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Jun 28, 05 03:29 PM

Incredible Dual MySpace Style.

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I've had a MySpace profile for a long time (see the link on the right); but now they've hooked me up with a MySpace Music page. It's got a bunch of tunes on the page for your listenin' perusal: myspace.com/mikedoughty.

Posted by Mike at 3:29 PM

Jun 27, 05 10:53 AM

I Met the World-Famous Talkin' Fox.

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Posted by Mike at 10:53 AM

Jun 26, 05 11:03 AM

Mermaids.

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Yesterday at Coney Island, the Mermaid Parade.

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The parade is fun and all, but really it's just an excuse to ride the Cyclone. I went with a friend who's also crazy for photography--so I could do the scene with somebody who was also pausing every nine seconds to get a shot of, like, a vending machine filled with Bert dolls--and her reaction to the roller coaster was hilarious. On the way up: SHITFUCKMOTHERFUCKERSHITSHIT. As the cars pulled into the station again: Is that all?

The dude offered us $5 for two to ride again; she whipped out a $5 bill from her purse in a snap. And then, all over again: SHITFUCKMOTHERFUCKERSHITSHITSHIT. And when it was over: Is that all?

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Posted by Mike at 11:03 AM

Jun 24, 05 08:54 AM

More Apparitions.

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Chuck D.'s on Marc Maron's show right now, lamenting the departure of the NY oldies station WCBS. Because when he's driving around with his kids in the back seat he'd rather they not listen to "Pass the Courvoisier," but rather "The Four Tops, the Temptations, and the Allman Brothers." The Allman Brothers.

Posted by Mike at 8:54 AM

Jun 21, 05 05:40 PM

Apparitions.

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Just now I saw a huge, pristinely white Cadillac coming up Orchard Street; behind the wheel was a large black guy with sunglasses and numerous gold chains around his neck. He wore a matching collared, short-sleeved shirt and slacks set; olive-greenish, sort of like something a Latin American dictator might wear.

The license plate said: CONNECTICUT LEGISLATURE.

Posted by Mike at 5:40 PM

Another Pleading Call to the Masses.

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Can any of you Limeware-savvy rocksters-in-the-know hook me up with an MP3 of the Screaming Blue Messiahs' song "Clear View"?

ADDENDUM: Thanks to Randy from Cambridge, Mass, for sending it to me!!

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I just have to point out how astonishing it is that I ask for an obscure 80s alt-rock song at 9:30 am, and a guy in Boston sends it to me less than two hours later.

Posted by Mike at 9:32 AM

Jun 20, 05 04:44 PM

Lazing.

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Is there anything not worth blowing off?

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I have succumbed to the season. I blew off everything today and lazed around in Central Park. Walked barefoot in the Great Lawn. Sat by the statues of literary notables and flipped around on the iPod.

I fell in love with the Joe Strummer song "Coma Girl," and downloaded all of his solo stuff. Really good records. It's a shame I didn't know what a vital solo artist he was 'til he passed away.

When I briefly lived in London, my roadie Heinz was friendly with Joe, and kept telling me that--being that we were both latecomers to the Ecstasy phenomenon, and both quite enthusiastic about it--he wanted to get us together to hang out. Never happened. The mind reels.

Posted by Mike at 4:44 PM

Jun 17, 05 11:42 PM

Shoot.

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Andy Adelewitz (aka Mike Doughty HQ) took these pix of the video shoot for "Looking at the World at the Bottom of a Well.

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I got there this morning at 7:30 am, and we shot 'til 7:30 pm. The man in the blue shirt with the awesome hair is the director, Danny Clinch. Keep in mind that in most of these shots with me laying on the ground, there's a camera up above me on a cherrypicker. Other than that, I could explain more but I think it'd just sound perplexing.

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Posted by Mike at 11:42 PM

Jun 16, 05 08:00 AM

Rashomon of the Late Night Talk Show Set.

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I'm getting a shitload of emails that are like, Dude, you were so nervous on Letterman!

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This is perplexing. I totally was not nervous on Letterman. Really. I mean, I had a mild case of jitters, but I was pretty together. At least I felt that way. As a matter of fact, I walked offstage thinking, Wow, I can't believe how in the moment I was.

