Teenage Jesus

So where was Jesus between stunning the temple elders at age 12 and getting baptized at age 30?  Just being the typical lost young boomer, turns out.

Shit

Ron Cobb, an underground political cartoonist, who happened to befriend a young Spielberg, and went on to design Star Wars Cantina creatures, the Back to the Future Car, the Nostromo (ask Makerbot), a time traveling DeLorean, and ET (Spielberg gave him a cut, and made him so rich he fucked off to Australia and was never heard from again), has died. His political cartoons were ridiculously prescient, and are sadly still timely. Comic above is from 1968!

View samples here.

Don’t Watch After Eating

I hate the songs of Jimmy Webb.  He won a jillion Grammy’s, and he’s regularly named as a great songwriter by people who really should know better (Bruce Springteen and some others).  At his best, his songs are merely annoying, melodically vapid, and oozing with gooey sentimentality (his songs for Glen Campbell: Galveston, Wichita Lineman, By the Time I Get To Phoenix).  At his worst, they are also pretentious (McArthur Park) and stupid beyond all description (Up, Up and Away, McArthur Park again).  I once played Richard Harris’s original hit version of McArthur Park to my older son, who was certain I was playing him a comedy record.  If you’re so inclined, above you can watch him perform what could be the worst song ever written with such bone-headed earnestness that you may find yourself wanting Anton Chigurh to walk up and do his captive bolt stunner thing on him.  I didn’t even make it to the infamous “cake out in the rain” part (surely the dumbest metaphor ever devised).  In a way it’s funny, but mostly not.  My question to you bastards: am I incorrect?  If any of you are Jimmy Webb fans, can you clue me in as to what’s good about him?  Did he write some hidden gems I’ve never heard?  Because based on his biggest hits, I don’t get his reputation as one of the greats at all.

What’s Your Sign Girl?

Chilton was an underrated guitarist. Feeling nostalgic for the late Nineties today …

From 1999 performance at Memphis’ Cooper-Young Festival. With Ron Easley – bass & background vocals, and Richard Dworkin – drums. Video by David Julian Leonard.

Goofy TV Gigs

I completely missed this one when it aired.  I don’t remember hearing about it at all.  A little sad, by ’79 the Ramones should have been too big for the Sha Na Na show.

But I did happen to be watching the tube in ’68 when psychedelic proto-punks The Seeds (as The Warts) mimed their biggest hit, the classic pushy-girlfriend-fuck-off song, “Pushin’ to Hard” on a now-forgotten sitcom called The Mothers-in-Law.  I bought the album soon after.  Oddly enough, that album had been released two years earlier, and they’d released another since, but they were still pushin’ this song on TV.  The second verse and guitar break were edited out.