The Mmming Report: Local Music News from Kharlie M

Issue #6 — Monday, December 12, 2016


Spotlight: Elmer and the Ceramic Trees

Robbie Haas

This is the band project of local singer-songwriter Robbie Haas, conceived in the summer of 2012. His songs tend to be deep and reflective, often somber, and his melodies are both mysterious and catchy. Often his harmonies are simple, but occasionally he throws you a curveball. His voice, deeper than most rockers, adds to the mystique. Brilliant production tops it all off. Robbie has already released two full-length albums on Bandcamp: Elmer and the Ceramic Trees (January 2, 2014) and SaturdayNight Satellite (December 16, 2014). Both have been well received. His songs have been featured on WADR 103.5 FM.

Album art

His latest offering, Maps of Outer Space, will release on Bandcamp on Thursday, December 15, 2016. You can view the album trailer on YouTube. This collection is otherworldly, ethereal, with great production and deep lyrics. Some of the songs have strong beats that suggest dancing, while others are flowing and reflective. Songs include “Wilderness” (one of my personal favorites) and “Everyone’s Afraid These Days,” which he has performed live. “View from a Beach” and “To Dream is Just as Good” have been already released online as singles.

A release show is planned at Exclusive Company, 1259 Milton Avenue in Janesville, Wisconsin, on Saturday, December 17 from 7:00 to 8:30 pm. Kat and the Hurricane and The Fur Trade will also play.

Follow Elmer and the Ceramic Trees on Facebook and Twitter.


About the Name

You may be wondering how I picked the name for this newsletter. It actually comes from the lyrics of my song, “Loving 101”:

Every night you sit by the radio,
Listening to the Mmming Report
to find out how King Kharlie spent the day.
I know that don’t make sense,
but neither does the place you went
with the dude I saw you with the other day.

You must think that I’m chopped liver,
For your heart is stone,
and it has grown so cold it makes me shiver!

This song was written in August of 2011, easily predating both this newsletter and my stage name Kharlie M (assumed in October of 2014).


Kharlie’s New Gizmo Makes It All Electric

My soprano ukulele is acoustic-electric, but the concert and baritone ukes are not. On October 18 I ordered a Cherub WCP-60G Acoustic Guitar Pickup from Amazon; it clips onto the instrument and plugs into an amp or recording device. Shipping via Singapore post, it took 43 days to arrive. I tested it and was amazed at the sound quality, which was actually clean and crisp. Price was ridiculously low at $4.44 with free shipping.


When It Rains, It Pours... and Then It Snows

Sunny

Our male cat, Sunny, had to be put to sleep on Friday, December 2. He was our constant companion; I called him my little Mmm guy because he would sometimes “mmm” instead of “meow.” During his last few months, he wasted away despite eating and drinking plenty; during his last few days, he didn’t eat well and appeared to be in much pain. He is dearly missed, even by Stormy, our other cat.

On Wednesday, December 7 (the night of the last open mic) I took a dear friend who needed a ride, to the hospital to be with her mom, who had been taken there by ambulance with chest pains. The mom is still in a bad way. The next day, Thursday, our furnace quit working; fortunately the repair was simple (just a clogged drain pipe) and we paid for only a service call.

You have probably had busy weeks like this, so you can easily understand how hard it has been to keep up with other things. This explains the delay on this newsletter. But it makes sense to skip an extra week in December with the holidays, so I’m just rolling with it. There are 52 weeks in a year which figures to 17 times 3 weeks plus an extra week, so I’ll publish 17 newsletters each year.


December Greetings from Kharlie M

Many people get upset upon hearing “Happy Holidays” at this season, preferring “Merry Christmas” instead. Personally, I love Christmas but find either greeting equally festive. “Merry Christmas” is more specific; “Happy Holidays,” to me, includes New Year’s Day as well, and can even include Thanksgiving. It can also include Hanukkah or Kwanzaa for those who celebrate them. If you don’t observe a holiday at this season, please accept my best wishes for a Dynamic December and a Joyous January!


© 2016 Charles D. Petitt and Ummamum Music. The Mmming Report is published about every three weeks. Please send all correspondence to m@kharlie.com.

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