Sunday, March 19, 2017

I knew it just hadda happen (if only because I have been thinking a whole lot about him these past few weeks--my psychic powers work in strange ways) but r.i.p. Chuck Berry at the r.i.p.e. old age of ninety. Really, what can be said about him that's not already been said by load of snobbish one-dimensional Big City Rock Critics over and over to the point of puke pail time---other'n yeah, he was another one of those fifties rock sickos but he was still fine enough even if his only number one hit was well, about his number one! Not to mention the fact that a whole load of inferior rock 'n roll "fans" had milked his act for eons already including the "duck walk" which was already a hackneyed prop by the time BACK TO THE FUTURE came out. (And considering this time of sorrow I'll refrain from bringing up the infamous "Wee Wee Hours" video not to mention the legendary poop parties where he coaxed young gals into his hotel room and loaded 'em up on Ex-Lax.)  Just keep those condescending raves from the aforementioned Dave Marsh wannabes who can't refrain from bringing up subjects like racism and oppression no matter how hard they try (not to mention that he 'n not Elvis is "The King of Rock 'n Roll" because...well, you know why!) outta your mind and who knows...maybe you too will enjoy his recordings for what they are and shall remain. Mainly some pretty hotcha early rock that has been imitated and ruined by over-emulation since who knows when but then again, so what else is new???
Life has ground to a stultifying still here at BLOG TO COMM headquarters to the point where even a loudmouth blowhard as I really don't know how to start off this typically traumatic post. As usual "real life" (ech!) tends to creep into my usual fun 'n jamz time with an alarming reality, and come to think of it what I'm subjected to when I do get a few hours of free time ain't anything to crow about either!

Thankfully I've discovered that my idea of having a fun time, when I do get some tossed my way that is, ain't anything that's gonna clear out the wallet which does come in handy for the day when Medicaid will not be covering my colostomy bags. Lez just say that at this point in time I'm happy enough just starin' out the bedroom window (with or without music spinnin' on the bedside box) watching the wind blowing the tree limbs (the more violently the better), at least until I get the energy up to pick one of those great comic strip/book reprints I've been getting hold of  via Golden Age Reprints and read/re-read some crucial saga that will undoubtedly be written up in these pages one of these days. Just doing this (usually in my stocking feet or what passes for my pajamas during the night hours when it's harder to see outside but wha' th' 'eh!) is enough to keep me in Suburban Slob heaven for a longer time than  anyone could imagine!

Also managed to squeeze some good sounds into my off-hours of relaxation, some of which are written about on this very post (look below, dumbkopf!). Thanks to Bill Shute, Paul McGarry, P D. Fadensonnen (or "Totensonnen" in this case) and Bob Forward March for these items, and as usual keep those cards and letters (and parcels) comin'! Give these a read, and as Bill Cosby once said if you're not careful you might learn something, something that I'm sure Bill sure wished you wouldn't have learned inna first place but that's his problem!

Totensonnen-WINTER SOLSTICE cassette (Fadensonnen)

Hey kids, cassettes are back in style! And what better way to celebrate this sacred technology which had recorded millions of C+-quality tapes since the sixties than with this release from Fadensonnen now going under the name Totensonnen who's dished out a couple more winners with this 'un. Side one's "Daybreak" is an acoustic effort featuring a rambling guitar and bongos wailing on and on. Kinda reminds me of Malachi's HOLY MUSIC in spots as well as some of those early Robbie Basho efforts that were all the rage about twenny years back. "A Night Gaunt Stares" features a return to electric guitar which wails on nicely like some of those Bruce Anderson affairs which I might have said about earlier Fadensonnen efforts but SO WHAT! Another nice addition to the Fadensonnen canon which I'm sure most of you readers have been following as intently as I have been.

On the same day I received the above wonder I also got these items for my perusal. Yes, its none other than the LIFE IS A RIP OFF guy himself John "Inzane" Olson doing the music thing with or without the aid of Wolf Eyes, and it's an eye-opener whether you have wolf eyes or not. The Cee-Dee-Are features Olson doing the solo thing  mostly using woodwinds while banging a tambourine or some other item with the other hand making a great (though not joyous, thankfully!) noise. On some tracks it sounds as if some infant is wailing along, perhaps in protest but who knows. I know it's difficult for me to describe such records without mentioning various AACM-related items of the late-sixties and seventies (just read a few of my Kendra Steiner Editions writeups!), but man does this one sound like some obscure Anthony Braxton session that came and went with a flash during that man's brief spotlight in the jazz sun back inna seventies!

The disque runs its way off with some Wolf Eyes and other ensemble recordings that are fuller in sound and will help ease your way back to sanity before you pick up the cassette tape and it's MORE solo John Olson horn, percussion and even kid sounds continuing with the first 'un left off! If you've read the man's writing this is more of the same only transcribed to sound, and I'll bet you'll pass these up as well because...for the life of me these were sent gratis and I don't know if they're even available commercially or not!
The Brian Jonestown Massacre-THIRD WORLD PYRAMID CD-r burn (originally on A Recordings)

Hmmmm....nice. Pleasant. Really went down well while reading old fanzines on a snow day such as this (Wednesday in case you care). A whole lot of it has that modern-day (which for me is like post-1981) dinginess to it what with the drone electronic sound and vocals to match (which is one reason I can't bear to spin my old Stereolab and Spaceman 3 albums anymore) but I find the whole shebang rather exhilarating. If you can't take your psychedelic music in its original form, these guys might just have the right prescription for your stuffed mind woes.
The Shamrock-THE MODS ARE ALRIGHT CD-r burn (originally on Smog Veil)

Considerin' that I'm writin' this on St. Paddy's Day I thought I'd drag this particularly Irish-y named band outta the Paul McGarry box. Sheesh, despite their moniker it turns out that the Shamrock are Japanese which really adds to the overall confusion, but I'm not gonna let that stop me from enjoying this collection of early-eighties songs recorded during that big hunkerin' mod revival that was goin' on at the time. However, I will let the fact that this is just more of that pale imitation of mid-sixties accomplishment get in the way, for the Shamrock really don't dig in hard like their inspirations most surely did. Good light listening, and if you were one of those guys who used to ape the whole QUADROPHENIA style 'n swerve you know what to do and I don't have to tell you to do it, right?
Imperial Teen-SEASICK CD-r burn (originally on Polygram)

Sheesh, with a name like Imperial Teen I was thinkin' this was gonna be some seventies-styled hard rock murderanza knock your socks off album. I mean, how far of a step is it from the name Imperial Dogs to Imperial Teen anyway?  Turns out that this Imperial Teen's just one of those upstart (or at least he was back in 1996 when this platter came out) ameraltie types of guy who deals in the twee-er side of underground pop. Some Velvet Underground refs only serve to remind me as to how that band had gone from being the standard bearer for late-sixties/seventies hard-edge gnarl to something that wouldn't be able to stand by itself even if a faint wind should blow by. I'm sure Paul McGarry had a good reason for send a burn of this my way. For the life of me I can't figure out what it is.
The Turtles-ALL THE SINGLES 2 CD-r burn (originally on Manifesto)

Mark Volman, Howard Kaylan and company have been subject to more "greatest hits" collections than George Takei has been subjected to Klingons on Uranus (well, actually his), so what is one more of 'em to subject a newer generation that couldn't care less into listening to these one-time hits by these one-time charttoppers. Well, all of the biggies are here as are the almost made its and the losers, but you be the judge as Mark, Howard and company careen from folk rock to Southern Californian sunshine pop and even some pre-Zappa satire with the sleek production standards that were oh-so-common back inna late sixties. You might have to do a lotta wadin' to make it from the pedestrian to the goodies,but it's a good wade and you'll be introduced to a whole load of new wonders if this is your first time around, or be re-introduced to some old familiars if you've been in on the game for quite awhile.
John Coltrane-SUN SHIP: THE COMPLETE SESSION 2-CD-r burn (originally on Impulse)

Another long-needed release featuring all of the ins and outtakes from one-a-them infamous Coltrane quartet platters that have long reached their infamous status in whatever circles albums like these are considered infamous in. Alternate takes, false starts, Elvin Jones drum tracks, control room to Coltrane patter etc. A nice little peek behind the scenes fly on the wall sorta affair that I get the impression most of you regular readers wouldn't give the time of day to,but I personally find it all to be a whole lot interesting on a variety of levels that I won't bother telling you about because hey, what do you care!
The Waldos-RENT PARTY CD-r burn (originally on Sympathy For The Record Industry)

It's all you would expect outta some post-Heartbreakers elpee complete with the designated cover tunes and a whole lot more. Really good even if it was predictable. At the time of its release I probably would have wooshed over it considering what else there was available at the time (which wasn't much mind you) but for a bunch of guys who were around forever and still cranking it out long after a whole slew of people on this planet could have cared less I sure give 'em ALL THE STARS IN THE WORLD and I do mean it!
Various Artists-BLINKY OUTRAGE FASTPACED SNOOKUMS CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Given there are no notes to this and I have to guess what's on here maybe I should let my imagination go wild and see what fun and clever puns I can come up with. Eh, that idea stinks, though I can tell you that there are some weird avant garde guitar type things that remind me of Derek Bailey, a number of Japanese pop numbers that have such a sparkling approach to 'em you get the idea that most Sadistic Mika Band fans woulda gobbled 'em up, and some radio and tee-vee ads including a couple with Jack Benny battling it out with Frank Nelson and Dennis Day! Heck there are even a couple of song poems here including yet another one dealing with that tragic and fateful day (though I forget the reason why) of November 22, 1963.

But what really got me to pluck this precious petunia outta the garden was the cover snap featuring none other than the comedy team of Tom Howard and George Shelton! These guys did some pretty hot (and a few not) comedies for the old Educational Pictures company in the thirties, and not only that but in the forties both were to be found on that classic radio program IT PAYS TO BE IGNORANT. I don't remember the television revival of this series starring Joe Flynn from the seventies (though I did discover that it ran in our area on Saturday afternoons which is why I missed it!), but it was a fave of none other than Bill Shute who taped the audio portion of it in those pre-VCR days! Hey Bill, if you have any of those lying around howzbout sending a few of 'em my way???

1 comment:

Bill S. said...

Who knows where the cassettes of the audio portion of the 70's Joe Flynn revival of IT PAYS TO BE IGNORANT are today...they probably are lost somewhere I once lived....maybe they can be "found" the way a lost silent film is "found" in someone's basement....another thing I remember taping the audio portion of was Henry Miller's appearance on the Tom Snyder show (!!!) one midnight. However, I DO have a few cdr's of the original Tom Howard/George Shelton radio program from the 40's which I can send you. By the way, I consider the Virtual Thrift Store comp cdr's that DON'T have track listings to be the "purest" of all of them because you have no idea what you are getting while you are getting it. It's like tuning in to some phantom radio station that just appears out of the blue, stays within range for 40-45 minutes, and then it's gone....and you never find out what it was or where it came from....I wish I could take over someone's Sirius Satellite Radio feed and give them 40 minutes of that when they were in the middle of the desert and could not get anything else, and my Virtual Thrift Store collection would be on all 348 Sirius channels, and they'd have Vitaphone Sound Discs, song-poems, crude garage acetates, local radio commercials, basement avant-garde musings, instructional flexi-discs, etc. coming at them, with no escape! However, I would not want to be held responsible for any accidents that caused!