Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Arthur Russell, All That Jazz, and Improv Tacos




The World of Arthur Russell and tacos on a Tuesday night. These were improv tacos--Costco smoked pulled pork from the freezer, some leftover sweet potato, feta, and cilantro. Something else was needed to take this over the top, maybe cotija and some citrus, or sweet peppers to give it some life. Peppery slaw of some kind. I made do. Kind of dark--like our May weather. Sweet potatoes popular at our house lately. There are records I listen to ALOT more than this Arthur Russell, but it's one of those that is fantastic and perfect when I'm in the mood. In a sort of avant disco glitzy sexy art music sort of way. If you haven't seen the Arthur Russell documentary Wild Combination, it's great.

I watched All That Jazz this week. It came up in the David Thomson book and I wasn't too psyched; I thought I was in for some middle-brow show-biz dancing cinema glam, when in fact it would go nice on a triple bill with The Wrestler and The Black Swan. The Fellini tone of the second half was crass and kooky, and a wild departure from the party hard/work harder storyline that's up front. Jessica Lange as an angel of death--who knew? When I was six or seven and saw King Kong (with Jeff Bridges) I took a dirt clod and wrote "I love Jessica Lange" on the concrete foundation of our house. She never called me, never drove by when I was waiting for the bus at the end of our long gravel driveway. It was one of those Christmas weekend movie outings with alot of family home. I remember my brother-in-law Jay cackling about "Kong Breath," when Jessica Lange's feathery hair was blown back by the big guy's super-alpha-boyfriend exhalations. I've always liked that version of King Kong. "Kong breath" is still part of the family lexicon.

I also liked Harry Brown, in which a lonesome, aging-gracefully Michael Caine character whups the crap out of a gang of thugs who are terrorizing a housing development. Comparisons made to Deathwish, Gran Torino, Prime Suspect...reviews were good, not great. I was taken by it though. Perfect pitch in every melancholy scene from a soulful actor.

Through The Children's Gate by Adam Gopnik. I liked this alot, and his Paris book is up next, if I don't slip a James W. Hall in between. I guess that would be like dj'ing Leon Russell between two Bill Evans numbers, or something like that.


And finally, would you let this man mix your record? I would! In fact, we did! The Golden Motors new platter is sounding hot, and this photo from La Margarita Express in Salem, Oregon is proof! Thanks Tom Nunes! Check out "Kickball Queen" now!
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