Thursday, December 31, 2009

"I'm not afraid to compete. It's just the opposite. Don't you see that? I'm afraid I will compete--that's what scares me. That's why I quit the Theatre Department. Just because I'm so horribly conditioned to accept everybody else's values, and just because I like applause and people to rave about me, doesn't make it right. I'm ashamed of it. I'm sick of it. I'm sick of not having the courage to be an absolute nobody. I'm sick of myself and everybody else that wants to make some kind of a splash."

-excerpt from 'Franny and Zooey' by J.D. Salinger

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster. i'm hoping for a disaster.
everything ends. everything always ends.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Sunday, December 27, 2009

where shall i find you,
you, my grotesque fellows
that i seek everywhere
to make up my band?

-excerpt from "Sub Terra"
by William Carlos Williams, 1917

Thursday, December 24, 2009

all those whispered promises
made under a soft gray winter sky
were broken when the letter arrived

a farewell & a long drive

the fall of a foxhole romance

Monday, December 21, 2009

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

new song

this is a new song. i don't currently have a title. the first stanza and the very last two lines at the bottom were written sometime in late 2007. everything else was written in the last day or two. it used to be called "long black nights" back in '07, but i'm going to change the name. i'll try to record a rough demo of it sometime. aside from the last two lines, the whole song is to be performed a cappella.

oh those long black nights
when you're all alone
after the party dies
you've got no one to phone
and you can't help but feel like
no one thinks you're cool
you were standing in the corner
wearing all the wrong clothes
so no one talked to you

oh those long dull months
when you're at school all day
you hang out with your friends
and act like you're okay
but there's a love-death within you
and it won't go away
and it tears you apart to know
the one you want
doesn't feel the same

oh that small bedroom
where you hide away
all the saddest things
you know you'll never say

this winter is a sinking flagship
and these gray days are quietly drowning

Monday, December 14, 2009

bram stoker vs. oscar wilde

she told me that nite would be unlike any other. and then she set the piano on fire. and this is how it feels to be yr own opening act. jealous on the east end, losing all yr best friends, and walking home on yr own under the falling leaves of autumn treason in 1971. and there's an actor watching you from his hotel window on the eleventh floor.
and she said, "all hearts are secrets. and love is what you make it." or something like that. anyway...
a heavy metal blur and a kiss in the front seat with winter on either side of me. soviet satellites in the sky and i'm so afraid of what love is.
and yr friends, yeah, yr friends who pledge allegiance to nintendo--they whispered last nite that you've been fighting in a war between the shadow of bram stoker and the ghost of oscar wilde. and you're not quite sure which side you're on. and you sent your thieves to destroy the film. and then you sent mon cher bonaparte to kidnap me. and as i escaped in handcuffs with a noose around my neck, i swear i heard yr voice cry out from the streets of st. petersburg. and it said, "all hearts are secrets. and love is what you make it." or something like that. anyway...
i will never give in to those faithless sighs the way i fell prey to yr tiger stripes.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

the plan

get a bland government job. rent a small apartment. make music no one will ever hear. die in 60 to 70 years.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Saturday, December 5, 2009

little losses
you have
a place
you always
you always
how many
more days?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

this nite is a guillotine

i don't want to spend another nite alone
but no one's picking up their cell phones
i guess i'm going to spend the nite at home
this nite is a guillotine

i don't want spend another nite alone
it seems like everyone in town is hanging out except for me
does anyone else out there feel this lonely?
this nite is a guillotine

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

december 11th mountair show

i'm definitely debuting new songs. i'm going to be enlisting the help of some extra people on one of them (hopefully). and i'm probably going to be playing guitar. probably.

most of these newer songs (technically older songs that just haven't been played in front of an audience before) are totally done other than the lyrics. i keep editing the lyrics. i can't get them the way i'd like them. so i've either got new songs with lyrics i'm not totally pleased with or old songs that i'm not as enthusiastic about these days. maybe i'll have some burst of inspiration in the course of the next 10 days and come up with some lyrics i really like.

