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Serge Gainsbourg’s reggae version of ‘La Marseillaise’ that earned him death threats
07.14.2014
08:19 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music
Politics

Tags:
Serge Gainsbourg


 
Serge Gainsbourg offended many of his patriotic countrymen in 1979 when he rewrote the French national anthem “La Marseillaise” as a reggae number, “Aux armes et caetera.” The song was the title track from his 13th album, recorded in Kingston, Jamaica, giving him the distinction of being only the second (to Mick Jagger, who dueted with Peter Tosh) major white European performer to record there. Serge did not anticipate the shitstorm that followed the TV premiere of his song, including death threats from nationalists and threats from soldiers to kick his ass if he performed the song in public. The French embassy’s website still has a reference to this controversy:

The French national anthem has had a turbulent past. Every now and then, there is an outcry to have it banned, or at least updated; it has been a long time since the Revolution was endangered by bordering European monarchs. Some people are offended during national ceremonies, when they hear such vengeful verses as “these ferocious soldiers who slaughter our sons and wives” or demanding “that impure blood flow in our fields.” But the majority of French people do not wish to change so much as a comma in their national anthem. Didn’t the members of the Resistance in WWII sing it as a final and supreme challenge to Nazi-occupying forces as they fell beneath the bullets of the firing squad?

The extent of the attachment of the French to their national anthem was revealed in the 1970s, when President Giscard d’Estaing attempted to impose “his” Marseillaise by having it played to a slower tempo in order to give it greater solemnity. The President’s initiative raised a storm of protest and Hector Berlioz’s orchestration was maintained. Late controversial singer and composer Serge Gainsbourg tried to rewrite the Marseillaise his own way in 1979 by having the national anthem played by a reggae band. The reception was less than stellar: A group of legionnaires threatened to give him a hard time if he performed his new version in public. Gainsbourg did sing the Marseillaise, but a cappella. One cannot tamper with that which is sacred!

 

A little gallows humor on the cover of Hara Kiri magazine
 
When a group of paratroopers caused a 1980 concert in Strasbourg (where “La Marseillaise” was written) to be shut down, Gainsbourg defiantly sang an a capella traditional version instead of “Aux armes et caetera” and was joined by the paratroopers! A year later in a defiant but classy move he bought an original manuscript of the anthem’s lyrics by Rouget de Lisle at an auction in France. Gainsbourg then proved to the public that his version—and the controversial “et caetera” of the title—was in fact, more faithful to the original than any other version: de Lisle, in fact, did not write out repeated verses by hand, but merely wrote “et caetera, et caetera, et caetera”!

Serge Gainsbourg, “Aux armes et caetera”:

 
Serge Gainsbourg sings the original “La Marseillaise” to calm everyone down, and at 2:09 the auction for the lyrics’ manuscript begins:

Posted by Kimberly J. Bright | Discussion
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Charles Mingus goes to Bellevue
06.24.2014
08:46 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:
Jazz
Charles Mingus

sugnimc1010.jpg
 
And I can hear myself saying, “No, don’t do it,” as I read Charles Mingus begging the guard at Bellevue to let him in.

As he tells it in his autobiography Beneath the Underdog, it’s the late 1950s and Mingus hasn’t slept in three weeks, his brain was like “a crazy TV set flicking picture stories in color and black-and-white.” He was wired, “sped-up,” walked the streets for hours with maybe-thoughts of visiting friends at Birdland but canceled the idea of dropping by to talk to someone anyone, who just might listen and help him unwind.

I decided if I called anybody they’d think I was only trying to get sympathy and attention. I kept walking across town, trying to think what in hell I’d done with my life.

Mingus considered his fifteen albums, the hundreds of recordings, the music he’d written and the music he’d yet to write, but still his brain sped on. Then he reached Bellevue with a big sentry guard standing on the other side of the gates, watching the musician approach. And that’s when I’m thinking, “No Mingus, don’t ask.”

I said, “Look, man, I haven’t slept in three weeks,” and he said, “This is no rest home, this place is for the mentally disturbed.”

“Look, man,” I said, “I am mentally disturbed. I’m a musician, I need help, and I once saw a film that said if you need help the first and most difficult task is having the guts to ask for it, so help me, man!”

The gatekeeper said, “I done told you this not where you want to go if you just sleepy. I can see from here you look a little tired, so go home, man, and go to bed. Ain’t crazy or nothing, are you?”

I said, “Maybe I am, maybe I’m not.”

And he said, “Well, take my word for it, you don’t want to come in here. If I was to let you in first thing you’d say when I close that door behind you is “Lemme out, I ain’t crazy!”

Mingus shoulda listened. First thing over the gate, “Here’s that crazy one,” and buttoned-up tight in a strait-jacket—O, America, so this is how you treat genius?

Inside, Mingus can’t sleep, there’s snoring and crying and farting and still no peace. It’s near breakfast and soon the nurses will do their rounds and Mingus will have to get up, eat some food, take his meds, and listen to the blatherings of some racist psycho-doc.

Then I heard him say to another doctor, “Negroes are paranoiac, unrealistic people who believe the whole world is against them.”

I said, “Tell me, doctor, do you mean all Negroes on this earth or only the Negroes in this room?”

He said, “I see I’m getting through to Mingus now,” and I said, “That you are Herr Doktor. Tell me, is this paranoia we all have curable?”

And he said, “Yes, this is what I am so happy to tell you. I can cure this disease with a simple operation on the frontal lobe, called a lobotomy, and then you’ll be all right.”

As soon as he gets out of the interview with Herr Doktor, Mingus looks for a phone. He calls his friend Nat Hentoff and tells him where he is. He can’t talk long, there’s a Nazi doctor, “a prejudiced white cocksucker so high on white supremacy that he’s blowing the whole USA scene on integration singlehanded… Nat I’m scared. You gotta get me out of here!”
 

 
Getting in was easy, getting out’s the problem. A lawyer drops by and tells Mingus he’s under supervision for two weeks. They saw needle marks and they don’t believe these are for “reducing the fatty tumor” on his arm. The lawyer tells him to bide his time, get some rest, take it easy—as if these were options.

Mingus goes to the art room, does some painting, finds one by Thelonious Monk (an ax in an apple) and then starts writing down something that might make sense:

I have not vanished or given up music although to many it may seem that I have. For whatever reason, the only albums of my recordings that have been recently made available to the public are at least three years old. I have worked in a few jazz clubs lately but from the people outside New York who have liked my music I have gotten letters wondering where I disappeared to. Before and during this apparent layoff from productivity, however, I have been producing as always and perhaps more because there were few to hear my voice and my need is to express my thoughts and feelings as fully as is humanly possible all the time, I have worked and I have produced music that has not been played and I have written words that have not been read….

Mingus can’t concentrate, too much hubbub, he notices a kid opposite playing chess. A math genius who checkmates him every game. Next day, Mingus writes “Hellview of Bellevue,” a seven point list of what is wrong with the institution and its doctors. He’s had no sleep, but hasn’t lost his sense of humor:

4. Dr. Bonk keeps saying I am a failure. I did not come here to discuss my career or I would have brought a press agent.

He knows it was a mistake to have begged to come in and claims it was a protest over his own psychotherapist, and finishes number seven with: “I have learned my lesson. Let me have my freedom.”

No dice. The next day Mingus writes a song “All the Things You Could Be by Now If Sigmund Freud’s Wife Was Your Mother,” which he later records. His visitors make him realize what a mistake he has made, but then he thinks, maybe he can use his time in Bellevue to help others. He talks to “Chess,” the kid math genius:

“Why don’t you and me and The Dancer get all these nuts together and start up a school? Look around at these poor bastards, look at all that confusion. Between the three of us we got a university—math, chess, languages, music dancing.”

They dig the idea, the nurses dig the idea and arrange a room and a blackboard, but the cartoon Herr Doktor Bonk raised his eyebrows and said:

“Mr. Mingus is going to organize Bellevue for us. May I comment that compulsive organization is one of the prime traits of paranoia.

You can almost hear the scalpel being sharpened. Mingus leaves the room and keeps his head down for the duration. Days go by, then Mingus finds himself in an office opposite a nurse who tells him he can make a call and have someone collect him.

“We are only trying to help you here at Bellevue.”

Later, when Mingus thought about his naivety in seeking treatment at Bellevue, he wrote:

“All of us who stay sane, stay inside our own cages all the time.”

Bellevue’s had its fair share of talents behind its doors: Eugene O’Neill, William Burroughs, Norman Mailer, Malcolm Lowry and Charles Mingus. They were all lucky, they got out, and some say “Chess” the math genius was Bobby Fischer.

