Normal History Vol. 540: The Art Of David Lester

Every Saturday, we’ll be posting a new illustration by David Lester. The Mecca Normal guitarist is visually documenting people, places and events from his band’s 35-year run, with text by vocalist Jean Smith.

Normal
Quirky was how she described them. Her brother had other choice words for them. Freak show was popular. He would have preferred that his parents possessed the will to fit in, to be normal. That was not the case. In nearly all ways, Arnie and Yvette demonstrated their abhorrence for all things normal, including the word. Normal. 

Yvette knew how to dress, but when she deviated from his perception of what a mother should be like, he pitched fits and stayed in his room. 

Yvette wore Arnie’s old button-down shirts as painting smocks and she sewed rudimentary trousers with elastic waist out of boldly printed fabric other mothers might consider using for curtains in their rumpus rooms. 

Yvette had been known to nip to the grocery store in her painting clothes, but he wouldn’t be seen in public with her if she was going to wear the curtain pants. 

The girl didn’t understand her brother’s urge to comply with the universal code of normal, but she surely felt the impact of his reaction to divergences from it. He wanted to be part of a normal family that gathered in front of a TV set to have dinner off trays laden with grilled cheese sandwiches on Wonder Bread with tall glasses of Tang. At their house it might be steamed clams dipped in individual dishes of melted butter with a Caesar salad made from a recipe out of Life magazine. Her brother was grossed out by the clams, repulsed by the anchovies and annoyed that he was being denied whatever he suspected was normal. 

Normal. He wanted to be. Normal.

“Normal” from Empathy For The Evil (M’lady’s, 2014) (download):

Normal History Vol. 539: The Art Of David Lester

Every Saturday, we’ll be posting a new illustration by David Lester. The Mecca Normal guitarist is visually documenting people, places and events from his band’s 35-year run, with text by vocalist Jean Smith.

Between Livermore And Tracy
He’s got the white coat, no stethoscope
Cause the movement to die out
Several times over
Walking the walls
A cardiologist, white coat, no stethoscope
Between Livermore and Tracy 

On rotation
Uneventful, one uneventful night
Just one uneventful night 

In the hall, he wouldn’t know left from right
He’s got the white coat, no stethoscope
Between Livermore and Tracy 

In rotation
Just one, just one uneventful night
Just one night of sleep
Between Livermore and Tracy 

Can you hear delirium with that machine
or is it just me?

Between delirium and quick clarity 

Delirium

“Between Livermore And Tracy” from Empathy For The Evil (M’lady’s, 2014) (download):

MP3 At 3PM: Katie Rose

“Beginnings” is the latest from singer/songwriter Katie Rose, who we first profiled three years ago. Rose started her career in 2011 when she was only 13, so she’s already a vet now that she’s hit the legal drinking age. “Beginnings” starts off sounding a lot like a fairytale movie but progresses into something reminiscent of a Broadway musical. Rose’s soft voice matches the initial simplicity of the tune, but as the song unfolds, both come out of their shell. “Beginnings” proves there’s definitely more special music to come from this determined young songwriter.

“Beginnings” (download):

MP3 At 3PM: Zoe Konez

South London singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/producer/promoter Zoe Konez is the epitome of a hands-on musician. Bringing her inspiration wherever she goes, Konez spends a lot of time making music for and with people who have faced challenging circumstances. In addition to her solo work, Konez continues to write and perform with Catbear, her most excellent duo with Sarah Smith. And Konez is also very active in the LGBTQ+ community. “We Got Lost” is her latest solo single, and it’s a folky psychedelic winner. Download and/or stream it below.

“We Got Lost” (download):

Normal History Vol. 538: The Art Of David Lester

Every Saturday, we’ll be posting a new illustration by David Lester. The Mecca Normal guitarist is visually documenting people, places and events from his band’s 35-year run, with text by vocalist Jean Smith.

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, 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 create this void of no communication
no communication
no communication 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

“Wasn’t Said” from Empathy For The Evil (M’lady’s, 2014) (download):