Sunday, May 17, 2009


Yes, I think I have reached the end of my rope, the nadir of my existence, the last square of toilet paper at the end of the roll. I mean, here I am at the end of yet another head-thumping, blood-vessel busting week and there really ain't anything for me to write or gab or talk or gloat about a tall. Methinks that the financial crunch which has prohibited me from buying up all those records I have on hold at VOLCANIC TONGUE and FORCED EXPOSURE has finally caught up with me, but then again there are only a few items coming out these days that really makes me wanna dig into my cashbox to dish out the hard-earned like I usedta even a good decade or three back. Now don't get me wrong, I have discovered a few seemingly tasteful goodies via CD Baby that I might cash in the Coke bottles for next week, plus (while on the search for free downloads) I came across this hopefully onna-level site where I can obtain current-day jass rarities from the likes of Luther Thomas and more for nine bucks a pop, but for now I think I'll jus hang onto the dough until a deep, driving motivation sets into my inner core. Which could be a longer time than I had imagined but at least I can otherwise use that moolah for a nice Chinese takeout. And I haven't had one of those since February!

Not that I've been living the life of a total hermit (that's hermit, not hermaphrodite as in David L of Bumfunk NSW), since there have been a few enjoyable moments to be found amidst the carnage of this previous week. Por ejemplo I managed to catch a boffo Lupe Velez flick on TCM Thursday night which I believe was the first of the MEXICAN SPITFIRE series, also featuring longtime fave Leon Errol doing a fine dual role not only as his typical RKO self but the fumbling English eccentricity Lord Epping which always seems to put a smile on my face even if it doesn't Kenneth Anger's. Not surprisingly this one came off like a 75-minute extended Leon Errol short coupled with Velez's hot tamale persona and surprisingly smooth comic abilities which work perfectly against the staid WASP-isms of the rest of the cast. This 'un even included some dang good skits (most notably the one where Errol impresonates the Lord who eventually shows up at the dinner causing confusion) that were so memorable they were worked into later Errol shorts, plus the whole film ended with a neat free-for-all food brawl straight outta the Three Stooges that got my mother laughing, and she hates the Stooges even though I caught her snickering at their on-screen hijinx on more than a few occasions! Lemme tell ya, it was a whole lot better for TCM to run this 'un than to "air" REAR WINDOW for the umpteenth time, and I hope the ratings were high enough to warrant 'em showing stuff like this more often and moderne-day crap a whole lot less! But man, do I miss the days when I could pick stuff like this up on my favorite UHF!

Hokay, I'm gonna work in one review (not counting my weekly bootleg writeup which I did a month ago anyway) just so's you don't go away hungry. As Julia Childs used to say, bon appetit!

Francois Tusques avec Benny Wilen-LE NOUVEAU JAZZ CD=R (Disques Mouloudji); Marion Brown-SOLO SAXOPHONE CD-R (Sweet Earth)

Hokay, a twofer-one shot here, both dug up from the recent Bill Shute dropoff of downloaded avant garde rarities he swung my way more outta pity'n anything. And like I said there are many to be had on the web and the good part is they're all hotcha rarities that were so obscure even the New Music Distribution Service didn't know they existed! And most of the time, you can latch onto 'em for the price of a blank disque and nuttin' else! The first's an early session that was co-led by French multi-instrumentalist Francois Tusques. You may have his not-quite-as-obscure rarity INTERCOMMUNAL MUSIC on Shandar, and if not I think it can be easily enough downloaded off of rapidshare or at least some jazz blog if you search hard enough. It's a peach, not only because its got sidemen like Alan Silva and Sunny Murray but because Tusques, besides playing his standard piano, also takes violin bow to both a saw and an electric guitar resulting in even more free-form mayhem! Nothing quite, er, Pageian on this album which Tusques co-leads with tenor saxophonist Benny Wilen, but it's still a fine late-sixties sesh performed with typical European aplomb and sensitivity in what I would call a hallowed pre-BYG sense. And it sounds so good that you won't believe that it was recorded by white Europeans imitating black Amerigans, obviously doing a smart job as a result.

I've only come to appreciate Marion Brown over the past few years (for some reason he seemed to pale next to the rest of the late-sixties hard-hitters) but my opinion has changed considering how I felt he fit in with the late-seventies loft jazz scene players as well as the post-AACM all-over-the-mappers rather swimmingly at best. And surprises of surprises, this rare solo sax album (recorded at NYC's Environ, then the hub of the even newer thing jazz) shows off Brown's versatility and general taste in doing old classic standbys which still give off that edgy air that people like Roscoe Mitchell and Joseph Jarman used to put into their Great Black Music woodwind spree. Even as backdrop for reading PLASTIC MAN this worked wonders, making me want to dig up up WILDFLOWERS disques to give a listen to Brown's even scrankier reading of "And Then They Danced" which can be found therein.
BOOTLEG OF THE WEEK!: Patti Smith-GOOD FRIDAY LP (Cat and Dog/Dog and Cat)

As far as thirty years of Patti Smith bootleg collecting goes one thing's for sure...these rekkids can get to be pretty chance-y affairs! Take that two-Cee-Dee set from a decade or so a go which was recorded at a '79 CBGB performance where Patti's throat gets so raw and ragged that she can't sing a note worth her own junkie spittle! She's so hoarse that the rest of the group, most notably Lenny Kaye, have to fill up time performing songs like "Spider and the Fly" perhaps making this a better show than had Patti been left to her own late-seventies pretenses! GOOD FRIDAY ain't quite a funtime mess as that one, but still Patti loses her voice early on and seems to struggle with it intermittently which ain't no skin off my nose cuz that night she was sounding like Phyllis Diller in the first place. The sound quality is clear enough for a late-seventies live recording and even with the technical difficulty during "Gloria" on side two it is entertaining probably due to instead of despite the lack of professionalism on EVERYBODY'S (even the people who put this out!) part.
ONE LAST THING YOU BETTER KNOW ABOUT!: Just discovered via the Hound Blog that none other than Miriam Linna of KICKS/Zantees/A-Bones/Nervus Rex/Cramps/BAD SEED/Flamin' Groovies Fan Club (need I go on?) fame has her own very own blog which is called (what else but?) KICKSVILLE 66! As you can see, I have so generously listed amongst these must-reads in the column to your very left not only because of the person in question who has created the thing, but because what's on there so far is perhaps the best novella of 2009 and worthy of some all-important blog award if there was any! Congrats on entering the 21st Century Miriam, and here's hoping that you'll dish out all the goodies regarding your life's work and energies and good deeds on KICKSVILLE 66, or at least the stuff that didn't get mentioned in that interview you did w/me back in '91! Anyway, to celebrate the arrival of this keen new bit of on-line reading, I decided to post the following clip from Amos Poe's underground smash THE FOREIGNER where we find Miriam and her Crampmates tripping the star of the film by the bar at CBGB (while the Erasers lay down a pretty hot number...when are they going to get the (re)issue treatment anyway?) before beating the sissy up in the men's room! Talk about tough chickies, eh? Tell you what, I wouldn't want to tangle with her in a dark alley, nosiree!!!

No comments: