Thursday, April 30, 2009

Weekend of Excellence

The view from one of my favourite places on Earth

I had a pretty amazing weekend. T was away with friends so I was free to play all the guitar I wanted. I did sate my guitar needs but I also managed to see my first cricket match of the new season which was a lovely day out on Saturday even if the game itself ended up coasting to a dull draw. The added bonus was that despite apocalyptic weather forecasts it remained dry all day so sitting outside was very pleasant. I treated myself to fish and chips on my way home and managed to time my arrival at the chippy to perfection as a fresh batch of both fish and chips were just coming out of the fryer as I entered the door.

In the evening I watched a lot of Bob Dylan footage and the Dylan documentary "Don't Look Back" before settling down to watch another documentary,this time a surf one, called "Crystal Voyager". I'd found out about this movie through a CD purchase I'd made earlier in the week. I love surf music and I love stoner psychedelia rock too. For this reason "Chairman of the Board - Surf Soundtracks '64 to '74" leapt out at me and I had to have it. Having loved the music I found that one of the films featured was available on DVD and one Amazon visit later "Crystal Voyager" was winging its way to me.

The film is great, the first two thirds are a reasonable matter of fact documentary about surfer and film-maker George Greenough and his attempt to build a yacht for sailing to places too remote for others to try and surf. That was fascinating enough but the last third of the film, which is separate from the rest of the movie is a 23 minute short of abstract footage shot from within the tube of waves and under water. Greenough made a camera mount he could wear on his back whilst surfing and it was using this that he got the footage. The music for that last sequence is "Echoes" by Pink Floyd and the sound and picture complement one another perfectly. Awesome movie, I completely recommend it.

On Sunday I cleaned and tidied the flat and then in the evening I walked up to Camden to see Bob Dylan play the Roundhouse. I'd never seen him before and apparently this was the smallest gig he'd played in about a decade. The music was great although the more successful songs were the more modern ones that played to the Tom Waits style growling delivery which is all his voice is capable of these days. His band is a rootsy, rock and roll, bluesy type outfit and on the newer tracks the whole sound, including Bob, were amazing. He played "All Along the Watchtower" as an encore which was extra special because Hendrix played a really noted gig at The Roundhouse so there was a real sense of history to it. It's a bit bizarre to me that songs like that were written. They seem so much part of our culture that must surely have always been. The idea that this little old geezer on stage in front of me created those things out of nothing is a bit magical. It was a great end to a great weekend.

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4 Comments:

Blogger Churlita said...

That surf guitar Cd sounds wonderful .The first concert my daughter ever went to was Dylan when she was 11. When she got back, I asked her how it went and she said, "Well, he's really old...But the music was good."

9:07 pm  
Blogger booda baby said...

Oh, nice weekend. Are you still going to Toronto? If so, you've got the weather down.

I can't remember the name of the surf film that showed here, but it's about the Irish surf culture and it gives a lot of focus to George somebody or other who - what a surprise! - had Irish roots. (It's a stretch, but ...) Anyway, it IS pretty great and has a deeeelicious sound track, too. Damn. How hard could it be to remember the film's name? Oh well. I'm still travel tired.

4:22 pm  
Blogger Mr Atrocity said...

Churlita, he's even older now but the music was still good.

booda baby, I'm trying to get out of going to Toronto: there's just too much to keep tabs on back in the UK. When you remember the name of the movie, let me know, I love a good surfing film.

6:39 pm  
Blogger booda baby said...

Well Google to the rescue again: Waveriders. And the tiniest of Ireland-story-hooks (but super fascinating history): George Freeth.

4:05 pm  

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