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jetlag, butterfly club & chapters

the stray cats show was depressing.
they were great, they brought it…they played from their hearts, they put on a solid show. but the audience would not move. they just stood there. doing nothing.
it killed me. it made me angry. it made me fearful. it made me want to play gigs for 5 years with not a single night off and then go hide and retire so that that never happens to me.
it made me thankful. if i ever feel like my audience is tuning out that much, i swear to god i’ll quit.

it made me really think about the ephemeral quality of bands, and rock, and roll.
something about being OF THE MOMENT and how that moment can never fully be recaptured. if you miss it, it’s gone. forever.
recreating it can lead to pain and emptiness beyond the pale. that’s how i felt, standing there. that this was all an illusion.
everybody was waiting for the radio hits, the crowd wasn’t a tribe, it was a just a random selection of people, all vaguely distrustful of each other.

hotel room in melbourne, jetlagged as shit, having barely seen the sun for 2 days, except sometimes through the window and even then i don’t believe it’s real because my body is telling me it’s dark out.

after the private slumber-party gig at the butterfly club, i collapsed and slept the jetlagged sleep that only the dead or jetlagged do and managed to miss a whole day. i don’t know where that day went. i remember waking up a dozen times and going back to sleep a dozen times and i remember answering emails and reading in bed and i remember doing laundry in the sink and leaving once to get sushi and whacking off, not all in that order. i still hate that i know that my mom reads my blog.

the slumber party was amazing, in a way that words can’t capture, but i’ll try.

i knew i was going to be taking time off in melbourne and i can never be anywhere and not play. (is it a problem? i dunno. it’s a good problem to have, better than smack or some other awful thing.)

and i knew that i wanted to do something special at the butterfly club, which is the most amazing place in the world.
the butterfly club is basically an old victorian house that’s been transformed into a little bar and theater, and every room feels like a living room….the walls are covered in art and kitsch and there’s not a blank space to be seen….total antique shop explosion covered in chandelier remnant gold-frame broken-doll fake flower oriental rug psychedelic mash-up wonderland.

stolen from internetz:

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(photos from flickr.com)

i went there last winter and had a crazy night with steven and the danger ensemble….we hung out in the empty little theater and we sang and we drank and before too long it was 7 am and we were all huddled outside the front door, waiting for a taxi that wouldn’t come, watching people going to work. it was the kind of night that i think people assume i have all the time. in reality, i have nights like that about twice a year at best.

anyway, the club is run by two amazing men, david and neville, and they’d invited me to come back.
however, booking a legit show in a 40-seat theater seemed unrealistic.
and i didn’t want to make people pay. so i held a contest, had people draw their dreams and email them in, and 20 people were chosen. they could all bring one guest.

and everybody wore pajamas and looked sleepy-hot.

and we started at midnight and i was ready to fall asleep because i was so fucking jetlagged. but i didn’t.
instead i just took requests, sang on a upright piano with no micropohne, and drank vodkas and redbulls and i felt like i was in my own house.
i want every show to feel like that show felt. it was just…completely real. when we got hot and tired, we took a break.
there were no times, no schedules, there were no plans. there was just me and a room of people. i spent most of the set talking, actually.
occasionally someone would just say something, and i would go off on a random tangent. we spent a long time talking about the music industry and how things are changing.
people shouted out songs and i played them. sometimes i really fucked them up.
tom dickins opened the whole night with a few of his songs (he was amazing) and then i made him sing “point of it all” while i did the piano part because he’d been driving me crazy with the fact that “point of it all” was his cellphone ringtone and i figured it was just punishment. he killed it. i hope a video surfaces….the kid has a huge future and a gorgeous fucking voice.

and at the end of the night i put out an empty champagne bucket and took donations, since the show was free and i’m still bordering on broke.
people gave money.

i wish i could always do that. i wish all tickets were free. i wish my poor fans could always just come and my rich fans could just pick up the tab and never feel the sting.

and you know:
this brings up a really interesting topic, and i’ll go off on it in another blog, about how i think that if we musicians are going to survive, we’re going to have to return to a faith-based
system of patronage.

i got home that night at 5:30, as it was just starting to get light.
i took a bath. as i soaked there, barely alive, i thought about how incredible life is. and about how i can create anything, write anything, do anything.
about how there are no rules.
about how all you have to do is imagine something into existence to make it exist.
i listened to some boards of canada. then i slept the sleep of the dead that i was referring to earlier, and lost yesterday.

now, pictures, all mostly stolen off a thread from the shadowbox: http://www.theshadowbox.net/forum/index.php?topic=7467.0

this is a drawing that i did right before the show for one of my favorite dreams, submitted by lyndon (not the violin-playing lyndon…another one).
my original plan was to draw every single dream and then hand them out at the party, but i got too jetlagged and took a nap instead.
lyndon’s dream involved a sequence in which his head was shaved and he melted cheese and chocolate on it and couldn’t stop thinking about how attractive it was:

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photo care of lyndon, who also had an awesome polaroid camera and took these….

