December 2008 - Coughing Up Blood and Whiskey: A Ryan Adams Blog

Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - AOL Sessions 2008

Here is the audio and video all zipped up for all. Cobwebs is great, especially near the end.

Crossed Out Name
Fix It
Q and A


If Ryan Adams had his way, he would have preferred to have his own name off of his recent album 'Cardinology,' and just have it say 'The Cardinals,' the moniker of his current group. He even suggested taking a Sharpie and crossing off 'Ryan Adams' on the spine of the album. "[Lost Highway, our record label] could not get it through their heads," Adams says at the band's Sessions taping, "that we were just the Cardinals, and that it was probably a bad idea to keep my name in front of it. But this has been going on for four albums."

His adamant feeling about is are indicative of the strong band vibe within the Cardinals, which includes pedal steel guitarist Jon Graboff, guitarist Neal Casal, bassist Chris Feinstein and drummer Brad Pemberton. The whole Cardinal clan flocked to our Sessions studio to perform some cuts from 'Cardinology' and to talk about the album, their working relationship and making homemade monster movies while on the road.

The reviews for 'Cardinology' have been very positive.

Ryan: I myself don't look at them. I don't read rock journalism because it's usually rock journalists are like the bottom of the bottom-of-the barrel writers. They're almost scumbags. When we walk away from the records I think all of us, at least for me, I know what we do in the room and that day is more important to me than the perception after.

Do you have any theme in mind when making a record?

Ryan: Well, no. This record is a Cardinals album. What people imagine my job is and what it really is in the band are actually two very different things. My job is to just be creative and that's it. I sit at home [and] I don't do anything different than what I've ever done. In fact, I actually have more time just sort of make these half-assed demos. Then I pass them on to these guys and these guys find things that they like. We'll sort of work on these ideas and the music will come around. And then when it's time for [them] to really be written. Then from a list of 30 or 40 comes a list of 20 and then I sit down and I really finish those words if I can.

And then I leave the studio as much as I can ... so I come up with some jam ideas because I like to spaz out on some bad guitars and I hand it to you guys and we have fun. Plus, I'm like really highly volatile right now because I'm 33 and I'm going to die alone. The woman I love decided to be with someone else, so f--- me.

The last song on the album, 'Stop,' is very moving. Talk about that track.

Ryan: I just kind of squeezed it out at the last minute. It just fell out. It was actually a completely different song. Then this woman I loved is never going to love me back because I screwed it up. One minute I had it and we could have fixed it but I didn't fix it. Anyway, [the song] seems like it could be about addiction issues, but to me it's actually about something entirely different.

Jon: The way it was made was different than any other song on the record. That was really the only song on the record, which Ryan sang, played on the piano and then basically left and said, "See what you guys can do with it." We just kind of thought about it and said, "Let's take this part out, lets add this part here," and it was really interesting. I think we did a really good job on that one.

Even though Ryan's name is front and center on the album cover, there definitely seems to be a band vibe throughout the record.

Ryan: We've been a band since [2005's] 'Cold Roses' but for some reason we just couldn't get anyone to understand that. I really don't want to make a record under "Ryan Adams." Hearing my own name makes me want to take a dagger and like literally shove it so f---ing hard into my stomach until I'm dead that I just can't f---ing stand it. I just want to be in the band that I'm in and I just want to go home and be alone for the rest of my f---ng life and die under a big stack of comics and let roaches eat my f---ing eyes out of my skull because that's how it is. But it's cool.

Jon: That being said ...

Ryan: I've had this [Cardinals] dream for a long time ... and it's shared by four of my best friends. That's really intense and we carry it everyday, we carry it all over the place and it works. It's just going to be good to get past this area where it has to have something to do with me because I'm just f---ing tired of my s--- and I just want to make some tunes.

What do the Cardinals do on the road?

Jon: Panty raids. [laughs] I'm only kidding, of course ... chess.

Ryan: Brad and Jon play chess a lot, Neal sits in his bunk and stares at the top [laughs], and chills out and watches surf movies.

Neal: We're all friends, we hang out and do stuff together. It's not just something where we just work.

You guys also make homemade monster movies? Tell us about them.