it's going to be weird playing with the other bands that evening. they're all really cool bands, but i have the feeling tujunga is defintely going to sound weird in the context of the rest of the show. whether it's shows or even zac hopkins' cool podcast, i can't help but feel like this entity known as tujunga doesn't really fit in with the things around it. i'm not really sure who tujunga would fit in with. all i know is it feels very foreign next to the other things with whom it's been associated with. i'm not saying i'm going to start conforming to what i imagine the norm to be (like dropping what i'm doing and and switching to a laptop or something). just noting that i feel like a weirdo sometimes.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

american national heartache

Thursday, November 26, 2009

pretty much every single thing in my life right now feels like it's in a transitional phase. this isn't necessarily a bad thing (but it's not great either). it's just how things are. there's a lot of things on my mind these days. most of these things are outside the reach of my control.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Download HERE

More music by my friend David Lenhoff can be found here:

Monday, November 23, 2009

western, western
bedroom noise
black, blank
tujunga all around me
wind stumbles outside
never thought i'd let you get this far from me

Saturday, November 21, 2009

eight miles away.

ilse lyrics

oh these ghosts that haunt me
they appeared the night you left
must i answer them?

they keep calling out your name
i see them on my ceiling
and i'm hiding underneath my bedsheets

i've been falling apart without you
you are the only girl i will ever love
i am going to die alone

oh these ghosts that haunt me
they will always haunt me
they're never going to leave me
and i'm never going to see you again

i'm never going to see you again

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


i'm working on a new tujunga song. i'm going to try to keep the song itself mired in mystery until i unveil it, but here's the gist of how i'm going about the writing process, performance setup, physical release, etc:

it's probably going to be about 10 to 15 minutes in length. i'm really into the who song "a quick one, while he's away" right now and i'd like it to exist in the same universe as that song (mostly in terms of the song structuring, but possibly even the sound a little bit). kind of a medley of parts concerning a series of events that altogether chalk up to one story. basically a miniature rock opera. this project is definitely something of a love song to my teenage admiration and adoration for pete townshend and roger waters. my dad buried that stuff so deep in me. it's always going to be there.
i've had the plotline and some disparate shards of words and melodies and chords slithering around in my head since spring of this year and i think it's time i finally sit myself down and write this thing out. (i initially planned for this be a full album-length work of individual songs back in the spring, but, as of november, it's become very clear to me how daunting that would be. the story is so vague and depressing as it is, no one would want to sit through that for like 40 minutes or whatever. i'll keep it down to a single 10 or 15 minute medley composition.)

right now i'm writing it to be performed with nothing but (electric) guitar and vocals. that's how i plan to do it the first time i showcase it live (that idea really frightens me). maybe the recorded version will feature a band. maybe not. all of that is totally up in the air right now.
(i don't know when i'll do it live either, if at all. i have a tendency to edit songs for a really long time before i'm finally happy with the end product. i'm totally not one of those people who can bash out a song in a day. i wish i was. i'm way too meticulous about every single word and note. everything needs to be perfect before i can show it to anyone.)

this song is probably the closest tujunga will ever get to any sort of 'singer-songwriter' sound. i cringe at terms like that, but i can already kind of see it. anyway...

this song will not be on any tujunga album. it is a stand-alone, one-off piece that exists by itself, having no relation to the art punk stuff that will be on the first album or the big guitar orchestra stuff i'm going to attempt to pull off on the second album. (think of it as tujunga's 'lion king 1 1/2'.)
this poses a problem for me---this one-off status. i thought about just recording it and then posting it for people to download through mediafire or something, but that doesn't work for me. i need it to feel official; real; something you can hold in your hands and stare at. it's also weird for me that it's just a single short work with no relation to anything else. a single 10 to 15 minute song released all by its lonesome. i don't know how to package that or what such a thing would even be called. (i guess it could be considered a single? an EP?) sometimes i wish i could be all bradford cox about music: just record stuff and stick it on the internet. but i can't do that. in my mind, everything is sacred and a part of something else. a song can't just be a song. it needs to be a song on an album of like-minded songs spawned from the same time period and emotions, with physical artwork reflecting that time period and those emotions. i can't separate music from a physical 'album' format. i guess it's partially my way of feeling like it actually exists. even if only 5 people ever hear it/own it. it's ridiculous, i know, but that's the way my mind works.

