunshine of Your Love" by Creem. Maybe some Savoy Brown, who can say. I remember learning "Witchy Woman" by the Eagles.

Me: Alright, so, this year I am asking random questions thanks to Tabletopics. Here goes... What are the most important qualities you look for in friends?

Jeff: Loyalty, honesty. There are different kinds of friends, there are friends who like the same kind of music and you sit around with a cup of tea debating who was better the Stones or The Who... it's The Who by a mile, and there are other kinds of friends who help you move at 3 a.m. when you get evicted. At nineteen I probably would have said good looking girlfriends with benefits.

Me: Jeff, I'm glad you're doing good. Please come back again, and take care.

Jeff: Thank you, Jason, you are a scholar and a gentleman, and please ask everybody to check out "Wonderland Road".

Me: Alright. Everybody, check out "Wonderland Road".

There, that about does it for another entry of the Phile. Thanks to Jeff Cameron, I am glad he's doing well. The Phile will be back next Saturday with singer Jenn Fiorentino. On Sunday it's Bert Hoover, lead singer for the band Cab 20 and Monday singer Jenn Bostic. It's a Jenn sandwich! Haha. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Pheaturing Will Hinkle From L.M.I.

Summer breeze makes me feel fine. Blowin' through the jasmine in my mind. Who is Jasmine? Whoever she is is not in my mind. Now if the song went like this... Sumemr breeze makes me feel fine, blowin' through the Kelly in my mind. Actually, they'll be blowin' but it wouldn't be in my mind. What? The First Lady is on the entry today, I gotta be good. Haha. Welcome to the Phile, kids. New readers are probably thinking what on Earth is he talking about? I don't know, I'm tired.  What's going on in the news? That Anthony guy is back in the news. Anthony Weiner has been caught in yet another sexting scandal. At the beginning of this campaign he said that other texts and photos were likely to come out. Well, they have. Finally, a politician who keeps his promises! Anthony Weiner said that he wants closure. If he wants closure, he should start with his zipper.  Yesterday I talked about the royal baby, but didn't mention his name being George, and some people called me out on it. "How can you be British and not know the royal baby's name?" they asked. I never said I didn't know his name. Anyway, if you don't know, the royal baby has a name now: George Alexander Louis. George is not the king yet. So for now, we’ll just address him as "Boy George."  Remember the band, Flock of Seagulls? They had their van stolen. I was like, "They still have a van?"  The Obama administration has admitted that under Obamacare, you might not be able to keep your doctor. At first the president guaranteed you'd be able to keep your doctor, and now they're saying you "might" be able to. Today Obama changed his slogan from "Yes we can" to "Perhaps we could try. Can’t promise anything." Just kidding, Ms. Obama. LOL.  This just in, the royal baby... George has spoken his first words already. He just came out of the womb like a week ago and he's already speaking. He said, "Fetch me some milk".  NASA released pictures of earth taken from 900 million miles away. From 900 miles away, you can make out the Great Wall of China. In Newark, you can make out the governor of New Jersey.  So, did you see the pictures of Kate and William and baby George? If not, I have the picture right here.

I love those Minions!  So, the new Wolverine movie is out, and I thought the ad they released for it is kinda odd.

Other Canadians are sorry? Sorry for what? Last Sunday Geraldo Rivera tweeted a nearly-naked selfie, proudly proclaiming, “70 is the new 50.” To which I proudly proclaim both are still gross to look at. If you didn't see the picture I have it here.

There you go, ladies. You're welcome. I'll be 45 in November. Maybe I will take a selfie like that on my birthday and post it here. Remind me. Haha.  As I have been mentioning Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is on the cover of the latest issue of Rolling Stone and the magazine is being criticized for glamorizing a terrorist. But in Rolling Stones defense that is not the only magazine he on the cover.

That's pretty stupid.  So, it's summer and all through summer I have been showing you pictures of phascinating pools, which I ran out of. So, I asked you readers to send me in some you know of. And another reader has done so.

That's the Marina Bay Sands swimming pool and is described as a cool swimming pool with no restrictions. Yep, I can see that. And now for some sad news...

Lindy Boggs
Mar 13, 1916 - July 27, 2013

It's 10:19, 82° and Kelly shared and engagement photo. Argghhhh!

