Killing my Lobster plus Mostly Other People Do the Killing mashup: or weird review of Charles Rumback, considered as a band leader

(maybe ain’t nobody home, dove ventured — UPDATE: if this post were about lobsters and not jazz music I would add information about lobster references in “South Pacific”, “Ah, Wilderness” and the works of David Foster Wallace; and or, I might also re-mount this as jointly about Mr. Ruback and the Jamaican author Marlon James and call it “A Brief History of 20 Killings, “killings” being slang for “good” or “good works” and then go over not just the new cd but all 20 of his recordings, as referenced on his website, formatted to resemble the prologue of his Man Booker prize-winning book, i.e. a joint list huff huff of Charles and his 100 or so collaborators, maybe broken down geographically, if that help some)

i was an English major at Dartmouth and studied and worked briefly in journalism; I claim that listening to jazz music screwed up the way my brain works.
(Meanwhile, or 15 years prior, I did take an intensive seminar at Dartmouth with Chauncey Loomis, and read or was assigned to read about 80 percent of his oeuvre, but in actuality I barely passed the course).
Although of course you end up becoming yourself
Deep down in there is a true anecdote about Dave Douglas having a dream about playing with Bill Frisell, or see he says. And I did like an idiot (full of sound and fury, signifying nothing, most likely) sent a note to Charlie Hunter suggesting he check out Jacob Garchik).

The only connection (I think) is that Jacob’s mother Leah Garchik is a gossip columnist and arts writer for San Francisco Chronicle, and sat behind me at the Darcy James Argue show, and I am meaning to send her this post and my headline/subject line “the mentawai went away”.



This is a weird intro to a brief review or shout out to Charles Rumback “In The New Year” video embedded above: so i’ve just given that 2 minutes and 52 seconds of my undivided attention and absolutely if it cost less that $20 and was less than 20 miles away I would go here that band perform that book live, tonight even (although we were actually fixing, my lady and I to see The Martian, a movie, I mean we are, because you are obviously not in SF or San Jose or Palo Alto and I’m not in Chi-town, although I was born there and am itching to get back, but probably not in time for one of your 20 hits or so on your schedule page).

A wee bit skronky, but I like that. skronk, swing, miles davis, ornette…my list of 1,001 sax players(I will have to add this alto or alta to that), new artists on tour, people who book their own tour but will talk to me for 45 minutes when i cold call, nina simone “save me…yeah” project, compositions, instruments, artists, recordings, labels and people

I would not automatically guess that this piece was written by the drummer. I presume its an original and not your version of a cover or standard. and i’d honestly have to listen a couple more times to get what exactly I am listening to besides the drummer and Jeff Parker guitar, who Caroline is, who is the reed player or what exactly chords and timbre I am hearing.

And if I had infinite time I see about 20 cds I could sample and listen for what is a Charles Rumback drum sound, or his writing leading compared to his sidework, and maybe there is.

But since you (talking to his publicist, Merewitz, earlier today) sent me a note in real time, I pinged you first.

I will check out Rumback. (for 2 minutes and 52 seconds which reminds me of a really bad joke about the year the Bears won the Super Bowl)

I also use the term “full Herzenberg” which refers to Jana Herzenberg also known as Jana Herzen of Motema Records who produced a tribute concert here at Stanford when her father died (the father who made millions of dollars for Stanford and likely for himself, in his science lab — I presume part of the Motema Records story is that she uses some of that money, on tour support, or pays her publicist $5,000 an hour)*

* hey it’s also true that I suggested to Don Lucoff he pitch Jeff Gauthier of Cryptogramaphone — I am the Zelig of the jazz scene, which reminds me of the time that according to Will Friedwald (?), the singer Joan Bender used to frequent the Woody Allen residency in NYC at the Carlyle and he allegedly humble-bragged slash hit on her but said “don’t break my heart, sweetie”. (and allocuted)

luke i am your father

luke i am your father

And yes, but you’d have to read carefully to find this, this entire exercize is woodshedding for the eulogy I am writing for my Dad for his memorial Sunday, and further that while not a big fan of Mark Murphy, reading of his recent passing (in The Times) is put into my horn, as Wynton would say (that everything you do or know, put that into every note.


Mark Murphy, an Unconventional Jazz Vocalist, Dies at 83
Mr. Murphy drew inspiration from such varied sources as the sound of his hometown factory whistle and the words of the Beat novelist Jack Kerouac.
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but in my humble opine, I do Faulkner proud relative to James Franco
As I Lay Dying (2013)


As I Lay Dying (2013)
Directed by James Franco. With James Franco, Tim Blake Nelson, Jim Parrack, Ahna O’Reilly. Based on the 1930 classic by Faulkner, it is the story of the death of Ad…
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mostly lobsters do the killing
a comedy troupe in SF, affiliated with Dave Eggers and 826 Valencia
but yeah I so dig Jeff Parker and wanted to commission him to write about Jefferson and his slaves/women, Parker from same part of Virginia fairly certain
From: Matt Merewitz
To: mark weiss
Sent: Thursday, October 29, 2015 11:19 AM
Subject: Re: Drummer Charles Rumback Releases “In The New Year” (ears&eyes Records) featuring Chicago Grown Talent Jeff Parker, Jason Stein, Caroline Davis, and John Tate

You write in a very Faulknerian style.


