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 a case of the blues?

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Nadja

Nadja


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PostSubject: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSat Feb 09, 2008 3:59 pm

The Stooges are so often regarded just as punk or punk progenitors but that's way too limiting a label. As so often discussed here, they've incorporated a whole lot of other 'types' of music from the beginning, jazz, avant-garde etc. And I'm only just coming to appreciate how a real keynote to their music is the blues - not just in terms of actual musical style, but really in terms of a blues sensibility that Iggy's really had from day one (for more than one reason no doubt) - I mean that sense of melancholy and all, which is so apparent in the generally downbeat vocals on that first album - a kind of 'glum' rock really. And recently, going back to The Weirdness after quite a while, I was quite surprised at how forlorn and depressed Iggy often sounds on this album. Not just some of the lyrics, but also his delivery - on 'Passing Cloud' and even 'The End of Christianity'!
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Borntohula




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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeTue Feb 12, 2008 12:07 pm

I'v always regarded them more or less like a psychadelic bluesband. Bluesy bass with a psychadelic and jazzy feel to the guitar and drumming.
I think Dirt is the best blues song I'v ever heard. The guitar just flows above the drums and bass and so does Iggys voice.

I'm really dreaming about a 4th Stooges album named Mindroom, with them returning to a more psychadelic feel. An album taking note of ATM, My idea of fun, Passing Cloud, Mexican Guy and O solo mio and devolping from there.
But with out the stuff about money, and just the parts about how stuff feels.
Just like in the old days when it was all about lyrics about being bored, depressed or mad.
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2008 12:15 am

yeah, it's just how the band are so often described as being 'the forefathers of punk' and very little else ... certainly that's how I first heard of them and then when I actually came to hear them - having already heard the staples of British and American punk and 'alternative' rock - I was kinda surprised, and disoriented. Especially as I heard the first two albums first, before hearing 'Raw Power'. Of course the energy and loudness and rawness was there, but my first thought was ... 'hang on, this is WAAAY better than any other 'punk rock' I ever heard!!!'Surprised
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homesickjameswilliamson
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2008 3:04 am

Borntohula wrote:

But with out the stuff about money, and just the parts about how stuff feels.
Just like in the old days when it was all about lyrics about being bored, depressed or mad.

The stooges, well iggy really since he's the only/main lyricist in the band, but the stooges always have an ethos or a theme associated with an album, its a great thing that not a lot of people can pull off, for instance the stooges was obviously about boredom and lack of futurity i guess you can put it, funhouse is about youth - i feel thats the prime thing the stoogs are about, youth, its why they can play with bands their age at festivals yet attract the younger crowd, and seem younger, theyre all about youth, and funhouse is just youth, the ups ( i feel alright) and downs (dirt), raw power was about reaching the bottom of the barrel, unappreciated and i think they were bad into smack at the time or at least gettin into it, and of course the weirdness was about money and its implications etc so i'd like em to do that, i wonder what the next one will be though, and i wonder if it will be in the same style as the weirdnes, cos god knows each album so far has been soo different in sound to each other, just wonder what theyll do soundwise as well, hopefully theyve learnt from the weaknesses mentioned on the forum esp on the weirdness, and pickup and put forward the strengths (o solo mio/sounds of leather/claustrophobia)
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2008 11:22 am

Another way of looking at it, I suppose is to think of them (certainly when they started) as a noisy, experimental, spontaneous 'garage' band (well, I suppose you can add as many labels as you like, really) assimilating many different influences, whatever was in the air at the time ... but they came up with some phenomenal end results!

and, Borntohula, about 'Dirt' .... yes, an absolutely stunning track, but the thing about it, for me, is that the solo automatically puts me in mind of Hendrix and all, the one and ONLY time on those first two albums that Ron sounds like he IS actually copying someone else, whether consciously or unconsciously!
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Borntohula




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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 17, 2008 5:35 pm

Nadja: About Dirt. I think Dirt surpaces anything Jimmi ever did. The only thing that's near the earthy feel of the song is the merman song Jimmi did on electric lady land, but the lyrics on that song is out of this world how crazy they are when Dirt touches you deeply.
And the whole punk born out of The Stooges is nothing I'v ever understood. Since The stooges sounds like nothing else and most "punk" is seriously shit. The so called punk has since forever been bent round the same rules.
Nothing new has been put into the mix.

