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Oct. 18th, 2016

Yeah I'm a Beatnik So What?

Here's a new song from me, a spooky instrumental with some deranged ramblings on top. Ken Nordine fans may dig this.


Jul. 2nd, 2016

Mangled Apricot Hellbeast... a Very Short Musical Declamation

Here's a goofy little piece I composed and recorded for a video production company. I titled it after a funny tweet about Donald Trump.


Jun. 6th, 2016

Unremarked-upon Excellence

Here's another appearance I made on an album by a group I really admire. Derrick Fore, who I met at the blind school in Texas, did amazing work under the Farrago Ensemble name. He got incredible players together, just fantastic musicans to the last. I'm humbled to have contributed. It looks like he's moving on to another chapter now, which I can understand, since his excellent work seems to have gone entirely unappreciated by anyone except his friends. I really don't understand the music business. Music seems to have nothing to do with it.

Anyway, here's a song I sang and played guitar on.


May. 29th, 2016

Moist Towelettes

Here's my vocal on the new Rudy Schwartz album! It's out now! I am so proud to be on an RSP album I just can't even.

I'm the towelette salesman... "Hello sir, good afternoon..." etc. Joe Newman sings the part of the obstinately purchase-resistant shoe salesman.


May. 3rd, 2016

Soundcloud May Start Charging

I heard soundcloud is going to make some changes and I don't know if it's going to limit my friends' ability to download tracks. I hope not. You might want to grab whatever you want now, though, just in case. I don't care if friends download stuff for free. My experience with subscription services is that they never pay small artists like me, anyway.

I once got a notice from Spotify saying I'd had several thousand plays and was due some royalties... 17¢. You can't apply for a payment until you hit a dollar, though, so I may have to wait a couple of years.

New song: King Rat


All tangled up in glorious of fur
Down in the darkness where the frightful things confer

A writhing tangle, a hundred glowing eyes
Lurching sideways, almost paralyzed

Chew the obvious and spit out the obscure
Without sickness there can be no cure

Let there be squirming and let there be desire
The lowest gutter to the highest burnt out spire

Let the darkness come and purify the day
Let the earth arise and push the sky away

Gather everything and tear it down to shreds
Let the housekeepers tremble in their beds

Surface dwellers the day is nearly here
When you shall fly like dogs into the arms of fear

Put your knitting down and dream a different dream
Have the courage and the faith to finally scream

To the heavens that forsake you
And partake in the unwinding
With your brothers

From the under
From the under

The underneath

Feb. 29th, 2016

Behold! The Master Cleanser!

Well, despite my best efforts to do nothing, it appears that I'm working on another album, which I'm currently thinking I'll call Yeah But No Really.

Here's the first preview. I started writing and recording The Master Cleanser and started recording it in 2005... just finished it up today. Finishing the lyrics was, as always, the main sticking point.

It's my ode to Stanley Burroughs, the messianic quack behind The Master Cleanser, a completely non-scientific diet that I—like every other counterculture musician from Austin—have of course done at some point. (Mr. Burroughs was convicted of practicing medicine without a license and killing one of his "patients.")

It doesn't follow his ideas that closely... it's more of a parody of New Age grandiosity, but I do believe that an untrustworthy narrator should be made as convincing as possible, so I will be greatly pleased if someone somewhere thinks the song is dead serious.

Feb. 17th, 2016

A Chestnut From the Vaults... Iron Door

Here's a new song... actually a very old song. I wrote it in 1986 and put it on Echolalia, the very first cassette tape I made. I used to give it to everyone I met and sell it in Austin music shops. I recorded this new version over the last two days. It's odd working on a song I wrote so long ago... it's like collaborating with a stranger.

Today I feel
From the top of my head
To the soles of my feet
Like I'm dead in the street

The razor sunshine
Isn't going to stop
I will faint if I don't drop
Into the pet shop

Where a litter of terriers
Is even more scarier
Than all of those people

Do these nice puppies have eyes?
I was just told
They're three minutes old

Will puppy learn to see
When it's time to lick off the slime?

Mollywog, I tarantula you
Will you please let me in?
Can I please share your skin?

When I hear that iron door slam
And I'm cuddled up snug
I'm as happy as a clam

If I may be so bold
Let's float in the hot and cold
Before it gets old

Do these nice puppies have eyes?
I've just been told
They're three minutes old

Will puppy learn to see
When it's time to lick off the slime?

Jan. 11th, 2016


Goodbye, Mr. Ed

Well, everybody knows how much I love David Bowie. I have been immersed in his work since I was a child.

It's too much to take in all of a sudden. I'm still mostly numb. It hasn't really sunk in.

Plus I have this weird thing where I find it hard to feel that people have died if I don't see the body or grieve with others at a ceremony. It's like they went to Australia and I can't reach them on the phone. I'm sure it's going to hit me at some point. Reading other people's responses on LJ and FB helps make it real to me.

I hadn't got Blackstar yet, so I downloaded it today. I don't think I have the heart to listen to it yet.

I'm sure I'll write more about this. But not yet.

Sep. 26th, 2015


You're Blasé

Here's a new ukulele tune. I've officially started recording my uke album. The working title is For Crying in the Night.

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