Haunting video, called In My Language, documents an autistic girl speaking and moving in an apartment - second half shows a subtitled explanation of what she is doing. Many more interesting videos, and the creator's other work and main site (and more autism resources), can be found here.
Heeeeeere we go again. Time to play the game, now in its 7th installment, known as "Drink to me only with your... mounds of toilet paper?"
Here's how to play: observe the fabric pattern to the left of these words, note the buttons - realize it is someone's shirt. Take a guess: Which WFMU DJ wears this shirt?
Winner gets a bumper sticker! Of course, you can't all get the right answer -- but you can all win! Take this mp3, free, get outta here kid don't bother me. [download] 5.7m
The fine print: As in past rounds (1-6 available here), please do not play if you have already won, or if you have direct personal knowledge of this shirt or its wearer. This fabric pattern could belong to any currently on or off-schedule DJ, as long as he or she has, at some point, had a regular show on WFMU. Here's a hint: it's neither Fabio, Irwin, Diane Kamikaze, Hatch, Joe Belock, nor Trouble. Good luck!
I picked this record up at a collectibles shop at the end of 2005. It caught my eye being transparent red & without much info printed on it. The owner of the store told me it was just a "jukebox" 45. I got the impression he thought it was CCR's "Sweet-Hitchiker", it certainly ain't. Listening to "171" I still wasn't sure what I had at first. It seemed like some driving instruction record meant to be played with film with humour thrown into the mix. Our narrator then starts to sound very distracted. Obviously it would be nice to have the film also. Oh well, let's check out the flip-side.
Well, if the first side was a bit confusing, the second should clarify. This is a soundtrack for an old nudie film! We are treated to hear a guy describe a woman we can't see in various stages of undress, walking up and down the beach doing her laundry. He actually describes her as a washing machine! Ah, pre-internet naughties!
Some good mp3 finds out there this week, but first I have to confess to being utterly captivated by the theme song for Screaming Yellow Zonkers. Here's the truly awesome commercial from 1972 (YouTube or Quicktime), and an mp3 of the song. Found via Phoney Fresh.
7 Black Notes, a great blog for finding for rare European, horror, and b-movie scores is retiring. So now is your last chance to pop over there and pick up some classic and hard to find rare scores like: Lalo Schifrin's Once A Thief; Les Baxter's Master of the World; the mock-horror classic April Fools Day; Fassbinder's weirdest starring role,Kamikaze 1989 with music by Tangerine Dream's Edgar Froese; the unreleased Hammer-style score for Vincent Price's Scream and Scream Again;the terrifically cheesy 80s synth of Young Warriors; or one of the all time great soundtrack oddities - the Adam and Eve rock musical, The Apple!Note: these are all via that pesky RapidShare - which is only free for the first download, then makes you wait an hour or so to do anymore. Just do what I do: bookmark the page, then idly check it later on (I do about four downloads a day from them just by popping back). Or try this.
The "last" Lee Hazelwood album has been out in Europe, and finally hits the U.S. this week. He's still milking "Boots", but it's impossible to be hard on the guy - despite his age and ill health he still has it in him to crank out one more. There are some great video clips on his MySpace page, and you can grab a track from the album here. Oh, and here's a nice interview, filled with those usual Hazlewood moments.
Uwe Nettelbeck, founder and mentor of Faust, died on January 17th. Jean-Hervé
Peron made this statement about the passing of the man who first formed and
inspired Faust and was a key creative force behind the group in their early
"Besides being a sharp-witted but yet charming and loving husband, father
and grandfather, he was an outstanding cook, a writer who always generated deep
emotions and interest, and a genius, selfless music producer. Thank you Uwe for
all you have done for our music. Faust is your work, no doubt ! Your work will
outlast all of us. May your soul rest in peace. My sincere sympathy to his
family Petra, Anouchka, Sandra, Elisha and Elsa."
I think in my mind I've appreciated Faust first and foremost for being this amazing organic, almost singular entity that presented music in a way that had rarely been referenced in the particular time of the group's inception. It took me a while to grow into recognizing individuals like Uwe within the framework (and then realized how responsible he was for the whole concept itself) and for that reason alone Faust succeeded in so many unlistable ways. Uwe himself said that the idea was to never copy anything in the Anglo-Saxon rock scene, and indeed they broke ground that people are still coming to terms with.
A previous Beware of the Blogpost on Faust's lost album V (the label's rejection of which marked Uwe's loss of interest in Faust), and some rarely seen 1971 in-studio video footage from the WDR Krautrock documentary here.(3 mins., 20MB mpeg). And finally, a Melody Maker 1973 interview with Nettelbeck here.
