Monday, June 28, 2010
I’ve just finished part one of the definitive Elvis bio, “Last Train To Memphis – The Rise Of Elvis Presley” by Peter Guralnik. Like the classic two-parter on Stalin, “Young Stalin and “The Court Of The Red Tsar”, part one is definitely the upper and part two the downer! I’ve only just started “Careless Love – The Unmaking of Elvis Presley” and he seems to have turned instantly from a sweet, chaste country boy into a horndog, speed crazed fucking jerk. But of course, nothing happens instantly, and that’s what really makes a biography like this a different beast to a fabulously trashy thrill ride like Little Richard: The Quasar Of Rock. The meticulous but human attention to detail, day by day from birth to death, paints a character so fleshy and familiar you can’t help but stay with them, through the best of times and the very blurst. Be it Elvis Presley or Joseph Stalin, once you feel like you’ve known that sucker their whole life, their aint no skipping the boring parts or copping out before the end…
Elvis being a clean living Christian boy, there aren’t too many wild debaucherous stories to single out and serve up for you here, but that’s not what this books about. It’s more a slow burning portrait of a time in a country, and a boy who gets famous and the machinery that grows up around him. Here’s a few little excerpts to give you an idea of the style anyway…
Here he is growing up in Tupelo…
Here’s an interesting part about the working relationship between our favourite Jewish teenagers, Leiber and Stoller, and “the process known as Elvis Presley”
And here’s some amusing clowning around at Graceland…
And a nice pic of Elvis with my favourite of his girlfriends, June Juanico…
Here’s a few fave young Elvis moments too, when he’s still real country and raw…
His first TV appearance
A super electric live recording from The Louisiana Hayride…
Thats Alright Mama (with great hillbilly banter)
And here’s this great radio spot from Ottowa in 1957, where the panel pontificate about the terrible psychological techniques of the rock n roll show, and then Elvis gives some great interview. I love the part toward the end where he says very seriously “…there was only one perfect man, and that was Jesus Christ, and people didn’t like him, they killed him. And he couldn’t understand why…”
Ottowa Radio Spot, 1957
Until next time, stay Elvis!
And for those down in geelong, tune into "For The Love Of Elvis", sundays 6-8 on 94.7THE PULSE, all elvis all the time!
I'm told Betty rocks the white hair and double denim and will fight anyone who questions the merit of ANY part of Elvis' oeuvre...
Thursday, June 24, 2010
ON THE RADIO
(Stone Love, 5-7 pm fridays on 106.7PBSFM in Melbourne, or www.pbsfm.org.au )
Some super spine tingly gospel at the start, some Lilith Lane live in studio numbers around the middle, and a whole bunch of ‘92 D.I.T.C type boom-bap towards the end…Out in the world I’ll be DJ’ing at Mr Hyde in geelong on Friday Night, Hosting Bamalama at the grace darling on Saturday night, and eating sausages and touching dogs at THE COMMUNITY CUP on Sunday…
IN THE WORLD
Minibikes (marcel Borrack) @ the retreat
Beaches 7” launch @ The workers club w/ the twerps and school of radiant living
The Vaudeville Smash @ The Evelyn
Richie1250 DJ’in @ Mr Hyde in Geelong 10-1
Ken Eavel DJ’ing in the Corner Hotel front bar 11-3am
Andrew Young DJ’ing @ yaya 11-5
Birmingham 2nd BDAY party @ The Birmy ft Keggin, Baptism of Uzi and a million others…
Bamalama @ The Grace Darling ft. The Frowning Clouds and DJ’s Bruce Milne and Hannah Fox and in the blues cellar, Pierre Baroni, Jim dandy and Mohair Slim, and striptease by the temptress Rosy rabbit, and your host Richie1250
Lillith lane GOLD DIAMOND lp launch @ Northcote Uniting Church ft. The Bulls