For example, Death from Above 1979 with it's motorhead combined with disco sounds are light years ahead shit like Rancid. Such shit are just pop songs played with distortion, three chords and the same fucking rytmh. And yes not to forgett the 30+ man childs tryign to act like 14year olds with their miss-belives that punk movement is about shitty clothes.
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homesickjameswilliamson
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 17, 2008 7:00 pm

Borntohula wrote:

And the whole punk born out of The Stooges is nothing I'v ever understood. Since The stooges sounds like nothing else and most "punk" is seriously shit.

Yeh the thing is, that the UK kinda got the wrong impression of 'punk', it started out (sort of) with say the MC5, not really punk, but it all adds up, they added the whole brute force thing of it, i.e. just turn it up louder approach, which still affects rock n roll music, anyway, the VU also added that ''it doesnt have to sound exactly like the beatles or the stones to be good music - it can come from your heart and more importantly mind" approach, total freedom, which they started in new york and has still stayed there with bands like the strokes and yeah yeah yeahs especially, but the stooges are something enitrely different, and yet define what the rest were doing

and keep in mind they didnt just 'create' or predate punk (another point, no one, like no one at all was doin what they were doin, mixing rock n roll with jazz and blues and psychedelia and that much drugs being such a part of the experience and all) but they created heavy metal, punk, grunge, metal, death metal - slayer covered i wanna be your dog as im gonna be your god, nt a great attempt but theyre still good - but they inspired loads, im still of the idea that theres a huge undercurrent of influence by the stooges that hasnt been acknowledged, its like how the stones started everything, but people know that, but the stooges started probably just as much, but no one knows, cos no one knows the stooges, they cant put a face to it. case in point, i saw an interview with iggy and he said he was the first person to wear ripped jeans, of course not the first person to rip their jeans, but the first to go, ah fuck it, ill wear'em anyway, look up and down the streets today, its all you see. they impacted modern culture as well, and iggy started crowd surfing, and jumping into the crowd and everything, no one else did that, and started the whole acting like a dick to the crowd thing, which no-ones replicated yet!

also punk didnt just begin with the stooges, MC5, dolls, etc etc, or even the stones "the beatles want to hold your hand, the stones want to burn your town" it started ages ago, and i think specifically with bob dylan, its always been the underbelly of music, even jazz had its crazies like sun ra and harry partch, blues had different john lee hooker, one chord man, and the stones kinda brought it out a little more, but they were just pure rock n roll, the stooges just brought everything, instead of being on an elevated plain, music being entertainment n all, they destroyed that, and brought it down to this primative level, this base thing, thats were they also started all this 3 chord music stuff, but instead of the uk punks takin it and saying, oh i can play 3 chords, it was about simplicity bringing everything down to a simmer, and it was the same in the lyrics, iggy said he loved dylan but knew he couldnt try it, so he turned it around and brought it down to very few words, he actually said in an interview that he remembered watchin soupy sales show as a child and he said if they were gonna write in to make the letters only 40 words long, and he thought the same, and said that the early songs only had used about 25 words each time, its about bringin everything down to a primative level, no ones done it since, they just get it wrong, its more from the heart than the amp u'no,

although really there is two types of punk US and UK punk, US is about freedom, its an art nowadays ppl like patti smith and television being revered, but it was about this freedom, like, they labelled everyhting becasue b4 them everythin came after something, like stones were chuck berry, beatles were the same then went crazy, but were alsways pop, stones were rock n roll etc, blues is blues, jazz is jazz rules n all, but punk is this label, which they relaly should relabel bcos people get the wrong impression and think johnny rotten, but ts about complete freedom, to be anyhitng at all, the stooges are completely different to the dolls and to the MC5 in musical terms, so is patti smith from television, television from the ramones, ramones from talking heads, talking heads are diferent to pere ubu, pere ubu are different from rocket from the tombs rocket from the tombs are different to suicide etc etc etc etc, its just this difference thing, you can be anyhting at all u'no but where the UK punks got it wrong was they took the message of the stooges boredom and just thought, yeh this is the same as me, im bored and nothins goin on here, and i can play 3 chords, ill sing about it like these guys the stooges and the dolls, but what they didnt realise is that that was iggys critique of middle america, it wasnt a selfindulgent ''oh help me i have a shit life and cant go anywhere" thing, it was telling people who didnt know exactly what wasnt happening in the mid-west, and the dolls another example, they said, yeh we dont have alot, but what can we do about it, the UK punks took that as , yeh we have nothing either .... and that was it, it was just a bunch of working class idiots really, creating a cool swinging 60s type scene of their own in their own time, which you can admire too, but it didnt create much good music, except, and my only exception is Xray Spex, they sound a lot like the stooges, again nothin like the stooges, but they have churning guitar, sax and a crazy lead singer, and Poly Styrene, the lead singer, got it, she knew it wasnt about stupid shit like "No Future" and all that bullshit, she did the same as iggy and used music as a critique, she critiqued modern society and consumerism and commercialism (the day the world turned day-glo) and even critiqued the scene she was involved in (oh bondage, up yours / im a cliche) theyre great, she got it, anyway its just a misinterpretation i believe
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 12:28 pm

