Dog Poet in Orbit.
May your noses always be hoses for the crack cocaine of universal brotherhood and impersonal cosmic love.
(A few preliminary, introductory notes. First, you were off the charts generous to James Jancik on our final radio show and he will be having that dinner. For James, let me thank you one and all. And there's good news, if you think it so. James says the downloads of our radio show are impressive and far outstretch the live listeners and that has been a problem for some reason. Nevertheless, James sent me an email yesterday saying that he didn't know where I was at with it but he would love to continue to produce the show and make it available for download so... next Saturday morning you will have the radio show and a regular vlog is coming very soon which, I think you will, find pretty damn original, if I do say so myself. I'm on top of the world today, on a gorgeous July day where the temperature is about 70 degrees. I'm on top of the world because I solved a problem that had been bedeviling me for decades. This has happened before and has marvelous salutary effects. I expect the same. Well, there are a couple of other things but let's get to the post.)
This weekend I attended a two day musical festival. I assume the website is not so colorful now because the mega concert is over but there is a tab line at the top of the page and you can get some feel for the event. It took place in Cologne, which one could say is one of the main cultural centers of Germany. Let me set the stage before I go back stage (grin). We left here early Saturday morning (6:00 AM). I got to sleep around 2:00 AM prior to and the night before I got no sleep. I went with my friend Michael, as his guest and with his daughter, Sarah who enjoys some of this form of music. It was about a five hour drive on the autobahn, where you can go a hundred and twenty miles an hour most of the time and Michael has a new Audi so.... Whoosh.
We got to our hotel(s) and checked in first. I was at a nearby hotel because there was no room at the inn where they were staying. Sarah had a friend who came in another car and as a result Michael and I had to wait for about an hour in the parking lot, while they did the sorts of things ladies do and which are mysterious to the rest of us. Finally, some distance closer to the end of the Kali Yuga, they emerged in their version of Goth/Emo, looking gorgeous under the circumstances.
This concert is a compilation of Goth, Emo and wannabe Satanists and included a measure of S&M torture freaks and alternative sexual expressions, like the tall and very slender blonde guy in a white, plastic mini skirt with a fishnet top. Here are some of the t-shirts people were wearing and it was rare if someone was not wearing a logo shirt; “My parents said I could be anything I wanted, so I became an asshole”. “I am an asshole”. “Hate me”. “Will the darkness possess me? Go to Hell”. “The Devil inside”. “I want to die today”. For some reason, I can't remember a lot of them now. If they come back to me I will intersperse them as we go. Black was the overwhelmingly predominant color and phrases having to do with Satan, death culture, nihilistic acquiescence, hunger for death, oh yeah, and things like this; more logos, “You can either agree with me or be wrong”. “Drink, fight, fuck”. That said, there was no violence. The people were generally good natured and friendly, even though they drank a lot of beer. If this were happening in the UK or the US there would have been fights.
The interesting thing is that with all of the dark advertising, it came off more as a costume ball than any actual celebration of darkness. There were guys dressed in these heavy, floor length black dresses, attended by all kinds of metal accessories like rings, clips, all manner of kinds and types. This was often topped by fishnet, black weave shirts or black t-shirts. Others wore cargo pants with the same motif. I'd say about 95% were dressed this way. Michael was dressed in black but he looked like some kind of paramilitary security. Sarah was in a black evening dress with boots. Here friend had black pants and a 'devil inside' T-shirt and her friend was dressed in routine black. Those two did a lot of clothes shopping. I had on my Jimmi Hendrix velvet jacket, black cargo pants and a black and white checked shirt. I'm sure these details are really important to the reader (grin).
At one point Michael, Sarah and I are focused on this one fellow. He wasn't so dressed up as everyone else but he had the most depraved set of eyes I have seen in a long time. You could see iniquities seldom dreamed of there. We all noticed, so I turned to Sarah and said, “Now there's a blind date for you but only if you are blind”. Then Michael said something about an open hand and I said, “I love an open hand as long as it's attached to a naked body”. There were a ton of one-liners. The result is that I got a song out of it featuring those two lines. There was a certain type of woman there who was statuesque in an Amazonian way and I said, “It would take two men to do her”; not exactly the words I used (grin) but had you seen them you would have known what I meant. There were some number of them. The general attire of the majority of the women was Slutville Central, as each seemed to be engaged in outdoing the rest of them. It was impressive in it's own way. There was a collection of buxom lassies there of what one might call 'economy sized', like when you buy the large container of soap power for your family wash and they were wearing these bustiers that barely contained their produce and seemed to threaten to escape at any moment. You could almost hear them singing, “I want to be free! I want to be free”! And some of them nearly attained this. Cynics might refer to it as a fashion accident but we're taking about something more timeless here.
