[The one and only Henry Rollins will be contributing a weekly column and far-reaching reportage to the music section of the LA Weekly. Look for your weekly Henry Rollins fix right here on West Coast Sound every Friday and make sure to tune in to Henry's KCRW radio show every Saturday evening, or online, or as a podcast, or however else you decided to listen to the most eclectic DJ on LA's airwaves.
This installment includes Henry's thoughts on voting (he's in a favor of it), his current favorite documentary, and a singer who gave him his CD-R (which he'll play on his show), plus the awesomely annotated playlist for his KCRW BROADCAST #87 for tomorrow, Saturday 10-30-10. For more details please visit KCRW.com and HenryRollins.com]
I don't know how much you follow current events. For some, there's not enough time to keep up on what's happening, for others, the news is too depressing and peering too deeply fills one with boiling frustration all too quickly.
I am morbidly fascinated the frenetic activity of what's happening pretty much anywhere. I do my best to stay on top of what is going down and the last few weeks have been extremely interesting. From the Juan Williams firing from NPR and his brand spankin' new contract at Fox News to the sudden demonization of NPR by Karl Rove and his ilk.
Personally, I have never felt at risk when listening to NPR and memories of Sesame Street on PBS still make me smile.
I would like to thank Rand Paul for inspiring me to refresh myself on the 1883 Supreme Court takedown of the Civil Rights Act of 1875 and the incredible resistance many Americans had to the passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964. There's so much to know, so much to understand, un-spin and get one's head around right now, the need for sleep becomes more of an annoyance.
I am no critic. It is not for me to tell you what is good or what to do. That being said, perhaps I may make a suggestion.
If you are looking for a great documentary to check out, I recommend with all confidence, Inside Job, directed by Charles Ferguson. Inside Job, in two hours, takes the viewer, step by step through the global financial meltdown of 2008. It's not an uplifting experience, heartbreaking and infuriating is more like it.
I think everyone should see it, as there's very few people in America who have not been touched by this man-made disaster. It blew my mind and really gave me a chance to understand how it all went down. It's narrated by Matt Damon, a tremendous piece of work.
I don't know if you know but Charles Ferguson is also the man who made another great documentary about the invasion and occupation of Iraq called No End In Sight, which I have seen three times now. Inside Job is playing at the Landmark on Pico. I am going back to see it again soon, perhaps I'll see you there.
Next week, many of you will have the opportunity to vote. I would never, ever tell anyone who to vote for but I would strongly advise that if you can, vote and let your voice be heard. Democracy, amazing social experiment that it is, needs you. It is ours to protect and ours to lose. Perhaps some of you have had the same experience that I have upon dropping the ballot in the box. It evokes in me, an excitement and euphoria that is completely unique.
What I think about any topic is of no real importance but one thing is for sure, there is a radio station, KCRW, (NPR) that has a slot warmed up for me Saturday nights from six until eight pm and it's the best two hours of my week.
This weekend's show is one of my typical Halloween time broadcasts where the tricks and treats rub shoulders. I know that there will be a lot of celebrating this weekend, costumed or otherwise. Please let your particular freak flag fly in a manner where no one gets their heads stepped on and everyone gets home in one piece. Until next week, get up for the downstroke.
DON'T MISS SATURDAY NIGHTS ON THA K, KCRW FM 89.9
6-8 PM - HENRY ROLLINS (FINC), ENGINEER X, WILL 'THE DOUBLE B' BENTLEY
8-10 PM - LIZA 'THE MAD DOLL' RICHARDSON
10-MIDNIGHT - MARIO 'MARIOMANIA' COTTO
GO TO KCRW.COM
PS: KCRW is going to pull a Halloween gitdown this weekend on the 30th at the Park Plaza. http://www.kcrw.com/events/masquerade-2010. Among other great K jammers, I will be playing music from 1215 to 0115 hrs. at this event. Should be good until I go on.
KCRW BROADCAST #87
I am listening to tonight's show here in my office as I write this to you. I am going between spasms of joy and violent, abdominal contractions of great pain as the songs go from amazing to amazingly bad. As far as bad music, I could have taken tonight's show way down that path. I had some other songs in the play list for tonight but just couldn't get through them and didn't think you needed to suffer more than you already do when listening to our show.
For the most part, we land on the side of good music tonight with only a hint of how bad things can get. "It's only got a little bit of rat in it," as the Monty Python sketch says. Keeping with the spirit of Halloween, there's plenty of appropriate imagery in the song titles and content to give you the impression that we are paying some attention to the calendar. When you hear some of these songs, it's hard to imagine that the band walked out of the studio with a feeling of accomplishment, that the magic had been captured and their futures were positively incandescent and bursting with potential.
Two quick stories behind two of tonight's stand out tracks.
Many years ago, almost twenty-five approximately, my lawyer was handling the publishing of a songwriter named Todd Tappin. I would see him now and then at the lawyer's office. He would see me in my poor man's clothing and overall scruffiness and make no attempt to hide his contempt for me and my band. One sad day, Todd no longer needed my lawyer's services and went elsewhere. I asked if I could save her the trouble of having to throw his cassette into the trashcan by taking it and she said yes. I have had it ever since. Every song a classic. Todd, call me, I want to hear your version of "Rock On" again!
RaVeN, a man I met outside my tour bus somewhere in North America, gave me his CDR like he was doing me a great favor. He told me that he was going to the Nine Inch Nails show the next night and stand outside of Trent Reznor's bus and give him a copy also. RaVeN asked me to pass the CDR along to all my big friends in the major label industry and promised me he would not become an egomaniac when the bidding war started, nor would he lose his essence with all the cash that was no doubt coming his way. I got the CDR onto my bus and played it immediately. What a score! And now you benefit from my great fortune. You're welcome.
Nitro! The singer, Jim Gillette, is married to Lita Ford!!! Dig the music, go online and find the band photos. Best hair in Metal, ever. Proud to be loud, dude!
I will no doubt see you all at the Park Plaza for the big KCRW party Now, hail Aqua Buddha and STAY FANATIC!!! --Henry
E-Mail address for Henry: Henryontheradio@gmail.com
01. The Misfits - Where Eagles Dare / Box Set
02. Sunn 0))) - It Took the Night To Believe / Black One
03. Fats Waller - There's Going To Be The Devil To Pay / RCA Complete Recordings
04. Black Sabbath - Lady Evil / Heaven & Hell
05. Howlin' Wolf - Evil (Is Going On) / The Genuine Article
06. Wolf Eyes - Burn Your House Down / Dread
07. Dokken - Breaking The Chains / Best Of
08. Robert Johnson - Me And The Devil Blues / Complete Recordings
09. The Telephone Company - Baby Halloween / The King's Surprise?
10. Roky Erickson - Don't Shake Me Lucifer / The Evil One
11. Albert Ayler - Witches & Devils / Witches & Devils
12. The Fall - Lucifer Over Lancashire / Beggars B-Sides
13. Carambolage - City-Grossmarkt / Carambolage
14. Lucifer - It's Lucifer! / Lucifer
15. Todd Tappin - We The People / tape
16. Death - You're A Prisoner / ...For The World To See
17. RaVeN - Sex Candy / CDR
18. Cedell Davis - She's Got The Devil In Her / Feel Like Doin' Something Wrong
19. Nitro - Double Trouble / OFR (Out Fucking Rageous)
20. Gun Club - Devil In The Woods / Miami
21. Blind Willie McTell - Death Room Blues / Complete Recorded Works
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22. Nicholson Alphonse - Monkey Drunk, Stand Below / Caribbean Voyage : Dominica
23. Jackie-O-Motherfucker - The Grave / Ballads Of The Revolution
24. The Mob - Witch Hunt / Let The Tribe Increase
25. The Misfits - Halloween / Box Set