[alert_box type=”info”]This interview was taken from the July 1973 issue of Oui magazine.[/alert_box] The introduction merely relates the Beefheart ‘legend’, however the interview itself is particularly interesting as the Captain discusses the formation of the Magic Band and the music which they produced, offering full credit to those involved and their contributions to the music. Captain Beefheart is not a military hero, the star of a kiddie show, or the symbol of a brand of dog food. After spending some time with him, though, you get the feeling that he could, if he really wanted to, be any one of those things. What he mightRead More →

This article / interview first appeared in Sounds 14th April 1973. Many thanks indeed to Simon Sergeant for typing it up and sending it. I must confess I didn’t expect Captain Beefheart’s reply to “Hello, how are you?” to be that he felt fine but was very angry about the Muhammad Ali fight: “Look what they have done to him man, I mean he won that, and they took it away from him.” Don Van Vliet and his wife Jan joined us for a lunch a couple of days after he flew in to London for his biggest and potentially most successful tour here. WithRead More →

[alert_box type=”info”]Taken from the 18th February 1971 edition of Down Beat. Many thanks to Francisco Vázquez for kindly scanning and sending it along.[/alert_box] The Manteno Festival may be the only festival not covered by the usual media overblow – mainly, of course, because Cincinnati is hardly your basic cultural Mecca. Also, no film was made, no records were cut, no one was killed or over-stoned or rioted – only music happened, albeit quite theatrical music, and a good but not revolutionary time was had by all. Well-met at the Ludlow Garage on Nov. 20-21, local entrepreneur Jim Tarbell by beneficent accident had simply assembled aRead More →

[alert_box type=”info”]This classic article originally appeared in Rolling Stone’s 14th May 1970 edition. Many thanks to Justin Sherill for making it available.[/alert_box] “Uh oh, the phone,” Captain Beefheart mumbled as he placed his tarnished soprano saxophone in its case. “I have to answer the telephone.” It was a very peculiar thing to say. The phone had not rung. Beefheart walked quickly from his place by the upright piano across the dimly lit living room to where the telephone lay. He waited. After ten seconds of stony silence it finally rang. None of the half dozen or so persons in the room seemed at all surprisedRead More →

[alert_box type=”info”]The following sound advice can be found in the book Rolling Stone’s Alt-Rock-A-Rama (1996) which includes an article written by John McCormick about Moris Tepper.[/alert_box] Budding guitarists take note. 1. Listen to the birds That’s where all the music comes from. Birds know everything about how it should sound and where that sound should come from. And watch hummingbirds. They fly really fast, but a lot of times they aren’t going anywhere. 2. Your guitar is not really a guitar Your guitar is a divining rod. Use it to find spirits in the other world and bring them over. A guitar is also aRead More →

It could be a tremendous black upside-down tulip it could be a black fishes’ tail it could be a day, artistically crimped and buoyant in its taped together way (28 September, 1991) A 1993 reading of Tulip is availableRead More →

Three months in the mirror burning hip – let’s go to the kennel honey and get one of those cute little moth pups they flap their little wings and fly around a light globe and you can keep ’em in the closet and feed ’em socks – six months in the mirror burning hip – honey let’s go out naked tonight with our moth puppy don’t forget the socks and the light bulbs make sure it’s not too warm you don’t want to burn his lttle wings – the lights are soft, streets soft, skies soft, the mirrors soft the smell of burnt powder theRead More →

A tin peened reindeer Metalically hoofed on glass Scorched cotton snowmen edged the corners Flesh coloured powder mountains Yellow lights melts cobwebbed articles Vague wire tunnels resembling Peeled flesh caterpillers Housing very tiny red Christmas tree lights The Nativity scene Re-enacted in Ivory soap A bone shade from age complete With tiny straw manger The Christ child its face replaced by an elephant’s head Intricate lace cups each ear and bands the trunk (1987)Read More →

The first scene was the bathtub ring and then out through the window ZOOM…. a little boy cutting out paper dolls singing ring around the rosey a rose jumped over a pansy into a mud puddle with the sun in it Pan…. to the bathroom, the wall paper decorated with Christmas ornament stars repugnantly cheery to the degree of nostalgic depression A woman begins to disrobe ZOOM…. in to the unkempt shabby underarm and large perspiration tears on the enormous lit up breasts one dark ‘n one light light nearest the window, dark nearest the basin above an inadequate light fixture below the latter breastRead More →

