Friday, September 17, 2004

Music - Muzak "One man's meat is another man's poisson"

It's such a lock-in, music. The associations and the generations... and the imprints.

I started playing Country Joe and The Fish to Julie, but all it reminded her of was Jefferson Airplane...sure, West Coast rock...but her 'best of' compilation is in the wrong order for me - who thinks they only made "Surrealistic Pillow" and then sloped off to be fat, rich and coked out - (although I quite like "Bless it's Pointed Little Head" - and went to see them live in the rain on Hampstead Heath) - ever-changing their sleeping-together patterns, hiring and firing each other...doing stadium rock. Don't get me wrong - I loved 'em, I ended up living on the beach in Bolinas...the time I was going to swim in Grace Slick's pool I was told the kids had peed in it, so it wasn't on for the day (sure). I even went with El Circo del Sol all the way to LA to do a 'circus' act at the opening ceremony for Big Grunt records and hear them live again...on acid (not a great plan) and so on. The music still got less and less interesting as time passed.

And now Frank Zappa is on the box downstairs - again, don't get me wrong, he can be funny. I loved Freak Out! but telling me he made 50 albums since then doesn't help. To me he's a control freak Capricorn, sarcastic, bombastic, smug and self-satisfied - didn't even let his musicians smoke dope, then killed himself with cigarettes (huh?) - just doing his 'Frank' thing. Sure he was some sort of genius (aren't we all?) Oh, and I like "Titties and Beer" (sounds like they're having a laff), but that's just because it was the first thing I heard when Herman put the elecricity back on in Castellar (by tapping power from the pylons). Yeh, it's funny - but how many times are you going to listen to funny?

I know Julie just hears Bob Dylan as mr.constipated whiny voice (she thought Jimi Hendrix wrote "All Along the Watchtower")...and I gave up saying he was a genius of popular music - broke the 3 minute record mould, said you could write yer own songs to The Beatles and The Stones and David Bowie and everyone - mastered folk, rock, gospel, blues - drawing on old traditions, and creating new ones for 40 years, hanging out with great musicians, and even outlived clean-living Frank(!) But no. He's that bloke with the strangled vocal chords. Fair enough.

Reality tunnels and imprints rule us all...

Click pic to see larger


Deek Deekster said...

ha ha ! your comment about Zappa so true. I still love him though.. scarcely matched for irreverance, taboo-demolishing like Bill Hicks who also smoked himself to death and died young, and what a huge scale of musical imagination (volume of output is neither here nor there - it's quality not quantity).. amazing albums like Hot Rats, Sleep Dirt, Over Nite Sensation, Apostrophe, Sheik Yerbouti and his later trilogy Joes Garage still very underrated IMHO.


PS: Found you by searching Blog profiles listing Roget's Thesaurus

Toby said...

Hi Deek

I know, I know. I was just being snide in public. How outrageous can you get (well, more than this, obviously).

I just lean to the improvisers who never do anything the same twice - and Bob is famous for throwing his scratch bands by changing key, tempo - throwing in unrehearsed songs, etc. Yeh!

I am equally impressed by organisation (I can assure you that jugglers and comedians have a lot of control) but I still prefer the 'go-with-the-flow' people, even if it is a partial illusion (Bill Hicks, Lenny Bruce, Eddie Izzard and ALL the jazz musicians...)

Related Posts with Thumbnails