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“I can’t slow down.”–Lionel Richie

February 23, 2010

Yeah, it's stupid, and I stole it from a cubicle near mine. I'm suffering from a lack of visual creativity today. Whatcha gonna do about it?

Atomic Drawers is playing at Lincoln’s tomorrow night! Must work harder on mid-tempo, three-chord acoustic songs! No time for sarcastic and crass commentary!

Except I should mention that we’re also playing at The Wakarusa Music Festival the first weekend in June! (Okay, we’re not playing the festival, as it were, but we will be playing at our campsite, much like our oft-heralded 2009 appearance at The 10,000 Lakes Festival in Minnesota.)

Oh wait, an update:

Atomic Drawers also performed at the Krewe of Geneva Mardi Gras Ball a couple of weekends back. Our setlist might have included Mardi Gras, East Bound and Down, Remix Ignition, and several other seriously stagger-heavy and off-time numbers. I think Billy and this guy named Spencer played a song together as well. But Spencer had taken in quite a bit of the libations, so it sounded kinda rough. It probably sounded like Atomic Drawers sounds when you, the fan, is hearing us and we’re onstage and we can’t hear a darned thing.

Wednesday Night, Lincoln’s Roadhouse, around 9 PM.

This is a big one for us: I have Thursday off from my day job.

Must hurry back to practice. Currently suck, must suck less. And, quite honestly, the world we’ve come to enjoy might just end horribly if I don’t figure out how to stop consistently fucking up B chords. You’d think, after this long, that I would be able to do it right. It’s not hard. I think I was born with short tendons in my left hand, forearm, shoulder, neck, back, side, hip, leg, foot, and big toe.


I’m Gonna Holler, I’m Gonna Scream,

February 4, 2010

I’m gonna get me some mescaline!

I'm your Spirit Guide, Homer.

More on that in a moment.

I’m a little late with this update. We played a couple of weeks ago, then my modem died and I had no internet access at home for a week and a half. I’m happy to report that I was able to survive and even feed and bathe myself occasionally during the Long Modemless Exile, and I’m all better now. My beloved internets are back in the homestead.

I’m a little cloudy on the details from the January 20th shindig. We played Patio Song, Dead Man, Chilly Water, and….I’ll think of it in a minute. The bar was truly packed and we had a nice turnout of Drawerids there to watch. Thanks to Max, Dave, John, Stephen, Michelle, and everybody else who came out. (Update: per a text from Billy, we also played Start Over Tomorrow.)

I got me a new black guitar.

It was kind of an odd night. There were people everywhere and John had musicians lined up like 747’s coming into LaGuardia; we had very little time to stand up there and verbally abuse the crowd. Still, stage time is stage time.

Thanks as always to John, Rebecca, and Chris, the best in the business.

On to more timely things:

We’d planned on playing again last night, but Hayes Carll was in town, and, well, you gotta go see Hayes Carll. He was at the Walnut Room, a damn fine venue here in Denver. Initially, we were bummed that he didn’t have his band with him, but he was great anyway. The dude can write some lyrics and tells a good story…

…which in all honesty is wonderful stuff unless you’re in the mood to get loud. Had we known that his band wasn’t with him, we probably would have ended up playing at Lincoln’s (even though we did have a damned good time with a lot of nice folks.)

One folk in particular actually recognized Billy and I from playing at Lincoln’s.

“Yeah, I’ve seen you guys play, right on!” was the extent of the conversation initially.

Fast forward to the end of the show. I ran into the same fine gentleman again and, while waiting on a drink and attempting to make conversation, said, “so, do you go up to Lincoln’s a lot?”


“Do you go up to Lincoln’s very often?” I repeated.


“You said earlier you’d seen Atomic Drawers at Lincoln’s.”

“I’m in an awake kinda dream world kinda. I had a little mescaline earlier.”

“Ahhh. Right on,” I nodded. “Have a good ‘un.”

So, there you have it. Fan recognizes us, fan forgets us, fan turns out to be on mescaline.

Such is the sometimes jovial, sometimes volatile, always unpredictable nature of the relationship between Atomic Drawers and our devoted legions.

We are practicing a ton. It’s like there’s a little Eastern Bloc gymnastics instructor hovering over the Creativity Cellar pushing us to work harder and harder, whether we cry like little children about it or not. In any case, we’re rounding into shape and will be playing again very soon.

Check ya later, check ya later.


The Atomic Drawers 2010 World Tour (and the End of the World.)

January 20, 2010

The End is Nigh!

This is the way the world ends 

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.
–TS Eliot, “The Hollow Men” 

Nonsense.  Not in the Drawers of the Atomic, anyway.    

In 2012, large stone Mayan calendars are apparently going to fall from the sky and disrupt solar flares from the moon’s gravitation tidal pool causing the earth to switch its axis and in turn make the Yellowstone Caldera explode and spew ash all over the place, rendering all things and all people utterly useless.  

Because of this End of Days of which the wise men speak, we might as well all participate in the splendor that is Wednesday Night Live Music at Lincoln’s Roadhouse

Atomic Drawers begins their Monumental 2010 World Tour in Support of Nothing tonight.  Come getcha some.

