Tag Archives: music

The Rise and Fall of Tower Records: Colin Hanks on His Tribute Doc

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The Rise and Fall of Tower Records: Colin Hanks on His Tribute Doc

The actor and filmmaker talks about ‘All Things Must Pass,’ his valentine to the record store that helped define an era

By March 27, 2015

Tower Records

Tower Records in West Hollywood, California Robert Landau/Corbis

Like generations of record collectors, actor Colin Hanks was seriously bummed when a friend told him she’d walked by a going-out-of-business sale at New York’s Tower Records store in 2006. The retail empire had opened in 1960 in the back of a drugstore; when the red-and-yellow, 89-store CD chain went bankrupt 46 years later, it had become so storied that Slash called it “the end of an era.” (The young, future Guns N’ Roses guitar hero had been arrested for stealing cassettes at the Tower in LA. Years later, he watched fans line up to buy the band’s Use Your Illusion at the exact same store.) “I never knew its history,” Hanks says. “I just knew it was from Sacramento, near where I grew up — and it had a great selection of records.”

The revelation prompted the Emmy-nominated Fargo star to pitch founder Russ Solomon on a documentary on the rise and fall of what, for many music fans, was a key part of their formative musical education. The result: All Things Must Pass, a highlight of this year’s SXSW Film Festival that plays as both an origin story and an epitaph for a retail empire. (Full disclosure: This Rolling Stone writer is interviewed in the film.)

The first hour plays like a comedy, detailing how Solomon hired a ragtag crew of music fanatics — shaggy-mustached hippies and rock-obsessed outcasts — as clerks in Sacramento, San Francisco and Los Angeles, and helped turn them into managers and executives. Bruce Springsteen talks about how L.A.’s Tower felt like home when he and the E Street Band first arrived in California; Dave Grohl recalls that it was the only place that would hire him due to his long hair; and Elton John, a regular since the Seventies, estimates he has spent more money at Tower than anyone ever. But the stars are Solomon and his employees, who are filmed reminiscing about the good times and visibly tearing up when discussing the bad times.

Hanks and his crew, including producer Sean Stuart and writer Steven Leckart, began the film seven years ago and finished it thanks to a recent $92,000 round of Kickstarter funding. In directing his first movie, the actor borrowed a strategy from Solomon: “The Tom Sawyer theory of letting someone else paint the fence.” At Tower, the founder never disciplined an employee for drinking on the job or ingesting the necessary substances to make it through intense all-night inventory sessions.

“You find the people that get their shit together, who get the job done, regardless of how much fun they have — and you leave ’em alone,” Hanks says of the the organization’s laissez-faire management style. “It’s pretty dangerous, but it works for the era and for the music business. Russ kept finding himself in the right place, at the right time, with the right attitude.”

Tower peaked in 1999, at the end of the CD boom, when the chain made $1 billion in a single year. Then Solomon planned a massive expansion into Japan (where he’d first opened stores in the Seventies), Latin America and Europe, just as online downloads were beginning to ravage the record industry and the company’s loans began to come due. The organization filed for bankruptcy in 2004 and closed two years later; Walgreen’s, Container Stores and Gibson Guitar Corp. shops took over various abandoned spaces. The last half of the film turns into a both a chronicle of extremely bad timing and brick-and-mortar tragedy about the changing tides of commerce.

Still, Hanks insists that All Things Must Pass is not out to bury Tower Records but to praise it, and that it’s a tribute to the folks who kept it alive and made it a vital place for decades. “Within 0.3 seconds we knew that Solomon was a total character,” he says. “But he insisted that he was not responsible for Tower’s success, and that it was really the people that had started as clerks and worked their way up. That’s when we started looking at it as more of a family story — about people coming together to do something truly unique and incredible.”

From The Archives Issue 1232: April 9, 2015

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/features/the-rise-and-fall-of-tower-records-colin-hanks-on-his-tribute-doc-20150327#ixzz3WqZXjLG5
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COOL PEOPLE – Watch Willie Nelson Tell the Story of His Legendary Guitar, Trigger

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Willie_Trigger-McSpaddenCred

Watch Willie Nelson Tell the Story of His Legendary Guitar, Trigger

An exclusive documentary on how the country icon changed music history with his beat-up Martin acoustic

 BY | February 11, 2015

Trigger, a beat-up, autograph-covered Martin N-20 acoustic, is just as recognizable as Nelson himself. And in the debut documentary in our “Mastering the Craft” series by Rolling Stone Films presented by Patrón, MaggieVision Productions and director David Chamberlin interview Nelson, his band and crew — plus friends including Jerry Jeff Walker and biographer Joe Nick Patoski, and fans like Woody Harrelson, who provides the documentary’s voiceover — to tell the story of how this instrument helped change music history.

Nelson discovered Trigger at a crossroads in his career. By 1969, he had spent nearly a decade trying to become a clean-cut solo success in Nashville. After a drunk destroyed his Guild acoustic, he decided to look for a new guitar with a sound similar to his gypsy-jazz hero Django Reinhardt (“I think he was the best guitar player ever,” Nelson says). His buddy Shot Jackson suggested the Martin classical “gut-string” guitar; Nelson bought it sight-unseen and gave it a name. “I named my guitar Trigger because it’s kind of my horse,” he explains. “Roy Rogers had a horse called Trigger.”

Later that year, Nelson’s house caught fire, and he raced inside to rescue Trigger and a pound of weed. He took the blaze as a sign it was time to relocate, returning to Texas to play the honky-tonk clubs he grew up around. The scene in Texas was more eclectic and wild, and Nelson began to thrive, pushing the boundaries of what everyone expected from an acoustic player. “No acoustic guitar at that time had been successfully amplified with a pickup,” Patoski says. Willie had a sound literally nobody else was getting.

Trigger has stayed by his side ever since, through the famous Fourth of July Picnics he started hosting in Texas in 1972, his experimental Number One breakthrough Red Headed Stranger, and all the rough times; when the IRS seized his possessions in the early Nineties, Willie sent his daughter, Lana, to hide the guitar in Hawaii. He’s had Trigger for so long and played it so hard and so much that his pick wore a sizable hole through its front. “My God! How do they keep that thing together?!” Patoski exclaims in the film. “I mean, it shouldn’t be playable.” Willie’s response? “I don’t want to put a guard over it,” he smiles. “I need a place to put my fingers.”

After five decades with his trusty companion, Nelson is still going strong. “I figure we’ll give out about the same time,” he says of the well-worn acoustic. “We’re both pretty old, got a few scars here and there, but we still manage to make a sound every now and then.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/videos/willie-nelson-rs-films-mastering-the-craft-trigger-20150211#ixzz3RUFskTXz
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Peacock Spider Dances to YMCA-So Very Funny

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!Peacock Spider Dances to YMCA

http://youtu.be/xYIUFEQeh3g

These spiders sure know how to party!

john lennon tribute

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john lennon tribute
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IMAGE: MARY ALTAFFER/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Monday marks the 34th anniversary of the tragic death of John Lennon, killed outside his apartment building in New York at the age of 40.Lennon’s gift for songwriting was one of the many reasons that the music of the Beatles remains so influential across the entire music industry. And while The Fab Four’s original recordings are not available on Spotify yet — they took a long time to arrive on iTunes, too — there is a wealth of incredible Beatles covers that show just how big an influence Lennon and the group had on the entire music world.

In honor of Lennon, we assembled the best Beatles covers into a Music Monday playlist. So enjoy this playlist full of artists paying homage to the masters.

HIWAY AMERICA – ALL ABOUT HOBOS AND THE HOBO MUSEUM, BRITT, IA

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HIWAY AMERICA – ALL ABOUT HOBOS AND THE HOBO MUSEUM, BRITT, IA

Hobo’s Meditation by JIMMIE RODGERS (1932)

http://youtu.be/HQ_xj3aDjWU

DEDICATED TO DAVE CHRISTY 

Hobo, 1894

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Hard Times in America
In the period from 1893 to 1896 America suffered a severe economic meltdown that was surpassed in its tragic impact only by the Great Depression that followed four decades later. The causes were complex. They included a public panic to cash in paper currency for gold, a subsequent depletion in the country’s gold reserve and bankers calling in their loans to private industry as the value of the dollar continued to decline.
Members of Coxey’s Army on their way
to Washington, 1893

A domino effect resulted as major companies such as the Northern Pacific Railway, the Union Pacific Railroad, and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe declared bankruptcy. An estimated 15,000 companies failed. The price of farm products plummeted, forcing many farmers to loose their farms and their livelihood. The crush of so many defaulted loans led some 500 banks to close their doors – taking their depositors’ life savings with them. Unemployment soared.

There was no government assistance. In Ohio, Jacob S. Coxey – owner of a failed business – decided to take matters into his own hands. In a move that foreshadowed the Bonus Army of 1932, he began a march on Washington in order to force the government to provide relief for the unemployed. As he made his way to the capital he was joined by what he proclaimed was an army of 100,000 destitute. However, when he entered the city he had a following of only 500. His plea fell on deaf ears as both the President and Congress refused to meet his demands. Coxey and his followers were subsequently arrested for trespassing.

The nation’s roads and railways were filled with the unemployed searching for a better life. They became hoboes, panhandling their way across the country in search of a job. Among them was eighteen-year-old Jack London, future author of Call of the Wild (1903).

“Thirty days, said his Honor, and called another hobo’s name.”

London described his experiences as a hobo in a book entitled The Road. We join his story as he arrives in Niagara Falls, NY aboard a freight train. Walking into town in search of food, he runs afoul of the law:

‘What hotel are you stopping at?’ he queried.“The town was asleep when I entered it. As I came along the quiet street, I saw three men coming toward me along the sidewalk. They were walking abreast. Hoboes, I decided, like myself, who had got up early. In this surmise I was not quite correct. . . The men on each side were hoboes all right, but the man in the middle wasn’t. . . At some word from the man in the centre, all three halted, and he of the centre addressed me. He was a ‘fly-cop’ and the two hoboes were his prisoners.

He had me. I wasn’t stopping at any hotel, and, since I did not know the name of a hotel in the place, I could not claim residence in any of them. Also, I was up too early in the morning. Everything was against me.

‘I just arrived,’ I said.

‘Well, you turn around and walk in front of me, and not too far in front. There’s somebody wants to see you.’

I was ‘pinched.’ I knew who wanted to see me. With that ‘fly-cop’ and the two hoboes at my heels, and under the direction of the former, I led the way to the city jail. There we were searched and our names registered. I have forgotten, now, under which name I was registered.

