Van Dyke Parks: Song Cycle

Van+Dyke+Parks+with+brian+wilson[1]

Today is the birthday of that great musical-poetic iconoclast Van Dyke Parks. Oddly enough, experimentalism and Americana go hand in hand — the list of writers, poets, painters and composers who’ve managed to straddle both is surprisingly long. Parks famously tried to steer pop music in that direction with Brian Wilson in the troubled Smile project (which is no longer troubled since its finally seen the light of day). If you haven’t listened to these brilliant tracks, I’ve got nothing to say to ya.

But I’ll cut you some slack if you’ve not listened to Parks’ solo work, as it is obscure in every sense of the word. If you’ve got time and the head space, I reccommend exposing yourself to his 1968 Song Cycle, his project following the disintegration of the Smile sessions. It’ll open your mind, daddy — unless it closes it!

To find out more about the variety arts past and present, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.

safe_image

 

And don’t miss my new book: Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Mediaalso available from amazon.com etc etc etc

chain%20of%20fools%20cvr%20front%20only-500x500

About these ads

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,360 other followers

%d bloggers like this: