Monday, November 03, 2008

Odds and Sods for Monday, November 3, 2008

Have I mentioned lately how much I miss Julie and Eric Slick? Thank God for You Tube:

There's the Adrian Belew Power Trio performing the title track off their new soon-to-be-recorded studio album, "E", a couple of nights ago in Den Haag, Netherlands.

So a couple of cool things.

There's an awesome article/interview with Adrian written by Matthew Shapiro over at State of Mind Music Magazine.

Here's some great quotes from the article:

"Q: What was your intention in putting together this trio with Eric and Julie? It's so interesting to see a musician of your caliber recruiting these two young players and together tackling some incredibly complicated music.

A. As usual‚ it's form follows function. I had written some music‚ which I felt was real suitable for a power trio. I really liked the idea that I was free to play whatever I wanted and I could play a lot more guitar than I normally do. I tried a couple of different combinations that didn't quite work out. It just so happened that I went to the School of Rock to do a seminar for their kids. The founder of the school‚ Paul Green‚ said‚ "You have to check out these two students of mine who already graduated‚ Eric and Julie -- a brother/sister team that are just the best players." So‚ I said to bring them in and we'll play a song together. Really‚ it was just so perfectly timed with what I had in mind. I would have never guessed that I would be so lucky to get such great players. They're so young and their energy level is amazing‚ yet they're so mature that their confidence and competence is there.

Q. Yeah‚ they're phenomenal. And not just for their age.

A. Yeah‚ for any age.

Q, I think you touched on the key word: confidence. They're so on top of their game. Julie throws it down so hard‚ and Eric's drumming‚ his touch and his feel are so beyond his years.

A. He is exactly what I'd like to be if I was a drummer. And it's the same with Julie as a bass player. They really know what to do in my music. They've studied the King Crimson stuff‚ my solo stuff‚ the David Bowie stuff‚ the Talking Heads stuff‚ Frank Zappa‚ so they've grown up on stuff that I was involved in. That was their education. It's just really serendipitous that here I am playing with someone who actually knows my music‚ but they're 21 years old....

Q....That's great. It's must be really cool to see them grow‚ not only as musicians‚ but also as people. And also‚ to see the communication between the three of you grow. They have the sibling communication…

A. Sure‚ that unspoken thing that siblings have. But I think now‚ we are a trio. Their father‚ who was here tonight and has seen a bunch of shows‚ said we sounded like one person tonight. It's really become that way. And as people‚ they're truly gifted. I don't think of them as kids at all. I forget they're so young because they know so much. And they're gifted in so many other ways‚ not just music. They're terrific people to be with and travel with. We just have a ball. We have a real‚ unique closeness. It's just so much fun. All of our shows are good. They never let me down. Not even once. I can't say that about a lot of the bands that I've played in‚ and I can't say that about a lot of the experienced musicians I played with that I admire. Sooner or later they're going to fall on their faces. Eric and Julie haven't done that. They're just super...

...I've got something so powerful and precious now‚ and Robert (Fripp) loves it too. I'll tell you the quote he gave me after he saw this band. He said‚ "King Crimson would have a difficult time following this power trio." [laughs]...

Anyway, this is a four page article complete with photos...please click on the link and read the rest...keeping in mind that this interview took place before the summer and certain things may no longer be "current".

So the list of cool people who came out to see the European shows continues to grow. I already told you about Markus Reuter Also attending shows were Theo Van Rock, Chris Harford, and, featured below, Reinier Parengkuan of Cucurullo Brullo Brillo.

Hey, also, don't forget about Andre Cholmondeley's new tour blog. I love the way he incorporates a music lesson into each post - he really gives his blog a different spin than the rest of us though I cannot help but cut and paste a bit right here because it really made me smile:

"...another great show!! I was fooled - we all were- with this place when we got there and saw the little stage...the small's a jazz club (Bill Frisell coming up next week...) and that always wigs us out a bit...right away we were considered TOO LOUD ..and that is usually the case..... also the sound system is usually waaaaay inadequate built no, this system was actually pretty ballsy...

but as i let the posters and listing on the wall sink in, I realized it was more diverse than "just jazz" -- they had funk bands, pop stuff, electronic...and the main floor area was open/no seats, so that was a good sign.

Sure enough - they crowded in there and were a rocking crowd!! It got pretty packed....

here as in in NL, some super-Crimson freaks were flipping out when they hit those numbers...and I was even surprised by the RARE appearance of "Elephant Talk"..very cool..."

And then there's this:

"what a killer show!! I'll keep saying it -- the band thrives-- like any good live band - on a rabid, involved and engaged audience. And this show, closing out the Dutch Trilogy (Groningen, Den Haag, Eindhoven) was just memorable stuff...

Started out with a spirited soundcheck, including trying out some parts for the "e" recording sessions coming up..."

Man, Andre's blog really rocks and to see photos of Chris, Theo, and to read a really touching tribute to the late Jimmy Carl Black, you really need to read the whole thing. Here. Let me make it easy. I'll repost the link.

Jimmy's website now says the following, which made me a bit teary-eyed this morning:

"Jimmy passed away peacefully last night Saturday 11/01/08 at 11:00 o'clock pm. Jimmy says hi to everybody and he doesn't want anybody to be sad."

Here's my Jimmy Carl Black story. I met him for the first time in East Germany in the summer of 2003 at the first Zappanale festival Eric and Julie ever played, when they were sixteen and seventeen years old. After Eric performed, Jimmy walked over to me.

"You're his mother?"


"You did good, woman. But only one problem."

"What's that?" (And you have to understand, I'm completely starstruck. For the first time, I'm meeting and hanging backstage with Ike Willis and Napoleon Murphy Brock and we're talking Zappa and John Lennon...drinking beer...etc. etc.)

"The problem is," said Jimmy looking over at fellow drummer Eric Slick..."How the hell do I go on stage now and follow that kid?"

He hugged me hard and smiled that big, happy grin.

Anyway, Jimmy does appear, along with the aforesaid very young Eric and Julie, in the documentary, Rock School. I do not remember if he's in the trailer I just linked or not...I will have to check it out and if not, do some snooping around as I do know some footage of him from the movie exists somewhere on line.

I keep having the same image of him, though. There was a really cool outdoor cafe in Germany we all hung out at...and no matter what time I passed by, there was Jimmy, with a whole bottle of whiskey in front of him...smiling, shaking hands, signing autographs...

Wow. It was just a little over five years ago but it feels like a lifetime. my favorite waiter once told me, "Time fries, Lobin."