Archive for September, 2008
I was having drinks recently with my friend Mike who grew up in Detroit and Ann Arbor in the late 70s-early 80s. And I dunno what we were talking about - I think the internet, what’s it’s good at and bad at - and he started to tell me about this radio DJ from his childhood, The Electrifying Mojo.
Mike described this amazing DJ who’d play these long sets mixing stuff like John Cage and Kraftwerk with Parliament and Prince - especially Prince. Like apparently he once made an on-the-fly 20 minute remix of When Doves Cry involving real dove sounds.
And then Mike quoted me this:
“If you’re in your car, honk your horn
If you’re in water, splash
If you’re in bed, boogie on your back…
When you feel like you’re at the end of your rope, tie a knot.
And remember - ain’t nobody bad like you!”
Mike said the Electrifying Mojo would say stuff like that every show and that it was the best feeling to be driving a car - or when he was younger, lying in bed with the radio - and feel a solidarity with all the other Electrifying Mojo fans.
He said he’d tried to find some archives and hadn’t had any luck. Obviously, I offered to look around too. Here’s what I found:
1) Wikipedia entry with lots of history (and some future!)
2) Transcript of Electrifying Mojo’s historic interview with Prince. (anyone got a recording?)
3) Juan Atkins saying the radio show was “the reason [techno] happened in Detroit”.
4) And most importantly…6 Youtube clips of Electrifying Mojo broadcasts! Like:
Wow. Absolutely full credit and thanks to great youtuber mcmorris55, but I used Vixy to make MP3s of his Youtube postings so I could listen on my iPod. And if you want them, you can download the MP3s here.
Hearing it from Mike and reading testimonies online, fans say again and again you can’t get it if you weren’t there. And that’s obvious. I urge you to read some postings here or here. These are testimonies to something truly special to have experienced. But even totally de-contextualized and museumified, this shit is awesome.
And it’s all tied to so much I’m excited about, I won’t even try to talk about it. But. Shout-outs to Umeanmatt’s great Prince project. And to young inheritors of the aesthetic, BFFs Lil’ Wayne and T-Pain.
And so…Summer fades and Television shows me its colors. So far, Fox is most viberant, with new shows Fringe and - holy shit - let’s not even talk about: Hole in the Wall.
Speaking of weirdo, trippy, tangential, double vision, etc: Girlfreh Catherine is having her first post-graduate art opening in New York!
Curated by Summer Guthery and Amy Owen
September 19th - October 24th, 2008
Opening September 19th, 7-9pm
October 24th Closing Performances by Melissa Brown, Carla Edwards, Pablo Helguera, and Rachel Mason
44 West 28th Street, 7th Floor. Between 6th Avenue and Broadway
Gallery Hours - Thursday through Saturday 1-6pm and by appointment
917.574.8365 or 917.968.1831
Tyler Coburn - Catherine Czacki - Patricia Esquivias - Tommy Hartung - David Maljkovic - Rachel Mason - Paulina Olowska - Lisa Oppenheim - Walid Raad
See you there!
P.S. Catherine’s fantastic book of many pictures, the past collides with the future/the future collides with the past is now buyable at Lulu.com! Keywords: time travel.
Speaking of the 90s, my summer iPod, Fader-blog, whatever: you know how The Name of This Band is Talking Heads is like a manifestation of a fantasy of the Talking Heads we didn’t think actually existed? PAVEMENT, LIVE AT PALACE 1994…
I mean HOLY SHIT, 7-minute Fight This Generation is raw, dark and silly fight-music. And secretly best friends with Greenlodge summer jam Celebrate the Body Electric. And of course, with a title that’s like “Love me, Lev!”
P.S. RIP David Foster Wallace. That sucks.
It’s funny that right now, 2 different mixes featuring Mellow Gold’s 2nd single Beercan happen to be on my iPod Shuffle…
Some People by longtime faves The Avalanches, from 2005, is a treasure I’ve enjoyed all summer - listening to it, the familiar and the exotic recombine, and I find myself changing my mind about all sorts of things. Like I maybe love Lady Sovereign now.
Nick Catchdubs does some awesome things on Radio Friendly Unit Shifter (The El Scorcho > Green Day transition: pitch perfect), but essentially, the mix is anonymous - DJ as editor, not author. Still, because it is so focused and un-artsy, it is great for thinkabouting its topic: alt-rock/hip-hop of the 90s. Like, can you believe I still hate Flagpole Sitta as much as I did in 7th grade? And for the same exact reasons?
BTW, doesn’t it seem counterintuitive that these focused power-hour style mixes seem much more nowadays than tangential, border-destroying mixes? Its like one is about how we thought the internet would be and the other is about how it actually is.
Anywayz, which do you prefer? My preference is obvious. But then trippy genre-hopping has been my thing ever since…well…ever since Mellow Gold.
Watching McCain at the RNC last night got me optimistic. Despite efforts by Ds and Rs these last couple weeks, I think the 60s culture war is finally on its way out. The ‘bases’ will prove to be the fringes they always should’ve been (and probably were).
It’s partially that McCain and Obama just aren’t that into it (though they’ve been trying). It’s also that the culture war is so old and its battle lines have been redrawn so many times that its impossible to keep track. Look at Palin’s daughter. When I heard the news I remember thinking ‘wait - how am I supposed to respond to this?’ and you could see the pundits do the same thing - like OH we’re for teen pregnancy now.
But it’s more that there’s nothing left to culture war over. This morning I read Pat Buchanan’s 1992 RNC speech because a few papers compared Palin/Giuliani/Romney to that. And yeah, sorta - but what’s more striking is how so many things from that blueprint seem amazingly old-timey:
In New York, Mr Gore made a startling declaration. Henceforth, he said, the “central organizing principle” of all governments must be: the environment.
The central organizing principle of this republic is freedom. And from the ancient forests of Oregon, to the Inland Empire of California, America’s great middle class has got to start standing up to the environmental extremists who put insects, rats and birds ahead of families, workers and jobs.
[…] Hillary believes that 12-year-olds should have a right to sue their parents, and she has compared marriage as an institution to slavery–and life on an Indian reservation.
Well, speak for yourself, Hillary.
Friends, this is radical feminism. The agenda Clinton & Clinton would impose on America–abortion on demand, a litmus test for the Supreme Court, homosexual rights, discrimination against religious schools, women in combat--that’s change, all right. But it is not the kind of change America wants.
Of all these issues (whoa, women in combat!) only ONE made it in any serious way to this years RNC. And I don’t think McCain or Obama are ready to fight just about abortion for 60 days. And yeah yeah, there’s been some ‘liberal media’ talk, but that’s a strategy for fighting, not an issue itself.
I woke up this morning saying things like “Maybe the Good vs. Evil debate can finally be replaced a Right vs. Wrong debate!” and now I realize that’s silly. But I do think this election won’t be about who was cooler 40 years ago.