New Paint 4 your Catter-waul, by Christina Long


“Luz and Reg”

“Luz and Reg” is 18 x 36 Photographic / paint & collage (Mixed media) $ 500.00

The diaspora between memory and imagination.

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Christina Long is a Los Angeles native and resides in L.A. County.  She does painting,  photography and photo collage. Her collage work pairs hypnogogic imagery with photography and explores the relationship between midlife paroxysm and our perceived cultural idealism. Her influences are diverse and include range from Caravaggio to Tom Waits.

Ever since art school she has been fascinated by the process of defeat. What starts out as yearning soon becomes debased into a manifesto of dread but not without the possibility of a new order. It is how we get to that new order that she’s so fascinated with.

"Death of a writer, and his sister"

“Death of a Writer, and his sister”

This is a familial piece.  It is borne of the memory of connections.  This piece is   is an 18 x 36 painting / collage / mixed media.  $400.00

“Eris among us”  This piece is 24 x 36 and is also Paint / collage / mixed media.  All paintings come with an artist statement and bio.

If you wish to give any of my works a home please fill out the form on the bottom of the page. (Psst…my name address and URL are in the fields, just type over them, they’re just examples.

The Trouble With Milk: 2010 in review – How loud were we?


The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 3,000 times in 2010. That’s about 7 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 53 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 81 posts. There were 257 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 84mb. That’s about 5 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was December 9th with 66 views. The most popular post that day was “SOUNDS-WEST” The best music in Los Angeles .

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were stumbleupon.com, facebook.com, webmail.aol.com, en.wordpress.com, and WordPress Dashboard.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for the trouble with milk, birth defects pictures, disney female characters, deadmau5, and disney male characters.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

“SOUNDS-WEST” The best music in Los Angeles October 2009
3 comments

2

NCLB and it’s effects on school ‘truancy.’ or…Pearls of Wisdom: “If our American life fails the child, it fails us all.” ~ Pearl S. Buck writer and sometime sha-woman.. March 2010
7 comments

3

Kettleman City – We need another Cesar Chavez. February 2010

4

Micachu and the Shapes: Bite your lip, get up and Dance. January 2010

5

How the Amelia Bedelia Books SHOULD be titled! October 2009

Some kind of Soul Mining: The music of Tim Easton


Take any John Prine song, A myriad of guitar riffs rooted in blues and folk, some early Dylan, and some plum picking for good measure  and  you  get Ohio-born, Joshua-Tree-living Tim Easton. ”

Easton, driven westward both geographically and musically since his college days in Akron Ohio, finally settled one hundred and forty  miles east of  Los Angeles in the sweet little outpost known as Joshua Tree.  A place where the work of contemporary artists can be found among cactus and creosote, where eclectic and soulful music  is made among the  Ocotillo and the yucca.  Though his  home base is admittedly Joshua Tree honky tonk watering hole Pappy and Harriets, Tim’s toured extensively in support of his four albums to date, landing in Europe and Asia in addition to a myriad of cities in the United States.  A 2006 tour opening for Lucinda Williams landed him at the Pabst theate in Milwaukee, the Ginger Rogers Theater in Medford Oregon, and the Paramount Theater in Austin Texas expousing revealing his soulful influences of Muddy Waters, Woody Guthrie.

Easton’s Folk Americana vacillates between the low down bluesey  growl of “Burgundy Red” from his 2009 release “Porcupine” to the  gospel meme hootenanny of “carry me” featured on 2001’s “The Truth about us” “Get What I got” also off Porcupine, offers a post punk downtempo vibe, with a slight nod to CCR  hiding quietly in plain view.  “Porcupine” combines Easton’s exploratory past while welcoming an edginess,that compounds all the elements digested by Easton over the years.

