Archive for musicians

How to Drain the Life Out of Rock

Posted in film, rock n roll with tags , , on July 12, 2011 by darcyarts

Say you want to put together a rock n roll show and you really want to  drain the life out of every performance. How would you do that?

First, don’t invite Ozzy Osbourne, but more about that later.

Before watching The 25th Anniversary Rock n Roll Hall of Fame Concerts I did not know that this concoction was a Time Life product. Now I understand why the “concert” seemed a nightmare of geezerish reduction.

Problems? The musicians were some of the best of the last century but they were grouped in ways that robbed each person of their uniqueness. The viewer is further punished by the fact that every musician is damned to perform their most insipid or most heavily over-played song. It became a game for me once I realized that was going to be the case.

Wait, Lou Reed will play Sweet Jane. What are they going to do with Patti Smith? Oh, yeah, Bruce Springsteen is there. They will make her play Because the Night. Neither of these are bad songs. The have their charm. The words to Because the Night are ridiculous but when Patti sings she’s all the way there to sell it. If you take the individual artistic integrity away from these songs they suffer.

Bad Editing: The lineup of performers was insane. It made no sense historically, musically or in any other way. The first segment started out with a well-worn Jerry Lee Lewis performing Great Balls of Fire. His feigning of youthful contempt by kicking over the piano bench after his performance did not work. It looked ridiculous. After Jerry Lee threw furniture around, which seemed to take all his strength, of course we move right into Crosby, Stills and Nash performing Woodstock! 

Many performers did not perform their own songs. Musicians of this caliber should be allowed to perform their own songs.

Thank god David Crosby got to do Almost Cut My Hair. David is a golden voiced god in all-too human body. Still the Woodstock/Freak flag emphasis was trite and TimeLife corny.

“Hey, arthritic 60s geezers, ‘member the good ol’ days of rebellion and mayhem? You’ll never have the energy to do that again, but you can buy this shitty trip down memory lane!”

David brought out his favorite Singer, the brilliant, soulful Bonnie Raitt who sang a Jackson Brown song, Love Has No Pride. Hey, Jackson Browne was there! He followed Bonnie and did The Pretender. Not something beautiful and real from his earliest days. No, play something form after he has become cynical and has begun to love that money train.

In keeping up with the California folkish sound, CS&N reassemble and invite James Taylor out. They play Stephen Stills’ Love The One Your With. Then James Taylor leaves. WTF?

Next we switch things up with a photo montage of the early days of the real folk scene in NYC. There is Rambling Jack Elliot,  Dave van Ronk, the young Bob, of course, Jack Kerouac (was he a folk singer?) and that is the perfect segue to . . .

Paul Simon? Okay Paul is from New York. He wrote a lot of wonderful songs was he ever a serious folky? Playing the people music? I don’t think so.

What do they have him play in this spot? You Can Call Me Al! What?

I guess they had to have a sort of bland latin rhythm carry over from Love the One You’re With. Is this Rock n Roll?

Another segment had Stevie Wonder and his band for the night anchor the stage for a couple of guests. It’s really hard to screw up a Stevie Wonder performance. Stevie always sounds great and powerful. How did they throw a wrench in that machine?

They had him perform Michael Jackson’s The Way You Make Me Feel. They invited a very tired and overweight B.B. King out to do a half-baked, sit down version of The Thrill is Gone. Oh, yeah, and made sure Stevie had to endure technical sound problems.

Smokey Robinson made an appearance with Stevie. He did a beautiful performance of  The Tracks of My Tears. Jeff Beck came out and played some hot guitar with Stevie on Superstition. 

By this time I really couldn’t take anymore. We switched to the second disc looking for rock music. and there was Metallica!!!  It was like a minor, studded miracle.  I am a fan of Metallica in an ironic sort of way. They crack me up and loud bass is a really, really good thing. Kirk Hammett is cool.

Metallica play a song then call out New York’s greatest voice. Lou Reed? I’m so excited. Now things will be alright.

“Dion DiMucci!”

What? He sings The Wanderer. I like Dion. He was cool but how can you even conceive this segue. How? Am I on crack? Are the organizers of this shit on crack?

Lou Reed did come out, eventually, and play Sweet Jane with Metallica as his back up band. There will be no delicious Lou Reed leads.Kurt Hammett’s got the floor. Don’t get me wrong I love Kirk Hammett. Lou wasn’t allowed to sizzle and be Lou. The audience was hungry for Lou’s authenticity, his essence. They didn’t get it in the clips I saw. Wham, Bam, Thank you, Mam. Lou was gone.

