Overnight Express: Keep Houston Weird

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If you're up for some mildly entertaining, somewhat informative, hardly revelatory Internet browsing - and really, who isn't? - take a gander at

one Yahoo! columnist's ranking

of the 23 "weirdest" musicians in the en-tar world, y'all. (23? That's all he could come up with?) And give yourself a nice big fat pat on the back, Houston. We've landed three on the list, more than any other city save noted fruitcake capitals L.A. and London, and way more than Dallas or Austin, which both clock in with a glittering goose egg.

One "Robert of the Radish" defines "weirdness" as "behavior that the majority of the population finds foreign, unnatural or strange." You don't say! He continues:

In some cases weirdness can be a bad thing -- For example, if I ran around a shopping mall slapping old ladies across the face while screaming profanities, you could not only classify my behavior as weird, you could also classify it as a crime. On the other hand, if I spent my days collecting cigarette butts from the ground and gluing them together into sculptures that bring attention to the dangers of smoking, I may be considered weird, but in this case, the end result is positive. Finally, weirdness can also be neutral, or "art for ark's sake" [sic]. If I chose to dress up like Liberace, stand on one leg and recite the Iliad I could certainly be considered "weird."

Something tells me he's just described a typical Friday night at the Radish homestead. By Robert's calculations, purported Houstonian Jandek ("His music is completely inaccessible due to it's [sic] atonal nature") is the eighth weirdest musician ever, while Daniel Johnston ("[His] music, although childlike and unpolished, is filled with compelling pop hooks and intricate creativity") and Roky Erickson ("Another musician whose 'weirdness' can be attributed to schizophrenia") barely slide in under the weird wire at Nos. 22 and 23. I know, I know, Johnston and Erickson are more commonly identified with Austin, but before they inflicted their idiosyncracies on the state capital, they had to come by them somewhere. Namely, here.

Too bad Mr. Radish never got wind of the Red Krayola. Or Rusted Shut. Or Linus Pauling Quartet. Or anything Dave Dove's Nameless Sound freaks www.namelesssound.org get their twisted mitts on. Any one of those, not to mention a host of others (comments?) would be enough for him to abandon his beloved cigarette-butt sculptures and settle down in a secluded corner of his Liberace museum/living room for a nice long weep. - Chris Gray

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