Well, it’s been almost fifteen years and Jarvis Cocker still hasn’t gotten his much deserved knighthood for jumping onstage during Michael Jackson’s ludicrous “messianic” performance at the 1996 Brit awards when the King of Pop implied he had the power to heal children and sick people. While the incident is well-known, of course, in the UK, this story is less known outside of Britain.
As Cocker told BBC’s Question Time in 2009:
“He was pretending to be Jesus. I’m not religious but I think, as a performer myself, the idea of someone pretending to have the power of healing is just not right. Rock stars have big enough egos without pretending to be Jesus – that was what got my goat, that one particular thing.”
Cocker and his friend, former Pulp member Peter Mansell jumped onstage and caused comic confusion before being led off by security. It was reported at the time that Jarvis “mooned” Jackson (that’s what I always believed) but this is not true at all.
The incident itself, which took place on live television. GENIUS!!! Even if you’ve seen it before, it’s still laugh out loud funny.
The police detained the Pulp frontman on suspicion of assault. A former attorney, comedian Bob Mortimer represented Cocker, who was released without charge.
Noel Gallagher, of Oasis proclaimed, “Jarvis Cocker is a star and he should be given an MBE.” Clearly the editors of the Melody Maker felt the same way. I was already a huge Pulp fan at the time, but this made me love them—and their lanky, fashionable and intellectual frontman—all the more.
After the jump, Jarvis Cocker’s press conference about the incident, Cocker looking back on the Brit awards stage invasion in 2009 and how the story was reported on at the time in Amercia..
This letter from Jack Kerouac to Marlon Brando in which Kerouac pitches the idea of a movie version for On The Road starring Brando was auctioned by Christies for $36,000 a few years ago. A check Jack can’t cash.
I’m praying that you’ll buy ON THE ROAD and make a movie of it. Don’t worry about the structure, I know to compress and re-arrange the plot a bit to give a perfectly acceptable movie-type structure: making it into one all-inclusive trip instead of the several voyages coast-to-coast in the book, one vast round trip from New York to Denver to Frisco to Mexico to New Orleans to New York again. I visualize the beautiful shots could be made with the camera on the front seat of the car showing the road (day and night) unwinding into the windshield, as Sal and Dean yak. I wanted you to play the part because Dean (as you know) is no dopey hotrodder but a real intelligent (in fact Jesuit) Irishman. You play Dean and I’ll play Sal (Warner Bros. mentioned I play Sal) and I’ll show you how Dean acts in real life…we can go visit him in Frisco, or have him come down to L.A. still a real frantic cat. All I want out of this is to able to establish myself and my Mother a trust fund for life, so I can really go around roaming around the world…to write what comes out of my head and free to feed my buddies when they’re hungry. What I wanta do is re-do the theater and the cinema in America, give it a spontaneous dash, remove pre-conceptions of “situation” and let people rave on as they do in real life…The French movies of the 30’s are still far superior to ours because the French really let their actors come on and the writers didn’t quibble with some preconceived notion of how intelligent the movie audience is…American theater & Cinema at present is an outmoded dinosaur that ain’t mutated along with the best in American Literature.
Come on now Marlon, put up your dukes and write! ...signed in blue ink Jack Kerouac
Well, well, well, at long last the LA City Council has actually done something I can respect: On January 5th, they adjourned a meeting early in honor of the passing of Don Van Vliet, AKA Captain Beefheart and presented this certificate of (??) at the recent Beefheart symposium in Los Angeles.
I guess any excuse to get off early with that lot, but the sentiment is appreciated (and at least they weren’t at work further messing up the medical marijuana situation in the city!)
In terms of political philosophy, reggae has leaned largely towards Marcus Garvey, Paul Bogle, Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. Here are a couple of exceptions, salutes to the man who we celebrate today in the U.S.
First, “Martin Luther King” by Max Romeo from Reconstruction, his 1979 follow up to his landmark album War Ina Babylon.
Here’s “Martin Luther King”, one of the tracks on studio wizard Scientist’s 1983 album International Heroes Dub with the Forces of Music band. Other track titles include “George Jackson”, “Ho Chi Minh”, “Malcolm X” and “Desmond Tutu”...
In 1978, at a time after the end of the Sex Pistols, but before Public Image Ltd. was formed, John Lydon gave an actual friendly interview to Janet Street-Porter. Cheerful, not at all rotten Mr. Lydon—seen here looking even more Dickensian than usual in a top hat he says he purchased at Disneyland—discusses how he’d like to see Malcolm McClaren dead, how he made no money whatsoever from the Sex Pistols and he touches ever so briefly on his recent trip to Jamaica, where he’d been scouting reggae talent (and meeting some musical heroes) for Richard Branson’s Virgin Records.
Lydon also reminds us that tickets for the USA Sex Pistols tour cost two bucks!
I’ve been sitting on a pretty decent but not perfect bootleg DVD of Alejandro’s nightmarish 1989 film, Santa Sangre for the last six years, but I could never bring myself to watch it because I knew (I thought) that a proper DVD release was just around the corner. Well, it took long enough, but it looks like it was worth the wait, as Severin Films is about to release the film on Blu-ray and regular DVD on January 25th with over five hours of extras, including deleted scenes, Jodorowsky’s audio commentary, multiple documentaries and interviews with key members of the cast and crew.
To commemorate the long awaited re-release of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s masterpiece SANTA SANGRE on DVD and Blu-Ray, Severin Films and The American Cinematheque will be presenting a 35mm screening of the film, preceded by a reception, at the Egyptian Theater, Hollywood Blvd. There will be a special Q & A after the film with soundtrack composer Simon Boswell, whose other credits include work for Danny Boyle, Clive Barker and Dario Argento.
