GOT CARRIED AWAY
Scotland's Trash Can Sinatras has been one of my favorite bands since they first hit America in 1990. Their album, Cake was one of the first two CDs I'd ever bought, unable to get them out of my head after seeing them perform at KROQ's Acoustic Christmas that year.
It's been 11 years since I'd last seen them live, and so it's fitting that I restart my love affair with them at an acoustic performance. They stopped in at Music Millennium today and performed a handful of songs: "Got Carried Away," "Easy Read," "All The Dark Horses," "How Can I Apply?," "The Safecracker," and "Weightlifting." It was well-attended, yet intimate, with singer Francis Reader sitting on the stage, backed up by a piano, two guitars, and a music egg. The simplicity of their graceful melodies are most evident in this kind of arena, and the late start was well worth it since all the tinkering meant they had crystal clear sound.
Of course, it's always a little weird to see that the core fanbase has aged with the band, and that we're all, well, getting old. There were two women in T-shirts with homemade TCS slogans across the chest in rhinestones that, really, should have known better. But then, Klingons of all varieties never really clue in, do they?
Before the show, I was able to meet Reader and give him a copy of Cut My Hair. It's a dorky ritual I have. Since I write with music in the background, I like to say thanks to the people who inspired me by hopefully giving them some entertainment back. In the case of the Trash Cans, they are also mentioned in the book and the last chapter, "Thrupenny Tears," is named after one of their songs. Reader flipped through it and saw the titles "Holidays in the Sun" and "You Are The Everything" and said he was glad to be in such good company. (Other people I have given the book to: Pete Townshend (not in person, but his office sent me a letter thanking me), Shirley Manson (got a nice postcard from her), Martin Rossiter from Gene, and Ian MacLagan from The Small Faces.)
I met the rest of the band after, and got them all to sign my Weightlifting CD. They were all very genial and friendly, something I remember from following them all over California with Benrus on the I've Seen Everything tour in 1993. I can't wait to see their full set tonight.
Afterwards, I saw the drummer, Stephen Douglas, talking to a middle-aged woman on the street. She was asking him where he was from, and when he said Scotland, she said, "Oh, the country overrun by wankers, huh?" I cringed at the clumsiness of it. Thankfully, Stephen knew that it was a Trainspotting reference and awkwardly let her off the hook, but what an embarrassing thing to say. (This was followed up by the site of the theatre showing Ghost in the Shell 2 declaring that it was "Japanimation!" on their marquee. Oy vey.)
Current Soundtrack: Minnie Driver, Everything I've Got In My Pocket; Sigur Ros, Breezeblock mix 8/20/2002
[to leave comments, click on the time-stamp below, then scroll down on the new page] – All text (c) 2004 Jamie S. Rich