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(mr lyndon himself:)
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yes, there was a fireplace….

as i said….butterfly club….most amazing place on earth.
if you’re in melbourne, go see something, anything, there. they put on shows constantly:
www.thebutterflyclub.com

……………………………………………

meanwhile….footage and stuff is starting to surface from the reading/signing/singing that mr. neil “reluctant literary sex symbol” gaiman & i did in dublin the day after my show….

if you want a sneak peek at some of the stories from the book, you can hear neil reading them aloud and see video of some of the photos from the book….

there’s a list of links up at
http://chaptersevents.livejournal.com/1201.html

this clip is great….it’s neil reading two stories from the book, back-to-back…..

he reads two excerpts….one is “the two of them”, about the florally-dressed palmer twins drinking tea in their living room and the other is “the sword”, about 2008 amanda palmer slaying 2003 amanda palmer with a parry and a thrust. neil explains it better.

we did a q&a, trading off talking, and i also played the ukulele, you can troll youtube with a search for amanda/neil/chapters and find the best clips, they’re just surfacing.

then we signed for about 4 hours. neil is a powerhouse pro of singage and puts me to shame.

some photos from chapters, stolen from coraline73’s flickr….

the crowd….
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neil gets ready to read from the book….
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signing….
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time to go find lunch.

leaving for sydney tonight.

for those of you coming to the opera house gigs, by the by, special treats in store….we got a string quartet together, featuring zoe keating, lyndon chester (yes, violin lyndon) and two of lyndon’s friends.
practicing all day tomorrow at the opera house, and it should be fucking beautiful….we’re hoping to do a radiohead cover (a surprise one), truce, girl a and a bunch of stuff from who killed amanda palmer.

all three shows are almost sold out. melbourne is sold out.
adelaide and perth and brisbane aren’t sold out, which reminds me…if you know ANYBODY in those cities, tell them to come.
and if you live there and want to trade tickets for flyering, e-mail katrina, who will send you stuff to promote with and hook you up with tickets in exchange.
if you know of any perth/brisbane/adelaide forums or blogs, spread the words.

when i die, destroy this first

February 25th Sydney – Sydney Opera House / The Studio
February 26th Sydney – Sydney Opera House / The Studio
February 27th Sydney – Sydney Opera House / The Studio
March 1st Brisbane – The Tivoli
March 3rd Melbourne – The Corner
March 4th Adelaide – The Gov
March 6th Perth – Fly By Night
March 7th Perth – Fly By Night
March 10th Auckland (New Zealand) – The Studio
March 12th Wellington (New Zealand) – Bodega Bar
March 14th Hobart – The Brisbane Hotel

LOVE
a

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  • hunta

    RE: Stray Cats show. Why do people go to the show if they are going to be statues? I don’t think that will ever happen to you with your fan base. The love AfP is a way of life, not a fad. Besides, I fear for the audience which disses you!

  • http://www.thraeryn.com Thraeryn

    That show sounds excellent, and exactly like what I’d enjoy seeing. Music is best when performed not for people who want a spectacle, but people who want to hear music. Hit Houston with something similar and I’ll try to bring a $50 for you.

  • sarah

    You are incredible, strong, loving. You’re my favorite. So full of life and everything. You’ve taught me so much, Amanda, really.

    I can’t wait for the book.
    I’m reading Coraline right now. I love Neil. You two are just the coolest.

  • shock

    wish the NZ shows were all ages :( i’d be there, by hook or by crook!

  • Sara

    I love you Amanda!
    I would love having a pajama party.

  • seejackrun

    ouch… i saw brian setzer a couple of years ago in LA and had the polar opposite experience. crowd was way waaaay into it. maybe not the right crowd?

    at the bimbo’s show in SF in December, I was beyond irritated with the crowd. You were amazing but people just fucking stood still during songs like Oasis and Leeds United, which are (in my opinion) built for sing-dance-alongs. I completely understand doing others the courtesy of being quiet during a show- after all, we’re there to hear you, not the person to our right. But I think people really don’t know how to PARTICIPATE anymore.

  • http://cgleason.org tina

    i’m so proud to be a fan of someone so passionate-as-fuck-eloquent&beautiful. i’ve had the pleasure of seeing both you, solo (@ the mfa, i think) and the dolls (free! @ the orpheum & the onion cellar) and all are among my favorites musical adventures. you put on a *hell* of a show, lady. i’m one of your twitter followers, so i’ve been keeping up with your blog & i just want to say that i hope love like this is the music of future. thank you, thank you, thank you.

  • Athene Numphe

    If I had money I would totally be a patron of the arts!

  • Mark Wagstrom

    Awesome post. Thanks Amanda. I particularly loved what you said about the ephemeral quality of music. I’ve been a performer most of my life, although on the classical side. The life of a performer is indeed one of exhausting preparation followed by the magical, fleeting moment of performance. No, we can never recapture the moment and even the memory fades fairly quickly. The trick is to enjoy it, love it, be it… then let it go and start preparing for the next one. For ultimately, we live for those moments, don’t we? It is different for the visual artist or the recording artist. They create a moment which then persists forever onward. But the performance artist must continually create new, fresh moments. To use an old cliché, it’s a blessing and a curse.

  • chaynicole

    we (your fans) will never treat you the way the stray cats were treated. we love you way too much. as hunta said in her reply, AFP love is a way of life for us…. i know it is for me!
    jealous jealous jealous about the slumber party. totally wish i could have been there! i also really wish i could have seen you and neil in dublin…. AAAHHHH! that’d just be too cool :)
    LOVE

  • Kecen

    Good god…I must remember to cheer wildly at every concert I go to now! The slumber party…is it in the same ephemeral nature?

    “this brings up a really interesting topic, and i’ll go off on it in another blog, about how i think that if we musicians are going to survive, we’re going to have to return to a faith-based
    system of patronage.”

    Couldn’t agree more…I’m looking forward to this. I just wonder about those musicians who do not perform live shows for various reasons (Kate Bush being one of them) and have to rely on CD sales…
    I am one of those “rich fans”. Having parents around to buy tickets…

  • casacre

    You’re so so special. Thank you for the slumber party gig. It was truly awesome and I’m so happy to have been a part of that awesomeness.

