Sara Bareilles just keeps on racking them up

Eureka’s own Sara Bareilles is making more news on Broadway. Her musical “Waitress“, which opened last spring at the Brooks Atkinson, continues its run with the composer herself taking on the title role of Jenna, a diner waitress. She’ll be there for the ten weeks following March 31and  they’re not selling tickets after June 30  so move now if you want to see our girl.  Decent tickets go for $170.  

It’s amazing to me that so little attention is paid to her.  What other Eurekan in the musical world has had such success?  Nominated for a Grammy ten times , for God’s sake,  yet the average Eurekan  has never heard of her.  What’s that quote about “a prophet without honor”? The Chamber should set a “Sara Bareilles Day” and we should have a parade. We don’t have a lot of celebrities and never hear from most of them.  Guy Fieri isn’t really from Eureka but is incredibly generous to the  Ferndale schools and always shows up for the County Fair. Jeff Bridges has never been helpful to the town where his father grew up. I don’t know where MIke Patton is now.  

You can read about Sara on page 14 of the April 3rd edition of the New Yorker. Sorry, link not available.


I can’t Believe I’m Crying Over George Michael.

I never even thought about him for thirty years. But I’ve cried twice and I’m looking up the lyrics to Careless Whisper, (which IS one of the finest pop songs of our era).  Am I crying for him or for my lost youth?

I’m glad he achieved success and happiness, even if cut down before his time. It’s ironic that at the same time a new Jeep commercial with the unmistakeable voice of Cat Stevens,  the other Greek-turned-Brit superstar, is in heavy rotation on TV.

Cat Stevens just finished a major 50th anniversary tour and I’m glad to hear he’s still going strong.  For awhile there he was erroneously placed on the no-fly list by people who didn’t know the difference between Muslims and terrorists, but that’s all resolved unless Trump starts acting up again.

I go back a long way with Cat Stevens’ music  When my aunt in Palo Alto  was teaching special needs kindergartners, I helped with the class one day. They were learning “Moonshadow” and they picked it up quickly.  His songs are like folk songs, “simple” in the good sense. Does the Arcata Gospel Choir ever do “Peace Train”?   That would be, as we used to say in Hawaii,  chicken -skin. 


Our Own Sara Bareilles On Broadway!

Eureka native Sara Bareilles, already famous for Little Voice and other albums, has composed the music and lyrics for a Broadway musical,  now in previews, based on the movie Waitress. Remember that one?  With Keri Russell? The  New Yorker describes it as “based on the 2007 film about a small-town waitress who enters a baking contest.”  Maybe our other local luminary, Guy Fieri, should be involved.  Tix are available tomorrow HERE and start at $150.

Let’s wish Sara a good long run. You go, girl!


Merle Haggard- A Great Californian

Who isn’t sad about the passing of the great Merle Haggard?T

“The first thing I remember knowin’ was a lonesome whistle blowin’,

  • And a youngun’s dream of growin’ up to ride,
  • On a freight train leavin’ town, not knowin’ where I’m bound.
  • And no one could change my mind but Momma Tried.
  • One and only Rebel child from a fam’ly meek and mild
  • My momma seemed to to know what lay in store,
  • ‘Spite all my Sunday learnin’ towards the bad I kept on turnin’,
  • ‘Til momma couldn’t hold me anymore.
  • And I turned twenty-one in prison doin’ life without parole,
  • No one could steer me right but Momma Tried, Momma Tried
  • Momma Tried to raise me better but her pleading I denied
  • And that leaves only me to blame, cause Momma Tried
  • Dear ole’ daddy, rest his soul left my mom a heavy load,
  • She tried so very hard to feel his shoes,
  • Workin’ hours without rest, wanted me to have the best
  • She tried to raise me right but I refused.
  • And I turned twenty-one in prison doin’ life without parole,
  • No one could steer me right but Momma Tried, Momma Tried
  • Momma Tried to raise me better but her pleading I denied
  • And that leaves only me to blame, cause Momma Tried”

This song is pretty near perfect.  Merle, you will be missed. Happy trails.

