Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Judy Garland, Marlene Dietrich, Brian Setzer, Liza Minneli, Benny Goodman, Scott Joplin, Scott Walker, Johann Strauss, Quincy Jones, Henry Mancini, Leonard Cohen
You'll be pleased to know that's not the proposed set list for tonight's Step On, but rather a smattering of the artists I played at last night's Central Park Film Festival as warm-up music for the 1968 Mel Brooks movie The Producers. And unlike Wednesday night, when it poured with rain and understandably enough, almost nobody showed up for Woody Allen's Annie Hall, I had a blast. Since growing out of the narrow-minded punk vision of my teens, I've always prided myself on having a spectacularly wide and varied taste in music, and I'm appreciating the opportunity to dig into previously unexplored areas of my CD collection and find the best in swing, show tunes, soundtracks and what they used to, back in the bobbysox era, call 'pop'.
The weather promises to be seasonally pleasant for the next three evenings: while tonight's set for The Fisher King will struggle to find a theme, Saturday I'll offer a good-natured 80s revival for Ghostbusters, and Sunday, for the festival finale screening of Hair, I promise a real relevant and rocking journey from mid-sixties pop bliss through late-sixties protest psychedlia. Doors are at 6pm, admission is free, and I play until 8pm when the movie starts.
And if you ARE coming to Step On tonight, expect the same musical madness we offered on the last couple of occasions - with the house section more tightly focused on the late 80s heyday than the present day, now that I've actually dug out the relevant box from my basement and discovered that I do have 'Voodoo Ray' on vinyl after all
JD and I will start spinning at 10pm.
Party Monster: Macaulay Culkin as Michael Alig, above right. The original party monster: Keith Moon, below.
Also today, the opening of the movie Party Monster, the big screen rendition of the downtown New York club kids scene, from its late 80s birth through to promoter Michael Alig's murder of Angel Melendez in 1996 and his subsequent downfall. The movie, which stars Macaulay Culkin in the lead role, was widely panned when shown at Sundance last winter, and is receiving equally unfavorable reviews now from those in the New York press who were witness to the scene first time around. I can't criticize a film I haven't seen, but the question is whether I want to see it: I had great respect for Alig before the drugs took over, and Angel was one of many kids who worked briefly promoting our night Communion before 'graduating' to the 'real' club scene of Alig's Disco 2000. I'm not sure how much I want to go 'back there' and relive Alig's fabulousness, especially if the movie, as some reviews have suggested, seems little more concerned for the death of low-life Hispanic gay drug dealer Melendez than were the police at the time. Besides, I already spent more time than was healthy re-immersed in that increasingly dark world when I penned my fictitious account of the era and the kind of people who were drawn to it in for Hedonism.
Related to another book, I did an interview yesterday for NPR's Weekend Edition about Keith Moon, which will broadcast this Sunday 7th, the 25th Anniversary of the great man's death. The show goes out at 9am EST but for those of you not up at that time or in foreign climes, NPR archives all its shows: you should be able to find the interview here. I'd planned on bringing in cassettes of the radio shows Keith did for the BBC in the 1970s, but unfortunately could not find that relevant box in the basement. (One out of two is a good average given the chaos that breeds down in the dark.) That may mean more of my voice than you'd like. I believe many hard-core Who fans will be away in London for a convention, which also reminds me that it's now exactly five years since the Moon biography came out in the UK. Where does the time go?
WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 3
Keeping the posts very brief right now: you don't necessarily want to know about my new-found appreciation for the soundtrack to Cabaret, and I also want to use what little time I have to get some longer pieces up - which webstats suggest go down very well over the long term. (In the absence of many other pieces on the duo, the 2 Many DJs interview is getting serious hits.) Plus, the Forum is now truly f***ed, thanks to the ability of the spammers to somehow make their ludicrous posts irremovable. Just as I can't imagine anyone responding to the 'urgent help for the son-of-an-African-dictator ruse,' I don't believe there's anyone using our Forum who would ever think about following any of these pathetic 'free porn/work at home/financial data' links. I've come to the conclusion that there's something about spam that seems similar to the whole business of file-sharing MP3s and copy-protecting CDs: after a while it's less about what anyone gains from the procedure than the mere fact that it can be done. Look for a new BBS/Discussion Board on iJamming! in the next few days...
Got an unusually busy schedule of DJ gigs this week
I'll be at the Central Park Film Festival from Wednesday through Sunday evening, over at the Summer Stage by the Rumsey Playfield (enter from 68th Street and 5th Avenue). The Festival celebrates Central Park's 150th Anniversary (since it was commissioned; it didn't officially open until 1858) with five evenings of mostly classic movies in which the Park itself plays either a starring or supporting role, as follows:
Wednesday: Annie Hall
Thursday: The Producers
Friday: The Fisher King
The movies start at 8pm each night, and I'll be spinning appropriate music for each film for two hours beforehand. Admission is free, and so is the popcorn, for what that's worth.
Annie Hall and The Producers have presented me with a rare opportunity to dig into the various compilations, soundtracks, Broadway musicals and jazz albums that have accumulated over the years: I've spent much of the last few days listening to the likes of Judy Garland and Marlene Dietrich, while also digging out rarities like the Henry Mancini version of 'Springtime For Hitler.' The Fisher King has me mildly stumped, Ghost Busters will be a night of 80s throwbacks and the Hair finale, for which the festival has optimistically asked the audience to dress the part, allows me to take a much-anticipated journey through the late 1960s. In the middle of all this, on Friday night, we have our monthly Step On party in Brooklyn, which if it's anything like the first two events, will be a riot. By the time this week is over, I expect to have played music from almost every genre of the last 100 years!
Sadly, the east coast summer-that-wasn't is continuing right into September. The annual return to school and work is usually mitigated by pleasant late-summer weather, but the normal 79 Farenheit for the time of year is down by at least ten degrees. The Film Festival is rain or shine, so I'll be there regardless; I just have a feeling I'm going to see more of the former weather than the latter.
(At right: saying goodbye to the upstate summer on a cold and sunny but beautiful day.)
AUG 25-31: Punk Planet, Carlsonics, Copyright Protection, Cline Zinfandel, BRMC
AUG 18-24: Black Out Blame Game, John Shuttleworth, British Music mags, Greg Palast, The Thrills live.
AUG 11-17: The New York blackout, Restaurant reviews, The Media as Watchdog, What I Bought On My Holidays
AUG 4-10: Step On again, Shaun W. Ryder, Jack magazine, the BBC, the Weather, Detroit Cobras, football and Rock'n'Roll
JULY 28-AUG 3: De La Guarda, The Rapture, Radio 4, Stellastarr*, Jodie Marsh, A Tale of Two Lions, Hedonism launch photos,
JULY 14-27: Manchester Move Memories, Hedonism is Here, Holiday postcard
JULY 7-13: Chuck Jackson live, Step On, Beverley Beat, British Way of Life
JUNE30-JULY6: David Beckham, Geoffrey Armes, Happy Mondays, Step On at Royale
JUNE 23-29: Ceasars/The Realistics live, weddings and anniversaries, Cabaret laws.
JUNE 9-23: Hell W10, The Clash, Big Audio Dynamite, Nada Surf live, Field Day debacle
JUNE 2-8: Six Feet Under - Over, Field Day, Siren Fest, Crouching Tigher Hidden Cigarette
MAY 19-JUNE 1: Ian McCulloch live, New York's financial woes, Six Feet Under, Hedonism, Tommy Guerrero.
MAY 5-18: Live reviews of The Rapture, De La Soul, Carlsonics, Laptop, The Libertines, Echoboy, The Greenhornes; observations on Chris Coco/The Blue Room, The Apple Music Store, Alan Freed, Phil Spector, The Matrix Reloaded, Rare Earth, Tinnitus and Royale!
APRIL 28-MAY 4: Flaming Lips, Madonna, Bill Maher, The Dixie Chicks, the war
APRIL 21-27: Rotary Connection, War(n) Out, Cocaine Talk
APRIL 14-20: Belated London Musings on Death Disco and CPFC.
APRIL 7-13: London Musings: Madness, Inspiral Carpets, the Affair, the Palace, the Jam
MARCH 31-APRIL 6: Music be the spice of life, London Calling: Ten Observations from the Old Country
MARCH 24-30: Six Foot Under, Peaches/Elefant live, MP Frees and Busted Boy Bands
MARCH 17-23: Röyksopp live, Transmission, Worn-Out War Talk
MARCH 10-16: Live reviews: Stratford 4, Flaming Sideburns, Joe Jackson Band, Linkin Park. Why I Oppose The War (For Now).
MARCH 3-9: The Pursuit of Happiness, Weekend Players, U.S. Bombs, Al Farooq, A New Pessimism, Brooklyn Half Marathon
FEBRUARY 24-MARCH2: Orange Park, Ali G-Saddam Hussein-Dan Rather-Bill Maher-Jon Stewart TV reviews, Stellastarr*, James Murphy, The Station nightclub fire, the Grammys
FEBRUARY 17-23: Village Voice Poll, Singles Club, Smoke and Fire
FEBRUARY 3-16: Snug, The Face, Pink, Supergrass live, Keith Moon, Phil Spector, Gore Vidal
JANUARY 27-FEBRUARY 2: Communist Chic, Spiritland, Daddy You're A Hero, Keith Moon, State of the Union, CPFC and more on Iraq
JANUARY 20-26: Divisions of Laura Lee, Burning Brides, Words On War, Child Abuse of a Different Kind, Losing My Edge
JANUARY 13-19: Pete Townshend, Pee Wee Herman, South Park and more Pete Townshend
JANUARY 6-12: Interpol in concert, Tony Fletcher's Top 10 Albums and Singles of 2002, More on Joe Strummer and The Clash, Fever Pitch and Bend It Like Beckham.
