With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

East Village Punk ‘n’ Rock Tour (NYC) from Rock Junket Tours – Saturday 29th December 2018 January 8, 2019


As a part of my birthday jaunt to NYC my wonderful wife Catwoman (a.k.a Catherine) booked a rather intriguing East Village Punk ,n, Rock walking tour of New York’s East Village from Rock Junket. Our host and Rock Junket Head Honcho was Bobby Pinn (not his real name) and it was a pure delight to spend a couple of hours in his company. I pride myself on knowing an awful lot about rock music, but I bow to the vast encyclopaedic knowledge of Mr Pinn. I learnt so much on this tour.

We saw the apartment block where Joey Ramone (a.k.a. Jeffrey Ross Hyman and also a.k.a Jeff Starship!) lived. Not far from there is the spot where the iconic photo of the Bruddas that adorns the cover of their first album was taken. Take another look at that picture, in particular the subtle way in which Joey is bending his knee and Dee Dee is standing on tip toes just so that the vast gap between the pair of them does not appear so vast.

Whilst I didn’t try one until later in the week we learnt what an Egg Cream drink was. The drink is immortalised in song by Lou Reed and apparently one of the best spots to buy one is the Gem Spa, a one time haunt of the New York Dolls. Strangely enough the Egg Cream beverage contains neither egg nor cream! Go figure!

I already knew a lot about Bill Graham’s venue the Fillmore/ Fillmore West in San Francisco, but I knew next to nothing about the Fillmore East in New York. Many great acts took to the stage there from the Allman Brothers to Frank Zappa. The most appearances by any artist or band was by the Grateful Dead.

Apartments that were once home to a young Madonna and tortured jazz giant Charlie Parker were encountered. Charlie Parker even has a street named in his honour. Now that is not bad for a suicidal junkie who died aged just 34. But that was just a part of his story and it is impossible not to recognise the towering influential, pioneering genius of Mr Parker. Also who knew that Madonna’s early live appearances were as a drummer for her then boyfriend’s band? I certainly didn’t!

I I hadn’t been on this tour with Bobby Pinn I am certain that I would have walked right past the building that features on the front cover of Led Zeppelin’s 1975 double album ‘Physical Graffiti’. The building was the home of Jimmy Page’s drug supplier who lived on the fourth floor. That floor is conspicuously missing from the album cover after a real cut and paste job by artist Peter Corriston. The very same tenement block was used in the video for the Rolling Stones 1981 single “Waiting On A Friend”.

The tour ended at the site of the now defunct CBGB’s; the iconic 1970s New York punk venue. I took the obligatory pictures outside and even ventured into the ridiculously expensive and rather disappointing shop that is now on the site. That said, the Captain Fantastic pinball table was stunning!

In this post I have tried to give you a flavour of this magnificent tour of some classic rock landmarks in the East Village. I didn’t want to add much more and therefore spoilmyour enjoyment when you take it. Make sure that you go walking around New York with Bobby Pinn next time you are in the Big Apple. You will not regret it. Click here to check out the Rock Junket site and to book your tour.

Apart from the Rock Junket header all pictures were taken by yours truly, apart from those that feature me which were taken by the most wonderful person that I know, Catherine Adamson. If you were wondering which landmark birthday I was celebrating it was 18 with 42 years of experience. 😉

 

“With a brat like that always on your back” August 18, 2017

Filed under: Trivia — justwilliam1959 @ 6:00 am
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It is now estimated that more Ramones t-shirts have been sold worldwide than Ramones albums. Seriously? What is the world coming to? Personally I feel very lucky to have seen the band play live in London back in 1977

the-best-funny-pictures-of-ramones-like-our-band-shirt

 

“I don’t need to sell my soul, he’s already in me” December 30, 2013


BbswjVuIEAAwAqUHave you ever thought about having a garden gnome on display at your home but then thought that you were too cool to do it? Well think again, especially if you are a fan of a Manchester band that you may have heard a little about. Yes folks you can now buy a full set of Gnome Roses who look remarkably like the Stone Roses. You could create your very own Spike Island next to your garden pond. Check out the Gnome Roses on Facebook and purchase them here at Alternative Merchandise. If you have already bought yours or received them for Christmas feel free to send me a picture and I will definitely give you a mention on this blog!

