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Filtering by Tag: music

Quindar Love

Chris Klimek

Mikael Jorgensen was kind enough to ask all his bandmates in Wilco to sign my copy of their 2004 LP  A Ghost Is Born.

Mikael Jorgensen was kind enough to ask all his bandmates in Wilco to sign my copy of their 2004 LP A Ghost Is Born.

For my day job at Air & Space / Smithsonian, I wrote about Quindar, an electronic music duo comprised of art historian James Merle Thomas and Wilco multinstrumentalist Mikael Jorgensen. In their multimedia live performances and on their debut album Hip Mobility, the pair finds inspiration in the ephemera of the pre-Shuttle space program.

I met with Jorgensen backstage at Wolf Trap before Wilco's Filene Center performance there last month. I waited until we'd concluded our official interview before asking him to sign my copy of A Ghost Is Born—the first record Wilco made after he officially joined the band. He countered with an offer to get the whole lineup to sign it. That was nice. Not counting book signings, the only other person I've ever asked for an autograph was Bono.

PREVIOUSLY: I interviewed Wilco founder and frontman Jeff Tweedy for the Washington Post in 2009.

Hark! The Christmas Force Awakens Is Now Fully Armed and Operational

Chris Klimek

Side B of my 2015 yulemix, The Christmas Force Awakens — Yuletunes Eclectice & Inexplicable Perfect X: Final Sequence, is posted below!

I might’ve cheated a little to make Side B fit a 55-minute cassette side. There are always a few outtakes, but this one had more than a few. Cutting the mashup of The Pretenders’ “2000 Miles” and Chrissie Hynde’s controversial Morning Edition interview from two months back about her new memoir was a hard call, but the right one. The others may surface if I can summon the resolve to do this for an eleventh time.

May your days be shiny and chrome, and may the Christmas Force be with you. Merry Christmas.

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We Still Care: A Conversation with Rhett Miller of Old 97s About His Band's Best Album

Chris Klimek

Formed in Dallas in 1993, the alt-country act Old 97's combines the heart-tugging wordplay of Townes Van Zandt with the attack of The Clash. After a couple of indie releases in the mid-'90s, the group was the beneficiary of a bidding war, signing with Elektra Records. Their major-label debut, 1997's Too Far to Care, remains their best and best-loved album. Despite retaining a substantial following—Old 97's' show at the 9:30 Club tonight is sold out—the group never reached the level of stardom its big label demanded. Since 2004, the band has been recording for the New West label.

Old 97's' current tour supports a 15th anniversary reissue of Too Far to Care, which they're playing in its entirety in sequence, along with a selection of other songs. I spoke with singer-songwriter Rhett Miller (whose career as a solo artist runs parallel to that of his band) by phone about the quest for perfect setlist, the excesses of major-label recording contracts, and the trouble with singing songs you wrote when you were 25 when you're 42.

This interview appears today on the Washington City Paper's Arts Desk.

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She Couldn't Blame Us: Cat Power at the 9:30 Club, reviewed.

Chris Klimek

I'm sorry to say that Cat Power's concert at the 9:30 Club last night was another heart-rending chapter in her sad history as a panicky, fragmented performer. It's always agonizing to watch someone on stage who clearly doesn't want to be there. I hope she'll get the help she needs. The club was sold out, so clearly her fans haven't abandoned her. Last night's audience struck me as uncommonly respectful, sympathetic and forgiving.

I reviewed the show for the Washington Post.

The Boss at the Ballpark

Chris Klimek

I was away on vacation when Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band played Nationals Stadium two weeks ago. I've seen them play twice this year, and I wrote about their prior DC show, back in April.  I've seen Springsteen perform live 14 or 15 times overall since 1999 -- once solo, the rest of the times with the E Street crew.

I'm grateful to whomever recorded and posted this surprisingly high-quality field recording of the full three-hour, 44-minute concert.