Last night I loved Metallica. They got to host Ozzy Osbourne who tried his damnedest to get people excited and on their feet, get up fired up!

“Stand up people!”

There was a lovely medley of Iron Man and Paranoid. Hallelujah.

If you love real music, in its natural state, don’t watch the film The 25th Anniversary Rock n Roll Hall of Fame Concerts.

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Barry and Crumb Love Music

Posted in Art, music with tags , , , on September 16, 2008 by darcyarts

Even though the moon has now moved into gung ho let-me at-’em Aries I still feel the dreamy soul syrup of the Pisces full moon. See Sideshow Bob in a nighttime blue? I feel like that. I guess I didn’t lounge in bed lounge enough. I like to let the new day’s reality dawn on me slowly.

Music lovers often find music makers great subject matter for portraits. I have done my share.

Robert Crumb and Lynda Barry have the coolest series of portraits of old timey blues and countryish players.

“R. Crumb’s Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country” is amazing.

Some of the portraits are done in pen and ink. Others are beautiful watercolor paintings like this one:

The colors are so rich and it is so interesting to see Crumb’s painting style.

 

 

The Sheiks and Skip James are the pen and ink. It’s all great. Crumb made these to used as trading cards. The original image would be reduced and given away with reissues from Yazoo. That plan never happened but as you might imagine, these portraits are highly valued.

This is a beautiful inspiring book. Here’s the inside cover with many of the portraits:

Here is my Howlin’ Wolf:

Lynda Barry did her series in the 80s.

They were published in her book “The Good Times are Killing Me.”

 

This is my beat up old copy of Barry’s book. The cover is one of the paintings she was doing at this time adorned with a hand made tin frame.

 

 

 Barry’s Little Willie John.

I love the elaborate design of the tin frame on this one and the painted foilage.

Ma Rainey:

Notice the cut sequins Barry used for de-lineating space.

There are lots of rhine-stones here, too. I love the sparkle.

It’s also an interesting choice to do the eyes and mouths in yellow and red.

And Mr. James Brown:

Dandelion

Posted in dreams, music, socialization, writing with tags , , , , , on August 16, 2008 by darcyarts

Catherine James.

Nice name and one that you would have heard if you had been very interested in the special girls who were close to the creative poeple in the 60s and 70s. Some call them groupies.

I never had any real or personal information about her. It seemed she was talked about in hushed tones. A sort of reverberant regal “ahhhh!” hovered around her. She was the queen. 

A contemporary of Pamela Des Barres, they’ve nowbeen friends for years.

Catherine now has a book about her very strange and wonderful life. In this photo you can plainly see that she is the offspring of great Hollywood beauties but see that sad look in her eyes? Don’t you want to hug her? 

Catherine’s story is insanely compelling. Her mother, though beautiful, was cruel and abusive. She never had a stable home but did have short periods with a loving grandmother. Catherine has a deep spiritual core that kept her together during the crazy childhood she endured. She had beautiful dreams.

By the age of 15, to be true to herself, after having had some deep conversations with Bob Dylan about freedom, she went alone into the world and relied upon the kindness of strangers. And there were plenty of amazing strangers, all of whom took her under their wing for a moment.

You have to read this story. You can read the first page here.

 Note to Jess: I read half way through in one sitting. It’s on it’s way to S.F. as soon as the last page is turned.

Come On In My Kitchen

Posted in Art, dreams, etsy, music, socialization, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 29, 2008 by darcyarts

 

This morning I can breathe! The air is so clear compared to the smoked mushroom soup we’ve had to suck into our lungs for the last month.

It feels fresh and the greens are growing and dude, I’m stoked to be living my life.

I hear the smoke is due to fall back into the valley again but I wont’ think of it now.

The container garden is doing well. We’ve had plates of garden produce to add to meals.

Roma tomatoes, Early Girls (yummy), Basil and one red chili pepper which is very mild. For breakfast I cook eggs and salmon with sliced chilis and basil.

We have these yellow peppers. I do not know what type they are though some are big and fat.  

 

 I feel so unworthy to speak of vegetation after reading chuck b’s whore-ticulture.

Here is just one wonderful page full of delights.

It starts out with pix of items being packed up before redecoration begins and then chuck b gets to the flora.