    RE: audiences and crowd reaction… last year on the night of the Spiegeltent gig I happened to have a spare ticket. I convinced my housemate to come along, who had told me previously that he did not like your music and in particular the way that you sang.

    Anyway I took him along and at the end of the night he told me how much he thoroughly enjoyed the performance and started listening to any live recordings of yours he could find (he still doesn’t listen to your studio stuff).

    How you perform really seems to really get to people. It’s so different to most bands out there, especially label-driven bands. Keep it up! You’ve got our support!

  • Natalierose

    I feel like life in general is very much OF THE MOMENT in this here internet age. I mean, just look at Twitter: You can hook up your Twitter account to your LiveJournal and your Facebook, share random thoughts with the entire internet and your friends can read them on their iPhones around the world. Everything has to be happening right now, right this second; there’s no time just to take a deep breath anymore.

    But your music, Amanda, is like a much need deep breath of fresh hair. I don’t think you’ll ever go out of style, AP. No matter how many hats you wear.

    The Butterfly Club and Show look goddamn amazing.

    I can’t believe you’re making a book with Neil Gaiman. YOU’RE MAKING A BOOK WITH NEIL FUCKING GAIMAN! Amazing, amazing, amazing.

    Keep making art, changing the world and Loving, Amanda.

  • http://danielkinsman.wordpress.com The 327th Male

    I’ve already tried to convince my friends to come to the Adelaide gig. Sadly no takers, so I’ll be rocking out there on my own.

    Actually I’m most looking forward to seing zoe, as I have been learning the cello for the last year or so, and the sounds she gets out of it are amazing!

  • noonecanstop

    sounds like a fantastic time. I remember my birthday this year (the only one i was able to truly enjoy) and i sat with my closest friends on my trampoline. we sat and talked and jumped and talked and breathed and talked. This was my first time i was able to not be haunted by something. With this i sat and smiled and listened and breathed my relief. watched the stars and the clouds pass by with no hatred for anything, no sadness creeping through me eating at my soul. Instead my emotions all took a back seat except the pure bliss brought from these people, brought from the hearts of children and the minds of artists.

    As for dreams i write and draw mine all the time. I wish i had known of you when the contest had come around. Oh well there is still many more days in my life and yours so i will see you at some point. whether it be on the streets or in the crowd or as you sing your heart to the masses i will watch and know that you have a true artist within you which brings the bliss to my music and my ideals. Hope you have a wonderful night and your dreams are filled with strange beings which shows you the door of insanity which we all must have to survive.

    Peace, Love, and Compassion
    ACTS

  • http://www.myspace.com/jewnifur jewn

    we should have had a slumber party in the establishment.
    like, a real one. strangers passed out on top of each other after another exhausting musiclove day.
    then wake up and eat vegetarian breakfast and start all over again.

    one day, one day.

  • Barb

    Hey AFP – Australians have been very lucky to share some of your world. In anticipation of the Perth experience – I would like to extend a pre- welcome to Perth and would like to say thank you for scheduling in 2 shows in the arse end of the world Perth. And to show my appreciation for all your efforts. I would be most grateful if you would accept a luxurious hamper for yourself and friends to share while in Perth compliments of me. Its not millions of dollars but it is pure gratitude for all you offer – mind, body and soul while on show.

  • http://myspace.com/starbuxchick91 weirdgirl27

    amanda, your blog posts are always amazing and inspiring

  • Alex

    I was actually reading an article/ comic strip somewhere else that talked about how true music lovers needed to go for the personal thing- instead of using itunes, for example, people need a way to download music directly from an artist, which would be cheaper and more money would go to the artist. the amount of work you put into your music is incredible and you deserve more than ten pennies for a dollar song, or whatever the percentage is. I admire you because you maintain such a personal connection to us.
    and that slumber party sounds fantastic. I would give a lot to come to something like that!
    thank you.

  • cassandra

    australia’s concerts are sort of like that. people stand there and litterally do nothing. it annoys me. a lot.
    concerts that i’ve seen people move are mostly the teen preppy ones, hardcore and rock. maybe that’s everywhere
    but it just angers me.
    sorry for the bad grammar, i’m tired.

  • http://wwww.twitter.com/John_Pickman John Pickman

    The nature of music (especially music performed by actual, living people in front of actual, living people) seems to be changing, and fast. Hopefully we can help guide that change.

    On an unrelated note, if there were one Radiohead song I’d love to see you do, it would be an all-out, banging-on-the-piano, audience-shouting-the-chorus version of My Iron Lung. But that’s neither here nor there.

  • Redscribe

    I’m going to pretend I’m not terribly jealous that I couldn’t come to the sleepover. That would have been so great, but alas, I can content myself with knowing that myself and a posse are coming to Melbourne, and I’m flying up to Brisbane to see that show, too. (Although – Truce in the Opera House? Wish I had of booked for that, too! Damn it!)

    I love that you love Australia. And I absolutely cannot wait to see your shows. I’m sure that they will be powerful and marvelous and beautiful.

