Monday, August 17, 2015

Rodney in an Original Imperial Dogs Shirt

While it might not have the moneyed cachet of the Seditionaries collectables these days (think PUNK: Chaos to Couture at the Met ferchrissakes), and the fact that you probably can't find one outside of Don Waller and Fred Patterson's storage spaces, you know which shirt ya need. If I had one, I could send a kid to college so rare are these shirts. First in line for the rescreen!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Juncosa Pt. II!

When I was back in LA last year, I was lucky enough to head down the road from my place with Professor Darren to help Sylvia Juncosa celebrate her 50th birthday with 100 Flowers, Jon Wahl solo and then a great Sylvia power trio with Steve Reed. Yes, it was OTT and Sylvia shredded fer sure. Now, I am not sure that this photo would have registered when I originally saw it in ’82-83. Had the first Leaving Trains single even come out yet? Sylvia on KEYBOARDS. Clearly before the Warf Rat Tales comp lp (was Sylvia on those LT tracks? Too lazy to check in the barn. A lot of great comps to check out. After Yes LA and Tooth and Nail, Beach Blvd. came Hell Comes to Your House, The Future Looks Bright, Public Service, ROTR series and the Life is Cheap/Ugly/Beautiful series. Anyway, Before SWA (my new band name!) Sylvia tearing it up somewhere in Southern California.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Claude Bessy Reviews the Desperate Bicycles "The Medium Was Tedium" 45: "Back-up Vocals That Remind One of the Incredible String Band's Simplistic Moments"

"Right now the chaotic world of new single releases is the most exhilarating thing in the business": Kickboy Face at the tail end of 1977 even before the onslaught of great LOCAL singles to follow, and before he decided to sing (in public at least) with a little encouragement from this single no doubt.  One of those recent wowzer moments is when I was told that Ryan "Ryebread Rodeo" Richardson had made all issues of Slash available here for your own scholarly research with a small coin toss to Medecins Sans Frontieres. I sorta inadvertently donated to Ginn's cat rescue mission at the Hollywood Palladium so this was the least I could do. From the actual "Year One" Exene cover (Vol.1 No. 6) December 1977, Claude Bessy referencing the Incredible String Band in a review of the first Desperate Bicycles single was totally unexpected and dead on.  "Yet I like this record alot."

Saturday, June 27, 2015

"Rodney Goes to (Girl)School"/ROTR 1982

Not a bad representative of what you would actually hear. Note Rodney's omnipresent Germs badge. I plan on posting as many of these as I can track down in the barn. I have posted the one English Disco top ten I found in the barn here. Some of these were clearly local hits like the Inflatable Boy Clams and Mr. Epp, and I remember having a discussion in the late 80's with friends outside of LA who couldn't believe they were "hits" in the loosest sense - probably even had a discussion with Arm about that fact at some point on one of his tours. That No Crisis might even have made it into the main KROQ playlist at odd hours. I hadn't listened to it in over 30 years and kinda remembered the piano being more prominent. Outside of the obvious ones (first Bangs 45, Red Kross, Sin 34, CH3, Agent Orange), that Tuff Muffin spoken word got played a lot and you can tell that it was the LA rockabilly moment as well (Stray Cats, Stingrays,and Rockin' Rebels etc.) Out of all of these, the track that has probably gotten the most play in my house the past couple of decades is Fowley's genius "Invasion of the Polaroid People."

Monday, June 22, 2015

American Primitive Spiritualist Video: John Fahey at The Euphoria Tavern, Portland 1976/The Real Bicentennial Style

I am a big fan (and minor scholar of sorts) of spiritualist photography. The quality and color of this footage matches perfectly - like an old double exposed ghost on the split screen. Apparently there are plans to release the whole tape. Who knew when old videotape degrades it turns brown . . .

Sunday, June 14, 2015

"Velvet Underground: Music and Mystique Unveiled" in June 1970/When Mel Brooks met Mel Lyman by Proxy [repost June 2011]

I swear when the Velvets decided to reform and tour Europe in 1990, it was pretty tempting to sell everything I had at the time and go follow them around.  Friends can attest to that aborted plan.  It didn’t happen and I thus still own the June 1970 issue of Circus below.  I have derided Circus in the past, but occasionally, there were some astute pieces.  The cover story on the Airplane was set to go to press almost at the exact time Spencer Dryden was being ejected/retired from the group.  Luckily, the editors found that photo of Joey Covington to slap on the cover as Dryden is still mentioned in the pages as drummer.  That said, Covington’s contribution “Thunk” from the underrated “Bark” is one of the better Nashville Skyline/doo wop/funk hybrids out there and a reet track to boot. Unfortunately, when Dryden left so too did all of his early Zappa-inspired creations ("no man is an island!"). As I have said previously on these pages re early JA up through "Bark": file next to Royal Trux.  And why the fuck is the Howling Hex not hitting these shores this year?  A future post on the greatness of even the concept of  a Victory Chimp audiobook when I hear it.

But I digress. When Clinton Heylin published his Velvets reader All Yesterday's Parties, he did include the great piece below on the Velvets just on the cusp of releasing “Loaded.”  In the end, Chris would have been a better choice to edit the thing and methinks Heylin knows that in his bones.  But as I have said before, it is far better to SEE and read the primary source.  It must have been weird in that spring of 1970 to now have all these folks claiming they were always fans of the Velvets.  Nothing could be further from the truth but just look at the critical consensus gaining speed when you read them all together in All Yesterday's Parties. Where were all these hacks when Cale was around? At least Gleason reprinted his SF Chronicle VU swipe in his Airplane book.  And why is Richman so prissy as to not have his Velvets juvenilia reprinted in Heylin’s book – I may need to scan it myself and post.  I have been listening again to the essential “Fully Loaded Edition” from a few years back and the outtakes are fantastic to hear in better fidelity than the late 1970's boots.   The whole thing just warms you up like that Plastic People of the Universe live tape of all Velvets covers from 1971 (or '72 or is it as late as '73?) which reeks of broken pint bottles sloshing around the floor - the atmosphere is that good and thick as to rival the Live at Max's lp .  This Circus article hit the newsstand and drugstore racks in June 1970, Brigid Polk records the band at Max’s on August 23, 1970 and Lou is out of the band within weeks.  Go figure.

So the back cover of the June 1970 Circus is an ad for the soundtrack to Zabriske Point.  You would get the impression after reading How Bluegrass Music Destroyed My Life that Fahey would at least get a mention in the ad.  This is all the excuse I need to post the Mel Lyman "cult stars" of the film Mark Frechette & Daria Halprin schmoozing and doing the creepy crawl with the irrepressible Dick Cavett – and Mel Brooks and Rex Reed (most action post the 7 minute mark).