Saturday, December 17, 2011

Everything Was Vonnegut

Meghan Chiampa and I made a website for the show we put on in September, Everything Was Beautiful and Nothing Hurt: A Tribute to Kurt Vonnegut Jr. You can watch all the original, Vonnegut-inspired pieces on

Acts included award-winning authors, poets, songwriters, a children's music band, an Eastern European  punk-funk group, and a shadow-puppet theatre reenactment of "Harrison Bergeron."

Enjoy, babies!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Manic Pixie Dream Girl Must Die

Eff you, new girl.

You know the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. That quirky, pretty, benignly "creative" female character in movies and television programs about brooding male protagonists who fear they're losing, or have lost the best years of their lives to their careers or failed relationships or stifling families or whatever. She shows up, spouts something bubbly and idealistic, drags the lead character on some off-beat adventure that breaks him out of his tired, square routine, and in the end, teaches him how to live

MPDGs are plot devices disguised as hippy chicks and punk rock girls. They are by definition one-dimensional and static characters. The coiner of the term "Manic Pixie Dream Girl," Nathan Rabin says "[MPDGs] don't live lives, they don't have jobs or careers, they just frolic and have fun and imbue people with a sense of life's infinite possibilities."

The Manic Pixie Dream Girl has ruined my life. People confuse me with her all the time.

Quick picture of me on paper:

  • I'm a poet and songwriter. I make most of my living doing things related to poetry and songs. 
  • I perform a lot in all sort of creative projects, from music videos to short films to multimedia shows to haunted houses.
  • I started a non-profit to increase youth poetry opportunities in Massachusetts
  • I've worked as a fine art model. 
  • I teach yoga.
  • I read Tarot cards.
  • I've never had a full-time job.

When I'm first introduced to people, my ten-second resume screams Manic Pixie Dream Girl. Since they've seen this character so often in movies and television, they can very easily imagine who I must be, and what role I'm meant to play in their lives. This makes my romantic life absolutely infuriating.

I can tell when a dude who's interested in me thinks I'm his MPDG. He gets all dreamy when I describe my lifestyle, imagining Woodstock and Monterey Pop when I talk about touring, when I'm often performing in coffee shops and bars and crashing on futons. A forty minute midnight walk home from a club that I make because I'm too broke for a cab is, for him, a wildly romantic bohemian adventure. He says things like, "and it's all because of you."

Invariably, when the dude catches his first glimpse of my ambitious and driven side, my financially responsible side, or my not-happy-and-full-of-joie-de-vivre-all-the-time side, the budding romance drops off the branch and rots.

Granted, this means I was talking to some pretty lame, unimaginative blokes. I've since learned to walk briskly in the other direction when I encounter these types. 

But then there is that part of me who does identify with the MPDG. I mean, I live a pretty unconventional life. I value art and human connection above most other things. I try as much as I can to live in the present. There's even a teeny tiny latently adolescent part of me who actually wants to be the MPDG. That part of me wants to be so full of vitality and love for life that people follow me around like I shed stardust. That part of me wants to believe in the MPDG. Maybe deep down, that part of me wishes my life were as simple as that of a plot catalyst. Or maybe that part of me hopes there's a MPDG out there for me somewhere, waiting to show me all the ways I've been blinding myself to the wonders of everyday life.

There's that speech in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind where rainbow-haired Clementine basically acknowledges that she understands how men tend to view her and tries to reject it. "Too many guys think I'm a concept, or I complete them, or I'm gonna make them alive," she says. "But I'm just a fucked-up girl who's looking for my own peace of mind. Don't assign me yours." With the reflective clarity of hindsight, the narrator Joel then instantly admits that he still thought she would save him even after she said that. (This is extra interesting because for most of the movie, she literally is a version of the character that exists in Joel's head -- oh Charlie Kaufman, I see what you did there.) 

I know we're not supposed to expect people to "save" us, but people often look for qualities they lack in their romantic partners. People do come into our lives who open doors and redirect our paths and help us grow. However, for any sort of lasting relationship to manifest, you have to grow because of (and with) the person beyond the shimmery quirks (and of course, you really have to grow because of you, but that's another post). What really makes a MPDG a MPDG is that she's more Dream than Girl, more symbol than character. That's fine, even necessary, in a shitty Hollywood movie like Elizabethtown, but if your life's going to imitate art, don't you want it to be better art than that?