There was a monitor dead smack in front of us as we were playing, and it was really difficult to not stare at it the whole time, like, Hey, I look good in that shot! Aargh, I look bad in that shot! So I was trying hard to look in every other possible direction, lest staring at the same point for three and a half minutes straight render me zombie-looking on television.

Funny thing: people that know me are all saying, You looked so relaxed! That's not quite true, either.

Maybe you guys don't see me that close up so often. Maybe I should consult my TiVo for further analysis.

Posted by Mike at 8:00 AM

Jun 15, 05 08:04 AM

Oh Yeah: This Is My New Tattoo.

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It says "musician" in Amharic (aka Ethiopian). I was hoping that there'd be a clear shot of it on Letterman last night, so that Ethiopians on their couches throughout the CBS-broadcastable world would rub their eyes and think, What the Hell?! But, no dice.

Posted by Mike at 8:04 AM

Jun 14, 05 09:43 PM

Will It Float? Will It Float?

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Yep. I'm blogging photos of our David Letterman appearance almost two hours before the show actually airs on the East Coast.

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What a fucking rush. I love my band. The thing is, you play one song, and it's this huge adrenaline surge, and then all of a sudden it's done and what do you do? We went and had tea together, and then the adrenaline dissipated, and now I'm exhausted.

Almost down at the bottom of these pics there's a shot of a bucket suspended over the set backstage. To me, an avid Letterman watcher, this was the most thrilling sight: the gigantic bucket they use in the "Will It Float?" sketch.

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Posted by Mike at 9:43 PM

This Is My Fucking Band in the Back of the Fucking Limo That Fucking David Letterman Provided Us.

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Handsome Dan Chen, Andrew "Scrappy" Livingston, myself, and Pete McNeal, aka the Broth Cop.

We had the limo take us to Joe Shanghai on Pell Street in Chinatown, where we had post-soundcheck, pre-show soup dumplings.

Posted by Mike at 9:43 PM

Jun 12, 05 11:38 PM

The Names.

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Of course, much more important than rehearsing a song for our network television début before millions is figuring out nicknames for everybody. Handsome Dan is obviously taken care of. Still working on one for Pete. Andrew's will probably be Scrappy Andrew "Mississippi" Livingston aka Consistency Jones. Both the "Scrappy" and "Consistency Jones" were the suggestions of Andrew himself.

Posted by Mike at 11:38 PM

Awesomeness of My Band.

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My band--Handsome Dan on electric piano, Pete McNeal on drums, Andrew Livingston on upright bass--have been rehearsing for the Letterman appearance, and just generally running through the tunes for future usage. They're really fun--we've been doing this variation on John Zorn game pieces that I slapped together, called Face Calls, as kind of a trust/mind-meld exercise; what a blast; really hilarious. Naturally, the mistakes are often better than the well-executed stuff.

Posted by Mike at 10:04 AM

Jun 10, 05 10:03 AM

Established: June 10, 1970.

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Happy Birthday to me!! Thanks for your sweet emails--you're all dreamboats.

Now--a question: I want to get a birthday tattoo. I have a very simple custom graphic that I want to get: basically, I need somebody who's accurate to a big degree. Any suggestions for NY tattoo artists? I don't need somebody who's an incredibly individual stylist, just extremely, extremely comptent.

Email link's on the lower right, if you'd like to suggest somebody...

Posted by Mike at 10:03 AM

Jun 9, 05 10:03 PM

Pre-Birf Fun.

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I'm very happy to report that I'm gonna be playing David Letterman on Tuesday night. He's a longtime hero of mine--I'm giddy. Happy birthday to me, indeed.

Posted by Mike at 10:03 PM

Elles Adore Les Books.

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I did an interview with Chicks Dig Books, and its proprietress Madison McGraw asked me to link to it here. So.

Posted by Mike at 9:42 AM

Jun 8, 05 10:03 AM

Plumping My Numbers.

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Look. I bought my own album on iTunes. OK?

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I just wanted to be able to look at the cover art on my iPod photo. It was done by this guy Alfredo Genovese, an Argentine master of the fileteado porteño decorative form. He did the Tango billboard that looms over the Obelisco in Buenos Aires.

