Megan Sue Hicks

Anthology Recordings is gearing up to shine an in-depth light on a collection of rare psych, rock, and folk nuggets sourced from 70’s Australia. Compiled by countryman Mikey Young (Total Control, Eddy Current Suppression Ring) and Anthology’s own Keith Abrahamsson, Follow The Sun drops May 5th and is sure to soundtrack a score of fazed-out summers. Following the premiere of Mata Hari’s blissed garage cut “Easy” comes Megan Sue Hicks’ “Hey, Can You Come Out and Play, ” a slice of loner folk that evokes the likes of Kathy Heidman and Linda Perhacs, tailor made for rolling down some desert highway. Check out the video, with illustrations by Total Control’s James Vinciguerra, below. words / c depasquale

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Our weekly two hour show on SIRIUS/XMU, channel 35, can be heard twice every Friday – Noon EST with an encore broadcast at Midnight EST.

SIRIUS 476: Jean Michel Bernard – Générique Stephane ++ Trailer Trash Tracys – Candy Girl (demo version) ++ Omni – Wire ++ The Vaselines – Son of A Gun ++ Ty Segall – Caesar ++ Indian Wars – If You Want Me ++ Parquet Courts – Paraphrased ++ Les Olivensteins – Fier De Ne Rien Faire ++ The Bellys – Chow Chow ++ Zig Zags – Wastin’ My Time ++ Wire – After Midnight ++ White Fence – Growing Faith ++ John Cale – Cable Hogue ++ Willie Loco Alexander – Gin ++ Apache Sun – Club Noir ++ Sam Evians – Sleep Easy ++ Mndsgn – Yawn ++ Daniel Patrick Quinn – Channelkirk and Surrounding Area ++ Mariah – Shinzo No Tobira ++ James Pants – Spaces ++ Gary Numan – M.E. ++ The Soft Moon – Total Decay ++ Gary Numan – Metal ++ Deerhunter – Ad Astrad (AD edit) ++ Moodymann – Remember ++ Daughn Gibson – Bad Guys ++ Willis Earl Beal – Flying So Low ++ Cass McCombs – Bum Bum Bum ++ Chris Cohen – Torrey Pine ++ Lightmyth – Across The Universe ++ Lower Dens – I Get Nervous (Aquarium Drunkard Session) ++ Lower Dens – To Die In La (Aquarium Drunkard Session) ++ Lower Dens – Electric Current (Aquarium Drunkard Session) ++ Lower Dens – Quo Vadis (Aquarium Drunkard Session) ++ Lower Dens – Tea Lights (Aquarium Drunkard Session) ++ Amen Dunes – Spirits Are Parted

*You can listen, for free, online with the SIRIUS three day trial — just submit an email address and they will send you a password.
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How many Deadheads does it take to screw in a light bulb? 1000. One to do it and 999 to tape it.

There was a time when yellow envelopes stuffed to the gills with Maxell XL2s and patchouli-soaked trading lists were the norm. Maybe those packages would lead to being invited to a fellow head’s apartment or dorm room for all-night dub sessions or back room trades at your local head shop. With those tapes came new friendships, show and band recommendations, and stories. Those stories came in both the handed down and first hand varieties — always a little embellished or missing parts, until you heard them again from the same source or another. Tour mayhem, good times (excessive and transcendental), life lessons, our boys (THE DEAD!) and more — no subject was left untouched. Over the decades, tapes turned to CD-Rs, CD-Rs turned to torrents and MP3 downloads. Technology advanced, but the stories? They began to disappear.

Thankfully, when archive.org was founded they started to be collected again in the comments sections. Sure, most people ignored the comments in their frenzy to get another show into their ears, but some of us read intently. 
As is always the case, Deadheads adapted to new technological platforms quickly, utilizing social media the way followers of the band always have: to connect to each other. In late 2014, in a Grateful Dead fan group on Facebook, I came across a note from a guy stating he was looking to find his tape collection a new home. I met Charlie C. in Cape Cod a few weeks later. As we sat at a bar with his wife (who was astonished to meet such a young guy so into the Dead) he regaled me with story after story of shows he saw. I still get goosebumps when I think about him sharing an anecdote about Pigpen sauntering past him at his first show, right before he jumped on stage to deliver one of his nightly sermons. Later, we went out to his car and he handed me over his entire collection of tapes -– hundreds of them, meticulously labeled with unique covers and a story contained within each one. In a separate bag were old issues of Relix, Golden Roads, Dupree’s, and Deadbases, along with a stash of stickers and pins. It was the kindest gift I’ve ever received from a “stranger.”

But of course, Charlie’s no longer a stranger. Now he’s one of my best friends. An email or text from him is bound to be filled with laughs or a list of other things to check out. This ‘zine is dedicated to him. He put me on the crazed path of collecting Dead tapes again for the first time since 2000. All that resulted in our second Dead Notes zine, available for download in its entirety here. There’s more to come: there are still countless pieces of unseen artwork and stories from the Dead community yet to be shared. words/d norsen

Download: Grateful Dead Notes Zine #2

On April 20th at the Bootleg Theatre in Los Angeles we are excited to partner with Liberty Hair Farm to present Grateful Shred who include members of Cass McComb’s band, Neal Casal’s Circles Around the Sun, and local favorites Austin McCutchen and Mapache. We have two tickets for who ever can tell us their best and or favorite Grateful Dead joke. The winner will be contacted on April 19th.

