Listing Ship

Listing Ship


“It might seem appropriate to find Listing Ship's Time to Dream sandwiched between Belle & Sebastian and Sufjan Stevens on some cutesy woodland creature's iPod. The album's layers of instrumentation are so lush with banjoes, violas, and mandolins they could blanket the driest fauna..."


Listing Ship was born in 2002 with songwriters Lyman Chaffee (guitar/banjo), and Heather Lockie (viola/banjo). Their constant music search have taken them through several experimentations, resulting in the current line-up of these seven musicians in 2005:

•Chaffee himself began studying music out of a theory book in college. Formally, he studied mathematics and logic, and got his doctorate in Descriptive Set Theory. He met Lockie at Occidental College in Los Angeles where she was studying French/English literature, and they began learning how to write music together. They formed an art-rock band called Leather Hyman in 1991. Years of club playing began to take a toll on their hearing, so in 2002 they re-formed as Listing Ship, and they have since dedicated themselves to making mellower but equally innovative modern folk music.

•Lockie (viola, vox, banjo) is a primary songwriter for Listing Ship, and has worked on film scores as well as played with various national and local live acts such as Scott Wieland (Stone Temple Pilots), Eels with Strings, Arthur Lee & Love, Macy Grey, Brian Wilson, Sparklehorse, Dave Pajo (Slint), W.A.C.O., Bodies of Water.

•Julie Carpenter (violin, vox), along with Lockie, recently toured with Eels With Strings. They have both backed up Arthur Lee/LOVE, Lydia Lunch, Dave Pajo of Papa M, and have both played in various Los Angeles-based bands such as W.A.C.O. Carpenter has her own project called Stolen Holiday and has played in Texas Mafia, Brian Jonestown Massacre, others.

•Kyle C. Kyle (drums) spent his formative years in the cultural revolution of funk, and he respresents a page in the book of Los Angeles punk rock. He has played with, among others, Venus and Razorblades, the Skulls, The Motels, Wafflebutt, W.A.C.O. Currently he is working with Laurie Pepper on “Straight Life,” a movie on the life of Art Pepper.

•Michael Whitmore (vibraphone, guitars, banjo, percussion) is a veteran of the Los Angeles underground music scene. Composer and multi-instrumentalist, he has a predilection for the sound of the 10-string guitar as it gives a peculiar dark tone to his compositions. He has two solo cd releases to his credit, and he has written scores for cinema, television, and theater. He has also collaborated with numerous artists such as The Negro Problem.

•Laura Steenberge studies music at CalArts currently. She has also studied linguistics at USC (Univ. of Southern Calif). She is a pianist, acoustic bassist, composer. She plays with Daphne the Painted Lady, The Lottery, and does solo work.

•Shawn Lockie sings and sometimes plays keyboards with Listing Ship. She is an actor and dance instructor in Los Angeles. says of "Time to Dream":

"There's something about the saccharine female vocals and general sing-along folk weirdness of Listing Ship's Time To Dream that makes me more than a tad uneasy. They sound so sweet but there's something not quite right lurking just below the surface. It's like the pretty, smiling girl I saw the other day handing out her Church of Scientology booklets downtown. Sure, she looks harmless enough. Then before you know it, it's six months later and you're living at the cult's bucolic agrarian compound staring down a national stand-off with armed FBI and ATF agents, drinking funny-tasting Kool-Aid while wearing brand new Nike Heaven's Gate sneakers. What time is the fucking mothership supposed to be here to pick us up anyway Tom?! Tom?

"Ahem..yes. Where was I? Oh yeah, Listing Ship. Time To Dream contains fourteen hallucinations of traditional folk that stroke your hair with one hand while the other is beating you relentlessly about the face and neck area. It's the way folk music should be. The album is creepy and dark and unsettling, but with the right amount of charm and beauty to make it all go down a little easier.

"Take "Black Eyes Of The Sea" for example, where the sugary vocals of the Lockie sisters deliver lines like "Death comes as a comfort to the one who is suffering / and she's wiggling in its arms" as innocently as if they were singing a child to sleep. Or on the Cash-like "Sarah", when male singer Lyman Chaffee takes the vocal reins and coos, "I held her in my arms and said I loved her/ I kissed her on the lips and said she was mine / she closed her eyes and with her head upon my shoulder / I shot her in the side."

