Thursday, June 30, 2016

David M.: on David's Bowie, CanCon, and so forth

David M. - praised by Nick Jones in the Pointed Sticks interview below - will be doing his Small Salute to David Bowie at Music Madhouse Records on Saturday, July 2nd, at 3pm, the day of the Pointed Sticks show. I have caught this set before and abundantly recommend it, even if you don't care THAT much about Bowie (I don't, I must admit, though he has his moments, he has his moments). And it seems to make perfect gig-sense to me, or for anyone coming from Vancouver or Burnaby: Skytrain to Lougheed Mall, find the record store, see David M, go for dinner - my girl and I have been enjoying the New West Spaghetti Factory, which, for some reason, is much more appealing than the Gastown location - then see the Pointed Sticks at the Columbia. Not exactly sure how to get to Music Madhouse, mind you - the Dishrags, who did an in-store meet-and-greet there last year, made it sound like it might be a little complicated - except that I know that it's by Lougheed Mall; I've never been. I'm excited to check it out - because if the people running it have this good a taste in in-stores, they probably have some cool records, too.  

Meantime, here's David M, speaking to a few points of relevance to the Pointed Sticks interview (and his own set). On the Retinal Circus show that never happened (which I first heard about through him; apparently collectors often ask him for copies of gig posters for that particular piece of history):
I think that the promoter couldn't get proper licensing, or the capacity was limited by the fire marshal, or the building wasn't habitable, or something technical like that. It got cancelled abruptly and without much explanation. There was some speculation that the city didn't want the show to happen, but it's likely that the promoter just couldn't make the venue work. As for why the poster might be in demand, obviously it's because of the nostalgia Vancouver old-timers have for NO FUN. The fools!
Asked what year that was, he writes: 
It would have been the day after our Thursday/Friday/Saturday at the Smilin' Buddha and 8 days before our Monday to Saturday at the Cave, so it would have made our insane career trajectory of November 1979 even more insane.
We had also been booked by Perryscope to open for Talking Heads on October 6, 1979, at the Commodore. It was going to be two shows, 8 P.M. and midnight. But a couple of weeks before that date  Talking Heads management decided to bring their new signing Pearl Harbor and the Explosions along as opening act. That kind of thing has started up again, I've noticed, now that the "real money is in live shows".
On the Small Salute to David Bowie, there have been a few changes and additions to the set we previously discussed. He has apparently altered the description in the poster, above, from "40 minutes of David's Bowie" to "44 minutes and 14 seconds of David's Bowie". He had actually mentioned that there might be a "short set as a warm-up and for fun, consisting of a few songs that wouldn’t exist if David Bowie didn’t exist (and perhaps something by Elvis Presley, who shares Bowie’s January 8th birthday)." But I do not know what exactly he is doing. He has said that he would "rather surprise people" than go into a list of which songs he plans. We did talk about his salute to David Bowie here, however, and I've seen the set one and a quarter times (the quarter happening in front of the Rickshaw during their February Bowie salute, which I shot a little video of.

Then I asked David about CanCon. Specifically, I wrote: "I'm curious in particular - a lot of bands that WERE good, like the Payolas and Doug and the Slugs, really started to blow goats the more they chased radio play. But did that have anything to do with Canadian content regulations? The Replacements were getting a bit blowy, in their later career (before the reunion), and that had nothin' to do with CanCon..."

David M. replies:
An industry arose because of Canadian Content that provided very nice livings for a lot of hard-working Canadians by emphasizing the “Canadian” over the “Content”. Jim Vallance told me back in 1979 that “a hit will buy you a house”. Ra McGuire told me at around the same time that “you guys would have hits if you weren’t so fucked up”, to which I replied “you guys would have hits if you weren’t so fucked up looking”.
Money money money money.
As for music, I think Phil Ochs covered the importance of that with “Bach, Beethoven, Mozart & Me”, just with that title, and he was probably clinically insane.
Zeus preserve us from the fragile egos of old musicians, especially me.
All images lifted off David M's "Small Salute" Facebook page, which, I discover, is distinct from the Music Madhouse event page, previously linked. So go check it out, there's lots else there. That's David and Ozzy with a Jim Cummins' Bowie.

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