Friday, August 11, 2006

sonic youth & john zorn | south bank show | 1989

through the 80's the south bank show had some pretty good documentaries.
the smiths' one immediately springs to mind.
but one episode of the south bank show changed what i listened to and how i listened to it in a totally life-altering way.

the program was called "put blood in the music" - it was a documentary on the new york music scene and i was watching it because sonic youth were on.

what i wasn't prepared for was 30 minutes on john zorn and the effect that watching him had on me.
i had recorded the program - again because of sonic youth, but it wasn't them i watched.
over the next few weeks and months i kept returning to the john zorn piece.
i still watch it at least once or twice a year, just to remind me of how important music can be.

john zorn | spy vs. spy: the music of ornette coleman

i bought "spy vs spy" within a week of the south bank show airing - life would NEVER be the same again.

"spy vs spy" and the interview with zorn taught me how important musical heritage was.
not about classifying, more about connecting.
like seeing the footsteps from robert johnson through bee bop, 60's garage punk, beefheart, prog, punk and into 80's indie as a continuous journey that embraced all types of music.
even the ones i didn't like.


  • At 8:01 AM, Anonymous Alfred Armstrong said…

    I remember that show too. A while earlier I'd bought the Spillane LP on the basis of a press review, but found its piecemeal quality rather uncompelling. All the same when Naked City played London I went to the show with a friend - boom! Road to Damascus! There and then I became a confirmed Zorn fan.

  • At 8:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You might be interested to know that the show is available here.
    I haven't seen it yet, but I will now on your recommendation.

  • At 8:28 AM, Blogger crayola said…

    thanks for the tip.


Post a Comment

<< Home