Sir George Martin died. If you are a fan of 20th century music, you know who he was and what he did, and I don’t feel like I have much to add to that – except to say that while I enjoy the music of the Rolling Stones here and there, I’m a Beatles kid, always was, always will be. The man was a hero of mine from when I first started to understand what it takes to make a record.
Andrew Loomis died. He was the drummer for Dead Moon, who you may be familiar with if you occupy a certain part of the hipster spectrum (not a pejorative, just sayin’). I found Dead Moon incomprehensible, and then I moved to New Orleans in 2004. It was an environment completely unlike anything I’d experienced before, and I changed quite a bit while I lived there. The group started to make total sense to me, and I was lucky to see them play (it really feels like a long time ago because I was still shooting bad, blurry, no-flash pictures on film, like this one, from that night) to a rapturous crowd right before they went on hiatus. I met Loomis, and he was nice. If you enjoy music documentaries, I highly recommend Unknown Passage : The Dead Moon Story – all I can say is that the dictionary entry for “D.I.Y.” should have a picture of this band next to it.
So. Anyway. Here’s a photo I hadn’t seen before today. Members of Hawkwind, including Lemmy, with Patti Smith and Alice Cooper.
What’s there to say? There’s nothing to say. “Well, that’s not a surprise”, is something you might catch coming out of your mouth, but that’s not helpful. A singular character, he invented a kind of music, lived how he wanted, and didn’t censor himself.
They’re going to drop like flies now, the really great ones I grew up with. Especially those who burned so brightly – the various fabulous, colorful, undeniable-song-making rock stars who were born in the 1940’s and 50’s, who were worshipped by, well, we’re talking about the first Motörhead lineup, the original trio, so, boys, mostly, born in the 1960s (us).. so, “You have burned so very brightly, Roy Batty”, or the live version of Both Ends Burning by Roxy Music, or whatever. (they fucking drank like fish every night, and they snorted cheap speed, and that’s why they’re dying, and, have you heard No remorse? And, unless Forest Hills, Queens is some sort of diabolical radium superfund site [and it may well be], why are most of the Ramones dead, while most of the much, much older Rolling Stones are still alive?)
But, so, I was a punk rocker. And there were zero other punk rockers in my high school, but there was this kid Corky, a metal fan. We had a hilariously antagonistic relationship at first – built into this budding friendship was the fact that nobody else would have either of us, and nobody else in the whole place cared one bit for aggressive music. We ribbed each other. He had home room one period before me, and would draw elaborate Ozzy and Black Sabbath pieces on his desk, which I would proceed to sit at, erase “Sabbath”, draw “Flag”, repeat, repeat, etc.
I had heard the metal I was allowed to like at that point (seen pictures of British punks with Motörhead shirts), but had not gone so far as to purchase the actual music (like, on vinyl import LPs) yet. We started to trade-lend records to each other (shit, Corky, thanks for not scratching my Minor Threat 7″s, the fucking things are worth thousands of dollars now), me receiving all kinds of fantastic new knowledge, Venom’s Black Metal, Exodus’s Bonded By Blood — and one day, he shows up to school, and presents me with No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith and Ace Of Spades, Bronze Records import albums with the shiny British covers, and says, “Here, I found these in the trash, you can have them.”
Certainly, the studio version of Ace Of Spades is the immortal track, but my jam, in them days, was the live version of The Hammer. I got into metal, and Corky became a punk, and then a skinhead, and then the leader of the Chicago SHARP skins, I kid you not. Years later, Philthy and I had the same storage space in L.A., and he used to drive in there in a goddamn pink Cadillac. I kid you not. Man, rock stars.
I’m not gonna say it, I’m gonna play it. From my old vinyl copy of the Southern Nights album. I’m in Madrid, where he died today. Feels weird.
Allen Toussaint : ” Last Train “
Allen Toussaint : Last Train
Allen Toussaint : ” Southern Nights “
Allen Toussaint : Southern Nights
Today is the anniversary of the Kent State Shootings.
H.R Giger : February 5th, 1940 – May 12th, 2014. I met him once, at his studio in Switzerland. Nice guy, he signed a book for me.
Pete Seeger, May 3, 1919 – January 27, 2014.
” Before Seeger’s confrontation with HUAC, people sometimes regarded his optimism as childish, and unrealistic, as a habit of mind inconsistent with the moral rigor of a serious person. Afterward, he became a figure of undeniable stature. He had stared down jail time. He had stood amid peril for his beliefs. He had typified the principles of all the brave people he had sung about. “
Today is Randy J. ” Biscuit ” Turner’s birthday. Photos by Pat Blashill.
Farewell, Lou Reed.
James L. Yuenger, Swaziland, Southern Africa, May 1976. Happy Father’s Day, everybody.
Gone a year already.
Dead Oak are a superheavy group from Austin TX. They’ve got cool gear for days ( vintage guitars, amplification by Matamp, a mountain of stompboxes, BIG drums – in short, everything good ) and great tunes, but they can’t find a singer. I’ve gone to Texas a couple of times to record them, and you can check out the raw tracks we did here. Think you’ve got what it takes? You can contact the band on their Soundcloud page or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A uniquely hilarious guy, a hugely creative guy, a big-hearted true original, a king of Queens, someone who was not like you or me. I made an album with him once, and I slept on his and Lia’s couch, and he showed me sets for his stop-motion puppet movies, and he knew where to get the best bagels, and I liked him a lot, and everybody else did too. Now there’s his voice, this:
Puny Human : Goddess Of The Metal
Puny Human : Goddess Of The Metal
A thing about Jim is here.