"Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)
Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)
Friday the 13th is the one time of the year that everyone gets together, renounces their religions, and starts believing entirely in the power of luck for a day. It’s true! Superstition trumps common sense on the 13th, and as someone who once got fired and evicted on one of these days, I’m more of a believer in its power than anyone. Still, I know how ridiculous it sounds to be scared of a day because of bad mojo. That’s why it’s always funny to watch news anchors try to cover Friday the 13th. Is it a holiday? Should they make fun of it? (Or is that just tempting the bad luck gods?)
We take a look at some of the more egregious examples of stations trying to make this non-story work below.
In 2009, Katie Couric did a short segment on Friggatriskaidekaphobia, a phobia of Friday the 13th, which raises the question: Why do we need a name for something everyone has?
Then this year, Jeff Glor repeated Katie’s segment almost verbatim.
Also in 2009 was the amazing CBS exposé on the Friday the 13th Insane Clown Posse show. One of the most unintentionally funny segments in news history.
Other network news anchors took a different tack, asking if this could mean a bad day for the markets. But first: walking under a ladder!
ABC affiliates take a nontraditional route and go out to find some fun stuff to do on this bad luck holiday, because why not?
I’m starting to think the worst part of today is making it through corny TV spots.
Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
"Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987
Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)