9:00 para auriculares y cacao


tKoL25: Quit While You're Ahead

 tKol25: Quit While You're Ahead


46:16 para auriculares y cacao
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When I met Ty, I only knew about five or six chords on the guitar. After three years of playing with him non-stop, I knew all eight. I always had something to say back then and I made sure none of that came through in the lyrics. As the Washington Post wrote about us, "The doors to the Kingdom are not wide open. Strangers will encounter private jokes and willful indulgences. Still the band achieves an engaging groove. Whatever songs like "Princess Bridge" and "ButterPump" are about, they slip-slide along with eccentric aplomb." After I looked up what aplomb meant, I felt seen. This is the nicest thing anyone has ever said about me. (For the record, ButterPump is about a butter pump.)

For The Grand Escape (1999), our final paid public performance, we actually had a set list because we played with Marcus Esposito, a second guitarist. Nonetheless, we forgot to play one of the songs on the set list which was fine because right before the show, Avelyn Mitra asked if she could play flute and we wondered why it took until our last show for people to figure out that they could do that. Just show up and play an instrument.

I never want to perform in public again and I'm sure Ty agrees. It's too much hassle. People seem to think that you have to in order to be a real band but the music was never for anyone not on the stage. It still isn't. If I could erase all the music tKoL has ever made public, I probably would. I like it in my earholes. It's been declared "an engaging groove" by a reputable newspaper. But I don't care about anyone else's earholes. Not even yours. In fact, stop reading. This is not for you either.

Rich Walkling
The Otter Farm, Berkeley, California
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At first, in 1996, it was just fun because I could make Rich laugh–at the corporate office where we both worked–with silly but pretty in-the-know allusions. Oh, this guy gets it I thought. Then some time later at the Zone he goes, “You know who you are?” To which I probably replied, “Huh?” “You are the king of leisure.” To which I probably replied, “Okay." We just ran with that rather than think of anything better.

Then one day Rich said, “I played some songs into my answering machine.” To which I probably replied, “Huh?” Then he said, “There are drums in my basement.” To which I probably replied, “Oh, I play the drums.” So we just ran with that rather than think of anything better.

I think we played exactly one show to an audience because that’s what playing a show was supposed to be; playing for strangers. This was after the headliners found us lazily buying candy across the street. Most of that show consisted of us playing some songs, talking to each other, bagging on the headliners (our friends), and yelling at people for not listening to us do this. After that, we basically just played for and to each other either in Smelly Hell or at “shows”. Because why not? Then we stopped playing songs.

Thousands of hours of trying to entertain the person on the other side of the stage was what it is all about whether the stage was a literal stage or through the tubes and across the world wide digital divide. It’s all the same; what kind of response will this silly but pretty in-the-know allusion I just made elicit from Rich. So we just ran with that rather than think of anything better.

That’s showbiz, kids. Quit while you’re ahead.

ty hardaway
The Otis, Middlespace, Maryland
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