  • Westy

    “this brings up a really interesting topic, and i’ll go off on it in another blog, about how i think that if we musicians are going to survive, we’re going to have to return to a faith-based system of patronage.”

    my band mates, other local musicians, and i have long discussions about this all the time. it’s really all we talk about. we are on the front lines, watching the way the “commodification of music” is beginning to mean something different and we are constantly brainstorming for ways to keep up with it all. what we realize more and more is that success comes simply from cultivating a relationship with your fanbase–which you’d think should be obvious–but there are still the bands (at least around here) that seem to be struggling to get “signed.” they’re fighting the wrong battle. the competition in the music industry seems to be fiercer than its ever been, but it’s surprising how the competition seems to melt away when you find ways of showing your appreciation to your fans. people are driven away by arrogance. you could make incredible music but if you’re a dick about it, people are more reluctant to buy your record.

    at our first record release show, my band gave copies of the new release away for free, simply asking for people to donate money if they felt so compelled (in exchange for hugs, of course… gay!). we ended up making more money that night than we ever had before.

    there’s also this weird phenomenon of kids (“the napster generation,” i call them) feeling entitled to FREE music. this has to do with widespread file sharing, the flooding of the market with new acts, and the increasing availability of recording resources to up and coming musicians, among other things, i’m sure. they scoff at the idea of people charging money for the music they make, which is a huge change in the industry because, suddenly, music is not this abundant commodity, it’s also one that nobody wants to pay for. they can just get it from their friends later. it’s so greasy capitalist.

    the point is, if a fan feels distanced from a band in some way, they feel like it is not their responsibility to support them. when you are honest with your fans about needing their help to continue doing what you’re doing, and you attempt to connect with them on a personal level, they are not only willing but eager to buy your record because they know that the money is going to support you making more music for them to listen to and love. they see it as their burden, too.

    this, i think, has to do with why merch has become so essential to a musician’s survival. you know all about this, though, i’m sure. i guess i just wanted you to know that the up-and-comers are in the same boat and well aware of it. very, very aware.

  • http://www.madnessofmany.com kim

    Re: Stray Cats.

    Go see them in Glasgow if you every get the chance, they have the best crowds there. Saw Brian Setzer and the Nashvillians there and I danced all night.

  • http://www.myspace.com/thecherriedpickles procrastinating

    I’ll be at the Friday night showwww at the Opera house! :D

    Deliver me from this Palliative care assessment! Yarghh!

    Also, if you get the chance, I encourage you to check out http://www.casulapowerhouse.com/ … (Its probably unlikely that you’ll have so much free time, but I love it down there… very industrial..)

  • Michelle

    YAY knowing youre in my town makes me tingly all over!
    although i’m one of your ‘poor fans’ i will spend my rent money on a second show if you were to be so kind to do one… :D

  • http://www.myspace.com/x____delilah Sally

    the way you talk about that night make me wanna go to that place!! (and have a pajama party with you, too) it seems like you had a really really awesome night.. and i hope you can have more nights like that.
    i loved the pics, specially the polaroid pics, you look so pretty.. well, you always look pretty =)

    love.

    PS.”if i ever feel like my audience is tuning out that much, i swear to god i’ll quit.”
    YOU NEVER GONNA FEEL LIKE THAT, WE’LL NEVER LET THAT HAPPENS.

  • ledh

    Where I live in Europe, shows like the Stray Cats one you described are the norm. Belgians, especially those from the more rural areas, have a tendency to be stingy with applause and praise and are very reluctant to join in. This happens a lot in theatre out here, and I can imagine that stand-up comedians think us a tough crowd. I hate it so much, and I was afraid people would be like that at your show, but apparently not :)

    I wish I could’ve come to the pyamathing…

  • http://maartendas.blogspot.com feeblemind

    Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous post. And you’r eabsolutely right about the faith based system of patronage. The way you just turn it all upside down and make things happen, is incredibly inspiring and uplifting. It makes me realise taht there is much more possible than we think. For me as a poet as well (I really wish I could perform with you one day, on an all-nighter with music, poetry, theatre, film, painting, anything). The amazing thing about you is that you come from a street performance tradition but you are gathering this worldwide fanbase and using the modern means of internet etc. to the fullest to take the street performance attitude to a whole new level. You coudl, and definitely should be in the vanguard of changing the way we experience music. I now see why your clashes with the industry are a blessing in disguise: they bring out the independent beautiful Amanda who just MAKES IT HAPPEN. Like I said, like John said, we all shine on…!!

