Friday, September 28, 2012

IGGY and THE STOOGES vs. Le Regazze Adolescenti Nudi

Apparently Sept. 27, 2012, Firenze, Italia proved a memorable gig on the summer tour by Iggy and The Stooges. Queried about the stage invasion of a comely, topless ragazza adolescente, their legendary Raw Power guitarist retained the best view onstage and noted:

James Williamson-- "I love our crew. If you look carefully (at the video below) a security guy tried to throw her off stage so they grabbed him and threw him off...she stayed...yeah I had to concentrate on what I was doing with her right in front of me...great show!"


photographs from 1.11.11 Hollywood Palladium
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Thursday, September 27, 2012

FERAL KIZZY live and sizzling 8.23.12

 They were recommended by no less than Ruby of the Ruby Friedman Orchestra. When a world class singer like Ruby calls another singer great, that's high recommend indeed. So, off on a 60 mile trek to Fullerton, Calif. to see the tail end of a residency by  FERAL KIZZY at the Continental Room.
My reaction? To quote Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction, "I say goddamn!" as it was that much of a mind-blow-blast! (but without Mia's fateful repercussions.)

So much there to compliment!  Singer Kizzy Kirk is fearless.
Peripatetically spending over half the set out amongst the audience, she flopped on strangers to carry her aloft, shanghaied pals to sing along on the dance floor, then swung precariously from the stage curtains, all while mini-skirted. None of a hardcore crowd's forced proactive dives here, her antics remain friendly but in your face.

She's been compared overall to Patti Smith which is balderdash. Her performing style is sui generis, emotive vocally as well as physically, somewhat closer to PJ Harvey-- inventive, athletic but strangely graceful. And that insistent yet sultry voice harkens back to young British punkers of the 1970s like Ari Up of The Slits or Poly Styrene of XRaySpex (in a slightly lower register.) To great effect, it's a modern, girlish voice atop that womanly physique.

 Their quirky songwriting's sound is hard alt-rock while the lyrics are narrative like a junior Randy Newman, containing odd scanning choices, which I quite like as in "..we discovered that fighting and YELLing are two DIFFerent things..."
All eyes may be on Kizzy, but the whole band's contributions make it all congeal. They are: Kizzy Kirk: vocals; Johnny Lim: guitar; Brenda Carsey: keyboards, vocals;  Hannah Smith-Keller: bass; Mike Meza: drums.

Great things surely must unfurl for this band Feral Kizzy. I'll give modern singing great Ruby Friedman the last word when informed I finally caught them live,"Woohooo! 'Told ya they rawked and rolled! Now you've been 'experienced' too!" 

                                         behold saurian merchandise 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

THE DOGS' leap of faith

I just finished writing liner notes to a forthcoming second retrospective dvd release by Future Now on THE DOGS' heady longtime career and found a few oddities from my photo files. 

Above, trying out the Phillippe Halsman jumping genre at a photo op of THE DOGS in a recording studio in the late 1980s. Odd interpretation of jumping by some. Left to right, Dogs' drummer Tony Matteucci, Ross Elliot- manager from Jamie Cohen's office, Dogs' singer/guitarist Loren Molinare, producer Warren Croyle, Dogs' bassist Marty Kay, pal Harlan Hollander, backer Frank Culbertson.

Below, The Dogs in 1986 with actress Tina Louise and a beneficiary of their charity gig. Niagara Detroit deemed this shot "Halfway to Arbus-ville."  Le mot juste! 

A FEW of my VINTAGE BOOKS under $2.00 when purchased new

My UCLA painting teacher Ed Ruscha published photographs of his own LP record collection as sort of a performance art book, a new concept at the time. As he was considered the West Coast equivalent of Andy Warhol, believe me this was considered High Art. Other of his masterpieces in the 1960s were "Every Building On The Sunset Strip" (depicting photos of same) and "Royal Road Test" (wherein a Royal typewriter [sort of a proto-computer to you young'uns] was hurled from a speeding automobile,) both of which I still possess.

