If I may, I’d like to speak to the ladies a moment. The women, the females, the girls; there’s something I think you’ll find very interesting. I’m so sure of this, that I’m just gonna hit you with it cold; straight, no chaser. Afterwards, I’ll reveal why.
The following YouTube link should be cued up to the correct spot, but on the off chance it isn’t, you’re looking for the 9:04 mark: “The Slave”, from Art Bears’ 1979 album Winter Songs. The lyrics are under the link in case you’d like to read them. The words are so clearly sung, you probably won’t even need to.
1941 is a not-very-good comedy from 1979, directed by a young Steven Spielberg. It has an all-star cast; John Belushi, Robert Stack, Slim Pickens, Ned Beatty, and Christopher Lee, just to name a few. The score, from the dependable John Williams, is rousing and bombastic, with a great send-up of Glenn Miller that plays before a “zoot-suit riot”. The movie is a farce about a small California town that descends into chaos when a Japanese sub appears off the coast, just after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
The destruction effects, and Slim Pickens faking a forceful shit by chucking a boot in a toilet, greatly endeared 1941 to me as a boy, to the point where I drove my dad nuts with it. He knew it was a stupid, leaden bomb. I saw Dan Aykroyd with nylon hose on his head and oranges in his eyes screaming “I’m a bug”, and I lost my mind. Then I tried it myself one day, and I almost lost my eyesight. Continue reading →
I have been a DEVO fan- a “DEVOtee”, if you will- for a very long time. 35 years ago, I was witnessing the video for “Whip It” for the first time, on the brand-new cable channel MTV. I knew a lot of spoiled kids.
When a good time turns around.
It’s not one of my favorite DEVO singles, but I appreciate its historical importance. Even today, it sounds truly weird. However, it came to be so closely linked with DEVO and their visual style, eventually it was the only song anyone brought up. Continue reading →
In college, I split-majored, in both graphic design and illustration. I’m a cartoonist, but when I graduated high school, that wasn’t a common part of art-school curriculum. In illustration, I learned the most important aspect of rendering;figure studies. After all, there will never come a time when human anatomical knowledge is unnecessary. The skill to draw any part of the body you inhabit will never hold you back.
However, I was naive in my choice of studies. I was so eager to learn all that I could, I didn’t grasp that graphic design requires the left (analytical) side of the brain, and illustration (creative) requires the right. For a green teen, it was too much; I burned out and then dropped out. I couldn’t jockey back and forth across the hippocampus day after day. While trying to ink the sewer grate for the cover of the second Mike The Pod Comix, I had a psychotic episode and hurled my sketchbook down the dorm hallway.
The greatest concept album of all time is Frank Zappa’s Joe’s Garage.
That’s not my opinion. It’s fact. Joe’s Garage is superior to any rock concept album you could offer in comparison. And I tell you this emphatically; mankind will never produce anything in the future that surpasses it.