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Every singer knows the old adage “When you pee clear, you sing clear.” (Grammar be damned.) This requires copious water-drinking, which poses a challenge when I’d rather have a delicious cup of coffee with a metric ton of cream and sugar.

(When my mentor Eugene Thomas saw me fix up a cup o’ coffee many years ago, he said, “So you don’t really like the taste of coffee, do you?” I digress.)

Even now in the middle of summer, I’d still choose a cup of hot coffee (even crappy coffee) over water. This isn’t a good thing, especially as I get a little older (perish the thought!) where the ol’ pipes require a little more care than they used to.

So here’s my revelation:
Whenever I go for a massage or some kind of spa visit (which isn’t very often, sadly), they always have big glass pitchers full of cool water with lemon slices or cucumber slices floating in there. Is there anything tastier or more refreshing in the world than that? NO THERE IS NOT. When I’m there, I drink 27655 glasses of this stuff because it’s just so damn tasty. And hey, what do you know: I’m suddenly hydrated. Weird, that.

If I spent more time in spas, this wouldn’t be a problem. But alas, my throngs of adoring fans do not buy me spa treatments I’m cheap and I always have something else going on. (and really: Does it make sense to pay $150 just to drink some water in a bathrobe?)

So I solved this dehydration quandary by doing something insane: I bought a dang lemon. And now I can’t stop drinking water. I don’t know why it’s taken me 30-plus years to figure this out.

You know, I’m really good at figuring out pretty complex problems; but the obvious occasionally escapes me.

Thank you, drive through.

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Holy cow, it’s been a long time since we’ve toured the east coast (January ’07, to be exact). We’ve got one anchor date secured in mid-October in Massachusetts, and a whole bunch o’ states to explore.

Who wants to name some IJG-friendly cities and venues?
Would you consider being on our street team for your city?

Comment here, or drop a line to jill atttttt industrial jazz group ( no spaces) dot die spammer com.

Yay!

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Greetings from sunny California, where IJG has been rocking the house!

We’re having a great time; our shows so far have been very well-attended and received — can’t really ask for much more than that. A woman stopped me as I was leaving El Cid last night and said how much she loved the show, and that she thought we were “like a fusion between anime and jazz” which I don’t entirely understand, but it sounds cool. :-)

My love affair with this band, the music, and its members continues full steam ahead. Durkin’s written a batch of all new tunes, and they’re just killer. What’s especially interesting about the new songs is how the vocals aren’t really highlighted; we’re used almost like instruments. It’s a blast to sing this stuff, and it’s also fun to come up with non-obvious ways to count rests in mixed time signatures. :-P

Last night’s show at El Cid was a really great exercise for me. We didn’t do any “lead vocal tunes” (songs which spotlight the vocals, e.g., Big Ass Truck, The Job Song, You’re In Love With My Mother, or any of the little interludes we do), and the audience (who was a largely new-to-IJG audience) really dug it. Since I come from a musical theater and singer/songwriter background, I’m most comfortable in the “lead singer(s) plus band” format; so figuring out neat ways to connect with the audience sans lyrics is a like satisfying yoga stretch. The feedback, even from IJG fans who are familiar with our “lead singer” tunes, was very positive.

Granted, I don’t ever want the vocal tunes to go away; I think they broaden our reach and widen our audience (plus, they’re fun as hell to sing– let’s be honest). But it’s nice to know that if we don’t have a piano / room in the set, we still rock without them. In a way, it takes some pressure off.

Speaking of the El Cid show: Immediately after the PLOTZ! and IJG sets, a DJ transformed the place into a goth club. I’ve never seen such gothy goths; I even saw a pair of amazing tranny goths which made me feel totally understated and demure in my silver spaceman suit and chrome yellow eyeshadow. Anyway, it was a comical (though pleasant) intersection for an hour as audience tides shifted.

Anyway, tonight is our last show. We’re heading down to San Diego to do our annual show at Dizzy’s with the Mesa College Big Band; PLOTZ! is also on the bill. I am so grateful to Jim Romeo from Mesa for not only being so supportive of IJG, but for being a propelling force in the San Diego jazz scene. It’ll be good to see him and his band tonight.

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My pal Mike was listing out the members of The Beatles in a recent blog post, but he accidentally replaced George Harrison with George Hamilton.

My, how tan you are!

George Hamilton <> George Harrison.

The mental images are hilarious, and I’ve been giggling for about 20 minutes.

That is all. :-)

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I’m sure we can all agree that nothing says “sexy!” like a chick in rubber gloves.

The "artist" at work
It’s true– I really do make the band T-shirts in my garage. They even smell like my laundry detergent, because the paint adheres to the fabric mo’ bettah if they’re washed first. See? Quality control!

Our shirts are guaranteed to be 100% unique and pet-hair free. No animals were harmed during the T-shirt making process, and they were manufactured in a garage that does not process peanuts or soy. Safe for the whole family! We eliminate the middleman and pass the savings on to you! [Insert cliché of your choice here!]

The best news is that if your favorite size/design/color combination is sold out at the show, you can leave a note and cashola with Matt (he’s the hunky schwag handler) and I’ll custom make one for you and pop it in the mail pronto.

See you on the west coast!

–Jill

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