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‘I would love to play for you, but I can’t’: Lemmy stops gig after two songs for health reasons
09.02.2015
08:33 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:
Lemmy Kilmister
Motörhead


 
It’s one of the more poignant entries on Setlist.fm I’ve ever read, by far. It’s a list of the songs played at last night’s Motörhead show at Emo’s in Austin, Texas, and it reads, as follows, in full:

1. Damage Case
2. Stay Clean
3. Metropolis (partial)

Note: Lemmy left stage at the start of the third song because he wasn’t feeling well.

Rock and roll fans the world over have been tracking the news about Motörhead’s beloved bassist and frontman Lemmy Kilmister, who is still touring at the age of 69 against the advice of doctors. (Lemmy turns 70 on Christmas Eve of this year.)

Just a couple of weeks ago, the news that Lemmy was switching from his beloved whisky to vodka for health reasons made the rounds. Some observers pointed out the contradiction inherent in Lemmy’s big quote from that story, “I am still indestructible.” Lemmy was treated for a hematoma in 2013, and he has also been fitted for a defibrillator.

This week Lemmy’s health issues are finally coming to a head in a serious way. On Thursday Lemmy similarly cut the show in Salt Lake City short because he was having difficulty breathing in the thin air of the high-altitude city. The next night’s show, in Denver, was cancelled altogether for the same reason.

Here’s a report from Eduardo Rivadavia at Ultimate Classic Rock:

We were in attendance at last night’s Austin show, and can report that the evening’s activities got under way normally enough, with a well-received set from Pennsylvania stoner rockers Crobot, and then a quite commanding one from New Wave of British Heavy Metal survivors Saxon.

Unfortunately, Lemmy seemed shaky from the start, as he ambled onto the stage looking noticeably gaunt and tried to sing the first number, “Damage Case,” clearly out of breath and at half speed. Meanwhile, guitarist Phil Campbell was doing everything he could to compensate by running about and engaging the audience much more than is his habit. Drummer Mikkey Dee also seemed to be trying to will Lemmy onward with his more measured but typically powerful attack.

Alas, the situation did not improve as Motorhead struggled to complete another Overkill standard, “Stay Clean.” After greeting his fans and admitting he was still under the weather, Lemmy lasted barely one minute into their next song, “Metropolis,” before dropping his arms, backing away from his microphone, and conceding defeat in obvious disgust, as his bandmates simultaneously ground to a feedback-screeching halt.

As for the crowd, many of whom were no doubt aware of the frontman’s recent health issues, they had nothing but supportive chants of “Lemmy! Lemmy! Lemmy!” — especially once Kilmister briefly returned to the microphone, leaning on his now familiar cane, and apologized yet again for his inability to carry on, leaving those assembled no choice but to turn away and start filing out.

Motörhead is touring to support its 22nd studio album, Bad Magic. The trek began on Aug. 19, in Riverside, Calif., and is slated to run until February. Their next scheduled show is tonight in San Antonio’s Aztec Theatre—the only information I was able to find out about that show comes from the well-known German tabloid BILD, which reported that the San Antonio show “fällt definitiv aus”—is definitely cancelled.

You can watch Lemmy’s heartbreaking announcement, as well as the loud support of the fans at the venue, right here:
 

 
via Ultimate Classic Rock

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
‘Bubblegum’ version of Bon Scott performing ‘Nick Nack Paddy Whack’ with the Valentines in 1969
08.14.2015
07:16 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:
Bon Scott
bubblegum music
The Valentines

Bon Scott and Vince Lovegrove of the Valentines
Bon Scott and Vince Lovegrove, co-vocalists of the Valentines
 
The term “bubblegum music” came to be sometime back in the early 1960s with help from Brooklyn music producers Jerry Kasenetz and Jeff Katz. Known as Super K Productions, the duo helped bring “bubblegum” bands such as the Ohio Express (of “Yummy Yummy Yummy” fame), and Crazy Elephant (“Gimme Gimme Good Lovin’” from 1969) large but short-lived fame. The Australian group, the Valentines—whose lineup included a 23-year-old Bon Scott, also rode the bubblegum music train back in the late ‘60s.
 
The Valentines--Wyn Milson, Bon Scott, Vince Lovegrove, Paddy Beach, John Cooksey
The Valentines (Bon Scott, second from right)
 
The Valentines got together after Scott parted ways with the popular Perth band the Spektors in 1966, and enjoyed a rather successful run down under until they called it quits in 1970. The Valentines kind of had it all—great hair, cool matchy-matchy clothes, and two good-looking vocalists who shared the spotlight in Scott and Vince Lovegrove. Lovegrove, who remained friends with Scott until his death in 1980, would go on to become respected journalist and manager of the Divinyls before passing away in a tragic car accident in 2012.

If you’ve never seen the band performing, then you are in for a treat. The footage of the Valentines performing “Nick Nack Paddy Whack” (a riff on the nursery rhyme “This Old Man”) from the Australian music television show, Hit Scene (below) was shot on July 12th, 1969, just after Scott’s 23rd birthday. And the man who would soon front AC/DC looks like he never stopped celebrating. Whenever the camera catches Scott in action (the one on the left without an instrument, he gets his big close-up at about 01:25), he’s either laughing, hilariously and barely mouthing the words to the song, or is grooving out of time with the music while his massive bell bottom sleeve top flops around. In other words, it is two minutes plus of pure, vintage, must-watch awesomeness.
 

The Valentines performing “Nick Nack Paddy Whack” on the Australian music TV show Hit Scene, July 12th, 1969

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Leon Trotsky’s run-down mansion only $4.4 million—FOR THE PEOPLE!
08.06.2015
09:30 am

Topics:
Class War
Heroes
History

Tags:
Istanbul
Leon Trotsky


 
After his exile from the Soviet Union in 1929, Leon Trotsky, having served as the People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs and the People’s Commissar for Army and Navy Affairs from 1917 to 1925 and having generally been the Marxist revolutionary and theorist par excellence, moved to a decidedly un-humble three-story villa located on Büyükada Island near Istanbul.

This week the mansion—which boasts 38,750 square feet and 18 rooms and 5 bathrooms, was put up for sale for the affordable sum of $4.4 million. However, if you’re contemplating running a refurbished luxury hotel called The Trotsky Arms or whatnot, know that the property is protected from such renovations as a historical landmark.

Located in the Sea of Marmara, Büyükada is a popular day-trip destination and is accessible via ferry from the Turkish metropolis. Trotsky arrived there in 1929 after being deported by Joseph Stalin. According to Hürriyet, he lived in the house for four years with his second wife, Natalia, and his grandchild, Sieva. Trotsky eventually moved to Mexico, where he was murdered in 1940.
 

Photo: Selj via Flickr
 
The Hanifi family, which currently owns the house, has requested that the buyer preserve the Trotsky name; they had hoped that the Culture and Tourism Ministry would purchase the house to turn it into a museum.

“It is falling into ruins and needs thorough works,” said Mustafa Farsakoglu, a former mayor of Büyükada. “If the Turkish ministry of culture could give the money, it could be bought, renovated and turned into a cultural centre or museum. ... In any case, it is a classified building and whoever builds it can’t turn it into apartments, or a hotel, or a restaurant.”

According to a real estate agent familiar with the situation, “It’s actually not the first time there has been an attempt to sell this house, but no one wants it. Its owner, who lives in Istanbul, has not carried out the necessary works.”
 

Photo: Pinterest
 

 
via artnet
 

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Attention, smart people: Over 100,000 have RSVP’d for tonight’s Bernie Sanders mega-event


 

“There are no coincidences, but sometimes the pattern is more obvious.”—Neil Innes

Attention, smart people! There is a MAJOR POLITICAL EVENT that’s happening—TODAY July 29th, 2015—across this nation that you might not have heard about for Bernie Sanders. Tonight Sanders will be speaking via the Internet to over 100,000 heavily-motivated people meeting for the first time at 3,520 Bernie-related house parties and get-togethers in bars and restaurants and union halls and church basements, etcetera, etcetera, all across the United States.
 

 
Yes, over 100,000 people have found other like-minded people in their area via this map and RSVP’d to get informed and to volunteer for Sanders’ increasingly astonishing campaign. I live in Los Angeles where there are well over 100 such gatherings. I’m married, but I would assume that a lot of smart, good-looking people would attend such events. Aren’t you even curious? Of course you are. Why not search for your zip code and see what happens?

Has there ever been a larger, more dynamic and more INSTANTANEOUS grassroots movement in American history? If there has been one, they must’ve kept it a secret. Even the Tea party movement didn’t grow nearly as fast as this. And after today’s event, what happens next?

I can’t wait to find out.

The sky’s the limit, but the goal is the White House. This can happen, people.

Bernie Sanders for President: It’s time to take it to the next level, America. He can’t do it without YOU.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Bad motherf*ckers: Action figures from ‘Pulp Fiction,’ ‘The Shining,’ ‘A Clockwork Orange’ and more

Alex Clockwork Orange figure by Rainman
Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange
 
Here’s what I know about sculptor and artist Rainman, the man responsible for the sinister as fuck action-figure of Alex from A Clockwork Orange (pictured above), and many others that are about to blow your mind. Rainman is a rather secretive cat, but according to his his Facebook page he’s based in Korea and currently works for video game giant CAPCOM (the makers of the 1987 video game Street Fighter). He studied animation at Kyungsung University, a private school in Busan, South Korea. Rainman is an accomplished painter and in 2013 he released a 500-page book called Not Afraid, which featured his conceptual artwork. He also likes Dr. Dre.

That’s pretty much all I know about this incredibly talented man.
 
Alex from A Clockwork Orange by Rainman
 
As I often post about unique action figures here on DM, I knew when I found Rainman’s creations I had struck gold. That is because Rainman’s collection includes some of the most bad-ass members of cinematic history. Like Travis Bickle from Taxi Driver, Alex from A Clockwork Orange (who comes with a glass of milk and other “accessories”), Tyler Durden from Fight Club, Jack Torrance from The Shining and many, many others. In some cases, Rainman will put together what I can only describe as “play sets” for his figures. For example, one collection of figures from The Shining not only included Jack and his trusty, door-busting ax, but also Danny Torrance along with a replica of his little blue bike, the Grady Twins, and a small version of the infamous carpet from the hallways of the Overlook Hotel.

Let’s have at look at Jack and his pals, shall we?
 
Jack Torrance from The Shining figure by Rainman
 
Danny Torrance and his bike figure by Rainman
 
Danny Torrance and the Grady Twins figures by Rainman
 
Danny Torrance (for scale) figure by Rainman
 
While Rainman’s articulated sculptures are breathtakingly life-like, I am equally impressed by the “secret items” that he often includes with his various figures, such as a miniature version of the last book Vincent Vega ever read, Peter O’Donnell’s Modesty Blaise (included with his sculpt of John Travolta from Pulp Fiction), Jules’ “Bad Motherfucker” wallet, a teeny-tiny version of the “TIME: Man of the Year” mirror from The Big Lebowski (that comes with his “Dude” figure), and the skanky blue bathrobe that comes along with his “Fighter 1999” figure (aka, Tyler Durden from Fight Club).
 
Miniature sculpt of Modesty Blaise by Rainman
Miniature version of Modesty Blaise
 
More after the jump…
 

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Punk ain’t cheap: One of Dee Dee Ramone’s bass guitars sells for $37,995
07.06.2015
09:54 am

Topics:
Heroes
Punk

Tags:
Dee Dee Ramone

Dee Dee Ramone and his Fender Precision bass
Dee Dee Ramone and one of his Fender Precision basses
 
According to the folks at musical gear auction site Reverb, some posh punk has paid $37,995 to become the proud owner of one of Dee Dee Ramone’s personal bass guitars (like the one pictured with Dee Dee above).
 
One of Dee Dee Ramone's Fender Precision bass guitars
Dee Dee Ramone’s Fender Precision bass guitar that just sold for $37,995
 
Dee Dee Ramone's Fender Precision bass guitar case
Dee Dee Ramone’s hard shell Fender bass case that sold along with his Fender Precision
 
According to the listing, the Fender ‘75 precision bass (with black pickguard pictured above) has been hanging out in a private collection since the 80’s, gifted to its owner by the Ramones themselves. The bass is said to still be in playable condition and even came in the original case (with a Ramones stencil on the back). Also included was a letter from Monte Melnick, the band’s former road manager, validating the instrument’s authenticity. Dee Dee played the Fender Precision for most of his too-short career and used them pretty much exclusively from 1974-1988, favoring the model with the black pickguard from 1975-1977.
 
Dee Dee and his Fender Precision bass
 
Another of Dee Dee’s Fender Precision basses (the all-white one you can see Dee Dee playing in the video below when the Ramones performed on the Old Grey Whistle Test on February 26, 1985), sold at a 2014 auction for a cool $37,694.48.
 

The Ramones perform “Wart Hog” (with Dee Dee on lead vocals) and “Chasing the Night” (from 1984’s Too Tough to Die) on The Old Grey Whistle Test, 1985

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
The Demon Dog: Filming with James Ellroy in L.A., 1994
06.24.2015
07:21 am

Topics:
Books
Crime
Heroes

Tags:
Nicola Black
James Ellroy

00james_ellroy_paul_gallagher_00.jpg
 
James Ellroy sits reading Jack Webb’s The Badge in the Clark Gable-Carole Lombard suite of the Alexandria Hotel, downtown LA, in the Fall of 1994. I’m there as interviewer—asking him questions for a documentary on the “Demon Dog of American Literature” called White Jazz. A preliminary Q&A was filmed the day before at a motel off Hollywood where Ellroy gave his pitch (“Woof, woof! Hear the Demon Dog bark…”) and want to find out who’s the man behind this well-rehearsed front.

We talk books: Ellroy’s telling me how his father Lee gave him a copy of The Badge for his eleventh birthday—a book of true tales of LA crime and the LAPD, in amongst which was the “brutally, graphically sexually explicit” story of the unsolved murder of 22-year-old Elizabeth Short, which became known as the Black Dahlia killing.  Ellroy said this explicit ten-page tale had haunted him.

I thought it a strange book to give a kid who was used to reading the Hardy Boys and especially a child whose own mother, Geneva Hilliker, had been strangled with her own stockings and her body dumped in El Monte just a year before in 1958. So, I ask him: Didn’t he think this was a strange book to give a child? Ellroy stops. He says he doesn’t get the question. I think he’s stalling, but ask again. Still he doesn’t get the question—doesn’t seem to understand or want to understand or really want to answer the question.
 
00ghvhj00oje94.jpg
 
The Badge is part of Ellroy’s myth—a key to understanding what he wants to be known about himself as it deflects as much as it reveals. It’s the book that pointed his imagination towards writing crime fiction and was the source of his teenage obsessions where he merged the murder of his mother with that of the Black Dahlia—feeding his fantasy of saving Dahlia/Hilliker from person or persons unknown and setting the world to right. Setting the world to right is perhaps why some writers do write—the world they create is containable.
 
001_james_ellroy_nicola_black_001.jpg
Director Nicola Black, camera Jerry Kelly with James Ellroy, LA 1994.
 
The documentary White Jazz was produced and directed by Nicola Black. It came about after Black had filmed Ellroy (in cold damp Victorian prison cell off the banks of the River Clyde in Scotland) for a previous documentary on the world’s first private detective Allan Pinkerton—a drama-doc which starred Peter Capaldi. Made over one intense week with Ellroy in LA, October ‘94, White Jazz followed the Demon Dog around the sites of his childhood, his criminal youth, and sober years as a writer. The film then opens out to follow Ellroy’s personal investigation into the unsolved murder of his mother, with the help of ex-County Sheriff’s Department Detective Bill Stoner—a calm, lean, genial man, eyes twinkling, full mustache, whose quite demeanour belies the horrors he has seen—he helped solve the Cotton Club killing—picking-up a victim’s exploded, shattered teeth on a desolate hillside. Stoner takes Ellroy through Hilliker’s morgue file—the black and whites of crime scene, body, ligature marks, bruises, and autopsy report—before visiting her last known locations where seen and the suggesting possible suspects. Ellroy’s collaborative investigation with Stoner became his non-fiction book My Dark Places (1996).

This award-winning documentary is seldom seen online—though pirate copies can switch hands for mucho dinero—and it’s a moving, fascinating and revealing portrait of James Ellroy, in which he takes the viewer on a personal odyssey through his life, his work and his obsessions with the city of Los Angeles—his “smog-bound Fatherland.”

But time moves on, and Ellroy is currently selling his Hollywood Hills residence for $1.39m—if you want to take a peak at his monkish orderly abode check here. He also has a new book out LAPD ‘53, in which he illuminates 85 duotone photographs from the LAPD archive that are “representative of a day in the life of America’s most provocative police agency.”
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Harlan Ellison is revolting: Speculative Fiction and the revolution of the mind

001harlanpixbwelldfghj001.jpg
 
In every generation there is a moment when some writer, artist, politician or whatever comes forward to announce that their generation is at the start of a revolution—some seismic shift in culture and society that will change everything for the better—forever. It’s rather like the way each generation appears to think it is the first to discover sex or sexuality and flaunts it through clothes, songs or horrendously written books.

A case in point is this roundtable discussion with a young Harlan Ellison from sometime in 1969-70, when the author declared “We’re in the midst of a revolution.”

It’s a revolution of thought, that is as important and as upending as the industrial revolution was—sociologically speaking. We’re coming into a time now when all the old “-isms” and philosophies are dying. They don’t seem to work any more.

All the things Mommy and Daddy told you and told me were true were only true in the house—the minute you get out in the street, they aren’t true any more. The kids in the ghetto have known that all their lives but now the great white middle class is learning it and it’s coming a little difficult to the older folks—which is always the way it is.

