Monday, December 20, 2010

Gimme Some Shelter

Along time ago in the small village of Twinderbe there was an awfully mean old man named Mr. Fudderstick. He hated children whom he deemed to be rotten. The truth be told, he hated all children. Good or bad. It didn't really matter. He had no time for their skipping, jumping or laughing. He had no time for any of it.

It was the rotten children, however, that he hated most. He despised these children more than anything any the world. His system for determining "rotten" remains unknown. On numerous occasions, he has stated that he has a secret formula that he uses. It is unknown if the "formula" is a mathematical one or some sort of elixir... but it is known that this formula is right about 86.7% of the time.

And every year, on the shortest day of the year, based on his formula, he sneaks into the homes of rotten children throughout the village. To keep their children safe, the people of Twinderbe lock their doors and windows. What the villagers do not know, however, is that Mr. Fudderstick enters through the chimneys of their homes. Sure it not the most clean entry, but it is an entry that is rarely locked. He has been burnt on a few occasions but this does not deter him from his mission.

Mr. Fudderstick gathers the rotten children and puts them in his basement. Over the next day or so, each child is ground-up in a big masher machine.

The mashed-up children are then boxed and sold to a local toy manufacture, Mr. Rouchethomme, who uses Mr. Fudderstick's mystery concoction as stuffing for toy animals and dolls and for paint on race cars and doll houses. If there is any left then Mr. Rochethomme uses that as filler for his famous winter cookies. He gives the cookies away for free at his store.

'Tis the season...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Way We Were

It was a dark and stormy night. It was a long, long, long time ago. It was in a life-space that is now far, far, far away where two star-crossed humans alike in dignity and humility first became one. It was once upon this time that Cabo Joe and Chop-Chop came together to change the fate of no one. It was here that the mysterious shot was fired from the grassy knoll to falsely change a generation of music. The year was 1993.

Both Cabo Joe and Chop-Chop attended a small liberal arts college. In 1993, during their junior year, they happen to get placed in the same dormitory residence. They had never met before. Cabo Joe was a scooter rider. At the time, Chop-Chop had the same disdain for scooter riders that he does for Prius drivers today. Chop-Chop worked at a local Pizzeria and had little time for the happenings on the college campus. It was quite unlikely that the two would ever meet.

The chance meeting only occurred because of the ingenious thinking of a residence counselor. The residence counselor was responsible for review housing applications and making decisions on whom should room with who based on these applications. It was his wisdom, that would change rock'n roll history forever. The counselor noticed that Cabo Joe and Chop-Chop were both raised in the same small town in the Inland Empire in Southern California. Additionally, they listed music as being their ultimate passion and listed similar favorite bands. The list of bands included, The Violent Femmes, The Smiths, Robin Hitchcock, Camper Van Beethoven and The Chameleons.

The January moon was hidden by clouds. There was rain. It was quite the torrential down pour... or it was completely dry. Both of our memories are rather foggy on this point right now. Only a few months prior, Chop-Chop had come to be known by his nom-de-plum. In September of 1992, at the start of his Junior year, Chop-Chop roomed with a gentleman named Trit Falcner. Cabo Joe and Trit had been friends since their first days on campus as Freshman. On their first day in the new living situation, Trit recorded the outgoing message for their answering machine. The outgoing message was "Yankee Joe and Chop-Chop are not in, leave a message." At the time, Chop-Chop was unaware. Slowly over the next couple of weeks he had to field many questions related to are you "Yankee Joe" or "Chop-Chop". Given the option, Tanner Smith (Chop-Chop's birth name), chose Chop-Chop... and the rest, as they say, was history.

Rutherford Jones Metlock, was the scooter mod-ster that was clueless to his own vilification on campus. In his five semesters of college, Rutherford or "Joe" as he was called since elementary school went through 7 roommated in just five semesters on campus. The reasons for the exceptionally high number of roommate are extremely benign ranging from death in the family, loss of financial aid to drug overdose. None of them were really Joe's fault or issues. He still, however, became something of a pariah on campus.

Trit or "Yankee Joe" began to grow sick of dorm life and in January petitioned the school and was ultimately allowed to find housing off campus. With Trit moving out, Chop-Chop was thrown into the "need housing" pool. And this is when fate would rule and a residence counselor would assign Rutherford (AKA Joe) and Chop-Chop to their path towards rock star unification.

Upon hearing the outgoing message on the voice mail, Rutherford (AKA Joe) quickly re-recorded it as, "CABO Joe and Chop-Chop are not in, leave a message." And that was that. From what could have been the "Rutherford and Tanner Band", "Cabo Joe and Chop-Chop" emerged like fiery phoenix lighting up the sky of Rock'n Roll history.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Irreconcilable Indifference.

Irreconcilable Indifference.

As a cardinal in the church of Rock'n Roll, I recently have found myself sonically agnostic. It is with a painless lack of interest that I announce my resignation as a full-time member of Cabo Joe and Chop-Chop.

I've spent that past couple of days meeting with lawyers. One of the lawyers represented my, while the rest presented Chop-Chop, Mean Rock Stars (our record label), Harvey (our manager), and Potato Recordings (the Studio that we record in). Needless to say, the settlement is not optimal for me.

1. I relinquish the right to use the name Cabo Joe outside of promoting a Cabo Joe & Chop-Chop record, concert, promotion, or product.
2. I am forbidden from participating in promoting Cabo Joe & Chop-Chop records, concerts, promotions, products or merchandise.
3. Chop-Chop will be responsible for fulfilling our existing obligations as Cabo Joe & CHop-Chop to our record label, management and recording studio. Except,
4. I am required to write and record at least two songs per album (collections of 10 songs or more) for next 10 years or 5 albums (which ever occurs first).
5. I must not record any music as myself or with another band for the next 6 months.
6. I must refrain from any comment, critique, criticism, opinions, sarcasm or slander of my former band and/or its current, future, or former members.

So, there it is. To paraphrase the Go-Gos and Fun Boy Three: My lips our sealed. Here is a link to the lyrics to this great song. The song conveys what I am feeling but that I am legally unable to say.

- (just) Joe

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Fast Times

I recently reconnected with MC Lil Chop's Mom, Button Chop. The two of us split from each other during the recording of our first album. As a result, our first album was never released in its entirety. I've never really talked about what happen.

If you are a Cabo Junkie (this what our fans like to be known as), you know that we stopped working on our debut album so that we could do the rpmchallenge 2008. I have never publicly spoken about why we did this.

In 2007, we were working hard on our first album. It was me and Cabo Joe with my wife, Button Chop, and her best friend, Skoshi. The process of writing the album was not a joyful one... to say the least. In January of 2008, Button left me and took MC Li'l Chop with her. Skoshi then quickly left the band.

So, there we were. We had a some demos and some half-finished songs... but no album. Then we heard about the RPM challenge. The idea is to write and record an album in the Month of February. We did that and the result was Wreck Oar Dings. We've since competed in the challenge every year... and we plan to do so again this year.

After Wreck Oar Dings, we went back and looked at the recordings that we had from our debut album. We added a few new songs, took some of the demos and completed a few of the songs. The result was Olive Few. So, Olive Few is the closest you will ever get to hearing our first album.

But, I digress. The important part of the story is that Button and I have reconnected. I'm actually writing song with her and working on recordings. It looks likes Skoshi might even come back for a few songs or possibly full-time.

Everything is going great... EXCEPT, Cabo won't stop calling Button, "Yoko". I've tried to explain that Yoko did NOT break-up the-up the Beatles. Drugs and Egos broke up the band. Whatever. Hopefully, he will be ready to rock again when we go to the studio next week.

Chop-Chop out!