New Naim FraimLite

A stripped back version of Naim’s reference Fraim, FraimLite operates on the same principles, providing a rigid, self-levelling platform for supported hi-fi equipment that isolates hi-fi separates from each other and their environment. Its simplified design results in a more affordable and simpler-to-set-up equipment support system that still looks stunning in a modern domestic listening room.

Alternative level heights and finishes are available across both models to match the settings of the room in which the system will be situated. Uprights are available in black or natural anodised aluminium finish and come in a choice of three lengths: standard, medium and tall. Shelving panels are available in ash, black ash and cherry real wood veneers.

House Party South Austin Style!

On the last Friday of the month for well over a year now, my friends throw a Happy Hour. In one of the only basements in Austin several bands play and the evening is wrapped up with The Box Spring Hogs, a very believable Tom Waits tribute band. You never know who will show up but it’s usually excellent. All kinds of music from free jazz, country, punk and heavy metal. Their basement has had more musical legends in it than most bars!

The Yarmigos playing Loudon Wainwright's Dead Skunk In The Middle Of The Road.

The Yarmigos playing Loudon Wainwright's Dead Skunk In The Middle Of The Road.

Chris Gates formerly of The Big Boys!  One of the best punk bands of the 80's!

Chris Gates formerly of The Big Boys! One of the best punk bands of the 80's!

The Box Spring Hogs.  The best Tom Waits tribute band in the World!  If you close your eyes it sounds exactly like him.  I do like their version of Mexican American by Cheech & Chong... good stuff!

The Box Spring Hogs. The best Tom Waits tribute band in the World! If you close your eyes it sounds exactly like him. I do like their version of Mexican American by Cheech & Chong... good stuff!

Bruce Clifford & Co. kicking out the Power Pop!

Bruce Clifford & Co. kicking out the Power Pop!

Silly Willie!

SIERRA BLANCA The Hudspeth County Attorney is ready to make a plea deal with the Red Headed Stranger.

“I’m gonna let him plead, pay a small fine and he’s gotta sing “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” with his guitar right there in the courtroom,” County Attorney Kit Bramblett said this week. “You bet your ass I ain’t gonna be mean to Willie Nelson.”

Nelson was arrested Nov. 26 after a Border Patrol agent smelled pot wafting from Nelson’s tour bus at the Sierra Blanca checkpoint. A little more than six ounces was found on the bus. Nelson was arraigned and on the road again after paying a $2,500 bond.

Thousands of vehicles roll through two Border Patrol checkpoints in Hudspeth County every day and finding pot here and there is pretty common. Bramblett handles 10 or 12 personal use cases every month. The 6.24 ounces that was found when Willie was arrested is above the amount Bramblett can handle in his jurisdiction, but after the packaging was removed, that was no longer the case.

The fine will be $100 and court costs amount to $278. Bramblett said he’s in contact with Nelson’s lawyer. Next time the singer’s tour schedule brings the Honeysuckle Rose close to Sierra Blanca, Bramblett’s office will be notified and Willie will make a scheduled stop at the Hudspeth County courthouse.

“Willie Nelson is 77 years old, and I’m 78,” Bramblett said. “He’s been my favorite artist all my life. We all know he smokes a little pot.”

Glenn Miller was lost at sea…

When the popular American jazz musician and bandleader vanished enroute from England to France to play for troops in recently liberated Paris, few people knew about it at the time. This is because it happened the same day the Germans launched their last major offensive against the allies in what would be known as the Battle of the Bulge, pushing such news to the back page. What happened to the single-engine Norseman he was riding in over the English Channel some 10 days before Christmas has never been explained, and no trace of Miller or the plane has ever been found. There is speculation a German fighter got it, or that the plane got hit by ordnance being dropped by British bombers on their way back from a canceled bombing mission. (Bombers couldn’t land with unexploded ordnance on board and had to jettison their bomb loads—preferably over the ocean—before they could land.) Whatever the case, Miller’s death was a huge loss to the American musical scene and one that it never quite recovered from.

