Posts Tagged ‘Rodeo for the Sheepish’

Greil Marcus on Rodeo for the Sheepish in Mother Jones!

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

— By Michael Mechanic Mon Oct. 18, 2010 4:00 AM PDT


Excerpt from article:

MJ: What about something totally outside your genre?

GM: I like to think there’s no outside; that I can hear whatever has a claim to make, but if you’d asked me if I were interested in poetry set to music, I’d probably say no. When I heard Ellyn Maybe’s “City Streets” on KALX in Berkeley I had no idea what it was, just that I was transfixed. I called up the DJ, went to Amoeba Records, couldn’t find it, wrote away—and after listening to Maybe’s album Rodeo for the Sheepish (Hen House) half a dozen times, I had no idea who the people behind it were—a poet, and a musician/singer who sounds like many of himself, or for that matter her-himself. But there’s a pathos cut with self-lacerating humor that makes this the most surprising and painful music I’ve come across.

Rodeo for the Sheepish Recommended by Perceval Press!

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

Viggo Mortensen‘s imprint Perceval Press is a small, independent publisher specializing in art, critical writing, and poetry. They were gracious enough to feature Ellyn Maybe’s Hen House release Rodeo for the Sheepish as one of their recommendations! Check out the spotlight and all the great content on their site.


Ellyn’s Poetry Rodeo in the LA Weekly!

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

LA_Times_Hen_House_Studios_Events_IconEllyn Maybe

Thu., September 30, 7:30pm

By Falling James

In her song-poem “There Were Two Girls Who Looked a Lot the Same,” the local poet Ellyn Maybe celebrates her titular subjects with a profusion of succinct details and a steadily rhythmic accumulation of playful phrases, such as “One wore lipstick/One bit her lip” and “The astronomy was tangible” and “They had eyelashes that looked like a hula skirt made of coal.” When Maybe declared, “They wanted a bite from each world,” she was marveling about how the girls appreciated both Gidget movies and Tennessee Williams plays. However, the L.A. wordsmith could have also been describing the sinuous way she moves between the worlds of poetry and music on her new CD, Rodeo for the Sheepish . Maybe’s homages to Picasso and Sylvia Plath are infused with beat-driven, soulful trip-hop moods from her simpatico band, who’ll not only back her tonight at this monthly event but will also whip up cool grooves for adventurous poets in the audience, who’d like to marry their words with this mysterious thing called music.


Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center

681 Venice Blvd.; Venice CA

Sparring with Beatnik Ghosts Goes to NorCal!

Friday, September 3rd, 2010



Thursday, OCT. 14TH – 7 P.M.
540 Broadway – North Beach
Guest Host…Ginger Murray

David Meltzer
Ellyn Maybe & Her Band
Steve Arntson
Jerry Ferraz
Martin Hickle
Richard Loranger
Whitman McGowan
Julie Rogers
Margery Snyder
Chris Vannoy


Friday, OCT. 15th – 7 p.m.
2905 Shattuck – at Ashby
Guest Host…Mark States
Ellyn Maybe & Her Band
J.R. Brady
Tim Donnely
Q. R. Hand
Mike The Poet
H.D. Moe
A. M. Stanley
Plus: Mystery Poets (To Be Announced)sparring_text_hen_house_studios


Saturday, OCT. 16th – 7 p.m.
107 Elm Street – Downtown Santa Cruz
Guest Host…Marc Kockinos
Gary Young, Santa Cruz Poet Laureate
Ellyn Maybe & Her Band
Dennis Holt
Debbie Kirk
Ron Lampi
Erik Lawson
B.C. Petrakos
William Taylor, Jr.
Mel C. Thompson
Plus Mystery Guest

Check out Ellyn’s profile on Last.FM

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Picture 6Watch videos, listen to tunes, comment, add photos! Check her out!

Last.FM Bio: Of Ellyn Maybe’s new poetry/music CD, Rodeo for the Sheepish, the legendary rock critic Greil Marcus wrote, “I heard half of the long, quietly mesmerizing “City Streets” on the radio—what was this? A woman with a poem, with music and a sung chorus not behind her but circling her, and the poem neither exactly recited nor sung, but spoken with such a lilt, in a voice so full of miserabilist pride—at forty, a woman is still getting high-school insults tossed at her (“Hey Mars girl,” a man shouts on the street, “get off the Earth”)—that it’s music in and of itself. There is no bottom to Maybe’s inventiveness, to her adoption of Nirvana’s Oh well whatever never mind as an artistic tool, to a confidence that allows her to toss off a bedrock statement on the American character (“There are people / who know the cuckoo is the state bird / of most states of mind”) in a throwaway voice so that its humor hits you not as a joke but as an echo. There is nothing like this album except for the real life it maps.”