Monday, November 21, 2011

European Tour Announced!

Exit, No Exit

Sean Patrick Mulroy and Jade Sylvan tour Europe

This January, American poets Sean Patrick Mulroy (New York) and Jade Sylvan (Boston) will embark on a European tour, performing their work to the multi-lingual literary crowds in the vibrantly budding spoken-word scenes of the E.U.

Over the past half-decade, Sean and Jade have each earned reputations as two of the most original and hardest working new artists to appear in spoken word.

Sean Patrick Mulroy is the author of The Pornography Diaries, a poetic study of love and sex as seen through the lens of media studies and film analysis, as well as a multi-media one-man show by the same name. He has toured extensively in North America and has participated in over 10 national poetry competitions.

Jade Sylvan is the author of The Spark Singer (Spuyten Duyvil Press 2009). She has toured with her work throughout the U.S., earning acclaim for her unique voice and attention to craft. She has facilitated numerous workshops on writing and teaching poetry across the country, and in 2011 she co-founded Mass LEAP (Massachusetts Literary Education and Performance), an organization to increase youth poetry opportunities in Greater Boston.

Exit, No Exit (yes, that’s a Sartre reference -- Sean’s an escapist and Jade’s a frustratedly anachronistic existentialist) tour dates include stops in Barcelona, Amsterdam, Reims, Dijon, and Paris.

A Tour Kickoff and Fundraiser performance will be held Friday, December 30th, at Gallery 263 in Cambridge, MA, with bands Gracious Calamity and ACLU Benefit.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

You Are Racist, Classist, and Xenophobic

This article was circling around my (very educated, well-read) Facebook network last week to much shock and appall. Apparently a holy man in India (yeah, one guy) has developed an unusual cure for sickness in infants that involves standing on them like so:

Here's the awesome non-generalizing, not-in-any-way racist commentary from the article:

"Although an isolated incident, it serves as a grim reminder of the dangerous religious traditions observed by many Hindus in India, many of which are done so for the health of their children."

This admittedly more visually-disturbing photo was used as the lead-in image for the article:

With this quote:

"When asked about [his methods], the guru claimed that he was merely speaking for God, and as such needs no other defense."

Way to diverge attention away from what's actually makes this a more visually unsettling image than the one above it. That baby is fucking starving. Oh yeah, poverty, first-world people. Like, actual poverty. That's sort of like that one time you were in college and had to live off ramen for a week so you could afford to buy weed, except instead of ramen it's your children dying and instead of weed it's your children dying.

Then the article segues seamlessly into a YouTube video of another crazy brown-person Voodoo ritual:

Nevermind that there have been no fatalities associated with this tradition, or that our infallible, forward-thinking Western medical system has a rich history of performing plenty of superstitious rituals on our own infants (check out the mortality rates of neonatal circumcision if you really want to throw up in your mouth), this is just some straight up racist, Orientalizing, Imperialist "Other"-gawking. "OMG look at those crazy brown people and their stupid polytheist, idolatrous traditions! Thank God (and by 'God,' we mean Jehovah, obv.) we have SCIENCE and deodorant. And we can like, outsource our shitty jobs to them and pay them $1.50 an hour and send our spoiled white sons and daughters on post-college month-long backpacking trips through their impoverished villages to 'discover themselves' and buy cheap drugs and silk saris so they can be super interesting and well-traveled at cocktail parties one day. Whoops, I'm late for yoga class!"

One of the posters in the dark abyss that is YouTube comments section actually calls the people in this video "savages." This is one of the comments voted all the way up to the top. Wow, I didn't realize Rudyard Kipling had Wifi on safari. And space-time-transcendent Wifi at that. It really is the future!

Honestly, until we're all making active steps to get modern healthcare/science/fucking food and clean water into the world's thousands of impoverished, parochial 4th world villages, I don't think we have any right to judge the rituals, procedures, and/or tools they've developed deal with disease, famine, and the myriad other unavoidable aspects of human existence.

In conclusion, before you recirculate an article on a social media site, please ask yourself, "Does posting this make me look like a Racist, Classist, or Xenophobic Ignoramus?" If the answer is, "Yes," "Possibly," or "What's 'classism?'" maybe hold off.

See you all in yoga class, everyone! As soon as I get my $90 yoga pants back from the Asians I pay to do my laundry.

Monday, November 7, 2011

I'm Fucking Fat

I'm not fucking fat. I look like this:

J.S. circa 2011

But I feel fat. All the time. It's fucked up that I feel fat all the time, and everything around us, including myself and my relationship to everything around us, is fucked up for making me feel that way.

I was a fat kid. Well, relatively chubby. I was teased a lot, wore overalls every day, and thought I would never, ever be lovable because of how I looked. The chubbiness was a phase I grew out of. The mindset was not.

J.S. circa 1992

Now, I practice yoga every day. I bike ride and hike. I eat very well, with tons of organic vegetables, homemade meals and such. I don't overeat (usually), but I enjoy food. A lot.

I am thick with muscle. I can pick myself up onto my hands and extend my legs into the sky. I know I'm in better shape that 95% of people in America. But I still think I'm fucking fat.

I was in a retail situation (like, getting clothes from a real store with dressing rooms and everything as opposed to the usual sacks of discarded clothes I find on the sidewalk or hand-me-downs from friends) and I was absolutely appalled by my body in the mirror. Dimples, everywhere! Malleable white flesh covering up all those ab muscles! My brain was a whirlpool of fat-girl shame for the rest of the day.

At my absolute skinniest, about 128lbs, I look like this:

I have only ever been this skinny three times in my adult life. All of them involved depression and amphetamines. I do not look like this now.

I like beer, and cake, and pizza. These preclude my body type from looking like I do up there. But even when I'm enjoying the shit out of a milk stout and thin crust I still obsess over what I eat, EVEN IN THE MOMENT WHEN I'M EATING IT. It sucks.

Feeling fat is not cool. It's a #whitegirlproblem. Everyone knows white girls' problems are funny and not to be taken seriously, because we have no REAL problems, right? I mean, all of our daddies bought us new Porsches when we turned 16 and then we all joined sororities where we developed HILARIOUS cases of bulemia. (You mean you, like, eat food and then throw it up? Like, on purpose? OMG why would anyone do that? That's CRAZY! Lolz.)

If you are a woman in America, you probably have a fucked-up relationship with food. You're supposed to be thin, obviously, because otherwise you're an utterly useless slob, but god forbid you care about being thin. Then you're the vain Wicked Queen talking to herself in the looking glass like a crazy person as opposed to the benignly chaste and obliviously lovely Snow White. Disney movies have taught us girls what an unforgivable sin trying to be beautiful is. It's almost as bad as being fat and ugly. Just kidding, nothing's worse than that.

Oishii da yo!

The most desirable type of relationship a woman can have with food in mainstream culture is Sailor Moon's. This girl has the metabolism of a hummingbird, is swizzle-stick slim, yet constantly and compulsively stuffs her face with abandon. She's super-skinny, but doesn't TRY to be skinny at all. Everyone knows women who care how they look and diet or work out too much are stupid shallow bitches, because how a woman looks doesn't affect how she's judged and treated by society and her peers at all.

I'm not meaning to be super gynocentric here. I know a ton of men are probably just as fucked-up foodwise as are I and my XX-chromosomed comrades. My male roommate, Dr. Manhattan, who is a scientist and may therefore be cited as A SOURCE, told me the other night while we were drinking beer and eating pizza that studies of high-school age kids are showing that men are now competing with women in the Who Fucking Hates Their Bodies the Most pageant. So hooray for that.

Then our friend Kate came over. Kate is skinny. Fashion-model skinny. Sailor Moon skinny. She cracked open a beer and I told her about my dressing room horrors.

Then, much to my surprise, fourteen-year-old-boy-skinny Kate said, "Yeah, I feel fucking fat every time I go in a dressing room, too. I have these dimples everywhere. It's gross."


Why can't we just stop? I don't mean just stop obsessing over losing weight or staying skinny, but stop being so fucking focused on the way our bodies look in general. Stop being so concerned with the eating habits of your our skinny coworkers. Stop being "empowered" to wear a bikini when our thighs rub together. Stop buying fucking yogurt.

I don't care if you're fat or skinny, thinking about your weight for more than ten minutes a day is simply a big fucking waste of time. I mean, with climate change and healthcare debates and the Occupy Movement, don't we have more important things to do with our lives?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

MPTJ hits the ground running

It's official. Steve has started to send out the book proposal of More Popular Than Jesus: The Beatles and the Mythology of Rock to agents and publishers. There's been some initial interest from small presses, but we've yet to send it to the biggest people and places. We set up a super-cool website here:

This is going to be a long process. Let the games begin.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sleeping w/ Pete + Keith

This is what my bookshelf* looks like right now.

