G. P. Skratz, Summer Brenner and Michael Bybel
with Smooth Toad, Arundo and Others

 

 

 

  WHATíS IN THIS STORY


Hey, can you tell me whatís in this story.
Rats dancing in the street.

Chocolate gliders.
Flying TVs.

Cats chasing dinosaurs.
Joe Palooka.

Hereís a pink slip: youíre fired!
Laying on Honolulu.

Yellow bikinis.
Mars attacks slime.

Japanese bras.
Star burst runs up the Sphinx.

Indians war dancing.
Cranberry juices reading books.

Whatís next?
Hand sanitizer bomb.

Rich people.
Superman came from a glass of wine.


--Michael Bybel,
Oakland / 01/31/10



 
Whats in the story

audio

Michael Bybel Reading
with Ms Bob Davis
Phil Loarie
G.P. Skratz

 
  STRAWBERRY CREEK
(G. P. Skratz / Michael Bybel)


G
strawberry creek
D
runs beneath our feet
C
runs beneath the street
G
beneath the pavement
C G
the road so cold

temescal creek
runs beneath our feet
runs beneath the street
beneath the pavement
the road so cold

the river styx
runs beneath our walking sticks
beneath the bricks
beneath the pavement
the road so cold

natural gas
runs beneath the as-
phalt morass
beneath the pavement
the road so cold

we think we have it tamed
we donít have it tamed
tho it seems restrained
beneath the pavement
the road so cold

*

one of these days
itís gonna go up in flames
& weíll all sail away
beneath the pavement
the road so cold

& weíll all sail away
beneath the pavement
the road so cold


 
Strawberry Creek

audio

G. P. Skratz: vocals, guitar
Michael Bybel: dumbek


Words & music: G. P. Skratz & Michael Bybel

 
     
  DOORWAYMAN


O ye wealthy of nations,
when I am become DOORWAYMAN,
when I seize the power to invade your mirrors,
then shall ye know me!
& you will be on your knees
amid your shattered glass
pleading for mercy!
O you'll search for yourself reflected
& see only DOORWAYMAN,
decaying image in the mirrors of the mighty,
spitting teeth in your eyes & screaming,
"TOOTH IN THE EYE! TOOTH IN THE EYE!
SELL, SELL, SELL! BUY, BUY, BUY!"

Yes: DOORWAYMAN, forever before you & talking,
nay SCREAMING, nonstop to himself
& disgusting one & all for the glorious will of the people
& the accumulation of useless knowledge!
& maybe a little spare change or a ciggie or two.
A bouquet of poppies will do,
for DOORWAYMAN is not without his gentle side
unlike the powersuited captains
& dominatrixes of fiscal trickery.

O how sorry, sorry, sorry you will be
when you pop open your little vanities
to adjust a hair or two
& see the loathsome face of DOORWAYMAN
spitting teeth in your eyes & screaming,
"TOOTH IN THE EYE! TOOTH IN THE EYE!
SELL, SELL, SELL! BUY, BUY, BUY!"

O how mad you will go,
how haggard you will grow
till you too come to know
& live the ways & life of DOORWAYMAN,
loathsome loser of the light
spitting teeth in the eyes of the night & screaming,
"TOOTH IN THE EYE! TOOTH IN THE EYE!
SELL, SELL, SELL! BUY, BUY, BUY!"

 
Doorway Man

audio

Performed by the Serfs

G. P. Skratz: vocals
Hal Hughes: fiddle
Bob Ernst: vocal, blues harp
Kevin Moore: lead guitar
Andy Dinsmoor: bass
Geoff Pond: trap set

 
 

 
 
 

 
 
 
PANCAKE BEGUINE
(words: Darrell Gray & GPS / music:  GPS)

 
A
i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,
F#m
you watch the northern lights.
A
i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,
    E
you watch the northern lights.
   C#m
pretending is so easy, you
A                E
tell me day from night.
 
some of us escape & some of us escape &
some of us reform--
some of us escape & some of us escape &
some of us reform--
through the pearly gate,
go back to the same old storm.
 
stars fall & reassemble, they fall & reassemble,
they lighten up the dew.
stars fall & reassemble, they fall & reassemble,
they lighten up the dew.
riverruns off the mountain,
runs right into you.
 

i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,

you watch the northern lights.

i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,

you watch the northern lights.

pretending is so easy,

except for when yr right.

 

i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,
you watch the northern lights.
i'll cook the pancakes, i'll cook the pancakes,
you watch the northern lights.
pretendin is so easy,
except for when you're right.