maybe i can put it out as a split cassette with someone. or burn a bunch of CD-Rs and just have a lot of blank space on them. or put the mp3 on cleverly decorated floppy disks. when it comes to releasing a 10 to 15 minute piece of music in a physical format, the possibilities are at once vast, exhilarating, and frustrating.
(oh, and it will be given away for free, of course. whenever that happens. that could be several months from now.)

sometimes i feel like i spend more time talking about making music than actually making it. oh well.
anyway, in case anyone's interested, stay tuned. maybe you'll hear it within a couple weeks, or a month, or longer.
walk away down the cobblestones
with yr painted-on eyes and yr heart so cold

& you can cut me out of yr life
but no matter where you go
or what you choose to do
my heart will still belong to you

ghosts bleeding out of a stereo
echoes of november

blank demons
ghosts all down yr corridor
i thought you knew

Sunday, November 15, 2009

i would be lying if i said there aren't times when i sincerely regret moving back to L.A. i've got some great people in my life down here, and for them i'm eternally grateful, but this just hasn't turned out how i hoped it would.

i've been trying so hard to make things happen. so hard. i've been pouring myself into all of this. and i've been met with enough apathy and negative experiences to make me question whether it's worth it to continue with any of it. there are a few people in particular who are making it really difficult for me to see why i should put so much of myself into things that they apparently couldn't care less about.

i'm not looking forward to any of this. maybe things will change. maybe not.

most of my L.A. friends don't even live in L.A. anymore. and the majority of the people i still know down here seem like they couldn't really care one way or another that i'm living in the same city as them again. i don't know what i was thinking. maybe i came back here because it felt like the safe thing to do. i always end up retreating sooner or later.
i had an amazing life in olympia. and i lost it. i moved to L.A. and lost touch with a lot of wonderful people and now i feel terrible. i lost it. and it's not something i'm going to get back.
i came back down here with one hope. and i'm not sure it was worth it.

future show plans

in the future (i.e. for the next couple shows) i think i'm going to renovate tujunga into a duo = drums + guitar/vocals. before i transition tujunga into a guitar orchestra in early 2010 and go back to pretending to be mick jagger.

i'm also planning on debuting a lot of new (to other people) songs at the december 11th mountair show. "pisces," "i want to be yr boyfriend," "sing sad surf songs," "the fall of a foxhole romance," etc. i've had these songs kicking around for so long. i have no idea why i haven't performed them before.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

i'm so drained. i'm very happy, but i'm terribly drained.
i feel like my veins have been ripped from my body.

please keep existing.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

'baptized a catholic, always a catholic.'
i don't know why
i put faith in you

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

lyrical subject matter of the second tujunga album:

plattsburgh, st. bonaventure university, coney island avenue, catholic guilt, brooklyn, driving to quebec, rock 'n' roll, giving up, the shipyards of virginia, war, faith, prussia, elizabeth taylor + richard burton, stolen cars, teenage kicks, lillian gish vs. dorothy gish, 1952, 1966, existence.

Monday, November 9, 2009


you are not who i thought you were.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

tujunga did some recording today. all is well in my world right now.

Friday, November 6, 2009

9 years.

i keep saying i'm going to give up, but i can't.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

i've had a crush on you
for far too long

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

lovers for gallows
gallows for lovers

Sunday, November 1, 2009

shows/guitar/i don't know

lately i've been thinking about the future of tujunga. i mean, is it basically going to be this thing where i write songs, play them in my garage for like 7 people maybe every month or two, record them as a little CD-R album (which only gets heard by those same 7 people), then repeat the process? it just sounds kind of sad. i'm not saying i want to be famous. but isn't there a compromise between no one knowing you exist and being U2? there just seems to be a certain futility at tujunga's very core. like it's doomed to be this thing that essentially exists only in my own head. an imaginary rock band that performs in my garage once in a while. i'd like other people to somehow know tujunga (the band) exists, but i don't even know how i'd go about doing that. this sort of brings me to my next thing...

