Tuesday, July 31, 2007


I copied this from the New York Times. Felt like a shame to waste it.

Introducing Tattoosday

Hello BillyBlog readers!

Behold a new feature that may or may not be a regular feature here....I'm calling it "Tattoosday". And I'm not saying I coined the phrase, others have done so elsewhere.

Here's the goal.....every Tuesday I'll post a tattoo or two, along with some or a lot of back story.

The exercise is interesting on many fronts....I hope the casual reader will find it brain-tingling and entertaining. Similarly, I hope to have fun producing the weekly post dedicated to body art. But not just any body art. I aim to photograph, with the permission of the inked, of course, tattoos that I find cool, and give a little story behind them.

I hope to meet some interesting people, perhaps boost a little readership, and ultimately entertain the readers.

However, I have to start out with a little bit of cheating. The first tat belongs to a co-worker, Sephora Uddin (the one that gave me the CBGB book for my birthday).

Here it is:

What is it?

A Hindu om symbol.

Is this her first tattoo?

Nah. It's her third of five. Her first is a lotus blossom on lower back. Her second is an angel on her shoulder. Her third is a Hindu swastika on the back of her neck.

Her fifth, and latest, but probably not her last, is on her second toe (the one next to the "big" toe, or hallux) on her left foot, three lines representing the Aquarius symbol.

For the record, I have only seen this one and the swastika.

When and where did you get it?

New York Hardcore Tattoos, October 2005


"The aum or om symbol is sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism, and I find it comforting. It reminds me that I am aspiring to wisdom even if I don't succeed."

So, there you have it. The inaugural tattoo on Tattoosday here at BillyBlog. It should be interesting to see what else I can come up with from strangers, or if I have to revert to friends to help me in this project.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Barefoot Memories

In today's New York Times Education section, a "trendspotting" piece here talks about the students at Reed College in Oregon and my alma mater, Occidental College, and their propensity to go barefoot.

Here are some of the Oxy shots:

I'm sure alumni all over the nation are saying either, "For shame!" or "That's not a trend! I did that!!"

So let me chime in....I attempted, or at least remember selectively that I attempted, to go shoeless my last term at Oxy (we were still on the quarter system then, so it was a shorter time). My philosophy was, I was going to have to wear shoes for the rest of my life, so I should go shoeless now. Besides, raised in Hawai'i, barefootness was second nature to me.

I still get raised eyebrows from neighbors when, in the dead of Winter, I exit the house shoeless to bring garbage to the curb.

A trend? Hardly. I wasn't the only shoeless student my senior year, Spring term. And I would imagine that the Sixties and Seventies were rife with shoelessness.

UPDATE: Monday morning, my boss walked in with the Times article, acting as if the barefoot students were a bunch of space aliens. Granted, in NYC, going barefoot is a little odd. You may remove your shoes in Sheep's Meadow in Central Park, but most city-dwellers keep their feet shod, as the sidewalks are significantly filthier here than, say, a well-groomed Southern California college campus.

Update 8/9/07: Someone linked this post in a yahoo group and my traffic spiked. If you are reading this and were referred here by that yahoo post, I would ask you to please consider either e-mailing me the text of the post, or cutting and pasting it in the comments section. Just wanting to slake my curiosity. Thank you.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Update: From the Archives

I have added a new "From the Archives" entry here. A lengthy, yet worthwhile, recap of a Poetry Society of America reading I attended on March 14, 2005 with the "Contemporary Masters" of poetry: Irving Feldman, Jack Gilbert, Maxine Kumin, and Gary Snyder.

Found on the Sidewalk Outside of Fashion Institute of Technology

Found this out on the sidewalk yesterday evening, in front of F.I.T.

A closer look:

Thursday, July 26, 2007

My New Yorker Conundrum

At some point in early 2006, I stopped reading The New Yorker.

Let me clarify. I stopped reading The New Yorker cover to cover, as I had religiously for at least a good ten years, perhaps more.

