First off. Those who tuned into our 'Alex Nieto' song and dug it; you can now buy a download on Bandcamp here: https://chuckprophet.bandcamp.com/releases Pay-what-you-want - 100% of the proceeds go to the Justice for Alex Nieto fund.
And another thing, all you long gone daddies and mommie and boys and girls, today kicks off the Chuck Prophet VS. Garland Jeffreys tour in Santa Cruz, no holds barred.
The Mission Express will be pulling double duty on these dates - doing our own thing, and backing Garland up - trading songs back and forth for one long set. Melding our two songbooks together, herding musical cats. Hopefully we'll all get out alive! We're psyched about it.
Again, what can I tell you about Garland? Born in Brooklyn in the 1940s, half Black, half Puerto Rican and ALL New Yorker. (People get a kick out of hearing he was Lou Reed's college roommate. Who swept the floor? With who?).
The other day we were chatting on the phone and he was telling me how he started out as a little Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers clone at the age of 8 singing Lymon's "I'm Not a Know It All" into the phone. And I was thinking for the fifteenth time, "Um, this is gonna be good..."
If he only made one of the hands-down greatest Rock and Roll singles of all time - "Wild In The Streets" - that would have been enough. Hear for yourself:
AND THERE'S SO MUCH MORE...IT'S DEEP. But this isn't Wikipedia. So, just this once, trust me.
Meanwhile, I've got a lot of things eating at me these days aside from the proper chords for New York Skyline. Which is itself pretty serious business on which James usually has the last word. At the risk or rambling off topic here...James DePrato and I on a good day will venture into shop talk and there's no stopping us. Go figure. This late in the game and we're still standing over steaming manholes obsessing over wah and chorus pedals in search of that perfect "80's demo" sound. And there's open tunings. Not to mention Whammy bars that kill your tuning and flat wound strings and Fender Vs. Gibson. Beatles Vs. Stones... Shaved vs. George Bush. Pretty sad stuff.
There's no end to it. You'd love it in the van. You know you would.
Anyway, we're doing 7, count 'em 7, shows. All in California. And we've got the commemorative posters to prove it. We might just be coming to your town. We're going to places like ARCATA, for example. Places I can't even find on a map.
Some venues are so nasty. Rip a piece of duct tape off of the stage. Chew on it. You'll build up your immunities to anything.
As for the hometown gig. No sir. The Great American Music Hall is a church. Or it's LIKE a church. This is not a piss-in-the-sink gig. Or a gig where Stephie waits in the van until she hears us counting off the first song. This is the Great American Music Hall. It's got those ornate balconies and marble columns and if you bother to look up, there's elaborate ceiling art. A PA system they spent some real money on. Clean bathrooms and good plumbing too. And history. For sure. I can get a little nervous playing there. Probably because of all the epic shows I've seen. I saw Jim CarrolL read there one rainy Wednesday night. Got up there, stood at a podium and read poems and stories he was working on. It was one of the most rock and roll things I've ever seen.
Remember that, Stephie?
But I've got alot eating at me.
Another thing eating at me is the sad state of Stephanie's Farfisa organ. Which we had to take out of storage and bring back to life. It's been on moth balls since around the time her band Go Go Market played with ? and the Mysterians at the Bottom of the Hill back in the day before the day. I was on my back under that organ with a soldering iron. I can't remember the last time I drove all night just to buy some shoes for anybody. But I have spent a lot of time fixing Stephie's gear. Boy, if you could see me - working a soldering iron with shaky hands trying to get the damn thing to fire up. If that's not love, I don't know what it is.
This was before we starting making payments on a Nord keyboard (shhhh don't tell John Vanderslice). Speaking of Farfisa Organs and back in the day. . . Here's Garland doing 96 Tears on that show Fridays: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9eXNXN6MyY
What else? The commemorative tour posters for sale. We've got way too much money sunk into these things. But Michael Gabriel made each and every one by hand with loving care. You'll want one. For all we know, in 100 years from now after we go down in that plane crash like those poor Skynyrd fellas, go on and try to find a poster that survived, for whatever reason, in whatever condition. It won't be easy. And you'll pay through the nose for it. No regrets, right?
And another thing. Get there on time, or even early, at the Great American Music Hall show: You'll want to get to see Thee Commons. A very cool BURGER RECORDS psychedelic cumbia-punk trio from East LA. More on Thee Commons here:
And for you people across the pond who can't make it. Dig it. Dan Stuart is out playing gigs in Europe. Catch him while you can. He's trailed by a bunch of VH1 suits trying to get more trash on Green On Red for their Beyond The Music series. I tried to tell them, "Hey man, we're not total losers, we played All Tomorrow's Parties for goodness sake!" But they weren't having it.
Rock out with your socks out,
THU APR 14 THE CREPE PLACE SANTA CRUZ CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets: $15 advance / $20 at door
FRI APR 15 GREAT AMERICAN MUSIC HALL SAN FRANCISCO CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets $19
SAT APR 16 HUMBOLDT BREWS ARCATA CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets $15
SUN APR 17 HOPMONK TAVERN SEBASTOPOL CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets $20. Doors at 6:00 PM. Show at 7:00
THU APR 21 HARLOW'S SACRAMENTO CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets: $18 advance / $20 Doors at 8:00 PM.
FRI APR 22 BOOTLEG THEATER - BAR STAGE LOS ANGELES CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets $13, $15
SAT APR 23 LOBERO THEATRE SANTA BARBARA CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express with Garland Jeffreys. Tickets $39.
FRI APR 29 BANK & BLUES DAYTONA BEACH FL USA Chuck Prophet (Solo). Tickets $11.24. Doors at 7:00 PM. Show at 8:00 PM.
SAT APR 30 TROPICAL HEATWAVE TROPICAL BREEZE STAGE YBOR CITY FL USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express. Tickets $35.
SUN MAY 01 IOTA CLUB & CAFE ARLINGTON VA USA Chuck Prophet (Solo). Tickets $20. Doors at 7:30 PM. Show at 8:30 PM.
SAT JUN 11 NOVATO FESTIVAL OF ART, WINE AND MUSIC HOPMONK TAVERN STAGE NOVATO CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express.
SUN JUL 17 HOPMONK TAVERN NOVATO BEER GARDEN NOVATO CA USA Chuck Prophet (Solo).
FRI JUL 22 FRIDAY NIGHT LIVE AT THE PLAZA CLOVERDALE DOWNTOWN PLAZA CLOVERDALE CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express.
SUN SEP 04 RANCHO NICASIO NICASIO CA USA Chuck Prophet & Mission Express.