From the office we were led to the ‘Hobo’ and locked in. The ‘Hobo’ is that part of a prison where the minor offenders are confined together in a large iron cage. Since hoboes constitute the principal division of the minor offenders, the aforesaid iron cage is called the Hobo. Here we met several hoboes who had already been pinched that morning, and every little while the door was unlocked and two or three more were thrust in on us. At last, when we totaled sixteen, we were led upstairs into the courtroom. . .

In the court-room were the sixteen prisoners, the judge, and two bailiffs. The judge seemed to act as his own clerk. There were no witnesses. There were no citizens of Niagara Falls present to look on and see how justice was administered in their community. The judge glanced at the list of cases before him and called out a name. A hobo stood up. The judge glanced at a bailiff. ‘Vagrancy, your Honor,’ said the bailiff. ‘Thirty days,’ said his Honor. The hobo sat down, and the judge was calling another name and another hobo was rising to his feet.

The trial of that hobo had taken just about fifteen seconds. The trial of the next hobo came off with equal celerity. The bailiff said, ‘Vagrancy, your Honor,’ and his Honor said, ‘Thirty days.’ Thus it went like clockwork, fifteen seconds to a hobo and thirty days.

They are poor dumb cattle, I thought to myself. But wait till my turn comes; I’ll give his Honor a ‘spiel.’ Part way along in the performance, his Honor, moved by some whim, gave one of us an opportunity to speak. As chance would have it, this man was not a genuine hobo. He bore none of the ear- marks of the professional ‘stiff.’ Had he approached the rest of us, while waiting at a water-tank for a freight, we should have unhesitatingly classified him as a ‘gay-cat.’ Gay-cat is the synonym for tenderfoot in Hobo Land. This gay-cat was well along in years — somewhere around forty-five, I should judge. His shoulders were humped a trifle, and his face was seamed by weather-beat.

For many years, according to his story, he had driven team for some firm in (if I remember rightly) Lockport, New York. The firm had ceased to prosper, and finally, in the hard times of 1893, had gone out of business. He had been kept on to the last, though toward the last his work had been very irregular. He went on and explained at length his difficulties in getting work (when so many were out of work) during the succeeding months. In the end, deciding that he would find better opportunities for work on the Lakes, he had started for Buffalo. Of course he was ‘broke,’ and there he was. That was all.

‘Thirty days,’ said his Honor, and called another hobo’s name.

Said hobo got up. ‘Vagrancy, your Honor,’ said the bailiff, and his Honor said, ‘Thirty days.’ And so it went, fifteen seconds and thirty days to each hobo. The machine of justice was grinding smoothly. Most likely, considering how early it was in the morning, his Honor had not yet had his breakfast and was in a hurry.

But my American blood was up. Behind me were the many generations of my American ancestry. One of the kinds of liberty those ancestors of mine had fought and died for was the right of trial by jury. This was my heritage, stained sacred by their blood, and it devolved upon me to stand up for it. All right, I threatened to myself; just wait till he gets to me.

Jack London

He got to me. My name, whatever it was, was called, and I stood up. The bailiff said, ‘Vagrancy, your Honor,’ and I began to talk. But the judge began talking at the same time, and he said, ‘Thirty days.’ I started to protest, but at that moment his Honor was calling the name of the next hobo on the list. His Honor paused long enough to say to me, ‘Shut up!’ The bailiff forced me to sit down. And the next moment that next hobo had received thirty days and the succeeding hobo was just in process of getting his.

When we had all been disposed of, thirty days to each stiff, his Honor, just as he was about to dismiss us, suddenly turned to the teamster from Lockport — the one man he had allowed to talk.

‘Why did you quit your job?’ his Honor asked.

Now the teamster had already explained how his job had quit him, and the question took him aback.

‘Your Honor,’ he began confusedly, ‘isn’t that a funny question to ask?’

‘Thirty days more for quitting your job,’ said his Honor, and the court was closed. That was the outcome. The teamster got sixty days all together, while the rest of us got thirty days.

References:
London, Jack, The Road (1907).

How To Cite This Article:
“Hobo 1894: Hard Times in America”, EyeWitness to History, http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com (2007).

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 Boxcar Willie Getty David Redfern 1989

BOXCAR WILLIE : Hank And The Hobo (train country song)

http://youtu.be/oh5hV2M22nk

Death of the American Hobo (Documentary)

http://youtu.be/LWHh9W5IeBo

THE HOBO MUSEUM

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Strangest Museums: Hobo Museum

Rachel Freundt
The Hobo Museum, Britt, IA
Housed in the former Chief Theater, the Hobo Museum celebrates the vagabond lifestyle, which happens to have a stringent code of ethics. It’s full of drifter memorabilia from the likes of Frisco Jack, Connecticut Slim, and Hard Rock Kid. Hobo crafts, art, photographs, and documentaries depicting the unorthodox way of life are also on display. It’s brought to you by the Hobo Foundation, which hosts an annual convention in town. hobo.com

What are Hobo Signs ?
Depression era symbols used by hoboes. In their travels for work, hoboes made marks with chalk, paint or coal on walls, sidewalks, fences and posts. The signs were meant to let others know what was ahead. (some call them the secrete language of the hoboes)