I remember being aware of the magazine in high school. Perhaps my mother had a subscription and I read her copies. Maybe I scanned them in the library at Iolani. The day I graduated from high school, in 1985, I gave myself 10 years to have a poem published in The New Yorker's hallowed pages.

I stopped writing profusely from '86 to '92. There were poems, but they were not regular emissions. I published a few in local college lit mags, but that was it.

In '92, I started writing more, and started sending out submissions. I was three years from my deadline of New Yorker publication. I was wise enough to understand that it was not a reasonable goal. I read the poetry in the magazine and knew, I wasn't writing at that level.

But I was a reader and I managed to read and write and even absorb some books as well.

In 2005, things changed. BillyBlog was born, which may or may not have mattered, but I also became addicted to the New York Times crossword puzzles, especially the Sunday magazine puzzle.

That beast was what I brought with me on the trains, the designated place for my New Yorker consumption. And then there was the Shul's book club, which started around the same time as BillyBlog. By 2006, my New Yorkers began to go unread.

So last November, when my subscription threatened to run out on me, I renewed, blindly. Despite the stockpile of back issues that went uncracked.

I admired their covers, but often didn't even check their tables of contents.

I stopped bringing the Sunday puzzle on the train with me. This explains the explosion of novel consumption I faced at the end of June. I am beginning to reassert my right to read The New Yorker, albeit sporadically and fleetingly. Of late, I have been referencing notable pieces (like here).

It is my goal to get through this stockpile, and I will let the readers of BillyBlog know how I am doing, on occasion.

Or, at least, tell you when I read something interesting, or particularly good.

For example, I am currently reading the May 21, 2007 issue.

I just read a fascinating article ("Walking the Wall" by Peter Hessler) about the Great Wall of China, which dispels my preconceptions of the structure. Namely, that it is one big, long wall. Sure, there are sections of Wall that are big and long, but there are multiple structures that make up the Idea of the Great Wall.

Additional notes from Peter Hessler here via National Geographic:

The Great Wall is not a single construction but a series of defensive walls built sporadically by a succession of rulers—at a monumental cost in human toil, injury, and death. The exact combined length of its sections remains unknown.
I also read a short story called "A Beneficiary" by Nadine Gordimer in this issue.

Monty Python's Philosopher's Song

Thanks to Benjie for dropping this my way and reminding me how brilliant it is:

New Yorkistan

Since talking about New Yorker covers, this one above is one of my all-time favorites. The artist is Maira Kalman and you can see her other covers here.

As for me, I live on the border of Fattushis and Fuhgeddabouditstan. And I work in Schmattahadeen.

Some back story:

"New Yorkistan" is an original design that became the cover art for the 10 December 2001 edition of The New Yorker magazine. It was created by longtime REMO friend Maira Kalman in collaboration with new friend, illustrator Rick Meyerowitz, and is, according to the American Society of Magazine Editors, #14 on the list of the top 40 magazine covers of the past 40 years.

The design depicts the boroughs of New York City, as well as individual neighborhoods within the city, giving each a name a "funny mixture of Yiddish, Farsi, and New Yorkisms" based on the history or geography of that area of the city: Lubavistan, Kvetchnya, Irate, Irant, Mooshuhadeen, Schmattahadeen, Yhanks, Feh, Fattushis, Fuhgeddabouditstan, Hiphopabad, Bad, Veryverybad, Khakis and Kharkeez (in Connecticut), and so on ...

The response to New Yorkistan was overwhelming. The magazine disappeared from newsstands in two days, becoming the best selling issue of The New Yorker in history.