'punk' is one helluva label - it's such a loaded term. Maybe it's just a media construct well, aren't all musical labels really? Just ways to describe 'different' types of music, and sometimes bands and artists get pigeonholed because of maybe just one element in their music

but of course punk usually is seen as embodying a certain type of attitude, and yes it just became a boring fashion, for the most part, certainly here in the UK (it was less of a coherent 'movement' in the US, far as I know). The thing about the Stooges though is that they didn't start out with any agenda that I'm aware of, other than making music, and just because of the loudness and energy and stuff, and because the lyrics generally dealt with one type of theme, it became easier, later on, to say that they were 'about' something. But their starting point was just music, whereas with a lot of bands the starting point is a certain attitude (certainly with self-consciously 'punk' bands) or an idea. I don't think that applies to the Stooges, certainly not to begin with. And they just found themselves bundled into a recording studio with a contract long before they became 'proficient' musicians, or harboured ANY pretensions of being so - that's the best thing that could've happened, and it did happen! I don't mean they were wild untutored geniuses - well OK, maybe I do mean that, a bit - but they weren't straitjacketed by notions of what their music should be like, and that worked incredibly well. Hell, they never even had any structure to their songs until the record label forced them. That's why I don't even like calling their stuff - certainly on these first two albums - 'songs'.

anyway, about 'Dirt', I wanna make it clear that I certainly don't think that stuff by Hendrix or any other artist comes anywhere close to anything off those first two albums. All I meant was, on that quite long, drawn-out and melodic solo Ron sounds like he IS taking on the mantle of one of those 'guitar heroes', usually rhythm is HIS thing, even in his solos - remember he started out on bass! - and maybe he IS doing this unconsciously, like I said, but that's the effect it has. I usually have the hardest time in the world trying to compare his playing to anything else in this universe, the attempt usually defeats me. But this is the one time off those first two albums that he DOESN'T sound competely and uniquely like himself, and I just said 'like Hendrix' cos that's a name that springs so readily to mind!
I don't know if I've made much sense but never mind (it's Monday morning, dammit, I just couldn't wait)
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 2:18 pm

The term Punk evolved strongly in time.
I agree on a lot what you write.
But I'm missing an important aspect;

The essence of punk is a do it yourself attitude dissolved from existing rules.
Not some kind of attitude..no..this very specific one.

And if you look at it from that point of view The Stooges were pure punk from the beginning.
Looking out for making music in a new way; new sounds/instruments, new ways of performing, singing, dressing, not connecting with what people would expect... etc. etc. The Stooges were extremely creative and alert to get over certain borders. A punk attitude is mostly about really DOING it.

Interesting is that the term originally comes from the prison environment.
The weakest prisoner which was often (sexually) abused was called a punk.
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 5:37 pm

well 'punk' can mean whatever you want it to mean I guess ...
It's just that it's largely come to mean a certain type of attitude, or sound, exclusive of everything else, and very often it's associated with three chords and sheer aggression and/or nihilism, and stuff like that, that was one of my big surprises when I first came to the Stooges, I'd been led to believe that they really were just 'angry young men' and little else, but it seems they really were having the best time of their lives when making those records, the first two records anyway, just hanging around together and doing their own thing (obviously this was before the really BAD stuff kicked in). The term 'punk' can be really misleading. It seems to have a very narrow usage, generally, certainly here in the UK - just all Sex Pistols' 'anarchy' type stuff or, alternatively, the political idealism of The Clash. And then there's also the horrendous term 'New Wave' to describe the immediate post-Sex Pistols period, in the UK! Of course in America the term has also been applied to more arty and intellectual artists, like Richard Hell and Tom Verlaine and just sheer sassy stuff like the early Blondie (or is that 'New Wave' as well?)
The 'DIY ethic' of punk - good point of course. But in that sense you can call helluva lot of things punk, stretching way back over the centuries and all! Obviously, the term really only emerged AFTER the Stooges began, in the 70s and all, although I'm not sure when the word was first applied to music. Something to do with a magazine - can't even remember which one
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Angusyd van Hyman

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 10:13 pm

With the magazine PUNK ...
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homesickjameswilliamson
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 10:18 pm

