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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

SETLIST

I know the big question on everybody's mind is: what will Ted play at TEDSTOCK. When disaster befell Happy Boy in the form of Kory breaking his collar bone, Chris Paul and I regrouped, called Machold, and reworked the set list. Out of the embers of Happy Boy is born #12 Rock and Roll Noodle. The Noodle set is as follows:

Pissin' On The Roses (Wilson)

This song was born in Austin, TX. I was visiting Chan. We were hanging out at Bill's in the garden. After a couple a soda pops, I needed to do the necessary. Bill indicated the rose bushes, and the rest is history. When I got back to NYC, and began flushing the song out with verses, I decided to place the song in a setting that would allow me to make the point; i.e. why is it so hard to piss on the roses - and indeed it was. The setting became the gig, the road, the real rock and roll lifestyle. Not the glamorous Bon Jovi video, but the hard bits, the suck of it all. Indeed, it ain't easy pissin' on the roses.

Plastic Girl (Pace)

Another road song, in the sense that it draws from experiences Chris had on the road in L.A. Chris can tell you more about the woman in the two room suite at the Bel Age, but I can tell you that we both seem to be rather taken with Los Angeles. For me, it's a holy land of sorts, hallowed ground where greatness took place - alongside depravity on a grand scale. What's cooler than that?

Pop Tart (Wilson)

This song is simply some word play on top of a riff I had around forever. It became about recovery from heroin addiction well after I wrote it. This is common for me. I don't always attach meaning to anything at the time of creation. There is, however, meaning everywhere, and it'll find it's way if you give it time. A crowd pleaser from the latter Happy Boy era, I believe we played it in Mister Littlejeans live sets as well.

Thumbnail Moon (Wilson)

Some songs not only won't die, they get more distinguished with age. I wrote this song back in '89 while driving to Nyack from Stamford, a commute I was soon to bag. I wrote the lyric and melody behind the wheel, and when I got to Tony Alva's apartment in Nyack, I picked up the Gagliano and basically plopped my lyrics down on the chord structure from Donovan's 'Atlantis'. Not long after, I had a one off gig at Knucklehead's (now Olive's) opening for the Drag Triplets on New Year's Eve. I was fortunate enough to have Joel Finn from The Horse You Rode In On in my band (Better Off Ted), and he gave me the 'F' part, which took my little folkie tune and turned it into a legit country number. As Chris and I grew musically, this song seemed to grow with us. The title is a Stephen King reference.

Santiago (Pace)

Happy Boy used to have a page at mp3 dot com. When Happy Boy broke up it became our Mr. Littlejeans site. Then it went away. A victim of corporate cannibalism. Before all that, however, we got 121 hits in one day from Chile. We printed out the stats and put it on the wall with the declaration 'Huge in Chile' written in Sharpie across the page. We were so proud and happy we wrote a love song for them.

Questioningly (Ramones)

Is that even a word? Joey Ramone could get away with stuff like that. This is my all time favorite Ramones song. It has been truly a dream come true to be able to play it live. I can't remember if Happy Boy ever played it out. I do remember Happy Boy breaking up while recording it. We did play it in Mr. Littlejeans. Damn, I forgot to invite Arturo Vega and Mark (Marky Ramone) Bell. I bet Arturo would have come.

Pills (Pace)

I can't really speak to the origins of this song. I do know that Chris' original title was 'Medication', but there was already a Spiritualized song by that name, a great Spiritualized song. We played it in Mr. Littlejeans, and then George found it and hi-jacked it for Brain Shivers. For me, it's simply a fun song to play.

Princess Leia (Princess of Alderaan) (Pace/Wilson)

Born during an improv one drunken Happy Boy rehearsal, Leia has never got it's due. As a band we could never re-create the magic. Since the planning of TEDSTOCK began, Chris added a new verse, and the advent of Macholdian structure has brought it to a new level.
Suge's been shot!

There She Goes Again (Reed)

The other cover. If one does the Ramones, it follows that one should do the Velvets. This is NYC after all. Chris is the bigger Velvet head, and he has made me appreciate the latter output of the Velvets, whereas I had always just stuck to the first album, which is the home of this tune, and again - it's just a damn fun song to play. That was my basic criteria for the setlist after all. I don't think I've played a gig with Chris where we didn't do this song.

Peace Chicken (Wilson)

What? I don't think there's any question. If I have an anthem, a theme song, it'd have to be Peace Chicken. A year or two older than Thumbnail Moon, it's my 'Satisfaction' I guess. More like an old t-shirt you refuse to throw away. David Rosenberg added the Bigg Riff, and Paul the hoo hoo's. It's certainly a much different tune than the one I brought to Tony Alva and Brian Spears back at Coal Mine Sound in late 87. For a long time I would introduce the song live by saying -"a good friend of mine told me this song sucked, we're gonna play it for you now'. I always loved that. If Tony hadn't criticized the song, I wouldn't have gotten to use that line.

Well there's the setlist, and the background behind the tunes. See 'em Sunday at 10 PM.

Comments:
If anyone cares, some more background.

"Plastic Girl" was originally written for an album called "Do You Want to See What I Dream About?" about 5 years ago. It went through several different versions and titles (it was called "Great Lawn Girl" at one point), but the plastic girl in question was inspired by my friend Tara, who came up with the character of a "Plexiglass Girlfriend."

As far as the girl in the Bel Age goes - she's fictitous but I've no doubt she exists. The Bel Age is one of the old Rock and Roll hotels on Sunset Strip. It has a cool rooftop pool and a real dusty Hollywood vibe. I'm sure many Plastic Girls staying at the Bel Age have shut the door to the balcony, turned down the lights, had some more, and drifted out into the galaxy. This one's for them.
 
Damn, I wish I could make it to the show.

it's going to rock on a huge scale!
 
I'm still serious about bringing the show to Hue, I bet we could get a few bands to travel, I am still also serious about not doing it until the spring. Y'all's crazy up there in the winter.
 
Microdot travels.
 
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