Gregory Corso – “Destiny”

August 26, 2008 at 8:48 pm (Gregory Corso, Poetry & Literature, The Beats)

They deliver the edicts of God
without delay
And are exempt from apprehension
from detention

And with their God-given
Petasus, Caduceus, and Talaria
ferry like bolts of lightning
unhindered between the tribunals
of Space & Time

The Messenger-Spirit
in human flesh
is assigned a dependable,
self-reliant, versatile,
thoroughly poet existence
upon its sojourn in life

It does not knock
or ring the bell
or telephone

When the Messenger-Spirit
comes to your door
though locked
It’ll enter like an electric midwife
and deliver the message

There is no tell
throughout the ages
that a Messenger-Spirit
ever stumbled into darkness.

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Keith Richards – Interview (TV – 1974)

August 26, 2008 at 8:47 pm (Music, The Rolling Stones)

Interview with Keith on “The Old Grey Whistle Test” – this was clearly during his heroin years.

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Elvis Presley – “One Night With You” (TV – 1968)

August 26, 2008 at 8:47 pm (Elvis Presley, Music)

From the 1968 comeback special – Elvis performs “One Night With You”

The sound quality on this one is just average – but the passionate performance Elvis gives makes up for whatever aural deficiencies.

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The Golliwogs – “Fight Fire” (1966)

August 26, 2008 at 2:29 pm (Garage Rock)

A garage rock classic by the band that later became Creedence Clearwater Revival – yes, that’s John Fogerty singing. This was later memorably covered by 60s-revival merchants The Chesterfield Kings in the mid-80s.  

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The Eyes – “My Degeneration” (1966)

August 26, 2008 at 2:23 pm (Music)

This was a part parody / part answer to The Who’s “My Generation” from this English band.

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Julian Cope – “Peggy Suicide” (1991)

August 26, 2008 at 2:10 pm (David Fricke, Julian Cope, Reviews & Articles)

Written by probably my favorite music critic David Fricke (senior writer at Rolling Stone) in issue #605 (May 30, 1991) of RS. A great review of this Julian Cope album…
                                                                              Image result for peggy suicide julian cope

Julian Cope is, as the English say, barking mad. Off his trolley. Utterly daft. He has been a confessed enthusiast of hallucinogenic leisure substances and is an avowed disciple of such legendary loose screws as Syd Barrett, Roky Erickson and Jim Morrison. During one memorable concert in Britain several years ago, he accidentally snapped his mike stand in two and then, in a bloody frenzy, lacerated his chest Iggy-style with the jagged end. He posed for the cover of his aptly named 1984 album Fried in a fetal crouch, wearing nothing but a huge tortoise shell. Last year he released an album entitled, with exquisite irony, Droolian.

In fact, Julian Cope is screwy like a fox. As the singer and leader of the great late-Seventies Liverpool band the Teardrop Explodes, he consummated a superior, twisted marriage of Sixties freak-pop kicks and punk dynamics that has been a big influence on new British chart pups like Inspiral Carpets and the Charlatans UK. His subsequent solo work has been consistently nervy if occasionally uneven. World Shut Your Mouth (1984) and Saint Julian (1987) best capture Cope’s flair for writing madcap, often poignant hum-along songs about fear, obsession and transcendental adventure and scoring them with a vertiginous swirl of hypno-locomotion, haunted fun-house keyboards and guitars-run-amuck.

In a pop age largely distinguished by an overreliance on calculated risk and a shortage of true psychedelic verve, Cope continues to make genuinely loopy, mind-expansive music. And there’s an abundance of it on Peggy Suicide, Cope’s extraordinary new double-album-length opus (eighteen tracks on CD, nineteen on cassette). In “Drive, She Said,” he goes on a looting spree through the Beatles’ mid-Sixties catalog – a touch of “Drive My Car,” a dash of “You Won’t See Me” – and then fires up his spoils à la “Levitation,” by the 13th Floor Elevators. “Not Raving but Drowning,” with its watery guitars and pastoral marimba, is a chilling study in druggy delusion based on a true story about a young man who perished in the English Channel after falling off a ferryboat while stoked on LSD: “Oh, you treacherous nixies and sea-serpents … now I’M the man of importance.”

And when it comes to advanced madness in 4/4 time, does it really get much better than this surreal opening scene from “Hanging Out and Hung Up on the Line”? “Well, the blues had a baby/And the bastard couldn’t sing/So the priest holds the candle/And the parents kiss the ring/Someone shouts ‘Let’s keep the afterbirth/And throw the kid away’/And I fried my brainsac for the pain I felt today.” With its jackhammer beat, strangled, Sonic Youth-like riffing and Cope’s agitated Lizard King baritone, “Hanging Out” kicks like Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World” in a Bellevue frame of mind. You’ll love it.

Peggy Suicide is ostensibly an ecological protest album, a dream-state odyssey tracing humanity’s relentless march to self-destruction. The title is Cope’s code name for Mother Earth, except there are no wistful visions of unspoiled rain forests and amber waves of grain. Cope crawls through the ruin wrought by, among other things, pollution, AIDS, the ruling Tory party, acid rain and acid damage, skewering villains as he goes along. “Leperskin” is his venomous send-off for “the apostolic hag,” Margaret Thatcher. In “Soldier Blue,” a motley psych-punk-house groove thing inspired by last year’s poll-tax riot in Trafalgar Square, Cope juxtaposes his own memory of the nightsticks coming down with a sample of Lenny Bruce’s classic indictment of elected authority and delegated enforcement: “Here’s a stick and a gun and you do it. But wait’ll I’m out of the room.”

There are cracks of daylight now and then, such as the sunny little romp “Beautiful Love” (note the little neo-“Penny Lane” trumpet lick) and his playful declaration of troth “The American Lite.” But Cope is transfixed by the mounting emotional and spiritual rot of our time and the lengths to which people will go to fool themselves about the inevitable consequences. “Safesurfer” is a brilliantly executed descent into HIV hell, eight minutes of great rage-guitar dementia charged with the deftly implied sexual menace of Cope’s repeated lyric-mantra “You don’t have to be afraid, love/’Cause I’m a safesurfer, darling.”

For a project of such missionary desperation, Peggy Suicide has a surprisingly homespun charm, a crackling chamber-garage sound that combines rhythmic precision and artful keyboard deployment with swelling guitar chaos and first-take vocal immediacy. The closing track, “Las Vegas Basement,” a quietly uplifting song about a loser’s dream come true, however brief, is indeed a first take; in his liner notes, Cope points out the two spots where he flubbed the lyrics and even includes the corrections.

It wasn’t because he couldn’t see straight, though. Cope made Peggy Suicide after he swore off LSD last year. The result is that where he once reveled in artificially induced madness, he can now see, and render, the real thing more clearly. As he sings in “Hanging Out and Hung Up on the Line,” “So come on split my head wide open/Scoop out a little of my brain/Need some identification?/Julian Cope?/The very sane.” We should all be so mad. 

David Fricke

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Elvis Presley – “Blue Suede Shoes” (TV – 1968)

August 26, 2008 at 1:27 pm (Elvis Presley, Music)

The King from his 1968 comeback special….from the “sit-down” portion of the show.

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Elvis Presley – “Sweet Caroline” (Live – 1970)

August 26, 2008 at 1:23 pm (Elvis Presley, Music)

Elvis performing Neil Diamond’s big hit from 1969…

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