Before Wes Anderson made his first full-length film, Bottle Rocket, the quirky auteur’s plot-line was auditioned in a short he directed in 1992. Co-written with Owen Wilson (the two shared a play-writing class at UT Austin), the earlier film, also called Bottle Rocket, was a skeleton of their later feature. It’s a heist film, of sorts, but with low-stakes and an offhand narrative styling that keeps it comic and fun. Brothers Owen and Luke Wilson star as partners in crime, and their on-screen sibling chemistry is recognizable from the get-go.
The original Bottle Rocket is more Woody Allen or Jim Jarmusch than anything current fans would recognize as Anderson’s trademark style. His characteristic austere, lyrical dialogue is absent, opting here instead for clamoring and conversational. The high contrast black and white feels about as alien as possible from the warm, golden tones we now associate with his work. And while the short makes ready use of good music, it’s all cool jazz, as opposed to the exotica Bowie covers, Nico and 60’s mod rockers.
Supposedly, Anderson can’t stand to watch the short (even though it was screened at Sundance), but aside from the fact that I think it’s a good little film, it’s fascinating to see someone’s work develop and bloom into something so richly different. Anyway, I like it way better than his Prada perfume commercials.
“To those who’ve followed the latter-day activities of the Zappa estate executrix, this latest move may seem a bit worrisome.”
Perhaps it does. Don Van Vliet died in December of 2010 and is survived by his wife Jan. If Gail Zappa is working on behalf of the widow Beefheart—and maybe she is—well, that’s one thing. If she’s not, that would be quite another. At this point no one seems to know exactly what’s going on.
Gail Zappa filed for the Captain Beefheart trademark in August of 2012. The Zappa Family Trust released the “original” 1976 version of his Bat Chain Puller album earlier that year. The tapes had gotten caught up in a legal dispute between Frank Zappa and his former business partner/manager Herb Cohen and Zappa refused to allow it to be released, causing Beefheart to rerecord the album as Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller) for Warner Bros. Records in 1978.
The description provided to the USPTO for CAPTAIN BEEFHEART is Audio and video recordings featuring music and concerts; musical sound recordings; musical video recordings; phonograph records featuring music; pre-recorded CDs, DVDs, audio tapes, video tapes, audio discs, video discs, audio cartridges, and video cartridges featuring music and concerts; downloadable audio recordings, downloadable video recordings, and downloadable MP3 files all featuring music and concerts; downloadable motion picture films, downloadable television shows and downloadable radio shows all featuring music and concerts; downloadable multimedia files featuring music and concerts; electronic publications, namely, books, magazines, manuals, journals, catalogs, brochures, newsletters, featuring music and concerts recorded on computer media; interactive multimedia computer game programs; music-composition software; software for creating music; software featuring musical sound recordings and musical video recordings; multimedia software recorded on CD-ROM featuring music and concerts; electronic game software; downloadable ring tones for mobile phones; downloadable graphics for mobile phones; sunglasses.
There’s bound to be more to this story… Stay tuned.
UPDATE: I found this on the GZ sez section of Zappa.com:
Re: Trout Mask Replica -Jan Van Vliet
Added: April 29th, 2013 in Questions
On Apr 11, 2013, at 2:11 AM, Odd Magnus Grimeland wrote:
I would think Jan Van Vliet has an interest in the estate of Don, similar to your own interest in the estate of Frank. I wonder how she is involved in the new issue of Trout Mask Replica and how her interests are taken care of?
O. M. Grimeland
GZ: There really isn’t a cordial way of not minding your own business and answering for anyone other than myself is not my business.