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Welcome to Aquarium Drunkard’s recurring Transmissions podcast. Today, we’re launching a new mini-series in collaboration with the folks at Mexican Summer. Last month, we sent AD’s Jason P. Woodbury to Marfa Texas to attend Mexican Summer’s Marfa Myths Festival, a four-day, multi-disciplinary celebration of art in music in West Texas, which resulted in his essay, “There’s No Such Thing As Nowhere.”

While out there, Woodbury hooked up with a number of Myths performers to record interviews. For this episode, he sat down with the Los Angeles-based four-piece the Allah-Las, to discuss the group’s record store roots, sound, and Reverberation Radio, their long-running online radio series.

Transmissions Podcast :: Allah-Las

Subscribe to the Aquarium Drunkard podcast on iTunes or via RSS feed.

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New Orleans. Aquarium Drunkard presents Kamasi Washington at One Eyed Jacks / May 4th, 5th and 6th. We have a few pairs of tickets to give away to AD readers. Into it? Leave a comment with your favorite jazz lp from 1968. Tickets available, here.

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Edie Sedgwick famously said she wanted “to turn the world on just for a moment.” Ciao! Manhattan, the 1973 film written and directed by Warhol Factory associates John Palmer and David Weisman, might be the closest she ever came to that ambition.

It’s a complicated film, a semi-fictionalized account of Edie as Susan Superstar, who travels from the Warhol’s New York to a drained swimming pool in Santa Barbara. In some ways, it serves as an elegy for the Sixties itself, and more literally so for Edie, who passed away from an overdose in 1971, just after the film was finished.

On Record Store Day, April 22, Light in the Attic Records/Cinewax will release the film’s soundtrack for the first time. Featuring counter culture stars like Richie Havens, John Phillips, and Skip Battin (Flying Burrito Brothers/The Byrds), the soundtrack also features rare recordings by Kim Milford, whose song “Justice” is a highlight, the synthesizer soundscapes of Factory “star” and model Gino Piserchio, and dialogue from the film. The LP is limited to 2,000 copies on “Angel Shock” color vinyl, features audio and film clips remastered from the original transfers, and includes a 20-page book with archival photos and an interview with writer/director David Weisman by Aquarium Drunkard writer Jason P. Woodbury.

Presented here, an excerpt from those notes, an attempt to capture both the psychedelic spirit of the era and also the sadness and tragedy that defined Sedgwick’s life.

Ciao! Manhattan is, first and foremost, about Edie.

Edie Sedgwick, socialite and heiress, the most dazzling of Andy Warhol’s Superstars. The true “It Girl” of the Pop Art age. Warhol projected his showbiz dreams on Edie. It’s speculated that Bob Dylan wrote “Just Like a Woman” and “Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat” with her in mind; it’s certain Lou Reed wrote The Velvet Underground’s “Femme Fatale” about her. Edie inspired a particular kind of devotion.

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Coco Hames likes to crack wise about “getting away with it” — as if her career as a musician and record store is some trick she’s pulling off. But the singer/songwriter’s newly released self-titled solo debut is no fluke or chance occurrence. Though it’s her first for Merge Records and first released under her own name, it’s a work of undeniable craftsmanship, honed over years. The LP finds Hames expanding on the garage rock of her band The Ettes, maintaining that group’s direct punchiness, but adding sun-dappled country soul, R&B, jangle rock, and classic Spector Wall of Sound pop to the mix. Twangy and sly, the album reflects Hames’ roots in the South. It’s easy to hear noted inspirations  Patsy Cline and Bobbie Gentry in songs like “I Do Love You” and “You’re Calling Me,” but Hames still rocks too, particularly on the charging “I Don’t Wanna Go.” Though it’s not easy to categorize — pitched somewhere between a power pop record and a traditional singer/songwriter outing — it feels whole and natural within Hames’ discography. The same spirit she caught on tape with The Ettes is here, only matured and refined.

Coco Hames :: You’re Calling Me

AD caught up with Hames over the phone from her place in Memphis. The conversation was freewheeling, with Hames bouncing from Simpsons and Broad City references to discussing writing songs for Tom Scharpling’s long-running comedy/music program The Best Show, covering Tommy Stinson, and coming into her own as a solo artist. This conversation had been condensed and edited for clarity. Coco Hames is available now via Merge Records. 

Aquarium Drunkard: You’ve been writing songs for a long time. Have these songs been kicking around in your head for some time now?

Coco Hames: I would say maybe half of them. Some of them were maybe gonna be on the next Parting Gifts record; one of them is fifteen years old. Straight up I wrote it when I was…oh, yeah twenty. I was kind of like, it was time, you know? I was just ready to make a record. The Ettes sort of petered out — I guess we broke up — but Poni [Silver] and I are still really good friends. I remember, talking with [Reigning Sound and Parting Gifts songwriter] Greg Cartwright, and he told me, “You get tunnel vision when you’re in a project like that.” As individuals we’re human beings and we all have stuff that we want to do that doesn’t just exist in this vacuum of the band and that’s okay.

After the band ended, there were like two years where I wasn’t really writing songs for myself. I wrote songs for Gary the Squirrel on The Best Show. That was fun, but I didn’t feel like I needed to do anything else. But eventually I was like, “Yeah, I’m a songwriter, this is what I do, and I love it. I think maybe I should put some songs out.”