DECEMBER 31 2002 -JAN 5 2003: A tribute to Joe Strummer, Radio 4 live on New Year's Eve
DECEMBER 25-30: NO POSTINGS: ON VACATION
DECEMBER 16-24: Metro Area, Breakbeat Science, Sting makes Wine, New York Downtown redesigns, Keith Moon anecdotes, Campbell's jokes.
DECEMBER 9-15: Tiswas, pledge drives, The View from Up North
DECEMBER 2-8 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Weekend Players and Snow Lit Piano Bars)
FOR NOVEMBER 25-29 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Joe Hurley, Thanksgiving, Sven Väth, Richie Hawtin)
FOR NOVEMBER 16-24 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Longwave, The Pleased, Get Your War On, Powder, Radio 4, Supreme Beings Of Leisure, Ben Neill, Baldwin Brothers, Thievery Corporation)
FOR NOVEMBER 9-15 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes CMJ report including Datsuns, von Bondies and My Favorite, and political Eagles)
FOR NOVEMBER 2-8 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Halloween, the New York Marathon, and British Cuisine)
FOR OCTOBER 26-NOV 1 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes live reviews of The Streets, Mooney Suzuki, Sahara Hotnights, Flaming Sideburns, Stellastarr*; Jam Master Jay; Halloween)
FOR OCTOBER 19-25 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Underworld live, Atlantic Avenue antics, Girls and Boys night)
FOR OCTOBER 12-18 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Bali Bombing and stupid editorials, the Electro-Clash festival, VHS Or Beta, Ballboy, Mindless Self Indulgence, 2 Many DJs, Tom Petty, The Streets, pointless stop-the-war e-mails)
FOR OCTOBER 5-11 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Steve Earle and John Walker's Blues, Dreaming Of Britney, Girls Against Boys and Radio 4)
FOR SEPTEMBER 28-OCT 4 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes White Stripes live, Morel live, My Generation re-issue)
FOR SEPTEMBER 21-27 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes The Creation live, Village Voice, Wine not Whine and more)
FOR SEPTEMBER 14-20 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Firefighter Andre Fletcher, Untamed, Uncut, and more September 11 Musings)
FOR SEPTEMBER 7-13 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Sep 11 memorials, Did Bin Laden Win?, Scissor Sisters and Electro-clash)
FOR AUGUST 31-SEPTEMBER 6 MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes The Strokes live, The Rising, Saint Etienne, Team USA, a.i., Tahiti 80, Dot Allison)
FOR AUGUST 17-30 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes holiday musings, wine reviews, Luna at Southpaw, and more)
FOR AUGUST 10-16 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes lengthy Who live review)
FOR JULY 27-AUG 9 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Area 2, 24 Hour Party People Party, Hootenanny Tour, 2 Many DJs and more.
FOR JULY 20-26 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Wilson Pickett, John Entwistle, rebuilding downtown NYC)
FOR JULY 13-19 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Love Parade, Teany, RenewNYC, Femi Kuti, NRA, Londonisation of New York, Britishification of Global Rock)
FOR JULY 6-12 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes Mike Meyers as Keith Moon, the RAVE Act, John Entwistle, Michael Jackson, Southpaw, Moby Online, Layo & Bushwacka!,(accidentally deleted)
FOR JUNE 29-JULY 5 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes World Cup Final, John Entwistle's legacy, The Who's decision to carry on, the meaning of July 4)
FOR JUNE 22-28 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes World Cup diary, Dr. John, Doves, Mermaid Parade, John Entwistle's death, Timothy White's death, Clinic Firewater and Radio 4 live, The Who's decision to carry on)
FOR JUNE 15-21 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes World Cup diary, Liars live, GiantFingers, the Big Takeover)
FOR JUNE 8 -14 DAILY MUSINGS CLICK HERE (includes World Cup diary, StellaStarr*, Jose Padilla, Dee Dee Ramone, suicide bombings)
FOR JUNE 1-7 DAILY MUSINGS, CLICK HERE (includes World Cup diary, Southpaw, Six Foot Under, Andrew Sullivan)
FOR LATE MAY DAILY MUSINGS, CLICK HERE
FOR MAY'S EIGHT DAYS IN A WEEK'S MUSINGS, CLICK HERE
FOR LATE APRIL LONDON MUSINGS, CLICK HERE
FOR EARLY APRIL MUSINGS, CLICK HERE