1. Good road to follow
2. Religious talk will get you a free meal
3. These people are rich (Silk hat and pile of gold)
4. Camp here
5. You may sleep in the hayloft here
6. Warning: Barking Dog
7. House is well-guarded
8. This is not a safe place
9. Good food available here, but you have to work for it
10. If you are sick, they’ll care for you here
11. This community is indifferent to a hobo’s presence
12. Authorities are alert: Be careful
13. Officer of the law lives here
14. Courthouse, precinct station
15. Jail
16. Free telephone (Bird)
17. Beware of four dogs
18. No use going this direction
19. Dangerous drinking water
20. Doubtful
21. A judge or magistrate lives here
22. Here. This is the place
23. A kind old lady (Cat)
24. Hit the road! Quick!
25. A beating awaits you here
26. A trolley stop
27. “Ok, alright”
28. This way
29. A gentleman lives here (Top Hat)
30. Police frown on hobos here (Handcuffs)
31. A man with a gun lives here
32. There is nothing to be gained here
33. The road is spoiled with other hobos and tramps
34. Good place to catch a train
35. Hold your tongue
36. A crime has been committed here. Not a safe place for strangers
37. Halt
38. Dangerous neighborhood
39. An ill-tempered man lives here
40. Be prepared to defend yourself
41. A doctor lives here. He won’t charge for his services
42. Keep quiet (Warns of day sleepers, babies)
43. The owner is in
44. The owner is out
45. There are thieves about
46. A dishonest person lives here
47. An easy mark, a sucker
48. Good place for hand out
49. There is alcohol in this town
50. Fresh water and a safe campsite

The hobo signs were copied out of a book called
“Hobo Signs by Stan Richards & Associates”

 

This is a rare example of tramp art in that I have found no references
in tramp art books to this wonderful pillow form.  Its rarity is further
exemplified by the materials used: cloth, heavy carpet-like fabric and a
stuffing of sawdust.  A great deal of time, skill and passion produced this
sturdy object.  It has the classic pyramidic shape repeated with precision in
row after row of a deep red heavy fabric on the top.  The edges where the top
meets the bottom are notched similar to tramp art woodcarvings. The bottom
exposes a smooth fabric that probably covers the entire object and displays a
light rust color.  The dimensions are 9″ x 9″ square and 4.5″ high, in the
middle. The pillow weighs just under two pounds – 1lb. 15 oz.

The following is a beautiful example of bottle art

done by Carl Worner at some time in the early 1900s.
see more at  http://sdjones.net/FolkArt/worner.html

 

The following are some examples of beautiful old
time wood carving.  Notice the intricate detail and the skillful carving of the
balls in cages and chain links.

 

   Next are some great carvings by our modern day
artist “The Tanner City Kid”.  Note that the chain links are fully functioning
links as in a steel chain and the balls in the cages are loose movable objects
that are carved from the interior wood during the hollowing out process.  I
think you’ll agree with me that Tanner’s work is as skillful as any of the old
timers.

COOL PEOPLE -JANIS JOPLIN- Tony Winner Will Play Janis Joplin in Upcoming Biopic

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COOL PEOPLE -JANIS JOPLIN- Tony Winner Will Play Janis Joplin in Upcoming Biopic

Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin – Ball And Chain (Amazing Performance at Monterey)

With Big Brother and the Holding Company, she performed the song at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 to an enthusiastic audience and critical reception. The first performance on June 17 was not filmed, so the band was persuaded to perform the song again on the next day. This shorter version

http://youtu.be/Bld_-7gzJ-o

Janis Joplin – Piece Of My Heart

http://youtu.be/7uG2gYE5KOs

 

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Singer (1943–1970)

Bio

Janis Joplin – Mini Biography (TV-14; 02:53) Breaking new ground for women in rock music, Janis Joplin rose to fame in the late 1960s and was known for her powerful, blues-inspired vocals

Synopsis

 

Born on January 19, 1943, in Port Arthur, Texas, Janis Joplin developed a love of music at an early age, but her career didn’t take off until she joined the band Big Brother and the Holding Company in 1966. Their 1968 album, Cheap Thrills, was a huge hit. However, friction between Joplin and the band prompted her to part ways with Big Brother soon after. Known for her powerful, blues-inspired vocals, Joplin released her first solo effort, I Got Dem Ol’ Kozmic Blues Again Mama!, in 1969. The album received mixed reviews, but her second project, Pearl (1971), released after Joplin’s death, was a huge success. The singer died of an accidental overdose on October 4, 1970, at age 27.
Janis Lyn Joplin was born on January 19, 1943, in Port Arthur, Texas. Breaking new ground for women in rock music, Joplin rose to fame in the late 1960s and became known for her powerful, blues-inspired vocals. She grew up in a small Texas town known for its connections to the oil industry with a skyline and dotted with oil tanks and refineries. For years, Joplin struggled to escape from this confining community, and spent even longer to trying to overcome her memories of her difficult years there.Developing a love for music at an early age, Joplin sang in her church choir as a child and showed some promise as a performer. She was an only child until the age of 6, when her sister, Laura, was born. Four years later, her brother, Michael, arrived. Joplin was a good student and fairly popular until around the age of 14, when some side effects of puberty started to kick in. She got acne and gained some weight.At Thomas Jefferson High School, Joplin began to rebel. She eschewed the popular girls’ fashions of the late 1950s, often choosing to wear men’s shirts and tights, or short skirts. Joplin, who liked to stand out from the crowd, became the target of some teasing as well as a popular subject in the school’s rumor mill. She was called a “pig” by some, while others said that she was sexually promiscuous.Joplin eventually developed a group of guy friends who shared her interest in music and the Beat Generation, which rejected the standard norms and emphasized creative expression (Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg were two of the Beat movement’s leading figures).

