Aquí y Allá

19 June 2011



Not me. I go outside:

“The biggest waste of water in the country by far. You spend half a pint and flush two gallons.”   (Prince Philip in a 1965 speech.)


Big Brother and the Holding Company, colored pencil. I have drawn this whirlpool, tornado like figure all my life.


Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi made the face of the Statue of Liberty resemble his mother, noble, wise, maternal.


Dr. Allen Andrew was born in England and he died in the Yellow Fever (Cholera) epidemic in Georgia, 1839.


The earliest Anglo-Saxon term for “shoe” was sceo (to cover) which eventually became in the plural “schewis,” then shooys, and finally shoes.

Dava’s shoes:


Blake Thompson and Kate Russo.


Wynonna Judd was born Christina Ciminella. Christina Ciminella is such a better name than Wynonna Judd, unless you live in the suburbs, and even then, Judd, I mean, come on. Judd?


In 1305, King Edward I (England) decreed that for a standard of accuracy in certain trades, an inch be taken as the length of three contiguous barleycorns. A child’s shoe measuring thirteen barleycorns became known as a size 13.


In the 17th century, the oxford, a low calf-leather shoe laced up the front through three or more eyelets, originated with cobblers in the academic town of Oxford, England.


Kate Russo and Dan Andrew.


The laceless, slip-on loafer is believed to have evolved from the Norwegian clog, an early overshoe. The Weejun loafer was named by a cobbler from Wilton, Maine, Henry Bass, after the final two syllables of “Norwegian.”


Kari and Christian Borle in… oh, you know where they are.


The microwave was invented after a researcher walked by a radar tube and a chocolate bar melted in his pocket.


My first drummer André Young, Okinawa, Japan. Where are you, André?



This is the origin of the word “pants.”

San Pantaleone’s blood is still liquid in Ravello, Italy, seventeen centuries later. After all of his holiness and suffering, he had the indignity of becoming a stock character in the commedia dell’arte. No one is quite sure how this happened. In the Commedia, Pantaleone was a gaunt, swarthy, goateed character who wore a pair of trousers, tight from the ankle to the knee, then flaring out like a petticoat. Pants. In France and in Shakespeare, Pantaleone was called  “Pantaloon.”


The most built up parts of Hawaii looked this way the first time that i went there in the late 1950s, and, even in 1969 when James Gurley and i used to visit Maui, the place was still very rural.


There was a character in Charles Dickens’ Barnaby Rudge named Simon Tappertit. Other names in Dickens:

Oswald Pardiggle, Paul Sweedlepipe, Doctor Soemup, Mortimer Knag, Augustus Moddle, Quebec Bagnet, Mercy Pecksniff, Morleena Kenwigs, Chevy Slime, Dick Swiveller, Conkey Chickweed.


Ancient Celts called men’s leg coverings “trews,” trousers. but Romans called them “laxus,” slacks.


Heather, Brent and Paul Bullis.


The world is an insane asylum patrolled by people who love guns, badges, power and political expense accounts.


Mari Aaronsouth and Mr. Rob. April 2011.


Teressa’s gigs, and please visit one if you are in the area.


Mach nisht kein tzimmes. Don’t make a big deal out of it. Fruit was scarce in Northern Europe, so, to try to imitate the taste of fruit, cooks made a stew of carrots, sweet potatoes, prunes, raisins, slowly cooked to simulate a fresh fruit compote. The recipe and the preparation were elaborate, and so tzimmes became a shorthand for an involved, complicated undertaking. My accountant once said, “Hey, we don’t have to make a tzimmes out of this, do we? You know what tzimmes means, right?” And I replied, “Yeah, blues,” thinking he said “tsuris.” What do you want? I’m just a goy. And a musician at that.


Sixty-four percent of women sleep on the left side of the bed.


Hot water on the left, cold water on the right. Is this universal? Oh, no, not even here in the USA. In French, hot water is C (chaude), so that can be confusing. Never assume that there is going to be hot water in any bathroom you visit. Nor paper towels. Both are a rarity in the world at large, but especially in Japan. In Japan, people hand out napkins on every corner as part of an advertising campaign. Take them every time and put them in your pocket. They will come in handy.


Ben Nieves. True musician.


Irene Scarborough married Sam Andrew in 1860.


Hoc Erat In Votis, 10 June 2011. Oil on panel. Work in progress.


Did you see her in The Grifters? She came from Kansas or somewhere, but she did her apprenticeship at the Actors’ Conservatory Theatre here in San Francisco, a local girl. Mars Attacks, The Kids Are All Right, I love this woman.


Frequentasne hunc locum?

Do you come here often?


Erin Homs in Pittsburgh.


In Genoa, French weavers made a twilled cotton cloth, similar to denim, used for making sturdy work clothes. They called the cloth Gènes, the origin of our word “jeans.”


And not far away in Nimes, France, they made a softer fabric and called it serge de Nimes. When this cloth reached America it was called “denim.” Levi Strauss dyed the denim blue to minimize soil stains and the cloth became very popular with gold miners.


Jack Lemmon was a more than a decent piano player. He could have been a contender.


The person third from the left, Albert Mann, is my maternal grandfather.


Janis Joplin, Brad Campbell, Terry Clements, Marcus Doubleday, Sam Andrew, waiting to go on in Memphis, 1969.


Don Wehr’s Music City was such a great music store. It was on Columbus Avenue, right turn from Bay Street onto Columbus, coming in from Marin County. Everyone went there. Carlos, Neal,  Sly, even James Gurley and I. Don had everything and he was such a great guy. I had the feeling that he came from the Mission culture and he was really plugged into the whole San Francisco scene in a real way. I loved one saying of Don Wehr’s, “You know, I drive along 101 in my car and I say to myself, ‘Hey, everyone else is asleep and I’m working.’ ” That was exactly how I felt about my songwriting and arranging. They’re asleep and I’m working. That’s all it takes, really. An incredible amount of work. So, to anyone who wants to know the secret, the secret is hard work. I worked harder than anyone in my band. I’m not crowing about that. Not bragging about it. It just happens to be a fact.


My nephew Anthony Vitale and Grace Walton, Austin. Anthony is my sister Paula’s son.

People who write books or blogs have a sense of theatre that outweighs their sense of privacy.


Katharine and Amélie at Aroma Café.


What if Hitler’s name would have been Chip? Or Howdy? Howdy Hitler. You think we would have had a World War II with Howdy Hitler?


Here and there.


Now this is presidential material. Clark Walker. He even has a presidential name.


Tibi diem natalem felicem !

Happy Birthday!


The Tuxedo is American, the dinner jacket is English. In Tuxedo Park, New Jersey, 1886, Pierre Lorillard IV didn’t want to wear tails to the annual Autumn Ball, so he had a tailor prepare several tailless jackets in black and persuaded his son and friends to wear them. They did, and the rest is… sartorial.


Joel Hoekstra and Brad Gillis.


Joel once spent a lot of time playing with Beth Hart (right) when they did Love, Janis together in New York.


This is Arianna Antinori. In July we will see her and Antea Salmaso again when we play in Vicenza, Italia.


Marvin Gaye had such bad stage fright that he once tried to escape by climibing out of his dressing room.


Chad Quist. We haven’’t seen him in so long he is becoming a mythical figure to us. Come back, Chad!


Sophia Ramos with Robert Downey, Jr. No, really, it’s Tommy Salmorin.


The longest one-syllable word is “screeched.”


Thank you, and I’ll see you next week.

Sam Andrew

Big Brother and the Holding Company


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