Sometimes with documentaries, length can be a hinderance. There’s such a thing as too much depth, and they can tip from fascinating to boring. Other documentaries, like From Straight To Bizarre about the other acts on Frank Zappa’s labels in the late 1960s and early 1970s, keep the interest up all the way through — in this case, through almost three hours. In fact, when I saw how long it was, I was a little worried — but I needn’t have. The release from Sexy Intellectual is very highly recommended to any Zappa fans, loaded with original music (and not weirdly lame knockoffs like the otherwise awesome David Bowie: Rare and Unseen) and interviews with the particulars. Continue reading
Cover of Wild Man Fischer
Sad news to report. Artie Barnes confirmed that Larry “Wild Man” Fischer died Wednesday from heart trouble. He’s been a favorite of mine — and his albums with Barnes & Barnes are very much worth tracking down. I also recommend the Rhino Handmade release The Fischer King, which has both of those albums, plus Wildmania and a whole pile of bonus tracks, and a pretty great essay. Such sad news to report, though. I don’t really have a lot more to say — though I also recommend the DVD of Derailroaded, which came out not too long ago, and which Kittysneezes reviewed here.
Wild Man, you will be missed.
Image via Wikipedia
I’ve been waiting 6 years for Derailroaded to come out on DVD, and I’m very happy to report that it finally has. The only way it could be better is if it came out with the Frank Zappa-produced An Evening With Wild Man Fischer, but I don’t think we’ll see a reissue of that in my lifetime. For those of you who aren’t familiar, Derailroaded is the documentary on outsider musician (and, honestly, great songwriter) Larry “Wild Man” Fischer. Continue reading
Image via Wikipedia
Who don’t love Christmas? Most of us, but as Wonderlick said, it’s nice to pretend. Here’s another hypothetical mix CD, and it’s all Christmas Songs, since it’s getting to be that time of year again (unless you’re reading this later, like, in January. In which case, well, I guess it’s still getting to be that time of year again, just much, much more slowly.), and there’s a lot of awful Christmas records out, so perhaps there will be some on here that people can actually enjoy, huh? (Also: I think there should be a moratorium on Xmas Mix CDs with the Pogues‘ “Fairytale Of New York”, just because it’s basically the One Good Song Everyone Knows About Already. Though it is basically my favorite Xmas song ever.)
The title comes from a piece not actually on here: “Yulenet (Christmas Dragnet)” by Stan Freberg. Honestly that and his single “Green Chri$tma$” are both must-hear records, so you should seek them out right away. They’re both wonderful.
Wild Man Fischer is one of the most enigmatic names of pop music. Fisher was discovered by Frank Zappa, named by Solomon Burke, and the first artist to release a single (and later, the first LP) on Rhino Records. He’s appeared on Laugh-In and had a documentary about him — Derailroaded by Josh Rubin and Jeremy Lubin. Unfortunately, Fischer is a paranoid schizophrenic, and can be difficult to live with.