Man, how many books does she have? Not one is a graphic novel I bet. Alright, moving on. This is kinda cool. I have a special guest who was last here this past September. She is the First Lady, and writer and lawyer, and I am thrilled she's back on the Phile. Please welcome back... First Lady Michelle Obama!

Me: Hello, Michelle, welcome back to the Phile. How are you?

Michelle: I'm good, Jason.

Me: So, what did you want to talk about?

Michelle: There's a lot of noise and talk and back-and-forth going on in Washington...

Me: About what?

Michelle: A lot, but hardly any of it seems to be about the struggles that middle-class families face. 

Me: Okay, so, how does this differ from any other time? Middle-class families always had a hard time.

Michelle: When I was growing up, a family like mine... living on my hard-working father's salary at the city water plant, could build a solid life without much debt and without relying on any form of public assistance.

Me: Okay, and today?

Michelle: Today, for too many families, that American promise is no longer within reach.

Me: Your husband, the President is working to fix that though, am I right?

Michelle: Barack is working to fix that, to give all families a fair shot.

Me: He probbaly needs help though, he can't do it all by himself.

Michelle: He needs solid Democrats in Congress to help him.

Me: There are not enough Democrats in Washington, Michelle. Haha.

Michelle: You're right, we need to elect more Democrats in Washington and across the country.

Me: I have to be honest, I somehow get a lot of politicians on the Democratic party here on the Phile. You yourself have been here once before, the President has been on the Phile, Biden, and many more. And the feedback I hear is people are tired and frustrated with politics. I'm British, cannot vote, probably sit on the fence in a lot of things, and I'm very cynical, as are a lot of people...

Michelle: It's easy to get frustrated and cynical about politics.

Me: True. And now the whole excitement of the presidential campaign has faded I'm sure it is so tempting to wait another four years to re-engage.

Michelle: But make no mistake about it... while some are tuning out, others are tuning in.

Me: Really? What are they doing?

Michelle: They're doing everything they can to make their voices heard.

Me: Have you seen effects?

Michelle: We're seeing the effects of that kind of imbalance every single day.

Me: So, do you honestly think the President can make our country a better place to live, for ourselves and our grandchildren?

Michelle : Yes, but Barack cannot do it alone. He needs people like you to get involved right now.

Me: Well, I am sure he'll get a lot of supporters. Tnanks very much for being here, First Lady. Give the President my regards and please come back soon.

Michelle: Thanks, Jason. I have one more thing to tell the Peverett Phile readers.

Me: Don't stop reading the Phile? What do you have to tell them?

Michelle: Please don't wait for the next presidential election to get involved. We've got to get going right now. That's the only way we'll get it done.

Me: You're right. Michelle Obama, kids!

Today's pheatured guest is the lead singer and guitarist for the Pennsylvania band L.M.I. whose latest EP "L.M.I. II" is available on iTunes and Bandcamp right now. They'll next be appearing at The M Room in Philadelphia, PA on August 1st. Please welcome to the Phile from L.M.I... Will Hinkle!

Me: Hey, Will, welcome to the Phile, man, how are you?

Will: I’m pretty good thanks.

Me: Okay, first things first, and don't get offended, but Will Hinkle is not a very rock and roll name. LOL. Did you ever thought of changing it or just going by Will?

Will: Haha. Nahh. I’ve never really thought about changing it, I normally just go by Will. But I guess it is kind of a funny name. 

Me: I can't speak, I went through my whole life people calling me Jason Pervert. So, I have to ask, what does L.M.I. stand for?

Will: It stands for Lazy Middle-Class Intellectuals.

Me: Who came up with that name, and where did it come from?

Will: The name came from a song by a band called Bad Religion. At the time I was a really big fan of them and I took the name from a song of there’s called “21st Century Digital Boy”.

Me: Where are you guys based, Will?

Will: We are based out of Lansdale, Pennsylvania.

Me: Where is Lansdale? My wife is from the Mechanicsburg area, are you guys near there?

Will: Lansdale is just north of Philly. And Mechanicsburg is more towards central PA.

Me: Alright, you guys are a trio, right? Have you always been a trio?

Will: For the most part yea we have just been a trio, we have had some small changes here and there but the three of us are really the only members who have stayed in the band.

Me: Who is in the band with you?

Will: Our bassist Brando Racik and our drummer Kevin Marcinek.