This is Atomix/Ignition

December 24, 2009

While Denver's Christmas Eve Eve snow storm last night was much larger and more irritating than originally anticipated, Atomic Drawers and friends were not about to deny our legions of loyal followers the Christmas show they deserved.

The evening was bitter cold; the landscape was covered in ice and snow.  Vanessa with her apsirations of dentistry and I with my shiny red nose had the Cristal poppin’ on our stretch iceberg as we floated out of our neighborhood and into the wintry night, eventually landing at Lincoln’s Roadhouse, singing a happy misfit song all the while.   

With all of the regulars frightened off by holiday obligations and blizzard-like conditions, Lincoln's was realm to stop-motion characters of all shapes, sizes, and maladies last night.

We entered Lincoln’s through the howling wind and found a warm fire and a happy crew of Christmas Eve Eve revellers.  Our set started about an hour later than usual, so everybody had a chance to really, really warm themselves sufficiently before we started.  With the weather as bad as it was (and having to work at 6AM,) I decided to lay off the sauce for the most part; thankfully, Billy had my slack.  I was sweating profusely when we took the stage.  Sobriety and music make strange and ofttimes unsuccessful bedfellows… 

With Mad Mike sitting in on drums, we started out with our Holiday Classic, Christmas.  I thought we did a good job on it; Vanessa later remarked that some members of the audience were actually a tad offended by a song about incest; I must object.  We’re tackling major social issues here.  Open your minds, people.   

Billy belts out "Christmas" while I admire his Hell's Belles t-shirt and Mike keeps the beat.

Next was a sloppy but energetic rendition of Louisiana Highway One.  I think maybe Billy and I were just going through the motions on this one because we were both very excited to debut our next song. 

All entertainers know that in this era of total media saturation, it’s important that the musical artist present the entire package to the audience in a visual, attitudinal (just made that word up), and of course sonic combination.  To that end, Atomic Drawers has decided that we must play the part of financially irresponsible, decadent, debaucherous celebrities if we’re ever going to actually attain such an image.  So with that in mind, we made a conscious decision to add Remix/Ignition by R.Kelly into our repetoire. 

Nervous at first after only practicing it twice, we shrugged our shoulders and jumped right into the song with Mike providing the “dope beat” as the kids of ten to fifteen years ago say.  The good peeps in the audience who recognized the song seemed to get it initially, then the rest of the bar picked up on it and dug it.  We didn’t have gyrating, scantily-clad hangers-on kickin’ it in front of the stage like in the music video, but it was fun anyway.  We’ll work on it. 

The best part?  We finished the song and I turned back and looked at Mike, who said,

“I don’t know where you two come up with this shit.”

Next was Robert Earl Keen’s Merry Christmas from the Family, followed by an experimental new number called Rock and Roll Ending during which I think I broke my acoustic pickup. 

We finished things up with T-Shirt (including hy-freaking-sterical new lyrics by Billy)  and the best Pussywhipped ever thanks to Mike’s chops. 

'Nessa, Jenny, Michelle, and Kelly smile for a photo as Jenny prepares to flip 'Nessa over her shoulder.

 Thank You Thank You Thank You to Vanessa, Jenny, Keith, Stephen, Michelle, Kelly, and everybody else who came out on an absolutely treacherous night to spend their valuable time with us; we appreciate it more than you can imagine.

Mad Mike the Drummer–just off an operation, he nutted up and provided a much-needed beat.  Thank you Mike!

Also thanks to Chris for pouring and John from Acoustic Music Revival for hosting, and Lincoln’s Roadhouse for keeping the cajun food hot, the beers cold, and the fire warm. 

Merry Christmas, everybody.  See y’all next year.

We just thuggin' it out....

Chestnuts Roasting in Atomic Drawers….

December 22, 2009

Pull Clarence out of the river and come to raucous Downtown Pottersville for the big Atomic Drawers Rock Exhibition on Christmas Eve Eve.

You work, you work some more, you never save money, yet you build wonderful little houses for all of the good residents of Bedford Falls.  Your building & loan is constantly in the red and always in danger of takeover by that total asshole Mr. Potter.

Then you have an especially bad day, get drunk in a bar, wreck your dope hoopty vintage model T, and make an off-the-cuff remark about wishing you’d never been born.  The next thing you know, you’re wet, deranged, and stuck hanging out with a gleeful but confused old guy who thinks he’s an angel.  You head into town to grab another drink and get your head straight, but find that Atomic Drawers is playing at Lincoln’s Roadhouse. It’s a Wonderful Life, indeed.

"Say! Can any of you folks tell me where Lincoln's Roadhouse is? I've been roofied and nothing makes a darn lick of sense!

On that subject, Atomic Drawers has been feverishly working on our best A Very Special Atomic Drawers Christmas Gala ever.  The setlist has been lovingly chosen, the songs have been practiced and polished and practiced again (once, to be exact,) and we’re downright positive that this Atomic Drawers and Friends Present a Country Family Holiday Salute to Holiday Country Music of the Holiday Christmas Hannukah Kwaanza Holidays will wow audiences all the way from Buchtel Street to S. Pearl Street, and all points in between.

