You can picture the scene, lunch somewhere, another glass, and then the producer says. “I know this band, they’re hot, they’re what the kids want, let’s get them in the movie.”
It’s a win-win situation. Surely? The band starts their film career and receive major media exposure; while the movie has cachet from the group’s fans. This, of course, all depends on the quality of the film and the songs.
Does anyone remember what The Yardbirds were playing in Blow-Up? All I recall is Jeff Beck going Pete Townshend on his guitar, while a white trousersered David Hemmings intently joined a rather bored-looking audience.
Amen Corner had topped the UK pop charts with “If Paradise is half as Nice” and must have seemed a perfect call for the Vincent Price, Christopher Lee schlock fest, Scream and Scream Again. Singer Andy Fairweather-Low is beautifully filmed in the background as loopy Michael Gothard prowls a nighclub in search of fresh blood. The trouble is the song’s a stinker.
Sparks were allegedly second choice to Kiss for the George Segal, Timothy Bottoms, Richard Widmark dull-a-thon, Rollercoaster. The brothers Mael had moved back to the US after four successful years in the UK, and had just released their album Big Beat, from which they played “Fill Her Up” and “Big Boy” to a wildly over-enthusiastic crowd. The audience obviously hadn’t read the script, as the film is turgid, and the band’s cameo is its only highlight. When asked about the biggest regret in their career, Sparks said appearing in Rollercoaster. Understandable.
Brian De Palma stopped copying Hitchcock form a few minutes in Body Double to make a pop promo for Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s “Relax”, right in the middle of the movie. Surprisingly, it works. But perhaps the best, almost seamless merging of pop singer / artiste in a film is Nick Cave in Wim Wenders in Wings of Desire. Cave is perfect, as is the film, and he was a resident in West Berlin at the time, writing his first novel And the ass saw the Angel.
Of course, there are plenty of others, (Twisted Sister in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, The Tubes in Xanadu, anyone?), but oddest may be Cliff Richard and The Shadows in Gerry Anderson’s puppet movie Thunderbird Are Go. Difficult to tell the difference between puppet and the real thing.
Michelangelo Antonioni originally wanted The Velvet Underground for ‘Blow-Up’ (1966), but a problem over work permits led to The Yardbirds, with Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck playing “Stroll On” in the cameo.
More pop and rock cameos after the jump…
Woody Allen’s dialog from Hannah and Her Sisters almost fits perfectly into this scene from Taxi Driver, with Robert De Niro and Cybill Shepherd. It works so well that it even presages what we know happens in Martin Scorsese’s film
“A week ago I bought a rifle. If I had a tumor, I was gonna kill myself. The thing that might’ve stopped me: My parents would be devastated. I would’ve had to shoot them also.
And my aunt and uncle….It would have been a bloodbath…
...I need answers. Otherwise, I’m gonna do something drastic.”
Now if only the Three Stooges had made Goodfellas.
Previously on DM:
Bonus clip, Rick Moranis spoofs Dick Cavett and Woody Allen in ‘Taxi Driver’, after the jump..
Back in the 1980s, when I had nothing better to do than watch TV and collect unemployment benefit, I saw a video of the artist Bruce McLean. It was shown as part of Channel 4’s art series Alter Image in 1987, and after watching, my first thoughts were: Who the fuck is Bruce McLean and what does he want?
I was lucky, I had time to go and investigate. In the library, I found this:
Maclean / McLean an Anglicisation of the Scottish Gaelic MacGilleEathain. This was the patronymic form of the personal name meaning “servant of (Saint) John”.
Interesting. But not quite right. Later, there was more.
Working in a variety of mediums including painting, film and video projection, performance and photography, Bruce McLean is one of the most important artists of his generation.
It was with live works that McLean first grabbed the attention of the art world. An impulsive, energetic Glaswegian, he became known as an art world ‘dare-devil’ by critiquing the fashion-oriented, social climbing nature of the contemporary art world in the ‘70s. At St Martins his professors included the great sculptors of the day, Anthony Caro and Phillip King, whose work he mocked ruthlessly. In Pose Work for Plinths I (1971; London, Tate), he used his own body to parody the poses of Henry Moore’s celebrated reclining figures, daring to mock the grand master himself.