Some Background: By early November 2001 the people of New York had settled into a deep funk. The ramifications of September 11 had set in and the war against the Taliban had begun in Afghanistan. "When their cover came out, suddenly a dark cloud seemed to lift" ... according to a glowing piece by Sarah Boxer in the 8 December edition of the New York Times. She went on:

"New Yorkers were mad for the map. They laughed. They shared it. They recited their favorite joke names on the map, making sure you had the proper Yiddish: the name Gribines (for the Hudson River) means chicken cracklings. They checked out your cultural knowledge: Blahniks (the Upper East Side) is where everyone can afford Manolo Blahnik shoes. What? You don't understand. Youdontunderstandistan? You should be banished to Outer Perturbia (somewhere on Long Island). Perhaps not since Steinberg's drawing had New Yorkers pored over a magazine cover so long. Of course, the maps are totally different. Steinberg's is a delicate drawing done in perfect perspective, with fully realized cars and little witty dotted lines separating Canada from Chicago and Mexico from Washington. The drawing by Ms. Kalman and Mr. Meyerowitz is flat and naïve. Aside from a funny perplexed camel standing in the middle of Stan (Staten Island), the humor is all verbal."

According to Maira, the inspiration for the cover arose in a car on the way to a party. She and Rick were talking about tribalism. At one point she came up with the idea of "Bronxistan", to which Rick replied "You know, we've got a map here." Originally, the picture was to be run on the back page of the magazine, but editors liked it so much that it was decided to make it the cover picture.

The above was quoted from this website, which offers up some pretty cool product based on New Yorkistan, and some sketches of the work in progress. Also, wikipedia has further trivia here, making this one of the few magazine covers to garner its own entry.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Latest New Yorker Cover

Perfectly New York City....

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Coney Island, Siren Festival, Sunset

I was going to blog about the Siren Festival, but instead I'll just blog about the afternoon and evening.

We went to the Siren Festival last weekend. It was a not-too-hot day on Coney Island. But there was a crowd. This is the crowd before M.I.A. took the stage:

Here's the best shot I snagged from my brave little camera:
We met up with friends Aransas and her husband Andy. Since we couldn't really get close to M.I.A., we decided to head to the boardwalk. We snagged some beer and ambled down the beach. After a while, the following scene unfolded before us:

We wandered on. We passed the aquarium and then headed back. As we neared the festival, Melanie saw something and she reacted. Along the back side of the aquarium was a corridor fabricated out of the French barricades. The path was created for the festival V.I.P.s. This is what we saw:

I love the picture because of the hugeness and color of the wall. Upon closer inspection, we see that it is David Johansen, lead singer of the New York Dolls, walking to the backstage area.

We followed along a while, watching as the frontman from the legendary band neared the security checkpoint.

After the band disappeared toward the backstage tents, we mingled on the boardwalk, chatting and taking in the sights. Suddenly Melanie pointed out something she had seen earlier:

Two guys were walking around with a huge wooden phallus. Perfect for BillyBlog, I thought. I approached the two Guardians of the Object, and requested to take their picture.

They complied, and then requested that I pose with the phallus. I did, and they snapped a photo (so much for a career in politics), but they politely declined to take a picture of me, avec l'objet, saying they were not allowed to do so. They explained to another curiosity-seeker that their friend had carved the giant appendage and entrusted them with a mission to wander the city and record their adventures. I wandered back to my companions and we continued chatting, pausing occasionally as people reacted to the trio of interest.

We heard the band start up. We couldn't get close. The sun was setting.

I then chose to record a "New York Minute:"

You may have noticed in the video that we were right next to the world-famous Cyclone:

We then decided to go grab some dinner. As we left, I snapped some pictures. I love this one:

I was shooting the couple on the ground,

but the whole picture, the sun setting on the Cyclone, the trash on the pavement, the colored skirt of the woman in the foreground, all make me interested in the moment caught in time.

Our walk to supposedly the best pizza in Brooklyn at Totonno's was punctuated by a breath-taking display in the sky.

and here:

Alas, Totonno's closes at the despicable hour of 8:30, and when we arrived at 8:34, we were turned away.