Nah, it was in rolling stone magazine's review of the first stooges album, they said ''this sounds like a bunch of punks strollin looking for chicks and burgers" or something to that avail, lol, william burroughs' quote in please kill me "its funny i always thought a punk was someone who took it in the ass" or somethin like that, lol ole burroughs
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JESUS_LOVES_THE_STOOGES
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 10:30 pm

hahahah, Smile
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 18, 2008 10:39 pm

homesickjameswilliamson wrote:
Nah, it was in rolling stone magazine's review of the first stooges album, they said ''this sounds like a bunch of punks strollin looking for chicks and burgers" or something to that avail, lol, william burroughs' quote in please kill me "its funny i always thought a punk was someone who took it in the ass" or somethin like that, lol ole burroughs

oh well, there you go. The Stooges DID invent punk rock after all.
My mistake!
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeTue Feb 19, 2008 7:00 pm

Anyway, I've just remembered that I wanted to talk about the blues in relation to The Stooges, rather than punk. Like I said, I don't think they were particularly angry and stuff when they started out (although later they got taken up in this way) but that melancholy blues streak is definitely there, from the beginning (and most manifest in the first album)and I reckon Iggy was largely responsible for that, what with his background as a blues drummer, and, even more, his well-documented sense of alienation when growing up and all. (I don't know, maybe the others felt like that too, but actually I always kinda think they really had found their niche, just with each other, while Iggy was the outsider among them at first.) Although I don't know how far you can say any one of them brought anything specifically to the band, but of course they all played a part, individually, in shaping the band.
Of course one thing they ALL did was all that trippy, mind-altering stuff, what with all that pot and acid and other things that I don't even know about.
One 'genre' they've never done is country, far as I know!! - and hopefully they never will.
mind you even The Ramones did country - another big surprise when I found THAT out
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeFri Apr 11, 2008 10:19 pm

Like the Velvet Underground they used a lot of jazz for their work. Ron's guitar solos, most on the first album, have jazz influences. On Fun House his solos are more bluesy but with jazz groove.

The Velvets used a lot of jazz, especially on White Light White Heat (Sister Ray has various jazz solos).
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeFri Apr 11, 2008 10:30 pm

are Ron's solos on that first album really that jazz-influenced, eusebioneto? could you be more specific? (I'm always ready to discuss that first album, you see Smile )
I have to admit I really haven't listened to a lot of jazz proper, so I'm kind of ignorant.
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JW82
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSat Apr 12, 2008 2:28 am

eusebioneto wrote:
Ron's guitar solos, most on the first album, have jazz influences.

I think this may come from Robby Krieger's influence on Ron. He stated The Doors first lp as one of his favorites. But what I meant is, when you listen to Krieger's solo in 'When The Music's Over' on Doors' second album - he's using that kinda effect that Ron used mostly in all of the solos on Stooges' debut. At least that's what I can hear. Fore sure these jazz influences may come from other guitarists as well Smile
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Nadja

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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSat Apr 12, 2008 8:01 pm

You've really piqued my curiosity now JW82!! For some reason I've never associated The Doors much with Ron. Iggy, yes, obviously cos of Morrison, but not Ron! Does this mean I'll have to go and listen to 'When the Music's Over' now? I mean, I've heard it in passing, on the radio and stuff, but I've never sat down to listen to it properly I guess. The only Doors album I am familiar with is 'Strange Days', but certainly the guitar there never puts me in mind of Ron, but is that album maybe less typical of their work as a whole?
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSat Apr 12, 2008 8:16 pm

Try to listen to Krieger's both solos in that song. On studio and live versions especially Smile I remember also Ron saying that he was listening to Ravi Shankar when he wrote 'I Wanna Be Your Dog' for example. The influence may be heard in the solo, which sounds a little exotic Smile
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSat Apr 12, 2008 8:24 pm

thanks for the tip, I'll give it a go ... If I do pick up on the similarity, then it'll increase my respect for The Doors enormously! Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSun Aug 17, 2008 7:28 pm

I really enjoy Williamson's playing on bluesy tracks like 'I need somebody' and 'Pinpoint Eyes' too. In fact I'm coming to appreciate it more and more. I'd like to have heard more stuff like this from him. Smile any opinions on this???
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSun Aug 17, 2008 7:39 pm

"Open Up And Bleed" is pretty bluesy as is "Delta Blues Shuffle".
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeSun Aug 17, 2008 11:30 pm

'I'm Your Man' - I'd forgotten - kind of long and meandering
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PostSubject: Re: a case of the blues?   a case of the blues? Icon_minitimeMon Aug 18, 2008 12:05 am

Iggy and James's Ballad of Holllis Brown is great
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