Archive for August, 2011

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on August 31, 2011 by sethdellinger

Dobbins Landing

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on August 30, 2011 by sethdellinger


Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on August 26, 2011 by sethdellinger

Faithful blog readers may recall a year or two ago, I was kinda sorta obsessed with the song “Rattlesnake” by the band LIVE, and specifically, taking photos to set to this song. Nobody gave a shit then, so I won’t be offended or surprised by your complete lack of interest now, either.

LIVE is (was) from the area I am from.  Not simply the same state, but the very specific same part of that state.  And they write music about this area.  Now, this is nothing incredibly new; plenty of songs have been written about “south central PA” and/ or Pennsylvania’s Appalachia, however, most of those songs contain fiddles, ukuleles, and the word “yonder”.  Don’t get me wrong, I like a lot of that music (mostly what is known as Bluegrass) and it is representative of this area.  But what draws me to LIVE’s renderings of the area is their markedly different approach.  (here is their first song about the area, Shit Town, about York, a city I once ran a restaurant in).  But nothing, as far as I’m concerned, matches “Rattlesnake”.

“Rattlesnake” is actually one of LIVE’s most derided songs.  Critics of Ed Kowalzcyk’s lyrics accuse him of putting actual nonsense into “Rattlesnake”—and they may be right.  Even I don’t know what “we’ll go find Lurch/ and we’ll haul ass down through the abbey” is talking about.  But to me, a lot of the lyrics here are meant as mood-setters.  The true purpose and triumph of “Rattlesnake” is to view this area through a new lens; one of mysticism, danger, and brooding darkness;  because there are definitely elements to living in Appalachia that are sinister and where the light—metaphorically—never shines.  Ed doesn’t ever really sing about this in the song, but it sure sounds like he is.  Musically, the song could not be much more different than most of the songs written about the area; hear that humming, suggestive, supernatural guitar underlining everything; hear that thwap-thwap-thwap rock thump that seems so juxtaposed to the humming guitar that the two seem to battle each other; hear that drumming that is practically March Militaire during the verses and practically Keith Moon on the choruses; “Rattlesnake” threatens to take you to a witch’s coven in the mountains, make you drink snake blood and have sex with a shadow-drenched moon-goddess. (and don’t get me started on the majesty of Kowalzcyk’s line “the rack is full and so are we/ or laughing gas, and ennui”…I have had hours of fun pondering it. Is the rack this or this or this?  How does the meaning change each time?  How does it not?)

I mention all this now not because I’m re-obsessed (it never really went away), but because now that I’ve discovered Windows MovieMaker, I can finally set my “Rattlesnake” pictures to the song in the way that I always wanted to.  I present to you here the first of a few slideshows of pictures I took in south central PA set to the song “Rattlesnake”.  First, in case you’re an outsider or dumb, a few things that might make the song more enlightening about this area for you (these are all links):

1.  Rattlesnakes in Pennsylvania

2.  Skinning Hunted Deer

3.  Jesco White

4.  Ennui

And now, my slideshow:


