Sunday, December 21, 2008

A teasa please | Mystery solved

As Boil The Ocean perfectly summed it up, 2008 was most definitely the year of the Tim And Henry format’s resurrection.
Are these things long trailers?
Or short videos?
Why are bushes bushy?
So many questions, so few answers. I’ll still call them “teasers” though, for the sake of my feature’s title's pun, and while some left us hanging wanting to see less, some definitely worked their magic. Like Stereo's "Dyson" part, the semi-recent Mystery promo is one of these.
With the brand's trademarked black-and-white-only aesthetics and tasteful riders choices (Pete Eldridge shouldn't be installing fireplaces), it’s also a success on the musical front. Which for whatever reasons I was expecting (dreading) to be way more three-chords or even worse, arena-rock, inclined. Well my friends, hosannah ! It wasn’t. Let’s see what this promotional teaser’s black box has to say.

1. Chuck Berry : The Downbound Train (Intro)
Right after he got advised by his idol Muddy Waters to go and meet a certain Leonard Chess, the musician whose cousin improv'd for a fresh-out-of-1984 Marty Mc Fly -shamelessly stealing his song from the retro-future, Johnny B Goode, as any serious biographer knows- recorded his first hit in 1955. It was called Maybellene, and got shortly followed by the No Money Down 7-inch. The Downbound Train could have been forgotten on its B-Side… Until the Mystery promo resurrected it. Feeling as bluesy as a 500-frames-a-second videographer losing all the colors on his screen, reverting back to trolley-less, Eastern Exposure 3-black and white times. Perfect mood-setting tune.

2. Smith: Baby It’s You (Everen Stallion)
The archetype of the one-hit-wonder that disappeared without a trace –still trying to contact Q Lazzarus, dudes-, Smith’s glory peaked in 1969 with this song. Nice performance when you come to think that it was only a cover of a 1961 Shirelles tune, that got also sung by The Beatles in 1963. But no, Smith got the money, and their beautiful soulesque interpretation of Baby It’s You can be heard on their debut album "A Group Called Smith," and in that fancy double-feature Tarantino film.
Four decades later, Smith’s singer Gayle McCormick ‘s poisonous delivery of these Cause-baby-it’s-yous still work -look at the photo at the beginning of this post and let imagination do the rest. Also, this band invented a very popular grind in skateboarding.

The other tunes
3. Sly And The Family Stone: Underdog (Montage)
4. Sean Price : King Kong (Pete Eldridge)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Re:music | Ed Tempeton's greatest almosts

Ever imagined what Nick Trapasso's already classic Suffer The Joy part would sound like without Sleepwalk's nonchalance? Ed Templeton and Kevin Barnett did, they even contemplated the option for a while. It wasn't the only one. Whatever the reason was, this one and a bunch of other tunes that should have been in Toy Machine videos never were. Why? Ed picked five and explains.

1. John Renbourn: Nobody's Fault but Mine
"Austin Stephens wanted to skate to it in Good and Evil but we couldn't secure the rights, so we used Peggy Honeywell's Sing, Sang, Sung instead."

2. Bob Dylan: One More Cup of Coffee
"That's the tune Nick Trapasso wanted for Suffer The Joy. But he got Sleepwalk by Santo and Johnny."

3. Johnny Cash: Hurt
"Billy Marks was trying to get this one but we ended up using Ladytron's Blue Jeans in Good and Evil."

4. Some song from Yes
"Kerry Getz was going to use a song from the band Yes in Jump Off A Building but then changed his mind, using the Scorpions."

5. Led Zeppelin: Immigrant Song
"This one was supposed to be Donny Barley's song in Welcome to Hell, but at the last minute he switched it to Ozzy, then Jeremy Wray used it I think..."

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Interlude | Memory Screened is up

Oh by the way, I just started also the Memory Screened blog, it's an archive of that page in Skateboarder aimed at creating a mess in pros' garages by asking them to dig up their five favorite boards and comment them. 
So far I posted the two first installments (Ed Templeton and John Cardiel) and will update it once a week -yeah right, just like this one. Anyway, it's up.