Thursday, February 12, 2009


Who still has their original LP of The Velvet Underground & Nico with the Andy Warhol. You remember, the one you kind of kept facing backwards so your mom wouldn’t see the cover with that big ol’ banana by Andy Warhol when she put off your clean clothes on your bed? Or maybe you put it right at the front of the stack, in a prominent place along your bedroom wall so she would see it. Oh yes, I see you nodding your head, you wild thing you! Well, anyway, who is going to argue that the banana album is a true classic? One of my enduring faves on it is our feature song, “All Tomorrow’s Parties.”

Here, for a refresher, is a YouTube video of Nico with the 1967 original. You just can’t beat Nico’s Marlene Dietrich-y monochrome vocals against that relentless guitar-driven, heroin-laced dirge – hey, you gotta have some purple prose to go with this song!

Okay, fast forward to 2007, and what I consider to be one of the Great Voices of Our Times – Johnette Napolitano, formerly of Concrete Blonde. I have some old Blonde albums for the early days (that would be the early 80s-90s), and more recently, Napolitano’s first (2007) solo album, titled Scarred. It’s got a lot of terrific original songs and great covers, including, again, our feature song (with a cameo by Lou Reed himself). Too bad there isn’t a video of it on YouTube, but heck, you’re probably better than I am at tracking down songs in other places, so I’m sure you can find all or part of it somewhere. But if you haven't updated this section of your CD shelf in a while, check this album out. Meanwhile, we’ll console ourselves with another fave of mine, and one that will be instantly familiar to all of you, too, “Joey” – Napolitano’s paean to loving someone who isn’t in the program but who should be.

Video by YT member tomorrettisgay (Nico) tearecords (JN)
Photo from Wikimedia


Poetikat said...

Not a fan of Concrete Blonde, BUT the band Japan featuring David Sylvian (a Warhol lookalike - by design) was a song I loved to dance to (alone) in a trance (not drug-induced). Also, he of the Jackson Pollock sweatshirt emulated Sylvian to a tee so, I guess he emulated Warhol by proxy.
AND, coincidentally, there's an honest-to-goodness Warhol exhibit here, in K-W and Kevin is taking me for Valentine's Day! How cool is that?

Dig up the Japan video and watch it, Deb - it's so atmostpherice, drony and alternative. Hah! I never saw them live, but I had 3 albums - including one called, "Oil on Canvas" (appropriately).
I notice from Googling that they released a collection last year, entitled, "Exorcising Ghosts" - hah! Aren't we all?

Didn't know the song went all the way back to '67.


Poetikat said...

Well that first paragraph was a nice mess! (no caffeine in me). The band's version, obviously, not the band was a song. Duh.

You can't find it on YouTube - except for a slowed down (dulled down) version. Darn!


Deborah Godin said...

@ Kat - Well I had you figured wrong, was sure you'd be a fan - it was the mascara thing...