For years now I've enjoyed finding recipe cards and cookbooks (among other things) at second hand stores. In 2000, I found Katie's Kitchen in a used record shop in Seattle's Pike Place Market (accompanied by Listener Jim) and after reading that there was a recipe for a Crab Meat Nut Sandwich that I could serve with Lime-V8s it was easy to plop down the five bucks. Never did put the record to use in the kitchen, but I plan to someday soon.
Big White Cock by Terence Koh. This is the kind of art that makes the people who create culture wars instead of, oh, art, really shoot their wads. Koh's other mixed media sculptures include his semen, blood, piss, and shit. And arty things.
No YouTube Di'n't! Watch videos that have been deleted from YouTube, which raises the question, How crappy does a video have to be to be deleted from YouTube? If you ask me, they look just as crappy as the regular videos. A new one comes up every time you refresh the page, and though so far I haven't seen anything very racy, let's assume it's NSFW.
File under TMI.High definition porn won't leave much to the imagination,
and since porn doesn't leave much to the imagination anyway, we're in a
bit of a bind in fantasyland. Hang in there until the cataracts kick in
and everything looks dreamy again. For now, porn stars are taking
measures to deal with oddly bulging boob jobs, stretch marks, and razor burn. Apparently, cellulite can stay. "[S]ome cellulite is not necessarily a bad thing," said director Robby D., who is obviously never going to be photographed from behind. "It's kind of sexy."
You would think the big news in musical condoms would be the impending debut of 50 Cent's new rubber line, but it's really about musical condoms. Before you get too excited (like some of us did), and have your long-held musical condom dreams crushed (sigh), read the fine print. It's just a CD packaged with some condoms, but it sounds better when the marketing people say it: "The Idom’s Exotica, Chocotasy and Loveberry brands come with CD compilations of chillout, acid jazz and dance music." I say the combination of breakfast cereal flavors and W Hotel music makes me want to hurl.
Three is a magic number. Who can resist a gallery of third nipple piercings? I like the guy lifting up his "Don't Mess with Texas" shirt to
show his pierced third nipple. My rule is don't mess with the guy with
the pierced third nipple -- the t-shirt is redundant. P.S. For that
special formal occasion, and I know they have a lot of them in Texas, Mr. Texas T-Shirt should invest in some nipple covers like Nippits. gallery via nerve
After the jump: Kama Sutra, Palmastura, Me, My, Mo Mutra...Sutra!
I've been working in my spare time on two projects near to my heart: a freeform webcast station for my university and a "Media Ecology" course with a large online database of readings.
As I've moved towards the stage of justifying each project I've begun to see a lot of connections. A true freeform radio station is a kind of educational institution, after all, serving as an evolving commentary upon/critique of commercial radio (in the case of WFMU, with its world-class "faculty" and "facilities," that critical engagement extends pretty much to the entirety of mass culture). The freeform ethos, in other words, is collective cultural criticism in practice. And while my main response to this practice is to encourage it, support it, tell others about it, and finally, to emulate it, there's nothing like a little theory to illuminate the practice.
Thus, I thought it might not be totally out of place to share some of the links I've found to the more important short works of cultural theory which are available on the web. If you like, we can use the comment section to discuss these texts and to suggest others if you know where they can be found. Here, in no particular order, are some of the biggies I've found:
It's H.P. Lovecraft week over at the Monster Brains art blog- a fantastic resource for all your grotesque and monster art cravings. Throughout the week your host Aeron Alfrey will be posting old paperback covers and art inspired by the horror master.
Bad news for anyone who listens to internet radio: the Perform Act was recently harkened back down to earth from legislative purgatory. If you don't recall what this nasty bill (formerly S.2644, now S.256) entails, allow me to get your blood boiling.
Music industry bigwigs like the RIAA somehow convinced California Senator Diane Feinstein (and a few others) that internet and satellite radio stations are acting as music distribution services (read: music download services), and as such, should cough up even more licensing fees, as well as abandon MP3 streaming in favor of a DRM-heavy audio format to thwart the apparent piracy that is happening.
Traditionally, and ahem, rationally, radio stations (even internet stations) have been considered "music performance" outlets. We play music, listeners hear the music. This happens over the air, and now over the internet. Radio stations with internet streams pay two types of "performance royalties" in return: one for playing music over the air, the other for playing music over the internet. Satellite radio has their own set fee schedule for performance royalties.
There is a commonly-held fear in Washington that thousands of evil web pirates have automated programs that can record internet and satellite radio, isolate individual songs by particular artists from those streams and transmissions, and then illegally redistribute those songs all over the internet. Essentially, the RIAA is blaming internet and satellite radio for widespread music piracy on the web, and they've even convinced a few legislators that this is actually happening. Last time I checked, the easiest and fastest way to add a song to my favorite P2P network was by converting the actual CD track to MP3. But what do I know? Senators are clearly experts when it comes to the internet.
