Jean Smith vocals and David Lester guitar (Smarten UP! Records, 1986 and re-released by K Records, 1995) © 1986 Lester/Smith SOCAN David Lester (music) and Jean Smith (lyrics) Available in iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/mecca-normal-the-first-album/id259773876
Views: 6871 Jean Smith
From the album, Calico Kills the Cat (K Records,1989). Jean Smith vocals, David Lester guitar. Video by Jean Smith, inspired by Occupy Wall Street and beyond. Buy the LP from the K Records Shop: http://www.krecs.com/Shop/product_info.php?products_id=4308 Buy the song on Bandcamp: http://meccanormal.bandcamp.com/track/dont-shoot Calico Kills the Cat was recorded by Calvin Johnson and Pat Maley in Olympia, Washington in 1989. Mecca Normal's second LP, it is often thought to be the first because the first LP was released on Mecca Normal's own label, Smarten UP! Records (1986). Calico Kills the Cat came as an LP on K Records and then, some years later, Matador released it as double CD with Water Cuts My Hands, Mecca Normal's third album (the second LP with K Records). When the rights to digital versions returned to Mecca Normal from Matador, Smarten Up! Records made Calico, Water, Snaps, Eagle and Elvis available on iTunes (with some songs popping up on Bandcamp).
Views: 4040 Jean Smith
Green House, Arcata, California, 2009 on the 25th Anniversary Tour. "Because it's my right to walk anywhere, in any city, at any time of day, wearing whatever the fuck I want to." Jean Smith and David Lester formed Mecca Normal in 1984. "I Walk Alone" was on the first album (1986). Mecca Normal's new album "Empathy for the Evil" comes out in September, 2014. Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com http://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal
Views: 1854 Jean Smith
"Attraction is Ephemeral" from "The Observer" (Kill Rock Stars, 2006). A self-portrait film by Jean Smith. David Lester guitar. Jean Smith vocals, piano, sax and synth. http://meccanormal.wordpress.com http://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal
Views: 17455 Jean Smith
© 1986 Lester/Smith SOCAN -- the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada, a copyright collective for musical works, protecting the performing rights of their members. David Lester (music) and Jean Smith (lyrics) Jean Smith re-mixed "I Walk Alone" from the original 4 track Fostex cassette tape (recorded as the song was written in 1984 or 85 and released on Smarten UP! Records -- Jean Smith's record label, named after her fanzine). This is the Fostex Mecca Normal used to record most of the first album. This version is longer (4:02) than the album version (2:35) making this a never-before-heard extended version which now sounds a lot better than the original. Jean Smith - vocals (re-mix and video) David Lester - guitar
Views: 706 Jean Smith
Jean Smith vocals, David Lester guitar, Peter Jefferies drums. From the album The Eagle & The Poodle (Matador, 1997, re-released on Smarten UP! Records 2009). Shot by Elliot Rocket in Seattle and Olympia. Produced and edited by Cyndee Baudhuin. Half hostage half victim blackmail shifts around there is a closing up and drawing in Spectacle is the reward in a catalytic cycle the universe behaves a crowd chants out at ringside calling out for the revival of cruelty calling out for more When a direction is taken it starts justifying itself beginning by imposing a dismissal on all that's unexplored all that's unexplored Direction becomes a window in the semi-dark of night we are peering in or we are gazing out We are peering in or we are gazing out we are gazing we are gazing out and the crowd calls out for more calling calling for the revival of cruelty the revival of cruelty
Views: 1251 Jean Smith
From Calico Kills the Cat (K Records, 1989 & Smarten UP! Records, 2010). http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Jean Smith vocals and David Lester guitar. Video by Jean Smith, from a solo reading (1993) and self-portrait watercolours from age thirteen to thirty-five (1973 - 1995). FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal
Views: 1793 Jean Smith
Mecca Normal (Jean Smith vocals, David Lester guitar with Peter Jefferies on drums) from "The Eagle and the Poodle" (Matador, 1996). Film by Jean Smith. FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/Mecca-Normal Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com David Lester guitar, Jean Smith vocals, Peter Jefferies drums and piano.