JS30467290-2953621Creator of these little gems is Andrew McDermid and he has ideas to expand the range, starting with the Ra-Gnomes with the advertising strap line of ‘Hi Ho Let’s Go!’. He also plans to work on the Rolling Gnomes, Kurt Cobain and Queens Of The Gnome Age. What? No Bowie as “The Laughing Gnome“?

 

“We took what we had and we ripped it apart” February 6, 2012


One of my favourite Bruce Springsteen songs is a single taken from 1980’s ‘The River‘ album, “Hungry Heart“. Did you know that originally the Boss wrote it for one of my favourite bands of all time, the Ramones? Nor did I until recently.

It was Springsteen’s manager Jon Landau who advised him against giving the song away. Having seen Patti Smith and the Pointers Sisters have hits with Springsteen giveaways “Because The Night” and “Fire” respectively. But I think ‘Da Brudders’ would have made a spectacular job of it. A bit of Spectoresque production and the uniqueness that the Ramones had would have made it a mega hit.

The song’s title is a reference to a line from ‘Ulysses’ a poem by Tennyson. The line reads ‘For always roaming with a hungry heart’.

 

Imelda May – York Barbican Friday 11th November 2011 November 13, 2011


This was a night I had looked forward to for some time. Catwoman and I had booked the tickets to see Imelda May months ago and the day finally arrived last Friday. This incredibly talented woman was certainly no disappointment, but more of her later. I need to tell you about the superb support act; Big Boy Bloater. I have heard a few of his songs on-line before but they simply hadn’t prepared me for just how good he is in a live setting. The best support act I have seen in years and remember I do have a lot of years! Mr Bloater (I don’t know his real name yet, but I know it isn’t Duncan!) has retro blues style with a splash of contemporary sounds.

Catwoman felt that his music wouldn’t be out-of-place on the True Blood soundtrack next to Jace Everett. He has some great songs. I particularly liked “That Ain’t My Name” and “Big Fat Trap”. He also did a great version of the Platters “My Prayer” in a modern ska style. I met the man himself after the gig and got him to sign the two CDs I bought from the Merchandising stand; one for me and one for Catwoman (aka Catherine). If you’ve not heard him yet you really need to check him out, you will not be disappointed.

After a short break the wait was finally over as the Irish dynamo that is Imelda Mary Higham better known as Imelda May took the stage with her supremely talented band. Every song was a winner; “Love Tattoo“, “Sneaky Freak”, “Psycho”, “Mayhem” and “Johnny Got A Boom Boom” to name just a few. Boom Boom is currently my favourite Imelda May song. Catwoman and I also love “Inside Out” and had that one played after we signed the register at our wedding in September. Who would have thought that a song mentioning wobbly bits would work, but bloody hell it does!

She had the audience eating out of her hands, including us. If she told us to sing along we did, if she told us to clap we did. It’s pretty difficult to ignore an instruction from someone who is not just talented but clearly seems to love what she is doing. The audience participation probably peaked during “Proud And Humble” which she sang largely a capella with help from her audience. To do it all in those killer heels just adds to the admiration! The band was amazing, truly fuelled by rockabilly rocket power. But believe me if you see Imelda and her band as just rockabilly then listen again, you’re wrong. She played a beautiful new song “Gypsy” which I think will be massive. I could also imagine Elvis Presley covering it had he still been around.