The Bowers @ The Tote w/ Mike Noga and Joel Silbersher
Winterrun @ the Public Bar w. Moroccan kings
Miss Goldie dj’in @ yaya 12-5am
COMMUNITY CUP!!!!!!!! Down in Elsternwick…
Plague Doctor residency finale @ Old Bar w/ Mass Cult Suice and Sunny The Magosopher
You and UR Music (SL PATRONS) @ Espy Front Bar
git on out there
to get off this list, reply saying: “It wan’t until we got back to graceland that I found out that Elvis had told Anita the whopping lie that ‘my c#nt hurts’ is a hollywood expression for ‘my rears sore’…
LAST WEEKS PLAYLIST
http://db.tt/c7Fo9y (right click to d’laod)
SPOTLIGHT ON ALEX CHILTON, DRAB DOO RIFFS LIVE - 18/06/2010 playlist
1 WYNONA CARR PLEASE MR JAILER
2 BOBBY BLUE BLAND HOW DOES A CHEATING WOMAN FEEL
3 BOBBY BLUE BLAND ROAD OF BROKEN HEARTED MEN
4 LESTER TIPTON THIS WON'T CHANGE
5 WAYNE COCHRAN GOING BACK TO MIAMI
6 WAYNE COCHRAN THE COO
7 THE BOXTOPS THE LETTER
8 BIG STAR SEPTEMBER GIRLS
9 BIG STAR BACK OF A CAR
10 ALEX CHILTON BANGKOK
11 ALEX CHILTON WHAT'S YOUR SIGN
12 ALEX CHILTON KIZZAME
13 DRAB DOO RIFFS LIVE TO AIR
14 THE CRAMPS THE MAD DADDY
15 MOTIVATIONS THE BIRDS
16 RENE HALL CLEO
17 JIMMY LIGGINS DRUNK
18 THE ANGLOS INCENSE
20 EDD HENRY CROOKED WOMAN
21 LITTLE WILLIE JOHN SPASMS
22 BIG MAYBELLE I'M COMIN HOME
23 JOHNNY GUITAR WATSON LOVE ME BABY
24 MARVIN GAYE STUBBORN KINDA FELLOW
25 DEAN AND JEAN STICKS AND STONES
26 PUTA MADRE BROS PUTANNANY TWIST
27 THE EXOTICS DOWN ON THE STREET
28 THE THINGS SHE'S TRASH
29 NEIL YOUNG REVOLUTION BLUES30 PRINCE BAMBI
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
After going to see the new version of A Nightmare On Elm St last night, I was in need of something tasty to fill the gaping hole inside me, and this was just the ticket. Oh, for the days when popular entertainments were shot with panache and villains wore pants high as the eye could see…
The basic plot is, a shady stowaway foreigner crawls out of a ship in New Orleans with a bad case of pneumonic (first cousin of bubonic) plague, but before he can keel over and die he gets into an argument over a card game with a fabulous trio of hoods (one jittery stubble scratching dago, one sweaty fat man with a white suit and handkerchief for dabbing, and one scar faced eight foot psycho) and gets himself prematurely deaded. The next morning Public Health Service man Dr Clint Reed (Richard Widmark) examines the body and realizes that if they don’t find and inoculate the killers asap it’s hello Black Death all over again.
From there it’s a frantic mix of race against time detective action, hard-boiled film noir style underworld milieu and disaster time political confrontation as Widmark and the skeptical police captain (Paul Douglas) scour the city trying to track down the rapidly double-crossing hoods and convince the mayor not to leak the story to the press and risk the infection fleeing town with the killers.
It’s good and tough and everybody plays their parts beautifully (New Orleans included), but Jack Palance completely steals the show as Blackie, the menacing, gargantuan killer who is kind to Irish Midgets and a sucker for a pretty dame in a mink shawl.
Palance was a pro boxer until Hitler invaded Poland and his WWII bomber crashed and burned, leaving him with a reconstructed face that was perfect for playing creepy Hollywood villains. By the time he was an old man he’d kind of grown into the face, but in Panic In The Streets, his first film, he looks like a corpse that’s just too tough to actually die, in a suit so sharp and pants so high they boggle the imagination. Unfortunately he has jacket buttoned up in the only clip i could find, but just trust me and see the movie, it’s great and those pants are the high pants equivalent of Wayne Cochran's hair...
