Wednesday, April 18, 2007



FAN-TASTIC DAY-AY-AY


I was in Gridlife's kitchen recently when he yelled, from the other room,

"Do you want to watch Manchester United?"

What?

"Do you want to watch Manchester United?"

Huh? Since when did you start liking English football?

"What?"

He came into the room.

"Don't you want to watch Bands Reunited?"

Oh, that. Sure!

On that night we watched a few episodes, in which members of long-defunct 80's bands are chased down by a handsome, gregarious Subcontinental-American man and coerced into playing a concert together. Many are bald or fat, and are usually caught doing something mundane. As each member agrees to do the show, they sign the cover of the band's best-known album. Then the host runs off to chase down the next one.

The Romeo Void episode was incredibly poignant. The singer lives in the desert and teaches art -- and looks the same age she was when the "Never Say Never" video was released. In other words, she still looks like Bettie Page, albeit a bit larger. During the episode, it came out that the record company wanted the rest of the band to split away from her because she wasn't pencil-thin. The band wasn't having it, so bye-bye record deal. Bye-bye music career. Not only that, but the saxophonist is now pretty much deaf (from doing concerts) and could not play the reunion show. He had to watch it next door, on close-circuit TV. But he had the best outfit of all.

Last night we watched the Haircut 100 episode (their big song was "Love Plus One"). Even though I was Ms. Mohawk and hated anything pop or meaningless and gutless I still liked that band. While they were recording their second album, the lead singer disappeared. The record company told the band that he was on holiday in Spain. That made them angry, and the smarmy conga player stepped in to sing lead. The album flopped and the band disappeared into the ether. Until this show, the other members seemed to have no idea that the singer -- Nick Heyward -- had disappeared because he'd had a breakdown from nervous exhaustion and checked himself into a mental institution. Again the evil record company destroys a band.

When the show found Heyward, he was in his backyard enjoying the rare sun with his family. He agreed to do the reunion immediately; he seemed to embody that yogic ideal of accepting everything and embracing nothing -- something I'm working on. And on. And on. Heyward has a huge Buddha smile, and flashed it throughout the show. He kept saying things that sounded yogic to me. When he spoke about being hospitalized, he said that the record company had had the band on a crazy record-tour-record-tour-record-tour schedule with no breaks and that, "I wanted to go somewhere and just be." At rehearsal, the smarmy conga player even apologized to him, and called his opportunistic move "the worst mistake of my life." It was all very yogic -- to me anyway. Plus you have to like that the guitarist is now a tree surgeon.

Yet they played together like it was meant to be. I couldn't help but think that they have unfinished business, and need to re-record their second album the way it should have been done in the first place.

So I devoted my yoga practice to them today.

How lame is that?

It was a good practice, though.

Thanks Nick.

4 comments:

  1. You ask, 'How lame is that?'

    Very.

    It's like when I was young and read every Alan Watts book I could find.

    Then I discovered he was a raging
    alcoholic, ignored his children, cheated on his first wife, etc, etc, etc.

    It's like that talk we had about Annie Leibovitz.

    Everyone is flawed in one way or another.

    ReplyDelete
  2. well said, dreyfuss

    ReplyDelete
  3. not flawed, just human

    ReplyDelete
  4. Bad Lady's Favourite Shirt5:40 AM

    hey I just love that you check Haircut 100...

    great band great look

    ReplyDelete