Views: 1821 Jean Smith
Norman Nawrocki -- Cultural Resistance http://www.nothingness.org/music/rhythm/en/html/bio.html Montréal sampling/looping violinist, composer, actor, author, educator. Over 50 releases since 1986, solo & with his different bands including Rhythm Activism, DaZoque! Alternative East European folk instrumental or ambient with rad spoken word + beats, or cabaret rock 'n roll or indie & experimental soundscapes, wedding & divorce music. Tours the world, jams with many. "Every city should be so lucky to have a Norman Nawrocki" -- The Montreal Mirror
Views: 769 Jean Smith
Bass – Jamie Baugh Drums, Vocals – Tom Harrison Engineer – Edward John Guitar, Vocals – David Lester Harp, Vocals – Bob Mercer Slide Guitar, Vocals – Alex Varty Georgia Straight Records, Vancouver, Canada GS 001 Vinyl, 7", 45 RPM, Single, 1978 A. Wilson, Lucas & Bruce 6:03 B. Everybody´s Crazy But You & Me 2:45 Copyright (c) – RN Mercer Recorded at Ocean Sound, North Vancouver
Views: 382 Jean Smith
Mecca Normal (David Lester on guitar and Jean Smith vocals) Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Mecca-Normal From the album Sitting on Snaps (Matador 1995, re-released on Smarten UP! Records, 2009). Film by Jean Smith (September 20, 2009).
Views: 1967 Jean Smith
Filmed in Boston in 1992. There may be black segments where the commercials go. I was flown out to Boston from Vancouver on VERY short notice, put in a VERY fancy hotel, limo-ed to and from the show. Sam went in a separate limo. They wanted to keep us apart, to get a cat fight going during the show. Sam phoned my room the night before, pleading with me not to make mince meat of her, assuring me that she was a feminist. Cripes. I had no idea who she was or what she was talking about. I still have no idea who she is / was. The producers encouraged us to interrupt each other. Evidently, the audience was given a lot of sugar and caffeine and told we were... in some way spewers of profanity. I had no idea the show was going to be focusing on profanity. I think this is why we all three seem a bit caught off guard at the beginning. The best bit is Sam's grandmother, at the end, standing up to say everything Sam has done she's done for herself (really? no kidding) ...she's never done anything for anyone else in her entire life... or whatever she says... sorry, Sam's granny. All-in-all, totally surreal. I'm sure I was way down the list of possible guests, but since Riot Grrrls weren't talking and I'd been talking for years, they put me on their show. For the next five years, every time I saw Calvin he said, "I'm on Def Jam" in the same annoying voice that the woman from Bytches with Problems used while she was interrupting me. Or maybe it was the annoying voice that I used to imitate her interrupting me.
Views: 4577 Jean Smith
From Mecca Normal's twelfth full-length album "The Family Swan" (Kill Rock Stars, 2002). http://killrockstars.bandcamp.com/album/the-family-swan Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal Filmed at the Capitol Theater in Olympia, Washington.
Views: 1344 Jean Smith
From the new album "Empathy for the Evil" released September 30, 2014 on M'lady's Records http://www.mladysrecords.com LP & CD available through - Light in the Attic http://lightintheattic.net/releases/1526-empathy-for-the-evil - Revolver USA https://midheaven.com/item/empathy-for-the-evil-by-mecca-normal-cd#.VL0Nd8t0wb2 - Rough Trade in the UK http://www.roughtrade.com/albums/89150 Digital Album - M'lady's Records https://mladysrecords.bandcamp.com/album/empathy-for-the-evilProduced by KRAMER. Mixed and mastered by KRAMER at Noise Miami. Recorded by Rat Bastard at the Laundry Room, Miami Beach in November of 2012. David Lester guitar, Jean Smith vocals with a bit of piano. KRAMER on bass and organ. Video by Jean Smith. Lyrics are from Jean Smith's (yet to be published) novel "Obliterating History – a guitar-making mystery, domination and submission in a small town garage." Mecca Normal Newsletter http://meccanormal.wordpress.com "Empathy for the Evil" http://meccanormal2014.wordpress.com Wasn’t Said Look ahead to the time when you’ve forgotten all that was said when you look behind and it doesn’t matter anymore Look ahead — it’s hard to want to go there now that’s where you’re heading that’s what you’re waiting for it’s what you’re waiting for that time, when you’re looking behind you and none of this will matter all of this confusion will be so far in the past it won’t matter in the now In the now that’s still ahead Looking ahead to when none of this is gonna matter how it went and what was said and what wasn’t said To make this void of no communication no communication no communication now there’s nothing now There’s nothing now but to look ahead when none of this will matter what was and wasn’t said It wasn’t said
Views: 2029 Jean Smith
"What's Your Name?" is on "Empathy for the Evil" released (2014, M'lady's Records) Produced, mixed and mastered by KRAMER. Recorded in Miami Beach by Rat Bastard at the Laundry Room in November, 2012. David Lester guitar, Jean Smith vocal and sax, KRAMER bass Video shot in Havana by David Lester https://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal Mecca Normal Newsletter http://meccanormal.wordpress.com "Empathy for the Evil" http://meccanormal2014.wordpress.com
Views: 259 Jean Smith
Oh Yes You Can (7" on K Records, 1987). This was Mecca Normal's second release. The first LP came out on Smarten UP! Records in 1986. Mecca Normal on FaceBook https://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal Strong White Male More, More, More 2:50 Man Thinks Woman 5:10 Film: "Strong White Male" "Man Thinks Woman" by David Lester, 1987. "More, More, More" by Heather Conrad.
Views: 1497 Jean Smith
Mecca Normal - Don't Shoot (video after UC Davis pepper spray) "Don't Shoot" is on "Calico Kills the Cat" originally released on an LP (K Records, 1989). The CD was released by Matador Records and recently re-released by Smarten UP! Records (2010). Malachi 7" (November, 2010) on K Records www.krecs.com/Shop/product_info.php?cPath=38&products_id=4630 Mecca Normal started in 1984 with the express purpose of changing the world. Writer Jean Smith turned her zine Smarten UP! -- A How to Change the World Publication -- into a record label to release the first Mecca Normal LP in 1986. "Arguably the greatest rock band without a rhythm section ever, the duo of acid-voiced singer Jean Smith and guitar hero David Lester must be seen to be believed." -- Douglas Wolk In April 2009, Mecca Normal celebrated its 25th anniversary with 25 shows in 25 days, including university and high school presentations of "How Art & Music Can Change the World" -- a lecture intending to inspire audiences to consider adding political content to their creative self-expression. Mecca Normal is known as a fore-runner and inspiration to the riot grrrl movement in the 90s. As part of the regional D-I-Y scene at that time, Mecca Normal co-founded the Black Wedge -- anti-authoritarian poets and minimalist musicians "setting wild hearts free, spreading the damn difficult word of how to combine poetry with activist resistance culture". In 2010 Smith and Lester launched The Black Dot Museum of Political Art with a four-person exhibit in Olympia. blackdotmuseum.wordpress.com Guitar player David Lester is the author of "The Listener graphic novel" (Arbeiter Ring, 2011) http://thelistenergraphicnovel.wordpress.com David Lester's first book "The Gruesome Acts of Capitalism (Arbeiter Ring)" raised over $2000 for the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture. David is the publisher at Get To The Point Editions -- a small press publishing poetry, graphics and fiction by community activists. His ongoing series of Inspired Agitators posters are featured in both the lecture and the Black Dot Museum of Political Art. blackdotmuseum.wordpress.com/inspired-agitator Vocalist Jean Smith is a painter, filmmaker and the author of two published novels. She is the recipient of two Canada Council for the Arts Awards as a writer of creative fiction. She runs Smarten UP! Records, a D-I-Y label for poets, minimalist musicians and community activists. Mecca Normal has released albums on Kill Rock Stars, Matador and K Records. Mecca Normal Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com MySpace: www.myspace.com/meccanormal Facebook: www.facebook.com/Mecca-Normal
Views: 746 Jean Smith
Four songs from "The Family Swan" album (Kill Rock Stars, 2002). Jean Smith vocals, David Lester guitar. In January 00:35 Family Swan (incomplete) 3:44 No Mind's Eye 7:39 Blame the Glassman 12:10 Ice Floes Aweigh 13:59 http://meccanormal.bandcamp.com/album/the-family-swan Mecca Normal Newsletter https://meccanormal.wordpress.com
Views: 121 Jean Smith
Beaten Down (first LP, 1986), Mecca Normal live at the Media Club in Vancouver, opening for The Corin Tucker Band. May 1, 2011. Mecca Normal Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Mecca Normal on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mecca-Normal/49770142508
Views: 517 Jean Smith
Rough mix. The song was originally released on a 7" by K Records and then on the Jarred Up compilation -- also on K Records. Jean Smith - vocals David Lester - guitar Peter Jefferies - drums Artoffact Records: [email protected] CBC Radio Brave New Waves series (spring 2019) https://cbcbravenewwaves.bandcamp.com
Views: 148 Jean Smith
K Records 7" (2010) http://www.krecs.com/Shop/product_info.php?products_id=4630 The Listener graphic novel by David Lester http://thelistenergraphicnovel.wordpress.com Mecca Normal opening for The Corin Tucker Band, May 1, 2011. Mecca Normal Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Mecca Normal on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mecca-Normal/49770142508
Views: 184 Jean Smith
Rat Bastard before Mecca Normal in Miami.
Views: 150 Jean Smith
Mecca Normal (Jean Smith and David Lester) opening for The Julie Ruin at the Wonder Ballroom in Portland on October 9, 2016. Video by Pat Maley. "I Am Here" is another new one that moves away from lyrics on the page, allowing me to perform it more in the moment. The song features two key lines. "As long as I'm still here I will be opposed to injustice." "Feminism was not a phase or a failed experiment."
Views: 93 Jean Smith
Matador Records' Gerard Cosloy talks about Mecca Normal in a clip from "The Shield Around the K" a film by Heather Dominic. Clip of Mecca Normal's "Waiting for Rudy" about the building Barbara Manning and Laura Moody used to live in in San Francisco. Video by Pat Maley. Matador released 5 Mecca Normal albums. Mecca Normal’s 13th album “Empathy for the Evil” was produced by Kramer and released by M’Lady’s in 2014. Mecca Normal on FaceBook https://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal
Views: 619 Jean Smith
"Now is the time of the older woman." - Gina Birch of the Raincoats in a BBC documentary about women in punk. Audio from an interview with Russ Forster for an upcoming segment on Radio Valencia. Video by Jean Smith of Mecca Normal The still photo is from an interview with Tyler Maxin at WNYU in October 2014.
Views: 218 Jean Smith
Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com A film by Jean Smith. "Because it's my right to walk anywhere, in any city, at any time of day, wearing whatever the fuck I want to." Recorded in SF at the Thirsty Swede in 1994. Thanks to whomever recorded it. J Free -- a swell fellow in Portland who does Sonic Archives -- recorded some of our recent shows and he gave us CDs of shows from long ago, including the live show at the Thirsty Swede. Thank you very much. The images are from summer 2008. And yes you are allowed to laugh at the evil genius in the weird pointy hat -- behind the scenes, pushing buttons, running the show. The original version of I Walk Alone was written and recorded at the same time in 1984 and released on Mecca Normal's first LP (Smarten UP! Records, 1986). The album was re-released on CD and LP by K Records some years later. Mecca Normal Newsletter: http://meccanormal.wordpress.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MeccaNormal
Views: 11533 Jean Smith
Jean Smith and David Lester being directed and filmed by Marilyn Freeman at Bryce's Barber Shop in Olympia, Washington. Prior to a Mecca Normal performance and art exhibit in 2004. Featuring David Lester's "Inspired Agitators poster series" on the walls. "Accidentally Visiting Grenada" (unreleased)
Views: 2029 Jean Smith
Mecca Normal's 2006 album "The Observer" is known as the "online dating" album (because that's how we promoted it), but there were a few songs that weren't directly out of my novel "Love Wants You." (yet to be published) which was at one time so large that it was two novels (the other being "Broke Like Me"). I had hoped that the album and the novel (or novels) would arrive on the market at the same time, bolstering each other, that the art I made would cause a stir, challenging the status quo. That the art I made would make a dent in misogyny and the general oppression of women. "1922" is a cinematic episode and, in fact, it was featured in a short film called "Cash Free" that's worth finding online. So here we have our protagonist, an egotistical painter, bumbling around his estate while the listener is asked to consider where the art the women made is located. What happened to the art she made? To me, it's so visual, it feels like a screenplay more than a short story, more than lyrics or a poem, but I plunked it here in a standard format. The video is somewhat random -- a male poet reading to a captive buffalo etc. Make of that what you will. 1922 “What happened to the art she made?” I walked out of the French doors of the library. I walk past the statue; seen it every day, every day of my life here. In my mind I have a painting of you. Carrying a plate. Holding a glass. It’s 1922 -- nothing’s automatic. Nothing’s precise. All colour comes out of a tube. This was before me. This was before you. I’m happy here in 1922. There is no Radio Shack. I couldn’t be an over-achiever if I tried. I’m happy, it’s 1922 – I don’t know if it was a good year; I’ve got nothing to compare it to. I’m walking on the lawn, grass under my feet. Museums are for men -- we know this. Men need history. We need it. We are men; we need to remind ourselves of this. I don’t feel important enough in the present tense. History reminds me -- I’m a man. I’m important, yes I am. I don’t know where Sweden is or was or will be. It’s 1922 and it’s raining in long dashes. Silvery long, leaping slivers into the centers of oscillating circles, like punctuation leading out of the library, demanding a thrilling conclusion to a book I will never write. It’s 1922 and I’m happy. He’s talking to his dog. He’s out of focus. Out of balance. So far out of whack. He’s telling his dog, “You’re going to have to learn, you’re going to have to learn, boy. Don’t be so pushy. Don’t be so pushy.” He’s talking to his dog, crazy detrimental male programming. He’s generating misunderstandings with his dog. (…he’s a jerk, he's a jerk, he's such a jerk…) “Where’s the art she made?” “It’s on the wall, but we don’t call art. In the cool of the summer kitchen. We put it there until we need it – we don’t call it art. It’s something we use – not every day, but we don’t call it art.” I’m a man and I’m happy, it’s 1922. I eat three times a day to keep my strength up. Saturday night I fling my hairy fist into the wall if my bath water’s cold. I need history to remind me – I’m important. Yes I am. (…he’s a jerk, he's a jerk, he's such a jerk…) He's walking on the lawn towards a milk pail he's going to kick it over he doesn’t care if it’s empty or full. The womenfolk are the scientists and organizers. They sit together in analyzing rooms arriving at conclusions. (…he’s a jerk, he's a jerk, he's such a jerk…) I’m a man and I’m happy.
Views: 103 Jean Smith
"Orange Sunset" by Mecca Normal from "Water Cuts My Hands" (K Records, 1991). Jean Smith vocals. David Lester guitar. Video and paintings by Jean Smith. Orange Sunset This sunset spreads orange across the sky a lid pressing down In Grand Central Station pickpockets look for tourist eyes I am more obvious – white female ambassador of lust He said, "Come with me I know you like to suck and fuck." Orange sunset a lid pressing down
Views: 59 Jean Smith
7" single b/w Blue Sky & Branches (K Records, 2011). http://www.krecs.com/Shop/product_info.php?products_id=4630 Jean Smith - vocals & piano. David Lester - guitar. Film by Jean Smith. Malachi Ritscher (1954-2006) was an American musician, free speech and anti-war activist who for many years made high quality recordings of other musicians (often jazz and experimental) performing live in Chicago. He would give a copy to the performers and sometimes these would become official releases. After the U.S. invaded Iraq, he became a vocal opponent of the war at demonstrations and was twice arrested. Like monks opposing the Vietnam war, his final act of protest culminated in an act of self-immolation. Malachi And camera goes click and you press record and you hand the document to the jazz musician after they perform And you talk and you listen and you protest this war And there is pain and it instigates change And there is frustration that your voice is not heard when you protest the war -- with a sign above your head -- in words And your camera goes click as you press record and the can of gasoline is there for this final document -- your protest against the war and some of us understood you know the history And your camera goes click as you press record and you pour the gasoline and Malachi you light match that ends your life in this final statement and some of us heard your final words and Malachi you light the match that ends your life in this final document -- your protest against this war and some of us understood and some of us heard your final word
Views: 823 Jean Smith
From Mecca Normal's first album (Smarten UP! Records, 1986. Later re-released by K Records) Jean Smith vocals. David Lester guitar. Video by Jean Smith with footage from the Covered Wagon (San Francisco), Rhino Records (LA), a CMJ event in NYC where I had to tell some people to get out if they were going to continue talking, and Chicago's Lounge Ax.
Views: 219 Jean Smith