Charles Mingus performing in Belgium, Norway and Sweden, with Eric Dolphy (sax,bass clarinet and flute), Clifford Jordan (tenor sax), Jaki Byard (piano), Dannie Richmond (drums) and Johnny Coles (trumpet). Tracks: “So Long Eric,” “Peggy’s Blue Skylight,” “Meditations On Integration,” “Orange Was The Colour Of Her Dress,Then Blue Silk,” “Parkeriana,” “Take The ‘A’ Train.”
 

 
Previously on Dangerous Minds
‘Mingus’: Powerful and heartbreaking documentary portrait of the Jazz giant

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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Incredible unpublished 1995 interview with Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna
06.11.2014
09:42 am

Topics:
Feminism
Heroes
Music

Tags:
Riot Grrrl
Zines
Kathleen Hanna

kathleen h singing
 
I stumbled across a box of old correspondence recently and found a few forgotten letters from Kathleen Hanna, singer for Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, and The Julie Ruin, from almost two decades ago. I vaguely remember sending her an embarrassing number of interview questions for a fly-by-night zine and, to my shock, she responded. She typed a lot of her answers on an honest-to-God typewriter. Unfortunately the zine stopped being produced and this interview didn’t see the light of day…until now.

Kathleen’s support for aspiring young female writers and musicians cannot be overstated. She was the riot grrrl movement’s big sister, muse, and fairy godmother. Bikini Kill wasn’t exactly raking in a ton of money, but she still bought zines from riot grrrls all over the world.

Not only that, she was amazing at introducing girls and building a support network. She asked me to suss out a nearby midwestern college town’s LGBT community for a dyke friend of hers who was moving there to teach at a small conservative university with no out faculty members or LGBT student organizations whatsoever. How could I say “No” to the amazing Kathleen? I was pregnant, prostrate with endless, debilitating morning sickness, unable to look at a computer screen without throwing up, but you bet your ass I still called around, researched, and compiled twenty pages of notes for her to pass along to her professor friend.
 
kathleen zine
 

Q: What was the best show you’ve ever played? What was the worst? And why?

Kathleen Hanna: BEST SHOWS ARE ALWAYS IN MINOT because the kids are spazzy and don’t care about cool….also some of our first shows in Olympia meant a lot to me just because we met w/so much opposition and our friends supported us…...oh yeah, our show in Richmond about a year ½ ago where my sister sang rebel girl & demirep with us and when the bass amp broke she did an acapella medley of songs we used to sing a long to (like on the family record player) and it just about broke my heart. My sister is actually an amazing singer and performer, Imean, I always knew she could sing, cuz we learned together by mimicing records, but I didn’t know what a performer she was till that nite.

Q: What was the stupidest remark any music store clerk has ever made to you?

KH: Okay, both these come from the same guy. 1. I was asking if I could sell my fanzine/writing thing and he said he wouldn’t sell it cuz it didn’t have anything to do with music and I should come back after I write something about my groupie experiences or something. 2. After living in the same town for like 7 years and being in tons of bands, putting on shows, putting out writing, etc….the same guy comes up to me when I’m reading a comic book in his store (incidentally he sold the comic book even thouggh IT had nothing [to] do with music) and starts telling me what a great guy the dude who made the comic is and he used to be in this local band blah blah blah, what he didn’t know is I wrote the comic I was looking at and went out with the dude (asshole) he was talking about for like two years. Duh.

Q: Do you think that there are more or fewer young women these days who fall into the “I’m not a feminist, but…” category than there were five years ago? Why?

KH: I really don’t know, I can’t answer that one.
 
bikinikill
 

Q: What are your thoughts on the following feminist theorists and writers:

a) Andrea Dworkin

KH:  saw her give a lecture. Went up and told her I felt erased by everything she said because I “am a feminist AND a sex worker”. She totally condescended to me and told me i’d pay for what I’d done for the rest of my life. She also lied and said that COYOTE, an organization by and for women who work as prostitutes was not happeneing at all anymore and trashed its founder, Margo St.James, and acted like there were No organizations by and for sex workers in existence (which is and was a total fucking lie) She also believes (or at least she did at this lecture a few years back) that feminists should work with law enforcement agencies which is just fucking stewpid…..and was in support of a bill/legislation (it passed) in WA state that made it so all sex workers (dancers/models/and other legal sex work situations and women who’d been arrested for prostitution) have to register with the police and pay a $75 dollar liscensing fee(obviously this is for legal sex professions) and get fingerprinted.  THIS IS TOTALLY FUCKED UP AND CLASSIST and bogus because it makes it so poor women have to come up with the same 75 dollars as middle class/rich ones would PLUS if you are in a jam because of domestic violence, or whatever and you need a job that pays cash quick, like dancing, say but they make you pay this fee…I mean, who can afford it. I could go on and on. My main problem is that she thinks she can speak for all of us (sex workers and women in general) and she can’t. She’s also totally mean. BUT some of her writing is interesting even though shes full of shit.