The place was jammed and sometimes you couldn't move very well. At one point I was watching a band perform and this lady appeared in front of me and decided to take a serious interest in me, which led to some creative groping. I was somewhat bemused. Out of nowhere this guy appeared and swept her away. I don't think he was bemused. Michael was though. Ironically, the next day, I was standing on the other side of the crowd with Michael and there she was right in front of me again. At one point she turned and looked at me and didn't recognize me at all. That Visible charisma must ebb and flow like the tides under the influence of the moon.
The bands, except for degrees of quality were pretty much all the same group and the group which drew the largest crowd was a tribute band, heh heh for Rammstein. I was told they had the number one selling album for a number of months and nobody seemed to notice the difference. I suppose this might be called Clone Rock. Michael tells me that Rammstein is so popular that it cost more to see them than we paid to get into this two day concert. I liked this one group, can't remember the name; Lost, something, something. Though I can find all the other bands listed at Wikipedia, I don't find any with lost in the title. Every singer with every band had the same voice with variations only of power and depth. They all sang in a low voice sort of like Tom Waits, if he was on PCP and there was a lot of screaming. I couldn't imagine their throats holding out for any length of time but... what do I know? One singer was screaming, “I want to hear you scream”. Finally I let go with an, “If you stop singing I will”. That went over pretty well among surrounding ears, along with my “Wrong”, which was in response to an endless repetition of “Right”. I figured out that the engineers were using the same vocal filters on every one of the singers.
Anyway, I was hanging on trying to stay upright, after two nights with not much sleep and told Michael I had to go back to my hotel. He didn't want me to leave because 'Sisters of Mercy' were coming on. It might have been a mercy that I left, I'll never know. Michael says he will walk me to the exit and I say, “So I just go over the bridge (over the Rhine- really wide at this location) and the hotel's right there huh”? He says “Yeah” and I don't think about it. Remember that I am truly bushed and want only to get to the hotel, maybe have a few beers in the bar and just fall gratefully on to my bed. So, it takes me about a kilometer of walking and negotiating to get to the bridge and then a long walk across it. Then I spend half an hour walking all over the place and... I'm moving at a good clip most of the time. People are giving me directions to Micheal’s hotel, “The Dorint”. I come to find out after about 6 K that this is the other Dorint, there are two of them and his and my hotel are back over the bridge on the other side. I walk another extended distance until I find a cab. The driver tells me he can take me to The Skada which is my hotel. We go across the bridge and I see the other Dorint. I say it's right here. He says no and proceeds to take me a couple of miles out of town to what might have been a hotel but which is closed down and empty. I am on the verge of a nervous breakdown after all the adrenalin of my efforts. I get him to take me back to the Dorint and we wind up in front of my hotel. He had been insisting that the other place was my hotel. Thank god I had had the presence of mind not to get out of the cab at the other location. He sees the name of the hotel on my real hotel and this makes him self recriminatory and apologetic. He is insisting on my not paying him. Finally we compromise; more energy expended.
I walk into the hotel and into the bar where the manager is sitting having a beer. I see the clock. It says 9:30. I was moving over distances for more than two hours. The manager says, “You're Les Visible, I know you”. What are the odds? Apparently he had run across my music at some point. He was convinced that I was performing at the festival, despite the vast difference in styles. Nothing I could have said changed it. He wanted me to meet this friend of his who was a producer and had the barmaid at the computer trying to find his email address, which didn't happen. He told me we would have coffee in the morning. I made it up to my room and lights out. I woke at 7:30 or so, still a little whipped and went down to breakfast. The manager was all business and seemed not to remember the night before. I take it he was drunk. I went back upstairs and slept till 11:00. I checked out and went to the festival where I met Michael as arranged. My recuperative powers are pretty outstanding. I don't know why I got put through what I did that night but I suspect it was to show me what is possible. I still can't believe it happened (grin).
I could get much more extensively anecdotal about the concert and any number of amusing things but I have run out of space. Michael says there's a much bigger festival in a few weeks at an abandoned airstrip. It is really too bad I didn't have my HD audio visual sunglasses working for this one but I will for that one so you'll see what I'm talking about. As some might say, “it was a real hoot”.
Friday's radio show is available for listening or download.
'Lucky Day' is track no. 4 of 13 on Visible's 2007 album 'The Sacred and The Profane'