Friday, November 28, 2008

Planet Rock and World Destruction

Afrika Bambaataa (Goerge Clinton) in the early years of hip-hop who recognized the genius of Kraftwerk - and incorporated their sound from "Trans Europe Express" into their classic "Planet Rock" in 1982. Excellent beat and bass - guaranteed to make you move it.

Later on Afrika teamed up with John Lydon a.k.a. Johnny Rotten and recorded "World Destruction." This song is just as relevant to today as it was back when it was first recorded in the 80s, especially with what's just happened in India.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

They're not shy

No - No - The 80s won't go away.
Well, I was STILL a teen and this song was on my Brit-pop compliation record, something called "Now That's What I Call Music." Anyway, it had the hits of the time and it was all too English. I never bought a Kajagoogoo album. Just that their pictures were in every magazine, be it No. 1 or Smash Hits. "Too Shy" was clever, catchy and had a fantastic bass line but here Nick Beggs looks ridiculous.
Anyway, they were part of that invasion along with Bowowow and Culture Club, so it deserves some sort of mention.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

2009 - Year of Ultravox?

Ultravox have put out re-mastered definitive versions of their first two albums Vienna and Rage In Eden. They are each two disc sets containing all the b-sides, live versions and 12" mixes.

The more exciting news is that all members have reunited to tour calling it "Return To Eden." There are no U.S. dates at the moment, but let's hope there are. I'll go to that show in a heartbeat!

My favorite 15 Ultravox songs:
  1. Visions In Blue
  2. The Voice
  3. I Remember (Death In The Afternoon)
  4. We Came To Dance
  5. Sleepwalk
  6. Vienna
  7. Mr. X
  8. Lament
  9. One Small Day
  10. White China
  11. I Never Wanted To Begin
  12. Hymn
  13. Reap The Wild Wind
  14. New Europeans
  15. Mine For Life
Actually, this is a hard list to make as all the Midge Ure Ultravox almost are listenable all the way through. All except the album titled U-Vox. I don't know what happened there. Everything from Vienna to Lament is gold to me.

We will be re-buying these same albums for years to come! I had bought all the Ultravox CDs as they were re-released sometime in the early 2000s. There's always a twist and a reason for buying the new ones that come out. I'll buy them, as long as they don't come with a "tacky badge."

Ultravox Official Site.

Addendum: Also announced is a Greatest Hits CD/DVD package.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

7 Random Facts meme - 2

Steve tagged me for this meme which I did sometime ago, but I'll play along one more time to pull me out of the blogging slump I've been in. I will post the rules, but I'm afraid cannot follow all the way. This blog is kind of intimate to just a few people and don't have the 7 people to tag, therefore, I will post the rules in case you want to do it proper. Thanks Steve.

Below are the rules:

1. You must link to the individual who tagged you and post the rules of TAG (which you are currently reading).
2. Post 7 random facts about yourself
3. Tag 7 friends and link to them and
4. Let them know that they have been tagged by leaving a nice little message on their blog.

Here are my seven random facts about myself:

1. I wore black. A lot! Even before I knew about the whole "goth" thing. But this picture is from the late 80s at a friend's apartment in Tempe, AZ.

2. I used to buy records based on album cover and names of bands alone and sometimes I would luck out and I would become a fan. Three of them were Frontline Assembly, Fad Gadget and Christian Death.

3. In Junior High we took a class trip to Philadelphia, someone had a radio and we listened to Joan Jett's "I Love Rock 'N Roll" pretty much the entire trip. Then we took a trip to Washington DC. My friend next to me had a radio, and we played Blondie's "Parallel Lines" album all the way through the entire trip. I provided the tape. In high school we took a trip to Salem Massachusetts. My friend had a radio and he played Frank Zappa's "Apostrophe" album throughout the entire trip. It was a blast. I met Laurie Cabot, the "certified" Witch of Salem there.

4. I didn't know how to prepare a proper portfolio so was not admitted to "The High School of Art & Design."

5. Once as a child I was playing around in a park with my brothers and a car going rather slow ran over my foot. When the crowd screamed for the car to stop, the driver stopped and went in reverse, again running over my foot. I wasn't hurt that much. (This would be the same place where we would watch for the swimming turtle, Steve.)

6. I fell in love with writing instruments at an early age when my dad brought me this really fabulous case of assorted pens. It included a fountain pen and even though I did not know how to write yet, I took an already written paper, put a blank paper on top of it and began to trace the writing with the fountain pen. At school, you were required to write only with fountain pens even though disposable pens were widely available.

7. I have always been fascinated with origins and watching things progress to their maturity. I love reading and learning about the origins of the universe, I love to watch plants grow from seedlings to plants and flowers. I love making strings of yarn into fabric and covering a blank piece of paper with lines, shapes and color to make "art." Also, composing music.

Some art I worked on while I took a class on Fashion Illustration at FIT. These previously posted before in another blog:

I know some of you have done this meme before, so I'm not tagging anyone but you're welcome to do it if you want to again and let me know so I can check it out.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

No: I've Changed my mind again (aaaaw!)

The Red Radio a pretty cool music blog has a nice rundown on the new Smiths compilation (The Sound of The Smiths). About every couple of years a new Smiths compilation comes out, but this one is different because both Moz and Marr have teamed up to put it together. Love the cover. I would get this one. It's not a bad idea because Moz is still actively recording and touring. There's just no stopping him. And in recent tours, Moz has performed quite a lot of Smiths songs during his concerts. I think during "Quarry" Moz gained a lot of new fans and this is a way for the new guys to get more familiar with The Smiths.

And over at Middle Eight, XO had a pretty nice post about all the new Moz/Smiths activity and he gave us a chance to "voice" out our list of 10 favorite Smiths tunes. I always love the opportunity to give a list of my favorite artist tunes. Get the details from Red Radio and Middle Eight.

Good Night and Than You.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Watching TV last night was almost like watching Dick Clark's "Rockin' New Years Eve" and waiting for the ball to drop in Times Square. The cheering of the crowds, the dancing, the emotional outpour.

Here's something from Mike Moore:

"But today we celebrate this triumph of decency over personal attack, of peace over war, of intelligence over a belief that Adam and Eve rode around on dinosaurs just 6,000 years ago. What will it be like to have a smart president? Science, banished for eight years, will return. Imagine supporting our country's greatest minds as they seek to cure illness, discover new forms of energy, and work to save the planet. I know, pinch me. "

Speaking of which, you have to go see Religulous. A docu. by Bill Maher. It's a movie to offend anyone that has faith and follows organized relegions and to make those who don't laugh out loud.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Change Underway

Congratulations to Barack Obama on being elected our next president. This is no doubt a most historical moment in our nation. We can now breathe a sigh of relief and say goodbye to 8 years of Bush.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Watercolor practice

I'll post this because it ended up looking like something. But I'm working on it and trying to practice (by the looks of it, I need plenty of it.) But it's progress all the same.

If any artist cares to share, just wondering what you prefer working with (watercolor brands, brushes, paper, etc..) I did this little piece with Winsor Cotman which I've had for years. One of the colors had completely dried up in the tube! Does this happen with the good brands? Is it cause it wasn't used for such a long time?

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Head Sketch

IF - Vacant

Watercolor pencils (Caran D'ache) on watercolor post card.