Early Musical Interests

Musically, Janis Joplin and her friends gravitated toward blues and jazz, admiring such artists as Lead Belly. Joplin was also inspired by legendary blues vocalists Bessie Smith, MaRainey andOdetta, an early leading figure in the folk music movement. The group frequented local working-class bars in the nearby town of Vinton, Louisiana. By her senior year of high school, Joplin had developed a reputation as a ballsy, tough-talking girl who like to drink and be outrageous.After graduating from high school, Joplin enrolled at Lamar State College of Technology in the neighboring town of Beaumont, Texas. There, she devoted more time to hanging out and drinking with friends than to her studies. At the end of her first semester at Lamar, Joplin left the school. She went on to attend Port Arthur College, where she took some secretarial courses, before moving to Los Angeles in the summer of 1961. This first effort to break away from wasn’t a success, however, and Joplin thus returned to Port Arthur for a time.In the summer of 1962, Joplin fled to the University of Texas at Austin, where she studied art. In Austin, Joplin began performing at folksings—casual musical gatherings where anyone can perform—on campus and atThreadgill’s, a gas station turned bar, with the Waller Creek Boys, a musical trio with whom she was friends. With her forceful, gutsy singing style, Joplin amazed many audience members. She was unlike any other white female vocalist at the time (folk icons like Joan Baez and Judy Collins were known for their gentle sound).In January 1963, Joplin ditched school to check out the emerging music scene in San Francisco with friend Chet Helms. But this stint out west, like her first, proved to be unsuccessful, as Joplin struggled to make it as a singer in the Bay Area. She played some gigs, including a side-stage performance at the 1963 Monterey Folk Festival—but her career didn’t gain much traction. Joplin then spent some time in New York City, where she hoped to have better luck getting her career off the ground, but her drinking and drug use (she’d begun regularly using speed, or amphetamine, among other drugs) there proved to be detrimental to her musical aspirations. In 1965, she left San Francisco and returned home in an effort to get herself together again.

Back in Texas, Joplin took a break from her music and her hard-partying lifestyle, and dressed conservatively, putting her long, often messy hair into a bun and doing everything else she could to appear straight-laced. But the conventional life was not for her, and her desire to pursue her musical dreams wouldn’t remain submerged for long.

Joplin slowly returned to performing, and in May 1966, was recruited by friend Travis Rivers to audition for a new psychedelic rock band based in San Francisco, Big Brother and the Holding Company. At the time, the group was managed by another longtime friend of Joplin’s, Chet Helms. Big Brother, whose members included James Gurley, Dave Getz, Peter Albin and Sam Andrew, was part of the burgeoning San Francisco music scene of the late 1960s; among the other bands involved in this scene were the Grateful Dead.Big Brother

Joplin blew the band away during her audition, and was quickly offered membership into the group. In her early days with Big Brother, she sang only a few songs and played the tambourine in the background. But it wasn’t long before Joplin assumed a bigger role in the band, as Big Brother developed quite a following in the Bay Area. Their appearance at the now legendary Monterey Pop Festival in 1967—specifically their version of “Ball and Chain” (originally made famous by R&B legend Big Mama Thornton) brought the group further acclaim. Most of the praise, however, focused on Joplin’s incredible vocals. Fueled by heroin, amphetamines and the bourbon she drank straight from the bottle during gigs, Joplin’s unrestrained sexual style and raw, gutsy sound mesmerized audiences—and all of this attention caused some tension between Joplin and her bandmates.After hearing Joplin at Monterey, Columbia Records President Clive Davis wanted to sign the band. Albert Grossman, who already managed Bob Dylan, the Band, and Peter, Paul & Mary, later signed on as the band’s manager, and was able to get them out of another record deal they’d signed earlier with Mainstream Records.While their recordings for Mainstream never found much of an audience, Big Brother’s first album for Columbia, Cheap Thrills (1968), was a huge hit. While the album was wildly successful—quickly becoming a certified gold record with songs like “Piece of My Heart” and “Summertime”—creating it had been a challenging process, causing even more problems between Joplin and band’s other members. (The album was produced by John Simon, who’d had the band do take after take in an attempt to create a technically perfect sound.)Cheap Thrills helped solidify Joplin’s reputation as a unique, dynamic, bluesy rock singer. Despite Big Brother’s continued success, Joplin was becoming frustrated with group, feeling that she was being held back professionally.

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Solo Career

Joplin struggled with her decision to leave Big Brother, as her bandmates had been like a family to her, but she eventually decided to part ways with the group. She played with Big Brother for the last time in December 1968.