We've moved into the nerve-wracking portion book-proposal of More Popular Than Jesus. Steve is handling the sales part of it (Thank Effing Christ), and I'm trying to write my little** piece on The Who and not think about the uncertainty and capriciousness of the publishing industry. Not that I have any negative experience with that or anything.

I'm learning how to say no. It's hard to say no to social invitations or performance requests when you grew up dreaming of being wanted. Writing needs space. Needs aloneness, if not loneliness. It's a weird thing to cultivate intentionally for someone who's felt lonely her whole life.

Other than that, I'm focusing on working at Karma Yoga, making new Madame Psychosis songs with LoWreck, applying for grants, and mailing out poem submissions. It feels good to be working on my own art again.

I've been popping in and out of Occupy Boston. I've been down there several times -- a musician friend of mine played a set last week, and I taught a free yoga class on Friday. I've been down there about four times all together, and it feels super important and I'm thrilled that there are so many people who seem to think in line with all the crazy shit I've been muttering to myself for years, and are using their bodies (peacefully!) to let this behemoth of a system know that its habits are unacceptable. At the same time, half the times I've been down there I've gotten some pretty creepy vibes. A lot of anger, a lot of confusion. Of course, living outside in a tent in the middle of the Financial District in October in Boston would sour almost anyone's mood.

It really felt like winter today in Boston.

*the left half of my bed

**really fucking huge

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Everything Was Beautiful and Nothing Hurt

Sneak-peak of photos by Caleb from the Kurt Vonnegut Tribute show at Precinct on Sept. 22, 2011.

We got a ton of great footage, and will be putting up a full website soon.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

New York City is where dogs look like Luck Dragons

Yesterday I finally understood why people love New York City.

SFTD and I played a set at Pete's Candy Store on Friday night. It was a smallish but really attentive crowd, and I got to catch up with my friend Jess and my former roommate Emily, both of whom are going to NYU right now studying Nutrition and Food Systems, respectively.

Our friend The Sneaky Mister came, too. She is brilliant and told us wonderful stories about tattoos and Joseph Campbell and Scotland. You should listen to her.

Then the next morning, I went to NYU to teach a workshop at the Preemptive Education conference at the Silver Center. It occured to me afterward that I was technically teaching at the school who's art school rejected me ten years ago. One more tiny little victory in my heart.

Then as we were walking back to the Subway to catch the Green Living Fest in Brooklyn, we ran into the Slut Walk. I got a "Consent is Sexy" button.

When I was a teenager I dreamed of dropping out of high school and running away to New York City. I wonder sometimes if I'd be further along in my art now if I'd done that, but that's kind of a ridiculous road to go down since EVERYTHING would be so incredibly different that it's hard to say what would have happened. Maybe I would have burned out or gotten addicted to heroin or started sleeping with a record executive. I was so fragile when I was that age, and for a few years after that I was so depressed and whacky who knows.

You have to know who you are, I think, to go to New York. This time, walking around, I felt comfortable. It was the first time since I was seventeen I thought, "Hey, I could live here."

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Jade Sylvan's Year in Review

photo by caleb cole

I'm a year older. 

I feel generally better about getting older than I ever have before. I know everyone tells you that happens as you grow out of your fledgeling phase, but hearing it and experiencing it are two different things. Let's recap and try to make some sense of it all, shall we?

Jade Sylvan's Year in Review 
by Project

1. Music

I recorded and released a crapload of music this year. Last September I debuted Madame Psychosis, her first EP, and the Zombie Apocalypse! music video (with the help of LoWreck), which people seemed to like quite a bit. I got in a few publications and got some radio play. MME P performed at a bunch of venues around town, and generally had some fun.

All winter I worked on recording my first album of indie-punk-folk (it is so a genre) music with Lee Wizda producing and some amazing musicians and singers. This was a labor of love and obsession. I'd never had to organize so many people and keep the faith so long in the face of uncertainty. I think it paid off, though, and in the spring, Blood and Sand came out. It got some really good reviews, and opened a lot of doors as far as performance opportunities. It got me some press and radio play and all that neat stuff. Oh, and Caleb and I made a music video for this, too. Overall, I'm so happy with how the album came out. It was made with absolutely no money, just drive and love and passion.