Posted in Prose with tags , , , , , , on August 20, 2011 by sethdellinger

on the couch a few days ago, not doing much, maybe reading, half-dozing, maybe muttering to myself, was suddenly aware of the Cheers theme song on the television, and despite having heard it dozens of times over the past few years I suddenly remembered a connection I had to it, or it had to me, in the dark smoky years of my fire, during the bed-ridden gin-soaked sorrow, however, I cannot fully remember this connection, it remains submerged in the narrow ether, in the marrow of moments; perhaps, paralyzed on a couch in Shippensburg, during some of the darkest days, with my back turned to the television while my rommates did homework and I was dropped out of school and just drinking drinking drinking and masturbating, perhaps paralyzed on that couch the Cheers theme song came on and it with it’s positivity-laden lyrics but somehow melancholy tune it cemented for me an absolute feeling that existence is definitely worth experiencing while also being utter shit;  I can have no way of knowing if that is the connection I am recalling but it is a likely one and certainly not much different than whatever the truth is.  And while I was on my current couch pondering this connection it became clear to me through some back alley memory loophole that the Cheers theme song had been a source for and symbol of my extreme melancholy for quite a few of the hazy barely-formed years of my most earnest absentia; while I was off tra-la-la-ing in the Land of Drinkers Who’d Rather Be Dead, there seems to have been a lot of syndicated television on in backgrounds (in basements, bars, and bedrooms) and this everybody-knows-your-name trope became something of a razor to my wrist, whatever that means, and what I am now stuck figuring out is how in the world I know this, if I can’t remember any instance of hearing it during those years, and how I forgot this connection in the intervening years and succesfully watched Cheers without remembering that sadness.  None of this has anything to do with Cheers, of course, but instead I am concerned with the terrifying part of our lives which happens without our noticing it; without our ability to notice it if we tried; this submerged, bottom-of-the-iceberg life we all live (whether you drank yourself to death or not, whether you watch boorish sitcoms or not) that transpires below the waterline of our minds.  Suddenly out of nowhere you realize a part of you is dead that you forgot ever existed and then you forget your realization and go on with your day eating a Snickers, riding an escalator, with no idea that hidden parts of you are orbiting.  Suddenly you remember you used to be a different person, with different habits, with different thoughts, and for a moment you hold that image of your former self perfectly in your mind like a microscope snapshot of a snowflake but then just as quickly as it came the structure vanishes and you remember nothing except that you had been remembering something.  Life becomes reduced to shadow structures; edifices with no interiors.  You spend all day trying to figure out what your vivid dream from the night before meant, and then suddenly, at 6 in the afternoon when you go to think about it some more, you cannnot remember what happened in the dream (despite having thought about it all day).  How can this be?  What chased it away?  Where did it go?  Where does it live now?  Surely it lives.  Or you had a dream when you were eight years old that you have remembered your whole life; you go back to pondering it from time-to-time in your waking life.  But suddenly in your mid-twenties you start to think that maybe half of it was real; that your grandma really did take you to that park to see those geese, and that the only part that was a dream was when you rode a goose into the sky, but you never do ask your grandma if it was real and then she dies and now you’re not sure at all.  And then maybe one day you’re 40 years old and you ponder the dream again and you think, maybe the part where I rode the goose was a day-dream; yes, that’s right, I day-dreamed it sitting in school; so half of it was real, and half imagined, but none of it dreamt.  But it probably was dreamt.  How can one not know these things?  Where do we live, in the shadows, in the light?  In the great underneath?  I had a dream a few nights ago that involved a lot of driving, a friend of mine I almost never see, and somehow my old high school parking lot, and I was happy, happy, and I kept on living in that dream world for as long as I could in the minutes after I woke up, until the logic and sense of that universe faded; even now I can remember almost none of it, but I lived there, I tell you; it was me living there just as sure as it’s me typing this.  The dream-me, and the typing-me, and the Cheers-sadness me…I wonder if they are the same.  Or if I am many.  Perhaps it is like viewing something through a crystal, and there are many different versions of the same thing, but existing all at once.  But is the Cheers me, the Fire me, still here, or do I simply hear his echoes (maybe him and dream-me are in cahoots), see his footprints, feel the slouch-pangs of his sinister urges?  In the deepest moments of latest night these are the questions I have when I become convinced I am more than alive

in the middle of something

Posted in Prose with tags on August 13, 2011 by sethdellinger

…living on for the moment, turning our full attention to the pleasures of the moment, to the pleasures of the moon, the snow when the snow deems its existence now-worthy, the cherries in bloom and the maple leaves if you are lucky to live somewhere near maple and maybe taking home a jug of real maple syrup that will get hard and grainy and unusable before you know it but you’ll get 6 maybe 8 of the best pancakes of your life out of that stuff before it goes, singing songs, oh singing songs, drinkng the most succulent fruit beverages you can find hopefully with pieces of mango or papaya immersed in the nectar, and I am not talking about pulp but pieces, diverting ourselves in just floating, floating along like otters in the most something of something, oh the words leave me dear but I’m sure you can picture the otter, can’t you?  Not giving a whit for pauperism staring us in the face, not to be disheartened, not to be withdrawn or fake, like a gourd just floating along a peacable current, this is what we call the floating world…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on August 13, 2011 by sethdellinger

Deep in my heart, that’s where the knot comes loose.

Posted in Concert/ Events, Photography with tags , , , , on August 12, 2011 by sethdellinger

Pictures, video, and setlist from My Morning Jacket show, 8/10/11 in Pittsburgh











Jim James and Neko Case duetting "Islands in the Stream"



The following videos are all from the same show, but only the first, “Knot Comes Loose”, was taken by me (the sound sucks.)  The others were taken by people with better cameras and shittier crowd positions. :)


Picture of the setlist taken from the band’s Facebook page:



1.  Victory Dance
2.  Circuital
3.  Off the Record
4.  I’m Amazed
5.  Gideon
6.  You Wanna Freak Out
7. Knot Comes Loose
8.  Slow, Slow Tune
9.  Evelyn Is Not Real
10. Honest Man
11. Dondante
12. Movin’ Away
13. Smokin’ From Shootin’
14. Run Thru (end only)
15. First Light
16. Touch Me (I’m Going to Scream) part 2
17. Mahgeetah


1.  Wordless Chorus
2.  Islands in the Stream (w/ Neko Case)
3.  Holding Onto Black Metal
4.  One Big Holiday

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