Author of eight books of poetry but even better known for her engagaging personality and performances, Ellyn was convinced by fans from the music world to adapt her spoken-word prowress to a musical format. Their delight at the results can be seen from a few typical reactions:

  • Jackson Browne“I have started to write something about you…several times, and each time I am struck by my inability to describe what you do in terms beautiful enough, original enough to do you justice. … Who has ever been able to say in other words what a song says? Maybe it’s why I like your poems so much; they say what can only be said in exactly the way you say it. The best way of turning someone on to you is to play you for them.”
  • Henry Rollins “Ellyn Maybe is an irresistible force. To…listen to her poetry is to be gently and completely crushed while simultaneously inspired and charmed. The honesty with which she so exquisitely reveals her vulnerabilities, desires and pain is beautiful and rare. … Reading Ellyn’s poems from the page is one thing but hearing…them just the way she meant them to be heard is something else altogether. … The musical accompaniment on the album is not mere background filler but a true collaborative effort between Ellyn and the musicians that really works.


Poetry Rodeo Rides on at Beyond Baroque!

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010


Jackson Browne on Ellyn Maybe and her album Rodeo for the Sheepish

Monday, August 16th, 2010


I have started to write something about you for your site several times, and each time I am struck by my inability to describe what you do in terms beautiful enough, original enough to do you justice. But it’s always been this way. Who has ever been able to say in other words what a song says? Maybe it’s why I like your poems so much, they say what can only be said in exactly the way you say it. The best way of turning someone on to you is to play you for them.

Jackson Browne

Photo Credit: Brandise Danesewich

Poetry, Music & Ellyn!

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

Picture 2Excerpt from Victor D. Infante’s “Life After Slam”

“The recent revival of poets performing with musicians is an interesting trend,” says Brown, who performs with bassist Steve Lanning-Cafaro as The Duende Project. “I know that for The Duende Project, it’s the chance to find ways to present my work differently to an audience; being a musician myself, it gives me a chance to flex different muscles … even though I may not be playing an instrument myself in the duo. Audiences may find a new way into the work through the music; it’s also possible that those who don’t care for poetry just like the music. Whatever the reasons for it.”

For Ellyn Maybe, a Los Angeles poet whose first full-length book was published by Henry Rollins’ 2.13.61 Publishing, and who recently released a poetry CD, “Rodeo for the Sheepish,” with musical accompaniment, the addition of music to a reading is a serious artistic choice.

“I think performing with music can heighten different moods,” says Maybe, “inspire new phrasing and bring out different, more outgoing aspects of oneself. I reference music quite often in my work, so it’s fun to actually work with music. For audiences it can get interactive as sometimes people dance, sing along and shake the fruit shakers at the shows!”

And it’s not just the poets who see artistic value in the collaboration between art forms. It also adds dimensions for the musicians involved.

Ellyn on Lightbulb Mouth Radio Hour!

Thursday, June 24th, 2010
Click on the Image to Listen!

Click on the Image to Listen! Ellyn is listed under June 9th...

Ellyn Maybe on BlogTalkRadio

Friday, May 28th, 2010

Writing  On Demand Hosted By Mende Smith

5/27/10 Show Description: Join Mende as talks to Ellyn Maybe Ellyn Maybe has performed her poetry all over the country, including Bumbershoot,the Poetry Project, the New School, Taos Poetry Circus, South by Southwest, Lollapalooza, Albuquerque Poetry Festival and Seattle Poetry Festival. She has also read in Europe at the Bristol Poetry Festival, on the BBC, and in poetry slams and readings in Munich, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Stuttgart. She opened the MTV Spoken Wurd Tour in Los Angeles. In addition, she has also read at USC, UCLA, CSUN and Cal State Fullerton, among other colleges. Writer’s Digest named her one of ten poets to watch in the new millennium. Her work has been included in many anthologies, including Word Warriors: 35 Women Leaders in the Spoken Word Revolution, Poetry Slam, Another City: Writing From Los Angeles, Poetry Nation, The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry and American Poetry: The Next Generation. She was on the 1998 and 1999 Venice Beach Slam teams. She was seen reading her work in Michael Radford’s (Il Postino) film Dancing at the Blue Iguana

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