PS You can find Palance in Robert Mitchum's biography from last week, flipping tables over at angry Mexican general’s as bullets fly around the bar…
Thursday, June 17, 2010
ON THE RADIO
The fever is catching. The Wayne Cochran fever… I suspect we hear some bobby blue bland too, and some Wanda Jackson and other gals of that ilk, since she playin at the corner on Friday night and we is giving away our CD of the week, a 3cd comp called ‘girls gone rockin’.
We also got Dom Tracy comin in to do a spotlight on Alex Chilton around 5:30 ahead of the Alex Chilton tribute gig at yaya on Sunday, and a rockin band from NZ called The Drab Doo Riffs ( http://www.myspace.com/thedrabdooriffs ) playin live in studio five around six o’clock.
If you heading down to the Wanda Jackson gig, I’ll be doing a couple DJ sets between the acts, and I’ll also be playing at the afterparty, JAILBAIT! (upstairs at yaya) alongside California Soul Man and Electric Mudflap…
IN THE WORLD
The Blues Brothers @ The Astor
The rebelles @ The retreat w/ Little Freddie and the pops
Drab Doo Riffs @ Bar Open w/ The Busty Insects
The Drab Doo Riffs @ yaya w/ The UV Race and Constant Mongrel
Wanda Jackson @ The Corner Hotel
JAILBEAT late night r’n’b party @ yaya Upstairs w/ DJ’s Electric Mudflap, California Soul Man and Richie1250 ans the top students of Anna’s gogo academy, 11:30 till 5
Dan Sultan @ the Forun w/ Even and DJ Ken Eavel
Fatti Frances @ The Builders Arms w/ Melodies and The Enclosures
Thank you friends – A tribute to alex Chilton @ yaya
Michael GT Blair & The Funkadelic Side (SL PATRONS) "A James Brown Tribute @ Red Bennies
NEXT FRI 25th
Beaches 7” launch @ workers club w/ the twerps and school of radiant living
LAST WEEKS PLAYLIST
FAT CITY - 11/06/2010 playlist
1 LITTLE RICHARD SHAKE A HAND
2 TINY BRADSHAW WELL O WELL
3 DADDY CLEANHEAD WITH THE CHUCK HIGGINS BAND SOMETHINGS GOIN ON IN MY ROOM
4 LITTLE WILLIE JOHN UH UH BABY
5 OTIS CLAY SOW PLACE
6 THE MIGHTY HANNIBAL SHAME SHAME SHAME
7 GROVER MITCHELL I'M STILL IN LOVE WITH YOU
8 MAHALIA JACKSON I'M ON MY WAY
9 THE MAR KEYS SACK O WOE
10 BOOKER T AND THE MG'S OUTRAGE
11 NORTHWEST COMPANY HARD TO CRY
12 KIM SALMON AND THE SURREALISTS RQ
13 IGGY POP TONIGHT
14 TELEVISION LITTLE JOHNNY JEWEL PT 1 AND 2
15 MICHAEL LIGGINS AND THE SUPERSOULS LOADED BACK
16 MELVIN VAN PEEBLES COME ON FEET, DO YOUR THING
17 SONS OF CHAMPLIN FAT CITY
18 MASTERS APPRENTICES BURIED AND DEAD
20 PUTA MADRE BROS DANCE! DANCE! DANCE!
21 SHOWER SCENE FROM PSYCHO ONE
22 YOUR ANIMAL BABY ITS YOU
23 LILITH LANE RIBBONS AND BOWS
24 STINA NORDENSTRAM THE MORNING BELONGS TO THE NIGHT
25 JULEE CRUISE THE NIGHTINGALE
26 LOVAGE TO CATCH A THEIF
27 AMY WINEHOUSE YOU KNOW I'M NO GOOD
28 MARK RONSON FT OLD DIRTY AND TIGGER TOXIC
29 BIG DADDY KANE WRATH OF KANE
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
If ever there was a biography to delight and wallow in, this is him. Within the first page and a half Mitchum’s father has killed a man in a place called Hellhole Swamp and his Norwegian Sailor Grandfather is dodging rumours of having eaten his whole crew. Mitchum is a totally Mitchum type character from the time he’s about four years old, and spends the next 600 pages shitting in teachers hats, riding depression era boxcars, escaping chain gangs, joining dog-napping gangs, writing songs for cross dressing cabaret acts, punching out cops, blowing saxophones, infuriating Kirk Douglas, hating Australians, writing lauded poetry, doing time, drinking endless bottles of vodka, smoking endless ‘pakalolos’, shagging starlets, golden showering Ava Gardner, playing with his kids, gruntling his long understanding wife Dorothy, wearing trench coats and busting out them acting skillz one eyebrow at a time, all with an air of bemused insouciance that makes him seem so damn cooooooooooool. It’s just bursting with delicious stories, but here’s a few I can’t help sharing with you right now…
Here he is living in Hells Kitchen at 12 y.o.