As if making  cathartic blues Americana wasn’t enough, Tim creates inspired folk art paintings that are currently centered on the motif of ‘the guitar.’  Certainly the god’s cannot be so indulgent! as to afford an already great musician an outstanding talent in a second craft,  But oh yes the god’s gluttony exposes them.  Easton’s paintings turn out not to be sophomoric indulgences by any means, in other words, they are not musings stretching weakly into another creative genre. They are  inspired and informed.  True pieces of mature art.  If you ventured out to SXSW in 2009  Tim’s visual representations were on display at the YARD DOG  gallery, as will several pieces from the 500 Individually painted vinyl jackets supporting”Porcupine.”  The vinyl jackets for this album were  paintings combining wood stain and designs of guitars and porcupines.  Tim’s other folk art uses found wood, oils and acrylics, chalk and pastels, and mostly features the guitar as it’s main subject.    If Musician, visual artist, aren’t enough to fill one’s creative palate, the “creatively-voracious” Easton also writes and is the founder and publisher of a community newsletter and ‘zine called The Joshua Tree Republic.”

A Video snippet of Tim Live in Bucyrus, Ohio exposes Easton telling the crowd that ‘the song he’s going to play next is called, ‘Carry Me’ at which time  very drunk woman whom has apparently been very disruptive during the show with a raspy voice finally yells, “SLAYER!!!, SLAYER!!!”  Tim isn’t caught vulnerable, instead he capitalizes on the situation with a deadpan and swift response by saying, ‘the day I play a Slayer song, is the day you get married.”   Easton comically takes interruptions, hecklers in stride.  and with humor, marches on, no bother and begins picking.

This is Real Folk music, an undeniable a romp  through the desert. It’s music about relationships – both coveted and lost.  The beauty and the tragic things too.  This is Americana,  This is the real Hootenanny, this is some kind of rave up, this is Tim Easton.

Find Tim Easton at: http://timeaston.com

~Chrissylong

No Marty & Elayne complex here! New Sounds at Taix!


Taix !!!! A place for old post-punk, Waiters, and pork pie hats (old location pictured)

The family name is pronounced like “Tex,”  As in “Tex and the Horseheads” someone might say. Actually I’d say that to help someone with the pronunciation but that’s me.  People have been known to almost come to fistacuffs arguing that the correct pronunciation is “Tays” but Mr. Raymond Taix settled the score many times over if you ever visited Taix.   Call it what you want but it’s the only french restaurant bar in Echo Park.  Dimly lit as the soft focus segment in a dreamy film sequence.  A dream that is real enough to enjoy.   Someone is whispering, “life is better in a soft light, it is to be taken in a slow drag, sitting in a high backed chair and small groups of friends crowded around a glowing table center candle”  At Taix, you could also easily conjure a 1959 Sammy Davis lounging earthily with friends as he enjoyed his stogie alternately flashing his wildly large white teeth.  Yah baby, it’s  “Lux-pack” but with a slight “hideous kinky” 1920’s prohibition aura still hanging like a hard fog.   The restaurant’s beginnings were seen during this tulmutuous time and on any given night it’s denizens can be equally quirky and mysterious.  Take a gander from your generous chair and find Hispanic Dodger fans, gay couples, blue-haired grannies, frivolously laughing and enjoying the vibe.  A few pork-pie hat-wearing, uber-hipsters looking to partake in the slow vibe and listen to music.

In order to guard against “Dresden Room Syndrome”  (Also known as the “Marty and Elayne Complex) Taix has recently employed the booking skills of  L.A. Musician Greg Franco, whom in 2006, L.A. Weekly called an “iconic auteur”  Franco, having earned that moniker as front man for L.A., for alt punk bands: The Blasphemous Yellow (1979-1985) and Ferdinand (1986-2002) and currently the New Zealand famous but L.A.based outfit, “Rough Church,” Franco has been a lover of Taix for twenty plus years.  A friend of the recently passed Ramond Taix,  his cuisine and love of good music.  Punk rockers, No Rockers, Low Brow, Americana Freak Folk, and people anyone with an earnest story and sound, can offer their soul against a backdrop of  realtors in bad suits hissing into cell phones, or Art dealers slunked down low, frock of darkish or silvery hair over one eye. Also skulking are Music industry dendrites, Record store barnacles, people ‘only there to see a friend’s band’ play” invariably mix with the “funky place’  that time forgot.  Some of the waitstaff are from your grandparent’s era some are in incredibly micro miniskirts with tattoos creeping round their shoulders and necks serving  exotic and ridiculously rich and meticulously prepared rattatoullie, or duck salad amongst other quintessentially French fare.  I’ve been told The creme brulee and  tart tartin are Tres magnifique!