Me: Your music is very ska and punkish, which is cool. Who are your influences?

Will: We have influences from all over the place really. When we started it was more just punk bands like NOFX, Choking Victim, and heavier bands like Gallows. But now we all really listen to many different bands so I’d say some of our influences include Gogol Bordello, Black Flag, Kylesa, The Bronx, Best Coast, and many others.

Me: Last December I interviewed Justin Jones from The Mahlors, have you heard of them, Will?

Will: Yea, we have played a couple shows with them in the past in our hometown and also in Atlantic City.

Me: So, who gets the most women, you guys or The Mahlors?

Will: Haha... probably the guys in The Mahlors. Who can resist those luscious dreads?

Me: Good point. How long has the band been together?

Will: This past February we will have been playing shows for 3 years. So about three years now.

Me: Alright, so, I downloaded the new EP "L.M.I. II" from iTunes, and liked it. Was there a "L.M.I. I"?

Will: Yea, our original demo was just self-titled and we couldn’t really decide on a name for this EP so we just went with “L.M.I. II”.

Me: Your first release was "Sell Your Clothes, Save Your Thoughts"... what does that mean? If I sold my clothes I'll be running around naked.

Will: Haha... well, that was our second release and it’s actually a slightly altered quote from the philosopher Henry Thoreau. The original quote was “Sell Your Clothes, Keep Your Thoughts” but we decided to change it a little bit. What it means is that your personal thoughts should matter more than your material belongings.

Me: The new release is an EP... what made you decide to release an EP opposed to another full length?

Will: A lot of our earlier stuff wasn’t really up to par with what we wanted it to sound like and we figured writing a new EP would be quicker and we could get the sound we wanted a lot faster then writing another full length.

Me: And I have to ask you about the artwork, Will. When I first saw it I thought it was a fat guy holding his really long penis. I'm sure that's not what it is, what is it?

Will: Haha. Well, you got part of it right. What is it is a fat guy holding a sword which he has cut part of his body off with. And the part of his body is raised above him a little bit.

Me: Who did the artwork, it's very good.

Will: Dan Smith. He is the drummer of a band called Fight Amp and also does artwork for bands.

Me: I saw on some of your merch, you guys use a picture of DB Cooper. I have a picture of it here...

Me: Is he a hero of yours?

Will: Haha, you’re probably the first person to realize who that was on our merch. And yes, I guess you could say he is a hero of our band.

Me: You guys seem so young, Will, are you in high school or college?

Will: All of us are in college.

Me: So, man, what's next for the band? Any new music?

Will: Right now we are in the early stages of writing a new full length and playing as many shows as we can.

Me: If you see The Mahlors again, tell them I said hello. Go ahead and mention your website and everything. And where can readers buy your music?

Will: I definitely will! And you can check out our facebook page at and you can listen to or download our EP from either iTunes or our Bandcamp page

Me: Alright, so, this year on the Phile I am asking random questions, so here is yours, Will... What kinda business would you love to start?

Will: If I could start any business it would probably be a record store that also has a bar and hookah lounge in it. I feel like that would be pretty cool.

Me: The record store part would be. Take care, and when your next release comes out, I'll have you back.

Will: Thanks! It was a pleasure.

It does look like a fat guy holding his really long penis, doesn't it. Anyway, that about does it for this entry. Thanks to Michelle Obama and Will Hinkle. The Phile will be back tomorrow with Phile Alum, the very entertaining Jeff Cameron. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Pheaturing Phile Alum Holly Elle

