Grateful Dead

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GRTUD's picture
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Joined: Jun 4 2007
Block Heads

I'm fairly certain that Pid was a BlocKhead (in one manner of speaking or other) at one time in his life, at least.
Speaking of which, I saw John Turnbull play with World Party at Bonnaroo in 2006 which was awesome. He and Karl Wallinger were perfect together and I was told (and heard a few "tapes" proving the point) that some of the other shows they played together were hot as hell (I think they played together in San Fran).
I wasn't into the Disco scene either, but I remember folks calling Terrapin Station "Disco Dead" when it was released (too funny).

"Dancin', dancin', dancin' in the streets..."

Mr. Pid's picture
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Joined: Dec 22 2007
Okay, hit me with your rhythm stick

Perhaps you do have a point, badger. To me, disco sound (i just can't refer to it with the M word) was just an incessant stream of indistinguishable throbbing. The most common complaint that I get from people who don't appreciate GD is that to them it "all sounds the same."

So I guess art really is in the eye, or ear, of the beholder.

Conversation is always more interesting than recitation, so speak your mind and not someone else's.

cosmicbadger's picture
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Joined: Jun 13 2007
well well well

we're smokin them all out now! Good story Mr P..

But hang on, aren''t be being a bit snobbish; Lots of people dressing up getting high and dancing to loud music and flashing lights? Sounds a bit familiar. What's wrong with that? Just a different generation. The whole acid house thing was the same in the 80s. I think the problem is the effect of the substance of choice for these movements and the culture it creates. What fuelled the psychedelic movement and the dance music of the last 20 years is very different from what fuelled the disco movement. As the wonderful and much missed Ian Dury once said:

'one snort and you're a fascist'

Hal R's picture
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Joined: Jun 13 2007
Thanks for the story Mr. Pid

Very well written.

I was drugged at times into going to discos, I must admit. Friends would say "There are women there". My reply was "But not our kind of women". My reaction when there was one of three 1. Run for the nearest exit 2.Shrivel up and become invisible 3. Get as messed up as possible, maybe I will just not notice or care I will be so numb. Or any combination of the 3.

If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.
William Blake

Mr. Pid's picture
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Joined: Dec 22 2007
My Studio 54 Story

WARNING! No Dead angle here. I only post this because the subject came up, and there was an inquiry about what Studio 54 was all about. Those of you who were fortunate enough to have avoided direct exposure to Studio 54 can consider your perfect records intact. I was not so lucky, and so for the benefit of anyone interested I will relate my experience.

Studio 54 was the "brain child" and first business enterprise of two guys named Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager. Steve Rubell is no longer visiting this planet, and these days Ian Schrager spends his time developing high end boutique hotels.

Anyway, their nightclub idea was located in a former television studio located in New York on West 54th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue, so you can see how much thought went into the name of the place. They intentionally restricted admission to only fancy, upscale-looking people and it quickly became a celebrity hotspot. The bouncers at the door were the arbiters of who got in, and getting past their velvet ropes became sort of a status symbol. The only other way in was to be "on the list," which actually had a panache of its own. No waiting in the line, just walk right up, speak a few words and the velvet ropes part. The stage was used as the main dance floor, and disco was all that ever got played there. They charged ridiculous prices for drinks, and in reality the place ran on cocaine, which proved to be its eventual undoing.

In 1980 I was in a band that had professional management. One of their other "artists" got booked into 54 to lip-synch two of her her so-called songs, and our manager asked us to please attend. After all, we would be "on the list!" I am absolutely certain that the only reason I was admitted was because I was on the list. I still periodically kick myself for having stooped so low as to have actually gone there. So in we go, me, my band, the manager, and this caterwauling ditz named Lenore O'Malley who was really just a white Gloria Gaynor clone.

Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. It was relentless, and getting louder as we went down the stairs. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. It was at this point that I coined the term Brain Slapping Disco. There was just no other way to describe it. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. The gain on the bass was jacked up so high it made your pant legs wave in the breeze. It was what an old sound engineer friend of mine used to describe as Too Loud For Humans.

