Makin' Candy all-tape edition, 4/26/05

In 1989 I developed a mad crush on this guy in my dorm. In retrospect he turned out to be pretty much a total jerk, but in my first semester of college that sort of thing seemed really cool. Anyway, we had a co-ed dorm with an open-door policy (except on the "quiet floor") so people could just wander in & out of each other's rooms, and usually we'd get together to listen to & talk about music. This guy, who we'll call "Luke" brought over a tape he'd made from a friend's music collection. On the spine of the tape along with the title, he'd written in very earnest capital letters "ALL FROM CDs." This was also double-underlined. Even at the time I thought this was possibly the dorkiest thing I'd ever seen. I mean, it's a TAPE. The only reason to write something like that is to impress people (or perhaps yourself), either with your unprecedented access to someone's CDs or your careful notation of the fidelity issues that might arise from a CD-to-tape recording. Anyway, the phrase has stuck with me ever since. So now I present to you a show that is "ALL FROM TAPES." It's the cassette special of Makin' Candy!

Another note: using tapes after a long hiatus was actually a bit difficult. They are mysteriously double-sided, and in a tape player that plays in reverse with poorly marked buttons, I sometimes didn't know what side I was about to play. Also cueing is difficult because if you don't know every song by heart, it's hard to tell what track you're in the middle of when you just randomly press play. The show didn't all go smoothly, but it was jolly to hear some of this music again. Because dude, half my music collection is languishing on tape.

Another note: I got 6 stitches in my right ring finger last night, so my typing may be even worse than usual. For reals.

Poetry Celebration, Makin' Candy 4/19/05

Second annual National Poetry Month edition of Makin' Candy. This year, besides having poets read their work (denoted by quotation marks and "by"), some musical interludes have been built in.

  • Rickover's Dream: Christopher Hedges
  • "Logan Heights and the World" by Juan Felipe Herrera
  • "The Fine Printing on a Bottle of Non-Alcohol Beer" by Adrian Louis
  • Levee Camp Blues: Fred McDowell
  • "Dear John, Dear Coltrane" by Michael S. Harper
  • "I Was Stolen by the Gypsies" by Charles Simic
  • "Lester Leaps In" by Al Young
  • "Prayer" by Joseph Bruchac
  • Jersey Bounce: Benny Goodman & His Orchestra
  • "The Tent People of Beverley Hills" by James Ragan
  • "Parsley" by Rita Dove
  • The Losing End (You're On): Neil Young
  • "Wild Gratitude" by Edward Hirsch
  • "Waltz for Ma" by Johnny Griffin
  • "My Sisters, O My Sisters" by May Sarton
  • "Crossing Over" by William Meredith
  • See Hunt & Liddy: Philip Woods Quartet
  • "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot
  • Driving Wheel: Robert Lockwood, Jr.
  • "So & So Reclining on Her Couch" by Wallace Stevens
  • "Birches" by Robert Frost
  • "Portrait of the Artist as a Prematurely Old Man" by Ogden Nash
  • Poor Boy: Howlin' Wolf
  • "The River Bees" by W.S. Merwin
  • "Diving Into the Wreck" by Adrienne Rich
  • "The Song of the Taste" by Gary Snyder
  • "Learning About Easter & Passover" by Dan Jaffe
  • Canada Geese: David & Mary Ellen Monroe
  • "Tia Sophia" by Carmen Tafolla
  • "Uh Oh Plutonium" by Anne Waldman
  • Espana: Mantovani & His Orchestra
  • "America" by Allen Ginsberg

yeah, the Ginsberg is my Favorite!!

Makin' Candy setlist, 4/12/05

Featuring some tracks off the latest "Little Darla Has a Treat for You" compilation--these marked with "*".

  • Darts of Pleasure: Franz Ferdinand
  • Batteries (can't help me now): Figurine
  • Mr. Jones: Talking Heads
  • Escaping the Game Grid: Technicolor
  • Out of Myself: Arco
  • Steppenwolf: Boney M
  • Lost Love: Lost Souls
  • Revelation: Santana
  • Mind Riot: Soundgarden
  • New Moon on Monday: Duran Duran
  • Jive Talkin': Bee Gees (Saturday Night Fever s/t)
  • American Boy: Juliette & the Licks
  • Cha Cha Loco: Joe Jackson
  • Set Yourself on Fire: Stars
  • Mr. Sun: The Lettermen
  • Flat Lay the Water: The Sea & Cake
  • The Joy Circuit: Gary Numan
  • *Love & Music: Piano Magic
  • *Midnight at the Underground: Baskervilles
  • *Como Campana: Superaquello
  • *Twin Evil Stars: Dead Cowboys
  • *Little Songs About Raindrops: Lullatone
  • *Nothing to Lose: Isabelle Antena
  • Electric Light: PJ Harvey
  • Green of the Melon: Ui
  • Sylvester (New Year's Day Remix): Wechsel Garland

Superfresh Meal in a Bowl: Udon Soup

I've been working on this recipe for weeks. The addition of miso seems to be an excellent finishing flavorful touch, but I'll probably keep experimenting, too.

1 package udon noodles (I like the brown rice kind)
1 box of broth (or mix up water with bouillon)
1 onion, sliced into strips
seaweed (for example, wakame and kelp)
dried mushrooms (for example, tree ears and shiitake)
vegetables, sliced or chopped (use many kinds! bok choy, sliced cabbage, daikon, carrots, zucchini, broccoli, celery, kale, asparagus, green pepper, etc.)
ginger (either fresh chopped or powdered)
olive oil or canola oil
sesame oil
sesame seeds
optional: spicy black bean paste, sliced scallions, chopped parsley, cubed tofu, sliced cooked meat

1. Place the seaweed and dried mushrooms in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit for about 10 minutes while you move on to #2.
2. Prepare vegetables and set aside. If you are quite orderly, you could keep the onions and ginger separate, as they will be used first.
3. Put a large pot of water on to boil (for the pasta).
4. Cut up the mushrooms and seaweed and set aside. Save the water if it doesn’t look too sandy or dirty.
5. When the water is boiling, put the udon in. Check the package to see how long to cook it, usually about 7-10 minutes.
6. Meanwhile, heat olive or canola oil in a large skillet or pot and start sautéing the onions and ginger. When they have started to get a bit browned, throw in some or all of the vegetables and stir-fry these a bit too. Before they start to lose crunch, add the broth, seaweed water and any remaining vegetables and bring everything to a simmer. (The amount of broth to use depends how watery you like your soup—I generally just add enough broth to cover the vegetables, and then throw in more later if needed.)
7. Meanwhile, when the pasta is done, drain it in a colander. I like to stir in some oil so it can sit for a bit without sticking while I finish the rest of the soup.
8. When the soup is boiling, throw in some tamari as well as the chopped seaweed and mushrooms. I also like to add a small spoonful of spicy black bean paste which makes everything slightly and mysteriously piquant. If you’re using tofu or other protein, add that now too.
9. Finally, mix in the cooked udon. Stir soup together until heated through.
10. To serve, put a spoonful of miso in a bowl and mash it together with a few tablespoons of the liquid soup. When thoroughly combined, fill the bowl with soup and garnish with sesame oil and sesame seeds. A sprinkling of scallions or parsley is a nice finishing touch. Serve! (I find I need both a spoon and a fork to eat this. It’s really filling.)

Note: If possible, try to do steps 6-10 very quickly so that the vegetables stay fresh and a bit al dente. One shortcut might be to heat the broth separately so that once you add it, the noodles can go in right away and you’re pretty much ready to eat.


I've started reading The Old Regime and the French Revolution by Alexis de Tocqueville and am finding it really excellent. Well, the first 3 chapters at least. Maybe I'll post some chunks here. For now, some links to possibly interesting ancien regime & XVIIIe siecle sites:

  1. Nobility & Titles in France from
  2. Very basic and slightly bizarre recap of French nobility:
  3. article on "Power and Politics in Old Regime France & The Ancien Regime" from History Today: link
  4. Dr. Lovett's easy bullet points of French history:
  5. "Early Modern Europe" lecture notes, Nipissing Univ:
  6. analysis of "Dangerous Liaisons" film, with links:
  7. e-text for "The Ancient Regime," by Hippolyte A. Taine:
  8. Brief summary called "Crisis of the Monarchy:
  9. Links to 18th century French writings, in French:
  10. Late 17th century history from the Salacious Historian:
  11. Hyperhistory timeline:

Makin' Candy once again, 4/5/05

This was a great show until the crazy screams of the Serge Gainsbourg cover threw me off. No matter, it's easy to recover with "Fancy Dancer" at your fingertips.

  • Guns of Navarone: The Specials
  • Wave of Mutilation: The Pixies
  • Happy Hour: The Housemartins
  • Cosmic Slop: Funkadelic
  • Rattlesnakes: Lloyd Cole
  • Dream World: Midnight Oil
  • My Radio (FM Mix): Stars
  • So Cold the Night: The Communards
  • Digital: Joy Division
  • 867-5309/Jenny: Tommy Tutone
  • As Good As New: Abba
  • You've Got a Crush on Me: The Donnas
  • Loverboy: Billy Ocean
  • Single Girl Summer Home: Land of the Loops
  • Love on the Beat (Serge Gainsbourg cover): Krikor & W.A.R.R.I.O.
  • Reptilia: The Strokes
  • Train in Vain: The Clash
  • Fancy Dancer: The Commodores
  • Wink that Eye: A Boy Named Thor
  • New Rock: Buffalo Daughter
  • Grease: Franki Valli
  • Justified & Ancient: The KLF with Miss Tammy Wynette
  • It Must Be Love: Madness
  • I've Got a Feeling: Jimmy Ryan
  • Hijinx: Heart
  • Non non rien n'a change: Poppys
  • Work It: Missy Elliott
  • Oh Sherrie: Steve Perry
  • So What's New: Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass
  • Fun Food Factory: Lollipop Factory

Makin' Candy setlist, 3/29/04

Pulling it together at the last minute--and I LIKE it! Some petits fours for the ears.

  • Games Without Frontiers: Peter Gabriel
  • Ritual: Charming
  • Telephone Book: Violent Femmes
  • Green Earrings: Steely Dan
  • King of the Kerb: Echobelly
  • Blue Jean: David Bowie
  • Best Friend: The Beat
  • Let the Music Play: Shannon
  • Every Man has a Woman Who Loves Him: John Lennon & Yoko Ono
  • Live With Me: The Rolling Stones
  • Reunion: Stars
  • Did I Hear You Say You Love Me: Stevie Wonder
  • Falling Down: Toad the Wet Sprocket
  • New Sound in Town: Roots Radics
  • Highwire Days: Psychedelic Furs
  • Crawlspace: Beastie Boys
  • Love Is the Drug: Grace Jones
  • Morder: Rockformation Diskokugel
  • Chakra Khan: Bombay 2--Electric Vindaloo
  • Here Comes My Baby: Cat Stevens (Rushmore s/t)
  • Lakeville: Amy Correia
  • Seasons of Wither: Aerosmith
  • This Flat Earth: Thomas Dolby
  • Camilla: The Art of Noise
  • Sunrise, Grand Canyon Suite: Tomita does Grofe
  • Prayer for St. Gregory: Alan Hovhaness