Saturday, June 28, 2008

Midnight Man

Happy Birthday, baby!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

I Sang a Song For the Glory of the Beauty of You

Excess is in my nature. Whether it is stress, work, or a good Chilean wine.

Excess in in my nature.

Here's one of my excesses, Angela Ryan:

Thursday night in the universe...

I've been pretty up front about my love of Neil Young's work.
I've been pretty up front about my love of Nick Cave's work.

They both speak to me.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Hard Day

And this is what I chose to listen to.

More Grege Dulli. More me. More you.

Fuck it.

The lyrics are not indicitive of my state of mind, but they are poignant. A feeling, a mood, but not the end-all-be-all, and certainly not literal.

Don't ever believe anything you read here, unless you know me and can ask me about it.

And then doubt the answer.

Unless you know that I never lie.

Fuck it.

Sibyl, beautiful, radiant and my friend.

Do you think she's beautiful?
Or, do you think she's evil?

She's not evil at all, as far as I know...

You don't get to listen tonight because I don't feel like giving anyone free music. So, just read.

And think.

It's poetry.

"Tonight, tonight I say goodbye
To everyone who loves me
Stick it to my enemies, tonight
Then I disappear
Bathe my path in shining light
Set the dials to thrill me
Every secret has its price
This one's set to kill

Too loose, too tight, too dark, too bright
A lie, the truth, which one should i use?
If the lie succeeds
Then you'll know what I mean
When i tell you i have secrets
To attend

Do you think I'm beautiful?
Or do you think I'm evil?
Will you take me for a ride?
The one that never ends
Too loose, too tight, too dark, too bright
A lie, the truth, which one shall I use?
If the lie succeeds
Then you'll know what I mean
When I tell you I have secrets
To attend

Tonight, tonight I say goodbye
To everything that thrills me
As I throw the chains
I forged in life
To shatter on the floor

As I dream all the evidence
Is piling up against me
As I breathe all the essence rare
Is falling off the vine
And if you knew, just how smooth
I could stop it on the dime
You could meet me at the
Scene of the crime"

Sixty more hours, and then I'm happy...

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Today's Lesson

On Friday, I participated in the closest thing I've ever done to a group shoot in a long, long time.

But this one was special.

My Brother From Another Mother, Chip Willis (see link to the right) was in town and had a wonderful hotel room and invited me to shoot there inbetween shoots that he was doing.

When I showed up, the people he had assembled were astounding in talent. Aeric (see link to the right), Tito (see link to the right), and my old pal the "cat killer", Tanya. And Lauren came in from Raleigh, also a very talented photographer...

...and all of them great friends.

I was shooting Scar, who I worked with three and a half years ago (and a favorite of mine) and my MUA was Anna, who is one of my new favorites. We do good work together. We've killed shoots together with Mosh and Angela Ryan and this was to be our hat-trick. It was.

It was odd shooting with four amazing photographers in the room, although I've done it before with Chip, Lauren and Tito individually. And Aeric got about three months worth of daily shots for his blog (check out his one of Scar and Chip posted today).

But as focused as I was, I also watched each of them shoot. We all have completely different styles and approaches, from lighting to angles to direction.

I feel blessed.


Scar from Friday. My little Buddha:

Nick Cave from today.


"Well, little Janie, she wakes up from a dream
A gun like a jawbone down the waistband of her jeans, oh yeah
Mr Sandman can recite today's lesson in his sleep
He says
There oughta be a law against me going down the street

Little Janie pipes up and she says, she says
We're gonna have a real cool time - tonight

All right

Down the back of Janie's jeans she had the jawbone of an ass
Mr Sandman runs around the corner
Trying to head her off at the pass
He sticks his head over the fence and yells
Something way to fast
It's a, it's today lesson
Something about the corruption of the working class

And little Janie wakes up on the floor and she says
We're gonna have a real cool time - tonight

Come on

Janie says we are all such a crush of want
Half-mad with loss
We are violated in our sleep and we weep
And we toss
And we turn
And we burn
We are hypnotised
We are cross-eyed
We are pimped
We are bitched
We are told such monstrous lies

