I didn’t know Erik, I think I emailed him once, but maybe it was someone else in Hans Condor. They were a Nashville band that gloriously went on a Japan tour, and leave behind a great album and at least one terrific video.
So this isn’t a personal reminiscence.
But a lot of Nashville loved Erik. Reading the remarks would be emotional (a young person dies) but his generosity is legend.
This clip is another example of Mike Douglas’s magic. John Lennon meets Chuck Berry for the first time and they do a kind of weak Memphis Tennessee because Lennon seems to be insisting on sharing vocals.
On Johnny B. Goode balance is restored.
I’m a fan of Yoko’s, but her mike seems to be cut in the Johnny B. Goode mix. It’s just weird during Memphis Tennessee.
Wesley Morris wrote about this version in the Times today, while making a bigger point.
I’ve always thought the Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes version was great, but even if you agree with that you’ll want to watch Patti LaBelle sing it.
Frank created a book of photographs called The Americans back in the 50s. It’s a terrific book of strikingly straightforward and revealing images full of, um, Americans.
Jack Kerouac wrote the introduction to The Americans, an obvious choice at the moment On the Road ruled the world. Kerouac also wrote and narrated Frank’s first film, a shambling tale of New York City’s bohemian lives, called Pull My Daisy. You can view it here.
Frank, of course, took the photos that made up the collagey cover of the Rolling Stones Exile on Main Street.
Frank also made a tour documentary with the Stones at about the same time. It is called Cocksucker Blues and the Stones, who have said they thought the film was excellent, sued to keep it from being released because its explicit sex and drug scenes were too much even for them.
A deal was reached that allowed Frank to show the movie five times a year provided he was in attendance. I remember one year leaving the Rolling Stone magazine Christmas party early to see the film at the Anthology Film Archives on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. You can find the film in pieces on You Tube, from time to time. Frank clearly wasn’t policing the copyright, nor were the Stones, as evidenced by this music video that uses some of the film.
Frank also made some dramatic films that drew notice, though the only one I saw was a shambling road picture featuring a who’s who of cool rock dudes in the late 80s (I’m talking guys named Johansen, Waits and Strummer, plus Leon Redbone).
This seems to be the whole film with German titles.
Final bonus video with Frank’s Super 8 film of the Stones.
My friend Rael posted about a girl group called the Fortune Cookies on Facebook. They have a record called It Should Have Been Me. Good song, standard girl group arrangement. The video uses The Graduate well.
But of course things don’t stop there. There is, it turns out, another song called It Should Have Been Me with a wedding theme, and a totally different sound. Also well worth hearing.
I just finished a 10 day challenge to name my Top 10 influential albums in 10 days, and then nominate 10 poor sods to do the same.
The lesson of this exercise is you have to cut a lot of good stuff out. So from now until whenever I stop, here’s some other albums that meant a lot to me. With a song from each.
The album this song came from was the first rock/pop album I ever owned. It also has a great version of The Battle of New Orleans, but I think this bit of cheese has legs. I’m not saying it’s a great song, but for a 10 year old? Killer.
This was my first pop music album. Influential? Yep.