Ted Nugent’s guitar playing on the Amboy Dukes Migration lp can be best described as tasty. Even tasteful. I found the record amid a pile of Artie Shaw rarities in the closet. Must have been a thrift store find. It’s all very musical and eclectic and psychedelic. Except for Rusty Day who sounds like Grover of Sesame Street, and maybe is. Was. One of those long forgotten rock’n’roll mass shootings.
Speaking of Boomers, we watched the Big TNT Show at our neighbor’s pad last night. Never seen it before. My faves were Bo Diddley (who I saw open for the Clash a zillion years ago), The Lovin’ Spoonful (who were incredibly loose and high and actually fucked up and had to start over again, giggling, it was beautiful), Donovan, and Roger Miller, tho’ it was nearly all great, and judging from his conducting chops, David McCallum didn’t have a musical bone in his body.
I sprained my pinkie sleeping yesterday (my lamest injury ever, a big man with a sprained pinkie) which could give me the excuse to watch Monterey Pop, Don’t Look Back, Gimme Shelter, Woodstock and A Film About Jimi Hendrix in one long pseudo acid trip on TCM today. Some of the same acts as the Big TNT Show, though much, much higher. Tina Turner was in the Big TNT Show (with a big bruise on her arm), but I remember seeing her in Gimme Shelter at the Wilshire Theatre when I was sixteen and thinking I wanted a girlfriend just like that, or even a school teacher.
I had no idea I used my pinkie to hit the tab key until just now.
Never saw this before, a fantastic C’mon Everybody by the great Eddie Cochran. This was 1959, and white boy rock’n’roll had morphed from raw and visceral rockabilly into something heavier, tougher, meaner. Alas Eddie was not going to be around to see what he helped bring about, which is a shame, but in another five or six years, after all the yeah yeah yeahs and pretty boy acts were dispensed with, rock’n’roll would finally get to the point where Eddie Cochran left it, and it would explode in all directions.
Tim Buckley’s “Get On Top” off his Greetings From L.A. is a flat out classic cut in the brickspicks.com corporate offices and would be everywhere if anyone ever played it again. Or even heard it ever. Too rock’n’roll, I guess, for people in a Tim Buckley mood, while the rock’n’roll people see the name Tim Buckley and rear away–it’s the dreaded singer songwriter genre. But this thing grooves in a tough noir way like Jack Nicholson dancing, and the lyrics have just the right coked out horny 70’s nihilism, like a Blue Thumb session gone bad when the drugs were edgy and paranoid. And while the mood is as wrong as any song could be in 1972, Tim Buckley could have stomped into CBGB’s with this about 1976 and fit nicely and no one would have noticed he was a hippie. Or could have, had he not been stone cold dead already.
Somebody innocently mentioned a cactus being picked up by the wind and hurled at them. Which was bad enough, but someone raised the discomfort level by several orders of magnitude by responding with a YouTube of Cactus doing Parchment Farm. Egad. Perhaps you are unfamiliar with Cactus. Well, they were Detroit band you loved if you thought the Grand Funk Railroad live album was overly melodic, subtle and well crafted. Because Cactus dispensed with even a hint of melody, subtlety and craft. They were the Detroit sound after Detroit had burned down. I remember finding their their album Restrictions in a bin somewhere for fifty cents. I think it was their third, by which time they had shed any hint of musicality, and is one of the most gloriously unmelodic hard rock records of its time. 40 minutes worth of songs pummeled to death by drums and guitars and the most tone deaf singer ever allowed into a studio. I loved that album. Wish I still had my copy, if only to bother people. Anyone who partied at our place in the mid 80’s was subjected to it at ridiculous volume.
Alas, at some point I became a jazz critic and now find that record utterly unlistenable. But there was a spell there circa early-mid-eighties when somehow finding the loosest, rawest, trashiest music imaginable became of utmost importance to a select few of us. I remember Humble Pie’s rendition of Honky Tonk Women was an unlistenable pleasure. Makes me almost glad that not a single soul in the entire world, not even some tone deaf record collector in Germany or Japan or Brazil, has posted the Lee Michaels unclassic Roochie Toochie Loochie, off his forgotten Tailface, which even then I thought was one of the dumbest album titles ever. But if you drunkenly drove from the Anti-Club to our pad in the mid 80’s at two in the morning, you and our neighbors were subjected to Roochie Toochie Loochie at ridiculous volume until one of you complained.
Anyway, here’s a cut off of Restrictions. If you are at work turn the volume as high as possible right now.
Wow. Yet another spontaneous celebration last night. In lieu of live music we watched the 27 hours long Director’s orgy of Woodstock, followed by the concise Gimme Shelter. A whole night spent in the last months of the 1960s. Sure I’ve seen both a zillion times, but never as a sixty year old. Noticed: music was way loose back then. Way. Also, people were way thin back then. Way. And septuagenarians now were once beautiful hippies. Beautiful. And also: weed was less strong and people rolled enormous bombers. And also as well, fat naked people on LSD, though that was Gimme Shelter. (Note to self, avoid LSD, or least keep clothes on.) Thin gorgeous people on LSD in Woodstock, pulchritudinous even. (OK, you try spelling pulchritudinous on a hungover Sunday morning after a couple hours sleep.) And you can tell where all this paranoia came from, though people are infinitely more paranoid now than then. Still, the two dudes yelling about the government seeding the clouds, man, was perhaps the only part of either movie that seemed like today. Finally, the Jefferson Airplane were one awesome band in 1969. Seriously. The extended 98 hour cut of Woodstock gives them more songs than any other band, they were that good. Damn.
Off to loll about in the flowers. Acid, incense and balloons. Figuratively speaking. I can’t stand incense. Punk rockers, you know, we just don’t appreciate nothing.
Also, think I’ll stay away from red wine for a while.
Somebody couldn’t remember the old Carly Simon song Anticipation. Sure you remember it, I said. How did it go? I began humming what I thought was the melody but was actually the bass line, accompanied by Jim Keltner’s (or was it Andy Newmark’s?) accents on the tom toms, boomp ba de bum boomp boomp. Air drummed, of course. The person looked at me bewildered. I stopped, felt like an idiot, and said in a monotone: Anticipation, anticipay-ay-shun. Oh yeah, he said, and began singing along.