Mom is home from the hospital. There is still a long ordeal ahead. At least my wife and I finally don’t have to go to the hospital every day (something we did for 18 days) and can do some stuff for us, getting out briefly on both Saturday and Sunday. Which was nice.
Saturday we just went out for a walk along Bonfacio High Street. The TLC channel had some huge event going on, celebrity guest that “Cake Boss” guy, not a thing for us. We had lunch at Pink’s, a franchise of the legendary Hollywood hot dog joint, brought to Manila by the folks behind Wildflour. My second time there. I stuck with “the Hollywood Legend” (your basic chili dog), my wife had the “Don’t Mess With Texas” (bacon, cheese, cole slaw, barbecue sauce). We agreed it’s quite okay but still prefer Lazy Bastard.
Sunday we splurged a bit and went to Salvatore Cuomo, the Manila outpost of an Italian restaurant from Japan, and as odd as that concept might seem, it was absolutely fabulous start to finish. Here’s their custom-built pizza oven:
And here’s the pizza we had:
A four cheese pizza onto which the server drizzled a small amount of honey – the right flour, the right kind of pizza oven, this may now be my favorite pizza in Manila. I also couldn’t resist their platter of salami, parma ham and mortadella and full marks go to their spaghetti with salmon, mushrooms and olive oil (which also included cherry tomatoes, olives and capers). Knock them down a notch for being a stand-alone restaurant that for some reason did not have a functioning toilet. Nevertheless, we will return. We were there mid-afternoon, were told at night reservations are an absolute must.
Another sort of distraction, looking at this web site that lists every show at the Fillmore East in NYC and trying to remember which shows I went to. I can’t pin down the exact shows (bands often played there 2 or 3 days in a row, 2 shows per night) but …
June 5 & 6, 1969 – The Who, Chuck Berry, Albert King
October 20-25, 1969 – The Who
February 6 & 7, 1970 – Delaney & Bonnie and Friends with Eric Clapton, Seals and Crofts, Wilbert Harrison
May 8 & 9, 1970 – Mothers of Invention, Insect Trust, Sea Train
May 15, 1970 – Grateful Dead, New Riders
July 9-12, 1970 – Grateful Dead, New Riders
September 17-20, 1970 – Grateful Dead, New Riders
(I probably didn’t go to all of those but can’t remember the exact shows I attended)
November 25-28, 1970 – Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna, Buddy Guy & Junior Wells
April 16 &17, 1970 – John Mayall, Boz Scaggs, Randall’s Island
April 25-29, 1970 – Grateful Dead, New Riders
May 20, 1970 – Leon Russell, Taj Mahal, Donny Hathaway
June 5-6, 1970 – Frank Zappa and the Mothers, Hampton Grease Band, Head Over Heels
Suffice to say that for every show I did go to, there were 5 more that I wish I’d gone to. Allman Brothers, Hendrix, Floyd, CSNY. How did I miss a night that had Joe Cocker, Fleetwood Mac and King Crimson? Big Brother, Tim Buckley and Albert King? Neil Young, Steve Miller and Miles Davis? The Kinks and the Bonzo Dog Band?
The above prompted by seeing on Facebook that my piano teacher Barry Goldberg’s band The Rides (with Stephen Stills and Kenny Wayne Shepherd) is doing some gigs next year with Buddy Guy, and then checking the dates for the one and only time I saw Buddy Guy live.
Other distractions, looking at the mega-box sets coming out in time for Christmas.
Bob Dylan – The 1966 Live Recordings
36 disc boxed set of every recorded show from his 1966 tours of US, UK and Australia. Pretty much the same set list night after night. A relative bargain at US$106, but not so essential. All this stuff has been available on bootlegs for ages but probably/hopefully the audio will be noticeably upgraded.
Pink Floyd – The Early Years 1965-1972
Okay, fasten your seat belts. 11 CDs, 8 Blu-Rays, 9 DVD’s, 5 7-inch singles. “7 individual book-style volumes, featuring much previously unreleased material. The Early Years box set contains unreleased tracks, BBC Radio Sessions, remixes, outtakes and alternative versions over an incredible 11 hours, 45 mins of audio (made up of 130+ tracks) and live and TV performance in over 14 hours of audio-visual material. The content includes over 20 unreleased songs, more than 7 hours of previously unreleased live audio and over 5 hours of rare concert footage, along with 5 meticulously produced 7″ singles in replica sleeves, collectible memorabilia, feature films and new sound mixes. Previously unreleased tracks include 1967’s Vegetable Man and In The Beechwoods, which have been mixed for the first time, specially for this release.”
The price for all this goodness? US$571. I will have to take a pass. Even though this for me covers the Pink Floyd that matters to me. For me the Pink Floyd albums that matter are the live disc from Ummagumma, Meddle, Dark Side, Wish You Were Here. Then Piper and Saucerful. And then everything else (yes, including The Wall).
There’s also yet another reissue of The Band’s The Last Waltz (CD/blu-ray boxed set) and a 5 CD super deluxe version of The Who’s My Generation.
The Rolling Stones are flooding the market – following their recent mammoth Rolling Stones In Mono box (which sounds really great) there’s a new studio album (all blues covers) and the Havana Moon CD/blu-ray box of their recent show in Cuba. I’ve lost track of how many live albums/videos the Stones have released in the past ten years but this new one does have this:
(Watch it to the end – it’s worth it. Or if you’re really impatient skip ahead to 5:12 and watch to the end.)
In terms of TV, aside from The Walking Dead (season 7 episode 1 was so gruesome and sadistic that it took me 2 weeks to watch the entire thing, and I’m someone who is not put off by gore in film and tv), there is Westworld and John Oliver, of course. But also The Good Place (something I should really hate but don’t) and Pamela Adlon’s Better Things (stunning and original) and I’ve only just discovered Black Mirror which is amazing.
And we actually made it out to the movies to see Dr. Strange, and I’m glad I did.
And if all continues well, I’ll be in Hong Kong next week for a few days.