One Day in RVA is a series on the fabulous folks who enrich our city on the daily. Greta Brinkman is someone I never get to spend time with and whom I admire deeply.

Photo by Scott Elmquist

Photo by Scott Elmquist

Who are you really?

I am Greta Brinkman. I have earned a living as a potwasher, baker, personal assistant, carpenter, seamstress, haircutter, and bass player, among other things. I used to play bass for Debbie Harry and Moby, but currently I’m only in one band, a Doom Metal outfit called DRUGLORD. I’m currently office manager at a local T-shirt printer, but in a fit of midlife crisis, I just gave notice so that I can spend more time playing music and making, or at least looking at, art! It’s exhilarating!

How was your day in RVA?

Here is my day, a Saturday:
6:45 AM: Boy, would I like to sleep in, but the cat alarm has no snooze button. This is Foofy Mopkins.

She has a really whiny voice so even though she’s just making conversation she always sounds like she’s being boiled alive. Oh well, at least she’s lazy and a terrible hunter; she’s no danger to my two pet rats, Ratalie Portman and Duchess Ratiana. 
I get the rats out of the Winter Palace where they spend their nights and give them a shoulder-ride to the kitchen for the essential start of morning: strong black tea made with an electric kettle.

Ratalie Portman and Duchess Ratiana

Ratalie Portman and Duchess Ratiana

I have 40 minutes to spare, so I think I’ll throw together some gluten-free SKILLET CORNBREAD. I’m not actually ALLERGIC to wheat/gluten, but I am trying to minimize it and I do think I feel better. This is the simplest, most foolproof recipe ever:

Got a cast-iron skillet?
Put 3 or 4 TBSP of BUTTER in there and put it in your oven. Turn the oven on to 425.
Get 2 bowls, a big one and a smaller one. In the big one, mix together:
1 1/2 cups of cornmeal
 1/2 cup rice flour (or quinoa flour, or almond flour, or garbanzo flour)

2 TSP baking powder

1 TSP salt

a little sugar, if you want
In the smaller bowl, whisk together:
2 eggs

1 1/2 cups soymilk OR ricemilk OR coconutmilk OR
Open up the oven, pull the pan out and dump the now melted butter in the smaller bowl too, and then quick-like-a-bunny stir the wet stuff into the dry stuff in the bigger bowl, and pour that whole mess into the still-hot pan (this gives it a nice crust).
Stick the pan BACK in the oven for 30 minutes.

While that’s cooking I make some gluten-free organic rice pasta (this stuff is not half bad, actually) 
add a little pesto, and put a fried egg on it for breakfast.

Put an egg on it.

Put an egg on it.

Honestly, I’m not really much of a foodie; I get intimidated if a dish has more then 3 ingredients. However, learning to cook is an excellent idea and I save probably thousands of dollars a year by making giant pots of food on Sundays and then eating leftovers at work instead of eating out every day!
Yum, breakfast! That bottle on the left? Freeze-dried cow thyroid from New Zealand. Why? Well, if you are over 30, have no health insurance, and your thyroid decides to shit the bed: you go get an ultrasound, and they say, yeah, it looks terrible but it’s not cancer. We can cut it out if you want. That’ll be $1000.00 dollars, please.
So I went on the internet and got this stuff. One pill a day and I feel like a human being again!
Here’s my cupboard.
Full of really expensive organic everything. Why? Because I hate Monsanto with the burning fire of a thousand suns. My hatred of Monsanto eclipses even my hate for PayPal, it’s THAT extreme. I already had cancer once and it was pretty scary, so I decided to do everything I can to avoid GMOs in the hope that maybe it’ll help keep me healthy.

After breakfast, time to clean the house a little and then get down with the laptop to sort out some new music.
It’s part of my job as WRIR the Loud/Metal Director to listen to the new releases and decide what gets to be on the server and what is just too terrible to subject anyone to (VICTORY RECORDS releases, the Lou Reed/ Metallica album, any solo release by that singer from System of a Down). Appreciate the irony of the fact that today is RECORD STORE DAY, a day dedicated to physical copies of vinyl records, and I’m busily downloading and shuffling around hundreds of thousands of bytes of digital material. My entire record collection fits on here:

The new OMD: pretty good. New GHOST: damned catchy but I’ll probably listen to it every day for 6 weeks and then never play it again.
Time to do the CMJ report! This is another part of my job, signing into the website to report what has been added to our server, and what has actually been PLAYED. I’ll get to it in a second, but my eyes are kinda tired and itchy from all the pollen, let me just rest them for a minute….
Oh shit, what happened? It’s 12:45! Ooh, it got nice out! Maybe I’ll see what’s going on at VINYL CONFLICT !

What do you know? There’s a bunch of my friends! There’s a block yard sale going on with all kinds of interesting finds!
And inside VINYL CONFLICT, live in-store by Dorthia Cottrell!

She has such an amazing voice. I envy her being confident enough to get up in front of people and sing with just an acoustic guitar… I would have loved to be a singer but the idea of having no rock band to hide behind freaks me the hell out.
Speaking of rock bands, there’s my band’s album in the racks! That’s a cool feeling!

Back at home, I have a little time to kill before meeting the guys at the space to load out for our BIG ROCK SHOW tonight in Raleigh. Maybe I’ll try this locally made hard cider from BLUE BEE Cider.

Blue Bee Cider

Blue Bee Cider

HOLY BALLS IS THIS DELICIOUS!!! Quite dry, only a little bubbly, you can really taste the apples.
5:25: I’m supposed to be at the space in 5 minutes! Luckily everything in RVA is less than 15 minutes from everything else, so I hop on my little Honda putt-putt and zoom on over there. Tonight’s other band, HORSESKULL, are letting us use some of their gear, so we are able to pack everything into one vehicle… barely. We’re trying to come up with the name and art for our new record and we think it’s going to be called “Enter Venus”.
Of course that means the back cover will have to say “Exit Ur-anus”, hyuk hyuk.
In Raleigh, we bring the rock to a decent crowd, sell some merch and EVEN get paid, and decamp to my old friend Roger Gupton’s place for the night.

In the morning we go to the local Whole Foods breakfast bar to stock up on eats and coffee before heading home.

See you all out at the art museum, Eric Schindler Gallery (, or a house show!


  1. This is so great.

  2. Pingback: Food Punk Blog Features Greta Brinkman and Vinyl Conflict ‹ Oregon Hill

  3. Wow. This is excellent. You are an artist in so many ways…it oozes out of you in this blog. Keep up the good work!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s