Friday, April 5, 2013

Chauncey DeVega on Twitter and Did You Know That Jimmy Page Performed the Soundtrack for Charles Bronson's Death Wish 2?

I routinely hate on the Internet and Facebook's hold on young people.

But ultimately, digital technology is just a tool like any other. For example, I was talking to some of my students about the death of "digging culture" among some who claim to be "hip hop heads" and DJ's. They can download whatever they want and do not have to pay the dues of searching for vinyl, and by doing so, educating themselves about music, get mentored by other DJ's and record fiends, and the various other weirdos and sundry characters who hung out at spots like Downstairs Records, Beat Street, and Rock And Soul in NYC.

The worst among them can only work that laptop and press buttons with Serrato. They have not learned essential skills such as beat-matching by ear or telling a story with their music (veterans are grandfathered in and have generally adapted well. Who wants to carry all of those records?) 

This too is a function of digital throw away culture in many ways as well--how can you have a real relationship and investment in your music when there is nothing tangible or "real" about it? Moreover, when you can quite literally have thousands of songs in your pocket? Is there no better example of a capitalist culture of disposability?

I am a cultural materialist. Aesthetics, art, and the mode of production are all intimately related.

The Internet and digital media also provides some great opportunities for random discovery: for example, I am watching Death Wish 2 on AMC, and I said to myself "damn that soundtrack is hot," it would be great on my found Ipod for the daily long walk/run. Google is my friend. It helped me to find out why I was feeling Death Wish 2: the soundtrack was done by Jimmy Page. I love being surprised. Ignorance is the beginning of knowledge.

I am not just a cranky old Luddite man in his thirties. At the encouragement of some friends like Gordon Gartrelle, I am doing that Twitter thingie that those crazy kids have been talking about. If our late great Roger Ebert said it was "okay" I will have to agree. I am on Twitter randomly throughout the day offering up random observations about #ghettonerds and other matters from professional wrestling, sex, politics, my love of congolene hair products, Star Trek, Star Wars, comic books, B-movies, popular culture, public transit, armchair sociology, and the triumph of ign't youth culture here in Chicago. 

I can be found at  It is fun. A few folks from WARN have found me on Twitter and it is nice to be able to chat in real time. Follow me at your peril...insert villainous maniacal laugh.


Dick Destiny said...

Heh. Age/generational difference. The Jimmy Page/Death Wish 2 soundtrack LP was common all across the US in used record bins for 25 cents to a dollar twenty years ago. Or maybe more.

Miles_Ellison said...

Jimmy Page is also a finalist for the '70s-Jesus-as-White-Heavy-Metal-Guitarist Crown of Thorns. This was also one of his first post Led Zeppelin musical releases. The music was good, but that singer was awful.

chauncey devega said...

Everything old is new again!

chauncey devega said...

yes he was. a multi-talented man. a triple threat. me thinks we need some Charles Bronson on the Chicago Transit System!

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Buddy H said...

Like most British guys of his generation, he got his start playing "skiffle" and here he is on a 1957 tv show:

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You always have the gems!

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edella said...

I sampled it about 12 years ago. Check it:

chauncey devega said...

wow. send me an email and bio. good stuff. would be great to build and chat.

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