Photo: Bríd O’Donovan
Myles performing at The Pavilion in April, supporting Trumpets of Jericho
Myles Manley & The Little People play Crane Lane, Cork
w/ The Vincent(s)
Tue July 17th, 12 midnight
Read Part II of Myles’ American Diary from yesterday here
For those who don’t know me, I am a singer-songwriter* whose family is English and who grew up, for the most part, just outside of Sligo town; I’m now based in Dublin. I first went to New York in the summer of 2009, and I’ve spent about a year of my life there by now.
I was kindly asked by WeAreNoise to write a tour diary for my latest jaunt to the city of New York, which was from mid-April to the end of May, and I wasn’t too keen to oblige. Being mainly Irish, or at least coming to terms with that, I begin to realise that I don’t have much time for a positive depiction of life. The facts are what appeal to me and the brutal reality – that which is down to earth, gossip-worthy. Ugly to hear about the sense that one’s sucked into a film, the rush of feeling, the pure positive energy of a place, the poverty and extreme wealth, the unkempt, obscurely beautiful, steel-cement garden, the variety of people, the distance from my past ordinary life & the sheer pride at pulling such a move off.
Bbbbbbbbleurgh bleurgh non-original, precious, preeeenavant-garde move to self-mythologise, hipster-cuntery — the embarrassing attempts to drum up images of poverty — impossible middle classness — maaaaaaaudlin rejection of roots — patti smith reveal all tell all ‘just kids’ awful awful namechecking self-indulgent wankery — the terrible hair—the preteeeeeentiousness worse than Dead School even — the pride in bowel movement…
…what rings true is the shocking high price of food and rent in NYC, the counting out of dimes for a 16oz of pbr to sneak into bar, the memorisation of dollar-pizza shop location, and scrounging of dollar, and pavement-trudging to the spot, amount of hours spent on subway staring at people just as bored, apathetic as anywhere else, the 10,000 white boys in town to make it as a rocknrollstarfolkicon rolling off the L-line, the just-as-sub-par-music, the middle-aged post-punks and drag queens: “it just isn’t like it used to be…”, the ‘howdyaactuallydoit … monetarily?’ the who’d’ya lay? and how drunk were ya!? and the oh i’m not that good. it wasn’t that good etc…
Well I’ve obliged due to ulterior motives, and here’s what I did then:
16th – Arrived
17th – ??
18th – ??
19th – gig at gizzi’s coffee, greenwich village
20th – gig at aviary gallery, jamaica plain, boston w/ rayvon browne, ACLU benefit,
21st – gig at postcrypt coffeehouse, columbia university w/ tony gong
22nd – gig at red hook bait and tackle
23rd – sidewalk cafe open stage (played ‘paddy’s revolt’ by trumpets of jericho)
24th – tuesday teacup open stage @ goodbye blue monday (‘paddy’s revolt’ filmed by
25th – ??
26th – rehearsed with charles goold and travis stewart at swan loft
27th – bar mitzvah, washington DC
28th – bar mitzvah, washington DC
29th – nyc
30th sidewalk open stage, wrote ‘distant stations’ in bathroom, and played it along with ‘i f*ck your wife’ to dubstep version backing, rehearsed with charles and travis late
1st – ‘nyc ep release’ for myles manley ep: performed with charles and travis; rayvon
browne, albert goold (w/ band), ray brown (w/ charles mansfield) also performed.
2nd – flew to san francisco at 8am, slept most of day in berkeley
3rd – berkeley, san francisco, listened to jehovahkill by julian cope in park near castro st, somewhat yuppy night out
4th – sunny berkeley, end of year director’s showcase, listened to ‘there’s a riot goin’ on’ by sly and the family stone, and harvest moon by neil young on BART, san fran airport
5th – nyc early, slept most of day, cinco de mayo! saw congolese band at shrine world
6th-8th – ?? (finished easter morning and i pay to play to you probably)
9th – banned from fat cat, hung out with ray brown on 14th st.
10th – wrote ‘gotta get out of the country’ and performed it at catweazle with albert goold, killed it and thoroughly upstaged rayvon browne’s video shoot
11th – open mic in community bookshop, broadway and 173rd
12th – middle school reunion, wellesley, MA
13th – nyc, late gig in goodbye blue monday
14th – recorded do re mi by woody guthrie with cal folger day at tribes art gallery for WKCR FM, as part of ‘tribute to woodie’ program
15th-17th – ?? (did demos for the little people probably)
18th – gig at brooklyn tea party, went to rayvon browne ‘Companion’ release at swan loft, took fritz to hospital
19th – gig at taco hut, new haven, connecticut
20th – afternoon gig at tribes ‘catweazle zine release’ w/ dave deporis, toby goodshank; late night gig at goodbye blue monday
21st – copied cassette tapes for rayvon browne at morgan’s apartment, performed
‘easter morning’ at sidewalk café open stage, late
22nd – watched live performance of hun-huur-tu: mongolian throat singing on
widescreen tv for ages with albert and charles
25th – ‘myles manley presents’ at sidewalk café: gig w/ graffiti sunshine, domino, beau alessi, me, m lamar, andrew hoepfner. failed attempt by m lamar to seduce me.
26th – house show at jen kaplan and ring alexander’s apartment (unicorn)
27th – visited bernard king on staten island, had beer with him on ferry on way back, arrived late to house show at deenah vollmer and co.’s
28th – sublet room, laptop stolen in process
29th – released music video via youtube, left for airport
In New York I get inspired and I feel free. It’s difficult to cope with the accelerated pace of life, and I’ve nothing to do really, so I put plenty of work into writing songs. I can think about Ireland from a distance; it seems puny and all-important to me. While there’s probably a larger collection of middle-of-the-road nothings making music in New York than anywhere else in the world (apart from Dublin, maybe), there are also, inevitably, some of the greatest talents. And I’m egged on by them, the basic currency is ‘new songs’, i.e. the rush of talent, and not the refinement of it. It’s very helpful to go back in stages, and see how people have progressed.
*I use the term singer-songwriter in the hope that it can cease to represent the worst genre of music, and become a merely descriptive again.
Stay tuned, Part 2 of Myles’ USA Tour Diary will be published here tomorrow, featuring plenty more info on the names listed above