Ryan: We just hit up a Super K in the middle of the night [and] get the bus driver to stop. We get a couple of masks and then we're off in the middle of nowhere. We just go out in the parking lot and like come up with a dumb thing. I'll have my camera out and there will be almost no dialogue but there will be a lot of plastic swordplay, and maybe some gunplay if we can find guns.

Chris: Its fun to watch the locals watch it happen.

Ryan, you've been in the media spotlight for the last couple of years. What is your opinion about how the media covers you?

Ryan: Do you have a phone number or an address for the Media? I don't believe in things like the media or the corporation because that doesn't exist. If you broke apart that idea what you would find is thousands of individuals who have broken hearts, who have something wonderful to say, who have stories, and that's what I'm interested in.

Are you thinking about the next album?

Neal: Yeah we're thinking about it alright, there's already new songs for it. We already have a song, like song 1, of the next journey.

Ryan: I always get so excited about making the next ... I'm like an over excited ... you know like people who bake, they make baked goods -- I get so excited just to get up and get in the kitchen. Just the kitchen smells and what we're going to put in it this time. That's my favorite thing. By the time we get to the lyrics, I'm usually pretty worn out because it's usually going to be the same thing: "She's going to stay with him, it's never going to f---ing happen and I'm going to die alone." That's the way it's going to be.

Jon: Under a mountain of comics.

---David Chiu

Download - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - AOL Sessions 2008 - MP3

Download - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - AOL Sessions 2008 - MP4 (video)
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Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - Darkbreaker Live

Have not gotten all the way through just yet but WOW is all I can really say. Whoever did this, thanks! Also, thanks to whoever took the album art picture.

The FLAC files will not be organized and are called Elizabethtown Sessions Live. The MP3's have been renamed Darkbreaker Live and have been organized. Thanks darkrendar!

This info was included with the download:

Ryan Adams - Elizabethtown Sessions Live

This is a compilation of Ryan Adams live performances of songs that he recorded on the unreleased Elizabethtown Sessions in 2005.

01. Cemetery Hill - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals 2006-10-11 soundcheck (Rockerfeller, Oslo, Norway)

02. Clementine - Ryan Adams 2005-08-09 (Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver, BC)

03. Everybody Knows - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals 2007-05-16 (Ulster Performing Arts Center, Kingston, NY)

04. Dreams Of A Working Class Clown - Ryan Adams 2001-04-25 (Sodra Teatren, Stockholm, Sweden)

05. Who Were We - Ryan Adams 2006-02-21 (Colston Hall, Bristol, UK)

06. Lighthouses - Ryan Adams 2006-02-21 (Colston Hall, Bristol, UK)

07. Everything Dies - Ryan Adams 2006-02-24 (Apollo Victoria Theatre, London, UK)

08. Two - Ryan Adams 2006-02-24 (Apollo Victoria Theatre, London, UK)

09. Maps - Ryan Adams 2006-02-18 (The Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool, UK)

10. Don't Get Sentimental On Me - Ryan Adams 2006-02-18 (The Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool, UK)

11. Elizabeth, You Were Born To Play That Part - Ryan Adams 2006-02-21 (Colston Hall, Bristol, UK)

12. Lighthouses - Ryan Adams 2006-09-18 (Bush Hall, London, UK)

13. Lions Of Broadway (aka Steve Miller And Weed) - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals (The Blue Note, Columbia, MO)

All tracks are soundboard sourced and my favourite live versions. Saturday Night is not included, since the song from the Elizabethtown Sessions has nothing to do with the one Ryan played live in 2001/2002. I made simple fade ins and outs and volume adjustments with Audacity. I also edited Maps a little bit to take out one of Ryans mistakes before the first verse. An uncut version of Maps is also included and since I couldn't pick one version of Lighthouses I included two very different ones.

Thanks a lot to the people that recorded and shared this beauties!

Download - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - Darkbreaker Live - MP3
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Ryan Adams Wallpaper

I edited a picture I took on Friday a bit. It works well as a desktop background.
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The Norva 7.22.2006

God, I wish I was at this show. Just look at the set. Something from every album released at the time, plus a good portion of Easy Tiger, which was unreleased at the time, and a Whiskeytown tune.