Janie wakes up and she says, she says
We're gonna have a real cool time - tonight

Real cool time

Mr Sandman has a certain appetite for Janie in repose
He digs her pretty kness and that she is completely naked underneath all her clothes
He likes to congregate around the intersection of Janie's jeans
Mr Sandman the inseminator, he opens her up like a love-letter and enters her dreams

Little Janie wakes up and she says, she says
We're gonna have a real good time tonight, tonight, tonight, tonight, tonight
We're gonna have a real good cool time - tonight
C'mon, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon
We're gonna have a real cool time"

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Me, I Ain't Going Anywhere, Just Sit and Watch the Sun Come Up, I Like it Here

My old buddy, Sibyl, from this evening.

My old buddy, Nick Cave, from his latest masterpiece of a record, "Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!!"


"Albert goes west, he crossed the vast indifferent deserts of Arizona, oh yeah
He had a psychotic episode on a dude ranch that involved a bottle of ammonia
Henry, he went south and lost his way deep in the weeping forests of Le Vulva
He grew so wan, he grew so sick, he ended up in a bungalow sucking a revolver

The light upon your rainy streets offers many reflections
I won't be held responsible for my actions

Bobby, he goes north, then he goes east, then over to New Hampshire
Bobby is a cautious man, he walked into a Concord dive to drink a beer


Do you wanna dance?
Yeah, do you wanna move?
Yeah, do you wanna dance?
Do you wanna groove?

I said this world is full of endless abstractions
I won't be held responsible for my actions

Me, I ain't going anywhere, just sit and watch the sun come up, I like it here
I watch the people go ticking past, go hey hey hey, you know I gotta say I like it here

All right.

Sha la-la-la, sha la-la-la, sha la-la-la-la-la-la
Sha-la-la-la, sha la-la-la, sha la-la-la-la-la-la"

Endless abstractions sort of week. Had a hell of an evening with Chip last night (thanks Marko and Chris!). Dropped him off at Stacy's this morning for the "tornado shoot." Lauren is coming in tomorrow as is Sarah.

I wish my baby were here, too.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Monday, June 16, 2008


...except this.

And this makes me happy.

Guilty Pleasure

Steely Dan. The band. Not the dildo from "Naked Lunch." Ironic, esoteric motherfuckers. Easy on the ears but lyrically challenging.

They got by the man. And do everyday when they get played on the AOR stations.

Fagen and Becker's songs are about excess, heroin addiction and debauchery.

Set to swinging radio-friendly vibes.

From Wikipedia:

"It was originally speculated that the song was written about the Wake Forest University Demon Deacons, but in a Rolling Stone interview, Donald Fagen said "Walter and I had been working on that song at a house in Malibu. I played him that line, and he said, "You mean it's like, 'They call these cracker assholes this grandiose name like the Crimson Tide, and I'm this loser, so they call me this other grandiose name, Deacon Blues?' " And I said, "Yeah!" He said, "Cool! Let's finish it!""

And don't even get me started about "Doctor Wu" - their heroin dealer...and a reference from the excellent James Coburn James Bond rip-off film "Our Man Flint."

And they gained total indie cred when the Minutemen covered it on "Double Nickles on the Dime" way back when.


Did I mention that the name of the band was the name of a dildo in William Burroughs' "Naked Lunch?"

I probably mentioned that before...there's a theme here...

Very few people know that. But hats off to Fagen and Becker.

They are playing the Beacon Theatre here this week.

I won't be attending. But a bunch of dildos will be...

Natsuko. She's my Doctor Wu...sans heroin.