It's a boy! Hello, and welcome to the Phile. Last Monday when I talked about the royal baby I received email saying I was more excited and talked more about the royal baby here on the Phile than I did my own son's birth. I don't think blogs were aroud in 1999. This one sure wasn't. Anyway, I’m sure you all heard the news about the royal baby. William and Kate are the proud parents of a baby boy. Can you believe the media coverage? You’d think it was Kim Kardashian and Kanye West having a kid. They kept saying on the news, "the royal couple welcomes a baby boy." Well, I hope so. Do people sometimes give a kid the cold shoulder? They named the boy Festus. LOL. The baby will be third in line to the pretend crown. The baby weighed about 8 pounds. Americans were like, "How much is that in dollars?" Prince Harry popped some champagne and danced naked around the palace. Then he heard about the baby. The prince said what any proud family member would say: "Back of the line, junior." There were very few people in the room for the birth. Prince William, the father, was there. Kate Middleton's mother was there, and Neil Patrick Harris... I believe he was there. He does the Emmys, the Tonys, the royal birth. And you know what, he makes it better. Normally I don't enjoy these things but when Neil does it, it's entertaining.  There's other news going on, in this country. Detroit has become the largest city in U.S. history to file for bankruptcy. What happened was Detroit's population dropped something like 70 percent, but the government got bigger. The tax base got smaller, but the government got bigger. Thank God that kind of thing could never happen in Washington.  Have you heard about the Anthony Weiner scandal? Yep, he's back in the news again. Weiner is running for mayor of New York City. He confirmed that some new sexually explicit messages have been leaked. He sent them to a woman on Facebook using the code name 'Carlos Danger.' Which is still easier to believe than that other name: Mayor Weiner. Weiner says he won't drop out of the race so that means by day he'll be Mr. Mayor, and by night he'll be 'Carlos Danger, Gaucho of Love.' Carlos Danger... isn't that the guy from the Dos Equis commercials? Yes, even after the sexting scandal that ended his congressional career. It turns out he learned nothing. Has this man never heard of SnapChat? Your dong shots disappear seconds after you send them… I have been told.  I love the New York Post, did you see the front page the other day? This is real...

Too hard to stop. Those writers are funny.  Alright, lets talk about the royal baby again. I'm British, so I can. Did you see how William and Kate showed the baby to the world? No? Then check this out.

Damn, Kate looks hot, doesn't she?  You know I love those Minions from the Despicable Me movies, right? Well, I do. And I think McDonald's is very creative in their tie-in promotion with them.

As I mentioned on Monday, Rolling Stone magazine is getting a lot of grief because they put the Boston bomber on their cover. Well, that's not the only magazine who put Dzhokhar on their cover.

That's odd This Old House featured him.  Hey, the Phile has a new sponsor!

I might need to use some of that. Haha. Alright, now from the home office in Port Jefferson, here is this week's...

Top Phive Groups Of People Who Went To See The Wolverine.
5. Theater lovers who didn't think Hugh Jackman's one-man Broadway show had enough carotid-artery slashing.
4. San Diego Comic Con goers from last week who still haven't taken off their Wolverine costumes.
3. People excited for the "fresh take" on Wolverine that Hugh Jackman will inevitably give the sixth time around.
2. Extremely heterosexual men who are totally not seeing this movie because they have a secret.
And the number one group of people who went to see The Wolverine...
1. Adamantium aficionados.

If you spot the Mind Phuck email me at Okay, you know what time it is... he's a patriot, singer and renaissance man... it's time for...

On the parkway and I notice an 80 year old woman tailgating me very closely... waving her hand 'coz I'm in her way. I'm doing 65... yea... right. I figured that I'd have some fun with her so I lowered the seat so all she could see was a tuft of hair sticking up and my knuckles on the steering wheel. I slowed down to 57 matching the speed of the person next me so she couldn't go around. I think the part that really pissed her off was when I drove for the next 4 miles in the left lane with my left turn signal on.  La la-la la-la.

Okay, today's pheatured guest is a Phile Alum who has a new EP out called "Leopardess" that's available on iTunes right now. It should have been called "Holy Hell". Anyway, please welcome back to the Phile... Holly Elle.

Me: Hello, Holly, welcome back to the Phile. How are you? How have you been?

Holly: Glad to be back! I have been, and continue to be fantastic, thank you for asking.

Me: I take it you've been pretty busy recording, and making videos and playing shows, right? What is your favorite thing to do?

Holly: I have indeed been busy. I really enjoy all of the above so I can’t pick a favorite. I love them all equally, like people pretend to love all their children equally.

Me: You're from Canada but based in Nashville, am I right?

Holly: You are so right.

Me: Do you get to go back to Canada often?

Holly: Not very often at all, sadly. I like to make my family come visit me here in Nashville a lot though.

Me: I think I asked you this last time you were here, was Nashville your first choice of a city in America to move to?

Holly: Not necessarily. I considered other music centers like New York and LA, but once I visited Nashville I knew it was the place for me.

Me: You mentioned you tried country music before then thought that wasn't what you wanted to sing. Do you still not want to sing country?