1. Intro
2. Love Is Hell
3. Let It Ride
4. When the Stars Go Blue
5. What Sin Replaces Love
6. Please Do Not Let Me Go
7. A Kiss Before I Go
8. He's Gone
9. Games
10. Shakedown On 9th Street
11. Rip Off
12. The End
13. Blue Hotel
14. Magnolia Mountain
15. Mining Town (Whiskeytown)
16. I See Monsters
1. Banter/Tuning
2. Breakdown Into the Resolve
3. Two Hearts
4. Everybody Knows
5. Mockingbirdsing
6. This Is It
7. Note to Self: Don't Die
8. Wish You Were Here
9. Two
10. Dear Chicago
11. New York, New York
12. Beautiful Sorta
13. Anybody Wanna Take Me Home
14. Hard Way to Fall
1. Strawberry Wine

Stand-outs in my opinion are "Magnolia Mountain," "I See Monsters," "New York, New York," and "Anybody Wanna Take Me Home." "Magnolia" and "Anybody" just sound great live, I'd love to hear those more. "New York, New York" is full of jams, and the chorus is just funny. "I See Monsters" is so fucking raw and in your face. How does anyone get lucky enough to go to a show like this?

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Ryan Adams - 2008-12-12

I was fortunate enough to see The Cards' open up for Oasis last night in Rosemont (Chicago), IL from the 12th row. They were sounding tight, sadly they are really held back opening up for Oasis. No banter, just straight up tunes for an hour. Ryan's voice sounded great and he seemed to be enjoying himself. He was way into the Off Broadway jam and Natural Ghost was one of the best I have heard. Here are some pictures, nothing special though, the lighting sucked and the camera I was using is not pro grade. Still cool, check em out.
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DJ Reggie - Hip Hopbreaker

How gangster is that album cover? Ryan Adams is a regular street thug these days slangin' rhymes to massive beats and going by DJ Reggie. These are all the YouTube songs that were announced the other day. Hope you guys dig the new jams.

Download - DJ Reggie - Hip Hopbreaker
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The Bijou Theatre 7.25.2006

Hello fellow Halloweenheads. It's only appropriate for my first post on this Ryan Adams shrine to be the first Cardinals (or Ryan Adams) concert I ever attended. The good ol' Bijou Theatre. What a place. About an 800 seat venue, Ryan went on stage late and left pissed off. But  in between, he put on one killer fucking show.


1. Trains
2. Please Do Not Let Me Go
3. The End
4. A Kiss Before I Go
5. Blue Hotel
6. Silver Bullets
7. Let It Ride
8. Shakedown On 9th Street
9. Franklin's Tower
10. Don't Get Sentimental On Me
11. Rip Off
12. Lost Satellite
13. Games
14. Peaceful Valley
15. What Sin Replaces Love
16. A Song for You
17. He's Gone

Standout's are "The End" (more specifically the mid-song rant about Batman and libraries during the second verse), "Blue Hotel," and "What Sin." Personally, I just enjoy this version of "Blue Hotel" ten times more than on the recorded version, but music is always ten times better live. And "What Sin" is just so fucking raw and intense. And how often do you get to see him cover the Dead AND Gram Parsons in one show? But overall, the entire show kicked ass. He has a good "fuck Lost Highway" moment at the end, and little Ms. Popper awkwardly apologized (I miss her a lot). Anyways, through all the outbursts and awkward moments, I feel very fortunate to have attended this show. I got to see a very rare form of the Cardinals.

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Infinity Blues, Signed!

Man did Christmas come early this year! Ryan Adam's new book, Infinity Blues, arrived on my doorstep today. Just in time as the weather turns briskly cold and white flakes start to dance their way towards the concrete-like ground, I now have every reason to stay inside and curl up to this gem of a book. As if having 286 pages of Ryan's forever captivating mind in my hand wasn't enough, his authentic signature signed in black ink graces the cover page. Consistent with the mystery of the greatest singer-songwriter since Neil Young, there is a line with a circle dangling from the U, and I suppose only Mr. Adams knows the meaning of this, but I thought I would post this in hope of receiving some interpretations. Please check back often as this blog has just begun.........................LET IT RIDE
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Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - Ambasador Theater - 2008-08-11

A blog friend recomended this show to me. He was there and his review can be found here. Nasty set list on this bastard and the Cards' sound damn fine.

Check out Indie Limerick while you are at it, the whole blog is great.

Download - Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - Ambasador Theater - 2008-08-11
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