Then in the late spring, I met Greg McKillop, an incredible songwriter and musician who wanted to play drums for me. We started touring around a bit and I couldn't be happier about it, and one of our first gigs was at Pete's Candy Store in NYC. We have the same aesthetic and musical philosophy, and working with him has been unbelievable inspirational. We recorded a fun four song EP together in my bedroom one day, and listening to it makes me so happy.

2. Poetry

I performed quite a bit of poetry this year. In addition to many local shows, I was honored to be asked to perform at the Massachusetts Poetry Festival in Salem. I also toured the East Coast (Savannah has a piece of my heart), and featured at the Berkeley Poetry Slam in California. I received a standing ovation at the Port Veritas Poetry Slam in Maine. It was my first one ever.

Caleb and I also put on Here and Now, a show about ephemera and a reaction against the hyper-documentation of modern society. It was super successful and a truly special night. We're working on plans to do it again this year, and even better.

I really feel like I've come to a new level as far as my performance goes. Partially inspired by Marina Abromovic, and partially by my yoga practice, I approach performing and my responsibilities as a performer in a very different way that's both more and less serious. It's not about ME the ego. It's about the moment, being present, and creating a ritual. The art happens in between the performer and the audience. I could go on about this forever, but this is a long enough post as it is.

Caleb and I made this video.

I also got a gig writing regular articles about poetry at Radius Lit Mag. It's a really smart, interesting publication run by my friend Victor Infante. It's a playground for my brain.

3. Teaching Poetry and Mass LEAP

I really grew as a teaching artist this year. I taught a three part workshop on Spoken Word Poetry at 826 Boston, and one-day workshops at the Mass Poetry Festival and the Andover Bread Loaf Writer's Conference.

In the winter, I met Anna West, who founded Louder Than A Bomb and Young Chicago Authors. She was in Boston for the year and was interested in starting a similar program here. She helped me, along with our cofounders, Alex Charalambides, Amanda Torres, Regie Gibson, and Ayano Strickland, start Mass LEAP, which just finished our first successful Kickstarter campaign and found a fiscal sponsor in Mass Poetry. I feel so honored to be a part of starting this organization, and I'm really psyched to see how it continues to grow and take shape over the years.

4. More Popular Than Jesus

The non-fiction book project I've been working on for the past two years with Steve Wagner really made strides this year. We've finished our book proposal and have the entire outline nailed down, as well as solid drafts of about 40% of the text.  

More Popular Than Jesus is a book that lays out the mythological and archetypal resonances of the Classic Rock icons of the 1960s (The Beatles as the Savior, Dylan as the Prophet, Jimi Hendrix as the Shaman, etc.) Initial response from agents and publishing contacts has been incredibly positive. We're really excited to wade this out into the world and see where it's going to take us.

In July, Steve and I performed the maiden run of a multimedia presentation about The Beatles as the Savior archetype to a packed house at the Brava Theatre in San Francisco. The audience responded incredibly well, and the night was filmed for a forthcoming DVD. I loved this performance and I'm looking forward to doing it again and again.

5. Yoga

I got really weird this year. I quit my job and went on foodstamps for three months and work-studied at Samara Yoga Studio. I started practicing 5+ times a week and took it very seriously.

The incredible teachers at Samara helped me improve at a lightening pace. I grew so much, and yoga helped me with so many of my lifelong issues, mental, emotional, and physical (depression, OCD, Tourette's Syndrome, allergies, bad knee/hip, chronic pain, drinking too much, insomnia, falling in love with the wrong people, anxiety, and headaches, just to name a few), that I knew I wanted to make it a big part of my life.

I met Jesse Winder and Doina Contescu, the owners of Karma Yoga Studio. We connected so strongly on our ideals and visions that it became instantly clear that we should work together. 

And a few days ago (technically after my birthday, but let's not split hairs) I taught my very first yoga class. :)


I honestly feel so blessed and grateful that I'm able to do so many things I love with so many people I love on a daily basis. Yes, there are hard times and dark times, and I don't make much money, and I work 80 hours a week, but look at all the stuff I get to experience, and all of the people I get to experience it with.