SXSW Wrap Up

Once again I have survived SXSW with minimal damage. I tried to pace myself this year. The secret to surviving a 4 day drinking binge is keeping hydrated. That shot of Jager was a bad idea but my judgement was quite blurred by that point of the night and it’s rude to turn down a drink! So after the joy of meeting Ron Sexsmith I woke up to a new day of adventures. I brought the family to the French Ligation Museum to see Sharon Van Etten
After that we headed over to the Liberty and saw Arms from Brooklyn…. BTW It seems almost EVERY band is from Brooklyn.
Right after Arms set (which was really good) None other than Sondre Lerche did a solo set. My wife and I are big fans.
sondre After that we headed back home. Her to watch the kids and me to get ready to go out for the night shows. I headed over to Stubbs to see TV on the Radio.
The next day I hung out until the afternoon and drug the kids to see The Hickoids hickoids and Meat Puppets
meat While talking to a friend I got a tap on the back.” ‘ello, are you Brian?” asks a nice British fellow. “I am”, “I’m Paul Darwin of Rega UK”. This is just another magical moment at SXSW!! Me Ron & Paul from Rega UK We slammed a couple beers and watched the Kirkwood Bros. By now my kids are MISERABLE, so we take off back home to wait for “Mothra” (mother) to get back from seeing Mike Watt. I slam some burgers on the grill and try to sober up for the Ron Sexsmith show at midnight.
ron and made it after a few more beers (and that damn shot).
Next day I wake up a little green but not too bad. Saturday is the BYOC fest behind the shop and always a BLAST!! My neighbors The Butler Bros. have put it on for 6 years now and it just gets better and better! I got there in time to hear Zukunasisters, a Japanese act that belts out Tom Jones type songs. I thought they were pretty good and would fit in great at any casino in Vegas.
After they left the stage the suprise of the day came on… Sway Machinery. This band is an All Star cast from all the hip bands today. Daptones, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Arcade Fire. The list goes on. They were playing Afrobeat with Hebrew lyrics. IT WAS AWESOME!!! I spoke with their trumpet player after the gig. He’s doing a record with Ornette Coleman!! Serious players!
Some laptop rock band played, then Matt a six year old drummer. Pretty cute watching him set up his drums until they were “just right”. Matt is gonna be a huge rock star someday.matt
Last up and closing my weekend of debauchery… The Woggles! I played a opening gig with them at Emos a good 14 years ago. “The Professor” is still in form. This is him telling jokes to my pal (from Brooklyn!) Jack Sprat.
Charming a very hard audience
The drummer never missed a beat flicking me the bird. I was impressed!
After The Woggles it was time for some serious Mexican food at Chapala. I eat here on average of twice a week. I would DIE without Chapala!
That sums up my weekend of SXSW. I look forward to next year! It will be my 17th in a row!

RIP Augustus Owsley Stanley III

owsley“…Owsley Stanley, the prodigiously gifted applied chemist to the stars, who made LSD in quantity for the Grateful Dead, the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Ken Kesey and other avatars of the psychedelic ’60s, died on Sunday in a car accident in Australia. He was 76 and lived in the bush near Cairns, in the Australian state of Queensland.”

My first (surreal) day of SXSW

ronWhat a day!! The shop was a buzzin’ and I got a email from a client. He won a pass to see the new documentary about Ron Sexsmith, Love Shines and meet the man himself. His band had a gig at the same time and he knew I’m a huge fan so he hooked me up! The film is directed by Douglas Arrowsmith and covers Ron’s career and the production of his new record Long Player Late Bloomer. I was turned on to Ron’s music a good 14 years ago and have faithfully bought every record since his first. If you’re not familiar with his music, you’re in for a cerebral treat. I know that might be a stretch for the Lady GaGme fans out there… I read somewhere that he’s Elvis Costello’s favorite songwriter. I would place him in the same league as Nick Drake, Graham Parsons, Nick Lowe and Richard Thompson. After the screening I got to hang out with Ron in the bar at the Hilton. We had a couple drinks and talked about different producers (Mitchell Froom, Bob Rock, T-Bone Burnett), what his songs are about, how he crafts them, his visit to Paul McCartney’s home, his love of 50’s doo wop, etc. There were so many questions that I had answered from one of the most prolific songwriters of our time. A dream come true. Anyone want to help me meet Keith Richards?