  • quent

    Sup, hot stuff,
    yeah, i really don’t want my family to read anything i post to you. And I told them some shit, like, I don’t know, just things.., like.., I read and comment on your blog. Anyway, I love it when you have flowers in your hair…… In like the past couple of weeks I had dreams that had you in it….. and I put, like.., a hand on your head, or chin, and pulled you toward me for a Kiss….. I felt your lips…… Next Chapter::::: I have this thing wrong with me…. that when I go to sleep, I will stay there.., almost exclusively…, for an unbelievable amount of time…., I fuckin’ know that I’m sooo happy when I do things and find love again…. but….. for some reason (and this has been going on for several years) I stay there until I am torturing myself…, It is a serious problem…., I really hurt myself…. I chain smoke…. I’ve tried so hard to get rid of it…. I’ve excercised and done yoga back in 2005, off and on…, the healthy things. .., but my mind can’t…. doesn’t put it together…. for some reason…. I saw that clip of you on youtube, with the Uke, talking about the dead pictures of yourself you have around your dwelliing… and you were like,,,. ” dead pics of myself…., ya know? Like you do..” that is so fuckin’ hilarious….. my 2 older sistas were fuckin’ homecoming queens…. that shit is so fuckin’ stupid….. My 2 older sisters are completely different from each other…. my olda was popular, and very “normal”…. the one closer to me…. eh.. is more like me…. she was very, very, quiet and polite…. It might not be healthy to get to into rehashing this stuff… because it is meaningless…. but you wear that tierra so I think that is a little interesting…. I was on the stupid homecoming court…. but for me it was so stupid…. it made no sense… I barely talked to ANYONE….. like I’ve said… I tried to hide all the time… people had no clue who I was…. most people who got close to me…, after a while knew there was something wrong…. anyway…, it is too unhealthy for me to stay on this topic…… people had “something on me” so I essentially couldn’t fight back…. to brighten things up a bit….. I burped a little bit ago…, and the smell reminded me of “The Raquet Club” where I played tennis as a child…. I stopped playing matches by the summer after 8th grade….. the 80s to me were in a way…, a bit of a “silent” period….. where getting introduced to new music,, Did not happnen too much…., when Nirvana came out with the video for heart shaped box, I was scared to death…, he was, really, a very scary entity…., when I heard the Dresden Dolls for the first time…., I was like…., this is the best shit I’ve heard in a long time…., I was listening to Modest Mouse a lot, earlier in this decade…. and the shins…. I play “New Slang” when I’m really on fire…. sometimes I get where I’ll play the guitar for, like, 5 hours or more… I’ve always wanted to be this way with it….. but for most of this decade I would become unbearably upset when I tried to play how I felt…. I would become completely hollow…., I shit You Not……. I knew the Shins when no one else did…. I love when that happens… but I play the song exactly like it is on the record…. you know…. the double-time shit….. because that is part of what makes the song so special… while the Shins themselves.., whatever his name is, does not play it double-time live…. I sorta don’t know how bands can be happy when they sound shitty live… Record companies can suck my dick!!!!! Shannon Hoon lost his voice because Capitol made them tour for…, somethin’ like 3 and 1/2 years.. STRAIGHT…. he really struggled at Woodstock…. and I think he knew it….. he was pissy for an MTV interview afterwards… but it was hilarious…. I did not like blind melon during the whole mtv no rain shit…. when bands become overcommercialized I become repelled….
    and their first album,,,, i don’t like too much…. the second albume “Soup” is really innovative to me…. and beautiful… even though his voice wasn’t the same… in so many words…. i speculate that the record industry partly killed him…. his voice was meant to be taken care of….. and he went all out with it though….. a voice like that….you know, needs to be used only for shorter spurts….. when I first heard his/they’re version of “Candy Says” I was just sobbing all over my car as I drove home from a job at a scrap yard…. I was really struggling…. and he had died…. and it is too beautiful… and all those things…. when I was in kindergarten i made an ornament that was a silver star with a pic. of an acoustic guitar in the middle… my ma still has it….. my cousin played guitar for a short time… when his ma made him choose between the piano or that… but he wouldn’t play in an outside sense…. he was shy about it… at least from what I heard…. I really looked up to him as a kid…. my parents bought me this really junky guitar when I was little.., but it was really shitty… and I think I’ve always known…. when it comes to too much technical shit… I can’t take it all in….. but I think that surely the old blues guitarists didn’t know the numbers shit and the rest… they would just play a lot…. and maybe… yeah, I know….. develop that sixth sense/intuition with it….. hendrix might have been that same way…. Frusciante is Not…. he is very good with the technical shit….. He credited Flea with opening him up to the essential intuition….. that is when they recorded Blood, Sugar.. Sex… bla, bla….I’ve tried really hard to learn the #’s shit in the past….. and it won’t stick…. anyway,,,, sometimes you hear that it is better not to get sucked in to that sort of computer, robot,,, shit….. I have more to write.., but I haven’t eaten virtually anything in about 24 hours or so….. I’ve been doing that all the time….. but I’m really happy right now… I’m alive right now…. whenever I play the guitar…. lots of times…. when I’m in sort of a state of bliss…… I flash with feelings of my dad…. sometimes I cry…. I’ll post this now….. ’cause you might care a little bit…. then I might come back…. ’cause as you can see…. have a hard time stopping…… and I keep wanting to talk…..

  • Shiny

    your shows in sydney; the friday night – i cannot wait!
    my friends and i have managed to cobble together some interesting costumes to wear. this will be our first concert, and for the last 3 weeks we have been running on hyper bursts of insanely joyous energy. will there be murchandise for sale? i will assume the affirmative.
    <3 <3 <3

  • L

    Still miffed I’m missing both the Perth shows due to being in bloody Melbourne on those dates. However, I’m telling everyone else they should go in my stead. To both shows, of course… I’ll be consoling myself by shopping at Anton’s…

  • http://armyoflarry.com armyoflarry

    After seeing The Stray Cats, now you know how lucky you are. It wasn’t the band, or the times at fault. Hell, Stray Cats were never of their time in the first place. Some people are just so afraid to come out of that shell that you seem to be able to crack open with your energy and your music. The Stray cats have that power, but the people have to be open to it. You have to consider that one of the reasons people were there were to see a band that had never toured there before, and maybe they didn’t know they could or should dance? I’m sure some did, but were afraid of looking foolish. I can tell you that this seems to be a rare thing at Stray Cats shows from what I have read and what I have seen.

    People can be so lame sometimes. To not dance at a Stray Cats show is so fucking anti-rock it makes me ill. It reminds me of a NIN show I went to here in Columbus OH on The Fragile tour. The band was on fire, the set list was amazing and Trent was going apeshit and keyboards and water bottles were flying all over the place on stage. The crowd? They just stood there and politely clapped at the end of the songs. It almost ruined the show for me. But I decided to be “that asshole”, ignore everyone around me and go crazy and get into it. It still darkened what should have been one of the best shows I have seen up to that point.

    People can be so uptight, and rock music is supposed to tear down that false wall and let us be free. It is a growing problem. Anymore, rock concerts seem like they are like visits from the Pope, where we are supposed to be all revernt and respectful. This is something that needs to be fought, and no one fights this better than you AFP. You really bring people into the experience and inspire creativity and joy. Do not fear, we will not grow old and let you down. We will be crazy forever. We are down for life. Long live AFP, DD, Belly Love and long live Rock ‘n Roll. They can try to pry it away from our cold dead hands!!!