The encore was pretty special too; three perfectly executed and well-chosen cover versions. First up was a sparse acoustic cover of “Baby I Love You” (originally by the Ronettes and well covered by the Ramones) accompanied by Al Gare on the ukulele. The whole band returned for their storming version of “Tainted Love” (originally written and recorded by Gloria Jones and made famous by Soft Cell). You can find the studio version on Imelda’s ‘Mayhem’ album. I would love to say that the title of this blog is drawn from that album, but I’m afraid it’s not. The closing number was one that she said she had been singing for years, it was one of Elvis Presley’s biggest hits, “My Baby Left Me“. A great way to close a stonking gig. We left the Barbican with massive smiles as we walked through the rain back to the car. In fact I reckon everyone who was there left in a happy mood!

Would I go and see Imelda again? Absolutely, positively, definitely yes! The same for the Big Boy too!

 

“Ever dance with the devil in the pale moonlight?” October 15, 2011


I have been a big fan of comic books and superheroes for many, many years and obviously people like the Fantastic Four, Spiderman, Iron Man, the X Men and many others are real aren’t they? OK you might be laughing now but click here and you will see that I could be right!

Phoenix Jones is a Seattle superhero crime fighter. He is the leader of the Rain City Superhero Movement. He recently appeared in court charged with attacking some people outside a nightclub using pepper spray. Somehow I can’t imagine that Batman kept pepper spray in his utility belt. The judge made him unmask and reveal his secret identity as Benjamin Fodor. I am not sure whether he was bitten by a radioactive spider, was exposed to gamma radiation, is a mutant or is indeed slightly mad. But he certainly seems to be for real. He is married to another superhero/ vigilante known as Purple Reign, she sounds like some kind of Prince protegé to me! I wonder if they drive around in the Phoenixmobile or the Jonesmobile?

Phoenix appears to be getting a bit of a caning from a woman here 🙂

Obviously we need a few hero related songs to accompany this post don’t we?

Holy hero Batman they've taken our jobs!

 

“Molars and fangs, the clicking of bones, spirits moaning among the tombstones” October 13, 2011


Thanks to my good friend Nick Horslen for directing me to this rather amusing story on the BBC recently. Apparently the latest movie in the Resident Evil franchise is being filmed in Toronto and when a number of actors in Zombie guise were moving from one stage to another there was an accident. There were no major injuries, just cuts and bruises. However the best part of the story is the surprise of the emergency services when they arrived. Can you imagine turning up to an emergency only to find that the victims were covered in blood; mostly fake blood as it turns out!

You can click here to read the story on the BBC. Obviously given the music nature of this blog I simply had to include some Zombie related
songs. Maybe you should consider including some of these on your Halloween party soundtrack later this month! Keeping up that Zombie theme, how many of you are fans of “The Walking Dead”? I think it’s a superb horror series, enjoy the trailer for series two by clicking here.

“Zombie” – Cranberries – Not really a Zombie song as it relates to the troubles in Ireland.

Pet Sematary” – Ramones – This is also not strictly a Zombie song but the classic Stephen King story centres around how things that are buried in an ancient native American burial ground come back to life. This song is the theme to the movie version. As I believe the strapline on the film poster and trailer said…….. ‘Sometimes dead is better’

“Call of the Zombie” – Rob Zombie – No Zombie song list would be complete without Mr Zombie himself would it. He recently made an appearance on the new Alice Cooper album “Welcome 2 My Nightmare” which is a sequel to, can you guess the title………… “Welcome To My Nightmare”. It’s rather a good album in my opinion.

“Zombie” – Fela Kuti & Africa ’70 – More of a tub thumping funky criticism of the Nigerian army than about zombies themselves. But an excellent song nonetheless.

“Thriller” – Michael Jackson – I guess this must be the Zombie song that everyone knows, especially the Zombie dance section. Did you
know that Vincent Price and Paul and Linda McCartney all appear as Zombies in the Zombie formation dancing section of the video.

I bet you can't guess who this fine looking Zombie is can you?

 

 
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