If you have NEVER needed any “step’ programs, then you can make note of  this Secret Alcoholic tip!!!!!   At the beginning of the fiscal year, Taix corralls all the extra alcohol that didn’t sell well, and puts it to the right end of the bar!  HELLO LIQUID GARAGE SALE!!!  $3 no matter what time of day! Martini at 10AM?  no problem!  but drinking responsibly will ahem…keep you from having to do those meetings, if you know what I mean.  It’s a little bit like a Bitchen Bordello that doubles as an alt / indy music breeding ground.  The likes of Ferdinand, Patria Jacobs, Rough Church and many other local L.A. bands, singers and songwriters have taken in the french lounge mystique that is Taix and filled the air with song.  Tokyo Police club a darling of the

 

Tokyo Police Club played a gig here...

indy scene rocked Taix via the Culture Collide event.  Taix is a sonic crib with Escargot De Gourgogne if you will, a place where you run a good chance of seeing ‘so and so’  before they were… you know…signed and living in Palisades or Laurel Canyon trading kitchen remodeling tips with Anthony Keidis or some shit.  Taix is a little bit Vegas lounge  and a little bit  haunted mansion.   It’s definitely a LOT of  rock and roll!   Think High Fidelity with Marie De Salle singing a sweet vibe unto herself nursing some  sorrowful wicked beverage.   A true Los Angeles original.

Booking list coming soon!

There is plenty of street parking or you can valet for only $2.50.

Taix French Restaurant – 1911 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90026  Ph: 213.8.1265

~Christina Long

Find the folks mentioned at the following:

Rough Church @ http://roughchurch.com

Patria Jacobs @ http://patriaworld.com

http://Tokyopoliceclub.com

 

 

Taix French Restaurant
1911 Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Tel: (213) 484-1265

Micachu and the Shapes: Bite your lip, get up and Dance.



The Precocious, multi-instrumentality of Micachu and the Shapes is like camping on an English moor full of howling wolves as you dance to a Kraftwerk album with Gavin Friday, Marke E. Smith and Guggi.  You’ll need a tour-guide in for this moor party because it’s a bafflingly intricate, yet uneasy place. Walking at night, you feel your feet sink into the moor, tin pans crash, an acoustic guitar rants and a shock of Roux-like hair bounces in and out of the frame. Just aloft you spy Colin Newman stoking a sonic campfire as he types on his iphone.  The fire crackles repetitively with a  waffle and snap.  You are at a zeitgeist sleepover, a tempiscore melding of sense datum.   Yes, you are overloaded but in a playful dreamlike state, these things are expected!   In fact it feels downright amazing, the music in the background has a restless energy,   a crack, a pop.   Set against a nefarious groan or the heaving low hum of soft machines, this eclectic pop is tamed by a warm and yet  distinctive androgynous voice.    That is the sound of Micachu and the Shapes, and it’s not a dream.  Micachu (Mica Levi) is tangible! and in a club somewhere tonight playing a vacuum cleaner.

Mica sits staccato, with an unexpected and painterly face. Her voice and  demeanor  project an element of confident-uneasiness. a careless androgyne, tall with a complex grin,  she is an ‘artiste de artist,’  one  bringing sounds useful to Dee jays, club-goers and the lucky and hard working denizens of Rough Trade, San Francisco.  So far everyone fron Bjork to Beck are calling her one of their “influences.”  or at at least “the most un-classifiable pop experimental music existing today.”   That’s pretty good when the avant-garde of the uber popular alternative are calling you “one of the lovely bones with which we are collectively building this thing we call popular music”.

Straddling many genres of music at one time, Michachu has got the concept cornered. How does someone play front instruments, sing,  and add the sound of a vacuum cleaner along with pops and clacks purposfully (and perfectly) set in time to a thick bumping background track? In my humble opinion the only contemporary rock band able to cross this boundary and do well with so many genres was  The White Stripes.  Jack White did whatever he wanted, and Meg was the co-ideator / conspirator in those avant experiments that turned into great songs.   The only constant was his voice as the music always surprised, swelled and dipped as he wailed and groaned in new and different ways.   Experimental, though, it was not.    It was exploratory. In Micachu and the Shapes’  type of ‘experimental’,   there’s  an element of  “I don’t care, I do what I want, what feels right at the time, and by the way… to hell with this ‘image thing”.   It seems  Levi and company do not ascribe to any specific assemblage of their art, it simply is… “what it is.”