The dusk blurred into nightfall:

Before we settled into a dining establishment, we were intrigued by this sign:

We ended up at Coney Island Surf & Turf Grill where we had some of these:

Tasty and perfect for the location. Check out their website here.

Brooklyn Vegan has tons of pictures of M.I.A.

Oh, and I thought I was a dork because I brought my copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows to read on the train to Coney Island, but Brooklyn Vegan spotted some folk even dorkier than me. Well worth the step to the link here.

More photos from Gothamist here.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Bloody brilliant.

Talk Talk

T. Coraghessan Boyle is one of my favorite writers.

He is a master craftsman in the world of fiction. Boyle has a loyal following but skirts the mainstream. He is immensely talented, and prolific. I have read all of his novels, and am a couple of volumes shy of reading all of his short story collections.

For previous BillyBlog posts about Mr. Boyle, go here (a pic of T.C. and me) and here (#6 on my favorite books list).

Last Thursday I finished Boyle's last novel Talk Talk. Incidentally, when I announced to Melanie that I was ready for the new Harry Potter book because I had "just finished the Boyle," Shayna squeamishly asked, "Ewww, Daddy, you had a boil?"

Click here for a brief introduction and an excerpt from the official T.C. Boyle page.

Boyle writes compellingly, creating characters that are memorable and cinematic. Only one of his books, The Road to Wellville, has been made into a film. It fared poorly at the box office, which I think has caused Hollywood to balk at producing more of his work. His novel The Tortilla Curtain is just one of his books to have had its film rights optioned. Apparently the project never came to fruition.

Talk Talk is about identity theft and the impact it has on the life of the ordinary person. But it goes deeper than that, and delves into the idea of identity. It is no coincidence that one of the main characters works at a CGI special effects lab, painstakingly altering each frame of film by computer to alter the appearances of the actors therein.

I had a slight problem with a significant plot device that propelled the narrative earlier on. A character tracks down the identity thief, or at least gets a lead, after a cell phone company calls about a past due bill. The whole process of the call, the demeanor of the cell phone company representative, the threats he makes, and the sheer fact that the customer is being called and harassed about a payment while the phone in question is still operational, all rang untrue to me. Granted, in fiction, the reader is asked to take a leap of faith. But knowing the collection industry, this incongruity with reality bothered me when it happened, and dogged me to the end of the book.

I still enjoyed the story and the way it was told, but I would have liked it much more had Boyle come up with a more convincing method to propel the narrative.

T.C. Boyle writes darkly, and he gives even the most villainous characters compelling back stories that stir the reader's sympathies. This skill, along with his ability to not end a book neatly, but leave the reader wondering, is what I like about his fiction. He is definitely not a "happily ever after" writer. As in life, loose ends are rarely dispatched neatly.

My mother-in-law told me that she thought this was Boyle's most accessible book. I tend to agree, although I wouldn't want anyone to forgo reading other work by him.

Check out his website and explore the world of T. Coraghessan Boyle.

For a positive review of the book, go here. Other reviews can be found here.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Live from the Siren Festival....

M.I.A. has just taken the stage. We are about 60 yards back from the stage. The clackety-clack of the Cyclone punctuates the throbbing of the music, which the guy behind me just described as "like '80's Salt-n-Pepa".

We're Off to the Siren Festival.....

Live Blogging May Occur

Miscellaneous Bits of Information for the Week Ending July 21, 2007

I gave up on Per Petterson's In the Wake. Someone reserved a copy at the library, so I had to return mine unfinished. I made it to page 38 (out of 202). Some other time, perhaps.

Interesting blog name of the week here.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Sekou Sundiata: All Depends on the Skin You're Livin' In

from The New York Times

Sekou Sundiata Dies at 58; Performer of Text and Sound

Jack Vartoogian/FrontRowPhotos

Sekou Sundiata in 2000, on the set of his theater piece “Udu.”