"Time To Dream is obsessed with death imagery, but this eccentric psych-folk ensemble makes death seem almost..inviting. Listing Ship is as deft with a murder ballad as Puerto Muerto is with a sea-shanty, and the two groups share a similarly odd originality. Mike Watt also plays bass on eight songs here, which should be reason enough for you to go out right now and buy this album. Now, who wants to hear more about Dianetics?" - Mark Horan | 2006-04-18 l


Ichabod Crane

Written By: Heather Lockie

Ichabod Crane
lies in his bed
dreaming of pigs
and stuffed Cornish hen
He likes to sing
his psalmody at night

Tasty meals
on the Dutch penninsula
and you'll earn the pigeon pie
if only in your eye
For dear Katrina
has true aim
and all the force
of an ample bosom

Thwarted in love
powdered and vain
horsemen approach
Gunpowder bolts
and comes the plan
to teach the tutor good

Brom Bones will win
'cause you don't deserve
a succulent goose
or apple preserves
You didn't think to
love her as she was

What is love
What is happiness
From above
or is it only an invention
when the night is turning
into dawn
I fall asleep and dream of meat:
smoked sides of ham
Cornish hen
and headless men

Chinese Song

Written By: Lyman Chaffee, Heather Lockie

Way up
in the hills of Arkansas
the sky is blue and grey
the earth is red dirt clay
and I'm not here to stay long

I'm not
from around here as they say
I am bedouin and brown
from a desert town
full of light and sound

The light
from the solitary lamp
makes the insects buzz and fly
vying for a turn
to buzz and fly and burn

lives a cricket in a cage
he is hanging overhead
he wishes he were dead
as much as he can wish

The Temptation of Miss Piggy

Written By: Heather Lockie

You live in a forest; you bicycle down
the hillside at midnight, don't return until dawn.
You carry a lantern; it gurgles and foams
when your tires hit pebbles and pits in the road;
I wish I could find out your name

You passed by my house on the way out of town.
The rainy day stopped; I ran out to the porch
trying to see you 'mid all of the branches,
but all I could catch was your orange Chinese pants
and a circular glimpse of your shoes.

Miner's pinpoint, bobbing, jiggling,
Miner's pinpoint, bob.

When raindrops turn crystal and fly in the air
the sunshine plays tricks with my eyes and your hair.
You're probably not very nice anyway;
there's no way to know you won't make yourself known
and no one can blame you for that.

Then recently happened a near tragedy;
your head felt the force of the branch of a tree.
There wasn't a struggle, there wasn't a fight.
I tugged you and dragged you with all of my might
and set you on top of this hill.

But I didn't see the kerosene spill
on the leaves where your head had lain.
And the men arrived with their buckets and their blades
and put out the fire we made.

Your head in my lap, I wait for your eyes.
We'll finally meet as the light of the fire dies.


MP3s available on: and

2006: "Time to Dream" Full length cd • True Classical CDs (Radioplay: "Chinese Song," "The Temptation of Miss Piggy," "Ichabod Crane," "Baise Ca")

•"Time to Dream" has made CMJ college radio charts top 200 in January/February 2006 and received radioplay on: KBVR (Corvallis, OR) #21; KCUR (Kansas City, MO) #11; KGAR (Lemoore, CA) #14; KNDS (Fargo, ND) #1; WCRD (Muncie, IN) #24; WDCE (Richmond, VA) #6; WDPS (Dayton, OH) #6; WMUC (College Park, MD) #22; WTJU (Charltsvlle, VA) #20.

•KCRW (LA, CA) and KPFK (LA, CA) picked up "Time to Dream" 6 months before its release in May 2005 and gave it a lot of attention. "Morning Becomes Eclectic" and "Weekend Becomes Eclectic" on KCRW continues to spin "Chinese Song" and "Temptation of Miss Piggy".

2002: "Dance Class Revolution" Full length cd • True Classical CDs

2000: "Sunshine and other forms of radiation" Full length cd • True Classical CDs (orig released as Leather Hyman; re-released as Listing Ship in 2005)

1997: "Host Body" (Leather Hyman) Full length cd • Frozen Hound Recordings

Set List

We have many set lists and have performed acoustically in small spaces as well as on large stages with full amplification. Sets can range from 30 minutes to one hour. Songs average 3 to 4 minutes each.

Here is a typical set:
Chinese Song
Hollow Bones
Temptation of Miss Piggy
Destroying France
Ichabod Crane
Crooked Teeth
Open Your Heart
Baise Ca