Holly: Well, to be clear I sang some gigs when I moved to town where I covered country music. I’ll definitely never be a “country singer”, but I do like blending styles, so you never know what elements will show up in my music from other genres. I have written country songs though, but for other people.

Me: Alright. I think some of your songs would sound great country-fied. Is that even a word?

Holly: Oh yes, it’s a word. Actually you’re not the first person to tell me that. I think a lot of songs sound great when someone reworks them and covers them in a new genre. I would love to hear someone do that with one of my songs.

Me: Do you watch the "Nashville" TV show, Holly?

Holly: I watch the hell outta that show.

Me: You look good on film judging by the videos I saw. Do you think one day you'd try acting?

Holly: Oh, why thank you. Absolutely I would. I was actually asked to be in a local production here in town and I can’t wait to be a part of it. I will announce it on my website when the details are settled.

Me: Cool. You tried out for "Glee", maybe you can try out for "Nashville". Whatcha think?

Holly: Hm... I dunno, maybe. I don’t know if I’m countrified enough...

Me: Haha. Last time you were here you were plugging your first EP "Infinitude". Since then that EP won best debut. Congrats. Did you get a plaque or anything?

Holly: Come to think of it, no! Where’s my effing plaque???

Me: I would of gave you one. Who gave you that award, Holly?

Holly: A website called Taking Over The Universe.

Me: Let's talk about your new EP "Leopardess". I see you passed on the name I came up for your EP... "Holy Hell". That's okay, you can always name your third EP that. Where did the name "Leopardess" come from?

Holly: I may have to save that one for a greatest hits album, it’s that good. I was looking for another cool one-word title that you don’t hear often. This album was very much about independence for me and I’m a huge animal lover, so the leopardess to me represents a strong self-sufficient female. Aaaaaand I’m obsessed with leopard print.

Me: How would you compare both EP's, Holly?

Holly: "Leopardess" marks a huge amount of growth for me, as a person and as an artist. I think everything about it is better.

Me: Did you have the same people working on both of them?

Holly: Yes I did. Same awesome producers; Zodlounge Music.

Me: I watched the video for "Who I Am", the single from the EP, and that was filmed all of Nashville. Was it fun to make?

Holly: It was so much fun to make. Every time I do a photo shoot, make a video, record in the studio, or play a show, I have so much fun. It really can’t be called work. It’s a blessing.

Me: So, who are you? Is that song about you, Holly? I take it is if you wrote it.

Holly: Who am I? I’m a mystery, baby. For me personally, sometimes the songs are 100% biographical, sometimes they are 100% invented, and sometimes it’s a mix. But what’s important is that the listener gets to decide what it means to them.

Me: Your song "Freak" got you a lot of attention in the gay community. Are you still getting attention the same way?

Holly: I’m not sure how to gauge that. What I do know for sure is that there are LGBT issues that still need attention, and I look forward to continuing to support in any way I can.

Me: Good point, and that was a stupid question. So, do you have a boyfriend, Holly? Is he supportive of your music and career?

Holly: Are you asking me out?

Me: Ummm... no. Not yet. LOL.

Holly: Well, this is awkward... Like I said, I’m a mystery. But you can bet your ass if I did have a boyfriend, he’d be more than supportive.

Me: Alright, moving on... You had a song in the show "Bad Girls Club" and "Real World". That's cool, TV placements work, Holly. If you could have your music in any show, what would it be?

Holly: That’s a good question! I still love "Grey’s Anatomy" and would love to be on that. I also want to be on a Kardashian show, I love them, I don’t care what the haters say!

Me: I don't know what "Bad Girls Club" is. Are you a "bad girl"? What do bad girls do?

Holly: Yeah what is a “bad” girl? Maybe you have to watch the show to find out, maybe it’s instructional. I think it’s good to be a little bad, but you won’t find me like snatchin’ weaves off a girl’s head if that’s what it means.

Me: Alright, so, what's next for you? That "Holy Hell" EP?

Holly: It might have to be, I mean there’s been so much hype and anticipation now, do I have any choice?

Me: Of course you do. Any new music planned?

Holly: I’m always writing and there’s always new music to come.

Me: Will you come back on the Phile when your next release comes out, Holly?

Holly: Hell yes! I do believe I could go on like this with you all day.