Pose Work for Plinths (1971)
The notion of using his whole body as a sculptural vehicle of expression led him to explore live actions: ‘it was when we (a collective) invented the concept of ‘pose’ that We could do anything’. Pose was live sculpture: Not mime, not theatre, but live sculpture. My colleagues, Paul Richards, Ron Carr, Garry Chitty, Robin Fletcher and I created Nice Style ‘The World’s First Pose Band’, which performed for several years, offering audiences such priceless gems as the ‘semi-domestic spectacular Deep Freeze, a four-part pose opera based on the lifestyle and values of a mid-west American vacuum cleaner operative’. Behind the obvious humour was a desire to break with the establishment, something that he has continued to do throughout his life and work. In 1972, for instance, he was offered an exhibition at the Tate Gallery, but opted, for a ‘retrospective’ lasting only one day. ‘King for a Day’ consisted of catalogue entries for a thousand mock-conceptual works, among them The Society for Making Art Deadly Serious piece, Henry Moore revisited for the 10th Time piece and There’s no business like the Art business piece (sung).
Now, I knew. Bruce McLean is a performance artist, a conceptual artist, a painter, a sculptor, a film-maker, a teacher, a joker, who knows art can be fun, which is always dangerous.
Bonus clips, including Tate Gallery interview with Bruce McLean, after the jump…
This is really very wonderful. Based on the (false) premise that Lennon and Stockhausen once planned an evening of music together, 1969 took place in NYC two nights ago and the below performance was somehow woven into a narrative including other pieces of the period. But aside from that conceit, this orchestral interpretation of what is easily the most widely heard and successful piece of experimental music ever made is a bit of real musical magic. They really pull it off !
bonus: The original Revolution 9 for comparison’s sake.
via Culture Monster with thanks to Rick Potts!
The Shock Doctrine is a 79 minute documentary directed by Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross, based on Naomi Kelin’s book The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, and broadcast by the UK’s Channel 4 in September 2009. From The Times:
“The Shock Doctrine examines the way that the free-market policies of Milton Friedman and the Chicago School were forced through in Chile, Russia, Britain and, most recently, Iraq by either exploiting or engineering disasters — coups, floods and wars. It’s an obvious fit for Winterbottom, a left-leaning director in the tradition of his one-time mentor Lindsay Anderson. He had long been a fan of Klein’s journalism and her bestselling first book, No Logo, though he admits that he hadn’t read The Shock Doctrine before Klein approached him about turning a shorter film she had made into something feature length.
Klein suggests a link between economic shock (radical spending cuts, mass unemployment) and the shock therapy practised in the 1950s by the psychiatrist Ewen Cameron, which led to the development of Guantánamo-style torture techniques. It impressed Winterbottom as “a simple and clever idea that makes you look at things in a different way”. He adds: “Naomi harnesses these events, especially the connections between what went on in Chile under Pinochet and what’s going on now in Iraq, which I hadn’t thought of before.
Winterbottom makes the point that when the current economic crisis hit, many people were not aware that to be pro-Friedman was to adopt a political position: his policies, implemented first by President Reagan and Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s, were the water we all swam in. “I’m an optimist and I think this is a good time to be arguing this case because there’s a possibility we could be talking about a comeback for a Keynesian model,” he says. “Naomi feels differently. She thinks that the powerful people who have benefited from these changes over the years are going to hold on to them. Maybe she’s right. You only have to look at Goldman Sachs paying out record bonuses.”
Absolutely essential viewing, this is television at its best.
After the jump, The Shock Doctrine, Parts 2-8
On January 29th, at the opening of their new space, Pop tART Gallery in Los Angeles, Dangerous Mind pal Lenora Claire and her partner, Phyliss Navidad, along with super-talented photographer Austin Young, orchestrated the chaotic first night of Young’s performance art/installation piece YOUR FACE HERE. With a crack team of some of the best make-up artists in Tinsel Town, Young and his glamorizers (in full view of an invited audience, passers-by and a reality TV camera crew) worked their magic. Margaret Cho was in the make-up chair when we got there. I’m told that he was able to shoot 40 portraits at the opening party alone.