More screenings will take place on 1/19 at the Alamo Downtown, Austin, TX, 1/24 at the reRun, Brooklyn, NY and 1/24 at the Brattle Theatre, Cambridge, MA followed by a Q & A with Star Sabrina Dennison.
Blanca Guerra, Guy Stockwell and the filmmaker¹s sons Axel and Adan Jodorowsky star in this surreal epic about a young circus performer, the crime of passion that shatters his soul, and the macabre journey back to the world of his armless mother and deaf-mute lover. “This is a movie like none I have seen before,” wrote Roger Ebert in his original four-star review, “a wild kaleidoscope of images and outrages, a collision between Freud and Fellini. It contains blood and glory, saints and circuses, and unspeakable secrets of the night. And it is all wrapped up in a flamboyant parade of bold, odd, striking imagery, with Alejandro Jodorowsky as the ringmaster. SANTA SANGRE is a movie in which the inner chambers of the soul are laid bare.”
I have to admit that now that I know this is coming out on Blu-ray, I’m salivating to see it. I haven’t seen Santa Sangre since I first saw it in a theater when it was released. Jodorowsy’s films are just too amazing visually to watch on bootleg DVDs. On Blu-ray, however, this will be a (sur)real treat!
Jim DeRogatis’ book, Let it Blurt: The Life and Times of Lester Bangs, America’s Greatest Rock Critic is a book that you either devour in one sitting or else you’d never pick it up in the first place. Me, I sucked it down like it was oxygen. Lester Bangs was one of my heros and I loved him to pieces. To read such a meticulously researched and well-written bio of the man was like a dream come true for me.
In the book, DeRogatis tells the tale of his own visit with Lester Bangs at his messy apartment on Sixth Ave and 14th St, in New York. DeRogatis was still in high school at the time and was there interviewing the writer for a class assignment. Two weeks later, Bangs was dead from an accidental drug overdose. As a nice digital coda to Let It Blurt, DeRogatis gave the complete interview to the Perfect Sound Forever website. Here’s an excerpt:
Jim DeRogatis: That makes it easier. I’m kind of turning the tables on you now.
I’m not a hard interview.
How did you get your start writing about rock ‘n’ roll?
They used to have a little box, believe it or not, in the pages of Rolling Stone in like 1968 that said, “Do you write, draw, take pictures? Send us your stuff.” So I started sending them reviews. The first four reviews I sent, let’s see, I said that Anthem of the Sun by the Grateful Dead and Sailor by Steve Miller were pieces of shit and White Light/White Heat by the Velvet Underground and Nico’s The Marble Index were masterpieces, and White Light/White Heat was the best album of 1968. I couldn’t figure out why they weren’t printing any of these things. Then this MC5 album, Kick Out the Jams, came out, and they had this big article in there saying the MC5 were the greatest band in the world and all this, so I went out and bought it. Just like anybody, you buy something you don’t like and you feel like you bought a hype. And I wrote this really like, blaaah!, scathing sort of review. And I sent a letter with it and said, “Look, fuckheads, I’m as good as any writer you’ve got in there. You better print this or give me the reason why.” And they did, they printed it, and that was the beginning.
How long were you with Rolling Stone?
I was never on the staff at Rolling Stone. I freelanced for them from that point, which was like March of 1969, until about ‘73, I guess, when Jann Wenner threw me out for being, quote, “Disrespectful to musicians,” end quote. I wrote a review of Canned Heat, an album called New Age, that said, “Why do we love Canned Heat? Let us count the ways. We love them because they did the longest boogie ever put on record. We love them because…” I mean it was making fun of them. I guess you’re not supposed to do that. Well, obviously not in that magazine.
Did that change your opinion of Rolling Stone?
No. I knew it was a piece of shit. The reviews I did for them really stuck out like sore thumbs. And I never did get along with Jann, because he really likes the suck-up type of writing. He doesn’t like people that are stylists unless it’s somebody he wants to suck up to himself, like Norman Mailer or Truman Capote or someone like that. And Jon Landau, my editor there at the time, did not go to bat for me, which Paul Nelson did later. When Paul Nelson got the job of record review editor, he told Wenner, “There’s certain people I want to write for the magazine.” And he said, “Like who?” And Nelson said, “Well, like Lester Bangs.” And Wenner said, “No way.” Nelson said, “Well if you don’t take him, you can’t have me.” That’s what kind of a friend Nelson is. He has integrity, which Landau didn’t have. Landau was saying things at the time like every Glenn Campbell album, every Jerry Vale album, every Helen Reddy album, every Ann Murray album was a distinct piece of art which should not be looked at as a piece of product.
That’s definitely against your theory, right? Rock is not art.
Oh, I don’t know. I double back on myself so much. There’s the trash aesthetic and all that. The way I’ve written about the Velvet Underground and Van Morrison, of course it’s art.
Like many of you out there, we here at Dangerous Minds are waiting patiently (or not so patiently as the case might be) for the DVD and Blu-ray release of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s fantastic (in every way) film Santa Sangre from the fine folks at Severin Films (you can also blame them for Birdemic), due to drop this month. In an effort to sate your Jodorowsky fever, here’s a link to a blog with several dozen examples of Jodorowsky’s Sunday comic, Fabulas panicas, written, drawn and colored by the great filmmaker, writer, composer and shaman in the years between 1967 and 1973 for the rightwing Mexican newspaper, El Heraldo de México.
Like most of Jodorowsky’s work, these comics aim to teach a life lesson or produce a psychological epiphany in the reader. Can you imagine how much the original panels would be worth, and will be worth in the future? Hopefully while Alejandro Jodorowsky is still living, a museum level survey of his graphic work will occur. It’s a honor he richly deserves.
347 of the Fabulas panicas strips appear in a book published by Grijalbo.