Captain Beefheart was on to something…

The Leinster Arms sheltered workshop for the tone deaf and rhythmically challenged proceeded as usual on Sunday. The masochists listened and the sadists tortured many old tunes and then, with the cameras off, made a snuff movie out of at least 4 jazz standards before dancing on the graves of the others that they had murdered .

Some people probably turned up expecting music, but the musical train wrecks and caterwauling continued without respite. I shall try to name some of the culprits. Apologies if anyone has their witness protection scheme compromised by the ramblings of this scribe.

The great Don Van Vliet, a.k.a Captain Beefheart, refused to use headphones to sync his overdubs to the playbacks of the band on the making of “ Trout mask replica”, his Avant guard a clue double LP. The results were jarring. Without having any reference to time or rhythm or harmony that his band had recorded , he blazed away in a trajectory that was purportedly at the cutting edge of free jazz, delta blues and auditory waterboarding. These cacophonous shortcomings set the pace for today’s jazz jams in Collingwood without his realizing it… The good Captain, Don van Vliet is no more but I still quote him and had he been there on Sunday he would have said “ Go for it !, is that what they say these days?”

Early on the headcount was short, and due to a lack of any credible drummers in the vicinity , this scribe was heard on drums, perhaps too audibly some might suggest. Real drummers and people who claimed to be drummers , non-drummers who denied it , and those who should have taken a vow against drumming, and those who just seemed deluded, were seen near the drum kit or perched on the stool of ill repute.

Drums: The Hirsh was possibly the king of drum solos, along with Sir Bruce of the unchangeable shuffle and others who were too talented , or too good looking to make a memorable impression. Il Duce , (Glenn the Publican ) didn’t play drums which was unusual.

Bass: Mihoko played double bass in readiness for her forthcoming gig on bass. Doug ‘hairstyle’ Kuhn also played along with subsequent sounds from Ivan the terrible on 5 string double bass and a while later there was an electric bass contribution from this humble correspondent.

Guitarists included Peter on his Starcaster, the very able Alex on his PRS and yours truly on the trusty cherry red Ibanez semi acoustic guitar.

Pianists included Gentleman John Curtis, Ted Woollan, Two wheeler Trevor and his female friends who either sang , played keyboards or did both but not simultaneously, Then there was a person who insisted we play a two chord Freddie Hubbard song and then lopped off the C section because he could.

As usual I offered my much maligned keyboard services but was wisely turned down.

Horns and wind instruments were blown by Peter, Damon, The captain of chaos( who was re-inventing chaos on a new level ignoring Ana Crusis every time as well he should , because Colin is married) , Marion Lustig, the Hendrix of the recorder ( sans lighter fluid , Marshall amps and a fiery sacrifice and smashing of the instrument), and others who were also too proficient or too good looking to make a lasting memorable impression.

Warblers included another what’s her face with the wonky digital chart that kept changing before our eyes singing “Is you or ain’t my baby”, Maria , who was warbling away in her trade mark high heels (altitude training improves one’s fitness), and others, who should know better than to try the vocal version of a Guantanamo bay interrogation with a microphone and claim it is music, what with people trying to consume victuals nearby .

Colin has suggested to me the idea of teaming the advanced train wreckers and tone deaf bipeds who cannot count at all with similar players. This may not be a good idea because if non train wreck hour was at 7 pm then you would have the musical equivalent of a dental root canal operation without an anesthetic from 4 til 7pm and the people who need to play with better players in order to learn and improve would not get the chance to play with MSO alumni , semi pro. gigging players, jazz fusion heroes and people who have too much time on their hands and as a result can play entire J.S. Bach trumpet pieces perfectly 10 metres underwater whilst tied up and wearing concrete wellington boots.

Was it all a bad trip or a nasty case of reality coming back on me? One cannot tell but Ted was there and no Coltrane music was played, so go figure.

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Mr T

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