Me: Cool! So, this year I am asking questions thanks to a box of cards called Tabletopics. Are you ready? I think I asked someone this before, but here goes. What are the redeeming qualities of the person you most dislike?

Holly: Oh my god they’re such an asshole, how can I possibly... Okay think, Holly, there’s got to be something... their mother loves them? I kid, I kid. That’s a great question. I love new and different questions. Of course everyone has redeeming qualities. I would have to say that they can be very thoughtful. When they aren’t being an asshole.

Me: Holly, thanks for coming back on the Phile. Was it as fun this time as last time?

Holly: More fun, if that’s possible.

Me: It is possible. Go ahead and plug your websites and please come back.

Holly:, Twitter: @hearholly, Facebook:  Thanks for having me. I look forward to the next time!

Me: Fantastic.

That's about it for this entry. Thanks to Laird Jim and Holly Elle. The Phile will be back tomorrow with Will Hinkle, singer for the band L.M.I. and also Michelle Obama! Yep, she's back on the Phile. On Monday it's Phile Alum Jeff Cameron. Yes, he's back as well. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Pheaturing Phile Alum Pete Donnelly

Hello, and welcome to the Phile. This is an exciting moment... Kate Middleton is in labor as we speak, making this a rare occasion in which a member of the royal family is doing something laborious. I'm British so I care. Does anybody else care? Kate has said if it's a boy, he'll have a popular British boys name. I'll look forward to the arrival of baby Mohammed. Australian radio DJs are readying a new tummy bug prank call to her while in hospital.  Also in England, Britain's parliament has passed a bill that would allow gay marriage. How about that? For the first time they are allowing gay marriage. If you thought royal weddings were big, just wait until the first gay royal wedding. Oh, my God. How fabulous will that be? The Queen said, "You know, it doesn't always have to be tea and crumpets. Sometimes it can just be two crumpets." Gay marriage is legal in the U.K. which is why Camilla asked Prince Charles, "So I can take off this dress now?"  The headquarters of the EPA was renamed in honor of Bill Clinton because of his dedication to protecting the environment. Or as Al Gore put it, "Are you kidding me? The environment? That's my thing."  There's no real news about NSA leaker Edward Snowden, he is still living at the Moscow airport. He's been there for about a month. He's scorned with no home to call his own. No safe harbor. It's like being an old George Clooney girlfriend. And here's how he stays in shape... he goes jogging every day on the baggage carousel.  Pope Francis is on summer vacation right now and apparently he's been spotted driving around in a Ford Focus. So I guess he takes that vow of celibacy very seriously.  Down in Texas Rick Perry announced he will not run for reelection. He said looked around and he said, "I executed one last woman, that fertilizer plant exploded, I returned abortions to back alleys where it belongs, my work here is done." I think that's what he said, he was chewing a crayon.  Well, as I said, gay marriage is legal in the U.K., and the Queen is excited about it.

Hey, did you see the new Viagra billboards? They're pretty clever.

Does anybody know where Belmullet is? I wanna go there RIGHT NOW. Take a look at this.

Someone look up where Belmullet is... please.  So, did you hear this? Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is on the cover of the latest issue of Rolling Stone and the magazine is being criticized for glamorizing a terrorist. But that's not the only magazine he is on the cover of.

My body looks like that. LOL. So, it's summer and all through summer I have been showing you some phascinating pools. Well, I ran out of pools to show you, so I asked you readers to send in some to me at And here we go...

There wasn't a description about this one, just it's Pamukkale pools located in Turkey. Weird. So, has the Royal Baby arrived yet? Nope, not yet. You know, as everybody is celebrating the poor Duchess is in the worse pain of her life. Ouch. Actually, I think having kidney stones is worse.

If you spot the Mind Phuck email me at

Alright, August is just around the corner and something important is gonna happen that month... Kick-Ass 2 is coming out. No, I mean something political and a phriend wanted to come on and talk about it. So, please welcome back to the Phile... Jon Carson, Executive Director for Organizing for Action.

Me: Hello, Jon, welcome back to the Phile. So, what's happening in August?

Jon: Every August, members of Congress head home to their districts for a few weeks of quality time with their constituents.

Me: And this year it'll be different?

Jon: Yes, this year, OFA is going to be there to greet them.

Me: How so?