Thank you, Universe. That is all. 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

reset-switches and eye-twitches

I feel like I just stepped out of a timewarp. This entire past year has been un-effing-believable. One of those that seemed to rush past highway-fast, but then you look back and it feels like you've lived seven lifetimes.

My birthday is in five days. I'm going to be old. Like, getting-so-close-to-30-I-can-tell-that-it-doesn't-wear-deodorant old. Oddly, I feel better about this birthday than I have about any birthday before. It feels like what I'm doing finally makes sense. Like my life is kind of looking how I want it to look. Like the story is turning out.

My Revolution Resolution is to blog more, Facebook less. I bet I had really cool things to say about all the stuff that happened last year, but it's now lost in the seaward-rushing river of the ceaselessly chattering social media.

I'm slowing down for a while. I need to write more. Reflect more. Get back into the space where I can be a lonely novelist lost in her head. I've been performing and schmoozing and Being Cool for a year. Playing at being a rock star is all well and good inasmuch as it furthers The Art, but The Art is always and must always be the important thing. The drisdi and the germ of every action.

I'm still reconfiguring looking into this fall. There's a lot of work to do here in Boston. I've taken a job at Karma Yoga Studio handling special events and community outreach, which I'm actually really excited about. The nonprofit I cofounded this year, Mass LEAP just had its first successful fundraiser and found a fiscal sponsor, and I'm now on the board of Mass Poetry. I'll be helping to plan the Massachusetts Poetry Festival this year, and the first Louder Than a Bomb in Boston.

All this should give me some sort of stability and routine where I can carve out the space to create new work. It's hard to explain the love/hate relationship I have with loneliness. One of the things I love about performing and making music is the community and social aspects of it. When I started making music I was blown away by how much fun it is. It's inherently a social thing, which for a writer is a novel (npi) artistic experience.

But that means that you can't really write, or at least write much or deeply when you're in that performance mode. And if you try to schizophrenically shift back and forth, you'll drive yourself crazy. And of course, by "you" here, I mean me.

I visited my parents in Indiana at the end of last month for my first nonworking weekend in I can't even remember. We went to farmer's markets. Cooked meals. Took a day trip to Bloomington, where I went to college. We ate dinner at the Upland Brewery, which, if I've ever had A Place in my life, this was My Place. I saw my Spiritual Guru (long story, but he bought me my first Tarot cards eight years ago). We even watched TV (and I'm now obsessed with Battlestar Galactica). Then on my second day of relaxation, I developed an eye-twitch.

Thankfully, it only lasted a few days. But Jesus, it's amazing how much more aware of things our bodies are than our brains sometimes.

So I'm home now, and I keep reminding myself, Slow down. Focus. Find the solitary place in the woods or in your room where you can build worlds. Where you can see clearly enough to chisel the truth.

Also, because everyone loves pictures of food, here is the Best Homemade Pizza Ever, made by me and my mom and dad:

It tasted even better than it looks.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

new split EP and sort-of band with Speaker for the Dead

Long time no write. I know. I suck. I'm a Facebook whore now.

I'm planning on coming back to this blog to more cohesively chronicle the madness that is my life, but in the meantime, the big news.

I have sort-of a band, meaning my friend Greg McKillop, aka Speaker for the Dead and I play shows together a lot, and he plays drums for me while I play guitar and sing, and plays behind my poems, and then we both play our acoustic stuff and sing on each other's songs, and that's sort of like a band, right? Anyway, we've played in Portland and New York and it went over super well, and we can't wait to do it again and again and again.

Here's a split EP we recorded together in my room. Two are mine, two are his.

Also, my trip to the Bay Area was massively successful and life-changing. The lecture for More Popular Than Jesus went off as well as we could have dreamed, and I met a bunch of brilliant, vibrant poets around the scene out there. Am seriously thinking of moving out there this coming spring.

More soon, I promise!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

my essay on Bob Dylan

My first article as a regular contributor to Radius Magazine is an excerpt from my collaboration with Steve Wagner: More Popular Than Jesus: The Beatles and the Mythology of Rock.

The First Patriarch of Rock n Roll: Bob Dylan and the Prophet Archetype.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

feature in the Boston Herald!

I talk about psychics and Saraswati.

of course, the intro font they used had to be Papyrus.