Micachu and The Shapes’ songs arent’ about punching other girls in bars, thanks Lilly, we’ve had enough of that.  It was fun in the begining, but now we have to see other people.   The female role in new music must get some plaster and lathe ready and quick, because Micachu just ripped that house a hole in the wall.

As Micachu swoons into a neutral plastic bounce, “Golden Phone,”  seems to reference her ‘style,’ that is, if she could be categorized…

How could they even care it’s a nonsense sound
This sound is everywhere but it can’t be found
Find Nancy fool around and the noise went white
It built the warmth back and there was light

Crimes everywhere yeah, but I don’t want that
Love’s all around yeah, but I don’t want that
Gold in my hair yeah, but I don’t want that
Bring me that nonsense sound and I’ll be back

Well, crushed up bit of stuff, can you pull their ear?
Their legs are far too stiff and they can’t get near
I’ll make this call back to you in a year
Mongrels, this nonsense sound won’t disappear

The song ‘Lips’ explores grime and punk crossover sounds.  Not unlike the likes of early Gang of Four, or Wire, Mica and the Shapes sharp and staccato dithering make you wanna get up and dance.

Die, die, die, your lips  a big lie

You lie all the time, but you still get by.

You bite your tongue but you don’t comply

Dry your tears away with your tie

You drive that truck but you’re still let by

Drop, drop, drop, your lips a big lie

In ‘Sweetheart’ and ‘Eat your Teeth’ Mica samples and manipulates every squeal and stray breath.  She and The Shapes, processes them into pop staccato explosions.  In contrast,  ‘Golden Phone’ is a dirty punk song, breathless and beguiling.

This is the Golden phone, can you ring me back?

Ten mongrels home alone bring the panic back

Sound traveled in the air then they blew it back

The took out all the noise and it all went black

How could they even care it’s a nonsense sound

This sound is everywhere but it can’t be found

Find Nancy fool around and the noise went white

It built the warmth back and there was light

‘Worst Bastard’ is pure punk brilliance; whilst “Vultures” may have the same basic background as Glen Branca’s, “The Ascension” Lesson No. 1″  I could be wrong though.  Branca’s wall of sound is exactly  the intricacy Micachu uses in their swirling and full soundscapes, and especially on this song.   The new Shapes’ album “Jewellery” is on track for album British Album of the year and I’m not surprised.  It may have to fight with La Roux’s signature album “La Roux” but they really are different territory.

In “Curly teeth”, Micachu uses a squeaky sound as a background layer and a dissonence that actually works under her defined and short shap vocals. “Curly teeth” does not dissapoint in fact as with other Shapes’ songs, it surprises once again.

I stumbled upon Micachu and the Shapes about 3 months ago via my favorite performance artiste chanteuse Bjork, and in my humble opinion, this unclassfiable band headed up by Mica Levi  is  channeling the best of electronica, rough wire, punk, avant-garde, pop, and dance. This stateside inhabitant will be sure to see them when they turn up at any venue within 40 miles of me.  Even if you just go to see someone use a vacuum cleaner onstage, don’t miss them when they come to town.

Ditch the Dead Heads!!!


No, We’re definitely not talking about your favorite Jerry Bear / Bob Weir lovin’ friends,

Jer-Bear and Bob

but the un-moving, previously living creatures above your head in your favorite restaurant or bar..

I’ve always thought those folks that hang the heads of moose, elk and the like were a bit looney tunes (still do), but mostly I hate going into restaurants and eating under the glassy eyed stare of some poor Elk that was probably just minding his own business checking out some milk thistle or looking for the perfect cow to hang out with. You know pass the boring time in the woods, that dang outback up there in Maine or in Canada or some place, vast, and cold.  Somewhere where things are peaceful.  It’s rough waiting until the permafrost melts.   The only ruckus is when Dick Cheney and his cronies start combing the taiga in search of living things to shoot for sport.

"Satan-i-cheney" Coutesy of democralypsenow.blogspot.com

Oh!  Damn…I guess other humanoids holding boston lager in hunter’s fatigues don’t count.  Hey! Dick makes mistakes doesn’t everyone? sic.  Back to the other denizens of the taiga who mind their own business, actually belong there and don’t drink boston lager whilst handling firearms, who would that be?….um…let’s see… the animals?