Posted by Mike at 10:03 AM

Birf.

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My birthday is on Friday.

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Yep. June 10, 1970. Which makes me two days shy of 35. Eligible for the presidency.

I want to do a get together--maybe at a restaurant--but I'm unsure how to email all my friends and say, "Let's get together and celebrate me!" Without looking like a total cornball.

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Posted by Mike at 9:58 AM

Local Boy Done Good.

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I had a weird moment at the Pink Pony.

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I went out for coffee with a friend to the Pink Pony, redoubtable institution of Ludlow Street. It's just a few blocks from my building; I've spent a lot of time there hanging out with Dougie Bowne, who's like the mayor around here. He spends so much time at the Pink Pony that we refer to it as "the Office." As in, "Do you want to meet at the Office before the Ribot show?"

We were sitting there when Phyllis, one of the owners, came up. "Aren't you Mike? Didn't you have your picture taken here for that article in Bust magazine?"

Yep on all counts. I was--ahem--the "Boy du Jour" in the last issue of Bust, and they did the photo session at the Pink Pony.

"As a matter of fact, in the picture, weren't you sitting right here?"

I suddenly realized that we were sitting at that exact same table. Phyllis brought her copy of Bust over to show my friend, and there I was, reprising the situation, in different clothes. I felt like I should be holding up that page, striking the same pose I struck in the pic, and saying to passersby: Hello! I am a tool.

Posted by Mike at 9:22 AM

Jun 7, 05 09:28 AM

A Girl at the Gig in Nashville Had a Lyric from '40 Grand in the Hole' Tattooed on her Foot.

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Posted by Mike at 9:28 AM

Jun 5, 05 06:14 AM

Again With the Morning Sedition.

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It feels like I do "Morning Sedition" on Air America--Marc Maron and Mark Riley's show--every other week. Which is fine by me. They broadcasted live from a coffeeshop in Chelsea on Friday, and I went over and played some tunes, and talked briefly about how my chief Watergate memory was the preemption of Batman for Senate hearings in 1974. I was mad at the time.

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Posted by Mike at 6:14 AM

Jun 2, 05 11:17 AM

'Mudhole? Slimy? My Home This Is!'

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PLOT SPOILER ALERT!! DO NOT READ THIS ENTRY IF YOU DON'T WANT REVENGE OF THE SITH RUINED FOR YOU!!

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After spendng the whole twelve-hour-marathon of "Queen Smabbalabba from Planet Boobylooby and the Lords of Shimmybimmy" stilted dialogue, just sitting there thinking, Will Darth Vader just please show up, please? Please?, by the time the climactic Obi-Wan v. Anakin/Vader lightsabre battle begins, I thought, "OK, so Anakin's gonna fall into the flaming lava and get all burned and then they'll have to enclose Vader in his tragic life-support scary-half-robot, black-shiny-monster suit that we all know and love him in." Roughly two and a half hours of swordfighting later, he finally gets all burned up in the crazy molten lava--by which time my eyes have turned to igneous rock.

Then--though it's awesome to see the helmet affixed to Vader's burned up face, and the boots and suit put on by robots, the first thing Vader says--in James Earl Jones' amazing voice--is, essentially, "What's up with my wife and kids?"

!!!!

Talk about a buzzkill. George Lucas--harshing my mellow.

The precise moment I fell madly in love with Darth Vader is a crystal-clear memory. I was seven, and my Dad took me to see Star Wars, telling me only that there was a movie that I ought to see. I had never heard of the thing, and was slightly weirded out by his insistence.

So: the first scene: the Imperial stormtroopers blow out the door of Princess Leia's spaceship and go storming in. There's smoke in the doorway. I hear that omnious Vader breathing, and I see Vader's boot step through the portal. I am one scared shitless seven year old. I think, What the hell is my Dad putting me through?! and cover my eyes.

A moment later my curiosity gets the best of me. I open my eyes. I see Darth Vader striding through the iPod-esque white corridor of Leia's spaceship.

I am in love.

Jung said that in a dream, a black man is the "father in the dark"--the shadow-father. (nevermind what the fuck this means if you are a black man and dream of a black man--what's up with that, Jung?) I've always thought this to be a great explanation of white kids' fascination with black culture; they're looking for the shadow-father, the father in the dark.

Forgive me this tenuous analogy. But I believe that on that moment, seeing Darth Vader and falling in love with him, I found the father in the dark. Ironic that my Dad took me to see the movie, and on his own whim, almost as if he planned to introduce me to the shadow-father without my prior knowledge.

And that that was the seed of my lifelong identification with black culture, my yearning to mine a kind of life-force from it. As Sekou Sundiata--the black poet that I idolized in school, the teacher that put me on the path I'm still on--once sang, "Darth Vader was a black man!"

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I discovered when I saw the first new Star Wars--in 1998? When was that? I don't remember--that no movie is going to magically make me seven years old again. A curious, existential disappointment.

I have this interesting memory from my childhood: I heard that rumour that there were going to be nine Star Warses. I was elated. Then I did the math. I realized it would be well into the 2000s by the time the last one came out; I'd be in my thirties, and the movies wouldn't mean that much to me. I remember so well this poignant feeling, desperately wishing I wouldn't grow up.

Posted by Mike at 11:17 AM

Jun 1, 05 12:13 PM

Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory.

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I've been getting some emails asking me about "His Truth Is Marching On," asking me if I'm a Christian.

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The backstory of "His Truth" is that I wrote it in the immediate wake of 9/11. Hence the title being a lyric from "The Battle Hymn of the Republic"--though I meant that as a bitter reference to the war that seemed inevitable to me.

The first line, "They say that God is great," is a reference to the Muslim prayer, "Allahu Akhbar." Literal translation, "God is great." And I kept thinking about the old hippie Christianism, "God is Love." My beliefs about God shift constantly--my view is that a rigid idea of God is impossible, that the nature of God is unknowable--sometimes God is music, or the spirit of humanity--even sometimes, often in troubled or scary times, God is that personified paternal Christian God that I was taught as a child--and oftentimes God is love.

So I was struggling with a belief in God in the face of 3,000 painful deaths a mile from my apartment. And struggling with how to have faith in a world exploding with murder over supposed faith.

I wanted to say that God can be a huge part of your life without being a fanatic. What fanatic, Christian, Muslim, or otherwise, is really compassionate? The God I struggle to have faith in is all about compassion.

I grew up an ambivalent Lutheran, but I'm not exactly a Christian. I'm fascinated with certain aspects of Christianity. I love Sam Cooke/Soul Stirrers records, the passion and the fervor of that Gospel. I love the Rev. Charlie Jackson's "God's Got It," a fantastic groove that I recommend to all and sundry, atheists included!

And the first line of the Book of John: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." What a gorgeous little puzzle that line is! And the Book of Revelations and the Psalms (though they're very cruel poems seemingly written by a poet suffering from bipolar disorder).

There's a lot about Jesus that I really dig. "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." That strikes me as absolutely beautiful. That central Christian idea of God turning himself into a human and volunteering for human suffering is so moving to me.

But the repression, rigidity, and backwards moralism of fanatic Christians is disheartening to me, and ugly a lot of the time.

It struck me as sad and fascinating that an Amazon reviewer, railing against Haughty Melodic, said, "He even has a song about how much he loves God! What the fuck?!" It's fucked up to me that to believe in God is to be on the wrong side in the culture wars. Why the fuck do we let the Republicans lay claim to God?!

Spirituality adds tremendous meaning to my life. It waxes and wanes--I need both reverence and irreverence in my faith. The line that seems most significant to me in "His Truth" is I'm fucking starved for love. I'm not pious.

A guy wrote to me this morning asking me not to elucidate my intentions in writing "His Truth."

He wrote: "I'm hoping against hope that you don't actually compose a journal entry about your Christianity. The question is much more intriguing than any answer can be. Does anyone really want to know what Bill Murray whispered in Scarlett Johanson's ear at the end of Lost in Translation?"

Though I guess I blew it as far as that guy's concerned, what a perfect representation of faith as I see it: mystery and irreverence.

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Posted by Mike at 12:13 PM
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