Published: July 20, 2007

Sekou Sundiata, a poet and performance artist whose work explored slavery, subjugation and the tension between personal and national identity, especially as they inform the black experience in America, died on Wednesday in Valhalla, N.Y. He was 58 and lived in Brooklyn.

The cause was heart failure, said his producer, Ann Rosenthal. At his death, Mr. Sundiata was a professor in the writing program of Eugene Lang College of New School University.

Mr. Sundiata’s art, which defied easy classification, ranged from poems performed in the style of an oral epic to musical, dance and dramatic works infused with jazz, blues, funk and Afro-Caribbean rhythms. In general, as he once said in a television interview, it entailed “the whole idea of text and noise, cadences and pauses.”

His work was performed widely throughout the United States and abroad, staged by distinguished organizations like the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Spoleto Festival U.S.A. Among Mr. Sundiata’s most recent works was “the 51st (dream) state,” an interlaced tapestry of poetry, music, dance and videotaped interviews that explores what it means to be an American in the wake of 9/11.

His other works include “Udu,” a staged oratorio about slavery in present-day Mauritania, with music by Craig Harris; “blessing the boats,” a one-man show, autobiographically inspired, about Mr. Sundiata’s experiences of heroin addiction, a debilitating car crash and a kidney transplant; and “The Circle Unbroken Is a Hard Bop,” a collaboration with Mr. Harris about black Americans coming of age in the 1960s.

Writing in The New York Times in 1993, D .J. R. Bruckner reviewed a production of “The Circle Unbroken” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe:

“This is a remarkably smooth work, its complex stories and ideas bound together by the vivid, memorable poetry of Mr. Sundiata. And in one tornadic scene, the poet lets the audience hear all at once the range of his vocabulary and voice: Mr. Sundiata becomes a young, crazed homeless man on the street, and in eight minutes pours out a torrent of grief, humor and shrewd insight that leaves one simply astonished.”

Mr. Sundiata was born Robert Franklin Feaster in Harlem on Aug. 22, 1948; he adopted the African name Sekou Sundiata in the late 1960s. He earned a bachelor’s degree in English from City College of New York in 1972 and a master’s degree in creative writing from the City University of New York in 1979.

He is survived by his wife, Maurine Knighton, known as Kazi; a daughter, Myisha Gomez of Manhattan; a stepdaughter, Aida Riddle of Brooklyn; his mother, Virginia Myrtle Singleton Feaster of Kingstree, S.C.; two brothers, William Feaster of Belleville, N.J., and Ronald Feaster of Manhattan; and one grandchild.

Mr. Sundiata, who performed with the folk rock artist Ani DiFranco as part of her Rhythm and News tour in 2001, released several CDs of music and poetry, including “The Blue Oneness of Dreams” (Mouth Almighty/Mercury Records) and “longstoryshort” (Righteous Babe Records). His work was also featured on television, on the HBO series “Def Poetry” and the PBS series “The Language of Life.”


I never caught him live. Sad, since he performed often in and around NYC.

Please, do yourself a favor. Go here and click to play the video from the Dodge Poetry Festival. 2 minutes and fifty seconds of spoken word brilliance.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Pearl Jam Video Project - The Letter "A"

Just a Little Experiment:


"All or None, Live at Benaroya Hall"

"All Those Yesterdays", Live in Washington DC, 9/19/1998"

"Alone," Live New Years' Eve, NYC, 1992

"Angel," 1992 Bridge School Benefit

"Animal," MTV

"Army Reserve," East Rutherford II, 2006

"Around the Bend," Bridge School Benefit, 2006

Volcanic Disruption

Front Page

Aside for some moments of uncertainty and pondered panic (Melanie called me in Brooklyn from lower Manhattan asking what happened), the big blowhole in Lexington Avenue had little effect on our lives (so far).

At this point, our closest contacts to the puka in the pavement are my boss, who lives a block or so away from what the Office of Emergency Management are calling "the frozen zone" and our neighbor downstairs, a young lady who works in a building near the site. Her clothing and whatever else she had with her are in plastic bags (sealed) downstairs, speckled with schmutz
until she has everything tested for asbestos.

