my first eBay vigil, while listening to the Vulgar Boatmen

Here are Robert Ray and Dale Lawrence of the '80s/'90s indie pop band The Vulgar Boatmen. (Here's a helpful essay about the group.) I can't really express how important this band has been for my rock & roll education. I've been thinking about the Boatmen since my song "Front Row at the Fashion Show" appeared on the current Paste Magazine CD Sampler...check my previous blog post..."...Fashion Show" has some obvious Boatmen inspiration, and I even deliberately borrowed a snare drum trick from their song "Mary Jane." Any of you who read this blog 'cause you like Jonathan Rundman music, you should probably surf over to and order yourself the Vulgar Boatmen debut album You and Your Sister as an early Christmas present for yourself. I remember exactly the moment I purchased that album (on cassette), in Marshall, MN, in 1989, when it was a new release. For a kid who grew up listening to Kansas, Styx and Rick Springfield this kind of throbbing and riffy two-chord garage-pop was quite the revelation.

Anyway, tonight I've got the Vulgar Boatmen on shuffle in iTunes, and I'm waiting out the last couple hours of my first ever eBay vigil. About 10 days ago I listed five items for bid on eBay, and three of them are having a bit of action. Two others seem likely to sell, too, although there are no bids yet. Some weird stuff....a pair of barely-worn leather boots, a '80s-vintage CD of Duran Duran's Rio album still shrinkwrapped in its original cardboard longbox, an autoharp I've used on a few albums, a 1978 Roland MP600 electric piano (you can hear it on "Smart Girls"), and a 1918 Gibson tenor banjo (that you can heard on the two most recent Lost And Found albums, as well as the Tennesota album I recorded with Beki Hemingway).

Here's a link to the items I've got up for bid. I know there's only an hour or so left, so blogging about it is kinda useless at this point, but oh well. As a first-time eBay seller, I have some comments:

+ it sure is a big hassle trying to set up an account and figuring out how to post items
+ there's a lot of psychology involved in the eBay universe
+ once people start bidding, it's kind of exciting!
+ I can see how it could get addicting, especially if you have some good luck selling big money items
+ now that I know that someone will win the bidding on the boots, the Duran CD, and the autoharp, now I've gotta figure out the logistics of fulfilling an order, shipping, etc.
+ so far, it's been a lot of busywork, but kinda fun
+ if this banjo sells in the next two hours, THEN I'll be very very pleased.


Bridget Delaney said…
Buying music is temptings, but I'm being pretty good, saving my money to try to get to the Extravaganza. You know, airplane ticket and hotel room. Registration is paid from the scholarship, so I'm cool with that. I just need to send in the money for the ELCA YMnet registration.

Must save money . . . thankfully my family knows this with Christmas coming.
Steve said…
Did I ever tell you I saw the Vulgar Boatman play and in-store show in Indiana in 1991? I picked up one of their cds--I can't remember which one it was (it has since disappeared).
Chase said…
What a coincidence! Was just telling a friend about VB today. Mentioned them following a discussion of The Silos. I got Y&YS first on cassette a lonnnngggg time ago. Had read about it & learned it was produced by Walter Salas-Humara. I wrote Record Collect label & they put me in touch with WSH. He sold me a copy of his solo Lagatija CD and the VB's debut cassette. I later got Please Panic on CD and was able to replace Y&YS with a CD version earlier this year. So great timing when I read your blog 2nite JR.

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