Caroleen Beatty and Sunshine Haire are back, as The Upsets, kinda sorta

This is the third time I’ve tried to write about Caroleen Beatty on the internet, including briefly in my post “I remember NOLAthing” and also, if you click through to Amazon, there for her Runt Records release of covers, “You’re Only as Pretty As You Feel”, I posted that in 2006.

I’ve been watching Caroleen and Sunny (am I the only person who still calls her Sunshine?) since December of 1994. I wrote a letter to someone in Bedlam Rovers asking them if they want to play my new concert series at Cubberley. They had basically broken up. I saw what I believed to be Sunny’s debut with them, on Haight Street, she was subbing for Marko who had tinnitis, I think it was. Caroleen told me later, in passing, that the band was from DC and had in fact once bought Ian MacKaye’s van, or borrowed it or rented it, for a tour (a propos of the show I did with The Evens, in 2007, I think). Caroleen probably hates having her career discussed in terms of her many better-known admirers. But let me just say that one of her biggest fans, who I met only because she suggested that, if I had to shop her demos he was worth checking with, Howard Greynolds of Overcoat Records in Chicago. Greynolds meanwhile has been pretty darn busy helping his other discoveries like Swell Season (who won the Academy Award, for “Once” and “Falling Slowly”) and Iron and Wine (what hasn’t he done?).

I also met Andrea Troolin through Howard; she works with Andrew Bird.

I will always remember, as I mentioned here, that on my 40th birthday, while visiting New York, I took the train and a couple cabs to watch Jon Langford’s soundcheck at North Moore in Philly, then I hustled back to keep my actual plan, to see Patricia Barber at Birdland (I had a date). It was my very first visit and I had no idea I would be falling in and out of love with a Philly-emigrant and would be spending so much of my 40s it seems in the 215.

So to the extent that Caroleen’s work is, what?, assuaging pain, I really do feel her, although she told someone once I don’t get it.

“I am a happy person” I heard her say once, on stage, at The Oakland Metro, opening for Stew (who had a pretty good run shortly thereafter, with “Passing Strange”) “it’s only my songs that are sad.” (That night the venue paid her fifty bucks and she kicked me back a sawbuck, the only commission I made during my two years or so managing the artists “individually, collectively and professionally known as Waycross.” — there was some verbiage about sunset clauses that I’ve never enforced but I’m not upset).

I remember when I played the demo of some of these same songs, including here “Boys Boys Boys” (“bluer than blue”) for Craig Ruda in LA, my cousin, and a running partner with David Immergluck, of the Counting Crows, who was quoted somewhere as saying his Christmas list included having Caroleen Beatty sit on his lap — he was enamored, Immergluck –that he made a pantomine of someone tieing off — it was sad, very sad music.

I think if you got these songs to Ry Cooder for instance he might want to re-cut “Paris, Texas” by Wim Winders — this fits that whole zeitgeist of love’s labour lost and powerlessness; maybe these tracks will end up on a special directors cut DVD.

Of course Eno is a fan of Caroleen, thanks to the work she and Doug did making their own version of “Taking Tiger Mountain.”

Although these five or so songs were shot more than a year ago, in August, 2010, they are a relevation and currency for me; I haven’t seen or talked to Caroleen in much longer, plus, as I said, I’ve been watching her over 18 years or so. She also used to play the flute on stage, some early reviews of Bedlam Rovers describe.

Well, she should be getting paid, not “fucked.”

“Satisfaction equals desire” a snatch of lyrics from Bedlam Rovers old song, maybe recorded live at KZSU, worked into my decision to drop out of mainstream advertising.

Anyhow, much respect and fondest best wishes to Caroleen and Sunny; not quite sure if its appropriate to invite them to play somewhere down here, for International Congress of Buskers or Palo Alto (ICOBOPA), at Lytton Plaza, at Zoe Cafe, in Mildred Howards “Clear Story” art installation, or what.