b) Germaine Greer

KH: I know about her but am not really familiar with her work.

c) Susan Faludi

KH: I liked backlash, it was sorta like pulp novel reading for feminist theory heads and seemed good, just in general, but I already knew sexism existed.

d) Mary Daly

KH: Shes like an ecofeminist and that shit scares me. I’m sure I’ll read her someday but I really hate the idea that women are more nurturing/close to the earth than men or something…...I think its stewpid and strategically flawed.

e) Naomi Wolf

KH: I read The Beauty Myth, and while it was interesting on some levels, like the idea of beauty being “the third shift” for women, I hated how she kept playing white women against Men and Women of Color, like how she’d be all like (this is not a direct quote) “No employer would expect an African American to do blah blah blah, so why do they expect women to do blah blah blah…” I mean, that shits just stewpid cuz Naomi Wolf doesn’t know jack about whatever any individual African American male OR female has to deal with in terms of employment, and also she would act like all women are white over and over and over and, well, it just so annoying and dumb that I stopped reading it, so whatever.

f) bell hooks

KH: I think bell hooks is one of the most important and creative scholars around. I’ve read almost all her stuff and cant wait till she puts out some fiction ( maybe she has and I don’t know?) Anyways, yeah, I could go on and on. I like studying her writing style because it seems really fluid and effortless even though she is explaining very difficult/complex ideas that are operating on several different levels, usually in a way that both academics and non-academics can understand.
 
kathleenint
 
Q: What do you think of the anti-feminist writers such as Christina Hoff Sommers and Paglia?

KH: I haven’t read them because I don’t feel like it. I have heard stories though and it makes me think that, you know, while some of their ideas maybe interesting, MEN tend to tokenize any woman who says anything that sounds at all, even remotely anti-feminist, and then this whole duality thing starts happening where no one really pays attention to their work anymore. Men just use Them to make women who disagree with them feel like shit…….and then certain feminists dismiss them altogether as male identified. Actually, I think that whole phenomenon is probably more interesting then some of these ladies ideas, but I don’t know, like I said I haven’t read them. I’d like to see more writing by feminists about Tokenization, specifically how it functions in different feminist contexts.

Q: What is your opinion of misogynist FEMALE musicians who insist on bashing other women and not supporting them?

KH: Courtney is boring. I am not interested in her.

Q: What is your favorite piece of musical equipment?

KH: My mouth.

Q: Last two books read?

KH: BE MY BABY by Ronnie Spector. Baudellair Live, Interviews with Baud. edited by Mike Gane

More delightfully outspoken opinions from Hanna, including what rock star might be a candidate for getting “beaten senseless with a brick” after the jump…..

Posted by Kimberly J. Bright | Discussion
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Ask Lemmy: Straight talk from metal’s ace life coach
06.10.2014
06:25 am

Topics:
Amusing
Heroes
Music
Race
Sex

Tags:
Lemmy


 
If there were any doubt in your mind that Motörhead’s apparently indestructible singer/bassist Lemmy Kilmister is a total goddamn genius, I refer you to these two “Ask Lemmy” videos. They were produced for the program Hard N Heavy on the Canadian E1 network in 1994, and in them, the man who gave the world the lyric “They say music is the food of love/Let’s see if you’re hungry enough” offers some perfectly blunt, often hilarious, genuinely sage advice on matters of love, sex, and RACE RELATIONS.

I can add nothing further here. Just watch.
 

 

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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‘The Filthiest Person Alive’: Divine profiled on ‘Night Flight,’ 1986
05.21.2014
06:01 am

Topics:
Heroes
Movies
Television

Tags:
Divine
Night Flight


 
Night Flight was an all-night, only on the weekends “underground” and “cult” TV programming block show that began airing on the USA Network in the early 80s wild west days of cable television. Before Law and Order:OMGWTF existed to fill every time slot on every cable channel in existence, Night Flight was an essential weekly download of deeply weird underground film and music. It was how I found out that Divine existed.

I don’t recall Night Flight ever showing an actual John Waters movie straight through, but they used cut-up segments from his films in their fucked up interstitials and bumps. So when I got to college and had a roommate with a beater VHS tape filled up with nth generation dubs of Mondo Trasho, Multiple Maniacs, Pink Flamingos, and Female Trouble, I knew right away that THAT was the the tape I was going to wear through to thinness while getting high as hell.

