Fleet Foxes and the contents of Janis Joplin’s handbag

Fleet Foxes are  an indie/folk band from Seattle of whom I’d never heard til this morning. They describe their own music as “baroque harmonic pop jams”, which must be THE most pretentious way possible of saying “we sound a bit like a new age Simon and Garfunkel”. Their eponymous debut album was released in 2008 to critical acclaim, with the band being lauded for their lyrics and use of harmonies to staggering effect.

This song, Helplessness Blues is from their forthcoming second album of the same name, which is due to be released on the 3rd of May. The song speaks of disillusionment which, no doubt, many Americans of my generation are becoming more and more familiar with. It’s a beautiful song.

In other news, I stumbled across this list earlier today, to be found in the 1972 book Piece Of My Heart by David Dalton. It describes in detail the contents of Janis Joplin’s hand bag.

Now where in the hell did I put that lighter…? Probably left it in that bar. I’m real sloppy. Lose more damn things in bars. Left a wallet with a grand in it in a bar last week. Just can’t seem to hang onto anything, man. In desperation Janis dumps her bag onto the floor of the limo. Its contents are truly awesome. Janis has a baglady’s compulsion to carry her whole life with her. There are: two movie stubs, a pack of cigarettes, an antique cigarette holder, several motel and hotel room keys, a box of Kleenex, a compact and various make up cases (in addition to a bunch of eyebrow pencils held together with a rubber band), an address book, dozens of bits of paper, business cards, match box covers with phone numbers written in near-legible barroom scrawls, guitar picks, a bottle of Southern Comfort (empty), a hip flask, an opened package of complementary macadamia nuts from American Airlines, cassettes of Johnny Cash and Otis Redding, gum, sunglasses, credit cards, aspirin, assorted pens and writing pad, a corkscrew, an alarm clock, a copy of Time, and two hefty books-Nancy Milford’s biography of Zelda Fitzgerald and Thomas Wolfe’s Look Homeward, Angel.

It’s probably a sign of the times that, while reading this, rather than being lost in the magic of this intimate glimpse into the private world of one of the greatest rock goddesses of all time, all I could think was “she could really have done with an iPhone…”.

(and finally)

This photo made me laugh:

(Thank you Hogan, Kiberd and Mouse)


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Filed under Music, Photography, Pop Culture, Technology

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