i'm really torn up about dalloway vs. tujunga regarding shows. i'd like it if tujunga wasn't exclusively based out of mountair, but i don't really know how to do that. dalloway always comes first for me. if some venue were to give me the opportunity to book a band with them (which is rare enough as it is), i would much rather tell them "put my name is dalloway on the bill" than try to have tujunga play the show (again, because it's so ridiculously hard to get shows at most venues in this city). if i ever did seek out a venue to get tujunga a show, i just feel like it would be sort of disingenuous to my name is dalloway---like that would be a show wasted on a lesser musical project. it's far more important to me that my name is dalloway gets out there and plays shows than tujunga. but i would still like tujunga to play shows as well now and then. and i don't know how to settle that, other than to simply forfeit and say, "all shows i have the opportunity to book, i'll tell the venue to book my name is dalloway. and tujunga will be based exclusively out of mountair (unless some weird, rare circumstance comes along)." i guess that's what i'm going to do. oh well.

i played my guitar for several hours last nite/this morning (whatever. nights and mornings kind of blur together for me these days. i can't keep track anymore). anyway, it dawned on me just how much i suck at guitar (i've always known that, but it somehow became ultra apparent then). there's all sorts of things i wish i could do with that instrument that i just can't. i've got these sounds in my head and i'm so awful at using my guitar as a vessel for them. lately i've been feeling like those sounds always either end up coming out diluted or entirely wrong.
sometimes i genuinely hate the way i play guitar.

oddly enough, i might try playing guitar at some future tujunga performances. maybe not right away. i'm not sure. i never really imagined tujunga as something that i would ever play an instrument in. i always wanted to leave that up to other people who are better at any given instrument than me.

tujunga is on the bill for the mountair show on dec 11th. i have no idea what i'm doing.

everything changes.
tujunga has always been envisioned as the place in which i could get all my art punk/mick jagger nonsense out of my system. i don't know. we'll see.

i'm just pouring ideas out of my head. nothing is permanent. within a week's time---why, even by tomorrow---i may have already changed my mind about every single thing i've written here.
everything changes.


i won't wait
for this heart to break

Saturday, October 31, 2009

yr quiet eyes so far away
i want to be yr boy

you make my heart shiver

you are the only mystery i want

Thursday, October 29, 2009

internet job application, pt. I


symphony cut out of paper

it was 1918
the war had just ended
i was on a boat
the boat was sinking
i got a call on my cell phone
from the captain
he said, "i jumped ship an hour ago.
i suggest you do the same."

tujunga's first album

here goes my first attempt (out of many, i'm sure) at explaining the debut album by tujunga. let's break it all down and see if this makes sense.

so i've recently begun making music under the name tujunga (august 2009). i have like 11 or 12 songs completed. i'm very fond of all of them, but i've recently decided that i'd like to put them to rest (either for quite a while or altogether; i haven't decided yet) and move on to new songs, new sounds, new music. but i feel like i can't move on to any new direction until i have a semi-definitive, quality recording of each song. (i'm afraid that if i move on to new music now i might end up not wanting to turn back. so i might as well record my current songs now while they're still fresh and in-the-moment and relevant. basically, while they still mean something to me.) once these are recorded i'd like to compile them as an album (i.e. CD-Rs that i'll give to whoever wants one---or that i'll just leave in random places like bus stops and library shelves), maybe with some minor artwork/packaging or something.

i find it difficult to even consider this an "album" since the songs don't have any particular theme or storyline tying them together. it sounds weird, but i can't help it. my father raised me on '70s rock records. i look for themes in albums that don't have them. concept albums are in my bloodstream. like catholic guilt and brooklyn accents.
and so i'm looking at the debut tujunga album less as an "album" and more as kind of just a compilation of the 'early works' of tujunga (the 'early months'?). i know it's weird to think that i only just started this project in late august and ever since mid-october i've already been talking about moving in a "new direction." (and this "new direction" will definitely not be permanent. not at all. i only plan on doing this new sound for one short album and then dropping it and moving on again, either back to the original sound or some third sound entirely. [i'll get into that another time.]) if tujunga keeps changing gears at this rate, who knows what it will become. just wait: by the end of 2010, tujunga will be some sort of hippie collective that does 20-minute noise drone jams.