But on top of the clips in the interstices, Night Flight showed this substantial interview segment, a wonderful introduction to the talented and genial actor and drag performer, and I don’t just say that because it was my introduction. Check it out.
 

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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Heroic cat saves little boy from vicious dog attack
05.14.2014
10:22 am

Topics:
Animals
Heroes

Tags:
cats


 
YouTuber Roger Triantafilo uploaded this incredible video today of what appears to be a pit bull mix mixed-breed dog attacking his young son who was on his tricycle. What you don’t expect to happen is a cat. Yes, a cat happens. Just watch.

My cat defends my son during a vicious dog attack and runs the dog off before he can do additional damage. Thankfully, my son is fine!

Glad the little boy is doing well.

 
h/t reddit

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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Helen Keller was a militant anti-capitalist radical
05.01.2014
10:22 am

Topics:
Class War
Heroes
History

Tags:
Socialism
Helen Keller


 
Today is International Workers’ Day. Happy May Day comrades!
 

“The few own the many because they possess the means of livelihood of all ... The country is governed for the richest, for the corporations, the bankers, the land speculators, and for the exploiters of labor. The majority of mankind are working people. So long as their fair demands - the ownership and control of their livelihoods - are set at naught, we can have neither men’s rights nor women’s rights. The majority of mankind is ground down by industrial oppression in order that the small remnant may live in ease.”  — Helen Keller, 1911

This is taken from a short essay about Helen Keller’s political activism found at Dorian Cope’s On This Deity blog. It focuses on the parts of her life story that they didn’t teach us about when we learned about Helen Keller in school… Hey, the blind and deaf chick in The Miracle Worker was a commie!

But what the endless accolades and history books almost always fail to mention is that Helen Keller was a militant radical activist. Her views mirrored the likes of the era’s most notorious dissidents – Emma Goldman and Eugene Debs – who were respectively deported and imprisoned for ten years. “I don’t give a damn about semi-radicals,” she infamously proclaimed; indeed, she leaned so far to the left that the FBI kept a file on her for un-American activities. She was a co-founder of the American Civil Liberties Union; a lifelong socialist who campaigned for Eugene Debs’ presidential candidacy; a member of the revolutionary Industrial Workers of the World; a suffragist and crusader for birth control; an anti-fascist (the Nazis publicly burned her books); and a pacifist, who condemned America’s imperialistic motives in both world wars. Having benefited from a privileged background, Helen recognised the social injustices facing those denied the same opportunities – and blamed industrialism and capitalism not only as the root of poverty but also disability-inducing disease. Her anti-capitalist and pro-worker stance was such that at the 1919 Hollywood premiere of a silent film about her own life, she refused to cross an Actors Equity Union picket line and joined the striking workers on their march.

I have to interrupt here. Ponder that last sentence for a moment. THAT is what you call a hero.

In her lifetime, Helen Keller was one of the most recognisable women in the world, and those who flocked to bask in the radiance of her fame were positively scandalised by her beliefs. After publicly supporting the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, admiring the Russian Revolution, and fearlessly lambasting the powerful John D Rockefeller for his role in the Ludlow Mine Massacre (“Mr Rockefeller is a monster of capitalism”), Helen’s radicalism became a source of extreme embarrassment to those who required her to be true to The Myth in order that they might gain:

“So long as I confine my activities to social service and the blind, they compliment me extravagantly, calling me ‘archpriestess of the sightless’, ‘wonder woman’, and ‘a modern miracle,’” Helen bemoaned. “But when it comes to a discussion of poverty, and I maintain that it is the result of wrong economics – that the industrial system under which we live is at the root of much of the physical deafness and blindness in the world – that is a different matter!”

Read the entire essay at On This Deity and watch this amazing footage:
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
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David Bowie narrates ‘Peter and the Wolf,’ 1978
04.29.2014
07:25 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:
David Bowie
Prokofiev
Peter and the Wolf


 
Thanks to its ubiquity in kids’ music appreciation programs, Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf is easily one of the best-known pieces of orchestral music of the 20th Century. Even among those of us who don’t really know classical music in great depth, its main themes are instantly recognizable. As a broadly popular work that was in the USA’s public domain for many years (it’s not anymore, so if you’re an orchestra conductor, don’t go gettin’ any ideas) Peter has been copiously recorded, released, and adapted for other media, but the release that I suspect will be of the greatest interest to DM’s readers is the version I have, RCA’s 1978 LP—on green vinyl!—featuring an enchanting, beautifully recorded performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra under the great Hungarian-born conductor Eugene Ormandy, with narration by David Bowie.
 

 

 
Though the vinyl seems to have only ever been issued once, the recording remains widely available on CD—a quick perusal of Discogs reveals that it was issued on CD several times between 1992 and last year, with a frankly silly cover image of wolf ears collaged onto Mr. Bowie’s head.
 

 

Peter And The Wolf by David Bowie on Grooveshark

 
We’ve heard lately that a few readers have had problems with Grooveshark embeds. If you’re among them and you want to hear this, there’s a YouTube playlist of the recording here. And if you don’t mind an abridged version (and you can endure an ad), you may enjoy this clever superimposition of the edited Bowie narration over a famous 1946 animated short.
 

 
Now, this has nothing to do with the Bowie version, but I don’t know when else I’m going to get to bring this up: if you still haven’t seen the 2006 stop-motion Peter and the Wolf by Suzie Templeton, you really need to do that as soon as possible. It’s free for streaming to Netflix and Amazon Prime subscribers (and a bargainous $2 for non-Prime users), and it is absolutely wonderful. I couldn’t find an embeddable version of the whole thing, but here’s a taste.
 

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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Frank Zappa as record label honcho in ‘From Straight to Bizarre’


 
By far the majority of artist-run record labels exist as mere vanity imprints, releasing an album or two by the musician/would-be entrepreneur him/herself, and that’s that. Noteworthy exceptions are certainly around—Trent Reznor’s Nothing Records and Null Corporation, Ani DiFranco’s Righteous Babe, and Jack White’s Third Man are a few artist-run labels that have achieved significant successes.

An early example of such an artist using his own label to bypass the strictures of major label deals is, unsurprisingly, the iconoclastically independent-minded Frank Zappa. In the late ‘60s, when Verve Records inexplicably missed their deadline to re-up Zappa’s contract, he and his manager Herb Cohen used that leverage to establish their own production company and label, to retain creative control, and to release artists they favored. The labels they established were Straight Records and Bizarre Records. Between them, in a mere five years of existence, the labels released albums by Lenny Bruce and Wild Man Fischer, and now-immortal recordings like Alice Cooper’s Love It to Death, Tim Buckley’s Starsailor, and Captain Beefheart essentials like Trout Mask Replica and Lick My Decals Off, Baby.
 

 
Tom O’Dell’s 2011 documentary From Straight to Bizarre tells the labels’ story in detail, through interviews with Pamela Des Barres, John “Drumbo” French, Sandy “Essra Mohawk” Hurvitz, Kim Fowley, Alice Cooper’s Dennis Dunaway and the Mothers of Invention’s Jeff Simmons, among many others. YouTube user Treble Clef has broken the feature-length doc into short chunks for your piecemeal viewing convenience. There’s a lot of illuminating stuff herein, so please, enjoy.
 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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Lou Reed and Brian Eno, together at last: it’s ‘Metal Machine Music For Airports’


 
When the mashup phenomenon hit remix culture a dozen or so years ago, I found the whole business exhilarating. DJs were gleefully combining a capella tracks with instrumental beds from often wholly incompatible songs and making it work, sometimes giving valuable new context to classics, sometimes even creating tracks that improved on both of their sources. People like dsico, Freelance Hellraiser, and the massively gifted and almost frighteningly prolific Go Home Productions were fashioning technically impressive and admirably witty pop-song syntheses.

What I’m sharing with you today isn’t nearly as advanced as all that.
 

 
Some clever or stupid person (it’s such a fine line) using the nom de YouTube “machined01” has mashed up Lou Reed‘s immortal noise prank Metal Machine Music with Brian Eno’s groundbreaking Ambient 1: Music for Airports. Not a dazzling technical feat, surely, but the results, surprisingly, are really lovely.
 

‘Metal Machine Music For Airports 1
 

‘Metal Machine Music For Airports 2
 

‘Metal Machine Music For Airports 3
 

‘Metal Machine Music For Airports 4

Feel free to kick the concept up a level and play all four at once.

Here’s a fantastic TV clip of Eno talking about Music For Airports, and how he arrived at the ideas that would codify just about all of the ambient music that followed. It’s not very long, and well worth the few minutes of your time.
 

 
A big ol’ hat tip is due to Pitchfork/The Wire scribe Marc Masters (who also co-wrote the book on No-Wave, as it happens) for this find.

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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