STRANGER: I just wanted to clarify a couple of things that were stated in the article that ran this week ["Die Young Stay Angry," Kathleen Wilson, April 24], things that I had firsthand knowledge about and needed to correct, for the record.
#1: You state that the Murder City Devils were never consulted during the live album's technical production. When the music was mixed by Phil Ek in January 2002, band members were present. Spencer, Coady, Gabe, and Nate went to the session and stayed for various amounts of time. We encouraged the band to attend. When the music was mastered in January 2003, Nate accompanied me to the session at RFI Mastering in Seattle.
#2: You quote Spencer talking about the liner notes statement that the band "blew it." He says that he's bummed that it implies that it's from the band, and that it should have been attributed to someone. It IS from the band, or at least a band member: Nate wrote that.
I personally loved working with the Murder City Devils. Was it always easy? No way. Rewarding? Heck yeah.
Stuart Meyer, A&R, Sub Pop
FROM A GAY
SANDEEP KAUSHIK: I enjoyed your piece in this week's Stranger on the conservative talk stations in Seattle ["War of Words," April 24]. I am a gay conservative reader of your paper and listener of KTTH-AM and am glad you are covering my side of the spectrum.
The only thing I take issue with in your piece is your line on KTTH's Michael Savage: that he is "known for his signature rants against gays and immigrants." As a huge fan of Savage, I disagree on that point. He repeatedly expresses a neutral opinion on sexuality (he does, however, sometimes oppose things that the gay lobby pushes) and, as an immigrant himself, reaffirms that this is a nation built by immigrants. A cornerstone of his show are his rants against illegal immigrants. I think it would have been fairer to include that distinction in your piece. Overall, however, I enjoyed the piece and I'm glad it was written.
Zach Galifinakis, via e-mail
SHERMAN ALEXIE: Shut the fuck up. Suddenly you're down with the working white folks [Reservations, April 17]. God, you're a huge-headed pain in the ass. I can't believe you're writing for The Stranger, you hack. If you're bored with writing, you should go shopping at the Mall of America or something. Your fashion sucks. Or get out and see the world. Go where nobody knows your fancy-dance name. Go where there's no middle-aged white women to titter at with your mean-spirited bullshit speeches. Go sex touring in Thailand and get some much-needed pussy. Just go. And leave the boring Stranger columns to the 22-year-old wannabes. You might be a goddamn Native American, motherfucker, but you're just another whinyass pussyboy mo-fo to me. Ya freak.
Inga M., via e-mail
DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS: Due to a series of big dumb errors, three paragraphs of last week's feature by Sandeep Kaushik entitled "The Outsider" were rendered fairly unreadable (what are we, Seattle Gay News?). Said paragraphs are reprinted below, and we encourage you to head to our website (www.thestranger.com) to read the entire piece in its proper form, because it's definitely worth it.
"Over a series of regular Friday afternoon meetings in the comfortably divey surroundings of Bill's Off Broadway, the Capitol Hill watering hole where he holds weekly independent study seminars for his advanced students, I get al-Madani to tell me the story of his upbringing. He's more interested in assessing the post-9/11 threat to civil liberties posed by John Ashcroft's relentless pursuit of the terrorist boogeymen within, he says, but politely honors my requests.
"'No question, Saudi Arabia is a hellhole,' al-Madani says succinctly. Then he backs up and tells me the story of his family, a story shrouded in mystery.
"Al-Madani's father, Ishmael, now in his 90s, started out poor, but was richly rewarded for aligning himself with the legendary Ibn Saud, who through conquest and consolidation created the state of Saudi Arabia in 1932. The al-Saud family, now numbering over 2,000 descendants, still rules unchecked the desert kingdom. Saudi Arabia has long been a close ally of the American government, in spite of its repressive monarchy and its continuing efforts to fund and promote the spread of radical Islam through the rest of the Muslim world. It's a deal of mutual interests; the U.S. gets access to Saudi oil, and in return the Saudi regime enjoys the protection of American troops.
"For his loyalty, and for helping to build one of the king's palaces, al-Madani's father was granted a vast tract of empty land on the outskirts of what was then the small port city of Jidda. According to family lore, his royal patrons allowed Ishmael to claim everything from where he stood at the city's edge to where he could no longer see a man walking away from him across the desert. Whether the story is literally true or not, as the city expanded over ensuing decades into a bustling commercial center, Ishmael became fabulously wealthy."