Jon: Well, this won't be your standard welcome wagon... instead, we'll be there making sure they know where we stand on issues like immigration reform, gun violence prevention, climate change, Obamacare, and more.

Me: Okay, that sounds cool. Anything else?

Jon: Phile readers, make a pledge right now to be a part of Action August.

Me: I don't know about that... What do you want my readers to do?

Jon: Make calls both to our lawmakers and to other OFA supporters, to inspire them to take action, too.
Jason, are you an outdoorsy type person?

Me: Not really. Why?

Jon: If you're more of the outdoorsy type, we'll keep you in the loop on upcoming chances to send your message to Congress in person.

Me: What about if people don't have time to get there?

Jon: We'll have tons of ways to get involved from home. When you make a pledge, it's just saying you'll be a part of it. That's all I'm asking today.

Me: Is there anything else you want to say?

Jon: Commit right now to spend some time with OFA next month and let's have a little bit of fun while we're at it.

Me: Thank you, Jon. I am sure a Phile reader or two will pitch in.

Jon: Thanks, Jason.

Me: Alright, kids, pitch in to help the OFA.

Is that Royal Baby born yet? Not yet. I'm waiting for the announcement photo of Will, Kate and baby with John Terry lurking in the background.

Alright, today's pheatured guest is a Phile Alum and bass player, singer, songwriter and founding member of The Figgs. His second solo album, "Face The Bird" comes out in a few weeks and he'll be appearing next at Ortlieb’s in Philadelphia on July 25th. Please welcome back to the Phile one of my favorite musicians... Pete Donnelly.

Me: Hello, Pete, welcome back to the Phile, how are you?

Pete: Very good. Thanks!

Me: Alright, before we talk about The Figgs, I have to ask you about NRBQ. Last time you were here you were a member in that band, played on their album, and I was so excited. You're not in that band anymore, right?

Pete: That's right. I left the band just at the end of 2012. I was fortunate to make one LP, 2 live LPs and 2 45s with the band.

Me: What happened? Did you decide to leave?

Pete: It's hard to say, it was not easy. But playing in NRBQ is really a life's work. As incredible as it was to play and as tight friends as we all became, it became clear that I didn't have the necessary commitment to it. My life's gotten busier and busier... and I've really wanted to front my own band playing guitar and singing my own tunes, I realized I may not truly be able to give what a band like this needs. I am so honored to have been a part of it for as long as I was. Five years!

Me: Wow, I didn't know you were in the band that long. I am still waiting for Al Anderson to rejoin the band myself. Anyway, did you have a good time playing with Terry Adams while it lasted?

Pete: Are you kidding!? Of course. Terry's my hero. Scott, Conrad, these guys will always be a part of me. In the five years I spent playing with them, we all learned so much. I will be feeling the results of that stretch forever.

Me: Terry was supposed to be on the Phile, but I don't know what happened. Anyway, would you ever play with them again? 

Pete: I certainly would, and did recently sit in with them for about 2 hours. Playing bass, guitar, singing tunes... it was great!

Me: What about any other band, Pete? Is there one band you would love to be a member of?

Pete: I am ;) 

Me: Your main instrument is bass, right? But you also play guitar. What do you prefer?

Pete: Each has it's thing. Playing guitar is generally easier to lead a band with. You're giving lot's of content, where bass generally is supplying foundation. I'm certainly inspired by guitar right now. And playing guitar makes me a better bass player. it's all music...

Me: And you're from New York originally, but live in Pennsylvania now. How long have you lived in Pennsylvania and what made you decide to move there?

Pete: I live in Southern New Jersey. Very close to Philly. I've been here about 8 years and in the Philly area for 14 or so. It's a great place! Philly is a major us city with lots to offer but it's very easy to manage. there's tons of bands/clubs/studios here, and endless great neighborhoods.

Me: Alright, The Figgs! I recently interviewed Mike Gent on the Phile for the second time and we talked about the Figgs' anthology album "1000 People Grinning: The Figgs Anthology". He said he wasn't to keen on releasing a greatest hits album, or an anthology album. Actually, I will quote him 100%... he said, "I have always wanted to move forward instead of looking back, as far as record making is concerned. Pete thought it would be good to have a sampler for people who don't know the band." Did it take a lot of convincing to convince Mike that this album would be a good idea or did you just go ahead and do it?