On The Cover Of Rolling Stone

Last Christmas my present to myself was a subscription to Rolling Stone. I hadn’t had a subscription to it since 1967 when the first issue came out. My then-roommate and I were early adopters.  We’d sit in the Coop at the UC Davis campus, ostentatiously flashing our copies of RS. I kind of gave up on them when they moved to New York but I was wrong. They have since become a major force in American journalism, with a million and a half subscribers.

So, a year later, here’s my notice to resubscribe.  Will I?  Oh hell yeah.  In recent months, along with the now-discredited story about the rape culture at UV, they’ve covered climate change in depth.  Bernie Sanders is on the cover this week and the last issue had in-depth coverage of Adele, Buddy Guy and Martin O’Malley.  Matt Taibbi is a noted pundit who frequently shows up on CNN or MSNBC.  But what I enjoy most is the trivia.  Here’s an example: Johnny Cash,  Willlie Nelson and Merle Haggard were best friends for years. Did you know that Johnny Cash’s friends never called him “Johnny’? It was always “John”.

To me that’s worth a few bucks.  Actually, the intro rate is usually $20 a year; for renewals you pay about $30 but you get a second subscription for free.  YMMV. Study hard.




Well, the phones are down anyway so we’re checking out early. Enjoy the weekend, drive carefully and if you haven’t seen it yet, “Straight Outta Compton ” is surprisingly enjoyable for those of us who aren’t big hiphop fans. Good performances, and it’s helpful to us oldsters that Ice Cube’s son- who plays Ice Cube-actually LOOKS like his dad. And of course the music is great. Recommended. See you next week.


Summer Sounds- Brian Wilson, Black Keys

I can’t settle down to mundane matters such as business and the economy while summer is bustin’ out all over. Instead, let me share with you the music I’ve been playing the last couple of weeks.

Brian Wilson is everywhere these days, including the movies and my CD player. The magnificent “That’s Why God Made the Radio” from 2012 is up there with Sergeant Pepper in my book but his newest,  “No Pier Pressure”, is also a beautiful, meditative work. It features a bizarre company of guests, including Zooey Deschanel and Kacey Musgraves along with Don Was and several cellos. Yes, that’s Al Jardine you hear on the vocals.  “Whatever Happened” is a beautiful ballad you will be hearing a lot. You’re supposed to stream music these days,  but streaming isn’t as much fun as going down to The Works.  Plus streaming doesn’t get you the lyrics and photos and you want these. Wilson’s battered jalopy of a face shows every one of his seventy-three years. The notes contain a special thanks “To Capitol Records my musical home for 50 years.”  That says it all. What a magnificent career!

My other recent purchase is Black Keys’ “Turn Blue” which is a much different kind of work and which I am still trying to get my mind around. I LIKE it but it’s going to take a while to assimilate. Anyway I would recommend either CD for driving around with your windows down annoying as many folks as possible. That’s what you do in the summertime.  If you don’t have a convertible, rent one. 




Tomorrow, Saturday May 9, you have two painless opportunities to do something good for the community. Take that plastic bag that was left for you earlier this week, or any other bag, fill it with food for those in need, and set it out for your letter carrier to pick up tomorrow. Save gas! Save hassle! Help someone!

This is a huge undertaking.  Last year’s NALC (National Association of Letter Carriers) food drive netted 43,409 pounds of food, which amounted to a third of all food donations received by Food for People last year. Food for People helped 12,000 people in Humboldt County last year,  half of whom were children. 10% of our population needs help to have regular meals. You all know the statistics.  They translate into hungry seniors and kids, among others. 

Those of you who have the pleasure of knowing me know that I never give a party without setting out a can for FFP donations. One of my neighbors used to bring over all her expired food.  She’s passed away now but when I think of her, that’s the first thing that comes to mind, that she was chintzy with the food drive. Don’t be that guy! Fill up those bags! (I use Grocery Outlet) and give till it hurts.  Then to reward yourself cruise by the Zoo and enjoy the Brew at the Zoo from 4-8pm.  Another great weekend in Humboldt!


“The Urge” Is Here

Today’s the debut of “The Urge”.

Will it cause us all to splurge?

Will new ad revenues emerge?

Or will the editors sing a dirge?

All the papers want to merge.

RED ink is a paper’s scourge.

Let’s all hope that this new “Urge” 

Will bring the Times back from the verge. 

 Good luck, guys!