Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Moose and Squirrel and Miles and Me

Two winners to announce for my latest contest (see the previous posting): Robert Jacobson from an unspecified location on the Indian subcontinent correctly identified the cartoon show whose theme resembles Miles Davis's "Nefertiti" as Rocky and Bullwinkle (to tell you the truth, Robert listed a plethora of Jay Ward shows in his submission, said scattershot answer indicating that he probably didn't actually extrapolate his reply through actual close listening to the Miles piece but based his guesswork on the hint given about the merchandise store in LA near the Chateau Marmont, which--now it can be revealed--was owned by Jay Ward, producer of R&B, Dudley Do-Right, Hoppity Hooper, Sherman and Peabody, Fractured Fairytales, and other beloved cultural folderol...oh well). The second correct entry submitted following hot on Bob's electronic vapor trail was from Kevin Davis of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, and he correctly came up with Rocky and Bullwinkle, with no extra guesswork thrown in. So congrats, gentlemen--a copy of Dylan's snarky WBAI radio appearance circa '66 and the new Fast 'n Bulbous album will be winging their way to Robert and Kevin, respectively.

Gary Lucas with the Yale Marching Band, Yale Bowl, New Haven Connecticut, 10/1972 (photo hosted by flickr)

Photo by Jeff Johnson | Click on the photo to enlarge

Also appearing on this page soon (thanks Tanya!) is a shot of me in full 70's regalia taken at the Yale Bowl in 1972 during a season when I played with the Yale Marching Band--I used to set up on the sidelines at halftime and crank my Epiphone through a Jim Dunlop wah-wah and a 200-watt Marshall stack, pumping out the Theme from Shaft and other goodies in tandem with my marching cohorts under the baton of Keith Brion (who conducted a wonderful album of Percy Grainger's symphonic band music on the Delos label a few years back; "To the Fore!"--in fact, Keith turned me on to Grainger's sublime, heartbreaking "Children's March", my solo guitar arrangement of which appears on my "Operators Are Standing By" album, recently reissued through Evolver/Rykodisc). It was nearly the Yale Marching Banned that year, as some of the elderly alumni brought heat down on us for various scabrous halftime hijinx, the most memorable being a Salute to the proposed Yale/Vassar merger, wherein half the boys in the band made a giant Y formation on the field and the other half a giant V, and the two formations kind of...merged...use your imagination here (helpful hint--the trombone player in the vanguard at the base of the giant Y donned a rubber shower cap as the entire Y formation marched into the apex of the giant V). Thanks to Stuart Rohrer for sending me the photo, taken by our fellow classmate Jeff Johnson--I ran into Stuart last week for the first time in about 30 years at the Gibson Epiphone showroom at the Hit Factory, where the winner of the Magrack Guitar Face competition was feted, and it was synchronicity in more ways than one--I'm a Fender guitar guy for years now, at least on electric, but back in the day, as you can see in the photo, I was sportin' that Epiphone (I painted it chocolate brown, it had only one pickup, but did it ever hum...)

It is now 10 degrees outside, the streets are dark and deserted... Caroline and I just came back from seeing "Closer" (I dig Natalie Portman so it was definitely worth the ten fifty--hey in London a movie is about sixteen, seventeen bucks, these days). I am going to play my Gibson J-45 now, I've been fine-tuning a furious new fantasia I've written for Gods and Monsters...




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