Over the course of the following five weeks, Young moved his studio into the gallery and took portraits of people from all walks of life—grannies to trannies—and tonight the fruits of these labors will be unveiled when 100 of these portraits go up on the Pop tART Gallery’s walls. Some of the celebs who sat for Young’s camera include Joe Dallasandro, Karen Black, and Perez Hilton.
I’m pretty unabashed in my enthusiasm for Austin Young’s work. I think he’s the most original photographer to emerge in America since David LaChapelle. If you happen to be in Los Angeles tonight, this is going to be the best party in town.
Above, a “Young” James St. James of The WOW Report.
Firefighters know that sometimes you have to fight fire with fire and they’re taking steps to make sure that the obscene fatcats who run Wisconsin’s Marshall & Ilsley Corp (a bank holding company) understand exactly what’s at stake in labor’s fight against an increasingly backed-against-the-wall Scott Walker and the Republicans: The survival of their own incomes. There’s no question about it, they’ve got these assholes by the balls. Why should the working people of Wisconsin entrust their hard-earned savings to the very people who are helping screw them over? Here’s more from Daily Kos:
What these pictures show are six hundred ordinary citizens descending on the M&I branch near the Wisconsin Capitol after learning of their purchase of the gubernatorial election last November. Two firefighters with old school ideas about saving had over $600,000 between the two of them and they demanded cashier’s checks on the spot.
Not everyone has the purchase price of a couple of homes sitting in the bank, but if the 60% of Wisconsin that’s sick to death of Scott Walker’s behavior simply go close their accounts the bank will crash and they’ll have stripped him of the funds he needs to fight the recall next January.
M&I closed for the rest of the day, obviously hoping to avoid a run on their bank. As if that will ultimately matter! The power is—clearly—NOT in the hands of the elite this time, is it? In a sense, it never was. It’s about time the man on the street realized that.
This is a brilliant tactical move. I hope this hand is played for everything it’s worth! More from Dane101.com
When the firefighters arrived at the Capitol this morning they started the chant “MOVE YOUR MONEY!” Firefighters Local 311 President Joe Conway told the audience they should move their money out of M&I Bank. The bank was one of the leading contributors to the Walker campaign due to contributions by current and former executives and board members. Detailed contributions are available via the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. In a statement to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel last month the bank said “Individual employees may choose, at their own discretion and based on their political beliefs, to make contributions to political campaigns.”
Following speeches by Conway and Wisconsin Professional Firefighters Association Mahlon Mitchell, the firefighters marched to the M&I Bank across the street and picketed the bank and withdrew $192,00. Video of the firefighters arriving this morning and part of Conway’s speech is posted below.
M&I Bank received $1.7 billion in bailout money via President George W. Bush’s Troubled Assets Relief Program. The bank was acquired by the Bank of Montreal in December of 2010 for $4.1 billion in stock.
Wanna get even angrier? Read more about Marshall & IlsleyI: This Bank Executive Took TARP Money, Never Paid It Back, And Now He’ll Get $18 Million If He’s Fired (Business Insider)
For those who may be interested, a long and absurdly kind article and fairly in-depth interview with yours truly along with a ton of videos has just gone up at When The Sun Hits.
“Episode 1. Paul gives me advice about the ladies and makes an offer.”
True story: Sometime in 2004, I was returning to my car in the parking lot of a CVS drugstore in Sherman Oaks, California (the one with “The Party Store,” the Marie Callendar’s restaurant and the really good dry cleaners on Ventura Blvd. & Willis Ave., for all you locals).
Just as Paul Stanley and his son, who was maybe 6-years-old at the time, were leaving “The Party Store,” two transgendered women were walking in.
The kid looked them and when the door automatic doors had closed behind them, he asked his father the rock star, “Dad were those GUYS???”
Stanley, with a deer-in-the-headlights look on his face that I will never forget said softly: “I don’t know, son” and then quickly changed the topic to “Hey, this is going to be a really great party, tomorrow, huh?”
Via Kembra Pfahler/Howie Pyro