Manager and Ditz headed off to get ready for her act. I looked out at the writhing sea of what I could only assume was humanity on the dance floor. There was more polyester than a recycling plant, enough gold chains to rival Fort Knox, and the most ridiculously overproduced hair I had ever seen. None for me, thanks. Where's the bar? OK, there we go.

EIGHT bucks for a beer? Twelve bucks for a well drink? Christ, it was 19 freaking 80. There are lots of places now that still don't have the cojones to charge that much! I didn't ask how much for the lines all those people were doing. And you certainly didn't need to bring your own weed. Oh well, it was far too hot and smoky in there to not have something to wet the whistle. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Doesn't it ever stop? How much longer am I going to have to put up with this insipid crap?

Time to hit the john. Good lord, there's some freak in a tux in here with an array of bottles filled with various types of chemical stench, turning the faucets on and off, and handing out towels. He seems to think I somehow owe him money for the privilege of using the urinal. "It's okay, buddy, I don't need any help with this, I've had lots of practice already. Maybe I should charge YOU something for the show?" What sort of a weirdo would ever take a job like that? I thought about asking him how much to piss on him instead, but decided I really didn't want to know the answer, especially if it involved him paying me, which seemed like it could be a distinct possibility! Couldn't get out of there fast enough, and I really didn't want to know what was going on in that stall.

Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. My brain hurts! Please make it stop! Thud-thud-thud-thud. Thud-thud-thud-thud. Finally, it's the Ditz's numbers! They're only about three minutes each, the end is in sight! Manager reappears and says, "Hey, what do you think?" At least that's what I think he said, it was almost impossible to hear over the thud-thud-thud-thud. So I tried to scream back at him "Couldn't I just pound railroad spikes into my temples instead?" I'm not sure if he got it, though. He thought this stuff was cool! That night he was Somebody! Sap...

Well, Ditz was done, we'd done our duty for the team, so the guitar player and I waved goodbye and got the hell out of there before we got infected. Apparently it was too late for the singer and the bass player who decided to hang around. They thought it was cool, too! More saps...

Sometimes I kick myself for having had anything to do with that band. The material was all really just commercial pop crap that surprise, surprise, never went anywhere. So happy I never signed that record contract. Even happier that I never got dragged to 54 again.

Okay, ccJoe, please enlighten us!

Conversation is always more interesting than recitation, so speak your mind and not someone else's.

deadheadkid's picture
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Joined: Oct 21 2007
not here

no shes not a member. The evil Devin is brooding in her cave, sucking the marrow from the bones of her latest victims. think of the mother of Grendel from the book Grendel. except with red hair.

Gr8fulTed's picture
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Joined: Jul 9 2007
Not so fast

I've got a great video, on DVD, of the BeeGees. Makes me want to put on my white suit and do some grinding.

Golden Road's picture
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Joined: Jun 5 2007
Arch Nemesis?

*looks Around and Around*
(cue "Beat It", by Michael Jackson)

Where?

"All energy flows according to the whims of the Great Magnet. What a fool I was to defy him."

deadheadkid's picture
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Joined: Oct 21 2007
Thanks

Believe me, HalR, I know disco sucks. we have taken the liberty of purging most of it from our stations librarys, but the hunt goes on, for it seems our electronic DJ likes to taunt us and play it occasionally ;). good luck with the research. I am curious about this story also. But enlighten me on this Taj Mahal story. I need excitement in my life for all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy indeed. a little history that doent involve the depressing and sad conditions of the Industrial Revolution would be great. Also, anyhistory that does not involve having to deal with my arch nemesis here woulf be wicked awesome.

iknowurider's picture
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Joined: Oct 23 2007
Waiting with Bells On..

Can't wait for CCj's story! I've seen the movie & I wonder how it really was. Good luck with your research HalR. Are you going Gonzo style?

PEACE

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