Here he is riding the boxcars out west with his little bro at 15…
And here he is on the set of some doctor movie with Sinatra in the mid 50’s…
While reading this book it may strike you as unfair that you can’t be as cool as Mitchum, but you can take some concession in the fact that you have real friends and an ability to express your emotions, both of which Bob had bugger all. Which kind of makes him seem even cooler…
Server’s view of him certainly isn’t fawning and uncritical, but through the testimony of all and sundry he comes across as a total legend of a dude, and you can’t help but clap and think ‘bravo on a life well lived’ at the end of it….
The writing is real snappy too. I love this summation of Howard Hughes’ time running RKO…
Order that sucker from your local book shop or do like I did and git it from the liiiiiiiiiiiiibrary…
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
They were fuckin rad, the singer looked like some kinda grizzled fisherman and busted out all this tasty shit on his guitar. The crowd was real rowdy and friendly too, we wuz flyin all over the place....
Heres a pic of my fresh white shoes after the gig...
So good to see a band at the arthouse too, been a long time. The band room is padded with all these random coloured raggedy ass pillows and sheets, and it just got that stank lived in vibe that make me feel goooooooooooood. Rad beer garden too. Got me mad excited about this party I havin there for the fifth birthday of my show...
Thanks to Matlok for drawing the poster! Click that baby and look at it big...
Check his art he do here too. Fresh to defffffffffff
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
What a great town. I would very much to visit it again someday...
Here is a beautiful record from New Orleans. It was written, produced, arranged and most likely piano'd or organ'd by one of the worlds great humans, Allen Toussaint. The beautiful european inflected arrangement, and Betty's pitifully aching vocal, are the stuff that makes boys like me swoon and shiver...
Betty Harris - I Can't Last Much Longer 45
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
It’s short, it has big type, and it’s full of ribald stories, all told in a wonderfully Little Richard-esque manner, like this one about Buddy Holly:
And he’s constantly using words like ‘penis’. It’s all “I liked Angel cause she could draw the men with the big penises. I like to watch her having sex with the men with the big penises while I jacked off and someone ate my tittes...”, and so forth...
It’s written in the early 80’s and I love that his whole stance is something like “Of course, now I understand that homosexuality is a terrible, contagious disease, but back then, WOOOOOOOOO! Let me tell you all about it...”
And when he decides to quit rock’n’roll and become a minister, the Church’s stance is something like “Well, we’re a little conflicted cause, ya know, he’s sort of a perverted homosexual freak, but man, the magnetism! Imagine all the people he could draw to the church. We just gotta have him...”
The hilarity is all in the details, but the basic plot goes:
- Grows up in Georgia. Shits in boxes, wraps them up and gives them to old people on their birthdays. Drives his mother crazy bangin on pots and pans and hollering all day long. Get’s into the gay scene and calls everybody “Miss Thing”.
- Joins a band and helps hock snake oil for a few years. Cuts “Tutti Frutti” and blows the fuck up. Tears up the ballrooms and has lots of ‘sex parties’.
- Sees Sputnik fly by, takes it as a sign from God. Quits rock’n’roll and becomes a minister for a few years. Church gets mad at him for asking a young man to ‘show himself to me’. Gets mad at church and quits.
- Get’s back into rock’n’roll. Endless tours. Blows all and sundry off stage and throws many priceless, bedazzled outfits into the crowd. More sex parties. Everybody smokes angel dust, gets naked and crawls around on the floor like dogs.
- Quit’s rock n roll and gets back into the ministry. Preaches around the country. Renounces former lifestyle. Happily tells all the juicy details...
Here’s a few choice parts...