Young Jessica is an excellent assistant and a real boon in the office. However she has one serious drawback. She was only born in 1997, and unfortunately does not come from a household where experimental music is the norm, we have several confrontations a week. This week that’s gone, for example, she told me, her voice rich with emotion, that if I ever played her Robert Wyatt again she would phone Child Line! What on earth can an old fool like me do in the face of such teenage intransigency.
I am actually dictating this to her, and when we got to the end of the last paragraph, I explained what ‘intransigency’ means.
She glared at me.
“I am not stubborn!” she spat at me stomping her foot, only proving my point.
Earlier this year I read Marcus O’Dair’s excellent biography of Robert Wyatt, and was struck by a very telling quote from Wyatt’s wife, Alfreda Benge. She was commenting on the practice of ‘Wyatting’. According to Wikipedia:
The verb "Wyatting" appeared in some blogs and music magazines to describe the practice of playing unusual tracks on a pub jukebox to annoy the other pub goers, in particular Dondestan. Wyatt was quoted in 2006 in The Guardian as saying "I think it's really funny" and "I'm very honoured at the idea of becoming a verb." However, when asked if he would ever try it himself, he said: "I don't really like disconcerting people, but even when I try to be normal I disconcert anyway." However, Alfreda Benge said it made her angry "that Robert should be used as a means of clever dicks asserting their superiority in pubs ... It's so unlike Robert, because he's so appreciative of the strengths of pop music. So that, I think, is a real unfairness. The man who coined it, I should like to punch him in the nose."
Now, personally, I am very fond of Wyatt’s music and don’t understand why anybody would find it grating to the ear. On the other hand I think some of the dubstep that has been played to me over the years by some of the young people in my extended family is a bloody awful row. when I was young I always thought my father was a bad tempered, curmudgeonly old sod by rejecting all the music that my generation made out of hand. I hope that I’ not quite as bad but I think that my chances of liking Skrillex are about as likely as Jessica whistling Dondestan on the way to work.
POSTSCRIPT: An earworm, sometimes known as a brainworm, is a catchy piece of music that continually repeats through a person's mind after it is no longer playing. Phrases used to describe an earworm include musical imagery repetition, involuntary musical imagery, and stuck song syndrome. Guess what piece of music I have managed to embed in Jess’s cerebral cortex? All together now: “Palestine’s a country, or at least it used to be”….
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Gonzo Weekly #145
Hawkwind, Twink, Stackridge, Alice Cooper, Robert Plant, Roy Weard, Dogwatch, That Legendary Wooden Lion, Hawkwind, Jon Anderson, and Yes fans had better look out!
The latest issue of Gonzo Weekly (#145) is available to read at www.gonzoweekly.com, and to download at http://www.gonzoweekly.com/pdf/. It has Dave Brock from Hawkwind cutting his birthday cake (picture courtesy Brian Tawn) on the front cover together with a round up of what is coming up for the Grand-daddys of Space Rock, We also have an exclusive interview with Twink about his new album - a sequel to the legendary Think Pink, and a look at the history of Stackridge to tie in with the band's last ever gigs. Doug looks at Alice Cooper, Lee at Half Man Half Biscuit, Jon muses about Robert Plant. Thom waxes all poetical like, whilst the legendary Roy Weard continues his regular column. And there is a radio show from M Destiny at Friday Night Progressive, and the first of four Strange Harvest radio specials from the folk wot bring you Strange Fruit. There is also a collection of more news, reviews, views, interviews and water opossums with something to lose (OK, nothing to do with small marsupials planning to pray to St Anthony of Padua for an intercession, but I got carried away with things that rhymed with OOOOS) than you can shake a stick at. And the best part is IT's ABSOLUTELY FREE!!!
This issue features:
Robert Plant, Kenney Jones, Rufus Wainwright, The Who, Barbara Dickson, Bob Dylan, The Zombies, Steve Hackett, Strange Fruit, Friday Night Progressive, Russell Henderson, Rick Wakeman, The Boomtown Rats, Karnataka, Twink, Alice Cooper, Stackridge, Ade Macrow, Lee Walker, Half Man/Half Biscuit, Roy Weard, Hawkwind, Dave Brock,
Lemmy, Motorhead, Jess Heard, Bee and Flower, Beatles, Elvis, Haight-Ashbury, Neil Nixon, William Basinski, Huldre
Read the previous few issues of Gonzo Weekly:
Issue 144 (Percy Jones cover)
Issue 143 (Billy Sherwood cover)
Issue 142 (Daevid Allen and Spirits Burning cover)
Issue 141 (Rick Wakeman cover)
Issue 140 (Jaki Windmill cover)
Issue 139 (Raz cover)
Issue 138 (Galahad cover)
Issue 137 (Chris Squire cover)
Issue 136 (Neil Nixon cover)
Issue 135 (FNP cover)
All issues from #70 can be downloaded at www.gonzoweekly.com if you prefer. If you have problems downloading, just email me and I will add you to the Gonzo Weekly dropbox. The first 69 issues are archived there as well. Information is power chaps, we have to share it!
You can download the magazine in pdf form HERE:
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* The Gonzo Daily is - as the name implies - a daily online magazine (mostly) about artists connected to the Gonzo Multimedia group of companies. But it also has other stuff as and when the editor feels like it. The same team also do a weekly newsletter called - imaginatively - The Gonzo Weekly. Find out about it at this link: www.gonzo-multimedia.blogspot.com/…/all-gonzo-news-wots-fit…
* We should probably mention here, that some of our posts are links to things we have found on the internet that we think are of interest. We are not responsible for spelling or factual errors in other people's websites. Honest guv!
* Jon Downes, the Editor of all these ventures (and several others) is an old hippy of 56 who - together with an infantile orange cat named after a song by Frank Zappa, and a small kitten totally coincidentally named after one of the Manson Family, purely because she squeaks, puts it all together from a converted potato shed in a tumbledown cottage deep in rural Devon which he shares with various fish, and sometimes a small Indian frog. He is ably assisted by his lovely wife Corinna, his bulldog/boxer Prudence, his elderly mother-in-law, and a motley collection of social malcontents. Plus.. did we mention the infantile orange cat, and the adventurous kitten?