A young Joey Ramone’s birthday party (with his brother, Mickey Leigh) via ICPWAG
Starting July 1, Florida head shop proprietors found selling pipes, bongs, and bowls, etc. will be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor; any subsequent violation will result in a third-degree felony charge, in which they lose the right to vote - Huffington Post
Young Turks join ‘standing man’ protests after arrest of performance artist - The Times UK
Bioshock’s Ken Levine writing Logan’s Run movie remake - Boing Boing
Exodus International, the world’s largest ministry claiming to be able to “cure homosexuality” and turn gay men towards a “heterosexual lifestyle,” announced the ministry is shutting down. Leader apologizes - Freedom Requires Wings
New link suggests George W. Bush direct descendant of notorious slave trader - Salon
Leah Gordon’s photographs of Kanaval in Haiti - Juxtapoz
Watch Right Now: Andrew W.K. playing drums for 24 hours straight - Mashable
Lemmy Kilmister recently underwent surgery to have a defibrillator fitted into his chest - Cherry Bombed
James Gandolfini reads from Maurice Sendak’s children’s story “In The Night Kitchen” - Open Culture
Great-grandfather banned from pub after twice complaining his peas were served cold - Arbroath
The gut-wrenching science behind the world’s hottest peppers - Smithsonian
R2-D2 cake with Princess Leia hologram projector - Geekologie
Deep anxiety about the ability to have children later in life plagues many women. But the decline in fertility over the course of a woman’s 30s has been oversold. Here’s what the statistics really tell us—and what they don’t - The Atlantic
Today’s entry comes from Michelle White, daughter of Clarence White, guitarist for second iteration of The Byrds:
I was in diapers so I have lots of glitched memories of walking in rooms with overwhelming loud playing, some were parties (of course I was led quickly right back to bed). I do remember coming to an age where I was pointed out certain licks my father did on the guitar that no one else could replicate…. and at times (I am 47) I am STILL blown away…
Clarence White was cut down in the prime of his life after he was struck by a drunk driver in 1973 at the age of 29. The final song that Gram Parsons wrote before his own death, “In My Hour of Darkness,” was in part a tribute to White.
Maryanne Amacher was, like Alvin Lucier, La Monte Young and others, another of the avant garde composers who gave birth to the modern “noise” movement. Unlike most of these musical pioneers, however, Amacher deliberately created compositions that had a high likelihood of really driving you away. You see, Amacher focused on special tones that had a unique property: When certain tones are played, the human ear will tend to resonate with them and, as a result, it will feel as if someone is directly thumping on your ears with their fingers. It’s pretty disturbing if you’re not used to it. Even if you ARE used to it the effect is still pretty disturbing.
Here’s what Amacher said of her “3rd ear” compositions:
When played at the right sound level, which is quite high and exciting, the tones in this music will cause your ears to act as neurophonic instruments that emit sounds that will seem to be issuing directly from your head ... (my audiences) discover they are producing a tonal dimension of the music which interacts melodically, rhythmically, and spatially with the tones in the room. Tones ‘dance’ in the immediate space of their body, around them like a sonic wrap, cascade inside ears, and out to space in front of their eyes ... Do not be alarmed! Your ears are not behaving strange or being damaged! ... these virtual tones are a natural and very real physical aspect of auditory perception, similar to the fusing of two images resulting in a third three dimensional image in binocular perception ... I want to release this music which is produced by the listener ..
Maryanne Amacher passed away in 2009. John Zorn’s incredible Tzadik label has released two CD compilations of her work.
Some of these “3rd ear” noise ideas made it into Glenn Branca’s work and, from there, into Thurston Moore and Sonic Youth’s music as well. Indeed, here’s Thurston Moore hanging with Amacher: I find it endearing that he appears to be trying hard to act cool in the company of such a wondrous artist. Note that to hear the 3rd ear effect you have to turn the volume up quite a bit:
...a house where proper precautions against disturbance can be taken; this being arranged, there is really nothing to do but to aspire with increasing fervor and concentration, for six months, towards the obtaining of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel.
Boleskine suited Crowley’s needs, and he later described the place in Confessions:
The house is a long low building. I set apart the south-western half for my work. The largest room has a bow window and here I made my door and constructed the terrace and lodge. Inside the room I set up my oratory proper. This was a wooden structure, lined in part with the big mirrors which I brought from London.
For Crowley, Boleskine House was a “Thelemic Kiblah”, a “Magical East”, where he could practice the Black Mass and summon demons. It is these demons which are believed by many to have caused the strange, monstrous disruption to the loch. Crowley later described the events in his later autobiography which basically go something like this:
...the spirits he summoned got out of hand, causing one housemaid to leave, and a workman to go mad. He also insinuates he was indirectly responsible for a local butcher accidentally severing an artery and bleeding to death. Crowley had written the names of some demons on a bill from the butcher’s shop.
Aleister Crowley and the Other Loch Ness Monster is an engaging short documentary, directed by Garry S. Grant. It contains fine interviews with Kenneth Anger, Colin Wilson, Neil Oram, Head of the UK OTO, John Bonner and Mogg Morgan. And the commentary is read by former Jesus of Nazareth, Robert Powell.
Back to my American friend. As we headed off into the night, in search of another bar, he said, “You ever think that monster was maybe Cthulhu?”