knock knock!

     I’ve been collecting these little wind-up automatic instrument-player guys called ‘Knockman Family’ since I recieved two of them as christmas gifts. From left to right in the photo above is the ‘Banjo player,’ who actually strums his three tunable strings; the ‘drummer,’ who beats on his own head; the cymbal guy, who hops up and down hitting his cymbals together; the ‘weird ridged fish’ player, who turns in circles, causing a marble to make ‘weird ridged fish’ noises; and the ‘xylophone’ guy, who does a sort of hula, causing the mallet to hit the tuned tines in his stomach. I did a bit of research into the design team behind them, Maywa Denki, and found that they’ve released several books that deal very specifically with things that I’m way into, and which I’d be very interested in owning. The problem is, the entire site is in japanese, and there doesn’t appear to be a way to order these books. I’m hoping someone might know of a place that deals with import books? Or maybe can tell me what the Japanese on the books page or any of the individual book pages says (The only English says ‘Please crick each book.’)? I don’t know. The main store site is here. Any suggestions are welcome. I tried going through
thier distribution company, Cube, but they only carry bizarre, inexplicable toys, no books.

     Several years back I almost bought a Beatles-related CD that I’ve now forgotten the name of. I’m hoping someone might remember it. Supposedly George Martin assembled a group of the best ‘soundalikes’ for each of the original Beatles, had them learn an album’s worth of Lennon / McCartney compositions that The Beatles never put to tape, and then recorded the whole mess on vintage gear at Abbey Road. I’ve always regretted passing it up the one time I saw it for sale, simply because I’m curious as to how closely they came to replicating the sound. If you know what I’m talking about, please let me know.

     In my previous post about Emitt Rhodes, I mentioned an interview in the current issue of Scram Magazine. Well, I finally received my copy, and here are two things I’ve learned about Emitt Rhodes:


Q: What other instruments do you play besides guitar, piano, bass and drums?
A: Nothing. Is there anything? For me it’s 1-4-5. For me it’s Pythagorean Theorum. It’s mathematics. I love Pythagorus. Everyone else in rock n’ roll loves Pythagorus too, even if they don’t know it. I’m just telling you that Pythagorus was a wonderful guy. He lived a long time ago. Nobody knows him and nobody cares.

He proceeds to mention Pythagorus twice more during the interview.

2.) He’s not very tactful, or ‘P.C.’ for that matter:

Q: What was it like working with Curt Boettcher in the studio?

A: Well, Curt Boettcher was a gay guy!

Q: Yeah, but what was he like?

A: He was just gay.

Q: He liked those high-pitched vocals, a lot of harmonies….

A: Yeah, he wanted to fuck me in the butt.

Q: …well that was awkward.

A: No, it’s just not what I do. (laughs)

Q: Did you make music with Curt?

A: Yeah, I kinda wrote music. And I’m sorry Curt, but my butt is my territory.

Q: So Keith Olsen was more the guy that you…

A: Yeah, Keith Olsen was the straight of the two. I like Curt Boettcher, but I’m just not gay.

     Not a terribly endearing interview. His first record is still ridiculously good, though.

     A long time ago I posted asking for any weird variations of the birthday song that you might know of. This one recently came to my attention. The end of line three is supposed to represent ‘you folks.’ Sickening.

“Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes,
Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes,
Hippo, Birdie, Deer, Ewe, Fox,
Hippo, Birdie, Two Ewes!”

This was recently sent via my mail form:

“Iwant to tolkomg about peace and love”

…and 3 minutes later:

“Can wee tolking about peaca and love”

No one ever includes a return address when they use that form.


  • Chris Graves of humorous bassist fame recommended an application called ‘WWW File Share Pro,’ which makes sharing files ridiculously easy. You simply choose which folders to share and it serves up a right-click-save-as-able html listing that anyone can pull up via your IP address.
  • I’ve been alerted to the existence of a New Pornographers B-SIde – ‘Turn,’ which was apparently only available on the Japanese release of ‘Electric Version.’ Anyone out there have an mp3 of this?
  • It ocurred to me a few minutes ago that big awards shows usually do those retrospectives honoring nominee’s who’ve passed away over the year since the last broadcast. Did anyone see if Eliott Smith was mentioned during the Oscars? Or do you have to win to be included?
  • Finally, I know that there’s got to be some way to get around ‘authenticating’ WinXP. I just haven’t found it yet…