I received a very interesting series of messages a short while ago from Micheal Smotherman, one-time member of the “tragic” era Magic Band. This is what he had to say: As a card carrying former member of the Tragic Band, I would like to put straight a few things that have become gospel somehow, just for the hell of it. I know that it is difficult to fly in the face of legend, but for anyone interested in the truth, here goes. First of all, the original Magic Band (Zoot Horn Rollo, Drumbo, et.al) did not quit en-masse “a few days before an important tour.”
Frank Xavier Weyerich’s photo of two whiskery gents in convivial conversation will be familiar to anyone who has ever done an Image Search for Beefheart. Who, I wondered, is that other chap, and what was he talking about with Don? The website hosting the photograph (thank you Webster70.com) led me to an email address for somebody called Tom Ray. Ray, who is now owner of one of the largest independent record stores in the American Midwest – Vintage Vinyl – kindly wrote back with the details of his meeting with Don, correcting me on where it occurred. Yes, I had that pleasure back in the
Another new Beefheart blog – Captain Beefheart Project – has been created this weekend. The first three entries deal with particular concerts, giving background information and links, including links to a site where torrents of audio files of Beefheart concerts can be found. I’m looking forward to seeing how this develops.
Fast ‘n Bulbous, the acclaimed Beefheart brass band which includes Gary Lucas on guitar, take the stage at Jazz em Agosto Festival in Lisbon at 21.30 GMT on 13 August 2005. The performance will be broadcast live from Portugal to your computer at Rádio Interna do Instituto Superior Tecnico.
Frank Zappa, Captain Beefheart and the Secret History of Maximalism is the title of a new book which is to be published by Salt Publishing on 1 September 2005. Salt Publishing’s website tells us that, “this book is not another critical biography, but an interpretive essay investigating what we feel is the cultural and historical importance of Zappa and Beefheart in the context of a wide-ranging network of references that run from Michelangelo and Arcimboldo to William Burroughs and Vaclav Havel.” The authors are Michel Delville & Andrew Norris, both of whom teach at The University of Liège, Belgium. There are samples of their writing
At last, beefheart.com shuffles nervously into the 21st Century with it’s own interactive Beefheart weblog. This weblog will be regularly updated with any news or trivia with so much as a whiff of Beefheart about it. New releases, exhibitions, television programmes, reviews, magazine articles, name-drops, new covers, influences, photographs, anything connected with the good Captain and his still-splendid Magic Band. All visitors are able to comment publicly on any of the items in the Beefheart blog, so if you feel you have something to say, please do so.
A formaheap prize quiz 1) What was Don Van Vliet’s favourite gargle while on tour? Was it a) Blue Bols b) Green Chartreuse c) Black & White Whisky d) Red Rum Connor McKnight’s 1972 interview in Zig Zag #29 includes this description of Don on a tour bus: [wp_quote]”..to relieve a sore throat, he was passed a tiny bottle of Green Chartreuse, with which to gargle. Having taken a swig and swirled it around his throat, he became harassed – as if looking for a receptacle in which to empty the stuff. Finding none, he spat it onto the floor of the bus, just under
Publisher: Music Sales Limited Date of publication: November 2004 ISBN: 1844494128 Dimensions: 210 x 135mm soft back Extent: 400 pages Price: £16.95 Order:Amazon.co.uk A formaheap prize quiz All of the answers to this quiz were available online throughout the competition. By choosing keywords, most of which were included in the questions, and typing them into an internet search engine, the answers could be found. This is a time-consuming activity and the number of entries was low. These opaque questions really did bug most people! Nevertheless, the standard of entries was high and only two questions were not answered correctly by anyone. The two problem questions were the one about the dancer