We’re even exhuming Bing Crosby to sing back-up on Good King Wenceslas.

So, come to Lincoln’s on Wednesday night (Christmas Eve Eve) and witness a musical performance that could very well have the power to either move you greatly or offend you completely, depending upon your particular state of mind.  We should be starting up around 9:00.

Maybe you should think of this performance as though it’s one of your kids’ (if applicable) School Holiday Pageant Singing things, i.e., we will NEVER, EVER forgive you if you bail on us. 

And, if we don’t see you Wednesday, you’ll wake up to nothing coal and switches under your tree on Friday.

Merr Chrihmah.

Atomic Drawers–Destroyer of Short-Term Memory?

October 27, 2009
This Is How We Do It

Some say that a gigantic, pyrotechnic, multi-instrumental stage show takes away from the pure musical experience. Obviously, Atomic Drawers disagrees.

I somehow completely spaced writing an update in the wake of our massive musical extravaganza last Wednesday at Lincoln’s, and I apologize wholeheartedly for the omission.

Thank goodness our broad and devout legion of fan(s) called me on it, otherwise I might never have remembered. The demands of this band have never been greater, and we at Atomic Drawers truly appreciate the help.

It was cold, it was snowing like all hell, and the roads were treacherous; however, the fire was warm in Lincoln’s and the good people were out in full force (all seventeen to twenty-three of them.)

Billy and I went on stage a little earlier than usual and decided just beforehand that, for no reason other than it was cold outside and there was a, uh, sparse crowd, we would play as loud and fast as humanly possible. We then ran through an interesting if slightly disjointed set of songs. We started out with He’s a Dick by GoldenSmog, a fun little tune we haven’t played in a couple of years. Then it was on to Suedehead by Morrisey. Nothing warms up a gruff crowd at the roadhouse like a song that a dude probably (okay, definitely) wrote about another dude. We can’t help it if it’s fun as hell to play; furthermore, we play it better, faster, and louder than the original. Next was…hmmm…It has been a few days…

Oh, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart. Loud, fast, and fun.  We followed up with…can’t remember…

Oh, Start Over Tomorrow, and Atomic Drawers original about a hangover. We ended our short set with Pecan Pie, again from GoldenSmog. (Something about cold and snow brings out the gratuitous and possibly unneccessary Jeff Tweedy worship in Atomic Drawers.)

The crowd was small, the beer was cold, the fire was warm, the Drawers were Atomic, and we passed a good time. And I was in bed by 10:30.

Thanks to Keith, Michelle, John, Becca, Chris, and all of the other fine folks who made the trek to Lincoln’s on a cold and dreary night.

Atomic Drawers will be back sometime next month, probably for our traditional Thanksgiving Holiday Show. In the meantime, there’s an ever-growing stack of world-killing originals to perfect.

See y’all soon.

Soggy Drawers

October 21, 2009
Is there anything more lovely than Downtown Denver in Autumn?  A full pallete of blazing color dazzles the eye.

Is there anything more lovely than Downtown Denver in Autumn? A full pallete of blazing color dazzles the eye.

Nobody ever wants to go out to Lincoln’s Roadhouse for an Atomic Drawers Spectacle when the weather is sunny and lovely.

As a resident, I get that.  This is Denver, where any sunny day wasted makes people point at themselves in their mirrors and cry before hiding in bathrooms and gagging up vomet for missing an outdoor workout or a dog walk or a trail hike or an extreme mountain biking experience or a chance to save an injured sapling. 

The truly bizarre part?  This place gets 300 days of sunshine per year.   You really can afford to miss one or two. 

But see, now, today, the weather absolutely sucks.  It’s wetter than a bull pissing on a flat rock outside, 35 degrees, wind, rain, snow; basically, we’ve entered the magical land of Shreveport in February (okay, Shreveport in February every three years or so.)  

I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right:  Atomic Drawers fan(s) are known for their extravagant and meticulously-created hairstyles.  I’ve often pondered the sheer volume of man-hours spent on the pursuit of good rock fan hair.  I myself dedicate 2.5 hours per day to this crucial art and believe you me, on this particular day I’ve been wrestling with the threat of rainy-day humidified hair; however, it’s not going to keep me home tonight and it should not keep you home tonight either. 

Grab one of those plastic bonnet thingies that old ladies used to wear and wrap it around your ‘do, put on your waterproof pancho, and come out to Lincoln’s tonight.  Eat a Meatloaf Cheeseburger (yeah, that’s right, Lincoln’s has incredible Meatloaf Cheeseburgers,) have several drinks, and enjoy some live music with Atomic Drawers and other of their ilk. 

Maybe I need to stop pushing the food.  It never works.  Perhaps we need a song about the food.  Or a jingle about Lincoln’s on the website.  I am now in digression and have taken my italicized inner monologue as far as it needs to go.

If 4000 people or more show up, we’re playing our Atomic Tribute to the Music of Marvin Hamlisch.  Any less, then we do a regular set filled with the lively and profane vitriol that you, our dear fan(s), have come to expect. 

We’ll be going on at around 9:00 PM and we will be taking attendance.