No Kisses, No Cameras — corrected.

The first Max and the Marginalized song was “No Kisses, No Cameras”, about the ban on photographs at Dover Air Force Base when flag draped coffins were returning from the combat zone. The official line was that it was out of respect for the fallen, but anyone with a hint of a brain knew it was to hide the cost of the war from the public.

It’s heartening to see the insulting and disastrous policies of the Bush administration get rolled back as we enter the age of Obama. Today the Pentagon lifted this ridiculous ban. We rerecorded “No Kisses” last week – enjoy the rough mix.


Chris Rakestraw = Funny Guy

Fri. Feb 13, evening:
INT. Garage Pizza, Freddy vs. Jason on TV.

Max: Who wins, Freddy or Jason?


Sat. Feb. 14, evening
INT. Studio

Max: It’s cool, you know I’m pretty adept at writing lyrics on the fly.

Chris: That must be a really tiny pen.

Recording update

So, we’re making a full-length album. We’re keeping a few of the earlier recordings but mostly rerecording songs. We didn’t really know going in which ones we were going to do but we had to start somewhere:

I have to say, it was a big feeling of accomplishment to see how many damn songs we’ve done and to realize that I don’t hate any of them.

Anyways, we did whittle it down, and we will soon reveal which songs made the cut.

Here’s Chris Rakestraw, who’s producing and engineering this thing, with Jon, who’s listening back to his drum trucks with a much more serene look than Chris:

Jon recording:

I don’t have any pics of me or Dave yet, but Dave will be back to sing background this weekend so more photos, to come. I’m off to go sing and play guitar some more now. We’ll keep you posted.

Music blogging at Crooks and Liars

Hi everyone!

Sorry for the slowdown. We’re recording an album next week so we’ll be action packed soon.

In the meantime, I’ve been doing little music blogs at Crooks and Liars at their Late Night Music Club, check them out!

Emptywheel: This Miracle Brought to You By America’s Unions

This is the best blog post I’ve read on the internets in about a year. Written by Emptywheel.

This Miracle Brought to You By America’s Unions
by Emptywheel

They’re calling it a miracle–the successful landing of a US Airways jet in the Hudson and subsequent rescue of all 155 passengers. They’re detailing the heroism of all involved, starting with the pilot and including cabin crew, ferry crews, and first responders. What they’re not telling you is that just about every single one of these heros is a union member.

There’s the pilot:

What might have been a catastrophe in New York — one that evoked the feel if not the scale of the Sept. 11 attack — was averted by a pilot’s quick thinking and deft maneuvers,


On board, the pilot, Chesley B. Sullenberger III, 57, unable to get back to La Guardia, had made a command decision to avoid densely populated areas and try for the Hudson,


When all were out, the pilot walked up and down the aisle twice to make sure the plane was empty, officials said.

Sullenberger is a former national committee member and the former safety chairman for the Airline Pilots Association and now represented by US Airline Pilots Association. He–and his union–have fought to ensure pilots get the kind of safety training to pull off what he did yesterday.

Then there are the flight attendants:

One passenger, Elizabeth McHugh, 64, of Charlotte, seated on the aisle near the rear, said flight attendants shouted more instructions: feet flat on the floor, heads down, cover your heads.

They are members of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA. Yesterday’s accident should remind all of us that flight attendants are first and foremost safety professionals–they should not be treated like cocktail waitresses.

There are the air traffic controllers:

The pilot radioed air traffic controllers on Long Island that his plane had sustained a “double bird strike.”

They’re represented by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association. Someday, they’ll rename National Airport for the work these men and women do to keep us safe in the air.

There are the ferry crews:

As the first ferry nudged up alongside, witnesses said, some passengers were able to leap onto the decks. Others were helped aboard by ferry crews.

They’re represented by the Seafarers International Union. They provide safety training to their members so they’re prepared for events like yesterday’s accident.

There are the cops and firemen:

Helicopters brought wet-suited police divers, who dropped into the water to help with the rescues.

They’re represented by the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association and the Uniformed Firefighters Association and Uniformed Fire Officers Association (IAFF locals).They’re the men and women who performed so heroically on 9/11–and they’ve been fighting to make sure first responders get the equipment to do this kind of thing.

Bob Corker and Richard Shelby like to claim that union labor is a failed business model.

But I haven’t heard much about Bob Corker and Richard Shelby saving 155 people’s lives.

Update: Sullenberger’s union membership corrected, UFOA added.

We’ll miss you, Dana

My girl:

In honor of the tinest, most attractive trojan horse of evil’s penultimate press conference, I figured it’s time to repost our old ode to Dana Perino from over a year ago:

4. Dana, Dana

Date With Dynasty

For our first song of 2009, we are adding our guitars, drums and voices to the chorus of opposition to Caroline Kennedy’s possible Senate appointment, which keeps seesawing to and away from inevitability.

Enjoy “Date With Dynasty.”

Also: for a great take on why these appointments from the Governor, check out this piece by Tom Geoghegan, who is running for Rahm Emanuel’s house seat in Illinois the old fashioned way.

Date With Dynasty

(Mouseover makes the player appear.)

So the chattering classes said it’s said and done, and this time they’re probably right
Opportunity knocks and then it’s ring and run, and disappear into the night
And I don’t have a finger to point right out but I think it would be a mistake
To march in the order of the monarchy to the top of the Empire State

Honoring a legacy, long before I came to be
When birthright meets opportunity
You’ve got a date with dynasty
You’ve got a date with dynasty

And they said consecration was dead and gone, it’s safe to say they were wrong
And they sang out a sun-soaked symphony but someone stopped singing along
So don’t get me wrong, I think it all goes down with the best of intentions at hand
Oh what a concept, the purpose of process has turned up in desperate demand

Tell me just what happened to, hearing out two points of view
I know that isn’t the life for you, but who’s got the time with so much else to do
And that’s why saints and royalty are better left to history
Be them, kings and queens or Kennedys
You’ve got a date with dynasty
You’ve got a date with dynasty

What good is entitlement, absent some accomplishment
Or maybe some shred of evidence, of some kind of semblance of interest
I guess we’ll never take a leave of silly old ideas like these
In this land of opportunity
You’ve got a date with dynasty
You’ve got a date with dynasty
There’s nothing quite like a legacy
You’ve got a date with dynasty