Inside the tubette on the small duplex tile shadow of my hand made a movie wolf head the dangling cigarette made a long fire tipped tube resembling a smoking fang which curled from his mouth to my mouth then slowly into the peeled back tiny mouths of the flaky enamel ceiling above my shaggy head a test of endurance metered by what with things changing this fast I drown the soggy creature threw his wet butt out of the bath tubette trembling as it was a small room with a very large open window he bounced and disappeared off the sill into morning aching andRead More →

The beep seal I saw once as a child So life like it almost made me cry It stared with its eye glass and one glue bubble Caught on its whiskers Its mouth was closed So as not to insult the observer Its canine teeth were red plastic N’ its molars were stained green by straw Excluding it from the carnivoris and Putting it in the vegetarian bracket All of this I viewed from the mistake in The side of the jaw By pressing my cheek up close To the glass on the other side Of the red felt roped off area This side ofRead More →

The mule kicked off a new one and the stockings ran up Seam Crooked Sam bandana frock stuffed with smoke and ears out flopped like bowlin’ pins hog troughs hocked and wallered in cool mud bins and patent leather hooves split in twos rooms for rent down t’ Ben’s Frendsa danced in a frenzy choked a juke bird with froth glass ferns and turpentine urns her sawdust daily keep and whiskey creeps down her neck naked front and red leatherette peen button set where her fanny sweat raised her wrist-a-fan and a mouse coughed cotton through a screen door cracked sand rooms rent only toRead More →

The smith that clean our stars The wolf head came off in night His paw plucked a mushroom and pawed a nest of bees A blade of grass trembled A water drop threatened – burst A felt ear curled back into pink His slick stocking face chrome lips puckered pursed Red balls fell out of a tiny screen Opened dot that shined and was licked away A yellow paraffin eyelid melted back into night velvet without sound Rested and reshaped… closed and hid the stair A tiny wooden door opened shut A polished knob grown dust in the dim hallway Meaty blond people danced atRead More →

It’s like a white onion-fleshed pumpkin tiny black eyes and round paper hairs laughing white collars minced muted in the huffing dry morning wind that jingled like fish bones… the black felt loam seeped hungrily and the waxy pepper stones puffed green tongued cactus with red hat thorny flowers seeped lazy in their thirst searching in their proteceted nakedness in the bottom of Arizona’s ocean… the sun stroked the grey fleshed drunk curtains and a lizard flipped off like a star of scales ‘n pukedafly of a yoke yellow throaty chirp… a senseless dust devil sucked the brush debris chimney soaring invisible waterfalls and drenchedRead More →

You should know by the kindness of uh dog The way a human should be You should feel the wet wood heart of the tree Wood sap pop like a frog’s eye Open t’ the fly ‘n the blood of the river When it ripples ‘n clicks like uh waterbell ‘n the elephant in his beautiful grey leather suit Though he’s wrinkled he looks smart as hell ‘n the turtle’s eyes carry bags very well ‘n the snake’s in shape He rattles like uh baby ‘wears his diamonds Better than uh fine lady’s finger ‘n his fangs are no more dangerous Than her slow aristocraticRead More →

I know of a Brown Star That only certain people have found For years they been lookin’ around A lot of people lookin’ up But very few of them looking down Well they searched high and low for that little glow That’ll make them happy Some searched fast and they went on past Some went slow but couldn’t let it go I know of a Brown Star That only very certain people have found You can ask a dog why he’s so happy Just waggin’ his tail around Or a frog that makes him jump around Follow a sailin’ cloud until it dumps The rainRead More →

Infra-grams – that hot old woman’s jams and jellies and Marmalade by the fire roasting her licked paws one cushion four toenails curled under the couch argyle across wood floors tiger-like fur diamond patterns loops that jump through under the icebox afraid and cold in the corner hisses with ice “E’s” plugs into the wall’s ear around the corner old man sits with white chin on denim collarbones inspects a lump on his thumb and groans in the garden one pea shoot chlorophyll pod cocked open upon a yellow pulp cloth pansy panting a bee dancing in his fine yellow hair black shiny legs retrieveRead More →

Noon bouncin’ ball of warm beside child Deflating ah vegelife puzzle Ah braking ball of wings, legs, leaves, lives, behives Movies from each comb Each pocket ‘n drones bouncin’ cones Prisms that melt flesh ‘n bones Dust ‘n dark dusklite None numb numerals Noon ball warm beside the child Earholes, eye holes, airholes Dance, deflate, inflate meat rainbows Flesh bonnets her hair woven Toes kick dust away Drops Blue, yellow, red, green clocks Her heart pumps, stops, starts, plays, drops Eyes roll Rocks back ‘n forth She played through the sun stuck out her tongue Stood on each of three decals She licked each oneRead More →