Monday, May 23, 2005

Hail The Boys and Girls of Western Maryland!

Last Saturday night, acquaintances from Frostburg, and Cumberland, MD stopped in Richmond to play at the Hollywood Grill on China Street in Oregon Hill. The players were Kenny Tompkins and Page France. Kenny is a singer- songwriter who is an excellent lyricist and crafter of pop melodies whose most recent album, The Beautiful Death of Everything, stayed in my stereo for months. Page France is a quintet consisting of 4 guys (Michael, Brian, Clint and a guy whose name I never caught) and a cute girl-y girl named Whitney. They are all indie-adorable, only 19 (I think), and judging by their earnest, searching and questioning lyrics (think a sweeter Pedro the Lion- or a Pedro with an angel singing backup and without the need for a heroin addiction) are all really nice to one another. Plus, Page France are pop magicians! Like Belle and Sebastian, they know just how long to wait b/f they bring in the tambourine, or the backing vocals. I got chills from two of their songs. Beautiful.

Kenny Tompkins, whom I know a little better than the members of Page France, is an excellent singer and songwriter (he obviously loves Conor Oberst) despite being too wrapped up in playing the role of Rock Star. As he told us during his set, he spent a big part of Saturday drinking a bottle of wine (imagine that! a guy on "tour" drinking heavily!!), and his set suffered as a result- not so much b/c of the grape but b/c he felt the need to tell us over and over how drunk he was. Damn good songs, damn common schtick. I guess the chills I've gotten from Kenny's music will remain a private experience a while longer.

Friday, May 06, 2005

A name and a reason.

This marks my first post to this blog. The name is in honor of my recently deceased sweetheart of a beast who I was lucky enough to have had in my life for 12 years. At 6 months old, "The Nose" was diagnosed with hip dysplasia and from what seemed a hell of a lot like day one, she and I were always in search of some sort of anodyne.

19th Century photography is littered with images of parents holding or sitting next to their deceased children. I am drawn to these images- I think mostly because I can't help but wonder how a person ever washes off the memory of holding, or sitting next to your dead child while a photographer takes your picture. For me, this lingering history is akin to how Germans must feel when they pass through areas where the Berlin wall used to be.

I buried Annabelle in my parents' backyard on April 5, 2005- a month ago. It is impossible to believe and nearly unbearable to think that there may come a time when I feel like I can have the film processed, and look at the pictures I took of her on that day.

Death, and Photography. Death and how we use photography to deal with death. Most likely, that is what this blog will be about. At least that's what it needs to be about today.