If the Perform Act is passed, online radio stations will be forced to abandon the high-quality and universally-accepted streaming MP3 format, and instead adopt a DRM-laden alternative to squelch the possibility of an evil web pirate scenario like the one described above. Paranoid? Extremely. But this is the RIAA we're talking about, after all. They sue dead people for downloading music.
The resurrected Perform Act is the RIAA's thinly veiled attempt to extort money from
radio stations and impose unnecessarily troublesome technological
mandates by criminalizing streaming online and satellite radio. We urge you to write to your senators, and let them know that a vote for the Perform Act is a vote against online and satellite radio, as well as a vote against technological progress.
This psyche / garage B side has been known to crop up on playlists of a few of the better informed collectors of leftfield esoterica in recent years and it was also sampled briefly by Madlib on the last Quasimoto album (damn! beat me to it). It was thrown in by the owner of a used store in New Orleans after I'd purchased a rather large haul of vinyl and was flipping through the 7"s on the counter. I looked at the title and, having never heard of the group and seeing that the label was an independant, decided to give it a go. What a treat.
Apart from the obvious drum breaks the rest of the tune is nuts, electronics, tape delays and effects and then there is the small matter of the timing. At first I thought 'wow' that time signature' is really wild, they must be incredible musicians to follow that' but on repeated listens i'm convinced that this is just a studio jam to fill a B side that the group or studio engineer were having fun with. The track starts out simply enough but suddenly the bass chimes in and the beats go awry and everything is wrongfooted, this happens repeatedly and i'll be damned if I can discern any logical pattern from it. Licks from others songs at completely the wrong tempo get thrown in the mix but the drummer keeps on hammering out his beat. Maybe they just cut the tape up, threw it in the air and glued it back together again. Whatever, it's supremely 'out there' as a result and way more interesting than the flip side. Furthermore to my theory that they could have cared less about it, check the credit under the publisher on the label, instead of having the exact time (as it does on the A side) it just says 'over 4 minutes'.
The Greek Fountains were from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and made a couple of singles and an album to my knowledge. They were popular at the time, shortly after the Beatles spearheaded the 'UK Invasion', and the bass player, Duke Bardwell, went on to tour with Elvis in the early seventies. You'll have to bare with my copy as it isn't in the best shape but i've put it through various de-click/crackle/noise programs to make it more palatable to the ear.
Since it is the cold season, and we are all soon going to die from bird flu, here is a nice piece of music for the occasion, by Nina Hagen (Warning: Clicking that link may damage your web browser and your senses) with Fritzens Dampferband: Hatschi-Waldera (MP3)
This song is another musical gem from the former GDR (aka East Germany), recorded before Nina Hagen moved to the West, played punk music, became world famous, and started talking about UFOs. By the way, Fritzens Dampferband featured Achim Mentzel on guitar, who later went on to become a hyperactive and frequently ridiculed host of a really bad German "folk music" TV show. If you don't know Achim, here is a YouTube video of him in action, singing and jumping around, before being looped and ridiculed by his arch-nemesis Oliver Kalkofe. (Actually, the two are now good friends.)
Heathen Shame: Wayne & Kate of Major Stars, Greg Kelley sicko blowout the No Fun fest (you can get the whole 2DVD compilation of the fest here), as well as the Lightning Bolt DVD, featuring this not-safe-for-epileptics clip done by the Paper Rad gang. Same kids who also did the art for WFMU's last double live CD Tunes On Toxic Terrain, (now outta print).
For just under one hundred years The Apollo Theater has catered, shaped and determined African-American cultural trends. Absurd, yet hardly surprising in the context of American history, is the fact that from 1904 to 1934 the Apollo was a whites-only establishment.1 There are many notable Apollo legends, some true and some apocryphal. Ella Fitzgerald, it is said, was one of the first African-American performers to perform on the famous amateur night after the Apollo finally opened its doors in 1934 to those who made up the majority of Harlem's population. One fascinating event however hasn't been told in thirty years and is pretty much forgotten.
Google the name Dick Davy and the only information you're likely to find is the article you're currently reading. Davy was a New York born East Village folk singer in the early nineteen sixties. Davy says he was "much more soulful and quiet [than the average folk singer] ... intimate ... and I wasn't making it. But I'd be talking in between and people would laugh at things I said. So I'd start out like very traditional ... Barbara Allen ... about forty seven verses of that. And people weren't listening for a while. And because nobody was paying attention, I'd just start talking and they'd laugh. And eventually whatever I'd say, they laughed at. And I really felt bad that I didn't have more things to say because I really had 'em with the first few things I said and they were ready ... and then I'd go back to singing another song, and they'd go back to bedlam. So I started writing down whatever they were laughing at." Dick Davy didn't know it then, nor could anybody have predicted, that this white folk singer would be, in just a few years, taking Harlem by storm.
