Sunday, 19 April 2009
These were the seeds that were planted....
As a little boy I was always taken by music.. I was possessed I couldn't get it out of my brain and my parents thought I had a unhealthy obsession with music. I banged, I clanged and sometimes fucking broke out in song. Since I was un piquito nino and didn't have the duckets or know how to have my own record collection I was stuck with the archive of those around me. My parents were young and listened to Soul and Rock... As a kid I would rifle through my dads records and just gaze at the record sleeves. I remember thinking when I first saw Johnny Cash on the cover of Live At Folsom Prison, was... just who is this sweaty guy, and why was he sweating? Now I know that this album is there up on my must have for every record collection but as a four year old... I wasn't mature enough to know just what the hell to make of this double chinned dude with stank all over his duff. Now being that my dad was a biker at the time his collection was pretty colourful
My favourite album was Big Brother And The Holding Company Feat. Janis Joplin "Cheap Thrills" done by Robert Crumb. This album cover mystified me. I would hide it away and stare at it for hours. So being the little cocky son of a bitch that I was I would plan military manoeuvres to get to those albums. It wasn't like I just waited for my mother to pass out on the couch in a muumuu with a bottle of Stoli spilling from her hands. Nope that was my friend Russell's mother. My dad once caught my under the bed holding the album and tried to pry the sleeve from my hands. I will say this I put up a good fight. So this began a ritual. My dad began to pry me away from his records and I was forbidden to touch, look or even smell them. So my little grubby stained hands were ruining his prize collection and I would soon learn. I would show him, make mental note find music and get own record collection. A chore I have accomplished with about 1600 titles to my collections. Music was the devils playground. It wasn't till I was baby sat by my aunt Jane, whom was much younger and had a record collection she was willing to show me. JACK MOTHERFUCKER SMOKING POT! I HIT THE MOTHER LOAD.
Now my aunt Jane was about fourteen fifteen at the time and she was my window to things. Such as Glam Rock and Black Light Velvet Posters... to me she was the coolest chick on the planet. And she was vital to introducing me to Led Zeppelin and David Bowie. Then It began all over again her record covers were my drug. You see it was the artwork of the Vinyl Generation that took me over.
Two albums were Diamond Dogs By David Bowie and Elton John's Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy. She flew into a rage once when I held the sleeve so tight that my fingers made and imprint and that too became off limits. She cooked up an idea that I would preform for the school when I came home with a note pinned to me informing them of an upcoming talent show. To which I would she dressed me up as Elton John and I would mime Someone Saved My Life Tonight in front of a piano. I lost to some little cunt whom tapped and twirled a baton, I was gutted. Still, to me these albums became criminal, sinful and dangerous. In short, everything rock and roll should be. The colours and subject matter to me seemed almost sexual of these albums because of the present physicality present in all the sleeves.
A sexual cocktail that made would you wanna do bad thing, party, rip your clothes off and be free.
Now I know what your thinking? How in the hell could a five year old look at this artwork and feel these things urging him to do such things. Well it wasn't as I was ready to stand under a red fucking lam post at the tender age of six. But the music did make wanna shake my rhythm stick, and that too was because my aunt Jane taught me how to dance. But I knew Primal sounds when they met my ear drums and to me music was sex and aural orgasm. It would be another seven years before I took the plunge and lost my virginity. Looking back at these sleeves I am forever changed because I knew that something in the realm of art was running through my blood. So when I was at the tender age of 10 and bought my first album with my own money I bought Blondie's Parallel Lines. Another album coaxing me to live in sin and drunken delirium. I honest feel that the art of rock album has shaped me in some weird and perverted way, to which I am proud. From Johnny Cash signing to a bunch of convicted criminals, to Janis Joplin be documented as property of The Hells Angels(Outlaws), I was sold. From seeing Bowie morphed into a dog and a sexual freak signing Rebel Rebel and making me jump and learn to strut, to my aunt Jane dressing me complete with sequins in her gear to mime Someone Save My Life Tonight in front of my whole school at the tender age of five and tapping into my competitive gene. I am still forever changed.
Truth is I have these records and are forever apart of my family history and tree. and to my dad and aunt Jane I am thankful that they introduced me to a two pivotal ingredients in my life. Rock Music and Art. It was also around this time my parents took me to see Fritz The Cat.. But that too is a whole different story.