Boneyard Media


Archive for August, 2008

Sunday Service: United States of America – “I Wouldn’t Leave My Wooden Wife for You, Sugar” (1968)

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

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“Experimental” is the operative word for this album, although it’s more satisfying than the word might suggest. It’s a good 50% hear-us-on-acid clatter, and a good 10% “When I’m Sixty-Four” envy, but it’s the other stuff, the moderately weird 40% that sounds best. Here’s one of those: an ode to whips and chains that closes with a Salvation Army band playing a Protestant hymn (“There is Sunshine in My Soul”).

United States of America – “I Wouldn’t Leave My Wooden Wife for You, Sugar” (1968)

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Song ID: Kendell Kardt – “Little Sparrow” (1972)

Thursday, August 28th, 2008

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This track, from Kendell Kardt’s unreleased Columbia sessions, features a gorgeous arrangement by prolific Nashville-based composer Bill Pursell. If you’re well-versed in your instrumental hits of the sixties, you may know of an atmospheric track called “Our Winter Love,” that features a nicely plump, buzzed guitar/proto-synth duet near the middle. Well, this beauty was Pursell’s piece, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it aroused a tinge of professional jealousy in Percy Faith at the time. Pursell’s only big hit, the song reached #9 in ‘63. (Give it a listen here).

Kendell’s friendship with Pursell came about through his work on the Columbia LP. He had been given some arranger demos to listen to and chose Pursell due to what he’d heard as a more classical than commercial orientation. “Whatever you might think of the song itself,” as Kendell puts it, “I can’t say enough in praise of the beautiful symphonic and choral treatment he created for this piece. I think the word ‘masterpiece’ may actually apply here.” Amen, Kendell.

Buried for decades as a memory at least powerful enough for the two to drunkenly wonder together about what might have been, now’s everyone else’s chance to hear it.

Kendell Kardt – “Little Sparrow” (1972)

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My Three Suns, by Paul Borelli

Thursday, August 21st, 2008

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My friend Paul Borelli is a self-taught painter and the biggest Fred MacMurray fan I know of. This latest work of his is based on a photo from a Van Heusen shirt ad that appeared in mid-60s magazines.

The big news about this is that it will soon be added to the collection of the Museum of Bad Art, located in the basement of a community theatre in the Boston area. As Paul puts it, “I only recently became aware of their existence when I saw and purchased a book of their ‘masterworks’ at Book People here in Austin. Their web site also contains a gallery of some of their more dazzling pieces. I hope that they will see fit to add my work to their online gallery, where it could be seen and enjoyed by MOBA’s over 10,000 members.” Paul will be the first Austin artist to be curated by the MOBA, a true mark of distinction.

The portrait is also of personal significance to Paul, because as a “MacMurray-meets-Magritte treatment,” it marks the “transitional point from my Paint-by-Numbers Period to my Pseudo-Realistic Period.” It also prompted him to “read a few books about how to paint portraits more accurately.” Paul is currently in the middle of a self-portrait (his second), which he hopes to show at the Self-Portrait Show at the Austin Figurative Gallery.

(By the way, did the Three Suns ever do a version of the My Three Sons theme?)

Bruce Cockburn – “Goin’ Down the Road” (1970)

Saturday, August 9th, 2008

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Goin’ Down the Road was an influential Canadian film about two Nova Scotia young bucks who drive a cool 1960 Chevy Impala to Toronto in hopes of snazzing up their floundering lives. It’s pretty much a bummer, like most movies at that time were. But it was a worthwhile bummer. Particularly worthwhile was the soundtrack by a young Bruce Cockburn, the venerable Canadian singer-songwriter who was only one album into his career back then. No soundtrack LP ever appeared because Bruce, apparently, insisted on not releasing something commercially that didn’t reflect his direct experience. Too bad. Anyway, I loved the theme song so much when I first saw this (still do) that I propped up a tape recorder by the TV, merging the opening first few verses with the closing verse that plays at the end.

Bruce Cockburn – “Goin’ Down the Road”

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“Marylou” from Kendell Kardt’s Columbia sessions circa 1972

Tuesday, August 5th, 2008

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Here’s another cut from the same unreleased Columbia sessions that brought us Kendell’s “Funky Song.” It’s called “Marylou” and you can hear a touch of the fifties nostalgia that had been wafting through (and generally cheering up) the hungover pop culture of the post-sixties. More Columbia tracks to come later this week, so stay tuned.

Kendell Kardt – “Marylou”

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