Friday, November 17, 2023

Self Help Radio 111623: Chameleons

(original image here)

No matter how much it tried, Self Help Radio could not change colors today & blend into the radio landscape. It, sadly, stuck out like the sore thumb of radio it is. However! As a show about chameleons, Self Help Radio played lots of music about chameleons & had lots of guests somehow involved with chameleons. So all's well that end's well. Except maybe it didn't end well. How I wish I could just disappear!

The show is available now at the Self Help Radio website. You must remember to use the username SHR & also the password selfhelp to access. Lots of things happened on the show, the details are below.

If you'd rather listen to the Chameleons than this show, though, I totally understand.

Self Help Radio Chameleons Show
"Chameleon" Elton John _Blue Moves_
"Chameleon" Labelle _Chameleon_

introduction & definitions

"The Chameleon" The Saints _Prehistoric Sounds_
"Two Chameleons" Dalek I _Compass Kumpas_
"Chameleon" Dark Day _Exterminating Angel_
"Music For Chameleons" Gary Numan _I, Assassin_

interview with chameleons-as-pets advocate Paxton Arch

"Chameleon Day" Talk Talk _The Colour Of Spring_
"Chameleon Blues" Bill Morrissey _Inside_
"Chameleon" Tim O'Brien _Chameleon_
"Chameleon Girl" Nits _Da Da Da_

interview with "the Human Chameleon" Pip Aparo

"C'mon Chameleon" The Research _Breaking Up_
"Chameleon" Marshmallow Coast _Ride The Lightning_
"Chameleon" James _Fresh As A Daisy: The Singles_
"My New Tattooed Chameleon" Annie Hamilton _Annie Hamilton EP_

our resident cinephile Chuck stops by to talk about films featuring chameleons disguises

"Chameleon" Animanz & Juanita Euka _Exotic Other_
"Chameleon Blues" Ruud Hermans & Dick Van Altena _Lonely 2_
"Chameleon" Jacco Gardner _Cabinet Of Curiosities_
"Chameleon Eyes" Marta Del Grandi _Selva_

interview with writer/director Preston Argyle about his new film "The Chameleon"
conclusion & goodbye

"Karma Chameleon" Me First & The Gimme Gimmes _Are We Not Men? We Are Diva!_
"Chameleon Bones" The Valery Trails _Chameleon Bones_
"Chameleon" Ruby Pins _Ruby Pins_
"Chameleon/Comedian" Kathleen Edwards _Voyageur_

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Whither Chameleons?

(A frightened chameleon turns black! From the Wikipedia page.)

It's going to sound dumb but. After I saw the Chameleons in September, as I moseyed back to my car in the cool night, I walked past some people who were probably a lot younger than I am & who were certainly far more inebriated than me. They were sitting at a table at a closed cafe talking to people who were leaving the show. They asked about which band they had seen & someone said "The Chameleons." One of them asked "How could you see them did they blend into the stage?" & they started laughing. Okay, maybe they weren't drunk, they were high.

In any event, it was probably the first time I really thought about the animal the band named themselves after. Were they at all like chameleons or was that just a cool name? What were chameleons like? & finally, like all my trains of thought, they stop at the depot that's marked "could I do a radio show about this?" Could I do a radio show about chameleons?

It turns out I could & I will. Self Help Radio's show about chameleons will air today! this afternoon! from noon to 2pm on Freeform Portland. In town the station's at 90.3 & 98.3 fm & online it's at freeform portland dot org. As I mentioned yesterday there will be no songs by the Chameleons on the chameleons show - but they served as inspiration so they will be there in an important way.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Preface To Chameleons - No, Not Those Guys

In case you didn't know, one of my dumb rules about my themes is that the song has to fit the theme, not the band. So even though I love The Chameleons & could easily play hours of their music & talk about them, as far as I know - & I should know! - they haven't written any songs about chameleons so I can't play them on the show about chameleons.

It's been quite amazing actually - I discovered them in 1986 right before they broke up & despaired of ever seeing them live. But I got to see Chameleons Vox (a band led by the singer) in Ohio in - maybe it was 2015? - then again here in Portland in 2019. & since one of the original guitarists (he's on the right in the picture) has rejoined the band, they call themselves the Chameleons once more, & I got to see them in September. It was great.

But I can't play them on the show about chameleons. Alas!

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Something You Don't See Around Here

This is something you don't really see in Portland, or at least I haven't noticed them as conspicuously: piles of bricks.

The other day I was talking to my friend Jon in Lexington & he mentioned some place in our old neighborhood there & I was looking at Gogoel Masp & I was struck by how many brick houses were there. We don't have a lot of brick houses in Portland. I mentioned that to my wife & she said, "I know! I hate it!"

One thing is true, I have a lot of pictures I took in Kentucky of bricks. The one above I took on this day in 2015. You might be saying to yourself, "C'mon, Gary! How many pictures of bricks can you have taken?" I can't tell you the total number but of the ones I saved, here are the ones from 2014, the year I started taking pictures on our dogwalks. Spoiler alert! It's four!

One thing to mention is this is just the piles of bricks (or in one case loose bricks on a walkway). I took way more pictures of brick walls &etc.

There's only one picture I've saved of a brick wall in the last couple of years in Portland. & that's because they don't really build things with bricks here, at least (as far as I can tell) as often as they do in Kentucky. & let me tell you - my wife hates it!

Monday, November 13, 2023

Wild Times At Wee Gertie's

There's a poem recited in the darkest & dankest halls amongst the worsening & worst. It's not a poem you would ever hear - why would you? - but it's kept in memory just in case. You never know when, in the course of the average workaday day, a working person might be hankering for a bit of verse. It is then when recitation might be an option - but maybe not even then.

Have you heard that pram, though, you might be asking. The answer is of course no. One doesn't often find oneself in the darkest & dankest halls in this day & age. Indeed, one is more likely to suffer through the half-hearted misheard song lyrics muttered in the dentist or doctor office, or the improperly retranslated muzak impressions which used to be the mainstay of malls.

But is this a crisis of poetry, you worry. The answer is probably not, because let's be honest here we don't want poetry to think there is a crisis. Poetry pretends it thrives in crisis when obviously it does not. Poetry barely manages to get to movies on time. Poetry is more comfortable watching wine & whiskey age than being on the front lines when immediacy is a necessity.

In fact, this poem about which we are speaking is older than most conflicts, older even than most affections. & though it suffers from corruption because of its oral transmission, it retains a kind of purity that's the result of the affection of those who learn it. & again, this is not the time nor place for that poem. Find yourself in the darkest & dankest halls if you really must know it.