We are no longer Kansas or Los Angeles or New York—it’s the whole planet now. They got smog in the Aleutian Islands now; they got smog in Anchorage, Alaska; they got smog at the polar icecaps—can you believe it, smog at the polar icecaps. There is no place you go to hide anymore. So the day of thinking that the Thames or the English Channel or the Rocky Mountains is going to keep you safe from some ding-dong on the other side doesn’t go anymore. A nitwit in Hanoi can blow us all just as dead as a nitwit in Washington.

We’re beginning to think of ourselves not as just an ethnic animal, or a national animal, or a local or family kind of animal—we are now a planetary animal. It’s all the dreams of early science-fiction coming true.

That Ellison could have made this speech in nineties or the noughties, or indeed any decade, only shows how each generation discovers certain truths that are eternally consistent.

Humans, he continues, are now aware of a bigger picture and that by not taking responsibility for our actions—whether thoughtlessly throwing away a cigarette butt or garbage—is “screwing up the ecology.” Which is apposite considering the news of some scientists claiming Earth is on the brink of its sixth extinction.

But Ellison—in sunglasses looking like a Jordanian revolutionary—is only warming up to his theme—the importance of speculative fiction (or that dreaded word “science-fiction”) in imagining (shaping) the future. He has a very valid point—but again one that is made generation to generation-six years before this the writers of previous generations C. S. Lewis, Kingsley Amis and Brian Aldiss held an informal chat on the same subject where they agreed:

...that some science fiction really does deal with issues far more serious than those realistic fiction deals with; real problems about human destiny and so on.

Harlan Ellison is one of those very rare writers who is always inspirational or thought-provoking in everything he writes or says. Like most people, I came to his work through TV before having the greater pleasure of reading him. His seminal episodes of Outer Limits, “Demon with a Glass Hand” and “Soldier” (which James Cameron later used as a basis for Terminator), or his script for Star Trek or “The Sort of Do-It-Yourself Dreadful Affair” and “The Pieces of Fate Affair” on The Man from U.N.C.L.E. stayed with me long after viewing and were cause for my seeking out his fiction. This interview comes from just after Ellison had edited the classic volume of speculative fiction Dangerous Visions, which he hoped might lead to a revolution in the mind of its readers.

It probably did, but the revolution is always moving, changing, evolving.
 

 
The conclusion of Harlan Ellison’s talk, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
‘Nick Danger’ RIP: Firesign Theatre’s Phil Austin, 1941-2015
06.19.2015
12:42 pm

Topics:
Heroes

Tags:
comedy
Firesign Theatre
Phillip Austin


 
Oh man. Some very bad, very sad news just crossed my desk in the form of this short email from Taylor Jessen, archivist extraordinaire, of the Firesign Theatre:

I’m very sorry to report that Phil Austin died last night at his home in Fox Island, Washington. Phil had been suffering from multiple cancers and had chosen to keep his condition private, so this was a sad and terrible surprise for us all. At his request, no memorial service is being planned.

Born in Denver, Colorado in 1941, but raised in Fresno, CA, Phil Austin went to Bowdoin College and then UCLA, before joining the staff of KPFK radio in Los Angeles in the late 1960s. It was at KPFK’s North Hollywood studio where he met his future partners in “the Beatles of comedy,” David Ossman and Peter Bergman, and later Phil Proctor, who’d been a friend of Bergman’s at Yale. Together as the Firesign Theatre (each of the troupe was an astrological “fire” sign), they recorded around thirty albums, including their Library of Congress recognized masterpiece, Don’t Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me the Pliers, and other classics like Waiting for the Electrician or Someone Like Him, Everything You Know is Wrong and I Think We’re All Bozos on This Bus. He is survived by his lovely wife Oona and their menagerie of pets.
 

 
Below, Phil Austin stars as “Happy” Harry Cox, a trailer-dwelling New Agey conspiracy theorist that Art Bell seems to have based his entire career on in the Firesign Theatre short Everything You Know is Wrong (This will be on the upcoming Firesign Theatre DVD in much better quality. Keep checking their website for the release date.)
 

 
Continues after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
American Gothic version of Divine and John Waters


 
There’s really not much to say about this fantastic painting of Divine and John Waters taking the place of the old prairie couple in Grant Wood’s iconic 1930 painting “American Gothic.” I simply dig it.

I had a hard time tracking down the artist as I misread the signature as GG Allin. To be honest for a few moments there I actually thought the late shit-hurling hate rocker painted this. The artisit’s name is spelled GIGI ALLIN and here are links to her Instagram and website.


The work in progress via Instagram
 
Via Divine on Facebook

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
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