23 May 2007

A Better Summary of the Early 70s I Can't Think Of . . .

How stupid were the early 70s and the 60s hangover of stupid thinking that lead to bad decisions after bad decisions?

This bad (from the Band on the Run wiki):

After the success of Red Rose Speedway, "Live And Let Die" - the new James Bond theme song - was released as the next "Wings" single (without McCartney's name in the artist credit) and became a worldwide smash. It was at this juncture that Paul and wife Linda McCartney began contemplating their next album. Bored with recording in the UK, they really wanted to challenge themselves and Wings by going to some exotic locale. Asking EMI to send him a listing of all its international recording studios, Paul happened upon Lagos in Nigeria and was instantly taken with the idea of recording in Africa. Alongside the McCartneys, guitarist Denny Laine was set to go, as well as lead guitarist Henry McCullough, and drummer Denny Seiwell. However, a few weeks before departing in late August, McCullough quit Wings in Scotland; with Seiwell following suit the night before the departure, this left just the core of the band, Paul, Linda and Denny Laine, to venture to Lagos alone.

While there, both the McCartneys were mugged at knifepoint, and were accosted in the studio by legendary musician Fela Kuti for fear that Paul was plagiarizing African music (fears which McCartney quickly assuaged by playing Kuti the recorded music), and were persuaded to record at Ginger Baker's studio in Lagos (where he lived at the time) by the man himself, once he heard that the McCartneys were in town. It was a most action-packed time, clearly, and one which only saw the recording of the ensuing album's backing tracks.

I think that sums up so much of that mindset. A massive amount of drugs is the only explanation for the actions of all involved.

Would love to turn that into a screenplay though. Not some love letter to the stupidity that was the late 60s, but a moment in time that captures the stoned thinking and stoned consequences of stoned actions.

Decided to give Macca a try, since most of McCartney's early albums are available on URGE for the first time. Must say, I'm inclined to agree with Robert Cristgau regarding Band on the Run, a decidedly C+ effort (always liked the song Jet, though).

Nothing I've heard from actual former Beatles (or the Beatles themselves for that matter) has swayed me from the opinion that Beatlesque pop is best left to non-Beatles. Both Jellyfish albums are far superior to Band on the Run, and I like both Sean Lennon albums (though to be fair to Sean, neither album is particularly "beatlesque") better than any of his father's output.
And I still prefer the Monkees over the Beatles any day of the week. Matter of fact, watch this video, you know it will make you smile (from the film Head, co-written by Jack Nicholson, this film is an example of good 60s stoner stupidity)

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