 In this same artistic spirit I present a smidgeon of my own library featuring books that I purchased new when they were first published (whatever edition it was: obviously [at least to some] I am no contemporary of William Blake) which cost no more than $2.00 full purchase price at the time. Clicking to enlarge these pics will verify same on some covers.

Saturday, September 15, 2012


Back when I was a natural light snob and flashless, I took this chiaroscuro shot of Sandy Denny, Trevor Lucas et al in Fairport Convention, live at The Troubadour, West Hollywood, with absolutely no light whatsoever. It probably dates from 1974. Check LINK for a far better shot of this band, albeit a different lineup, circa 1973 at UCLA.

I was part of a conjoined media/group interview with Ms. Denny shortly thereafter in reference to her new solo ambitions, and was as embarrassed as the interviewee herself at my colleagues' lack of knowledge of her career. After an onslaught of their Fairport FAQs, she brightened considerably at my first query, wherein I wanted to know the source of the plentiful maritime themes in her own songwriting. Unfortunately this article has been lost to the mists of time or more likely, the damage fallout to my files by the Northridge Earthquake.

SPOONFUL a la 1968

Above, photo and sculpture of mine from actual 1968. I took art classes at Stanford University between prep school graduation and college, making this life-sized plaster man holding a spoon while sitting in a chair (everyone copied my propping up the statue with furniture as soon as I unveiled same.) It remained at Stanford when I returned home to Southern Calif...

For those with lurid minds, yes, my sculpture was influenced by the song below and the British fellow, a Michael York lookalike but with curly blond hair who had introduced me to the music of Richard and Mimi Farina (video below) and assorted blues greats.
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Thursday, September 13, 2012

ANDY PRIEBOY, off kilter mega-talent

The composition deliberately was photographed off kilter to mirror its subject, as his metier was awfully strange for a highly successful music biz star.

This was Andy Prieboy circa the late 1980s
in the pre-broadcast green room for the television show Tom & Randy's Excellent Videos (early cable tv offering of superior, alternative music fare from writers Tom Kidd and Randy Karr. Tom in particular was [and remains] known for being the rare insightful music writer with integrity in a business that openly declares war on these very attributes.)

Prieboy was on top of the world when this photo was taken, and I appreciated his sly smirk for same. He'd authored "Tomorrow Wendy," which had just become a viable chart hit for Concrete Blonde, a song improbably about suicide related to a diagnosis of AIDS which was then wholly untreatable. I should know: one of my first cousins died of this somewhat later. I miss him still.

Earlier Prieboy had replaced Stan Ridgway as lead vocalist/co-songwriter in another alternative hit band, Wall of Voodoo circa1983. He then took flight with fascinating solo work that was lyrically as original as Randy Newman's genre and sonically complex as Jellyfish or Procol Harum. In "Upon My Wicked Son" his original tunes in myriad styles bore titles such as "Maybe That's Not Her Head," "Joliet" (as in the prison,) "Man Talk" and my personal favorite "Montezuma Was A Man Of Faith" (with its catchy chorus " 'kept his faith, gave his world away..." in response to mistaking conquistadors as Gods. Plus ca change, plus le meme chose.)

He later composed a fascinating operetta in the late 1990s utilizing a deliberately corny Broadway Musical high style entitled "White Trash Wins Lotto" about an Axl Rose-type metal god, performed as a work in progress in clubs and on Conan O'Brien's eponymous tv show, said musical sadly left unfinished. He's now one of the Kings of Download, satisfying fans everywhere online.

I never got to photograph him live due to an odd exigent factor (not excuse.) My only photo invite was to one of those revolving clubs, the type housed in non-clubs with entirely different businesses during the day, different types of music on different nights, and entirely different addresses and places each time it occurred. Off I drove to Long Beach in the middle of the night, only to find no building with anything remotely resembling its address in an area of all seaside port-related warehouses and bunkers, none of which had any identification in words nor numbers. This pre-dated cell-phones to rectify such quandries, and after I ended up on a bridge in the shipyard docks with no hope of finding this invisible, Brigadoon-style disappearing club, I called it a night and slunk home in frustrated despair.

Monday, September 10, 2012


#1. First favorite soundtrack moment of epiphany. Although Philip Glass composed it for a previous film Powaqqatsi, its usage in The Truman Show wordlessly encompasses the protagonist's first enlightenment to his predicament, and the bizarre meaning of his own life. Perfect, and almost biblical in its implications of uncontrollable forces vs. self-determination, like Patrick McGoohan's original The Prisoner. (Plus I'm a sucker French horns, since they're the same timbre as the male voice.)

Watch the sequence in the film, not this snippet, and it will all make sense to you as well as the character. The film becomes more relevant by the hour as scripted drama falls by the wayside and reality shows become synonymous with regular broadcasting. Pure, and far-sighted brilliance from director Peter Weir and writer Andrew Niccol.

#2. From Magnolia, the entire cast of characters' realization that they must change change their respective, troubled lives. I interpret Aimee Mann's last verse as giving up resistance to wising up, and really felt for Melora Walters' lost girl and the little quiz show child.

#3. Now for some derring do. The below sequence includes the longish set up for the sudden 'this is what I must do at this point in my life' song choice. And which other one could launch the instantaneous bravado to overpower single-handedly an entire yacht swarming with modern, armed, hostile pirates as much as this song? From The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou starring the redoubtable Bill Murray...

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Saturday, September 8, 2012


I had motored to the Los Angeles Equestrian Center today to purchase horse supplies, only to be greeted by a sign proclaiming "Welcome Arabians!" It was the Pacific Slopes Arabian Horse and Half-Arabian Sport Horse Championships show, so I took a gander and shot these with my "purse camera," a Panasonic Lumix which handles low light and action reasonably well for a snapshot camera.

The above photo depicts 4th level Dressage in the indoor arena with a horse that reminded me of my own Indiana Jones (a National Show Horse, also registered as Half-Arabian, and currently on the get well soon list from hoof and pastern damage.)

Even thought this was a Class A show, riders are allowed to doff their heavy, formal riding jackets when it's this hot (98 F at 4 p.m. with muggy humidity) if judges allow same, which in Southern California they do.

Hunter pleasure
class over fences,
I suspect.

Up and over
the Arabian way:
wheee-ee-ee !!!

Arabians are always very energetic as well as beautiful.


"Artifying the arty" as my better half Mr. Twister reviewed my still life situated at the kitchen sink, the above soup cans commemorate Andy Warhol's famed fine art silkscreens of this product, altogether a nice promotion by the Campbell Soup Company.

Its special-edition cans of condensed tomato soup with labels reminiscent of the Pop artist's paintings were only available at Target stores starting Sept. 2, 2012. In my locale for miles around, the supply sold out immediately, with Twister
having nabbed 3 of the 4 available art cans.

Monday, September 3, 2012

THE FACES live 1972

Opening my archives to Rod Stewart & Faces, 1972, Hollywood Palladium, Ronnie Lane and Rod the Mod. Below, the latter with his former Jeff Beck Group bandmate and future Rolling Stone Ron Wood, same performance.


Full service autobiographical shot of your humble photojournalist in April, 1967. I appear in a post-Mod black and white striped formal frock (actually a ballgown purchased at Le Droguestore that I chopped off to minidress length,) ever-present camera (cheapo Instamatic, wellspring of my live Buffalo Springfield and Doors pics,) eyes wide shut, and in front of posters of teenage lust and angst that I had painted for this tented outdoor party.

Also seen are longtime schoolchum Blaire Simpson chatting with yours truly, and sporting the Vidal Sassoon haircut, my Beatlemaniac/Stones fan, fellow music enthusiast Sally McMahon uncharacteristically turning away from the live band.

I resurrected this shot while looking for an entirely different one. It serves to remind me of select, rare bright spots in that difficult period of my life, my entire childhood and adolescence. I am NOT one who nostalgically covets the past. And there's too much to do right here, right now.

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