Sunday, April 13, 2014

Personality Crisis

1973 New York Dolls, Personality Crisis.
I went through a period in the early 70's when I could not stand most rock music being sold. The radio was radioactive to me. Pretentious, over produced pop gave me hives! I had becomea jazz snob and was really into fusion jazz rock....Larry Coryell and Carla Bley were my heros. I hung out in a few record stores in Toledo and scoured the bins for Sun Ra and free jazz. Then I saw the first NY Dolls Album produced by Todd Rundgren. It changed my life. The band that proved that attitude was the most important ingredient in Rock. A friend recently told me that they gave him a headache, but it was the kind of headache he loved.  I always thought that David Johansen was one of the greatest rock vocalists ever.  He never really got the credit he deserved, but then again, the dude probably had too much personality, if you know what I mean. These guys wrote the book for punk rock before the term existed. Sure, the little British dudes were prancing around in their glitter glam rock outfits, but The Dolls were pure trash and flaunted it! In the late 70's I was moving Johnny Thunders and Nolan and their band, The Heartbreakers in my lime green Toyota pick up to gigs around NYC, usually for a 5 pm sound check at Max's. The toughest part of that job was waking them up at 4 in the afternoon. It would be almost 5pm and I was dealing with The Dawn of The Living Dead. Crammed into the front seat of the pick up, trying to get them to not snort up the strange chemicals they needed to get "functional" while I was negotiating traffic on Park Avenue. Somehow by the time we moved the amps in, they were ready to play...

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