"This is the day
Of the expanding man
That shape is my shade
There where I used to stand
It seems like only yesterday
I gazed through the glass
At ramblers
Wild gamblers
Thats all in the past

You call me a fool
You say its a crazy scheme
This one's for real
I already bought the dream
So useless to ask me why
Throw a kiss and say goodbye
I'll make it this time
I'm ready to cross that fine line

I'll learn to work the saxophone
I'll play just what I feel
Drink scotch whisky all night long
And die behind the wheel
They got a name for the winners in the world
I want a name when I lose
They call Alabama the crimson tide
Call me Deacon Blues

My back to the wall
A victim of laughing chance
This is for me
The essence of true romance
Sharing the things we know and love
With those of my kind
That stagger the mind

I crawl like a viper
Through these suburban streets
Make love to these women
Languid and bittersweet
I'll rise when the sun goes down
Cover every game in town
A world of my own
I'll make it my home sweet home

This is the night
Of the expanding the man
I take one last drag
As I approach the stand
I cried when I wrote this song
Sue me if I play too long
This brother is free
I'll be what I want to be."

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Everyday Is Like Sunday...

Angela. Different. My goal.

Morrissey. The same.

"i'm just looking for a friend of mine..."

The last Joy Division post. For real. "Control" forced a new, but welcomed, resonance with me...

If you don't care about the band or the fact that "Interzone" is a William Burroughs book, well, the cinematography is stunning.

Jus' sayin'.

It's complicated. Just like everything else...

Friday, June 13, 2008

Anti Gear-Head

A friend of mine, who had a lot of cameras, recently sold a bunch of them. He loves cameras, but decided that there were too many hanging around that he never really used. His primary film camera is a Leica, and he shoots most of the editorial work he does with the two he has.

Two other friends of mine just bought into the Leica digital and it has become all-consuming for them. Everywhere they go, it goes.

I'm so not a gear-head. I'm happy with my little menagerie of misfit cameras. They are all different and do the job I want them to do. Currently in my arsenal:

- My beloved 35mm Pentax ZX-M
- My wonderful 35mm Konica Auto-Reflex Half-Frame
- My kick ass Mamiya 645 system w/ the Polaroid back
- My workhorse 35mm NIkon F5
- My extremely durable, but outdated Nikon D50 digital

And other than the many antique cameras I have, that's it.

Sometimes I worry when I show up for a gig that someone will pass judgement that I'm not whipping out the Hasselblad, or the whatever with the Leaf back, but you know, fuck it, I do really good work with my versatile collection of freaks.

The Pentax is my third. It's the third because it is an extension of my hand and brain. I can do anything with this camera.

The first passed away in a boating accident ("This was no boating accident!") somewhere between here and Boston in 1988. The camera flew out of my hand across the boat in a violent storm and hit the opposite wall 12 feet way and the body cracked in half. I was seasick, so at the moment I really didn't care. But when I took it to the repair shop in Boston the week after the storm, the guy said "You got insurance?" After I indicated that I didn't, he let it fall 4 feet into a trash can. Blam. Harsh, but lesson learned...

The second was stolen by some marauding drag queens at the launch party for an album called "Disco Divas" that a client of mine invited me to. I'm not so upset about the camera as I am about the roll of film that was in it from that night.

The third was given to me by a former girlfriend for Christmas in 2001. It's still here, and it recently took this shot of Carolyn:

The F5 doesn't get enough play, but I spoke to it tonight and promised to take it out for walkies more often.

The Konica I got off of eBay about a year ago with the intention of making it an in-camera diptych taking machine. Something to make me think before shooting. I've been so successful with it that a certain young talented female photographer has been using it a lot lately and is proving to be better at making them than I am.

The Mamiya is my high-tech baby. Three lenses and the Pola back. There is nothing like looking through the glass of those lenses. And the shots are magical.

Four days ago I dropped my Nikon digital and fucked up the lens - no big deal as you can get those toys for $189.99 at B&H, but I have missed it's simplicity and versatility this week. I need to either get that lens fixed or just get another one.

On the musical tip, the new NIN album, "The Slip" is pretty darn good, and I'm not even the biggest fan. Trent is giving it away for free at the official "Slip " site.

Check it out.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Shit. Lauren wins. Again...

6am up for corporate client video shoot this morning, me directing.

Driven to and from New Jersey.

Nuff said.

Saw Marko and Smiph tonight. Hadn't seen Smiph in quite some time. And she was right, she was a totally different Smiph. Listened more, talked less, still cute way around that.

The three of us talked about our common mentor and how he has this astonishing way of putting everything, no matter what, into perspective. A producer's nightmare, he.

I'ma gonna try to get up to see him next week, finances willing.

Came home to Joy Division's "Preston 28 February 1980" in the mailbox and it's almost through it's first play right now.

Thanks, Chris. I didn't even know it existed a week ago.

Marko and I late one night at his place being really fucking serious. With beers held tightly in synch. Probably, the seriousness was about Joy Division. Or something just as important. Like The Smiths.

Courtesy (and copyright) Cari.

Check out Marko's link to the right, He's one of the good guys...

...."Dance, dance, dance, dance, dance to the radio."


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Guided By Voices

When I have a bad day, Bob makes me feel better. Currently listening to "Same Place The Fly Got Smashed" and I feel better already. Lo-Fi for sure, but sometimes Lo-Fi genius is WAY better than Hi-Fi anything.

Appropriate. The right tool for the right time and the right sound and the right frame of mind.

Ever been to the Brooklyn Naval Yard's NYPD Tow Pound? I went twice today. Yep. Twice.

And it was completely and utterly MY FAULT.

New York City: when it works - like when you have a carbon monoxide leak, etc - it's fucking impressive. When it doesn't work - like when your car gets towed and you have to deal with slovenly city employees who would rather you just die than help you - it's a bureaucratic nightmare.

And it will fuck up your whole day.

At least it was ten degrees cooler today. At least it was a system with few rules, which after a while, surrenders your car to you, so you can illegally park again. At least my client didn't fire me for not showing up to work today.

Everything is fine. Everything is alright. Just like Pete's "kids."

Here's another take on the previously seen skirt and the grey wall. This is Sara Banks from Ontario. Make-up and hair and skirt by the aforementioned Meagan Marie.

We work well together under any circumstance.

Gotta go - Bob's singing about something like this:

"For Chrissakes, Charley
Send them your love
Pictures from happier times
When babies acted like babies
So did the grown-ups
The band played "We All Fall Down"
And some of us did..."

The opening stanza from "Skin Parade" - check it out.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

There Is a Certain Grace in Self-Destruction

I was gonna title this one "When the Routine Bites Hard" but then I woulda lost my proverbial bet with Lauren...

Another shot of Angela Ryan. I really tried to do something different with her. And I think we did (thanks, Anna!).

Skirt stolen from Meagan Marie. Thanks, baby...

I leave you with this dose of brilliance. Criminally out-of-print...

"Terminal Island" by Falling james and The Leaving Trains.

"Because I've already drowned in your eyes
Always left behind
I was planted in a field of depression
Just keeping an eye on the crows

Hello runway coming down
We can't hide in the underground

I've always loved you from afar
Overseas floats China on a raft of air
Maybe we'll be here tomorrow
A terminal island always surrounds us

There was a dance floor on the navy base
A kick under the table and a brush against your arm
Grey ships, stretching steeples rising from the bay
There is a certain grace in self-destruction..."

The Last Joy Division Post For a While

I promise.

I saw "Control" this afternoon. I know the story. The cinematography is phenomenal.

When's the last time you saw a black and white film about Joy Division? When's the last time you saw a black and white film, period?

She's lost control again...

The wonderful Angela Ryan. Candid shot.

This weekend I had a couple of breakthroughs...

...or so we'll see.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

I Put My Trust In You

Model: The ever and always wonderful Angela Ryan.
Make Up and Hair: Anna DeMeo.

'Nuff said...


Thursday, June 05, 2008

New Dawn Fades

I shared a few drinks tonight and stepped outside.

Thanks Chris, Cari, Tammy and Tim. And those dudes that had their asses kicked at pool at Fontana's.

Joy Division's "New Dawn Fades" has been going through my head all day and is playing on repeat right this second.

It is one of the best songs ever recorded, and my favorite Joy Division song - period.


And really, it's just a song and has nothing to do with my state of mind.


Scar. I miss her. She doesn't come to NYC enough...

"A change of speed, a change of style.
A change of scene, with no regrets,
A chance to watch, admire the distance,
Still occupied, though you forget.
Different colours, different shades,
Over each, mistakes were made.
I took the blame.
Directionless so plain to see,
A loaded gun won't set you free.
So you say.

We'll share a drink and step outside,
An angry voice and one who cried,
We give you everything and more,
The strains too much, can't take much more.
Oh, I've walked on water, run through fire,
Can't seem to feel it anymore.
It was me, waiting for me,
Hoping for something more,
Me, seeing me this time, hoping for something else."

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


I was reminded of some things today:

I was reminded that people only remember the bad times, never the good times. I was reminded that some people are relentless despite the law. I was reminded that if you don't make square with people, no matter how bad times are, especially involving money, they will fuck you, insult you and generally try to make you feel poorly. They will bring up death and debt - all for the sake of guilt in an effort to make you do something you physically cannot. I was reminded that some people cannot separate the personal from the business, no matter how highly you will always think of them.

I was reminded that I am not always right.

I was reminded how scary it is to be without anything, temporary or not - terrifying. I was reminded that one's real friends understand and always offer support. I was reminded that you can never escape your ghosts.

I was reminded how people squander opportunity that you offer them. I was reminded of the unprofessionalism of "Internet Professionals" (x2). I was reminded how human beings always wait until the last minute for fucking everything. I was reminded how sticky this city is in the Summer. I was reminded that I have no idea what to do next.

I was reminded that I need to go back to work, and I mean my work. I was reminded how landlords tend to want their money by the 5th of the month. I was reminded how great my overpriced neighborhood was when the blue-haired girl at the wine shop told me where to get the two-for-one Camel Lights. I was reminded how I underestimate the Joy Division fans in my neighborhood (parents of babies and "New Dawn Fades"? I think not...) when I went to rent "Control" and all the copies were gone.

I was reminded how fragile life is when I found out that Jim Jones, the off-and-on again guitarist for Pere Ubu, passed away on February 18th from a heart attack. I was reminded of the weekend that Jim spent with me in 1999, driving me all around Cleveland showing me every place that touched Ubu and that Ubu touched so that I could photograph them all. I was reminded of the photo I took of Jim taking a photo of the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame, a place where I doubt Ubu is represented.

I was reminded how bad it is to fuck up your knees and your glasses in the same day - blind and crippled, but all worth it.

I was reminded how great a photographer my friend Lauren is when I saw her black and white photos of Presley Roan and Billy Zoom at The Cat's Cradle, just last week, with me standing right behind her.

I was reminded how great a photographer my friend Michael (see link to the right) is when he presented me a signed print of a hotel in Tunisia, for my living room wall. Much needed.

I was reminded that life repairs itself, one day at a time, with little setbacks and speed-bumps, which call out to us to be patient and just let it happen. Or make it happen. Or something. Or not.

I was reminded how much I love this shot of Joe Strummer and Mick Jones from The Clash and Allen Ginsberg. I miss Joe and Mr. Ginsberg, even though he was kinda mean to me once in Providence, Mr. Ginsberg, that is. Regardless, I wish I'd taken it even though it's not really my style, but man, look at Joe's face. I stoles it from da Interwebs via this wonderful blog from fellow Brooklyn resident Ted Barron.

While reading Ted's blog, I was reminded that I am a record geek at heart, or as my boy Toby (see link to the right) and I have always said - "record boys."

I was also reminded how much I love this shot of Naomi and my "rare" Blondie 12".

I did take this one.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Lightening Rain

Ever wake up and $4,000 is missing from your bank account...?



Motherfuckers. Illegal-ass motherfuckers.

And now I gotta go through my tax attorney to get it back - 3-5 business days no doubt...

Good thing I didn't spend all the cash I had in my wallet last night during the weekly billiards-fest...

...oh well, I'll just have a smoke with my girl and weather the time waiting...