Up from the Gutter

Ex-punk New York troubadour Jesse Malin brings his latest offering of uplifting, rootsy rock to Miami

Not that comments like this should be taken as pessimism. Rather, the geographic shuffling, the transience, gave Malin a more universal, Zen-like world view focused on treasuring life's passing moments. On the opening track of Glitter in the Gutter, "Don't Let Them Take You Down (It's a Beautiful Day!)," Malin catalogues a few of the world's ills: "Hurricanes, love in vain, Murphy's law, days of war." But still, he urges listeners to follow the song's title.

It's the attitude that keeps him going after so long. He misses the feeling of home, his friends, his cats, but he's a dogged road warrior on an extensive national solo tour. "I'm reading an article about Marley and the Wailers and thinking about the Seventies and how revolutionary that was. You know, people that are pioneers, whether you're a painter, or you run a pet store, or a teacher, or a rock musician. It's about passion, it's about honesty -- that's the new danger," he says, on a roll, the tempo of his speech increasing.

"Everything's kind of been done. It's all easy access, the Internet, living like a cyber-digital human sitting on the couch. I think going out to shows is about being around strangers. I'm not religious -- to go to a rock show and be in the pit with strangers, that's my religion, my ritual, my tribal thing. All the touring, hard living, sleeping in a bunk and eating bad food ... that's just to get up there and hopefully connect with an audience in a way beyond selling some T-shirts."

Put a Starbucks here over  Jesse Malin’s dead body
Joseph Cultice
Put a Starbucks here over Jesse Malin’s dead body


Jesse Malin performs with the Wildbirds and Acute on Tuesday, July 3, at Studio A, 60 NE 11th St, Miami. Doors open at 8:00 p.m. Tickets cost $15, and all ages are welcome. Call 305-358-7625, or visit www.studioamiami.com.

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