Following a historic performance at Woodstock (August 1969), Joplin released her first solo effort, I Got Dem Ol’ Kozmic Blues Again Mama!, in September 1969, with Kozmic Blues Band. Some of the project’s most memorable songs were “Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)” and “To Love Somebody,” a cover of a Bee Gees tune. But Kozmic Blues received mixed reviews, with some media outlets criticizing Joplin personally. Feeling uniquely pressured to prove herself as a female solo artist in a male-dominated industry, the criticism caused distress for Joplin. “That was a pretty heavy time for me,” she later said in an interview with Howard Smith of The Village Voice. “It was really important, you know, whether people were going to accept me or not.” (Joplin’s interview with Smith was her last; it took place on September 30, 1970, just four days before her death.) Outside of music, Joplin appeared to be struggling with alcohol and drugs, including an addiction to heroin.

Joplin’s next album would be her most successful, but, tragically, also her last. She recorded Pearl with the Full Tilt Boogie Band and wrote two of its songs, the powerful, rocking “Move Over” and “Mercedes Benz,” a gospel-styled send-up of consumerism.Tragic Death and Legacy

Following a long struggle with substance abuse, Joplin died from an accidental heroin overdose on October 4, 1970, at a hotel in Hollywood’s Landmark Hotel. Completed by Joplin’s producer, Pearl was released in 1971 and quickly became a hit. The single “Me and Bobby McGee,” written by Kris Kristofferson, a former love of Joplin’s, reached the top of the charts.Despite her untimely death, Janis Joplin’s songs continue to attract new fans and inspire performers. Numerous collections of her songs have been released over the years, including In Concert (1971) and Box of Pearls(1999). In recognition of her significant accomplishments, Joplin was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, and honored with a Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammy Awards in 2005.Dubbed the “first lady of rock ‘n’ roll,” Joplin has been the subject of several books and documentaries, including Love, Janis (1992), written by sister Laura Joplin. That book was adapted into a play of the same title.

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Tony Winner Will Play Janis Joplin in Upcoming Biopic
Nina Arianda set to portray the singer, with Sean Durkin directing

BY ROLLING STONE

An upcoming Janis Joplin biopic has found its star: Tony award-winning actress Nina Arianda will appear as the singer in the Sean Durkin-directed Joplin, Deadline reports.

According to producer Peter Newman, who’s been trying to put together a Joplin flick along with his partners for the past 12 years, Arianda will sing all of Joplin’s music. That’s no easy task, especially trying to capture Joplin’s signature grit, but Newman says he’s confident in his star’s talents.

“I’ve never in my life seen an actress walk on a stage and convey the duality of vulnerability with overheated sexuality, which is what Janis was all about,” Newman told Deadline.

While this isn’t Arianda’s first foray into film – she’s held supporting roles in Midnight -n Paris, Tower Heist and others – it will be her first major starring role. The actress won acclaim and a Tony for best actress in a play for her turn in the Broadway show Venus in Fur. Meanwhile, director Durkin broke out last year with his film Martha Marcy May Marlene, which garnered plenty of praise at festivals and landed him the Best Director honor at Sundance.

Joplin will focus on the last six months of the Texas-born musician’s career, though it will also include flashbacks to her early career. The film has exclusive rights to use 21 of Joplin’s best known tracks.

While there have been other attempts to produce a Joplin biopic, especially as Newman’s sat on the back-burner, the producer had scored Joplin’s crucial song and life rights as well as the arrangements by backing band Big Brother and the Holding Company. Newman also holds the rights to the collection of letters Love, Janis and Piece of My Heart, the book written by Rolling Stone reporter David Dalton, who traveled with Joplin during the six months before the heroin overdose that killed her in 1970.

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/tony-winner-will-play-janis-joplin-in-upcoming-biopic-20120710#ixzz3K6cF1LwT
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Nina Arianda set to portray the singer, with Sean Durkin directing

nina arianda janis joplin
D Dipasupil/Getty Images; GAB Archive/Redferns
Nina Arianda to star as Janis Joplin in upcoming biopic
BY | July 10, 2012

An upcoming Janis Joplin biopic has found its star: Tony award-winning actress Nina Arianda will appear as the singer in the Sean Durkin-directed Joplin, Deadline reports.

According to producer Peter Newman, who’s been trying to put together a Joplin flick along with his partners for the past 12 years, Arianda will sing all of Joplin’s music. That’s no easy task, especially trying to capture Joplin’s signature grit, but Newman says he’s confident in his star’s talents.

“I’ve never in my life seen an actress walk on a stage and convey the duality of vulnerability with overheated sexuality, which is what Janis was all about,” Newman told Deadline.

While this isn’t Arianda’s first foray into film – she’s held supporting roles in Midnight -n Paris, Tower Heist and others – it will be her first major starring role. The actress won acclaim and a Tony for best actress in a play for her turn in the Broadway show Venus in Fur. Meanwhile, director Durkin broke out last year with his film Martha Marcy May Marlene, which garnered plenty of praise at festivals and landed him the Best Director honor at Sundance.

Joplin will focus on the last six months of the Texas-born musician’s career, though it will also include flashbacks to her early career. The film has exclusive rights to use 21 of Joplin’s best known tracks.

While there have been other attempts to produce a Joplin biopic, especially as Newman’s sat on the back-burner, the producer had scored Joplin’s crucial song and life rights as well as the arrangements by backing band Big Brother and the Holding Company. Newman also holds the rights to the collection of letters Love, Janis and Piece of My Heart, the book written by Rolling Stone reporter David Dalton, who traveled with Joplin during the six months before the heroin overdose that killed her in 1970.

