Dropping the name Beefheart

My inbox most days contains links to newspaper and magazine articles referencing Beefheart. New bands love to drop the Beefheart name, music journalists likewise. I send about 99% of this stuff to trash.

What remains is some fun stuff, such as Liverpool band The Zutons who claimed to have named themselves after a Beefheart song. For the mp3 generation, who don’t read sleeve notes, that long lunar note was played by a Mr Zuton Rollo.

So when a musician with no need of fame by association places ‘Lick My Decals Off, Baby’ at the top of his list of favourite albums – as David Lowery of Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven did last week in his local newspaper – I think it is worth reporting here.

And when Buck 65 and Tortoise go into a recording studio together with “almost no plan” about how to make a new album – and Buck tells one of his local papers, “About the only thing we did beforehand was listen to a bunch of Captain Beefheart records” – then I listen to 5 tracks from this album at Buck 65’s website. And I find myself doing so again and again. The CD, ‘Secret House Against The World’ was released this week and I bought it. I’ve a feeling that if you’re still reading this, you might like it too.


  1. The Buck 65 album is excellent (thanks for the prompt!), however, any Beefheart connection is far fetched in my opinion. Only the frenetic rhythms of ‘Le 65isme’would seem to bear any resemblance whatsoever. That said it is a good album and well worth buying if your like Johnny Cash, Tom Waits or (dare I say it?) Nick Cave.

  2. The snobbishness about what is and isn’t worthy of being acknowleged as Van Vliet-inspired is more than just a tad pompous in my opinion.

    Though you obviously have a very personal response to it and may have devoted years to following CB, Don’s art isn’t necessarily any less meaningful to Buck 65 or a 17-year old neophyte than it is to you.

    Ease up on the Beefheart-ista ‘tude. You run a nice blog otherwise.

  3. Snobbish? Pompous? I’ll have you know I’m a card-carrying badge-wearing fan of Unconditionally Guaranteed! ;o)

    No “Beefheart-ista ‘tude” was intended, sorry if that hasn’t been clear. No one was decreeing what is or isn’t worthy of claiming Beefheart-inspiration. We have merely noted that his name tends to crop up a lot as a reference point, sometimes in the strangest of places.

    Besides, Derek was recommending Buck 65, as would I because he’s fab. He and Sage Francis are probably my favourite things around at the moment.

    I’m glad you like the blog, thanks for the pomposity-check.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *