Friday, January 14, 2011

Nine By Design 18

You've come to the end of the work week and all you want to do is find out what today's 9 is going to be.  You've obviously come to the right place to get your weekend started.  As always, we've (I've) slaved over a hot stove (keyboard) to bring to you the best in entertainment, for your hard earned dollar (I should charge something, but I like having readers, so free it is).  What will it be?  Will it be comedy?  Movies?  The old standby, Music?  How about all of the above?  This week's Nine By Design is about Concert Movies.  I'm a sucker for documentary films, especially entertainment based ones.  I just like learning about anything, bands, comedians, you name it really.  If done well, anything can be made interesting.  These Nine are great and should be checked out if they pique your interest.

Concert Movies:

U2 - Rattle & Hum : I have mixed feelings about U2.  I liked them early on in their career, then Bono decided to leave planet Earth for a bit and become Sting, but I can't really blame the band for the lead singers actions.  I don't blame the Police for Sting, as they are still one of my favorite bands.  So, when you have one of the cooler drummers in your band, Larry Mullen Jr. and Edge finally realized that he was balding and got rid of the "rat tail," you can deal with LSD (lead singer disease).  Bono, still thinks he's the second coming, but that's now, you could deal with him during Rattle and Hum.  Plus, it really helps that they are really "on" during the movie.  "Bullet the Blue Sky" is amazing.

The Rolling Stones - Gimme Shelter : Most of you may know or at least heard about the tragedies at Altamont.  The Hells Angels were hired to do security.  That would be like hiring a fox to guard the hen house.  Just bad news from the jump.  Fights broke out during the Flying Burrito Bros. and Jefferson Airplane sets.  In fact, Marty Balin of Jefferson Airplane got beat up by one of the Angels.  Tough gig.  Also, there was the horrible stabbing of Meredith Hunter when he tried to get onstage.  So, the film becomes more of a historical event than concert

Urgh! A Music War : I love this film.  There are just so many bands in it that it's hard not to.  It's really a who's who of early 80's Punk/New Wave.  This is about as straight forward a concert movie can get.  There isn't really any's all music.  Unless, someone is talking from the stage, it's song, new band, song, repeat for 2 hours.  There are well known bands, somewhat underrated bands and bands that were never really known.  It's down and dirty, do it yourself and at times, you really feel like some dude with Dippity Do in his hair, is pogoing right next to you.

Beastie Boys - Awesome; I F**kin Shot That! : What happens when you give 50 fans camcorders and tell them to record everything from the start of the concert until the end.  This happens.  It's a really great idea and a fantastic way to give back to your fans.  I am not the biggest rap fan in the world.  I appreciate certain rappers to a point and the Beastie's fall onto that list.  I think it has more to do with the older rappers.  I'll still listen to Run DMC or Grandmaster Flash or even, NWA when in the mood.  What I really like are the DJs.  I'm a huge fan of how they put together the beats that the MC's rap over.  Mixmaster Mike is a favorite.  I strongly recommend the documentary Scratch, which is all about DJs.  Amazing film.  I also love the way the Beastie Boys end their concert.  Real powerful.

Eddie Murphy - Raw : Wait, this isn't music, but it is a concert film.  This movie was my first real understanding of black comedy.  I had heard a little of his Delirious album, but I was only 9 when that came out.  I was 13 when Raw hit.  Fours years at that time in your life makes a huge difference.  Your not laughing just because, he's saying dirty words.  You understand what he's talking about now.  This also got me into Richard Pryor, the comedian and not just the actor.  Huge difference.  Then a little later on, Chris Rock would hit and really take black stand up over. 

Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars : The brilliance of David Bowie was just becoming evident with this creation.  He would constantly recreate himself over the course of his career.  I take it as he never wanted to be boring and he's had an incredible run.  Bowie also had at this time, one of his best bands and my favorite Bowie guitarist, Mick Ronson.  Reeves Gabrels is a close second, but he doesn't come into the scene until much later.  Mick died way too young.  I also love the cheering and then the silence at the beginning of "Rock n Roll Suicide" when he's telling the crowd that the band is playing their last show ever.  Most people thought he was retiring from the music business, not just retiring Ziggy.

Monterey Pop : I like it slightly better than Woodstock.  Jimi Hendrix and The Who were making their first American appearances.  Otis Redding was crossing over to a predominantly white audience for the first time, backed by Booker T and the MG's.  Redding was another rock n roll tragedy, plane crash at 26.  Monterey came before Woodstock and seems more natural.  It never gets the credit that Woodstock got.  Plus, it has Canned Heat, who was pretty much unknown at this point.

Talking Heads - Stop Making Sense : I'll get this out of the way early, I love the band, but hate David Byrne.  He's one of the poster children for the aforementioned LSD.  One of the all-time great jerks in music history.  Okay, I think it's out of my system.  This is a non-stop concert.  They are really going for it.  So all dislike aside, Byrne is very entertaining, which pains me for admitting that.

The Band - The Last Waltz : Everything about this "band" kills me.  All of them so talented, with three, count them, three distinctive singing voices.  Plus, they have guests up the wazoo...Clapton, Van Morrison, Neil Young and some guy named Dylan.  If anything is a must own on this list, it's this movie.  You'll just never see anything like them ever again.  Whether it's a ballad or a rocker, they are totally amazing.  The other thing I love about this movie is guitarist Robbie Robertson, he bronzed his guitar and by the end of the night, couldn't play it anymore, because it was too heavy.

So that wraps up our weekly stroll.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Maybe, you'll add some these to your Netflix or buy them at the local Best Buy.  They are all worth it.  Cheers, Happy Weekend!

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