 

Pancake

audio

Performed by Smooth Toad

G. P. Skratz:  vocals, guitar
Hal Hughes:  whistling & percussion
Bob Ernst:  whistling & percussion


Words:  Darrell Gray & G. P. Skratz
Music:  G. P. Skratz
 
     
 

ARUNDO HIGH COO

 

 

full moon

 

forest fire

hanging from a tree

 

*

 

digging dahlias

big as turnips

putting them to bed

monster children

 

*

 

spent time

the skin of it

washed up on shore

 

*

 

tough red chiseled

     seams plunge

toward alluvial chasm

     or is it away?

 

*

 

high coo

low moan

bed springs

 

*

 

giant bronchial fans

fluted in mud

branch and flare

open to the sun

 

*

 

transformation

 

what burns grows wings

 

*

 

jet noise fills

spaces between raindrops

as they tinkle on roof

 

 

*

 

moon over oakland

 

moon over easy

with fries

 

*

 

rain bursts out

like fickle spring

drowning oboe

d'amore and bassoon

 

*

 

turning on hudson:

down the street, between oak trees:

moon gone dark, a ghost.

 

*

 

poems flit like shadows

too quick to catch

bats at night

birds by day

 

--Summer Brenner & G. P. Skratz

 

Hight Coo

audio

Performed by Arundo

Summer Brenner: vocals
G. P. Skratz: vocals & tanpura
Andy Dinsmoor: sitar


Words: Summer Brenner & G. P. Skratz
Music: Andy Dinsmoor

 
     
     
     
 

GOTTA GO

 

C              E

the early worm rides the bird

       Am                F

to the promised land, or so iíve heard

G                           Em

gettin out the door, itís a long hard ride,

     F

& ya ainít got nowhere but the wrong damn side.

 

             C              G

chor:  gotta go, just canít stay--get

                C

       outa the way

 

you can dream a lot of sinnin, windowshoppin w/yrself,

butcha ainít really sinnin till ya do it w/someone else

capín wants action by the end of the day

i ainít got started, but iím a-plottin my escape.

 

nothin is forever, but it all comes back

beaten & broken by the railroad track

cd be better, cd be worse

cd be ridin in the back of a hearse

 

Gotta Go

audio

Performed by Smooth Toad:
G. P. Skratz: vocals, guitar
Bob Ernst: vocals, percussion
Hal Hughes: fiddle


Words: G. P. Skratz & Andy Dinsmoor
Music: G. P. Skratz & Hal Hughes

 

 


G.P. Skratz (left) and Michael Bybel

 
G.P. Skratz, author of the poetry collection, Fun, the prose-poem collection, The Gates of Disappearance, & ghostwriter of the 3 Stooges bio, Larry, the Stooge in the Middle, has performed with Summer Brenner & Andy Dinsmoor in the poetry & music group, Arundo, & currently plays with Bob Ernst & Hal Hughes in the band, Smooth Toad.  Smooth Toad's latest CD, Drunken Dumbshow, is available on iTunes, Amazon, & wherever you might least expect it...

 

Michael Bybel attends Peralta Elementary School in the under-rated urban paradise of Oakland, CA.
 

ARUNDO collaborators include:

 

Summer Brenner is the author of many books of poetry and fiction, including Dancer and the Dance, and, most recently, the novels, I-5 & My Life in Clothes.

 

Andy Dinsmoor, G. P. Skratzís life-long lead guitarist/sitarist since 1968, also recently played guitar for Wylie Trassís Oaktown Blues Machine & the legendary soul group, The Ballads, &, with Barney Jones, composed the score for Bob Ernstís Catherineís Care.

 

SMOOTH TOAD collaborators include:

 

Darrell Gray (1945-1986) is the storied author of the poetry collections, Something Swims Out, Scattered Brains, Haloes of Debris, & Poltroon Pressís forthcoming collaboration with G. P. Skratz, Everything Else.

 

Hal Hughes was a founding member of the Blue Dolphin, a collectively run venue for improvised music in San Francisco, & has worked in music, dance, & theater with Tumbleweed, Overtone Theater, Subterranean Shakespeare, & Nightletter Theater.

 

Bob Ernst co-founded the Blake Street Hawkeyes, out of which theatrical luminaries such as Whoopi Goldberg emerged, & beat the Guinness World Record for longest solo dramatic performance at over 24 hours.

 

Andy Dinsmoor, ďToad EmeritusĒ since his 2007 departure for Connecticut, nonetheless manages to get his ď2 centsĒ in on recent songs, as in the recent ďGotta Go.Ē

 

Ms Bob Davis is happy in her accompanying role.

 
Phil Loarie seems to be attracted to things that move & glow.