Monday, June 13, 2011

light and shadow

Caleb and I did this last winter while we were taking a break from a work-date. The sun was coming in through the blinds in such crispy slices and he was all, "Take your shirt off and get down in that light." I did.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

you're the reason I'ma travelin on

I have been horrendously delinquent about updating this blog situation, partially because I AM SO FREAKING BUSY it hurts my veins to think about, and second because I've been being more and more of a Facebook and Twitter (ew) whore.

I went on a mini tour of the Southeast in May. Highlights included a drunken walk through the National Mall in DC with an old high school friend ending in a 1AM pow-wow with Abe Lincoln, randomly opening up for an underground hip hop show as Madame Psychosis a ham, eggs n grits southern breakfast in gorgeous, gorgeous Savannah, and performing in a Masonic Temple in Asheville, NC.

They filmed my whole feature there. I'll be cutting it up and posting it bit by bit on my youtube channel. Here's the first bit:

Right now, I'm over at Caleb's house. We made banana pancakes and a mushroom scramble. He'll be gone at a residency the last half of this month, and I'm away at the Bread Loaf Writer's Workshop the first half of July, and San Francisco the second. We're so grown-up all of a sudden.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Spent twenty-four hours packing up cds to be mailed out to radio stations and reviewers, baking thank-you cookies for my studio musicians (vegan coconut cardamom oatmeal cookies -- ridiculous), and uploading my freaking album to bandcamp.

Caleb and I have been having "work dates" lately, where we spend the whole day together working on our own boring shit side by side, with an occasional break for food or commentary. It's surprisingly productive, and cuts down greatly on the working-from-home isolation/depression/craziness factor.

Album release show this Friday. Biggish events always freak me out a bit. Residual childhood fears about no one showing up. It's incredible how much we keep working through over and over again in our lives. How growing up means more appreciating these things than "getting over" them.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

stop-motion music video

Nifty music video for the first single off my album, Blood and Sand:

Caleb Cole and I shot this all in about four hours time. I feel like I should thank my high school art teacher who kicked me out of Independent Study my senior year.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

jade sings!

I hate those blog posts that are all, "I'm sorry I haven't posted in forever!" so instead I'll just say, I've been insanely busy with mostly good stuff, and I have a record album of music coming out on April 5th. Lookit!

More info in the next coupla weeks. And a new music video!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

snow days

are not so bad when you can walk to your friends' houses.

and play with Holga cameras.

lucky to be where I am, with who I am.

Friday, January 14, 2011

let it burn

So Caleb and I are setting up this show. It's on March 4th.

More info:

Here & Now: Ephemera is a multidisciplinary collection of unconventional writers, visual artists, and performers seeking to create an ephemeral artistic experience in reaction to the hyper-documentation of modern social life.
Five writers will read new pieces from type-written pages with no additional hard or soft copies. Other acts will include burlesque, visual art, and a lecture on ephemera by a physicist (performers' credentials range from The Slutcracker to Harvard, if you care). Once the performances are complete, the writers' pieces will be ritualistically burned along with all materials from the other acts.
No cameras, recording devices, or other forms of documentation will be allowed in the space.
By the end of the night, the artists will render a timely manifestation of the phrase, “One night only.”

Sunday, January 9, 2011

furry finger

on our way back from New Hampshire, we decided Jeddo Stars needed a new name.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

hello 'leven

After a mostly-positive December that almost drove me insane from business, I flew home to Indiana for a week of sitting around, eating, and drinking Champagne.

On Christmas day we did the traditional Italian seven course dinner. I learned to make braciole and proper lasagna from Grandma:

This is a life skill that will surely come in handy.

My bro and I were dago-ing out.

It's good to get back to my routine though, and I wound up missing home (Boston, that is) quite a bit. It's crazy how much I really do love my life here. Plenty of people dread getting back to their "real life." I need it to feel like myself.

I do need to take better care of myself, though. I literally ran myself to exhaustion toward the end of last year. I loved almost everything I was doing, but I started having panic attacks (a new experience for me) and major anxiety. If I believed in New Year's Resolutions, that would be mine.

My new living situation helps. My roomie (who I can't name because he's all businessy and fancypants, so I'ma call him Dr. Manhattan) actually gets me to relax sometimes and watch movies(!). Yoga helps, too. Maybe I don't need to work from the second I wake up to the second I go to bed.

Also, my brother got me a ukulele for Christmas! I played it at a show in Portland ME last night. Check it: