News / Blog

January 24, 2007

no "steak tips" here, ever

In tragedy, there is often revelation. Take this morning for instance.

We have this email list (one of our biggest marketing assets I’m told, which is why I should guard it more carefully). This morning, while attempting to shield our beloved supporters, from the 100+ emails a day that try to post through our list, I left one little box unchecked, and they all received an email, ostensibly from me, that posited a number of seemingly disparate things. First, it said, and I quote, “In its entirety, Straight an extremely guiltygoing to be an architect.” While surely none of us would disagree with that, I did want to let you know that it has been confirmed by your friends in indie-rock Basil, Jim, Jake, Katherine and Steve. I personally had no idea, but can certainly identify with anyone who feels guilty about anything (St. Brendan’s K-8 and Notre Dame Academy 9-12 saw to this).

Second, it purported to give what we’ll call, for the purposes of attempting to avoid the old spam filter, “steak tips,” from me, of all people. That’s funny, because when I had a job, and had to pick out my 401K distributions, I chose by hue and sound, favoring particular brochure color combinations, plus lyrical and onomatopoeiaic tendencies in nomenclature. (“Altria has such a nice ring to it. I’ll bet they’re very nice people.”) You can check with your own people, but I think perhaps it best you don’t follow my “steak tips” in your own investing. And don’t worry about me. It’s probably still not too late for me to find a rich husband, and as long as he has his own house and travels a lot, we’ll get along fine.

All this talk of business and high finance reminds me, we’ve come up with a new marketing plan that we’ll be instituting for the next record (because we’ve run out of money for this one, as I invested all in some “steak tips” that were sent to me personally by a Nigerian prince). Last week, our friend Mike Marrone, who programs the excellent “The Loft” for XM Radio, wrote this unbelievably favorable full page piece about “Live a Little” for “Business Week.” Now, I know you’ll find this hard to believe, but we’re not regular readers of “Business Week,” so I had no idea of its reach. We got hundreds of orders for “Live a Little” from that one review, and they were from the suburbs, which is not traditionally a Pernice stronghold (I’ll spare you one of my geography essays, as I think you’ve heard enough of those). Now we spend a LOT of time trying to figure out how to sell more records (and by a LOT, I mean that every time we release a record Joe and I spend the amount of time it takes to drink one cup of coffee discussing a marketing strategy). Anyway, next record, you won’t find our ads in Harp, No Depression, Paste, Big Takeover, et al. And you won’t hear us on commercial radio (big concession there) or see us on MTV (ditto). Our entire marketing campaign will consist of ads in Business Week, US News & World Report and the Wall Street Journal. Joe will also make appearances on CNBC, MacNeil Lehrer, and my personal favorite, Lou Dobbs. We’re also looking into touring with Jack Welch, former GE Chairman, on his next book tour. I have people staking out his Beacon Hill townhouse now, to see if we can arrange a meeting. We’ve been doing it all wrong, it seems.

Anyway, if you’re still with me (don’t you have ANYTHING to do?) you deserve an update. The problem with telling you about our various projects, is that they become real, whether we gather the energy to pull them off or not. Thus, we have a great lost Chappaquiddick Skyline record, “Ascending/Maintaining,” and of course, the musical. None of these things exist, and probably won’t. Joe is back in Toronto, working on a second novel. No idea if and when it will be released, but in case he doesn’t get a book deal, we have secured the services of some Nova Scotia monks who will hand write ten copies and bind them with the bark of a rare tree that was going to die anyway (we would NEVER kill a tree), and we will sell them on line for $5000 US each, and use that money to invest in “steaks,” and the production below. He’s also still working on the screenplay for “Meat is Murder” you’ve heard about, with our friend Neal Huff. That project moves in fits and starts, because Neal’s like this big TV star, with a role on “The Wire” (best show on television) and doesn’t really have time for us any more. If we can’t get someone to make this movie for us, we will use the above referenced money to build a stage on the Boston Common (or Dorchester Park, depending on the former’s availability) and “stage” the screenplay starring all of the real-life characters on whom the story characters are based. This will call for a little bit of belief suspension, but we think you’ll be able to do it, especially since, if we do this, we will fly all of you in to Boston and put you up at Joe’s parents’ house, or find you an empty bed at a halfway house, so you can attend the opening. We’ll get our company filmmaker “Felony” to come over and TRY to find the video camera which Joe SWEARS in somewhere in the basement. He’ll tape it and we’ll sell it online, with a homemade cover. I’ll let you know about prices later. Joe’s also talking about starting a new record, but he’s not talking to me, as I’m the one with the access to the online banking, and he knows what I’m going to say. You’ll undoubtedly see this play out in the pages of some tabloid, when we start fighting to rival other formidable warring factions like Donald and Rosie.

James is probably touring with more than one band at a time. He’s very prolific. Poor James. He bought a steel guitar on the west coast and spent a lot of time and energy arranging to have it shipped to Boston so he could carry it back to London when he returned there after the Hot Stove show in Boston. It arrived at my house just as his plane was leaving the gate at the Boston airport. He really is a lot like Schleprock (see immigration thumb story on the blog). Is there an English equivalent of Schleprock? Peyton is home, perfecting recipes and guitar flourishes. Jose is about to take Spouse (the band, not the mate) on tour. Patrick has allegedly accepted a full-time job, the details of which are shadowy at best. My own personal projects include getting out the 1099s before Jan. 31 and re-lining the kitchen cabinets. The latter has been on my list for several years now, taking the “albatross” position that once belonged to my unfinished masters thesis for many years. I swear, I’m having a harder time with the cabinets than I had with the thesis. It might be because of the mouse infestation I’m certain has occurred. Charlie doesn’t seem to mind it. I think he likes the company. I have visions of the mice pushing his ball around as he chases it when I’m not home. It’s very Norman Rockwell until he eats one of them. Charlie’s projects are vague, but include sleeping and licking.

We don’t see any touring on the horizon, because we feel that this “if-you-blinked-you-missed-it” touring strategy works well for us. No need to email me – I know you disagree. Talk to me when you own half the company.

We’re trying to blog regularly here, but we’re middle-aged (except James, but he’s English, and their interwebs are on a different current than ours, so he can’t post to our blog) and it feels awkward, like we’re trying too hard. Same with our myspace pages.

If you haven;t already bought everything we’re selling (and I think you probably have), feel free to visit our store on the website. We are grateful for your support. No matter what I say that might seem to the contrary.

JL (and Charlie Ashmont)

Dorchester, MA

Joyce @ 2:24 pm