More and more the “Deco-hunter-trend” seems to have oozed slowly from the taiga of the greater Northern Americas and seeped into the hearts and minds of upscale “uber-designers” as they have never been so keen as to use this motif for or  in lighting fixtures, lamps and upscale restaurants.  I think that we would be better Americans if we changed the  “scene of Americana,”  or at the very least the icons of the “Great North America.”

PETA members, active and gift-bearing sympathizers are now “on to”  those that promote the subjugating practice of buying and displaying Trophy animals on the walls of their restaurants, bars and personal spaces. Animal activists (whom should quite simply be called life Activists, as they are supporting and protecting life, in particular the lives of animals), have been asking everyone to consider the rights that animals have to live.  These activists are asking us all to go a step further and think about “the promotion of the horror of  killing for sport”  in particular the use of “trophy animals.” If Trophy heads are being used in the “design” of a “space” or to support an “art idea” it is wrong. Yes, we are talking to you!  The fine artists dwelling saliently in dilapidated but decidedly cool downtown lofts, we urge you to really think about your “installations. Do they even vaguely support this subjugation?  Hopefully not.  Hopefully arm-chair activists we have not become.  Manifesting our activism on blogs and Face-book but rarely in real life.     Whether it’s a convoluted window dressing “just trying to give the feeling of Americana”, or “the close to the bone living off the land ” type of feel, it is wrong.   How about the restaurant designer who thinks that a trophy-head gives that just right je ne sais quois,  mix of testosterone and boutique lager” that draws in the 21-35’er “city cool” male demographic he’s aiming for?  This trend is bad for the animals, for environmentalism, it’s bad judgement in general, and further teaches our children to subjugate animals.  Let’s let Johnny who pours salt on slugs grow out of that ‘sometimes common boyhood mis-judgement’, and become a concerned and caring individual not only towards other humans, but also toward his unspeaking but feeling animal neighbors.

I’ve got a great idea!  Let’s substitute Trophy animals with “Trophy wives?”  How about that?  Imagine for a moment won’t you?   Woman “A” puts an ad in (of course, Craig’s List), for a “sugar-daddy” and voila!  One “dubiously lucky” guy gets his trophy wife and then has a bolt driven into her underside and has her put on a trophy mount!   No longer a nuissance  having her on his arm for the looks and no meaningful conversation, and the status 2-7, now he can pretty much just place her on a shelf to point out whenever guests come by to visit.

It’s the “hey look what I did!” syndrome.  “Aren’t I a man? Look how strong and able I am!”  It’s where primitivo meets insecurity.  It can be on Match.com or in a restaurant in Michigan.  We can’t control whose psyche needs the trophy, but we can control whether we patronize establishments that display that kind of cruelty. If we wouldn’t think of doing that to women in America, then why do we do that to our Moose and Elk friends?

If it's good enough for the Trophy Moose, it's good enough for the Trophy Wife

When you enter a restaurant or bar that promotes this practice.  Ask them this:

Concerned cool person (you) says: “Excuse me, may I ask you a question?”

Capricious and unaware or just plain cruel bar / restaurant owner:  “Sure! What’s up? seating okay?”

Concerned cool person (You) says:  “I was wondering whether you enjoy decapitation.”

Capricious and unaware or just plain cruel bar / restaurant owner:  “What the? Why would you ask me that?”

Concerned cool person (you) says: Well I don’t think that it’s necessary to mount lifeless decapitated animals on the walls to make your food any better.  We all “get” the “Americana” thing.  Can I replace the Moose head with a piece of art work representing that moose / elk head?

Capricious and unaware or just plain cruel bar / restaurant owner:  “Um… well can I see your artwork?”

At this point, you have a potential customer, you can tell them about how they ‘really don’t want PETA to come and review the restaurant’ and then show them your portfolio.

It’s suggested to have some ideas available or at least pull up your blog on your iphone and show them your work.

Here’s a cool installation I ran across, and sky’s the limit on what else can be ideated!

Go to 2 http://www.watermelonwatermelon.com to read about this artwork

please…I don’t want to look into those glassy sad eyes anymore, anywhere.

-Chrissylong