Everytime I go there I get lost in chuck b’s world. It’s enchanting. Here is his fresh blog My Back 40. Scanning the pix on the first post I found my favorite flowers — Naked Ladies!!!! They smell heavenly. I’m sure in the other world the whole place smells just like Naked Ladies or Amaryllis Belladonna (thanks, chuck).

As a child we lived near Disneyland. What a Psych-Fest it was but even in the midst of all that sparkle and fantasy I would always find my way to the Main Street gift shop. They had candles that had that scent. I would pick them up, breath deep and trance right out.

The first time I encountered the aroma of an Amaryllis Belladona I was ecstatic. There was that beautiful smell after so long.

This picture of Amaryllis is from the blog southernbulbs.com

Here are some pictures from my kitchen:

This is my new lamp fixture. It is beautiful glass in someof my favorite colors. I have fixed it over the light bulb portion of this way-too-country fan/lamp combo. It is a great improvement. It cost $5.50 at my local thrift store.

Succulants sit in one of the kitchen windows. When these plants were outside I had the jade plant in a planter beside the aloe vera. by the end of the warm weather, when I brought them inside, the jade plant had creeped into the aloe vera planter and put down roots. Now the pots are joined.

My Josh Homme painting hangs on the wall above this great fish made by Shasta High’s art club, the Mad Mudders.

Orange things and pink things, purple onions, garlic, yellow peas, chop sticks and packaged condiments from Panda Bowl (Homer drool).

 There are shelves on either side of the window over the kitchen sink. I have pix and knick knacks on them. Musicians and Hindi god figures and candles.

Eno, a shell and a yellow light. Eno’s web presence.

Bob Dylan and Brian Jones, a candle decorated by the fabulous musician Jessica Pratt.

 

I love this picture of Jim Morrison with a juicy watermelon.

Oh . . . do you think it’s suggestive? Naughty boys rule.

It definitely looks like an invitation to sensual pleasure, and summer delights.

There are dried flowers hanging near him in this window.

If you look carefully at the photo with the deserty palm plant (I’m no vulture for horticulture) you can see my candle decorated with an image of John Waters in a beauty salon. The cat is Tipsy.

Let the light in and breathe deep.

Time is an illusion and while we are counting. a world is woven from the things we forget.

I dreamed I had a ticket to go to France. Then I realized I couldn’t make the trip.

I dreamed beautiful musical instruments kept being delivered to our mailbox and Frank would bring them in. One was a handmade, one of a kind Bass for him.

I had a wooden handcarved guitar thing with two drone strings. One heavy and one light. The heavy one was on the outside.

What if your name was Peter Coyote.

An Astrological Aside

Posted in Art, music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on July 15, 2008 by darcyarts

I have always had a strong attraction to Taurus men. I wasn’t able to define this phenomenon in the early days but as I continued to experience it’s power I realized it was undeniable.

Now that I know, I posit the theory that even back in grade school the sweet-tempered boys that attracted my attention were most likely Taurus boys.

It started early. It happened through film, photos as well as in person.

In cinema, I loved Gary Cooper and Jimmy Stewart.

In my elders’ pop music era I loved Perry Como, then Bobby Darin, then Roy Orbison’s beautiful voice.

In Cream, it was all about jack Bruce. Gee, what’s that I see just south of the right side horn of Jack’s SG ?

 In the Buffalo Springfield, it was Richie Furay.

 Here is Richie with his girl, Nancy. She wrecked my teenage dreams. Taurus men are loyal and he’s still with her. At the Springfield’s last concert I gave Richie a satin scarf from the thrift store. He kissed me on the cheek. I was in a daze for hours.

 

In Roxy Music, it was Brian Eno. Brilliant men are hot.

In Queens of the Stone Age it is Josh Homme, a true musician and great voice.

This is a photo by Nick Wilson.

 

 

 

 

 Here, I made him up in the style of Mel Odom.  I painted the eyes to look dreamy and the lips are accentuated in Odom’s style. 

It’s all about the eyes with Mel Odom.

 

 

 

 

 

Mel Odom is a very interesting illustrator. He has done a lot of very sexy images like this red-headed couple. He also makes beautiful collectible dolls with a super old school, Hollywood, gay aesthetic.

 

 I’d finally get my very own Taurus.

 Jack White with his hair combed back?

Naw, but Frank (Santa Barbara, 1979) was definitely all that and a big, big bag of chips. Nice shoulders, too.

Still is.

 

 

Here we are as New Wave hot bitches thinking about “Baby’s on Fire.”

 

On the pro Art front Hi-Fructose Vol VIII out this month has some really interesting things in it.