On Oct 29, 2015, at 2:01 PM, mark weiss wrote:

“The mentawai went away”

From: Matt Merewitz
Sent: Thursday, October 29, 2015 10:05 AM
Subject: Drummer Charles Rumback Releases “In The New Year” (ears&eyes Records) featuring Chicago Grown Talent Jeff Parker, Jason Stein, Caroline Davis, and John Tate

Drummer Charles Rumback Releases Quietly Startling Quintet Album, In The New Year

Featuring Jeff Parker (guitar), Caroline Davis (saxophone), Jason Stein (bass clarinet), John Tate (bass)
Out December 4th on Chicago Imprint ears&eyes Records

As a drummer and composer, Charles Rumback personifies the inclusive spirit that has become a hallmark of the music scene in his adopted hometown of Chicago. But while he’s been a crucial part of numerous jazz and rock bands—as well as serving as an ideal rhythmic collaborator to singer/songwriters—Rumback is stepping out further as a leader with his new quintet disc, In The New Year (ears&eyes).
“I’ve been writing music since I was 19, but it was always for the people I was playing with—whether a collaborative group or whatever,” Rumback said. “As I started to get more work all over the place, it was great, but I was spreading myself too thin. I thought if I don’t start doing my own thing, there won’t be time for it to happen. So that’s when I decided to make an effort to make it happen and then it did.” I think the salient point is that there is new music, original music, respectful of the past, hopeful about the future, in jazz and it is for your people who have $20 to blow but not 40 dollars or more, which to me is categorically “classical” meaning only classes the rich can go there and jazz is not just a repertoire or putting on a pork pie hat like a costume or living in the past, it’s a breathing growing digressing devolving skronking if it wants to skronks new types of beauty and these young people like the Charles Rumbacks of the world they do deserve people to take notice, or giant lobster creatures yes just might be sent down from other South Side planets and crush yer head.

not sure what else got clipped from this as the ghost works its way thru WordPress or my version of it, but I also coinky-dinky bought a first edition this morning of Nelson Algren “Walk on the Wild Side” which is about New Orleans but he is from Chicago like our man of the minute the drummer Chaz Rumback.
This is a book about Jefferson written by a Dartmouth trustee, and I somewhat non-realistically think about trying to put her and Jeff Parker together for a thru-composed treatment of Jefferson ala Wayne Horvitz “Joe Hill” (Stegner)

If you are actually reading all the way down here searching for the part about MOPDTK jazz group their drummer is actually Kevin Shea (I had to look it up) and the line at the very top, “Dove” is from Nelson Algren, who actually does have some connection to Chicago, where Rumback is based; for instance there is a Nelson Algren Prize for writers, given out by the Tribune. There’s a literary theme here, kinda sorta. The famous short chapter of As I Lay Dying, My Mother is a Fish is what made me think quite naturally of lobster, chopped lobster and death. Chicago, my kind of town (we fled, in 1968).

I read some Faulkner a while ago and would love to make time to re-read but I also claim as an excuse for sloppy that I read aloud in front of an audience even Ginsburg “Howl” and do have this post-modern fixation and Fast Cheapand Out of Control act. I am at least faking a thought disturbance. The other book I am reading today, beyond Algren, beyond a David Foster Wallace interview (Lipsky) is the logic book (which is semantics) and there’s a funny story about an inmate and they say If we let you out will do you think you are Napoleon? And he says “No” but the polygraph says he is lying. As compared to G.E.Moore and Bertrand Russell. “Have you ever lied?” “Yes” and Russell says that that is the only time Moore lied. Or the only lie Moore ever told. I mean I am no EI or DJA, who write beautifully but there is something about jazz is a lie, in a good way. NYEt. I did a similar thing jointly reviewing Cake and Gang of Four.

i mean I could not actualy say I like the way the alto sax and the bass clarinet dart around each other, but maybe Leah could

i mean I could not actualy say I like the way the alto sax and the bass clarinet dart around each other, but maybe Leah could

this is rich:
Hi there! I’m new here, but I’m hoping to get some advice.

I am props master for a production of Ah Wilderness!. The problem I have is that a family of 8 sits down to a lobster dinner. I don’t know how I’m going to do this. I was told by several sources to get real lobster shells and fill them with mashed potatoes. I attempted that, but the shells where just too gross and were not going to stay intact for a run. I’m thinking hollow plastic ones might do the trick, but would love some tips.

Has anyone done something similar before? Thanks.

re: There’s lots of lobster coming and you can fill up on that. (Richard suddenly bursts out laughing again.) Miller. (Turns to him, caustically) You seem in a merry

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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