Posts Tagged ‘collaboration’

Dizzy Atmosphere


Saturday, January 1, 2011

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Hello and welcome, True Believers, to 2011. For my first post of the new year, I wanted to do something a little more personal, and well, positive. I thought about writing something on the comics I got for Christmas – but the only one I really liked was King City #12. And if I write about the end of that series I’ll just spoil it for those among us who haven’t been able to track down the back issues. Should I list the comics I got for Xmas that I didn’t care for? Nah. I’m gonna try and write only about things I like this year. I’m getting tired of reading “oh I hated it” reviews. So I figure I’ll just do one of my typically rambling posts about the only book I really did enjoy reading over the Xmas break. Please enjoy this riff.

The book is Dizzy Gillespie’s memoir To Be or Not To Bop. I’m a big jazz fan and this book really set the record straight that Dizzy was truly the founder of the modern style in jazz. It’s basically an oral history with lots of interviews with his contemporaries in the 1940s. Time and time again each interview reveals that it was Dizzy who taught the modern style to everyone else. There were plenty of guys playing the modern style – or trying to – but Dizzy would literally show his bandmates and friends how to phrase things on the trumpet, on the piano, on the bass, on the drums. Apparently he could play just about every instrument in the band and birthed this modern style that would eventually become known as bebop. (more…)

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Saturday, September 11, 2010

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This comic tore me up by which I mean it wrapped me up and held me. Death grip. Eyes closed, squeezing too hard to nothing. SCARY. This comic is WEIRD. I picked it up from the quarter bin. The art looked good, the colors strange and… um, it was a quarter. And by the tenth page I couldn’t take it no more and had to get up and wash the cover, seriously. Quarter bin comics can be GRIMY. Normally I can take it but in this case the grime was comprehensive. It was plaque. Real lived in terror page by page and despite what I’ve seen it’s hard to reconcile what David Wojnarowicz has seen… I take a paper towel and hold it under luke warm water until its soaked and then I squeeze it until I have a damp wad of paper towel in my hand, then I shake the thing out and wipe down the cover (this is how my Grandma taught me to DUST).

Writer: David Wojnarowicz
Artist: James Romberger
Colorist: Marguerite Van Cook
Year: 1996

This comic keeps its distance. Toes on the edge. You can see EVERYTHING. Every God-damned thing. Every sad sad thing. Everything antagonizes in this comic. Everyone is a VICTIM, which could be a criticism but I don’t mind. This comic describes an out of control helplessness, always tragic and leading to one thing: DEATH. And sometimes dying can be beautiful if not ecstatic. FLEETING. We have very little time and what time we do have is out of our control. “The minimum speed required to break through the earth’s gravitational pull is seven miles a second. Since economic conditions prevent us from gaining access to rockets or spaceships we would have to learn to run awfully fast to achieve escape from where we are all heading…”

I’ve seen this cover a million times. I’ve known this cover forever. Where has this comic been? Why haven’t I read it before? What took so long? (more…)

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