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/tony-winner-will-play-janis-joplin-in-upcoming-biopic-20120710#ixzz3K6cF1LwT
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

COOL PEOPLE -Bob Dylan Plays Concert for One Insanely Lucky Superfan

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COOL PEOPLE -Bob Dylan Plays Concert for One Insanely Lucky Superfan

Bob Dylan Plays Concert for One Insanely Lucky Superfan

“I was smiling so much it was like I was on ecstasy,” says Fredrik Wikingsson. “My jaw hurt for hours”

Bob Dylan and Fredrik Wikingsson
Simon Rudholm
Fredrik Wikingsson at the Philadelphia Academy of Music watching Bob Dylan in concert.

BY | November 24, 2014

Yesterday afternoon around 3:00 p.m. 41-year-old Bob Dylan superfan Fredrik Wikingsson walked into the Philadelphia  Academy  of music took a seat in the second row and prepared to watch his hero play a concert just for him. “At this point I still thought I was about to get Punk’d,” he says. “I thought some asshole would walk onstage and just laugh at me. I just couldn’t fathom that Dylan would actually do this.”

RELATEDBob Dylan, circa 1969.

8 Things We Learned Diving Into Bob Dylan’s ‘Basement Tapes’

This wasn’t Punk’d, and within 10 minutes of Wikingsson taking his seat, the lights dimmed and Dylan took the stage alongside his touring band. Playing to an audience of one, they abandoned their usual repertoire and played Buddy Holly’s “Heartbeat,” Fats Domino’s “Blueberry Hill,” Chuck Willis’ “It’s Too Late (She’s Gone)” and a blues jam that Wikingsson  has been unable to identify. “I was smiling so much it was like I was on ecstasy,” he says. “My jaw hurt for hours afterwards because I couldn’t stop smiling.”

The incredible concert was part of an ongoing Swedish film series Experiment Ensam (Experiment Alone), where people experience things completely alone that are usually reserved for large crowds. Past films focused on lone people at comedy clubs or karaoke bars. The filmmakers thought a lot bigger for this one and made arrangements with Dylan’s camp for the private show, paying him an undisclosed amount of money. “I have no idea how much it was,” says Wikingsson. “But it was probably more than he gets for a normal gig.”

Wikingsson’s friend Anders Helgeson is the director of Experiment Ensam, and when he told him about the Dylan concept he begged to be the subject. “I had an endless series of meetings where I managed to convince people my extreme fandom made me the best candidate for the enviable task,” he says. “I’m very passive and I always picture myself as the guy that wouldn’t be able to save himself on a sinking ship. I’d just lay down and die. I have no real ability to grab the moment, but when I heard about this I thought, ‘For once, I have to stop everything in my life and go for something.'”

The day before the show, Wikingsson, a popular TV personality who lives in Stockholm, walked around New York’s Greenwich Village with a camera crew and visited famous Dylan landmarks. On show day, he found himself so nervous he wasn’t able to eat. “I was a fucking wreck,” he says. “Part of me was thinking, ‘Maybe this won’t happen and it’ll be for the best. I don’t want to impose on Mr. Dylan. I don’t want him to stand there and be grouchy, just hating it.'”

When he walked into the theater, he had the surreal experience of being able to pick any seat in the house. He went with a seat in the middle of the second row. “I thought the first row might freak him out,” Wikingsson says. “I was like a guy picking the next-to-most expensive bottle of wine in a restaurant, which is a very Swedish thing to do. I figured the second row would be ideal. Malcolm Gladwell would probably have all sorts of theories about this.”

The light dimmed 10 incredibly anxious minutes after he walked in. “It was completely dark and empty,” Wikingsson says. “Then a guy walks onstage and started talking to the lighting guy. Turns out it was Dylan and he nodded at me. There wasn’t any ceremony at all. He just started talking to his bassist and drummer about how they were going to start the first song.”

Dylan’s set list has been remarkably rigid over the past year, centering largely around songs released in the past 15 years. Covers are extremely rare, so Wikingsson was delighted when the show began with “Heartbeat.” “I liked Buddy Holly before I liked Dylan,” he says. “I felt like Christmas morning.”

He broke out into applause when the song finished. “Nobody took notice of me,” he says. “I figured that maybe it just sounded phony or weird. During the second song, ‘Blueberry Hill,’ I realized I had to say something. It was just too weird. I screamed out, ‘You guys sound great!’ That caused Dylan to burst out laughing. Now, I have two kids and their births were great, but him laughing onstage at some lousy fucking comment of mine was unbelievable.”

At the end of “It’s Too Late (She’s Gone)” Dylan performed a harmonica solo. “I always detest people that automatically holler and applaud every time he breaks out the harmonica,” says Wikingsson. “But I found myself almost weeping when he played the solo. He could have just ended the song without the solo, he wanted it to be great.”

The show wrapped up with a blues song. “It’s still a big mystery to me,” says Wikingsson. “This will probably be a embarrassing for me because it might be a well-known blues song. I’m sure when I get the tapes I can figure out what it was. When the show ended Dylan said, ‘Swing by anytime.’ He was highlighting the fact this was a weird thing that will never happen again. It was just so fucking great.”

Dylan played a public show that night, but Wikingsson decided to not go. “It would be weird and nothing could top this,” he says. “To be honest, I went to a karaoke bar with the production guys and sang my throat out. I selected all Dylan songs, but they just had these crappy Byrds versions.”