Pete: It didn't take any serious convincing. Of course every project is more work than you think! We'd been toying with this idea for some time now. I just thought it would be nice to have something for folks who want to buy one record. I've never been against best of's etc... I was forever changed by "We Sold Our Soul for Rock and Roll".

Me: What did Pete Hayes, The Figgs' drummer think of it? I bet he was happy, as he wrote the title track.

Pete: Pete Hayes is the joy of existence. And that song is beautiful.

Me: So, are The Figgs gonna be recording a new studio album anytime?

Pete: I'm sure we will.

Me: I have to talk about Graham Parker as readers of the Phile know I am a huge GP fan, and I love that he put The Rumour back together for an album and tour. By the way, I interviewed both Martin Belmont and Brinsley and they both said good things about The Figgs. The Figgs got to open for GP and the Rumour on their comeback tour last year. How was that, after The Figgs played with GP for so many years.

Pete: It was great seeing GP with those guys. I was happy to be able to share some of that history. It felt like a big happy family doing those shows.

Me: Mike said he'd love to play with GP again, Pete. Would you as well?

Pete: Sure would. Graham's got songs forever. He always amazes me with his output. And his newer records are phenomenally good!

Me: You are currently working with your own band the Wise Easy. Where did that band name come from, and who is in the band?

Pete: It's one of those names that means something, or nothing really... the guys I'm generally playing with are lifer's. Because they have so much knowledge/wisdom about music, they make everything easy.

Me: Who are the Wise Easy?

Pete: Fred Berman (Amos Lee) or James Balga (the Excerpts, Botswanas), Tony Reyes (TLC, Cee-Lo Green).

Me: You're about to release your second solo album called "Face the Bird", am I right? How is that album going?

Pete: Man, the last 10% is always the hardest. I was trying for a late April release but it's officially going to be August 20th. But as of now I'm shipping them out the door.

Me: And you were cool enough to send me a copy. Who is playing on the album with you? Mike played on your last solo album "When You Come Home", is he gonna be playing on this new album as well?

Pete: He's not, it's mostly Fred, James, Tony and myself. Some other folks are on it as well. Jim Boggia, Shelby Lynne...

Me: I mentioned NRBQ and GP, who you worked with, but there's someone you worked with that I was surprised... John Legend. His music seems so different then anything you've done. When and what did you do with John?

Pete: Well, that's one of those session guy things. I know a producer, Dave Tozer, who works with John a lot and he had hired me a couple times to work on John's records. I've played on, and produced, all kinds of records at this point.

Me: I mentioned to Mike that I like how The Figgs released some of their albums on vinyl. Do you think vinyl is making a comeback?

Pete: Well, it's certainly cool to me, and people have been buying it. It is still very niche but at least it's gaining some interest. I don't like how it's so expensive. they used to be 7 or 8.99. Now they're like 20-30 bucks.

Me: Do you prefer vinyl over downloads or CDs?

Pete: I have never had an iPod... not true, I've never used an iPod, honestly I've just never made the leap. I do love the accessibility of music online for many reasons but nothing beats putting on records and engaging with the physical world. I prefer not to see any TV/computer/device screens when music is on. But really I don't care too much what the medium is. I do have an issue with how often we hear very low quality versions of music. On Sirius, or any of those stations, the music is often swishing and sounds like crap. I can't believe people aren't asking for refunds. All the time, on so many sites, you hear music swishing and swirling now. It's worse than cassettes!!

Me: Good point. Alright, Pete, so this year on the Phile I am asking random questions thanks to Tabletopics. But I thought with you I would ask you the same question I asked Mike. If you were offered a seat on the space shuttle would you take it?

Pete: I have always wanted to float in space, to feel no gravity, not sure I could take the G-forces though... I'd probably toss!

Me: Thanks for being back on the Phile, Pete. Come back when your next release comes out. Take care.

Pete: Thank you, Jason. Cheers!

Me: "Feel the Bird" is a great album. Get it when it comes out in August, kids.

That about does it for this entry, kids. Thanks to Jon Carson and of course Pete Donnelly. The Phile will be back next Saturday with Phile Alum Holly Elle, then on Sunday it's Will Hinkle from the band L.M.I. and Monday the return of Jeff Cameron on the Phile. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!