  • rella

    I was at a Cyn show with drunken idiots who were comped filling the first few rows, and being afraid to stand or cuddle with gf cause they were so rowdy/homophobic. I remember thinking WHY ARE YOU HERE? Someone at that show actually heckled Cyn. She handled it with humor. This was before the True Colors tour. How do you not get up and dance to Girls???
    Had the everyone else is sitting and I wanna dance thing happen at TC this year (B52s!!!) and last,
    but who the hell wants to spend travel money plus tixs? I can barely afford just getting my ass to a local show.
    Paid as much as my first car for the best seats for a show last year. Instead of being in the first few rows, they were behind genadmin, and pretty far away. The performer appeared annoyed to have to do the meet and greet they committed to. I *try* not to let it color my perception, but when you spend your whole life and salary supporting an artist, and they do that, you can only say “everyone has bad days” so often.
    All this to say that the one time I saw you live, it was memorable, and I do recall that you took the time to meet with the audience for free. That, and this blog, make it seem like you really do care about your fans.

  • vagabond

    stray cats: damn, i’ve been to a couple of shows like that and i felt so unreal each time. i felt almost ashamed for the whole audience, even though there was nothing i really could have done.

    by the way, it’s my first post here, but i’ve been sneaking around a while now. amanda, i have so much respect for you and your art. the way you’re doing it is truly inspiring. especially the way you connect with your audience. i’ve never seen you live with the dolls, sad enough, but i was at your solo-show in vienna and it was damn exciting. i was there with marlies, the singer of my band, and we both agreed we hadn’t seen a show like this in our whole life. you are one of my favourite artist ever, there’s just an aura of honesty around you and that’s not something to be found that often. speaking of my favourite artists, i was wondering if you know the irish band “Therapy?” and what you think about them. i just love the way this band sounds different with each and every album but you still recognize them right away. if you don’t know them, check them out, every album is worthy in itself, but for starters i’d recommend “infernal love” (1995), “troublegum” (1994), “babyteeth” (1991), “suicide pact – you first” (1999), “never apologize, never explain” (2004) and the new one “crooked timber” which comes out in march, cause these are their most dark and most twisted releases. and also, they’ve just impressed me when i met them, truly down to earth and nice people and very honest too.

  • dantescat

    I am seeing The Moz (finally!) next week and worry that the crowd will simply stand around, instead of move as one illustrious, swaying shoe-gazing mass, swapping occasional smiles and dances with strangers who GET IT.

    Fingers crossed for now.

    So very happy you are coming to Florida.

  • Eoghan O’Halloran

    I was there for the Chapters event and it was surreal to be so close as you sarinaded your fans with your lovely ukulele songs. (And lovely ukulele itself, it almost seems an aesthetic extension of your spirit.) The composition about your childhood home/friend being sold was more than worth the trip and half hour wait on the floor, my ankles swelling with blood, in and of itself. (The price you pay for the third-second row, but I honestly didn’t expect the huge surge of humanity that came after me, I’d actually rather have been standing, but by the time I could have made that estimation, it was impossible for me to get up and leave my place without a serious risk of casualties.)

    I’m very lucky that owing to the massive crowd they had to record the proceedings from behind the microphone; now I appear on the same youtube clip as Ms Amanda Palmer and a tall man in black that I presume to be Neil Gaiman! I was cautious about a reading, but Mr Gaiman has a voice made for storytelling and instead of possibly ruining the text for me, he certainly made it come alive, as if it was the true medium for the content. His recounting of the liner notes on the album being far superior to any fictional voices I designed to read it. It was like being sploit honestly, these fantastic fictional Amandas killing and being killed, nominally having their tales told by the stoic and statue-like proportioned Neil Gaiman whilst his lovely assistant went ’round with images of her own gruesome deaths, permeated with an intimate showing of Ms Palmer’s ukulele ballads. A truly unique and wonderful event.

    It was amazing that the pair of you sat there to ensure each and every person got their moment and their items signed. And were surprisingly chipper and warm after almost three hours; the old cliche about never meeting your heroes doesn’t seem to apply to you. Amazing too that so very precious few elected, even after it became apparent how long we would be waiting, to leave, a display of the impact you have on peoples’ lives.

    Though I can be seen in the second/third row, (Just between the heads of the curiously anachronistic grunge couple at the very front, maybe Amanda’s trip in the Delorian overshot a half decade or so? On second viewing, it’s hard to tell on the video, but they really were hardcore grunge. ) with my own cobainesque facial hair, I ended up at the very back of the line. Though it was an experience to snake around the outer reaches of Chapters’ varied erotica sections for tens of minutes per shelf. I had hoped for spontaneous mass sing-alongs when they decided to play both ‘Who Killed Amanda Palmer’ and ‘The Dresden Dolls’ albums, (A testimont to the lenght of time you set aside for your fans that they got through both of them before I rounded out of the last shelves to within sight again of you and the table that I started out a mere metre from. Listening to the lyrics “…there’s a million more in line.” and “I think I’ll wait another year.” was all too felicitous.) to soothe our wait. Alas, that was not to be. We were all too concerned with coming up with fabulously witty and authentically gushing things to say when we got to the table.