how this album will be recorded is a whole issue totally unto itself. jarrod has offered to record it with me. that's really, really cool of him and would be so much fun. and ben noted that he and jessica would be willing to help record it, which is unbelievably gracious and amazing of them. so i really have some options to think about.

honestly, getting several people involved in this just makes me feel kind of sad and embarrassed. i don't think my songs are good enough to warrant several people dedicating however much amount of their time to recording them. like i'd just be taking up their time with my dumb songs. i guess i'll mull it over.
i almost might want to hold off and take ben up on his very, very kind offer whenever i go about recording the new, upcoming, yet-to-be-written tujunga material. i feel like i'd be more proud of that stuff; like i wouldn't feel quite as bad about taking up his or jessica's time.
i guess it really just comes down to me not wanting to take up other people's time. the thought of a bunch of people going out of their way to spend their day doing something for me that doesn't benefit them at all just makes me feel really bad. it's something that goes back to my days with my old band (and first real solo musical venture), the library. i just felt bad asking people to play with me. even making the phone call to ask if they'd be interested in playing at a show with me just made me feel so guilty---whether or not they had a good time doing it. i always did it, but i usually felt bad afterward. maybe that's why all my solo music post-library was just me by myself with an acoustic guitar or dulcimer.
(come to think of it, was that really the last time i performed solo music of mine with other people? wow. that was like march through september 2004. that was a long time ago.)

mackenzie and jarrod (and justin, too, one time a while back) have already practiced and performed with me as tujunga on several occasions and i'm really, really grateful. even that just makes me feel bad. i try to thank everyone as much as i can but i don't think i do it enough. and i still feel really guilty. i think i need to try doing something sometime, someday, that would just consist of me singing and playing guitar along to my roland 606 drum machine. guilt-free.
i like to be the guy who helps other people out. it just makes me feel embarrassed and guilty when i have to ask someone else to help me. that's why i usually try not to do it in most situations, whenever i can help it.

part of me is really liking jarrod's initial offer: the idea of buckling down with jarrod sometime toward the end of this year and bashing this album out on GarageBand super quick---ultimate DIY 21st century style. we'll see. i'm not ruling anything out. i have so, so much thinking to do.

i want to believe it would be a very simple recording process, however it's done, whoever wants to be a part of it. every song is super stripped-down and simple. that's the point. they're just cheap art-punk songs. i basically want it to sound exactly how it does live. there will probably a few small multi-vocal overdubs on like three songs, but that's it. voice-guitar-drums. i'll be doing the singing, and i'm probably going to do the guitar myself (that way i have no one to blame but myself), and jarrod is my number-one go-to drummer if he's down to do it (plus he's been playing drums [excellently] on like half the album's songs for quite a while. i can't even imagine trying to explain all of these songs to a brand new drummer at this point. that would be such a hassle).

i'm hoping (if it's at all possible) to record this thing sometime in late november or any time in december. that's the hope, anyhow. somehow the end-of-the-year timeframe just makes sense to me. new year = new tujunga. a brand new decade for a brand new version of the same old band. (but if recording ends up happening in january or something, that's cool. so be it.)

i thought this blog would help me sort these matters out, but i think i'm actually feeling more directionless. i really have a lot to think about.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


this is the tujunga blog.

some overview info:
i may not post here for days or weeks at a time. or i may post here several times in a single day. i really don't know. let's see how this goes.

sometimes there will be 'news'-like posts with updates about shows, recordings, etc. (for tujunga, my name is dalloway, mountair, or anything any friends of mine are a part of). other times (most of the time) there will be a lot of 'inner dialogue'-type posts that may not make a lot of sense to anyone other than me. there might also be some lyrical fragments, photographs, random personal stuff, whatever. basically, this blog will allow me to store all my thoughts and ideas into one consolidated space.
my hope is that, after having done this for a while, tujunga will start to make a lot more sense to me.

this blog is primarily just for myself---to help me figure out my own musical project---but you're welcome to read along, comment on my posts, etc.

a lot of this is going to be very 'in my own head', so don't feel weird if you don't get what i'm talking about. most of what goes on inside my head doesn't make sense---not even to me.

that's why i'm doing this blog.