Wikingsson’s private Dylan show was filmed by eight cameras, and a 15-minute documentary of the event will hit YouTube on December 15th. “Fans might detest the fact that I’m sitting there,” he says. “But it’s going to be really cool and great looking. The sound was just incredible.”

He’s also going to talk at great length about the experience on his popular English language podcast,  Philadelphia Academy of music

Now that the whole experience is behind him, Wikingsson has one final dream: “I want Dylan to release an official Columbia EP of the concert called Songs for Fredrick.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/bob-dylan-plays-concert-for-one-insanely-lucky-superfan-20141124#ixzz3K5YoIrfc
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BEATNIK HIWAY – HAIGHT ASHBURY IN THE 60’S-A VIBRANT HIPPIE HISTORY- AND TODAY’S KIDS

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BEATNIK HIWAY – HAIGHT ASHBURY IN THE 60’S-A VIBRANT HIPPIE HISTORY- AND TODAY’S KIDS

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“San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” is a song, written by John Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas, and sung by Scott McKenzie. It was written and released in June 1967 to promote the Monterey Pop Festival

http://youtu.be/bch1_Ep5M1s

ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS-“SAN FRANCISCAN NIGHTS”

 http://youtu.be/g2JwiusEyPQ

“San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” is a song, written by John Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas, and sung by Scott McKenzie. It was written and released in June 1967 to promote the Monterey Pop Festival.

http://youtu.be/bch1_Ep5M1s

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dave and myself in San Francisco

Posted: 10/15/2012 2:20 pm EDT Updated: 10/16/2012 2:21 pm EDT
HAIGHT ASHBURY 1960S
  A stroll down Haight Street today will undoubtedly evoke a certain 1960s nostalgia.

Live guitar music still warbles from street corners, tie-dyed t-shirts are hawked by the handful, the smell of pot permanently wafts, colorful peace signs adorn windows of businesses like the Red Victorian Bed & Breakfast — institutions better suited to an earlier time.

(SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOS)

But said nostalgia is often overshadowed by the sad realities of a neighborhood that has long since evolved from the remnants of a revolution: the wayward teenagers, the tourist traps, the vagabonds, the $6 corporate ice cream cones sold at precisely San Francisco’s most famous intersection.

During its heyday, which culminated in 1967’s infamous Summer of Love, young dreamers converged in the Haight by the thousands. Historians deem the neighborhood the birthplace of the hippie movement, marked by peaceful protests and psychedelic experimentation. The era’s greatest luminaries, from Jerry Garcia to Allen Ginsberg to Jimi Hendrix, all lived nearby.

Then the movement waned, and the area began to decay along with it. “By the fall of 1967, Haight-Ashbury was nearly abandoned, trashed, and laden with drugs and homeless people,” blogger Jon Newman wrote in his essay Death of the Hippie Subculture. “With the Haight in ruins and most of its residents gone, it was simply unable to operate as a hub for music, poetry and art.”

Of course, the Haight still has a certain appeal. There’s no better jazz-and-pizza combo in the city than at Club Deluxe, Amoeba Music offers a truly epic collection, a parklet just popped up in front of Haight Street Market and the 12-piece band that assembles in front of American Apparel on Sunday mornings always move crowds to dance in the street.

Yet we can’t help but heave a sigh while pushing past gaggles of gawking tourists or stepping over the man sleeping on the sidewalk at noon. While a stroll down Haight Street today certainly evokes nostalgia, it also makes us yearn for a place that was once the epicenter of peace and love and youth in revolt, a place we never had the chance to experience ourselves but will be forever engrained in San Francisco’s complex, progressive history.

A History Of Hippies

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 This collection is part of a new HuffPost SF partnership with the San Francisco Public Library’s History Center, “Tales From The City,” which features various images from throughout the city’s past. Visit the San Francisco History Center in person to view original photographic prints and negatives as well as tour other relics from SF’s earlier days.

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This is a short documentary about the Haight Street kids living in San Francisco.

http://youtu.be/sIHa8QyU2Ok

COOL PEOPLE – The Grateful Dead

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Grateful Dead – Dick’s Picks Vol 25 – New Haven, CT 5-10-78

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http://youtu.be/rwUhu184tbI

The Grateful Dead turn 50 next year and to celebrate the occasion, they’ll release a career-spanning documentary directed by Amir Bar-Lev, who also had a hand in 2010′s The Tillman Story and 2007′s My Kid Could Paint That. Most notably, the film will be executive produced by Martin Scorsese. The film will contain never-before-seen footage of performances and new interviews with surviving members Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh, and Bob Weir. “Millions of stories have been told about the Grateful Dead over the years. With our 50th Anniversary coming up, we thought it might just be time to tell one ourselves and Amir is the perfect guy to help us do it,” the band said in a statement. “Needless to say, we are humbled to be collaborating with Martin Scorsese. From The Last Waltz to George Harrison: Living In The Material World, from Bob Dylan to the Rolling Stones, he has made some of the greatest music documentaries ever with some of our favorite artists and we are honored to have him involved. The 50th will be another monumental milestone to celebrate with our fans and we cannot wait to share this film with them.” No details about the film’s release schedule have been revealed so far.

Grateful Dead Jerry Garcia Hippie Interview

http://youtu.be/eYxbJzyVzaY