    As for my time at the table? I was partially stuned, the last few legs of my journey went by so quickly, I would have been comfortable in that line forever, crafting the perfect condensed description of how much your music and art helped me when I was so desperately depressed and alone, how it did what any good art does, helped me realise how universal my feelings were and helped me feel that slightly less alone. (It’s all too complicated to get into in an internet comment post, I fear this is already well in excess of any of the others for this post. I already went through the whole experience of my lost adolescence and how your music helped me during it in an email whose completion took 5 months nearly.) The girl ahead of me, I learned only 16 and with a broken arm, had the same item with her as I did, the self-titled ‘The Dresden Dolls’ album, of them all, it had the most sentimental value, being my first nearly 5 years since my first learning ‘Missed Me’. She moved up to you and whilst you were taking her copy to sign the art/lyric book, she softly, but frantically told recounting something it seemed deeply personal and produced a small necklace, the story and context of which I wasn’t able to hear. But your response was immediate and moving, you suddenly leapt up across the table to kiss her forehead and cheeks and gave her a tight embrace. Slightly dazed and ecstatic, she took a moment to a side to contemplate what just happened and (again) softly and politely said that though she knew you and Neil had previously expressed that due to the volume of people in line, you wouldn’t mind people taking photos, but would be unable to pose for them. (Either her trying to calm you that she had no intention to press you, least you feel alarm at her camera, or making the valid point that we were amongst the last dozen or so, it may no longer fully apply.) Your charming response that you didn’t think it applied at this stage any longer set her eyes alight and she asked if I would take the picture, I whole-heartedly obliged and took the picture, feeling privileged to have been a part of such a moment.

    When it came to my own turn there was a technical glitch. Let me explain: After the initial ten minutes of the signings, a staff member began to go through the line with post-its, upon which she wrote everyone’s name and gave them to us, so that we wouldn’t have to explain how to spell it. Now at this point I was already dehydrated and slightly elsewhere, she came up behind me and was so nice and it seemed to me, in such a mission of efficiency, that to slow her down would be a high crime, I thought she was putting stickers on everyone to sort out those who came into the shop to that point, or something like that, so I said it didn’t matter which version of my name, ‘Eoghan’, she wrote down. Years of depression and feeling an imposition made that particular thoughtless response possible. So she wrote down ‘Eoin’. (So many years of officials, teachers, friends…relatives, misapplying ‘Eoin’ instead of ‘Eoghan’ and my general meekness led me to that automatic response, because it never really did matter before, it made me feel unregarded on occasion, but I got used to that, at least it was a quick way to tell when I was.) I was too unsympathetic to my stupid mistake to call her back as she wrote out the lengthy repose about it being for somebody’s niece. I was resigned, that, however stupid it might look, I would just explain myself when the time came, I was so far to the back, would it matter? Was Amanda Palmer going to confiscate my album right there and forbid me from ever going to see her or Brian Viglione, solo or together in concert ever again? When we passed the post for putting our email addresses to the mailing list, I found a pen to repair the error, sadly to further compound my own mistake, I wrote my own name in cursive and not block capitals, as would have made more sense and as was the case for ‘EOIN’. So I just went right along, some six or seven hours without water, an hour with crushed ankles and almost three hours standing around. I had finished taking the photo of the young girl and the queen of punk cabaret and the moment was so perfectly contrasted with the brief exchange between myself and my hero, about how to spell my name, not quite the same kind of moment. I didn’t make you laugh, I didn’t have the guts to tell you how much your music helped me through a deep depression and adolescence spent with isolation and unrequited love. Afterall, a signing is a signing, it’s the memory, the moment with the person you waited hours in line to meet, that it represents that has meaning. If Amanda is reading, I hope you didn’t get the wrong idea from my “Now I just need Brian’s” comment, a signing on it’s own is not the most important thing to me, but I’ll always remember that girl and your rapturous embrace of her and my small part in her memory of it.

    • Eoghan O’Halloran

      *serenaded not sarinaded, I need to hire my own proof-reader.

  • Randomgit

    Please please PLEASE make a Canberra gig next time you buzz through. I know an army of switched on people who would gladly stab a hundred beauraucrats each to get you on a stage, even for ten minutes.

    Your blog is the only performers blog I’ve seen that could be called such. Thanks for being nice to us here in Australis Assendus.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/marksobba/sets/72157611468117002/detail/ Mark Sobba

    I have a list of silly things I would do if I ever got a lot of money. It is an old game I played with my mom. Back when I was a child, and she was younger than I am now and we were very poor.

    So I am adding this to my list: be a patron for a small band, such as yourself. Sponsor a whole tour, where the tickets are free and the fans pay whatever they can. Where the performers perform and keep all the donations.

    It would be neat to see what everyone paid.

    Yes, that is going on the list. It is too nice of an idea for it not to go on the list.
    Mark

  • http://www.myspace.com/itsrachelk rachelk

    i would really ask you to marry me if it wasn’t so creepy, haha.

    you’re an inspiration and a DAMN fine, foxy lady!

  • Carla

    bummed, couldn’t see you
    damn being a poor student
    that’s the way life goes

    RE: the standing around at concerts, i found at your Sydney Dresden Dolls concert in 2006 there was this freaky guy wearing a suit just standing in front of me, arms folded and looking rather angry, made me wonder why he came… it didn’t look like he had any children there, he didnt seem old enough …but maybe that’s the way he listens to live music :S

  • TikiDoll

    greetings darling
    its so wonderful to hear that others from that big wide world also treasure the butterfly club as i do. next time your around I hope you get to share in Dr Sketchy’s Anti-art school, its an amazing night of energy art and great times where you can be surrounded by stunning women who make you melt as you draw, sketch, paint them…

    counting the days till the melb show….

  • http://maartendas.blogspot.com feeblemind

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zg_ZQP8OiCo

    Sing along version of Mrs O (w/ the crowd helping out AFP :))

  • Loo_C

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XneJT7I5h4Q

    ‘Amanda Palmer and Tom Dickins The point of it all Live at the Butterfly Club’

  • http://www.myspace.com/upyoursatan elizabeth

    I LOVE YOUR BLOGS!! i feel so honoured and special that you choose to share with us so much of your extraordinary life–thank you amanda ! it is a rare privilege to have an open window into the fascinating life of someone so expressive, talented, intelligent, and sincere. ~thank you~

  • Tori

    About the Stray Cats show…

    I went to a show of theirs a year or so back and, as you said, they really brought it. They were fucking fantastic. Sadly, my mother and I were the only people moving in the audience (with the exception of a drunken man who held up his arm a la Hitler). It was quite depressing.

  • http://maartendas.blogspot.com feeblemind

    I have no idea how much value you add to this, but according to this list: http://www.marcandangel.com/2009/02/18/8-ways-to-inspire-others/ you are doing swell on all 8 points. Not a surprise really, but still :)

  • Evan

    Hey, I love your blog posts, they are always really interesting and well written. I wish I had lived further south so I could have tried to go to the slumber party, but I shall have to be content with flying down to see you friday night :)
    Im also looking forward to listening to you on triple j on their website http://www.abc.net.au/triplej this arvo.

  • Jen

    I can’t believe I miss the Perth show by one day, where one day equals an ocean and several thousand kilometres traversed on a flight from Tokyo starting around the same time as Amanda’s show on the 7th.

  • http://gabrielgrub.blogspot.com/ June_Miller

    Jesus. Motherfucking. Christ. You’re playing the Sydney Opera House tomorrow night. With a (BAD-ASS) string quartet.

    I may climax while watching Youtube recordings of this.

    It will be smashing.

    That’s a bummer about the Stray Cats. Crowds vary from place to place, I guess. You know that already, though. I could see them getting pretty rowdy around here, maybe, but I cant’ say for sure. They could be too stoned/drunk/old. We can’t all circle-pit like in our glory days, can we?

    God knows I want to. Damnit.

    So I’m really liking Neil Gaiman the more I read/check out more of him. What an interesting fellow. I may already be a fan. His stories are always just so..odd, and interesting. I truly enjoyed the “The Sword” story/picture.

    Money is truly the bane of all existence. Fuck it, fuck it, fuck it.

    Shake it…like a polaroid picture.

    I got nothin’ man. Cut me some slack. I’m tired.

  • wotsername

    Re: immobile audiences… I do this all the time – I don’t cheer, I don’t jump around, I don’t dance, I barely even tap a toe. That’s not to say I’m not enjoying it, I’m just not very demonstrative. If only you could see into my head – things are definitely going on in there!

    On one hand I think: why should I have to *prove* that I’m enjoying myself? On the other hand, I do feel guilty for not participating in a visible way…

    However, I accept no such excuses from anyone else ;) and certainly not from an entire audience so, had I been at the Stray Cats show, I would prob have agreed entirely with your thoughts on the subject Amanda…

  • Patricia

    Last night’s show at the Opera House was awesome, and it meant so much that you hung around after to sign things. (I was the redhead who told you she cried during Astronaut). It was such a great night, at a gorgeous venue – thank you for coming to Sydney!

  • http://eartothenoise.com mdiogenes

    I wish I could write as much as you, but just like many men in America, I have some embarrassing shortcomings-
    I totally agree with you on the musician patronage thing, I think we should do the same with any type of artist, it’s the only way to really get back to those good old renaissance days of oil & blood(now: wrong kind of blood, wrong kind of oil)

  • http://www.myspace.com/blueattic tani

    Dear Amandaliscious.

    I am very sad. I was going to buy tickets to your melbourne show but my brother insisted I wait as he was entering one of your competitions, the one to feed you i think. Anyway, I waited and waited and then LO! I missed out on buying tickets to your show. I think your comps are a lovely idea, but the people who get involved run the risk of missing out altogether. I would pay double to see you, I don’t need or want freebies, as an artist I believe in paying. My bro is a tight arse. And i told him so. I am really really really spewing. If there is any way of getting to see your show – even if i have to sell candy floss to the punters, let me know.

    Well, anyway, you frigging rule and I really like all your work. Rock on Sista.

    love Tani. xox

  • http://www.myspace.com/blueattic taniblue

    Dear Amandaliscious.

    I am very sad. I was going to buy tickets to your melbourne show but my brother insisted I wait as he was entering one of your competitions, the one to feed you i think. Anyway, I waited and waited and then LO! I missed out on buying tickets to your show. I think your comps are a lovely idea, but the people who get involved run the risk of missing out altogether. I would pay double to see you, I don’t need or want freebies, as an artist I believe in paying. My bro is a tight arse. And i told him so. I am really really really spewing. If there is any way of getting to see your show – even if i have to sell candy floss to the punters, let me know.

    Well, anyway, you frigging rule and I really like all your work. Rock on Sista.

    love Tani. xox

  • Michael S

    No need to worry, I am personally going to both Perth shows, bringing a friend to the Friday one (hopefully a few more too) and going with a large group on Saturday. I’ll do my best “be there in masses” for you :)

  • http://www.karisinkko.com kari_sinkko

    If time was money, I’d be rich. If Water was wine, I’d be drunk, if stars where love, I’d go insane. I’m not sure where that came from, it just happen, just like life does.

  • http://www.carpetremnantsstore.com/ Carpet Remnants

    Excellent! Great article, I already saved it to my favourite,

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