Featured today is a home recorded acetate disc created for Lois by George, Ann, and Ray that was found in a junk antique shop for a dollar in Reno Nevada in 2006. Side One contained the first two tracks and Side Two carried the brief third track. The label image is from Side One.
A question arises in my mind - Where and when was this record given out or listened to? Unlike other product musicals this was not played out live on stage during a corporate convention. Was this handed to you at the cash register when purchasing American-Standard products in a hardware store? Was it given to customers visiting an office for "Holiday Green" or "Trend-Setting Builder" real-estate? Did they leave you alone in a room with a turntable to listen to this, after giving you a wink and saying, "I'll be back in 15 minutes to answer any questions"? Probably not. Side 2 is full of dinner music.
Perhaps then, it was a gift (especially to newly-weds) from traveling salesman who would stop by a second time later in the day to check upon your interest in the album's presentation. (Much like the amazing Bert Tenzer "Sci-Fi Drama" traveling salesman product records.)
My only clue is in the liner notes: "We sincerely hope you enjoy the reading of the essay, the miniature musical and the lovely dinner music. Your American-Standard representative will soon discuss the complete details of the Trend Setting Builder Program and point out your vital role in upgrading the new home market to more profitable feature goods fixtures through this program."
I love the music and dialog of this record very much. It's Perfect. Laughter even arises at times during the "scene" of the husband and wife waltzing through the kitchen, to the plugs of American-Standard products included as bonus features to the new home - the slip resistant polka-dots in the bathtub and the "vent-away"(?) toilets - "Freeesssshhhh!”
Media: 12" LP Album: Today We Bought A Home Label: American Standard Catalog: CSS863 Credits: Music by Jules Styne, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. A unique album, prepared exclusively for distributors of American-Standard products, in support of and for the benefit of the Trend Setting Home Builders of America. Date: 1968
With idiosyncratic roles in sub-iconic fare like The Boy In the Plastic Bubble (1976), The Death of Richie (1977), In the Matter of Karen Ann Quinlan (1977), Thank God It's Friday (1978), The Wanderers (1979) and The Final Terror (1983) - John Friedrich spent most of his career on screen playing
characters that you naturally assumed would have developed a thick skin
and tough exterior because of their prickly life situation - but for
some reason hadn't. His portrayals were often brassy and smart aleck-y in vain,
and became uniquely endearing. Because of his somewhat kooky physical
persona and the unmistakably barmy look in his eyes, he often played
the oddball even within an ensemble cast of oddballs. His face was child-like, with smiling eyes
that seemed to front a mischievous, unruly brain. Watching him was like
observing a child that, upon reflection, you suddenly realize might one
day grow up to be a criminal. His...
Here's something to warm you in the dead of winter: a video (QuickTime, 9.9 MB) I shot Saturday, June 24, 1995, of a turn on my favorite Ferris wheel anywhere, Coney Island's Wonder Wheel. It was a rainy day and before I took the reviewing stand to serve as Mermaid Parade M.C. (my sixth year on the job), my friend Gina Bellando and I took a ride in a swinging car (in addition to the customary stationary cars, the Wonder Wheel has swinging cars which move along a track as the wheel rotates).
Coney Island, as you may have heard, is on the verge of a drastic makeover. A developer - Joe Sitt of Thor Equities - snatched up property on either side of Deno's Wonder Wheel Park (including Astroland Park, which will close after Summer 2007) and has plans for a $1.5 billion "entertainment and amusement district". Luxury seaside condos and a hotel will also rise where many of the structures seen in my video now stand. Some argue these changes are long coming, that Coney is a decaying, unfulfilled promise. Others feel the uniqueness of the place - it's the only truly urban amusement park I know of - will be forever lost. And you? Are the coming inevitable changes good for Coney Island? Or will you never again step foot in that "Playground by the Ocean"?
When this record was recorded, Joe Reed was in his third year as a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers. According to the back cover of this LP, Joe Reed is both an "athlete and a singer". The NINER NUGGETS, who had been seen representing the 49ers at golf tournaments, hospitals, civic functions, shopping centers, and booster gatherings, are the ONLY singing group to represent an NFL team. Catch Joe Reed & The Niner Nuggets performing the classic "Put Your Hand in the Hand".