Ian Brennan is their supporter, and took them to East Coast on his Brainwash group tour; he’s a wheel as a producer now with Tiniarawen and Ramblin’ Jack Elliot. He could at least get them heard, for instance, at Anti.

Not sure if Caroleen wants to be heard by anyone but her close friends.

I once had a notion to suggest Wilbur Woodas a pseudonym in that she has a lyric about “down on her knuckles” and it sounds rural. She owns a gardening service and or is a gardener.

Topher Delaney

She is the Topher Delaney of folk punk. Wilbur Wood, who turns 70 next month, was known for his endurance and resilience — like Caroleen – and is the last pitcher to both win and lose 20 games in a season, in 1974. The Upsets is a fine name, too.

Check out the parallax view of this performance shot by two different people; the social media page, linked at very top, is public so people like me who are dissidents can check it, for now at least.

About markweiss86

Mark Weiss, founder of Plastic Alto blog, is a concert promoter and artist manager in Palo Alto, as Earthwise Productions, with background as journalist, advertising copywriter, book store returns desk, college radio producer, city council and commissions candidate, high school basketball player; he also sang in local choir, and fronts an Allen Ginsberg tribute Beat Hotel Rm 32
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10 Responses to Caroleen Beatty and Sunshine Haire are back, as The Upsets, kinda sorta

  1. markweiss86 says:

    I want to laugh, but its not funny/ I want to let out this SCREAM.

    advertising equals desire

    from 1992 “Scream” on “Wallow” Heyday and “‘Squeeze Your Inner Child” which is what I have, somewhere, in storage, but etched in my gray matter, and my heart.
    has bits of it???

  2. markweiss86 says:

    Part of what is informing this is that I snuck into, for $7, about an hours worth of a matinee of “Midnight in Paris”, today at Aquarius Theatre, and it has Carla Bruni as a tour guide at Rodin Museum — not much difference between the one in movies married to president of France (who shares my birthday, pretty darn sure, January 28) and being at 83 views on youtube; Caroleen is French, which explains something of her ways, methinks.
    Maybe she needs to sing in French like April March:
    “plus bleu que le bleu” et et et

  3. Mark Weiss says:

    Piotr Orlov reviewed Enorchestra at Knitting Factory, from December 2004

  4. Mark Weiss says:

    Sunny spotted even more recently by Watsura for Vimeo in a Patsy Cline tribute with Margaret Belton Patsychords:

    Sunny is perhaps best known, beyond her collaboration with Caroleen, for her work with Knife and Fork, Eric Drew Feldman’s band that toured with P.J. Harvey and The Pixies. She was or is a concierge at not the Phoenix but something like it.
    I meant to say how shy she seemed that first show at Nightbreak, in 1994.
    She is from North Florida, near the actual Waycross which is in South Georgia. She told me, although they all hate being known by famous friends, that she knew Michael Stipes back in the day.
    REM who jus announced they are done. Reminds me I have to hit the sack, at 3:10 a.m. now.

  5. markweiss86 says:

    a sawbuck is 10 a double sawbuck is twenty. better is a jackson for andrew jackson and calculate the distance from tennessee, what nashville? to waycross ga what 300 miles or less — andrew jackson is from the same part of the woods as sunny and where caroleen’s muse apparently eminates from???
    bloody bloody andrew jackson broadway show see also

  6. markweiss says:

    Jon Langford and Caroleen Beatty had a co-led project called Pre War Jewel. I was going to Philly on my 40th birthday to get his ok to shop it around to the labels. Kind of a red herring, with Philly cheese on it. But auspicious of me spending so much time there starting later that year. My grandfather and namesake Morton B. Weiss (we preserved the MBW at least, initial-sake?) was actually born in Philly but moved to Chicago.

  7. markweiss says:

    which reminds me and caroleen would hate me for going here at all, the palo alto international film festival is showing trip to the moon and 39 miles away jon langford is playing hardly strictly bluegrass — can we time it so jon introduces or at least sees the restored print:

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