An exciting night in the Big Apple, more for some than others. But everyone under my roof is safe and sound and operating business as usual. Thanks to those who called to check in to make sure we were all okay.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Some Kind of Birthday Gift!

This popped up in my mailbox today:

along with the cryptic message:

"Happy B-lated B-Day Dude! Thought about getting this for you when I first heard about it a year ago. Enjoy!"

Not sure who sent it to me. Thanks, Mystery-Giver!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Rescue Me! (Soundtrack and Music Guide to Season 1)

So, the television season ended and we plowed through our DVR detritus, catching up on odds and sods of shows, but it seemed like there was nothing to watch.

Co-worker Ian praised the show Rescue Me and insisted I watch it. But somewhere along the line, someone got it in our heads that we should at least watch season 1 on DVD before embarking on the latest episodes (season 4). So we did. We watched 2 episodes before we had to return the DVDs back to the New York Public Library.

Well, we thought, we will certainly watch more of those. So I got back, as they say in Britain, in the queue at the NYPL and after receiving my e-mail that the DVD was in, picked this up on Tuesday:

Um, not the DVD, but the soundtrack. Ok, I'll survive. The DVD came today. There's 10 copies in the system and 20 people in line.

And, I figured, since it's unlikely we'll finish the last 11 episodes of season 1 in a week's time, I've already reserved another copy. Why not?

Anyway, I listened to the soundtrack today on the way to work and it's pretty darn good. So here is the track listing. Very indy. But very good.

1. "C’mon C’mon" – The Von Bondies (Rescue Me title song)

This song is the perfect title song. It sticks with you and rocks. In the liner notes, Dennis Leary remarked how the song sounds as if it was written for a fire engine. The urgency in the lyrics launches the episode into high gear.

2. "Devil" – Stereophonics

This song is cool. It has a little bit of a early-90's grunge feel for me. It didn't show up in Rescue Me until Season 3, Episode 1. The disc has selected tracks from the first three seasons. The video for the song was considered controversial. See for yourself here.

3. "I’ll Be Your Man" – The Black Keys

From their album The Big Come Up. This band is a little in the White Stripes-variety. I am actually a fan of theirs (26 tracks on the BilliPod), and have been ever since I heard them of the School of Rock soundtrack. Good, hard, thick blues-rock.

Listen: "When the Lights Go Down" (mp3) by The Black Keys from the soundtrack of Black Snake Moan.

4. "Bonnie Brae" – The Twilight Singers

Dennis Leary loves these guys. Check out this post over at Stereogum. The Twilight Singers were formed by former leader of the Afghan Whigs, Greg Dulli. Not a bad song.

5. "All The Wild Horses" – Ray LaMontagne

Honestly, I don't know what to think of Ray LaMontagne. He's an "indie" favorite, but he's a little too mellow for my tastes. I don't think I could listen to him endlessly. But this song definitely has its merits, conveying a dark, sad mood. He's another favorite of Leary's, I'm guessing, because three songs of his have been used in the series (not counting season 4, under way currently).

6. "Shine A Light" – Wolf Parade

Wolf Parade is another favorite of the youths who I have never really sunk my teeth into. This song is perfect for the show, it has tinges of Irishness, and an angst that melds well with the themes of the show. The video for the song, viewable with Quicktime here, illustrates an individual's inner demons. The lyrics confirm this:

I keep my head uptight

I make my plans at night
And I don’t sleep I don’t sleep I don’t sleep ’til it’s light
Something’s flowing, someone buried alive

There is an awful sound
This haunted town
And it will not it will not it will not just be quiet
Some ghosts sing, someone get called to the life

Spend boring hours in the office tower
In a bus on a bus back home to you and
That’s fine I’m barely alive

It’s just a matter of time
No one gets out alive

7. Karaoke Soul – Tom McRae

I know what you're thinking, "Is he going through the whole track list?" You betcha. It's fun and I get to pay closer attention to each song and artist. It's educational for me and you. You can thank me later.

Anyway, this is a pretty kickin' tune, as one generation or another of kids said, at some point. Perfect for this soundtrack, a driving beat with a little hint of '80s Robert Plant (musically, not vocally).

You can watch the video for "Karaoke Soul" here.

8. "Love Is Blindness" – The Devlins feat. Sharon Corr

This a haunting, beautiful song that just drips with heartache. It's a song I can picture listening to as a teenager, over and over again, before, during, and after a failed relationship. Sharon Corr's violin work is chilling and accents the song perfectly. The song was originally by U2 from the Achtung Baby album. The Devlins have stripped away the percussion and studio production that you find in the original and have created, in my opinion, a superior cover. The song was recorded for a U2 benefit/tribute album called Even Better Than the Real Thing, Vol. 3.

9. "Fell On Bad Days" – Rubyhorse

Another Irish band, which makes sense, since the show is about an Irish-American firefighter in a department that has a tradition steeped in the Irish-American community. And the executive producer and lead actor is Dennis Leary. This track was prominent in the season finale of the show's first year. This track is a soaring musical tour de force that uplifts and inspires.

10. "Wipe That Smile Off Your Face" – Our Lady Peace

Not a bad track at all. Again, perfect for this soundtrack. A nice, angry, bitter song to uplift your spirits.

Listen to another song by Our Lady Peace: Somewhere Out There (mp3), courtesy of
Heartache With Hard Work.

11. "Open Heart Surgery" – The Brian Jonestown Massacre

I've heard of the Brian Jonestown Massacre for years but never listened to them. This song just kicks butt. I know what you're thinking, is there anything on the soundtrack I don't like? Well, duh, why do you think I'm dissecting the entire album?

12. "Oh Yeah" – The Subways

This song could also be a main title song. It has a great beat and a driving melody that combines with the lyrics to depict a sense of urgency. Watch the video for the song here.

13. "Pussywillow" – Greg Dulli

Remember "Bonnie Brae" above? Same dude. Same sound. I could do without this track. It's okay, but falls flat after the Subways.

14. "Just A Dream" – Griffin House

The last words we hear on the album are from Griffin House:

All you are now is only just a dream
Can you fall down in following me?

I see the placement here as essential summing up of the soundtrack. For me, I would have preferred a more rocking exit. The song is okay. The subways may have been better suited to end this project. But hey, Dennis Leary is who he is, and I am me.

Anyway, this is, overall, a great soundtrack, especially if you like the series.

You can read Dennis Leary's liner notes by clicking on the music guide at the official Rescue Me site here.

Update: August 2007
I get a lot of hits to this post from people looking for a music guide for the series, so I will try and elaborate.

Season 1

Season 1, Episode 1, "Guts":

Coldplay's "Don't Panic" is playing at the end of the episode.

Season 1, Episode 2, "Gay":

Tom McRae's "Stronger than Dirt" at the end of the episode.

Season 1, Episode 4, "DNA":

Tyrone Wells' "When All is Said and Done" at the end of the episode.

Season 1, Episode 5, "Orphans":

Magnet's "Chasing Dreams" at the end of the episode.

Season 1, Episode 7, "Butterfly":

Tom McRae's "Karaoke Soul" (track 7 on the soundtrack CD, described above)

Season 1, Episode 8, "Inches":

Tyrone Wells' "All I Can Do" as they pull Billy's body from the warehouse.

Season 1, Episode 12, "Leaving":

Griffin Wells' "Just a Dream" at the end of the episode (track 14 on the soundtrack CD, described above)

Season 1, Episode 13, "Sanctuary":

Rubyhorse, "Fell on Bad Days" at the end of the episode (track 9 on the soundtrack CD, described above)